BBC claims ‘economic downturn’ will cause more attacks on teachers by pupils

On Saturday a number of national and regional media outlets reported the story of 10-year-old boy attacking two female teachers at his school ‘in Avalon Road, Orpington’. It resulted in both teachers being taken to hospital – one with a broken leg and dislocated kneecap and the other bearing facial injuries.

None of the outlets went into any more detail, not even the name of the school or its background. Instead the Autonomous Mind blog was left with an exclusive about the school, Burwood School, an establishment for boys with special educational needs that has a number of troubled and previously excluded youngsters on its small roll. No other media sought out and reported these details.

Some hours later the details carried on Autonomous Mind, including the elements of the 2011 Ofsted report cited in the blog post, were picked up by BBC London who despatched Paul Curran to the previously un-named school to deliver the details in a BBC London news report.

But being the BBC, the report just had to include a different slant that furthered a favoured and seemingly unrelated pet narrative. This saw Curran lead in to a televised quote by a teaching union official from an un-named union, who himself was also un-named, by saying:

One teaching union expects the situation to get worse because of the economic downturn.

But can you spot any mention of the economic downturn in the official’s broadcast assessment of attacks on teachers by their pupils, quoted in its entirety below?

In today’s society, where lives are difficult, stressful, often chaotic, it’s no wonder that very occasionally children go completely off the rails.

There could be any number of causes for lives being difficult, stressful or chaotic. But the BBC has decided the cause of an increase in attacks on teachers will be as a result of the economic downturn.

This isn’t factual news reporting, it is opportunist speculation mixed with personal opinion, pushed on viewers without any supporting evidence whatsoever. And it deliberately ignores the particular circumstances of the incident at Burwood School given the challenging nature of the school’s troubled pupils.

It has no place on a publicly funded service broadcaster, but it happens over and over again.

U.S. Government Shut Down Blues – A Dishonest BBC Song

The BBC keeps reporting on the debt and budget talks between the President and the Republicans in the House of Representatives. The latest report covers the announcement by Moody’s that they’re going to review the US credit rating with an eye to downgrade it to a default risk.

My position is that the BBC has an ideological stance when it comes to government borrowing, spending, and debt. Stephanie Flanders has trumpeted the Keynesian solution on a number of occasions (just search her name on this blog and read the links to her pearls of wisdom), thinks the Greek bailout worked (yeah, I know, which one?) and at one point even told us that the US would never default.

With this in mind, let’s look at the BBC’s report on the Moody’s news. As everyone here knows, the problem is that the US is at an impasse regarding the debt ceiling. We either have to raise it, or do some serious cutting in spending right now. There are ideological opponents on each side, but there are also hard facts which are not debatable. The BBC says this about the President’s side of the argument:

He has said he is willing to countenance cuts to social safety-net programmes dear to Democrats, as long as there are tax rises for the rich.

Republicans have rejected the latter proposal, saying that would stifle investment and job growth.

This is false. In fact, it’s more than the class war stuff. As I posted the other day, the President said Himself that He wants to raise taxes on a lot more in 2013, which, you know, is what the whole budget deal is about. Yeah, the BBC censored that bit out of the speech video they showed you. So all you know is that Republicans are holding the country hostage over protecting the evil rich. But since it’s the White House Narrative, that’s what they’re going to report.

Now, about that debt ceiling:

When it came to the crunch in the past, Congress regularly voted to raise the debt ceiling, giving government access to the cash it needed.

How about some context, BBC? The current situation is unprecedented, and Congress never rubber-stamped (that’s implied by the BBC sub-editor’s choice of words) an increase when the country’s finances were in such dire straits. It’s completely dishonest to compare today with the past, and act as if the Republicans are somehow an anomaly and not the situation itself. But they do it anyway.

This year, however, newly empowered Republicans have demanded steep cuts in government spending in return for raising the limit.

