John Humphrys and BBC bias

 

 I was pleased to see that John Humphrys agrees the BBC has shown bias and misunderstanding of the public mood on EU matters and immigration.

I would have been more impressed if today he had given a better and more balanced interview to the Australian Foreign Minister.  Instead he  first  attacked her for trying to stop deaths at sea through people trafficking, a policy many of his audience would support. Then he moved on to try to get her to stop the special relationship with the Queen and the UK  by querying the presence of the Union flag on the Australian one when again many of his listeners support it and are proud of it. I loved her answer when she said that sadly many Australians had been proud to die for what that flag symbolises.

He could make up for this misjudgement by inviting on a senior EU representative and giving them a really hard time about

 

high energy prices

youth unemployment in the EU

Mass unemployment in the Eurozone

their role in the current Ukrainian crisis

and the many other sins of EU policy which we in the UK dislike

 I somehow do not expect to hear that any time soon.  The BBC refuses the hold the EU to account for its many errors, bad laws, wasteful spending  and policy mistakes.

 

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66 Comments

  1. Ex-expat Colin
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 5:35 pm | Permalink

    Suddenly my radio on/off switch has failed…thankfully OFF. Odds are good on TV switch failure soon…I hope.

  2. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 5:40 pm | Permalink

    No chance of the BBC even exercising balance in EU affairs let alone holding them to account when the BBC receives £millions in EU funding, tries to hide it in its accounts and only admits it under sufferance when a Freedom of Information request is made. Add to that the fact that the part-time BBC Trust chairman Chris Patten is a former EU Commissioner and Euro enthusiast and you know that far from criticising the EU, the BBC propaganda machine will be in action at every opportunity to praise the foreign organisation which purports to govern us.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 11, 2014 at 6:25 pm | Permalink

      The BBC is for ever cheering on totally the wrong policies of ever more EU, ever more regulation, more government, more lefty lunacy, more tax, borrow and waste, more misguided market interventions, more expensive religious energy, more train and bikes and more totally uncontrolled and unselective immigration, more dumbed down education, more payments to augment the feckless, more disfunctional NHS, more enforced “equality” and PC drivel.

      But these are also clearly the policies of Cameron (one assumes that is why he appointed Patten to maintain them). So any referendum he holds (and not much chance of that anyway) would go heart and soul’s way helped by BBC propaganda.

      • Hope
        Posted March 12, 2014 at 8:30 am | Permalink

        But why should the BBC act differently from the government? Cameron allowed £18 million pounds of taxpayers’ money to be spent on propaganda to promote closer union to the EU. Why would Cameron want the BBC to act differently, it would be a waste of the £18 million pounds. So when he and JR says Conservatives are for low taxes who could believe it when so much of our hard earned money is wasted in this way?

        • Lifelogic
          Posted March 13, 2014 at 7:04 am | Permalink

          Indeed 299+ tax increases and they want us to thing they are for low taxes. You can only be for low taxes if you stop pissing money down the drain.

          Cameron in his heart and soul (and measured by his actions) is as pro EU as Nick Clegg is. Also as devout a fake green crap as Ed Davey.

  3. Bill
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 5:54 pm | Permalink

    Yes, and the sad thing is that Humphrys is probably the best of the bunch. His constant interruptions can become manic. Still, at least he admits that the BBC’s failings are real and not simply a figment of Conservative imagination. Like the Labour note left on the desk in the Treasury after the election saying ‘there’s no money left’ (http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/politics/7732661/Labours-warning-to-new-Government-theres-no-money-left.html), Humphrys’ admission should be repeated whenever necessary.

    • ian wragg
      Posted March 11, 2014 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

      But as Humph says, the BBC only recruits the brightest and best so we plebs are stupid for not following BBC think.
      I no longer pay my licence as I refuse to subsidise the fake green, pro EU left wing dogma of the BBC. I could join the Labour or Lib Dumbs party if I wanted that. ( or indeed the non-conservative party).

    • Aunty Estab
      Posted March 11, 2014 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

      JR, would be interested to hear any ideas you might have as to how we are ever to be rid of all this BBC, EU, Climate Change ,Old Etonian, PC rubbish that is ruining the country.As voting Labour or Conservative is to elect the same sort of people is the only way to have a revolution like Ukraine?

