August 15, 2017

The BBC, Chapman and a post-Brexit meltdown

The BBC, Chapman and a post-Brexit meltdown

The BBC’s fawning over the increasingly erratic James Chapman and his post-Brexit meltdown is alarming, says David Hardy.

Just when you thought the BBC could not become any more duplicitous, just when you thought it could not get any more devious, the corporation goes and lowers the impartiality bar yet another notch lower. If you thought you had seen the worst excesses of the BBC’s naked anti-Brexit/pro-EU bias, in the words of the politician, ‘you ain’t seen nuthin’ yet’.

Outside the Westminster bubble the name of James Chapman will probably not ring too many bells, nor should it. For in the wake of the UK’s vote to leave the EU last summer, this former assistant to ex-chancellor and chief architect of Project Fear, George Osborne, left politics to forge a new career in public relations.

If you thought that might be the last you would hear of Mr Chapman you’d be wrong. Thanks to a recent flurry of anti-Brexit tweets – some more eccentric than others – Chapman predictably managed to find his way onto the BBC radar. Calling Brexit a ‘calamity’ he recently popped up on Radio 4’s Today programme, and on August 11 had a whole BBC news website page devoted to his fringe views. The BBC even reproduced some of his most recent tweets, one of which read:

“Let’s be honest, if we had an effective electoral law leading Brexiteers would now be in jail.”

That the BBC reproduced this tweet in all its glory speaks volumes. The broadcaster did not blink so much as an eyelid. Nor was the presentation of this tweet framed in a way that could be interpreted as even mildly censorious or ironic. His call to jail political opponents was met not by outrage, but rather tacit support.

On the contrary, Chapman’s extraordinary contention was presented matter-of-factly, without any comment, critical or otherwise. If silence equals agreement then one can only assume that the BBC concur with this outrageous sentiment. As yet Mr Chapman has not elaborated as to what kind of judicial sentence he would propose for such dissent – hard labour perhaps?

But it doesn’t end there. Not only is our national broadcaster amplifying the views of a single fanatical individual – a view reeking with authoritarianism and yes, shades of fascism, (lock up your political opponents) but on the very same day the corporation is promoting this brand of extremism, it is taking some pains to suppress the findings of the largest and most detailed piece of Brexit research since the 2016 Referendum.

Although it would not doubt come as a surprise to BBC readers, listeners and viewers, researchers from Oxford University and The London School of Economics recently conducted the most significant piece of Brexit research since the June 2016 referendum. Respondents were questioned about issues such as single market membership, free movement of people and the so-called Brexit ‘divorce’ bill.

Reporting that two-thirds of the 3,000 plus respondents backed Theresa May’s ‘hard’ Brexit and that even pro-EU voters wish to limit free movement of people post-Brexit, this is research that most certainly would not meet with BBC approval. The study also found the same proportion of people – 67 per cent – preferred ‘no deal’ to a soft version of Brexit. Again, not what the BBC wish to hear.

Rather than covering a piece of research that has profound significance regarding the post-Brexit mood of the UK, the BBC chose instead to publicise the eccentric views of a diehard Remainer who fantasises about locking up his political opponents.

But it’s not only people who voted to leave the EU that Mr Chapman would like to sanction. If he and his newly formed ‘Democrat’ party have their way, free speech could also be seriously curtailed. ‘The Democrats’ tweeted Chapman to pro-Brexit website Guido Fawkes, ‘will close you down when we implement Leveson.’ This sinister message followed a similar threat issued to another pro-Brexit site, Westmonster.

Chapman is intent, it seems on stamping out all opposition to his pro-EU fanaticism. Facilitated by his new ‘democratic’ party, his avowed aim is to overturn the outcome of the EU referendum, which just happens to be the largest democratic election in the history of the UK…

Should Chapman’s ‘Democrats’ ever come close to achieving anything like power, it seems we can henceforth look forward to a future where political opposition is routinely suppressed, democratic votes overturned and free speech shut down. If that prospect does send a shiver down your spine, then frankly nothing will.

Thanks to the BBC Chapman has become somewhat of a Twitter hero of late. Hundreds if not thousands of hard-core Remain voters are flocking to his Twitter feed, clutching at his increasingly bizarre tweets as a drowning person would a life raft. Now the emergence of demagogues should worry us all, especially those whose rhetoric resembles something that might have come straight out of the pages of 1984 – but not, it appears, our national broadcaster.

