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Jul-21-2011 17:11printcomments

More Trouble in Murdoch World

So, Murdoch is taking a more proactive approach to stop the bleeding. But will it work? postulates Mike Whitney.

Rupert Murdoch

(MELBOURNE) - The Mainstream Press and TV misinformation services in general are doing their best to create the image or the public concept that this is a simple scandal of “hacking” into private and personal affairs, prying, so to speak.

It was NOT!

It was a criminal act of warrantless wiretapping telephones in order to get information, an illegal activity punishable by a prison sentence and, in this instance, involving a Newspaper, possible loss of the newspapers license to publish, as well as imprisonment of those involved or accessories to the facts.

We must not let the public begin to believe that what Rupert’s gang at News of the World did was “hacking,” which most people regard as a harmless computer prank by kids. 

It was “wiretapping” of telephones, which is a felony offense in most countries, and most definitely so in the UK.

I notice there is no one named to the Investigatory Panel who has a degree or background in the legal Profession who might make a distinction between unsociable  snooping, or  “Hacking,” and illegal criminal activity, “Wiretapping.”

I also note that in none of the discussion in MSM is the possibility of “wiretapping,” or the actual word employed. We should not let the public forget this, or be misled by the MSM!

Mr. Cameron is simply another small part of the cover-up.

Stu Littlewood puts it nicely “…. and Murdoch Is Not The Only Maggot In The Rotten Apple ” in the barrel, but the entire rest of the barrel are also just as rotten, every last one of them. What anyone can say about Murdoch holds as true or even truer for the rest of the mainstream media, BBC, CNN et al who if Murdoch is targeted and put on the sinking ship will have to scurry for cover.

“Rupert Murdoch is the last of a dying breed: An old-fashioned press baron, a tough businessman with ink running through his veins, a hefty checkbook, and a hunger for the next big story. ” — reports CNN

Rubbish! Old-fashioned Press Baron ? He is nothing more than another run of the mill piratical power broker who has amassed a great media empire as a tool to meddle and peddle his Ares, influence and blackmail. There is a vast difference between a Baron and a Brigand.

He and his kind have killed all of the old “Press Barons,” who were not much better.

See: Rupert Murdoch Has Gamed American Politics Every Bit as Thoroughly as Britain’s

UK leaders say Rupert Murdoch’s empire has “entered the criminal underworld”

Yeah, he is behind and deeply involved in a lot of criminal activity… but you can bet he has legal cover which gives him absolute denial, and you will find his finger prints on nothing.

He obviously has an entire army full of Becky Brook’s to take the heat and the rap, and he will throw them under buses wherever and whenever necessary. And, he can do valuable work for some very important and even more powerful people than he is, which makes him a valuable asset in certain quarters. He has friends. He has money. Money equals POWER.

With a good wife, like Wendy, a man might be reformed.  But, with a shrewd and ambitious wife, like her, it is more likely that she would simply feed and fan his fires or greed and ambition onward and downward to greater and greater depths of suppression, success and excesses of exploitation and power.

“As the phone hacking investigation widens, the effort to revise media ownership rules is bound to gain pace. But Murdoch can’t be bothered about things like that now. He’s got more important matters to attend to, like putting out the fire that’s threatening to consume more of his properties. What he’s focused on is crisis management and “getting ahead of the curve” so he’s not dragged around by events like he has been up-to now. That’s why he’s launched an impressive Mea Culpa campaign wherein two of his chief lieutenants have resigned (on Friday), Murdoch has personally (and publicly) apologized to the family of Millie Dowler, and News Corp. has published two full-page ads in many of their Saturday and Sunday newspapers stating in bold print: “WE ARE SORRY”. …. “We are sorry for the serious wrongdoing that occurred…..We are deeply sorry for the hurt suffered by the individuals affected.” (etc) signed Rupert Murdoch.

“Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.”

