Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Don't You Just Love Trev?

Oh how we laughed. The Cragsbury family flailed around in hysterics. It was the best entertainment we’d had for some time. What, pray, where we laughing at?

That brilliant article written by Trevor Kavanagh from The Sun. Oh, the poor oppressed Sun journos. Feeling a little hard done by, are we? Excuse me while I cry into my beer. Now before I start my rant, let’s just remember that News International titles are but some of the papers that have been behaving illegally. They have all been at it and in this blog post, Guido has a handy graphic showing the results of the 2003 Information Commissioner’s research. So, News International titles were at it but others were at it more. Anyhoo, let’s get to the facts:

1. News International provided information to the police voluntarily - Interesting. This would indicate that they had spotted some ‘open and shut’ evidence of wrongdoing and knew they had to react ASAP.

2. ‘It’s an outrage. 10 officers were sent to arrest each journo. Why could they just not have been invited to a pre-arranged meeting at the police station, like the other pervious arrestees?’ - Er, no, you numpties. From past experience, after this cordial invite, the shredders would have been on turbo charge 24/7. And the 10 plods were there to search each journos premises, seize any evidence - IT, papers etc - bag it, tag it and remove it. Can’t do that with one plod now can you.

3. ‘There are 171 police officers, torn from other important investigations, more than worked on this investigation or that investigation, poring over this silly case’ - (Full outrage face), listen carefully you assholes. If you hadn't broken the fucking law you wouldn't be being investigated. And if you hadn’t broken the fucking law so often and over such a long period, the police wouldn’t need so many fucking plods.

4. ‘It’s a witch hunt’ - No, it is an attempt, very, very belatedly, to sort out the cesspit of our print media which has hitherto descended into the gutter, been flagrantly breaking the law and has not been held to account by the police until now.

It’s amusing to listen to the dead tree press and all their acolytes whinging and moaning and complaining. You would think that nothing had happened to warrant any censure. So arrogant, they still don’t get it. They just want to sweep it all under the carpet ASAP so they can get back on with trashing people’s lives.

And, oh the hypocrisy, complaining about police raids! It's hysterical. Really you couldn’t make this up. The Sun, which for years bribed policemen so they could be warned off when there was a police raid about to take place, so they could be there with their cameras and record it for their readers. Makes me cry with laughter.

If journos want to moan, the real crisis here is just how badly the Murdoch empire has handled this whole process.

1. For years, they had the ability to stop their journos from breaking the law. They failed.

2. They had a chance to investigate the issue properly in 2002 when the Steve Whittamore allegations became known. They failed.

3. They had a chance to sort it out in 2003 when Steve Whittamore was imprisoned. They failed.

4. They had another chance in 2006 to change things when the Information Commissioner published What Price Privacy. They failed.

5. They had yet another chance in 2007 when Glen Mulcaire and Clive Goodman were imprisoned. They failed again.

For years, their clearly adopted strategy was to sweep it all under the carpet and hope and pray that no one asked any awkward questions.

So, Trevor Kavanagh, your problems lie in a widespread journo culture of law-breaking and your management’s purposeful disinterest in sorting it out. And once the stench became too strong and they were forced to address it, they monumentally fucked up. They closed one of the largest circulation tabloids in the UK - The Screws,

(a) in the vain hope this would draw a line under the affair - how’s that plan working out for you, Rupert?

(b) on the ‘evidence’ pushed by one of their competitors - The Guardian - which has proved to be completely and utterly wrong.

Now that’s what I call a fuck up.

And here's the thing. How long can the board and investors in News Corp put up with the cesspit of their UK print media operation dragging them down? The FBI are now on their case in the USA. Much more of a problem. And if they pull the plug and walk/sell, which is attractive as the UK print media operation is so tiny in the big picture for News Corp, what then?

Well that’s a problem here in the UK because The Sun (profitable) pays for The Times and The Sunday Times (both unprofitable). Without these three titles, UK media land would be a much worse place. Unless of course you're a Lefty who would love these titles to disappear and enjoy a victory over the ‘evil Murdoch media empire’.

So all you non-Lefties out there, be careful what you wish for.

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