Michael Buerk, for years one of the main BBC newsreaders, and now presenter of the R4’s Moral Maze, has long been a trenchant critic of the BBC’s climate reporting. Almost a year ago, he took a direct kick here at the rampant eco-loonery when Peter Sissons savaged the corporation’s espousal of climate alarmism in his memoirs. This week, he’s renewed his attack on the BBC Trustees – along with Harrabin, Black and their crusader colleagues – in a new blog called The Fifth Column. He points out that although he himself does believe in anthropogenic warming, the BBC’s reporting of the issue is a pile of odure. He says:

What gets up my nose is being infantilized by governments, by the BBC, by the Guardian that there is no argument, that all scientists who aren’t cranks and charlatans are agreed on all this, that the consequences are uniformly negative, the issues beyond doubt and the steps to be taken beyond dispute.

There’s much more in his short, punchy essay (hinged on the BBC’s reporting of the Durban summit), all of it brilliantly crafted to say that the corporation’s stance on this topic is indefensible.

The only question now is whether Mr Buerk will be ignored (as usually happens), fired, or someone is paid to ridicule him. My guess is that it will probably be Fiona Fox. She’s got form.

PS: I missed this pre-Christmas piece of naked agitprop from Richard Black attacking those who dare to challenge that nice EU’s punitive new tax on air travel. Jaw-dropping, even by his standards.

Harrabin the denier

How wonderful it is that my debut post here on Biased BBC times perfectly with a nugget of a post over at Bishop Hill, which underlines the BBC’s reputation for telling half the story all the time.

The subject is climate change, so once again our eyes turn towards the Socratic wonder that is the BBC Environment Analyst, Roger Harrabin. Speaking as a member of what appears to have been a panel of prestige-laden experts in front of an invited audience a few months ago, Harrabin had this to say:

What we appear to have constructed in climate change is a bunch of people who say, ‘I’m really worried about the future. I’m really worried about climate change’; a small group of people who say, ‘I don’t give a damn. It’s not going to happen. Humans can’t change the planet’; and quite a lot of people in the middle who say, ‘Well actually, I don’t know. I hear these competing voices and I don’t know’.

Biased to his rent seeking, vested interest heavy core, one notices how Harrabin is yet again distorting reality. Where in his analysis is any mention of the overwhelming of climate change sceptics who say, ‘The climate is changing and always has; and scientific evidence shows it has been both warmer and cooler in the past as a result of natural factors we aren’t even close to understanding, therefore mankind’s influence could very well be grossly overstated’?

Harrabin has deliberately set out yet again to paint what passes for debate about climate change as warmists on one side and ‘deniers’ on the other, while airbrushing mainstream scepticism out of the story. This is another example of the bias at the heart of our public sector broadcaster, which consistently abuses its monopoly on ‘news’ reporting to condition the mindset of those compelled to pay for such output.

Far from climate change sceptics being deniers, the real deniers are the likes of Roger Harrabin, who load their reportage with bias and distortions and ‘educate’ fellow Beeboids to adopt the same narrative.

The BBC, it’s what they do.


As I have written ad nauseam, the BBC has become by degrees nakedly political in its reporting of climate change. The trustees, having commissioned a report on the subject from a scientist who was totally biased, this summer sanctioned this approach. In its wake, it seems that overt indoctrination is now underway at the BBC so-called College of Journalism. Guess who by? Of course, it’s Richard Black, who in his “objective” presentation, venomously promised to demolish the favourite BBC enemies, such as the Mail on Sunday. David Whitehouse, writing for the Global Warming Policy Foundation, a former BBC journalist who unlike Mr Black, has scientific qualifications, spotted that – to put it mildly – what Mr Black told his BBC acolytes this week was of “a dismaying standard of scientific literacy”. Mr Whitehouse is a model of gentlemanly restraint in his comments. I would be less so, but I will leave you to judge. Oh, and I wonder when, if ever, someone other than an eco-fascist (such as David Whitehouse?) will be invited to address CoJo? Pigs might fly.


The UK economy continues to teeter on the edge of recession, with all the misery that this entails. But Richard Black and his assorted greenie fascist chums want to push us even further down into the mire. Here, Mr Black wheels out a range of eco nuts led by the Committee on Climate Change (as well as his bosom buddies Oxfam and WWF, whose idea the shipping tax is) who want Britain to impose taxes on the cost of shipping fuel. Where do these nutters come from? Out country is an island. Our very existence is based to a major extent on physical imports and exports with the big, wide world (as this excellent Civitas pamphlet points out) – but have no fear, the greenies want to hobble our economy even more by ensuring that we make it as costly as possible to go about activities that have sustained us for centuries. As usual, there’s scarcely a peep in the story from anyone with an ounce of common sense or a contrasting view; the main thrust is that nasty “carbon” emissions must be curbed, whatever the price.

I’m all for free discussion, but Mr Black is engaged in a deliberate, sustained camapign to damage Britain and its people. Time he read Matt Ridley.


If, unlike me, you missed the first half-hour of this morning’s Today programme on Radio 4 here’s a summary of the main points. You may detect a theme.


