Sunday 24 November 2019

Mid-November Open Thread

Hello. Here's a new open thread to warm yourselves in front throughout this dark mid-November. Thank you for your continued backing and comments. 


  1. The BBC have worked very hard today to make the NHS a key election issue.

    The main BBC One news tonight had a lengthy Hugh Pym report on the subject.

    Why the focus when it’s a Brexit election? Who will gain the most by the BBC propaganda on the NHS?

  2. Continuing the topic of the bias in BBC Reality Check. The last time the BBC went into full Labour Party propaganda mode was during the Ed Miliband election. When he lost they were in mourning for at least half a year. The terrifying thing about this time around is that Labour have two very powerful propaganda machines working for them: The BBC and Momentum. We could easily find ourselves with Agent Cob in number 10 for Christmas.

    1. It's a danger. Younger people may be the deciding factor and they have been subject to serious brainwashing on issues like migration, equality and patriotism for decades. That said, I think a lot of people reaching age 30, are suffering hugely in the housing crisis, and - not being as stupid as the MSM would like - can join the dots on migration, population and lack of suitable family accommodation. We shouldn't assume they will necessarily gravitate to the liberal-left.


    Sensibly, the Government refused the BBC's invitation to walk into the elephant trap, an ambush on rape-prosecutions. So it was instead turned into an opportunity for Total Sham Chakrabati to virtue-signal wildly in an attempt to boost support for Labour, facing not even the softest of questions on her incoherent claims and assertions.

  4. I recall listening in my youth to Jimmy Young on BBC Radio, in the days when Radio 1 had long sections that were in reality the warmed up Light Programme (rebranded as Radio 2). There was a brief cookery feature each day, introduced by the Chipmunk-sounding catchphrase "What's the recipe today Jim?"

    And that's how I feel about the BBC's election coverage now: "What's the recipe today BBC?"

    Ingredients invariably include: "cruel Tories", "devious Tories", "Far Right Tories" and "lying Tories". But each day there has to be a new recipe.

    Today it's a favourite BBC recipe: "NHS Pie (Should Be Bigger)". And the lead headline is "NHS 'imploding' as waits at worst-ever levels".

    Imploding means "collapse or cause to collapse violently inwards" or "end or fail suddenly or dramatically". Just because someone uses the word doesn't justify the BBC plastering it across their website in a headline.

    To change metaphors, for the BBC the NHS always has the same disease: moneylackingitis and there is only one cure - regular moredosh infusions (but not under a Conservative government).

  5. It's interesting to see what became of yesterday's 'Heckling of Jeremy Corbyn' story on the BBC News website. Reports are there, but you will need to look on the Scotland pages to find it - now archived, buried very quickly.

    ... 'Glasgow church minister who heckled Corbyn in Twitter storm.' ...

    The report is primarily concerned with attacking the heckler under the guise of a 'Twitter storm' thus avoiding any necessity for Corbyn or the BBC to respond to the questions asked by the heckler. How?

    1. Relegate the story to a backwater of the website as quickly as is decently possible.
    2. Deflect the importance of the story by headlining it as a 'Twitter storm' instead of addressing the subject itself directly.

    1. I'm not a fan of "heckler-based" news. It's so easy to set up. But you are quite right that in this case the BBC has completely shifted the story round.

      The irony is that of course nearly all Muslims and African envangelist Christians will agree with the Pastor on homosexuality whose comments, rightly or wrongly, were the standard Christian view for 2000 years and are still the standard Islamic teaching.

      Normally the BBC does everything it can not to offend said sections of the population. But of course white Scottish Pastors are an entirely different matter...not much better that Ulster Pastors in BBC eyes! :)

    2. It's a hot potato the BBC prefer to drop. Best left in the land of haggis, neeps and tatties.

  6. Breitbart has taken a look at that BBC article on the "explosions" in Sweden which I referenced on the previous Open Thread.

    I am not sure I agree with Breitbart that the BBC have "acknowledged" the serious nature of the problem. Putting a question in the headline, mentioning "bangers", using photos of only "traditional" Swedes, failing to mention in detail examples of perpetrators and rubbishing the connection with migration as "Far Right" propaganda, doesn't amount to "acknowledgement" of the issue. I am with Craig on this, that it might have had something to do with Andrew Neil's comments on the subject: firstly to avoid the allegation that the BBC like SVT was avoiding the subject and secondly to undermine any connection between this extreme violence and mass immigration. The timing is certainly suspicious.