“Newly empowered”, eh, BBC? I think we all know what that means: Evil Tea Party Influence. It’s funny, because the BBC and Obamessiah worshiper Mark Mardell initially claimed that the Tea Party hurt the Republicans in the mid-terms. But never mind that. I don’t need to remind anyone here what the Tea Party movement represents to the Beeboids. So back to BBC dishonesty.

Mr Obama has proposed a package of up to $4 trillion in budget deficit reduction over the next 10 years, but Republicans have rejected that and other proposals because it calls for raising taxes.

Again, false. I posted a few days ago about how this White House/BBC Narrative is also false. He’s not giving in on the entitlements at all. But the BBC doesn’t care, they just keep spinning for the leader of a foreign country. Notice also the appearance of “newly empowered Republicans” in a previous BBC propaganda piece report about the budget talks. I’d say this code for “Evil Tea Party Influence” has made its way into the BBC style guide, but it’s probably just the same Beeboid writing it. But still: Narrative? What Narrative, eh?

And then Keynes raises his ugly head again, in the form of Ben Bernanke.

In his testimony to Congress, Mr Bernanke said the Fed would renew stimulus efforts if the economy remained weak.

The Fed’s second quantitative easing programme (QE2) ended two weeks ago, and there has been much speculation about whether a QE3 programme is on the cards.

Now, to someone who is trying to follow reality and is not ideologically locked into policy, this might sound like the captain of the Titanic saying that he’s just going to cut another hole in the hull to help the water flow out the other side. At least the BBC didn’t censor news that people in the real world see it that way:

The dollar extended earlier losses against the euro following Mr Bernanke’s comments, with the euro rising more than a cent to $1.4088.

Now, if, as we heard before from the BBC, printing money and throwing it around increasing borrowing for more stimulus works, why would the dollar tank against a currency that’s the shakiest thing going when the Fed suggests more of it?

Analysts said that Mr Bernanke had only raised the possibility of a further stimulus, and was not saying that it was necessary.

Oh, right, it’s not really his fault, just stupid speculators over-reacting.

Alternatively, it could be because the previous “stimulus” efforts failed and only added another couple trillion dollars to the debt.

Morning Bell: Why Obama’s Stimulus Failed

Oops, my bad. That’s about how the first stimulus failed. Here’s something on QE2:

Obama’s People Admit Stimulus Failed Miserably In Creating Jobs

So we can see how….hang on…what the hell is this?

Democrats Press Obama to Include Stimulus in Debt Deal After Jobs Report

Democrats pressed for some form of economic stimulus in the debt deal President Barack Obama is negotiating with Republicans following a U.S. Labor Department report yesterday showing job growth slowing.

Senator Charles Schumer of New York, the chamber’s third- ranking Democrat, called for an “immediate jolt” to the economy by extending and enlarging a one-year payroll-tax cut that’s set to expire Dec. 31. He asked for action “as quickly as possible by including it in the final debt-limit agreement.”

You have got to be kidding me. No wonder we’re heading towards a Weimar-type situation. So it’s not Republican intransigence to protect the evil rich at all. And the BBC has told you none of this. All you know is the heroic Obamessiah has been trying to save us from ourselves.

Don’t trust the BBC on US issues.

Those Oh So Sensitive BBC Editors…..

It’s a tough job, trundling through BBC’s Editors Blog (did Goebbels have something similar at his Propaganda Ministry?) but two items are worthy of note.

Firstly a tear stained piece from Jeremy Hillman, editor of the BBC News business and economics unit. Jeremy was soooooo upset about George Osborne suggesting

the BBC’s approach to reporting the economy was relentlessly to focus on the bad news and the most gloomy statistics.

Hillman went on to produce a fistful of examples in an attempt to derail Osborne’s case, par for the course for any BBC suit when faced with accusations of bias. Then he sits back smugly thinking he has proved his point.

