BBC…Defender Of The Faith


Tohseef Shaha dmitted criminal damage following the incident in Burton last April

‘Support the Taliban’



‘Islam Will Dominate The World…Osama is on his way’ ”Kill Gordon Brown’


Not a word from the Muslim Council of Britain about those insults on the BBC….and yet when the BBC makes a frontpage splash with this:

Wikipedia edit from government computer added Muslim insult


……they’re all over it:

Nasima Begum, a spokeswoman for the Muslim Council of Britain, told the BBC: “It is these types of attitudes that create an unnecessary climate of fear and hostility.

“It is shocking and cause for great concern that inflammatory comments like these should be sent from someone within the government.”


Remarkable that the BBC continues to make such a big story out of this……especially when it completely ignored C4’s ‘Dispatches’ programme ‘Undercover Mosque’ which revealed some pretty nasty thinking based on Islamic values.

The BBC instead preferred to spend a week, the same weeek Dispatches was broadcast, attacking Jade Goody for allegedly being racist on another C4 programme ‘Big Brother’…so can’t claim to be embarrassed about investigating other channel’s programmes.

A very good indication of the BBC’s priorities and how it hides really dangerous news (ala Rochdale)  in favour of hounding  ‘stupid white trash’  as Goody was proclaimed to be by the self righteous  on many a BBC programme dedicated to exposing the ignorance and prejudice of such people that week.


And in fact I can’t even find a BBC story on the vandalism of the war memorial with ‘Islam will dominate the world’ sprayed on it….nor indeed for the memorial in Burton sprayed with ‘Support the Taliban’.    There must be some I’m sure….all with expressions of sorrow and anger from the MCB.






All Change




The BBC is losing quite a few heavy weights these days….Mason, Flanders and now Paxman:

Jeremy Paxman to step down as presenter of Newsnight

Jeremy Paxman has decided to step down as the presenter of Newsnight, a position he has held with great distinction for 25 years.

He informed Tony Hall, the Director General, and James Harding, the Director of News and Current Affairs, of his decision last summer, but with the appointment of a new editor and following a difficult period for Newsnight, Jeremy generously agreed to stay to help the new team bed down.


Bit of a reshuffle going on elsewhere as well:

BBC News announces four senior appointments

BBC News has today announced four senior appointments which will strengthen the BBC’s news coverage, both internationally and at home.

Jon Sopel has been appointed as North America Editor. He replaces Mark Mardell, who will become the presenter of Radio 4’s The World This Weekend and also present The World At One on Fridays. Katya Adler has been appointed as Europe Editor, taking over from Gavin Hewitt. Ian Pannell becomes International Correspondent, in recognition of his award-winning coverage of global affairs.


Interesting they have actually replaced Mardell with a real person…a tub of lard, ala Roy Hattersley, would have done a similar job to Mardell….for a lot less money.


No sign of the Glee Club at Today being given a bit of a makeover though….Bowen might also  be usefully redeployed elsewhere….and then there’s Roger Harrabin.


Work in progress?







Busy morning on the BBC. Every effort made to debunk claims by Sir Andrew Green’s MigrationWatch (with Evan Davies joining in the fun and games), then a strange thought for the day that seemed to claim teachers were like Christ, and of course a item on how Labour might win the Newark by-election. Just a normal day through the prism of the BBC.

5Live Drivel….Paint It Black



Heard Peter Allen talking (18:24) about how the US and German economies were doing so much better than ours….because, Allen tells us, they didn’t have ‘austerity’…the ‘big cuts’…..we may be improving here…but you know what, says Allen…not so much…nowhere near where we were in 2007…..em….wasn’t that just about to go bust in the biggest crash in history!!

Got his backside kicked by the guest, who knew what he was talking about.

Germany of course was never in the bad position that the UK was in in the first place because it didn’t spend vast amounts of money in the good times.

The US’s first solution didn’t work…that is the much vaunted stimulus…Plan B in UK talk.

