The news where the BBC isn’t

There have been reports that the government intends to abolish the TV licence fee and turn the BBC into a commercial organisation. Boris Johnson’s Igor, Dominic Cummings, reportedly has an ideological conviction that the public service broadcaster ought to fund itself through a subscription service, similar to that used by Netflix or Amazon. The revamped BBC would then only be available to those who had paid the fee. The reaction from Scotland has been “meh”.

There’s little affection for the BBC amongst independence supporters in Scotland. The Corporation displayed its British bias to the full during the independence referendum in 2014, and has consistently failed to represent the full range of Scottish political opinion, preferring to concentrate on SNPbaddery and portrayals of Scotland through the prism of British nationalism. The BBC underfunds and underrepresents Scotland, sooking funds from Scottish licence fees and giving us an underfunded wee ghetto channel that’s been set up to fail so that bosses in London can claim that there’s no appetite for distinctively Scottish broadcasting. However what we can be quite sure of is that if the Conservatives replace the BBC, they’ll give us something that’s even worse.

There’s little love lost between the BBC and Boris Johnson. Even less love than there is between Scotland and the BBC, so that ought to tell you something. The Prime Minister believes that the role of the BBC ought to be a cheerleader for him and his government, and it should devote itself to holding nasty socialists and Scottish separatists to account. And the Corporation does perform that latter task extremely well. That’s the job of the BBC, not pointing out that yet again the Prime Minister has failed to be arsed enough to visit areas of England and Wales devastated by flooding just like it took a campaign of shaming him on social media last year to get him to visit the flooded areas in South Yorkshire. Although to be fair, the BBC hasn’t pointed it out, everyone else has.

Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson doesn’t do flood victims, he only does voters. He’ll be back up to northern England in four years time, blaming the EU for something. He didn’t show up for anything when he was running for PM, so he’s certainly not about to start showing up for stuff now. He might have sired a litter of kids that he refuses to acknowledge, but his refusal to put in an appearance when he’s expected to does at least prove that he knows how to practice the withdrawal method.

The BBC has resolutely and bravely not mentioned his absence from the scene of the flooding. There’s that holding power to account that we all pay our licence fees for. Someone should tell Johnson that what the flooded areas really need is a huge bridge. He’d be there within minutes. It’s far more important for the welfare of the UK that the Prime Minister spends some quality time in a luxury mansion with 115 bedrooms, set on a 3500 acre estate. He’s staying this week at Chevening in Kent. He does not intend to hold a COBRA emergency committee meeting or pay a trip to areas affected by the weather. Chevening doesn’t just have luxury accommodation, it also possesses a very nice selection of fridges. Johnson is hiding in one of those. The BBC is showing us all that it is worth the licence fee by calling out the Prime Minister for not doing one of the basics of his job, to reassure the public during a time of stress and emergency. Oh wait. Of course it’s not.

We’ve only had this majority Tory government for a couple of months and already we’ve got a Prime Minister who makes a habit of being absent during a national emergency, and distraction techniques in the form of discussions of a bridge between Northern Ireland and Scotland that will never get built, although no matter how many miles of sea the bridge crosses it will never be long enough for the Tories to get over themselves. We’ve had eugenics, racist lies about IQs, discussion about enforced contraception of the poor, rampant xenophobia, a Home Office that insisted a 101 year old Italian man who has lived in the UK longer than Boris Johnson has been alive bring his parents to an interview in order to verify his identity before he can be given permission to remain in the UK. We’ve had attempts to prevent judges from holding the government to account, forced deportations of Jamaican born people who have done the exact same kinds of things as the US born Johnson (yet strangely he’s not up for deportation. Who knew?). We’ve got the perma angry Dominic Raab as Foreign Secretary and not even in an ironic way, a Home Secretary who possesses a Daily Mail wet dream combination of stupidity and vindictiveness, the suppression of the report into Russian meddling in UK politics, the loss of freedom of movement, the denial of Scottish democracy, incipient fascism, Annie Wells as deputy leader of the Scottish Conservatives even though she’d struggle to lead a queue at the bus stop, the centre of the Scottish capital is represented in Holyrood by a woman who’s more interested in a career in PR and who would prefer a seat in the Lords, and now there’s attempts to prevent the BBC from challenging the Conservatives.

It’s a catalogue of crap, a litany of loathsomeness, an enumeration of excrement. We’ve had all this, and the Tories have only just started. There’s going to be another five years of this, and most likely another ten since there’s little prospect of the Labour party getting its act together in England any time soon. This is the security and stability, the protection from extremism, the love and respect, that Scotland was promised in 2014 in return for a no vote. So how’s that working out for everyone? There’s only one way out of this mess, and it’s not by hoping for a Labour government in Westminster in five or ten years time. The British state isn’t just failing Scotland, it’s a moral, intellectual, and political failure. It’s only going to get worse.

