I have a bit of a beef with the standards of BBC News, in its current guise. It seems to my better half and me that they are starting to appeal to the lowest common denominator so beloved of the gutter press. The most recent example I would like to cite goes as follows. I spent ten minutes on Friday morning watching a story about the birthday concert for Diana, Princess of Wales. Now, OK, that is a news story and one that many people want to hear about.
However, just as I was leaving the house, I heard "now back to our breaking news about a failed bomb attempt in Central London". So, let me get this straight. A bomb which has the capacity to kill many, many people in a British city is second place to a dead Princess? Who, exactly, feels that they are going to get a knighthood for this sycophancy? Doesn't the BBC feel that it is slightly important for us to be informed that terrorism is up and running in the UK? You know, it would be nice to know that the risk of being bombed is higher than it was the day before.
In and of itself it isn't reason to stop watching the BBC news. However, we have both noticed an increasing mawkishness in the news. We were subjected to a story about yet another bombing in Iraq. What made this one different was the need to show bits of blood everywhere.
Then we move on to the recent floods in this country. A woman was shown, having seen her house for the first time since a whole load of damage had been wreaked. She was then asked, "how do you feel"? Ooh, I wonder how she would feel. Hmmm, let me think.
I was also really disgusted by the coverage of the search for the missing three year old, Madeleine Mc Cann, in Portugal. So much of the coverage was interrogation- lite, with the clear implication that the Portuguese Police weren't doing their job. Richard Bilton demanded of one officer why he didn't search a locked out-house. The officer explained the nature of Portuguese law, which is the same as here. The Police can't just kick down any door they want. Mr Bilton, the next time there is an abduction in your neighbourhood, I vote for the Police to be allowed to kick down your door with no grounds at all.