James O’Brien

14/10/19

James O’Brien is a radio presenter on LBC. He has a weekday show discussing the topics of the day. He has recently rose to prominence due to the Brexit debate. James regularly debates callers on his show and these clips have often gone viral. He might not be the first person people think of when they think of skeptics but his demands for evidence from his callers makes him a much needed rational voice. James’s book, How to be Right in a World Gone Wrong is a perfect book for skeptics. It takes a rational and evidence-based look at the issues in society today.

James went to Ampleforth College, a Catholic private school. James refers to this experience a lot in his work as he feels his early exposure to the way the elite in society are raised and taught makes him less reverential. James worked as a print journalist before moving into radio and TV. This followed in his father’s footsteps who had worked for The Daily Telegraph when he was growing up. This journalistic background may account for James’s drive for evidence. Journalism is meant to be a search for the truth. James was an occasional presenter of Newsnight on BBC2 but he broke from the BBC because he was unable to express his political opinions in his LBC show or on Twitter about Brexit.

James has been critical of the BBC for its false balance issues (see previous fact) these were highlighted by the Jones Report by Geneticist Steve Jones in 2011. James may be too political for many skeptics but his constant demands for evidence make him a welcome voice for our community. James has also covered homeopathy treatments and anti-vax issues on his show. Bringing evidence-based thinking into political debate is much needed as far too often emotions are allowed to rule political interactions. James also has a reach to a varied audience and the more people that are encouraged to assess the evidence before reaching a decision the better.

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