Matt's Crow Country: BBC's BNP Question Time own goal

PUBLISHED: 08:24 27 October 2009 | UPDATED: 16:10 11 May 2010

Nick Griffin

Nick Griffin

LIKE many of the reported eight million people who tuned into Question Time last week, I m not a regular viewer of the BBC s flagship debate show. But I have watched it enough times to know that it doesn t usually turn into a one-issue circus like it did

LIKE many of the reported eight million people who tuned into Question Time last week, I'm not a regular viewer of the BBC's flagship debate show.

But I have watched it enough times to know that it doesn't usually turn into a one-issue circus like it did last week.

I am referring of course to the decision to allow British National Party leader Nick Griffin to join the panel.

I think it was right to allow the BNP to be represented on the programme - sadly they are a part of the political scene in this country, and excluding them would only let them play the victims as they seek to peddle their usual mixture of hate and half truths to ignorant voters.

However, I do think the BBC got it wrong with the format they allowed the programme to take. Although it was the agenda was bound to be dominated by issues of race and immigration, to allow it to descend into what was essentially a debate on the wrongs of the BNP only allows the odorous Griffin to make out like he was being unfairly picked on.

I would have liked to have heard details of the BNP's policies in areas other than immigration. I suspect this would have just confirmed what a joke they are, and would have dispelled any notion that they may be a realistic alternative to the main stream political parties.

So, surprise surprise, Cheryl Cole is number one in the singles chart.

Seeing as none of the other artists with songs out last week were given a free prime time slot during the X Factor to plug their work, her ascension to number one was probably inevitable.

I think it's wrong that, as a judge on the show, she should be allowed to promote her own career. Surely this is a conflict of interest?

And moreover, she didn't even sing live, preferring to pre-record her rendition of the woeful Fight for this Love.

What kind of example does this set to the X Factor wannabes, all of whom have to sing live on the show? Perhaps Simon Cowell should have a rethink on the criteria required to being on the X Factor panel of so-called experts, because in my opinion someone of Cole's meagre talent is not in a position to pass judgement on anybody.

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