THE IRANIAN MAKE-OVER.

When one considers the Islamofascist character of the Iranian government, backed up by deranged Mullahs and their puppet president Ahmadinejad who has an imaginary 13th Imam as a dining pal, only the BBC would conclude that this is a conservative regime and yet that is exactly how it is what repeatedly described on an item on the “Today” programme just after the 6.30am news. Discussing elections taking place in Iran today, the BBC reporter stated that “moderates” might struggle to produce a breakthrough because of the essentially conservative nature of the regime. So just to reprise – hanging gays, enforcing shar’ia, backing terrorism, profound anti-semitism – these are all the hallmarks of a conservative administration, if one listens to the BBC. Is it any wonder that the BBC’s leftwing bias is a target for many of us when we witness this kind of tripe served up as impartial news reporting? Curiously enough, 25 minutes later, the BBC followed up with a story suggesting that the British Conservative party was not showing enough a lead over Labour to win at the next election. Conservatives = bad in BBC worldview, and they sure know how to subtly poison the well, don’t they?

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53 Responses to THE IRANIAN MAKE-OVER.

  1. Hillhunt says:

    Mr Orange:

    How often can I praise your genius! You have led us so far and so fast and now this…

    We will henceforth whinge about words whose definitions we choose to ignore. I must alert you that, along with the BBC, are these nasty, terrorist-loving freedom-hating traitors:

    Wikipedia: Conservatism is a term used to describe political philosophies that favour tradition and gradual change, where tradition refers to religious, cultural, or nationally defined beliefs and customs.

    Dictionary.com:
    con·serv·a·tive adjective
    1. disposed to preserve existing conditions, institutions, etc., or to restore traditional ones, and to limit change.
    2. cautiously moderate or purposefully low: a conservative estimate.
    3. traditional in style or manner; avoiding novelty or showiness: conservative suit…

    American Heritage Dictionary:adj.
    Favoring traditional views and values; tending to oppose change….

    There we were all thinking were that it’s a word defining those who cling on to traditional ways in whatever culture it defines. None of us had yet clocked that the Iranian theocracy were, um, forward-looking on culture and religion.

    But you lead us into seeing that the c-word refers only to those policies you deem to be conservative.

    Could I modestly suggest that we start a new campaign next week when we demand a new meaning for the word Vance. Readers might suggest several definitions…

    Biased BBC: Words. Mean. What. We. Say.

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  2. backwoodsman says:

    Hillhunt, you worthless troll, it would be rather more to the point for the beeboids to refer to the repressive tendancies of the Iranian regime, as being similar to that of nulab here. Bugger off and stop trying to defend the indefensible.

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  3. Oscar says:

    Well said backwoodsman. The report this morning on Iran repeatedly contrasted the words “conservative=bad” and “liberal = good” – neither of these terms, imported from a British parliamentary democracy are appropriate to describe the situation in Iran. The BBC has bent over backwards to present the Iranians in as positive a light as possible – witness their interminable Inside Iran (I think that is what it was called) season last year. This is despite the fact that Iran continually contravenes human rights that are supposed to be dear to the hearts of the BBC like gay rights. Rather than give any proper coverage of their multiple abuses – which should be called by their proper name – fundamentalist Islamism – the BBC seem more intent on trying to score political points in the Westminster village by associating them with the ‘Conservatives’. Yet again the BBC expose themselves to be morally bankrupt.

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  4. Martin says:

    How come the BBC are igroring the story of the homosexual Iranian trying to stop being sent back to Iran?

    It’s all over the rest of the media and Sky News.

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  5. David Vance says:

    Oscar,

    Exactly right. The idea is to constantly associate the term conservatism with evil, and the BBC excel at it. Apparently Islamofascist is not in their vocabulary!

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  6. Joel says:

    Do you mean this story Martin?

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/europe/7294908.stm

    I saw it on BBC News 24 last night and searched bbc.co.uk for ‘Iran’.

