“We don’t take sides!” is a cry repeatedly heard from certain biased organisations that operate under banners of impartiality.
On the other hand, the foreign secretary isn’t constrained by such a banner. Nevertheless William Hague says the government isn’t taking sides on the intricacies of Egyptian politics.
“We do take sides,” he admitted moments later, “on behalf of democracy!“
Democracy must always be entirely for the good, it seems, even if the electorate have been brainwashed from birth into voting for distinctly undemocratic governments, as in the case of ‘democratically elected’ Hamas. Did I catch Hague praising the smooth-running and successful outcome of the elections in Tunisia? By Jove I think I did.
After strongly advocating motherhood and apple pie in Egypt and free and fair elections, preferably overseen by….. someone or other, Hague declaims:
“ We’ve seen successful elections in Tunisia, a new government is now being formed in Libya, important reforms are taking place in Morocco and Jordan, and so we should remain on the optimistic side of what’s been happening in the Arab Spring, albeit that there are many conflicts and difficulties along the way.”
“There’s a little test for Libya coming up, isn’t there?” asks Humph alluding to ‘unSaif’ Gaddafi jnr.
“Blah blah blah, international standards.” says Hague.
“Syria? “ asks Humph.
“Ambassador delegate,” mumbles Hague. “pressure!” “Arab League!” “Sanctions!” he drones.
Humph is meek and mild today. “What about Iran?” he ventures.
“Waffle, waffle, waffle” goes Hague.
We don’t take sides, even in the (hidden) face of such female candidates as Muna Salah, whose manifesto is “Women Are Deficient in Intelligence and Religion, and It Is Not Permissible for Them to Be in Authority” Does Call me Dave know?
Is this ‘sitting on the fence’ malarkey official BBC policy now that florid featured Lord Patten is in charge? Has Humph been told to calm down dear? Only I’ve been looking at a report about Patten’s recent speech in which he is quoted as saying:
”The BBC is unable to conduct investigations into some of the most important stories of the day – including phone hacking – if they could be construed as having a political bias,”
Poor old them. Hampered by those pesky impartiality obligations.
“As a publicly funded broadcaster whose output is so directly intrusive, there are some areas where we ought to be particularly careful in our journalism or even decline to follow where newspapers or online journalism may properly lead,” Lord Patten said.
Penetrating observation that. Their output certainly is “so directly intrusive,” and that’s why so many people are hoodwinked and influenced by its barely hidden agenda.
“Despite the BBC’s tradition of investigative journalism, it could not have paid for the information on MPs’ expenses as the Daily Telegraph did, nor pursued the hacking story at News International as remorselessly as the Guardian campaign did.”
However, as was reported the other day, information ‘the BBC couldn’t be seen to pay for’ can be obtained indirectly, through third parties such as independent programme makers who can conveniently fall on their swords when outed.
Then comes the familiar old chestnut:
“Patten also used his speech to take a side-swipe at politicians who criticise the BBC over alleged breaches of its impartiality. “We have been attacked from both the left and the right,” he said, pointing out that the frequency with which the broadcaster is accused of political bias justifies its choice to not engage in some vital journalism.”
If only the BBC really did choose not to just engage in some vital journalism, and engaged, instead in all vital journalism, not just the kind that fits in with their bias.
Nick Cohen has: “Over at the Leveson inquiry a smug Lord Patten – there is no other kind — said the BBC could not possibly be biased because left wingers attack it on some occasions and right wingers attack it on others.“
By continually using this excuse they’re comparing apples with pears to try and justify the wrong-headed, deeply flawed, smug, superficial conclusion that they invariably bandy about in order to give short shrift to all their critics.
Giving Cohen the benefit of the doubt, I’ll assume it’s just ‘for the sake of argument’ that Cohen is also giving Patten the benefit of the doubt, by continuing oddly, thus:
“The BBC holds the ring, he implied. Uncontaminated by the ideologies of extremists, and possessing indeed no bias or ideology of its own, it speaks for moderation and reason.”
‘Taking the centre ground’, Cohen continues, ‘offers no protection against deranged ideas’ , citing the current vindication of former critics of the euro, once perceived as “crazies”, whereas in the light of the crisis in the eurozone, ‘advocates of moderation and reason’ (in this case the BBC) are revealed as the dangerous utopians.
Personally I can’t see the BBC or Lord Patten as centrists or moderate purveyors of conventional wisdom, but I know what Cohen is getting at. There are, however some perceptive comments below the line.
I would like to know why no-one on the BBC seems to question the government on their apparent complacency over the rise of Islamist parties in the aftermath of the Arab Spring. Is that part of the constraints imposed by the impartiality obligation? Or is is part of the constraints imposed by their politically correct, pro Islam, left-leaning consensus, which runs right through the organisation from top to bottom like a stick of rock?
As the BBC’s output is so directly intrusive, is it any wonder that the left is the new centre, and the BBC can claim to be moderate and reasonable?