Rats and Sinking Ships

“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.



  • treborc

    What can be done under the words of Investigatory Journalism, I wonder how much would be said now if this was about checking the phones of people on benefits, I suspect it would be classed as Investigatory Journalist , and Journalist given seats in the house of Lords, or MBE or CBE.

    Funny old world, they may well have got away with looking at the phones of people who raped, murdered , again investigatory Journalism, but once you enter the dark area of checking MP’s and Minister really got the ball rolling. Then checking that dead soldier to see it he was doing something naughty, Soldier “A” who died in Iraq actually was a love cheat, well you may not like it, but those media hungry public seemed to love it hence the rags sold.

    But we lived in a country in which people were seen as cheats lose your job phone up to get benefits, because the Labour party closed down benefits offices so the phone had to be used you can put a voice analyzer onto the phone find cheats. You can enter a council house top see if they are living above their means, what law do you use to do this, well ok course terrorism regulations, lots of benefits cheats building bombs you know.

    Labour laid the ground rules everyone was seen as a suspect they were guilty never mind innocence, and people could go out and prove it, so long as you stay away from Tony Blair and Gordon brown.

    The Public need slander they need to know they have to know and the media was willing to go to any lengths to get it, just stay away from the rich and powerful.

    • swatantra

      The sad fact is benefit fraud does go on, and investigations have to be carried out and action taken on the evidence collected.
      Think, fraudsters deny legitimate claimants their entitlements as the pool of money is reduced, although there is still a staggeringly high amount that still goes unclaimed. You can’t force people to claim maybe by ignorance or sheer frustration with the procedure and tests. I am in favour of means testing so that the money is targeted to those that actually need it.
      Journalists do a difficult job. Much of the Sunday Press is filled with stories because of the double standards people in public life pose. Sometimes ordinary people are forced into te public eye trough no fault of their own because they become ‘a story’. And its right that once that happens, we know the truth about who they really are not what they say they are.

  • swatantra

    I similarly would like to see McKenzie nabbed by the collar and led insisde and his infamous headline thrown back in his face. Gotcha!

  • LesAbbey

    Good of MacKenzie just to reinforce my point on what a shit he is by turning up at the Leveson pre-inquiry drinks and canapes sessions and dumping on Cameron and NI in support of the Mail’s editor Paul Dacre.

    Kelvin MacKenzie has accused David Cameron of “a— kissing” Rupert Murdoch and said the PM only set up the inquiry to deflect attention from his controversial decision to appoint Andy Coulson. Here is an edited version of former editor of The Sun’s speech to the Leveson inquiry.


    MacKenzie accuses Cameron of arse licking Murdoch. Suprised there was room as that position used to be filled by our Kelvin.

    there is some interesting bits in the article. How about this on the Sun’s endorsement of Cameron?

    Cameron wanted Rupert onside as he believed, quite wrongly in my view, that The Sun’s endorsement would help him to victory (when the paper did come out for Cameron the Sun’s sale fell by 40,000 copies that day).

    Was that 40,000 Sun reading Labour supporters I wonder?

    • treborc

      Labour supporters reading the Sun, yes possibly after all page three is about the normal for these so called supporters

      • LesAbbey

        Maybe they were the last of the Daily Herald readers ha-ha. See I still remember the Herald becoming the Sun before Murdoch got it. My uncle use to swear he bought the Sun because it had the best racing. Now he had been a bookie so I had to take his word for it.

        • treborc

          I’m enjoying watching Newer labour have nightmares at the moment, Miliband has told Twigg to follow parties line on free schools, forgetting what Miliband had himself stated on Free schools nothing wrong so long as Academies which are basically free schools paid for by say Tesco, should work with free schools which are Tory.

          If you cannot beat them?????

          • swatantra

            A bit of a dilemma here.
            I am in favour of Co-op Trust Schools and the Co-op Academies. I’d like to see more.
            But I am not in favour of Free Shools because they are not ‘Free’ any any sense of the word but have an Agenda; and I am not in favour of Faith Schools, because one specific Religion should have no role or lesser role in Schools.
            A Secular Education System is preferred.
            About time Labour changed its policies on Education.

          • treborc

            Education is so important and yes I can accept faith schools are a problem, but the best school in my area with the top awards are the RC school like it or not people are waiting to get on the waiting list, It was my school and it was the old grammar school.

            It’s open up to other faiths now in Wales but the main pupils are Roman Catholic the teachers are the best, so we need to copy this school not dump it.

          • swatantra

            As Twiggy said, we need to look at what makes a
            ‘good school’ and copy those elements, but I don’t think being RC is one of them. It has a lot to do with leadership and discipline of the pupils.
            Some of the parents that apply are ‘lapsed’ catholics anyway. These schools have creeping selection criteria, even though thy are forced to open up to a %age of nonbelievers.
            If a school is not working a a particular community the only way is to close it down and start again with a ne head and staff and ethos.
            That could mean a Free School or Academy.

          • treborc

            How the hell can you close a school down for god sake give the kids a years holiday, and I did not say I like the RC school sadly it’s the best school with the best marks in all of my area, it has the biggest number of A level candidates and has the highest number of people going to University and like it or not I would send my kids to it in seconds.

          • swatantra

            Changing a failed school into an Academy doesnt necessarily mean that there is an interruption in a child’s education. Plans can be prepared, interviews carried out, and the ‘new’ school open
            within weeks