BBC Spread the Hatred 188


UPDATE Sign this Sack Laura Keunssberg petition. It put on 16,000 signatures in the last twelve hours after gaining just 25 in its first three months!

No matter how terrible the BBC is, it constantly manages to get worse. The BBC News this evening appears like an especially rabid Tory Party broadcast. Sarah Smith was just breathtaking, while I thought Laura Kuenssberg must be the Chairman of the Conservative Party.

Sarah Smith’s report from Holyrood was so astonishingly biased that a rather bemused BBC correspondent named Keane followed it with “But after Sarah Smith’s report let’s not forget that the SNP have won an historic third election”. Sarah Smith’s contribution was a voiceover of a photo montage of Ruth Davidson. Smith told us the election was all about Independence and the “stunning” Tory result was evidence that voters were firmly rejecting the idea of any second referendum. Cut to Ruth Davidson saying the Tories were firmly rejecting any second referendum.

Let us for a moment accept Sarah Smith’s contention that the Tories attracted those voters who do not want a second referendum. The truth of the matter is that just 1 in 9 of eligible Scottish voters, voted Tory. 21% of those who voted. So the proper conclusion should be that the Tories came a distant second and most people rather fancy a second referendum. Sarah Smith’s anti-independence tirade was gobsmacking, but then it was topped by some BBC pundit comparing Ruth Davidson’s Tories to Leicester City.

A foreign visitor would have had to be watching very carefully indeed to realise that the Tories had not won, and indeed got half the votes of the SNP. So the Tories are not Leicester, they are Newcastle. Yet the Tories in Scotland got four times the coverage of the SNP on the BBC news.

And so to the rest of the UK. Laura Kuenssberg seems to have a depth of hatred for Jeremy Corbyn which is more generally reserved for Fred and Rose West. She appears to be sponsored to say “anti-Semitism” as often as possible. She opened her report by saying that the results called Corbyn’s leadership into question.

The strange thing is that the results are near identical to Ed Miliband’s 2012 result at precisely the same Council elections. The net loss of Labour councillors is 12 out of over 2000, as I write. Miliband’s result was unanimously hailed in the media at the time as a triumph. Exactly the same result for Corbyn – including winning many councils in Tory Westminster constituencies in Southern and Midlands England – is a disaster.

An opposition party should make gains in council elections. But when that opposition party makes truly spectacular gains, but is still the opposition when they cycle comes round again, you can’t expect it to make further gains exponentially. Keunssberg stated directly that Labour has to be “piling on hundreds and hundreds of net gains” to have any chance. That is simply untrue. 2012 was Miliband’s high water mark. It was all downhill from there. Corbyn is exactly matching Miliband’s best ever performance, and doing so despite being tendentiously branded a mad anti-Jewish racist by the bitter Blairites in his own party. Plus under Corbyn, unlike Brown and Miliband, the London mayor is now Labour again

Miliband went downhill from 2012 precisely because, after his 2012 successes, the BBC and corporate media threw their entire firepower at Miliband. Corbyn has already weathered an even greater media barrage than Miliband ever suffered. It is by no means plain he will follow Miliband’s downhill trajectory from here. In England next year’s local election results – in a tranche of seats last contested when Miliband was already slipping back – will tell us a great deal more.


188 thoughts on “BBC Spread the Hatred

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  • Pudsma

    Thank you for the petition. I’ve complained directly to the BBC also. Kuenssberg really takes the biscuit for the most poisoned disgusting and twisted reporting ……we are paying her quite directly from our licence fees. £200k. Is she even performing her role? With tabloid type set ups – live resignations and leaked memos on election night. No she is not performing to any acceptable level her highly paid role. She seems to have been let run riot and as a fairly junior/new member of the BBC team this is very irresponsible and destructive of her bosses -they’ve allowed her to demonstrate a total lack of integrity-that good journalists need. Her bosses have failed her….and BBC News in general. How many times did she mention Corbyn negatively? It seemed like hundreds……the BBC have the evidence they must act.

