TV’s incredible

Two months ago, I had never heard of the brilliant British TV series Yes Minister. First aired on the BBC in 1980, it portrays an incompetent minister in a UK Cabinet newly elected on a reform ticket, battling his top civil servant who will do anything to avoid implementing any changes.

The third episode aired on 17 March 1980. It pitches the minister against his department in a battle to establish (or not) safeguards preventing unauthorized access by officials to a Government database of private information about her majesty’s subjects. I was appalled to find it echo my exchange with bv about the staggering public lies on “security” databases: it’s not even a modern issue. (More on this at Privacy International.)

Second coincidence: yesterday, I downloaded the iPhone application Uitzending Gemist, which allows you to watch the past 8 days of Dutch public TV. I don’t have TV and don’t miss it, but I thought I’d check it out.

The first show I see on the screen when testing it an hour ago? Sorry Minister, a local, contemporary remake.

Oh yes–and the app is awesome, by the way!

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