Sunday, 1 January 2017

Carry On Being Biased Again

First footing - James Naughtie arrives in the Radio 4 studio

The next Radio 4 current affairs staple, The World This Weekend, was also dominated by a panel discussion. 

Under discussion were globalisation, Trump and Brexit. 

Again, the panel consisted of three expert guests (Haroon Moghul, Brian Klaas and Ngaire Woods) whose articles, videos, Facebook entries and Twitter feeds reveal them all to be strongly anti-Brexit and strongly anti-Trump...

...knowing which (in advance, thanks to Google) helped me make sense of just where their contributions were 'coming from' today. (The programme itself gave its listeners no such help).

The worried 'liberal elite' was speaking to us through the BBC. Again. 

No voices from what they called the "populist Right" were present. No Trump fans, no Brexit supporters. Again. 

The BBC's first-footing current affairs programmes are offering us nothing but tall, dark, handsome strangers today. No short, fair, plain (or ugly) types are being let in. 

The BBC should be providing us with a range of voices for such discussions. The wider the range of voices the better. Just because Haroon is even less optimistic than Brian and Ngaire, with whom he largely agrees, isn't really that much of a range.

Lord Reith, posing as Il Duce

P.S. Shaun Ley's segue to the next item was seamless:
As Professor Woods pointed out, globalisation stalled in the 1930s after the effects of the Wall Street Crash spread like an electric shock across the world's economy. Strongmen leaders emerged in response, offering simplistic solutions and scapegoats to desperate people.
He mentioned the Daily Mail's support for Hitler straight after.

The British media's attitude towards Hitler were then discussed (from the Guardian to the Express), with especial focus on the Daily Mail's dodgy behaviour.

Puzzlingly, the BBC's Lord Reith's admiration for Hitler and Mussolini wasn't mentioned, even once. I'd have thought that Shaun might have just mentioned that, even if just in passing.

[See comments here too. We all heard it the same way!]

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