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The unmentionables

The BBC's decision to part company with the Met Office has provoked a great deal of comment over the weekend (and a cartoon or two as well). Returning to my desk this morning I expected that the story would have run out of legs, but it has just been given a new lease of life via the Today programme.

I've attached the audio file below. Justin Webb was discussing possible reasons for the the BBC's decision and he mentioned that some people had suggested that this might have something to do with the Met Office's stance on climate change. Given that the BBC is now arguably rather more alarmist than the Met Office, however, this seems somewhat counterintuitive.

To be fair it was just a throwaway comment, the aural equivalent of clickbait, and at least one bottom feeder has swallowed it whole.

Stand back and admire, gentle readers, the majesty of a public-funded bureaucrat demanding that a public-funded journalist lose his job because he merely mentioned the existence of views that the bureaucrat found distasteful. What a shameful place the London School of Economics has become.

Today - Met Office BBC

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Reader Comments (53)

Don't you really mean that the bottom feeder to whom you refer is actually the lowlife that bottom feeders feed on?

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:04 AM | Registered Commenterdavidchappell

Bob Ward must be a secret sceptic as no one would want to be on the same side of any argument as that loon.

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:04 AM | Unregistered CommenterSwiss Bob

Bob Ward is too trigger happy with twitter and his sour, insulting comments alienates everyone except those he doesn't have to persuade otherwise. He should have dealt with the matter privately with the Today prog because such twitter insults get him nothing except a bad reputation. This is not the mark of a PR professional. But we knew that already as the Royal Society said it too them years to repair the damage done by Ward's ham-fisted (their words) attempts at PR. Ward is a failed journalist, and it shows.

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:16 AM | Unregistered CommenterPRDec

Bob Ward thinks that anyone who isn't more extreme than him is a blasphemer. It's only a matter of time before he accuses himself of being a skeptic.

Bob's gone 'Full-Mannian'.

They should have told him, you never go 'Full-Mannian'*

* Apologies to 'Tropic Thunder'

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:17 AM | Unregistered CommenterStuck-Record

Global Warming experts are the new scientific dinosaurs. Bob 'Dino' Ward needs to come up with evidence, to back up his accusations. The fact that the Met Office have failed to come up with evidence, proves there is no evidence, or they are incompetent. Which way does Dino want it?

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:18 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

The story was also discussed on Radio 5 this morning with Quentin Letts & another gentleman's name who I cannot remember. It is noteworthy because Letts mentioned how politicized the MO had become about Climate Change. This was around 8 O'Clock this morning.

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:19 AM | Unregistered CommenterJack Cowper

Is Bob Ward paid by the public? That was not the impression I had gained over the years.

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:20 AM | Unregistered CommenterJack Savage

Narky man by the look of it. Has to fling the verbal abuse about...teddy out of cot?

I should imagine the MO will return itself somehow..this looks like more wriggling to satisfy the contract selection independence stuff. Either that or they'll sub let via the likes of Wogan or similar. Is he still their (BBC) limousine hire company man?

Don't get the impression that the TV tax is to be changed..likely hiked again. No hope of programme quality but for a bundle of vids of whales and the like. Thats mainly picture quality as cameras advance of course.

LSE..Gadaffi boy

Hope I'm largely wrong.

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:24 AM | Unregistered CommenterEx-expat Colin

Just checked Radio 5 live, it's available on the player:

1 hr 41 minutes it starts with John Teather and Quentin Letts.

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:25 AM | Unregistered CommenterJack Cowper

As I pointed out yesterday, it is far from clear whether the divorce will result in the BBC being prepared to criticise the MO, or whether it will allow them instead to "independently" support its climate alarmism. There is no sign that Harrabin's 28-gate policy has been halted. Now if the BBC sacked Harrabin and replaced him with someone sensible, that would be news.

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:31 AM | Unregistered CommenterIt doesn't add up...

