General BBC-related comment thread!

Please use this thread for comments about the BBC’s current programming and activities. This post will remain at or near the top of the blog – scroll down for new topic-specific posts. N.B. This is not an invitation for general off-topic comments, rants or chit-chat. Thoughtful comments are encouraged. Comments may also be moderated. Any suggestions for stories that you might like covered would be appreciated! It’s your space, use it wisely.

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134 Responses to General BBC-related comment thread!

  1. Bryan says:

    What’s happening? Ain’t seen no new comments since yesterday evening. Is this just me or is Haloscan on the blink?


  2. ed says:

    Something has been happening. I get a strange message about refreshing the page to see new comments. When I do it nothing happens.


  3. Bryan says:


    Yes, same here. I saw a few comments above the one I just posted (only after I’d posted it) but now they have vanished. And the counter read “2 comments” after the one you just posted.

    Dunno, maybe it’s fixed now.


  4. deegee says:

    Same old ~ same old
    Gazans seek end to bitter split
    AM seems to find no place to describe Hamas taking advantage of the chaos to kill and maim Fatah supporters nor to note that rockets are still being fired at Israel albeit in lesser amounts and thus Israel has no incentive whatsoever to open its borders.


  5. Will says:

    I came across this New Zealand web site campaigning for balanced reporting in the Middle East: (Kiwis for Balanced Reporting in the Mideast)
    Their approach is to write to newspapers over specific articles which exhibit an anti-Israeli bias.

    They also place advertisements in the press to provide the often missing Israeli view point. They are not pro-Israel as such, just object to the constant bias against them. Best of all, they make good use of that deadly weapon – the facts.

    The New Zealand media is as infected with liberal-left bias as that in Britain, but there is no telly tax.


  6. anon says:


    I hear and see a lot of the bias in the fairly leftie New Zealand media whenever I go there.

    But this last time there was fierce public criticism of a Turkish cafe owner in Invercargill who refused to serve two women because they were talking in Hebrew. In the middle of the Gaza offnesive. And a lot of criticism of loons like John Minto who objected to an Israeli girl playing in the Auckland tennis championships.

    So – there is something of a pushback against all the Gaza propaganda.


  7. Dick the Prick says:

    The real hustle as always.

    Next week – how to disable burglar alarms.


  8. fewqwer says:

    Anybody heard mention on the BBC of the EU connection to the imminent part-privatisation of the Post Office?

    Either Eu Ref has got it wrong, or this goes beyond bias into outright conspiracy.


  9. Libertarian says:

    BBC gullibility again

    James Lovelock, the British chemist and alleged expert on climate change, suggests that 80% of mankind will be wiped out by climate change and that the hot planet will last for 100,000 years. So persuasive is his assertion that it was asserted on BBC World’s HARDtalk as a fact today. What ever happened to science and to journalism? scroll down


  10. Jim T. says:

    fewqwer 1029 – Indeed it’s the EU behind the privatisation of the post office, an unwelcome fact which is totally ignored by Mandelson and the BBC, musn’t tell the punters that something’s happening which would turn them against the EU. It’s an absolute disgrace, powers are being taken away from what used to be our democracy but you’d never know that if you relied on the lying politicians and BBC. EU Ref website is thoroughly researched and you can rely on their reports.


  11. George R says:

    John Redwood:

    “The BBC discusses whether the UK can go bust”


    “Where has the ‘Today’ programme been for the last year? This morning I awoke to hear them asking someone if the UK government was borrowing too much and if it could find it difficult to raise all the money, as if this were a new question. The interviewer then rushed to retail the government’s misleading figures, reassuring us that the UK is lightly borrowed. That was scarcely true even before the government bought one of the largest banks in the world. You needed to add PFI, PPP, Northern Rock and Network Rail into the figures for starters. Since buying RBS the opposite is true. The UK is now a large bank with a medium sized government attached.” (John Redwood.)


