Paxman has once again been rampaging around the country on his obsessive hobby horse making highly political comments about Tory ministers…and calling Cameron an idiot because Paxman thinks commemorating WWI is somehow the same as celebrating it.
Jeremy Paxman reopens war of words with Michael Gove over the WW1 centenary: ‘A charlatan’ who scores ‘cheap political points’
Can’t quite see how the BBC can continue to use Paxman as a political interviewer when he is so openly antagonistic towards the Tories…or indeed politics as a whole. His comments during and after the Brand interview/farce should have immediately brought to the attention of the BBC hierarchy that Paxman is past it, jaded and unable to maintain a professional front.
Could he be shunted permanently sideways into the graveyard for past-it interviewers, making history programmes, like Andrew Marr?
Andrew Marr’s grasp of history is pretty shaky and prone to a leftwing take or revision of it…but judging by Paxman’s reading of Cameron’s speech on the WWI commemorations historical accuracy and honest analysis doesn’t seem to be one of his strong points either as we’ve pointed out before:
Going Over The Top
and noted in 2012 as well….
Jeremy Paxman on Gordon of Khartoum: so laughably inaccurate that I thought I must be hearing things
By coincidence John Humphrys piped up recently about BBC pro-EU bias (A coincidence that the next day the BBC began its defense of the license fee? Can’t help thinking Humphrys was prodded into saying this and to say the usual ‘We were biased but you know what…its all right now.’)
Craig at ‘Is the BBC biased’ has done an excellent job transcribing John Humphrys’ defense of his comments on Feedback where Roger Bolton isn’t impressed……
Roger Bolton: There is a question mark about whether you should say it publicly at this time, because…
John Humphrys: Why not? Public money!
Roger Bolton: Well, some people would say, one, because there’s a campaign going against the BBC and, therefore, you’re aiding its enemies.
So no one should criticise the BBC? Those that do are ‘enemies’ however justified the criticism?
Then we get to a bit that is relevant to Paxman and his political outbursts…..
Roger Bolton: The point I’m making, John, and it is difficult for all presenters. If they express themselves forcibly on a matter of public contention and debate when they come to chair something in which they’re required to be seen as objective they are compromised.
John Humphrys: Well, on some issues you’d be absolutely right. I don’t, for instance, conduct interviews on assisted dying, which is a hugely contentious area, and I’ve written a book about it, and I have views about it, and I told the BBC I was writing the book and they said ‘Fine!’ and I agreed without hesitation. I suggested that I shouldn’t do interviews on it, and of course I don’t. So, the BBC is different. We are ALL the BBC.
If Humphrys is required to refrain from doing certain interviews upon subjects which he has publicly expressed strong views then shouldn’t the same requirement be made for Paxman?…and looking at his views on politics in general that would surely count him out of doing any political interview as he would clearly be basing the interview on his own jaundiced views.
Paxman is compromised right up to the hilt.
Finally a last word from Humphrys which is just a confirmation of what we all know….who gets invited for an interview onto the BBC is critical…..which is why programmes like Today pack the airwaves with musicians, artists, poets and writers because they know they will almost certainly have a leftwing take on events and will be suitably critical of people like George Bush or pro-climate change……and the presenters never seem to forget to ask them…‘By the way…any thoughts on Iraq/welfare/education?’……
Roger Bolton: Has anyone ever told you to go soft on the subject of Europe?
John Humphrys: Nope. But that doesn’t prove the point, Roger, because I don’t edit the programmes. I don’t decide who gets interviewed. And that is crucial to it.
Of course that isn’t the end of things…the presenters are indeed all too often of a likemind with their guests…..
As evidence by this recent bit of smearing by association spotted by ‘Is the BBC biased’:
What’s your advice, in the European countries, to the mainstream parties who see parties on the far-right with populist appeal of one kind – bashing immigrants or bashing European institutions? How should they behave? How should David Cameron, in this country, behave to UKIP?
‘Bashing immigrants‘…of course he means merely being critical of immigration doesn’t he?
