BBC right to include BNP

October 21st, 2009 at 1:00 pm by David Farrar

The ODT reports:

To the outrage of many Britons, a white-supremacist fringe party riding a wave of electoral success has been invited to participate in a prime-time TV show on politics.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown’s Labour Party government says it is appalled that the far right British National Party will get such high-profile exposure to millions of viewers. The BBC, however, says as a publicly funded broadcaster it must cover all political parties that have a national presence.

The is a loathsome vile racist party. But they also won two seats in the European Parliament. It is not for state owned to decide not to cover a party, just because of their views.

Personally I believe exposing extreme views, and ridiculing them, is much better than ignoring them.

Having said that media should be careful not give a minor party disproportionate coverage just because they are controversial. For example should get the same coverage as any other party not in Parliament that is polling 1% to 2%.

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41 Responses to “BBC right to include BNP”

  1. Ryan Sproull (7,028 comments) says:

    Having said that media should be careful not give a minor party disproportionate coverage just because they are controversial. For example Winston First should get the same coverage as any other party not in Parliament that is polling 1% to 2%.

    Why should coverage be proportionate? Doesn’t that give an obvious and unfair advantage to incumbents?

    [DPF: Well my solution is to give all the broadcasting money to parties not in Prlt. But coverage should be roughly proportional or you would have Social Credit covered as often as Labour]

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  2. MikeNZ (3,234 comments) says:

    good point as that is the history here.

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  3. Will de Cleene (485 comments) says:

    Wow. So how do you reconcile that with last year’s dictat by Clark and Key not to appear for a leaders’ debate with the minor parties? Even the state owned media didn’t have a say in that one, let alone the public.

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  4. RRM (9,445 comments) says:

    ^^^WTF???

    “I am not interested in appearing on your programme. Goodbye.” Dictat?

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  5. Redbaiter (13,197 comments) says:

    The Otago Times is just another communist propaganda sheet, shown this time by their pathetic obsession with labelling the BNP “far right” when the truth is they’re much further left than they are right. Hey you Otago Times moron- Right Wingers crave small unobtrusive government. That is the measuring stick you need to apply to any categorising of any right or left political force. Stupid half educated Progressives posturing as journalists.

    And I say let the BNP have their say. I’d rather hear what they have to say from their own mouths rather than through the filter of stupid uninformed partisan Progressives pretending to be journalists.

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  6. Murray (8,838 comments) says:

    The greens a vile loathsom democracy hating party that didn’t win a single electorate in NZ but they still get air time.

    Sauce, goose, gander.

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  7. cha (3,779 comments) says:

    Griffin isn’t simply turning up to mouth some shit into a microphone, he will be there to answer questions and participate in the debate. He will have to face his opponents and hopefully they will be able tear him to pieces so how can that be a bad thing.

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  8. Big Trev (15 comments) says:

    Sadly – the BNP can contribute most of its success in the UK to Labour and its failings. The country has been over run – but Labour are to PC to actually do anything about it (actually like NZ labour – they just dont have any ideas on what to do about anything).

    My wife who had a terminally ill child requiring significant medial help was told that she ‘came down the list’ as immigrants had to be given priority else their Human Rights were being violated. (How – Stuffed if I know). This is just one story like this out of millions.

    Most Brits have had enough. Not for racial views or hatred of certain people – but because they are getting treated as second rate people in their own country. And they want it to stop.

    Sadly – I see that the UK is going to get worse and worse. Next elections I believe that the BNP will actually do even better.

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  9. Bryce Edwards (248 comments) says:

    Absolutely.

    The BBC’s only crime is in putting the Blairite Jack Straw up to debate the BNP’s Nick Griffin on Question Time. Straw might not be as authoritarian and rightwing as Nick Griffin, but his time as Home Secretary proved he wasn’t really in a different league to Nick Griffin.

    The British left unfortunately have this idea that only ‘respectable politicians’ should be allowed on TV, which means they end up endorsing all sorts of dire MPs, and allowing this subjective-based type of censorship free reign.