What did work?….well for one thing it wasn’t shackled to the Euro Zone like the UK is…the Euro Zone just doesn’t make sense…one of the reasons Britain is doing so well is because it’s not in the Euro Zone…and of course there’s shale gas making their industry so much more low cost.

Allen deflated pretty quickly…..guess the new ‘current affairs’ brief from the BBC Trust to be relevant, significant and insightful might be targeted at him.


Or it could be directed at the BBC’s economics ‘expert’ Evan Davis who a couple of weeks ago thought that ‘since 2010’ (when all things bad began for the BBC) the tax regime had become very light touch and allowed companies to get away with murder…hence the tax gap ‘increasing’.

Once again a BBC talking head got his backside kicked….the real expert put him right…the tax regime is in fact harsher than ever…..and the tax gap isn’t ‘bigger’ as the economy is itself bigger. The tax gap has in fact gone down percentagewise.


The BBC does seem to make a determined effort to play down any economic good news…whether it’s employment or GDP growth or exports or consumer sales or house prices rising…..there’s always a downside.

Still I’m sure if the moribund Miliband gets in they’ll be just the same.






If Things Don’t Change They’ll Stay The Same



Here’s the spin:

BBC News highly regarded and trusted but needs to act to maintain reputation with audiences, BBC Trust review finds



Here’s the actual report:

Review of BBC Network News and Current Affairs


Here’s the Big Changes acoming your way:

As a result of its findings the Trust has set out a number of actions for the BBC Executive, including:

  • Developing its online and mobile news provision so that it remains relevant for audiences in a rapidly-changing market;
  • broadening the agenda and tone of BBC News to address audience concerns that it can sometimes feel ‘distant’ from their lives. This includes making more use of regional and local reporters on national network news, and making further progress in creating  a more diverse workforce both on and off air;
  • Increasing the impact of its current affairs output, with  commissioning decisions  driven by the significance and relevance of the subject matter and the insight offered to audiences;
  • Ensuring that a wider range of international stories are available to audiences in the UK, making better use of the scale of the BBC’s foreign newsgathering resources.


Sounds like they had a good meeting.  Lots of good wine, good food, bit o’gossip, tips on tax efficient pay…. schemes….and oh yes…better dream up a few worthy management targetty type things to make ’em look productive, on the ball and with it.

Do like that bit about ‘current affairs’……improve their impact by making them significant and relevant…along with some insight… they really need to be telling the journos to do that?

Sounds like not a lot is going to change.

I wonder why this review of BBC news and current affairs has been made available to the Public….shouldn’t it be under lock and key?  Have they not heard that all such reviews are ‘eyes only‘ to be shrouded in secrecy behind the veil of ‘For the uses of journalism, literature or art’?

I wonder what the difference is between this review of BBC journalism and that conducted by Malcolm Balen.  Maybe the BBC, in this age of austerity, decided it couldn’t afford to spend £300,000 covering up its mistakes….or perhaps it’s just because no Israelis get killed as a result of the journalism examined in this report.







Plurality Futility


The egregious ‘Hacked Off’ is trying to impose EU diktat upon the  Media..something that could well backfire upon the Hacked Off friendly BBC.


This is one of their slides from their presentation (Via Guido):


We all know that…and yet Labour and Hacked Off don’t seem to have a problem with the BBC dominating the Media scene.

Strange that they don’t mind such a right wing organisation (h/t Owen Jones) ruling the roost.




Poison Pill



It’s small and short but poisonous:

Adie and Ruth – Adventure in the Blood


Ruth tells of her travels and then how her son follows in her footsteps…going on a journey they hadn’t realised the dangers of….going to Gaza.

The dangers of course being in a land infested with murderous terrorists and religious fanatics….or not.

The danger was the Jews.

Travelling in his boat to Gaza across the water, like Jesus, to bring salvation to the Palestinians Adie was suddenly surrounded by 8 Israeli gunships and then attacked….thrown to the ground by Israeli soldiers in full military attire (what no beach shorts and sandals?), they beat him up, dragged him in and imprisoned him for a week


Just another poison pill from the BBC about the awfully awful Israelis.




