Lib-Con Negotiations Stall Over BBC Question Time

Humour Alert: Courtesy of the excellent Man Widdicombe blog.

Talks between David Cameron and Nick Clegg have broken down this afternoon, much to the shock of pundits and journalists. Most of the major hurdles; voting reform, taxation, education, and immigration, had been overcome and both parties were heading confidently towards a formal coalition for stable government.

Then the question of BBC Question Time was raised.

Both leaders agreed that if they were going to jointly form the government then it would be ‘unfair’ to have two seats around the table on a Thursday evening but the question of how to allocate representatives from both parties have lead to difficulties. The Tories are adamant that they should have 6 out of every 7 weeks while the Lib Dems are holding out for alternating appearances on the show.

Meanwhile we have learned that when Gordon Brown tried to derail the negotiations he offered to arrange a permanent seat on the panel for Sarah Teather in exchange for replacing Dimbleby with Charlie Whelan. We have to assume from the angry outburst reported from the leader of the Labour Party that this was turned down.

Both teams have returned to their respective parties to discuss their options and to see if there are any suggestions to move the negotiations forward. Senior Tories are looking at the idea of arranging for Lembit Opik to be the showbiz correspondent for the This Week show, now that he is no longer required to attend Parliament, as a way of resolving the impasse.

An announcement is expected soon.

Cheers, BBC! Cheers, Jane Garvey!

Now might be a good opportunity to reminisce; recalling those old, but not forgotten, times….


“I do remember… the corridors of Broadcasting House were strewn with empty champagne bottles. I’ll always remember that”
Jane Garvey on BBC Five Live, May 10th 2007, recalling May 2nd 1997 (Audio / Transcript)

We’re betting it’s not like that this year, eh, Beeboids?

However this is currently the view from your liveblog Moderator’s desk at Chateau Eye. Cheers!

Election Night LiveBlog

Here it is – the Election Night Liveblog…..starting when polls close at 10pm and carrying on until the last Moderator collapses in a gibbering drunken stupor over their laptop.

We’re live and dangerous across 10 blogs –  All Seeing Eye, Barking Spider, Biased-BBC, Corrugated Soundbite, Dick Puddlecote, Governmentitus, GrumpyOldTwat, Man Widdicombe, Subrosa and Red Rag Online with the usual motley crew of Moderators from the Question Time liveblog.

See you here at 10pm!

Election Night LiveBlogging

It’s almost here…the night that should see only the second change of a ruling party in the UK since 1979.

We’ll be hosting another LiveBlog; this time starting when the polls close at 10pm and finishing when the last Moderator expires from alcohol poisoning in the early (or not so early) hours of the morning. As background information, these were the declaration times from 2005.

As we’ve done previously, this is a joint LiveBlog collaboration with a host of other splendid blogs; on Biased-BBC, All Seeing Eye, Barking Spider, Corrugated Soundbite, Dick Puddlecote, Governmentitus, GrumpyOldTwat, Man Widdicombe, Subrosa and The Red Rag. Ten splendid and highly recommended blogs, one livechat! The moderators will be the usual Biased-BBC motley crew.

Join us for a night of excitement and high drama from 10pm on Thursday…

The 3rd Leaders’ Debate LiveChat

Tonight will be a live-blogging double-bill, starting with the second Leaders’ Debate and rounding off with Question Time and This Week.

The Leaders’ Debate is a joint LiveBlog collaboration with a host of other splendid blogs; here on Biased-BBC, and on All Seeing Eye, Barking Spider, Corrugated Soundbite, Dick Puddlecote, Governmentitus, GrumpyOldTwat, Man Widdicombe, Subrosa and The Red Rag. Ten blogs, one livechat! If you haven’t tried some of those other blogs before then please do – their authors have all been part of the B-BBC Question Time chat before so you’ll be right at home.

Moderators for this part of the evening will be AllSeeingEye, David Mosque and QT chat regular Daniel1979.

Leaders’ Debate and QT Liveblogging Thur 29th

This Thursday evening again brings a double-bill of liveblogging…. 

“You lucky people”, as Tommy Trinder used to say.

First up at 8.30pm we will be live blogging the 3rd Leaders’ Debate which is being broadcast on the BBC between 8.30pm and 10:00pm. Rather like the last Debate chat this promises to be great fun as once again 10 blogs will all be hosting it simultaneously. Let’s see if Dimbleby will be as fair and balanced as he is on Question Time! Moderating again we’ll have David Mosque, AllSeeingEye and B-BBC QT-chat regular Daniel from Governmentitus.

