From the Mail…
We’re out of touch with ordinary, ‘ghastly’ Britons, says ex-BBC chief: Leaked email says it ‘ignores and despises’ millions because they do not embrace liberal views
The BBC ‘ignores and despises’ millions of Britons because they do not embrace the liberal views of a metropolitan elite, a leaked memo has revealed.
The Corporation was said to be ‘completely bewildered’ about how to respond to the concerns of ‘ghastly’ ordinary people.
There would be no end to the issues facing the broadcaster until the ‘London bubble’ had burst, said a report by David Cowling, former head of the BBC’s political research unit.
Sensitive subjects that worried households were barely acknowledged by the political class, his analysis claimed.
Although he did not name specific issues, Mr Cowling would almost certainly have in mind mass immigration – routinely among the biggest fears of voters – and the way foreign arrivals have changed communities in the UK.
For decades, politicians and the BBC have been accused of censoring debate, branding as ‘racist’ those who voiced concerns about the perceived erosion of our national identity or the pressure on jobs, housing, schools and healthcare. Fury at being overlooked for so long has led to vast numbers of Britons – many casting a ballot for the first time – to vote to quit the EU in a howl of frustration at the political elite.
Mr Cowling, a former special adviser to a Labour Cabinet minister in the 1970s, made the withering assessment in an internal memo that was leaked on the internet.
His words are damning because the BBC’s political research unit provides extensive background briefings for journalists and programme-makers.
But his findings appear to have been dismissed amid fears at the Corporation that it may be perceived as a Right-wing political agenda.
Mr Cowling, who is now a visiting senior research fellow at King’s College London, wrote: ‘It seems to me that the London bubble has to burst if there is to be any prospect of addressing the issues that have brought us to our current situation.
The article goes on later to suggest some thought the BBC’s coverage of the referendum was even-handed…have to say I disagree…certainly there were many balanced reports…but there was a definite undercurrent of pro-Remain comments from presenters, guests who were encouraged to tell us what they thought about the referendum, the BBC knowing full well that they supported Remain, so much targeting of known Remain voters such as ex-pats and the young, one sided interviews from Remain supporting companies susch as Siemens and whenever a Leaver came up with their reasons the BBC would instantly counter that with something they hoped would prove the Leave case was nonsense. Cameron was allowed to wriggle out of the difficult questions…his first interview way back when with Humphrys was like water off a duck’s back for him whereas Gove was roasted, the last one on Wednesday started well with Humphrys grilling him on immigration but Cameron bluffed and intimidated Humphrys into backing off and Humphrys failed to challenge the stats used by Cameron…such as two thirds of new jobs went to Brits…not true, and that the EU economy is bouncing back. Then there was the BBC’s Reality Check….little reality and certainly not a check on Remain’s case….their economic projections, guesses, were apparently slightly exaggerated but otherwise sound economics. No, they were just guesswork. Where is the BBC reality check on what remaining in the EU will mean? The BBC dismissed all concerns yesterday…no Turkey won’t join the EU, trade will fall, regulations don’t come from the EU, Cameron’s negotiations have dealt with immigration. And on ‘More or Less’ they wheeled in Andrew Lilico from the Leave camp to talk about immigration…why him? Because he is a well known advocate not for less immigraation but for more….why did the BBC pick the person who must be one of the very few in the Leave camp to want more immigation to represent Leave on this subject? The also had on Peter North who damned Leave….no surprise there…he is strongly opposed to Leave despite being a Europsceptic….so of all the Eurosceptics the BBC could choose they picked the two who would damage Leave’s case…and yet the BBC didn’t tell us about Lilico’s and North’s personal positions. Why not?
The BBC countered Leave’s claim that we couldn’t deport criminals with a claim that we were extraditing foreign criminals back to their own countires…but that was a false argument, extradition has nothing to do with deporting people from our shores…extradition is a response to requests from other countries to send to them people who have committed crimes in those countries not in the UK. Deporting them is the British government’s decision on our own national security grounds.
The BBC dismissed claims that the EU is responsible for making large numbers of our laws….telling us that many were minor, trivial laws…such as regulating the curvature of bananas…which is curious as the BBC has spent years trying to dismiss that ‘myth’ as nonsense and on the other hand has been telling us that we just can’t leave the EU because it is responsible for so much or our health and safety laws, worker’s rights and human rights, climate change and enviromental laws and so on……it seems the BBC wants it both ways.
The BBC, as you might expect, has in no way been impartial….an amount of impartial interviews and reports along with an underlying pro-EU narrative that doesn’t argue strongly against Remain’s case but forensically examine’s Leave’s case does not mean the BBC is balanced and impartial. It’s still biased.
I imagine the BBC thought process was that in the last week if they pushed hard but subtly for Remain and the result went in their favour it was job done and there would be no going back even if the BBC could be proven to have been pro-Remain. There wouldn’t be another vote so a smack on the wrist for the BBC would be worth the risk to keep Britain in the EU.
Reputation wise they probably think the Leavers are all anti-BBC anyway and those who vote Remain will cheer them on…so life goes on as normal, no damage done.