Posts Tagged ‘BBC’
Your work is cut out if you claim a benign god made all living things, and ordained since the dawn of creation their behaviour. Nature is what nature is, species trying to survive and reproduce, at a cost to themselves and others. Our consciousness allows us to find beauty and horror in what happens throughout the animal kingdom. On this planet 99% of what we are aware once roamed this earth live no more.
As Christopher Hitchens observed, “some design”.
Clive James’ review of Sir David Attenborough’s latest wildlife programme:
When you consider that David Attenborough personifies an entire broadcasting epoch, it was only fitting that he should be given a whole three-part series in which to say goodbye. Attenborough: 60 Years in the Wild (BBC Two), a retrospective survey of his greatest work, held innumerable delights.
Many of them were of a sexual nature. Female viewers probably most appreciated the maestro’s early appearances in a slimline safari suit, but for at least one male viewer the great sexual moment was a mating display by a male bird of paradise.
The female bird of paradise has none of the male’s sensational plumage. He is the one who wears the fine long feathers and does the dance that wins her heart. Attenborough waited for decades until his cameras were good enough to catch the action. Then he commented breathlessly while a male went through his complete routine.
“Can it really be worth all this,” the great man whispered from a nearby place of concealment, “just to mate with a female?” The male bird went on posing and posturing. But guess what? The female didn’t want to know. She just sniffed and moved on, presumably looking for a bloke who really had what it took – perhaps a tail 10 feet long that could tie itself into a written message, such as, for example, “All this could be yours.”
Watching that poor loser of a male bird trying to assimilate the cruel fact that he had knocked himself out for nothing, I pondered all over again the great truth about sex as it applies to human beings: that sooner or later it will make a fool out of anybody.
Article written by John Sargeant on Homo economicus’ Weblog
The BBC Director General, George Entwistle, has resigned following errors in current affair reports on child abuse both involving the flagship current affairs programme on BBC2 Newsnight. Past colleagues have spoken about someone with integrity, and honesty. It seems however that when you are the boss, there is only so many occasions you can say you did not know before you have to quit. He had only been in the post 54 days.
Jeremy Paxman, most famous anchor on Newsnight made the following comment:
Full statement from Jeremy Paxman via @capelland-
“George Entwistle’s departure is a great shame. He has been brought low by cowards and incompetents. The real problem here is the BBC’s decision, in the wake of the Hutton Inquiry, to play safe by appointing biddable people. They then compounded the problem by enforcing a series of cuts on programme budgets, while bloating the management. That is how you arrive at the current mess on Newsnight. I very much doubt the problem is unique to that programme. I had hoped that George might stay to sort this out. It is a great pity that a talented man has been sacrificed while time-servers prosper. I shall not be issuing any further statements or doing any interviews.”
What is striking is that for all the heads to roll, the first are at the BBC who had nothing to do with alleged child abuse on BBC premises by Jimmy Savile. Not police officers that did not pursue allegations made against him, or hospital managers that allowed unprecedented access for a celebrity non health worker who raped children in the private rooms they gave him as a night porter. Or the care homes that fawned on his presence. His fame as a radio, TV presenter, and the tens of millions he raised for charity allowed him access despite concerns media and celebrity circles had about him. He abused children for over 40 years.
There is a jewel in British broadcasting that has international renown. From the World Service to Doctor Who, has a global audience. The British Broadcasting Corporation has a reputation that was once the envy of the world. The way it is funded, by a universal TV license, market share and values have made it’s media rivals outspoken in wanting to change it to a shell of it’s former self. The fear is this will give them the chance.
I put my concern that Entwistle should have known what was going on to Rory Bremner, well known satirical impressionist that knows the celebrity and news scene:
The two cases where the former Director General claimed ignorance: not knowing that a news report on Jimmy Savile being a paedophile on Newsnight was dropped just before a Christmas tribute to the late Jimmy Savile on the BBC last year. The last was Newsnight wrongly accusing a senior Tory figure of being involved in a child sex scandal in Wales in the past few days.
The director general’s brief includes responsibility over the news division. So he should have known or been informed given the sensitive nature. However, smaller fry clearly did not review the latest report to go out. The rumour mill in media circles are other senior managers are going at some point.
As a figure head, Entwistle is an easy scapegoat. Perhaps with better management this could have been avoided. Yet this is a sideshow in what is an horrific scandal to have happened in post modern Britain. There are culpable people who need to answer to justice for allowing such easy access to vulnerable children.
Article written by John Sargeant on Homo economicus’ Weblog
As regular readers know, I look after my brother who has severe learning difficulties. Sweet natured and fun to be with, he is dependent on others and cannot communicate. He will need safeguarding for the rest of his life.
To fail vulnerable people is not just failing in a duty of care – it is inhumane. At Winterbourne View care home in the UK endemic abuse was cruel and sadistic towards those that could not comprehend what was happening to them, let alone defend themselves. They were let down badly by the care system. The under cover investigation by the BBC Panorama team has finally led to nine support workers and two nurses being sent to prison when a whistleblower had not been listened to.
Yet some of those abused have had further safeguarding alerts in their new residential homes – in one case leading to a criminal inquiry. In a broadcast tonight:
Panorama is set to report that at least 19 of the 51 former Winterbourne View patients have been issued with safeguarding alerts since they were moved to other care homes – according to NHS figures
There may well be no excuse for failure as the Government Minister Mr Lamb said today. We will continue to have problems until we have a situation where there is enough capacity to cope with demands on the care system so sub standard homes can be closed without causing homelessness. Plus more competition should drive up standards with family’s having more choice.
If we continue to fail in regulating care, where users cannot speak out, whistleblowers are not listened to, and families input invalidated, we will not be the compassionate society we aspire to be.
The vulnerable will take the brunt of our failure, not us. That is the stark harshness of it all. No one said life was fair. It’s time to fight for those that cannot fight back.
A priori arguments suggest that something existed before anything came into being, and as the “steady state” concept was disproved meaning the universe was not eternal the only remedy for something rather than nothing was a creator.
Whilst I doubt that this science programme from the BBC with Professor Al-Khalili will satisfy any young earth creationist it does try to answer that question with science. Hope to get round to watching soon – enjoy! (Reposted videos from here).
Part One – Something
Part Two – Nothing
The new series is now into the second part of the first episode in ten minutes here in UK (BBC America for my far west friends). As ever, hooked and wish Dr Who was this good when I was a kid (sorry McCoy).
More on the new series from Dr Who website