This ‘chat’ collaboration will be between All Seeing Eye, Barking Spider, Biased-BBC, Corrugated Soundbite, Dick Puddlecote, Governmentitus, GrumpyOldTwat, Man Widdicombe, Subrosa and The Red Rag, – all excellent and highly recommended blogs. If you haven’t been to some of them before then please take this chance to try them out.

After a pause for breath we’ll be running our own regular chat for Question Time and This Week starting just before 10:45pm. Hopefully you can make both.

See you here on Thursday night!

The 2nd Leaders’ Debate LiveChat

Tonight will be a live-blogging double-bill, starting with the second Leaders’ Debate and rounding off with Question Time and This Week.

The Leaders’ Debate is a joint LiveBlog collaboration with a host of other splendid blogs; here on Biased-BBC, and on All Seeing Eye, Barking Spider, Corrugated Soundbite, Dick Puddlecote, Governmentitus, GrumpyOldTwat, Man Widdicombe, Subrosa and ToryTottyOnline. Ten blogs, one livechat! If you haven’t tried some of those other blogs before then please do – their authors have all been part of the B-BBC Question Time chat before so you’ll be right at home.

Moderators for this part of the evening will be AllSeeingEye, David Mosque and QT chat regular Daniel1979.

Leaders’ Debate and QT Liveblogging Thur 22nd


This Thursday evening brings a double-bill of liveblogging…. 

“You lucky people”, as Tommy Trinder used to say.

First up at 8.00pm we will be live blogging the 2nd Leaders’ Debate which is being broadcast on Sky News between 8.00pm and 9.30pm. Rather like the Budget chat this promises to be great fun as once again 10 blogs will all be hosting it simultaneously. Let’s see if Sky do a better job than the lamentable ITV production, and set a standard for the BBC to fail to live up to.

This ‘chat’ collaboration will be between All Seeing Eye, Barking Spider, Biased-BBC, Corrugated Soundbite, Dick Puddlecote, Governmentitus, GrumpyOldTwat, Man Widdicombe, Subrosa and Tory Totty Online, – all excellent and highly recommended blogs. If you haven’t been to some of them before then please take this chance to try them out.

After a pause for breath we’ll be running our own regular chat for Question Time and This Week starting at 10:30pm. Hopefully you can make both.

See you here on Thursday night!

Here is the news…

The pretence of impartiality has been scrapped in the last-minute scramble to change minds before Labour faces the electorate next month.

Well, actually that’s a paraphrase of the introduction to this article. No mention of the fact that Labour has a large majority and that it has no need, based on this, to scrap anything. The correct reading of events must be that they are trying to disrupt Conservative campaigning by changing some of the talking points relating to tax, for instance the cider tax and the broadband tax. Notice in the article how the “experts” magically align themselves with the Government policy while the Conservatives are depicted as spoilers. Repeat after me, Beebies: Labour has a majority and has no need to scrap anything; the Conservatives have no power to scrap this stuff; any such action we can presume is dictated by the drive for Labour presentation at the elections. Fair dos, eh?

Selective feedback

According to the BBC, Ed Balls “received a standing ovation – unusual for a minister at a teachers’ conference – as he outlined the increased investments in education since 1997.”

Wow. Good to know. Those investments wouldn’t have included massive pay increases for teachers, would they? I believe they would (not that the BBC would ever spell it out). And who wouldn’t give an ovation when the pay concerned was theirs?

The Beeb seemed to think that Balls’ challenge to the Conservatives to match his spending plans for education was a solid punch.

On the other hand the BBC consider it just not worth remarking that one of Britain’s most celebrated recent war heroes wanted to “knock out” Gordon Brown, so angry was he made by Brown’s disrespect for the armed forces.

I guess Balls’ jab just seemed more punchy, from a certain point of view. (thank to Hippiepooter and others for pointing out the Beharry omission)

B-BBC ELECTIONWATCH

Yes, this IS going to be a long series but with the General Election campaign now well and truly underway, I think we should take the time to dissect exactly how the BBC covers it. Today started in fine fettle this morning by contrasting on the one hand Conservative “confusion” over tax policy for married people with Labour vision to help our farmers. Nice, especially when one considers how Labour has screwed up farming over the past 12 years. I hope any farmers reading this will share just how wonderful Labour has been for their industry but in the BBC worldview, Labour offers hope whereas those bad evil Conservatives will return us to the wilderness of the Thatcher years. Vote Labour, you know it makes sense….