A theme emerging from this series is that there is often a great deal of difference between the headline and the actual story that follows. Obviously that’s mostly down to sensationalism. The newspaper gets across the propaganda point it wants to, and then covers itself (if it bothers to) by admitting that the story’s a bunch of crap in the 17th paragraph.
This is the rationale behind this breathtaking headline in – where else? – the Daily Express:
“EU’s plan to liquify corpses and pour them down the drain”
Because our great tabloid press loves nothing better than an EU scaremongering story. The story has now removed the story from its website, but you can see how it used to look here. As Tabloid Watch points out, the basis for this story was dead wrong (sorry).
Because when the Express said ‘EU’s plan’ what they actually meant was ‘Belgium’s Flemish Association of Undertakers’ plan’. It’s easy to confuse the two.
The EU Representative to the UK pointed out: “Whatever Belgian undertakers decide regarding funeral arrangements is a matter for the Belgian authorities. Just like it’s a matter for the UK authorities in this country. The EU has no competence in this matter and to suggest otherwise is wide of the mark.”
In conclusion: incorrect story, fantastic headline. And certainly worthy of number seven in our series.