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36 thoughts on “The news where the BBC isn’t

  1. Pingback: The news where the BBC isn’t | speymouth

  2. The oldies will not vote for them. Losing the feee licence fee will destroy the Tories. TV is one of the cheapest forms of entertainment. Although the young do not watch anymore. They are on the Internet.

  3. Jeez oh Paul, what a depressing picture you paint, and the worse thing about it is, it’s all true. Every word of it.
    At least the Independence movement are trying to do something, they at least have plenty of ideas,besides waiting for LBJ to change his mind on a referendum.

    I dinnae gie a stuff aboot EBC, the sooner it disappears from Plantation Quay, the better. Hopefully, it won’t fall into the Clyde and pollute it.

    I’m away to try and cheer myself up now.

  4. In my view the BBC emits a poisonous output, akin to a kind of radiation, that has contributed massively to maintaining a docile public here and abroad. The quicker it has to live on subscriptions the better.

    I imagine it will still have its role as the mouthpiece of the state but it’s effectiveness as such will be undermined further than it has been recently. The conflict around changing it and the separation of its propaganda role and it’s “educational”/entertainment roles will be very undermining – if it ever happens.

    The public are much less taken in by the private media than they once were. So if that is the path Johnson wants to go down I am up for it.

  5. Can’t feel any sympathy for BBC. They reap what they have sown.

    On the day of the referendum 2014, we had been detailed to drive round and get the independence vote out. At one house we encountered a young lady in some distress. Her parents she informed us had already gone out to vote yes but she felt conflicted and hadn’t yet been to vote because she still couldn’t make up her mind what to vote. When asked why, she told us that she had several friends who worked at Pacific Quay who had been told firmly that they would lose their jobs if independence came and so those friends were going to vote no.

    So the BBC brought it on themselves. I don’t think that No would have won if it hadn’t been for BBC’s deliberate propagandising. They haven’t relented since 2014. They chose their side and have helped deliver Scotland into the nightmarish situation we have now with a Westminster Government hell bent on its far right project. Only the older generation will follow it into a subscription ghetto and they are already captured. Well done BBC.

    (I am also of that older generation, by the way, in case anyone objects. Ever since the sixties i have not been at one with that generation. Most of them have been spoiled by being the post-war generation and having been the recipients of the post war welfare state. They are often selfish and smug and have little sympathy for those who are struggling since they will maintain that they reached a comfortable old age entirely by their own efforts. So they are content to kick away the ladders for younger generations. And that includes some of those who used to go out on student demos in the 70s and 80s. Alistair Darling et al.)

    Oh and where is the BBC’s outrage at what is happening to a journalist – Julian Assange – held in conditions amounting to psychological torture and unable to defend himself against extradition to US, the only reason why he was held in prison in the first place? The BBC don’t do journalism any more, so again if they are coming for the BBC now? Won’t be getting my support.

  6. Yes, true and appalling. But hardly surprising or unexpected: we’ve experienced many years of Tory governments and there surely was no secret about the kind of government Johnson’s would turn out to be.

    And why do we now have a Johnson government? In large part because so many in England who would claim to be really ‘Labour people’ in the past still found it in themselves to vote for the Tories in last year’s GE.

    Now Labour leadership candidates have the gall to claim that the Party can only regain power in Westminster by winning in Scotland!

    I suggest they find out why their former, longstanding voters in England showed so little solidarity with working people and the vulnerable that they voted for Johnson’ Tories.

  7. Heard a “northern” BBC journalist on Radio4 complaint about Scots and Welsh newsreaders on the BEB when people from the north cannot get on the BBC.
    What Scots newsreaders? I can’t think of even one across any UK-wide BBC platform?

    Two stats we need. What % of our licence fee is spent in Scotland on Scottish programmes? Last I heard was our per capita share was half of England’s.
    What is BBC/Radio Scotland’s audience share, and is that why Donalda is leaving?

  8. LBJ’s lying (in more ways than one) back at Chevening like a slab of smelly lard, stuffing his face, guzzling champagne and doing whatever else he seems to like doing (the mind boggles) whilst hundreds, if not thousands, of people’s lives are in ruins.The BBC don’t seem to be too keen to report this, just as they’ve got nought to say about Nicola Sturgeon visiting flood victims, volunteers and the emergency services in the Borders.

