Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Public Service Broadcasting

It seems it only takes the word Public placed in front of something to give it automatic validation and acceptance. Words are indeed hypnotic and politicians in particular count on this when making policy. Certain words and phrases are guaranteed to elicit sympathy albeit on a subliminal level which again is what politicians rely on in order to push through legislation in their change agency capacity and this human failing to only be semi conscious  is an invaluable prerequisiste in facilitating their daily incursion ever deeper into what is left of the private sphere of their hapless and disarmed subjects.

The phrase 'public service broadcasting' is a case in point and indeed the general invocation by politicians of the 'public good'whenever they want to raid the so called public purse for some public work or other. In the realm of State funded broadcasting the outcome has only ever been the same ie political tendentiousness,bias,and  in one single direction -leftwards,the service used to promote overtly in some cases but usually covertly, a statist pro big government orientation and nothing could better illustrate this than the daily output of BBC news and political commentary which is relentlessly and unfailingly left in all its applications.

When one thinks about it, it could not really be otherwise, this leftist  composition of public service broadcasting journalism.A State run TV and radio station cannot but reflect a statist ethos in its  output and it would be counter intuitive to expect such a national nay international behemoth - which the BBC undoubtedly is - to be pumping out free market pro capitalist oriented journalism! Why would it bite the hand that feeds it?

We then get into the totally fallacious on its face and outright brazen untrue assertion by the BBC defenders that the organisation is independent of government! In a very big pigs eye. But then like the character in Alice in Wonderland the left who are the BBC s most fanatical defenders  -bar some masochistic lefty Tories - adopt the position that 'words mean what I want them to mean'. Independent State broadcaster. Get your mind round that one folks.

So let us examine a little closer what the word independence means in this context. We hear the word bandied about a lot by politicians when they want to expand the State but want that expansion to go on under the radar. They know that even the comatose masses will only put up with so much State so what do they do. They create these hybrid constructs that are of the state but positioned at one remove by the stratagem of employing  some artificially contrived bureaucratic space between the State and the institution in question. This can be seen with the phenomenon of the Quangoes. Quasi autonomous. Sound familiar? This is an oxymoron of course. Quasi pregnant anyone? Quasi independent? But in the case of the BBC this subterfuge is not even deployed and instead the apologists for it assert brazenly that it is independent with not a shred of evidence to support their patently bogus claim.The simple solution to a quandary if such it be over the validity of the independent claim is to simply follow the money. Who is the paymaster? The State. And why should the BBC be in conflict with this anyway when it is on the same side of the State in pushing the statist agenda. There is no tension between the State and the BBC employees because they are working in ideological tandem.

But this potentially compromising and morally untenable situation must not be openly acknowledged or the game would be up so periodically the BBC indulges in some faux conflict between it and its State paymasters, in order to assert its 'independence' and people say oh brave BBC standing up to the bully State! This cynical charade is repeated periodically and it manages to fool most of the people most of the time.

When challenged about its obvious leftist bias the BBC has recourse to a tried and tested resort. It denies it.This can be explained in only two ways. Either it is lying and knows it,or it truly thinks it is being objective. Either one of those positions does injury to the trade of journalism for the following reasons. If it is the first ie lying it means that journalists are  violating their core principles of journalism, namely, to be truth tellers.If it is the second ie they are not aware that they are biased and tendentious it means they are in the wrong trade because being a journalist means having allegiance to objectivity or at least striving towards it. Not a good look either way.

And briefly ch 4 which is also public service broadcaster - with adverts just to gull the masses is guilty of all the same sins abovementioned and for the exact same reasons. I rest my case, for public service broadcasting read Statist biased, tendentious and partial. I argue for its complete abolition not because of any of the reasons here given but because it is immoral and fundamentally illiberal to force people to pay for a service they have not voluntarily chosen to purchase and it is adding insult to injury to describe this act of naked State coercion under the grotesque Orwellianism of 'public service broadcasting'. If they wish to subscribe to a left leaning tv or radio broadcaster by all means they should be free to do so but the State has no business whatsoever getting involved in the medium any more than it should be running a State newspaper and for exactly the same reasons. 

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