  7. Is there nothing that can be done to stop the BBC news website campaigning and lying in support of Labour every single day?

    1. Nope. Not even the Conservatives are prepared to do anything about it and Ofcom, thanks to the Conservatives, are stuffed full of pro-BBC types. The Electoral Commission also will not count it as pro-Labour propaganda.

    2. As Ozfan said on an earlier thread, the BBC is a political broadcaster.

      It continues to push the boundaries of impartiality by publishing highly politicised content because there is no one to keep it in check or to push back.

      They are emboldened by the lack of oversight and use the their mission to educate to push and promote their version of liberal socialism. Here is another example of a puff piece on Corbyn and Labour.

      This BBC piece is a major political broadcast in style, content and length. Clearly not knocked out in a few minutes on a reporters laptop.

      What is its real purpose, one may ask?

    3. Breathtakingly biased. It's almost political pornography...with the BBC placing the gossamer strategically lest we catch a glimpse of his real self. Of course Corbyn's profile has appeared at the perfect time for Labour...when will Boris's appear? Will it be equally positive?

  8. I was going to comment further on the BBC's pro-Labour NHS story today.

    I'd already criticised the original headline: "NHS 'imploding' as waits at worst-ever levels".

    Imploding is simply not an acceptable word to use in this context. You might say the Soviet Union imploded, or Debenhams imploded or Change UK imploded. But the NHS is simply not in any danger of imploding (unless Great Thunberg's policies are adopted). It might do better at coping with increasing demand in the future or it might do worse but it is not going to collapse in on itself. That's Fake News.

    The BBC obviously read this site because they have changed the headline to:

    "Hospital waiting times at worst-ever level"

    - much more defensible though it could be misread as stating that ALL rather than some waiting times were at a "worst-ever" level. "Worst-ever" is also probably wrong, since we are only talking about since the targets were introduced (whereas I am pretty sure average waiting times, without attached targets, were assessed prior to that).

    Here's a link to the article:

    There's this para in the story: "Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are also missing their targets, although health is devolved so NHS decisions are taken by the administrations in those parts of the UK." It's an odd way to put it, especially since N Ireland doesn't have an administration currently, but I think that was changed from an even odder para in the original story. Time for the News Sniffer, Craig? The headline was definitely changed, so other parts might have been as well.

  9. A new angle from Mark Easton tonight. There is not enough immigration. Lowestoft's most vulnerable residents are at risk because they can’t get enough migrants to do jobs in public services. In the middle of the report they hastily inserted a clip intended to embarrass Priti Patel. It ended with a sympathetic Jeremy Corbyn asking for a decent and fair system where public services can be properly resourced (with immigrants?).

    Blatant bias, editing and manipulation on this report and very clear where the BBC sit with immigration and which party they support.

    1. I have mentioned before that Mark Easton's name appears amongst the great and the good of the Westminster Abbey Institute. With him there is one Dominic Grieve QC.

      A quick look at their website:

      Embracing Global Challenges
      How does humanity embrace global challenges that brook no national boundaries? The harm to the ecology of our planet cannot be addressed without international collaboration; nor can technology’s benefits and threats.

      Similarly, to answer the question of where millions of migrating people find their home requires a globe-wide reconnection with our common humanity. What sort of people must we become, and how should our institutions and policy makers adapt, if we are to address the needs of the 21st century and beyond? Embracing Global Challenges explored ways in which humanity can respond creatively and courageously to our unfolding story.' ....

      We can guess that Mark Easton's BBC worldview might have been fashioned along these lines.

    2. Absolutely blatant bias, I'm sure. Easton is an enthusiast for mass immigration. We need to have a ratinoal analysis of what a low paid migrant costs the country. Once the low paid migrant (often a person in their 20s) has settled here and begun a family are they making a contribution to the country in terms of tax or are they tax negative? If they have three children, that will be costing the state about £320,000 over 18 years. Add in health care, housing subsidies (including housing benefit), child benefit and income support...
      Then there is the increase in housing costs affecting everyone as mass immigration drives an unprecedented population increase.