  12. Bryan says:

    Will | Homepage | 28.02.09 – 9:04 am,

    That’s a good site. I recall that years back the Sydney Morning Herald was as bad and mindless as the lefty BBC.

    anon | 28.02.09 – 9:43 am,

    Good to know that they are fighting back there.


  13. Will says:

    So – there is something of a pushback against all the Gaza propaganda.
    anon | 28.02.09 – 9:43 am

    True enough, but the wider point is that the media seems to attract the liberal-left leaning type of person (much as the military seems to attract conservative types) who then skew their reports to match their own perceptions.

    The result is an institutionalised left wing bias in the media. This has reached the point where there is precious little conservative opinion expressed in the media and left-of-centre is deemed ‘the centre’.

    Little wonder then, that there is a revolving door between our favourite lefty media outlet, the BBC, and our favourite lefty government, New Labour. Also unsurprising is that the media spectacularly fails to represent the opinions of conservatives. (that’s ‘conservative’ as opposed to ‘Conservative’)

    NZ is small enough in population for this conservative ‘pushback’ to be heard, in Britain I fear it is drowned by the volume of the BBC’s output.


  14. GBS says:

    On BBC’s Qustion Time on Thursday night, Peter Hain was obviously keen to express his distaste for Fred Goodwin’s pension, whilst (being the snake-like MP he is) distancing himself from the fact of Lord Myner’s (conflicted?) involvement in the reward of failure.

    Anyway, this funny satire from The Daily Mash is right on the nose:

    The Daily Mash, 27 February 2009
    http://tinyurl. com/d56pwb

    Gordon Brown last night dismissed calls to surrender his £123,000 a year pension when he is forced to stop being prime minister next June.

    Mr Brown was defiant in the face of City outrage despite the UK
    government’s annual operating loss of £100bn, rising to £1.5 trillion
    when the write-down of its banking assets is taken into account.


  15. Susan Franklin says:

    With the backing of the mouthpiece of the Brown government the BBC, He who trumpets NO Reward For Failure • is now trying to shift blame for the sad state of UK Banking system to Sir Fred Goodwin. In my view the one person in the UK who must Not be rewarded for failure is Gordon Brown

    Goodwin could perhaps be persuaded to give up his pension. But he could do it on one condition: when Brown admits his own systemic failure and gives up his pension. That will put the cat among the proverbial “political pigeons”. It would be in the public interest – or common interest, as Labour likes to label it.

    There is no escaping the fact that Gordon Brown alone designed the current three-ring regulatory circus in 1997, when he stripped the Bank of England of responsibility for overseeing banking practice. Today’s UK banking and financial meltdown is a direct consequence of his failure to design a proper regulatory system. And as we clearly heard from the FSA this week, Brown intervened repeatedly over time to ensure the FSA (i) remained toothless, and (ii) backed off if they considered actions that would “rock Gordon’s boat”.

    Anyone with more than one brain cell knows the current financial meltdown comes on top of cyclical downturn • it is not caused by it. Sadly and with great human cost it amplifies its worst effects of recession. Up to now Brown has been hiding behind a cyclical global recession claiming that is responsible for the current financial crisis or that it’s made in America.

    Did all countries screw up the Financial Regulatory System? As the BBC and other broadcast media in UK have failed to point out – NO.

    Just ask the Canadian Prime Minister why the Canadian banks are fine, thank you very much – even though the Canadian economy is more integrated with the American economy than the British Economy will ever be. The Canadian PM says repeatedly • not reported in the UK • that today’s financial mess results from a failure to regulate properly • of some governments • most notably the USA and the UK. Australian and New Zealand banking systems are also fine as are many others around the world.


  16. GBS says:

    Will said: This has reached the point where there is precious little conservative opinion expressed in the media and left-of-centre is deemed ‘the centre’.

    28.02.09 – 11:28 am


    When you extend the media to include the blogosphere and say talk-radio (in the US), then the opposite is the case.

    The left perceive a threat from the media sources they do not control, hence the US legislation being put forward to enatc what is referred to as the The “Fairness” Doctrine.

