There is a strong argument for why appointments should be apolitical, and unwittingly former Tory MEP Daniel Hannan has hit on it.
First published in September 2020.
I would suggest you may want to play this one out to its logical conclusion, Dan.
If a government appoints cronies based on its own agenda, then not only who is there to hold government to account? But also, what happens when a government you disagree with is in power?
There is a strong argument for why appointments should be apolitical, and unwittingly Daniel Hannan has hit on it. If you appoint only those deemed “ideologically pure” to positions such as this, you end up never hearing opposing views, which has two main possible outcomes.
The first is that you silence opposition, not exactly something which leads to good things for a country – although with other recent government decrees it appears to be the way in which they would prefer to head.
Or, number two, you start believing your own hype, become increasingly out of touch and eventually get called on it by the electorate.
Those two outcomes are aside from what happens when those you don’t agree with get into power, as they will at some point.
This isn’t, as much as Hannan et al would like to make out, about the left wanting to keep voices out of the BBC. It is about actually ensuring it maintains its impartiality not just now but in the future.
Funny thing when you set a precedent, others will follow it in the future.
The BBC has made many mistakes, but for the most part it has remained impartial and respected the world over. Moves to remove that impartiality, as this is, will damage more than just the corporation.🔷
Dan Sohege, Human rights advocate, international refugee law specialist, immigration economist, charity fundraising professional and Director of Stand For All.
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