    What I don’t get is how so many English people voted for that blatant wee conman. Duped those in the North into voting for him in December. And here we go again!

    ‘Flood defences in England get 1% of infrastructure spending,’

    …”Current figures show nearly £5bn is due to be spent on flood defences up until 2026, with a third of the money spent in London and the South East.”…

  9. Looks as though the Tories are planning to be around for quite some time to come.

    ‘Tories split over plot to destroy the BBC.’

    ….”It’s an interesting plan – especially, as Zelo Street points out, considering the fact that the BBC’s current agreement with the government runs until 2027, three years after the current Tory government’s term runs out.”..


    Gavin:- ”What Scots newsreaders? I can’t think of even one across any UK-wide BBC platform?”

    What about Carrie Gracie, Gavin (yeh she doesn’t have much of a Scottish accent now)?

    She sticks in my mind because she really p*ssed the BBC right off, lol. She opened the floodgate that led to Samira Ahmed winning her equal pay case in court which in turn has strengthened the cases of dozens of BBC women who are now demanding reparation too. The BBC? Good enough for them!

    …”Since returning to London (from China) she has often been the main afternoon presenter on weekends either on the BBC News Channel or BBC World News.

    In June 2018 the BBC agreed to give her years of back pay and to pay her equally with other men presenters. Gracie donated the full amount of £361,000 to the Equal Pay Advice Service and the Fawcett Society.”..

  10. The gratitude of kings…

    Mibbies the Beeb should’ve thought about that a bit more before alienating half a nation? But yeah, meh is about the right response from many folks in Scotland. Safe to say that they’ll find sympathy in short supply hereabouts.

    Heard about Ms MacKinnon’s pending departure earlier and frankly it barely raised an eyebrow as a point of interest. I mean… (shrugs).

    Appears it’s a case of tick tock for both UK politics and the Beeb.

  11. Nice one Paul, particularly over the PQ output which lies somewhere between laughable and pathetic, the plug should be pulled not privatised… Mc Kinnon taking a fast exit for the early pension pot (more time with family) before it all goes to hell tells you much more of the extent of “political guidance” anticipated…
    The laughable element to the “subscription” notion is that it feeds the Tory ethos of private ownership yet relies on continued blind obedience to the London message, two contradictory posits unless you’re Rupert Murdoch.
    The media are going full choral shortly after Valentine’s day I would guess, now would be a good time for a SNP cunning plan to be leaked to throw a spanner in their collective works before the Odes of March descend…

    • I don’t have a tv license as I don’t watch the box.
      I prefer to think of myself as a Propaganda avoider, and not a license fee delinquent.
      On the times I’ve seen the EBC in Scotland’s ‘news’ I find the articles and their running order strange.
      On their website, it carries articles that can be a week out of date and so not worth looking at.
      The bogs are my way of keeping an eye on the media’s recycling of propaganda, the newspaper output is picked up by the TV broadcasters then recycled into the newspapers.
      I don’t buy any newspapers now although used to buy one every day and 2 on the Sunday.
      The scotsman article is written from the view that IF you don’t have a license then you are a criminal and watching their output, what happens now is not a problem for me, they can close down the EBC and something else will appear to take over, lots of my friends are of the opinion that the output is rubbish, nothing they haven’t seen before, repeats.
      Streaming appears to be the ‘Youth’ system of entertainment.

      • “”The bogs are my way of keeping an eye on the media’s recycling of propaganda, …””

        I know it is a typo but it did give me a much needed laugh this morning before I headed out to the dentist.

        The vision it evoked of you going round reading toilet doors was priceless. But then I thought about it and realised the ‘bogs’ are probably the source of much of their news and if not the source then where it should end up

  12. BBC spends £5Billion. More taxpayers money than the licence revenues. A lot goes on the property estate. The worldwide news propaganda. Like Murdoch Fox News in the States. Totally biased and corrupt. Non Dom tax evaders. Tax evading BBC elite. They were reprimanded by the authority for biased comments on the internet.

    In the US they started watching RT news for better information, worldwide. Less biased. More people die in the US of homicides 26,000 a year. Than the military involved in illegal wars.

    Murdoch sacked Johnson for lying. Too many crooks. All in it together. Unelected Cummings now running the show. It will all end in chaos, again.

  13. A bit late but early start waiting on a delivery from Engerland , you know the place we do most of our business with that’s been threatening cut us off Aye ok that threat cuts both ways Bawjaws ,lets see when we bypass the English companies.

