I Stopped Watching TV Over 10 Years Ago.

I got asked a few days ago whether I still don’t need a TV licence:

We need you to confirm whether you need a TV Licence.

If you tell us you still don’t need one, you won’t need to do so again for almost two years.

As we mentioned when we last contacted you, we have to check every so often that a licence isn’t needed at your address.

People move home and circumstances can change, so we do need to get in touch with you occasionally. But it only takes a few minutes to let us know.

Only a few minutes, eh? It’s a few minutes too many.

With what other shop or service provider do I have to tell them that, no, I don’t want to buy their product? Do I need to periodically pop into local shops to tell them that, no, I still don’t want to buy a power sander? Or, no, I still don’t want to buy a lawnmower. Or, no, I still don’t want to buy a fishing rod. Or a Range Rover. Or a goldfish.

Why is it that only the TV licence people “need” to know whether I need a TV licence?

Look, I can tell them right now that I will never need a TV licence.

I stopped watching TV over 10 years ago.

Can’t you get that into your thick skulls?

But they seem to think that everyone needs to watch TV. It seems inconceivable to them that anyone wouldn’t want to watch TV. Or if they say they don’t want to, they can’t really mean it, and it’s a good idea to come back every couple of years and ask them if they’ve returned to their senses.

I stopped watching TV when I realised it was being used to try to manipulate my opinion. To be honest, it wasn’t just the BBC that was trying to manipulate me. So was ITV and Channel 4. And so were all the newspapers.

They were suddenly all full of Global Warming 10 years or so ago. It was something we had to do something about. But I couldn’t see what the fuss was about. I hadn’t noticed any global warming. I was wearing just as many clothes as I used to wear. And I had just as many blankets on my bed.

And then, overnight, Global Warming turned into Climate Change. And the entire mainstream media started talking about that instead.

And at the same time that they were all screaming about Global Warming and Climate Change, they were saying nothing at all about the smoking ban which I thought was the biggest change that I’d seen in my entire life. On 1 July 2007, the BBC reported the smoking ban that came into force that day as the 5th or 6th item in the news.  It reported it as a non-event. And it had one or two people saying that they welcomed it, or didn’t much mind it.

But I minded. And over 10 years later, I still mind.

So they were talking a lot about something that didn’t interest me. And they were not talking about something that very much did interest me. What was the point to watching TV or reading newspapers, if they weren’t discussing what mattered to me? Or were discussing things that didn’t matter to me? So I stopped watching. It’s not worth paying £155/year to watch it.

I think the days of the mainstream media are numbered. I think the internet is becoming the place where news gets distributed, and matters discussed. I think that, with our mobile phones, we’re all becoming reporters and cameramen. We’re all becoming reporters and cameramen and pundits and opinion-shapers. And my blog is my personal newspaper, in which I say what I think. And I read a few other people’s personal newspapers.

Even Donald Trump has got his own personal newpaper. He uses Twitter. It allows him to express his own opinion to millions of people without going through the mainstream media.

He met up with Vladimir Putin a couple of days back. And apparently, according to reports about it on CNN, he may as well have sold out America’s latest jet fighter designs to Russia.

I didn’t watch CNN. But I saw some video showing Trump meeting Putin and shaking hands with him. He was wearing one of his red ties. They’re the ones he wears to tell the world he means business. And the main thing I noticed in the clip was that he gave Putin a big wink. A big collusive wink. It was probably just before he passed Putin the jet fighter designs, and Putin said, “We’ve already got these designs. Haven’t you got something better? Like a submarine design or a golf course design or something?”

Anyway, it was the big wink that I noticed. I’m surprised that hardly anyone else has mentioned it. CNN don’t seem to have mentioned it. Although I don’t know if they did or not, because I don’t watch them. I only heard from somewhere else that people like James Comey and John Brennan have been accusing Trump of collusion and treason. Because it seems that Comey and Brennan use Twitter almost as much as everyone else. Because everybody uses Twitter these days.

I get my news from all sorts of places. I get it from comments on my blog. Or other people’s blogs. I get it from hundreds of ever-changing sources.

One place I don’t get it from is the BBC. I never watch the BBC. And recently I’ve noticed that the BBC wants me to register to read their online news. I don’t want to register to read their news, when I can get it free elsewhere. If they want me to register to read their website, it’s most likely that they want to entrap me into watching something on video. And then demand £155 from me.

So these days I actively avoid the BBC. Isn’t it rather wonderful, that I live in the UK, and I block my ears to everything the UK’s state broadcaster says?

