Sunday, 18 December 2016

"I think you're fooling yourself"

The final Newsnight of 2016 featured part of an interview with The New Yorker's liberal, anti-Trump editor David Remnick and a transcript of the full interview has also been published on the BBC News website. The passage that stood out for me was this one (not broadcast on Newsnight) where Mr. Remnick and Newsnight editor Ian Katz discussed impartiality, and the former had a little dig at the BBC's view of itself:
Ian Katz: But is there a problem that if you hoist your flag - as you did effectively on the night of the election - that actually when you do this really important accountability reporting you're talking about and you call the government out on lies and you deliver this crucially important fact-based reporting, that actually you are dismissible by the other half of America, because you've shown your colours. 
David Remnick: My colours were never concealed. I don't believe in that business - this old 1950s notion of the New York Times, much less the New Yorker - that it was objective, somehow like a science experiment. That scientific method was involved in journalism, I think is a fantasy... What I think is achievable is checking facts. What I think is possible is to have fair argument. What I don't think is possible is to have some fake objectivity - in which on the one side we have 99% of the scientists say... You know on the one hand on the other hand… That's bad journalism. It does the world no good. 
Ian Katz: But you've got a problem in this country which is that there is no place, there is no media organisation, platform, which even a plurality of the country can agree to trust. 
David Remnick: If you think that French state television or the BBC in England is somehow a common narrative of the country, I think you're fooling yourself. I bet you there are a lot of people, the people in the north of England, who think the BBC is a bunch of lefties.


  1. I strongly object to the idea that the New Yorker or the New York Times lead on objective fact-checked news. That's the sort of Fake News that Newsnight puts about!

    They are probably among the most biased, fact-averse outlets on the planet.

    It's the same with the BBC, trying to persuade a disbelieving public that 25 year old males are 16 year old children just because they claim to be refugees. What is that if not Fake News and lying of the first order?

    1. I strongly object to David Renwick! Does he seriously believe it is only people in the North of England who 'believe the BBC is a bunch of lefties'?

  2. David remnick is perfectly entitled to air his views on whichever broadcast media in the U.S. employs him.The U.S.A. does not have a publicly funded (poll tax type arrangement such as the licence fee) broadcaster like the BBC. If you are privately or commercially funded organistaion thenyou are then you are entitled to express political views but not when you are publicly funded. No-one should be expected to fund an organisation expressing politcal view which are the opposite of their own.

  3. OMFG. "I bet a bunch of stupid hicks in flyover country think you're an elitist."

    I'd say this was Poe's Law in effect, but it's apparently the real thing.

  4. The BBC talk to the New York Times.
    But not about how they called Brexit and Trump so wrong-the biggest events in the histories of the UK and USA in our lifetimes.
    Just bunker chat reinforcing their own idiocies and prejudices-and neither in danger of getting laughed at or sacked, Yet we`re STILL forced to pay for their therapy and the bunk up and trash those of us lacking their sensibilities and care for the future.
    Time to scuttle Newsnight-absolutely NO point to it-just Last of the Summer Whine for the Guardian lotus eaters and Beeboid thickies.