    The follwoing excellent article (by the excellent Dr Hurd) illustrates the evil principle behind this doctrine:

    “In talk radio, the product for sale is ideas. The left-wing politicians who, up to now, cannot sell their ideas, are now attempting to do the next best thing: Prevent the ideas that do sell from being offered for sale.”


  17. george whyte says:

    lets see if the bbc reports this.

    Muslim Arrested for Targeting Obama with AIDS-Tainted Blood…


  18. Greencoat says:

    Interceptions of Taliban communications have shown that British jihadists are active in Helmand and other parts of southern Afghanistan.

    These scum are about as British as Idi Amins’s arse.

    It makes me sick.


  19. martin says:

    Typical BBC. No mention of the fat one eyed one being responsible for creating the current banking mess.

    The BBC re-writes history again. Move along please, nothing happening here.


  20. George R says:

    BBC report and lobby for political liberal/left:

    “Campaigners stage liberty events”

    Shouldn’t that read: S Chakrabarti’s selective ‘Liberty’ outfit – and its liberal/left supporters of Ethiopian/ ‘British resident’ Mr. B.Mohamaed, and opponents of British entry of Dutch MP, Geert Wilders?

    Which of them supports Mr. Wilders’ campaign for an International ‘First Amendment’?:


    ‘Geert Wilders: The World Needs an International First Amendment and a Ban on All “Hate Speech” Laws’


  21. Millie Tant says:


    And a lot of criticism of loons like John Minto who objected to an Israeli girl playing in the Auckland tennis championships.

    anon | 28.02.09 – 9:43 am | #

    There was some kind of demonstration by “peace campagners” during a match when the Israeli Shahar Peer was playing in Auckland.

    Well, that is how the BBC described them near the end of this article about how she was subsequently denied entry to Dubai for a tennis tournament: for


  22. George R says:

    The BBC must be finding it increasingly difficult to juggle its utopian belief in Gordon Brown and Labour’s late conversion to a ‘moral’ crusade about banking, with the increasingly harsh economic reality involving Labour’s spending.

    On the one hand, we have this sort of BBC report:

    “Brown promises banking clean-up”

    But, on the other hand, the sheer scale of Labour’s public spending on banks is likely to be increasingly risky for taxpayers.

    The BBC’s Radio 4 ‘Money Box’ programme provided valuable insight into this today, especially in the final seven minutes (at 19 minutes in) of the programme, containing an interview with Paul Wilmot:

    BBC iPlayer (audio) –


    ‘Wall St Journal’-

    ‘Britain’s Postcrash Insurance:
    Guaranteeing toxic assets is a bad deal for taxpayers and financial markets.’


    “It’s little surprise that U.K. financials rallied yesterday {25 Feb} on the news that the British state will guarantee more than £500 billion of the banks’ toxic assets. It’s like getting car insurance after having crashed the vehicle into a wall.

    “The ‘Asset Protection Scheme’ is a great relief for everyone around — shareholders, managements, creditors — except for the people who share no responsibility for the mess: taxpayers. In a sign of how bad markets believe this deal will be for taxpayers, prices for U.K. government bond futures initially slid more than a full point on Thursday. If and when the losses on those poisonous assets materialize, the government will have to issue a lot of debt.”


  23. Millie Tant says:

    The “live” link above didn’t work. Here it is again:


  24. George R says:

    – ‘WSJ’ reference to 2:32 pm


  25. anon says:

    The BBC picks away at Iraq like a scab. last night, for example, Eddie Mair was bringing up the issue of releasing Cabinet minutes when he was supposedly running an interview about the pay of local council officials.

    The BBC theme is that going into Iraq wasillegal/immoral – and that the whole affair was a disaster. Even when events turn for the better – it remains a disaster, a stain on Bush and America. A stain they want Obama to wash clean. That was the sense of Justing Webb’s comments before Obama’s statement on Iraq, – he will be pullig out of a disastrous escapade. Obama had been against the surge, and then refused to recognise its success. His campaign promise appeared to be virtually complete pull-out very quickly.