Chapman’s belligerent, unapologetic stance might be thrilling the BBC, but purpose served he will no doubt soon slip off the broadcaster’s radar, supplanted by the next pro-EU acolyte in much the same way as has happened to the likes of Gina Miller and Tim Farron. He is but a temporary symptom of a much deeper malaise in society, whereby certain individuals feel empowered to openly flout the principles of democracy due to what a psychologist might diagnose as narcissistic personality disorder. NPD is, according to the Mayo clinic, a condition whereby individuals, ‘disregard the feelings and wishes of others and expect to be treated as superior regardless of their actual status or achievements . . .’

Not that such information would necessarily trouble the BBC, who in James Chapman have unearthed the latest voice to further their anti-Brexit agenda. Expect therefore to hear a lot more of his ‘Democrat’ party in the weeks to come.

By amplifying Chapman’s wild ravings while simultaneously suppressing the important research of two of the UK’s most esteemed institutions, the BBC has confirmed what many have long suspected: Auntie is no longer the trusted broadcaster of yore, an organisation envied around the world for its even handedness and objectivity.

For here is a national broadcaster that when it is not undermining Brexit it’s trashing Trump; when it’s not trashing Trump it’s attempting to demonise populism; when it’s not demonising populism it’s sneering at Corbyn, Farage and Gove; when it’s not sneering at wrong-thinkers, it’s whipping up hysteria about the NHS and public services; when it’s not creating hysteria at home, it’s creating hysteria abroad constantly advocating for mass migration into Europe’s borders. It just goes on. And the longer it is allowed to continue this way, the more audacious it becomes.

Sad to report, but with every passing day, this once great British institution edges ever closer to becoming little more than a quasi-political party, mouthpiece for a rich and powerful liberal elite, a parody of its former self, a playground, in the words of Andrew Marr, to ‘an abnormally large number of young people, ethnic minorities and gay people.’

All of which would be bad enough. But it doesn’t end there. To add insult to injury, to administer one final kick in the teeth, this is a quasi-political party financed by the public purse, by you, and formerly, by me.

4.57 avg. rating (91% score) - 35 votes
David Hardy
David Hardy
A university lecturer by profession, David Sedgwick writes about a wide range of topics including Theatre, Politics and Formula One. His forthcoming book, ‘Shooting from the Hip’ is a collection of political essays written from a Libertarian humourist perspective. In his spare time, he enjoys marking student dissertations…
  • Lamia

    For a couple of weeks the BBC and other Remoaners had a great time touting Chapman as their next great political hope.

    Since then there has been almost total silence, and we all know why.

    The BBC and others ought to publicly acknowledge that they were taking seriously someone who was, as others noted early on, having a mental breakdown and talking nonsense, including nonsense of the libelous variety. Regardless of any sympathy one might have for the man himself, it tells you all you need to know about his followers, and they deserve to be derided for it.

  • Last week I listened to the Sunday Review on BBC Wales. Lord Heseltine was given 10 minutes under the most sympathetic questioning to explain why Brexit was a disaster. Heseltine. Who represents no-one. Has no mandate. No other view was offered. This is where my licensing fee goes.

  • englishperson

    Anti-Elitism = European Republicanism , people power
    be not afraid

  • MikePage

    Progressives have a habit of backing the wrong horse, don’t they? Rumours are that Chapman was arrested in Greece over the weekend, presumably for his own safety.

  • PAD

    And a c….t of the highest order.

  • 60022Mallard

    Gave up on the BBC and turned to Eurosport. coverage. Saw all the UK performances, but also lots of great contests in the field events. Even with the advert breaks – including the excellent Aldi ones with the Brownlee brothers – there was half as much more actual competition coverage, with limited talking heads (Johnathan Edwards and Greg Rutherford)

  • DaviddeAngelis

    Will never happen. MPs terrified of BBC retribution (smears etc.)

  • getahead

    Oh dear Andrew. Methinks you over-react.

  • James Chilton

    Should Chapman’s ‘Democrats’ ever come close to achieving anything like power, it
    seems we can henceforth look forward to a future where political opposition is routinely suppressed, democratic votes overturned and free speech shut down. If that prospect does send a shiver down your spine, then frankly nothing will.

