Skip to main content

Murdoch: into the Endgame

Two weeks ago Rupert Murdoch-controlled News International has a minority holding in BSkyB and full ownership of four national Daily and Sunday newspapers. True, He had explored turning his Dailies into seven day operations, but that looked to be a little while away. Also true, he was bidding for 100% control of BSkyB.

Now he has a minority holding in BSkyB and full ownership of three Daily and Sunday newspapers. A seven day Sun looks to be only a few weeks away and although the current bid for BSkyB has been shelved, another bid could be tabled within a few months, if need be.

It rather looks as though Murdoch has lost a battle, but not yet lost the war.

Yet there is still the ongoing political shitstorm to get through. Though the pressure from the BSkyB bid may take some of the heat away, there is still the ongoing police investigation and the political and judicial inquiry and the real possibility of a backlash in the US.

From the point of view of the UK, Murdoch has had a small defeat: his papers can never again behave with such impunity, and British politicians will now be extremely wary in their dealings with the press. We will see if that will be enough to satisfy the wrath of political and public opinion.

I suspect it will, which will mean that the Murdoch serpent has been only partially de-fanged.

For me, however, it is not enough: it merely restates that breaking the law is a bad idea, it does not take sufficient sanction against the criminals responsible in the first place. The judicial inquiry and the police investigation must be backed to the hilt until full completion.

Never again should the press or the police, still less politicians, believe themselves to be above the law.


Richard T said…
The re-erection of a Murdoch Sunday paper may lead News International into more trouble. As the precipitate closure of the News of the World made the staff redundant without notice and outwith the statuory 90 day consultation period, the organisation is going to walk into serious unfair dismissal problems if the Sunday Sun appears at any time within the 90 days and probably within whatever statutory notice was in the employees' contracts. The redundancy terms are going to have to be very generous to avoid trouble and, bearing in mind the manner of the dismissals, I can't see much hope for forbearance from the former employees of the News of the World. We shall see.
Tim Worstall said…
Not quite. News I owns the newspapers. News Corp owns News I plus the BSkyB stake.

Popular posts from this blog

Cicero ReDux

By Special Request of Baroness Scott and Mark Valladares... Cicero's Songs returns: bigger, longer and uncut.
October 1st marked the half way point of the Estonian Presidency of the European Union.  Perhaps for many people such an anniversary is of passing interest at best.  Yet the conduct of the Estonian Presidency is reinforcing just how forward looking and innovative the most northerly of the Baltic States has become.
Estonia is a country that wants to live in the future, and with its openness and innovation, that future seems a lot closer than almost anywhere else in Europe
It is not that Estonia does not “do” the past: the picturesque cobbled streets of old Tallinn have tourist crowds a-plenty enjoying the mediaeval architecture in an Indian summer of sunshine and blue skies.  The real point is that Estonia refuses to be a prisoner of its past. Lennart Meri, Estonia’s President in the 1990s- who spent years of his childhood in Siberia- once told me that the country had to conc…

Trump and Brexit are the Pearl Harbor and the Fall of Singapore in Russia's Hybrid war against the West.

In December 1941, Imperial Japan launched a surprise attack on the United States at Pearl Harbor. After the subsequent declaration of war, within three days, the Japanese had sunk the British warships, HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Repulse, and the rapid Japanese attack led to the surrender of Hong Kong on Christmas Day 1941 and the fall of Singapore only two months after Pearl Harbor. These were the opening blows in the long war of the Pacific that cost over 30,000,000 lives and was only ended with the detonations above Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

"History doesn't often repeat itself, but it rhymes" is an aphorism attributed to Mark Twain, and in a way it seems quite appropriate when we survey the current scene. 

In 1941, Imperial Japan, knowing its own weakness, chose a non-conventional form of war, the surprise attack. Since the end of his first Presidential term, Vladimir Putin, knowing Russia's weakness, has also chosen non-conventional ways to promote his domestic powe…

The American National nightmare becomes a global nightmare

It is a basic contention of this blog that Donald J Trump is not fit for office.

A crooked real estate developer with a dubious past and highly questionable finances. he has systematically lied his way into financial or other advantage. His personal qualities include vulgarity, sexual assault allegations and fraudulent statements on almost every subject. 

He lost the popular vote by nearly three million votes.

He has, of course, been under criminal investigation practically since before he took the oath of office. The indictment of some of closest advisers is just the beginning. His track record suggests that in due course there is no action he will not take, whether illegal or unconstitutional in order to derail his own inevitable impeachment and the indictments that must surely follow the successful investigation of Robert Mueller into his connections with Russia.

However, all of that is a matter for the American people. 

It is also a matter for the American people that Trump is cheating…