      It would be far cheaper to increase the wages paid to low paid social care workers who are already living here as UK citizens and invest in training. People will soon react to this incentive and join the profession.

      Elsewhere we should be investing in automotation and robotics e.g. for crop picking to avoid the huge financial and social costs of mass immigration.

    3. You forgot to mention education. The average cost for educating a pupil in a London school is £9,000 a year. Add to that traffic and public transport congestion, environmental damage, translation services, English classes, increased crime...
      Free movement of people, or any system that approximates that, in a welfare state makes no economical sense.

    4. Not only do immigrants get old but they sometimes bring in their own aged parents who might not have and never will have a single word of English.

    5. If a person from abroad is housed by the State then someone has had to fund that accommodation, in London you cannot buy a flat for less than £300,000. Multiply up the cost of all the housing lived in by immigrants and their families but owned by Councils and Housing Associations and there is a huge cost to the country.

  10. I am pleased to report a slight improvement in Laura K's article:

    ... 'General election 2019: So where do main parties stand on immigration?' ...

    I have counted:

    2 uses of word 'Tory'
    5 uses of word 'Tories'
    3 uses of word Conservative

    And, the first of these words mentioned in the article is 'Conservative'.

  11. If the effing Tories (I'm going to indulge myself) lose this election they will have only themselves to blame for never having taken on the lib-left media establishment or the hard left character of the modern Labour Party and for not defending the principles of free speech (which has allowed PC ideology to take over the whole of our cultural life).

  12. BBCs Faisal Islam tweets today :

    “South Korea experience does make the argument for significantly more strategic even coercive hand of state fixing rules, bank financing and guiding private sector to reach outcomes. “

    Sent out during an election campaign where the two main parties have very different views on nationalisation - Surely that’s blatant bias for one side.

    1. Yep. Definitely. It's outrageous bias.

      Imagine if he had written "Singapore's experience does make the argument for a more free market approach to the economy - for exiting bureaucratic supranational blocs and encouraging a full throated capitalist approach to economic development with less emphasis on workers' rights."

      Not that a BBC staffer ever would write such a thing! But it is an interesting thought experiment isn't it? Can you imagine the howls of protest? The Ofcom denunciation? The editorials in the Guardian and FT? And the grovelling apology from Tony Hall?

  13. AT(three up) - Laura T reduced them to 'tories' today, whilst extolling the glory of Labour control over free speech.

    MB(two up) - Agree - I am almost tempted to tell our clown they had my vote but given their ineptitude any party not supporting Remain and fielding a candidate does.

    1. I'm trying to think strategically. In my constituency the Conservative is remaining strangely reticent about Brexit on his campaign literature.

  14. Re: the NHS
    A while ago I heard that the GMB had, for years (if not generations), restricted the number of training places for new doctors to ensure their own high-standing and high salaries. a) Can anyone confirm whether that story was/is true and, if it is then b) why is the story not a headline story?

    1. I have heard such allegations. From my own observation, there is a huge difference between some expert brain surgeon and a standard-issue GP. I am sure many more people could be perfectly good GPs, especially with all the technological support they now have (yes - they use Dr Google as well).

      I've also read or heard that because of PC considerations many perfectly well qualified persons, often from families with a strong medical tradition but the wrong ethnicity and gender, are refused places on medical degree courses and often end up travelling to places like the Caribbean, USA, Canada and Australia to pursue a medical career. That has the ring of truth.

      If we need more doctors we should train them (not least because it's morally wrong to import them from places like India and Africa where they are desperately needed). But we should also be innovative. Many robot systems are better than GPs at diagnosing illness. I am sure there is strong resistance from GPs to accept this fact and allow for GP surgeries to adopt robotics. They want to maintain their professional mystique and the status that goes with it.


    3. Seems like John is right.

      It costs £220,000 to train a doctor.

      Now, although it's true an overseas doctor will be tax positive, that is also true of a UK citizen doctor. So that's neither here nor there.

      But a migrant will be an additional demand on the UK's infrastructure (roads, trains, parks, leisure centres). If they buy an existing house, that means another house has to come on the market to make good the loss.