    One of the first things Chapman’s ‘Democrats’ would do, is to appoint a Hate Thoughts Czar.

  • Tommein

    MP’s are the only people who can decriminalise non-payment of the TV tax, these are the people who need to be made aware of the publics unhappiness.

  • The BBC is the knife pushing into the chest of democracy.

    In the end its time to break them up and leave the commercial part to swim and the public service rump to raise its oiwn money by public subscription.

    After Brexit – it should be next on the to do list ….

  • AlfTupperDarlin

    It is shameful that the BBC parades the afflictions of a man having a public mental breakdown just to fill a silly season news slot or two. Chapman needs psychiatric help not publicity.

  • fitzfitz

    … their new angst is that there are , allegedly, inadequate numbers of black women in the fem GB rugby team …

  • fitzfitz

    … it is racialist & marxy of course, but the coverage was also lazy and obvious in its tedious one-trope stress …

  • Jack Jim Jones

    I’d love to know who’s making these editorial decisions at the BBC. They’re hidden from public view mostly aren’t they.

  • Andrew Mitchell

    I can’t believe that normal adult people would look at your web link and think “yip, they’ve got a point! “The conservatives are controlled by the Freemason’s” the Freemason’s don’t allow women, and I think the UK has had two female PMs, so how does that work? The site also says that parties including UKIP are on the EU gravy train and thus will support the EU, does the author know who UKIP are? What gets me with stuff like this is, I’m gobsmacked that someone would sit down to write all that crap, they obviously believe it and for me, that’s a clear sign that they have mental problems, as for those who read such crap and think the ten or twenty minutes they’ve just spent reading it, was time well spent, then they too have mental problems, watch out, your lightbulb is actually a microphone and the CIA are listening to your every word, boo!

  • Ringstone

    I’m beginning to think that with Chapman you’re seeing a breakdown Tweeted in real time…sad thing for anyone.

  • Harry Hill

    Umm, some good points, but perhaps you might want to view the images of the women’s 800m world record holder – I give you Jarmila Kratochvilova.

    She had more testosterone pumping around her than an all male gym. She came from nowhere at a late age and no-one has run close to her times since, that was over 30 years ago. She makes Semenya look like a Disney Princess.

  • getahead

    Any truth in the rumour that the BBC is controlled by Common Purpose? “BBC has 400 Common Purpose staff censoring out anti-EU news,”
    https://eutruth.org.uk/freemasoncontrol.html

  • Kay

    An excellent article, hit the spot. I’ll be undemocratic and say let’s close down the BBC.

  • wolfhound

    Semenya must give the Beeboids a wet dream every night.

  • wolfhound

    The BBC are filth.

    THey’ve been getting away with their bias for years and, thanks to Cameron’s fudging of their Charter review, we can expect even more duplicity as they are approaching panic mode over Brexit. Their pro-EU, AGW, PC views long ago exposed their bias; Trump is the latest target of their campaign to push the globalist/ Common Purpose agenda.

  • Dr Evil

    Would that be the National Socialist Democratic Party then? It sounds like it should be. This bloke Chapman is a joke. I doubt he would recognise democracy if it bit him on the backside. This remainer nonsense is just getting boring now. The Oxford/LSE report has shown what the reality really is. The BBC needs a good old kick too.

  • Aethelflaed

    Your list of political mantras missed out the BBC’s racism and anti-British ‘hatred’, as seen in the recent World Championships. Even Michael Johnson told them to start promoting and talking about the compeition as a whole, rather than using it as a platform to hero worship and eulogise a very selective, and particular type of athlete. Twas a matter of extreme karma that their ‘selected’ individuals were proven to mostly have feet of clay, whilst the British mens 100m relay team did so well. We should also be grateful that the women’s 800m world and olympic records are still held by a women !!

  • Muttley

    Speaks volumes that the BBC could not bring itself to report the recent Brexit attitudes survey, more so since the research was carried out by two institutions with flawlessly socialist credentials – Oxford U and LSE.

    As for Chapman, he is a classic Europhyte – elitist, arrogant and worryingly anti-democratic.

  • ratcatcher11

    I doubt then that the BBC would publish the information and research by American universities that halting the flow of unskilled Labour across her southern border will save America over a trillion dollars in 10 years. Again respectable research ignored by the press for political reasons.

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