      • APL
        Posted March 12, 2014 at 7:47 am | Permalink

        Aunty Estab: “is the only way to have a revolution like Ukraine?”

        The easy thing to do then is leave the EU. Presto!! the EU starts meddling in your internal affairs – regardless of the consequences.

        Big brotherBBC: “war is peace’.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 11, 2014 at 6:31 pm | Permalink

      As I see it the BBC has an endless stream of interviewers with lefty, arts grad, BBC think, fake green, loony opinions that is shown in almost every question they ask and Andrew Neil who seems fairly middle of the spectrum and fairly bright.

      From the sensible right they have no one at all and never have had.

      They are state sector think to the core.

      • alan jutson
        Posted March 11, 2014 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

        Lifelogic

        “sensible right” ?

        Sensible middle/balanced /truthful/common sense !

        Now that would be helpful !

      • APL
        Posted March 12, 2014 at 7:51 am | Permalink

        Lifelogic: “endless stream of interviewers with lefty, arts grad, BBC think, fake green, loony opinions”

        These are the prime product of forty years of the Great British State university system.

        The State education system turns them out. The state ( the BBC, the Civil service, Quangoes, et al) employ them.

        All told, a massive counterproductive drain on the British economy (with positive feedback).

        The amazing thing, the whole economy hasn’t collapsed by now!

        • Lifelogic
          Posted March 13, 2014 at 7:12 am | Permalink

          The only reason it has not is the huge advances in engineering, farming, mining, production and manufacturing efficiency.

          But the benefits of these are nearly all stolen by the bureaucrats, lawyers, accountants, courts, duff legal systems, governments, the feckless and endless other largely parasitic activities.

  4. margaret brandreth-j
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 5:59 pm | Permalink

    I remember about 10 years ago saying to mum on the telephone when she was making disparaging remark about John Humphrey’s, that I quite liked him,; she said well you being a Tory would. I am not sure what the connection with the conservative party is and what is more I am not an anything. I vote when the script is right.
    He is a bit clumsy at times and acts like a spoilt kid when he can’t get his own way , but I quite like him.
    You really don’t like the Beeb, yet all sides show what is hot at the moment and reveal a bias in keeping with editors whims.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 11, 2014 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

      The main problem apart from their lefty, pro EU, bid state, greencrap, (dig holes and fill then in again magic money tree) economic beliefs is that they are rather dim art grads who cannot think as they go along. They go in with a fixed “BBC think” agenda and a list of silly questions. They rarely listen to the replies given and just continue with the next question on their list. Even if the last answer given has rendered the next question redundant.

      Kirsty Walk is perhaps the worse of all, with her chip on the shoulder, lefty, BBC think “feminist” views which drip from every daft question she ever poses. Paxman at least tries to hide his views slightly and can occasionally adjust his line of questioning.

      • margaret brandreth-j
        Posted March 12, 2014 at 3:22 pm | Permalink

        Why confine this to the BBC. Your comment about making a question/ answer redundant can be applied to all organisations who have a fixed set of questions.This is typical of research questions and questions which cannot be answered yes or nor directly as it is not a matter of either/or.
        I in the 90′s/0′s went on many many interviews and this sort of questioning went on in nearly all interviews. I felt like saying I have just said that; can’t you understand? but of course one doesn’t, but simply use tautology instead for the sake of their format.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted March 13, 2014 at 7:13 am | Permalink

          Perhaps saying “I have just said that were you not listening” would be better.

  5. arschloch
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

    Erm you might find an EU rep pointing out its not the EUs fault but HMGs. Expensive petrol? Its HMG who decides that we suffer such huge levels of duty. Youth unemployment? Compare the UKs to a state like Germany’s who is at the heart of Europe. Driving Russia into an alliance with China and making the Eurasian land mass unstable? Blame the UK for continually deluding itself it has a “special relationship” with the US, who is involved in yet another game of geo-politics.

    • yulwaymartyn
      Posted March 11, 2014 at 8:26 pm | Permalink

      arschloch: a very good reply. That is exactly what they would say in answer to these questions.

    • Anonymous
      Posted March 11, 2014 at 9:13 pm | Permalink

      The EU is ostensibly left wing. The BBC, therefore, feels it has no reason to question it. Nor does it question Tory policies where they align with dear energy, high immigration, interference in world issues.

