Sunday, 3 September 2017

Open Thread


One of these is long overdue. 

Thank you for your support and your comments. 

And here's yet another ITBB picture of Morecambe's magnificent Eric Morecambe statue (with some random bloke next to it posing for the cameras) - a statue that surely puts Michelangelo and Rodin to shame.

31 comments:

  1. Predictably, the News Channel report on the Brexit talks began with the EU's viewpoint, followed by a sound bite from David Davis. We were then shown Davis saying a great deal, but not allowed to hear most of what he had to say - we had to make do with a voice-over summary instead. Could it be that he spoke with conviction & passion and too effectively for the BBC's liking? Could it also be that the BBC's summary was less than accurate? No idea - we'll just have to try to piece things together from Guido & other sources tomorrow.

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    1. PS for Craig: Old Eric really ought to be more choosy about the company he keeps! Sisyphus

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  2. ERIC: I used to be a Marxist you know...oh yes me and Lenin were like that...like that [twisting two fingers together]. He used to say to me...Comrade...it's Russian for Commie Red you know, that's what he used to call me Comrade you know...we were on good terms...like that...Comrade, he'd say...Comrade, I need you to go to the corner shop and get me a dose of salts...I've got a bad case of the Trots.

    ERNIE: Oh don't be ridiculous...you're making up this nonsense. You weren't even born in 1917.

    ERIC: I was before my time...that's the mark of a real revolutionary, you know.

    ERNIE: Stop it with all this rubbish...take off that ridiculous cap and take off that false beard.

    ERIC: That's my Castro beard...I'm not going to be de-Castroed thank you very much...it could be very painful for one thing. It could be very painful for two things come to think of it...

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    1. I was at school (Aldenham) with Eric's son, Gary Bartholemew. I don't really remeber him but his old man came over one day and my two mates took him for a beer in the 6th form common room. They will remeber the funmniest hour of their lives until they are boxed. Certainly Eric would not have approved of JC's politics,"For The Many Not The Jew".

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  3. Radio 4 Migration at it again today. A so-called sitcom at 11.30am - by Danny Robins (who posts pro-Remain propaganda on his twitter). Summer:New Swedes was an excuse to portray all Muslim migrants to Sweden as talented and ready to integrate, whilst rubbishing Trump and anyone who supports him (Piers Morgan was described as not a human being) and also portraying traditional patriotic Swedes as vicious racists.

    The only laugh came when the programmed finished and there was a trailer for a programme damning mass tourism. How typically Radio 4! Mass tourism bad - destroys local culture, puts pressure on housing provision for locals and degrades the environment...but mass immigration GOOD (according to the BBC) - even though it destroys local culture, puts pressure on housing provision for locals and degrades the environment!!!

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  4. Maybe the subject, or the artist, or both, but Eric comes across as a spontaneous, joyous, all male free spirit in that pose.

    Jez, er, doesn't.

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    1. "Spontaneous, joyous, all male free spirit?" Shh! Don't let them hear you or Eric will be joining Spike Milligan down in the forbidden archive!

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    2. His day can not be far off.

      I doubt he was vegan either.

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  5. The BBC went fairly large on some United Nations tosh about disability rights in the UK. But the UN also recently released a damning report on human rights in Venezuela. If it was on the BBC, I missed it, which probably means it got little coverage at all. And this report is important because the man with little or nothing in common with Conservative leaning Eric Morecambe and would be prime minister has been telling us for ages the Venezuela has shown us there is 'better way'.

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  6. Anybody hear champagne corks popping over at Beeb House? It seems the BBC's latest PC campaign has borne fruit: the lunatics are now firmly in charge of the asylum and John Lewis has announced that it is announcing a range of 'gender neutral' clothes for children from which the "boys'" and "girls'" labels have been removed (Telegraph). Why do people feel the need to pander to the Beeb's whims? - could it be that they believe the BBC is representative of the man and woman in the street?(Sorry, man/woman/person/thing).

