Killing Aunty Beeb

Gawd bless my lil Sis; convinced her to get me a subscription to Reason magazine for my birthday and she pulls through (a little over 6 months late but who's counting.

Anyway a brilliant column on the makeup of new agencies and how this correlates with the behaviour of the host state:

In a paper published in the spring issue of the journal Peace Economics, Peace Science, and Public Policy, Pal analyzed data from 98 countries. Her goal: to see if there were statistically significant correlations between press freedom and seven measures of instability, including ethnic tensions, external and internal conflicts, crime and disorder, military participation in government, and religious tensions. An increase in press freedom, she concluded, reduces all seven measures of instability. (emphasis mine)

Now I think we are far from being able to say explicitly that one causes the other; more likely there are synergies at play that won't show up on an initial analysis but the results are compelling: greater press freedom skews attempts at government at closing down alternative lines of debate (why I feel the internet is so important and rightly feared by our current political elites).

This is particularly interesting though:

Pal also noted that state ownership of media is associated with higher corruption, weaker civil liberties, insecure property rights, lower education and life expectancies, and higher infant mortality and malnutrition.

And yes I realise that Aunty Beeb is not technically state owned, but it does derive it's powers of coercion from the state so will be less likely to bite the hand that feeds it (nibble mildly in the case of the Squandervative coalition maybe, but only because they lack the prerequisite spine to do anything about it).

Worth a try killing the Beeb in any case though eh?

No comments: