Friday, 9 November 2018


While I'm waiting (anxiously, and with sweated brow) for Samira to reveal whether it's Roger Waters or David Coverdale or some other hard rock singer who's been complaining to the BBC about Arron Banks being 'platformed' on the Andrew Marr show, I'll just blurt out another thought (as you do on a Friday night, especially with some red wine at hand)...

I half-watched last night's Question Time today.

I rarely ever watch it these days, but the prospect of Diane Abbott and Dr. Jordan Peterson appearing on the same programme was too much for me not to at least half-scan it. 

Interestingly, this didn't turn out to be the pile-in-upon-the-extremist spectacular I expected (pace Nick Griffin). Far-left Diane was largely left alone.

As for Dr. Jordan Peterson, well, he got lots of applause - at least until the free speech question approached the Nazi-saluting pug video. He stood alone over that one, with a small fair bit of piling-in from his fellow panellists.

(I think he failed to explain his position properly on the specifics here but was sound on the general issue).

Here, for the record, was David Dimbleby's intro:
With me tonight: Kwasi Kwarteng, part of the Treasury team under Philip Hammond, a Brexiteer, he won't like me saying this, seen by some as a future leader of the Tory party; Diane Abbott, Shadow Home Secretary and MP for more than 30 years, one of Jeremy Corbyn's closest advisers; Mairead McGuinness, the first Vice President of the European Parliament since 2017, she has been in that job, MEP for the Irish Fine Gael party since 2004; David Aaronovitch, writer, broadcaster, columnist for the Times newspaper, and the Canadian psychologist whose self-help book has sold 2 million copies and whose speaking tour excites controversy wherever he goes, Jordan Peterson.
Quite an introduction for the Canadian professor there!

Anyhow David, Jordan Peterson didn't "excite controversy" last night.

Will the team behind Question Time be disappointed by that? Were there too few sparks flying for them?


  1. Yes...I couldn't resist tuning in for a couple of minutes...only to realise Jordan was doing what Canadians do best and that isn't set the room alight. :) But no doubt the Guardian's Marina Hyde found much merriment in his ethnic minority pronunciation of "aboot".

    Jordan didn't have a chance to get into deep philosophy so I was rather fixated on Diane Abbott's teeth...if you have all that money to spend on your hair and clothes and son's education, can't you find some to spend on your teeth. Politicians these days have followed soap actors and actresses in getting their teeth etc done...Rebecca Long-Bailey's had the full works including acrylic hair implants by the look of her at the last conference.

    Yes, I know these comments are beneath my normal high-minded observations on political life but it is a Friday.

    1. If you couldn't write about Diane Abbott's teeth and Rebecca L-B's hair implants on a Friday night, then there'd be something very wrong with the world.

    2. Rebecca Long-Bailey has had acrylic hair implanted in her teeth ?! Blimey. She must look like she's chewing a chihuahua ?

  2. What annoyed me was the amount of time given to the Irish MEP. No interruptions by David except to shut her up when clearly she had been speaking for too long.

    Also, why wasn’t Diane introduced as a fervent remainer? Another BBC tactic of undermining the speaker before they start. Surely, people should point out who the remain people are, as they are the ones seeking to overturn Brexit in any way possible.

    Lastly, the best debate of the evening could have been about hate speech but the panel, excluding Jordan, decided to revert back to last stereotyping themselves and make loose connections absolute. The point being that context and indeed ‘intent’ which used to be a cornerstone of the judiciary has now been totally flipped on its head by virtue signalling notice and to see tolerance through a narrow neo-liberal-leftist lens. The joke is we are becoming more and more like a communist country where by any joke can be deemed incitement to a hate crime.

    The BBC won’t mind this at all as they see themselves as the judge and jury in what we now can and cannot say, hence why there was no real debate about hate speech as they know, under the lens of constructive debate, what Jordan said is true; “the cure is far worse than the disease”.

  3. *lazy stereotyping- not - last