Three Cheers For Victoria Derbyshire



If you’d like a laugh there’s always Marx…Karl Marx this time, and the BBC’s ‘of the moment‘ meme:

The Future of Capitalism

Anne McElvoy talks to the social theorist Jeremy Rifkin who foresees the gradual decline of capitalism and the rise of a collaborative economy. As new technology enables greater sharing of goods and services, Rifkin argues that it provides a challenge to the market economy. The sociologist Saskia Sassen warns that the majority of people may not enjoy the fruits of this new world as increasing inequality, land evictions and complex financial systems lead to their expulsion from the economy. The Conservative MP Kwasi Kwarteng looks back at the history of international finance and how gold and war have shaped the economic order of today.


Jeremy Rifkind has a great theory…except he has never heard of the garden shed or garage in which individuals create new stuff that takes on the giants of industry….has he never heard of Steve Jobs and Bill Gates?  Rifkind’s theory?….Old hat idea using new technology….in other words nothing new to see here.

Saskia Sassen is tr’ffic value… dodgy as Delboy at his flypitching best….whatever you throw at her won’t throw her…she’s always got an answer…and it’s usuallly ‘well, what I’m saying may not be happening now…but just you wait…it’s coming….it’s on the curve….I’m right you know’

Kwasi Kwarteng was doing OK, mostly by not saying much, but ran into trouble when blaming 9/11 for the crash in 2008….I thought it was the dastardly Chinese trick of lending us back our money to buy more of their stuff and give them their/our money back which they could then lend to us so we could buy even more of their stuff ……and of course the Hand of Gordon.


Any BBC bias?…probably not other than the choice of subject, the end of Capitalism, which was a theme past its sell by date even in the 1930’s when we heard the same things being predicted, and now only kept alive by the BBC and Occupy (remember them)….I should take a leaf out of Sassen’s book and predict Capitalism may have looked down and out for a bit but it bounces back…check the ‘curve’.

The presenter, Anne McElvoy did do a good job and took issue with most of the ridiculous points…so she was quite busy.


And speaking of BBC journo’s doing their job…there’s this clip of one taking the Labour Shadow Home Affairs Minister, Angela Smith, to task (11:48)   for her, what can only be described as, bullshitting….the journo nailed her and saw right through the spin and doubletalk. It should be kept as an example of how to cope with lying, misleading and dissembling politicians….a classic for the College of Journalism.

Three cheers for Victoria Derbyshire!






Kismet Harding



And, while social media can make anyone into a journalist, citizen journalism has, to my mind, reinforced the value of the professional journalist. When there are so many voices out there, so many with hidden patrons and private axes to grind, so many confusing opinions for news, then there is something simply priceless about a voice you can trust.


That’ll be the BBC then.



Fate and copious amounts of public money has put the BBC in a dominant position in the media aims to stay there…the adoring Public needs us…..says James Harding.


Professional journalists cannot expect to have the influence we once did, but, if we’re clever, if we’re innovative and if we’re trustworthy, we can earn it. This is because we live at a time when there is an unprecedented hunger for information and ideas……there has never been a greater need for original reporting, insightful analysis and challenging opinion. People making choices need information and intelligence. We need journalism. And, in Britain, we are extremely fortunate to have a boisterous, curious and courageous Press.

But I believe in journalism. I believe that journalism can enable democracy, improve society and empower the individual. When it comes to stories in the public interest, I generally believe that society has more to fear from secrecy than to gain from privacy.

I hold that Fleet Street is one of the best things about this country and the BBC is the best in the world at what it does. If either are inhibited or diminished, I think that both the British people lose out and Britain’s standing in the world falls. And so I worry when politicians and judges weigh in, either frequently or eagerly, on the behaviour of journalists and news organisations. At a time when our society needs curious, inquisitive journalism more than ever, I think we need to be extremely vigilant against encroachment on press freedom and freedom of expression.

