Sunday, October 18, 2009

BBC, BNP and 'balance'

Nick Cohen on Nick Griffin's appearance on Question Time later this week:
A media interested in nothing so much as covering media stories will make the programme an event. Dozens of press articles and radio debates have already analysed the BBC's decision to allow the British National party on to its best current affairs show. The London media barely cover the ugly problems of Stoke-on-Trent, Burnley, Oldham, Dagenham and the other depressed areas where the BNP has made gains, but justifies its current focus on itself by insisting that Dimbleby's rigorous interviewing and the tough interventions of the mainstream panellists will expose the BNP.
Most of the other things worth saying about this have been said, but Nick's right here: The stupidity of the BBC allowing this knuckledragger onto their schedules is a symptom of a wider failure of journalism and commentary. An inability to challenge. A lack of self-confidence, and - yes - a moral re-lah-tiv-ism.

And this point:
"I speak from experience when I say that outsiders – journalists, comedians, celebrity dons – have it easiest. We can engage in a little rabble-rousing, while politicians know that the Westminster press will accuse them of a "gaffe" if they accidentally deviate from the party line. Griffin, who has been practising his sales pitch since he addressed the Ku Klux Klan leadership in 2000, will be composed. He may be surprisingly popular because Question Time cannot just be about racism, antisemitism and links between rhetoric and violence."
It'll be a car-crash, and it will highlight the fatuous nature of the BBC's notion of 'impartiality' - and especially the damage that it does today when there isn't a counterweight of balanced pluralistic journalism and commentary from other sources.


Rayatcov said...

Isn't democracy wonderful.
What are you all so worried about. What do you fear the BNP will find out.
After all they have only two MEPs, hardly earth shattering is it.
You would think by the attention of all the media, printed and otherwise, they were poised to take over Parliament. Considering they managed two MEPs, when everyone and his dog were against them, is a little startling to say the least, just think what they would have achieved if it had been a level playing field.
Grow up children.

By the way the saying is The road to hell paved with good intentions not bad. Still I suppose that's education these days.

Paulie said...