  • Charles howarth

    I do not in any way appreciate the BBC extorting money out of the population and using that money to fuel pro Tory propaganda. I do however worry about the era of online petitions demanding people being sacked without any form of due process. If we are so confident, as we should be, that the BBC are allowing party sympathies to come ahead of facts, then we should really call for all involved to be investigated rather than sacked. Coming to the conclusion that they are guilty and should be immediately sacked by petition smacks of kangaroo court justice. We should also remmeber it is not just Keunssberg behind this story. There are editorial decisions at high levels in play here, and simply scapegoating one person will not solve the huge problems in the culture endemic at the BBC.

    • John Spencer-Davis

      That is a thoughtful posting. I do not think anyone seriously expects the BBC to sack Kuenssberg. And as a matter of law it would not be possible to sack her on the basis of public opinion. Ed Balls sacked Sharon Shoesmith as a matter of public relations and it cost the taxpayer nearly a million quid.

      I think it’s more a question of sending a message. Tens of thousands of people are reminding Kuenssberg, and the BBC that it’s not her job to act as an anti-Labour Left advocate, and that it’s the BBC’s job to be impartial. That’s not a bad message to send. But I do take your point.

  • Bobby Sands St., Teheran

    Just goes to show – when you exercise your self-determination, don’t expect to be treated any different than the Irish.

  • Tony_0pmoc

    Based on my call log, which I have not deleted from my mobile phone..The NSA are going to think I am in love with My Sis

    I have never denied it..but I know I really pissed her off last week…but I reckon she will forgive me…

    Why the hell should I ever text or phone my wife???

    We live together and do most things together..

    Where are You..It’s Gone 1:00 am?

    She says she is still in the pub – but will be home soon..if she gets her over 60’s Bus Pass next year.

    I’ve already got mine.

    Tony

  • Colin Jones

    Truly, but sadly the bbc has become a propaganda tool for the government, the new political editor is obviously there because of the “whittingdale effect” that has firmly put the bbc political reporting in camp of the government

  • Junius

    I’d say less ‘The BBC’ and more a rogue department within the BBC. News and Current Events are running their own game.

  • bevin

    “But they did dare, as you acknowledge. With military hardware, specialist jungle training and “holding on” to Malaya. What’s more, British troops fought in Vietnam in their thousands by simply transfering to Commonwealth armies…” Phil the former frog.

    I can assure you that you are wrong. Why on earth would British soldiers volunteer for Vietnam? As to transferring to Australian and New Zealand forces, its possible a few did (the money was much better and so were promotion prospects) but there was no official commitment of troops.
    There was actually a letter, signed by tens of thousands of young socialists, to Ho Chi Minh offering their services as soldiers if needed. Happily they were turned down but the gesture is one worth recalling.
    The truth is that the Labour Party has a very broad heritage which includes, apart from Ramsay Mac, Gaitskell and Arthur Deakin, armies of extremely decent and committed socialists, including those who fought in Ireland, in Spain, in occupied Europe (EP Thompson’s brother) and wherever Preacher Casey would have wanted them.
    The notion that all were corrupt, always, is a gratuitous insult to hundreds of thousands of dead socialists who were not corrupt, not the idiotic puppets of ‘leadership’ and not either traitors or cowards.

    No Wilson and his mates did not dare to send troops to Vietnam. And the fact that they did not dare was noted by many young Americans who themselves turned against the war, inspired in part by the refusal of the British to go along with its evident injustice and illegality. It was noted in Canada too where it stiffened the government’s resolve to keep out- and was a precedent for Iraq in 2003- and thousands of ‘draft dodgers’ and ‘deserters’ were afforded refuge and asylum.
    Perhaps you think that these are small things-certainly many Canadians volunteered for the US forces and went to Vietnam- but they were not. They gave rise to massive movements, in the sixties, in Europe and the States. And only an idiot would join the unlamented Habbakkuk in observing that ‘they all eventually petered out.’

    • Phil the ex frog

      Yes the Labour Party has a broad heritage. But that it does and still consistently acts contrary to that heritage is precisely the point.

      All these wonderful people you speak of. Yet the Party consistently supports war and opposes strikes. Consistently does stuff the exact opposite to what these wonderful members wish.

      Most Labour members have never paused to consider the reality of their Party. What is the Labour Party if it consistently promotes imperialist war and consistently opposes strikes? It is a fucking sham. But most members have not even thought it through enough to have even considered these stark realities. Instead they jump up and down waving their Party card, paying their subs, voting their vote, primed in ignorance to act all surprised that the Party would do such a thing when they are fucked over. Blair is uniquely evil! No he isn’t. He is just another Labour Party leader warmonger acting in the interests of others. You shouldn’t be surprised.

      Your repeated resorting to insulting me and focusing on distractions is typical of the mental dissonance of the faithful struggling to (not) recognise their delusion. So I forgive you.

    • Phil ex frog

      Just been shown this.
      On the army archive site. Testimony from Uk spies and soldiers. Photos of British bombers and British soldiers receiving medals. Approx 4000 British soldiers in Aus forces.
      http://Www.nam.ac.uk/what‘s-on/lunchtime-lectures/video-archive/jungle-too-far-britain-vietnam-war

      The URL may contain errors. On phone. Couldn’t copy and paste.

      • bevin

        There is nothing on this website-http://www.nam.ac.uk/whats-on/lunchtime-lectures/video-archive/jungle-too-far-britain-vietnam-war- contradicting the arguments that I made.
        The lecturer gives a very interesting account, all of which is consistent with the general analysis in Busch’s work.
        The Australian Army has always contained large numbers of British born men and its enviable pay and conditions have attracted the highly trained and experienced NCOs in the British army. This does not mean that British personnel were seconded to forces fighting in Vietnam.
        You are making an argument to sustain a position which is a crude over simplification of the fact that the British state is imperialist, therefore its governments are imperialist. This does not mean that there have not been significant differences between Labour and Tory attitudes to the Empire: Labour dismantled large parts of the Empire in the teeth of Tory opposition. And one reason that it did so is that Labour supporters and MPs insisted on it. This was particularly the case (unfortunately) in 1948 and Palestine.
        I haven’t been a member of the Labour party since 1968, I can assure you that I have no illusions whatever about the party.

        Regarding Balir and New Labour there are of course significant differences between the old party, with its curious but useful democratic institutions and its constituency parties independence, and the Blairised version with ‘democratic centralist’ control over the constituencies and the substitution of Third Way waffling for the 1919 Constitution with Clause 4 and the general commitment to equality. Without the rolling purges of the party which allowed Blair to dictate policy there is no way that the party and the country could have been tricked into allowing the Iraq war.

        Is it your view that there is no difference between a party which elects Corbyn as its figurehead and that which elected Blair?

  • Gill Hubble

    I have always been a true supporter of the BBC and can only think that the corporation is scared that Mr Cameron & Co will sell off the whole lot to their good friend Mr Murdoch. I am truly sad to be signing this petition but totally agree that it has got to stop.

  • BillyO

    Don’t pay the BBC TV tax

    If, say every member of the public were to cancel directly funding the BBC but continued to watch TV, what could the BBC realistically do about it?

    Fine everyone? Jail everyone? This is doubtful.

    But say there was a fighting fund set up from revenues saved by not paying the TV tax, and a team of lawyers explicitly dealing with any court actions, surely if the volume of non payers exceeded the Beeb’s capacity to enforce it then it could be beaten in the same way as the poll tax

    • Phil the ex frog

      At last. Someone proposing action that hasn’t been proven to fail many times over. You will be ignored mate.

      Too much trouble. Lots easier to whine day in day out about how surprising the entirely predictable is. I am very, very upset though! So upset I wrote a comment and signed a petition! Mr Murray is a visionary. And he writes real lovely yes he does!

  • Bert.

    Why should you be surprised at the generally right-wing attitude of the bbc’s presenters. Look at the money they are on. Years ago the bbc was the Platinum standard in broadcasting. It was what every other broadcaster wanted to be. Then came thatcher: competition, competition, competition. The bbc had always paid lousey wages but offered the very best in support for its staff and artists. The best engineering; the best production; the best support; the best of everything… That was the way John Reith built the edifice that was the bbc.

    Now, it is money money money. All these presenters, who you so rightly criticise, are very very well paid North London Crescent media types. When the average wage in this part of the world is about £25,000/yr; 70% of the people are on less than that £25,000/yr; 85% of the people are on less than £35,000/yr; 90% of the people are on less than £50,000/yr; and 95% are on less than £75,000/yr – where do you think the loyalties of these over-paid morons will lie?

    Do you think that Keunssberg is on less than £75,000/yr? If you do you are living in some kind of dream world.

