Why is the Today programme losing its listeners?

“Today”  is losing listeners  (minus more than 800,000 last year) in part because its endless Brexit coverage is one sided and tedious. It strives to make most things as being about Brexit, when most things are nothing to do with Brexit. Yesterday morning a Minister was trying to talk about exports. She was  regularly interrupted by an interviewer who just wanted to shout Remain propaganda at her, claiming that a No Deal Brexit would be a disaster without providing a shred of evidence. This is all too common. Where were the good questions about the UK’s capacity to export, about the changing nature of our markets and the growth areas of our products and services? There was no single question to challenge the Minister or to draw out some new material on the UK as a trading nation. How will the UK fare as the digital revolution advances? Will the big build up of technology businesses in the UK stand us in good stead? Have all the EU trade agreements been novated to us as well as to the residual EU? Is it true that 90% of the growth of our trade will be with countries outside the EU? How is the Trade department’s budget best spent on trade promotion?  We almost learned that the existing EU trade agreements will novate to us and to them, but the interviewer fell short of pressing and confirming this.

Most economic news items like currencies, jobs or balance of payments  have the same explanations as before the vote. Interest rates go up and down thanks to actions of the Bank of England. Shares and currencies go up and down related to world economic changes and government economic policies. Most of us have no wish to hear recycled the same old Project Fear stories  about how trade will be affected after we leave, as explained by the so called experts who wrongly told us to expect a recession in the winter of 2016-17 after the vote along with big job losses, rising unemployment, plunging house prices and a collapsing stock market.

For years we have had to put up with a Today programme which has eschewed serious criticism or commentary on the EU project of economic, social, currency  and political union, and to put up with a refusal to properly  balance the endless pro EU speakers  with enough interviews of  serious minded and well informed participants who have forecast the outcomes of the Euro , the ERM and the moves to political union accurately. Any party or movement anywhere in Europe that wins elections by  challenging  some part of the EU scheme is seen as “extreme right” or “populist” and unhelpful.  Now they are taking the Today programme further away from being a sensible and well informed 3 hour consideration of the news by introducing quizzes, poor coverage of cultural matters , long  commemorations of popular artists when they sadly die and genuflections  to magazine lifestyle issues.

People used to tune in to Today to get a serious if not always balanced  debate and commentary on the business of the nation and the business of business. That’s now hard to come by on a programme which often caricatures itself.

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  1. Nig l
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 5:23 am | Permalink

    I left it years ago when the interviewers became more and more boorish with constant interruptions seeking to disrupt any views that were not their own.

    I have a wide choice of news sources, so for me the BBC, as with everything else it does has become irrelevant.

    • oldtimer
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 5:50 am | Permalink

      Me too.

      There is very little on the BBC that captures or retains my attention. And when it does cover a subject about which I know something it is, more often than not, very superficial.

      • Andy
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:48 am | Permalink

        Breitbart is not news.

        • percy openshaw
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:41 am | Permalink

          Neither is the BBC.

          • Hope
            Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:40 am | Permalink

            JR, the seed is being sown to extend the punishment extension as the deal cannot be made by October. No extension is required no deal as a vassal state is needed either.
            Time has come to leave and if the EU want to talk about a trade deadline it ca do so after we leave in March next year. It will focus their minds to vevserious as well. If not WTO terms is fine without any payments or any additional,programmers. Security and defense to be resolved on an ad HoC basis. Nothing given or taken for granted . The EU is an ally and friend nothing more.
            Socialist quangosvto be cleansed one by one , no former politician allowed in any of them. Lords to be scrapped ASAP.

        • matthu
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:46 am | Permalink

          At least Breitbart is free, so you get what you pay for.
          BBC is not news, and they force you to pay for it.

          • Rien Huizer
            Posted August 22, 2018 at 12:34 pm | Permalink

            What about getting paid to read Breitbart?

          • Edward2
            Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:44 pm | Permalink

            Who gets paid to read Breibart?

        • L Jones
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:38 am | Permalink

          Neither is Facebook news, Andy.

        • Roy Grainger
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 3:39 pm | Permalink

          Bretbart not news ? Stop reading it then Andy. It is odd how many Labour voters read the Daily Mail just to be continuously offended by it and share articles from it on social media so their like-minded friends can be offended too. Must do wonders for the Mail’s circulation. Personally if I don’t agree with a newspaper’s stance I don’t read it. Simple.

          • libertarian
            Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:58 pm | Permalink


            Exactly right

            I reckon there are more readers of Breitbart ( I must admit Ive never read it) and the Daily Mail that are left wing, remainers and etc ed than right of centre .

            Personally I no longer read any newspaper , I dont listen to BBC radio . R4 is opinionated boring garbage and BBC local radio is not local anymore and is facile. There are dozens of small interesting independent radio stations broadcasting interesting programmes . If you like a good argument with a balanced line up of presenters then LBC and TalkRadio are the place to go

        • oldtimer
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:29 pm | Permalink

          Where did I mention Breitbart? I have never looked at or listened to Breitbart. It is easy to go to original sources these days and to reach your own conclusions. It is called disintermediation and is hated by traditional media like the BBC.

      • Fishknife
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:53 am | Permalink

        On Monday Panorama devoted an hour to telling us that we could get a flight to Huston to buy an old revolver for over £2,000 and bring it through Customs legally.
        It totally ignored the reality that if you want to break the Law and buy, or make, illegal ammunition the going rate for a working gun is about a tenth of that.
        Knives, or a van, are much cheaper, a brick is virtually free.
        Where there is a profit to be made someone, somewhere will flout the Law to do it.
        Antique arms are too expensive for ‘The Street’, but it makes good alarmist propaganda.
        How to ‘novate’ is too boring for lazy journalists and has no ‘impact’ in the media.
        In this Age if Information The ‘Truth’ is what you don’t hear.
        Andy, I don’t hear any praise for the EU.

        • Tad Davison
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

          Guns smuggled in from eastern Europe can sell for as little as a tenner in places like Moss Side, Manchester. In fact, in all the big cities. The breakdown has already started folks. Don’t say I didn’t warn ya. The BBC are as usual, well behind the curve.


          • Caterpillar
            Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:16 pm | Permalink

            Tax Davison,

            I agree breakdown has more than started. Crime is a hysteretic phenomena, a high chance of conviction and hard punishment is needed to achieve a culture of low crime. Getting away with antisocial behaviour and so-called minor crime (irrespective of age) is a cause of more serious crime. All antisocial and criminal behaviour has to be cracked down on (and urgently) to return to a safer and considerate culture. It is only once this is done that toughness can be relaxed, but once there are signs of the antisocial and violent behaviour returning (whether forgetfulness creep or new population) punishment has to be ramped back up. Age of offenders is not an excuse.

            I don’t think any political party at the moment has really switched on to the reality and urgent need to improve law and order. The costs will go up the longer the delay.

    • Peter
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:46 am | Permalink

      You have to bear in mind what the alternatives are. Years ago ITV News at Ten on TV was a major programme. That went. Then Channel4 offered an hour in the early evening. That became a daily crusade on behalf of illegal migrants from the Third World. Newsnight viewing figures have collapsed now, due to reporting scandals and irritating presenters I suspect.

      The main BBC TV news has become tedious.

      “Today” is the only place where you get several hours in depth news coverage every day.

      • libertarian
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:00 pm | Permalink


        “Today” is the only place where you get several hours in depth news coverage every day”

        Blimey Pete do you live in a cave? The only place for rolling 24 hour news…really?

        • hans christian ivers
          Posted August 23, 2018 at 7:30 pm | Permalink


          I am fed up listening to your propaganda about the so-called remainers not knowing anything about trade and business.

          You have had problems with services in Germany in the oast which most of us have never had, so I am afraid I cannot take these sort of contributions seriously. you really have to do better in the future.

          • Edward2
            Posted August 23, 2018 at 10:41 pm | Permalink

            Libertarian is correct
            News coverage is rolling 24 hour multi channel offering.

            Do you agree with Peter who said that the Today programme is all there is?

            Is Brexit getting you down hans?
            You are getting all aggressive lately.
            Do try to keep calm.

          • libertarian
            Posted August 24, 2018 at 8:09 pm | Permalink


            What has your facile post got to do with what I posted above or this thread , can you not read?

            I dont care what you are fed up with, keep displaying your ignorance and I’ll keep showing you up.

            I’ve explained to you multiple times that I haven’t had problems dealing with Germany, the issue hans is that Germany imposes non tariff barriers on some service businesses thats what I said. Remainers like you talking about shortages of IMPORTED stuff and queues to EXPORT are displaying an almighty ignorance about how trade works.

            If you dont like me pointing that out try doing some basic research before posting your guff

    • Stephen Priest
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:02 am | Permalink

      “She was regularly interrupted by an interviewer”

      Every Conservative is regularly interrupted by an interviewer on BBC, SKY , ITV

      Every Non Conservative is never interrupted by an interviewer on BBC, SKY , ITV

      Of course the same rule apply to Leave – Remain politicians.

      • Lifelogic
        Posted August 23, 2018 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

        It you do every get a Brexit person on the BBC then there are usually four remainers plus the interviewer endlessly interrupting and disagreeing with them.

    • NickC
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

      Today was biased against Leave in the run-up to the Referendum, but no more than we had got used to anyway. After the Leave result the BBC went into Remain meltdown, especially when we didn’t get the recession they imagined. I just don’t listen to, or watch, the BBC at all now. Breitbart, Zerohedge, Fox, Prager, Trump’s tweets, Infowars, all better than BBC/Today.

  2. Mark B
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 5:25 am | Permalink

    Good morning

    Variety is the spice of life.

    Our kind host tries to keep things topical and varied. Which I like.

    News media and all other service based business must take into account what their customers want. If the BBC was a commercial enterprise it be in serious trouble with its business model. Which is why I want it moved to subscription.

    May the Today programme continue as our kind host explains. 😉

    • Lifelogic
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:01 am | Permalink

      Indeed it should go on to subscription. Then they they would have to respond to customers desires rather than trying to politically indoctrinate them in the standard BBC, Guardian, New Statesman agenda of:-

      Pro climate alarmism (and almost any other) alarmism, pro the EU, pro Tax and regulation increases, pro open door immigration, pro zero deterrent criminal justice, pro magic money tree economics, anti landlord and pro tenant, pro enforced by law “equality of outcome”, anti real science and engineering, pro bike, anti car/truck/plane, pro women and diversity and anti any white, heterosexual male especially if working class.

      • Tad Davison
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:54 am | Permalink

        Political indoctrination is what the BBC is all about these days LL. Yet I find it astounding that so many viewers and listeners still fall for their dishonest guff.

        I’m looking forward to some friends and former BBC radio presenters going before a House of Commons select committee to tell all about the way the BBC is run by a wholly inept management. It isn’t just the Today Programme that’s losing its audience, BBC Radio Cambridgeshire for instance has lost a third of its listeners in the past twelve months for much the same reason.

        The sooner the BBC is funded by subscription or maybe broken up altogether, the happier I will be.

        How sad it is that an organisation with an almost unique position and an opportunity to be even-handed has allowed itself to get into this deplorable situation. Instead of being the benchmark of good journalism, it has degenerated into a haven of bias, left-wing political correctness, and has become a laughing stock.


        • Lifelogic
          Posted August 23, 2018 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

          Indeed and they are, as it happens, totally wrong on almost all their biases.

      • margaret howard
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 10:55 am | Permalink


        ” Then they they would have to respond to customers desires rather than trying to politically indoctrinate them in the standard BBC, Guardian, New Statesman agenda of:-”

        I suppose you prefer the Daily Mail, Telegraph, Spectator indoctrination variety.

        However, your list of ‘pros’ suggest that the likes of Breitbart and Fox News should fit the bill.

        • Edward2
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 3:45 pm | Permalink

          Difference is you and I have to pay for the BBC like it or not.
          With the newspapers you and I can choose one that we do like and pay for it if we wish.

          • Lifelogic
            Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:05 pm | Permalink

            Plus of course the BBC like the Libdems, Theresa May and the wet Tories are all wrong on almost everything. This on the EU, climate alarmism, the dire state monopoly NHS, on energy, the size of the state and loads of other things too.

            Their agenda does not work as we see in Venezuala.

        • NickC
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:26 pm | Permalink

          Margaret Howard, Why do you suppose I should fund your prejudices?

          • hefner
            Posted August 23, 2018 at 5:31 pm | Permalink

            Matthew 7:3

          • Edward2
            Posted August 23, 2018 at 9:10 pm | Permalink

            Whilst you hefner show no flaws and have great acceptance of others opinions.

          • NickC
            Posted August 24, 2018 at 3:32 pm | Permalink

            Hefner, The difference is I’m not demanding that Margaret Howard, or you, should fund my prejudices.

    • Richard1
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 10:44 am | Permalink

      I’ve found an article in the Guardian I agree with. George Monbiot makes a good point here – also made eloquently in the FT the other day by the journalist Jonathan Ford – that governments have an extraordinary propensity to make terrible and wasteful infrastructure decisions. HS2, Hinkley Point, the Thames Tideway Tunnel (now apparently completely unnecessary but EU-mandated) are all examples. It sounds like the Oxford- Cambridge road and added new towns is another example. Needless to say Mrs May has been far too ineffectual a Prime Minister to do anything about all these statist vanity projects. The lack of proper scrutiny and public debate must be a large part of the explanation, as Monbiot suggests.


      • Lifelogic
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 12:48 pm | Permalink

        It is not their money nor they who get the value from the “investment” so what do they care. I do not suppose Monbiot mentioned the absurd waste of money on green crap subsidies and climate alarmism that he pushes. Though he did, I think, eventuslly support nuclear energy as indeed do I. But not Hinkely which is clearly the wrong scheme.

        • Richard1
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 3:30 pm | Permalink

          He did not. I doubt that’s an issue on which he would favour such scrutiny and debate. I believe he has changed his mind on nuclear, for the reason it’s zero carbon emissions. I don’t know whether he favours Hinkley Point. It seems to me to be the worst possible option for nuclear power.

          • Lifelogic
            Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:06 pm | Permalink


    Posted August 22, 2018 at 5:40 am | Permalink

    Wanted. A political party that when in government purges the State of all Common Purpose state employees across all areas.

    The privatisation of the EU obsessed BBC is an absolute priority. It’s outlived its purposes and as with many other taxpayer financed (under the threat of the criminal law) state entities has become infected by the liberal left political movement.

    It is an offence to objectivity and balance that this infected organisation is allowed to get away with what it does. Cameron did threaten to de-criminalise non-payment of the BBC licence tax but as always with Tory wets he ‘bottled it’ and delivered the BBC a massive birthday pressie with bows on

    I am forced by the criminal law to pay an amount of money to an organisation who then uses that funding to pump out propaganda that directly accuses me and millions of other UK citizens of racism and xenophobia simply because I voted that the UK should leave the EU.

    Tory voters are becoming intensely impatient with current events. We want a radical Tory government with a radical Tory PM.

    Blair came to power and deliberately applied Gramsci-esque entryist techniques to infect huge swathes of the body politic.

    It’s time the Tories under a radical PM hit back without apology and de-politicise all taxpayer financed public sector activity

    • percy openshaw
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:46 am | Permalink

      I agree with every word; however, our window of opportunity is closing. Your Common Purpose types have at last got two of Trump’s men to squeal – with a ruthless dedication they somehow lack when dealing with allegations against the Clintons. Should the Democrats regain power in the US, then the unpopulists who today run the western show will make things even more difficult.

    • BOF
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:06 am | Permalink

      I agree with your post Duncan. Unfortunately we have people like Lord Hague writing articles to propose that we never have that radical PM with independent and strong minded MP’s for support.

    • Man of Kent
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:28 am | Permalink

      I agree with your thrust and privatisation of the BBC .

      However do not forget it is not only the BBC that pushes this propaganda but also Sky ,Channels 4 and 5 . It is a trait of main stream media who all draw on the same pool of like- minded graduates .

      American MSM are all anti-Trump with the exception of Fox News , so repeating a similar fault line .

      What I find objectionable about the BBC is that they took EU loans with little or no need to do so and then as a condition of loan were required to report favourably on the EU.

      They have now morphed into the propaganda arm of a Remain socialist leaning government with little pretence at treating Leave fairly in any way and forever pushing ‘climate change ‘

      Lord Reith must be turning in his grave .

      • Anonymous
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 4:19 pm | Permalink

        “taxpayer financed public sector activity” was the clue.

        The BBC is a near to taxpayer funded as it can get.

    • Bob
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:13 am | Permalink


      “Wanted. A political party that when in government purges the State of all Common Purpose state employees across all areas.”

      Government departments actually send staff on Common Purpose training courses at a cost to the taxpayer of £5k per head. This insidious organisation has tentacles throughout the establishment, education Police Service and the BBC. MPs should be required to declare their dealings with it in the same way that they need to declare other vested interests.

      • Jagman84
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:50 am | Permalink

        “Leading beyond authority”. That sums up the malevolent influence of the Westminster civil service. Acting as a de-facto Prime Minister, a la Mr Robbins.

    • Tad Davison
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 10:30 am | Permalink

      Boy do I agree with those sentiments DUNCAN!

      Well said!


    • margaret howard
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:04 am | Permalink


      “Tory voters are becoming intensely impatient with current events. We want a radical Tory government with a radical Tory PM.”

      I agree with Margot who writes:

      “One of the main tactics of fascists is to criticise and seek to delegitimise the institutions that underpin our democratic processes. Trump attacks the “MSM”. The Brexiters attack the BBC”.

      • Edward2
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

        It is getting ridiculous when everyone on the left of politics routinely smears those on the right of politics as all being first hard right or now as with your comment as all being fascists.

      • Anonymous
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

        They deligitimise themselves.

        You don’t have to be a Brexit voter or Trump supporter to be sick of the right on message.

  4. Bob Dixon
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 5:45 am | Permalink

    I turn to the BBC after visiting other news sources. The BBC current set up must be high on the agenda for change, once we have left the clutches of the EU.

    • MickN
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:46 am | Permalink

      I long ago stopped watching BBC “news” but some of the others are no better. The ITV 10 o’clock news last night managed to get in a dig at Donald Trump on three “news” items.
      The third was about whether in a digital age signatures are still relevant Illustrated by showing Mr Trump signing off a document and turning it to camera to reveal a drawing of a stick man that a four year old might draw. Pathetic !!
      Drain the swamp !

      • MickN
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:38 am | Permalink

        Incidentally there were two more people shot in London yesterday but they didn’t feel this was “news ” So full was the program with slagging off Mr Trump that there was no room left to report it.

        • Hoof Hearted
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:21 am | Permalink

          Two people shot in London every day is no longer news.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 12:52 pm | Permalink

          Doubtless the police and Ms Dick were too busy thinking about and making statemente on Boris and alleged hate crimes to do much about gun and knife crime.

          All is a question of your priorities I suppose.

        • libertarian
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:07 pm | Permalink


          They were shot in the constituency “represented” by a Labour MP who has spent the last few days moaning about Jamie Oliver rice recipes and didn’t have time to mention shootings

  5. Lifelogic
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 5:48 am | Permalink

    A typical BBC report on almost anything goes something like this:- The massive problems in X are all caused by Brexit, the ignorant racist & uneducated Brexit voters, Donalt Trump, Climate Change “deniers”, unscrupulous landlords (they all are to the BBC and indeed to Hammond it seems), a blind belief in free markets, “austerity” (not much evidence of that in the largely parasitic state sector) or lack of even more government taxation and regulation.

    Delete as required.

    PM is surely going the same way, the other day almost the whole of the programme was devoted some American singer who had died called Aretha – why? Attempted political indoctrination as usual one assumes.

    The BBC endlessly talk about government needing to invest more in this or that without ever recognising that the money has first to be taken off people and businesses who would have invested it far more efficiently anyway.

