I have paid little attention to the current kerfuffle at the BBC. As stated previously, I am intensely relaxed about the fact that some people have far more money than I will ever have, and I cannot bestir myself to get in a flap about it. It is of course preposterous that the ex-Deputy Director General was given a million pound payoff in order to keep him focussed on his decisively important work (or words to that affect) but, heigh ho, that is the way of the world and to expect any better is to live in a fool’s paradise.
At the same time, I can be roused to a sort of impotent armchair-based fury when these ridiculously overpaid persons make public display of their own witlessness and stupidity. Consider Ian Katz, lately the deputy editor of the Guardian and now installed as the editor of BBC’s Newsnight. I do not know how much he is paid but it is no doubt a sum beyond my wildest dreams.
Katz is the latest in a long line of supposedly intelligent persons who is unable to master the difference between sending a private message and broadcasting it to the entire world. In his editorial role, he apparently sent a “tweet” in which he said a Labour shadow minister was boring – for which he later apologised. Frankly, I couldn’t care less. It is the sentence that followed the accusation that bothers me. Katz wrote:
playout was fun tho, wasn’t it? telly MUCH better than snooooozepapers innit
Let me remind you. This man was deputy editor of a serious newspaper and is now editor of a flagship current affairs programme. No doubt he would say he is being playful and “ironic”. But for him to even think of writing – and then actually to write – such infantile twaddle is profoundly depressing.
Katz should be locked in a cupboard with a copy of The Anatomy Of Melancholy, and taken out at intervals to have his brain sluiced. Then he might begin to earn a tiny fraction of what he is paid.
I just wanted to say that I think the proposed punishment for Katz is excellent and should indeed be considered for a greater number and variety range of offenders and offences.