      Even if the doctor is relatively wealthy they may have their children educated in state schools, certainly up to age 11. Those children will also be an additional demand.

      There are only 6000 training places for doctors each year! It's clear we need more doctors to deal with demand - in particular to reduce pressure on GPs and A&E.

      The idea we could not find 15,000 people per annum to train as doctors out of a cohort of maybe 700,000 seems not credible to me.

      15,000 x £0.22 million = £3.3 billion or an increase of £1.98 billion.

      Given the insane levels of money being pledged by government and opposition in this election, this seems to me to be, by contrast, a wise and sensible investment.

      It makes you wonder why it hasn't been tried? I suspect this is more about the migration narrative.

    4. I can support you figures, Monkey Brains. My son trained to be a Doctor, 2011-17. He applied in October 2010 for entry in 2011. At the time he applied there was 5,000 places available but over 27,500 applications for those places. All of those 27,500 applicants had the necessary 3 A's at A level required for entry.

      As I understand it, applications are still running at the same level. The only constraint to training more doctors is the capacity of Medical Schools to cope with increased numbers. We should be training 12,000-15,000 doctors a year given increased demand (ageing population and mass migration). So, we are close to 100,000 doctors short over the last 20 years.
      Add to this, that Mr Hunt did a good job over his time as Sec of State for Health to antagonise junior Doctors; out of 55 new junior Doctors at my son's first hospital placement 39 went to Australia. We will certainly get a good number of these back but at this level of attrition you can see how we have problems ahead. With an estimated 2 million illegal immigrants, you can see the intense pressure on the NHS.

  15. I heard that the immigrants are trying to reach England so that they can see their own doctor.

  16. The BBC website has had this story with a Picture of Jeremy Corbyn
    If you look at the changes and content there is no actual news of any value and the story is just a labour placeholder. They really are shameless.

  17. Just looked at the BBC 2 schedule:

    'The Empire Writes Back. Series 1, episode 2.

    The second documentary examining fictional writing from three different perspectives considers the subject of race and colonialism. It looks at books including Robinson Crusoe, the first novel ever published in English, in 1719, whose hero was a slave trader, and two famous American novels published more than a century apart - Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin and Toni Morrison's Beloved. The programme also comes up to date with titles such as Malorie Blackman's Noughts and Crosses and Paul Beatty's The Sell Out.'

    They never stop with the race obsession.

    1. If you were really interested in opposing slavery and oppression (rather than promoting PC ideology) the first thing you would say is that slavery is an institution found across the planet, in the Americas, Asia, Europe, Africa and Oceania, involving all races and ethnicities, and all the major religions as well (Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Buddhism and Hinduism), and that no individual descendant of a slave trader or owner should feel any guilt about this as long as they are not engaged in modern slavery.

  18. Andrew Marr is at it again. In his opening piece to camera, he fires off with 'the Tories', not even bothering with the BBC's flimsy cover of first mention must be 'Conservatives'. Afterwards he did manage a couple of 'Conservatives'. Too late, Mr Marr.

  19. The BBC pushing a story today by its Panorama team about war crimes by British soldiers whilst in Iraq.

    I’m finding this very distasteful because I’m not sure why the BBC is getting involved. These are (I think) Phil Shiner cases who has already been discredited and struck off.

    What are the BBC up to here? What is their motivation to resurrect complex and far from straightforward cases.

    1. This was a travesty, ex MET detectives who were upset they had been closed down. Interviews with women villagers and statements that hundreds had been killed unlawfully. Hardly balanced and all allegation. No context of realities in front line operations. If soldiers had shot some, why didnt they shoot all in the same group so there would be no witnesses?


    Amol is running amok on the keyboard singing the praises of "exceptional producers - heroic public servants the public know virtually nothing of" though they were some SAS unit undertaking hugely dangerous operations in enemy territory.

    All these overpaid prima donnas have been doing is putting together some telly programmes. You might as well talk about "heroic" backroom staff in the banks and building societies who do so much to keep our money safe...or the unsung "heroic" plumbers who keep the nation's water supply running - without them we would be living in the Dark Ages, wouldn't we Amol...

    Looking at Amol's Twitter Feed I see he proudly proclaims his association with a Liberal Democrat Peer's charity (the Rumi Foundation).

