Awkward, Very Awkward.

Unemployment is down…but Stephanie Flanders is on the case…..she says it should be good news……but to her mind it is a sign of a sickness at the heart of the British economy…and it’s probably all George Osborne’s fault.

‘To get rid of that longer term mystery, the ONS would have to decide that everything it had said about GDP in the past two years was wildly wrong…..implausible, even to those – like the Bank of England – who believe the ONS does tend to understate growth.

Of course, there is the other possible explanation, that the jobs figures are actually worse than they look.’

Unemployment going down plays against Balls’ assertion that the government is borrowing because unemployment is pushing up welfare costs….that can’t be if unemployment is going down…funny Flanders not raise that little issue.

If only  we had a Plan B.

It’s been a recurring theme all day on the BBC (and over recent months)….questioning the validity of the unemployment figures…when they’re going in a downward direction  that is.

Either they are wrong or the jobs are the wrong sort of job…apparently.  I don’t remember any such qualms about employment figures under Labour…or crime figures…if Labour said crime was going down Mark Easton would be on the case defending the validity of those figures everytime a Tory minister suggested that they may be wrong.

Flanders admits in the end that she can find no real answer (er…perhaps jobs are being created to do work that is being created?…simple)……but she isn’t going to let you carry on thinking that there is any good news to be had under a Tory Chancellor.

Keep sowing those seeds of doubt and perhaps Ed and Ed will get elected…and she can get some great scoops with her close personal contacts.

Surely any half awake, half decent journalist would go to a company that is employing more workers and just ask them ‘Why are you employing more people?’

Is it really a mystery worthy of Sherlock Holmes?  Shame we have Clouseau on the case.


Bookmark the permalink.

23 Responses to Awkward, Very Awkward.

  1. Deborah says:

    I was only half (or a quarter) listening to the 1pm Radio 4 news and had assumed that unemployment numbers were up (resolve – listen more carefully and analyse everything I hear).


  2. fitzfitz says:

    Why do you tolerate these lazy, knee jerk “journalists” of the left ? This Flanders woman should move to the NY Times where she would find the culture rather alluring .


    • David Preiser (USA) says:

      She’s very well-credentialed. That’s enough for the BBC.


    • LondonCalling says:

      Flanders is embedded with Labour, literaly. She is such a tainted source, any half decent organisation would consider her reporting “tainted” and fire her. But of course we are talking about the BBC…


      • David Preiser (USA) says:

        I’d be less concerned about her Labour connections than the fact that she’s just plain wrong about so much so often. Not to mention her consistently partisan policy recommendations.


    • Ian Hills says:

      Why do we tolerate it? We’ve got no choice.


  3. Nick says:

    The GDP figures are a fiction too.

    Taxes at 45%. Tax revenue at 570 bn. GDP = 1,270 bn. So why report 1,400 or 1,500 bn?

    It’s a fudge. The only really accurate figures are the percentage tax rate and the tax take.

    No wonder the ONS want to make it up.


  4. The Old Bloke says:

    I listen to my local BBC radio at lunchtimes just to have a chuckle at how their phone in programme..yes they set the agenda, tackled this news story. It goes without saying that every trick in the book was used over a period of about an hour to turn what should have been a good news story into one of a human disaster perpertrated by the *government* of the day. Yesterdays programme also got me laughing when it was quite obvious that the lead story about rail fare increases and of course the Tory government was to blame, but whoops, their lead speaker on the issue suggested it was Labour that set up this idea of increases over and above inflation. O’h dear that kinda took the wind out of the interviewers sails.


    • Amounderness Lad says:

      Ah, the rail fare increases. Another example of BBC duplicity. The PM programme on Radio 4 decided they would speak to some rail users with the obvious intention of having us believe they were just ordinary members of the public who happen to use the railways.

      One of those “ordinary members of the public” just happened to comment, “When we speak to rail users we find…….”, the rest of the details don’t particularly matter. I don’t know about the rest of you but I, personally, don’t know many ordinary members of the public who use the Royal “We” when speaking on their own behalf.

      The Beeb, whilst indicating the person was just another random rail user, were obviously talking to a PR person for either the Unions or some pressure group and waas pushing their particular agenda about both rail fares and the railways.