Top the page when I Googled 'highly strung':

very nervous and easily upset.
"highly strung horses"
synonyms: nervous, excitable, temperamental, sensitive, unstable, brittle, easily upset, easily agitated, on edge, edgy, jumpy, keyed up, irritable, fidgety, restive, restless, anxious, overanxious, tense, taut, stressed, overwrought, neurotic;

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:44 AM | Registered CommenterJohn Shade

With Ward as global warming's spinmeister, the science is doomed. He is the best barometer of imminent storm force disaster, sweeping across Britain, wreaking havoc throughout failed political ideology, dressed up as science.

The post-disaster damage limitation operation, across science will take years. Much will have to be scrapped, being beyond economic repair, and even if repaired, being unfit for any purpose at all.

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:51 AM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Shouldn't the title be 'The Unmetionables'?

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:53 AM | Unregistered CommenterIan E

Interestingly, the Met Office guy said that they use the profits on their weather forecasting business to cross-subsidize other Met Office activities, climate research in particular.

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:57 AM | Unregistered CommenterRichard Tol

It's just another example of the textbook alarmist play: shut down anyone we disagree with. The arrogance of Ward's anti-democratic, anti-freedom of speech position is quite astounding.

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:58 AM | Unregistered Commentercheshirered

Bob Ward wouldn't know the difference between a stratus and a nimbostratus cloud or the significant different albedo effect of either

Aug 24, 2015 at 11:59 AM | Unregistered CommenterNeilC

Someone sensible like a journalist with actual scientific qualifications? Kind of like those who had those qualifications that the BBC chased out (Bellamy comes to mind).


Aug 24, 2015 at 12:08 PM | Unregistered CommenterMailman

Ex USA correspondent Webb is a fairly new addition to the Today team, and can hardly be described as a dinosaur compared to his copresenter grumpy Jurassic Iohn Humphrys. I get the feeling that the Beeb is at least thinking about its coverage as Charter renewal approaches,the allowing of the Quentin Letts piece being a prime example. This has also been seized upon today as 'proof' of the BBC's duplicity - what utter nonsense, unless you take the finger in the dyke analogy seriously. Cue, outrage from climate alarmist lesbians.

Aug 24, 2015 at 12:20 PM | Unregistered Commentertrefjon

Apparently the MO wanted to include probabilities in their forecasts (as they should) but the BBC took the arrogant and patronising line that it would make their forecasts too complicated and most people would not understand. (Daily Telegraph). I was impressed in a recent MO forecast where the presenter suggested alternative tracks for a low pressure system. That was the first time I had seen any mention of probabilities.

Aug 24, 2015 at 12:30 PM | Unregistered CommenterRoss Lea

Mailman. And DR David Whitehouse. His was a real doctorship I believe, not like the honorary ones that BBC reporters get these days.

Aug 24, 2015 at 12:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterCedri

It's about time Grantham Institute had a clear out of its own dinosaurs.

Aug 24, 2015 at 12:48 PM | Unregistered CommenterDaveS

If anything the MET isn't alarmist enough for the BBC but I doubt either party will refuse to work with the other if their mutual goals can be furthered.

Aug 24, 2015 at 1:01 PM | Unregistered CommenterTinyCO2

Ward, violent storm 11, East, backing champagne socialist, expected Shukman Harrabin McGrath by 0700 tomorrow, occasional tears, poor.

Aug 24, 2015 at 1:06 PM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart

Jack Savage

Coco the Climate Specialist is employed by the Grantham Research Institute on Climate Change, funded not by the government, but by $100 billion carbon trader Jeremy Grantham.

Aug 24, 2015 at 1:13 PM | Unregistered Commenteresmiff

@ Richard Toll 1157. So does Judith Curry usher profits from her weather forecasting business to support her work on Climate Research. The difference is in the value for money. :)

Aug 24, 2015 at 1:28 PM | Unregistered CommenterKevin Lohse

Ward is suffering from PCSD, Post Climatic-Stress Disorder. The stress is all his, the climate never suffered any harm at all.