    But hey ! what does Obama now say ? That there will be a very large force remaining in Iraq after 2010, doing pretty well what the forces are doing there right now. And he commends the US forces and their leaders on what they have now achieved – “you got the job done”. And he now recognises the major political advances made by the Iraqis.

    Has all this major change of TONE been reported squarely by BBC radio or TV ? Not that I have heard. All they have focussed on is the withdrawal, plus some comments on the size of the force remaining.

    Obama’s speech was, in effect, a concession that Bush had done the right things over the past couple of years, and that precipitate total withdrawal oiud be strateically dangerous. But don’t expect the BBC to carry that message from Obama.


  26. JohnA says:

    The anon above re.Iraq was me – as were the anon postings about New Zealand.

    Yes, there was a small demo in Auckland in January against the Israeli player at the tennis. By a handful of nutters. It was widely condemned by the public. As was John Minto’s daubing of a war memorial. Probably did the Pali cause more harm than good.


  27. Allan@Oslo says:

    New Zealand? pro-pally demonstrators? Is there nowhere in the Anglosphere that these scumbags won’t leave alone?


  28. JohnA says:

    Its just a left-wing thing. Worldwide. John Minto in NZ is a loonie leftie:


  29. JohnA says:

    More on Obama adopting Bush’s hated Iraq policy :


  30. Millie Tant says:


    See the video embedded in the news article here:

    And tell me: Is this the looniest loony ever? (I know there is plenty of stiff competition!) Watch it and you may not know whether to laugh or cry at this example of the conduct of our public life and public office.

    This is a priceless example of a certain sort of lunacy. Check out the subject: a massively funded project about BLACK SLAVERY (yes, it was rather a long time ago – I don’t quite remember it myself, do you?); check out the language (all the cliches and weasel words), the mindset, the aggressive sense of entitlement, rage and righteousness, the sheer lack of awareness and lack of sense of irony of this race warrior. Not to mention the lack of decorum or decency or respect. A rich seam here for comment. On one level, it is absolutely hilarious. It is beyond satire.

    Anyway, you know how the BBC loves nothing more than RACISM. So any RACISM story, no matter how trivial, about a word such as a golliwog or a monkey cartoon or whatever word of the moment, will be emblazoned on the FRONT PAGE of the News website.

    Well, I happened across this coconut rant on the front page of The Sun online and out of curiosity then had a look at the BBC News website FRONT PAGE – no sign of it. I then used SEARCH and up it came:

    To see it as an item on the BBC News website, though, (apart from SEARCH), you would have to go to ENGLAND and then select and click on BRISTOL from a long menu of places for LOCAL news.


  31. David Preiser (USA) says:

    In a few minutes, I’m heading downtown to NYC’s City Hall Park to participate in the latest growing, important news story in the US which the BBC doesn’t want you to know about.

    For the last couple of weeks, there have been little protests in cities around the country, called “Tea Party Protests”. They started small, 50-100 people, but it’s growing. The latest have had about 1000 people.

    This might turn out to be a big deal. Unlike all the usual BBC-beloved Leftoid causes, these haven’t been organized by political activist groups like ANSWER or ACORN or Stop the War, or any other slimy organization. These are being arranged spontaneously by ordinary citizens who are pissed off.

    But the BBC doesn’t want you to know about anybody protesting against their beloved Democrats and President Obamessiah. No mention in the vacuous Obama diary, either. If the BBC ever does report this, it’ll probably be depicted as nothing more than a handful of white Conservatives, just minute groups of stupid people who think that evil rich people should keep money they don’t deserve, and who want to deny health care and education to the masses.


  32. pounce says:

    The bBC and investigative journalism when it comes to racism.

