By Tim Montgomerie
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It's been as horrible few days for the BBC but not as horrible as the last week and more has been for Lord McAlpine. That's the message of the Mayor of London's column in today's Telegraph. While the BBC is feeling sorry for itself, Boris writes, it should do more to reflect on its "cretinous" journalism and its effective smearing of Lord McAlpine.
George Entwistle may have resigned but in a sign that the Corporation still doesn't 'get it' the outgoing BBC Director General has been awarded a £450,000 exit settlement – equivalent to one year's salary and TWICE as much as he would normally be due. The Telegraph gets the £1.3 million figure for its front page splash by adding the £450,000 to Mr Entwistle's £877,000 pension pot.
A number of Tory MPs have lined up to attack the pay off including Tory Chairman Grant Shapps:
John Whittingdale MP, Chairman of the Culture and Media Select Committee: "A lot of people would be very surprised that somebody who was in the job for such a short period of time and then had to leave in these circumstances should be walking away with £450,000 of licence fee-payers' money."
Philip Davies MP commented: “This pay-off is totally unjustifiable, it’s unacceptable, it’s extraordinary and I suspect it’s been done to save Lord Patten’s bacon.”
Dan Byles MP: "Entwistle is being given almost £8,500 for every one of his 53 days at the BBC. From an organisation that regularly sneers at bonus culture".
Alun Cairns MP: "Big mistake for Entwistle to be awarded such a large package. This highlights that #BBC Trust & management is out of touch".
Harriett Baldwin MP: "3,000 people a week are prosecuted for not paying their licence fee. Enough for 1 Director General pay-off."
> Yesterday's ToryDiary: The BBC is simply too big to be properly governed. It's time it was broken up.