Thursday, 14 April 2016

Conspiracy theories

So was the BBC itself pushing a "conspiracy theory" (about Mr Whittingdale and the press) as part of an actual conspiracy of its own (to bring down its 'enemy', Mr Whittingdale)?

Quite a few people are claiming (or implying) as much - from the Spectator to Stephen Glover, from Biased BBC to Neil Wallis on Today

It was faintly comical that Emily Maitlis and John Sweeney (on Tuesday night) said - for 'balance' - that critics of Hacked Off and others might say that Hacked Off & Co. have an 'agenda', a 'grievance'.

The Newsnight pair didn't entertain the possibility that they ('Newsnight') might have been pushing "a conspiracy theory" for some reason too. 

According to David Aaronovitch in The Timessuch 'conspiratorial' thinking certainly was in the minds of some at the BBC:
It has been put to me by someone in the BBC that the simple fact of Mr Whittingdale knowing that there might be a story about him that someone might have wanted to publish was sufficient reason for him to be recused from any responsibility for the press. I think this is mad. Every politician (and public figure) has a story or picture from the past that they would prefer not to see printed. In any case the reverse logic would apply: since Mr Whittingdale’s Damoclean sword has now dropped he must currently be the best person to do that job.
This is where obsessiveness gets you: ridiculous conspiracy theories
My own pet 'conspiracy theory' is that Newsnight editor Ian Katz simply wanted another 'scoop' - a 'scoop' at any price, as it were - and spotted his chance. (He seems to be obsessed with Newsnight 'scoops' at the moment, perhaps because of his programme's dire ratings). And perhaps, if it harmed John Whittingdale, so much the better.

And the BBC's senior management gave him the go-ahead because they also want Newsnight's rating to go up and didn't want to get caught suppressing another Newsnight 'scoop' (given past humiliations) - and, well, if it harmed John Whittingdale, so much the better, perhaps.

And then the rest of the BBC piled in - as the rest of the BBC always piles in on such occasions. And, being John Whittingdale, maybe they piled in with even more relish than usual. Perhaps.


1 comment:

  1. Maybe Ian Katz can get the girls of Newsnight to do a cabaret version a la Mel Brooks' 'The Producers' of 'Springtime for Max Mosely', with John Whittingdale as Chief Whip?

    Still can't figure out them shafting the bloke who gave them all they could wish for.

    Maybe it's a Scorpion thing?