And linking UKIP, once again, to the ‘Far Right’….the BBC et al were quick to denounce people who reminded us that Hitler was a socialist….and Labour are socialists. Didn’t like that link for some reason.
Labour ‘One Nation Socialists’...National Socialists?
Accept all the above, and heard much of it myself.
Yet the bit you put in bold type-with Humphrys emphasis as he said it-does reveal the wheels within wheels there at the BBC…the “Free Speech” debacle on BBC3 is beyond Swift and Tom Lehrer(as Craig and Sue says on their blog).
See-I too am balanced in regard on my take on BBC bias…”Biased BBC”, followed by “Is the BBC biased”?…my idea of a balanced prospectus…BBC rules of impartiality apply as well.
A fine return to form from Stewart Lee last night after his anti UKIP unfunny crap last week( Stewart Lees Comedy Vehicle, 10pm or so BBC2 15/3/14)
He described the Brand/Paxman “interview” as hardly Nixon/Frost….more akin to a chimp throwing its excrement into a foghorn!
Not bad at all!
John Humphrys was dismissive of claims that interviewers were told to ‘go soft’ with certain interviewees.
Clearly it would be wrong if that were the case, although he does admit that the agenda and personnel are chosen by the editor. However what he doesn’t address directly is that the interviewer may indeed ‘go soft’ on their own volition, no need to be told.
He makes a somewhat pathetic case that post-war children were frightened of a new European war and therefore anything that might deter such a war was a good thing. I would suggest that no child born after 1940 would be frightened of a European war, (i.e. a five year-old in 1945 might have frightening memories, a younger child would have no memory of the war), and the question of the EEC/EU didn’t arise in the UK until 1971 or so. That would mean that the ‘frightened’ child would now be 30 plus and should have been able to come to their own rational opinion on the EEC/EU, rather than some Marxist Euro-claptrap.
If there was any fear at that time it was that the Cold War might get hot. The hero of the Left, JFK, had done a Putin re. Cuba and the rest of us were in the firing line. Exactly what influence was the EEC going to have on that? Perhaps the UK and French military might have persuaded their politicians to join in the fun but as for the wider ‘Europe’ nothing – this was strictly Uncle Sam versus The Russian Bear. To say otherwise is just John Humphrys re-writing history following the claim of the EU to have maintained peace for 65 years etc. Just lies.
If we are lucky we might just avoid a new European war started by the unelected EU Commission in Ukraine.
If it was up to the BBC we would only celebrate great Islamic victories.
One thing that sticks in my throat ; the BBC get all reverent and austere when commemorating or presenting anything military such as the Armistice or Trooping of the Colour when in fact the BBC despises our armed forces and does everything it can be demoralise them.
Paxman did take a huge dip about six months ago with his strange facial appearance and the trashing of the once perceptive Newsnight show. He seems to have recovered though as has the programme ( was Katz threatened with the sack?).
Humphrys on the other hand in his broadcasting dotage seems to take great pleasure in exploiting the weaknesses of his opponents. This is fine when dealing with politicians, but not with guests who expected a more friendly treatment – the ex Afghanistan veteran this morning, reduced to almost incoherence when accused of propaganda is a case in point.
Both veterans have become their own story and fail to understand that objectivity does not mean assuming that every enemy is just a misunderstood victim and every conformist an useful idiot .
I commented on this on the “Biteback” thread of this very site.
There is nothing more preposterous than a BBC hack reaching for the smelling salts and lace hanky on finding that a “correspondent” of theirs has been less than truthful.
This naive officer may have had other things on his mind than a soundbite to trash the MOD for the 8.10 slot.
Granted though that the BBC would think of little else.
Save for Lyse Doucett who rather likes Taliban poetry metre….oh, if only our squaddie chappies could learn to love ” Death to the Kuffar” in its original Pashtun.
For Humphrys to squauk about “not being told the truth” as if the BBC don`t do this every day to the rest of us 24/7 is and was the height of Humph humbuggery.
As is Bowen, Doucett and f***in Mardell, Black, Harrabin and the rest of `em don`t lie ceaselessly on behalf of “the Cause”….