    Then theres this story covered quite a bit yesterday too:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/programmes/5334594.stm

    As to the original post, I think you show a lack of understanding of Iranian politics and the struggle between moderates and what are legitimately called conservatives ie ‘political philosophies that favour tradition and gradual change’.

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  7. David Vance says:

    Is wiping Israel “off the map” an example of gradual change? Is arming Hezbollah an instance of tradition. This is pure semantic nonsense. The Iranian “political” leaders are deranged Islamofascists, end of story. Only the BBC and fellow leftists portray them as conservatives.

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  8. Steg Stegsson says:

    Of course Iran is conservative. Have I stumbled into a GCSE politics debate? Can no one understand the difference between conservative and Conservative? What next? Liberal and libertarian are the same thing?

    Further confirmation of the GCSE status of this blog can be found in the fact that no one seems to recall the ‘right wing’ bias of the BBC during the ’60s and ’70s.

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  9. archroy says:

    “There we were all thinking were that it’s a word defining those who cling on to traditional ways in whatever culture it defines”, says Hillhunt

    Is theocratic dictatorship an Iranian tradition? I would have thought Iranian ‘conservatives’ were those wanting a return of the Shah

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  10. Phil says:

    I rather think the Iranian government thinks of itself as being revolutionary. As in Revolutionary Guards.

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  11. Hillhunt says:

    Mr Orange:

    The Iranian “political” leaders are deranged Islamofascists, end of story. Only the BBC and fellow leftists portray them as conservatives.

    You’d better start re-defining fellow leftist, too…

    Here’s that hotbed of Iranian cheerleading, The Jerusalem Post:

    the reformist coalition only won 39 seats in the 2004 elections, leaving 156 seats to the conservatives and 95 seats to independents.
    http://www.jpost.com/servlet/Satellite?cid=1205420681690&pagename=JPost%2FJPArticle%2FShowFull

    Or our own, politically, ahem, Conservative, Daily Telegraph:

    But the contest for the 290-seat parliament, or Majlis, still confronts President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad with a crucial test. For the first time, the hardline conservative camp has split.
    One group, styling itself the United Front, backs the president.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2008/03/13/wiran113.xml

    Or even Mr Murdoch’s proudly conservative Wall St Journal:

    Conservative candidates — including ultraconservatives such as Mr. Ahmadinejad who seek to rule Iran with revolutionary and religious ideals and moderate conservatives who favor some flexibility — significantly outnumber those who seek broader systemic and democratic changes.
    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120545849596335521.html

    Seems to me you have three options:

    1. Battle on because you alone defy dictionaries, wussy liberals and those pansy-faced quitters at the JP, the Torygraph and the WSJ
    2. Have a quick ring around their editors (and thousands of others) to see if they’ll quietly stealth edit their sites till you’ve battered the BBC on this one.
    3. Do the decent thing and admit that this is another stinker born of bitter prejudice and striking ignorance.

    Biased BBC: Where Dictionaries Are Not To Be Trusted

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  12. Hugh says:

    Hillhunt, though still annoying, is right on this one. It might well be unfair but the description “conservative” in this sense is widely understood and used.

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  13. David Vance says:

    When the term is applied over the radio, I don’t hear the quotes, do you?
    I also could care less what the print media says, the name on this blog is Biased BBC and the BBC hates anything that is not radical left.

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  14. Hillhunt says:

    Mr Orange:

    I also could care less what the print media says, the name on this blog is Biased BBC and the BBC hates anything that is not radical left.

    Are we saying, then, that this blog no longer tries to show bias, but simply asserts it, regardless of:

    1. context or
    2. evidence or
    3. accepted definitions in dictionaries, encyclopedia or
    4. standard journalistic practice (even among conservative media)?
    .

    Biased BBC: Evidence Is For Girlyboys

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  15. max says:

    The Saudis are also conservative, it appears:
    “Saudi Arabia is the Gulf’s most conservative Arab state, while Qatar has tried to forge an independent stance, including on media freedom and contacts with Israel.”
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/7287247.stm

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  16. David vance says:

    Wahhabism = conservatism through BBC glasses.

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  17. Martin says:

    Joel:

    Come on!!! Sky News went BIG on this story as have much of the leftie media. News 24 is watched by no one as is most of the BBC new website.

    Where has this story been on the 6pm or 10pm news?

    NOWHERE!

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  18. Hillhunt says:

    min:

    The Saudis are also conservative, it appears:

    Those BBC types, Lord Haw-Haws to a man.

    Oh, wait…here are the Trots at the, er, State Department in Washington:

    Islamic law is the basis of the authority of the monarchy and provides the foundation of the country’s conservative customs and social practices….The norms for public behavior in Saudi Arabia are extremely conservative, and religious police, known as Mutawwa, are charged with enforcing these standards.
    http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_pa_tw/cis/cis_1012.html

    And, once again, those yeller-bellies at the Torygraph:

    And on Sunday, (the) US ambassador to the United Nations and the former US envoy in Baghdad, offered a rare public criticism of the conservative Arab state…. “Saudi Arabia and a number of other countries are not doing all they can to help us in Iraq.”
    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/main.jhtml?xml=/news/2007/08/01/warms201.xml

    Biased BBC: Politics 101.

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  19. Hillhunt says:

    Mr Orange:

    I also could care less what the print media says, the name on this blog is Biased BBC and the BBC hates anything that is not radical left.

    Okey-dokey. Let’s avoid those hate-filled radical rags like the WSJ, the JP and the DT. Let’s look instead at a reliable broadcaster: How about freedom-loving, Murdoch-run Sky News. What are they saying today?

    Blimey!

    Iran Goes To Polls To Elect Parliament

    Voting is under way in Iran in a parliamentary election widely expected to be won by conservatives.

    Must be a blip. What are they actually transmitting? Oh, this:

    Many pro-reform candidates have been prevented from standing and the ballot’s widely expected to be won by president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s Conservative party. Sky’s Tim Marshall reports.

    Biased BBC: Now twinned with Biased Sky News

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  20. Anonymous says:

    Steg Stegsson | 14.03.08 – 11:31 am | #

    eff off

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  21. Anonymous says:

    Unbelievable,
    I remember the BBC accusing Czech of being also “deeply conservative”:
    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/europe/7189556.stm

    This puts the democratic secular Czechs in the same category as Iranian Mullahs.

    BBC’s moral relativism would make the late crackpot Edward Said very proud.

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  22. Cockney says:

    isn’t it the UK Conservative Party that’s distorted the meaning of conservative rather than the other way round?

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  23. David Vance says:

    Wikipedia: Conservatism is a term used to describe political philosophies that favour tradition and gradual change, where tradition refers to religious, cultural, or nationally defined beliefs and customs.

    So, engineering a second holocaust is a conservative aspiration? Really??

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  24. Joel says:

    I like to inform and educate so below are some websites that may help enlighten readers about Iranian society.

    The forces of conservatism want to maintain the status quo, others want reform:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/7279003.stm

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/shared/spl/hi/middle_east/03/iran_power/html/default.stm

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  25. Hillhunt says:

    David Vance:
    Wikipedia: Conservatism is a term used to describe political philosophies that favour tradition and gradual change, where tradition refers to religious, cultural, or nationally defined beliefs and customs.

    So, engineering a second holocaust is a conservative aspiration? Really??

    David Vance: A Man At War. With The Dictionary. And Encyclopaediae. And the Conservative Press. And even Sky News

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  26. Joel says:

    Martin: You puzzle me, your arguments often seem to be contradictory.

    If the BBC is so in love with Islam and the Iranian regime as some here suggest, why cover the story at all?
    We can argue about how BIG the coverage was, but of what little news I saw yesterday, there was quite a bit. Depends when and what youre watching.

    But not covering the story on the 6 or 10 is hardly evidence of bias, is it? While how newsworthy a story is, is very subjective, its not exactly earth shattering news is it?

