Following the departure of some significant talent over the past five years, some due to old age and some to competitors, questions are being raised about this tax payer funded public broadcaster with Libdems now to demand a meeting with Lord Hall – the director general of the BBC.
“We are now top of the polls so we should get more coverage than anyone else,” Ed Davey, a contender for the Libdem leadership, says. “We can legitimately ask why is Nigel Farage on so much of the time?”
Over the past two days, the BBC has had a number of political shows, starting with Question Time on Thursday. On the panel:
“Nicky Morgan MP, former education secretary, Conservative; Anneliese Dodds MP, Labour’s shadow treasury minister and a former MEP; Drew Hendry MP, Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy spokesperson, SNP; Alison Phillips, editor of the Daily Mirror; and Piers Morgan, journalist, broadcaster and presenter of ITV’s Good Morning Britain.”
So we have conservative, labour, the Scotish Nationalist Party (SNP), someone from a left paper, and right wing Piers Morgan.
On the same day, there’s This Week. Here we have Michael Portillo (conservative), Stella Creasy (labour), Miranda Green (journalist) and Alex Phillips (Brexit Party).
Miranda Green was Libdem press secretary 30 years ago, but now writes for all sorts of papers on a freelance basis. While Alex Philips is full on Brexit Party (BP).
Then on the same day there is Politics Live with Andrew Neil. Here we have someone from the conservatives, but this time of the no deal kind, someone from labour, an economist, and someone from the Institute of Economic Affairs which is basically conservatives.
So an entire day and not one from Libdems proper, nor is there anyone to really argue for Europe, but we have plenty making the BP argument whether under a conservative banner or whatever banner.
Then on the same day there’s Newsnight. On this day, June 6th, Newsnight is at the same time as Question Time. Few therefore are watching Newsnight, if anyone at all, especially as it opens with some story about Ford closing some plant. Then 20 minutes in, we have a five minute interview with Ed Davey, leadership contender of Libdems, without some sort of opening into how Libdems are doing or any panel discussion.
On the next day, we have fewer political shows, so “everyone” is watching them. We have Politics Live this time with Jo Coburn. They had Brexit Party MEP Ben Habib, Labour’s Faiza Shaheen and someone from The Daily Telegraph (conservative/BP) and The Guardian (Labour).
We had one hour of Habib condescendingly laughing at times and interrupting, but with what she was given, Coburn did a fine job.
On the evening of that day we have Newsnight. This opens with whether the tories can survive Brexit. There’s obviously a bit of Nigel Farage, BP’s leader, delivering some letter asking to be part of the negotiation team, then we have a panel.
On the panel theres a Green MEP and Suzan Evans, ostensibly from UKIP, a party that is barely having 2% on the polls. Which means she is really there for BP since there’s hardly a difference between the two. Of course no Libdem.
So then on Wednesday, June 5th, we have Politics Live with Robert Buckland (conservative), Jenny Chapman (labour), Steve Baker (no deal conservative), Philippa Whitford (SNP), The Spectator’s Isabel Hardman (conservative) and The New Statesman’s Stephen Bush (labour).
In the evening we have Newsnight, which is all about Boris Johnson, a panel of three conservatives, and then off to talk about D-Day.
On Sunday June 9th, there’s Andrew Marr with Michael Gove (conservative), Esther McVey (conservative) and Barry Gardiner (labour). Reviewing the newspapers are Katy Balls (The Guardian/labour) and Pippa Crerar (The Guardian/labour).
So in three days we’ve had one libdem for five minutes during a spot that arguably no one watches as they’re watching Question Time. We also have a half Libdem if it can be called that.
We have one hour for a BP panelist. We have another UKIP/BP on another panel that is actually watched, and likewise another BP spokesperson on This Week.
That’s not to mention the Nigel Farage coverage, and then the whole will Brexit break tories opening segment which is implicitly about BP.
The SNP also seems to be everywhere and then obviously conservatives and labour even though both are generally polling below or on par with Libdems while SNP is not even at play.
Has BBC Turned Against Liberalism?
Apparently the director general of the BBC has a cosy relationship with Michael Gove and apparently there’s close relationships between some of the BBC staff and senior Brexiteers.
After close to a decade of conservatives in power, who at times have threaten to cut BBC’s budget, it is perhaps to be expected that there would be some right wing bias, but its extent where Libdems are concerned is quite worrying.
BBC’s usual response is that they’re being criticized by both sides, so there’s no bias. However, Farage has clearly figured out that if you complain of not being given coverage, even if you are being coverage, then you’ll get even more coverage.
In addition, if others complain of bias, then Farage complains even more loudly so as to cancel their complaint.
In short, just because you get criticism, doesn’t mean the criticism is justified. Where Libdems are concerned, however, the facts speak for themselves.
The Brexit Party, at the end of the day, doesn’t have one MP, yet in the past three days they have appeared on almost every political show, either as full on BP spokespersons, or as no-deal conservatives.
Libdems, on the other hand, got one 5 minute interview at the worst possible slot. While more generally, the arguments for staying in Europe have been presented by no one even though 16 million people voted for it and if the expat votes had been counted, it may have been a majority.
Meaning half of the British public is completely being ignored with some perhaps thinking theres a stitch-up fearing Britain may well be dragged out of EU by some elite regardless of their will.
As can be seen above, the Brexit Party is always behind Libdems and at times Libdems are above Labour or Conservatives.
Meaning BP is more of a pressure group, clearly shown so by the fact they still don’t have a manifesto, presumably because their only aim is to force conservatives even more to the right and towards nationalism.
Libdems, on the other hand, have seen 17,000 new member since May, a close to 20% increase to now 117,000, not far off from overtaking the conservatives’ 125,000.
Yet Newsnight doesn’t lead with: is there a Libdem surge? Nor does it wonder whether views are changing on Europe and on the referendum vote now that we know what we know. Instead the perception may well start developing that it’s Farage on TV all the time, or his BP spokespeople, with this so far being just a one way “debate” as far as the BBC is concerned.
The country more widely, however, is having a proper debate as polls and election results continue to show even in Peterborough where Libdems never had a chance.
In the recent by-election, we can see libdems gained 9%, quadrupling their share to 12%. Most of Peterborough voted for leave so the Brexit Party has gained more perhaps because they’re on the BBC all the time. While labour did win, but its share of the vote dropped considerably.
For conservatives it has dropped even more. So if we take conservatives and BP to be the same party, there’s only a 4% change from the last election when conservatives gained 46% of the vote. Compared to a 9% gain for Libdems.
Meaning Libdems are rising, and quite a bit, but they can do a lot better. Their youtube channel, for example, has only one video for the past week and just two for the entire month.
This is while they shocked everyone with the local election results last month and while they became the defacto opposition during the European elections.
As so many are now learning of the party for the first time, there should be a lot more videos there because in this digital age far more people watch youtube than even the BBC.
They should be livestreaming every speech they give, and they should be sharing all this on social media as that’s the primary way people now get information.
With all this mattering quite a bit to this space because as India has shown, nationalists don’t like bitcoin very much. Likewise nationalist Trump has given us a bullying SEC and a CFTC that greenlights manipulative futures, but not physically bitcoin settled ones.
While when Libdems were in a coalition, FCA declared a beautiful friendship with this space. So we may well now have to engage in politics because it does matter and it does have consequences.
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