The BBC wants to change the news, not report it

Yesterday I was phoned to be asked onto the BBC Radio 4 Today programme this morning. They said they wanted me to answer questions about how the election would change the UK’s ability to negotiate a good new relationship with the EU. I was happy to do so, and said I could make any time at their studio. It seemed like a good topic, and central to what the PM said about her reason for calling the election.

They then proceeded to ask me a series of questions all designed to get me to disagree with the UK negotiating position and Prime Minister. I explained that I supported the PM, agreed with her Brexit White Paper and stated aims, and suggested if all they wanted to do was to criticise her they should approach the Opposition parties. They continued to try to get me to disagree. They did not seem to have read the White Paper or the PM’s speech on the topic, so I had to tell them what was in them and why I agreed with them.

I explained again that their thesis that the Leave supporting MPs were in disagreement with the PM and were “rebels” was simply untrue. We are not in disagreement with the PM and we have been strongly supporting the government’s statements and legislation on Brexit. She said she would get back to me about the invitation to go on, with the details.

She did not of course bother to, as it was clear I was unwilling to feed their view of what the news should be.

I then found another Leave supporting Conservative MP had been given the same treatment, and he too had thought the BBC were trying to change the  news rather than reporting the position. When I came to do a live interview on some other BBC programme I was faced with the same stupid thesis and had to explain on air how wrong their idea  was.

I do not know who is feeding the BBC this nonsense, but it is frustrating that they do not accept the truth from those whose views they claim to be reporting, and do not bother to get back and openly say they do not want you on because you won’t say what they want you to say.

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208 Comments

  1. Duncan
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 5:41 am | Permalink

    Knowing all of this and how the BBC is now nothing more than a conduit for views expressed by a metropolitan based, left-leaning clique it begs the question as to why the BBC remains unreformed.

    Why do successive Conservative govts tolerate this quite obviously and shamelessly biased organisation? It is need of major reform in many areas and yet we continue to see toleration from the right in the UK.

    Let the BBC report what they like but I resent it when they do it using monies paid through the licence fee.

    Decriminalise non-payment of the licence fee. Break up the BBC and set up another state news provider with a completely different remit. Whittingdale was given this task and bottled it though to be fair he had DC on his back playing quid pro quo games. DC did the same with the opt-in union subs payment system in the public sector.

    Pathetic, silly games playing vested interest groups off against each other to achieve short term political victories…

    We have had too many gutless Conservative govts who refuse to confront necessary reforms across the public sector and the BBC is just another sacred cow they refuse to cull

  2. stred
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 5:42 am | Permalink

    They don’ t need to be ‘fed this nonsense’. they just come into work, having read the Guardian, chat with each other, think how much they are being paid, and instinctively know the pravda.
    The broadcast media is really the Libdems with few votes but all the airtime. Rather like the communists, but unable to kill their opponents and restricted to brainwashing them. Some ‘Conservative’ MPs are fellow travellers and it looks like we will be asked to vote for them.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

      Exactly, and about half of the Tories, but at least we will finally be rid of Osborne and Ken Clark.

    • Hope
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 3:57 pm | Permalink

      How naive of JR. It was evident from the referendum and every day since that MSM was trying to scare us of an apocalyptic ending. What did he, or more importantly May expect(or want) from calling the election. It will drive the remainicas and MSM into hysteria. All the has been will be lined up to tell us how we must stay in EU etc. May has betrayed the public vote to leave the EU. She stayed five times in nine months there would not be an election. If she wanted one she should have sent the letter last year and held the election then. This is about getting EU light. Today we read the EU wants the divorce bill plus ancillary charges for years to come! Is this why May is prattling on about a transition period? No, no no. Leave with no payment.

    • rose
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

      They all let the mask slip today though, protesting that £70,000 per annum doesn’t make you rich!

    • peter
      Posted April 21, 2017 at 8:31 am | Permalink

      Agree completely. It should at least be a manifesto commitment to remove the criminal justice enforcement of the BBC licence fee (if not abolish it altogether). Also noted the “Fake News” issues – most of this is MSM whining as they have lost control of the narrative…

    • Protestant Reformed
      Posted April 23, 2017 at 7:54 pm | Permalink

      They don’ t need to be ‘fed this nonsense’. they just come into work, having read the Guardian, chat with each other,

      >
      The Guardian and the BBC run joint strategies.

  3. stred
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 5:47 am | Permalink

    They don’ t need to be ‘fed this nonsense’. They just come into work, having read the Guardian, chat with each other, think how much they are being paid, and instinctively know the pravda.

    The broadcast media is really the Libdems with few votes but all the airtime. Rather like the communists, but unable to kill their opponents and restricted to brainwashing. Some ‘Conservative’ MPs are fellow travellers and it looks like we will be asked to vote for them.

  4. Mick
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 5:47 am | Permalink

    It’s obvious to anyone that the BBC agenda is to discredit those that are against the dreaded eu, all true patriot MPs should blank out the eu bias BBC /Sky/channel 4 or any of the other eu loving media, you only had to watch the interviews yesterday and 90% of them interviewed were remoaners, the only un-bias BBC interviewer is Mr Andrew Neil all the others are in the pocket of the eu, bring the GE on and hope the Tories wipe the floor of lab/lib ???/ snp/green/SDLP and slap the smug looks of the faces of the eu loving media

    • Jerry
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:57 pm | Permalink

      Mick; “all true patriot MPs should blank out the eu bias BBC /Sky/channel 4 or any of the other eu loving media,”

      Well that would leave one newspaper and perhaps one radio station, what should candidates [1] do the other 98% of the time they should be conducting media interviews, whistle to themselves?

      [1] after May 4th (?) there will be no MPs until after June 9th.

  5. matthu
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:02 am | Permalink

    I do not know who is feeding the BBC this nonsense …?

    Well, I could hazard a guess at any combination of Blair, Mandelson, Heseltine, Clarke, Cameron, Osborne, Clegg, Branson … take your pick.

    Who feeds the BBC all the other nonsense: on climate change? On immigration? On gender equality? On HS2?

    Who supports the BBC paying themselves massive salaries and gold-plated pensions?

  6. Jerry
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:04 am | Permalink

    Shock horror, the media tries to trip up a politico!

    It’s not just the BBC, ALL media outlets do this (broadcast, print and web), and do it to all side of political opinion, it’s their job.

    • Ed Mahony
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 4:17 pm | Permalink

      ‘It’s not just the BBC, ALL media outlets do this’

      – but other media outlets are commercial organisations. I don’t like it, but that’s the kind of thing commercial organisations do to boost audience ratings.

      The BBC has no excuse. It’s funded by tax payers and shouldn’t be going after ratings to justify its existence.

      I’m not here to knock the BBC overall (I want it to flourish creating great, original TV and radio for all). But it must be challenged when it chases ratings (and also when it also demonstrates political bias).
      Regards

    • getahead
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:03 pm | Permalink

      No Jerry the BBC is special. It is funded by the unwilling public.

      • Jerry
        Posted April 21, 2017 at 6:15 pm | Permalink

        @getahead; Oh do go and find a first clue! Even those who do not own a TV have to pay for commercial broadcasters, at least we do have a choice about funding the BBC, it is quite possible to live without a TV, many do just that.

    • formula57
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:18 pm | Permalink

      You have misunderstood Mr. Redwood’s post and would be wrong to suggest all media outlets try to make news to suit their own message rather than report it.

      You also misinterpreted Evan Owen’s comment below for he clearly said scrap the present method of funding the BBC, not scrap the BBC as you chose to suppose.

      Perhaps you have been over-exposed to contemporary BBC methodology?

    • libertarian
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:18 pm | Permalink

      Jerry

      You are right its not just the BBC ( although they are the worst and most devious)

      However it is NOT their job. Yes hold people to account , challenge facts and data but thats not what they are doing. What they are doing is 1) Following an agenda of their own 2) trying to set the narrative 3) Attempting to discredit people who disagree with them Thats not news reporting or journalism

      • Jerry
        Posted April 21, 2017 at 6:29 pm | Permalink

        @libertarian; Then I take it Walter that you will criticise any media outlet that tries to trip up Mr Corbyn, or some other politico of centre, the left or far left? Or is this really just the usual case of the right-wing wanting it both ways.

        It IS their job to ask difficult questions, it IS their job to ask uncomfortable questions, it IS their job to ask surprise questions. At least it is if we are to have a modern news and current affairs broadcast industry rather than the total deference the industry had 60 years ago to politicos, who were basically invited to address the audience without any further involvement by the programme anchor other than to thank the politician for his or her monologue once finished!

    • Posted April 21, 2017 at 12:58 pm | Permalink

      Yes, but they should do it with all politicians, and that is not happening.

      • Jerry
        Posted April 21, 2017 at 6:32 pm | Permalink

        @Richard Unwin; You need to check your facts, otherwise you just come over as another ignorant anti BBC rant. The BBC gave a Labour MP quite a hard time of it yesterday, during the PM programme I understand, its been trending ever since as a “car crash” interview….

  7. Mark B
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:10 am | Permalink

    Good morning.

    Auntie has long since given up on following its charter and you will hear many calls here today demanding that the BBC Telly Tax be abolished. Perhaps it is time to put something in the Conservative Manifesto regarding the future of such a tax as there is now no need for it given, what is now, old technology on subscription. This will not change the culture at the BBC, but it will force it to live in the real world or die.

    • Ed Mahony
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

      ‘Auntie has long since given up on following its charter and you will hear many calls here today demanding that the BBC Telly Tax be abolished

      – I’m sorry but this demonstrates a lack of imagination as well as a defeatist attitude.

      Yes, take the BBC to task over the way it chases ratings and for its political bias. But don’t throw the baby out with the bathwater when it has the potential to create great TV and radio for all ages and backgrounds (as it’s done in the past and to a degree today too), create sense of patriotism helping to glue our country together, feed the creative industries with well-trained people, as well as serving us well abroad in how the world perceives us.

      To lose the BBC would be a great shame. It just needs re-shaping.

      • getahead
        Posted April 22, 2017 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

        A good way of re-shaping it would be to make it pay per view.
        I understand what you are saying Ed, but I believe the BBC is too indoctrinated to change.
        And lastly, why should you have to pay for it if you don’t watch it?