    I think senior BBC people should be more careful about proclaiming such associations with party political figures.

  21. Most of the BBC, and a lot of the broadcast groupie set, appear to have convinced themselves Ems is half way between Woodward, Bernstein and Erin Brokovitch (Abbottognetics).

    It was clearly about as dumb as it got, but once Randy told his team to set it up, who else but the BBC were the idiots going to hand it to?

    It's like a BBC 'Exclusive' when you know all that happened is a PR guy sent them a press release.

    The last time they tried actually investigating was McAlpine, which worked out less than well.

    Amol fancies himself as Teflon as Naga, but is a shy a few crucial layers.

  22. Does the BBC EVER suggest a connection between immigration and the strain on the NHS?

  23. I wasn't aware that there is yet another trial involving Tommy Robinson at the Royal Courts of Justice...a civil case this time:

    Presumably full censorship in operation by the BBC at this stage?

  24. OK, so last week we have the Corbyn Love-In from Iain Watson on the BBC Website.

    And now we have John Pienaar metaphorically sitting on Boris and trying to squash the life out of him.

    The article actually has a "stealth headline" on the website; "How Boris Johnson rose to power." Rose to power? Where have I heard that sort of phrase before? Oh Hitler rose to power, how Stalin rose to power...Not "How Boris was elected to Parliament, became party leader and thus entered Prime Ministerial office." That wouldn't be setting the right tone!

    Contrast the lead graphic of Corbyn avuncularly drinking his cup of coffee in friendly fashion with the image of Johnson as a suited boxer with his back to you - not friendly at all. Boris is famed for ability to connect with people of all backgrounds, so clearly the BBC want to damage that idea of friendly interaction.

    There are lots of "nice" images of Corbyn in his profile. But the next two for Boris are in shadow (so you can't see his face) and with his hand on his head (that might be captioned "Oh no, I've gaffed again.").

    They are both long...I'll take a more detailed look later.

    1. The Corbyn article strains to be nice to him. Take this:

      "He fell foul of the then Labour leader Neil Kinnock when he invited two Irish Republican former prisoners - who had not been wrongfully convicted - to the House of Commons in 1984. "

      What? "...two Irish Republican former prisoners - who had not been wrongfully convicted" - er, I think you mean "two convicted IRA terrorists", BBC.

      Then there are the omissions. No mention of his relationship with Diane Abbott or their joint tour of the Communist GDR, back in the day when men, women and children were being shot trying to escape into West Germany.

      It peddles the "too little too late" line on anti-semitism. Claiming that some in his own party have accused him of failing to "tackle" anti-semitism within the party...but it's not just that is it? Some in his party e.g. Ian Austin MP have accused him, Corbyn, personally of anti-semitism. Given his close ties with Hamas, the PLO and the Iranian regime why does the BBC think such accusations cannot be entertained? Because he is on "the Left"...and the Left cannot be anti-semitic by definition, according to the BBC's theology.

      The Boris article dwells lovingly on his time in Eton. In the Corbyn article, young Jeremy's time in a private prep school was passed over in complete silence. Boris Johnson's name is given in full, whereas Corbyn's wasn't (Bernard is Jezza's middle name in case you were wondering).

      The whole article is peppered with sprinklings of negativity. Boris is "stereotypically" English and his exotic ancestry is not celebrated. He puts in a lot of stuff about Boris's father, which any casual reader could misinterpret as being about Boris since he doesn't uses the personal pronoun. Was it deliberate? Pienaar passes it off with a reference to him being a block off the old was only at the point it became clear to me he was referring to Boris's father.

      "Highs and lows have come and gone, including his two spells as Mayor of London"!!! Firstly what is that supposed to mean? So was he a success as Mayor of London. I think most people accept he was a successful Mayor - certainly a popular one. As for "two spells" - it was 8 years. Eight years running the capital city - home to about a tenth of the UK population. I think Pienaar worded it that way because he didn't want to give Boris any credit for his period as Mayor.

      The Pienaar article is very odd. It reads like he copied and pasted in some old (tendentious) stuff.

      He ends with the rude and questionable conclusion: "His leadership will be unlike anything we have seen. But the consequences will be no joke."

