Watch Ed Miliband take John Humphrys to task over his imbecilic questions

John Humphrys and Ed Miliband on the BBC Today programme
Tracy Keeling

Ed Miliband took Today programme host John Humphrys to task over his imbecilic questions on 30 April. The Doncaster North MP was on the show to talk about the climate catastrophe after announcing he’ll serve on the Institute for Public Policy Research’s (IPPR) Environmental Justice Commission.

Humphrys’ interview style, however, left a lot to be desired. And Miliband debunked the host’s moronic questioning without hesitation.

Hands off our Costa Brava

Alongside joining the IPPR’s commission, Miliband has recently called on the UK government to “produce a revolution in climate leadership” by taking stronger action on the crisis. During the interview on the Today programme, he also spoke about some of the efforts people can make to help limit the climate breakdown.

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Miliband argued for people to eat “less meat over time”. That’s not, however, how Humphrys ‘clarified’ the MP’s point to listeners. He commented:

Right, stop eating meat… stop flying?

Miliband attempted to make clear that he wasn’t calling for all meat to be removed immediately from people’s diets. He also responded to Humphrys’ question on flying by saying we “can’t have unlimited airport expansion” but that he wasn’t arguing we “have to fly less”. Humphrys appeared to think this was some kind of gotcha moment, saying:

See, this is the point, these great ambitions that you had are withering away.

The MP then gave the planned new runway at Heathrow as an example of what “we shouldn’t be going ahead with” in terms of airport expansion. After this, Humphrys went in for the kill:

Should we be going ahead with our holiday to the Costa Brava?

The BBC host’s message to Brits was clear: Miliband is coming after your meat and your cheap, sun-soaked holidays.

Manufacturing failure

The Doncaster North MP cottoned on to Humphrys’ messaging, though. And he promptly called him out on it:

I guess the point is John… if we just say to people ‘you’re going to have to make sacrifices and life is going to be worse’, I don’t think we’re going to bring people with us.

This statement served as a dressing down to Humphrys, because it seemed to be exactly what he was doing. Miliband wasn’t the only one to call him on it either:

Another person on Twitter wrote:

Why would @BBCr4today allow someone who isn’t prepared to do slightest amount of research or have even baseline knowledge to “discuss” (I use the word loosely) such an important topic vital to all our survival?

Meanwhile, some argued Humphrys’ interviewing changed depending on whom he chatted with and what they talked about:

Business as usual

When announcing the IPPR committee, Miliband said:

We face a climate emergency. Climate change is the biggest threat to our economic and social well-being, and to our national security.

Politics needs to be on a war footing to deal with this enemy but too often it sends the message that business as usual will do.

On the Today programme, Humphrys sent a message that it’s ‘business as usual’ at the BBC. Even on an issue as monumental as the climate breakdown – where the future of life on earth lies in the balance – its presenters are manufacturing public opposition to action. Why? Because leftwingers are leading the argument for the change needed.

Featured image via Twitter – BBC Radio 4 Today

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