    “Sky News went BIG on this story as have much of the leftie media. News 24 is watched by no one as is most of the BBC new website.”

    Don’t you think the BBC is part of the ‘leftie’ media? BBC News 24 is the most watched 24 news channel in the UK. I dont know the figures but I would presume bbc.co.uk is visited daily by millions.

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  27. Hillhunt, would you agree that those in Iran whom the BBC terms ‘conservative’ are oppressive? If so, then would the term ‘oppressive’ not be a more appropriate description than ‘conservative’ because the latter may have more than one definition but the former does not. How about ‘authoritarian’, or… check a thesaurus.

    That is exactly the point being made by DV: the ambiguity in the term ‘conservative’ is being used by the BBC to tarnish western right-wing politics, and deliberately so.

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  28. David Vance says:

    Allan,

    Absolutely right.

    The sad thing is the trolls who come here and appear to be at war with reality.

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  29. Hillhunt says:

    Allan:

    the ambiguity in the term ‘conservative’ is being used by the BBC to tarnish western right-wing politics, and deliberately so.

    If every leading medium feels comfortable with the use of the c-word to describe Ahmadinejad and his followers, it seems very odd to demand the BBC alone refrain from its use.

    If the Telegraph, the Jerusalem Post, the WSJ and Sky News (among thousands of others) routinely use this description, it is part of a common and non-ambiguous language.

    They can’t all be setting out to “tarnish western right-wing politics”, can they?

    Clearly, if you start from the notion that all BBC coverage is tainted, than everything they do will seem like bias, even if they use the same words as everyone else. But that is attacking bias from a position of total bias yourself. How healthy is that?

    On your point about oppression: That may be a description of the behaviour of the Ahmadinejad Government. But conservative describes its place on the political spectrum of the country, which is the label most useful in assessing an election.
    .

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  30. Cassandra says:

    Seems strange to me that J Reith stopped posting all of a sudden then hey presto, Hillhunt starts posting and posting and posting! Lots of posts mostly calling DV childish names like “mr orange”. I wonder? Every post DV makes and up comes HH with lots of obvious pro BBC/nuliebour propaganda? Plenty of greasy and smarmy wit with a large helping of arrogance?
    Hillhunt seems to be online all the time watching and waiting and ready to stick his opinion in?

    Hillhunt,

    I do not know if you work for the BBC/NuLiebour and frankly I dont care!
    BUT please stop throwing insults and stop calling people childish names! It does not help your case and people are sick of your patronizing wit.
    If you have an opinion then state it plain and simple, there is no need to mix your 100% partyline answers with your greasy and unfunny asides.

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  31. Cassandra says:

    Hillhunt,

    The term conservative on its own is not proof of bias BUT given the past nature of the BBC it makes people wonder just why the BBC are making such a big thing of calling the Iranian regime conservative at every possible opportunity where a negative meaning can be attached to it.
    Your case does hold water IF the BBC would describe the word conservative in a positive way in some stories BUT they dont do they? I have not heard one instance where the BBC have used the word conservative in a positive light.
    If you can show me where the BBC have used the term in a positive light I will support your argument fully.

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  32. Hillhunt says:

    Cassandra:

    The term conservative on its own is not proof of bias BUT given the past nature of the BBC it makes people wonder just why the BBC are making such a big thing of calling the Iranian regime conservative at every possible opportunity where a negative meaning can be attached to it.

    It depends what you call a big thing. The c-word is political shorthand for a group of people with views considered traditional in their own culture. If it’s commonly used by all the conservative and B-BBC friendly media quoted above, we come round to the same question: Why pillory the BBC alone for using it?

    If you can show me where the BBC have used the term in a positive light I will support your argument fully.

    I think you make the mistake of seeking moral approval for a word which merely describes a party’s relative position in its local politics.

    Does Ahmedinejad argue for sticking to long-established religious and cultural traditions? Yes. Is he arguing for a radical change in these traditions? No. By all of the accepted definitions, this makes his stance a conservative one.