    • eeyore
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:17 pm | Permalink

      In a charming contribution to the gaiety of nations, Mr Corbyn’s brother Piers complains that the BBC is in fact biased against Jeremy: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/04/19/jeremy-corbyns-brother-brands-bbc-evil-criticising-labour-leader/

      The BBC likes to respond to accusations of bias by claiming that, as both sides complain, it must be getting it right. Using the same argument, a scientist who says the moon is made of cheese can claim that criticism from all other scientists proves he’s right.

      So cheese it is.

  8. eeyore
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:15 am | Permalink

    JR has every right to be indignant, personally and in the national interest. This sort of thing at the start of an election campaign is not acceptable.

    But raising the topic here just tells us what we already know. I suggest he opens the debate wider with a letter for publication to a national newspaper.

  9. Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:24 am | Permalink

    Please do not be hurt. The BBC have to do a lot of research before you go on, I am sure. Unless they have the correct “story” they simply cannot do the research because a committee or three will stand in their way. They have to “conform” and then “deliver”.
    If you came out as a Lesbian or said that you were in favour of introducing Spice into the army, then you would get at least four hours!

  10. formula57
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:26 am | Permalink

    It is also frustrating to be denied lawful access to live broadcasts by the BBC’s competitors without first funding that propaganda organization but that is what parliament demands. Why?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 21, 2017 at 2:48 am | Permalink

      Indeed that is the key point. They have a huge & totally unfair advantage over competitors due to their enforded tax payer funding, and funding of what is blatant propaganda.

  11. sm
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:28 am | Permalink

    20 years ago, I was a very active Conservative Association Chairman in a habitually marginal seat.

    I was called by the BBC to ask if I would be interviewed about a slightly controversial political subject, and the researcher persistently attempted to provoke me into uttering views that fitted her concept of fuddy-duddy, out of touch old Tories. When I (quite genuinely) denied holding those views, I was told they would ‘get back to me’, which of course they never did.

    Over the ensuing years, there were other attempts, once during a live broadcast on Radio 4’s PM programme, to provoke me into foolish comments. I don’t think the public truly understands that the BBC regards itself as an ‘op-ed’ outfit rather than a news broadcaster, and that their opinion is strongly in tune with The Guardian and The New Statesman.

  12. Richard1
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:37 am | Permalink

    An emerging theme is that a large majority for the Conservatives will lead to a softer squishier sort of Brexit as Mrs May will be less beholden to the likes of you.

    I suggest concentrating on making sure the Conservative manifesto creates latttiude for really radical policy to leapfrog the UK into the group of most competitive and dynamic economies so as to maximise the chance of economic success post Brexit. I’d also susggest a placeholder for House of Lords reform or immediate overrule if all those LibDem and Labour nonentities who now sit there try to block the new Govt’s initiatives.

  13. oldtimer
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:37 am | Permalink

    I am not surprised to hear this. The BBC is a propaganda unit not a news provider. That means it will seek to frame the debate, the question or the “news” in ways that reinforce the propaganda. This approach extends beyond so called news programmes to include drama, comedy and documentary programmes as well.

  14. Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:40 am | Permalink

    Thank you for this continued insight into BBC editorial policy.

    Yesterday in an editorial comment we remarked: ” Regrettably it’s our experience that very few Remainer MPs are ever actually in possession of any real facts. Even more regrettably, with the notable exception of Mr Andrew Neil, almost no TV interviewers are in possession of any facts about the EU either, and so Remainer MPs are seldom challenged effectively.”

    Whilst writing, your readers might be amused by a short piece we ran on your dialogue with US House Speaker Paul Ryan last night, at the Policy Exchange think tank?
    http://facts4eu.org/news.shtml Currently the second item down.

  15. Ex-expat Colin
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:42 am | Permalink

    I find it impossible to watch BBC TV or listen to BBC Radio but have to contribute to its furtherance or face harassment/penalty for owning a TV. That is clearly wrong and you clearly show a prime reason why. Add the very poor entertainment and other/general topic coverage. I’d like to own a TV to watch other channels…why do I have to be forced to remit to this one?

    Captcha with pics is terrible…words version is better

  16. Lifelogic
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:55 am | Permalink

    Indeed the BBC have their agenda. Stuffed as the BBC is with lefty, remainers, PC, climate alarmists, chip on the shoulder feminists, art graduates. On, for example, Newnight they nearly always have a film which preframes any issue, generally in an absurd lefty way before any brief (and thus heavily distorted) dicussion is permitted. Almost all the questions come from the left.

    The many lefty Tories are never really questioned from the right on why government has to be so big, does the NHS state monopoly really work, would tax cuts grown the tax base etc. People like the dire John Major, Michael Hesselting, Ken Clarke, Nick Clegg are never asked anything much beyond what would you like to import to the nation next Sir.

    At least Osborne has finally gone he says “I hope I’ve left the economy in a better state than I found it”. Well not that hard given the mess that labour and Brown left it. But it is not better due to him it is better due to the ingenuity of the people despite him.

    He should be remembered to his IHT £1M each threshold promise that deterred Brown going for an early election that he would probably have won. After that Osborne was a disaster, ratting on this IHT promise, increasing taxes, tax complexity and red tape hand over fist, wasting money on countless absurdities, devaluing the currency, increasing the debt (while claiming to be repaying it), increasing certral state control of wages ……..

    Above all for the appalling punishment budget threats he made to try to deceive voters in the referendum and allowing the Carney threats too.

  17. Thames Trader
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:57 am | Permalink

    Same BBC.

    I recall when just after the coalition government of 2010 got started they were always much more interested in reporting so-called splits between the two sides over a policy rather than explaining the policy itself and let the viewers work things out.

  18. Graham
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:57 am | Permalink

    Well this Gov’n should do something about it and stop the TV tax. Only when they rely on free paying supporters will they be brought into line.

    • getahead
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:21 pm | Permalink

      Yup.

  19. DaveM
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:02 am | Permalink

    OT. I’m glad to see that another foreigner has decided it’s ok to lecture the UK on what it should or shouldn’t do. This time it’s an IT specialist from the US.

    • rose
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:51 pm | Permalink

      Well, rather a lot of people here – and on the Continent – lectured the US on what to do domestically. At least this impertinent billionaire has the excuse that foreign aid is foreign policy.

    • Jerry
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:04 pm | Permalink

      @DaveM; Funny how so many (mostly of the hard right) in the UK quite like telling other countries what they should be doing, and how they should be spending their money but dare anyone try and suggest likewise to the UK anyone would think they have just insulted the Queen.

      • hefner
        Posted April 22, 2017 at 5:33 pm | Permalink

        This whole blog is a delight for anybody interested in cognitive bias.

  20. Helen Taylor
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:06 am | Permalink

    It has been the same all the way through the Brexit campaign, their seemed to be very little reporting of true facts regarding the EU, when they report the people were lied to the media is talking about themselves. They certainly put out some real untruths. I must say I never followed Politics up until Brexit, I just voted and let you all get on with doing your job. I have seen interviews in the flesh so to speak where a polititian has said something. Then watched news reports and headlines twisting it to be something totally different and taken quite out of contect. I must admit although I have voted liberal when I was younger my vote this last few times has been conservative. Since the referendum I have been totally following the procedures. I believe in Theresa May and I just think she is being given such a bad time for trying to sort this out. Hopefully the people will get behind her and let those treasonous polititians know we want them to stop being so negative about our Country. If they feel that the EU is so great let them move over to Europe. They are there to represent the British People but they are putting the Country down so much. As Theresa has said they need to come together to form a solid front against the EU negotiators. On another note John, thank you for you daily post I must admit since I found your site it is my 1st port of call in a morning to read it.

  21. agricola
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:07 am | Permalink

    I find myself less than sympathetic to your expression of a view of the BBC even though I agree with it. The BBC operate as a political entity with their own agenda. An agenda I do not agree with, maintaining that they should report news not create it and be strictly neutral in the process.

    I find your complaint somewhat hypercritical, even if accurate, when you are very selective of what you publish in your diary. You prefer to ignore views that you do not agree with, particularly when they concern the terrorist threat to Europe. You may agree it exists, you may not like it, but you run a mile when it comes to defining it. You censor by omission. You cannot have it both ways and expect too much sympathy.

    Reply I am not paid to run an impartial public broadcaster! I pay to run my own site, and publish a wide range of views I disagree with from contributors. I refuse to publish items that make unsubstantiated allegations about people, groups of people or institutions for obvious reasons.

    • Ed Mahony
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

      Mr Redwood has published quite a few comments critical of him and his politics on his website. The fact that he publishes them, demonstrates modesty, character and respect for others. I respect him far more for for this than whether he is right or wrong about politics (much of which I agree with him about).

      • Ed Mahony
        Posted April 20, 2017 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

        ‘Mr Redwood has published quite a few comments critical of him and his politics’ – well, not really about him or nothing harsh, at least, but certainly comments critical of his politics over the EU.

    • rose
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:58 pm | Permalink

      The BBC was established to inform, to educate, and to entertain. It is paid handsomely to do just that, and fails dismally. It is a national institution which used to be patriotic and is no longer. This is a privately run blog with much higher standards of truth and decency. It is also patriotic.

    • getahead
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:30 pm | Permalink

      Well said John, you are a member of a political party that was voted into power because of its specific views.
      The BBC is not meant to be a political party. It should not be pushing its own political agenda. It needs to be persuaded to act otherwise. Financially I suggest.

    • agricola
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

      Sad to say Paris this evening. I wonder what it will do for Marine le Penn’s prospects in the French election.

    • BCL
      Posted April 21, 2017 at 7:59 am | Permalink

      “I find your complaint somewhat hypercritical, even if accurate, when you are very selective of what you publish in your diary”

      But this is a personal blog. It’s supposed to be about JR’s views. It isn’t supposed to be a balanced impartial reporting of facts. I don’t think this is a fair criticism. JR is a conservative and therefore entitled to a conservative point of view. The BBC isn’t.

