Friday 24 April 2015

Credit where credit's due

The BBC isn't exactly covering itself in glory at the moment, impartiality-wise, but it's always right and proper for a blog like this to pay credit where credit is genuinely due.

This piece of credit-paying comes courtesy of Douglas Murray at the Spectator and goes to one particular BBC reporter, Panorama veteran John Ware, for his exposé of Lutfur Rahman's misrule in Tower Hamlets:
The other person who deserves credit is the BBC’s John Ware. The BBC gets a lot of flak these days as well, but John Ware is the sort of reporter that enemies of the license fee should think on. At Panorama, among other places, Ware exposed the corruption going on in Tower Hamlets when central government was wholly missing in action. It was Ware’s Panorama on the corruption in Tower Hamlets that bounced Eric Pickles into ordering an audit of the council’s activities, and it was this that has now directly led to the judgement in court.
Another of John Ware's Panoramas - The Battle for British Islam - was similarly brave and uncompromising. At the time we called it "an outstanding piece of reporting". It went places the BBC very rarely goes. 

His 'rarity value', however, does rather make him the exception that proves the rule, doesn't it?


  1. Couldn't agree more about John Ware.

    The thing we need to be aware of is that there are going to be a lot of Sharia-connected lawyers moving into senior judge positions over the next decade or two. They will be subject to pressure from within their communities, even if there are sympathies are with a democratic system of law.

    Don't expect this sort of court judgement to be replicated in the future, necessarily.

    We've already seen the damage Sharia-sympathetic Cabinet Ministers can do in terms of governance.

  2. His 'rarity value', however, does rather make him the exception that proves the rule, doesn't it?

    Exactly. It's like that rara avis who leaves the BBC to join the Tories in comparison to all those who worked for Labour or did some Left-wing activism before joining the BBC, or vice versa. There's a revolving door with the Guardian, but not with the Spectator.

    In the end, though, nothing about Ware's work supports the causality of the license fee. Correlation, yes, but his excellence is not a direct result of the license fee. Ware is on the BBC because the luxury of the license fee affords him a bigger and more prestigious platform for his professional work than other broadcasters. But the license fee didn't cause him to be a good journalist.


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