One of the worst affected organisations following last week’s Tory Budget, the first Tory budget for 18 years, was the BBC.
The Corporation signed a secret funding deal with the government, which this led Labour’s shadow culture secretary, Chris Bryant, to call for the chair of the BBC Trust, Rhona Fairhead, to resign. He said the BBC was a ‘lame duck’ for signing the deal which effectively saw the BBC agree to shoulder the cost of free TV licences for the over 75’s by 2020, a deal which was agreed in secret and criticised for both being conducted in this way and for the result of the ‘negotiation’.
Bryant said: “My anxiety is that if [the government] is going to keep on treating the chair of the BBC Trust like this through charter renewal , you’re not going to have charter renewal, you’re going to have caving in.” Bryant said that the 10 year old Trust system of governance was unfit for purpose and that the BBC had been bullied by the government. One estimate suggested the possible real term dip in the BBC’s budget was 20%.
David Cameron is planning a free vote this Thursday which will relax the current legislation on fox hunting. Although the vote won’t repeal the ban completely the rules proposed would see a solution in which hunters would be able to use a pack of dogs to flush out foxes before the fox is shot. There is currently a limit of two dogs.
By offering a ‘third way’ Cameron is hoping to avoid hours of debate which would be the case if he wanted to fully change the legislation. We know how the majority of Labour MPs will vote but they need the support of the SNP’s to make sure this doesn’t go through. How they will vote is not yet clear, but there is hope that they won’t support this cruel amendment to the legislation.
Congratulations to Serena Williams for winning her sixth Wimbledon title. However, despite winning the prestigious tournament for the sixth time she faced criticism for her physique. Yes she has come under fire for the way she looks. It never ceases to amaze me how people think it’s OK to make such offensive comments. Williams is an athlete who is the top of her game. She is an extremely fit and able sportswoman yet derogatory remarks are banded about with the ease and speed of her killer serve.
Of course, it’s not just Williams that faces such remarks, most sportswomen are ‘critiqued’ in a way men would never be. But the author JK Rowling had the ultimate reply to a twitter follower who claimed Williams was built like a man after Rowling had shown support for the tennis ace. Responding to the remarks she said: @diegtristan8 “she is built like a man”. Yeah, my
husband looks just like this in a dress. You’re an idiot.” Well done Rowling, and well done Williams for another Wimbledon triumph.