    The May government is clearly very left wing on economics, very high taxing, very wasteful and wrong on almost everything and yet ministers are never ever questioned by the BBC from this direction.

    They never ask:-Why do we have the highest tax levels for 40 + years yet governments deliver so little of any value? Why is health care a dire virtual state monopoly?

    All BBC interviewers (other than Andrew Neil who is fairly central) see to be dim, left wing art graduated with no grasp of maths, science, logic, history, human nature, reason or economics. People who always work on irrational emotions rather than any reason, analysis or logic.

    • Mitchel
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:49 am | Permalink

      Even Andrew Neil,although still a competant enquirer,has gone downhill these past few years- with the stunts, dressing up,attempts at comedy that he pads his show out with.He/his producer/the BBC clearly do not think we should have a serious political discussion show anymore.

      I quite like Zeinab Badawi-HARDTalk is much better when she hosts it rather than Stephen Sackur(whose own views are always on display),although disappointed to see she’s yet another PPE.

      • Tad Davison
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:48 am | Permalink

        A friend of mine, Norman Finkelstein, was on Hardtalk and he said to me afterwards it ought to be called ‘Hard-to-talk’ because he couldn’t get a word in edgewise. All through the programme, the presenter would ask another question before he’d been able to answer the first one, and so on.

        That, by my calculation is very poor journalism, especially where someone has something important to say, yet it is a tactic very often used to stop them saying anything of value to the audience. So what is the point of BBC Current Affairs if they have an in-built inability to deliver anything decent and informative to the people who pay for their programming and wages?


        • Dennis
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 3:59 pm | Permalink

          I agree about the constant interruptions – the BBC should learn how to do interview properly by watching RT which is so superior.

          • NickC
            Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:53 pm | Permalink

            Dennis, RT is a shill for Putin, BBC is a shill for the Remain, global warming, cultural-marxist, establishment. So not much difference in principle.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:12 pm | Permalink

          For a really, really bad interview listen to the Channel 4 one with Jordan Peterson. She just did not listen to the answers given nor think in real time (or indeed think at all).

          This despite a first in English at Oxford I understand.

          • libertarian
            Posted August 23, 2018 at 10:52 am | Permalink

            Take a look at last nights Mat Frei Channel 4 car crash interview First they wrongly introduced Hillary supporting, Democrat voting, Harvard Law School Emeritus Professor Alan Dershowitz as an ‘adviser to Donald Trump’, before he demolished their holier than thou attitude towards the state of U.S. politics. Frei had no answer so just cut off the interview. Hilarious

            State propaganda is reaching epic proportions. When I was younger and reading about history, i would say to myself but why did reasonably intelligent people believe in the Inquisition, Witchfinders, National Socialism , Communism when they can see with their own eyes how wrong and bad these things are.

            Now we know, the establishment, politics, civil service, media etc live in a self reinforcing bubble that pumps out propaganda 24 hours a day. Most people going about their daily lives trying to make ends meet just assume what they ae being told is true and so it reinforces itself

            Direct Democracy is the ONLY antidote to this

      • Lifelogic
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

        Not every PPE person is daft, lacking in logic and reason and misguided, only about 90%.

        • Lifelogic
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:14 pm | Permalink

          I rather like Henry Marsh (neurosurgeon) and his excellend books (Do no harm etc.). He got a 1st in PPE, but sensibly changed to Medicine.

          • libertarian
            Posted August 23, 2018 at 10:54 am | Permalink

            I agree LL

            Probably one of the best books I’ve ever read. So well written , such a powerful story about the work of a Brain Surgeon . The main point being that we all use the term “brain Surgeon” to refer to the ultimate expert and clever person. Henry shows just how wrong this view is.

  6. Nicholas Guitard
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 5:53 am | Permalink

    I’m one of Today’s lost listeners. I wrote to tell them I could no longer stomach the crass popular culture they wanted to infect me with. No reply of course.

    I guess Today, and the BBC as a whole, suit government well – a slavish state propaganda machine sufficiently distant from power to masquerade as independent. The epitome is Andrew Marr, the only interviewer both Mrs May and Mr Corbyn dare trust themselves to. He, HMG and BBC should all be thoroughly ashamed.

  7. Richard1
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:00 am | Permalink

    Absolutely agreed ‘Today’ has become utterly tedious and repetitive. The BBC is meant to be politically neutral, but whilst it nominally is vis a vis parties, it is clearly not On issues. Advocates of BBC approved views, especially on Brexit, massively outnumber their opponents and are given a free pass to make whatever assertions they like. Opposing views are rare and subject to constant, but unintelligent, interruption. I haven’t listened to Today for a month now. I suppose I might pick up on it again in September, but with an inward grown. Even worse is the dreadful BBC TV question time – though I gave up with that years ago. We really need competition in news and current affairs broadcasting, both radio and TV. The license fee neeeds to be replaced by a subscription agreement with various possible levels of service.

    • MickN
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:42 am | Permalink

      Questiontime used to be the highlight of my week’s viewing. Not any more. I look to see who is on the program. Nigel Farage gets a look in along with a couple of others. I am not interested in what urban poets, rappers and so called comedians always of the left and remoaners that the program is crammed with have to say. More often than not now I avoid it.

  8. Anonymous
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:04 am | Permalink

    I resent paying the BBC licence. There is no BBC output that I like. Even R2 plays rap music now.

    Andy really ought to worry about when pensioners ! *spits* stop voting and stop paying. Then it will be the young people revolting violently.

    Venezuala here we come.

    • Bob
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:27 am | Permalink

      I haven’t paid the Licence Fee for over ten years.
      I have a Smart TV which has access to on demand services which do not require a BBC Licence.

      The only channel I can’t legally watch is BBC (big deal), but I can legally listen in to their radio broadcasts, a bit like listening to “Germany Calling” during WWII really.

      • Ian wragg
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 3:36 pm | Permalink

        I think you will find legislation has changed and watching any tv requires a licence. One ploy was to put a 5 minute delay timer and claim rightly that you don’t watch live telly.

  9. sm
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:21 am | Permalink

    John, may I take a slightly different perspective on this?

    I get the very strong impression that politicians get NO training in how to deal with this kind of aggressive ‘interviewing’ technique.

    Obviously, being rude in return (especially for a Minister) is out of the question, since a slanging match would delight the programme managers and achieve nothing. But how many politicians have ever tried one-word answers, which in my limited personal experience tends to put the interviewer off balance slightly; or alternatively, a polite “I didn’t realise I was invited to listen to YOUR views and interpretations/I can’t explain my position if you are talking over me all the time”.

    Let’s face it, very few media outlets want clear discussions about policy – they are after controversy and confrontation, and must be starved of it.

    • Iain Moore
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:00 am | Permalink

      The problem is that politicians from the right, those that aren’t carpetbaggers who would seem to have more in common with the Libdems or Labour, are mostly apologists for their claimed beliefs, in not believing the cause they claim to represent they allow themselves to be beaten up by BBC presenters. For those who do have some ideological belief they would be well advised to take some lessons from the likes of Sebastian Gorka , who frequently speaks on behalf of Trump, and who never leaves a BBC presenter unscathed, and more often than not schools them to some basic facts.

      • Tad Davison
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 12:07 pm | Permalink

        I thoroughly agree. Sebastian Gorka is a very clever man and it would be very hard for anyone to get one over on him. Perhaps that’s why the BBC doesn’t ask him to comment very often as heaven forbid, he might make people sit and think and then change their minds.

        When interviewing someone from the political right, or maybe a Brexiteer, they tend to want to have lightweights or those who are not entirely on top of their brief in the hope they’ll trip up. If that isn’t an underhanded ploy to influence the debate in their chosen way, I don’t know what is!


    • Peter Wood
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:19 am | Permalink

      The worst thing for an interviewer is the looooong pause. Sadly, many politicians think the more words they use the better, (Mrs May) rather than a short, accurate answer, preceded by that pause.

  10. Dave Andrews
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:25 am | Permalink

    The BBC looks bad, until you consider the alternatives. ITV is just as bad, if not worse, C4 is certainly worse. You get a different perspective from RT, but then you seem to be tuning into the Dark Side.
    Points of View used to be a credible right to reply, but has now become a complaint management exercise, with the BBC using it to deny all wrong. The presenter is not allowed to challenge her BBC colleagues, but is obliged herself to follow the BBC line.

  11. Gary C
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:26 am | Permalink

    There’s little point listening to the same old echo coming from the BBC, where Brexit is concerned the amount of remainers using the cry wolf tactic is proof their case is flawed.

    They are unable to dazzle us with brilliance and think they can baffle us with bull****.

  12. Thames Trader
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:30 am | Permalink

    It’s not just the Today programme. This week the BBC TV news led with the absurd story that the NHS drug supply will be impacted from day one of a no-deal Brexit. It was presented like it was hard fact with no balancing response.

    • Jim Mansfield
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:31 am | Permalink

      And no explanation as to how countries that trade entirely under WTO rules are able to get medicines without significant delays. How does a country like Australia get medicines? Would the BBC be good enough to explain?

      • SecretPeople
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 10:07 am | Permalink

        I read an illuminating article by Martin Howe QC in which he wrote:

        “Much of the hysteria about ‘shortages’ of goods such as food and medicine seems to be based on the idea that the UK would impose non-tariff barriers against the importation of goods from the EU27. Not only would such an action be criminal stupidity, but it would require a positive amendment to the law to achieve it.”


    • Denis Cooper
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 10:16 am | Permalink

      It wasn’t just the BBC, it was also Sky taking the story from the Times which had got it from Buzzfeed who were the beneficiaries of another leak from a member of the civil service under the ministerial direction of the Prime Minister, as always, and the lack of a proper balancing response was because obviously the government is not going to effectively rebut any false propaganda story which it has started to try to move public opinion towards acceptance of its Chequers plan.

      The story centres on the 44 tests which the EU applies to medicines being imported from outside of the EU, with the presumption that the day after we leave the EU we will have to also apply those tests to medicines being imported from the EU which we have not been testing for a long time while we have been in the EU.

