After forty years as a TV journalist, Peter Sessions has written his career memoirs in what could actually be called a “tell all” about the United Kingdom’s longtime news outlet, the BBC.
On the news organization in general, Sessions comments:
Institutionally biased to the Left, politically correct and with a rudderless leadership …
My time as a news and current affairs anchor at the BBC was characterised by weak leadership and poor direction from the top, but hand in hand with this went the steady growth of political correctness.
Indeed, it was almost certainly the Corporation’s unchallengeable PC culture that made strong leadership impossible.
Leadership — one person being in charge, trusting his or her own judgment, taking a decision and telling others what to do— was shied away from in favour of endless meetings of a dozen or more people trying to arrive at some sort of consensus … At the newsroom level it became impossible to discipline someone for basic journalistic mistakes — wrong dates, times and numbers, inaccurate on-screen captions and basic political or geographical facts — for fear of giving offence … But what really concerned me was when the culture of political correctness began to influence what appeared on the screen. […]
… it was heresy at the BBC to question claims about climate change?.?.?.
For me, though, the most worrying aspect of political correctness was over the story that recurred with increasing frequency during my last ten years at the BBC — global warming (or ‘climate change’, as it became known when temperatures appeared to level off or fall slightly after 1998).
From the beginning I was unhappy at how one-sided the BBC’s coverage of the issue was, and how much more complicated the climate system was than the over-simplified two-minute reports that were the stock-in-trade of the BBC’s environment correspondents.
These, without exception, accepted the UN’s assurance that ‘the science is settled’ and that human emissions of carbon dioxide threatened the world with catastrophic climate change. Environmental pressure groups could be guaranteed that their press releases, usually beginning with the words ‘scientists say?.?.?.?’ would get on air unchallenged.
… In reality, the ‘appropriate space’ given to minority views on climate change was practically zero.
Moreover, we were allowed to know practically nothing about that top-level seminar mentioned by the BBC Trust at which such momentous conclusions were reached. Despite a Freedom of Information request, they wouldn’t even make the guest list public.
Yet the cream of the BBC’s inquisitors during my time there never laid a glove on those who repeated the mantra that ‘the science is settled’. On one occasion, an MP used BBC airtime to link climate change doubters with perverts and holocaust deniers, and his famous interviewer didn’t bat an eyelid.
Meanwhile, Al Gore, the former U.S. Vice-President and climate change campaigner, entertained the BBC’s editorial elite in his suite at the Dorchester and was given a free run to make his case to an admiring internal audience at Television Centre.
His views were never subjected to journalistic scrutiny, even when a British High Court judge ruled that his film, An Inconvenient Truth, contained at least nine scientific errors, and that ministers must send new guidance to teachers before it was screened in schools. From the BBC’s standpoint, the judgment was the real inconvenience, and its environment correspondents downplayed its significance. […]
Christians are “fair game” for insults at the BBC whilst Muslims must not be offended, one of the broadcaster’s veteran news anchors has warned … “Islam must not be offended at any price, although Christians are fair game because they do nothing about it if they are offended.”
His comments are unlikely to surprise many Christians who have become increasingly concerned about a perceived anti-Christian bias at the public broadcaster.
The veteran presenter, who fronted news and current affairs programmes at the BBC, also said that staff damage their careers if they don’t follow the BBC’s mindest.
He said: “In my view, ‘bias’ is too blunt a word to describe the subtleties of the pervading culture. The better word is a ‘mindset’.”
He added that “the one thing guaranteed to damage your career prospects at the BBC is letting it be known that you are at odds with the prevailing and deep-rooted BBC attitude towards Life, the Universe and Everything.” […]
No surprises. Those of us reading the BBC news style for the last several years have noted as much, but were told we are just too stupid to understand the complexities of ‘journalism’.
And if what you briefly read about the BBC sounds familiar it’s because our own American MSM (network and print) are the same way. Bernard Goldberg has written books about it. We also recently saw with FOX News contributor Juan Williams that even our own taxpayer funded NPR is quite left-handed with their views and presentation of the issues of the day.
The fact that many young adults today can’t seem to tell the difference between real news and Jon Stewart’s satire on Comedy Central tells you there is an entire generation (or two) being ill-served buy an entity that loves to consider itself our ‘watch dog’.