There have been misgivings about the BBC’s behaviour for some years, something that was not helped by stunts such as having a Labour shadow minister resign live on the Daily Politics at a time that benefited the Tories. That one was excused by Robbie Gibb, more recently exposed as a right-winger and fervent Brexiteer. But even after Gibb’s departure, the disquiet has only magnified. Now the dam has finally burst.
Lord Hall-Hall - needs to call time on himself
What happened this week leaves no doubt that some at the Corporation should face the sack for their shameless partiality, not least Director General Lord Hall-Hall, serenely carrying on as if nothing were amiss, and Director of News and Current Affairs Fran Unsworth, on whose watch the organisation has given Vote Leave’s lawbreaking a free pass, and failed to keep its political editor in line.
The matter that caused push to come to shove was the round of set-piece interviews of party leaders, which should have been conducted by Andrew Neil, who, despite his back-story of supporting Mrs T while editor of the Sunday Times, and overseeing the increasingly alt-right Spectator magazine, has thus far been an equal opportunity giver or short shrift to those passing before his inquisition.
Neil grilled Jeremy Corbyn; the next to occupy the hot seat would be alleged Prime Minister Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson. Bozo The Clown had come off second best to Jezza in last week’s Question Time leaders’ special, and at a head-to-head debate on ITV. He had fared badly the last time Brillo grilled him. The presenter was, he claimed, already working on his preparation. But then Bozo apparently got cold feet, and may chicken out.
While the Beeb told that “As part of our series of leaders' interviews, we have dates for two more next week. Andrew Neil will interview Liberal Democrat leader Jo Swinson and Brexit Party leader Nigel Farage”, they then admitted “For those asking when Boris Johnson's interview will take place, we're in ongoing discussions with his team but we haven't yet been able to fix a date”. So what had they told Labour before the Corbyn interview?
Theo Usherwood of LBC had the answer: “Labour source tells me BBC informed them Boris Johnson would do an Andrew Neil interview next week. Turns out no such agreement had been reached. If Tory leader isn't subjected to same scrutiny as Mr Corbyn, but his team was told he would be, that's a problem for the BBC”. Kevin Maguire of the Mirror didn’t quite believe it. “Unforgivable of both the BBC, which should’ve nailed him down, and a cowardly Johnson if this interview doesn’t happen”.
And Owen Jones hit the nail on the head. “This is an absolute disgrace from [BBC News]. They lied to Labour and said they'd agreed an interview between Andrew Neil and Boris Johnson next week. If that doesn't happen then no one can ever trust a single word the BBC say ever again and senior figures will have to resign”. Could it get worse?
It certainly could. After Randeep Ramesh of the Guardian revealed “The prime minister’s senior aide, Dominic Cummings, has resigned as a special adviser, according to a Cabinet Office source”, up popped Ms Kuenssberg. “Was probably a matter of time.. Dominic Cummings back on his blog … warns Brexiteers there is 'real possibility of a hung parliament' and a second referendum”. Promoting a Government advisor. Or former one.
Aaron Bastani responded “What on earth is happening to broadcasting impartiality during an election? You’re literally sharing a call to action for Tory activists about what they need to do. I’m honestly gobsmacked”. And Donahue Rogers concluded “Do you know what? Most people wouldn't have seen that if you hadn't provided the link and that includes [Ofcom]. This is election purdah period, can you now provide links to close advisers of other political parties as you now need to do to maintain balance?”.
That Ms Kuenssberg Tweeted that out speaks volumes for not only her hideous partiality, but also for her confidence that she will get away with it - again. If there is any justice in this increasingly wayward media world we now inhabit, her tenure as the Corporation’s political editor must be brought to an end, and sooner rather than later.
Unlike the Thatcher years, when the Tory Party’s assault on the BBC was incessant, and vicious with it, there has been criticism from many on the left, but not from the Labour leadership. Perhaps if there had been, someone in the organisation might have stopped and thought. If Bozo really does chicken out of a Brillo encounter, they will then.
For decades, BBC News and Current Affairs has been the Gold Standard, the bar against which all other broadcast journalism was measured. Now, the Corporation’s currency has not so much decoupled from that Gold Standard, as it has crashed out of it.
If we cannot trust the BBC, what news can we trust? We live in disturbing times.
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For many years, the BBC's standards have gradually weakened by Cameron and co, who stuffed the Beeb with Tory supporters and ex HSBC bankers, with an agenda to turn the BBC into a mouthpiece for the Alt right.
With the BBC's continuous backing, 'Tory Laura' Kussenberg increasingly resembles Ri Chun-hee.
And Laura isn't embarrassed! Apparently whenever she visits her old university in Washington DC to talk about journalism to the students, there are giggles and laughter from the audience..
Shows how our American friends view Laura's contribution to journalism.
Cummings will be back. He's just dodging the otherwise sensible rule that senior civil servants cannot work on political campaigns.
As for the BBC. I've lost count of the number of complaints I've sent to them in the past fortnight regarding bias. Oh well, another one in the offing now...
