Those Oh So Sensitive BBC Editors…..

It’s a tough job, trundling through BBC’s Editors Blog (did Goebbels have something similar at his Propaganda Ministry?) but two items are worthy of note.

Firstly a tear stained piece from Jeremy Hillman, editor of the BBC News business and economics unit. Jeremy was soooooo upset about George Osborne suggesting

the BBC’s approach to reporting the economy was relentlessly to focus on the bad news and the most gloomy statistics.

Hillman went on to produce a fistful of examples in an attempt to derail Osborne’s case, par for the course for any BBC suit when faced with accusations of bias. Then he sits back smugly thinking he has proved his point.

Actually Sarah Montague, despite Hillman’s spin about consciously downplaying Padoan, did indeed home in on the Padoan remarks so obviously she didn’t get the memo.

But we all know what Osborne was really getting at – not that they ignored positive items about the economy from third parties but the whole question of tone and emphasis which is why he used the word “relentlessly”. Ever since the Coalition took office the BBC’s overarching leitmotif has been CUTS rather than savings and one only has to watch any QT audience to see how successful that campaign has been.

However the good news is that Osborne’s comment touched a nerve. I guess that this issue has been raised at several North London dinner parties recently because Hillman and his pals realise that Charter Renewal is beginning to appear on the horizon and they cannot afford to upset a senior cabinet figure. Let’s hope that other government big cheeses start getting under sensitive BBC skins on a regular basis.

Then this abject apology re the Israeli Dog Stoning story from Nathalie Malinarich, world editor of the BBC News website

We failed to make the right checks. We should never have written the article and apologise for any offence caused.

Don’t worry, luv – we know why you failed to make the right checks…..while you were all busy filling in your expenses forms a breathless young graduate trainee rushed in and blurted out “those crazy religious bigoted Jews – as well as murdering helpless innocent Palestinians they are now going after helpless dogs…”

It fitted into the BBC’s anti Israeli narrative so perfectly you just couldn’t resist it…c’mon, Nathalie…is the Pope catholic? Those Jews aren’t they evil?


I tuned into Radio 5 live this morning around 6.20am and there was my old pal Nicky Campbell discussing whether William Hague or Ken Clarke would make a good successor to George Osborne. Has the Conservative Shadow Chancellor resigned overnight then? Nope – just some tactical undermining by the BBC. I then tuned into Radio 4 “Today” and there was James Naughtie discussing…whether William Hague of Ken Clarke would make a good successor to George Osborne. Why it’s deja-vu all over again! Mind you, to be fair, the BBC does suggest that whilst Ken Clarke would be popular in some quarters (I.E. Left wing media like itself) he carries echoes off those foul Thatcher years so sorry Ken, even though the Beeb might like you but they still won’t back you against their Labour pimps! After sitting back for MONTHS and watching the Pound plummet in value, the BBC now appears to believe that only Osborne carries the can for such financial devastation. Miraculously, McCavity is absolved from any culpability. Isn’t it swell to have a pro-government broadcasting corporation?

Get Osborne! (save Brown)

Looking at the many valuable comments in the latest open thread, it’s amazing how many ways the BBC have found to get at George Osborne in recent days. Speaking from what I have seen, it was noticeable how Marr stacked his progamme this morning with better-then-average lefties like Doug Alexander and Dr John Reid (plus Jarvis Cocker for leftist chic), to foreground a lengthy interview with Osborne which began with the line from Marr: “Do you think your job is on the line this weekend?”

Sums it all up really- not the reality, that is, but the BBC’s preferred narrative. Alexander- the Secretary of State for International Development- was there to demonstrate how (in accordance with the Brown narrative) the crisis is global, first, and we are the victims, second, while John Reid was there to show how he was burying the hatchet and uniting behind Brown and to blame Osborne for not doing the same.

In fact Osborne performed superbly on the Marr programme, so despite Marr’s repeated attempts to bring up the world crisis in defending Brown, Osborne swept past him. Yet is he actually winning this argument? Difficult to say, because the BBC has so relentlessly depicted him as on the defensive, the “George Osborne under attack” meme. This has been partly justified by bringing up a so-called convention regarding commenting on Sterling which, as the commenters at B-BBC have noted, is bogus. Meanwhile David in the comments points to this article as a related note, where Brown “regrets” Osborne’s comments highlighting the risk to the pound. Surely in fact Brown regrets that his economic incompetence is being exposed? It is no good his shaking his head over that unpublic-spirited Osborne- it is Brown who has been frantically trying to look competent in situations he has been instrumental in creating. So far he has done only the most obvious things, like bail out faltering banks, huddle with world leaders and pronounce “routemaps” as he poses for photos.

Earlier I saw an BBC online article where Gordon was shown in a decidedly odd picture (actually used above) at the G20 meeting towering over the Russian President, the Russian’s eyes upraised to meet Gordon’s (ie. where on earth was Gordon standing in relation to Medvedev? [Update: apparently Medvedev is unusually small. This does not explain the particular photo with Gordon facing the camera and Medvedev looking up to his eyes, or indeed the very choice of this photo- why these two men and only them? Generally I think the BBC’s photo-story-telling is abysmal]). In a more sensible world Brown wouldn’t even have been able to take the reins of the Government a year and a half ago because his incompetence over boom and bust would have already been made apparent by a sentient fourth estate (Labour’s favourite bank Northern Rock was melting away as they feted Gordon). Instead, those who have the temerity to question the inevitably compromised economic wisdom of Gordon Brown are put in the media dock by the BBC-led media.

Meanwhile, Guido points to yet another angleof BBC bias in favour of Brown.