Monday, 16 November 2009

Anti's rant at the BBC

Douglas Batchelor, £100,000+ p.a. chief exec of the League Against Cruel Sports, is incandescent at BBC Countryfile's excellent coverage of National Taste of Game Week (Julia Bradbury went shooting with game chef Mike Robinson, and shot, cooked and ate a hen pheasant - for the next week or so, you can watch the programme on the BBC iPlayer here).

Batchelor's rant follows the organisation's PR disaster on the start of the hunting season, where the BBC declined to screen some wobbly, pointless video footage which, LACS claimed, showed illegal hunting (LACS have just spent thousands kitting out their 'monitors' with fancy new video cameras, only to discover that the BBC won't ever use their footage, as it infringes their guidelines).

His whiny open letter to the BBC Trust is a feeble attempt to play the 'impartiality' card - as if shooting game was some hugely contentious issue. It isn't. And writing a pack of lies and half-truths to the BBC won't make it so.

Batchelor claims in his letter: "Your report also failed to mention the thousands upon thousands of birds which are shot and then discarded and left to rot". That's an outright lie. I challenge Batchelor to provide a shred of evidence to support his wild claim.

He goes on to talk about: "predator control employed on shooting estates where land is managed for a single species, such as the pheasant, which systematically wipe out any other animals which pose a threat to the birds". What rubbish!

Faced with dwindling public support, and the prospect of a government who will treat them with the contempt they deserve, it seems the antis are resorting to the age-old tactic of telling porkies. There's another example here where LACS are suggesting that a) Being crass and tastless with a dead animal is cruel and illegal and b) Repeal of the hunting act would make it legal again. Neither of which is true.


Hubert Hubert said...

Meat-free porkies, of course!

Alan Tilmouth said...

Have no view on the rest of your post but why mention the salary? A quick check at the Charity Commission will reveal that the Game Conservation & Wildlife Trust also have an employee earning over 100k and I'm willing to bet they have a PA too. Of course working in the priavte sector as you do your own wage as editor isn't in the public domain is it?

James Marchington said...

Alan, people donating money to LACS should know where their cash goes. There really is no comparison with GWCT - you can take issue with the topics they decide to research, but they are a proper scientific research organisation, doing genuine peer reviewed scientific research which contributes to our knowledge and informs the debate on conservation and the environment. LACS, by contrast, start with a fixed opinion, which they want to enforce on everyone else. Their campaigning has nothing to do with animal welfare, and everything to do with their disapproval of what they imagine shooters and others get from their sport. They have no wish to learn and understand, only to complain and to ban. Private sector salaries are not generally made public, for good commercial reasons, but I can assure you mine is a fraction of £100k!