BBC Complaints: The link you need!

Sunday, 4 October 2009


The World This Weekend's Shaun Ley, who I foolishly said I would ley off, got into another tangle with William Hague. Every time this happens Ley comes out looking like a biased interviewer who cannot get his facts right. Mr Hague would score a bigger hit than me by blogging as Beeb Bias Bill, as he fisked Shaun with a vengeance.
Ley had presented a package on how the Tories couldn't win in the Northern Cities. As a North-Wester myself, the Tories' success in this region in the European elections has not gone unnoticed. That did not stop Shaun Ley. His report seemed fair. He may have interviewed a Thatcher-hating professor, but he also interviewed a Conservative chairman and a former MP. Both, however, criticised Cameron (the chairman calling him 'weak' and saying that many of his local party activists don't like Dave - contrary to much of the polling I've seen recently).
When Ley came to put this to Mr Hague, William rebutted all these criticisms with a forceful good humour than many of his colleagues could learn from.
The key moment came when Hague refuted the criticisms in Ley's report thus: "Go to Bury...and you will find Conservatives making great gains in recent years, including taking majority control in Bury."

How did Shaun answer this? By saying "I probably shouldn't get into an argument about Bury and Manchester cos I feel the people of Bury may feel a little different about that, but let's put that aside. Let's turn to the question of the Lisbon Treaty."

Well Shaun, let's not put this aside. What the hell are you talking about? What William Hague said was factually correct. You probably shouldn't get into an argument about it as a result. The people of Bury - despite how you 'feel' - can hardly 'feel a little different about that' because there is nothing to feel different about. The Conservatives have made great gains in recent years in Bury and have taken majority control in Bury. Why is Ley disputing this? Quite bizarre. The only reasonable explanation is that anti-Tory bias has descended like fog on his brain!

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