I wonder how Jeff Randall votes?

Jeff RandallIMAGINE the reaction from the foaming hordes if, talking about the state of the economy in 1991, a BBC presenter had said: “What would I do if I were the government? Resign.”

But it’s 2009, not 1991, and Jeff Randall doesn’t work for the BBC, he works for Sky News. Of course, few of my own commenters seem to accept that, legally, Sky News is under the same obligation as any other broadcaster to maintain neutrality and objectivity.

So it seems strange that Randall makes this politically-biased claim in the advert running regularly on Sky at the moment. I suppose he’s got to do something to attract attention away from Robert Peston. And Randall was, until recently, editor at large of the Telegraph. Never having seen his actual programme, I accept it’s possible he is entirely objective and fair.

His advert, however, clearly isn’t.



Filed under Economy, Media

25 responses to “I wonder how Jeff Randall votes?

  1. Jim

    I’ve never heard you or anyone else on the Labour benches complaining about the transparent pro-Government bias of the likes of Crick, Peston and Kuensberg – or indeed Sky’s Niall Paterson. Funny, that.

  2. RJT

    Perhaps you should invite Iain Dale to admonish Sky for this as he does when he perceives left-wing bias at the BBC. Or perhaps it’s OK when the shoe’s on the other foot.

    I’ve seen the ad. The overt political nature of Randall’s comments were quite shocking, actually.

  3. Jim Baxter

    Phew. What a busy afternoon I’ve had. Peace at last. That twit will never find me in here.

    Randall, yes. Overplays his hand just a tad. A good journalist maintains a civil objectivity. People rave about Paxman. I think he’s a disgrace. It should not be part of his job to get exasperated. He should expose what inconsitencies or deceits that he can and leave it to the audience to get exasperated. Getting exasperated is entertainment. It’s not news. Charles Wheeler. There was a journalist.

  4. richard

    I didn’t find the comment offensive or partisan.

    Labour’s made a complete pig’s ear of things and the right and proper thing to die would be to resign as a government in order to seek a new mandate for taking actions that are nowhere to be found within the current manifesto.

  5. Jim Baxter

    There are journalists whose job is to express opinion – Matthew Parris, Dominic Lawson, Matthew D.Ancona, David Aaronovitch.

    I like Randall. I like his guts and I like his style. The question is, what role does he belong to in his current post? When he was writing for the Telegraph he had harsh things to say about this government as a business specialist. His role was understood. He was an expert commentator. Is his current role understood? Maybe it doesn’t matter. Maybe we are watching the evolution of television reporting.

    It’s a step-change though, even from the likes of Paxman. Inevitable perhaps. Punctuated equilibrium.

    I, for one, don’t like it.

  6. John

    At least it gives some balance to Labour’s propaganda machine, and by that I of course mean the BBC. Sky News is hardly pro Tory though, they just make a conscious effort not to be pro Labour in any circumstances.

  7. Johnny Norfolk

    He is the only one to say it as it is . He has been proved correct all the time.

  8. Chris Gale

    The media is full of Tories, always have been, the BBC is no exception too. The media class is right wing as anything, even the so called progressives in the so called ‘liberal’ press like the Guardian, a paper full of Tories pretending to be trendy.

  9. Chris Gale

    Why are the banks not lending despite being given billions? It is because they are run by Tories who are doing the bidding of the establishment in attempting to shaft a Labour government. They, the establishment, have decided that 3 terms of a Labour government is much too much and a return to the ‘natural order’ WILL happen.
    All their friends in the media are rolled out to add to the mix. Never underestimate the power of the forces of the establishment in some very dark places in this country to pull out all the stops to get rid of any kind of progressive change.

  10. Helene Davidson

    I actually have been disappointed so far in his interviews. For someone who is meant (or would appear to be meant) to argue from the vantage point of fiscal rectitude, he is no better at calling time on corporatist Britain than the general run of mainstream commentators. I expected him to be quite aggressive and tactical in his questions. As for his political bias, you have to balance his against Robert Peston, for example, who though he claims none, has definitely drunk deeply at the government’s well of financial misinformation.

  11. Random

    Have you ever complained about the numerous cases of bias in the Labour Party’s favour from the BBC? It is bloatantly obvious who most of their employees vote for.

    As for the comment you do complain about, it actually says far more about the state of the country than Mr Randall’s voting record. Since they have made a monumental mess of running the country, and have been more dishonest than any previous administration, then of course they should all resign!

  12. Random

    Chris Gale

    Bizarre conspiracy theories are not helped when you lose all credibility by trying to claim that the BBC, that bastion of socialism, which has no concept of how businesses function or their vital role in society, is pro-Tory. Have you ever actually watched or listened to anything they have ever done? The only time they ever really question Labour is when they think that policy could be more left-wing.

  13. Tom, I do not wish to be unkind, but the fatc that Jeff Randal says that if he was in this government, he would resign, indicates that he understands ministerial responsibilities, and when things have gone so monumentally wrong on your watch.. you resign.