    Bryce

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  10. Ryan Sproull (7,028 comments) says:

    [DPF: Well my solution is to give all the broadcasting money to parties not in Prlt. But coverage should be roughly proportional or you would have Social Credit covered as often as Labour]

    DPF, you say that as if it’s a self-evident fact that Social Credit should not be covered as often as Labour. I would find it weird for Social Credit to be covered as often as Labour, but I think we should be clear why that’s a bad thing before using it as a proof that coverage should be roughly proportional. Nothing about incumbency alone makes a party’s policies more or less likely to be better than an outsider’s. Incumbent parties are news in so far as they can affect the country, but beyond that, I don’t see any extra value in a party simply by virtue of being incumbent.

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  11. Pete George (22,804 comments) says:

    The British National Party (BNP) is a far-right, whites-only political party formed as a splinter group of the British National Front by John Tyndall.

    Because they are left of one poster here doesn’t mean they’re not far right. If it’s ok to lump anyone to the left of the BNP as socialists then accept the BNP into your pigeonhole.

    Today the term the Right is primarily used to refer to political groups that have a historical connection with the traditional Right, including conservatives, reactionaries, monarchists, aristocrats, religious fundamentalists, and some nationalists. But in modern times, the Right has also encompassed views supporting capitalism and free markets.

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  12. noodle (151 comments) says:

    http://www.melaniephillips.com/articles-new/p=688

    is well worth a read on this topic. Though the one-eyed individuals who blog nonsense wouldn’t agree.

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  13. queenstfarmer (746 comments) says:

    Winston Peters used the phrase “tsunami of immigrants” the other week.

    Seems to be a BNP catch-phrase: http://bnp.org.uk/policies/immigration

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  14. sonic (2,818 comments) says:

    “My wife who had a terminally ill child requiring significant medial help was told that she ‘came down the list’ as immigrants had to be given priority else their Human Rights were being violated.”

    Nice lie there, you should get a job with the BNP.

    As for the rest of you, nice to see you justifying fascism, a couple of choice Nick Griffin quotes.

    “The electors of Millwall did not back a post modernist rightist party, but what they perceived to be a strong, disciplined organisation with the ability to back up its slogan “Defend Rights for Whites” with well-directed boots and fists”

    “I am well aware that the orthodox opinion is that six million Jews were gassed and cremated and turned into lampshades. Orthodox opinion also once held that the world is flat.”

    He is all yours.

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  15. Banana Llama (1,105 comments) says:

    BNP are Fascists, since Fascism evolved from Marxist doctrine i think it is quite fair to say they are far left.

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  16. sonic (2,818 comments) says:

    They hate gays, black people, socialists, Jews and Trade Unionists, glory in the Union Jack and National Anthem and worship the monarchy.

    Typical lefties eh Banana.

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  17. expat (4,048 comments) says:

    Either way, they are knob heads like socialists.

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  18. Banana Llama (1,105 comments) says:

    So communists are far right now Sonic?! better stop spinning you have lost your sense of direction.

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  19. grumpyoldhori (2,410 comments) says:

    Amusing how reich wingers jump to defend their own.
    Nice bunch the BNP stating that a black UK soldier only got the VC because of PC values.
    Maybe Griffin will like to visit that black soldier’s regiment in Afghanistan,I’m sure they would be able to arrange a negligent, what a pity that would be.

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  20. sonic (2,818 comments) says:

    You may have Banana that sarcasm is the lowest form of wit, however it still appears to go over your head.

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  21. Banana Llama (1,105 comments) says:

    Well no I understand fully what you are saying and I find you quite the intelligent contortionist, however if I am to take what you said in reply to my post seriously then I would have to ask why you consider racial prejudice and nationalism a right wing trait when it is apparent in left wing governments through most of modern history.

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  22. bobux (349 comments) says:

    They hate gays, black people, socialists, Jews and Trade Unionists, glory in the Union Jack and National Anthem and worship the monarchy.

    Typical lefties eh Banana.

    On they other hand, they have also called for tariffs on imports, a ‘Buy British’ policy for state purchasing, state support for domestic manufacturing and nationalisation of strategic industries. And they abhor multinational businesses and the international movement of labour and capital.

    Typical righties eh sonic

    Welcome back, by the way.

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  23. snice1 (28 comments) says:

    I just hope the debate shows Griffin to be the tosser he his.

