Wednesday, June 21, 2006

BBC can't get over Thatcher being right


The left doesn't like criticism of the BBC. For they see it as the repositary of objectivity, balance and free speech - because it so often reflects, primarily, their view of the world. The BBC is like the Guardian - except that the Guardian isn't state subsidised, and there is no Telegraph or Times to counterbalance it (ITV News is more leftwing and vapid than the BBC, Channel 4 is closer to the Independent as far as newspapers go).
.
However, the BBC's ability to act, on the one hand like a commercial broadcaster, paying exhorbitant salaries to personalities to stop them being lured by private broadcasters, and on the other re-write history.
.
Simon Heffer in the Daily Telegraph explains how, in a recently produced drama by the BBC, Margaret Thatcher is depicted as "a bellicose drunk, demolishing whiskies and importuning other guests for refills". As Heffer has known Thatcher personally for many years, he testifies to having never seen her drunk or asking for drinks. He claims that there is an ongoing campaign to villify Thatcher, partly through lies (such as claiming her to be a drunkard), partly through only telling one side of the story.
.
He notes the lack of any conservative or free market plays, dramas or comedies on the BBC:
.
"Like many viewers and listeners, I have been beaten into surrender about the dramatic and comic output of our state broadcaster. We accept, with due docility, that Right-of-centre playwrights, scriptwriters and comedians (I suppose there are such people, starving in garrets somewhere) simply cannot survive the commissioning process. "
.
While the BBC claims to criticise Blair as well, that also is from a socialist perspective. He "betrayed" the Labour cause (i.e. made it electable three times), he isn't criticised for growing the state. Blair is the new Thatcher, because he got re-elected by being more palatable than the Marxists the Labour Party used to put up, like Michael Foot and Neil Kinnock.
.
Heffer does offer an explanation:
.
"A long-time servant of the BBC explained to me, in a moment of stunning insight, why the Leftists in that organisation, and the Leftist contributors to it, are so bilious and angry even 16 years after Lady Thatcher left office: it is because they lost. They were wrong. They were humiliated. They have become bores with nothing else to say. They were not, of course, defeated just by Lady Thatcher: the coming down of the Berlin Wall and the end of the Cold War defeated them, too."
.
Thatcher's reforms saved the British economy, and Britain has reaped the rewards of those reforms for the last decade. She also championed the fight against socialist tyranny (although sadly not fascist tyranny of Pinochet). How many journalists would have thought that by the end of Thatcher's leadership, Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia would be on the verge of independence - and by now, members of the European Union. How many would have wished it?
.
However most of all, her legacy has held on by "New Labour" largely not undoing what she did. Blair won by being "Thatcher-lite" - and he continues this. Heffer concludes that the BBC's mates - the Labour Party haven't delivered what the BBC would have hoped:
.
"Finally, why hasn't "their" party undone all the "damage" of Thatcherism? Why do trade union laws remain unrepealed, and industries privatised? Why has there been no uprooting of the property-owning democracy? It is because she was right, and they know she was right. They cannot, however, bear to admit it. All they can do instead is tell lies, call her names and spit with rage. Don't laugh at them. Pity them."

No comments: