Sunday, April 14, 2013

Appeasement at the BBC

Whenever I travel, especially when a Canadian television station is not available, I tend to tune into the BBC, which generally practises the kind of hard-hitting journalism that the CBC was once known for, before embarking upon a policy of trying to appease the right-wing. Sadly, that virus of appeasement now seems to have been caught by the British national broadcaster, reflected in its decision to air only a five-second clip of Ding Dong! The Witch is Dead, the song which, in the wake of Margaret Thatcher's death, is likely to rise to number three on Sunday, in time for BBC Radio One's The Official Chart show.

The BBC has apparently been influenced in its decision by the howls of outrage from the British right-wing, upset by the implied disrespect of their patron, St. Margaret, that airing the full song, the usual practice of the show for rising songs, would demonstrate.

Compounding the craven capitulation is this disingenuous and self-serving remark by Tony Hall, the BBC's director general (italics mine):

"I understand the concerns about this campaign (the massive purchasing of the song to celebrate the week's major event). I personally believe it is distasteful and inappropriate.

"However, I do believe it would be wrong to ban the song outright as free speech is an important principle and a ban would only give it more publicity."

So in Mr. Hall's world, a little betrayal of public trust and integrity is okay. Hmm, sounds like just another politician ascending the ladder to me.

For those who cannot muster any sorrow for Maggie's passing, enjoy the following video which, I think, rather effectively captures the animus the Iron Lady was so adept at fostering:


  1. Like you, Lorne, I turn to the BBC to get my television news. It's most disturbing to see the corporation bow to the powers that be.

  2. We can only hope that this doesn't become the norm with the Beeb, Owen.