      There is no sense in that, but no government minister or even spokesman went on air to say “There is no sense in that, why on earth are you expecting that imported medicines which we do not test now while we are in the EU will suddenly need to be tested the day after we have left the EU?” Yes, Liam Fox was interviewed, but his feeble answer was that he expected that we would get a deal, which was tantamount to saying that if we failed to get a deal then this story would come true.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 10:36 am | Permalink

      As it happens I have just this morning received an email response from a lady in Liam Fox’s department, as follows:

      “Dear Dr Cooper

      Thank you for your email dated 8 August to The Rt Hon Dr Liam Fox MP, regarding future compliance with Article 7.4 of the WTO Agreement on Trade Facilitation after the UK has left the EU.

      The Secretary of State receives a large amount of correspondence every day and is unable to respond to each one personally. On this occasion I have been asked to reply.

      The Government’s assessment is that under a no deal scenario, imports from the EU would still not be classified as ‘high risk’. This is based upon the reading of the Trade Facilitation Agreement at 7.4 (4):

      ‘Each Member shall base risk management on an assessment of risk through appropriate selectivity criteria. Such selectivity criteria may include, inter alia, the Harmonized System code, nature and description of the goods, country of origin, country from which the goods were shipped, value of the goods, compliance records of traders, and type of means of transport.’

      The key criteria are country of origin, country from where the goods are shipped and compliance of traders. Even under a no deal scenario, these imports would constitute low risk because of the certainty of the trading partners and country of origin. High risk would be goods originating from third countries where any number of the selectivity criteria are uncertain. This is not the case in terms of imports from the EU, and a no deal scenario does not change that.

      I hope the information above is helpful to you. Thank you for taking the time to write to this Department.

      Lauren Wood

      In other words, IN FULL CONFORMITY WITH WTO RULES the UK would not be arbitrarily deciding that medicines from the EU has suddenly become high risk and therefore needed to be put through the full gamut of tests applied to products from other perhaps less reliable sources.

      • Know-Dice
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 1:05 pm | Permalink

        Thanks Denis, excellent post, please keep it up 🙂

  13. Andy
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:41 am | Permalink

    It is a pretty simple equation. Today is a hard hitting credible news programme. And few Brexit backers are credible.

    The reality is that due to strict impartially rules Brexiteers have been given an easy ride. Even though your arguments are simply not credible you still get airtime.

    You’d all find that you’d get asked far fewer questions about Brexit if you could adequately answer the ones you get – but you can’t.

    As for losing listeners, the main reason Today is losing listeners is that the news agenda is much quieter this year than last year. And radio figures are year on year comparisons.

    The second is that when they do have Brexiteers on, most of Today’s audience – serious, credible people – turn off at the fact free ranting.

    • eeyore
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:51 am | Permalink

      I always enjoy Andy’s contributions, but suspect he has no journalistic experience and so is not sensitised to the subtleties of propaganda. He might try this touchstone: note how often the BBC talk about “fears” or “problems” of Brexit. Then note how often they talk of Brexit “hopes” and “opportunities”.

      • hefner
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

        Good point, eeyore. I confess I am still listening to mostly the 6:30-7:30 bit of the Today program. I now have a piece of paper and a pen near the radio, and will check the frequency of those words.

    • percy openshaw
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:52 am | Permalink

      Here we go; another dose of Remainiac assertion and snobbery. You assert that your side are “serious and credible” and that your opponents merely rant. Isn’t such an assertion itself the very essence of “ranting”? Do you offer any facts or figures to back up this assertion? Do you address the EU’s intransigence? Of course you don’t, because your bully pulpit certainties couldn’t then survive. Finally, if your one eyed view were in any way true, wouldn’t it be better to balance the supply of speakers on the BBC if only to expose the supposed paucity of the Brexit case? Whilst the Beeb, egged on by bigots such as yourself, continue to exclude pro-Brexit argument we can only conclude that it is from fear and that all your towering, preening arrogance is nothing but whistling in the dark.

    • Beecee
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:19 am | Permalink

      Thank you Andy, you give us all a really good laugh every day, sometimes multiple times – which is a joy.

      Keep it up.

      • Mitchel
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:55 am | Permalink

        Andy and Lifelogic are definitely the “slebs”(celebrities”) of the Redwood blogosphere.Perhaps we could nominate them for the next “I’m a celebrity get me out of here!”or “Big Brother” house and see how they fare!

        • fedupsoutherner
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:49 pm | Permalink

          @Mitchel. Yes, agree, but at least Lifelogic talks sense and his posts are intelligent and coherent unlike Andy’s whose are nasty and unnecessarily rude towards pensioners.

    • matthu
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:31 am | Permalink

      The only common threads linking decline in audience figures of any of BBC News, Today, Question Time, Any Answers, Daily Politics, PM, Andrew Marr, Have I Got News For You … (the list goes on and on) is the BBC’s unabashed bias and inane style of interviewing. And contrary to what you suggest, Andy, there are no rules of impartiality on issues of the day (outside of a referendum period).

      Any superficial balancing of the airtime is never the equivalent of ensuring that licence payers are being presented with a reasoned examination of relevant issues from all sides, since the BBC can always control what issues are ever discussed, what distortions of the truth incessantly pedalled.

      Another tactic is to ensure that panel discussions are heavily biased (either one way or the other) so that well-reasoned debate is made more difficult, while serious discussion is further diluted by including a socialist comic or two among the mix.

      Even when all of the above-mentioned precautions have been taken, the presenter will often attempt to inject his own dig at the perceived opposition. (Witness Dimbleby’s attempt to take a swipe at Rees-Mogg for having attended Eton, resulting in one of the most incisive – and last – take-downs of Dimbleby I ever bothered to watch. Repeats are still worth watching on Youtube.)

    • L Jones
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:41 am | Permalink

      Yes, Andy, I daresay that ”Today” appears to be ”hard hitting” to a devotee of Facebook.

    • mickc
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:54 am | Permalink

      Most Brexiters voted out to regain control of our own laws…..not on economic grounds. Remainers just don’t get this.

      • Andy
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

        On the contrary. I get it entirely. So why do leading Brexiteers go on TV and radio to claim otherwise?

      • mickc
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 2:03 pm | Permalink

        No idea….best ask them

      • margaret howard
        Posted August 23, 2018 at 4:39 pm | Permalink


        “Most Brexiters voted out to regain control of our own laws…..not on economic grounds”

        How do you know?

        • libertarian
          Posted August 24, 2018 at 8:17 pm | Permalink

          margaret howard

          He knows because Lord Ashcroft paid for an analysis of why people voted to leave and the top answer was to regain sovereignty

          Here you go


          Perhaps you would like to show us your evidence you used to pronounce that 17.4 million Brexit voters are all xenophobic , fascists ?

          No? Thought not

  14. David L
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:43 am | Permalink

    In defence of the BBC, I must say that Radios 3, 4 and 5 are my staple listening on long drives for the music, general interest and sport coverage. I am willing to pay a subscription for these services, however, your criticism of their news analysis is valid. To write off views that dissent from the liberal elite in such daft generalisations as far right or populist is actually putting their whole news coverage at severe risk…or maybe they haven’t analysed that far ahead yet!

  15. Margot
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:52 am | Permalink

    One of the main tactics of fascists is to criticise and seek to delegitimise the institutions that underpin our democratic processes. Trump attacks the “MSM”. The Brexiters attack the BBC.

    • eeyore
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:21 am | Permalink

      This is ignoratio elenchi. To criticise where criticism is merited does not make one a fascist. On the other hand, to call people fascist when the epithet is irrelevant is to seek to shut down argument – a typical fascist tactic, Margot.

    • sm
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:00 am | Permalink

      Are you and Ageist Andy good friends, Margot?

    • Kevin
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:01 am | Permalink

      “One of the main tactics of fascists is to criticise”

      Given that you yourself appear to be engaging in criticism, do you consider criticism to be a bad thing?

    • a-tracy
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:03 am | Permalink

      The definition of fascist is someone with “no tolerance for opposing opinions” John Redwood appears to be asking for all opinions not just one version on one of the programs he likes to listen to.

    • matthu
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:52 am | Permalink

      The only current attempts to delegitimise democratic processes that I am aware of have been those to exonerate Hilary Clinton, to link President Trump to Russian collusion, and to overturn the EU referendum.

      No doubt the institutions that you see underpinning our democratic processes include the horribly-biased and arrogant BBC, the woefully wrong-footed polling organisations, the House of Lords, the EU commission and the European Courts, the top echelons of our civil service and other EU-leaning institutions such as our universities, the regrettably politicised Royal Society and now etc ed

    • Bob
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 10:16 am | Permalink

      Godwin’s law alert.

    • margaret howard
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:08 pm | Permalink


      “Pathetic !!
      Drain the swamp !”

      Or get a sense of humour!

    • libertarian
      Posted August 23, 2018 at 11:04 am | Permalink


      An the EU attacks national and regional democracy

      French, Dutch , Danish & Catalan votes.

      Imposing Prime Ministers and austerity on Italy and Greece

      Next they will try to shut down free speech on the internet….. Oh look here comes article 13

  16. stred
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:54 am | Permalink

    The BBC (reflects the views of ed) the civil service and liberal unelected state. Both operate through Common Purpose and other international government bodies to undermine the parliamentary nation state and back EU and UN policy. The unelected House of Cronies back them and are in the high management. It reinforces the few Guardian readers that listen to it and look for adverts to work in it. The number of listeners and readers drops but the money is still fed to them.

