Tuesday, 3 April 2018

Poor Auntie

Apropos of yesterday's post - men's profusion of eyebrow, nose and ear air beyond a certain age must obviously be of some evolutionary advantage to men, but what that could be escapes me. Cushioning? Microbial filtration as the efficacy of the immune system diminishes with age?

Poor old Auntie Beeb: She started off being perceived as pro-Remain (as that was the Establishment view) and was accordingly accused of bias by the Brexiteers; however, since the Conservatives narrowly won the election Auntie is perceived as more pro-Leave and has consequently been accused of bias by the Remain camp.

The fact is that Auntie reflects the Establishment position - and the Establishment is currently the Conservative government; he who pays the piper calls the tune. It has always been thus and privatisation would lead to even greater accusations of bias by one side or the other, depending on who was in charge of the newly privatised corporation. Yes, it would be free of the Establishment Group-think, but imagine if Murdoch got control of it.

Polls concerning bias are as reliable as a sunny day at Easter, as those being asked are naturally biased themselves and will reflect that bias in their vote.

The BBC makes infinitely better flagship programmes than independent television, which seems to have gone into a race to the bottom in terms of quality and intellectual content. They're usually some excruciating, cheap-to-make, fly-on-the-wall nonsense posing as documentaries about bin men, sewer cleaners, or a contemporary remake of Opportunity Knocks.

The BBC is hamstrung by the demand that it is balanced in its news reporting, which has the unfortunate consequence that the most ridiculous and outlandish views get equal billing (and hence weight) with commonsense and truth. That's not balance, it's pandering to a minority. It results in Nigel Farage, who has failed twice to get a parliamentary seat, is no longer the leader of Ukip and hardly ever appears in the European Parliament, getting 32 appearances on Question Time - he's joint top for number of appearances. It results in pseudoscience getting equal billing with real, peer-reviewed science. Factual reporting tinged with commonsense is fading fast.

I have heard it said that Channel 4 News is better than the BBC, so I may overcome my deep distaste for adverts and give it a whirl.

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