Thursday 28 June 2018

"and in some ways its conscience"

That tweet was in reference to Jon Sopel's report on this morning's Today, and I agree with Jane that it betrays a social liberal bias on the part of the BBC reporter:
BBC Newsreader: President Trump has been handed the opportunity to shift America's highest court further to the right with the retirement of one of its judges. Justice Anthony Kennedy is stepping down from the Supreme Court after three decades in the role. Viewed as a moderate conservative he has advanced gay rights and opposed attempts to restrict abortions. Here's our North America editor Jon Sopel. 
Jon Sopel: For over a decade Justice Anthony Kennedy has been the key swing vote on the Supreme Court and in some ways its conscience. He came down in favour of same-sex marriage, allowing that measure to pass 5 to 4, and was decisive in resisting efforts to tighten abortion laws. But with his departure Donald Trump is presented with an opportunity to appoint another conservative to the bench, something he's committed to do. With mid-term elections in November, which theoretically could lead to Democrats taking charge of any confirmation hearing, there is an impetus to get this done as quickly as possible. Presidents may only be able to serve eight years; a Supreme Court justice is for life. And conservatives are eyeing an opportunity to change US social policy for a generation.
Of course, the use of the word "moderate" in the introduction there is also something of a value judgment. 


  1. The funniest ones are where they are so completely biased but are unaware of the fact because they are so used to swimming in the lukewarm waters of the PC pool of ultraliberal values. Whatever you may personally think of abortion or gay rights, it's clear that Sopel thinks that only one view is conscionable, and the rest are oppressive. If abortion is simply an operation on a woman's body, why has the BBC never shown an abortion on its TV screens over the last 80 years? And why will it never show one? They have shown everything else.

    1. Spot on. This was not an example of conscious bias. It's simply inconceivable to Sopel that decent people might have a different view to him and his BBC colleagues about abortion, gay marriage and so on.

      I hope Trump appoints a proper conservative who believes that the Constitution means what it says (as opposed to one who believes it is an amorphous document that can be interpreted in ways the authors never even imagined in order to support currently fashionable social trends).

      This does not mean that the Constitution cannot be changed, as the many amendments to it demonstrate, but that it has to be changed by legislative decision, not by judicial activism.

  2. Don't you love it when the luvvies of BBC News start luvvying each other.

    Apparently, according to Jon Sopel, John Simpson is a "brilliant colleague" who has produced a "fascinating, insightful tweet"...about how there are fewer wars and more democracies these days. Hardly the wisdom of Solomon is it? It's a commonplace point made numerous times by numerous writers and commentators.

    But I have a feeling Jon can expect some kind words from John about the paperback release of his "If Only They Spoke English" book with an "added chapter on Trump's first year" (Wooh! Can't wait!!!)


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