    LBC increases its audience because they allow debate from both sides. It is interesting to learn just how the other side thinks and hear their thoughts questioned. Yesterday a woman called in after 4pm to say that a second referendum was necessary because voters did not understand the ‘disaster’ that they were letting themselves in for. She told the host that the UK already had control of its borders. Also, the leaders of the far right had vested interests in Brexit and had opened businesses in Dublin to profit from Brexit. When asked for an example, she mentioned your name JR. The host disputed this and said they would check. But the saddest part of this rubbish was that she said she knew this and told her students these facts, as she read them in the Guardian. She said you were her MP. So all this crap does actually get through to the less independent or intelligent young people and this is why they are manipulated into wishing to be controlled by unelected politicians in Brussels. Coming to them in a school in Wokingham, courtesy of the taxpayer.

    Reply Glad she was put right about a Dublin business – I have done no such thing. I have always argued Brexit is good economically for the UK, contrary to various lies put out about my views.

  17. Jim Mansfield
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:56 am | Permalink

    However bad you might think the Today programme is, it is nowhere near as bad as the utterly disgraceful Newsnight.

    • Mitchel
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 10:02 am | Permalink

      Does anyone still watch it?I gave up before Paxman left,having turned himself into a self-parody.The last memorable edition was when ……….Peter Oborne berated that”idiot from Brussels”-so good I’ve had to re-watch it a few times since on youtube!

  18. Sir Joe Soap
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:59 am | Permalink

    It is basically Blairite.
    On the one hand it wails at the terrible “cuts” on the NHS, social services and so on. It never questions our contributions to the EU, our continental assets which could be seized, and so on.
    On the other hand it now has Venezuela in its sights, so it dislikes the Corbyn Labour party too.
    It’s clear to see that its heros are the Chukka Umunna, Stephen Kinnock, Ben Bradshaw types. Very diverse until it comes to respecting peoples’ rights to expect a return on their work, and a say in their democracy.

    • bigneil
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:15 am | Permalink

      Re the “cuts” you mention. A local council has hinted that bin collections might become once every 4 weeks, to save money. Imagine the smell of rotting food in the recent hot weather. Something there is ALWAYS govt cash for and THAT cost gets bigger and bigger – the non-contributing arrivals of this country. Free everything. Even the working class numpty can see it is unsustainable.

  19. Original Richard
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:03 am | Permalink

    Mr. Redwood,

    Is there a listing, or can one be produced please, of all the organisations who currently receive EU funding, such as the BBC, CBI, RUSI etc. and thus will be looking for UK government funding to replace the EU funding after we leave ?

    • Fedupsoutherner
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:00 am | Permalink

      The BBC are already funded by us, the licence payer for the privilege of watching pure crap.

    • Duyfken
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:46 am | Permalink

      I doubt that such a listing exists, but the implication is fair. Should not all those who presume to enter the Brexit debate, be required to declare any financial or fiduciary interest (whether from the EU or any other source) affecting impartiality?

    • old salt
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:08 am | Permalink

      Original Richard-
      May I suggest most governmental type organisations and more including religious ones are in receipt of EU funding which after all is our money anyway less our subs and admin charges. This is why those organisations have to pay heed to their financier. He who pays the piper calls the tune!

    • Mick B
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:12 am | Permalink
      • hefner
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

        This site has everything that (I guess) one wants:
        look for FTS (Financial Transparency System)
        putting a year, say 2017, and country, UK, you get two lists, of “beneficiary is the sole recipient of the commitment” and “beneficiary is one of multiple recipients …” with the received amounts. By exploring a bit more, one can find some (shortish) summary of what the money is supposed to pay for.
        It will take time to go over all the UK institutions and companies getting some money.
        At least in 2017 RUSI did not get anything (and I have some doubts it ever got any).

        • Original Richard
          Posted August 22, 2018 at 10:02 pm | Permalink

          I know of this EU wesitesite but I don’t find it transparent and I doubt it is complete.

          From RUSI’s own website :

          “During 2016-17, the following organisations have supported RUSI in a variety of ways, including research partnerships, sponsorship of conferences and corporate members of the Institute.

          Over £1,000,000

          European Commission”

          (At the very top of the list)

  20. Alan Jutson
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:09 am | Permalink

    Afraid proper interviewers are a dying breed, we now have presenters, many who think they are celebrities who’s own opinion is worth more than anyone else’s.

    Gone are the days of clever forensic interviews over a 15-30 minute time scale, which teased out the often hidden truth, now it seems we must have instant sound bites, Sensationalist headlines, with shouty, shouty reporters, because the younger generation get bored after 5 seconds.

  21. Ian wragg
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:16 am | Permalink

    Every day the BBC, Sky and ITV have an anti Brexit article.
    I get thoroughly sick of listening to the diatribe so much so that I refuse to subsidise such drivel.

    • Andy
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 4:41 pm | Permalink

      Perhaps you should read it? Listen to it? Watch it?

      Perhaps you are wrong – and Brexit will be bad for you? There’s a thought.

      • Edward2
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:08 pm | Permalink

        Perhaps Project Fear 2.0 will prove to be as poor in its predictions as Project Fear 1.0 was.

      • libertarian
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:27 pm | Permalink


        Dont think it will be as bad as what you and your friends have cruelly done to the people of Greece. You should be ashamed , very ashamed of this

        As Greece exits international bailout programmes, it’s worth remembering:
        – 500k people, mostly young, emigrated
        – Unemployment hit 27.8% (still >20%)
        – Youth unemployment reached 60%
        – Economy shrank by 25%
        – Debt/GDP ballooned to 180%
        – Suicide & depression rates rose sharply
        – Nearly one third of Greeks are now living in poverty

        • Mitchel
          Posted August 23, 2018 at 9:58 am | Permalink

          And much of it’s key infrastructure foreign-owned due to forced privatisation.

        • Andy
          Posted August 23, 2018 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

          The Greek economy has been in bad shape because of decisions made by Greek governments.

          Think of the state they would be if they had not had their EU friends to help bail them out.

          As you are so interested in the domestic economies of EU member states, tell me about Ireland or the Czech Republic or the Netherlands.

          Doing rather well now, aren’t they?

          • Edward2
            Posted August 23, 2018 at 8:57 pm | Permalink

            Tell us about Spain Cyprus Portugal Italy

          • libertarian
            Posted August 24, 2018 at 8:30 pm | Permalink


            For a fan boy of the EU it would help if you knew something about your EU partners

            The Greek economic miracle is the period of sustained economic growth in Greece from 1950 to 1973. During this period, the Greek economy grew by an average of 7.7%, second in the world only to Japan. In total, the Greek GDP grew for 54 of the 60 years following World War II and the Greek Civil War.Greece consistently outperformed most European nations in terms of annual economic growth


            I can tell you about Italy, Portugal, Spain, Cyprus, Catalonia and the impending removal of Irelands 12% CT rate if that helps .

  22. Chris S
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:17 am | Permalink

    Today is just the most obvious symptom of a BBC run by and for a left-of-centre liberal/labour elite. It is no surprise that the luvvies overwhelmingly choose the Guardian as their newspaper of choice.

    The BBC is committed to gender equality and the over-representation of ethnic minorities. Perhaps it should also be required to meet specific targets for political allegiance, particularly in the News and Current Affairs departments.

  23. Julian Hodgson
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:28 am | Permalink

    I switch it on and leave the presenters and guests chuntering away in the background. Occasionally some intensely irritating piece comes on which I can’t ignore so I switch it off. It’s gone down hill recently, of that there is no doubt.

  24. Mike Stallard
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:30 am | Permalink

    I come from the other side and want to see us leave the Eu and Single Market (EU/EEA) and to join Efta/EEA instead.
    Every now and then I turn on Radio 4 to find that I am listening to Women;s Hour. It is always Women’s Hour on Radio 4.
    Pale Male and Stale?
    Not at all.
    Now it is Haughty, naughty and well over Forty.

    • Andy
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 5:23 pm | Permalink

      EEA / Efta is not Brexit. So say some people who voted for Brexit. But, wait, other people who voted for Brexit say EEA / Efta is Brexit.

      How can this be? Perhaps EEA / Efta is like a Schrodinger‘s Brexit? Both Brexit and not Brexit at the same time?

      As a Remainer I would, reluctantly, accept EEA / Efta. It is clearly significantly worse than what we have now but is better than the extreme amputation that hard Brexiteers seek. Plus it would reflect the fact that the country was pretty evenly split, that young people (the future) do not want Brexit and the fact that hard Brexit was overwhelmingly rejected in the 2017 general election.

      • Edward2
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:40 pm | Permalink

        It is ridiculous to claim brexit was overwhelmingly rejected in the 2017 election.
        The two main parties had manifestos stating they were committed to leaving the EU
        They got over 80% of the vote.
        The two parties that stood on a manifesto promising to stay in the EU got nowhere.

      • Anonymous
        Posted August 23, 2018 at 4:11 am | Permalink

        The party offering a second referendum was obliterated and it’s leader unseated.

      • libertarian
        Posted August 23, 2018 at 11:12 am | Permalink


        You are so funny, you are a parody of yourself

        EFTA is not Brexit but some leavers want it …. they’re silly

        Andy : I want to Remain , EFTA is not remaining… but I want EFTA … LOL

  25. Sakara Gold
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:32 am | Permalink

    Things could be worse. Recent developments in the USA, where Mr Trump’s personal lawyer Michael Cohen has pleaded guilty to commiting a federal offence – at the direct instruction of the President – have been accurately reported by the BBC. I was disturbed to read that Mr Trump regards the press as “the enemy of the people” which should be translated as “the enemy of me”. For all it’s faults the BBC does tell the truth (but perhaps not all the truth)

    Trump’s presidency will now be handicapped by more (allegations ed), more evidence of criminality from dismissed staff, more evidence of possible etc ed , more Russian revelations…..never mind Brexit, we should be planning for the impeachment of Trump and eventually a President Pence

    • Prigger
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 4:36 pm | Permalink

      And no, I’m not going to elaborate…for various reasons. But yes, to a “farcical” question you would not ask openly, it IS literally possible.

    • Mitchel
      Posted August 23, 2018 at 10:03 am | Permalink

      The late,1960’s avant-garde art-rocker,Frank Zappa,once said that “US government was the entertainment division of the Military-Industrial-Complex.”

      I’m sure even he never imagined how pertinent that observation would become!