  22. Lifelogic
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:10 am | Permalink

    Have you ever heard the BBC point out that all the climate alarmist computer predictions have been proved totally wrong or that we have had no significant warming at all since 1998 (and nothing remotely abnormal before that). Or pointing out why the “free at the point of need” massive state monopolies like the NHS are so inefficient and kill so many?
    Has the BBC ever suggested that lower taxes, less regulation and smaller government might work considerably better?

    The BBC were massively biased in the EU referendum and have been vehmently anti UKIP for years.

    Has the BBC ever pointed out that government can only “invest” using money they have taken off businesses or people thus preventing them investing it, usually it rather better?
    Have they even pointed out how the BBC themselves are hugely unfair competition to other private sector media? Just as the NHS are to private health provison and state education is to private provision.

  23. Narrow Shoulders
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:12 am | Permalink

    Today and PM in particular do seem to gear their interview questions to supports the editorial line.

    A good forensic interviewer should go where the interview takes them rather than heading for a predetermined result. Unless the piece is an expose based upon hard evidence rather than supposition.

    In fairness the BBC is not alone in this approach. Sky, ITV, Chanel 4 and CNN do the same. It can be tiresome for the viewer let alone the interviewee.

    Along the same lines I would like to see reports on what has happened rather than eating up the spin from the parties. “The Conservatives will say that” or” Labour will declare that” must be among the most disengaging phrases in our language.

    • getahead
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:33 pm | Permalink

      In fairness the BBC is alone in that funding is not voluntary.

  24. Martin
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:13 am | Permalink

    I thought blame the media was Mr Corbyn’s policy!

  25. Lesley
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:17 am | Permalink

    BBC invitations: T’was ever thus.

  26. mike fowle
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:17 am | Permalink

    Not all that surprised. The BBC is a disgrace. But the remedy lies in the Government’s hands.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 3:41 pm | Permalink

      Indeed but Cameron even appointed Lord Patton, the Tories clearly want a lefty, greencrap, pro EU, high taxes, big government BBC it seems.

    • Jerry
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:28 pm | Permalink

      @mike fowle; Trouble is, it is not just the BBC, and why is it not just the BBC, because basically our host is complaining that the MSM do their jobs! Any government who messes with the media in such a way that would stop the MSM doing their jobs would not remain the government for long, assuming the plebs still had any (freedoms to) say.

      I bet, when the MSM treat Labour politicians in the same way, as they have (tonight one Labour MP’s radio interview is being described as a “car crash”), how many of you who fake rage at the BBC -or any of the MSM- will get on your high horses and complain – after all, as you say, the MSM should report the news, not make news by way of comment etc…

  27. M Holmes
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:18 am | Permalink

    The BBCs inability to report rather than engineer news has long been evident
    It is counterproductive as I find many contemporaries automatically reject the BBC view”” and look to other news outlets for balanced unmanaged news

  28. John Probert
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:36 am | Permalink

    This has been happening for a while now and its getting worse
    Great that you took a Robust line John

    Difficult for them to make a story out of a One horse race

    Maybe we can learn something from Mr Trump by reporting directly
    and skip the fake news

  29. MPC
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:39 am | Permalink

    Sadly the BBC now seems to see itself as a quasi Opposition judging by recent comments from Nick Robinson et al.

    Already the Establishment media is treating Tories and MPs from other parties very differently. The deputy leader of the SNP and Tim Farron were asked easy open ended questions yesterday without being interrupted or challenged. Karen Bradley on Sky News today was interrupted persistently about how terrible it is that Mrs May won’t participate in live TV debates and ‘will she mind being empty chaired’.

    Please don’t lose heart Mr Redwood because the referendum campaign showed clearly that voters see through such bias. You and your colleagues will no doubt continue with your unfailing politeness and patience which continues to impress.

  30. Iain Moore
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:39 am | Permalink

    Giving Bill Gates an unchallenged headline spot on the news is the BBC’s attempt to hijack the issue and make it impossible to make any changes to our ludicrous Aid policy.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

      Some overseas aid is sensible and well spent but most is not. To have a legally binding % of GDP to spend every year is clearly absurd. It should be looked at and adjusted based on all the circumstances and the needs at the time.

  31. Juliet
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:41 am | Permalink

    Not just the BBC Sky News Channel 4 are all acting as the Remainers mouthpiece. Sky was called out by Raab yesterday

    BBC & Sky journalist are anti Brexit, comes across in there interviews, attacking pro-Brexit guest and ignoring audience views. It’s this type of reporting that dividing the country and creating them and us mentality. Government needs it own channel, BBC can’t be trusted to report the truth

  32. Lifelogic
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:42 am | Permalink

    Corbyne says he will help “the British people, the true wealth creators, held back by a system rigged for the wealth extractors”. He is quite right.

    But who are these “wealth extractors and the destroyers of wealth”? It is of course the bloated, misdirected and usually incompetent state sector. The private sector can, after all, only extract wealth off you by providing a service or product you are prepared to pay for.

    Only the state sector can take money off you, under threat of imprisonment. This while delivering very little of real value at all. Corbyn’s policies would make “this extraction and destruction of wealth” even worse than Hammond is already doing.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:09 am | Permalink

      We do however need far better legal mechanisms to enable shareholders to properly control executive remuneration packages properly. We do not need workers on company boards by law, enforced gender pay gap reporting, quarterly tax returns or any other such, totally misguided, time wasting, lefty drivel form May.

  33. Bob
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:45 am | Permalink

    You surely aren’t surprised by this Mr Redwood?

    I suggest that you join the TV Licence Refusniks and campaign for an end to the anachronistic Licence Fee system that supports this sinister organisation.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:57 pm | Permalink

      I am against all unfair competition from the state, the BBC, schools, the NHS, state housing, the greencrap and all the other rent seekers and the subsidised croney capitalism.

    • Jerry
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:38 pm | Permalink

      @Bob; How would that stop ITV, Ch4, Ch5 and Sky, plus many radio broadcasters, much newsprint and even more websites doing the same as the BBC has been accused of doing – abolishing the BBC will not stop politicos being given a hard time, being metaphorically tripped up or what ever. In fact without the BBC as barometer it could be ten times worse, do we really want a left-wing version of Fox News.

      • APL
        Posted April 25, 2017 at 8:43 am | Permalink

        Jerry: “abolishing the BBC will”

        In his comment he didn’t advocate abolition of the BBC.

        But maybe your straw-man argument perhaps reveals your unconscious fear.

        That if the BBC were exposed to the real market, where people buy things because they want to, it would quickly become apparent that no one outside of readers of the Guardian or Morning Star would pay the market rate for BBC services.

        • Jerry
          Posted April 25, 2017 at 5:37 pm | Permalink

          @APL; “In [Bob’s] comment he didn’t advocate abolition of the BBC.

          If the TVL fee is abolished as a method of funding the BBC, it also abolishes the very foundation of the BBC, QED. The resultant broadcaster might well still be called the “British Broadcasting Corporation” on the LSE but it will no longer be governed by a Royal Charter.

          “if the BBC were exposed to the real market”

          In such a situation the BBC would become like any other broadcaster in the UK exposed to populist market forces, as I said, just as Ch4 has been…

          • APL
            Posted April 26, 2017 at 7:47 am | Permalink

            Jerry: “If the TVL fee is abolished as a method of funding the BBC, it also abolishes the very foundation of the BBC”

            I see you are torturing logic again.

            The Royal Charter is an inadequate fig leaf wheeled out whenever apologists for the BBC have run out of arguments. The Royal Charter is ignored more than it is honoured by the BBC.

            Jerry: “BBC would become like any other broadcaster in the UK ”

            The BBC has made itself just like every other broadcaster in the UK. It had a unique opportunity to stand above the mêlée of the market by virtue of its statutory funding model.

            But it chose some years ago to attempt to compete on the same, as you call it ‘populist’ terms as the rest of the broadcasting industry.

            The BBC doesn’t have to chase after ratings, it choose to.

            The BBC doesn’t have to cater to the lowest common denominator, its management chooses to.

            Since the BBC wants to be measured by the same criteria as the other commercial channels, it should have to operate by them.

  34. Doug Powell
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:48 am | Permalink

    JR, I saw the programme in question and very much enjoyed your ‘put-downs’. I wish more politicians would do the same, but they often seem enthralled to be on the BBC and roll over.

    It is interesting to note that since Mrs May became PM, there have been opposition figures claiming that her premiership has no legitimacy because she had not received a mandate via the ballot box! Lo and behold! These same people are now saying that her decision to go the country is naked opportunism! We can but refer them to the wise words of the Bard …. “There is a tide in the affairs of men/woman, which taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;” etc.

    To return to the BBC, let us hope that once the EU relationship has been sorted, the BBC can be introduced to reality by removing the Licence Fee. It is a disgrace that public funding is used to promote such a blatant unpatriotic narrative.

    In the meantime, there is a small victory within the Brexiteer’s grasp – and that is for those asked to appear on the BBC to refuse to do so unless the de rigueur backdrop of that bloody awful EU flag is removed!

    We are leaving the EU, BBC! The display of the EU flag is totally inappropriate. So enough of you underhand subliminal advertising!

    • getahead
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:46 pm | Permalink

      Well said Doug.

    • Jerry
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:49 pm | Permalink

      @Doug Powell; The point these people are making is that if Mrs May thinks she now needs a mandate then why now, why did she not think that back in the summer of last year, what has changed – Mr Corbyn even less popular, or was there really a danger that the government would not be able to control the business of the House(s)?

      It is also a bit rich for people on this site to complain about others, after all how many used to call for Gordon Brown to “call and election” because he had no mandate… Indeed, we can but refer these commentators to the wise words of the Bard …. “There is a tide in the affairs of men/woman, which taken at the flood, leads on to fortune;” etc. Oh-humbugs!

      • APL
        Posted April 25, 2017 at 8:38 am | Permalink

        Jerry: “what has changed”

        Clearly, Mrs May’s mind.

        • Jerry
          Posted April 25, 2017 at 5:41 pm | Permalink

          @APL; Obviously, but why. Duh!

          • APL
            Posted April 26, 2017 at 7:52 am | Permalink

            Jerry: “but why.”

