Sunday, 10 July 2016


Like Sue, I binged on politics this morning. It matters, it's fascinating, and it was still raining.

My ears, as ever, were listening out for bias and Paddy O'Connell's Broadcasting House decided to mock Andrea Leadsom for overusing the word 'clear'.

They had a dizzying montage of her saying 'clear' in their introduction and the 'feature proper' mocked her repeated use of 'clear' to the accompaniment of the kind of music I associate with late '50s/early '60s adverts showing women trying out soap powders.

Does she use 'clear' more than other politicians? I'm not at all clear about that. After all, the famous Jeremy Corbyn said 'clear' twice in his Marr interview today and the sainted Theresa May used the dread word three times in her last Marr interview.

Was this an example of some clever biased BBC type (who doesn't like her) spotting her using a word on a few occasions, finding it funny and then wangling it onto a receptive BH?

Still (much to at least one of our readers' disgust), I have kept crediting Paddy for raising his game, impartiality-wise, in recent years (after his appallingly biased early years), and I'll give him a bit more credit here too - if not for the above!

The programme had been repeatedly pushing both the 'politics is too much for us at the moment' and the 'everyone's feeling down' memes this morning, and Paddy pushed them again during the paper review (and his reviewers followed suit).

Then (like in an old cartoon) a light bulb very clearly switched on inside his head and Paddy began saying that he was pushing this because even some of those who voted Leave were now feeling anxiety because of uncertainty over when Article 50 would be activated. He then pledged to find and put on air people (Leave types presumably) who are still feeling happy. I hope he does.

Meanwhile, over on BBC One...

The Andrew Marr programme's paper review sandwiched poor Tim Loughton MP between former Labour advisor Ayesha Hazarika and CNN's highly-opinionated (and rude) chief international correspondent Christiane Amanpour. 

Mr Loughton is, as you'll doubtless already know, leading Andrea Leadsom's campaign. Ayesha and Christiane aren't fans of Mrs. Leadsom. I bet you can guess what happened? (Poor Tim.)

The picture the programme's website uses to illustrate the programme will give you a flavour of it:

Later came (i) David Davis (on (a) to call for Tony Blair's head and (b) to back Theresa May), (ii) leading Leave/UKIP supporter Arron Banks (backing Mrs. Leadsom) and, finally, (iii) the famous Jeremy Corbyn (backing himself).

On how Andrew Marr dealt with David Davis over Theresa v Andrea, I'll just quote the questions he asked:
Now, you clashed with Theresa May a bit in the old days over civil liberties and other things.

You’re now backing her campaign. We’ve talked a lot about Andrea Leadsom, she’s a fresh face and so forth. Do you think that she is fit to be a British prime minister?

So people talk about the glass cliff, not the glass ceiling. But you take a women into a really difficult position and there’s a cliff and you push her off it. 
And you think she’s just a bit lacking in experience?
I was expecting fireworks with Arron Banks but they never came. Both sides treated each other with cautious respect. Andrew, inevitably, raised the issue of the 'worst poster ever', but he didn't make anywhere near as much of it as, I suspect, Evan Davis or James O'Brien would have done:
Andrew Marr: I guess, if there was one moment or poster which crystallised people’s worries about the Brexit side of the argument it was that Breaking Point poster with the migrants leading up, and Nigel Farage. Do you regret that in any way?
Arron Banks: I wasn’t really involved in that. That was a UKIP matter.
Andrew Marr: Did you think it was a mistake?
Arron Banks: I didn’t think it was a mistake. I think that in terms of the referendum it was very much the economy versus immigration, and I think it put immigration right at the forefront of people’s thoughts. I thought it was not a mistake at all.
As for Jeremy Corbyn, well, I don't think it was a 'toughie' (to put it mildly) but JC took exception to AM's line of questioning from the word go:
Andrew Marr: Now all this started with reaction to the Brexit vote, so a very, very straight forward question if I may to start with. Which way did you vote in that referendum yourself?
Jeremy Corbyn: Remain. I’m surprised you even ask the question.
Andrew Marr: Well I asked it because quite a lot of people around you suggested that you had never been a supporter.
Jeremy Corbyn: Nobody ever suggested I was going to do anything other than vote Remain, and I think you’re very well aware of that.
Despite that, the Bearded One generally seemed very relaxed, chipper even, throughout.  

And an even-more-heavily-bearded individual appeared at the end - the lead singer of Miracle Legion, a group I'd never heard of before (and who sound agreeably REM-like to me): 


  1. Would be interesting to do a word repetition count on BBC. 24th June "shock" would have been repeated a lot. 25th June "downturn" and "fall" would have been used a lot. 26th June "regret" would have come into play.

  2. Good times for the politicos eh?
    Can see the advantage of not being bound to a party anyway-Banks was unable to be shackled to anything political, because he`s not...he just funds his patriotic priorities, and couldn`t be touched by Marr.
    Corbyn is in a similar position-not attached to a party able to busk it.
    Acquited himself well-legally, morally he`s untouchable-and has that mandate less than a year old. So he`s correct-and the lefty BBC and their MPs can only rage at their impotence.
    Tragedy if you`re a Lefty-comedy gold if you hate them as I do!

    1. Quite right, Chris.
      Andrew Neil pushed Angela 'the Edwards' Eagle on the moral and legal point too on The Sunday Politcs. It's perfectly obvious that JC has the moral right to be in any leadership contest. For him not to be in it would be soooo unfair. And the legal case looks watertight to me too - despite Lord Kinnock's windbaggery.
      The Eagle didn't soar at all today. She was more of a dodo.

  3. Amanpour is only there to capitalize on her silly spat with Dan Hannan. She lost her rag, and needed to redeem herself. Not that the horrible woman (who once wondered during a speech at some press gathering "how did we allow" GW Bush to become the Republican nominee) is capable of it, but Marr and his team will think she was brilliant anyway.

  4. Falling pound brought up for no apparent reason in a sports report? Check

    Wimbledon 2016: 'Serena Williams should be savoured'