    Do you think that Emily Maitliss is on less than £75,000/yr? Do you think that Kirsty Wark is on less than £75,000/yr? Do you think that Andrew Neil is on less than £75,000/yr? Do you think that Jo Coburn is on less than £75,000/yr? Do you think that Evan Davis is on less than £75,000/yr? If you do you are living in some kind of dream world.

    It is in their personal best interests to advocate a tory: small government; low tax; cut welfare; slash subsidies… world. (I note that the tories now want to restrict the maximum welfare going to any one family to £20,000/yr – reduced from £23,000/yr. Capitalist prices go up; welfare goes down.)

    Bert.

  • Carole Coote

    I became fatigued writing to complain to the BBC over the their coverage of the last two elections, but Keunsberg’s behaviour is something else. I want to defend the BBC against The Ministrr of Culture’s interference but am losing heart. Keunsberg’s has to go.

    I am no Corbyn supporter but I am a supporter of balanced and fair reporting. The BBC’s coverage was a travesty.

  • Glen Craig

    I had a simple rule I followed as a BBC reporter, give all politicians a hard time.
    From a working class family ( dad was a miner) I was once attacked for being pro Tory, after a strong interview with a Labour MP.
    As for Sarah Smith ( her dad was Labour leader John Smith) she was spot on with her analysis.
    Laura has definitely changed her interviewing technique since returning to the BBC after working for ITN and gives everybody a hard time and isn’t prepared to take spin for an answer.

    • Suhayl Saadi

      Thanks, Glen, good to know.

      I’ve been trying to read, and watch, the coverage over the past few months as dispassionately as I can. I have to say that my impresison from reading many of the BBC reports on these elections is that language is being used in ways which I recognise very well and which appears to be formulated in ways which help to minimise the impact of any successes the Corbyn-led Labour party (and the SNP, actually) have and maximise the successes of, broadly, the Right (not helped by the obvious divisions withn the Labour Party itself).

      I’m not going to comment on individual journalists. I’m sure they all try to do the best job they can. I know they, and the BBC, get criticised by the Right and the Left and the Centre, regardless, and that the BBC would argue that this fact means that it must be doing something right.

      John Smith was a key figure in New Labour, the Policy Exchange is a Right-wing think-tank, and it is both interesting and, I would suggest, problematic that most of the influential people in this country, including those in the media industry/publishing, etc. (regardless of the social origins of the parents of those people) come from/have become part of a particular quite narrow social class.

      If one has been to private school, for exmaple, and I realise that this is a generlaisation, you are more likely to hold political views which might be characterised as right-of-centre (and I include New Labour/Blairites/Brownites, etc. in that bracket of right-of-centre because their economic and often social policies fit that label far better thanh ‘left-of-centre’, though labels are pretty meangingless, let’s call it the post-Thatcherite mainstream political consesus). I do think that there is a danger that this narrow social base does influence underlying attitudes and preconceptions. I wonder whether a lot of people – and in my experience, counter-intuitively, intelligent, highly educated people often are the worst for having insight – even have much insight into this process, it has become so normalised. And I do wonder whether part of the – to me pretty clear – anti-Corbyn tone emanates from that rubric.

  • Stuart Gray

    Such blatant propaganda by the BBC is totally unacceptable. Where is there coverage of the Tory party being investigated for election overspending?

  • Jayne Venables

    I thought the BBC was spoofing itself. My comfort is in the defining nature of Corbyn supporters; they’ve seen through the lies and propaganda. Ergo, it’s directly and cumulatively counter-productive.

    I wonder if Trump’s and Sanders’ election successes have stirred an establishment onslaught, as they stumble out of denial.

    The best I can do is promote your all-shackles-off blog to those of my friends and associates who daily absorb the bbc with only the faintest sense of indigestion.

  • smiling vulture

    When the BBC covered South Africa,I can’t ever remember them saying Independence was a Dream.

    def–dulge in daydreams or fantasies about something greatly desired.

    Yet when BBC cover Scotland ,Independence,Dream is intertwined all the time

  • Susan Hames

    It is becoming more and more evident that you cannot trust trust BBC reporting to be factual without Tory bias.

  • jennifer

    The b b c are also run by money men along with the Tories I do not watch anything on that channel because of its political alliance , Labour will win the next election there is no doubt about that .

