Moral Panics? At The BBC It’s What We Do…..

Obviously over the last few days the great and the good at the BBC have become rather unsettled as control over the urban mob violence and looting narrative began slipping through their fingers.

Shocked by the tsunami of contempt that hit them when they tried to frame the discussion in terms of “protestors”, poverty and/or race the Beeboids and their allies in the left wing media/academic cultural elite have been desperately searching for a way of regaining control of the issue by shifting the parameters of the debate.

The initial attempt was laughably unsubtle. Making much of a bevy of leading police officers, spearheaded by ACPOs big cheese Sir Hugh Orde, the aim was to portray the Cameron government as being out of touch. “Leave it to the boys in blue” became the watchword.

Unfortunately the evidence of a lack of leadership and control from the higher echelons at the Met over the first 2/3 days of mob rule in parts of London was so overwhelming that the utterances of Orde and Co. had a very hollow ring.

But, as David at noted yesterday, a new editorial line had been adopted by the BBC suits and programmed into the robotic Sarah Montague as she fed the appropriate cues to the former Director of Public Prosecutions, Lord Macdonald, over sentences handed out to looters. Naturally he came back with the appropriate response – “a collective loss of proportion” This triggered Sarah’s circuitry and produced the key phrase we shall be hearing over and over again at this weekend’s North London dinner parties.

Moral panic.

It’s all out of proportion, you see. There’s no real threat but a lot of opportunists have jumped on this bandwagon to further their own political agenda.

Moral panics allegedly arise when an event is perceived as a threat to society and its values. Those who foment the panic are said to be motivated by a fear of losing control. They therefore attempt to channel potentially disruptive energy by portraying another person or group – “folk devils” – as more of a danger than they actually are. So the Sarah Montague/BBC line appears to be that Cameron is using the riots as an opportunity to demonise the disenfranchised and divert attention from his austerity drive and, strangely enough, that was the angle recently taken by The New York Times…..surprise, surprise….

Heavy stuff, indeed…

But wait a minute – “no real threat but a bandwagon to further an agenda”……”folk devils”…..that seems to ring a bell….

Rupert Murdoch, Anders Breivik, bankers, EDL, AGW deniers, Israelis – now there is a collection of folk devils for you, always presented as the symbols of dark forces ever ready to take us back to some Thatcherite nightmare away from sweetness and light.

Moral panics? At the BBC it’s what we do…..

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24 Responses to Moral Panics? At The BBC It’s What We Do…..

  1. KyleLovitt says:

    The BBC is a moral cancer


  2. George R says:

    Oh no, I can see another pro-rioters BBC-NUJ immoral campaign starting up, in defence of foreign rioters in UK:

    “‘Firm justice’ for looters: foreign rioters to be deported”


  3. London Calling says:

    Foreigners? This is desperation! No doubt there will be a swift handbake turn to avoid stigmatising anyone of West Indian or African origin. Or the Commonwealth. Or Europe. Or EFTA. Or who has been granted asylum, and can not be deported as it’s “not safe” and we can not guarantee they won’t be tickled to death on return their homeland.

    If they manage to find some luckless rioting eskimo to deport there will be the five years of apeal (for the benefit of m’learned friends who will unable to sleep fearing for their human rights.)

    Just when you think you couldn’t make it up, someone does.


  4. VFC says:

    For those who don’t believe that Jersey’s media, including the BBC, aren’t “State Controlled”


  5. matthew rowe says:

    So are they advocating the opposite ? cool lets have loads of  immoral confidence


  6. Billy-no-mates says:

    Blunkett spoke about the petition to take away benefits this morning saying “the rule of the mob went a long time ago” – funny that – I thought that was democracy.Its strange how Labour and the BBC hate doing what the majority of people want – I remember when the Today program had a vote amongst listeners for a subject to be discussed in Parliament. The “today” public wanted the right to protect oneself (kill the theivin’ scum) in the home – the Labour respnse (Stephen Pound MP) “The people have spoken – the bastards” Needless to say it was never heard of again..


