Anyone that does media studies or has taken a journalism course will have more than likely come across the saying "today's newspaper is tomorrow's chip paper."
On a metaphorical level, this saying relates to the timeliness of news; however, on a literal level it is also quite true. I know of many takeaways that use yesterday's newspaper as wrapping for your fish and chips.
There are many newspapers I would rather not have my fish and chips served in, though, as it would leave a bad taste in my mouth due to those publications' crass so-called journalism.
Today's case in point is The Daily Mail—a British tabloid.
To say that one is not affected by the agenda of various news media is to tell one big porky.
What do I mean?
In October of 1996, a Frenchman from the Alsace region of the country took over the management reigns of Arsenal FC.
At first the British media laughed a little at the geek who looked more like an accountant or teacher than a football manager. The favourite headline being "Arsene Who?"
You see they would watch this man come in, manage Arsenal for a while but then fail horrible and scuttle off back to the continent. "Johnny Foreigner" could never compete with the most British of British.
Sadly for the xenophobic section of the British media, Arsene Wenger succeeded and succeeded magnificently. In his first full season he won the double while introducing a brand of sublime, passing football.
His success continued and over the years the xenophobic nature of the media continued to raise its ugly head.
"He's introducing too many foreigners into our beautiful game, it is his fault our national team are suffering" they screamed.
Yes, this came from the exact same British media that have celebrated the skills of Henry, Bergkamp and Cantona over the years. The exact same media that hail Cristiano Ronaldo, Fernando Torres and Robinho for joining the best league in the world and are about to welcome Kaka with open arms.
Since he was a success, the media had to paint him as something else. So he became the "most incredible whinger the world has ever seen".
Is Arsene Wenger a whinger? Without a doubt. However, he is no better or worse that Alex Ferguson, Jose Mourinho or any other manager of a club you dare to choose.
I could guarantee that Arsene Wenger and Alex Ferguson could both say the exact same thing word for word, however Wenger will be painted as a "whinger" while Ferguson will be the one "playing the management game".
Which brings us to the many statements made today about Kaka's impending move to Manchester City for a record-breaking fee.
Several people involved at all levels of football were asked to give their views on this deal. It is important to remember they were asked, it was not something they themselves brought up.
Regardless, people ranging from Alex Ferguson to Alan Shearer were asked and gave their views. It was reported that they were in "disbelief" at the money being mooted but were in no way dismissive of Manchester City.
The same question was asked of Arsene Wenger at his regular weekly conference. The reply given by Wenger is what is expected of a man with a master in economics.
When asked he replied:
"First of all I don’t know if it’s true. We have not seen it and that is the difference. We have seen it in the papers but that doesn’t mean these numbers are true.
It doesn’t look real to me at all. It is like an abstraction. If you say to me 'I am a billionaire', I say 'OK but I don’t know what it really means'. It [the offer for Kaka] doesn’t look in connection with today’s world because on one side we have the economic situation which is quite worrying and for me this is abstraction.
I don’t feel in connection with that at all because we live in a football club which lives in the real world. That means we spend the money we make from our income.
The implications [of a £100million transfer] would be disturbance on the market. Inflationary trend in a deflationary world.
But it leaves Arsenal where we are now. That means we spend the money we produce and we make. We are in a world where we live from three kinds of income – gate receipts, the sponsors and the television money. That is the real world of football.
The rest is exceptional and is not the rule of our world. It is a special income with unlimited resources, but it’s not the real world.
Whether it is us, Sunderland or Coventry we live with the same rules. Manchester City are in a different world because they do not live with their income."
Reading this, one would take it that Wenger is referring to the difference in the money Manchester City can now spend compared to the current economic slowdown.
He also comments on how Manchester City are different from many other clubs including Arsenal as they now have access to unlimited funds. It can be argued that City have "out of this world" resources while Arsenal inhabit a world of the vast majority of clubs who rely on gate receipts and television money.
There may be a hint of fear in what the Arsenal manager said, who isn't afraid of the megabucks Manchester City now have? However, it was his response to the richest club in world football.
So as I said, there is probably more than a hint of jealousy and fear in what Wenger said but it hardly contributes to a "whinge" does it? Well it would if you read The Daily Mail and the wonderful slant they put on events.
"HATCHET MAN: Wenger is still trying to convince the world that Arsenal are hard done-by" - screamed the headline in the paper.
Sorry, correct me if I'm wrong but did Wenger not pile Arsenal in with the majority of clubs worldwide while admitting that Manchester City are a special case?
The report started "Arsene Wenger should get off his soapbox about the morals of football's finances."
This coming from a journalist standing on his soapbox complaining about Arsene Wenger's morals. Here my journalist friend a little tip for you 'don't want to know a man's view on something, don't ask him.'
This wonderful piece of literature continued: "He says his club live in the 'real world' while their rivals owned by super rich benefactors are 'not in connection to today's world', but that is self-serving garbage."
I beg your pardon Mr. Journalist, but where did Mr. Wenger mention Arsenal's "rivals?" He mentioned Manchester City when asked but where did he mention Manchester United, Chelsea, Liverpool or Aston Villa?
'Agh I see Mr. Journalist, you added that part in to create the image of a whinger didn't you?' Funny I call this sort of journalism "self-serving garbage".
This rubbish, I mean article, went into overdrive by stating "Wenger's funding rants are designed to convince the world to see Arsenal as hard done-by." Of course it is Wenger ranting isn't it Mr. Journalist the deluded man that you are.
Some may find this laughable, others may think this is simply an Arsenal fan defending the manager of her club, either way I have not reached the creme de la creme. The line to end all lines.
Brace yourself folks as apparently Arsene Wenger is still jealous of Chelsea because of Roman Ambramovich giving out gifts. Here, read it for yourself.
"Chelsea have 'borrowed' their money from Abramovich, the difference between him and Arsenal's bankers is that he doesn't appear to be paying interest and may not want it back."
Is this not the most hilarious, unfounded statement you have ever read? Ambramovich "may not want his money back". A man who has lost numerous billions in the last year "may not want his money back".
There was us idiots in the "real world" been lead to believe Chelsea are attempting to become self-sustainable before Ambramovich decides enough is enough. Chelsea fans you are worrying about nothing as he "may not want his money back".
This exceptional journalistic talent ended his wonderful piece by saying "City's money seems to be investment and while it may not be part of a sustainable business plan like the one Wenger's paymasters think they have adopted, it is still a business plan, and Arsenal should stop moaning about it."
Okay!!! Did Wenger comment on it? Yes. Is he perhaps a tad jealous and a bit fearful? Yes. Is he moaning? Hardly.
Then again Mr. Journalist he did say it in a French accent and not a deep London one, we'll have to keep the "foreigner" in his place, won't we?
So there you have it folks! You have the original transcript of what Arsene Wenger said - was it one long moan or one long comment?
Well its the former if you believe the journalists at the Daily Mail who are so brave and adamant in their views they didn't even put their name on the byline.
Whoever you are Mr. Journalist, I wouldn't wrap my chips in your filth.