      This is just totally slapdash. Johnson has been PM for since early summer. He has negotiated a withdrawal treaty with the EU and got the House of Commons to support it in principle. No mention of these achievements. No mention of the fact that the Conservative have an 11 point average lead in the polls!

      Does the BBC really think this is acceptable as a pre-election profile?

      Bias and incompetence in equal measure.

  25. This is a very good corrective to current climate hysteria and suggests the historical temperature record is being distorted to fit current orthodoxy.

    It's worth sticking with...

  26. Corbyn shared a platform with rabid anti-Jewish speakers:

    Why on earth is the BBC protecting him with such assiduity?

  27. For those who like a good metaphor, can I recommend "The BBC could milk an anvil" from Guest Who over on "the other channel".

    I googled it and couldn't find any reference to its use, so maybe this is a newly minted metaphor?


    Got to's amazing that the Conservatives are on 40 and averaging an 11 point lead in the polls, given the off-the-scale level of bias not just from the BBC but on ITV and Sky as well and the Conservative campaign to date has been very average to be kind. People like Corbyn, Swinson. Lucas and Sturgeon are allowed to lie, deceive, and misdirect without even a hint of correction, whereas the media are all over Conservative claims.

    This must mean that people around the country are far more resilient in being able to filter out bias, than you might otherwise think. That's encouraging for the future. Probably means they can see the damage mass immigration is doing to the country and the insanity of equality-of-outcome policies, and the economic illiteracy of Labour's nationalisation and wealth taxation plans (though they may favour water and rail nationalisation - perfectly rational).

  29. The BBC's stance on language and offence seems to change with the wind or at least according to who is doing it and to whom. It makes a meal of anyone saying a wrong word referencing one of its special protected types, even inadvertently or tangentially, with headline news on the website and earnest interviews on 'Today' and wherever. But when the wrong word comes from its sacred (doubly) protected types in a programme that the BBC is spending money on and promoting, it switches to batting away complaints defending wrong word / offence as positive and to be celebrated. You couldn't make it up!

  30. The difference between the USA and the UK. In the UK the media are grossly biased against the PM and the Conservatives but the PM and Conservaties don't tell the public that is the case. In the USA, the media are grossly biased against the President and the Republicans but the victims of that bias DO tell the public that is the case...

    The Conservatives should turn their fire on the media, on the BBC in particular.

    1. No chance.

      They never will nor will Boris. Their politics is/are Blair lite. You can’t fit a fag paper between them and much of the BBC group think.

      Their natural reaction is ‘how can we change our policies so they don’t hate us as much.’

    2. Agreed. As presently constituted...

      Well I'm thinking tactically. The Conservatives have to win this election, for the defence of the nation otherwise we are well and truly and royally screwed for all time.

      But, beyond that, we need a populist party that will take the fight to the mediacracy.

      Either the Conservatives need to turn themselves into a democratic party or a populist party needs to replace the Conservatives.

      The first thing the Conservatives need to do is junk their name. The Democratic Party or Citizens Party would be much better.

  31. This is another outrageous interference from the BBC in our democratic election campaign. They are weighing in again with criticism of the Conservatives - this regarding the costing of Labour's spending pledges.

    The logic of the BBC's position seems to be that an opposition party can make as many spending pledges as they like but never be held to account for them, if they don't put them in their manifesto. That is a licence to deceive the voting public.

    Would the BBC look so kindly on the Conservatives if they did the same? Of course not - then it would (as with the allegedly misleading £350 million for the NHS) be all about "lies" and "trust".

    So why is it OK for Labour to pledge spending tens of billions of pounds with no intention of ever honouring the pledge while it's wrong for the Vote Leave campaign to possibly slightly exaggerate the amount of funding that would be released by Brexit?

    Come on, BBC - tell us...

    The BBC article appears to be based on a lie - that the Conservatives were costing Labour's manifesto when they were costing its spending pledges.

  32. How can this tweet from Hugh Sykes possibly meet the impartiality requirements that apply to BBC News staff?

    This isn't the usual deniability-bias...this is straight out calling Conservatives, and only Conservatives, liars.

  33. ::::NEWSNIGHT WATCH::::

    Classic line from Nick Watts, Political Editor..