    A liberal democrat councillor from Bristol his made the news by referring to a Tory councillor as a coconut Now in light of how quick the bBC can be when it comes to levelling charges of ‘Racism’ at anybody who even looks funny at somebody who isn’t white in the UK. You’d think the bBC would be highlighting this story over the ugliness that is racism that can be found in the UK today.
    Err No.
    In fact the bBC has kept this story very low key. It’s not as if there isn’t any proof as the incident is caught on camera. So why are the bBC not promoting this story as a racial hate crime.
    Could it be the racist is a Black woman?
    Could it be she is a liberal democrat?
    Could it be the story revolves around how the Tory Indian councillor questioned why £750K is being spent yearly on commemorating a slave trade which ended 200 years ago. Her view being that it was over 200 years ago and the world must move on.
    But the irony and the angle the bBC don’t bother looking into is.
    The black liberal councillor who was born in Jamaica and who complains about how the funding for remembering the Slave trade in the Uk (which sent millions to America) should be cut lives not in Bristol, nor the UK or even Europe. It appears Councillor Brown lives in Florida, USA Instead they ensure that a racist councillor is given enough time and space to excuse her actions. Shame Carole Thatcher wasn’t given that option.

    The bBC and investigative journalism when it comes to racism.


  33. David Preiser (USA) says:

    I forgot to mention that I’ll be wearing a Frankenstein’s Monster costume.


  34. George R says:

    – NOT mentioned by BBC:

    ‘Jihadwatch’ –

    ‘Police in Scotland ordered to give special priority to crimes where the victims are Muslim’

    “Because, you see, this will keep them from becoming ‘radicalized’ — i.e., turning to jihad. Living in a society that treats all equally before the law is not enough: Muslims have to be placed in a special class with rights and privileges beyond those of non-Muslims. And that, of course, is precisely the arrangement envisioned by Sharia.”

    Perhaps the BBC’s political line is to support Muslims having superior legal privileges in British society to the majority of non-Muslims, but that it would be ‘politically incorrect’ of the BBC to report this.


  35. Beness says:

    Seems one reporter is starting to challenge the governments facts.


  36. Ratass Shagged says:

    Typical BBC double standard. When they report men who pay for sex it’s all about seediness, sex trafficking and child prostitution. However when they report women who pay for sex, it’s all girl power, cheapening men and social empowerment.

    And naturally the report is filed by a woman. If that’s what you call the bull dyke rug munching misandrists that scrounge off the BBC.


  37. Ratass Shagged says:

    Forgot the link in my fury! Sick buckets on stand by. Right on girls!!


  38. deegee says:

    Nothing about New Zealand surprises me.

    In front of Dunedin’s Museum is a ‘Peace Pole’ with the flags of every nation –
    except Israel


  39. fewqwer says:

    From Millie Tant’s link:

    “How can I be a racist when I’m black?”

    Obviously been watching too much BBC.


  40. Will says:

    “How can I be a racist when I’m black?”


    Says it all – the only racism is white against black.

    How does she manage to watch too much BBC when she’s got her head so far up her arse?


  41. will2001 says:

    “Deflation!” Bring it on says the BBC. Due to the unique way it is funded the licence fee just keeps on rising

    The BBC’s six-year licence fee deal will break the historic link with inflation and hand the corporation a 3% annual rise for the two years from April 2007, a 2% rise for the following three years, and an increase of between 0% and 2% in the final year of the deal, 2012-2013.

    The price of a colour TV licence will be as follows:

    2006-2007: £131.50
    2007-2008: £135.50
    2008-2009: £139.50
    2009-2010: £142.50
    2010-2011: £145
    2011-2012: £148
    2012-2013: £148-£151.50


  42. Dave S says:

    Maybe this has already been commented on but I have some sympathy for Sir Fred and his pension . That he is an idiot like most corporate , quango and government lackeys is a given but it must be hard for a man whose ” Crimes “, if that is what they were, are purely financial to be vilified by the whole state apparatus and it’s tame media camp followers. The BBC has been prominent in leading the attack. Sir Fred has not been guilty of any violent crime but he has been personally attacked in public by our bully of a PM cheered on by the BBC and much of the press.
    This is a misuse of power and distasteful in a democracy.
    The responsibility for the crisis rests with the governments who permitted banks to behave like fools so as to use the taxes generated for grandiose projects.
    We are not all fools and can see Brown the bully trying to avoid any responsibility for anything.
    The BBC would be well advised not to toe the Brown line lest it too becomes associated with what is becoming a distastful witch hunt.