      Clearly the EU is an extension of US reach and I suspect that any Eurosceptic PM on coming to office is taken to a back room and met by ‘special’ types who tell them exactly how things are going to be.

      Not ‘deluded’. Over a barrel more like. This explains the change of character which seems to overcome many.

      Yet again the unwitting Left (the BBC) take up the fight for their sworn enemies, on culture this includes the misogynists and the homophobes – anything so long as it is not English. Bob Crow was right in saying that the EU is a capitalist conspiracy. He was right not to support any party.

      A vote for any of the major parties is a vote for more of the same.

      • uanime5
        Posted March 13, 2014 at 1:31 am | Permalink

        The EU is ostensibly left wing.

        Clearly the EU is an extension of US reach

        So are you claiming the US is also ostensibly left wing?

    • Douglas Carter
      Posted March 11, 2014 at 10:34 pm | Permalink

      Removing the UK from the EU will denude any and every UK politician from blaming the EU on any such matter. It’s very much the central principle under which many of ‘us’ on that side of the debate form our views.

      ‘We’ wish Westminter Parliamentarians to be sole custodians of their decisions, and be solely responsible for the accounting.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted March 13, 2014 at 7:15 am | Permalink

        Indeed democracy demands that the politicians have real powers to act.

    • Mark W
      Posted March 12, 2014 at 6:46 am | Permalink

      I don’t understand the point about fuel tax. Yes it is high. That combined with the price of raw energy is the problem. Of the fuel tax was cut to compensate then where does the tax come from?

      The energy whacking us is gas/electric/heating oil. All low taxed and hurting because of EU policy.

  6. Iain Gill
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 6:07 pm | Permalink

    yes I heard the interview and thought the bbc were a disgrace.

    like most Brits I was wishing the British political class were half as decent as the Australian equivalents seem to be on this issue.

    • Leslie Singleton
      Posted March 11, 2014 at 7:09 pm | Permalink

      Some of us would love Australia a little more if we could understand why they, and New Zealand, felt the need to suck up to America by naming their currencies dollars.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 11, 2014 at 9:10 pm | Permalink

      They still elected Julia Gillard, so even in Australia plenty are totally deluded – even if they have come to their senses finally with Tony Abbott.

  7. acorn
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 6:56 pm | Permalink

    The trouble is JR, that the BBC doesn’t know how to hold the EU to account. There isn’t a BBC reporter, who knows enough about the EU to ask sensible questions. As mentioned elsewhere today, unless the British media can bring an EU conversation down to the “bent banana” level; (Regulation (EC) No 2257/94), there is no way they will ever get it past a programme Editor.

    It was pretty much the same at the Treasury Select Committee today. We had a bunch of MPs who didn’t know enough to ask sensible questions and spent most of their time, trying to trick the Governor of the BoE, and his wingmen, into making political statements. Particularly about Scotland.

    It really must be exasperating for the Governor to have to keep hidden how a sovereign fiat currency economy actually works, and pretend it is like a household budget. All, so politicians can whine on about government deficits and debt and how the world will end if the debt goes over 90% of GDP. (Someone should tell Japan).

    The trouble is the Treasury has let the cat out of the bag thanks to the last government. But, only a numerate few will be able to understand “Whole Government Accounts”. WGA sets out a nations accounts in the same way that Tesco and other large corporates have to for potential investors. For instance, the Government Treasury and its wholly owned subsidiary, the Central Bank (BoE), are one and the same in reality. That is, they are treated exactly the same as MMT (Modern Monetary Theory) aggregates them as the sovereign fiat currency issuer (not a user like a household).

    Neil Wilson at “3spoken” can fill in the detail for you, if you are interested; you should be (UK Whole of Government Accounts – Some Juicy Quotes).

    If our next government should wish to reduce the government budget deficit to zero by 2018/19, while still having a Balance of Payments trade deficit, you will be able to witness the private sector households, slowly but surely, going broke. The private sector knows that this Osborn’s policy. They know that will reduce household spending power; less customers turning up to buy stuff. Why would any company invest to increase output knowing that?

  8. Peter Martin
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 6:57 pm | Permalink

    Mr. Humphrys, in his capacity as a speaker for the nation, and interpreter of events, does seem to be engaging mouth more than brain of late, especially if he is hoping to avoid dark looks around the studio and those corridors where BBC bigwigs do so much of their best work free of record or, often, remembering.

