I speak with all the vehemence of one who spent last Friday evening in a state of ecstatic rapture at the Proms. Take away the licence fee and you take away the Beeb's ability to spend £6 million on the world's greatest festival of classical music.
Get rid of the licence fee and you lose the vast red velvet drapes in the Albert Hall saying BBC Proms; and without the BBC Proms there would have been no frenzied Italian conductor, his spasms barely contained by the polished brass of the stand. There would have been no white-jacketed trombonists, no bare-armed female violinists.
There would have been no choir, their silvery hair like magnesium balls of fire in the TV lights, belting out Beethoven's Ninth, the Ode to Joy, with so much crumping explosive power that it made my neck tingle. The more I rhapsodise, of course, and the more I expand on my love of the BBC Proms, the louder I can imagine the protests.
But why do we have to pay for this, I hear you say. Why can't it be funded by Coca-Cola, or Sky, or private subscription of some kind? To which I can only say that yes, I suppose it might be so funded. But then again it might not be.
There are some strong arguments for retaining the current licence fee, but this is hardly the strongest. What Boris is saying is that classical music concerts cannot take place without the benevolence of the BBC. Rubbish. Why not go the whole hog? Why not nationalise our entire cultural heritage on the basis that it MIGHT not be funded by anyone else? This is lazy and muddled thinking and Boris ought to know better.