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Tuesday 10 December 2019

Jeremy Vine - Give Your Head A Shake

After BBC political editor Laura Kuenssberg relayed the false claim that a Labour activist had assaulted Health Secretary Matt Hancock’s SpAd outside Leeds General Infirmary, one might have thought that others at the Corporation would stop and think before rushing to her defence; after all, this is not her first such lapse. But that would be to discount Jeremy Vine, who has leapt in with both feet in his criticism of those calling her out.
Laura Kuenssberg ((c) Guardian)

The ceaseless bullying of my colleague [Laura Kuenssberg] on Twitter is just disgusting. She is a fine journalist: impartial, indefatigable” he claimed, somehow missing that on-air resignation stunt (aka “Making the news on the Daily Politics”), taking dictation from Vote Leave main man Matthew Elliott over the campaign’s lawbreaking, and the small matter of the BBC Trust passing adverse comment upon a report on Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn.
Jeremy Vine - knee-jerk defensiveness

On that last point, the Guardian reported that “The broadcaster’s regulator concluded that a Laura Kuenssberg report for the News at Six in November 2015 breached the broadcaster’s impartiality and accuracy guidelines, in a ruling that triggered an angry response from the corporation’s director of news”. But “James Harding, the director of BBC news, rejected the Trust’s ruling and called Kuenssberg ‘an outstanding journalist and political editor with the utmost integrity and professionalism’”.
In other words, the same tone-deaf defensiveness exhibited by Vine today. Not addressing the issue and the failings, just dismissiveness. Ian Fraser, for one, was unimpressed. “Jeremy, you may like to characterise it as ‘bullying’. Yesterday it was mostly legitimate criticism for spreading a fake story to her 1.1m followers. Twitter users with far fewer followers than Laura played a part in getting the falsehoods corrected”.
Chris Smith was even more unimpressed. “Sorry Mr Vine. She tweeted out lies fed to her by Tory spin merchants without any attempt to check. The claims were libellous. All the criticism of her and Peston is entirely justified”. Peter Jukes added “I've met Laura, and I like her personally, but both her and Robert Peston failed some basic editorial controls. Where is management providing support and guidance?” Quite.
One observer asked “Some of the criticism has been OTT, much hasn't . The same for [Robert Peston]. They are experienced journalists, not novices. They were had by the oldest trick in the book. Lying. Verbatim repetition isn't journalism. Where were the ‘2 independent sources’ to corroborate the story?” Where were they? They weren’t.
Another mused “The most important election of our lives. Both [Laura Kuenssberg] and [Robert Peston] have disseminated disinformation.  We need to find out why because something has gone very wrong. Doubling down is not helpful Jeremy - it could happen to you too”. And Iain Dale - no raving leftie he - had harsh words for Peston and Ms K.
They are briefing that a SpAd was punched, when he clearly wasn’t. The video evidence is there for all to see. What a sorry state of affairs we’ve got to. And also, for senior journalists to have fallen for that briefing and put it on social media, without actually checking the facts, is a disgrace”. So, whisper it quietly, are those defending them.

Jeremy Vine is defending the indefensible. But he can’t bring himself to admit it.
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Anonymous said...

If "they were had by the oldest trick, lying" they were willingly "had".

In which case the BBC needs to explain how its gang of tory propagandists were "had" with all their other "mistakes".

All of which makes Vine just another duped bullshitter.

Mark said...

Jeremy Vine is utterly useless. He has nothing about him at all, as evinced by the fact that, when he's allowed to play with the big boys, he's always given the short shrift. From being Number 2 Jeremy in the Newsnight set-up (and didn't he hate that?) to being in charge of the swing-o-meter on election night, a role previously given to that other waste of space, Peter Snow. But he was so slatheringly desperate that he even agreed to dress up as a cowboy and adopt an American drawl in arguably one of the biggest examples of dumbed down TV ever.

His character can be best summed up by the fact that, when forced to take a pay cut by the Beeb, he took on a second job with Channel 5 to make up the difference. That said, do we really think he'll be happy to pay more tax under a Labour govt? Not a chance. Hence he's sticking the boot in and defending Lady Haw-Haw.

Oh and he's mates with Tracy An Oberman. Says it all really.

PS, remember when he said that Radio 2 shouldn't have a Drivetime show because it celebrates cars when we should all be using bicycles like him?

Sam said...

Isn't @Punchgate a perfect example of what Labour have been up against?. Recall when the Leader of the Opposition WAS punched in the head- viciously - it was briefly reported as an egging yet when video emerged that showed the truth albeit Corbyn's attacker holding an egg in his fist as he slammed that fist into the side of Corbyn's head (and was going for a second punch before stopped) there was no correcting of the record. The incident faded quickly out of sight.
Now a blatant lie was perpetuated by 2 senior political reporters at a crucial time and yet they have become the victim.

Alan said...

Among this shower of Tory stooges, K*ntsberk seems by far the worst. There will be a sort of poetic justice if BoJob wins, abolishes the licence fee, and shoves her out of her grotesquely overpaid berth at the Beeb.

Anonymous said...

She'd become his 'media advisor'.

Anonymous said...

To Alan 03:25.

In which case she'll move over to a Murdoch/Rothermere equal perch. Or, just as likely, a far right outlet vomited by her Alma Mater in the USA.

The woman is a dyed-in-the-wool right wing reactionary product of Georgetown University and its sponsors.

neil said...


She will move seamlessly into the PR department of No. 10.

Unknown said...

J Vine is a vastly overpaid whining buffoon who would like to be viewed as a knight errant of the fourth estate in a multitude of guises most of which would be more like an auger than worthwhile entertainment. L K is well able to stand on her own ...without chancers freeloading on her errors...leave the lady alone and do a better job yourself.

Anonymous said...

"L.K. is well able to stand on her own."

Yeah, right.

That must be why we're all paying her wages...whether we want to or not.

Andy McDonald said...

Read his book, "Your Call", some time. He makes it quite clear that he panders to what he sees as his core audience of largely older, retired people who have the time and need to dial in to radio phone in shows.

Think about such people. Lonely, impressionable and scared. Scared largely of stuff the media tell them to be scared of. As a departing Star reporter once put it, an ever decreasing whirlpool of shit.

Mark said...

Kuenssberg may well be finding she has to stand on her own when the Met come a calling about her decision to casually announce to the viewing public that her beloved 'Tory sources' are privy to the postal votes.

Incidentally, received the usual non reply to my complaint about her decision to smear Labour activists with the lie that Hancock's advisor had been punched. Surprised how quick they got round to replying actually. Usually takes ages - suggesting they knew they had to be prepared for a deluge of protest.

Unknown said...

Laura gets accused of bias and abuse from both the left and right so she must be doing something right. In this case she made a mistake, don't we all.

Mark said...

Unknown, was her breaking electoral law and the broadcasting code yesterday a mistake too? How about the time she was found, by the BBC's own ECU, to have 'problems accurately reporting the Labour Party' as a result of being caught doctoring footage to make Corbyn appear like he'd answered a different question from her?

A journalist needs to prove what it is they are telling their public. They cannot simply rely on one source, specifically when that source has their own agenda. To say that Labour HQ ferried activists to Leeds General would have required research on her part, like asking the kind of 'senior source' she so favours within that party. To say nothing of actually checking that a punch was actually thrown in the first place.

It's not a mistake to not do the proper and checks and balances required from you in your well paid and professional role. It's incompetence at best and dangerous bias at worst.