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    1. I'd wager John Lewis are piggy-backing on an in-vogue story knowing full well this will generate free publicity. Unisex clothing for kids is not a new thing.

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  7. I listened to From Our Own Correspondent on Saturday morning. The correspondent Martin Patience was leaving Nigeria after a 2 year stint.

    His farewell to Nigeria piece described a scene where dozens of mothers queue hopefully to claim their daughter after one is rescued from "militants". Then he says the root causes of the "insurgency" are obvious - lack of jobs and corruption.

    In just a minute he demonstrated yet again that the BBC will never refer to anything negative about Islam. Wilfully refuses to join the dots and make any connection with the violence spreading now from Manchester to Myanmar. The BBC has no interest in informing us. Quite the opposite.

    It was also straight from the Jeremy Bowen and John Simpson school of journalism. A few years as a correspondent in a country makes you an expert on its politics and history. Your views trump all others, especially as you never report them.

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  8. I've complained about this before (here, not to the BBC as there would be no point) - talking about the way they dress up pure opinion pieces by outsiders as "BBC News".

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-asia-41143589

    This time it's Dr John Nilsson-Wright of Chatham House writing about North Korea. Chatham House is a kind of grown up companion to the Guardian in terms of the influence it wields over the BBC's group-think.

    So what does the good doctor think? Well firstly he opines that Kim Jong-Un as "a rational actor" who is pursuing "a desire for political autonomy, national prestige and military strength" (sounds not too bad - nice of him not to mention the hundreds of thousands of political prisoners, the hereditary nature of the regime or its nutjob belief system) and trying to defend his country against "a potential pre-emptive attack" by the USA (but Nilsson-Wright does not suggest that is a paranoid notion).

    OK that's Kim Jong-Un done...what about the other side, that Trump guy. Ah, change of tone. Apparently the "more worrying element of instability is the temperament and thinking of Donald Trump". It seems that Trump is "bellicose" and engaged in "sabre rattling" and really this wild animal is only kept in check by the wiser counsels of the generals who surround him.

    So there you have it: none of this is North Korea's real fault. They just feel insecure, like a troubled teenager, and rightly so you might think. It's Trump who is the one itching to plunge the whole region into war.

    That's the official view from the BBC.

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    1. By way of contrast,here's a clip from Fox News. Instead of being some kind of frothy-mouthed racist bile-spewing mouthpiece of the Far Right, which you would expect from the BBC, you find on Fox more often than not cool and calm analysis. I particularly like Gordon Chang who has very cogent, clear and persuasive views of what's going on. He also points out that NK has never given up on its goal of taking over South Korea and will seek to achieve that through nuclear blackmail once his arsenal is secure.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h_eWvG0-djI

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    2. There is always a point complaining to the BBC itself. They have to staff the Complaints department and it all costs money. If you challenge their answers and carry on a correspondence with them it is more costly for them and more of their staff have to get involved eg the editor of the programme. They are obliged to answer. Let them see directly your complaints . If enough people did complain directly and pursued they would have to spend more money dealing with them. Yes, it is an effort but it only takes good people to do nothing for evil to triumph.

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    3. There isn't any point in complaining to the BBC. They have developed mechanisms to deal with awkward people - that would be everyone who might take the time and trouble to go through the complaints procedure.

      I followed one such complaint as far as i could - about a BBC Four series on architecture, in which there were several straightforward factual inaccuracies (it was made worse because it had the OU sign on the credits so I assume it will be archived in some academic resource somewhere).

      Having received a thread of e-mails telling me that as each programme was only one hour long, the programme-makers were creating a story, and they simply didn't have the time for in-depth study. In the end, after several attempts to get the BBC to admit that what they put out was inaccurate, I was told the "The Programme=makers stand by their 'work' and that they refuse to carry on any correspondence about the issues.

      There is no point in complaining to the BBC. It is a waste of time and effort.

