Left-wing radio commentator James O’Brien has slammed the BBC for hosting right-wingers like Jacob Rees-Mogg MP, equating it to giving a platform to people who believe in unicorns, whilst admitting “routinely” breaking BBC impartiality rules when working there.
The LBC radio presenter was until this January a presenter of the BBC’s Newsnight programme, but stepped down admitting his own inability to remain impartial, claiming he did so to “retain my right to criticise Brexit and Trump in my other work”.
He later complained that the BBC had restricted his ability to propagate his “belief” that “Brexit will be bad for Britain and that Donald Trump is a racist sex offender”.
“Trump [and] Brexit have broken the impartiality model,” he added on social media after quitting in January.
Now, he is pushing to change the BBC’s impartiality rules, stating in a monologue on his LBC radio show this week that pro-Brexit speakers should be considered fantasists and banned from the public broadcaster.
“You get Chris Patten on to simply state some facts,” he ranted, “and then you’d have to invite Jacob Rees-Mogg on to tell you when the unicorns arrive. That is what the BBC mistake for balance.”
The more I think about Rees-Mogg's Suez comparison the more I think his parents deserve a refund for his school fees at Eton.
— James O'Brien (@mrjamesob) March 28, 2018
Writing in the New Statesman, he added: “The British broadcast media has, in recent years, seen the noble journalistic principle of impartiality become confused perilously with the altogether trickier issue of false equivalence.”
Whilst claiming the BBC was breaching impartiality rules by hosting people with right-wing views, he admitted ‘smashing’ those same rules because of his entrenched anti-Trump and anti-Brexti bias.
“I don’t tend to interview politicians much these days,” he added.
“I withdrew from an occasional slot presenting Newsnight because the BBC’s impartiality rules were, to be fair, being routinely smashed to smithereens by my insistence in other jobs that Brexit was an almighty con job and that Donald Trump is a racist hatemonger.”
British Govt Consults Crime Agency on Oxfam Scandal as Ex-BBC Anchor Runs Defence for Aid Workers https://t.co/FJmeGp9zLn
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) February 14, 2018