Jason OMahony - Irish political blogger, Irish politics, EU politics

If you liked The Office or Only Fools and Horses, then don’t vote Tory.

Posted by Jason O on Apr 20, 2010 in British Politics |

The Tories have come along way from being the nasty party, on gay issues and social moralising generally. They are even getting ready to realise that in government, the European Union is a fact that has to be dealt with, not sulked about. However, there is still one good reason why they should be stopped.

Rupert Murdoch, for his own perfectly reasonable (for him) reasons, dislikes the BBC. He sees it as unfair competition, and so the Tories have effectively agreed to beat the crap out of the BBC on his behalf, including the very possible scrapping of BBC Three and Four. Whatever about BBC Three, BBC Four is one of the few channels around now that caters for grown ups, with thoughtful and provocative drama, history and current affairs programming. It is a model of what public service broadcasting is supposed to be, giving the public maybe not what they want (yet another f**king reality/talent show) but what they need. Getting rid of it would be yet another contribution from the so-called Conservatives to the coarsening of British life.

Remember, this is the party that broke up the old ITV monopolies and turned ITV from the channel that created The Jewel in the Crown and World in Action into the ITV of reality shows and home camera man-getting-kicked-in-nuts shows.  

But go one step further. Name the great comedies of the last 15/20 years. The Office, One Foot in the Grave, Only Fools and Horses, Little Britain, all were given a chance not by ITV, which seems to regard comedy as being too risky, but by the BBC. People forget that Only Fools and Horses was a flop when it was first transmitted, as was Blackadder, but the BBC had faith and gave them a chance. Think ITV would have done that? ITV cancelled Men Behaving Badly, BBC took in on, and made it a success.

Rupert Murdoch doesn’t like that, and so his Tory puppets are going to put the boot in, and restrict the BBC’s funding and ability to create, in short, to sabotage one of the areas of culture that Britain has excelled in so that that Rupert Murdoch (An Australian-born US Citizen) can sell more US shows to British television.

Well done the Tories, the so-called patriotic party.  


Apr 20, 2010 at 9:34 am

Many years ago when I worked for Procter & Gamble they told a story about the BBC doing some exposé on skin creams. The VP for that product (who was an American) wasn’t happy about this and insisted we pull all our advertising from them unless they canned the program.

For that reason alone I have always supported the idea of licence funded/non-commercial TV.

Jason O
Apr 20, 2010 at 10:38 am

It’s one of the areas that I’m very left wing, in that I support a well funded public service broadcaster.

david morris
Apr 20, 2010 at 8:15 pm

Yes of course

Except you, located where you are, are not forced to pay a TV Tax (AKA License) to fund the BBC. We, as GBserfs ( shortly to be rebranded as Euroserfs) have no choice in the matter.

Jason O
Apr 21, 2010 at 6:35 am

Actually, David, in Ireland we do pay a hefty licence fee for our state broadcaster RTE. I also pay, through my cable provider, a fee to the BBC to get BBC 1-4. It’s one of the few taxes I pay that I don’t bitch about.



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