Dr Who writer Russell T Davies brands Tory minister Nadine Dorries a ‘f***ing idiot’
Dr Who screenwriter Russell T Davies has launched an extraordinary attack on the Culture Secretary Nadine Dorries, branding her a “f***ing idiot”.
The renowned Welsh dramatist has warned that the UK Government wants to “control culture” after Dorries’ made what has been interpreted as a threat to the public funding of the BBC, following her appointment in Boris Johnson’s reshuffle.
Davies also criticised Dorries over her claim that there was “nepotism” at the BBC, saying, she “talked about the BBC having nepotism when she employed her own daughter.”
The cabinet minister told a fringe event at the Conservative Party Conference that she didn’t know if the BBC would “still be here” in a decade in response to a question about its funding.
Dorries, who controls the funding to Welsh-language broadcaster S4C, also accused the BBC of a “snobbish approach” and a “lack of impartiality”.
Russell T Davies, who also wrote the hit Channel 4 series, It’s a Sin, said: “The woman’s an idiot, a big f***ing idiot. I’m here to talk about the threat of public funding and the threat to public service broadcasting.”
He also criticised the UK Government for its handling of Channel 4, saying: “The threat that Channel 4 is under is even greater.”
When asked if he believed Channel 4 would be privatised by the Conservative government, Davies said: “It’s doomed, nothing. It’s happened. It’s a fact, the Government has decided.
“Your loss, my loss, our loss and they’ll just give us some more bread and circuses to take our minds off it.”
In response to being asked if the UK Government cares about culture, he said: “I think they care very much about controlling it. They are doing everything to change voting, rules. They’re doing everything to get in power and stay in power.”
‘Ally of Boris Johnson’
Dorries, who voted against equal marriage, is a staunch ally of Boris Johnson.
She once made headlines after hitting out at former Tory Prime Minister David Cameron and his then Chancellor George Osborne, describing them as “arrogant posh boys who don’t know the price of milk”.
She had the whip removed by the Conservative Party in 2012 for appearing on I’m a Celebrity. During her time on the show, she got her teeth into life in the jungle by chomping on a camel’s toe, a lamb’s testicle, and an ostrich’s anus in a stomach-churning Bushtucker Trial.
After partaking in the challenge, she said: “I actually feel a bit sick now, but I’m really glad I did it.”
She has regularly criticised the BBC, claiming it is institutionally skewed to the left.
In 2018 she tweeted that it was “a biased leftwing organisation which is seriously failing in its political representation, from the top down”.
In 2014 she wrote a blogpost about the licence fee, saying “a tax on the ownership of a television is a completely outdated concept”.
In a 2017 tweet which was widely recirculated after her new job was announced , Dorries said: “Leftwing snowflakes are killing comedy, tearing down historic statues, removing books from universities, dumbing down panto, removing Christ from Christmas and suppressing free speech. Sadly, it must be true, history does repeat itself. It will be music next.”
‘Apparently I’m racist’
In 2013 she tweeted: “Apparently I’m racist because I think Chuck [Chuka] Umunna looks like Chris Eubank? What would I be if I said he looked like someone who was white??”
The UK Government has recently said that it planning to make it a legal requirement that public service broadcasters – which include S4C and BBC Wales – produce “distinctly British” programmes.
The then media minister John Whittingdale told a Royal Television Society conference that he was planning to “talk to Ofcom about how to make the obligation of Britishness work”.
Broadcast in the UK is state-regulated by Ofcom, which has the legal powers to fine a channel or withdraw its license to broadcast if it breaks Ofcom’s government-approved broadcasting code.
“So in our upcoming White Paper, I intend to include proposals that will expand the remit of public service broadcasters, so that it includes a requirement for them to produce ‘distinctively British’ content,” John Whittingdale said in comments reported by i.