The events are designed to show how powerful and important are the broadcasters, and how trivial our political leaders. Silly little bar stools, demeaning sets and intellectually inadequate presenters with little understanding of democracy and frequently an inability to chair either effectively or impartially the debate make the things a spectacle like those in which secret incestuous caravan-park relations are revealed before a studio audience. TV debates are all about the broadcasters.Well, last night was absolutely everything I hate about these staged spectacles. The set was taken from a game show, the vacuous presenter would perhaps have served to interview a minor royal with the IQ of a slice of bacon but for nothing more challenging, and the audience bayed and booed. The broadcasters have yet again insulted the gravity of our democracy with jejune malice and have turned a leaders' debate during the most important election in a century into an episode of the Jeremy Kyle show.
We must ensure that this is the last time the broadcasters insult our democracy, devalue the power of our vote and belittle our electoral process. A ninety-minute studio debate without an audience chaired by Andrew Neil would serve - but this lurex spangled game show must end.