  26. G Wilson
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:48 am | Permalink

    It is terrible – but it will continue, because the BBC has no commercial incentive to cull bad programmes.

    Such is the lack of voter choice, no main political party is willing to privatise this dinosaur.

  27. Adam
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:50 am | Permalink

    John Whittingdale’s intentions for remedying the faulty BBC might have prevented such a slide into lower standards. ‘Today’ is no longer worth listening to. Better sounds are generated walking through a swamp with a shoulder-held tape recorder.

  28. Peter Farmer
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:56 am | Permalink

    I turned off Today an hour ago and switched to the ‘200’ band on Free view -France 24, CNN, Al Jazeera, NHK, even RT for the odd item.

  29. a-tracy
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:02 am | Permalink

    If Today want to talk to just less than half of the population instead of all the possible audience then they will eventually get half continuing to tune in. I’m surprised Grimshaw survived as long as he did chasing away the audience to the private networks and enabling Smooth, Heart and others to get a good following. This is not an attack on the BBC and I much loathe the assumption that if you disagree with BBC programming balance you’re suddenly a “fascist” Margot. Rude titles are very easy to bandy around and people should take care when name calling.

  30. Kenneth
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:05 am | Permalink

    It’s simple really.

    The BBC just needs to remove it’s own opinion from its own coverage.

  31. Alan Joyce
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:16 am | Permalink

    Dear Mr. Redwood,

    Dear All,

    May I appeal to regular contributors to this blog to refrain from any exchanges with the posts of the boorish ‘Andy’ – tempting as it might be sometimes.

    There he sits at home frustrated by all and everything around him – the only highlight of his day penning his sad little contributions to this blog.

    Perhaps he could take up the suggestion of our kind host and provide some comment on the UK’s capacity to export, about the changing nature of our markets and the growth areas of our products and services – post-Brexit?

    Maybe not. Must be too busy paying all that tax.

    • Anonymous
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 4:25 pm | Permalink

      He’s a useful idiot. The true voice of Remain.

      • hans christian ivers
        Posted August 23, 2018 at 10:38 am | Permalink


        not necessary

        • libertarian
          Posted August 23, 2018 at 4:46 pm | Permalink


          You are right Andy isn’t necessary but he does show up the vacuous lack of knowledge about trade and business of the average Remain supporter and the spite and bile directed at a group of people who he presumes to understand but who are largely a figure of his over active imagination. You on the other hand are intelligent and experienced so you are a much bigger disappointment

    • Andy
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:39 pm | Permalink

      I find it all rather funny how angry you all get.

      What is the collect noun for Victor Meldrews?

      • Andy
        Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:42 pm | Permalink

        Collective. Need a new iPhone.

        • Edward2
          Posted August 23, 2018 at 7:33 am | Permalink

          You better buy a new iphone quickly andy.
          According to you, after Brexit they won’t be able to be imported.

          • hefner
            Posted August 23, 2018 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

            Why that? There are essentially made in China by a US company. Do you not know, that? really? Or is it just your zeal to shut people up?

          • Edward2
            Posted August 23, 2018 at 9:02 pm | Permalink

            You are getting very aggressive hefner.
            Do try to keep calm
            Don’t let Brexit get to you.

            Previously young Andy has been warning us how difficult imports will become after we leave.
            Do you not know that?

        • libertarian
          Posted August 23, 2018 at 11:17 am | Permalink


          The EU thought police will be after you son. An iPhone? An Amercian product , using UK chipsets, assembled in China …. No surely not Andy, surely you will buy a Polish made phone, assembled in Germany using a Hungarian operating system

          Anyhow according to you once we trade using WTO you won’t be able to get smartphones from outside the EU

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:57 pm | Permalink

      @Alan Joyce. Agree Alan. His posts have become laughable and not at all credible. I think he just writes things for effect. I have also become bored by his continual slagging off of pensioners who have paid into the system for years so he can enjoy it. Ignoring him is the best thing to do. At least we can all have a good laugh each day.

  32. Brian Tomkinson
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:21 am | Permalink

    I have stated hear many times that the broadcast media is in daily breach of their statutory duty of impartiality under the broadcasting code. In my opinion the BBC, ITV News, Channel4 News and Sky News are all overtly anti-Brexit and anti-Trump. Ofcom do nothing. Perhaps that is because they share thosse same biases?

  33. margaret
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:41 am | Permalink

    The listening audience is changing. I cannot agree that because A/ B is so , however I am sure there sits an unequal bias as you say.

  34. English Pensioner
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:46 am | Permalink

    I haven’t listened to BBC Radio since Terry Wogan stopped presenting the breakfast time programme! I rarely look at BBC TV either. There are a few good dramas such as Poldark and I like Michael Portillo’s Rail Journeys, but apart from those there is too much trivia or propaganda. The feminist Victoria Derbyshire of a morning was the last straw, so I now get my update on any overnight news from the internet.
    As a pensioner, I can’t moan about the licence fee as I no longer pay it, but I feel sorry for those who do.

    • Michael Wood
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 7:47 pm | Permalink

      I rarely watch television and would do without it if it wasn’t for my wife.
      She likes so many of the veterinary programs, such as ‘Fitzpatrick referrals, even though many are repeats.
      I am, like you, of an age that means I don’t have to pay the licence fee.
      I, again like you, prefer the Internet. Sites like http://www.facts4eu.org, for example.

  35. David D
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:26 am | Permalink

    BBC radio is a right on lefty waste of time exactly like it’s tv counterparts. Why does any sentient human being continue to pay a tax in order to be propagandized by a left wing, big government supporting organisation like the BBC? Also why would you subject yourself to 10 minutes of intelligence insulting adverts every half hour to listen to commercial radio or watch commercial tv soaps and quiz shows? For years now it is perfectly possible to watch thousands of hours of far better informed and more truthful news and other videos online for free with no advertising at all if you can be bothered to install ad blocking software. No wonder there are so many brain dead Remainers- they’ve been lobotomized by main stream media.

  36. Arthur Wrightiss
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:30 am | Permalink

    I too am one of the 800,000 who no longer listen to the Today programme and haven’t done for about 12 months.
    It was always the radio programme to listen too over breakfast, and I remember Jack de Manio as a presenter…that’s how long I was a regular listener.
    The Beeb give silly excuses why the listening numbers are dropping dramatically but that’s what to expect from them. For me, it’s the constant interruptions, rude and offensive interviewing, pro EU bias nonsense from the grossly overpaid and over pensioned self important interviewers.
    The Beeb needs to be on a solely commercial basis with no licence fee.

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 2:41 pm | Permalink


      “De Manio dumped

      12:00AM GMT 08 Dec 2000

      SIR – James Naughtie was certainly justified in being alarmed when Lord Pearson of Rannoch accused BBC Radio 4’s Today programme of being “wretchedly biased” on Britain’s EU membership (report, Dec 6).

      It was not always so. Jack de Manio was always blunt about the costs and disadvantages of joining the EEC on the programme in the early 1970s, but it cost him his job.

      A Radio 4 investigatory programme, Document – a Letter to The Times, broadcast on Feb. 3, quoted a European Movement spokesman’s comment: “Jack de Manio was a presenter who was terribly anti-European, and we protested privately about this and he was moved”. The director of BBC Radio at the time was Ian Trethowan, who was said to be a known friend of Edward Heath.”

      It doesn’t identify the author of the letter.

  37. Robert Eve
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 10:03 am | Permalink

    I stopped listening in 1997 after Labour got in.

  38. Den
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 10:11 am | Permalink

    What I do not understand is that with a succession of Conservative PMs, not one of them censured the BBC for its biased programming. The are a public funded organisation and have the full responisbility of providing BALANCED views.

    When is a Prime Minister going to make a FIRM stand against such a blatantly Socialist bissed Broadcaseted funded by the people? It is despicable that they are permitted to attack Brexit for it is plainly anti-democracy, exactly the same as the EU Commission in Brussels. Freedom is Priceless but the BBC will not accept that.

  39. getahead
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:05 am | Permalink

    Number 10’s propaganda machine?

  40. Shieldsman
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:07 am | Permalink

    Andy must think he is one of the serious, credible people. That if you voted to leave you are not.
    If Breitbart is not news, then neither is the BBC. The BBC reports on the Commission but not on the member States.
    Considering the UK is the second largest contributor to the EU it gets very little out. Just 3.6% of the £410 billion ESI Fund.

  41. David01
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:20 am | Permalink

    It is fatuous to suggest that Brexiteers have no valid arguments. The entire Brexit process is governed and led by the Prime Minister, who is by no means a convinced Leaver. There are very many Leavers who are nowhere near the levers of power and do not have a Treasury or Civil Service to carry out studies/impact assessments on their behalf. When the PM has the entire Civil Service and other machinery of government at her behest they are the source of ideas. People like Farage, Tice, back benchers on both sides of the House have no resources to call on to expound their ideas, prepare studies, devlop options. If the leaders of the various arms of the Leave campaign had been given the Government’s resources to plan and negotiate the exit deal I am quite sure that there would have been a vastly different scenario to that which we appear to be facing. The BBC never seems to raise this point when interviewing both sides of the referendum arguments

    • Puffer Fish
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:07 pm | Permalink

      A rather limited view. We are told that within the Leave side there are very intelligent people, some having gone (some years ago maybe) through excellent universities. To say that backbencher MPs do not have resources seems to me very wrong. Recently it was pointed out that each MP could have/has up to roughly £150,000/year potentially available to use for paying staff. I would hope some MPs could get together and finance some tens/hundreds of thousands of pounds for research (independent from the Government).
      Moreover thinktanks whatever their leanings usually have (sometimes very generous) sponsors. There is a non negligible number of such Brexit-inclined thinktanks.
      The referendum was held more than two years ago. I am now not only looking forward to but expecting properly documented and argumented papers assessing the present situation and defining a future path for the country and this from the ERG/Brexiters. The argument that the Cameron government had not prepared for a possible Brexit does not wash anymore. It is time to hold the JR-M, Boris et al. responsible and make them tell us exactly what future they prepare for the country. We are supposed to get some scores of mini-reports from the Government defining what a no deal would entail, possibly with pessimistic outlook. Will there be a similar number of counter-reports from the Brexiters defining more optimistic albeit properly discussed views?
      With a bit of practise anybody half-intelligent can write (maybe not such a pleasing one but) a column in the Telegraph or some daily 500-600 words.