            A woman’s prerogative. Realpolitik. Who knows?

            Jerry: “Mr Corbyn even less popular,”

            I’ll give you a clue.

  35. MickN
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:52 am | Permalink

    I am surprised they called you at all. Watching the way that they rotate Ken Clarke, Nicky Morgan, and Anna Soubry when they want a “Tory ” member of a panel for balance you could be forgiven for thinking that there were only three Conservative MPs in the House.

  36. A.Sedgwick
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:53 am | Permalink

    Cameron bottled the defenestration of the BBC, despite another one of his half hearted commitments, perhaps you would consider leading a campaign to remove the BBC poll tax.
    Any chance of it being in the manifesto? It is Dickensian that someone can end up with a jail sentence for not paying the completely anachronistic TV licence (except Scotland).

    It is a vote winner, along with abolition of H of L.

    Their biased influence is becoming too noticeable with rare exceptions e.g. Andrew Neil.

  37. Glenn Vaughan
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:04 am | Permalink

    John

    “I do not know who is feeding the BBC this nonsense,…”

    The answer is that such nonsense is already embedded within the culture of the BBC and has been for decades.

  38. Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:05 am | Permalink

    Why am I not the slightest bit surprised at your experience ?

    The whole corporation is riddled from top to bottom with Liberal/Labour/Leftie Remainers who have spent the years since the announcement of the referendum trying to ridicule and undermine the case for leaving the EU and those that support that case.

    It’s also equally obvious that the leadership at the top of the Corporation has been turning a blind eye to the terms of their charter requiring impartiality from the Editor and staff of BBC News. Your experience is just the latest of a long line of examples.

    At least Corbyn and his Labour party having any serious chance of winning the election is so lacking in credibility that the BBC is asking awkward questions which Labour cannot or doesn’t want to answer.

    Even John Humphries, while giving Emily Thornbury a relatively easy time this morning, seemed bemused and was anything but supportive of the Labour case. I guess like a lot of left-leaning BBC interviewers he must be feeling intensely sorry for the plight of those being wheeled out to pretend that Corbyn could ever make it to Downing Street !

    Mrs May is absolutely right to refuse to do TV debates if they were to include Farron and the leaders of the Scottish and Welsh Nationalists – party leaders who don’t even put up enough candidates to mathematically win and become PM.

    Last time they were so unwieldy, stilted and artificial that they were utterly worthless. I suspect that Mrs May would have been very happy to go head to head with Corbyn alone.

  39. Bert Young
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:06 am | Permalink

    The “Liberal” bias on the BBC is extremely annoying – so much so I only watch two of its programmes ; “Sky News” is much more internationally oriented and does not show bias . The BBC has been in the grip of a management that has defied all efforts to redefine itself into a neutral communicator of news and information . Chairmen in the past – whom I have had a close contact with , have complained about the intransigence that exists and who gave up on introducing “change”. Outside professional bodies have also been used to re-align their management ; these efforts have also failed .

    Another tax defying trait of the BBC has been the way they have remunerated some of their key staff . (words left our ed) They are no longer the body of neutral truth and behaviour and must be either totally reformed , or , cease to exist .

  40. Hope
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:11 am | Permalink

    Chairman May has given the BBC, and MSM, its greatest chance to rerun the outrageously bias referendum! Do you think they might speak to Clarke, Clegg, Heseltine, Soubry and co a lot more than anyone else? Perhaps we might hear about hard and soft Brexit that does not exist. We voted out despite false claims by remainers.

    Of course the MSM will look for division because it exists. Do you think May, Hammond, Green, Rudd et al share your views? They were prepared to lie to the public and get all the civil service behind them to rienforce apocalyptic warnings in their message.

    Blame the EU remaining idiot for calling the election not the outlet. JR, very naive blog in the extreme. The Donald is way ahead of you hence his strap line fake news, which has caught on. He knew his opponents including the MSM.

  41. Pat
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:23 am | Permalink

    Twas ever thus.
    How about recognising that the BBC has an agenda to push and is impartial on nothing.
    Then doing something to clip its wings.
    Like making the license fee a civil matter, allowing alternative media and in general withdrawing state support.

  42. Shieldsman
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:25 am | Permalink

    The Prime Minister is quite right to refuse to to engage in a televised political debate. Nothing can be gained by joining in the BBC’s (and Media) politically manipulative game show.

    The BBC no longer sticks to reporting the news, its reporters express opinions that are designed to influence the viewer. They are being partisan.

  43. Richard1
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:29 am | Permalink

    I haven’t seen or heard any BBC report on the visit of US House of Representatives Leader Paul Ryan to the UK. Given he is one of the 3 or 4 most significant decision makers in the US this is extraordinary. Perhaps its because he has assured the UK of the US’s interest in a bilateral free trade deal, something anti-US left-leaning pro-EU media organisations don’t like? We hear every huff and puff from anti-UK EU bureaucrats (the latest being that the EU Commission will start to freeze UK companies out from contracts) but not from Mr Ryan, a person of far more significance. Refusal to report news is in itself fake news – the BBC should note.

    Reply Yes, that is odd. There were journalists present at the event and he clearly stated a warm approach to the Uk and an enthusiasm for an early free trade agreement. That surely was news.

  44. iain
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:32 am | Permalink

    No surprise there John. Should this be raised at PMQs ?

  45. William Long
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:34 am | Permalink

    The one positive thing about what happened is that it gives concrete prove of what we all think about the BBC. How can you get it to the attention of a wider audience?

    • getahead
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:58 pm | Permalink

      Part of the problem is that the BBC is not only a news and current affairs broadcaster.
      Women, mostly,watch the soaps that the BBC puts out. There is therefore some support for the current situation.
      The BBC licence fee needs to be cancelled. But if the government sees this as too harsh a measure, perhaps it would consider breaking the BBC up into separate political and entertainment units.

  46. Leslie Singleton
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:42 am | Permalink

    Dear John–A simple point is the glee and intensity with which the BBC kept on about how the PM has not kept her “promise” or variously “broken her word” on the timing of an Election: she did not do any such thing, she just changed her mind on what she had previously said–this is very different from breaking her word and promises. It’s a wonder they didn’t say she had sworn on the Holy Bible in Church.

    • rose
      Posted April 21, 2017 at 7:53 am | Permalink

      The BBC don’t know what “promise” means. They were the same over the suggestion from some Leave campaigners that we spend more on the NHS rather than on the EU. They must surely be doing this because they have no arguments.

  47. Jagman84
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:43 am | Permalink

    Are there any ex-Labour MPs in the hierarchy of the BBC? That would be a good place to start!

    • Narrow shoulders
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 12:47 pm | Permalink

      James Parnell?

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 1:34 pm | Permalink

      May has misguided, lefty, labour people like Matthew Taylor doing employment practices enquiries for her. I assume as a ruse to increase taxes still further so they can waste even more money.

      Almost all the BBC staff are misguided, chip on the shoulder lefties. Did they not have James Purnell as head of radio? Some even describe themselves as raving lefties. Mind you half the Tories and Theresa May is too. Workers on company boards by law, gender pay reporting, building on EU employment “rights”, ratting on the NI and IHT tax manifesto promise, introducing a probate tax, controlling wages by law …….

  48. Yossarion
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:48 am | Permalink

    Surprised not, If we all stopped our DD to the TV Tax Dept for a couple of months on mass it would be interesting to see how they would react.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 1:39 pm | Permalink

      Or perhaps people might withhold payments to HMRC on account of the fact that they are not providing the services we have paid for. Perhaps offset the costs of private health care when we cannot get operations, or they fail to provide decent school places, roads and the likes.

  49. Peter
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:49 am | Permalink

    The BBC are an entity who have honed propaganda to a fine art, and back it with censorship.

    They talk constantly of editorial integrity, and impartiality being in their DNA.

    Their actions suggest otherwise.

    • Lifelogic
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 3:43 pm | Permalink

      Indeed.

  50. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:52 am | Permalink

    The BBC has its own agenda and sees itself as making the news. Unlike newspapers the broadcast media is meant to observe a broadcasting code of impartiality and accuracy. This seems never to be enforced. To add insult to injury we are forced by law to pay a licence fee to the BBC if we own a television.
    Did the BBC ever reply to the complaint of bias sent by MPs?

    • Bob
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 1:19 pm | Permalink

      @Brian Tomkinson

      “Did the BBC ever reply to the complaint of bias sent by MPs?”

      They probably pointed to a postbag of complaints from the likes of G. Miller, M Heseltine, K. Clarke, R Branson, E Izzard, G Soros, N. Clegg, G Osborne, D Cameron and T. Blair, all complaining about the BBC’s anti EU stance and on that basis concluded that they must have it about right.

    • Jerry
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:20 pm | Permalink

      @Brian Tomkinson; “Did the BBC ever reply to the complaint of bias sent by MPs?”

      Which group of complaints was that? The ones sent by Labour, the Libdems, the Conservatives or the perhaps the ones sent by the SNP and Greens, all complaining of bias…

  51. chris francis
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:53 am | Permalink

    Depressing as it is to read this, somehow it doesn’t leave me overly surprised. It is, indeed, a shame that our national news outlet cannot recognise that people are royally fed-up with these sorts of shenanigans

  52. Prigger
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:59 am | Permalink

    “The BBC wants to change the news, not report it”
    Green Party total number of voters 1,156,149
    SNP total number of voters 1,059,897

    What reason does the media have for showing and interviewing the SNP and Mrs Sturgeon well over and above the Green Party? It is not “democratic balance” when there are more people in Yorkshire and Sunderland who did not vote for any party whatsoever but are not interviewed except if they make funny individual outrageous entertainment in a shopping mall.
    There are 66,000,000 million people in the UK. Let us see far less of Mrs Sturgeon and the Greens.It’s a question of balance. Let’s face it, the vast majority of people think Greens and SNPers are cranky anyway. They no longer make novel funny entertainment in their grass-sod houses and lentil production speeches nor in their quaint Lowland Scot accented English bashing.

