Triple Whammy



This is number heavy and involves a bit of reading…but it’s worth some effort as it is a classic example of the BBC either being lazy and incompetent and/or deliberately missing out relevant facts when it suits them.


The BBC are happy to ‘fly a kite’ or two with speculative ‘reports’  that present a negative image of any one of a number of BBC bête noires based on what ‘someone’ claims…usually a Labour MP, a charity worker or a community leader.

The intent?  To keep an idea afloat, to keep it continually in the background of people’s minds even when there is little to no evidence to prove it conclusively…perhaps the suggestion that ‘racism’ is behind  every bad experience for a black person or that every social ill can be linked to Tory policies, especially Austerity…or failing that a quick double take and we’re back to the eighties and the fall back cause of all the world’s woes is of course Thatcher.


Yesterday we had three classics:

Demand for food banks has increased hugely…..due to welfare cuts.

A Labour MP states that a constituent may commit suicide because of the welfare cuts.

A black cafe owner claims customers won’t eat at her cafe because she is black.



All given headline treatment but you could argue all stories that are baseless…at least on the terms the BBC wants to portray them.


Just look at one…suicide rates…..I’ll note this here first, that the figures given below indicate a fall in the suicide rate per 100,000 of the population….the BBC reports a rise in overall numbers but without that all important qualification…..amongst others that it also conveniently misses out.

The BBC et al became very indignant when arsonist Mick Philpotts, and his benefits funded lifestyle (£60,000/year), was used as the poster child for Tory suggestions that welfare might need to be reformed.  The BBC were more than happy to label the Tories as heartless monsters politicising a tragedy linking welfare reform to the killing of Philpott’s children…which of course the Tories never did…a highly politicised invention of the ‘Left’….but no one said anything about that exploitation.  

All that indignation at alleged politicisation and exploitation of personal tragedy gets thrown  overboard when the BBC scents Tory blood.  They are more than happy to link the personal tragedy of suicide to Tory Austerity policies….such as they are.


Here the BBC makes it clear the importance of how this is presented:

Tragedies such as the one that befell Stephanie Bottrill have the potential to cut clean to the heart of a debate that has the potential to intensify still further.


In this recent article the BBC takes a press release, likes the cut of its jib and slots it into its own world view of the economy…for which it is a perfect fit:

Will the age of austerity harm health?

It starts off with the usual anti-Thatcher rhetoric (Not the only BBC reporter to try and make the link…Mark Easton blamed a rise in depression on Thatcher…and of course Thatcher’s ‘Big Bang’ was the ‘real cause’ of Gordon Brown’s economic crash):

Sandwell, like many areas that were heavily reliant on manufacturing, was hit hard by the recession of the 1980s……But it has only been over the past few years that the impact on the health of the local population has been fully felt.

A host of areas badly affected by the 1980s downturn can point to a similar impact.

It is further proof that economic hardship is bad for health.


Then we get onto the figures for suicides….the numbers are rising…due to austerity the BBC tells us:

The problems could be further compounded by cuts to the welfare system.  The charity Mind has drawn attention to research just published by Manchester University.  It shows that the number of suicides among mental health patients rose from 1,175 to 1,333 last year.


The figures are taken from a 2013 report by the National Confidential Inquiry into Suicide and Homicide

Here is a video on YouTube from the NCI which explains some of the findings….one of which I repeat here:

That rise is unexplained…though it coincides with a rise in suicides in the general population which most people have related to the difficult economic circumstances at the moment.

So..the rise is ‘unexplained‘….though ‘attributed’ by others, not the NCI, to the state of the economy.

 Here are some of the reports actual findings and explanations:

Our figure for suicide by patients shows a rise in 2011. This figure should be interpreted cautiously as it is a provisional figure based on incomplete data.


So the BBC reports as fact a ‘provisional figure based on incomplete data’.


The BBC also reports:

Prof John Ashton, the new president of the Faculty of Public Health, believes we need to heed the warning.

“Young people have been the hardest hit this time,” he says.


But the NCI says:

Suicides in patients aged under 25 and those aged 25-44 fell in the report period. A rise in 2011 is projected for most age-groups but not in those aged under 25.



And why have the figures risen anyway?  Is it purely a result of more people committing suicide or what?

