Gove Goes For the Old Boys in the Media

Michael Gove is on fine form today:

“Armando Iannucci, David Baddiel, Michael McIntyre, Jack Whitehall, Miles Jupp, Armstrong from Armstrong and Miller and Mitchell from Mitchell and Webb were all privately educated. 2010’s Mercury Music Prize was a battle between privately educated Laura Marling and privately-educated Marcus Mumford. And from Chris Martin of Coldplay to Tom Chaplin of Keane – popular music is populated by public school boys. Indeed when Keane were playing last Sunday on the Andrew Marr show everyone in that studio – the band, the presenter and the other guests – Lib Dem peer Matthew Oakeshott, Radio 3 Presenter Clemency Burton-Hill and Sarah Sands, editor of the London Evening Standard – were all privately educated. 

Indeed it’s in the media that the public school stranglehold is strongest. The Chairman of the BBC and its Director-General are public school boys. And it’s not just the Evening Standard which has a privately-educated editor. My old paper The Times is edited by an old boy of St Pauls and its sister paper the Sunday Times by an old Bedfordian. The new editor of the Mail on Sunday is an old Etonian, the editor of the Financial Times is an old Alleynian and the editor of the Guardian is an Old Cranleighan. Indeed the Guardian has been edited by privately educated men for the last sixty years… But then many of our most prominent contemporary radical and activist writers are also privately educated.

George Monbiot of the Guardian was at Stowe, Seumas Milne of the Guardian was at Winchester and perhaps the most radical new voice of all Laurie Penny of the Independent – was educated here at Brighton College. Now I record these achievements not because I wish to either decry the individuals concerned or criticise the schools they attended. Far from it. It is undeniable that the individuals I have named are hugely talented and the schools they attended are premier league institutions.”

Gove’s state school and then scholarship education will set him up nicely for a post-Etonian PM world…




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