‘Dinosaurs team up on you’: Dutch historian who savaged Davos elites pillories BBC political show
In a series of devastating tweets, he claimed he’d been invited on to the program under false pretenses. He revealed that producers had originally invited him to talk about his book, but ended up pushing him to give his opinions on Brexit and the EU, despite his protests that those issues were outside his expertise.
Michael Portillo on Rutger Bregman @rcbregman film: “I thought it was a pretty ill-informed”— BBC This Week (@bbcthisweek) March 22, 2019
But the Dutch historian presses on, saying how excited he was that dismissed ideas are suddenly being discussed#bbctwpic.twitter.com/W4hT9z8xOw
Davos was a bewildering experience, but this beat everything.
1. Last night, I was invited to be on the BBC show ‘This Week’. I thought that Davos was a bewildering experience, but this beat everything.— Rutger Bregman (@rcbregman) March 22, 2019
2. A bit more background on how incredibly stupid the show really is. First they invite you to talk about your book, and pretend to be really interested in your ideas.— Rutger Bregman (@rcbregman) March 22, 2019
3. Then they ask: ‘Can you make a statement about the European Union?’— Rutger Bregman (@rcbregman) March 22, 2019
⁰Me: ‘No. That’s not my expertise.’ ⁰
Producer: ‘Can you say something about the terrorist attack in Utrecht?’⁰
Me: ‘No, that’s not my expertise. Didn’t you invite me to talk about my book?’
Bregman lashed out at the show’s presenter Andrew Neil, guests Michael Portillo and Alan Johnson, both of whom are former UK government ministers, saying the “right-wing dinosaurs” had ganged up on him, cutting him off, making up facts and changing the subject “every ten seconds.”
8. This was the worst experience I’ve had with UK media, but after quite a few interviews in different countries, I think I can say that, on average, British journalists are the least curious of all. So often, being ‘critical’ is just a pose.— Rutger Bregman (@rcbregman) March 22, 2019
Summing up, he claimed it had been his “worst experience” with the UK media and suggested that British journalists are the “least curious” about ideas on how to tackle poverty, such as a Universal Basic Income, outlined in his book ‘Utopia for Realists.'Also on rt.com Tucker Carlson apologizes after telling guest to ‘go f*** himself’ in unaired interview (VIDEO)
Neil has hit back at Bregman’s tirade on social media, claiming the Dutchman is merely embarrassed about his performance and that, for a man who is all about “’taxes, taxes, taxes,’ his knowledge of taxes seems thin.”
US media fawned over R Bregman. He should’ve known @bbcthisweek doesn’t do fawning. We asked some pertinent questions. He didn’t know answers. Embarrassed, he’s now lashing out. Ho hum. But for man who’s made his name with “taxes, taxes, taxes”, his knowledge of taxes seems thin. https://t.co/QljrL57lXP— Andrew Neil (@afneil) March 22, 2019
Commenters under both Bregman’s thread and Neil’s rebuke mostly sided with the Dutch economist, though – lamenting the BBC’s bygone credibility.
Erm. That’s not what I watched. I saw 3 old men, enjoying the sound of their own voices....whilst ignoring the answers they requested.— RD (@RPD_Bear) March 22, 2019
Politics at the BBC is now part of the Light Entertainment Department.— David Quilter (@david_quilter) March 22, 2019
This is the norm for BBC political programming. Most panels made up of neo-liberals. Even the so called left panelists are Blairite dinosaurs like Alan Johnson. Found their treatment of you last night bullying and would not allow you space to make yr points.— Emperor Tomato Ketchup 🍅 (@ETK75) March 22, 2019
I saw the interview. I can't describe any of you three close to what I consider mainstream or relevant.— David Taylor (@DavidTaylorNYC) March 22, 2019
Mentioning Venezuela? Makes you laughable. You suffer from a case of the "whatabouts".
This sums it up: pic.twitter.com/OoQjVqdWzT
Bregman, meanwhile, used his getting drowned out on the BBC program as another opportunity to amplify his own message – tacking links to a few of his smoother TV appearances at the end of the critical Twitter thread.
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