Politics, Power and Media or Murdochgate.

In Uncategorized on July 25, 2009 at 10:19 pm

Isn’t it interesting how Murdochgate has been pushed off the front pages by dead soldiers? All heroes, now they are dead.

I have always been amazed by the loyalty shown by former soldiers for the British Army. Especially given how badly they are treated when no longer of use. It says a lot for the re-programming ability of the military.

But could it be the case that the speed with which the police decided there is nothing worth further investigation might have something to do with information gleaned from having their own privacy invaded at the behest of News International.? Only a cynic would suggest that the media outlets it owns are influenced by the opinions of the owner, and even sometimes, by the political aims of the proprietor.

Because it is true that the greatness of the man is underestimated. He issues no guidelines, no diktats, no directions to his editors. Ordinary mortals all, the editors of all his papers somehow all always come to the same editorial conclusions as the astonishing Mr Murdoch at election times. Odd indeed, no, I should say rare indeed , are the occasions when a Murdoch paper editorial disagreed with the Boss. Of course this could just be an extraordinary outbreak of telepathy or simply brown-nosing with scuba gear.

This man has demeaned the level of public discourse and the fabric of the societies where his companies have media interests.It hardly comes as a surprise that the Sun denounces the licence fee whilst failing to mention that Sky costs a whole lot more. Or that his papers constantly attack Public service broadcasters, or limits on cross-media ownership. (This does not apply to Italy, where Berlusconi has TV pretty sewn-up, I imagine)

If the NoW was hiring private investigators to snoop on private citizens, regardless of whether they were famous or not, is very disturbing. Many still remember the behavior of the Sun after Hillsborough,when it disgraced itself by wild and untrue allegations of bad behaviouer by the victims of the police-made disaster, who are still waiting for justice. Others will remember the Sun for the miners strike, and the crude bragging that ‘It wos the Sun wot won it!’ after a Tory election victory. Some will recall the ‘Gotcha! headline celebrating the sinking of the Belgrano, an Argentinian ship which was the last surviving battleship from Pearl Harbour, and which was actually steaming away from the Malvinas/Falkland as demanded. Hundreds of conscript Argentinian sailors perished in the South Atlantic. The submarine made no effort to rescue them.

The Guardian broke this story and because of it, the former Editor of the News of the World and senior executives were forced to reappear before a House of Commons committee in order to explain apparent discrepancies in their evidence.  (see http://preview.tinyurl.com/n4zmz4 )

Why does this matter? Because the former Editor is now Cameron’s chief spin doctor.

Because all of the recalled strangely suffered total failure of their own recollection in front of the MPs.

Because we have no reason to suspect that the tactics of the Murdoch press here in Ireland would be any different. Certainly the Oirish Sunday Times and Oirish Sun are hostile to Europe.

Because his papers spend a lot of time rubbishing RTE, a competitor which costs us less than Sky.

Because they can’t be trusted.


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