      Reply We have published a great deal of material explaining what a good Brexit looks like.
      Such reports would be very welcome.

    • Andy
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:32 pm | Permalink

      Or .. the Civil Service is actually impartial and your Brexit will make most of us poorer. Including you.

  42. Pauline Jorgensen
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:24 am | Permalink

    I realised a few years ago that when you know something about a topic the BBC news is often inaccurate and sensationalist and yet I still believed it when I listened to news about something I knew nothing about!

    The Brexit coverage has become the last straw, I now listen to the Parliament programme to and from work – no more edited highlights, selective quotes and interpretation – and an hour listening to the European parliament being preached to by and fawning over unelected civil servants such as Mr Barnier is guaranteed to put you off Europe for good.

  43. Tony Sharp
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:30 am | Permalink

    It is not just Today (which I stopped listening to some years ago for the reasons John has outlined) but all the so called R4 News Magazines eg last Sunday we had on the 9am ‘Broadcasting House’ TEN MINUTES of uninterrupted interview of Lord Carr ‘The author of Art50’ we were informed breathlessly by the compere – who told us all
    “1) UK can and should delay Art50
    2) EU can and will do so
    3) UK can and should withdraw Art50
    4) The EU can and should allow this
    5) “Now we know the truth we should have a second referendum to stay in the EU.”

    Nobody was asked to provide a critical debate with Carr or a response to his opinions – it was simply delivered to us as the gold plated truth – all of it based on the unwarranted assumption that Brexit and the referendum result were wrong in princpile.

    • mancunius
      Posted August 23, 2018 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

      Because he was the hapless drafter of Art. 50, Lord Kerr has formed the fond impression that he can ‘creatively interpret’ it at will. He does not say how an Art. 50 letter might get to be suspended or reversed: there is no such provision in the article, nor anywhere in the EU treaties.
      We know europhiles are fans of magical thinking, and possibly they imagine Harry Potter will wave a magic wand and shout ‘Hocus pocus, Articulus jokus!’

      Sorry, it doesn’t work like that.

      Btw – Lord Carr – i.e. Robert Carr, was the intrepid Employment Secretary who introduced the 1971 Industrial Relations Act and faced down an attempt on his life by the Angry Brigade. A much more intelligent and useful member of society than his homophonic namesake.

  44. adams
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:35 am | Permalink

    Why doesn’t the Tory party privatise the BBC ? That action is long overdue . The TV tax has to stop .

  45. Sue Doughty
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:43 am | Permalink

    The BBC is the government’s main public information broadcasting outlet, always has been. For the Census they used the Eastenders TV soap opera instead of advertising.
    The Today prog went downhill when the present editor took over. It is either politics or something I have no interest in.
    From 6 am until 7 there is a lot of business news that should be interesting but much useless – this morning they told me Laura Ashley is in trouble but today the share price of that stock shot up 25%! Thanks to the Today show I missed it.
    They never tell us how to get better interest rates on savings, or how to switch to better deals on utilities. Part of the 7 am onwards is just them reading out what I am reading in my newspaper. They haven’t even written their own script!
    John, you are right about their Brexit attitude. Mr Barnier is not doing his job right and Today are not criticising him or the EU as they should be for balance. So much for giving both sides of any story.

    • Anonymous
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 4:29 pm | Permalink

      I disagree. The BBC actually sets agendas by selective activities.

  46. Prigger
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 12:11 pm | Permalink

    “Why is the Today programme losing its listeners?”……………………………………..
    JR..you have said all.

    I may comment, a little later, to do my bit, as best as I can.

  47. matthu
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 12:16 pm | Permalink

    I have just been watching a very clear and well-reasoned exposition of Sharia Law in Britain by Baroness Cox. (Did you realise that there are apparently already 85 Sharia Courts operating in Britain outside the law?)

    The clip I watched was from Sky TV – in Australia, not UK.

    I guess I must have missed this sensible discussion on BBC – but that is probably because it took place right in the middle of the Boris Burka saga, and the BBC still can’t bring itself to focus on anything bordering on sense when we talk about Sharia law.

    Reply Everyone operates under a single common law in the UK

    • Anonymous
      Posted August 23, 2018 at 4:19 am | Permalink

      Reply to reply: Pffff.

      At least Sharia law is enforced properly. It’s the only chance we ever have of conservatism returning to our penal system.

      Lost it on law and order, lost it on Brexit, lost it on economic prudence…

      “Vote for us to keep the others out” does not cut it anymore.

      Never again.

  48. Michael Cawood
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

    The Today program has been on a downhill slope ever since the superb Jack de Manio (former presenter) left in 1970.

  49. Nick C-T
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 12:49 pm | Permalink

    There’s classic comedy on Radio4extra weekdays 7-9am. I find it an alternative when Today goes off track 😉

  50. A.Sedgwick
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 12:54 pm | Permalink

    Fully endorse your comments, I was a regular listener and no more. If a few “Andrew Neils” replaced the incumbents it would be a different story.

  51. lojolondon
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 1:15 pm | Permalink

    Because it is propaganda, they do not even try to understand, they just choose a side and fill the hours with people who support their view. Time to STOP the TV TAX.

  52. Prigger
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 1:25 pm | Permalink

    No real jokes are made in comedy programmes, funnily, now
    I used listen to mildly satirical four-panel shows. The OTT jokes. I used to roar with laughter when my side and the opposite side in equal measure of politics were targets. None of it is funny now. Stuff has got serious hasn’t it.

    • L Jones
      Posted August 22, 2018 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

      Comedy programmes on TV and radio (BBC, of course) seem to be made up of panels of remainer whingers, with nothing funny to say, although the (hand-picked) BBC audience howls with laughter about anything anti Brexit. Bring back ‘Round The Horn’ and other classics for a bit of real light relief!

  53. Ed Mahony
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 2:01 pm | Permalink

    I agree with a lot of comments here about the BBC. However, the BBC has done great things in the past. It can do great things in the future – under the right creative leader.

    I think the BBC should just focus on creativity – drama (like the great 1995 production of Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice), documentaries (history, nature, arts) comedy and children’s programmes.

    Creative people are funny / unusual people. They’re unpredictable. They can produce rubbish. Or gold. They’re often poor. But when they really make it, they can make millions for this country (look at JK Rowling).

    The BBC has a key role to play in UK Arts. And UK Arts is key to UK Patriotism. UK Arts is also good for the soul. As well playing an important role in our economy.

    I think the answer isn’t to get rid of the BBC. We need something like the BBC (and we know how destructive commercial TV can be – I know, I worked in the USA). But to make sure we have the right creative leadership to get the BBC to make creative / original / innovative TV.

  54. Iain Gill
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 2:09 pm | Permalink

    Too politically correct.

    Their interview with Jordan Peterson is on the web and well worth a listen.

    Jordan was one hundred percent correct, and the dogma of the liberal elite establishment of the BBC was exposed as the psuedo scientific BS most people know instinctively it is.

    And not just the BBC, most of the political bubble too.

  55. Anonymous
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 3:16 pm | Permalink

    The Tories have lost it on crime and illegal immigration, that means they’ve lost it on civilisation.

    We’re going down.

    Things are not going to get better they are only going to get worse. There is nothing that convinces people things are going to be reversed and all the authorities can do is criminalise the otherwise law-abiding motorists they can catch with instant (and zero tolerance) speeding fines. Real criminals ignore speeding fines.

    Give me one good reason to vote Tory again. No. Jeremy Corbyn isn’t it.

    What are they good for ?

    Let’s be ruled by Brussels directly and have done with it.

  56. hefner
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

    “Mirror, mirror on the wall,
    Who’s the best Minister of them all?
    It’s Grayling, the Transport Hero,
    Who’s just published his “Road to Zero”

  57. John
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 3:52 pm | Permalink

    The TV license should be voluntary, the BBC a subscription service.

    If not that then the money should put out to tender for service providers to provide factual news. Say BBC getting 1/3, Sky 1/3 and ITV 1/3. Then the proportions changed depending on quality.

    I don’t watch the BBC, its time is up.

  58. acorn
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 4:23 pm | Permalink

    This Brexit thing is weekly becoming more and more like that scene from Python’s Life of Brian.

    NISUS: Withdrawal Agreement with added Transition Agreement?
    MR. CHEEKY: Ah, no. No-Deal Cliff Edge for me.
    NISUS: What?
    MR. CHEEKY: Eh, No-Deal Cliff Edge for me. They said I hadn’t done anything, so I could go free and live on an island somewhere.
    NISUS: Oh. Oh, well, that’s jolly good. Well, off you go, then.
    MR. CHEEKY: Naa, I’m only pulling your leg. It’s a Transition Agreement, really.
    NISUS: Oh, ho ho.
    MR. CHEEKY: Heh heh heh hehh.
    NISUS: I see. Uh, very good. Very good. Well, out of the door. One–
    MR. CHEEKY: Yeah. I know the way. Out of the door.
    NISUS: Line on–
    MR. CHEEKY: Line on the left; one No-Deal Cliff Edge each.

  59. Eh?
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 4:46 pm | Permalink

    It’s just as if someone had put a spanner in the works of otherwise very well-trained journalists.

  60. British Spy
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

    The pen is mightier than the sword.

    These BBC interviewers, their bosses must have said a nasty word or two with such very modern cutting edge, they have veered to the absurd.

  61. Gormless
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 5:28 pm | Permalink

    “She ( a Minster) was regularly interrupted by an interviewer who just wanted to shout Remain propaganda.”