    Nothing wrong with that.

    Contrast that with members of the actual government, with Gordon Brown smiling like the banking crisis and recession is the best thing ever, and New Labour folks showing their old Labour colours by suggesting the end of capitalism as we know it!*

    *I may be exadurating a bit for effect 🙂

  14. It’s hardly political bias, it is about as balanced as you could hope to get. Your objection can only be that he shows his commitment to one side or the other, that’s not bias, that’s spunk.

  15. I think people rightly feel that it is one thing for a private company to employ who ever they like it is another to force Conservatives to pay for an extended camapaign against the Conservative party.
    I am at a loss to see why any private company should have to be ‘neutral’ whatever that means , to me it is balanced .Thank god that denial of the free exchange of opinion does not apply to the Press

  16. Chris Gale

    “Bizarre conspiracy theories”

    Oh really? I suppose the Masons are a conspiracy theory? Did you know they have more lodges in the House of Commons and the City than across the rest of the UK put together?

  17. Ha, Randall is corruscating about all sides of the political circus.

    He gave Osborne a hugely hard time in print over his Corfu shenanighans and he has pointed out more than once the policy pirouette’s Cable has performed over Northern Rock and other aspects of the financial disaster Labour have visited on us.

    Brown ran up a £200bn deficit between 2001 and 2007. If Randall points that out he’s pro-Tory? No, if the BBC fail to, they are pro-Labour.

  18. Andrew Woodman

    Might I suggest that Jim Naughtie referring to Labour as ‘we’ was a bit more of a crime?

  19. The idea that Jeff Randall is comehow a counterweight to Robert Peston is laughable. He’s got a very clear ideological perspective that comes across in everything he says. Of course that’s fair enough, but let’s pretend that our Jeff’s reporting doesn’t come with a slant.

    Just a few of the titles of his recent comment pieces at the Torygraph (notice there isn’t a single one leading on the culpability of bankers, failure shareholders to act as owners etc) –

    Shameless layabouts and gutless politicians defraud the taxpayers

    Telling the truth is lambasted in politically correct Britain

    Everyone except the Government knows we’re spending too much

    Debts up, taxes up, unemployment up, welcome back Old Labour

    When money is tight, people spend less. Are you listening, Mr Darling?

    Barclays: expensive independence beats government interference

    Gordon Brown’s fingerprints are all over a disaster made in Britain

  20. cuffleyburgers

    @ Chris Gale

    I found your conspiracy theory most amusing and I think your opinions should be nationalized to preserve them for the enjoyment of future generations.

    Back in the real world, Labour’s incompetence has cost the country BILLIONS, the people to suffer most are hard working families whose breadwinners will lose jobs and risk their homes.

    Your notion that bankers aren’t lending because they want Labour to lose the next election is beyond risible!

    I suggest you try to learn something about banking before making your comments if you don’t want to look like an arse.

    By the way, I should make the most of the BBC’s taxpayer funded labour party political news broadcasting while it lasts, because once Labour have been consigned to the compost heap of history after the next election – IT’S ALL GOING TO CHANGE!

  21. Random

    Chris Gale

    You can’t defend one conspiracy theory by a claim that a completely different conspiracy theory is true! Especially as you provide no actual evidence that there is any conspiracy to do anything other than meet up once a week and give to charity.

    Tom P

    “He’s got a very clear ideological perspective that comes across in everything he says”

    Interesting that your wording should be ambiguous as to whether “He” is Mr Randall or Mr Peston. Certainly your comment could apply to either one.

  22. ani

    You’ve got some brass neck accusing CG of conspiracy theory then asserting this rubbish.
    “By the way, I should make the most of the BBC’s taxpayer funded labour party political news broadcasting”…

    Typical Tory risible lies laced with threats.
    The BBC is a well loved and respected national institution, and believed and trusted above any political party.
    Grow up.

  23. Zim Flyer

    The difference is we are not forced to pay for the BBC.

    People are angry and Jeff Randall reflects that anger.

  24. “Interesting that your wording should be ambiguous as to whether “He” is Mr Randall or Mr Peston. Certainly your comment could apply to either one.”

    It’s not really that ambigious is it? On a philosophical point, I guess you can argue that both of them are ideological (as we all are) in the sense of having a set of views/beliefs about companies, markets, governments etc which we used to interpret the world. But are you really suggesting that Peston’s views spill over into what he writes as much as Randall’s?

    “People are angry and Jeff Randall reflects that anger.”

    dunno about that. most people first and foremost blame the banks for the crisis. Randall sees the same crisis, with the same causes, but his emphasis is primarily on the Government’s failings, not the bankers’.

  25. Zim Flyer

    Well I’m angry because my savings rates have been pushed down next to nothing and Gordon Brown and Alistair Darling have done nothing but encourage interest rate cuts by the Bank of England.

    This week the Bank of Scotland gave us 0.08 per cent interest on our company savings account, yet we face a big Corporation tax bill in April, the government has done nothing for us apart from reduce our money to try and support irresponsible borrowers.

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