“So, Murdoch is taking a more proactive approach to stop the bleeding. But will it work?” postulates Mike Whitney:

Rupert Murdoch’s troubles keep piling up

by Mike Whitney

On Friday, Labor leader Ed Miliband called for a break-up of the Murdoch empire saying, “I think he has too much power over British public life…..We’ve got to look at the situation whereby one person can own more than 20 percent of the newspaper market….I think it’s unhealthy.”

Miliband has a good grasp of public sentiment, which is why his personal approval ratings have soared in the last few weeks. His comments reflect a fundamental change in attitudes about media ownership following revelations about Millie Dowler, the 13-year old murder victim whose phone messages were hacked by investigators employed by Murdoch. The public now understands that the concentration of media has led to terrible abuses that need to be corrected. As the phone hacking investigation widens, the effort to revise media ownership rules is bound to gain pace.

But Murdoch can’t be bothered about things like that now. He’s got more important matters to attend to, like putting out the fire that’s threatening to consume more of his properties. What he’s focused on is crisis management and “getting ahead of the curve” so he’s not dragged around by events like he has been up-to now. That’s why he’s launched an impressive Mea Culpa campaign wherein two of his chief lieutenants have resigned (on Friday), Murdoch has personally (and publicly) apologized to the family of Millie Dowler, and News Corp. has published two full-page ads in many of their Saturday and Sunday newspapers stating in bold print: “WE ARE SORRY”. …. “We are sorry for the serious wrongdoing that occurred…..We are deeply sorry for the hurt suffered by the individuals affected.” (etc) signed Rupert Murdoch.

“Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa.”

So, Murdoch is taking a more proactive approach to stop the bleeding. But will it work?  His first big test will be on July 19, when he and his son James appear before the Select Committee in Parliament to answer questions related to the phone hacking controversy. We expect the usually-abrasive Murdoch to be on his best behavior doing whatever is required to put the flap behind him.

But the crisis won’t end with these preliminary hearings. In fact, there’s little Murdoch can do to stop the drip, drip, drip of new revelations. Already there’s talk of “break ins” and “phone tapping”, although, so far, the claims have not been substantiated. What is certain, though, is that Murdoch Inc. is going to be under a microscope for a long time to come. And, that’s going to be very bad for advertising revenues and stock prices.

So what will the investigation uncover?

Well, first of all, there’s the question of criminal wrongdoing. Is there proof? This is from Reuters:

News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks was warned by police in 2002 about serious malpractice and possible illegal activities by reporters at a newspaper she edited, former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown said on Wednesday….

“As early as 2002 senior police officers at Scotland Yard met the now chief executive of News International and informed her of serious malpractice on the part of her newspaper staff and criminals undertaking surveillance on their behalf,” Brown told parliament on Wednesday.” (“Police told News Corps Brooks of malpractice: Brown, Reuters)

Okay, so who knew the phone hacking was going on and how high up the chain of command does it go? All the way to Murdoch?

If so, then was phone hacking company policy? These questions have to be answered.

Here’s a tidbit from the Hindustan Times:

“….a steady stream of revelations over the last few years suggest that reporters at the News of the World illegally hacked into the phones of upto 4,000 people, checking on their voice-mails and perhaps, listening to their conversations. The list of those whose phones were hacked (often by private detectives working on behalf of the paper) included politicians, sports stars, actors, other journalists and anybody else who happened to be in the news at the time…..

If it is wrong to hack or tap phones or carry transcripts of the private conversations (as the current mood of outrage suggests) then let’s also accept that this is a fairly common and widespread practice. Reporters often tap phones or secretly tape conversations. Newspapers hack into computers and obtain access to bank data and personal financial information. They carry taped conversations without verifying their accuracy or testing the tapes for evidence of tampering….

In Britain, there is also a little discussed kind of journalism called the ‘dark arts’ in which journos hire actors to impersonate people on the phone to obtain information or pretend to be somebody else to con people into talking to them….” (“When the whip comes down on tabloids”, Hindustan Times)

So, Murdoch is just the tip of the iceberg?

