Shadow culture secretary Jeremy Hunt wants the BBC to recruit more Conservatives to counter its ‘innate liberal bias’.
There is absolutely no chance of that happening. None at all. It’s a fantasy. Forget it. But even assuming the BBC did recruit some token Tories (it won’t), that wouldn’t help.
As Press Gazette helpfully reminds us, Hunt was referring to “comments made by BBC former political editor Andrew Marr, in November, 2007, saying he believed there was an ‘innate liberal bias’ inside the BBC caused by its abnormally large proportion of younger people, ethnic minorities and gay people working for the publicly-funded urban organisation”.
Marr’s use of the word, innate. was precise. The bias is part of the BBC’s essence.
Here’s one among many examples.
Today’s R4 programme, ‘Costing the Earth‘ was about the creation of an energy ‘Supergrid’ linking renewable resources across Europe.
Presenter Tom Heap spoke to two politicians: Liberal Democrat Energy spokesman Simon Hughes and his Tory equivalent Greg Clark.
Hughes was heard in almost reverential silence as he:
- called for EU involvement in creating the grid;
- said big business wouldn’t do the job; and
- criticised the Tories.
He was not interrupted once – his views went completely unchallenged.
Greg Clark said he didn’t want a ‘grand projet’, and played down the role of the EU, saying any project would involve non-EU members (Norway), as well as African countries.
Heaps of questions
Heap challenged him straight away, asking if his views were influenced by Tory Euro-scepticism, and asking if Tory plans meant we “would be at the mercy of big business”.
The remainder of the programme was devoted to showing that plans to involve Africa were ‘more controversial’, and would mean exploiting the continent’s poor.
Ask me another
No problem with that. It’s sound journalism. But why wasn’t Hughes asked if Liberal pro-EU bias influenced their views? Why wasn’t he asked if their policies means we would be at the mercy of the Brussels bureaucracy?
Innate liberal bias?