Actually Sarah Montague, despite Hillman’s spin about consciously downplaying Padoan, did indeed home in on the Padoan remarks so obviously she didn’t get the memo.

But we all know what Osborne was really getting at – not that they ignored positive items about the economy from third parties but the whole question of tone and emphasis which is why he used the word “relentlessly”. Ever since the Coalition took office the BBC’s overarching leitmotif has been CUTS rather than savings and one only has to watch any QT audience to see how successful that campaign has been.

However the good news is that Osborne’s comment touched a nerve. I guess that this issue has been raised at several North London dinner parties recently because Hillman and his pals realise that Charter Renewal is beginning to appear on the horizon and they cannot afford to upset a senior cabinet figure. Let’s hope that other government big cheeses start getting under sensitive BBC skins on a regular basis.

Then this abject apology re the Israeli Dog Stoning story from Nathalie Malinarich, world editor of the BBC News website

We failed to make the right checks. We should never have written the article and apologise for any offence caused.

Don’t worry, luv – we know why you failed to make the right checks…..while you were all busy filling in your expenses forms a breathless young graduate trainee rushed in and blurted out “those crazy religious bigoted Jews – as well as murdering helpless innocent Palestinians they are now going after helpless dogs…”

It fitted into the BBC’s anti Israeli narrative so perfectly you just couldn’t resist it…c’mon, Nathalie…is the Pope catholic? Those Jews aren’t they evil?

Tea Party Movement Anniversary: Two Years of the BBC Getting It Wrong

Today is being called the second anniversary of the Tea Party movement in the US. The genesis of the movement actually began with a small taxpayer protest against the Democrat’s massive “Stimulus Bill” spending plan in Seattle, WA, on Feb. 16, 2009. They called it the “Porkulus Protest”. As it happens, conservative blogger Michelle Malkin actually referred to the Boston Tea Party when she posted about it on the day, although the name didn’t stick at the time. This was quickly followed by protests in Denver, Kansas, and a couple other cities, including New York.

It was on Feb. 19th, when Rick Santelli of CNBC made his on-air rant about how the country needed a new version of the Boston Tea Party that the name came to life. The impetus was already there nationwide, and word about the other protests had already spread like wildfire on the internet. And so a movement was born.

(UPDATE, Feb. 28: Paul Adams has done a report about the anniversary. It’s nearly good, but in the end the bias rears its ugly head. I discuss it in the comments below.)

Hundreds of protests large and small popped up individually all across the country. The BBC refused to mention any of it until reality forced them to acknowledge hundreds of thousands of people protesting on April 15. In case anyone has forgotten, or isn’t aware of how the BBC treated the movement and its participants, here’s a reminder. It’s no exaggeration to say that the movement was directly responsible for the Republican victories in November, and the current state of play in Congress.

With this background in mind, let’s look at the latest BBC article about the fiscal policy scene in the US.

Obama urges budget consensus to prevent ‘gridlock’

US President Barack Obama has urged Congress to find “common ground” over the budget to prevent a government shutdown.

Don’t expect any actual reporting, as this is just the BBC dutifully reproducing the White House talking points. Some may, of course, see this as a weakened President sitting on His hands, a substitute for leadership. Even the BBC News Online sub-editor understands this, and so makes sure to get in a word for the defense:

Although Mr Obama is empowered to propose a budget, it is up to the US Congress to pass it into law and then to distribute the funds.

Whew, that was close! A reader nearly thought He was weakened for a moment. Thank goodness it turns out that the office of the President never had the power to force things on Congress in the first place.

“Next week, Congress will focus on a short-term budget. For the sake of our people and our economy, we cannot allow gridlock to prevail,” Mr Obama said in his weekly radio address.

Naturally the BBC then has to spin the laughing-stock of a budget He actually proposed. Notice how they use His talking points again.

The president unveiled his proposed budget earlier this month and described the proposal as a “down payment” on future cuts to the US budget deficit.

