29 MAY 1964, Page 10

typically ludicrous Beaver- brookian flourish—com- bining all the best features

of his papers' style. Every- thing was there—the Common Market, xeno- phobia, inconsistency and exaggeration in the cause of propaganda bordering on deliberate inaccuracy.

The saga of the great Beef Scandal started

on Tuesday with a murmur of little news stories like the one in The Times (`BEEF DEARER IN SCOTLAND') and a quite restrained article from Donald Gomery in the Express, pointing out that beef prices were rather high and that 'two fac- tors' could be blamed for the situation. 'One is the failure of the Argentine to supply us with enough meat at this period.' (Nicely put, that.) `But the fundamental trouble is that the British farmer does not get enough encouragement from the Government.' It was not until the next day that the Express first discovered a 'crisis' on hand, and first got its teeth into the real culprit —when readers of the front page were told that `Foreign buyers with thousands of pounds to spend sent the price of beef soaring yesterday.' But even then a certain restraint still operated on the leader page, where the answer to the question `Whom should the housewife blame?' still came firmly, The Government.' By Thursday the left hand and the right hand were at last in touch. 'BEEF BUST-UP—"FAMINE" WARNING' shouted the front page—and twice the leading editorial stabbed home the identity of the culprit, The