Tuesday, February 2, 2016


I'll try to keep this short. It's been clear ever since the Second World War that the decisions of the US President can affect everyone on this planet. It matters who the voters of the States elect.

However, inside BBC News since the 1960s, there's been a self-refreshing clan of obsessives who see taking part in coverage of the prolonged ballyhoo and misdirection of a US Presidential campaign as the highlight of their journalistic careers. The fight to get on the road trip is prolonged and occasionally bitter. The end result is micro-coverage on many BBC outlets - more detailed than that offered by most Stateside media.   Anyone fancy a Snapchat with Emily Maitlis or BBC News (US) ? Or a Newshour feature on "Iowa - The Musical" ?

Overnight from Iowa, we heard, saw and read reports by - and this isn't an exclusive list - Jon Sopel, Emily Maitlis, Nick Bryant, James Naughtie, Laura Bicker, Anthony Zurcher, Katty Kay, Gary O'Donoghue and Razia Iqbal. Iowa has a population the size of Wales.

BBC World, in particular, twisted and turned Janus-style overnight, as it tried to accommodate its American aspirations within programmes aimed normally at audiences in the Far East.

What fun, eh ?

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