      It is a method used widely by the Beeb to present somebody with a vested interest, especially when it comes to pushing the Beebs agenda, as if they were an ordinary member of the public speaking as an individual.


  5. Scrobs... says:

    As is the norm with Beeb ‘journalism’, just hear the words and understand the opposite, because she spouts awful Ballsian theory, probably because she learned it from him when they were closer chums.


  6. Leftie-Loather says:

    “If only we had a Plan B.”

    If only Al-Beeb’s beloved bankrupting Labour really had a Plan A!


  7. Span Ows says:

    testing twice


  8. Span Ows says:

    I wasn’t planning on doing this but so relentlessly upbeat was the BBC TV news report on the German economy, courtesy of Stephanie Flanders, that I felt a corrective was needed.

    “Eurocrash: the BBC misleads”

    Eureferendum (yesterday) couldn’t post the link.


  9. The General says:

    “Surely any half awake, half decent journalist would go to a company that is employing more workers and just ask them ‘Why are you employing more people?’”

    She could not possibly do that….she might get a totally unacceptable answer. Best to stick with explanations put forward by Ed and Ed.


    • Guest Who says:

      ‘any half awake, half decent journalist’
      What, like some who may read anything other than the Graun, delivered and paid for by the licence fee payer?:)


    • Guest Who says:

      She could also try twitter of course.
      That’s worked out well for her recently as well.


  10. Richard D says:

    Retail sales volumes rose 0.3% between June and July.
    And the figure for June was revised up significantly to 0.8%, rather than the 0.1% previously estimated, after the real figures were received.

    Expectations were much lower. If my maths is correct, and the expectations were what I read, there was an expectation of a 0.1% contraction in July vis-a-vis the previously reported 0.1% growth in June, leaving an expected cumulative net change over the two months of 0% to all intents and purposes. However the figures released today seem to indicate a cumulative net growth of more than 1% over the two months being reviewed. Also shop price inflation dropped to 0.2% in July, its lowest for almost 3 years.

    Now these are certainly not spectacular, I agree, but the BBC response ? It found an economist who, when it was put to him that the retail sales figures were encouraging, denied this almost out of hand…without challenge from the interviewer.

    The BBC. The narrative is strong with this one….


  11. johnnythefish says:

    Unemployement going down with net immigration still running at circa 250,000 a year – I’d call that a bleeding miracle, Stephanie. Sorry to mention the ‘i’ word, but it does sort of have a bearing on this issue, though you’d never think it from any of the BBC’s coverage.


  12. Sir Arthur Strebe-Grebling says:

    And some more awkward moments on BBC News 24 this morning. Today’s anti-government script is that the cost of going to university is now so high that students are being deterred. So they sent reporters to interview some students who have just got their A level results (and some who will take A levels next year).
    Unfortunately for the BBC they all wanted to go to university and the BBC couldn’t find anyone to read from their script.


    • Guest Who says:

      I enjoyed SKY’s attempts too.
      All the peroxide-sink moppets (all who looked about 35) they got to open their envelopes seemed more excited about 3 years at Uni than really following prompts on media narratives.
      Mind you, as all seemed to have got Prizes for all A*’s in PE and Sports Reporting (for some reason the secondary education establishment chosen didn’t seem to have much of a focus on science or engineering) , possibly some pause may have been worth it as to how many will end up walking into a career tailored to hone such talents, especially with a £40k debt in tow.


  13. lillian says:

    The BBC is now going into overdrive about the school playing fields story. The big bad Tories are selling off the playing fields, the BBC does not even try to hide it distortions of stories when they can discredit the Government.
    Truth is between 1997 and 2010, 226 playing fields were sold off, or 17 per year.
    The coalition sold 15 per year.
    The other fact they have tried to hide is the fact that some of those playing fields signed off were ones that Labour had approved and, were just tick boxed.
    The BBC of course will keep this going for days.


  14. KimJ says:

    It seems like the debate has gone up a notch as the Mail on Sunday report shows below.

    Stephanie is no doubt confused you see in her world everyone assumes that Ed Balls is indeed correct, so there can be no bias…