The Aged P

…just toasting and ruminating….

06 March
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That BBC Farage/Clegg Debate – If It’s Dimbleby Nigel Needs A Very Long Spoon…

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Classic anti Farage tweaking via the Telegraph’s James Kirkup in a snarky piece about the forthcoming Farage/Clegg debates – Kirkup uses that pic of Farage perspiring during his UKIP conference speech alongside a standard stock photo of Clegg looking steady and serious…..par for the course, I suppose.

Young Kirkup claims that the format is nearing some sort of agreement

LBC, the radio station that hosts Mr Clegg’s weekly phone-in, will stage a debate expected to have fewer rules and restrictions than the BBC. The debate – also before a live audience – will be hosted by Nick Ferrari, a more combative broadcaster than Dimbleby, who is expected to allow more “lively” exchanges.

So far, so good….Ferrari won’t take any prisoners but, unlike anyone at the BBC (except maybe Andrew Neil) he does tend to resonate with white van drivers and their wives, a constituency that is not renowned for going starry eyed over beards and sandals.

But warning bells did start to ring in my head when I read about the TV debate

The two men will be given an hour to argue about the merits of Britain’s membership of the European Union, moderated by David Dimbleby.

Ah, Dimbleby, the Grand Panjandrum of BBC Question Time who inevitably intervenes when he feels a member of the BBCQT panel is simply not up to his own intellectual level. Pompous, smooth and trousering sackfuls of taxpayers’ money via the licence fee he is the epitome of BBC smugness, socially and culturally closer to Clegg than Farage. When you also hear that the audience will be carefully selected to demonstrate “balance” red lights should be flashing in the Farage camp because we just know the BBCQT definition of “balance” from week after week of handpicked rent-a-quote lefty androids who always seem to get chosen when Dimbleby’s eyes scour the audience for his “random” selection…..and isn’t it strange that they often seem to be allowed a few additional comments just in case the message didn’t get through.

During the 2008 and 2012 US Presidential elections the TV debates were organised and “moderated” by the big networks, all dominated by the same liberal/left viewpoint  as our own BBC. The Republican establishment is now coming under increasing pressure from the Tea Party movement to demand a less Democrat friendly structure to the 2016 debates.

I certainly hope that Farage and UKIP also box very cannily with the BBC. It is an organisation that is institutionally inimical to almost everything UKIP stands for.

When you sup with the Beeb you need a very long spoon…..

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19 December
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Our Media Luvvies Do Get The Hots Over Violent Criminals. But Their Victims? Not So Much….

I watched the BBC’s take on the “Great Train Robbers” last night. The Telegraph dubbed it polished which it certainly was. But I can’t help agreeing with one of the comments.

For my money this show was more style than substance. Yes the filming, sets and score were immaculate but where was the script and believability? It sounded more like a 50′s Pinewood studio crime caper. The dialogue between the crooks was dire as if any of them ever spoke to each other in comic voice bubble language. As a consequence I found it very difficult to believe in them and it failed to add any depth to the plot and characters.

It was an excellent example of the geezer caper genre, but more “Italian Job” than “Get Carter” with the snappy one liners and lack of  atmospheric menace – and the production values were not always 100%….snow and leafless trees in August?

Presenting Bruce Reynolds as framing the blag as a symbolic strike against “The Establishment” was a laughable attempt to over egg the whole affair with retro sixties mythology. They were South London thieves, greedy, violent and preferring others to work hard so that they could then rob them of the fruits of their labour.

Robin Hoods they were not.

But then the romantic affair between media luvvies and violent criminals dates back to that very era of the sixties when the colour supplements began to glamourise the Krays.

Dan Hodges, I think, hit the nail on the head. During the “caper” the train driver, Jack Mills, and some of the postal staff were savagely beaten. Others were terrorised into compliance. But, of course, they weren’t chirpy geezers who were dreaming of opening a club or buying a villa in Spain. They were just ordinary anonymous faces who did the boring jobs that keep our society ticking over.

Tonight, the BBC will present the first of a two-part docudrama on the robbery. One, called the “Copper’s Tale”, focuses on the efforts of the police to catch the perpetrators of the crime. The second, “The Robber’s Tale”, shows things from the perspective of Biggs and his colleagues. I presume it was done that way in the interests of balance. I also suspect there will not be a third episode “The Railway Worker’s Tale”.

Amen to that, say I….

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24 October
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“100 Women”….BBC Paying Out Half A Million Pounds Of Our Money On Therapy For The Chattering Classes

Hey you licence paying suckers – yes, you over there worried about your job, your bills and the fact you are being priced out of the housing market. You can relax because the BBC is at last responding to your cri de coeur.