  7. Concerned Citizen says:

    Seeing the picture of George Orwell below, I am reminded that, when he worked for the BBC, Orwell described it as “half whorehouse, half lunatic asylum”.

    Most institutions change over time. Not the BBC, it would seem (though one has to concede a sea change after Hutton, on behalf of New Labour, removed their remaining bollock)


  8. Louis Robinson says:

    In Middle Eastern folklore there’s a story about a fellow called Nasurdin searching for something on the ground. A friend comes by and asks what he’s doing? “I’ve lost my key”, Nasurdin says. “Where did you lose it?” says the friend. “In my house?” “Why are you looking for it here in your garden?” Nasurdin replies, “Well, there’s more light here than in my house”.

    It seems to me this sums up the media approach to the riots. They could look for the real answers where they are – in the house. But the easy, old, traditional (wrong) answers are more convenient. Maybe they should go find the answers in the houses and among families responsible for the mayhem even though it’s a darker more uncomfortable place to look.


  9. RGH says:

    BBC patronising again.

    They KNOW what’s best.

    And clearly they think the British public is being silly.

    Particularly if they allow their emotions to distract from the really big issues like the CUTS.


  10. Martin says:

    Sky News report that a Police officer has been arrested for leaking information on phone hacking to the Guardian newspaper

    The BBC report that a Police officer has been arrested in connection with the phone hacking scandal.

    Who do you think is telling the truth?

    We all knew the Guardian were getting information from the Police the female hack involved denied that they were getting it from the Police on Sky News a few weeks back.

    I hope the Guardian offices are now raided.

    Just how did the Guardian find out Andy Coulson was to be arrested before he actually was?


  11. cjhartnett says:

    A Montague/BBC line indeed!
    In short it`s a crazed zig zag to wherever looks the best place to park their flabby intellects, to examine the contents of their lacy handkerchieves and to do the ritual fart at the turbine….no, doesn`t move…but one day you`ll not be laughing!
    All “morality” at the BBC is flatpack with no-one able to work out what the boxes are for, or even who would have been so mad to keep them in stock. Instructions in Esperanto somewhere probably, but who gives a stuff?
    Still the likes of Sarah sway wearily from lost cause to bomb site…shrine to Green Room, then back to Mumsy or Nanny. They would have surrendered any consciences before if they were still hawking them around.
    Still-look at what they`ve got instead! Issues, bandwagons, fellow stooges and travellers and school fees and pension pots!
     Pathetic boozy loozy waggle dance in 666 formation from now until we pull the plug-and then have to say sorry to our kids for letting them strip and foul the hives, nests and potting sheds of this once decent country!
    All those workshops-and they can`t even tell the difference between a flatpack and a a flapjack. On the losing side of history.
    Just knobs who`d rather be yobs!


  12. wild says:

    As I remarked on the education thread

    “The amazing thing about this scam (we take your money and in return we undermine the education system, and corrupt your children) is that people say, OK.”

    In that context I was talking about grade inflation, lowering standards (in mathematics this can be measured) universities replacing critical thinking with Critical Theory (i.e. slavery to Leftist orthodoxy) and becoming (like the Kulaks and Landlords of old) an untermensch (the sort of terrible person who reads the Sun or the Mail or the Daily Telegraph instead of The Stalinist Daily) if you point that out.  
    I noted that

    “Leftists will be Leftists, it is what they do. They never saw a free society they liked, and so they will seek to destroy them. But what is our excuse in letting them do it?”

    Well the answer to that question (and the relevance to this thread) is control of the narrative.

    The BBC is not simply a source of employment (for Leftists), it is not simply that it broadcasts the sort of critical reflection (= braindead Leftism) that (Leftists) like to consume (the same could be said of most “publically” funded “Arts” projects) these are just a bonus.

    The reason why the Left love the BBC so much, the reason why it is so important to them that any criticism of it’s political bias must be eliminated from the consciousness (ESPECIALLY if that criticism comes from an ex-BBC employee) is that it seeks to educate people to have correct opinions.