The NCI says:

Suicide by mental health patients has risen – 1,333 deaths in 2011 (England). A change to the coding of causes of death has contributed to this figure and changes to the Mental Health Minimum Dataset (MHMDS) method make comparisons with earlier years difficult but it is likely that this is a true rise in patient suicide, following a previous fall. The rise probably reflects the rise in suicide in the general population, which has been attributed to current economic difficulties.

 When the Tories claimed knife crime was rising under Labour Mark Easton jumped in very quickly to claim that the figures couldn’t be compared to previous years…as the methodolgy for collecting them had changed…no such scruples here for the BBC….no qualification that the figures may have risen, at least in part, due to a new ‘coding method’… the NCI goes on to reveal:

Prior to 2011, some narrative verdicts were coded as accidental deaths where intent was not specified which may have led to an underestimation of suicide. However, in 2011 guidance was issued to coroners in England and Wales when returning narrative verdicts to provide clearer information on the intent of the deceased. This has led to improvements to the coding of narrative verdicts by the ONS coding team, and some cases which would previously be coded as accidental may now be coded as suicide.



What other inconvenient ‘facts’ might we find if we actually read the report?


First there is the same report by the NCI but from 2012:

In 2000 there were 4,819 suicides, in 2010 there were 4,021.

The report tells us that there was an average change in the general suicide rate in England between 2000 and 2010 of around minus 20%…that’s a drop of 20%.

For people with mental health issues who committed suicide in 2004 the figure was 1,317 and in 2011 1,333…… at the height of Labour’s boom we had a very similar suicide rate.

So it must be austerity…right?  And remember the population was lower in 2004…hence…


The NCI report in 2013 claims that the suicide rate per 100,000 people with mental health issues was in:

2004  117.7

2010  91.7

2011  87.8


So in fact the rate of suicides has gone down…though the numbers have gone up…the population having grown enormously since 2004.


Here are some charts of the general suicide rates and the rates for mental health patients in England…note differences in the figures in the two reports (2012 and 2013)…which should be the same:


 suidice patient 2012


suicide patients fig 1 2013



Here are the figures for the general population:


 suicide figs 2012


suicide figs 1

Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to Triple Whammy

  1. Amounderness Lad says:

    Of course those nasty, white British people refuse to eat in restaurants and cafes owned or run by people from other ethnic groups. I mean have you ever seen a white person in a Chinese Take-away? Have you ever seen a white person in any Asian Restaurant? Have you ever seen a white person in a Turkish Kebab House? Of course you haven’t, the BBC says so and as we all know the BBC is always right, is always accurate and would never misrepresent the truth for propaganda purposes, now would they?
    And the moon is made of green cheese, the streets of London are paved with gold, pigs can fly and little green men are taking over the world.


    • Wild says:

      The BBC was almost having an orgasm on Newsnight about a G4S and Serco overcharging for government contracts. A bigger Public Sector is the answer to every problem it seems. The obvious point that if a private sector business fails to deliver, its contract is terminated, was of course studiously ignored. Can we terminate having to pay for the BBC given that its executives are crooks? No wonder Radio Four ran a series saying that giving people a choice is bad for them – bad for the BBC they meant.


    • Ian Rushlow says:

      You’re not allowed to say “pigs can fly” as it maybe offensive to some communities (e.g.. prospective Labour Party candidates in areas with large ethnic minorities and BBC presenters). I suggest instead “Buraqs can fly” as this is factual. See for more information.


      • Joshaw says:

        This country’s going to the dogs.


        • Guest Who says:

          Depends who you rely upon for news.
          BBC Breakfast (@BBCBreakfast)
          RT @jennyhill23: For those interested judging of pigs has just begun at Yorkshire show @BBCBreakfast Big beasts!
          Interesting story for the time of year.


      • Guest Who says:

        ‘I suggest instead “Buraqs can fly”’
        Isn’t that the slogan now on Air Force One?
        The Last Father didn’t see that one coming.


  2. Thoughtful says:

    Sorry to be the one to burst the bubble, but I have seen white people working in Indian restaurants, and in Chinese takeaways – not in a Turkish as we don’t have many.