The Beeb feels your pain and knows exactly what you want.

So they are paying a hundred women from all over the world to assemble at Broadcasting House on Friday October 25th

We’ll ask them to tell us where they think the world’s women are today, and to set out their goals for the future.

That’s right…air fares, hotel bills, plenty of food and drink over the weekend.

Plus fee payments, of course…..making it, at a conservative estimate, half a million pounds at least – courtesy of the ever generous taxpayer.

Who are these women?

They hail from all over the world, and from walks of life. They do all kinds of things: they make music, save lives, raise children, run businesses, write, preach, act and tell jokes. 

Here’s a taster

Salwa Abu Libdeh Palestinian TV journalist

Madawi Al-Rasheed Saudi academic, gender expert @MadawiDr

Nadia Al-Sakkaf Editor, Yemen Times @theyementimes

Sreymom Ang Cambodian fashion designer

Joyce Aoko Aruga Student teacher, Kenya

And who do we have from Britain? Here’s a sample

Anna Arrowsmith English porn film director @annaarrowsmith

Sarah Walker (No picture) Head of the English Collective of Prostitutes

Kate Smurthwaite British stand-up comedian and activist @cruella1

Jacqui Smith Former UK Home Secretary @smithjj62

Oh and I almost forgot….

Cherie Blair British barrister and philanthropist @CherieBlairFndn

Cherie Blair…..philanthropist…..lol…

Don’t get me wrong. Some of the 100 women listed are worthy of respect and have achieved a great deal against immense odds. But too many are failed politicians, international bureaucrats, scribblers or obscure inhabitants of The Guardian Arts pages. If they want to meet together to produce a bland concoction of anodyne declarations that are heavy on good intentions but empty of substance then that’s fine. But let someone pay for it out of their own bank account – not out of the taxpayer’s pocket.

No…this is yet another example of the profligacy of the BBC. Pumping out middle class therapy for the chattering classes paid for you and me via the BBC Poll Tax.

You’ll be able to follow every development on BBC TV, radio and online.

No thanks – I’ll be busy rubbing bleach into my eyes. It’ll be far less painful…..

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03 October
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White BBC Pundits Assure UKIP’s Amjad Bashir That He Is In Denial About His “Racist” Fellow Members

Rather bizarre few minutes on BBC Daily Politics…Amjad Bashir, UKIP’s spokesman on Small Business (a Yorkshireman with a Pakistani background) being assured by Jo Coburn and two other white people that Tory Grandee Lord Heseltine was right in saying there was a substantial “racist” element within his party.  Mr Bashir pointed out that he, unlike Heseltine and the three of them, had experienced being the target of racism but never in UKIP.  Indeed he had been warmly received when he spoke at UKIP’s recent conference and was on the party’s short list of potential MEPs.

You could see the patronising look in their eyes……they had already filed him under “Uncle Tom”

After all a bunch of white middle class media pundits always know better…

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26 September
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You Don’t Fool Us, Mr. Miliband…Like Cameron, You Are Scared Of Facing Ukip’s Nigel Farage In TV Debate

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Labour leader Ed Miliband is eager to confront David Cameron on TV during the 2015 General Election campaign but, he claims, Cameron is scared of him.

David Cameron should stop “ducking and diving” and agree to take part in televised debates ahead of the next election, Ed Miliband said.

Cameron certainly has got good reason to be nervous of another TV Debate for in 2010 his weak performance is often credited with being the cause of the Conservatives failure to win an overall majority at that election. He had an open goal but the smooth PR man allowed himself to be Clegged.

But Milliband’s portrayal of himself as the alley cat fighter willing to take on anybody in the mean streets of TV politics is a hypocritical charade

Mr Miliband said: “I will debate [with] anybody. In the end that’s a matter for the broadcasters.

“In the end that’s a matter for the broadcasters” – and in that phrase he showed himself up to be a blustering windbag, using tough guy talk to cover up his own cowardice. Because that was his answer to someone who asked him if he would debate with Ukip’s Nigel Farage.

It’s obvious that Cameron and Miliband have made it crystal clear that they don’t want Farage, whose party’s polling now regularly parallels Clegg’s Liberal Democrats, to play any part in a TV debate. They have watched him hold his own with fellow panellists and audiences on BBC TV’s Question Time too often to fail to realise that he is a formidable debater with a message that resounds not just with disgruntled Tories but also with many Labour voters. Recent elections and polling show there is a great swathe of the working class who feel that Labour has sold them out to a metropolitan elite who despise them for their failure to grasp that mass immigration, multiculturism and the creation of a swollen class of work refusers subsidised by their taxes is the best thing since sliced bread.

