Charles Moore, writing in the Daily Telegraph, urges Britons compelled to pay the outrageous tax, sorry, licence fee to the BBC should refuse to do so following the recent episode over two radio presenters who chose to mock an elderly actor about one of the presenters having had sex with the actor’s grand-daughter. I urge readers to read the Moore article. It is devastating and gets to the heart of why the Russell Brand/Jonathan Ross saga is not just a minor issue, but a brutal example of what is happening in the culture of the UK.
It is a lamentable fact about Britain that one of the things we are best known for these days is braying vulgarity, rudeness and cruelty, although certain issues, such as football hooliganism, seem to have become a bit less of a problem in recent years. For example, I tend to find US television far funnier, far sharper and yet also less cruel. Of course this is a generalisation – I am sure Samizdata readers living abroad can give me examples of cruelty-as-entertainment – but in the UK, it is becoming more and more the norm, not the exception. And the BBC, paid for by a tax, is at the heart of it. What is even more pathetic about the brutality of this culture is that its targets are not powerful dictators or scoundrels, since that might be dangerous. It is the sheer cowardice of these folk that appals.
As Sean Gabb has written, the BBC is part of the “enemy class”. As libertarians, we need to realise that privatising the odd bit of the state is not enough. The BBC, as part of the media class that is so interwoven with the political, corporatist class, must be destroyed, totally.