Sunday, 20 May 2018

Open Thread

New(ish) open thread.

If you were wondering, the painting is by Francisco de Zurbarán (1598-1664) and is called Still Life with Four Vessels. Its relevance to this blog's main subject hardly needs spelling out.


  1. Was catching up with last week's Spectator. There was a remarkable piece by Matthew Parris in which he confesses that insanity has pierced his interior life and he has become a "Remainiac", one who actually finds it difficult to sleep at night, being so worked up about Brexit. I kid you not, this is what he writes.

    The remarkable thing is I pointed out some weeks ago that Parris and some other leadings opponents of Brexit were indeed in the grip of that sort of mania. So glad he at least concurs!

    Of course one of the aspects of this mental affliction is they claim the other side are also in its grip. But nothing could be further from the truth. There were absolutely no signs that any Brexiteer was going to campaign to overturn the result of the EU Referendum had it gone Remain's way (Farage's comments on continuing the fight, were simply that - obviously many people who opposed the UK's membership of the EU would continue to work to extract us after the Referendum result had been implemented, were it to go Leave's way). There was no suggestion any would seek legal recourse through the courts to block the decision, or use the House of Lords to attempt to block it, or raise resolutions in Parliament to block it or appeal to other countries to block it or organise street demos against a pro-Leave Referendum result.

    And the idea that the likes of Nigel Lawson, Boris Johnson, Michael Gove are kept awake at night gnawing at the sheets because of the opposition to Brexit is fanciful.

    Nope, the extreme manic response to the Referendum result is purely a Remainiac affair. If psychologists and psychiatrists were themselves nearly all Remainiacs no doubt they would be eager to study the phenomenon.

    1. MB, I recommend going to Guido & searching for: 'Yasmin Alibhai-Brown: Brexit driving me to the edge of madness.' From Guido's clip from the Daily Politics, one could be forgiven for thinking that the good lady has fallen over said edge. Note the rising hysteria in her voice - a cross between an electronic whine and a wail. What have these people got against democracy?

  2. I was listening to Steve Wright this afternoon in my car.
    He was interviewing Angela Griffin, an actress who was promoting a play where Trump gets killed for saying he wanted to put up a wall.

    A play for those with TDS by the sound of it and offensive too but I’m sure it will get the full red carpet treatment by the BBC.

    Anyway Angela Griffin was saying what a challenging role she had in the play and her character was trying to really understand the mindset those who voted for Trump rather than just dismiss them all as idiots, which they weren’t.

    She then reiterated that the play was making an important point to understand why people voted for Trump and Farage so that it could never happen again.

    So there we have it. A little known actress gets a prime time slot to promote her play and left wing political views to 7m listeners. With all those undesirables who voted for Trump and Farage cast as villains of the piece.

    Of course, her views are acceptable and mainstream on the BBC but can you imagine the reverse being broadcast?

    No I can’t either - and that’s bias at work.

  3. For Radio I’ve got a new job 30 minute commute at most and I only listen to radio 2 now, I can’t handle 4 anymore so my exposure to the bias is limited.

    For TV our aerial broke last year and we only watch Netflix etc rarely BBC so my exposure to the bias is limited.

    I heartily recommend the above, cut it out your life and get your news from the interweb. Obviously multiple different sites of all political spectrums and Male up your own mind.

    I still have to pay the license fee though which is ridiculous!

  4. Radio 4 is like some PC wet dream lol! - even down to the Archers village cricket team being saved by superior women players. It's pretty much 24/7 anti-Brexit, pro-EU, pro state spending, Uberfeminist, pro migration tendentiousness.

    I heard a trailer for a new Clare Balding's "Ramblings" (Yawnathon) - she's gonna go walking with a group of refugees in Suffolk or there's a surprise.

    I occasionally listen to Radio 3 on the principle that there are just fewer opportunities for PC presentation, especially when the music is 18th century opera.

    I can also recommend the rap music channels on satellite TV as well if you want to hear some robust pre-PC assertions of gender differentation, the importance of belonging to your home area, and the need to defend yourself from those who would harm you. :)

    1. I presume you miss 'Essential Classics' when the sort of person that probably goes to BBC presenters' dinner parties gets to push 'the agenda'.

      And then there are all those International Women's Day, Women's Week, Women's year etc. when all those unheard, (for a reason?) women composers get and outing, (like just now as I type!).

    2. We'll be seeing much more when gender equality in sports becomes top of the pile of subjects to be forced down our throats. Tennis has been more or less dealt with, but now with so much BBC reporting of women's cricket, rugby and football (some might say that's because the BBC are unwilling to compete for broadcasting rights on the men's sports), the next step will be to push for equality in pay.

  5. Now that we're being bombarded by the media with news of this Royal Wedding farce. Did anyone notice that there wasn't a single mention about it on last night's BBC1 Question Time.
    I've often felt the the weekly visiting audience are sometimes fed the show's questions.
    But last night they were clearly told not to bring the subject up as this whole event is going pear shaped.

    John... N.London.