Cameron and now Miliband are playing the usual establishment game of stitching us up to keep us quiet and, at present, the media is willing to play by their rules. The worn out husks of political parties that were once vibrant movements energised by mass membership are messing their pants over Ukip, as are their hangers on in the media and the lobbying “industry”

So let’s take the battle to the court of public opinion…..raise such a fuss that the media will have to sit up and take notice and shame the toadies of the political class at ITV, BBC and Channel 4 into admitting Farage into the debate.

Because we have a lever.

It’s not politics because the Grand Panjandrums of TV loath Ukip and all it stands for. But they have a higher love than politics. They worship RATINGS.

The formula is straightforward.

Cameron, Miliband, Clegg…..yawn yawn, universal narcolepsy

Cameron, Miliband, Clegg plus Farage…..ratings gold!!!

Bring it on…….

 

pic h/t

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04 July
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Oh Dear…The BBC Has Been In Denial About Immigration Concerns For Many Years…Never Mind, Water Under The Bridge…..

Well, who would have thought it. A report finds that for decades the BBC  has been rather deaf to those who were worried about immigration into the UK

The report found that the BBC was too reliant on the views of politicians, who tended to steer clear of “taboo” subjects, such as immigration, and warned that “even today the debate on the BBC may not reflect the public mood”…………………….

 ……………………………….His report concluded: “The BBC was slow to reflect the weight of concern in the wider community about issues arising from immigration. “It remains the case that the agenda of debate is probably too driven by the views of politicians.

 

“Slow to reflect” is far too gentle a phrase. For nearly fifty years, from Enoch Powell onwards, the BBC has either demonised or ignored any individual or group raising concerns about the sheer scale of immigration into the UK – not just in the news or documentaries but in drama, “comedy” or soaps.

 

Well, guess what – another report  has” let the cat out of the bag” (as if most of us didn’t know already)…

 

The full impact of mass immigration on British life was laid bare last night by a Home Office report.

It said that half the population lives in a town or city which has experienced high levels of immigration over the past decade.

Ministers said this ‘uncontrolled’ flow had caused a number of problems for wider society, ranging from pressure on maternity services, high rates of infectious diseases and a squeeze on school places, to disproportionate levels of some types of crime, inflated rents and immigrants living in ‘beds in sheds’

Don’t expect any change from the BBC, however.  Oh they’ll prattle on about “lessons learned” and “balance” but the culture is too deeply embedded for any significant change in attitude, not just at the BBC but throughout our media and political elite where “diversity” is something to be celebrated – as long as it is far away from their own leafy streets and their children’s schools.

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06 May
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Right Wing Pundit David Starkey Annoys Left Wing Harriet Harman By Pointing Out Her Posh Background…

Brilliant put down by historian David Starkey of the liberal left panelists on BBC Question Time. As he points out he and Conservative minister Justine Greening are the only ones who come from humble backgrounds and made progress by merit. They also happen to be the only two who are right wing in their views. The others (including the chairman David Dimbleby) had parents who were wealthy and already very well connected in the worlds of politics and/or the media.

His barbs about feminism largely working for the benefit of comfortably off  middle class women scored a direct hit on Harriet Harman – her pompous and self righteous indignation only served to prove his point. Moreover the bonus came from watching a clearly rattled Dimbleby struggling to move the agenda forward. He didn’t appreciate the audience being reminded of how much taxpayers money cascades into his pockets via the publicly funded BBC to add to his already substantial inherited family fortune.

He might be an old queen and I don’t agree with all his views but Starkey is never afraid to upset his fellow panelists – or the audience – with some hard home truths…..

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14 March
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Did Dimbleby & BBC Producers Choreograph The Anti UKIP Question Time Incident That Has Backfired On Them?

The Daily Mail picked up from The Commentator and UKIPIAN the case of Amy Rutland, the Labour Party official who fulminated against Eastleigh UKIP candidate Diane James on last week’s BBC Question Time (James, you might recall, very nearly snatched victory from the Liberal Democrats)

The question was about the impact that UKIP might have on the Tories future electoral hopes.

the camera swung to Amy Rutland, who launched a personal attack on the UKIP panellist, the Eastleigh candidate Diane James, calling her ‘disgusting’.
Miss Rutland, a politics graduate, claimed UKIP preyed on vulnerable people by ‘scaremongering’ about the number of Romanians and Bulgarians expected to come to Britain.

fortunately Diane James remained unhassled and dealt with her in a calm and effective manner – and there it would have ended if some salient facts about Amy Rutland had not emerged over the next few days.

