Re-reading the second volume of Harold Nicolson's diaries I came across the following for 16th December, 1941, when the author had been pushed out of the government and made one of the BBC's Trustees.
Harry Strauss [Conservative MP for Norwich 1935 - 1945, for Combined English Universities 1946 - 1950 and for Norwich South 1950 - 1955, later 1st Baron Conesford] attacks me on the grounds that the BBC is almost wholly left-wing. The Conservative view is never presented. It is difficult to tell him that most of the right-wing people make bad broadcasters. Let them find their own Priestley.To which one could reply that it is the BBC's job to find a right-wing J. B. Priestley, who, one must admit, was outstanding as a broadcaster. However, were there really no possible right-wing broadcasters of talent?
This reminds me of one of the many discussions I took part in on the bias in the BBC cultural output when somebody said that there was a problem with balance as, after all, there was no right-wing equivalent to David Hare and what can we do about that. Ahem, said a number of participants including me, what of the best living playwright, Sir Tom Stoppard? Collapse of stout party.
And on that note: Happy New Year to all. May 2014 be a year of conservatism.