BBC broadcasters whose jaws dropped on learning that they worked for a member of the Confederation of British Industry are free to sign away their pensions by signing my petition calling for the immediate resignation of the BBC from the CBI.
However, I believe in being fair. And I believe in thinking strategically. I don’t hold people responsible for the behavior of their employers. In other words, don’t make an individual gesture that will allow your employers to sack you.
Having said that, how on earth could broadcasters of the highest quality, investigative journalists, have been kept in the dark about the fact that their salaries tied them and the license fee payer generally to the biases of the CBI?
Criminalizing, and jailing, those who have refused to pay the license fee means that the British state has been abusing their power. The British state has forced trade unionists to subsidize – however indirectly – those who have used black lists against their own activists. It has worked to undermine every instance of collective resistance to management abuse, and forced trade unionists to pay for the privilege.
Let’s call a spade a spade. This is nothing less than a scandal. What we are dealing with here is a relationship of corruption at the very heart of our so-called public sector broadcasters.
The BBC bosses are so oblivious to simple logic that they expected to carry on regardless even after STV explained why their membership of the CBI had been made untenable after the latter declared its intention to spend over £100,000 to back the No side in Scotland’s referendum. They had a statutory duty to impartiality and membership of the No Campaign in the referendum ruled this out.
It took several more days before it was revealed that the BBC faced this same problem. And their bosses refused to resign membership of the CBI. It took a lot of protests before the BBC bosses so much as agreed to suspend membership for a very brief period. Heads must roll at the BBC.
But there is definitely more to it than this. The BBC cannot pose as impartial during Scotland’s referendum. That’s been ruled out due to their claimed ‘right’ to be members of an organization committed to paying a hell of a lot of money – partly coming indirectly from the license fee payer – to the No campaign. But what about industrial relations?
Ian Katz – the editor of Newsnight – allowed a piece of obnoxious red-baiting propaganda to distort the democratic vote in the National Union of Teachers in the last few days. What a pity comrade Katz ‘forgot’ to mention his relationship to the employers organization.
The BBC directors are now a busted flush. Any suggestion that these anti-trade union political partisans can be trusted to spend our money on covering industrial relations with a modicum of impartiality has come to an end. Or, to be precise, the existing management of the BBC have exposed their lack of objectivity. They have to resign. Immediately. No ifs, no buts. Just resign today.
All socialists from this point on need to place the maximum pressure on the BBC bosses, rather than let them bury the reality of what has gone on here. You don’t all have to sign my petition demanding the BBC immediately resigns from the CBI if you don’t want to. But I don’t think it can hurt. Here is the link if you are interested: http://www.change.org/petitions/lord-chris-patten-resign-immediately-from-the-cbi?recruiter=7035201&utm_campaign=twitter_link_action_box&utm_medium=twitter&utm_source=share_petition