- JoNova - https://www.joannenova.com.au -

Big-government propaganda: ABC, BBC are “Aggressive political participants”. Sell or Split?

What to do with the public broadcasters? ABC BBC CBC (Can anyone explain public media in NZ?)

Big-government fans forcibly take funds from all citizens to support big-government propaganda by journalists who predominantly vote left or very-left (see here or here). The question is not whether or not they should do this but whether to privatize the public broadcasters, or to split them in two. I say, let’s forget the submissive plea to get one conservative commentator among a monoculture of “progressives”.  Chop the current one in half and call it what it is: pro big-government. Then set up a new counter half to match — the pro-small-government broadcaster with the same funds but new staff. (Game on — let the best team win that ratings war.) Abbott could keep ABC funding promises. ABC-L plus ABC-R equals current ABC-LL+ funding.

Obviously, true free-market libertarians want public broadcasters 100% sold — their incentives are always going to run counter to unbiased reporting and the hunt for the truth. On the other hand, among the populace, the ground is not remotely laid for a big-sell. Many voters remain blind to the bias, and have no idea how filtered the half-truths are: in 2013 73% said they “trust” the ABC. Though 4% more viewers  turned off  the boring indoctrination last year, there is a long way to go.

Is a split more realistic, or is it a short term solution but a long term fail? Would a split ABC (or BBC or CBC) finally achieve real public debate to help our civilization achieve the best balance between “Big-Gov and Small-Gov”? I think the independent-minded Small-Gov-half would romp in the ratings as people tuned in to see real debate, real conflict and the funniest smartest shows. Big-G TV can keep the ever-predictable Shaun Micallef, and the group-thinky gags of Clark & Dawes. Edgy comedy is a step ahead of the crowd, it mocks the ruling paradigms rather than repeats them. The most popular BBC show is (or was) Top Gear. Need I say more? Political correctness is just not that funny.

A dark side of a split would be that polarized audiences may end up watching self-reinforcing TV, everyone in their preferred silo. I’m optimistic; I think the competitive side of libertarian-conservative minds would mean the Small-G-TV would be where the real debate happened. The Big-G team currently work by silencing debate, but the independent minds crave it. Perhaps the “progressives” would have to debate their ideas once more? But there is also the danger that, if it wasn’t done well, the big-government lovin’ journalists and their attendant bureaucracy would capture both broadcasters.

So here are two points for today’s blog episode of “sell or split”. One: The Victorian State Liberal Party (now in opposition) formally recognizes the Australian ABC as the enemy, and sends a message to the Abbott government that the ABC should be privatized. Two: Rupert Wyndham eviscerates the BBC for it’s pretentious but vapor thin grip on “ethics”. His letter is a work of art.

Victorian Libs recognise the enemy

Andrew Bolt:

The accompanying statement to the motion [passed by the Victorian Liberals], drafted by Bernie Gaynor:

The ABC and the SBS are clear enemies of our party. They wish us ill, do us great harm – while we foolishly maintain them with our taxes. They are not mere political reporters and commentators – they are aggressive political participants. Relentless in their pursuit of left ideological policies and objectives, they have nothing but contempt for our liberal, conservative values.

It is not the role of government to run a huge media empire. The time for public funding of this disgraceful political bastion of the left is over. They must be sold. Let the left pay for them out of their own pockets, and let the tax payers of Australia be saved $1.2 billion per year by their liquidation.

Rupert Wyndham explains what ethics are to the BBC

Wyndham writes to point out real ethical issues the BBC ought to discuss. A few razor sharp points first below, and his full letter with all 32 examples after that. (H/t to Ross, thanks).

“…what are the ethical issues that should, but plainly don’t, exercise … the state broadcaster? Here are a few suggestions.”

So when the BBC:

Read Rupert’s whole letter below.


Lord Hall                                                                                                                                26 March 2015

Director General

BBC White City Media Centre

201 Wood Lane

London W12 7TQ.


Dear Lord Hall

Last week the BBC aired an interview with a recent graduate from the University of Oxford, by chance my own alma mater. This young man, it transpired, represented a covey of similarly minded contemporaries. They were driven by a desire to pressurize the trustees of the university finances to divest its portfolio of shares in fossil fuel extractors across the spectrum. With evident, and rather obnoxiously self-preening, satisfaction, he declared this to be ‘an ethical issue’. Given the BBC’s fastidious standards in this regard, no doubt it collectively, as well as you personally, would agree. So, indeed, would I, albeit not be for reasons that would appeal either to your interviewee or to the Corporation.

Let me begin with a simple, and surely an incontrovertible, proposition. It is that the abundant availability of fossil fuels, combined with the wit that has allowed human beings to exploit them, is the greatest blessing ever to have been visited upon the species. After all, without them no BBC at all and no University of Oxford – well, at least not as to be recognisable today. So then, what are the ethical issues that should, but plainly don’t, exercise either this callow youth or the state broadcaster? Here are a few suggestions. In the interests of reasonable comprehensiveness, this may occupy space. On the other hand, the issues are important (the defining challenge of the times, according to the BBC and its mentors), so we should not be niggardly.

So when the BBC:

The list is long. It could be longer.

But let us expand this young man’s horizons a little beyond merely the shortcomings of the BBC. He – and, indeed, the BBC – might, for example, consider some/all of the following:

Again a long, representative but by no means comprehensive list.

Finally, let me revert to the commencement of this letter. When, on the flimsiest of grounds (indeed, no grounds at all), it seeks to deny to the poor and destitute of the earth access to the one essential requirement for their betterment – namely affordable, readily available energy – then most surely


Yours sincerely


R.C.E. Wyndham


Cc: Prime Minister       Mr. E. Miliband MP     Archbishop of Canterbury      Archbishop of York

Cardinal Vincent Nichols   Vice-Chancellor, University of Oxford           As the spirit moves

9.5 out of 10 based on 117 ratings