  53. Chris
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:01 am | Permalink

    The BBC has always done this and with impunity. They have been allowed to get away with it when it has featured other political parties, most notably UKIP, for whom there was a relentless smear campaign and distortion of information, in my view. Now it is affecting the Conservatives more openly, will something be done? I doubt it. The Conservatives were given a chance to radically reform the BBC but did not take it, and from that one must conclude that it has suited the Conservatives, at least until now, to have the BBC operating in the way it does. Something in the election manifesto about the BBC and further reform would win a lot of votes.

  54. E.S Tablishment
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:11 am | Permalink

    They did this to you JR on a recent Daily Politics programme too. I guess what they are aiming for is a “walk off set” incident.

    • Jerry
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:23 pm | Permalink

      @E.S Tablishment’ Or of course the Politico could simply answer the question, or at least just carry on and do what they usual do, answer the question they wanted asked…

  55. Mitchel
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:11 am | Permalink

    Those people who think the EU is the USSR in the making need to look closer to home.

    And do something about it!

  56. David Webb
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:12 am | Permalink

    It would be interesting to hear Nick Robinson’s defence of the BBC approach – he seems to be their main spokesman, as in his recent contributions to the Radio Times, and here (with Charles Moore) in the Spectator. https://www.spectator.co.uk/2017/04/bias-and-the-bbc/

  57. JimS
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:14 am | Permalink

    It isn’t just you, they do it to everyone.

    The BBC is a campaigning organisation that we are forced to pay for like it or not.

    Democratic politics is destroyed by them. We get to tell ‘you lot’ what to do every election, they get to tell you every day. There is only one Truth and the BBC are its Priests.

  58. Ian Whittaker
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:16 am | Permalink

    Unfortunately it seems to have become a common issue with the BBC. BBC journalism is now more about pushing an agenda than reporting the news.
    Indeed Nick Robinson tried to defend the BBC not being impartial re its Brexit coverage.
    Its hard to see how the continuation of the licence fee can be supported given that the BBC has given up on impartiality and furthering the national interest.

  59. Phil
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:17 am | Permalink

    And recently the government obligingly changed the law so that iPlayer users need a TV licence, even though a technical solution was easily possible.

    • Paul H
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 10:56 am | Permalink

      It’s totally bizarre. Whittingdale had the chance to sort the BBC out, made all the right noises, but then backed off. At the time I assumed that Cameron made him do so to keep the BBC on side for the referendum. Now I’m not so sure. It’s almost as ‘though the Tory party is suffering from some kind of Stockholm Syndrome. Maybe it’s simply about power. Most politicians are attracted to power, and so crave the validation from a powerful institution that comes with being a reliable go-to person for it.

      It’s not just the sheer lazy arrogance that bugs me. It’s the rank hypocrisy. On one hand the BBC will be all over the evil Tories for any policy that allegedly impacts poor people disproportionately. On the other its elite think their 6-figure salaries and 7-figure pension pots should be funded by the poor at the point of a prison sentence. It’s obscene.

  60. Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:24 am | Permalink

    The BBC will never admit what you describe but this has become the norm across all policy areas. It has a view and it promotes that view skewing the conversation and tailoring it.

    With anti EU interviewees it usually tries to make them out to be extremist.

    The aim is always to make out that the BBC view is the correct and accepted one and most others to be wrong, eccentric or dangerous

  61. libertarian
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:26 am | Permalink

    Funnily enough that has happened to me a few times with BBC local radio on various local topics.

    What I do now is agree with the researcher/producer then change my story to the reality when live on air. It throws them every time

    • G
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:00 am | Permalink

      Nice!…

    • Tom William
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:27 am | Permalink

      Excellent tactic but surprising that they ask you back.

      • libertarian
        Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:24 pm | Permalink

        Tom Williams

        Ha ha me too. But they do. Its because they aren’t really listening anyway. To be fair the interviewers aren’t Paxman or Andrew Neil they are local bods with no real knowledge or background research into the topics.

  62. bigneil
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:26 am | Permalink

    A classic case of the Brussels Broadcasting Corporation. Funded by the many to serve the few. It is time they are made to look after themselves. The fee we have to pay goes to them, yet they provide a smaller and smaller portion of programs as more and more channels become available.

  63. Kenneth
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:27 am | Permalink

    The BBC has a history of talking up its own position, hoping that it will become a self-fulfilling prophecy.

    When the BBC realised it had lost the referendum it was quickly marketing the idea of a “soft” Brexit.

    Recently it has been pushing the idea if a transitional arrangement that will allow “free movement” to continue.

    The BBC clings to such ideas and latches on to any comment or even a nuance within a comment to support its cause.

    This political posturing provides a steer and a platform for ant-Brexit forces who gladly take up the BBC’s position.

    • APL
      Posted April 27, 2017 at 8:32 am | Permalink

      Kenneth: “Recently it has been pushing the idea if a transitional arrangement that will allow “free movement” to continue.”

      Personally, I’ve no problem with ‘free movement’, nor fixed term ( say 5 years ) renewable residency permits. It seems we need these if we want a viable tourist industry.

      What irks me, is that some one can just turn up and be given citizenship and a British passport.

      We should too be looking at people who maintain dual or multiple passports. A ‘red flag’ that an individual is ambivalent about British nationality.

  64. Gavin Hardy
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:28 am | Permalink

    Surely something can be done about the BBC? They stray so far from the guidelines of the BBC Charter that there has to be a route to getting then to behave properly.

    Would there be support for a judicial review?

    • BOF
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:36 am | Permalink

      The trouble is that the BBC is headed and staffed by the Left, and the Judiciary is decidedly Left Wing so the result is likely to be a foregone conclusion.

      • APL
        Posted April 27, 2017 at 8:36 am | Permalink

        BOF: “The trouble is that the BBC is headed and staffed by the Left, and the Judiciary is decidedly Left Wing .. ”

        A failure of the right, always on the back foot, scared to offend.

        And especially an utter failure of the Tory party, which has always bent over backward to accommodate the newest fad and fashion.

  65. Colin watson
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:29 am | Permalink

    Quite right John. I think the Prime Minister is doing exactly the right thing – no TV debate as it is media driven and she should call the shots. I hope the Conservative party play it cool in the election and not fall for the media jibes.

  66. Antisthenes
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:31 am | Permalink

    BBC news reporters smugly lecture us 24/7 on how politically, economically, socially, environmentally illiterate we are if we do not embrace their progressive socialist wisdom. They are not alone in doing this other media outlets do the same. So do politicians and others who wield power and influence. It is notable however that the worst excesses of it emanate from those with lefty sympathies. A display of partisanship and bias which is a human character flaw that we have tolerated because until recently it was spread fairly evenly across the opinion spectrum.

    That is no longer true especially as the BBC has waded in to also shape our opinions and left wing groups have developed a means to shut down those whose opinions they do not like. Something the BBC are expressly forbidden to do under the terms of their charter. It does not deter them as your experience and others attest and we daily observe on out TV screens as they seek to control the narrative and distort the truth. We are forced to pay for the propaganda the BBC continually subject us to which no amount of complaint or pressure appears to be able to curtail them. The answer can therefore only be to deny them public funding repudiate their public information role and let them compete in the same way as other commercial outlets.

  67. Hamsterwheel
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:32 am | Permalink

    It’s called bias.

  68. Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:44 am | Permalink

    Time to scrap the TV tax.

    • Jerry
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:11 am | Permalink

      @Evan Owen; OK, so lets assume the BBC is scrapped, what do you propose should be done about ITV, Ch4, Ch5 and Sky, never mind radio broadcasters and the print media, perhaps you just think freedom of speech should be removed?…

      • Ormskirkred
        Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

        You don’t get it do you Jerry? We’re fed up of paying nigh on 4 Billion a year to be told what to think by the BBC. Channel 4 is publically funded, and the rest are paid for by advertising or subscription.
        If you don’t agree with them turn over. If you stop paying Sky, you won’t be able to watch their subscription output.
        If you stop paying the BBC the law says you can be sent to prison.
        Do you get it now Jerry? Give me strength…

        • Jerry
          Posted April 21, 2017 at 6:45 pm | Permalink

          @Ormskirkred; No, its you who doesn’t get it, in fact you do not appear to have a first clue. The public pay for commercial TV (via the check-outs etc), and we have virtually no choice, unlike with the BBC, no one is being forced to watch broadcast TV.

          The public even help fund subscription TV when they have not taken out a subscription, because paid for advertising is shown and that has to be for, and it is the consumer who pays.

      • anon
        Posted April 20, 2017 at 10:00 pm | Permalink

        or maybe the dominant state subsidized incumbent is removed from its monopoly position which allows other entrants and voices in the market to be heard. How about competing views and facts.

        Those that are willing to fund the BBC can pay for it.

        You can “voluntarily” buy a decent subscription with £150

        Do you think people should be treated as criminals for not requiring or having a licence?

        • Jerry
          Posted April 21, 2017 at 7:02 pm | Permalink

          @anon; “You can “voluntarily” buy a decent subscription with £150”

          Yes, it’s called the TVL, it allows legitimate access to somewhere in the region of 100 TV channels, it also pays for PSB broadcasting in the UK…

          The next cheapest universally available subscription is actually £264 pa.

          “Do you think people should be treated as criminals for not requiring or having a licence?”

          They should be treated in the same way as someone who fails to pay their VED and then chooses to either uses or keeps a motor vehicle on the public roads. They should be treated in the same way as someone who fails to pay the proper amount of VAT, or income tax – tell me, do you think people who break the law should not be treated as criminals?!

          No one is being forced to watch TV.

          • APL
            Posted April 25, 2017 at 8:28 am | Permalink

            Jerry: “No one is being forced to watch TV.”

            But they are, if they buy a TV from the high street being, shall we say, coerced to buy a TV licence.

            Today there are a number of things you might do with a TV beside watch BBC programming.

            A computer games console, a Computer monitor, you can even watch streamed content from another country or continent, or if you’ve got a library of DVDs and a DVD player you can sit and watch your favourite films.

            None of those activities require a TV licence, and none of them involve live content from the BBC.

            Yet if you come to the attention of the BBC licence authority** ( aka Crapita ) you are hounded to prove a negative. Something the law used to recognise is an unreasonable thing to expect.

