No Boris, the BBC are not Boko Haram

Boris Johnson has outdone himself in offensiveness and hyperbole.

Boris Johnson has outdone himself in offensiveness and hyperbole, writes Jenny Jones

Although it’s part of my elected role to scrutinise Boris Johnson, I try not to read his Telegraph articles as they sometimes bring me to the brink of despair that someone so talented, so clever and so funny can write such utter drivel on so many important issues.

And I’d have hoped that if Johnson were to write about Nigeria and the Boko Haram, he’d have mentioned the kidnapped girls, the world’s outcry, and the lacklustre efforts of the Nigerian government to find them.

But instead, he chose to compare the BBC to Boko Haram – for sacking a DJ:

“In our own modest way, we live in a Boko Haram world, where it all depends on the swirling rage of the internet mob, and where terrified bureaucrats and politicians are borne along on a torrent of confected outrage.”

Being abducted by a religious death squad, probably raped and beaten and sold as a ‘wife’ in a market, is the same as getting into trouble for saying the notorious N word, according to the Mayor of London.

Johnson has indeed outdone himself in offensiveness and hyperbole.

I might agree that the BBC is losing the plot and lacks consistency, but his writing that “In our own modest way, we live in a Boko Haram world” is absurd, even if it is (hopefully) being written tongue in cheek. The kidnapping of Nigerian girls by a religious death squad (Boko Haram) is plainly not comparable to the plight of a DJ being sacked by the BBC, nor to Jeremy Clarkson.

Boris Johnson likes to shock and outrage. I’m just irritated. I wish he’d concentrate on the day job of running London and making our lives better.

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26 Responses to “No Boris, the BBC are not Boko Haram”

  1. Bill Ellson

    The BBC did not sack the DJ, but merely accepted his resignation. He had offered his resignation in the mistaken belief that the BBC would beg him to stay. When the press got hold of the story some BBC press officer instead of establishing what had happened (an easy task as it was set out on the DJ’s blog) panicked and the managers who had, quite properly, accepted the resignation were overuled. Not only was Boris wrong, but he got the story entirely the wrong way round as it was the mob who got this rather silly man re-instated.

  2. Dave Roberts

    It’s a fair comparison. Boko Haram and the left. Both are the enemies of democracy,freedom of speech and human rights generally.

  3. Liam Fairley

    And you, sir, are an an enemy to common sense, reasoning and intelligent debate.

  4. Alec

    Panicked, possibly, because they realized just how ridiculous even trying to bollock him was. Being silly is not and should not be a disciplinary offence.


  5. Bill Ellson

    BBC management did not ‘try to bollock him’, as stated above they accepted his resignation, before press officers, who made as little effort to ascertain facts as you have, panicked.

  6. Alec

    Oh, right… they were going to ask him to play the piece again and tell the complainant on air to stop being a twunt.

    Of course they were going to bollock him. In such a position following such a peccadillo, I for one would have been filled with sheer bloody anger at management’s abject failure to treat me an employ with respect instead of pandering to vexatious complaints.


  7. Bill Ellson

    Why do you make things up?

    There was one complaint, that management proposed to deal with quietly. The DJ wanted to make an on-air issue of the matter and when management said no he resigned.

  8. Alec

    Point to something I made up. You know, like Jenny “hehe, wimpy rozzers” Jones did when she juxtaposed Lowe with the claim he’d said the word.

    There was one complaint, that management proposed to deal with quietly

    I bet they did! Because publicizing it would have shown just how badly their organization had handled Clarkson, and they preferred to leave it hanging over Lowe like a bad smell.

    The complaint had no merit. It couldn’t even get his name right.

    The complainant should have been told to fuck off.

    Are you a BBC manager?


  9. Kathryn

    U mad

  10. Kathryn

    Nailed it.

  11. Alec

    You’re a semi-literate troll.


  12. Bill Ellson

    You made up that the BBC tried to ‘bollock’ the DJ. You made up that I defended BBC management. You made up that BBC management wanted the matter to be hanging over the DJ like a bad smell.

  13. Alec

    Yes, because “bollocking” is a recognized term which means summat like final written warning.

    No, actually, that’s bollocks.

    His managers were not going to say “well done, David! Keep up the good work”. They were going to give him a bollocking.

    But in secret, without any subsequent mention of it in the medium which the original ‘offence’ took place as is commonplace with such apologies. Because it would have shown they’d mishandled the situation without any sense of proportion, gave a vexatious complainant far more deference that they deserved and were rightly embarrassed about the way the organization had bent over backwards to save the far more egregious Clarkson.

    Jenny “what are those rozzers complaining about, they only had flesh ripped from them” Jones made it plain that Lowe said the n-word. He didn’t. That’s making things up, if you’re interested.


  14. Bill Ellson

    A lie is a lie, however many times you repeat it.

  15. Bill Ellson

    Pot, meet Kettle. Kettle, meet Pot.

  16. Alec

    I love the way you cannot answer a straight question! The minimum criterion for a lie is for it not to be true.

    Jenny “silly po-po” Jones presented Youn… no, Lowe as having said the n-word. I presented the BBC as being ready to express their disapproval towards Lowe.

    One was mendacious and false. The other was, as no-one apart from a mendacious purveyor of falsehoods could say, plainly what happened.

    You make Lowe’s point about the totalitarian control of language – not to mention contempt for employee’s rights – over and over again.


  17. Bill Ellson

    What are you prattling on about?

  18. Alec

    Twat. You are trying to define a lie not only as a colloquial description of what happened but also as synonymous with poor spelling.

    D’you either not know or not care?


  19. Alec

    You understood a moment ago. Stop playing dumb.

    The BBC screwed-up. They didn’t even follow their own guidelines, and – post-Savile – tried to hold it in camera.

    I’m quite happy to call a bollocking the unequal and disproportionate – and cowardly – treatment of an employee in response to a vexatious complaint.

  20. Bill Ellson

    The ‘treatment’ of the employee is all in your mind. As stated above the DJ resigned in the mistaken belief that management would beg him to stay.

  21. Bill Ellson

    I think most people reading this page can spot the irony in you calling somebody “a semi-literate troll”

  22. Alec

    And they did when they were compelled to answer for their conduct in public rather than skulking behind closed doors. Well, they’re a public service organization and media broadcaster… they damn well should do it in public.

    The complaint shouldn’t have been rejected straight away. But Lowe, being such a nice man, offered to efface himself in public. The managers didn’t want that because they knew they’d shown no discernment in the face of their own guidelines, and that it was plain as a pikestaff that Clarkson – not to mention loutish rappers – was being treated as a special case.

    I am quite sure you realize you don’t have a point hence your snarling this thread up with a protracted non-point about the use of one word. Bollocking means an expression of disapproval by someone in authority as you well know.

    You can have a severe bollocking, a mild bollocking, even a friendly bollocking. I could just as easily have said “rapped on the knuckles” and you’d be simpering about that.

    The case is closed. You don’t have a point.

    Now, what about that bollocks are Lowe having said the n-word?


  23. Alec

    A: most people are not you.

    B: semi-literate means semi-literate. You’d have to be semi-literate not to know that.


  24. Bill Ellson

    The idea that the BBC should address every single complaint on-air is impractical and absurd.

  25. Alec


  26. Alec

    No further thoughts?


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