One theme of ConservativeHome's Agenda2008 is support for the draft proposal from Jeremy Hunt MP that a small portion of the BBC licence fee be allocated to the establishment of a new broadcaster. In this Platform article, Peter Whittle of the New Culture Forum suggests what that new broadcaster might look like.
Robin Aitken should be congratulated that the proposal he made in his book Can We Trust the BBC? has been taken on board by Jeremy Hunt. Hiving off a meagre 2% of BBC revenues would give a new radio channel around £60 million a year. A genuinely exciting prospect; but what would - and should - it sound like?
Well, as much like Radio 4 as possible would be my hope - or should I say, with the same structure and variety of content, but minus the smug, predictable and increasingly alienating mindset. Radio 4 symbolises the dilemma many of us have when regarding the future of the BBC. We are genuinely torn, not wanting to throw babies out with bathwater, not wanting to loose Start the Week or Book at Bedtime while at the same time being utterly exasperated by that other political universe which comes at us every week in Any Questions, Woman's Hour, panel shows populated by uniformly left-wing comedians and dire so-called satirical comedy which preaches solidly to the choir,
Like many others, I've found that however much I might like the station in principle, I'm actually tuning in less and less. Life is stressful enough, especially when you're listening while sitting in a traffic jam on the south circular. I don't want to turn into Michael Douglas in Falling Down.