            **If you buy a television from any of the online or highstreet retailers your post code is noted down and passed to the BBC licensing authority.

          • Jerry
            Posted April 25, 2017 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

            @APL; You clearly have no idea what the TVL fee law actually states, nor what your legal duty to the TVLA (and their agents) is. Get off your anti BBC high horse, go find a first clue.

          • APL
            Posted April 27, 2017 at 7:21 am | Permalink

            Jerry: “You clearly have no idea what the TVL fee law actually states, ”

            It’s on the web, Jerry.

            Jerry: “anti BBC ”

            I don’t care about the BBC, I do care about the extortion racket the BBC is running.

            Two different things, but then you’ve frequently demonstrated, reading comprehension isn’t your strong suite.

          • Jerry
            Posted April 27, 2017 at 1:10 pm | Permalink

            @APL; So what’s your problem! If you really do not use a television receiver to access broadcast television (or a computer to access iPlayer type live streaming) just comply with your legal requirements – problem sorted. There is no “extortion” going on, we have a choice. no one has to watch TV or is being made to watch TV, QED.

            If your rants are not aimed at the BBC, just what you call “extortion”, then perhaps you would be kind enough to join those who campaign to see exclusive subscription content outlawed. Why shouldn’t the same football match, Golf tournament or motor race etc. be broadcast live and in full by two or more broadcasters. Viewers would then be able to choose which channel to watched based on style of presentation etc. not just who has the sole rights.

  69. Roy Grainger
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:45 am | Permalink

    I think no-one is feeding them these views, they are generating them themselves, then all they do is find a commentator from the hundreds of MPs and professional pundits they have contact details for who will come on and say what they have already decided. They view political news as being always about conflict rather than agreement – look at how they report Brexit negotiations.

    Another problem is a large class of people who are really politicians but who masquerade as journalists. They are on all sides of the divide. For example many left-leaning journalists have been going on Twitter to say they want a new centre-ground political party to be formed – it is plainly because they personally want to support it – but they want someone else to do it so they can reserve the right to stand apart from it as “impartial” journalists and criticise it if they want to. I would class all the main newspaper political editors under this faux-politician banner – they all try to persuade their readership to vote the way they want. They are politicians but without any of the responsibility.

  70. Man of Kent
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:46 am | Permalink

    A useful point to make in the manifesto .

    And what you will do about it .

    • Kenneth
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 12:53 pm | Permalink

      An attack (as it would be portrayed) on the BBC in the manifesto could lose the Conservatives the election, such is the power of the BBC

  71. Iain Moore
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:54 am | Permalink

    I look forward to hearing the BBC report Corbyn’s speech as left wing populism.

  72. Sir Joe Soap
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 10:05 am | Permalink

    Dear BBC employee,

    In the light of the forthcoming General Election, it is important for the BBC to emphasis our central thesis towards both Brexit and our approach to each of the political parties. As usual, on the theme of Brexit, we will expect all journalistic output to be generated to meet the criterion that a “soft” Brexit will be the least bad option. Output should adhere to our core thread that whilst the UK voted to leave the EU, it didn’t vote to leave the customs union.

    As for treatment of key figures, this should follow this general pattern:

    -Corbyn and Labour
    Irrelevant. Whilst we would usually be backing Labour to the hilt as the progressive party of modernity, we can clearly see from the polls that with the present leadership they are doomed. Our medium term aim, of course, is for David Miliband to return to the UK and take up the mantle, but that is another storyline for another day. The views of Blair, Kinnock and Mandelson, however, should be aired alongside those of Major, Clarke, Heseltine as the voices of reason.
    -Clegg, Farron and the Libdems.
    Provide them with space at every opportunity. They really are the progressive party of our time. Avoid questions which expose their ludicrous and contradictory earlier statements of three million unemployed but insufficient staff for the NHS when we leave the EU. We need them to argue and be given a voice to our core belief that maintaining contributions to the EU will be needed to provide access to EU markets. Without UK taxpayer funding of the EU, BBC funding and your job will be at risk.
    -May and the Conservatives
    A damage limitation exercise is needed. A Tory government with a large majority is likely. Amongst the Tory cohort, there will be hard liners, supported by former UKIP people. It is important that we damage the Brexit cause by marginalising these people and their views. Theresa May must be portrayed as the voice of reason being held captive by “nutcases” in her own party. This will create both a “mirror-image” story to Labour’s , allowing the Libdems to sneak through the middle as a significant force, and generally discredit Brexit and those who are pushing for it in any way.

    Yours

    BBC Management

  73. Tad Davison
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 10:05 am | Permalink

    John,

    It’s called an agenda, and I have been complaining about it for ages, for it always seems to strive to do the very things you describe. They’re not interested in reporting what politicians say, only trying to construct a story for mischievous ends. Maybe there should be something in the Conservative manifesto about ensuring balanced journalism.

    Tad Davison

    Cambridge

    • Vanessa
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 12:31 pm | Permalink

      The trouble is that the BBC is owned by the State and so is Channel 4.

      The difference is that the licence payer funds the BBC whereas Channel 4 is funded by the money from its advertisements.

      • Vanessa
        Posted April 20, 2017 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

        P.S. the only independent broadcaster is ITV – you can buy shares in that company.

  74. McBryde
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 10:31 am | Permalink

    It has become more and more apparent over the past few years that the BBC does not actually represent a balanced view; but instead uses its privileged position to further the cause of an unknown entity (Whitehall?).

    I hope your influence will start to make public awareness of this alarming and disgraceful fact more widespread.

    • clear
      Posted April 23, 2017 at 8:43 am | Permalink

      (Not Whitehall)
      The public are aware.

  75. James Matthews
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 10:39 am | Permalink

    “I do not know who is feeding the BBC this nonsense.” No one. The BBC has its own world view and agenda and is entirely capable of generating it on its own. It has long since abandoned any pretence of merely accurately and fully reporting what takes place in the world.

  76. Janet Willoughby
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 10:42 am | Permalink

    Always remember that the BBC gets funding from the EU and in return for that, must always present the EU in a positive light. We see them do that every day.

  77. Dinero
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 10:43 am | Permalink

    the net result of that process is that the input from the politician being interviewed becomes more akin to a editorial opinion contributor.

  78. norman
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 10:49 am | Permalink

    It was noticeable immediately after the announcement that the BBC were putting a biased and jaundiced spin on the public’s reaction to the news. This shows how deep the rot runs on a number of fronts, of which the media is a prime example.
    It is also of concern that the wily Mr Corbyn will try to buy the public with expensive promises, and the Lib Dems will act as a rallying point with the implacable ‘remainers’ – many of whom were Conservative voters before.
    Mrs May has shown admirable leadership qualities so far, and I think you should keep it simple, so that voters will reward her sincerity, and back what is best for the country. It will now be their choice: I pray, for the good of everyone, they will get it right!

  79. Bryan Harris
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    WHEN IS SOMETHING GOING TO BE DONE ABOUT THE BBC John?

    What you’ve reported is just the tip of the iceberge when it comes to bias and making up news to suit their views.

    There are just too many things wrong with the BBC – Time someone had the courage to break it up and reassembled into something useful, that actually reported rather than influenced what was happening.

  80. lojolondon
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:07 am | Permalink

    The Biased BBC see themselves as the natural opposition to the Conservatives, as they believe Labour is not up to the task. So they promote every left-leaning party, and constantly try to break down the Tory narrative. Time to end the TV Tax.

  81. Monima O'Connor
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:11 am | Permalink

    it’s an absolute disgrace. The BBC should now be privatised and forced to compete with other providers for viewers.

  82. Ed Mahony
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:13 am | Permalink

    Part of the problem with the BBC is when Lord Birt tried to commercialise the BBC’s ethos. And so now there are people in the BBC more concerned about ratings (including journalists) and their careers than the welfare of the BBC.

    We need to de-commercialise the ethos of the BBC. It’s not about ratings. But about creating great, original and innovative TV (in arts programmes, documentaries, children’s programmes, comedy, film etc) that commercial broadcasters aren’t able to do because of the constraints of the commercial environment.

    We need a strong BBC but not one that does not chases ratings, and is politically neutral, whether that be in journalism or anything else.

    • Ed Mahony
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:16 am | Permalink

      ‘We need a strong BBC but not one that does not chases ratings’ – that does NOT chase ratings, i meant, and that IS politically neutrally.

      And we can do it. The BBC is something that belongs – or should belong – to all of us – Conservative, Liberal and Labour. It’s a useful tool for gluing us all together, for creating a sense of patriotism, for creating intelligent and witty and imaginative and creative TV and radio in general, and that even helps to feed the commercial creative industries with people who are well trained and come with much useful experience. It also gives us some clout and exposure abroad.

    • Ed Mahony
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:20 am | Permalink

      So yes, the BBC has been damaged by Liberals and left-wing types, for sure, but also by Conservatives types (e.g. Lord Birt and by a certain type of careerist in the BBC who shouldn’t be working in the BBC at all but in the commercial sector).

  83. BOF
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:27 am | Permalink

    The BBC and The Ministry of Truth are indeed one and the same. I cannot decide which was modelled on which.

  84. Adrian Brammer
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    In one of Steve Hewlett’s last interviews on The Media show he asked James Harding if he knew ANYBODY in his circle of friends and colleagues that supported Brexit or Trump and he was met with silence … the answer is NOBODY of course.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b0890kjg

    The BBC itself is just an organisation, and although it might have impartiality in it’s manifesto it is made up of people and groupthink is writ large within the people that are employed by the BBC.

    As much as they bang on about diversity, there is certainly very little diversity of thought.

  85. fedupsoutherner
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:38 am | Permalink

    I can’t even bring myself to watch QT, anything with David Attenborough in it and Countryfile because they are all full of bull and bias. Nothing on your post John surprises anybody and it’s about time something was done about it.

  86. They Work for Us?
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    The Conservatives flunked proper reform of the BBC.
    It does seek to make news by interviewing someone, feeding them comment to provoke comments they can use shortly afterwards as news.
    Can we have a simple manifesto please? As a starter……….