    A BBC news programme is essentially the search for a Leftist narrative. This is not only about telling people what to think, it is about deleting anything which questions the orthodoxy that keeps the Leftist establishment in place.

    It is no accident that it was not the BBC who launched the MP’s expenses scandal, the function of the BBC is to promote the notion that (Left) politics and (Leftist) politicians are the answer to every question.


    • London Calling says:

      Well said that man. The BBC is a “safe house” for the Left.
      Never forget 75% of the public say they get their news from the BBC (the other 25% from the Big Brother House, but we won’t go there) . As long as that pertains it is almost impossible for normal people to have any sort of intelligent discussion as “the facts” have already been tainted.

      Conversation the other day – “You don’t like Obama? Eh? I didn’t know you were “right wing” What? You don’t believe in global warming? Ahh! (Penny drops) do you by any chance spend a lot of time on the Internet – you know, the blogs (cue: rolls eyes)

      So I say, Yes. And where do you get your news from – The BBC? (cue: roll eyes too)

      Make no mistake, the bBC is a far greater evil than most people understand.


      • cjhartnett says:

        Heard Jonathan Dimbleby earning his Tuscan villa from the paymasters on the floor above tonight!

        The panel he “chaired” tonight asked about the family (and its undermining) was maybe a factor in the riots…was it a “moral” issue? Noooo….but lots of big words first that say nothing if you`d be so kind!

        Dimblebys choosing not to hear the question being answered head-on was a master class.
        The Cof E handwringer was first…the university-trained copper was next…and “their professional research/experiences led them to the complex conclusion that…”well not welfare baby mothers anyway, you Tory apologist you!
         Well it wasn`t  the family really…more police and priests needed and less families (who are not to be trusted!).

        Dimblebys sly slithering of the herd  toward the pen where the whole debate is now to be parked( before an inquiry/more police/more funds and less prosecutions etc) was actaully very good if you enjoy “One Man and His Dogs”.
        Wonder if the other old sheepdog-pedigree Dave-will be able to match this, come the sheepdog trials in September.
        These are likely to be the only kind of trials that the BBC will be wanting for the feral youth of Accrington/Nelson…indeed anywhere outside Richmond-on-Thames!


      • wild says:

        “The BBC is a far greater evil than most people understand.”

        You could argue that it is to their credit that they do not understand.

        I am reminded of the Polish historian Richard Pipes. He mostly wrote about one radically Socialist country (what used to be called the USSR) and the darkness he wrote about was very difficult for him.

        To give a single example. Between them the German and Russian (black and red) socialists exterminated pretty much the ENTIRE intelligensia of Poland (he and a few others managed to escape) and it is very doubtful whether Poland will ever recover. How can you comprehend such a thing?

        There are more subtle levels of destruction than death camps. For example it is very doubtful that Russia will ever recover from Communism. I do not mean economically (they have plenty of natural resources) and even the population may recover, I mean spiritually.

        Modern Russia is a nihilistic hell on Earth. Whereas the Mongols killed and enslaved people, contemporary Russia is what is left after spiritual death.

        Anybody who knows about the techniques used by the Left to destroy society finds what the BBC is now doing very very familiar.

        They way to notice it in yourself is to have a belief which you are confident is true (indeed which you believe that it would be insane to deny) but which the Left absolutely hates. How do you feel when you even think that thought.

        To give an example. I am a confident fellow. At university I was better educated (in the sense that I had a wider education) than most of my professors. I made my own path. But I would not dare say something in a seminar that did not accord with Leftist orthodoxy. Not from timidity, but because it was absolutely pointless. Because I had more sense.

        Now imagine that times one hundred. That gives you a rough idea of the power which the BBC exercises in contemporary Britain. Did you give them that power? I must have missed that referendum.