    Speaking of such market rate talents, Mr. H it appears has also claimed the BBC does what it does, so well, due to having only the best and brightest, to university level, and such folk will of course not be conservative in nature.

    If he says so.

    One might wonder if such a claim from a conservative quarter would be treated by him and his colleagues with sober introspection, or more howls for positions to be considered?

    It seems the Eloi can diss the Morlocks, but woe betide any horny-handed son of the soil who may wonder out loud what the arts graduates packing our national treasure actually do, besides earn a lot of money wasting that the public is forced to give them, to blow on vanity projects, pay rises, gardening leaves, sidestepping, new departments, more staff, legal fees and compensation to those unimpressed with their not having a great grasp of the law. All with zero accountability and near universal FoI exemption. The trust and transparency just oozes from every pore does it not?

    One can see why the BBC [heart] the EU, and the EU reciprocates.

    Just not too sure how any of this actually serves Britain. You know, the country in theory at the forefront of the BBC’s logotype.

  9. margaret brandreth-j
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 8:04 pm | Permalink

    Yet you know, whoever we dislike or like, whatever is spoken in parliament , business will lead. I have just been to my local Italian restaurant , got into my French car and listened to Bachs’ ‘St Johns Passion’ Isn’t that European enough ? choice allows us to dip into and out of different EU Countries products and services.Is that not enough?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted March 13, 2014 at 7:21 am | Permalink

      Of course to be anti the EU and the EURO is to be pro Europe and pro the peoples of Europe and pro democracy and peace.

      Vive la différence

  10. forthurst
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 8:15 pm | Permalink

    The BBC continually misrepresents reality by distortion and omission in order to groom its audience into false beliefs; its interviewers are rude and ignorant, its programmes are poorly researched and poorly presented. Nothing will ever change unless change is forced on it.

  11. John E
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 8:15 pm | Permalink

    I was in Australia at the time of the Royal Wedding, which was just after Anzac Day. Both occasions were very movingly marked without the cynicism that prevails here. The Australian Foreign Minister did well to put him in his place.

  12. Cary
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 8:26 pm | Permalink

    Having read Humphrey’s comments, he is talking about the BBC’s attitude to the EU and immigration in the past – still no recognition that the problem of bias exists now.

  13. Dabble
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 8:46 pm | Permalink

    I cannot see the Conservative party ever winning another election with the BBC continuing in its current guise. It monopolises radio and television, with its bias prevalent in much of its output from the News, documentaries, drama, comedy and the arts. It promotes the views and opinions of minor media organisations such as The Guardian and The Independent whilst demonising the output of a populist newspaper such as The Daily Mail. I disagree with the corporation’s world view, yet I am forced to pay a tax – under threat of imprisonment – to pay for it and the lavish salaries and pensions of its employees. The day the Conservative Party grows a pair and stands up to the BBC is the day I shall consider voting for them again. Until that day, they are doomed to either election failure – or timidity in the unlikely event they have a finger on the levers of power.

    • uanime5
      Posted March 13, 2014 at 1:36 am | Permalink

      I cannot see the Conservative party ever winning another election with the BBC continuing in its current guise. It monopolises radio and television, with its bias prevalent in much of its output from the News, documentaries, drama, comedy and the arts.

      The BBC hasn’t had a monopoly since ITV was created and with all the thousands of channels from all over the world the BBC has a much lower influence than in the past.

      It promotes the views and opinions of minor media organisations such as The Guardian and The Independent whilst demonising the output of a populist newspaper such as The Daily Mail.

      So if you disagree with a newspaper it’s a minor media organisation but if you like it then it’s a populist paper. That’s pretty hypocritical.

  14. Max Dunbar
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 9:00 pm | Permalink

    There is no point in moaning about the BBC unless words are backed up with action.

    If the premise is that the BBC is biased, incorrigibly left-wing but funded by the taxpayer then some things can be achieved.

    Firstly, we mere plebs do have a choice at the moment. We can get rid of the telly, watch the computer and dispense with the licence fee (and bin all the threatening letters).
    Secondly, why do right-wing politicians tolerate the hectoring, constant interruptions, increasing impertinence and setting of the agenda by these aggressive and arrogant inquisitors?
    If the BBC is not impartial, which it will never be, then take the fight to the BBC. Treat them as if they were members of the Labour Party and take the initiative. Ask them some searching questions for a change. Refuse to put up with cheek and attack them on subjects not of their choosing. Walk off the set if necessary. Hang up the phone – as Farage did with the obnoxious and offensive BBC hack who ‘interviewed’ him shortly after the Edinburgh incident.

    In other words, do not give them either the deference or safe place that they think they deserve. Why let them get away with it?

  15. formula57
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 9:06 pm | Permalink

    People whinge about the BBC but not enough do as I do and (legally) deny it the oxygen of funding.

    What a pity your friends Millar and Grayling confine themselves to paying lip service to taking proper measures to sort the BBC out.

  16. Martin
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 9:17 pm | Permalink
  17. zorro
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

    The BBC refuses to criticise the EU because it receives funding from it….http://www.telegraph.co.uk/culture/tvandradio/bbc/9055183/BBC-admits-receiving-millions-in-grants-from-EU-and-councils.html

    It will not bite the hand it feeds from….

    zorro

    • uanime5
      Posted March 13, 2014 at 1:37 am | Permalink

      The BBC receives more funding from the government than the EU. Are you claiming that because of this funding it won’t criticise the government?

  18. Posted March 11, 2014 at 10:19 pm | Permalink

    By my judgement the BBC has always had a left –leaning bias.

    However, this seemed to worsen during the 1980s and has remained a serious national problem ever since.

    Some senior BBC people have admitted to this problem. For example the former director general Mark Thompson spoke of a “massive bias to the Left.”

    The Bridcut report of 2007, ‘From Seesaw to Wagon Wheel’ looked into BBC impartiality. It stated:

    “The BBC has come late to several important stories in recent years – particularly awkward when they turn out to have been catalysts for cultural turning-points. It missed the early stages of monetarism, Euroscepticism, and recent immigration – all three, as it happens, ‘off limits’ in terms of
    a liberal-minded comfort zone.”

    And there is plenty of anecdotal evidence. For example, in the late 1980’s the pollsters found something odd going on: people who were being polled about which party they would vote for were increasingly likely to say Labour/Lib Dem to the pollsters but actually vote Conservative in the polling booth.

    This measurable gap, or ‘shame index’, was, I suspect, a rough and ready reckoner to the effect that propaganda – mainly from the BBC – had on voters, whereby voting for a right wing party or even expressing right wing opinions was seen as somehow shameful.

    The very sad thing is that nothing has changed. I strongly suspect pollsters still have a ‘shame’ weighting in their results. The BBC continues to shy away from any serious criticisms of the eu and continues to promote every Labour press release whilst bashing the Conservatives at every opportunity.

    The trouble with all this, is that it affects election results. The BBC can make or break politicians or even political parties. Therefore, our livelihoods, the makeup of our neighborhoods and nearly all other aspects of our lives are governed by the BBC.

    Despite all the reports and evidence of left-leaning bias and of a heads-in-sand attitude towards immigration and the eu, what has the BBC done about it? Well, the BBC decided to set up the BBC College of Journalism with our money. This was meant to be the BBC’s answer to the bias and other problems with its journalism

    Please have a look at the website (use Google). See if you can spot any efforts to correct the problems John Redwood, John Bridcut, Mark Thompson and many others have identified. After you have perused this website you will see that the BBC has used its own failings to spend millions on an organisation which re-enforces its bias rather than corrects it.

    • Max Dunbar
      Posted March 12, 2014 at 11:53 am | Permalink

      Very well put and to the point.
      The sad thing is that Conservative MPs and members of the Party have been cowed by this constant barrage of propaganda and forced to comply with leftist ‘values’, thereby losing a great deal of respect from erstwhile supporters. An extreme example of the vilification and ‘shaming’ of beliefs of a section of the population can be seen in Scotland where the poisonous institutionalised brainwash has been very effective, and it starts from the age of 5 years old and possibly younger. There is still a substantial Conservative vote in Scotland but I have not heard anyone openly saying that they vote for this party. Many former conservatives now despise the Tory Party. The paradox is that a UKIP supporter is more likely to be up front about who they support.

      • uanime5
        Posted March 13, 2014 at 1:47 am | Permalink

        An extreme example of the vilification and ‘shaming’ of beliefs of a section of the population can be seen in Scotland where the poisonous institutionalised brainwash has been very effective, and it starts from the age of 5 years old and possibly younger.