He said the US had to live within its means and called for some reductions, but said “we can’t sacrifice our future” with drastic cuts.

No mention at all that it was a completely irresponsible budget proposal, and a deliberate defiance of the voters in November. Here’s a more honest point of view the BBC won’t let you hear.

But contrary to the call of Obama’s fiscal commission last December to reduce the deficit by $4 trillion by 2020 through deep spending cuts, elimination of scores of tax loopholes and major entitlement reform, Obama balanced his concern about fiscal discipline with a fresh round of spending on education and research, investments in infrastructure and high-speed wireless data network, and other programs he says are essential to the economic recovery and enhancing the country’s global competitive edge.

Sounds a lot like Labour-speak, no? No wonder the BBC supports Him to the bitter end. In fact, His budget adds more than $7 trillion to the deficit over the next decade. This is not fiscal responsibility by any stretch of the imagination. If He hadn’t given the finger to the voters like that, we wouldn’t be facing gridlock right now, and He wouldn’t have to call for togetherness like this. This situation is His own fault, but the BBC won’t tell you that. Instead, they’ve decided that – surprise! – blame lies elsewhere.

But Republicans, who control the House of Representatives, do not think the cuts go far enough in tackling the deficit.

Republicans put together an interim proposal to cut $4bn (£2.5bn) in federal spending on Friday as part of legislation to keep the government operating for two weeks past the deadline.

House Democrats have reportedly responded positively to the plan, according to CNN.

Neither party wants to be blamed for a government shutdown, but the Republicans say any plan will have to include cuts.

“Our goal as Republicans is to make sensible reductions in this spending and create a better environment for job growth, not to shut down the government,” Senator Rob Portman said in his party’s weekly address.

You’re meant to take away from this the idea that, no matter what happens, it’s going to be the Republicans’ fault, and that the President tried to stop them.

The BBC won’t spend a moment acknowledging the Tea Party movement’s anniversary, or what it has accomplished in spite of the vicious attacks from the media (including the BBC) and the Leftosphere. There’s much more to do, of course, and 2012 is still a long ways away. But whatever happens in future, don’t trust the BBC to inform you.

BBC Economic Bias: Only The Left Has It Right

While everyone is enduring yet another full day of BBC reporting negatively about the nasty cuts forced on the poorest by the Conservative-led Coalition, it’s also necessary to check out the BBC’s reporting on budget policy developments in the US.

Barack Obama unveils US budget plans for 2012

US President Barack Obama has unveiled his 2012 budget, describing the proposal as a “down payment” on future cuts to the US budget deficit.

The budget aims to cut $1.1tn (£690bn) from the US deficit over a decade.

He said the US must live within its means and called for some reductions, but said “we can’t sacrifice our future” with drastic cuts.

The White House policy sounds suspiciously like the Labour line. It’s not a coincidence, as both Labour and the White House are guided by the same economic principles. Notice how the BBC treats The Obamessiah’s position.

After the requisite criticisms from Republicans – which sound suspiciously like the Tory statements, only without the luxury of the “we inherited this mess” card – we get more of the Labour line….sorry….White House line that we “can’t sacrifice our future in the process”. Does that sound familiar? It should.

The BBC sub-editor who put this together subtly sets you up to interpret the subsequent statement from the President with this:

Although Mr Obama is empowered to propose a budget, it is up to the US Congress to enact it into law and then to distribute the funds.

Mr Obama’s budget is seen as an opening bid in a long process of negotiation with House and Senate leaders of both parties, and analysts say Republicans will press for deeper cuts.

“Analysts” say? The Republicans themselves have only been shouting it from the rooftops since Nov. 3. Why bother attributing the notion to anonymous analysts? Also notice how the BBC makes sure to include that the negotiations will be with the leaders of both parties.

Then we get some Gordon Brown language in a summary of one of the President’s points:

At a school in Baltimore on Monday morning, Mr Obama called for future investment in education, transportation infrastructure and high speed internet, “so that every American is equipped to compete with any worker anywhere in the world”.