    Brexit from a position of strength, no deal is better than a bad deal.
    Gross immigration to be drastically reduced. Work permits yes (return afterwards the norm). Anything leading to citizenship, indefinite right to remain the exception not the norm.
    Overthrow of all policies based on the green assertion/ religion of “man made climate change”.
    Later on down the list, reform of public funding of the BBC to become a factual news reporting organisation, not a “news, manufactured news and comment organisation”. The BBC should have no in house policy on news issues. It should just report them factually.

  87. forthurst
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 11:57 am | Permalink

    JR should understand the game by now. It is very clear that the MSM sees its role as not to report events and obtain the opinions of those who have been elected to represent the demos but to create the public discourse from whole cloth. Without this, the people might not only begin to understand how they are being duped, but they might start to get quite angry and demand the changes that will stop a process initiated and controlled by a very small claque of manipulators whose power derives from money and a pathological hatred of us: English, British, European peoples who believe in the nation state as a bulwark against forces that would render most of mankind into deracinated cogs in an infernal machine. The people might start to understand the purpose of the unnecessary wars that create mass misery where they occur and a destructive mass migration into the West, the laws that are in place to prevent people complaining about the egregious effects this has on previously contented communities, the weird obsession with sexual dysmorphia in all its real and invented forms, above all, in the process of creating synthetic conflict between groups in order to hide the conflict of interest between the mass of the people who simply to wish to live normal, lawful lives and the devilish manipulators.

  88. Tony Sharp
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 12:00 pm | Permalink

    The BBC Remain ‘agenda’ fantasy currently is that Mrs May is a ‘soft Brexiteer’ (ie closet Remainer) being held hostage by extremists in her own Cabinet. So that what these journalists are trying to elicit from various sources is that ‘story’ that Leavers don’t trust the PM and this Election is about ‘weakening’ their control of her! So by trying to find a ‘divide’ between Mrs May and eg John Redwood they can demonstrate – gues what? – another reason why the UK should for all intents and purposes Remain part of the EU mechanisms even if not in the EU!

  89. Treacle
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 12:12 pm | Permalink

    You seem surprised, Mr Redwood. The BBC has been a left-wing campaigning organisation for many years. It has got away with this because no government has tried to stop it. It will carry on in the same way for as long as it is allowed to. If the government doesn’t like what the BBC does, it ought to do something about it. And now is the time, with the Conservative manifesto being written as we speak, and the largest Conservative majority for decades about to be achieved. All the Conservative Party needs to do is to say that it would like to privatise most or all of the BBC and abolish the licence fee.

  90. Beecee
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

    I have just watched the first 10 minutes or so of the BBC 1 o’clock news.

    It was a Party Political Broadcast for the Labour Party.

    Totally disgraceful!

    • miami.mode
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

      Beecee

      Have just seen Labour’s Barry Gardiner on BBC News trying to “get down” with their grass roots by saying that Labour are to be compared to Leicester City who won the Premiership last season. The interviewer obviously missed a trick because they subsequently sacked their manager!

    • John
      Posted April 20, 2017 at 10:22 pm | Permalink

      I watch Andrew Neil and sometimes A Marr, I don’t watch BBC news in general

  91. Mark Weightman
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 12:24 pm | Permalink

    I don’t know how the general election may affect this but a debate was scheduled for early next month about the TV licence fee. I hope this behaviour will be taken into account then. It is unfair to allow the BBC to break its charter, broadcasts similar rubbish to all the other channels, and report biased lying on news and current affairs and then compel dissatisfied customers to pay so much for it. At the very least the BBC should have the fee capped to rise with inflation and then give customers a 20%, 40%, etc discount over subsequent years until it is phased out.

  92. Vanessa
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 12:28 pm | Permalink

    So tell me something I don’t know !
    This is why I refuse to pay my licence fee and why I therefore do not have television. The drivel they want me to watch defies belief. I would rather watch grass grow!

  93. Anonymous
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 12:43 pm | Permalink

    Doubtless the BBC will get EU funding after Brexit.

  94. Posted April 20, 2017 at 1:23 pm | Permalink

    The same happens on non-political subjects, so part of their research process is weighing up how the speaker will fit into the structure of the program. Your experience is more is more extreme, but I have always assumed that they were in the driving seat, and I was likely to be passed over if my views did not fit their needs.
    That is why blogging is so useful: you can give your own opinions as you see fit. The problem is that blogs have a poorer reach than state funded media. You could overcome this by ensuring that at the end of each post there was a Tweet button and Facebook button so that your views could be given greater prominence.

  95. cosmic
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 1:29 pm | Permalink

    It’s not so much the BBC trying to change the news, as trying to change the views.

    It’s clear that the BBC has a political agenda which is quite outside its charter.

  96. BobE
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 1:50 pm | Permalink

    The BBC receives money from the EU. Follow the money.
    BobE

  97. Timaction
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 1:55 pm | Permalink

    I have complained so many times, with specific examples, I now find the entire exercise futile. Marr, BBC News, any current affairs programme except “Brillo” is straight propaganda. Subliminal messages in their popular shows from left of centre minor self important minor celebrities.
    Every time they just deny bias. My last complaint received a reply that waxed lyrical from some lefty about content she must be employed full time to ………..just lie.
    The BBC must go so democracy and the National interest can be supported. Reform is not possible without mass sackings as the Guardianistas infest the organisation. It sticks in my throat that I am forced to pay for this nonsense.
    So what are the legacies going to do about it? The same they’ll do on Foreign Aid and mass migration. They’ll keep it.

  98. Robert Christopher
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 2:04 pm | Permalink

    Radio Berkshire (circa 8:30-9:30am, today) were posing the question along the lines of, ‘Do you want International Aid cut or do you want to help those in need’, to several people, I think in the studio. They might have been politically aware listeners, but I don’t think they were fully paid up members of the political class as I think they were taken aback at the forcefulness of the questioning. And the interviewer even said that he was unbiased, so the questions must have been crafted by a team of ‘BBC neutral lawyers’ and checked by another set! It looks like another example of a misleading invitation. (I see it happened to you a week or so ago and was in the paper: it needs to be called out, especially when they don’t even ask a question on the agreed subject! A ‘last question’ on the most current subject is, unfortunately, part of the deal of being a senior politician, I think)

    The good news is that the Radio Berkshire interviewees gave as good as they got! I think they did the same yesterday morning but then, the BBC churn out this stuff continually and it is easy to forget what day it is! 🙂

    It is a pity, as local radio, in the past, has usually been less infected with this miasm.

    Maybe we should let them continue: their Remainer bias helped the Brexit collection of teams more than ever thought possible! 🙂

    • APL
      Posted April 23, 2017 at 6:42 am | Permalink

      Robert Christopher: “It is a pity, as local radio, in the past, has usually been less infected with this miasm.”

      BBC ‘local radio’ isn’t ‘local’. It’s but one trading arm of a multi billion pound extortion racket. If a private company operated on the model the BBC operates on, ( Pay me regardless you want our product, or we’ll send the heavies in ) they’d be shut down, by the state.

      As it happens, they are the UK governments preferred extortion racket.

  99. Simon Platt
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    I’m afraid I no longer take anything I hear on the BBC at face value.

  100. Anonymous
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 2:31 pm | Permalink

    Countryfile is a case in point.

    It is anti Brexit because it says it will damage farmers. Well farmers will never go short of markets for their food – even if it’s to a domestic market.

    Famers will never go short of cheap and willing labour – especially if Brexit is going to be as bad as the BBC tells us it will be.

    Then Countryfile bangs on about the environment – at the same time as telling us we need to keep piling people into the country.

    Patently bullocks, all of it.

  101. The Prangwizard
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 2:44 pm | Permalink

    It’s time you and colleagues ‘named names’. Complaining about ‘the BBC’ is pointless. If any professional made false representations or put pressure on to buy something not wanted they would probably be dismissed. Nothing will change otherwise. The BBC’ sees itself as untouchable. Individuals should not be allowed to hide.

  102. Gary Lloyd-Coxhead
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 2:47 pm | Permalink

    John, I follow your blog avidly but your comment of “who is feeding them this nonsense” surprises me because I and many of my friends and relatives no longer trust the BBC to report the news fairly and without bias for a number of years. This is the ‘norm’ for the modern BBC and is one of many reasons I and others like me want the BBC disbanded and why I haven’t watched the ‘news’ for over 4 years now. They nailed their colours to the mast in the run up to the EU referendum and their blatant bias confirmed what I had known for a long time and is why I do not have a TV or pay the licence fee. I will not contribute to a left wing media outlet that does not report the truth. It’s time the H.O.P. Discussed this issue in detail with a view to abolishing the BBC. It is no longer trustworthy or fit for purpose and it’s time something was done about it.

  103. Martin Conboy
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

    As BBC Radio 4 Today program is transmitted live, you should do what the BBC do and tell lies. Give the BBC official who is canvassing you what they are seeking, as far as you can without giving an explicit untruth. This will get you on the program, and when you are questioned live on air that is the time to tell the whole truth and nothing but. Hopefully this strategy will elicit an admission from the BBC that they would not have invited you on had they known your true views, thus confirming their bias. More likely the interviewer will simply start doing all the talking, interrupting you continually with irrelevancies and preventing your message from being heard – and that kind of interview also speaks volumes about the BBC.

  104. Protestant Reformed
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 3:15 pm | Permalink

    The BBC have their narrative to push John, if you do not fit in with that you are surplus to requirements.

  105. SimonC
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 3:18 pm | Permalink

    Shame on the so called BBC, that we are forced, on threat of prison, to fund this biased rubbish if we want to watch any TV. Overdue the license being abolished and the so called BBC having to make it’s way commercially.

  106. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

    Does the BBC still receive EU grants? Is it truly independent?

    Thinking ahead to the negotiations with the EU’s institutions, we hardly need to negotiate at all.

    Firstly, we should get the EC on the back foot by emphasising that it has no democratic mandate for the formation of a German dominated Federal European SuperState. The electorates of France and Holland have explicitly rejected a draft European constitution and no attempt has been made to get them to change their minds.

    Secondly, we should point out that free trade is a right not a privilege. On our point of departure, we shall impose neither tariffs nor non-tariff barriers on EC exports to us. If the EC imposes barriers on our exports to them, we shall then retaliate. We alone shall put a value on the economic damage done to us by non-tariff barriers, and we shall be quite prepared to retaliate against individual member states if need be.

