america Culture wars 

The extinction of reason

On a day like today, when there are protests and demonstrations in country after country against governments’ alleged failure to tackle “climate change”, you feel as if you have stepped into a looking-glass world in which people have collectively taken leave of their senses. If, that is, you are someone like me for whom the whole climate change hypothesis is a mad, nightmarish cult in which an infantile (literally) view of the world, peddling ludicrous theories of imminent apocalypse which owe more to medieval millenarian sects than modern science, is…

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Britain 

The BBC’s hilarious new comedy production

The BBC has produced a new comedy which is an absolute roll-on-the-floor, laugh-out-loud side-splitter. It’s called the revised Editorial Guidelines. Here are some comic highlights. “In our journalism in particular, we seek to establish the truth and use the highest reporting standards to provide coverage that is fair and accurate… We are impartial, seeking to reflect the views and experiences of our audiences – so that our output as a whole includes a breadth and diversity of opinion and no significant strand of thought is under-represented or omitted. We are independent of outside interests and…

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Audio 

In the Moral Maze with art and the transgressive artist

On BBC RAdio’s The Moral Maze this week, Claire Fox, Matthew Taylor, Anne McElvoy and I discussed art and the artist. Can their moral worth be separated? Our peg was “Leaving Neverland”, a two-part TV documentary which detailed child sex abuse claims against the singer Michael Jackson (whether Jackson’s music can be termed “art” is debatable, but anyway). The renewed allegations have prompted a debate about whether we should stop listening to his music. Some believe a boycott takes an important moral stand against the late singer’s alleged crimes. To…

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fashion Israel 

Once again into the fray in TV’s gladiatorial circus

I did two TV appearances in one day yesterday – the first on the BBC’s daily Politics Live, and the second on the BBC’s flagship political debate show, Question Time. It was the first edition of Question Time with Fiona Bruce in the chair after the retirement of its venerable anchor David Dimbleby who had become something of a national institution. So it was a show that attracted much attention and considerable comment in today’s newspapers. All eyes were on Fiona and whether she could fill Dimbleby’s patrician shoes. You…

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warming Culture wars 

BBC censorship and the man-made global warming scam

This evening, an important lecture is being delivered in London on the subject of man-made or anthropogenic global warming (AGW) theory. If you follow BBC news programmes, you are extremely unlikely to hear anything about this important lecture. That is because the scientist delivering it is saying that man-made global warming theory is a scam. BBC policy is to report no challenge to AGW theory at all. The explicit statement of this policy was set out in a four-page memo by Fran Unsworth, the BBC’s Director of News and Current Affairs,…

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Question Time Britain 

How the Question Time bear-pit changed me

As a regular panellist over the years on BBC TV’s Question Time, I’m sorry to see that David Dimbleby is stepping down from the show after a mere quarter-century in the chair. He says he wants to return to his first love, reporting. Maybe so. Or maybe he’s just had enough of the trivialisation of the show that he has anchored for so long. Nowadays there’s almost invariably at least one comedian among the five-strong panel — and that’s just the politicians. I have come to realise that the audience…

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