Little Red Blogger

This blog looks at radical politics(with a libertarian socialist slant), music and culture. Marx to Mises, Girls Aloud to Steve Reich...

Location: Wiltshire, United Kingdom

Monday, March 28, 2005

The Baby Eating Bishop of Norwich Makes the Best Argument For The Disestablishment of the Church of England I've Heard in Years....

Why is the BBC employing the Bishop of Norwich? What purpose does using license payers money to subsidise a parasitical priest placed at the centre of some hideous BBC quango called the Central Religious Advisory Committee. The Bishop's position in this committee is purely down to the UK's fetishisation of the Church of England as the state church. The BBC is compelled via it's charter to have a certain percentage of religious programming in its output.

The Bishop of Norwich is merely part of the Weberian bureaucracy devoted to producing and regulating this religious programming. His latest tirade is against the BBC for not considering 'religious sensibilities' in its latest programming with the inoffensive(if crap) Vicar of Dibley coming in for some stick regarding an episode on midnight mass. What really annoys me is his contention that the BBC has a 'western liberal secular mindset' and his statement that the BBC should engage with religions more. Now what the Bishop is doing here is equating the liberal secular viewpoint with religious viewpoints. If all these viewpoints are equal he is implying then religious viewpoints should get an equal share. The Bishop of Norwich then is echoing shallow vulgar post-modernist doctrine regarding the relativity of beliefs with secular liberalism being just another consumer choice in the 'marketplace'. So what the Bishop of Norwich is objecting to is the liberal secular framework in which his and others beliefs are placed in arguing that they should be presented free of secular bias.

This seems an untenable proposition, even if you agree with his contention(which I do) that there has been a worldwide religious resurgence(see American..Iran et al). The BBC's job is not to proselytise for different religions it is to try and present them truthfully. The BBC will inevitably be biased about this presentation but one could argue a secular bias is better than an outright atheistic bias or the pretence of neutrality. What the Bishop's bleatings do make clear is that position of the Church of England is untenable in modern society. Church and state as in the US should be separate and religious belief should be a private matter. That the Church of England has an input into the state broadcaster is an abomination in itself the fact that it complains about it adds further insult to injury. Disestablish the Church of England scrap the BBC's compulsion to provide religious programming and put the remainder on BBC4 and remove once and for all the inherent conflict of interest that a state church generates.