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Monday, March 24, 2003

BBC Pile On

Andrew Sullivan has decided to take on the BBC. In that link he reports several emails he's received from Americans who are shocked at the BBC's bias. In this one he says:

I'm somewhat thrilled my little obsession of the past couple months has begun to find new converts. Not exactly my persuasive powers. More due to the fact that suddenly the BBC is being broadcast live to Americans. That funny, subtle sound you hear is of a few thousand jaws dropping...

(There are links to other blogs in that post too.)

Well, welcome to the blogosphere, Andrew, where we've been on the case for more than just the past couple of months.

For example, there's a whole blog dedicated to sniffing out BBC bias. Plus there's a BBC Watch. And there's this sporadically-updated page on political manipulation of the BBC.

Today's Lileks is on the BBC again today.

Not to mention the fact that I've been venting frustration at them almost from the very day I started this blog. My very first hint that the BBC may be just a weensy bit biased came after I'd had cable TV in Sydney for about a week. It came with BBC World Service. They have a program on the environment---can't remember its name---and one episode dealt with global warming (possbly every episode deals with global warming). Naturally it mentioned Kyoto, and Bush's FAILURE to sign it, "...even when global warming hit Bush's home state...". The video they showed over these words was the flooding in Houston caused by Tropical Storm Allison in 2000. It's Houston! We get Tropical Storms! They bring lots of rain! It floods! It was like that before the coming of the White Man; it did not arise as a result of the Industrial Revolution. But, no, anything to spin their pet agendas.

About two weeks later came September 11. They were OK---even sometimes a bit maudlin---during the coverage of the attacks. But when it came time for the war, they fell into the mode we've come to know and mock. A parade of experts trooped across their set, pontificating on what the American military would do. About 90% of these were dismissive of our capabilities.

In this early post (seen by almost no one!) I explain what inspired me to start this blog. Scroll down to the imaginary BBC interview with the defense expert "pillock". The fellow I was most thinking of while writing this was Dan Plesch, Pillock-in-Chief.

It got even worse when they showed their reporters on the scene in the US. I remember vividly their correspondent reporting on the anthrax mailings in New York. He spoke earnestly into his microphone about the sense of panic that was gripping the city. Meanwhile, on the street behind him, people strolled, walked their dogs, played with their children. A beautiful sunny, panic-filled day. The BBC's America sounded almost nothing like the one I knew. Finally, their constant refrain of PANIC led me to email several folks at home, just to double-check. Nope, no panic. The BBC continued (and apparently continues) to exist in an alternate universe, very like our own, but not quite.

To continue, there's the ghastly "Dateline:London" and its frequent guest, slime-covered Abdel-Bari Atwan. And just recently I used a BBC article to demonstrate my theory of the US as Prime Mover---the strange idea among some that only the US's actions matter and are subject to criticism; other entities cannot be faulted by the reactions they are "forced" to make in response.

And here's the BBC trembling in its wing-tips over the frightening implications of America's deep Christian faith.

When I went googling for BBC references on the blog, I found I had poisoned this well by displaying the tag line "More accurate than the BBC!" --- ExPat Pundit. Actually, what Brian said was this:

I'd love to have the documentation in the form of a transcript from the BBC, but in my experience Angie is far more accurate than that organization anyway.

There you have it. An unimpeachable source.