“So long and thanks for all the fish.” I know I’m mixing up my animals but doesn’t Kelvin MacKenzie seem a bit of an ingrate? He has done very well by his association with News International (NI) over the years and had been supporting them in their fight to limit damage done by the phone hacking scandal. A couple of months ago, seeing the writing on the wall, he walked away from his column in the Sun to take up a position in the Daily Mail. Our reaction to anything this man does should be similar to the people of Liverpool who have boycotted the Sun since MacKenzie told lies about the fans after the Hillsborough disaster. After all this is the man who in own words says “I want to get the Lonsdale Belt for vile and be personally rude to as many people as possible.”
This last week we had four former NI executives appearing before a parliamentary committee. The two of special interest were Tom Crone and Colin Myler. Both had issued a joint statement after James Murdoch’s earlier appearance at the same committee, saying he was mistaken in reporting they hadn’t told him the large settlement with Peter Taylor was necessary because Taylor’s lawyers had proof of more News of the World journalists being involved in the hacking, rather than just the one admitted.
It’s becoming likely that more NI people are going to be serving at Her Majesty’s pleasure within the next couple of years. The problem for people like Andy Coulson is the bar has already been set by the sentences on Clive Goodman (4 months) and Glenn Mulcaire (6 months). It’s difficult to see how a judge could hand out lesser times than have already be awarded. How high can this go in terms of senior management? Well Rebekah Brooks has been charged and James Murdoch must be very close to getting a tug.
I read in relation to this phone hacking scandal that the FBI and NYPD look for the tipping point when trying to roll up organized crime outfits. Starting with a few soldiers being apprehended they watch for the top bosses to start kicking out the middle management as they are implicated in order to save themselves. The bosses then have to be fearful that these people don’t start to tell stories about those above them. Eventually the bosses are all that’s left. Now both the FBI and the New York cops are usually after, and get the top mafia bosses. Let’s hope that Scotland Yard takes a similar stand.
Just patting myself on the back, but I blogged back in January 2008 we should be pushing for better media laws to stop people like Murdoch getting such power. I also warned that Brown shouldn’t be expecting Murdoch to support him in the coming election. Then again what do I know? Two excerpts from this post below.
In the 15th. Century Wikipedia refers to the real ruler of England being Richard Neville, the Earl of Warwick, also know as the Kingmaker. Today’s Kingmaker must be Rupert Murdoch. UK politicians beg his support. His power over the media is overwhelming. In 1992, using the Sun newspaper, he kept the Tories in power. Blair considered he had to make deals with Murdoch to win his election. Gordon Brown’s spin doctors must live in fear of him backing Cameron…
Might be time to look back in history. The Earl of Warwick finally got his on the battlefield. Maybe Gordon Brown can take on Rupert Murdoch before he gets to pick another king. Push some US style laws through parliament and limit how much media a man or company can own. Take away his newspapers or television companies. Send his son packing. Get in first Gordon because Rupert is probably planning on doing it to you.
Brown should have listened to me;-) What would make my day is for MacKenzie to become embroiled. I would love to see him being led through the gates of one of our superb prisons. I would pay money to see him do hard time.