Katie Hopkins: 'There is no Such Thing as Fact Anymore"
Controversial Mail Online columnist Katie Hopkins trashed all traditional journalistic notions of truth or fact at a Media Society event this week, claiming "there is no such thing as fact anymore".
"Politically all reporting is biased and skewed," she added. "There is no truth, only the truth of the interpretation of truth that you see."
'In Conversation' with Decca Aitkenhead of The Guardian, Hopkins, who once described herself as "Britain's biggest bitch", also reasserted her belief - at first tweeted but then removed - that Saturday' incident outside the Natural History Museum in Kensington was a "terror attack" and said the BBC's report that it was a Road Traffic Accident amounted to "blatant State propaganda".
'I don't buy that it was a road traffic accident'
"I don't buy that it was a road traffic accident, I am suspicious because of the headline that says 'he deliberately drove into us', I am suspicious about where it happened, that he hit a bollard and carried on driving," she explained.
"We can never talk about what we should do after a terror attack in this country, we have to say we stand united, we are not cowed, light a bloody candle, make a heart gesture at the sky, have a hashtag, I am sick of all that Labour nonsense by Sadiq Khan. We are not allowed to talk about Muslim extremism - enough!"
Holmes derided accusations that she was doing the job of ISIS by encouraging people to believe it was terrorism. "I think our political class are responsible because they have failed to act or do anything about the 23,000 active jihadis on the watch list.
"Do I want to round them up? Yes. Do I want to deport as many of them as I can? Yes. Can you believe that Channel Four made a documentary about 'The Jihadi Next Door' - it's bonkers.
"It's the appeasers who are doing the work of the terrorists in this country."
'Fact is an antiquated expression, all reporting is biased'
Of the journalistic maxim that "comment is free, facts are sacred", Hopkins later said: "I have no belief in fact. Fact is an antiquated expression. All reporting is biased and subjective. There is no such thing as fact any more.
"There's biological, scientific fact but politically all reporting is biased and skewed. There is no truth, only the truth of the interpretation of truth that you see."
Asked why, in person, she was "courteous, kind and pleasant", but seemed to take a "gratuitous pride" at the keyboard for "being as ugly as humanly possible", Hopkins said: "When I write it's one big gush which is later edited and legalled."
'We can't be seen to piss them off'
She justified her describing migrants as "cockroaches" because, with all the hardships migrants had to face, she had recalled that cockroaches were "the only creature that could survive a nuclear holocaust". The comparison prompted condemnation from the head of the UN, arrest under cautioned for 'hate crime' by the UK police - actions she claimed had been prompted by complaints from the Society of Black Lawyers.
"And as an officer said to me 'we can't be seen to piss them off'. I have been reported to social services twice over the welfare of my children and had inspectors at my house because people think they can take you down. But if you put yourself out there, you suck it up. I don't like it - but you have to really mean what you say and stand by your words and take the flak."
But did freedom of speech extend to calling a nine-year-old autistic child on TV "a twat"? "All parents want a badge when they don't bring their kids up successfully," she answered. "They trot to the doctors and get a bottle of pills and now one in four children are declared educationally sub normal."
'Tired of arguments about free speech'
"I am tired of arguments about free speech. It can be nebulous, vague and without purpose. What I am trying to stand for is to show people that there are lots of different views out there which you might disagree with or even hate. But I want people to stand up and own their opinions, which cannot be right or wrong."
Of her planned tour of schools, entitled 'Stand Strong Schools' under the banner Hopkins said: "We don't have to agree to get along, we can agree to differ.
"Young people email me all the time and ask me to come to their schools because they are sick of being told what to think."
One politics student who "quite liked Trump gave up because he was told by teachers that he couldn't think that."
Although the Welsh secretary said she was "not welcome", along with the Scottish Secretary and Cardiff City Council, as well as both countries' teaching unions, when Welsh TV polled the audience, 90 percent said yes.
"The Lefties don't want me to come but people are offering to pay for halls. It's quite extraordinary." She claimed her main audience on Twitter is 17-24 year olds, and that her young audience at LBC had been bigger than Capital.
'The truth has cost quite a lot of money'
Meanwhile, Hopkins agreed that her view of the truth had "cost quite a lot of money", quoting the £150,000 damages a family who were barred from boarding a flight to America after claiming they had terrorist links.
"But if you delete a tweet, apologise in the words given by someone's solicitors, then the bar for litigation is lower than my labia - and my labia is pretty damn low!" she told a largely sympathetic audience. "But it breaks my heart that every bit of legal advice is settle, settle, settle. This is just a litigious society - it's madness".
On lying about her epilepsy and taking "thousands of pounds of taxpayers' money" to be put through Exeter University and Sandhurst Military Academy, Hopkins "completely agreed" that that had been "wrong" - and would have "shredded someone else" for doing the same.
"My job is carrying on because so many people can't say what they think because it's not worth the backlash... It's so claustrophobic. We don't have free speech. Someone is always an ist."