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  33. David Vance says:

    Planning for the second holocaust “may” be indicative that we are dealing with something that is far from conservative but really close to facist – it’s Islamofacist. End of.

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  34. Joel says:

    Cassandra, you seem to have missed this bit: “Clearly, if you start from the notion that all BBC coverage is tainted, than everything they do will seem like bias, even if they use the same words as everyone else.”

    Its not about whether its used in a positive sense or a negative sense, it is the correct word to use, full stop.

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  35. Hillhunt says:

    Mr Orange:

    Planning for the second holocaust “may” be indicative that we are dealing with something that is far from conservative but really close to facist – it’s Islamofacist. End of.

    Let’s start from that position since you have padlocked yourself to it.

    Will you be sending one of your fiery posts of denunciation to all of the respectable organisations – WSJ, JP, Telegraph, Sky, the US State Department and many others – who have inexplicably joined the BBC in this perverse use of the c-word.

    And if not, why not?

    Biased BBC: Lexicophobia – a way of life

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  36. David Vance says:

    The trolls in here are either stupid or arrogant. I have made it clear I’m not feeding them – so the only question is why are they still here?

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  37. ThinAndBritish says:

    David, HH has made a fair point this time. You can add the Times to the list of media who used the c-word today.

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  38. Jeffd says:

    There once was a troll called Hillhunt
    Who constantly talked like a……

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  39. Bryan says:

    Is theocratic dictatorship an Iranian tradition? I would have thought Iranian ‘conservatives’ were those wanting a return of the Shah
    archroy | 14.03.08 – 11:43 am |

    I rather think the Iranian government thinks of itself as being revolutionary. As in Revolutionary Guards.
    Phil | 14.03.08 – 11:46 am

    These are two good points. And the use of the word “conservative” by media other than the BBC is not in itself proof that the BBC is not biased here.

    Anyone notice a violent contradiction in this sentence from the WSJ article:

    ….including ultraconservatives such as Mr. Ahmadinejad who seek to rule Iran with revolutionary and religious ideals…

    An ultraconservative revolutionary?

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120545849596335521.html

    David Vance pointed out that, Planning for the second holocaust “may” be indicative that we are dealing with something that is far from conservative but really close to facist – it’s Islamofacist. End of.
    David Vance | 14.03.08 – 5:21 pm

    Well it looks like we should go with [email protected] | 14.03.08 – 3:54 pm and use the term “oppressive”. It’s certainly far more accurate. I think “terrorists” is closest to an accurate description of Iran’s leaders. After all, Iran:

    *Actively seeks the destruction of Israel by arming, sponsoring and training terror groups Islamic Jihad, Hamas and Hezbollah for the main purpose of murdering Israeli civilians.

    *Terrorises its own people by carrying out brutal executions for minor infringements of Islamic ‘law’.

    About the only action by Iran’s leaders that can be described as “conservative” is the imposition of strict dress codes on women.

    The media needs to come up with new terms to report on “elections” for the terror regime. The cringing BBC is certainly not up to the task. Besides, the BBC is head over heels in love with Iran because of the Mullahs’ hatred of America and Israel.

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  40. Anonymous says:

    Bryan:

    The media needs to come up with new terms to report on “elections” for the terror regime. The cringing BBC is certainly not up to the task.

    Let’s accept that for a moment.

    Where do you start the campaign? Why bother with the BBC since they are certainly not up to the task.

    Where would you start? The Jerusalem Post? The Wall St Journal? The Telegraph?

    I freely acknowledge that because I defend the BBC on a regular basis, many of you assume I have an automatic setting. I don’t, as discussions on other strands, viewed fairly, will attest.

    But this is idiot stuff.

    It starts with a narrow definition of conservative, which is taken to mean a set of policies espoused only by a limited number of US and UK politicians.

    It ignores the widespread body of independent academic opinion, which defines the word in its widest sense in dictionaries, encyclopaediae and other journals.