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  24. winston smith (45 comments) says:

    far-left, far-right, left-ish… Hasn’t anyone (ie: Otago Daily Times) looked at The Political Compass or anything? http://politicalcompass.org/ (For the lazy, http://www.theadvocates.org/quiz.html has a similar quiz – it’s not as good.)
    You just can’t put economic & social policies in the same scale without screwing up things a lot.

    The BNP are “far-right” because they’re very anti-immigration and have a strong relationship with Laura Norder.
    They’re quite left economically (more so than New Labour) because they want tariffs on imports (thanks bobux), ‘Buy British’ and so on.

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  25. MT_Tinman (2,989 comments) says:

    DPF Where the fuck does this strange idea that single interest groups (in this case political parties) should be given ANY financial support from the taxpayer come from?

    As for the BNP, were I a Pom voter (and thank christ I’m not) and based on the stories I get told by traveling Poms, I’d look seriously at voting for them.

    Only their extreme left wing tendencies would deter me.

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  26. bobux (349 comments) says:

    winston

    It ain’t exactly rocket science, is it.

    The BNP support active government intervention in the economy AND various forms of social conservatism.

    If you believe every party falls somewhere along a left-right axis, this is no doubt confusing. But if you believe in a simple left-right axis, you are probably very easily confused.

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  27. Hurf Durf (2,860 comments) says:

    They hate gays, black people, socialists, Jews and Trade Unionists, glory in the Red Flag and National Anthem and worship the General Secretary.

    Though your knuckle dragging needs a correction – they want a British republic AFAIK and to be totally isolationist, withdrawing from every conflict British forces are currently involved in, including Afghanistan. They sound strangely familiar. They also derive most of their newest support from the disaffected Labour base. Gawd, your pigeonhole is getting smaller and smaller.

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  28. sonic (2,818 comments) says:

    So to sum up, you guys are happy with the BNP’s open racism, their leaders denial of the holocaust an their associations with people who blow up gay bars and attack Mosques, however you are a little worried that they have some populist economic nationalist policies which might hurt business profits (a la that well known socialist Winston Peters)

    That sums many of you up to a tee, if the BNP dropped I’m their supposed “left wing” ideas I’m sure many of you would be out there marching along in your little brown shirts.

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  29. Murray M (455 comments) says:

    Who gives a flying fuck what goes on Europe. We should look closer to what I used to call home. A certain leader of a certain party telling ceratin people to stop fighting each other and to contemplate fighting the fairer skinned variety should be of more concern to NZ’ers.

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  30. sonic (2,818 comments) says:

    Care to be slightly more specific there Murray M?

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  31. Hurf Durf (2,860 comments) says:

    So to sum up, you guys are happy with the BNP’s open racism,

    The fuck did we say we were happy with the BNP’s racism, Chronic? The fuck has the BNP’s social tribalism been anymore acceptable than the Gweens? Those damned businesses and their damned profits, after all. Has your extended stay in Ulan Bator, lost and alone and away from your lover Hulun, made you cranky and upset? Nevermind, I’m sure there’s an embassy nearby.

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  32. ernesto (257 comments) says:

    polling… schmolling

    Winston should get 4.5% of the coverage ie what he got last election and more than ACT in case you forgot.

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  33. transmogrifier (520 comments) says:

    This thread is an example of how embarrassing political debate can get in this country. Some fascinating issues (politics based on racism, political spending, immigration policies etc) laid aside so we can debate whether some entity is more left or right wing.

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  34. Clint Heine (1,563 comments) says:

    We had Sonics mates the Socialist Workers hanging round White City and Shepherds Bush tube stations over the last 2 weekends handing out leaflets and shouting that they should “ban the Nazi Party from being allowed on TV”. I asked one of them that surely banning them is a “Nazi” characteristic and that National Socialism is very similar to their brand of Socialism… and I got some very angry looks.

    I wouldn’t vote BNP but I agree they should go on TV. Let people see that they really don’t have the wider picture. Plus, why should every other party get grilled in the media and they get off?

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  35. ephemera (563 comments) says:

    @Clint Heine

    I agree that they should be on TV, but Question Time may not be a particularly good format for it. If you have seen the show, it is about petty point scoring and soundbiting. It won’t be a ‘grilling’, or allow people to see that they don’t have the wider picture.

