The Channel 4 programme "The Great Global Warming Swindle" prompted a predictable barrage of complaints from global warming hysterics, who hate it when anyone disagrees with them and will go to almost any lengths to shut dissenters up - in fact, some of them did go to very considerable lengths, as one complaint was over 130 pages long.
The complaints went to watchdog Ofcom, who recently published their judgement. This largely cleared Channel 4 of wrong-doing and justified their decision to broadcast the programme, but criticised the programme's partiality. How a programme dedicated to exposing a fraud can be expected to be fair and impartial towards that fraud or its perpetrators is hard to fathom, but there we are …
Anyway, Scottish blogger Neil Craig could spot the inconsistency and has sent his own complaints to Ofcom …
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
Following your judgement that the Global Warming Swindle failed to adhere to your rules about impartiality & particularly in line with section 5.12 "an appropriately wide range of significant views must be included and given due weight in each programme or in clearly linked and timely programmes" I wish to follow up my complaint of Sunday, to which astonishingly you have made no response, with the following from the last 17 hours.
Complaint 1 - Channel 4 news 7.30 - though the programme accused Mugabe's followers of violence & torture & a commentator from the opposing side was interviewed, nobody from the government side was.
Complaint 2 - BBC 10 o'clock news - reporting the Warming Swindle programme, the BBC started by mentioning that the programme had not interviewed the IPCC or Sir David King & only near the end mentioned that Ofcom had found the scientific parts of the programme (1-4 of 5) accurate. They interviewed one alarmist spokesman (from the Royal Society) but not anybody on the other side. In particular Professor Singer who was criticised for saying King said something which Hansard also says he said should have been allowed to reply. This is particularly outrageous since this is the very activity that they are reporting that has been censured by you.
Complaint 3 - BBC 10 o'clock news - reported on Zimbabwe, accusing Mugabe of murder & interviewing an MDC spokesman but not a ZANU one.
Complaint 4 - BBC Scottish news 10.30 - reporting on a proposed new windfarm they interviewed Alex Salmond who said, untruthfully, that this windfarm "could light up the city of Glasgow". In fact with perfect conditions & 100% capacity, instead of the 27% average capacity it could light up all the houses, so long as none of them had 2 bar electric fires or equivalent which only leaves the 2/3rds of energy used outside the home. No questioning of this claim was allowed. BBC then interviewed an Airtricity spokesman. Again no attempt to produce a "wide range" of views or even one sceptic was allowed.
Complaint 4 - Newsnight BBC2 10.30 - Reporting on Zimbabwe a US state Dept spokesperson alone was interviewed. The US, of course, voted for sanctions against Zimbabwe on the ground that it was a threat to regional peace. No spokesman from either Russia or China, who voted down that resolution were interviewed. It is difficult to claim that the views of 2 of the 5 Security Council leaders are not "significant".
Complaint 5 - Newsnight BBC2 10.30 - Reported on the capture of Radovan Karadzic claiming him as responsible for the "7,500 people who died at Srebrenica". This was both unbalanced & a misrepresentation of the facts since the only undisputed massacre there is of at least 3,800 Serb men, women & children (but mainly women & children since the men were in the army) in surrounding villages by Moslem forces.
Complaint 6 - Tuesday 22nd BBC Radio Scotland 7.30 on - reporting on the capture of Karadzic the BBC put out nearly a dozen soundbites/interviews all with people claiming him guilty of crimes. Obviously if this was ever intended to be a real trial the BBC would not have considered acting in such a prejudicial manner but even though it is merely to be a propaganda show trial they are still in breach of their duty that "wide range of significant views must be included" which obviously included innocence.
Complaint 7 - ClassicFM 10.00 a.m. - interviewed Paddy Ashdown, a well known supporter of the openly genocidal Bosnian Moslem leader & former SS auxiliary whose coup prevented Karadzic performing his job as President, under the rotating presidency of Bosnia & Hercegovina. No attempt at balance by interviewing anybody from the other side.
I note that in a 17 hour period, watching/listening to only 1 channel at a time, I have found 7 instances which clearly & indubitably breach the guidelines as you have interpreted them. It must be assumed that over a full day & all channels it must be at least double that & over a year you are thus going to have to issue 5,000 critical reports. You have my felicitations in that process since it is clear this will be an arduous task.
Of course if Ofcom's job was not the one it claims but merely to ensure that the broadcast media continue to be a fascist propaganda arm of government willing to tell absolutely any lie & distort any news in a racist and/or unscientific way your job would be much easier.
I look forward to your response & action this day.
The GOS says: Well writ, that man. Don't hold your breath waiting for a reply, though.
I recently complained to the BBC about two programmes in one evening. One was that appalling two-part drama "Burn Up" which portrayed the oil industry and anyone not wholly convinced about Global Warming as devious, manipulative criminals, and environmental activists as victims. I suppose it's possible the balance was redressed in the second instalment, but I couldn't be arsed to watch.
The other was a potentially fascinating programme on BBC digital TV called "The Thirties in Colour" - wonderful old archive film shot all over the world between the wars. However we were not allowed to simply enjoy a vivid glimpse of a bygone age - an age which a few of us can remember, rather more recall from their parents' experiences, and many of us are familiar with from the novels we read in childhood and youth.
Instead, every single clip was accompanied by a commentary explaining how the quaintly-dressed and exotic natives on the screen were terribly exploited by the Europeans and how the people behind the camera had no real insight into the injustices of the lives they were filming. In between, there were interviews with wishy-washy liberal talking heads about the evils of colonialism and the guilt we should all be feeling for the sins of our great-grandfathers.
At the root of my anger is my distaste for being patronised. I have sufficient experience and intelligence to have worked out for myself what I think about global warming or the oil industry, or colonialism. I don't need to be told, and I particularly object to being told by someone who, to judge by their command of English, is my intellectual inferior (but is on the telly, so must be right). And if any viewers don't have my years of experience and deep thought, they can bloody well get thinking and reading and work it out for themselves, as I had to.
Needless to say, I have had no reply from the BBC, and don't expect one. They don't like it up 'em, as Clive Dunn used to say. Though I daresay quite a few of them are accustomed to … er … turning the other cheek …
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