    1. Think you're right about questions being spoonfed, but I'm not at all convinced that the Beeb is trying to prevent the wedding from going pear-shaped - surely that would suit their left-wing agenda - unless, of course Ms Markle ticks a diversity box & so is, for the time being, considered 'a good thing'.

  6. I notice from BBC News that Russian ex-spy Sergei Skripal has been discharged from hospital today.

    It's not bias I spot, but a lack of investigation and questioning by the BBC other MSM on this farcical story.
    The worlds most deadly nerve agent and they both recover (as did the PC). Russian scientists in the early days saying if they have come into contact then they are gone, finished.

    May and Johnson being very direct and critical of Russia with their choice of language and no challenges from the BBC.

    Some of the images and actions have been strange to say the least.

    Police were covered with the full protective outfits and 10 yards away people are watching in normal clothes. The cemetery scene with flowers passed to non protected hands. The random hazmat suits and watching passers by. The sawing off of the park bench after three weeks. The burning of the restaurant table on about day 2.

    A tiny amount can kill but the official government advice a month later to Salisbury residents was to wash your clothes on a hot wash.

    Something is not right yet nothing much from the BBC & MSM who would normally be full of questions e.g. Windrush & Grenfell.

  7. Joe Lynam reporting opinion as fact on BBC News tonight.

    When reporting on US/China tariffs he said it was extraordinary that the US needs to coerce major trading partners into buying their goods.

    This personal opinion masquerading as reporting is happening more and more by BBC reporters and correspondents. And when it happens, it always supports their worldview.

    1. Transcript time (with personal opinion posted in block capitals)!

      MISHAL HUSAIN: The United States and China have put a potential trade war on hold, with officials agreeing to suspend plans to impose tariffs on each others goods. President Trump had said in March that he wanted to tax Chinese steel and aluminium. Beijing had threatened to retaliate. Well our Business Correspondent Joe Lynam is here. How is this averted Joe?

      JOE LYNAM: Well, It is a case of two economic superpowers stepping back from the brink. Donald Trump may have said trade wars are easy to win BUT THE REALITY IS THAT THEY'RE NOT. America had wanted to impose a 25% tariff on Chinese steel - and all steel around the world - and the Chinese would have retaliated in some form and that would have spiralled out of control. The reason it didn't is because a delegation from China went to Washington last week and they've agreed today to buy a whole lot more American produce - agricultural produce, be that pork, orange juice, or whatever, and oil and gas products from the US - without any firm commitments though. It does appear to have done the job. The Americans have pulled back from the brink. They've put these sanctions on hold with the threat that they'll reimpose them if China doesn't meet its end to the bargain. I THINK IT'S EXTRAORDINARY THAT AMERICA WOULD FEEL IT NEEDS TO COERCE AND FORCE MAJOR TRADING PARTNERS INTO BUYING ITS GOODS, but...

      ...[Craig - classic example of a BBC reporter expressing an opinion and then deciding to say it's something 'a lot of people say']...

      ...that's what this looks like for a lot of people. As for us here in Britain and in Europe, there are still potential trade tariffs that could be applied to steel products from Britain. If President Trump goes ahead with it on June 1st Europe has said it will retaliate and then a trade war could be back on.

      MISHAL HUSAIN: Joe Lynam, thank you.

    2. Doing their best to obfuscate: China has been dumping steel on US market and, once again, Trump's approach has been vindicated - he's won & very quickly too! He's not going to win any 'Personality of the year' contests, but it has to be admitted he's a shrewd operator. Perhaps he could give Theresa May some advice on negotiating!

  8. The BBC like creating news about their own presenters or 'stars', hardly a day goes by without a main story involving one of them.

    Pride of place on the BBC website today is a story about one of the BBCs ex Radio 1 Presenters, Jameela Jamil.

    in the article it says, the 32-year-old said she moved to Los Angeles without a job or even a plan.
    "I was literally starting again and I was actively discouraged by everyone in England," she told BBC Radio 5 live's Anna Foster.
    "Everyone said I was being mad, throwing away an eight-year career, and that I was too old - I was only 29 - too ethnic, and too fat to come over to Los Angeles."

    So whats the headline they created? Yes, it had to be...

    Jameela Jamil was told she was 'too ethnic' to make it in the US.

    Obfuscation and cherry picking of the highest order and a bit disingenuous if you read the full article.

    1. What? The LA music scene is absolutely dominated by "ethnics". In any case ethnic is a racist term since we are pretty much all "ethnic".

  9. Manna from heaven today for the BBC from Mark Carney.

    Earlier this morning he said the economy is 2% lower than it would have been if we had voted to remain in the EU. He also said household income was £900pa lower because of the referendum result.

    Needless to say the BBC are all over this on their news reports.

    1. I suppose being Canadian he has no loyalty to this country, only to the Globalist Creed. But even if you believed that economic outcome to be true you wouldn't say it as Governor of the Bank of England, knowing what tremendous economic damage that statement will do to the UK. The only reasonable conclusion is that Carney wants to harm the UK economy.

      I might add that Carney would never tell you the truth about the real effects of mass immigration on this country's economy, for example the huge increase in housing and welfare costs, or the dead weight on our productivity level.

      Has Carney pointed out that one of the effects of the Brexit vote has been to puncture the housing market, so that housing is now cheaper in many regions. If that means you don't have borrowing another £100,000 that will save you a lot more than £900 pa.

      My contempt for the BBC is marginally exceeded by my contempt for Carney and my contempt for the fact that May let's him carry on, talking down the economy.

    2. Agreed MB, Carney is a left wing political agitator when he should be impartial, the BoE like most UK institutions are happy to break impartiality on Brexit.

      Today, the BBC have tried to bury the item below, if it was the other way around it would be lead item, no doubt.

      Government finances have continued to improve, potentially giving more scope for the Chancellor, Philip Hammond, to raise spending in the Budget.
      The government borrowed £7.8bn in April - the lowest figure for April since 2008, according to official figures.
      The Office for National Statistics (ONS) also revised the borrowing figure for last year to £40.5bn, down from its previous estimate of £42.6bn.
      The deficit was 2% of GDP last year, the lowest rate since 2002.

  10. Absolutely contemptible line of attack by the BBC on Mogg...

    Would they ever question Warsi or Javid about their religious beliefs in this aggressive way? Of course not.

    Coburn advancing the BBC ideological line: the BBC policy is to turn the Tories sea green and pink. They made a lot of progress with Cameron, but they really want someone like Ruth Davidson (what has she ever actually done? what original idea has she ever had? do we really think she's as saintly as depicted by the BBC?) to further the social revolution that will turn the Tories into the Lib Dems Mark II.

  11. Shame we don't hear more of this sort of debate on our MSM, and in particular the BBC - which really ought to be encouraging such debate.

    Interesting Stephen Fry contribution:

    1. Despite being a BBC presenter he is quite happy to identify his politics - he is a man of the left. Shame other BBC presenters aren't more honest.

    2. But Fry has a problem with political correctness. someone who values academia, I think he can probably see what it's doing to free debate within universities and how it is now poisoning politics.

    I've only dipped into.

    1. I watched the beginning of this over the weekend. Whilst Peterson was content to discuss the subject of the debate Dyson and Goldberg went straight into attacking Peterson personally. Familiar story? At times Dyson’s verbosity was obscuring whatever point he was actually making. I understand it all became rather heated.

      But yes, it would be good to have this kind of debate on the MSM. Alas programs like Question Time are no longer forums for serious debate but just platforms for easy soundbites and political electioneering. I fear also that the collective ego of the BBC is so inflated that it would never allow any outside voice to have this amount of time and space. I imagine this is why people are now turning to Youtube as an alternative .

    2. Yes, Question Time long ago stopped being a serious debate programme and become an exercise in competitive virtue signalling, tendentious and biased inquistions from the chair, and organised mobbery.

      I really think that the BBC has deliberately killed off coherent debate programmes. It's the last thing they want. If they allow such programmes, people like Stephen Fry will raise questions about the ideology of political correctness. If they don't allow such programmes, the questions won't get asked, and the BBC prefers it that way.

  12. I don't hold out much hope that we will ever see this piece of news reported by the BBC. It is ironic that he regularly appears on the BBC as a champion for 'love not hate'?

    Sir Alan Parker also revealed that Brendan Cox, the widower of murdered MP Jo Cox, would have been suspended by the charity if he had not resigned.
    Mr Cox admitted earlier this year that he made 'mistakes' and behaved in a way that caused some women hurt and offence when he was working at the charity.
    Sir Alan said: 'Of course Mr Cox at the time of his resignation, was still fully denying everything, and in his resignation letter was saying very clearly he felt this was unfair, he would not get proper justice, he was very very robust on this, and literally just left.
    'But from the moment we received the report on Brendan Cox - he was away at the time - we then moved to suspend him. He never returned to the building once during that process.'

  13. (Mistakenly put this on another thread, but meant it to go here)...

    And here's the BBC's great Anthony Zurcher on Twitter:


    The great thing is this construction can be used for pretty much any allegation. Is the government controlled by the Illuminati? Did the US fake the moon landing? Is Soylent Green made of people? "I think it would be very troubling to millions of Americans if that took place."


    Zurcher is quoting Pence on reports of FBI surveillance of the Trump campaign. His intent is clearly to rubbish Pence's comment.

    However, the evidence of surveillance of the Trump campaign by moles in the Trump campaign working for the FBI or other agencies has been growing by the day and has been taken seriously by that august publication much beloved by the BBC, the New York Times.

    Is Zurcher really impartial and non-partisan as required by the BBC's formal rules? Or is he really a fake news merchant just spinning Democrat talking points

    1. The BBC will have no problem whatsoever with those tweets. Zurcher conforms to the BBC worldview. His tweets are fine so long as he attack the things the BBC attacks and supports the things the BBC support.

  14. Kirsty Wark Fake News alert:

    Tonight on Newsnight she claimed people in the South voted Remain. In fact the South East and South West regions voted Leave. Reality Check: The majority of the three southern regions voted Leave.

    No doubt Ms Wark will be issuing a formal apology in due course, saying sorry for this typically lazy bit of fake news reporting by the BBC, which actually reflects their ideological narrative.