    It will allow Nick Griffin to speak to his biggest audience yet, and appeal to their fears and accepted myths. Some of us can see him for what he is, but others.. well, there are some incredibly thick people in Britain

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  36. Flashman (184 comments) says:

    A significant number of Brits are deeply unhappy with their lives and the direction the country is taking. They are also deeply dissatisfied with attitudes and behaviours of Establishment political parties.

    To the outrage and dismay of the milky-tea chattering classes, the BNP offers these disenchanted working class voters a fresh, raw, in-ya-face, no bullshit message. Not only is it a winning formula in its own right, but BNP leadership contrasts really well when the best the socialists and tories can field are Gordon Brown and some nebulous prat called Cameron.

    BNP support is, I would imagine, drawn from individuals who would otherwise either not bother to vote or would vote labour. So which ever way one cuts it, the rise of the BNP is a direct result of the failure of UK Labour.

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  37. bobux (349 comments) says:

    Sonic

    Let me get this straight.

    You insist the BNP are a right-wing party, but you accept that they have

    populist economic nationalist policies which might hurt business profits

    I guess that makes them the world’s first right-wing left-wing party.

    Or you can accept the painfully obvious; that the BNP’s policies are an opportunistic grab-bag taken from the left and right, presumably designed to appeal to the marginalised voters they target. But as you would then have to stop sneering about the Evil Righties, that might be a step too far for you.

    Murray, Flashman etc

    You might want to look a little harder at the BNP before singing its praises. Do you really want to support a party that accepts or rejects members solely on the colour of their skin? Or one that seems to accept a string of assault or theft convictions as acceptable in its office-holders? Or one that believes every misfortune that befalls a poor white briton is the fault of dastardly darkies undermining the white race? (I exaggerate, but not much).

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  38. NationalFrunt (1 comment) says:

    The only reasons the BNP are getting any success is that 1. the mainstream parties (left and right) are rightly seen as totally dodgy and corrupt, and 2, the BNP hides their most repulsive policies, because they know most people would find them repulsive

    Here in NZ the national Frunt are just as repulsive, we are a bit thicker though and havent managed to hide it as well!
    nationalfrunt.blogspot.com
    NZ National Frunt

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  39. labrator (1,745 comments) says:

    The BNP is a like a contagion of all the shoddiest headlines from the Sun newspaper rolled up into a political party. They’re neither left wing nor right wing, they’re low level common denominator popularists. England still suffers from a large number of poorly educated people and these are who the BNP appeal to. The “what’s in it for me” population who feel disenfranchised if anyone gets something they didn’t. England deserves the BNP if they get any grasp of power, and I’d hate to see what happened to the pound and England’s place in the world if they did.

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  40. Flashman (184 comments) says:

    bobux – hard to believe that you believe I was “singing praises” to the BNP and that I “supported” it. I was merely expressing a reasonably informed opinion as to why the BNP is gaining electorate traction.

    So get a grip man. There really isn’t a skinhead under your bed.

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  41. robiati (1 comment) says:

    I think the BBC is entirely wrong on this. On the whole I am against censorship but there has to be exceptions. Inciting racial hatred is one of these. The BNP is a constitutionally racist party and this makes it illegal regardless of how many votes it has gained. Nick Griffin is a convicted criminal (race crime) and holocaust denier.

    When such people are given powerful platforms you get spikes in race-related hate crime. Which usually means violence.

    The BBC should not be impartial when faced with racism. The current legal problems faced by the BNP should be in themselves sufficient for the BBC to keep Griffin off Question Time.

    To be clear I am not against debate on the BNP. But you can have such a debate without aggrandizing bigots like Griffin and racist organizations like the BNP by legitimizing them through platforms like Question Time.

    Certainly we should bring organizations like the BNP to the attention of the public in a way that shows how ridiculous their viewpoints are. But that is not something Question Time is designed to do. And perhaps if the BBC and other media organizations had done a better job of exposing the ugly truth behind the nuanced and polished facade of the BNP – and organization that has deliberately softened its language and image in the attempt to win power – it would not have gained so many votes in the first place.

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