    It ignores the acceptance of this wider usage by undoubtedly conservative media, media deeply hostile to the Iranian regime.

    And it then demands that the whole world judge the BBC alone for that usage, whilst blithely ignoring everyone else’s.

    Many of you share an emotional attachment to the Israeli cause, to spreading the word about the excesses of Islam and to arguing in favour of British broadcasting being handed entirely over to commercial ownership. All of those things are responsible and respectable aims.

    But permit those of us who feel that the BBC has far more virtues than vices and value it as a unique source of information and entertainment to make our case, too.

    To win, in the end, you need to convince people. It is just not possible to do that by screaming blue murder when the BBC uses an adjective which is used throughout the media spectrum to describe the same set of people pursuing a specific, if unattractive, set of policies.

    Where bias exists, it should be recognised. But this is so far from it that it’s tragic to pursue it.

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  41. Hillhunt says:

    whoops… that was me…

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  42. David Vance says:

    An Iranian revolutionary Islamofascist regime set by the wicked Ayatollah Khomeini that isp intent of destroying Israel is in NO way “conservative”. It’s been a gas hearing siren voices claim otherwise but sorry – the BBC drips poison on this o ne and all the obsfucation in the world won’t stop THIS site exposing it. I suppose it’s the same deranged mindset that suggests the National Socialists were right-wing. The political left are dissemblers, full of deceit and they’ll get no pass here.

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  43. Hillhunt says:

    Mr Orange:

    the BBC drips poison on this o ne and all the obsfucation in the world won’t stop THIS site exposing it.

    Brave. All things considered.

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  44. David Vance says:

    Trolls never learn seemingly.

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  45. Bryan says:

    Hillhunt | 14.03.08 – 10:41 pm

    OK, the point has been made that it is inaccurate of David Vance to state that, “…only the BBC would conclude that this is a conservative regime…”

    That said, I’ve noticed that certain descriptive terms get picked up by journalists and used almost in an unthinking fashion. It’s a simple matter to Google and find these terms widely scattered throughout the media. I have even heard some Israeli journalists using “militant” when they would usually say “terrorist”. They are light years away from the attitude of the average pro-Islamist BBC hack when he/she says “militant”.

    Don’t forget that the BBC’s reputation precedes it and the way it has handled Iran makes people cringe with embarrassment. The Iranian government is arguably the most despicable regime currently burdening this overburdened planet. To give it an air of respectability by calling it “conservative” is to obfuscate and muddy the waters. Have a look at the WSJ article you linked to. Who wrote it? Farnaz Fassihi. Is he Iranian? Probably. What is his relationship to the regime? Who knows. But for those of us who have been following the BBC for some time, its relationship to the regime is obviously one of dhimmitude. At the risk of boring people who have seen me point the following out a few times, Frances Harrison produced the one and only BBC report that I have seen critical of the Iranian government:

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/programmes/from_our_own_correspondent/6183061.stm

    As a BBC article it was quite remarkable because it poured scorn on radical, anti-Semitic Islam. But someone evidently put his hand over her mouth because she has been quite subdued since then, coming up with the kind of timid, meaningless pieces for which the BBC is well known. I guess they are looking after their interests in Iran. There’s the BBC Farsi Service to consider. Doesn’t make a great contribution to journalism, though.

    It ignores the widespread body of independent academic opinion, which defines the word in its widest sense in dictionaries, encyclopaediae and other journals.

    As I said, the media, including the BBC, is going to have to come up with something a little stronger if it wants to report on pure evil. “Conservative” simply doesn’t crack it.

    I can’t agree that the BBC has more virtues than vices. That was possibly the case when, for example, you had the great Alistair Cooke with his Letter from America. There was a journalist worthy of the name. Who do you have now? The pompous, self-important ignoramous Justin Webb inflicting his narrow anti-American agenda on an unsuspecting public from his elevated position as North America “editor”.