        So it’s not the fault of the Conservative party that their policies aren’t popular in Scotland, it’s due to some mass brainwashing that no one has ever noticed. Somehow I doubt this.

        There is still a substantial Conservative vote in Scotland but I have not heard anyone openly saying that they vote for this party.

        So there’s a substantial Conservative vote in Scotland, even though the election polls show the opposite. Isn’t it more likely that there isn’t a substantial Conservative vote in Scotland because the Conservatives’ policies don’t appeal to may people outside of the South of England.

    • uanime5
      Posted March 13, 2014 at 1:43 am | Permalink

      For example, in the late 1980’s the pollsters found something odd going on: people who were being polled about which party they would vote for were increasingly likely to say Labour/Lib Dem to the pollsters but actually vote Conservative in the polling booth.

      It’s entirely possible that Labour/Lib Dem voters vote at different times to Conservative voters (possibly because they tend to be younger). So the problem may not be due to bias but due to the time of the broadcast.

      The trouble with all this, is that it affects election results. The BBC can make or break politicians or even political parties.

      So since Thatcher won 3 elections and Major one an election this was due to the BBC was supporting the Conservatives. If not then the BBC can’t make or break politicians or political parties.

      Let’s not forget that it was the Sun who claimed they won an election, not the BBC.

  19. Douglas Carter
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 10:42 pm | Permalink

    More than anything Mr. Redwood is the pro-EU figures the BBC invite on to defend and define membership. Whilst the EU is resolutely a Political body, representatives invited to speak on its behalf are invariably either:-

    …Corporate shills such as Sorrell or Branson to consolidate the establishment orthodoxy that the EU is a trading body…

    ….or….

    …Unaccountable and discredited figures such as Mandelson who will reliably refuse to answer questions which point to political accountability.

    The public debate, as presented under a cosy media\Westminster cultural stitch-up is a lie. It benefits not the EUphiles. The Eurosceptic debate has evolved far beyond the EUphile trenches. When the defeat for them comes, they will discover they lost because it didn’t even occur to them to turn up for the debate offered.

  20. TJSquire
    Posted March 11, 2014 at 10:47 pm | Permalink

    I feel that many people in this country would like to much more informed about the way the European union works.
    There are so many directives /competences etc that British people are not told about until they come into force, usually a couple of years later.

    I don’t understand why Herman and Manuel are allowed to govern my country.
    I don’t understand why the people we voted for are not representing us.

    Please let us have a debate on this issue..

  21. Posted March 11, 2014 at 11:13 pm | Permalink

    I’d be all in favour of giving EU bigwigs a hard time on the question of youth unemployment. I’m just wondering how the residents of this blog would suggest it should be done?

    The problem , as I see it , would be that the Euro rules are unnecessarily restrictive and do not allow the kind of government deficit spending which would be necessary to kick start the economies of the peripheral Eurozone countries.

    The Troika are making a bad situation worse by insisting that Greece, Spain , Italy etc should balance their budgets.

    There are aren’t many contributors making the Keynesian case on this blog. So, wouldn’t everyone else end up criticising the EU for following exactly the kind of policies they themselves would recommend?

  22. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted March 12, 2014 at 1:20 am | Permalink

    But WE can hold the BBC to account and get rid of it if it doesn’t shape up.

    • Posted March 12, 2014 at 8:05 pm | Permalink

      Can we?
      Anyone who moves against the BBC will be painted the villain by public opinion ….and just consider the main information source the public uses to form its opinions!

      • Lindsay McDougall
        Posted March 13, 2014 at 11:34 am | Permalink

        No way is the BBC truly independent. Hit their ratings; watch ITV, Sky and RT. Even perhaps Al Jazeera.

  23. Bob
    Posted March 12, 2014 at 9:15 am | Permalink

    The BBC is under control of the Fabians and they play a long game.

    It wouldn’t matter so much if it were not funded by tax, which of course is why the Fabians took over.

    In order to avoid paying the tax you just need to stop watching broadcast TV and use the catchup services instead.

    The decriminalisation of non payment of the TV Licence would be a step in the right direction, and would force the BBC to explore modern funding methods such as voluntary subscription. It’s totally unacceptable for poor, vulnerable and uneducated people to receive criminal records simply because they lacked understanding of the law relating to this anachronistic system.