    Our ‘divorce bill’ will be limited to one and a quarter years of our annual net contribution to the EC, taking us up to March 29th 2019, plus our due share (fully audited) of pensions payable to EC staff up to the time of our departure. This will be non-negotiable.

    We should be prepared to pay a small extra payment for the right to IMPLEMENT trade deals with other nations prior to out departure from the EU.

    The ECJ and other European Courts will not be allowed to influence our exit terms. We do not recognise these courts in this respect.

    We shall control our own fisheries and agriculture from day one of our departure, reserving the right to use force if this is resisted.

  107. Andy
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 4:50 pm | Permalink

    I understand what you are saying about the BBC. I’ve dealt with them and I find they are basically lazy – you end up having to do their work for them.

    However, I have read that the BBC produce over 70% of broadcast news output. When are you MPs going to do something about this ‘monopoly’ ? If it would be wrong for Rupert Murdoch to have this concentration of news output then the same applies to the BBC. It badly needs to be broken up and we need more diversity of opinions not the Lefty second hand Guardian rubbish that is the BBCs stock and trade.

  108. Mark Watson
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 5:15 pm | Permalink

    Best just to go along with the researcher John, then when you actually get on air enlighten them!

  109. Andy Marlot
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 6:24 pm | Permalink

    No surprise at all. The BBC is a propaganda channel not a news channel.

  110. John
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

    News funded by the license fee needs to be tendered out to other broadcasters to compete to give good unbiased reporting of the news.

    What ever money is spent on news needs to be in that pot. I think it could be split between 2 or 3 broadcasters atleast and reviewed every so often whether to renew.

    The quality people like Andrew Neil and Andrew Marr won’t have a problem being employed where ever.

  111. mickc
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:31 pm | Permalink

    The BBC is very much a purveyor of what, when propounded by others it calls “fake news”. Of course, what it calls fake news simply means facts or views it dislikes and seeks to discredit.

  112. Elliot Kane
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 7:37 pm | Permalink

    Good journalists become journalists to discover the truth.

    Bad journalists become journalists to confirm their truth.

    Sadly, there are rather more of the latter than the former.

  113. Little Englander
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 8:36 pm | Permalink

    Remove their Charter – like the House of Lords they serve no purpose and are therefore redundant.

  114. Prigger
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:28 pm | Permalink

    Heaven only knows why the Twitter share price has been heading down and down for ages now. It is the chief and sometimes only source of immediate news in emergencies across boundries, languages and interconnected international mainstream medias.

  115. Turboterrier.
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:30 pm | Permalink

    The B-llsh–t Broadcasting Company cannot stoop much lower. the answer lies in the hands of the politicians to bring to an end this shame of a news company. We pay for this crap and they should be accountable, but until you get politicians with real backbone it is something akin to weeing into the wind. if they were dissolved would we really miss them? NO NO NO

  116. ian stafford
    Posted April 20, 2017 at 9:53 pm | Permalink

    When the general election decision was announced on the Radio I was appalled to here the BBC indicate that it was to give the government a bigger majority so as to reduce the influence of back-bench Brexiteers. The BBC is pursuing this interpretation as an editorial policy. Your interview shows this.

  117. Peter D Gardner
    Posted April 21, 2017 at 12:52 am | Permalink

    Congratulations for exposing this truth.

    • Atlas
      Posted April 21, 2017 at 12:13 pm | Permalink

      Agreed, Peter.

      One could tweak the BBC’s nose by NOT closing down AM and FM radio. This closure is something which they want for doctrinaire reasons and indeed our host John, I believe is less than impressed by Digital Radio. Perhaps John could get any closure mention removed from the Digital Economy Act in the Parliamentary ‘Wash up’ process?

  118. Brian Bakker
    Posted April 21, 2017 at 7:43 am | Permalink

    This phenomenon of MSM writing/broadcasting biased articles littered with opinions is nothing new and has been going on since the dawn of the printing press… The Internet is the most significant revolution since the Gutenberg Press and it has awoken the silent majority as they now have the ability to look at other sources for ‘News’ to align with their beliefs. MSM, through their opinion pieces and fake news, have signed their slow death warrant as people start looking for alternatives… from having watched the news at 10 and Newsnight religiously for a decade, I am now turning over the channel to find a documentary or comedy because I am no longer interested in listening to reporters opinions with a small dose of actual news reporting.

  119. Wolf
    Posted April 21, 2017 at 8:23 am | Permalink

    As long as nobody in the Conservative Party has the courage to do something about the BBC TV TAX, or challenge it more aggressively in ‘interviews’ and panel shows, this left-wing bully boy will continue to rip them to shreds on the airwaves at every possible opportunity. Is masochism the only explanation, or is there more to this than meets the eye..?

  120. WingsOverTheWorld
    Posted April 21, 2017 at 9:02 am | Permalink

    Maybe you and your colleagues should tell the researchers what they want to hear to get on the programme and then blindside the presenter with what you really think once on. When questioned over why you didn’t say that to the researcher, tell them (and the audience) the truth – that the biased media wouldn’t give airtime to opinions that don’t fit their narrative. I think such a tactic would find much sympathy among the public, not to mention viral memes of broadcasters being dumbfounded by common sense.

    • McBryde
      Posted April 23, 2017 at 11:01 am | Permalink

      Yes … brilliant idea! Please do that!! 😀

  121. Charlotte Bedford
    Posted April 21, 2017 at 9:37 am | Permalink

    This has been going on for over a year now with constant complaints on Facebook and Twitter about the blatant bias of the BBC. It is full of metropolitan Liberal elite, who just want to give a platform to (lib dems ed) whilst shooting down the Tories and Corbyn. How is this allowed to go on? They totally ignore any attempt at balance, everything, from street interviews, to guests on programs are all chosen to push their view. Can Ofcom not stop this, or the Government? They should be taken to task publicly by those who do go on air and challenged more often.

  122. j royston
    Posted April 21, 2017 at 11:04 am | Permalink

    I wrote a complaint to the BBC about the reporting on the American Election. I got a standard reply saying they try to cover all aspects etc. The simple truth was they were pushing a very biased agenda. By no means was it a fair analysis.
    News 24, as I am bed bound and have the television running in the background, is just make it up as it goes!?! You can`t catch repeats of it so they just say whatever they want however untrue.
    I find it very annoying that our Countries television channel, which is mandatory to pay for, are allowed to have a bias towards whatever agenda they feel.
    Please do something about it John.

  123. Dennis
    Posted April 21, 2017 at 2:24 pm | Permalink

    JR and posters here seem not to understand the BBC position which is doing a good job. By putting their position against the interviewer and being anti Brexit etc. which perhaps many of the viewers hold or wish to clarify allows the interviewee to scotch these views/opinions educating the viewer.

    If the interviewer did not put the opposing view I among many viewers would be screaming at the screen ‘why didn’t they ask/put this point of view ‘ to see what the interviewee responds. I admit it has been one sided there being no discussion of what the downsides could be in remaining in the EU – why has JR et al never mentioned this during a BBC spot?

    Just to report the news without comment educates no one and assumes everyone to have all the related facts in mind = impossible.

  124. TheRepugnant
    Posted April 21, 2017 at 3:28 pm | Permalink

    The BBC has been pushing political agenda since as far back as I can remember, thinking back to the days of the champagne socialist lead by the War Criminal Tony Blair.

    I stop watching it completely a few years back, I honestly find it hard to tell the difference between what is shown here and the US.

    Everyone appears to be pushing an agenda and nobody what to stand up and take responsibility for failures, you know like calling things that dont push their ideology ‘fake news’, while they push their own fake news ?!

    Far as I am concerned the age of the BBC came to an end a long time ago, the little good it still does is frankly out weighed by the harm it is pushing.
    Its time to scrape the licence and see if the BBC can stand on its own merits.

  125. APL
    Posted April 21, 2017 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

    JR: “I do not know who is feeding the BBC this nonsense, but it is frustrating that they do not accept the truth …”

    Your party has now been in government for seven years, yet you’ve done nothing to reform the BBC.

    Stop whining about it and do something!

  126. rose
    Posted April 22, 2017 at 9:08 am | Permalink

    I see you have been kneecapped by the BBC’s Provisional Wing, the Guardian and its readers.

  127. Tony Robson
    Posted April 22, 2017 at 8:18 pm | Permalink

    In my opinion the whole Brexit issue is beyond the Keystone Cops. It is beyond everything. I am becoming red in the face to say that I am English

  128. Thames Trader
    Posted April 23, 2017 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

    Interesting to see that this topic has generate many more comments than others. There are obviously many readers who, like me, are unhappy with the BBC. An area worth pursuing in future Diary articles.

  129. margaret
    Posted April 26, 2017 at 6:00 pm | Permalink

    I must agree with you on this interview with radio 4 on Wednesday . I was appalled by someone trying to make distinctions where non really exist to satisfy their own ego. She referred to Nurses and midwives as caring professions . If this were solely the case I would never see a registered medical practitioner or a dentist again. We want all our staff to care.
    She then went on to describe Doctors ( wrongly titled ) and dentists as purely clinical and tried to separate these groups as being far above everyone else in intelligence and medical ability.
    Does she realise people choose their professions. Not all want to have this posited status symbol to show off with and the greasy people who suck up to them around our health service.
    The terminology which creates these distinctions distorts the truth. If they in truth regarded the Drs role in a hospital or primary care they would see all of us care. If they truly look at the clinical and ,medical input of Nurses they would not try and down this highly intelligent group of professionals with their ego appealing notions of class distinction.

    A typical example of this is the terminology where Nurses have passed medical exams , distribute medicines in full knowledge of the whys and wherefores , prescribe medications after diagnosis ,THEN these inflated egos term us as Non medical prescribers .

    In law terminology should correspond to reality , but this incorrect terminology is setting a precedent for the gullible for whom it is good ‘to be umble ‘ and spoil excellent care by all.

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, He graduated from Magdalen College Oxford, has a DPhil and is a fellow of All Souls College. 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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