    I do not know which one.
    Re-interrupting the interviewer and using the venecular…. to throw the question back at the interviewer could very well give a jolt… and a re-think of the structure of the interviewer’s own wording. The interviewer’s answering and re-question could be remarkably different to the first posed question.
    I do not have skills in parrying. The Minster may have such linguistic skills which she has not thought to use…or possible reasons for their use in modern life.

  62. Denis Cooper
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 5:41 pm | Permalink

    Off-topic, an article by Brian Monteith in today’s CityAM alludes to this report:


    which estimates that the Exchequer is losing £10 billion a year of tax revenues through the ability of large multinational companies to exploit EU Single Market rules and shift their UK profits to other countries, perfectly legally, and the CityAM article further asserts that this would continue to be the case under the government’s Chequers plan, but not under WTO rules, and quite logically suggests that it would be far better to abandon both the Chequers plan and the related Luddite idea of an Amazon tax.

  63. TimetoChangeMayGoNow
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 5:55 pm | Permalink

    Not listened to the Brexit Bashing Corporation since long before the Brexit vote.

    When I want to listen to biased, political comment there is plenty of choice.

    It does irk, that I pay a license fee to subsidise their chosen agenda…but what can one do.
    No political Party has the cajones to face down the BBC…who hide behind a facade of being an untouchable ‘National Treasure’.

    The BBC has long since become a gigantic Pension Fund Scheme that occasionally produces a quality TV or Radio Programme.
    Unfortunately, the BBC also receives payments from the EU and why would they want to” bite the hand that feeds them”.

  64. Steve
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:18 pm | Permalink

    I’ve noticed lately a trend developing at the BBC to support the EU and remoaners using quite a number of programmes, in fact any opportunity nowadays.

    Not surprising, after all the BBC has been totally infiltrated by politically correct English – haters.

    The BBC socialists will have their days numbered in the highly likely event of a nationalist victory at the next election.

    They know this, which is why they avoid coverage of what is going on throughout Europe.

    Be interesting to see how they portray Merkel’s removal from office by the AFD. You’d have thought they would have got it through their thick heads ‘the times they are a changin’. Same applies to all the conservatives loyal to Europe.

    The clock is ticking

    BBC = England – hater’s propaganda machine. It’ll be purged good and proper come the day. Continued pro Europe propaganda is futile, the government, the EU and the civil service created the perfect breeding ground for nationalism. Ye reap what ye sow.

  65. Des
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:41 pm | Permalink

    I am one of those ex-listeners…after 40 years
    I completely agree with your analysis.

    I feel I am back in 1940 subject to this BBC propaganda but this time briefing against England.

  66. John S
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 6:59 pm | Permalink

    The first serial interrupter was Sue MacGregor. Now they all do it. When Humphrys said he was going on until he dropped my heart sank. The best Today presenter in my opinion was the late John Timpson. Very amusing in a dry way but would get annoyed with his backroom staff if insufficiently briefed. I doubt whether he would have gone along with this ceaseless climate change propaganda on the BBC.

  67. ChrisShalford
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

    Some good thoughts which BBC bosses should read: I especially agree with the one about the ill mannered interruptions. Russell Hamblin-Boone, CEO of the Civil Enforcement Association was treated appallingly this morning. Okay, debt collectors would not win a popularity poll, but he was genuinely trying to answer the questions and I would really have liked to know what his answers were going to be.

  68. Tweeter_L
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 8:58 pm | Permalink

    The BBC still funds the Proms, several regional orchestras and various schemes that nurture musical talent. It provides the BBC iPlayer Radio app that enables me to listen to Radio 4 Extra’s output of drama and literature from Radio 4 when it used to be good. Thus on balance I do not (yet) resent paying the BBC Tax. As for its reporting of current affairs: what a sick joke. The BBC should hang its head in shame at the comments here and I write this more in sorrow than in anger.

    • mancunius
      Posted August 23, 2018 at 5:24 pm | Permalink

      The BBC Orchestras are of course a considerable fixed cost. But even including that cost, relatively little of the BBC budget is spent on its radio programmes – vastly less than on its tv output. Even the more expensive, more labour-intensive end of radio production (such as Radio 3 and Radio 4, drama, concerts, sports relays etc) costs relatively little and is still quite sparsely-staffed. Many a radio programme can be – and often still is – written, edited, produced, presented and readied for transmission by one or two people. The budgets for such programmes are astonishingly low.

      Even the Proms, which cost £10 million annually to stage (offset by £5 million recouped through ticket prices, and substantial royalty and licence payments from foreign media companies) cost only 19p of the licence-fee payer’s annual £150.50p.

      Which leaves one asking – what on earth is the BBC squandering the licence fee on? The answer is basically: on television, the salaries of managers with baroque titles who do not manage very much or well, empire-building, unnecessary overheads, IT wastage and ‘consultancy’.

  69. R.O'Connor
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 9:05 pm | Permalink

    I’ve complained about the lack of focus on detailed political,social and economic debate on this programme, ever since Sarah Sands took over. It is now the ‘One Show’ of morning radio.

  70. Yorkie
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 10:06 pm | Permalink

    I saw you on TV tonight sat at opposite a Labour Party anti-Brexiteer. Interviewed separately.
    After you had vacated your seat, the Remainer was strident in saying the imagined food shortage was important.
    She didn’t leave and address where we could send her food parcels. I hope you left a fiver to tide her over and a pickled egg until she got to a supermarket while stocks last.

  71. Yorkie
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:10 pm | Permalink

    Have you got any pickled eggs left?

  72. Simon Coleman
    Posted August 22, 2018 at 11:52 pm | Permalink

    So it’s back to those old post-referendum economic predictions that didn’t come true. That’s your only Brexit-related success in the last two years, so you have to keep gloating about it. In fact, the rise in inflation has caused damage and other factors indicate a weakening of the economy: poor export performance (you predicted an export boom!) and a slowing housing market…and record personal debt. And as for the UK’s impressive employment statistics – you never mention that some 800,000 people are on zero-hours contracts. But that’s exactly what you want: huge numbers of people in low paid work with no rights, under complete control of employers. If Brexit results in erosion of employment rights for more workers, then your dream of a bargain basement Britain, the new tax haven, will move closer.

    Reply I have set out the true position here in many posts. Leaving and spending the money on ourselves would be a great economic boost for the UK

    • Denis Cooper
      Posted August 23, 2018 at 8:48 am | Permalink

      Actually for almost all of the economic statistics that I have checked nothing that has happened since the EU referendum has departed greatly from the trends which were already well established long before the referendum. But EU loyalists only ever like to look at whatever narrow set of statistics suit their propaganda purposes, they are not the slightest bit interested in the truth.

  73. Slim Thin
    Posted August 23, 2018 at 12:08 am | Permalink

    It seems unhealthy lifestyles are going to trigger diabetes and heart attacks, again.

    Food has become fat free, sugar free,carbohydrate free, meat free, sweetener joggers running past my house round the park all day, exercise clubs doing their exercises in the park, health clubs in town. 50% cut in cigarette smoking
    And none of it when people were apparently slimmer years ago. Jogger, Sweetener and Diet pop are new words….10 or 15 years old..
    Odd isn’t it. All since Brexit

  74. Toe rag
    Posted August 23, 2018 at 12:19 am | Permalink

    My in-growing toenail has been growing at twice the speed since Brexit.

    • fedupsoutherner
      Posted August 23, 2018 at 8:50 am | Permalink

      Toe Rag. Lovely to end with a laugh. Thank you.

    • mancunius
      Posted August 23, 2018 at 5:39 pm | Permalink

      Quite, TR!
      I don’t know how we shall manage without the EU Directive Q/&%R/93 on ‘Accidental Unguitical Reimplantation (Permitted Therapeutical Methodology and Pertinent VAT Tax Regulations, including Moldavia)’ to help us.

  75. Helen Smith
    Posted August 23, 2018 at 2:41 pm | Permalink

    I dont want to fund the BBC but cannot stop paying the licence if I want to watch ITV, how does that work?

    I loathe the BBC and refuse to watch it yet am forced to continue to fund it. Something must be done about this and fast.

  76. Lindsay McDougall
    Posted August 23, 2018 at 11:47 pm | Permalink

    The BBC is part of the Deep State identified by Nigel Farage. So, too, are the Supreme Court justices and members of the House of Lords. None are truly independent. I favour indirect elections for all three. Governors / members of these three bodies would be selected by suitably qualified committees; these committees would be elected by universal suffrage. Such a system would ensure that they do not stray too far from popular opinion.

  77. Simon Coleman
    Posted August 23, 2018 at 11:57 pm | Permalink

    There is no need for Remain propaganda. You Leavers make the case for Remain stronger by the day. The very fact that you advocate No Deal as a positive outcome just shows that you place ideology before protecting jobs, prosperity and stability every time. As for your incessant and tedious complaints about BBC interviewers – it’s entirely logical and necessary that they should interrogate anyone working for the Brexit project and pay less attention to those who advocate Remain. If the policies that won the referendum and caused a seismic change in our nation’s direction aren’t properly scrutinized by the media, then that media wouldn’t be doing its job. Yes, all of you politicians who told us that we must leave the EU after 40-odd years of membership should come under legitimate scrutiny…and be held accountable for the promises you put before the British people. It’s quite obvious that you’re unhappy with this scrutiny.

  78. Trimperley
    Posted August 30, 2018 at 11:04 pm | Permalink

    I now listen to LBC. In their own way they broadcast more news than I thought they would and let their guests talk without too many inetruptions. If something is interesting they don’t cut it short to do the weather or sport. Today was infuriating for getting a world class expert guest that you don’t normally get to hear speak and then cutting them off to stick to the timetable. Nick Ferrari is a very good interviewer and presenter and aimiable company over breakfast. I wouldn’t want any of the Radio 4 lot at the breakfast table. The range of callers to LBC is far wider than you get calling Radio 4 and we get to hear a wider range of views. Giving Farage, Rees-Mogg and even Sadiq Khan a show of their own is inovative broadcasting. If the news is too glum I watch the shopping channels which are always happy.

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    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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