    It has to be said that the BBC and many political commentators seem to willfully misinform the public about the law relating to TV Licensing Mr Redwood.

    As for the Guardian and BBC bleating about the possible (probable) loss of revenue, I say cut the bloated salaries, pensions, expense accounts and wastage. They’re well known for sending hundreds of staff to entertainment and sports events which could have been covered by half a dozen or less.

    Lastly, they should publish the taxpayer funded Balen Report.

  24. Peter Davies
    Posted March 12, 2014 at 10:28 am | Permalink

    How can you hold an organisation to account when you are in their pockets. We all know about the funding FOI request regarding EU funds.

    Time to give the other terrestrial channels a share of the license fee funding for electronic transmission equipment and even out the media playing field

  25. Richard1
    Posted March 12, 2014 at 10:42 am | Permalink

    Humphrys is a good broadcaster, though he exhibits many of the BBC left leaning prejudices, as this interview showed. The best interviewer on Today was Edward Stourton, whose politics never came across, but who was felt to be too posh by leftists in the BBC management. Perhaps its something about this programme. Evan Davis often presents good programmes both on radio and TV, but on the Today programme is intolerable, foisting his own leftist views, often at the cost of leaving the listener wondering what the interviewee’s were.

    • Posted March 12, 2014 at 11:01 pm | Permalink

      You can add Sarah Montague to the lefty list of Today presenters.

      She’s fine on non-partisan subjects but has an intolerable tendency to constantly interrupt Conservative interviewees to the extent that the conversation is totally disjointed.

      This morning she interviewed Douglas Alexander on the new Labour No-EU-Referendum plan and she gave him almost a clear run. There were no challenging questions whatsoever.

      • Richard1
        Posted March 14, 2014 at 9:48 am | Permalink

        I agree Sarah Montagu is not a good presenter or interviewer, and clearly also interrupts Conservatives more than leftists – like Evan Davis, James Naughtie and Justin Webb. The new lady, Mishal Hussein is good though.

        They should bring back Ed Stourton and get Eddie Mair on, and use them with Hunphrys and Mishal Hussein and drop Davis, Webb and Montagu

  26. lojolondon
    Posted March 12, 2014 at 10:49 am | Permalink

    I am constantly ashamed of the BBC, their claim to represent Britain to the outside world, and the anti-British way that they approach foreign diplomats. No better example exists than the disgraceful Question Time programme broadcast days after the 911 attacks.
    The licence needs to be revoked, if the BBC was commercial then they would have to represent their viewers, as it is, they take pleasure in attacking anything British.

    • Posted March 12, 2014 at 1:53 pm | Permalink

      Well said – the 911 Question Time was when I gave up on the BBC too.

      I get all my information from the Internet these days – and as an ex-BBC viewer and an ex-Guardian subscriber I’m constantly amazed at how I’ve been manipulated over the years.

      The pundits say the recession has caused a right-wing surge – but that’s not true.

      It’s the internet that’s enabled the ordinary man to bypass the mainstream media and to seek alternate views – and suddenly you realise you’re not alone in your opinions, there are millions out there who all feel the same as you do.

      • Posted March 13, 2014 at 12:22 am | Permalink

        That’s true. But it doesn’t mean they are right.

        Most people think interest rates are largely defined by market forces. Most people think the UK government is like a household. That is a user not an issuer of its own currency. They think the UK government have to borrow money from the Chinese or the Swiss. Most people think Quantitative Easing is simply printing money and spending it to stimulate the economy -even though that’s in contradiction to other beliefs.

        Many people think that the USA is on the verge of bankruptcy. They think gold is the only safe store of money.

        Many people think that CO2 is not a greenhouse gas. That the build up of CO2 is nothing to do with human emissions. Many people think the GH effect doesn’t even exist.

        And then there’s the millions of conspiracy theorists of one kind or another!

        So just be careful of so called alternate views!

        • Posted March 14, 2014 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

          Yes, you still have to use your critical faculties and you still have to bring your own experiences and judgement into play – but at least these alternate views are being discussed openly.

          I’ve recently been reading about IQ and crime – and it’s been a revelation to me. IQ by country is another subject that’s worth Googling.

          It’s no longer possible for powerful regimes to supress information that doesn’t serve their purpose.

          The world is changing for the better – and IT and the internet are at the heart of it.