The BBC has a team dedicated solely to harvesting User Generated Content and, in the short time I have been there, I have seen it transform the coverage of the Boston Marathon bombing, the street-fighting in Cairo, the political row over Tesco’s and Next’s employment practices, not to mention the recent weather.

The BBC must, if it is to be a public service broadcaster, deliver on its obligation in local news. I say this because there is what I consider to be a mistaken view that the BBC should rein in its local news coverage for fear of aggravating the economic woes facing local newspapers. We have a direct interest in the health of local newspapers and regional newsrooms. We thrive thanks to vibrant public debate and courtesy of the stories and ideas unearthed by our colleagues in rival news organisations. But, let me be clear, the problems facing the local newspaper industry are not the BBC’s fault.

I am acutely concerned by the pressures facing the local newspaper industry and we at the BBC will do anything to help. But the BBC’s primary responsibility must be to serve licence fee payers – and they want and are entitled to the best possible local news services we can deliver.

And, while social media can make anyone into a journalist, citizen journalism has, to my mind, reinforced the value of the professional journalist. When there are so many voices out there, so many with hidden patrons and private axes to grind, so many confusing opinions for news, then there is something simply priceless about a voice you can trust.

Which brings me, by some happy coincidence, to the BBC.

The power of the BBC lies not just in the 8,000 journalists who work for News and Current Affairs but in harnessing the 300 million people who use BBC news.

The real strength of the BBC comes down to one thing. We are trusted. Trust is our most prized asset – and the key to our future. It is rooted in the BBC’s uncompromising commitment to accuracy, impartiality, diversity of opinion and the decent treatment of people in the news. It requires us to guard jealously our independence. And it depends upon us striving, ceaselessly, to be fair, reliable and open to ideas. In what will be an ever noisier world, there is, I believe, a great future for the voice you can trust.

In this, WT Stead’s rallying cry, defining the ‘New Journalism’, holds true for the BBC as for all other journalists. “It is something to have an inspiring ideal, and it is well, to be reminded of the responsibilities that attend upon the power which has come to the journalist as an unexpected heritage from the decay and disappearance of the bishop and the noble.”




Conscious Coupling


It’s not whether you are right or wrong, it’s who you are that gets a response from the BBC  panjandrums….if you’re Lenny Henry clearly you’ve some influence at BBC House.

A few headlines in the newspapers and a private meeting with Tony Hall and the BBC falls over itself to seem ‘relevant’ and ‘diverse’. (But only with regard to gender and race.)

As James Harding says:  ‘Anyone with a story, a point of view and a Twitter account can set the agenda. If you choose, the ‘Powers that Be’ are you.’

Well anyone as long as ‘you’ are ‘ethnic’ and famous.


Quoting Harding quoting Marx (Groucho…the only Marx that you can take seriously) “The secret of life is honesty and fair dealing,” he said, “…and if you can fake that, you’ve got it made.”


Faking sincerity?   With that in mind lets have a look at what the BBC has concocted to reassure us that they are sincere about being impartial……


BBC staff take ‘unconscious bias’ course to encourage more diverse recruitment

BBC staff were sent on a course in “unconscious bias” to address concerns they tended to recruit people like themselves hindering the broadcaster’s efforts to embrace diversity

Senior BBC staff have taken a course in “unconscious bias” in a bid to stop them recruiting new employees “in their own image”, the director of news has disclosed.

James Harding, who joined the BBC last year, said his staff had been given training to improve the diversity of new recruits, with targets to increase the representation of ethnic minorities.

In a speech to staff at New Broadcasting House yesterday, he disclosed the senior recruiting board were so concerned about continuing to employ staff with similar backgrounds that they had each take a course in “unconscious bias”.

The speech follows findings from the BBC Trust, published yesterday (Mon), which order BBC management to increase the number of ethnic minority faces in news and current affairs, both on screen and behind the camera.

Mr Harding said: “If we really are determined to make the BBC more representative of the audiences it serves, then we have to intervene.

He added: “Across News, we worry that we have a tendency to recruit in our own image, so all members of the News Group Board have taken a course in unconscious bias.”