Rutland is South-East Policy Co-ordinator for the Labour Party

She was very active in the Eastleigh by election

Although identified by Stephen Twigg, the Labour MP on the QT panel, merely as “a questioner from the audience” she had been with him at a meeting earlier in the day
Now in itself there is no reason why a political activist should not be present in the QT audience. But there is considerable suspicion that the BBC was aware of her presence and that the chairman, the millionaire David Dimbleby, not only picked her out but then kept her in the spotlight by highlighting her remarks and pressuring Diane James to react rather than answer the original question

I suspect that Dimbleby and the producers choreographed the whole scene hoping to unsettle UKIP’s Diane James (who had impressed the media at Eastleigh) and to undermine UKIP’s policy stance on immigration.

Unfortunately it has backfired on them. Rutland has gone underground and the Beeb is backpedalling furiously.

But never mind – it was all paid for out of our pockets via the BBC Poll Tax (and it’s likely that £450,000 goes each year to David Dimbleby)

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22 January
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Why Nigel Farage And UKIP Are Making The UK’s Political And Media Elite Rather Uncomfortable

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UKIP’s leader Nigel Farage has a letter box mouth, eyes that look as if they will pop out on stalks at any moment and a face that seems to pull in different directions on the cusp of every grin. When he speaks he sounds very much like an on course bookmaker shouting the odds. His views are disdained by the media elite and the political class and you are unlikely to find him at any North London dinner party. He is a PR consultant’s nightmare….

….and yet he and the party he leads, long dismissed as a collection of nutcases, fruitloops and pub bores is edging near to 20% in opinion polls. When he appears on BBC Question Time, for years the graveyard of right wing pundits thanks to its chattering class chairman and an audience carefully selected to skew leftwards, he always goes down well. He also proves more than a match for the great and the good on the panel who discover much to their chagrin, that he is remarkably articulate and skilful in debate.

It’s not so much his euro sceptic views that win him support (though that must never be dismissed as a factor) but his very lack of smoothness, his everyman persona that immediately detaches him from our ruling class, the wealthy, soft figures like Cameron, Milliband and Clegg who have never really had long term experience of work outside politics and who began their rise to the top three quarters of the way up the ladder thanks to influential families and friends.

It is these characters and their cheerleaders in the media who paint Farage and his party as buffoons who could never be trusted to make tough decisions and run the country in an effective and efficient manner – as if their years of governing have not been years of failure consisting mainly of short term, short sighted and flashy “initiatives” threaded with lies and undelivered (and often undeliverable) promises.

Farage is an outsider, he is not of the political class and is not constrained by the conventions of that class. Have a look at this video – unlike many featuring Farage it is not a two minute sound bite designed to make public impact. Forget the cartoony face and the odd diction – just concentrate on what he is saying and then ask yourself if this man is speaking for you rather than speaking at you.

You might be surprised at your reaction.

This man may be political gold.

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14 December
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Aren’t You Glad To Be Paying For Those Regular BBC Flights To The USA?

Yes folks, aren’t you glad that the money taken out of your pocket via the BBC Poll Tax, enabled so many of the BBC elite to travel back and forth over the Atlantic?

The BBC spent more than £1 million on flights to America in the space of seven months this year, according to figures obtained under the Freedom of Information Act,
Executives including former director-general Mark Thompson clocked up the massive bill flying both business and economy class for meetings and to make programmes.

Yes, forget about the excessive use of fossil fuel and annoying the citizens who live under your flight path – is it absolutely essential to be physically present at those meetings? After all the BBC is television company…can’t they organise “virtual” conferences via skype?
Then what about making programmes – the BBC schedules are full of rubbish anyway so is it necessary to spend hundreds of thousands on sending “Top Gear” or Stephen Fry to the USA as a change of background from the usual crap?

Of course, the costs of these visits are even greater when you consider the hotel bills (doubt whether they stay in Motel 6) and cabs, hire cars, restaurants etc

Note that Mark Thompson travelled to the US a lot – did that include visits to his new employer, the New York Times? I think we should be told…
But do you know what, for me, is the most gut wrenching fact of all?

As the BBC is not legally obliged to reveal full details of how it spends the £3.7 billion it is given each year through the licence fee, it is not possible to name every staff member who flew to the U.S. between April and October.

Not good enough – it is this kind of “broad brush accounting” that helps to cover a multitude of sins. It’s time we were allowed to see these detailed accounts because, after all, IT IS OUR MONEY, YOU BBC FREELOADERS

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