The documentary-maker, who has made several programmes with the BBC, savaged their “morbid obsession” with Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s private life and the controversial articles he penned during his years as a journalist. In a shocking intervention he also told the BBC they risked “digging its own grave” while condemning the “pillorying” of Breakfast presenter Naga Munchetty who claimed US President Donald Trump was racist. Mr Phillips told The Times: “From the constant sly digs in its comedies, to its relentless fascination with minor players in the Conservative soap opera, it breathes Toryscepticism.
“Its drama adopts the opposition’s catastrophist agenda, painting Britain’s leaders as incompetent fools manipulated by malevolent, conspiratorial geniuses.
“And its morbid obsession with the prime minister’s private life and his past writings, despite the fact that neither has the remotest bearing on the nation’s future, invite the eye of Sauron to look out from Downing Street each day in search of enemies in New Broadcasting House.”
Mr Phillips, 65, was chairman of the Equality and Human Rights Commission for 2003 to 2006 and took aim at the BBC’s “woke behaviour”.
He also highlighted plans for the BBC to introduce same sex couples on Strictly Come Dancing.
He said: “Worst of all, the increasingly “woke” behaviour by the corporation is endangering the central justification for special treatment, which is its universal reach.
“The BBC has to recognise social change, sure, but it is not the institution’s role to lead it; speculating about same-sex couples on Strictly, when the ballroom dancing world has not yet considered such a change, feels like putting the political cart before the cultural horse.”
He added the BBC was in “danger” of being overtaken by Netflix.
It comes as the Prime Minister has threatened to scrap the TV licence fee.
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In a surprise announcement on the election campaign trail, Mr Johsnon questioned whether the corporation should continue to be funded by effectively taxing every household with a television.
His aides later confirmed that Downing Street officials are working on proposals for a major overhaul of broadcasting funding with options including turning the BBC into a subscription service like Netflix or even making payments voluntary.
Mr Johnson’s threat follows strained relations between his Government and BBC bosses including the long-running row over the withdrawal of free TV licences for viewers aged over 75.
Senior Tories have also been irritated by the way BBC interviewer Andrew Neil openly taunted the Prime Minister for declining to take part in a live interview with him during the election campaign.
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Mr Johnson let slip the Tory plans to overhaul BBC funding during a question-and-answer session with staff at a haulier’s depot in the North-east.
One employee at Fergusons Transport in Washington, near Sunderland, asked him: “Why don’t you abolish the TV licence, please?”
When a startled Mr Johnson asked “For everybody?” the employee responded: “Yes.”
Published at Sat, 21 Dec 2019 17:53:00 +0000