Good to meet you Joe Ad­cock

The Guardian Weekly - - Diversions -

I first met the Manch­ester Guardian in 1961. That was in Mex­ico City, where I had a fel­low­ship to study at the Univer­si­dad Na­cional Autónoma. I was flu­ent in Span­ish. But the Mex­i­can news­pa­pers were of­ten fi­nanced by, and al­ways un­der the thumb of, the Par­tido de la Revolu­ción In­sti­tu­tional – the allpow­er­ful PRI.

I think I picked the Guardian from the dis­play of news­pa­pers be­cause of its in­ter­est­ing pa­per. It was a sort of tis­sue pa­per called “air­mail weight newsprint”. But, as I read the ac­tual news, I was par­tic­u­larly im­pressed by a ca­sual in­dif­fer­ence to the United States. At that time we Amer­i­cans were ob­sessed with base­ball, foot­ball and lo­cal and na­tional pol­i­tics. The world was what­ever wars, hot or cold, were go­ing on. One at­trac­tion for me about the Guardian was news about an ac­tual so­cial­ist party, Labour, not sub­jects of sus­pi­cions of un-Amer­i­can ac­tiv­i­ties. An­other at­trac­tion was sto­ries about the dis­so­lu­tion of em­pire and the emer­gence of an­ti­im­pe­ri­al­ism. To see re­ports on the dis­so­lu­tion of Dutch, Bri­tish, Por­tuguese, French and Bel­gian em­pires gave a hope­ful sense of the way of the world.

Through the years I’ve been an off and on sub­scriber to the Guardian Weekly. Any­thing that presents an al­ter­nate re­al­ity to con­trast with the gru­elling degra­da­tion of Trum­p­land is wel­come.

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