    As for the comments above about the demise of the BBC now Bawjaws is on a roll , wakey Wakey rather than applauding Bawjaws the best way is to show support for the BBC because the man child will do his best to go against anything the Indy movement support , it’s like negotiating with a child use a bit of cunning to get the desired result, this Clown needs to be handled a different way from most adults .

  14. I got free, 3 months subscription to Britbox when I purchased a Samsung television recently. Are there any Scottish productions included in this enterprise? No.
    Netflix let’s me choose to watch productions from other countries. One I enjoyed was Ragnarok. It is from Norway. Scotland can do the the same, and if the BBC and STV are unwilling to produce Scottish drama series and films for the world. It would be great if Netflix did it.

  15. It is long past time we made our own luck and took a firm grip of our future in our own hands and free this country from the destructive power of Westminster

  16. This is all true, but we know it already. It’s not what we need right now. We need reasons to be cheerful, not in the cheeky chappy Cockney sense, but actual evidence of progress towards something better.

  17. I’ve weaned myself off terrestrial/satellite tv years ago. So I find I have little sympathy for the beeb. Even so, I was shocked at the hysteria over a closed bridge, versus the praise over one that can’t be built. The UK media disgraced themselves that day. It really was a new low. Now I see they are trying once again to blow smoke up out backsides, as to what a great guy Carlaw is…

    How very, very, fucking dare they parade mediocrity before us and tell us its fit to rule Scotland.

  18. Well, Jackson Carlaw, sorry, is it Carjack Lawson, is now the branch Manager of the British Conservative and Unionist Party which is on the cusp of destroying Scotland’s Health and Care sector, Tourist Industry, Farming and Fish industries, and much much more, now that one of his bosses, Priti Patel, the Accidental Israeli Tourist, and big fan of the tobacco and alcohol industries, has set out her Immigration Ban Policies.
    No freedom of Movement for you Sweaties.
    An ‘Australian Style Points Based System’ means that the borders of 27 countries in Europe have been slammed shut to Scots, who don’t speak French, German or Dutch, if the EU play hard ball, and match this smirking awful little arch Right Wing chancer, who has effectively placed Scotland under House Arrest, and seriously damaged the social, economic and political well being of our country, Scotland.
    No more seasonal farm labour for Alister ‘Union’ Jack. No more nurses and care workers from Europe.
    If you are a young Brit wanting to take a ‘year out’ to travel in Europe and pick grapes, forget it.
    I am one of the 8 million ‘economically inactive’ whom Ms Patel quotes, who can fill the gap..I am 72, a pensioner, crippled with OA in all joints. She lies that there is this vast pool of Brits just waiting to step in to the breach.
    ‘Fuck business’, right enough.
    This woman is a seriously deranged Tory zealot, who will not rest until the UK is reduced to a Victorian mad house.
    Well, Carjack Lawson will surely rise to his feet at Holyrood and defend the farmers, fishermen and woman, and demand that Scotland has its own Immigration Policy, won’t he?
    Will he feck.

    It has started; the destruction of civilised society.
    Any idiot broadcaster who peddles the ‘wait until the 2021 SGE’ before we demand Self Determination, better hope that their mother doesn’t need residential care, or their child is press ganged into picking turnips in Jack’s Farm before then.
    It is no hyperbole to observe that England is now controlled by the most right wing fascist racist bunch of imperialists in history.

    Come on, Scottish’ Brit Nats, let’s hear you scream out tomorrow at Holyrood FMQ.
    We won’t hold our collective breath.

    Come on Rennie, Leonard, let’s hear it for Scotland, for once in your lives.

    It has started. The destruction of society.

    • Looks as though the Tories have their eye on the 8 million ”economically inactive” in the country and are going to train them up on how to pick strawberries and so on.

      If we thought that life had been horrendous under this Tory government, to date, we can now see that with them being unshackled from the EU plus their majority, we’re about to take a nose dive into the abyss.

      • “8 million ”economically inactive””

        I don’t think those 8 million, retired tory voters would take kindly to berry picking. 🙂

        • Don’t you worry Luigi. When the Tories get round to making us all wear badges and armbands they’ll be wearing the ”exempting” blue one. What colour for the verminous Scots, I wonder?