  27. Neil Craig
    Posted March 12, 2014 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    Like Australia the US state of Alaska has the Union Jack quartered in its flag.

    I assume Mr Humphries & his researchers don’t know that, otherwise, being legally committed to “balance” he couldn’t have made that attack on Australia for still sharing the flag.

    That was irony. The BBC makes no attempt to keep the law because those in power don’t want them to. Free media not merely state propagandism is a necessary condition for true democracy.

    I do not believe that any MP who has not publicly objected to the bias and propagandising of the state broadcaster, as you have John, can honestly be called a democrat. I realise that makes most of our MPs totalitarian but that is how it is.

  28. Athelstan.
    Posted March 12, 2014 at 8:38 pm | Permalink

    Humphrey’s, makes suitable noises, for he knows the BBC are under pressure like never before, and he sees his precious left wing advertiser going down the ‘tubes’.

    “The 70-year-old said that BBC staff are more likely to be liberal rather than conservative because they are the ‘best and the brightest’ and tend to be university educated.”

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2577951/BBC-grotesquely-managed-liberal-bias-says-Humphrys.html#ixzz2vmNufXHL

    “Best and the brightest”…………………?

    Quite apart from stating the obvious, that, not necessarily do the “best and the brightest” attend university. It is also a highly contentious statement to aver that, the Beeb employs anything near what Humphrey’s wrongly supposes to be ‘the best’.

    The continuity of the Beeb’s liberal tendency, that all pervasive blinkered left wing bias is innate.

    In bred, the BBC and the problems of a society that believes in left wing mythologies.

    It can be put down to the BBC recruitment process. More especially recruitment of people in current affairs programming and associated departments – in that, most of their news correspondents and executives come from a very narrow strand of society, first and foremost youthful if slightly [or very] naive and not so very worldly wise, the products of an academic structure – where left wing bias is not just a badge of honour but a necessary requisite for employment in most if not all of our concrete and glass but also in red brick and ‘ivy league’ British Universities. Agitprop, for young vulnerable charges it is an easy sale and where lecturers, teaching left wing dogmas is second nature.

    Next, ‘The Guardian’, always a left wing rag, in the last thirty years has become the clarion and champion of the cultural Marxist Labour party and is left wing crimson through.

    Funnily enough, their biggest customer is the BEEB. That, there is a revolving door between the Labour party, the Guardian and the Beeb is hardly a state secret – in fact the left rubs our faces in it by triumphantly advertizing their incestuous relationship.

    But then, The left – they know they’re untouchable because they tell us that they command the high ground of moral superiority. Morality? borne of a uniquely but specious British left wing justification put about by the apologists and using the vehicle of the BBC – we all know how it goes, it is a mantra “we are the left and it follows that, we are the vanguard of high-minded principle and behaviour” – when nothing could be further from the actuality.

    An amusing aside for some, a jolly gape -though, if you think that Humphrey’s was apologizing, you need your eyesight adjusting.

    End the licence fee, make them, the BBC compete in the real world – it’s the only way.

  29. The PrangWizard
    Posted March 13, 2014 at 7:25 am | Permalink

    I am not convinced that he means what he says, he is intending to deceive, some kind of diversionary tactic.

  30. The PrangWizard
    Posted March 13, 2014 at 7:55 am | Permalink

    Maybe Mr Cameron should make a point of getting the BBC to explain why his visit to Israel and his condemnation of the rocket attacks by Islamists in particular is getting almost no coverage.

  31. margaret brandreth-j
    Posted March 13, 2014 at 5:21 pm | Permalink

    An article today by Ian Burrell says that the BBC, under pressure from the right ‘wingests’ is demonstrating a right wing bias.

  32. James Reade
    Posted March 13, 2014 at 8:13 pm | Permalink

    But at least it holds the UK government to account for its “its many errors, bad laws, wasteful spending and policy mistakes”, eh?

    There’s only so much incompetent government you can hold to account…

    BTW the BBC’s recent pro/cons of EU article was very poor in terms of actually detailing the case for staying in the EU. You probably enjoyed it?

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  • About John Redwood

    John Redwood has been the Member of Parliament for Wokingham since 1987. First attending Kent College, Canterbury, he graduated from Magdalen College, and has a DPhil from All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has been a director of NM Rothschild merchant bank and chairman of a quoted industrial PLC.
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