Monday, 12 July 2010

Quote of the Day: The BBC's Contradiction

Rod Liddle in the Speccy has quoted a first class Charles Moore piece to help him emphasise his own refreshing and welcome disdain for the direction the BBC has been taking for the past decade or so, especially as regards its squandering of the licence fee tax on overpaid and highly over-rated "talent". He points out that Moore illustrates the contradiction that lies at the heart of the BBC's funding-spending model and the dishonesty in senior managers' constant attempts to deflect our attention away from it. Liddle writes:
Charles’s diary in the last edition of the magazine put far more succinctly, and clearly, the point I was trying to get at in my blog about the BBC a few items down from this one. I talked about the BBC’s moral cross-subsidisation (which is never publicly admitted by the corporation) and how this is increasingly difficult to justify. Charles puts it better, with this exposition of what lies at the heart of the “endless contradiction” which the BBC exploits
Excellent, sure, but then he goes on to quote Moore:
“When you complain that it is funded in a privileged way, it says that it does things which no one else can do. When you complain that it spends its unique funding on enormous contracts with stars, it says it has to do so in order to behave like its rivals. The truth is that the concept of the star……….is incompatible with the Public Purposes expressed in the Charter of the BBC.”
Brilliantly put. What I know is that the corruption at the centre of the BBC, and its cause has seldom been more eloquently articulated than it is by Moore here, must be challenged and the corporation reformed, broken-up or abolished altogether.

Until then, for instance, more than a quarter of all criminal court actions will continue to be licence fee-tax related. People will continue to go to jail and/or be fined extraordinarily punitive amounts in their tens of thousands simply because, as is often the case, they cannot afford to fund the lifestyle of people like Jonathan Ross.

That is unacceptable, and this government had better do something about it in this parliament or be viewed, at least by this blogger, as a failure.


  1. Agreed in principle but let's not take them on like that. They do have the ear of many people. Better to gradually whittle away by measures like using part of the licence fee for broadband rollout.

  2. You are right, but as you might have guessed from my stuff in the past, I often think it's important to make a point and frame the strength of feeling connected to it at the same time. I think that's fair enough in the medium!

    You're advocating the reform option. That's the one I'd prefer too by far. However, for the heads of the BBC there should no longer be any choice in the matter whatsoever. Time's up.


Any thoughts?