According to the BBC Trust, research has shown that some viewers and listeners find BBC News too “distant” and “formal” in tone, and failing “to reflect the diversity of life in the UK today”.

The Trust said: “In part, this audience need could be addressed by BBC News and Current Affairs looking, sound and, more importantly, being as diverse as the audience it serves.

“This is not a new challenge and it is one recognised by the entire industry, but the Trust believes the BBC must take a leadership role for the sector as a whole.

“Audiences need to recognise their own lives, perspectives and concerns duly reflected in the BBC’s programmes. BBC News needs to be heard as having a multiplicity of voices, with its own authority grounded in its experience and understanding of the many interests, cultures and communities that make up the UK.”

The BBC has already been publicly challenged to improve the representation of ethnic minority by actors including Lenny Henry.

The Trust has now given management a year to produce “concrete proposals from the BBC to achieve this, and further progress in terms of both gender and ethnicity”.



So….representative of the nation…..but only in terms of gender and ethnicity… me that’s almost an irrelevance….that’s not the BBC’s job…its job is to provide the news, regardless of gender and ethnicity, and to do that impartially they must recruit people not using skin colour or whether they sit down to piss as a critieria but their politics and their world view.

It’s possible to do that…obviously…..just look at who the BBC recruits now….more often than not they are like minded people…if they express views that align with those  in the BBC bubble they might get a tap on the shoulder…much like the good old days when MI5 or the KGB were touring the universities….‘we like the way you think…fancy a job?’

I’ve already mentioned in a previous post the likes of Giles Fraser and Stacey Dooley getting ‘tapped up’….and what to make of Aaqil Ahmed, a Muslim, as head of religious programming?…especially when he was already controversial when at C4….and then there’s Labour’s James Harding himself….or Alastair Campbell or Jacqui Smith.

And of course (h/t David )  Doreen Lewis.

Then there’s the ‘Asian Network’…what’s that about?  Ghetto radio…are people of ‘Asian Heritage’ not British then?  Does having brown skin mean you don’t like The Rolling Stones or Blue Peter and have to have ‘Asian’ themed news and culture?  Why is it that white people can watch Trevor McDonald but brown people apparently can’t watch Huw Edwards?

In fact why is that so different to the thought of UKIP’s William Henwood who said if Lenny Henry wanted to be among Black people then he should go and live in a black country….the BBC has just altered that slightly…instead of shipping Asians who would prefer to be Asian out to Pakistan or India they bring Pakistan and India here.

The ‘Asian Network’…..a bit of ‘Apartheid’ brought to Britain by the BBC….its motto…..’You’re not really like us’.


Whilst people like Giles Fraser are seen as acceptable the BBC would never recruit anyone who had views in any way similar to Henwood’s….despite their own segregationist policies in regard to Asians….scoff at the European Tyranny, the climate orthodoxy, the benefits of uncontrolled immigration or the delights of Islam and you won’t find yourself with a parking space at BBC house or indeed granted a whole network dedicated to meeting the cultural and social needs of your personal ethnic, philosophical and political background.

The BBC reflecting “the diversity of life in the UK today”?   Just reflecting what they see in the mirror still.

Gender and ethnicity are easy to ‘deal with’….you can just wander around the office with a clipboard and do a count…Black, Asian, gay, female, male, Cornish…dealing with the lack of political balance is clearly beyond the abilities of the BBC…or rather not something that registers as a concern that needs to be dealt with…..they pay lip service to it but the reality is that the BBC is predominantly leftwing in its leanings….and intends to stay that way.


The BBC Trust wants to chat to you about all of this:


Live webcast on 29th April: Richard Ayre and James Harding discuss findings of News & Current Affairs service review

On Tuesday 29th April the Trust will publish the conclusions of its service review of BBC News and Current Affairs.

To mark publication, BBC Trustee Richard Ayre and Director of BBC News James Harding will discuss the review’s findings and the actions the BBC will be taking in response, as part of the BBC’s News Festival. The event will be broadcast live via the Trust’s website from 1.30pm – 2.15pm.