Sunday, September 4, 2016


Listen out for possible froideur on Radio 4, next time John Humphrys and Nick Robinson are paired at Today.

Guardian columnist Catherine Bennett has just unloaded some stored-up anger about BBC Brexit coverage, both for pitting Remain and Brexit big nobs either against each other or sequentially in remorseless unenlightened interviews, and for failing to give appropriate weight to the exposure of clearly faulty arguments. Catherine is John Humphrys' partner. Her only named offender in all this is Nick Robinson, thusly...

As with climate change, implicit in extreme BBC impartiality is a distinctly un-BBC like, post-truth proposal that, since all opinions merit equal coverage, the public might as well give up on evidence-based argument. So much was plainly stated by Today’s Nick Robinson when he assured voters who were, in huge numbers, seeking information from the BBC that the debate was all “claims and counterclaims”, “guesswork”. “No journalist,” he declared, “no pundit, no expert can resolve these questions for you.” Whether the imaginary £350m claimed by Johnson and Gove would ever be imaginarily spent on the NHS was not, it presumably followed, a lie for the BBC to repeatedly expose, but “a matter of judgment”.

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