Is it enough though? We all get the same reply back that shows no remorse. Or the 'it was a genuine mistake guv, honest' li(n)e. What we should do is all of us refuse to access the BBC for a couple of days each week in the run up to the election now. Maybe they'll reconsider when the ratings plummet
Next time they tell you about Putin and how awful he is, remind yourself, we are no better
BBC "News"?......Oh don't make me larf. That propaganda unit verges on neofascist methods.
You think I exaggerate? Compare this Newsnight logo at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Newsnight#/media/File:Newsnight_titles.png with this Nazi logo at https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/7/70/SS-Panzer-Division_symbol.svg/396px-SS-Panzer-Division_symbol.svg.png
Or Way Back When http://vignette2.wikia.nocookie.net/logopedia/images/f/f4/Bbcnews.jpg/revision/latest/scale-to-width-down/300?cb=20121102144947 with https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/c2/Flag_of_the_Schutzstaffel.svg/1200px-Flag_of_the_Schutzstaffel.svg.png
Then look at Andrew "Julius Streicher" Neil's Parliament Register of "interests":
"Chairman, Press Holdings Media Group (The Spectator, Spectator Life, Spectator Australia, Spectator USA and Apollo, the international arts magazine). Chairman, The Addison Club (London). Director, Glenburn Enterprises Limited (provides media and consultancy services). Fees for speaking at, hosting or chairing an event were received from the following organisations from August 2018 to July 2019: Speech to Jeffries (investment company); Weil, Gotshal (law firm); Chair conference on Securities for Goodacre (business and technology consultants); Speeches to Parliamentary Review (publication); Vanguard (asset management company); Speech to the Annual Conference of Insurance Brokers; Chair Arabian Business Conference/Awards in Dubai for ITP (publisher); Speak to Aberdeen Standard (an asset manager); Speech to D S Smith (packaging company); HSBC (bank); Investec (investment company); Christie & Co (property advisers); Interview Klitschko Brothers for Ukraine House (a promotor of Ukraine); Speech to Hiscox (insurer); Engineering Employers' Federation; Interviews in Davos for NBC Euronews (broadcaster); Speak to Knight Frank (an estate agent); Chair conference for UK Landlords' Federation; Speak to the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment; Endless LLP (private equity company); Value Edge (asset managers); Keepers of the Quaich Dinner (a society for the promotion of Scotch whisky); Conference organised by Institutional Investors (publication); Blick Rothenberg (chartered accountants); Association of Insurance and Risk Managers in Industry and Commerce; Conference staged by Investors Weekly (publication); Conferences staged by Portfolio Advisers (publication); Chair a debate on crypto currencies at the Asian Crypto Currency Summit in Taipei; and Chair a debate for Cannabis Europa, a conference on legalising cannabis (registered July 2019)."
Add in "mistaken" (read: fraudulent and lying) edits and the rest of the tory gang shit, stir in deliberate editorial decisions to ELIMINATE the word "alleged" in connection with tory bullshit levelled at Labour, bring to the simmer by INCLUDING the word "claims" against Labour's exposure of tory NHS lies, season with minimising or ignoring anything which diminishes tory prospects (for instance, Bozo ducking out of comparative "interviews"), and you have the far right corrupted soup that is BBC "News". ITN and Sky are just as bad, often much worse.
So......"disturbing" doesn't even begin to cover it. We're talking real neofascism here. Don't kid yourself.
Does anybody REALLY think Fat Greasy Neil's "interview" of Jeremy Corbyn and the subsequent oligarch press assault wasn't a deliberately co-ordinated far right concoction? If so, such naifs are living in cloud cuckoo land.
If this nation cannot summon the courage to face down this cowardly corporate media then we are going only one way. That is over the edge into an era which will make the 1920s and 1930s look like a picnic - the socioeconomic signs are already there.
Sorry, but the rot set in a long time before Cameron. It can be traced back to the Hutton Report, which was specifically designed - right down to the person leading it - by Blair, Campbell and Mandelson to put the frighteners on the BBC for daring to report with some degree of even-handedness over Blair's rush to illegal war. To this end, one journalistic cock-up was expanded into a condemnation of the BBC's entire news operation.
The result? A decade and a half of cowardice on the part of executives and hacks alike, where a condign liar like Al DePiffle can't be called out on his lying because, "...it would cause the public to lose trust in the political process".
It was from that time that the dominance of the Right in the BBC stems, as we have seen with the appointment of three successive Chief Political Correspondents with the same ideological hinterland. To appoint one wouldn't have been an issue (Buggins' Turn, and all that); to appoint two in a row looks like a recruitment blunder; to appoint three points to it now being a policy.
And if this is all news to you, then you should ask anyone living in Scotland who saw the BBC expose its true nature with its coverage of the independence referendum:
That photo of Hall.
Appropriately it's in a soap opera set. Appropriate because BBC "New and politics" is a far right soap opera of lies and hypocrisy.
Check out Hall's CV in Wikipedia and follow the sources to confirm it. The guy's an out and out far right tory hypocritical fraud grown fat on establishment "honours" bribes and other bullshit appointments.
He's a made-up oligarch, nothing more. About as trustworthy as a cornered rat.
I completely agree Nigel. Greg Dyke was the last decent DG at the BBC. As for the one now, it's the wrong Tony. We need Tony Garnett in charge
The BBC has been the British establishment's lie machine since the 1920s.
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