Perhaps I should write to the BBC and ask them whether they’ve been reading my blog. Perhaps I should tell them that I need to know whether they’ve been reading my blog. And it’ll only take them a few minutes to let me know. And if they admit that they do very occasionally read my blog, I could hit them with a demand for a £155 licence fee. Why not? It would be tit for tat.

About Frank Davis

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11 Responses to I Stopped Watching TV Over 10 Years Ago.

  1. roobeedoo2 says:

    Grandad is hosting a chap’s paper, ‘Smoking – on Ethics’:


    • Smoking Lamp says:

      It is a very good paper demonstrating the misinformation, lies, and propaganda used to sustain the persecution of smokers.

  2. Rose says:

    Frank, yesterday you asked me “Have any claims for compensation ever been lodged before the courts?”

    “Mrs Kay Labate, the widow of a former official Mario Labate, has gone to the European Court of Justice, which has a special tribunal for EU functionaries, to contest the Commission’s refusal to recognise her husband’s lung cancer as an occupational disease.

    Mr Labate was an official with the Commission for 29 years, during which time he was exposed to a large amount of second-hand tobacco smoke – before a 2003 (I think) ban on smoking many EC buildings were smoky places.

    “He was declared permanently invalid following the discovery of the lung cancer which subsequently led to his death. He submitted a request for recognition of the illness as an occupational disease,” reads an ECJ paper.

    Here is the conclusion from the European Commission’s in-house medics:

    “While acknowledging Mr Labate’s exposure to second hand tobacco smoke and finding no other cause for his lung cancer, the Medical Committee in its decision nonetheless stated that it could not establish with certainty the connection with his professional activities.
    “The Commission accordingly denied the request, following the finding by the Medical Committee that the connection between the disease and Mr Labate’s professional activities was not sufficiently established.”

    And, thus the judgement from the EU court tribunal: “The claims for compensation… by Mrs Labate are dismissed as manifestly unfounded”.

    “manifestly unfounded”.

    As you can read for yourself here.
    Kay Labate v Commission of the European Communities.

    • Frank Davis says:

      Thanks for that. It rather looks like Deborah Arnott spooked the entire hospitality industry with something that almost certainly wasn’t going to happen.

      • Rose says:

        What I find particularly interesting in that case were the dates.

        “Mrs Labate seeks annulment of the Commission decisions of 18 October 2004 and 6 October 2006 not to recognise the lung cancer which led to the death of her husband as being an occupational disease,”

        The Commission had already dismissed lung cancer as an occupational disease caused by ETS 8 months after ASH sent the registered letter to the hospitality industry and again 9 months before our Smoking Ban started, but over a year after Enstrom and Kabat was published

        Environmental tobacco smoke and tobacco related mortality in a prospective study of Californians, 1960-98.
        BMJ. 2003 May 17


        “The results do not support a causal relation between environmental tobacco smoke and tobacco related mortality, although they do not rule out a small effect. The association between exposure to environmental tobacco smoke and coronary heart disease and lung cancer may be considerably weaker than generally believed.”

  3. AndyDan says:

    The BBC has just had to fork out £210,000 to Cliff Richard following their helicopter stunt over his house as it was being raided. It even had the nerve to claim it signalled a “shift against press freedom”. I suppose that’s the freedom to perform trial by media as it did with Savile.
    I haven’t funded the bastards for 5 years myself and never intend to do so again. £155 to listen to the mouthpiece of the Deep State? No thanks.

    • smokingscot says:

      What’s really irritating is Sir Cliff had to spend extremely large amounts of money to fight his case without any guarantee he’d win.

      At this point, yes he gets all his costs back and £210k on top.

      However the BBC intend to appeal, so Sir Cliff’ll have to go through the same thing again, though they apologised for the grief they dished out. This time it’s just about a point of principle. One I believe the Judge got right – sensationalism.

      Public’s on Cliff’s side. BBC’s squandering our money.

  4. Jonathan Bagley says:

    Had Twitter existed in 2005, when the smoking ban was being put through Parliament, it’s possible it wouldn’t have become law.

  5. Vlad says:

    I saw a Marlboro pack from Cote d’Ivoire (a west African country)….it only had a written warning in French on the side of the pack (US style) ‘abuse is dangerous to health’. How about that!!

  6. waltc says:

    If Dmitri’s around I’d be interested in his take on both Helsinki and its aftermath

  7. Mark Jarratt, Canberra, Australia says:

    Why does the UK government even charge for TV licenses – archaic and ineffective when content can be streamed live on computer. Yes Frank, invoice the government for doing their job, to be truthful in so called public health, especially puritanical tobacco controls.

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