    I found the story of the café very odd Otley is a place North of Bradford, and although the BBC doesn’t mention race there’s the usual intimation that the customers were white – that might not be the case, which wouldn’t make a BBC story.
    Equally people might not be walking out because they don’t like Black people, but because she’s not as clean as she might be, or that the café smells of spices which when all you want is a cup of tea & slice of cake might not be ideal.
    The BBC double think at work again – you aren’t allowed to be ‘judgemental’ when it comes to ethnic people, but it’s fine when the targets are white.


    • Joshaw says:

      I don’t think Amounderness Lad was talking about employees, although I’d be very surprised if the percentage of white people so employed is very high.

      Coming from Bradford, and having lived in a village about 5 miles from Otley, I know it well, and the story as reported doesn’t ring true. But, as usual, black person says ‘racist’, so we have to accept it without question.


      • Joshaw says:

        Following pah’s comment, I should make it clear that it is Otley I know, not the cafe.

        Don’t know Ossett.

        At my local Sainsburys, black customers seem to gravitate towards a checkout with a black assistant when there’s a choice. Probably natural, to some extent.


        • DP111 says:

          Probably natural, to some extent..

          Quite. That is why nation states were founded – on the basis of of ethnic and cultural commonality, as it is the best way to secure internal peace.

          What we have now in the UK and Europe is not just multiculturalism, but multi-ethnicity and multi- ethics.

          This will not end well. One can view rise of the EDL as the first symptoms of a dark future, like small tremors before a large earthquake.

          Time is running short.


    • pah says:

      I believe you’ll find the café in question is in Ossett, which is between Dewsbury and Wakefield, not Otley.

      It is more than possible that people walk into the café see the owner and decide they don’t want to eat there because she is black. That is surely their choice unless we now want to enforce quotas on customers as well as staff.

      There is more than that wrong with the story anyway. The bit about the white assistant was added later after a number of comments had pointed out that there could be many other valid reasons why people may walk in and straight out again, the owner withstanding. The BBC have moulded this story by manipulating the facts in order to fit a warped narrative. Let’s hope community adhesion in the area isn’t affected eh?

      As to Indian take-a-ways hiring white staff well, yes, they do. Our local Bangladeshi restaurant has a buxom white waitress and very nice she is too, so are the Bangladeshis AFAICT. But the Bangladeshis are thin on the ground around here and with at least three ‘Asian’ restaurants in the local town there probably little choice than to employ outside of their own ‘community.’

      IME I have never been served by a white person in a Chinese or Indian restaurant in a large town or city. In fact when I last lived in a city all the local ‘ethnic’ shops were mono-racial, even the chemists.

      But in the end so what?


  3. Deborah says:

    Not sure I am off topic here but in response to Wild – on Channel 4 the Minister (forgot which one) pointed out that contracts to G4 and Serco were made under the previous government and were still active – at which point John Snow started to talk over him demanding that all contracts with these two companies were stopped. Whilst I may not like what these companies appear to have been doing it is obvious that John Snow (and many BBC newsmen) have no idea of business – stopping a contract immediately could prove very expensive and someone has to do the work that was being done…an alternative company knowing that you needed someone immediately wouldn’t be looking at a contract at the lowest price.


    • Lost Over There says:

      Something else they or the BBC won’t mention is John Reid’s involvement with G4S


      • Wild says:

        Indeed Deborah, but when the contracts end you have the choice whether or not to renew the contract. What you can do if somebody with whom you have a contract fails to deliver mid-contract depends on the terms of the contract.

        What the BBC seeks to obscure is that it is not Public Sector v Private Sector it is Compulsion v Freedom to Choose.

        They merge the question of whether or not politicians/civil servants made the right contracts, with the question of whether or not there should be contracts with the private sector at all.


  4. chrisH says:

    All wind and sails eh?
    It`s not that it`s not worth knowing or researching-but,sad to say: we just KNOW that the BBC slip and slide their stories in as they see an agenda to follow(and maybe create for tomorrows Observer-who`ll return the favour for Mondays Today show).
    Shameless and hopelessly inept at their “rolfing” of the news stories to create the seamless liberal banners for an imagined Durham gala.
    I just know it`s what they do-no further questions.
    Anybody hear Alistair MacGowans programme on Erik Satie this morning(10.30am Radio 4)
    Why don`t the BBC stop trying to stiff the turkey with their liberal lefty Islam shite, and let us enjoy the best that the can do…for I liked this one rogramme this week.
    Maybe I`ll get value if I stick to the Proms now!