Friday, July 15, 2011

So that’s the end of Murdoch then

And the end of my pretensions to political punditry. As Thatcher said about unemployment, a small price to pay.  Or was it Tebbit.

Cameron must be looking and feeling foolish. Milliband, if the comments I’ve seen are right, is riding high. And Vince Cable is vindicated for being at war with Murdoch. When the Daily Telegraph tricked him into declaring this in December he was greeted with gasps of astonished disproval from the establishment.  For his sake I hope he didn’t do too much backtracking in the meantime.

According to someone called David Carr writing in the New York Times,  "a kind of British Spring is under way”, now that News Corporation’s system of punishment and reward for politicians has crumbled.  That sounds going too far to me.  He seems to mistake social media roaming “wild and free across the story” for protesters camping out in Parliament Square.  Still an interesting thought.

The main thing is the BBC should be safe for now. Murdoch's plan to destroy it is now on ice along with his BSkyB bid. And let us hope will stay there.  At least if it's revived there is the prospect of widespread protest.


  1. Politicians have a free pass to attack the press at the moment; and they are. Gosh, I did not see that one coming.

  2. Why is it the end of Murdoch (or are you being ironic?)? I must admit I haven't kept up with this fully in the last few days, but he's still the major (though not majority) shareholder in BSkyB isn't he? And if he still owns the UK's best-selling daily newspaper he's not been completely disarmed. Like I say I might have missed something - has he made some promises as to his behaviour or something?

  3. A valid point Noggin, but here's what the politicians have been saying to themselves:-

    Brown, when he was in power: "I despise myself for kowtowing to Murdoch, especially after he scammed my child’s medical records and everything, but I've got to kowtow, just in case I can persuade him to support me against the Tories, like he did for Blair. It’s a long shot but it’s got to be tried."

    Cameron, until 3 weeks ago: "It’s a pain kowtowing to Murdoch but basically he's one of us. I know he really oughtn’t to be allowed to have BSkyB, and I'm in two minds as to whether to destroy the BBC to please him, but hey, what the heck, lets do it for a quiet life."

    Milliband: "Dare I? dare I? Hey! Milly Dowler! I dare! I dare! Cameron will have no choice but to say 'me too'."

    Cameron, 6 months from now: ???

  4. I really hope you're right Pete, but I don't see this "British Spring" it's being painted as in some places. So the government might not kowtow to News International in future, but it won't make their policies any more palateable, just we'll know they weren't influenced by this particular media monster. Meet the new boss....