  43. Will says:

    will2001 | 28.02.09 – 9:01 pm

    Sorry will – didn’t mean to nick you handle 🙂


  44. Will says:

    should be ‘your’ of course


  45. Alex Reynolds says:

    I do feel the BBC, and entire media actually, are rather guillable for focusing on the Sir Fred issue instead of the huge debt, bigger bank stakes, reorganisation etc.

    I don’t know if its bias – I think more lazy journalism; they go for the easy story of ‘rich bastard paid off for screwing up’ instead of the far more complicated mess in the banking sector.


  46. wally says:

    I suppose coconut could be seen as a technical term of political abuse (black on the outside, white on the inside) used by one colored person to another. Since blck people frequently use the ‘n word’ there may be some arcane etiquette surrounding by whom the word is used.

    What irritates me is the constant breast-beating over European involvement in slavery while that of the Islamic world is overlooked or made to appear somehow more benign. Muslims were invariably the middle men who caught the slaves and sold them to Europeans; over a millenium of activity meant that numerically greater numbers were enslaved by them;
    being a women who could be used as a sex slave or a boy who could be castrated (with an horrendous death rate – as was that on the transport operation) does not involve markedly
    less suffering than European usage.

    Last year the BBC had a great ‘mea culpa’ fest to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the abolition of the slave trade. I do not remember them once mentioning that slavery was abolished in the Islamic world only as a result of western pressure or occupation.In fact Malcolm X became disenchanted with Islam when he saw an auction of black slaves in Mecca in the 1960’s!

    This omission helps Muslim proselytisers exploit black susceptibilities by painting Christianity as the enslaving, white man’s religion.


  47. Anonymous says:

    The halo-esque image of the Obamessiah, head all-a-glow, is getting repeated use at BBC Views Online…


  48. David Preiser (USA) says:

    Beness | 28.02.09 – 6:24 pm |

    This is what happens when the BBC gets used to being cozy with the government. Eventually – no matter which party is in charge – the reporter is going to get double-crossed, because sometimes policies and government motives change so fast there isn’t time to send another email. This time it looks like Mark Easton was on the receiving end of bad info, and he seems to be annoyed that he was used as a Labour propaganda outlet. Awwww.

    Nick Robinson and Robert Peston got double-crossed in exactly this manner just recently over the VAT non-increase and the Pre-Budget Report. Petson pretended it didn’t happen, but Robinson admitted it on his blog, and started questioning the government’s motives, at least for a little while.


  49. Beness says:

    David Preiser (USA)

    Agreed David.It would be nice to think that they have been double crossed.Join the club.


  50. John Reith spins in his grave says:

    … I do not remember them once mentioning that slavery was abolished in the Islamic world only as a result of western pressure or occupation.In fact Malcolm X became disenchanted with Islam when he saw an auction of black slaves in Mecca in the 1960’s!

    This omission helps Muslim proselytisers exploit black susceptibilities by painting Christianity as the enslaving, white man’s religion.
    wally | 28.02.09 – 11:07 pm | #

    Yes – slavery has been an Islamic speciality ever since Mo dreamed it all up – even after the Saudis finally officially banned it in 1962.

    In the 17th century – you weren’t even safe taking a stroll on the beach in Cornwall…

    …North African pirates abducted and enslaved more than 1 million Europeans between 1530 and 1780 in a series of raids which depopulated coastal towns from Sicily to Cornwall..

    …according the no lesser authority than the Grauniad ;-

    The little island of Gozo near Malta, where I spend a few weeks a year, was completely depopulated in 1551 when Cosair slavers took virtually every man woman and child – and the locals still haven’t forgotten it:-

    Not that you would ever find any of this out from Al Beebazeera.