Powerful and impotent

Via Roy at alicublog, we catch up first with Peter Robinson, which then takes us to EU Referendum, or as we like to call it Son of Trying to Grok. (We point this out because according to Robinson EU Ref “looks at some of the math” if by that one means “writes many numbers.”) And there we learn that a recent poll done in the UK that shows a small minority of Britons holding positive views of America (the country, not the book) is full of the shit:

We are told that, as Americans prepare to celebrate the 230th anniversary of their independence tomorrow, the poll found that only 12 percent of Britons trust them to act wisely on the global stage.

Fear not however, for there is a snake in the survey:

On the other hand, there is one figure (in an EU Barometer poll) which stands out, which makes a mockery of the whole survey game. As many as 53 percent of respondents “tend to trust the television”.

Because if you tend to trust the television, that means you are not qualified to have an opinion about US policy. (In an excessive display of enthusiasm, EU Referendum’s author skips over the fact that the figure for “tend not to trust the television” stands at a healthy (using his logic) 42%. Fortunately for us, the wingnutty goodness continues:

Given that this medium – still dominated by the BBC – churns out a relentless diet of anti-American propaganda, revelling in the Guantanamo issue, and lovingly following every twist and turn of the “Rendition affair”, to say nothing of the torrent of coverage on Abu Ghraib, it is surprising that the trust factor is still so high.

Say what you will about the BBC, but you probably should start by making sure your assumptions are a somewhat accurate reflection of reality. In this case? Sadly, No!:

Channel 4 is the only terrestrial station not to have experienced a decline in audience share. ITV1’s share has dropped 5%, both BBC1 and BBC2 have seen falls of 6% and Five’s share of viewing has decreased 2%.

Or our favorite:

Viewing figures for BBC1 are heading towards an all-time low (…) Figures produced by Barb, the Broadcast Audience Research Bureau, for the week ending August 14 show that the channel had only six programmes in the national top 20 – four of which were editions of its ailing soap, EastEnders.

Must surely be all those Abu Ghraib story lines on the EastEnders that are behind the hate. That, and the BBC’s “domination.”

So there you have the total wingnut circle of logic. One day the BBC (like the dreaded MSM in the US) is losing viewers at an amazing rate. The other it can manage to lead a nation of TV zombies into hating America for no other reason than the multiple clusterfucks that have taken place on the current administration’s watch. (Where propaganda is defined as “reporting shit that’s happened” something that only recently started and only ever happens on “liberal” networks War on Xmas War on Christianity War on Whites War on Conservatives War on Secret Government Programs War on Wingnuts War on Falafel War on Mustache of Knowledge War on Price Gouging.

Time for the punch line:

But what this also says is that a nation which counts amongst its number 53 percent who still trust what they see on television is not a nation whose judgement itself can be trusted.

Because if you don’t see the bad things that happen on the TV, they didn’t really happen. (How we wish someone had mentioned that nugget before Italy scored 2 goals in the last two minutes against Germany.)


Comments: 16


According to a recent Harris poll, 53% of Americans trust TV news sources.


Over to you, Reechard of “EU Referendum”…

But what this also says is that a nation which counts amongst its number 53 percent who still trust what they see on television is not a nation whose judgement itself can be trusted.


“Trust the television” to do what, exactly? To they lend it money?


Hey, waitaminute!! I trust my television. I didn’t realize what a fool I’ve been. I leave it alone all day long, with all my good shit, my money, my CD collection–hell, I leave my cool little iPod nano RIGHT ON TOP OF THE TV!!! And sometimes? I’ll leave my girlfriend at home, sitting right there on the couch with the TV!! My god, now it’s come to this. Betrayed by my president, betrayed by the supreme court, betrayed by the congress, and now my tv? That’s it, I’m gonna have to go live in a cave in afghanistan…



theo, I’d assume then that Reechard distrusts the judgement of the US government even more than the general public. According to the same poll, 62% of congressional staffers trust commercial TV news, vs. the only 53% for the general public.