    "You Gov gave it 51 for Boris Johnson and 49 for Jeremy, a dead heat."

  34. Crikey! Going up in the world around here - I don't think I've seen spam postings before!!

    1. That's because we try to nuke them before you have to see them. Apols for temporary lack of vigilance! :-)

  35. Well I'm going to give it a try...

  36. Roger Hallam, a co-founder of Extinction Rebellion has sparked anger in Germany after referring to the Holocaust as “just another *uckery in human history”.

    This has been widely reported elsewhere but not on the BBC so far as I can tell.

    1. I have been interested to find out recently that the Anglican church is full square behind Extinction Rebellion, and sees no unChristian behaviour in their 'protests' - which result in arrests and cause losses to ordinary folk going about their business.

    2. A certain AH was also convinced that biological extinction would follow if his favoured policies weren't followed. Then there's the symbol of AH's party...not so very different from the ER symbol.

      AH's party was given a fair wind in most areas by Catholic and Protestant leaders.

      The parallels are frightening... except the the thought of a 9 stone vegan with a wispy beard (and that's just the women, the men are even less intimidating)does not conjure quite the same level of fear.

    3. I would have thought that it was obvious to anybody that ER’s agenda extends far beyond action on climate change. They are an anti-capitalist, anti-Western anarchist group harbouring some very unpleasant characters. I know it’s an unpopular viewpoint here but there are many decent people who are concerned about climate change. Unfortunately the desire to jump on the bandwagon, and quite frankly plain cowardice in not alienating themselves from this group is tragically disappointing. It doesn’t help their cause.

  37. Anon - "BBC Editorial Integrity means there is never going to be time or space to even allow a dent in the careful narrative we have created to date"

  38. A new form of bias - "advertorial sound bite montage bias"...

    Hear on Radio 5 Live today a quick fire montage of sound bites, advertising the Radio 5 Live's peerless election coverage.

    You have no idea who you are listening to. But they sound like everyman/everywoman voices...could be vox pops but of course the advertorial nature of the content means they aren't obliged to tell us.

    It was interesting what sound bites were could have been Labour's own collection. They were all harping on things like services, "diversity in Parliament" (oh yeah - that's the issue on everyone's lips isn't it?), funding (and emphasising it was a "complicated" thing - so don't worry your little heads about it).

    The odd thing is that Brexit appeared to be completely absent from the list of pressing issues...which no doubt any Conservative or Lib Dem would consider a rather serious omission.

    Has anyone else heard it? My attention wasn't fully on it, but it seemed to avoid all Brexit mention.

    These advertorials are however a clever way to insert a lot of bias without being responsible, in the same way as interviewing a guest or reporting on manifesto content or conducting vox pops. It can just be a montage of sound bites that frame the election in a particular way. It's more difficult to complain about. They go on quite a long time and are quite raucous, so probably grab people's attention.

  39. Faisal Islam, a recent addition to BBC ranks has just published a very sympathetic article on the Labour manifesto. He is obviously a fan and doesn’t try to conceal his admiration for a plan that will make us like ‘Germany and Japan’.

    The last sentence clearly reveals his bias.

    1. Ignorance or deliberate diversion?

      Surely Islam knows that personal debt in Germany is a mere 52% of GDP compared with 89% in the UK and that Germany borrows much more from itself than from abroad (like Japan, so it's not really national debt). All these things have implications for how you can push borrowing. Also, some of these grand schemes turn out to be much more difficult to implement in practice - see Smart Meters...there has been lots of consumer resistance. You'll find the same with insulation...and then wait for the complaints about people falling ill in poorly aired by highly insulated homes, breathing toxic air.

      And why are these figures never translated into amounts per household? Labour, on Islam's figures, is planning to spend an additional (NB - additional) £26,400 per household over 5 years. Is that credible, within the framework of the tax rises they have indicated?

      Will nationalised industries run by the appointees of a Far Left administration really be able to resist big pay demands? As soon as public sector workers realise they are pushing at an open door they will know they have to be first through the door before the inevitable happens and there is an incomes policy (formal or informal) introduced.

      A Far Left Labour government will be a target of the further left Trots - SWP in the van - as they will see the opportunity to dismantle capitalism completely and bring in Leninist government. Far fetched? Not if you lived through the 60 and 70s. There will be more and more attempts to control government policy through action on the street.