  • Ruth Cordero

    One does not like to spread hatred, despite the unequivocally biased views expressed by the organisation. However, this person has failed at her job so, unless she is protected by the same ‘laws’ that allow wealthy tax dodgers to get away with it, should be sacked for that failure.

  • Rory Regan II

    I packed away my TV almost two and a half years ago in January 2014 because I couldn’t afford it and also because I had it on almost 24/7 for background noise and/or the illusion of company.

    Little did I know how much bias, propaganda, lies and distortion I’d soon be missing out on by not watching the BBC anymore in the run up to the Indepence Referendum (and paying for said privilege under threat of prosecution from Capita AKA TV Licensing to whom the BBC quietly outsourced this unpleasant part of their operations).

    The BBC radio coverage of the referendum and 2015 GE was gobsmacking in its bias and diversion from any kind of neutrality and the only sensible form of protest in response to this is for everyone feeling the same way is to stop paying the license fee.

    If you have kids then you’re doing them a favour in the long run, anything else you can watch online for free on pirate sites or on catch up sites and your refusal to pay your English Establishment propaganda service charge is the best way to show your disapproval!

    If you do not watch or record live TV *as it is broadcast* ie live TV on any device such as a TV, a tablet or a smartphone then you simply do not need to pay the TV tax or Westminster Propaganda Service Charge at all.

    If any Capita “enforcement” officers chap your door, you are within your rights to refuse them entry; they may only be allowed access to your property to invade your privacy if they have a search warrant and are accompanied by police officers (who would rather be anywhere else doing proper coppering instead of babysitting a pair of officious diddies who think they have the power of life and death over uninformed proles).

    I’ve signed the petition so good luck!

  • Eddie McDowall

    I don’t watch the BBC anymore but unless Scotland can get an independent broadcasting company then, if we do have a second indy referendum, it will be another uphill battle. The BBC are an absolute disgrace

  • Jackie

    I am so pleased that someone has taken the decision to stand against the BBC I was sick to my stomach when watching the news on BBC as they belittled Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour party in every sentence they spoke!! Its about time we were given an unbiased view of ALL the parties and not to have the Conservative party shoved down our throat at every available opportunity!! I believe Jeremy Corbyn is changing the Labour party for the better and the people of the UK are starting to see the Conservative party for what they are!! Let the people choose for themselves and DO NOT try and use the BBC to give us false information

  • John Mcillaney

    The road the Tories are trying to take us is back to the days when we worked for them for a pittance with no hope for the future. They are taking control of all sections of the media with the help of their non-tax paying friends and placing others in positions to make sure everyone who opposes them is shown constantly in a bad light. This is as far from democracy as we can get,but then we always knew they have never been a democratic party! We need a clean sweep to remove this dangerous poison from British politics.

  • Dan E

    I’ll preface this by saying that I’m a big supporter of Corbyn and I was appalled at the Tory bias in the election coverage (especially spin coming from David Cameron: if Labour are ‘out of touch’, what about the Conservatives who lost more seats!), but in what sense was Miliband’s 2012 local elections result ‘near identical’ to this one? Miliband had 38% of the vote compared to Corbyn’s 31%. Miliband ended up with 2,159 councillors and 75 councils, Corbyn has ended up with 1,326 councillors and 58 councils. Most importantly, Miliband *won* 823 councillors and 32 councils, where Corbyn has *lost* 18 councillors and has won 0 councils. I’d just like some clarification on how you think these two results are the same seeing as they seem to be completely different, and this article therefore seems misleading.

    • Stu

      “Miliband ended up with 2,159 councillors and 75 councils, Corbyn has ended up with 1,326 councillors and 58 councils. Most importantly, Miliband *won* 823 councillors and 32 councils, where Corbyn has *lost* 18 councillors and has won 0 councils.”

      There were no council elections in Scotland or Wales this week because of the other elections. In England Corbyn achieved 98.5% of Milliband’s results.

      The reason Ed *won* more was because of the lower starting point for him. The two results were exactly the same only one was hailed a great result and the other a disaster (until the BBC were forced to flip flop).

      The overall vote share figure is less clear but it doesn’t directly relate to votes cast and is quite opaque. The method of calculation has obviously been changed following the polling failure at the GE 12 months ago.

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