Sunday 31 January 2016

Bernie who?

One of the mainstay features of the BBC News website (not that, I suspect, many people read it!) is Anthony Zurcher's blog

Its masthead reads "Welcome to Zurcher's take - where I'll be giving an American view of US politics and culture", but he very rarely writes about US culture. It's pretty much all about US politics with Anthony (though he did also cover Justin Trudeau's election victory in Canada).

The oddest thing of all is that, for months and months now, it's been almost entirely about US Republican Party politics, especially Donald Trump, so much so that I thought Mr Zurcher had been told to focus exclusively on the Republican race and leave the Democratic race to people like Hillary Clinton biographer Kim Ghattas. 

Ignoring his latest blogpost, here's a complete list of Anthony Zurcher's pieces for the BBC website going back in time from yesterday till 8 December 2015. I think you'll see what I mean:
US election 2016: Winners and losers of Republican debate
US election: The 11 cards that sum up the Republican race
Is Donald Trump causing a Republican civil war?
Donald Trump gets Sarah Palin power
The Trump-Cruz feud gets nasty
Republican debate winners and losers
Donald Trump's Southern hospitality
Nikki Haley, the Republican who took on Trump
Republicans talk poverty - for a day
Who might stop Trump from nomination win?
Donald Trump's first TV ad touts Muslim ban
What happened to Rand Paul's 'libertarian moment'?
Republican debate: Winners and losers
Dumping Trump: Four ways Republicans might take on Trump
Is Donald Trump a Democratic secret agent?
Who are Donald Trump's loyal supporters?
Is Donald Trump destroying the Republican Party?
Then on 7 December 2015 came:
What's wrong with Obama's 'no-terrorist' gun ban?
That was a mere blip however and, again going backwards in time, came:
'We are at war': Republicans respond to San Bernardino
Donald Trump's bungled black-vote pitch
Republicans bristle at criticism of Planned Parenthood rhetoric
Trump leads Republican ‘bandwagon’ against Syrian refugees
Ben Carson: Unable to process foreign policy? 
            etc, etc, etc
You have to go back to October 14 last year to find a small clutch of pieces on the Democratic Party race - "Did the debate dash Biden's presidential hopes?", "A polished Clinton parries Sanders in Democratic debate", "A widening gap between Clinton and Obama" - before it's back to the Republicans again.

I thought I'd point this out because it is symptomatic of the BBC's coverage in general...and because Anthony Zurcher has just posted another piece about the Democratic race - his first in three-and-a-half months!:
Hillary's fight to the finish
The two highest-rated comments (so far) beneath this piece aren't impressed:
7. Posted by fedup
The BBC is so slanted in their coverage it really is disgusting. Finally an article about Hillary and not a mention of the investigation swirling around her. No mention of Top Secret e-mails. Nor is there any mention of the influence peddling that's been uncovered. Donar's cash in exchange for favors, the old Clinton game. Seems like some pretty big questions hanging over old Hillary?
13. Posted by Rather_Be_Cycling
Despite the BBC and the liberal media's best efforts, Hillary Clinton's "damn e-mails" (as Bernie Sanders charmingly describes them) are not going away. Now the BBC might prefer to report instead on every time Donald Trump offends someone's sensibilities. but this Junior Varsity of scandals is not going away. The White House and the Democrats are ready to ditch this mendacious old shrew.

I had to smile at Emily Maitlis's introduction to this feature. It made it sound as if the BBC and the rest of the media have been passive victims of Trump-inspired fate in choosing to massively under-report the Democratic race:
The US presidential race for the past few months has been dominated by the politically implausible, larger than life character of Donald Trump, which means that most of what's happening in the Democratic Race has got quietly lost.
The main focus of the segment was an interview with prominent Hillary supporter, Anne-Marie Slaughter (which was nice for Hillary). Earlier in the month, in contrast, interviews about The Donald were with a Muslim anti-Trump protestor and a New York Times journalist.

There's nine more months to go of all this.


  1. At least they're finally admitting, sort of, that Zurcher writes opinion pieces. As for the BBC censoring nearly all news of Hillary's growing email scandal, they can as usual claim lemming journalism as a defense. The US mainstream media - Democrat and Progressive activists with bylines - have also either played it down or helped promote Hillary's defense that it's all something ginned up by Republican enemies. So the BBC doesn't have to report it because, as Mark Mardell explained about his refusal to take Benghazi seriously, the wrong sort of people are talking about it.

    The BBC does not operate to a higher standard.

  2. Anthony Zurcher receives payments from Clinton super pacs.....

    1. If you look you'll see that his overall emphasis on the the candidates are - Trump satirical, Clinton celebratory, Sanders dismissive.

  3. I quote you.." A total of 2,996 people died on 11th September when al-Quaeda militants hijacked four planes etc etc....". Are you serious ? Are you supposed to be a serious journalist ? I've got an "0-level" in Domestic Science and even I can see the many flaws in the various official accounts. I didn't read the conspiracy nuts. I generally started reading way back, like page 15 and there's nuggets of gold to be found. Ask yourself how Mohammed Atta's passport happened to be found intact on the pavement in Manhattan. George W. Bush says he saw the 1st plane hit the WTC "on a TV" on 9/11 but this footage wasn't publicly aired until the following day. I love the BBC and gladly pay my licence fee but very many of their journalists don't seem to have done any original research.

  4. I am "Seeker" above, Chris Jones, lady taxi driver from Liverpool

  5. Utterly biased reporting in favour of HRC!
    Shame on you BBC and especially Anthony Zurcher!

  6. He's at it again....

    "Although the Vermont senator may not have held up to the glaring spotlight of the general election campaign"

    As chiffmonkey said, of Sanders, Zurcher is always dismissive. I complained directly to the BBC about him during the build up but he is so personally biased and pro-Republican he really doesn't come up to the BBC's normal standards of impartiality. But then again, the new Head of News at the BBC is an ex-Murdoch man and since he arrived BBC News has turned into right-wing tabloid drivel.

  7. Anthony Zurcher is obviously biased in his affection for the liberal viewpoint and the bbc should be ashamed of promoting him as a reporter rather than an op-ed writer. He is exactly what most Americans think of the press; biased, unbalanced, not to be relied upon.
    Oregon, USA

  8. Jan 29, 2017... again: headline anti-Trump "Amateur Hour at The White House". Zurcher is the absolute essense of liberal, biased, pseudo-intellectual nasty dweeb... BBC needs better.

  9. Zurcher is a liberal idiot, saying that Obama saved GM., Sure at the expense of bondholders who were robbed $29 billion. Get your facts right moron!

  10. should start a signature petition to get the bbc to fire anthony zucher and hire someone more professional

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