    • Jack
      Even the EBC are rubbishing the new patel plan.
      Of the 8 million economically inactive less than 1 million are actually looking for a job.
      Just like Donalda of the EBC who will retire on £90,000 a year pension will be in the group of ‘Not Needing to Work’.
      Herd a bit on the Classic FM news, Global news, Our employers will have to come to terms with no more cheap labour from the EU, says Nigel.
      Pitel says that they should be ‘Training’ up the slackers on benefits in the RUK, to take on the jobs the low skilled from the EU do for us. EH, in the same sentence the people are unskilled and require training to be unskilled.
      Looking forward to carloss jackass asking a question on the lack of training places provided by the SNP bad government. The failure to provide classes in the arts for the secondary schools due to no teachers of the subjects.
      I’m like you, a retired person, but I am economically active, I spend my pension money in the community and that provides jobs.
      When are they going to eject doris, the foreigner who along with the Patels and the other emigrants who are in the political parties who wouldn’t get into the country now.
      I look forward to my new course in street sweeping to continue to receive my pension, no doubt it will be a degree course that I’ll have to fund myself as I have already been funded to that level in the dim and distant past.
      We should be afraid, our next move will be to the concentration camps for the economically inactive.
      This morning as I paid for my fuel at the filling station I was asked if I had a nectar card, said no that I wouldn’t live long enough to cash them points in for something worthwhile.
      The attendant said that the old tesco clubcard was a much better deal.

      • Hence me placing ‘economically inactive’ in parenthesis, Dave.

        Like you, I spend my income in society.

        For example, we don’t have kids at school, yet we have no problem in the Collatin Household to pay full community charges.
        We pay VAT, and buy things.

        It’s called civic society.

        Some of the kids being taught now might cure cancer in the future, or be my specialist surgeon when and if needed.

        What this frankly fascist immigration policy means is that Europe is effectively closed to Scots.

        The EU will apply the same Draconian rules to Brits wanting to travel, settle, and work over there.
        Carjack Lawson is perfectly aware that Scotland will suffer badly when the English Homeland Security close our borders to the Europeans. But he doesn’t give a feck. England/Britain is his country, and he’s paid well to sit back and let it happen.
        We shall suffer badly because an ‘English’ Party has made the decision for us.
        We are an imprisoned colony.
        Yet the North of Ireland can be ‘Irish’ and ‘British’?

        I’ve had enough of this.
        Time for action now.

      • ence me placing ‘economically iHnactive’ in parenthesis, Dave.

        Like you, I spend my income in society.

        For example, we don’t have kids at school, yet we have no problem in the Collatin Household to pay full community charges.
        We pay VAT, and buy things.

        It’s called civic society.

        Some of the kids being taught now might cure cancer in the future, or be my specialist surgeon when and if needed.

        What this frankly fascist immigration policy means is that Europe is effectively closed to Scots.

        The EU will apply the same Draconian rules to Brits wanting to travel, settle, and work over there.
        Carjack Lawson is perfectly aware that Scotland will suffer badly when the English Homeland Security close our borders to the Europeans. But he doesn’t give a feck. England/Britain is his country, and he’s paid well to sit back and let it happen.
        We shall suffer badly because an ‘English’ Party has made the decision for us.
        We are an imprisoned colony.
        Yet the North of Ireland can be ‘Irish’ and ‘British’?

        I’ve had enough of this.
        Time for action now.

    • You’ll be waiting a long time Jack for the bus, leotard and carcrash to change tactics, but these chancers well realise their coats are on shoogly pegs unless their bluff works, and however forgiving Scots may be, but they do not forget…
      Regarding the much vaunted Oz points based system, I watched a YouTube video (possibly “A Different Bias”) which quoted a report from the independent UK body who had been tasked to comment on the proposed UK policy, which broadly concluded “You already have a points based system, the Oz version is inferior”… The normal extension of the head of this independent group has now been limited to months so he (?) may respond to questions over the report.
      Tories, you don’t like the answer, shoot the piano player and monkey and bury the piano….

  19. Perhaps we should be more aware,
    Don’t bother to debate were the head honchos of bbc are losing their bbc jobs, but instead debate where the big yin’s are going too,
    As far as i am led to believe there is a lot that are already, or going to be employed in ofcom, where they will have more say on regulating online social media platforms, and the ability to decide who to take down if it does not agree with their view of how the world should be.
    Be aware.
    Behind the farce of no bbc rhetoric, there is trouble brewing, for those whom think freedom of speech is important, the curtain closing on bbc is there for a purpose, the curtain hides much more than you realise.
    You have to watch your opposition carefully and closely.
    With that scary news out of the way.
    We would like to say welcome back to Scotland to you and your husband, hope you both had a lovely time.

  20. The latest from James Kelly:-

    ..”The “People’s Alliance” plan for a new pro-independence party is yet more People’s Front of Judea stuff, and the notion that it’s going to ensure we have pro-indy parties as both the government and opposition in Holyrood is absolute pie in the sky. However, I’m much less concerned about it than I was about the proposed “Wings party”…

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