And mikey, I had the same naive trust until I got back from school a day earlier than planned, only to find my TV throwing an appliance house party. You do not want to know what it was doing with my coffee grinder and my heat gun. *shudder*


I trust netflix


Surely in this context we should be looking at the ratings of BBC’s News, not their programming overall, most of which is entertainment.

Also, numerous polls show that the most trusted news source in the UK is the Beeb. This is because, well, unlike most of the other news sources in the UK, it actually makes an attempt to be non-partisan, and does it in a way entirely different from the US’s sycophantic media.

Why attack the guy for saying that most British people get their news from the BBC (which is probably true, at least to an extent), when you could be attacking him for his ridiculous slanders of the BBC? The quality of sadly noing has been going sadly downhill of late.


So, to summarize, I have no idea from your data whether British people get their news from the BBC. They apparently mostly watch other channels, oveall, but that says nothing about where they get their news from. So Reechard from EU Referendum may in fact be right, although he has not demonstrated it.


The quality of sadly noing has been going sadly downhill of late.

Well, I can’t speak for everyone, but dood, this IS a lefty politcal snark site. I drink scotch, I partake of the bounty of the herb, I watch baseball. Perhaps you might try us again after the world series. No, I don’t promise to be any more sober or coherent, but I WILL have more time on my hands. There’s every possibility my posts will be better thought out, and maybe even carefully researched (nah, don’t count on it)…



Even more damning from that EU barometer poll is that 70% of Brits trust the police and 76% the army.

And yet Robbo doesn’t mention that.


lovingly following every twist and turn of the “Rendition affair�

(Saxaphone muzac) Next week, on The Rendition Affair. Will Taylor escape the Moroccan compound in time to stop Ridge from marrying Brooke?


I saw similar attempts at rubbishing the Pew Poll by attacking the foreign media. One of the columnists at the WaPo was whingeing that 98% of Germans knew about Abu Ghraib and Gitmo because of the eeeee-vil Yurpean MSM. This Merkin journalist was much prouder that only 76% of Merkins knew of Abu Ghraib and Gitmo and the greater ignorance of Merkins was to be celebrated… most of all by Merkin journalists and Merkin MSM.

I just shook my head and blogged on it (though long gone from the front page, so don’t even think of clicking).


We Brits tend to trust Auntie Beeb because she tends not to blatantly lie to us day in and day out, unlike Fox News which sued in court for its right to lie on air and won.

Freshly Squeezed Cynic

My personal favourite bit:

Unfortunately, in order to maintain their own self-esteem, they seem to end up convincing themselves that their enforced “make do and mend” strategy is somehow superior to the American way.

Yes, how dare they think the strategy of trying not to seem like an occupying force, and actually trying to win the hearts and minds of the Iraqi people (if not actually achieving much success in that regard) is superior to simply blowing up anyone who comes near and torturing the rest.

Then they show the British army’s “moral superiority” with a pic of a few squaddies baring their arses to the world. Clearly, nudity in the desert is a great, terrible shame.


But what this also says is that a nation which counts amongst its number 53 percent who still trust what they see on television is not a nation whose judgement itself can be trusted.

Soooooooo, what does it then mean that the British are our only real allies left in the “Coalition of the Willing?”


Lessee, 53% are mindless TV watchers. 88% overall are untrustful of BushCo.

So, he counts on the wise 12% can be found among the 47% of non-TV watchers.

Does that not translate to: 3/4 of the deep-thinking book readers in the UK don’t trust the Bush and his running clown show?


Are we allowed to mention the poll that showed the more someone watches Fox News, the more likely they are to believe utter shite.

(The decline in TV viewing in the UK is matched by an uptick in radio and online news-gathering. And Auntie Beeb does pretty well on both counts.)

unlike most of the other news sources in the UK, it actually makes an attempt to be non-partisan

Actually, they’re legally obliged to avoid the kind of shite that Faux gets away with. As are all broadcast news sources. Including Murdoch’s Sky News.


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