Talking of Emily Maitlis...
She was interviewing Michael Ignatieff about the Erdogan/German satirist affair, and put what struck me as 'a very BBC point' to the Canadian liberal:
There is a line though, isn't there, between satire and offence? And when you talk to Turkish journalists and they say, 'Actually, this bordered on Islamophobia', it becomes a slightly different question.
Mr. Ignatieff gave an understandable - and properly liberal - response:
Oh come on!! I think satire isn't satire unless it's offensive.
If you were watching BBC Two a lot in the 1980s and '90s, you'll probably remember Michael Ignatieff. He was something close to being BBC Two's official intellectual, wandering around various places wearing a deeply thoughtful expression. (This was in the days before Will Self came to favour at the BBC). I always liked him. (Can't quite say the same for Will Self).
How many conservative intellectuals, however, would receive this kind of introduction on Newsnight?:
Well, earlier I spoke to the great public intellectual Michael Ignatieff, former leader of Canada's Liberal Party, now Professor of Politics and the Press at Harvard.