29 August, 2010

How to treat the media elite

It seems that Peter Salmon, the astonishingly well paid (£430,000 a year) director of BBC North will after all be moving north as his department is transferred to Salford, near Manchester. Initially he had said he didn’t like the idea of it. He won’t be moving for a few years, though, and still wants us to rent him a flat.

If it were me in charge I should assume he had turned the job down. You could send a note of regret along with his P45 and hire a replacement for a fraction of the sum.

Now Salmon has come out with a perfectly Mandelsonian response to the public outrage: he says people are trying ot talk down the North of England and it is quite disgraceful. I don't think even the Dark Lord could have done this better. Of course nobody has been saying that: what people have been saying is that it seems he doesn't like the North of England. It is not his critics that have whinged about having to live near the department they are being grossly overpaid to run.

It is rumoured that the Human Resources director is refusing to move as well. This seems like an excellent way of culling overpaid staff. Perhaps we should move the whole damn thing to Anglesey: think how much we’d save!

Meanwhile the Director General, Mark Thompson (£864,000 a year!), has said that Rupert Murdoch is too powerful. Thompson needs to be reminded that Murdoch is not running a £2bn deficit and that everyone who subscribes to his channels has done so not by force but because they wanted to, even though they were already paying for the BBC.

Something urgent needs to happen here: these people are living in anther world, at our expense.

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