THE Olympic Games confounded the expectations of us curmudgeonly nit-pickers and everything worked out rather well.
The slightly barmy opening and closing ceremonies were global hits that have redefined the image of Britain for the better, the transport and security ran swimmingly, the volunteers who helped visitors find their way around have received a particularly good press abroad, and the British team scooped an astonishing medal haul ending up third, or is that bronze, in the medal table. There were plenty of outstanding sporting feats and Britain has also acquired a new generation of national heroes.
The organisers were also thoughtful enough to ensure that were was something for Northern Ireland to moan about. So everyone was happy.
All-in-all, the Olympics were a resounding success, which, coming hot to the heels of the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations, have seen British national pride elevated to levels not seen since the 1960s.
Still, I am glad that the London Olympics have run their course because BBC World, the international TV news channel, which did not have the rights to broadcast the actual Olympics, not even highlights, has used the Olympic fortnight as an opportunity to pump progressive propaganda out to the world, intermixed with its reporting of news about the Olympics.
I only have two English language channels on cable package here in Barcelona: BBC World and CNN. Five minutes of CNN saps my will to live, so I have to flick over to BBC World every now and then.
Getting visitors ready to go to London, BBC World offered a helpful sightseeing recommendation.
Apparently the most wonderful thing a tourist can do in the British capital is to go to Highgate cemetery and gaze upon the austere Soviet-style grave of Karl Marx. Maybe BBC World had other suggestions, but I saw the lavishly filmed solicitation to pay homage to the corpse of modern socialism about a dozen times, and saw no other possibilities proffered.
Running in parallel to the Olympics news was a programme about the rise of the English language, which I learnt was due to and unedifying combination of violent British colonialism and American capitalism.
In a section had you seen anywhere else but on the BBC you would have thought it was a ‘Private Eye’ style parody of the adolescent loony left debating club, an earnest academic with a bad haircut pronounced that it was the responsibility of everyone who speaks English to ensure that they did not use it to colonise individuals. The BBC was very pleased with that quote and used the clip in heavy rotation.
Just in case anyone did not get the message, we were treated to regular appearances by Benjamin Zephaniah, the poet who rejected an OBE because “‘Empire’ evokes slavery, brutality, and oppression”, who gave us insights into his colourful and selective view of British history.
While the rest of the media was enjoying the antics of the Mayor of London, Boris Johnston, BBC World only had time to interview one political figure, Tony Blair, and gave him free rein to claim that he was the saviour of British sports through the “Tony Blair Sports Foundation”.
People back in the UK were treated to a glimpse of the BBC’s true colours when some of its presenters were overcome with the London spirit and started showing enthusiasm for British athletes. The BBC elite moved to put a stop to that sort of nonsense and reminded the minions that there were other countries competing too.
Other BBC programmes were also caught on last week being economical with the truth.
BBC Scotland, a cheerleader to anti-British Scottish nationalism, was exposed as having presented an SNP activist as an neutral constitutional lawyer.
Needless to say this supposedly “independent expert” delivered a carefully considered analysis that just happened to match that of the SNPs.
Finally, the BBC put the boot in to Help for Heroes. The now discredited report was a joint venture with a left-wing outfit called The Bureau of Investigative Journalism that works under such banners as “Corporate Watch”, and has a particular interest in Tory Party funding, but none in the Labour Party, which is handy as these fearless investigators are funded by a Labour donor accused of using non-dom status to avoid paying his fair share of tax.
Former Army chief Richard Dannatt accused the broadcaster of an “abuse of the truth” and said that the charity, which helps wounded British servicemen, was “a target for the BBC to bash”.