“Spending” is softened and sexed up into “investment”. You’ve all heard that one before, and will continue to hear it next time Ed Balls is in front of a BBC microphone.

Then the BBC quotes the President’s own words about exactly the same thing.

“While it is absolutely essential to live within our means – and while we are absolutely committed to working with Democrats and Republicans to find further savings and to look at a whole range of budget issues – we can’t sacrifice our future in the process,” he said.

“We have a responsibility to invest in those areas that will have the biggest impact in our future.”

So when the BBC writes that His “budget is seen as an opening bid…”, it’s clear that this is in fact the White House’s talking point. In other words, the people who actually see it this way are the President and Katty Kay’s personal friend, the new White House Spokesman. And the BBC dutifully toes the line. He says He’s going to work with “both parties”, just like the sub-editor set framed it above. Another White House talking point turned into BBC reporting.

The resulting impression is that He’s trying His best to reach across the aisle, and any problems will be due to intransigence by nasty Republicans, who want make budget cuts for purely ideological reasons.

Notice, though, more Labour ideology in the President’s statement: “We can’t sacrifice our future”. We hear it time and time again on the BBC when hearing criticisms of the nasty Tory boodget coots.

The bias only gets worse.

Among the programmes slated for cuts under his own plans are some that Mr Obama said he considered crucial, including development grants for poor neighbourhoods.

Hitting the poorest hardest, naturally. It’s getting to be like an echo.

Mr Obama also reiterated his call for $78bn in cuts to the defence budget.

“If we’re going to walk the walk when it comes to fiscal discipline, these kinds of cuts will be necessary,” he said.

He said he aimed to wring greater efficiency from government programmes and to sell 14,000 government office buildings and properties.

So He’s now portrayed as a fiscal hawk. If He’s going to cut the precious US military machine, He must be serious, no? The only mildly opposing view we get is from another analyst who says – wait for it – that the Republicans will want more cuts. Why not get an actual Republican to say it, BBC? None willing to talk to you off the record? Couldn’t any of the legion of Beeboids in the US get a better source? No, an HSBC (greedy banker!) analyst saying we need to cut more will do nicely. Funny how they manage to dig up a month-old quote from the Treasury Secretary about making sure we “don’t hurt the recovery”. Or was it a quote from Ed Balls just mis-attributed? It’s getting very hard to tell. It’s no wonder the BBC is leaning heavily towards one side here.

The reason I’m making this a main post and not just another complaint in an Open Thread is that the bit right before that Geithner/Balls quote highlights the BBC’s bias on economics reporting both in Britain and elsewhere.

Whereas countries such as the UK have imposed spending cuts to reduce their deficits, the Obama administration has said rapid, drastic spending cuts are not the way forward.

This one sentence reveals the massive editorial bias about economics at the BBC. Countries such as the UK, eh, BBC? The Obama administration has said the exact same thing Labour keeps saying, so it must be true. In the context of the recent – including today’s – relentlessly negative BBC reporting on the Tory spending cuts, one can only draw the conclusion that “drastic” spending cuts are disastrous, hit the poorest hardest, etc.

Censored from this and basically all BBC discussions of countries imposing spending cuts is the one country which actually did it starting last year: Germany. Worst of all for the BBC, the Germans seem to have gotten it right.

The German economy, Europe’s largest, has powered the region’s expansion over the past year as companies stepped up output and hiring to meet export demand. While governments from Ireland to Spain are struggling to revive their economies and push down budget deficits, German business confidence surged to a record last month and manufacturing growth accelerated.

Germany’s outlook is looking better and better because of the austerity measures the BBC hated on at the time. They hated it so much that they actually put up a page asking for input from people engaged in anti-austerity riots in Europe. They acknowledged Germany’s success once or twice (while still reminding you that nobody likes it and the masses are rioting anyway), but it’s quickly swept under the rug and censored when discussing policies in Britain, as if the example doesn’t exist.