      This will all lead to a succession of big economic crises.

  40. Is it just me who gets very annoyed by the voxpops that BBC news does on virtually every bulletin?

    The format is so tired and out of date. Tonight it was Alex Forsyth, she was sent to Hastings. It then follows the same old format like groundhog day.

    A small business is visited, and a few local people have their say. Some are for Brexit , some against. Some are for Labour, some for for Conservatives.

    Akex, like every other reporter, finishes by saying ‘convincing voters like these will win or lose this election’.

    It’s a complete joke and not representative or useful as guide for public opinion but the BBC trot out this rubbish on a daily basis.

    1. It's not just you. It's a very stale format.

      I didn't see that Alex Forsyth report but I can well imagine it. You've summed up the template perfectly. That useless finishing comment is exactly what every other reporter says.

      It's not always banal though. Mark Easton, an arch-defender of the use of vox pops, doesn't usually use vox pops in that way (though he does sometimes). His choice of vox pops tend to reflect the message he's trying to get across in his report - or to discredit the other side's argument. But even he, however outrageously biased his report, does favour the 'convincing voters like these will win or lose this election' closing line.

    2. Perhaps for a bit of variation they could close with: "These five or six voters have no statistical significance at all. We don't even know if they are or are not representative of this constituency. Or perhaps we do know, and they aren't but there's no way for you to find out, which is why I'm signing off with this smug smile."

    3. Like it.
      "These people's views are frankly irrelevant - a simple visual vehicle used to somehow convince you, the viewer, that whatever narrative I have wrapped this report in contains any valid information whatsoever.
      Alex Forsyth, BBC news, Hastings."

    4. Love it, MB. More bite than a BBC comedian.

  41. The BBC News website Election 2019 page has the following six stories read top to bottom, left to right:

    1. Labour vows to transform UK at Manifesto launch
    2. What are the 12 key policies in the Labour manifesto?
    3. The manifesto Corbyn has always wanted (Laura K article)
    4. Brexitcast: the Labour manifesto launch
    5. Labour's big-state, big-spend transformation plan (Faisal Islam article)
    6. Tories top donation list for first election week.

    In summary, five positive stories about Labour, and one negative story about 'Tories'.

    1. As it ever was

      And always will be

      Unless it is held to account

  42. ho ho

    question time audience is anti-labour pro-brexit. Fiona Bruce doing her best.

    And Richard Burgon - LOL!

  43. I can’t see any articles on the bbc website challenging Labour spending plans. The day after the launch, the bbc have gone silent, not one article explaining, criticising or reality checking.

    In contrast, The papers are all leading with critical headlines.

    If there had been £83 billion of Conservative spending announced, I suspect the BBC would be picking over every detail today and leading with stories of errors and miscalculations.

    1. There are articles on aspects of Labour's manifesto:

      But it is astonishing that when the IFS - the BBC's "most favoured" think tank says the plans are not credible from a fiscal point of view, the BBC avoids the subject for a reality check. But not surprising.

    2. Thanks for the link MB.

      More on the IFS. The BBC has published an article just now where John McDonnell says he respects the IFS, but ‘they have just got it wrong on this one’.

      The BBC have played a blinder here by parroting McDonnell's rebuttal at length as a method of backing the spending plans. No criticism, no words of caution or BBC dirty tricks in this report.

  44. The usual Saturday 11 am programme about Westminster, presented in turn by various journalists, some of whom can be annoying enough, has been replaced by something called Electioncast:

    'Adam Fleming and the BBC's politics team bring you the essential guide to the 2019 UK general election.'

    Last week I tuned in only to hear the worst cacophony of cackling and participants all babbling at once that I have ever come across. I turned it off. In reality it was probably only three people, including Laura Kuennsberg and Adam Fleming, but it sounded like double that for sheer noise. Normally I don't mind Adam Fleming and he's been calm and agreeable when he's occasionally presented Politics Live but I don't feel the need for more BBC opinion or 'guidance' re the election and this is a format that produces noise and chatter I can gladly do without. Even putting up with Helen Lewis presenting the usual half hour Saturday Westminster programme is better than this. I am not tuning in again.


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