‘Drunk on free money’: Moore and Dacre on the BBC in their own words | Media


Charles Moore

  • If I, for instance, applied for a job in the BBC, and they knew that I was anti–abortion, antigay marriage, pro–hunting, climate change–sceptical, and pro–Israel, they wouldn’t say, “Oh, we can’t employ someone with such disgusting views.”

    They would say, “Charles has his own agenda, and therefore would undermine our impartiality.” I might not leave my repulsive opinions at home; I might bring them in to work, like someone who turns up at the office with his dirty laundry spilling out of his briefcase.”

Daily Telegraph, 13 July 2013

  • Despite huge public pressure, I shall not be applying to be director-general of the BBC. It was kind of Tony Hall to stand down early, forgoing next year’s centenary plaudits, so that I could rise on the wave of post-Brexit fervour. But no: I am not a woman and have no plans to become one and, under the BBC’s diversity rules, uniformity of gender is required … The truth is that no director-general, not even the ticks-all-boxes Sharon White, can lead the BBC’s monopoly through to its second century. The technology no longer works; nor does the concept. Bureaucracy is the enemy of creativity. The BBC can only be a bureaucracy.

Spectator, 25 January 2020

  • If I had the resources of the BBC (over £5bn a year, the great bulk coming from a compulsory licence fee), I would set up a reality check on its own claims. It would keep several hundred reporters busy throughout the “24/7 news cycle” 365 days of the year.

Daily Telegraph, 26 November 2019

  • The BBC has decided to be a secular church and it preaches and tells us what we ought to think about things. So it tells us we shouldn’t support Brexit and we should accept climate change alarmism and we have to all kowtow to the doctrines of diversity.

    Like the Church of England in the 19th century, I think the church of the BBC has some good aspects, some high standards in some respects and some benefit to the culture. But I do think it should be disestablished.

BBC interview, 28 December 2019

Paul Dacre

What really disturbs me is that the BBC is, in every corpuscle of its corporate body, against the values of conservatism, with a small “c”, which, I would argue, just happens to be the values held by millions of Britons. Thus it exercises a kind of “cultural Marxism” in which it tries to undermine that conservative society by turning all its values on their heads. Cudlipp lecture, January 2007

Extracts from leader columns in the Daily Mail during Dacre’s tenure as editor:

  • Drunk on “free” money from licence-fee payers, the BBC seems institutionally incapable of mending its spendthrift ways or recognising that in this multi-channel, digital age, many of its activities are impossible to justify … like most Britons, the Mail has a tender spot for our national broadcaster, exasperating though its soft-left bias can often be. But the BBC’s privileged access to public money brings a heavy responsibility – which, as yesterday’s figures show, it continues to abuse.

15 July 2015

  • [ On then chairman Chris Patten] A part-time dilettante is the last thing the corporation needs in the face of such a profound crisis. But the biggest question of all is whether any one person is capable of effectively overseeing an organisation which has become so bloated and amorphous … The BBC needs a proper regulatory system. Much has been made of the failings of the Press Complaints Commission but at least newspapers had a body that sought to encourage and impose the best standards – despite these being flouted by the criminal few. The BBC is virtually a law unto itself. It’s not wholly answerable to Ofcom and its frankly unimpressive trustees have a sorry record of imposing discipline.

13 November 2012

  • To many, it will come as little surprise that journalists in the BBC’s news division are paid up to 40% more than their equivalents in the commercial media. It’s only our money they’re spending, after all … Leave aside how this mighty army distorts public debate with its uniform pink-tinged views. Haven’t licence-fee payers every right to voice outrage at the overstaffing, duplication and waste?

13 October 2016

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