The media today is merciless. Whether print, television, or social media, there is no dearth of platforms where the ruling PML-N has been feeling pinch from the Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf pushing the corruption narrative. Even without the PTI’s support, the narrative pushes itself – the Prime Minister’s stances are on public record and the party’s anxiety about the results of the Supreme Court investigation are palpable.

In the face of this furore, the top PML-N leadership decided to revisit its media strategy to better counter the more social media savvy PTI. The result; we can expect more of the same. PML-N’s patented ‘fighting fire with fire’ strategy is still their most favoured one and the hawks of the party – like Talal Chaudhry and Daniyal Aziz – have been charged with taking the fight to the PTI. Lists of specific PTI leaders and relevant talking points have been distributed, and we can soon expect a mud -slinging match of the highest order.

Not that it will do much good; Talal Chaudry and Danial Aziz’s press conference after the Qatari letter came into light was juvenile at best and self-depreciating at worst. Hurling inventive barbs and insults at Imran Khan while ignoring the elephant in the room – the Qatari letter – fools no one. It was clear that the press conference was an attempt at diverting attention, and since there was little tangible things they could go after, it was also a superficial one. The party must remember, pointing out someone else’s faults does not wash away one’s own.

What the nation needs right now, from the government’s perspective at least, is restored confidence, which does not come from a negative counter attack, but from a positive campaign designed to highlight the party’s achievements in the development of Pakistan. To this end, the media strategy meeting’s other major decision – sending “senior and sober elements in the party” to media talks shows and public appearances instead of the young, brash ones – may be helpful. They will be charged with defending a flawed and difficult government stance, and we shouldn’t expect miracles out of them, but a party member who represents a notable period of service and does so in a dignified way might influence the voters to remember why they chose the PML-N in the first place.