    Apart from the fact that Cooke really could write and knew how to spin a yarn and draw the listener in, it was impossible to detect his political leanings, if he had any, from his work. That’s how it should be. However, the claim of today’s BBC of “impartiality” is a bad joke. The BBC is like a private club pushing its blinkered political agenda rather than a public broadcasting service. Who needs it?

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  46. Disinterested Bystander says:

    ‘….no one seems to recall the ‘right wing’ bias of the BBC during the ’60s and ’70s.”
    Steg Stegsson | 14.03.08 – 11:31 am |

    Me neither. I can’t recall it at all.
    But then again the ‘right wing’ bias never existed. Unless of course you’re thinking of the crap sit-coms that the BBC seems to excel at.
    If you examine the content of ’60s and ’70s BBC output through today’s perspective then yes, it might appear as mildly ‘right wing’.
    Having been in the armed forces in the ’60s I can tell you that we viewed them as crypto communists and not at all ‘right wing’ as you claim.
    Bryan makes mention on another thread about the BBC reporting during the 6 Day War. I remember it. It was pretty dire, and as for the Vietnam War well it’s like BBC history repeating itself.

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  47. Disinterested Bystander says:

    I see that the idiot savant is blathering on with his pathetic definition retrievals of ‘conservative’, predictably missing the point entirely, yet thinking himself very clever indeed.
    The buffoon has delusions of intellect.
    I implore you all, please someone, send sillybunt a brain. Failing that, if you know Ed Balls, ask him to give the clown a job, he’d fit in well with the slimeballs.

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  48. Anonymous says:

    BBC trots out the c-word again…

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/7297923.stm

    “Conservatives” (x3), not “hard-liners” or some other label.

    Nope, not at all accidental.

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  49. Bryan says:

    Bryan makes mention on another thread about the BBC reporting during the 6 Day War. I remember it. It was pretty dire, and as for the Vietnam War well it’s like BBC history repeating itself.
    Disinterested Bystander | 15.03.08 – 4:08 am

    Be interesting to do some research on the BBC’s output in the sixties and seventies. If anyone can show that it was “right wing” I’ll eat my keyboard. However, it’s probably true to say that it was staffed more by starry-eyed, bleeding-heart liberal idealists than the vicious leftie fascist ideologues of today’s BBC. I’d also hazard a guess that they were a bit more knowledgeable and professional than the self-important propagandists who currently staff the BBC.

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  50. Hillhunt says:

    Bryan:

    The Iranian government is arguably the most despicable regime currently burdening this overburdened planet. To give it an air of respectability by calling it “conservative” is to obfuscate and muddy the waters.

    With respect, I think you are missing the point of labels like conservative, militant, liberal and so on. You assume that these confer a fixed meaning – and because you approve of conservative politics in Europe or the USA, you assume journalists are trying to give an air of respectability to some other cause.

    These are all relative words. They’re useful in describing someone’s position in a particular political environment. They don’t confer moral value.

    Many writers described Mrs Thatcher’s policies as radical – they departed from previous Conservative thinking and brought about much change. But no-one assumes the word means the same applied to campus radicals in America, or to radical Islam. It just helps us define the flavour of each political group.

    I understand the sensitivities about the use of the word militant when you want to call people terrorist. But it’s another of those words. It’s equally applied to Derek Hatton’s old Trotskyist mates and to pro-active Christianity – The Church Militant.

    Have a look at the WSJ article you linked to. Who wrote it? Farnaz Fassihi. Is he Iranian? Probably. What is his relationship to the regime? Who knows.

    Well, yes, but there’s a fair bet that the WSJ is not going to be giving a platform to radical Islam. There are many Iranians who take a principled stand against the theocratic regime. In any event, everyone else, not just Fassihi, is using the c-word as the BBC does.

    As I said, the media, including the BBC, is going to have to come up with something a little stronger if it wants to report on pure evil. “Conservative” simply doesn’t crack it.

    I think you’re making another error here. The BBC story – and all the other coverage – is reporting on an election, not trying to define Ahmadinejad or his regime in moral terms.

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