Business confidence in Germany is the highest in two decades, basically since before West Germany had to absorb East Germany much in the same way that Lloyds had to (yes, had to, despite Robert Peston’s attempts to make you forget about that) absorb HBOS.

This fact is suspiciously missing not only from this report, but from basically every single BBC report or discussion about budget policy. They don’t want you to think about it, because it contradicts the Narrative: Left economic policies are better.

All you hear from the BBC is how bad these cuts are, and what cruel and unnecessary damage is being done. You never hear of a case where it’s working, and certainly are never allowed to consider how the alternative plan failed in Japan and Ireland, for example. The BBC’s partisan bias on budget policy is very clear and consistent.

Fanfare cancelled

Yesterday I was rather sickened to see close-up the visage of our Prime Minister(discredited to all but Labour loyalists and those who know nothing about him ie. gullible foreigners) splayed across the BBC frontpage. Not another interminable G20 pose-fest, I thought. Not another opportunity for G. Brown to mince across our screens flaunting his moral compass. Yet it was: Gordon had yet another populist wheeze- a tax of financial transactions- to “save the world” with.

The BBC was kindly obliging him, as they have always done. They seemed to sense a chance to hype Gordon as the world’s saviour again- which bombast is the only way to cover the reality that he is the world’s biggest bust as an economic manager and political leader.

Well now the latest pose-fest seems to have squibbed, the BBC having to play backstop for the Prime Mentalist. Despite another grotesque miscalculation on the part of HMG, the BBC report covering the event now simply leads with the glossy affirmation that “G20 vows to spur fragile growth”. Gordon’s latest serial embarrassment is slipped surreptitiously in lower down as having “received a lukewarm response from other G20 countries”. This is just prior to Geitner’s statement of a “very broad consensus that growth remains the dominant policy imperative across our economies”.

Watching the C4News clip here, I almost laughed when Geitner prefaced his rebuttal of Gordon’s scheme by saying that he wanted “to show the appropriate deference to our hosts” (Gordon/UK). Interestingly, Gordon’s gesture did seem to meet a little gleeful approval from the French. And of course from the BBC, until the wind changed.

The audacity of distraction

On the day when the unemployment figures surpass those of any time since “things could only get better”, the BBC have found the perfect story to fill the space and relegate jobs to a lower position on their UK news webpage: racism in Belfast. Normally this would be somewhere tucked into the N. Ireland backwater pages, but somehow this time it’s really critical.

What was fascinating, as I took a glance at the ONS June update on employment was a rather startling figure concerning employment of “British borns” versus overseas workers. I don’t pretend to be able to contextualise this thoroughly, but it does bring perspective on the Romanians in Belfast story. Here goes:


“The number of UK born people in employment (not seasonally adjusted) was 25.28 million in the three months to March 2009, down 451,000 from the three months to March 2008. The number of non-UK born people in employment (not seasonally adjusted) was 3.81 million, up 129,000 fromthe three months to March 2008.”

Needless to say, this was not in the BBC report on the jobs news, which was stuffed with “not as bad as expected” voices.

UK economy buried in prison shock

Sorry I am a bit confused. The BBC currently seem to think that the worst GDP decline since records began is less newsworthy than a Government bureaucratic decision about prison building. You just can’t get the bad news to bury the bad news, these days.

I CAN SEE FOR MILES!

You have to hand it to the BBC, they really are doing their best for Gordon Brown. Today they are providing much publicity to the claims by an economist called David Miles, soon to be a member of the totally independent MPC! More green shoots of recovery – recession bottoming out – nothing to see, move along, Vote Labour. You get the drift.

WHISTLE A HAPPY TUNE.