        • jarwill101 says:

          Excellent post, wild. The Leftist orthodoxy operates unchallenged throughout much of higher education. Those who babble most about ‘enrichment’ & ‘diversity’ are shockingly reluctant to permit a plurality of opinion. You were right to keep your head down at univ. Every year I re-read Malcolm Bradbury’s, The History Man, as a painful reminder of just how the sociology/PC racket gained such a stranglehold on cultural debate in universities, & thereby provides the remorseless flow of suitably indoctrinated ‘talent’ that the Red Establishment, especially the BBC, requires. A young person of independent mind wouldn’t get a look in. And that is how we end up with a broadcasting service, stuffed with a well-heeled, smug, insulated clique, that just cannot understand the blistering, rightful anger of the ‘unelightened’ majority that, last week, had to square up to the murderous Frankenstein’s monster that decades of cultural Marxist engineering has stitched together & dumped on our doorstep. In a fairer world, a beeboid ‘peace flotilla’, with Guardianista outriders, should have been despatched down Croydon Broadway to experience first hand the remarkable ‘enrichment’ our society is dying from. The blessed holders of the ‘nuanced opinions’ would have been lynched.


  13. dave s says:

    The whole liberal elite is about to ecperience that moment when we all stop listening and the game is up.
    One thing I’ve noticed about the average Guardianistas is their lack of any instinct for self preservation which is why they have to be cocooned by the state, quango, charidee, or an organisation like the BBC. They never seem to be working for themselves or engaged in trade and commerce.
    I expect they will continue to get it wrong over the riots because to face the truth would make their heads explode.


  14. Martin says:

    Well well well, the 6pm news on BBC 1 makes NO mention of the latest arrests into thephone hacking scandal.

    I wonder why!!!!


  15. George R says:

    Will this actually happen, and what’s the political context?:

    “England riots: foreign rioters will be deported”


    “More than 150 people born abroad have been arrested over the looting and arson attacks which brought misery to English cities. ”

    But is this likely to happen, given:

    1.) anti-British ‘human rights’ legislation;

    2.) cowardly UK government;

    3.) the dominance of ‘multiculturalist’ ideology in all 3 main political parties;

    4.) the media power of BBC-NUJ and other pro-mass immigration propagandists  such as political sentimentalists for rioters as Chakrabarti, Alibhai-Brown and Toynbee?


    • Span Ows says:

      It won’t happen. They may well say it and give the sentence but the action – the actual physical deportation – will never happen for the reasons you write.


  16. George R says:


    “UK riots: It’s not about criminality and cuts, it’s about culture… and this is only the beginning”


    “What a week! It’s not every day that you’re the subject of direct personal attack from the Leader of Her Majesty’s Opposition. On Tuesday, after he had spoken at his old school, Haverstock Comprehensive, about the riots, Ed Miliband was invited by a member of the audience to ‘stamp out’ the now-infamous opinions I had expressed on the same subject on last Friday’s Newsnight.
    Mr Miliband might have replied that he disagreed with what I said, but in a liberal democracy defended my right to say it since it broke no laws. Not a bit of it, I fear. Instead, Miliband – the son of a refugee who fled from Nazi Europe to preserve his life and freedom of thought – agreed enthusiastically with the questioner. Mine were ‘racist comments’, he said, ‘[and] there should be condemnation from every politician, from every political party of those sorts of comments.’
    “Strong words. But what do they mean?” (David Starkey.)…-and-this-is-only-the-beginning.html

    Supplementary, ‘Daily Mail’:

    “‘Witch-finders already have their sights on me’: David Starkey hits back after causing race storm with Newsnight outburst”

    Read more:


  17. cjhartnett says:

    Excellent posts above-jarwill,wild first among a lot of equals!
    The Beeb run a mile from “morality”…especially in any God backed meaning of the word.
    Therefore it is good of IDS/Cameron to use the word as rat poison or kryptonite as they wish!
    Never seems to upset the public sector leeches of the media and established “progressive” fellow travellers.
    Going to hell in a handbag…bye,bye Sooty…bye bye!
    (No-that`s not racist today!)