That was as much as I could take on a frosty morning. On the plus side – shouting expletives at the radio wakes you up, so there is that at least.


There’s no doubt whose side the BBC is on in Julia Gillard’s attempts to force her country into economic suicide by taxing “carbon” output. Australia is a “worst polluter”, so of course such measures are right. A picture of horrendous, belching CO2 (actually, most likely steam, but never mind – the message has to be rammed home by the BBC thought police) has been carefully selected to show just how bad it is. Yes, opposition leader Tony Abbott is quoted and it is made clear that 60% of electors also oppose the measures, but the thrust of the story is that coal-guzzling Aussies must take their medicine and Miss Gillard is a saint.

Meanwhile, Richard Black continues his vicious campaigning to discredit the hated deniers. Here, in a pile of statistical gobledeygook and obfuscation, he turns his fire on that nasty rag the Daily Mail and mentions specifically a story carried last week by someone he calls Christopher Brooker which had the effrontery to challenge the idea that we would all be frying but for Chinese aerosol particles. I posted on the story last week to show how biased the BBC’s coverage was.

Actually, Mr Black, it is Christopher Booker. I’ve been reading his journalism and his books for more than 40 years, and I would venture to suggest that he knows more about his craft in his little finger than you do at all. Here, in case you missed it, is his latest piece on the zealotry that you espouse; I would also recommend you read this – his sharp, knowledgeable book on the massive scam that your are perpetrating with such venom. Next time, though, if you want to attack such targets, at least use your spellcheck. And show some respect.

Ignorant US People Astonish Katty Kay

Check out Katty Kay – taking over for Matt Frei as alpha Beeboid at BBC World News America since he left for Channel 4 – telling Mayor Bloomberg of New York that she is “astonished” to learn that more and more people in the US are turning away from Warmism.

“What is it with the American public opinion that seems to fly in the face of all the scientific evidence?”

Calm down, dear. Substitute any other political issue and the Beeboids are usually equally astonished by American public opinion. But never mind.

First of all, it’s not that the people don’t believe the climate changes. That’s BS Number One from the Warmists. Of course the climate changes; we all know that and it’s not in dispute. The question is whether or not it’s caused mostly by human activity. The science on that is being debated all the time, yet the BBC acts as if it’s not, and only whackos don’t get it.

The reason I call this BS #1 is that the very euphemism the Warmists have forced into the discussion – “Climate Change” – is disingenuous. What they all really mean is Anthropogenic Global Warming. The “science” of AGW, invented by people whose careers and fortune depend on it becoming fact, is what Katty is talking about, and not about whether or not the earth’s climate changes or was in a warming trend for a while. But because the Warmists have already won the argument – if you’re using their terminology, they’ve already won the argument, even if you’re still talking – Katty and the BBC can get away with saying that people like me don’t believe in “Global Warming” when in fact it’s that we don’t believe that building one more clean coal plant will sink the Maldives. The recent record cold temperatures around the US probably don’t help. But that’s only weather, yeah.

The reason they switched terms is because “Global Warming” can mean all things to all people. There is no cause or effect implied. Yet we know the BBC and all Warmists believe the cause is human activity, as the topic of this discussion between Kay and Bloomberg proves. As the term itself is dishonest, this BBC segment is dishonest and Katty and Mayor Mikey are dishonest for using the term.

Mayor Bloomberg, of course, is a committed Warmist and an über-Nanny Statist. Don’t even get me started on the behavior he’s banned against the wishes of New Yorkers. Hell, even the fact that he’s mayor right now is undemocratic, because he went against the voters – and his own promise – and twisted enough arms to change the term limit rules so he could buy a third election run for mayor a third time (and I speak as someone who happily voted for him the first time, knowing full well that he was a RINO Nanny). So this guy is the perfect example of an elite ruling class forcing his own personal wishes on a helpless public. No wonder the BBC wanted to talk to him. As soon as Bloomberg says “reduce consumption”, you know where he and the BBC stand. All your personal freedoms are belong to us.

I’m not going to bother getting into more details of Katty’s interview with the mayor, because it’s beyond the point. The BBC – as admitted by Jeremy Paxman in the sidebar – long ago took sides in the debate, and actively works to pursue a specific political agenda. Carbon emission regulations, coal plant permits, government subsidy/investment in various technologies, and the regulations for the entire automotive industry are all political issues. Even if we’re talking about seat belts in cars or helmets for motorcycles, creating a law about any of it is a political issue. No matter which side one is on, it’s done in the legislature by – in theory – democratically elected representatives, and these laws can be changed or repealed entirely by the next batch of democratically elected representatives if that’s what the voters want.

It doesn’t matter which side of the Warmism debate one is on. Legislation is political, full stop. The BBC always takes sides in this specific political issue, and deliberately chooses disingenuous language to support it. And as seen here, they do political advocacy posing as news and information.

How The Establishment Closes Ranks Around the BBC

This is a cross post from Autonomous Mind

“Regular readers may recall a couple of posts back in January where we told the story of an Autonomous Mind reader who complained to the BBC about an edition of Hardtalk.