Ok, so we may be “officially” in recession but hey, surely things can only get better under The Great Leader! Anyone catch him on “Today” this morning? I see B-BBC regular Notasheep is prominently quoted by the BBC in the link. So what did you think of the Brown interview? I was unable to hear it but for my sins, I did hear a curious interview conducted just after 7am with Nouriel Roubini, professor of economics at the Stern School of Business at New York University. This guru gave a surprisingly upbeat assessment of our economic prospects – I presume his role was that of John the Baptist to Brown’s appearance at 8.10am? I know that the great Roubini is a man whose opinions are much in demand these days and I also know that he is a big supporter of Obama’s economic team, so I suppose no better man to prepare the way for Mr Broon? The BBC select their guests with great care.

It’s always there.

The bias I mean. I’ve just watched Andrew Marr’s interview with David Cameron for his regular Sunday mornng show. The first minute or two of Cameron’s performance were used in correcting Marr’s premise that the Conservative position was just to let the recession “take its course”. Isn’t this so typical? The Conservative always placed on the defensive by the casual distrust of the BBC man? If you listen or watch carefully (painful I know) it’s always there.

Earlier on I heard the news report say that Icelanders were rioting over the handling af the credit crisis. This is an interpretation that the BBC prefers. Surely demonstrators are protesting at the occurrence of the crisis itself, and the economic management which brought it about? Cameron was under fire from Marr for not ‘getting the scale’ of things. No mention of Gordon’s not getting the entire economic management “thing” which could have mitigated or averted it. I would say that- given British banking’s swollen role compared with the British economy- Gordon’s management of gold, regulation, taxation and interest rates should very much be on the table as a cause of the world’s crisis. Instead we have Marr lamenting the lack of a positive Conservative response. Where’s the room for positive responses? It’s only damage limitation thanks to Gordon.

The last part of the interview, patiently fielded by Cameron, was Marr’s questioning of Osborne’s position. Prior to that we had “Business Secretary” Peter Mandelson spinning the economy for Gordon. No questioning of his suspicious reintroduction into UK politics, or his ability to take the flak that Darling or Brown should be facing.

It makes me sick listening to the skewed BBC coverage. But whether I listen or not, it’s always there.

Best placed?


The IMF is not optimistic: it’s cut its 2009 growth forecast for the global economy to 2.2% from the previous estimate of 3%, as this report from the Beeb just about manages to mention at the end. And, more relevantly, in this piece yesterday about the rate cut. But can you guess what nugget of information readers of the Beeb’s reports miss out on?

  • The Independent: Britain, in particular, is heading for trouble, the IMF said, predicting that the UK would suffer a more serious recession than any other developed country in the world during 2009.
  • The Times: Britain is now forecast to bear the brunt of the global slump, with its GDP plunging by 1.3 per cent in what would be the worst year for the UK since the economy shrank by 1.4 per cent in 1991.
  • The Telegraph: Britain’s economy will suffer and will see the steepest decline in G7 club of leading powers, shrinking 1.3pc as the crunch in the City of London leads to more job losses.

Regular readers won’t be surprised, though, because unfortunately this is becoming a bit of a habit at the Beeb.

CHANCELLOR PESTON..

..

Is BBC business editor Robert Peston now running the UK economy, or merely ruining it? I ask this having endured watching him droning away on The Ten O’Clock News and reading this latest entry on the BBC news portal. He hails the Brown £50bn bail out as our banking system is partly nationalised, suggesting that it will make the banks stronger and more ready to lend. It’s been interesting to see a lot of criticism across the blogosphere directed the BBC’s way over the hysterical financial grandstanding by Mr Peston and his apparent admiration for Labour. We are not alone.

Financial crisis: Is it time for stricter regulation?

Not my question, the Beeb’s. The reflex never fails, does it? These have your say things are a joke when the question more or less determines the whole structure of debate. One question, which some would consider moot, means that reasonable answers to that question will inevitably tend to fall within the BBC’s comfort zone.