Listening to Mark Thompson on the Amdrew Marr show this morning it was pretty clear that the BBCs only intention is to ride this storm over Ross and Brand out as best it can before going back to how it was. The message was clear - we got caught this time, but we're not going to change.
This is, for me, perhaps more indicative of the BBC attitude than the actual incident itself. The sheer arrogance of an organisation which eats up £3 billion of public money while refusing to accept being held to account by the people from whom it takes this money is breathtaking.
It is not enough to say sorry for this clear breach of broadcasting standards, the BBC must take steps to ensure that it will never happen again, but Thompson was at pains to make it clear that, despite the furore, the BBC will continue to push the boundaries of taste. By doing so he makes it certain that something similar will occur once more, but the thing is that this latest outrage has become the benchmark - in other words, the BBC will push up to this limit at least and possibly beyond.
The remarkable thing is that there seem to be no taboos which the BBC will not consider breaking - except for the liberal progressive taboos. The simple fact is that the BBC would never allow anyone on its network to be so deliberately offensive to gays, blacks or Moslems. These are the only taboos which nobody may transgress on the BBC - all we ask is that similar standards be applied to the rest of society.