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    4. I've nothing against people complaining to the BBC if they like to but out of a £5 billion budget the BBC aren't going to spending much on complaints even if complaints increased tenfold. Complaining to the BBC in my view simply reinforces their role as judge and jury which I think is completely unacceptable. Evan Davis has made clear the BBC staff completely ignore complaints by the way. They will be viewed as a minor irritant and no more. What would help is if the pathetic Timid Tory MPs actually called out the bias. But of course, they don't. Not sure why - probably part fear (the BBC will go after you if you cross them and a lot of them have skeletons rattling in the cupboard), part tactical (believing the nonsense about not wanting to be seen as the "nasty party") and part agreement (a lot of Tory MPs actually agree with mass immigration, multiculturalism, appeasing Sharia followers, globalism, Trumpophobia, remaining in the EU and degenderising the population, and therefore see no reason to complain).

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    5. I agree with Brains and his 'Judge and Jury' line. The BBC really do believe that they are above criticism and thus they will ignore any complaint however it is conveyed to them.

      When a story comes along like http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-41161233, a far-right story, they are allowed a free hand to recalibrate the bias meter.

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  9. When the Don starts using starving dogs or AA guns on close relatives or generals who forget their notebooks I'll pay more attention to BBC 'experts' like Dr. John on matters rational.

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    1. And I'll wait until the Don starts firing ICBM's over someone else's country. 'Expert' Dr John of the BBC must surely have noticed someone other than the Don doing that recently.

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  10. What is the point of the BBC having a Reality Check service involving the employment of a "Reality Check Correspondent". I took a look at the latest "Reality Check" on the state of Brexit negotiations:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-41153482

    To be fair - unlike many Reality Check pieces - it was fairly balanced and contained no glaring factual errors.

    But what is the point of it? It's simply a news and analysis report. It cannot resolve the continuing political turmoil around Brexit - issues like a second referendnum, whether we should threaten to walk out, whether we should seek to stay in the Customs Union, how much we should offer to pay if anything etc etc. So it's really a pointless exercise.

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  11. This is interesting :

    http://www.breitbart.com/london/2017/09/05/corbyn-firing-mp-warned-grooming/

    I still wish Champion had waited to have actually been sacked. That mistake lets 'them' off the hook in perpetuity, unfortunately.
    How are the BBC going to squirm around with this one ?
    Can't help but smile.
    Champion and Robinson on the same path ! Who'd a thunk.


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    1. I object to Breitbart presenting it as primarily a "racially" motivated issue. The main motivation is religious, following the example of the religion's founder. The racial element is there perhaps but it is their "Kaffir" status that places children in danger.

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  12. John Pienaar's assessment of Labour's approach to Brexit? - "Labour's policy on Brexit is not all clear." If there were a Nobel prize for understatement, Pienaar would be €975,000 better off!

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  13. From BBBC - please look through the list of proscribed organisations of which National Action seems to be the only 'far-right' entry - out of 71. Most of the remaining 70 have one thing in common.

    https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/612076/20170503_Proscription.pdf

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    1. Seemed to be a collective BBC News orgasm over this story. BBC happy to jump to any number of conclusions. Most of us are happy to see terrorism stamped out from wherever it emerges...but for the BBC it seemed that terror is colour coded with some forms being worse than others.

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    2. All the relished tag words were there in the BBC Ten O'Clock News last night - far-right, white supremacists of the same organisation as the Jo Cox assailant, banned group, proscribed organisation etc.

      In seeking balance, when a counterbalancing story such as this appears, the BBC go way over the top in an effort to diminish the perceived horror of recent extremist attacks. It simply doesn't work. We know how the BBC corporate brain works.

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    3. I think it is of interest, although the background I would like is not one the BBC gives. These people have been arrested for what ? Being members of a proscribed organization ? I.e. these are now "political detainees" ? I think it what said there was "no immediate threat" to the public.

      When was last time such arrests were made?
      How come ISIS fighters can return to UK and not be arrested?
      And many other questions the World Class broadcaster will not ask.

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    4. How many of the 71 proscribed organisations have been named by the BBC on their flagship news programme?

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    5. And had their skin colour/ethnicity discussed?

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