This is the one in December 2010 where President Mohamed Nasheed of the Maldives was allowed to state, without challenge, that due to human induced climate change sea levels around the Maldives are rising. The lack of journalistic rigour and blind acceptance of such a controversial viewpoint as fact led to the complaint being made and the BBC’s two fingered resp0nse in January which included the immortal words:

We’re committed to honest, unbiased reporting and are determined to remain free from influence by outside parties.

Following the response, our reader then filed a Freedom of Information request to the BBC asking for details of:

  • how many complaints/ accusations of bias the BBC received from the public about the BBC’s coverage of climate change
  • how many of the complaints received about climate change were upheld by the BBC, i.e. were accepted
  • brief details / a list of all the complaints upheld, i.e. the details of the upheld complaint and the BBC’s response (excluding details of the person complaining)

In publishing the story in a follow up post we shared the unsurprising news that the response from the BBC to our reader’s request was a refusal to provide the information sought. Once again the BBC was hiding behind its establishment-given provision to withhold any information the BBC considers to be held for the ‘purposes of journalism, art or literature’.

Read the rest:


I’ve been away for a few days and am busy catching up on recent blogposts and comments (and excellent stuff it is too).

I see that the BBC has devoted some attention to links between the Gaddafi family and various British institutions and politicians. However, I can’t seem to find any mention of the useful idiots who, in the name of climate change, supported this particular PR exercise/vanity project back in 2007:

The Libyan government has announced the creation of what it claims is “the world’s first sustainable region”. It’s backed by architects Foster and Partners, enthusiastically endorsed by Sir Nicholas Stern – and directed by the Colonel’s son, Saif al-Islam Gaddafi.

The Green Mountain Conservation and Development Authority (GMCDA) will cover the northeastern region of Jabal al Akhdar (literally, ‘Green Mountain’). This encompasses several of the country’s major cities, including Benghazi, and stretches from the coast inland to a plateau featuring junipers, cypresses and wild olives. According to Norman Foster, it’s “one of the most beautiful and little known landscapes on earth”…

Sir Nicholas Stern… has given his blessing: “If we are to avoid the catastrophic effects of climate change… we need urgently to build new economic and social models of development on a substantial scale. The GMCDA will show how environmental and cultural objectives can help to build a thriving and sustainable local economy in a crucial part of the world.” Among other organisations involved are UNESCO, WWF and the Prince of Wales School of Traditional Arts.

The locals didn’t seem to share the enthusiasm of Lords Stern and Foster and the Prince of Wales for Saif Gaddafi’s vision. Green Mountain and Benghazi were among the first areas to revolt.

The BBC’s Michael Hirst was at the press conference at which Saif’s eco-utopia was unveiled. It’s a shame he didn’t remind his colleagues on Newsnight about it before their recent report; I can’t be alone in wondering how much money Foster and Partners received for their work on young Gaddafi’s project, or what financial return Lord Stern and others got for their endorsement. (Yes, I know – the BBC avoids asking the blessed Lord Stern awkward questions, especially concerning his lucrative career as one of the world’s foremost climate change alarmists.)

One final point relating to people who have in the past sucked up to the Gaddafis – who else remembers the edition of Have Your Say from the Oxford Union in which the BBC’s David Eades made a total tart of himself?
UPDATE. Thanks to John Horne Tooke for pointing out that David Eades continues to make a tart of himself, most recently at a “Sustainability Day” sponsored by Italian energy giant Enel last month – see here and here.


From Michael Buerk’s intro to the Moral Maze this week (via Bishop Hill):

“not long ago, to question multiculturalism… risked being branded racist and pushed into the loathesome corner with paedophiles and climate change deniers”

Is Buerk really comparing climate change “deniers” with paedophiles, or is this observation from Saul Jacka in the comments at Bishop Hill closer to the mark?

With respect, isn’t Michael Buerk something of a controversialist?
In other words, isn’t he quite capable of implying what he doesn’t mean to have a dig at some of his bien-pensant BBC colleagues?
On past form, he is certainly capable of taking such a line

UPDATE: Cranmer:

Michael Buerk is not himself equating anthropogenic climate change deniers and those who question the doctrine and policy of state multiculturalism with paedophiles: he is lampooning those of his BBC colleagues who do so habitually.


A reader sent me the following picture taken by his daughter. As part of some sort of school/youth project she has been transferring the results of a climate questionnaire onto computer. Being a big fan of Top Gear she was amused to see the following answers from a Year 10 boy (click to enlarge):



This morning’s Today programme devoted substantial time to allegations – scandalous if true – that the Metropolitan Police has undertaken an orchestrated campaign to discredit expert defence witnesses in Shaken Baby court cases. One of the pathologists in question stated:

“…it appears to me that there has been an attempt to remove from the courts all of those people who are willing to challenge the mainstream hypothesis”

A supposedly impartial and highly influential state body using dubious methods to discredit those who dare to disagree with the establishment’s consensus opinion. Remind you of anything? (Clue – Paul Nurse’s Horizon and Storyville’s Meet the Climate Sceptics.)