Aug 24, 2015 at 1:30 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

...this might have something to do with the Met Office's stance on climate change. Given that the BBC is now arguably rather more alarmist than the Met Office, however, this seems somewhat counterintuitive....

No it's not.

The Met Office is caught between politics and science, and might be FORCED to agree that warming is not as dangerous as the BBC want it to be. So what better than to drop them before they become an embarrassment, and sign up with a New Zealand company, who have a good track record of saying whatever the warmists want, and fiddling their figures to show extreme warming...?

Aug 24, 2015 at 1:31 PM | Unregistered CommenterDodgy Geezer

@retard more like...

Aug 24, 2015 at 1:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterJeremy Poynton

When I think of Bob Ward, an image of Mr Punch comes to mind....with a big stick and a blue robe and a long red cap.

Grantham's sock puppet, is an obscenely exaggerated caricature or, a representation of the angry Mr. eco-SJW men and various rump of the great unwashed. An amorphous chattering idle, of ill educated but nevertheless extremely opinionated - that blob, of left wing alarmist loonies who infest the graun threads.

Aug 24, 2015 at 1:53 PM | Unregistered CommenterAthelstan.

One aspect of the story that has not yet been mentioned is the question of to what extent has the Met Office milked licence payer money over many years, only coming to light now due to that wonderful thing that everyone benefits from ... pressure on budgets.

With no much free (i.e. tax and licence payer) money on offer, maybe we should be surprised that this kind of fight at the pig trough doesn't happen more often.

Aug 24, 2015 at 2:11 PM | Unregistered CommenterMikky

Bob 'fast fingers ' Ward strikes and misses 'AGAIN' , now I know his pay master is a very rich man but given how awful Ward is you would have thought he would have cut is losses and let Bob go by now . I guess cash does not always equal sense.

Aug 24, 2015 at 2:18 PM | Unregistered Commenterknr

Snarkolepsy - boring everyone senseless with progressively more deranged accusations.

Aug 24, 2015 at 2:21 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

knr, Grantham receives twice weekly updates, telling him how well the propaganda ministry camped out in the London Scool of Economics is doing.

One is signed by RE Ward, and the other by Lord Stern.

Both reports routinely recommend massive staff christmas productivity bonuses and 50% pay rises.

Self certification is the only way forward in Climate Science.

Aug 24, 2015 at 2:33 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Bob Ward (@retard)

Aug 24, 2015 at 2:42 PM | Unregistered CommenterNCC 1701E

More likely that the BBC doesn't want the Met. Office's rather increasing scepticism to sully its full believer's stance.

The Met office has to at least pay lip service to some kind of raw data.

Aug 24, 2015 at 2:57 PM | Unregistered CommenterLeo Smith

The Mail is heavily on the case, reporting Exeter MP Ben Bradshaw's demand that the PM fix it:

and letting Quentin Letts reprise his recent radio programme:

Aug 24, 2015 at 3:01 PM | Unregistered CommenterIt doesn't add up...

I just put that through the climate-speak translator

"It is about time @BBCr4today had a clear out of its presenters who threaten the well paid jobs of dinosaurs like myself"

Aug 24, 2015 at 3:20 PM | Unregistered CommenterOwen

Now the mad loons like Davey and Huhne have been ejected from power and coalition influence, the BBC has realised that its funding cojones lie in the hands of a less climate-alarmist party than it has seen since the 28-gate scandal and before.

They will also have noticed that Ms Rudd has been making a pretty clean sweep of cherished 'green' moneypits with no significant public alarm nor effective opposition.

It must be clear to them that alarmism is a busted flush right now and so they are temporarily unhitching their wagon in the hope that the nice folks in the government will forget about their cheerleading past.

Aug 24, 2015 at 3:45 PM | Unregistered CommenterLatimer Alder

Latimer Alder, on the contrary, as Amber Rudd has neutered various alarmist outfits, the squeals of protest have come from those being neutered, and their cheerleaders. The public now breathe more easily as the stench of toxic science propaganda diminishes.

