The Labour Defence Team

The Labour Defence Team Newsnight

Michael Crick and Newsnight did a smear job on Friday on the Government’s abuse of power in arresting Damian Green, in a programme flagged up by John Reith spins in his grave in the comments.

Crick begins his report (20 mins into the BBC broadcast ) by talking of the “mystery” of Damian Green’s leaks, and how this may run and run. Of course, the question (not mystery, as motives are not lacking) of why he was arrested and held for questioning for 9 hours at all is one which needs to be fully and swiftly explained, but this angle the BBC ignores. They wish to imply that the Government’s actions are above suspicion.

At the beginning of the item we are treated to a sinister close up of Green’s eyes- the suggestion being that there must be some sinister underlying issue. We were given a short clip of David Cameron’s response to the arrest, and a short clip of Clegg doing the civil liberties bit, and then we were fully into the Nu-Lab love in. Jacqui Smith worded herself carefully in claiming that the arrest was not authorised by ministers (how about “suggested”, with “suggested” guarantees, Jacqui?). The fact is that the Government is answerable for the actions of the police, and in this case more so than usually, but this angle too was lost. Martin Salter (Lab) backed up the action, making great play of the wording of the accusations against Green of not just receiving but “actively conspiring” to get the leak. This follows Crick’s own use of the word “procuring”. But what does this mean? These locutions are simply smears- leaking is active, and information must be gained. Does it mean the information was paid for? Are they talking of bribery (bribing a public official)? If so, they had better say so. The BBC not only lets a Labour politician smear Green, it participates in advancing that smear.

Then Crick segued into a historical perspective. It seems promising when a young Gordon Brown is shown in archived footage defending his own mole in the then-Conservative Government. Crick though immediately cuts to another Nu-Labour figure, Geoffrey Robinson. Robinson refers to Winston Churchill getting (or procuring?) leaks from Chamberlain’s hapless administration! Genius. Brown and Winston in the same breath- it’s a running BBC joke played on the public.

All the time that they build this picture of noble leaking- to Brown and Churchill- however, they are carefully implying that there is more to it in the case of Green. Crick’s final comment seals it:
“last night it looked like it [the Green arrest] could badly embarrass the Government, but tonight it is less clear, with some Labour sources saying the Home Office leaks didn’t just go to Damian Green, but to other Tories too”

How does it alter the situation that colleagues of Green were involved? In fact it would make it even more likely that the leaks were conventional if they were shared among Green’s colleagues (I don’t know what an unconventional leak might be, actually, but I am sure the BBC/Nu-Lab can come up with something). To the viewer however it suggests conspiracy, and dark forces at work (maybe the vast right wing conspiracy?) in the Green “mystery”. There’s something they’re not telling us, the BBC imply, warming to their theme. But surely it is for the Government (not the Conservatives, or Green) to answer for its arrest of a Member of Parliament? The BBC (and Crick) forgets its place, if it ever knew it.

It’s necessary to reiterate the real issue: Green was arrested over an apparent leak. This was a wholly exceptional response to a normal state of affairs in which many politicians have participated. The question is why this Government is so authoritarian, why it holds such antipathy towards its political opponents, and, for us, why the BBC is so wedded to the Government’s point of view. Smith, Salter, Robinson, and Crick himself are all Labour loyalists (Crick joined Labour aged 15 and intended for many years on a career as a Labour politician)- Crick wheeled out his comrades to peddle a Government perspective. The BBC is biased.



I note the BBC has been reporting the Great Leader declaring that it is important that “top earners” accept that they must pay more in income tax to “share the sacrifice.” As you know, the new top tax rate of 45% has been set to kick in at £150,000. As Private Eye points out, how fortunate then that those in Brown’s Politboro are only only raking in just over £141,000. You can be sure the BBC will never raise awkward little points like that with the Great Leader since we proles might get that idea that “sharing the sacrifice” does not extend to our political masters.

Brown’s Darling to the rescue

Here’s a thread to discuss BBC coverage of the Government’s pre-budget statement. Worth saying I think that it was Labour who introduced the pre-budget statement. This junket that nowadays occurs is in many ways midwife to valuable pro-Government spin. Thanks to Paul S for highlighting Fraser Nelson’s helpful list of Gordon’s spin – how many of these points will the BBC promote in its coverage? Look out for action contrasted with passivity (Gordon v Dave)- especially how Gordon is leading the world in action- and the recession that “came from America”, as well as plenty of party politicals harking back to the “heartless Tories” using false or misleading comparisons with previous recessions. Maybe you’d like to consider counterpunches, since the BBC probably won’t allow for any or properly cover any Conservative rebuttal…


I was reading Robert Peston announce that Alistair Darling may have to increase taxation in a few years time (to helpfully unspecified levels – cheers Robert). Peston adds that “the bulk of the tax cuts will be directed at those on lowest incomes, partly because they have the highest propensity to spend – for the good of the economy – and also for reasons of social justice.” OK, I accept that socialists like Labour believe in spurious nonsense such as “social justice” – it’s a handy euphemism for taking from the industrious and giving to the spongers – but since when does the BBC Business Editor have the right to use the vocabulary of the left in his own witterings?


I read with dismay this report on the BBC this evening concerning the failure of the government to deal with child abuse insofar as it merely parrots the established cliche that “lessons must be learnt” – except they haven’t. It gets worse by throwing in a dollop of class warfare alleging that poor “families”get poor services. Free school meals are even given an airing in this context although why they would stop some of the horrendous child abuse that has gone on under the noses of the many government agencies, rather like the peace of god, passes all understanding.

Quote of the Day:

“Look, we know we keep going on about the pants lefty tax-funded BBC, but we’ve just had enough. On a personal level we are seriously thinking about joing the telly tax rebels who refuse to pay (especially now we know the BBC has backed away from prosecuting). And on a national political level, there have to be consequences for the way they systematically undermine our future well-being by supporting Big Government Labour and bashing any Tory who even hints at believing in smaller government.”

Tyler from Burning our Money takes on the BBC’s coverage of George Osborne. Brilliantly. Hope you enjoy by reading on here.

Best placed?

The IMF is not optimistic: it’s cut its 2009 growth forecast for the global economy to 2.2% from the previous estimate of 3%, as this report from the Beeb just about manages to mention at the end. And, more relevantly, in this piece yesterday about the rate cut. But can you guess what nugget of information readers of the Beeb’s reports miss out on?

  • The Independent: Britain, in particular, is heading for trouble, the IMF said, predicting that the UK would suffer a more serious recession than any other developed country in the world during 2009.
  • The Times: Britain is now forecast to bear the brunt of the global slump, with its GDP plunging by 1.3 per cent in what would be the worst year for the UK since the economy shrank by 1.4 per cent in 1991.
  • The Telegraph: Britain’s economy will suffer and will see the steepest decline in G7 club of leading powers, shrinking 1.3pc as the crunch in the City of London leads to more job losses.

Regular readers won’t be surprised, though, because unfortunately this is becoming a bit of a habit at the Beeb.


So, let me see if I get this right. Shares are down again, the pound is at a five year low, the economy is heading into deep recession, unemployment is rising, the banks are not lending to each other — and yet Gordon Brown stands as an economic colossus. The great Brown Bail Out has been such a success that it is now the global template, apparently. Have I missed something? The BBC seems to have decided that it is possible to report all this economic gloom and doom but simultaneously detach it from the actions of a government that has been in power for more than decade. Can you just IMAGINE the headlines if this was all happening under a Conservative government? It is shocking to see inherent BBC bias provide a tatty pass to Prudence Brown when to any remotely neutral commentator, it is obvious that considerable culpability lies with the British government for the aware of the British economy. But we must not speak the obvious lest it offend the Great Leader – the man who also provides the cash for the BBC.


You have to hand it to the BBC, they sure know how to keep a story going. This morning sees the Osbourne non-story once more hoisted right up to the top of the news agenda. More tit for tat allegations and the BBC positively beaming with delight at the opportunity to smear the Tories. My critics here suggest that I am showing bias myself by attacking the BBC over this but they miss the point. I carry NO brief for Osbourne, I merely contrast the enthused tone which every BBC commentator has adopted over this story with the apparent disinterest with similar, and indeed much worse stories, emerged concerning those in the Labour junta. Cameron has a real and dangerous enemy in the form of the BBC and he needs to slay it. Simple as that.


Hi All, been away all day so just catching up now! Well, what about poor Georgie Porgie and that “conversation” with that Russian billionaire? A few points strike me.
1. Osbourne has been foolish in the extreme and has left himself – and his party -open to the smears of sleaze now being generously applied. For that he deserves no pity.
2. The BBC coverage has been exultant, almost hysterical. The Great Leader will be pleased.
3. The comparison between the fevered coverage afforded to this non-story contrasts with the subdued interest Al Beeb has shown in the serial corrupt dealings of Labour during the past decade. Anyone detect the hand of Mandelson in all this spinning? The Prince of Darkness is back but the BBC are throwing all the light on stupid little Osbourne. It is my view that the BBC will help Labour further narrow the opinion poll gap with the Conservatives by ignoring all decent suggestions that Cameron makes and then crucifying the Tories each time they commit an error. In this way, over the next two years, the way for four more years is being prepared and you and I, dear reader fund it.