Let us all have a compost heap, of the political vanities, and dig it into the ground. It is Mother Nature's way, so the Green Blob ought to approve.

Aug 24, 2015 at 4:40 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

Aug 24, 2015 at 12:20 PM trefjon

Justin Webb has been at the bbc for sometime. Used to do TV rather than radio

Aug 24, 2015 at 4:44 PM | Unregistered CommenterStephen Richards

I know this is "weather" - but Bournemouth ditched the Met Office back in 2010 after disastrously inaccurate forecasts cost the Seaside town £'millions in lost trade.

The last straw was a doom and gloom prediction over a Bank Holiday that kept people away when the reality was a brilliant sunny weekend.

Aug 24, 2015 at 5:17 PM | Unregistered CommenterDoug UK

@Golf Charlie

Indeed you are right. But the Blobbers will no doubt have been deeply disappointed to see that the general public have been completely indifferent to their emasculation.

Their self-image of Saviours of Mankind (while also making a nice few bob for doing so) will have taken a huge knock. And if their access to spout propaganda on the BBC continues to be restricted, they'll end up in their fast-approaching old age like the sad guy in the movie spouting ' I could have been a contender'.

Aug 24, 2015 at 5:20 PM | Unregistered CommenterLatimer Alder

@Doug UK

Sadly the malign influence of the MO still looms over the fine town of Bournemouth.

Doom and gloom and end of the world predictions from them dissuaded many from coming to the beach yesterday. It meant my chums and I were able to see the 4th day of the Air Show in comfort on a near deserted strand. And finish a splendid day with a barbecue in glorious sunshine.

As ever, the world did not end and the alarmist predictions did not come to pass.

Aug 24, 2015 at 5:27 PM | Unregistered CommenterLatimer Alder

One of the main pillars of the climate obsessed is the vulnerability of modern people to doomsday claptrap. Now that we have had huge exposure to this regarding climate, environment, energy, population, and other sources of false fear, perhaps we can push back against alarmism in general and increase critical thinking skills.

Aug 24, 2015 at 8:17 PM | Unregistered Commenterhunter

Do we know anything about the terms on which the BBC plan to employ the MO replacements? 2 alarmist stories a week,or 2 a day?

Aug 24, 2015 at 10:03 PM | Unregistered CommenterIt doesn't add up...

It doesn't add up, with the Met Office not providing weather forecasts, the BBC's newly appointed climate consultants will have to provide anticipated temperatures based on the amount of warming that is to be expected, in accordance with models.

This will increase the chances of infiltration by dodgy syndicates, gambling on insider knowledge gleaned from corrupt scientists.

Most viewers won't notice any difference.

Aug 24, 2015 at 10:38 PM | Unregistered Commentergolf charlie

The BBC gave the reason as trying to give the customer the most value for their money. That means without the revenue from Jeremy, James and Richard, they just can't afford their socialist agenda anymore. Ironing!

Aug 25, 2015 at 4:47 AM | Unregistered CommenterSera

"National pride", anyone? Letter to the Telegraph

SIR – Two aspects of British life that are known throughout the world are the BBC and the Met Office. Both have been, and are, the best national services in the world in their fields.

I am appalled by the news that the BBC has ended its contract with the Met Office. Our national pride and support for our world-leading institutions are being lost in an ethos of penny-pinching.

Professor Brian Hoskins
Chairman, Grantham Institute

Aug 25, 2015 at 9:05 AM | Unregistered CommenterMessenger

I sometimes find it hard to believe that anyone could be any worse at weather forecasting. We had a village fête last Saturday, for which the MO had predicted rain all week, but which turned out fine, and only yesterday I booked a short excursion for tomorrow on the basis that it would be fine, and today the forecast has changed to rain!

Five days? Don’t make me laugh!

Aug 25, 2015 at 12:24 PM | Registered Commenterjamesp

Maybe they have a cunning plan to lure Rachel Riley from Countdown at C4 to do the BBC weather.

Aug 25, 2015 at 1:08 PM | Unregistered Commentermichael hart

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