Apparently so. But if that’s the case, then isn’t time the public found out how widespread these intrusions into their privacy really are? And don’t people have the right to know whether the media is gathering information legally or not? That seems pretty basic.

There’s an interesting article in The Nation titled “Has Roger Ailes Hacked American Phones for Fox News?” by Leslie Savan that brings these questions more into focus. Here’s an excerpt:

Dan Cooper was one of the people who helped create the Fox News channel with Roger Ailes, and was fired in 1996. In 2008, Cooper wrote on his website that David Brock (now head of Media Matters) had used him as an anonymous, on-background-only source for an Ailes profile he was writing for New York magazine. Before the piece was published, on November 17, 1997, Cooper claims that his talent agent, Richard Leibner, told him he had received a call from Ailes, who identified Cooper as a source, and insisted that Leibner drop him as a client–or any client reels Leibner sent Fox would pile up in a corner and gather dust. Cooper continued:

“I made the connections. Ailes knew I had given Brock the interview. Certainly Brock didn’t tell him. Of course. Fox News had gotten Brock’s telephone records from the phone company, and my phone number was on the list.

Deep in the bowels of 1211 Avenue of the Americas, News Corporation’s New York
headquarters, was what Roger called the Brain Room. Most people thought it was simply
the research department of Fox News. But unlike virtually everybody else, because I had
to design and build the Brain Room, I knew it also housed a counterintelligence and
black ops office. So accessing phone records was easy pie.” (“Has Roger Ailes Hacked
American Phones for Fox News?” Leslie Savan, The Nation)

If Savan is right, then the other major media are probably involved in similar activities. But doesn’t that suggest that media is not really a “watchdog of power” at all, but rather a threat to the public interest? After all, no one knows how this information is being used. It could be that ownership is using the information to blackmail politicians or to eliminate political enemies. Is that why so many congressmen have decided not to run for another term in the 2012 elections, because someone in the media has dirt on them that would turn them into the next Anthony Wiener or John Edwards?

Lastly, here’s a blurb from another article in The Nation titled “Sky Falls on Rupert Murdoch”:

“…widening revelations of the phone-hacking scandal show, News Corporation is not an ordinary commercial enterprise. Through his journalists and gossip columnists and the network of former and current police officers and law enforcement officials on his payroll, Rupert Murdoch has been operating what amounts to a private intelligence service. And the threat of personal exposure—on the front page of the Sun or Page Six in the Post—gives News Corporation a kind of leverage over inquisitive regulators or troublesome politicians wielded by no other company on earth.

English already has the expression “para-state” to describe the kind of shadowy forces that operate beneath and behind legitimate authority. Is it really unreasonable to suggest that in News Corporation, Fox, News International, Sky and the rest of Murdoch’s empire, we are witnessing the exposure of the para-corporation?” (“Sky Falls on Rupert Murdoch”, D.D. Guttenplan, The Nation)

Repeat: “Rupert Murdoch has been operating what amounts to a private intelligence service.”

Uh-huh.

The firestorm in the UK is not really about phone hacking at all. It’s about Corporate fiefdoms and unelected oligarchs who control the flow of information and use that power to their own advantage. The longer the investigation goes on, the better for everyone. Transparency is the best disinfectant.

___________________________________

Mike Whitney graduated from St. Michael’s College in English Lit in 1975. 

Currently, he is Program Director of the Snohomish County Democrats but, he admits that his interest in politics only began with the appointment of GW Bush as President.

Like many other regular Americans, he has understood from the very beginning the global aspirations of the Cabal that presently occupies 1600 Pennsylvania Ave and the threat they pose to the world.

It is a threat that is as real and as far reaching as any we have seen since the rise of Fascism in 1930s Germany (The author’s description of himself). He lives in Washington state. He can be reached at fergiewhitney@msn.com

Source :Information Clearing House and “The Nation




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Ozstein July 26, 2011 6:39 pm (Pacific time)

Presumably you can read and have a pulse too, Bill, so do your own research into 9/11 and you will be amazed by the evidence you will find which wasn't reported in the Murdoch media or the New York Times or the Washington Post and all the other Zionist owned media, but which does not fit with the official story - GWB's Big Lie that Osama bin Laden did it.


Bill July 26, 2011 7:33 am (Pacific time)

Ozstein thanks for clearing that up for me, but my publisher does require a bit more, as do most people who can read and have a pulse. Maybe an omission of pertinent facts put into an orderly and replicable flow would be more helpful...though in terms of not having the steady flow of news reports on the 9/11 attacks by multiple organizations controlled by Murdoch would include literally thousands if not millions of people, thus that would be some kind of conspiracy and control, whether covert or overt in nature. It would be terrific if you could support that theory with some [evidence].


Ozstein July 25, 2011 11:11 pm (Pacific time)

To address your point, Bill, censorship by omission is what I was implying when I wrote about the Murdoch media covering up 9/11 evidence, but perhaps I should have said, 'not covering the 9/11 evidence'. However, I put it to you Bill, that promoting George W. Bush's conspiracy theory of Osama bin Laden being responsible and omitting the real evidence of 9/11 amounts to the same thing as covering up the crime. As for being useful in your novel on Conspiracy Theories, your cannot say that real evidence - which abounds regarding 9/11 - is a conspiracy. And I prefer to call the evidence a reality, not a theory - or in other words, the truth. However, the truth is something Murdoch and his Zionist friends eschew when it comes to hutzpah crimes like 9/11 - I wonder why...


Bill July 25, 2011 9:11 am (Pacific time)

Oztein do you have a link to a primary source that has the evidence to support your claim re: Murdoch covering up 911 evidence? Thanks, I'm finishing the last section of my novel on Conspiracy Theories, and that evidence would certainly help my book sales.


Ozstein July 24, 2011 10:03 pm (Pacific time)

The evidence is 9/11 and the fact that Murdoch did nothing but cover up that evidence - that is misprision of treason. And by the way Mike, you obviously haven't noticed that Karl is only a Sunstein shill, so don't get sucked into his apologia.


Mike July 23, 2011 7:42 am (Pacific time)

Oztein, Anonymous, D, et al: I read and re-read your very passionate posts, and respect your feelings, but still you have provided no evidence to counter Karl's comments. No doubt there are well financed individuals/organizations out there that pursue a variety of different agendas, and depending how we each value those different agenda's, naturally we will hold conflicting ones in low regard. Thus, we need evidence, otherwise we just have innuendo, which in our legal system has no validity.


Anonymous July 23, 2011 3:20 am (Pacific time)

@ Karl Does anyone have any proof of criminal wrongdoing by Mr. Murdoch? No, he has an army of Becky Brooks doing it for him you just have to re-read my previous comment here. Start thinking!! When is the last time that a wire intercept team or network was busted by US counter intel ??? Why does any Intel or Government Agency sell out its own country? For profits and benefit of the Authoritarian figures who manage and govern those agencies. And the Politicians for whom they work. Public Office has become a franchise, didn’t ya know Karl? Wake up! It seems to be de rigueur lately! I think I have already mentioned the massive amount of money Murdoch has access to, and the power and friends which it attracts… and, it must always be kept in mind, he and his organizations are infamous for their widespread wiretapping in recent history… so this is the guy who knows where all of the bodies are buried, where all of the skeletons are hidden, and he has keys to all of the closets. If this does go that far Karl, I will be surprised if they let Murdoch appear in court where he might testify and say some “wrong things.” He is an elderly man, you know, and subject to all kinds of possibilities including heart attack, auto-smash and aircraft accident. More than likely, he will disappear someday, and surface later on in Tel Aviv. His ethnic identity which he seems to have shunned all of his life will pay off and he will be immune to arrest or extradition. I doubt his loving Chinese Wendi Dang will find such seclusion exciting, and I doubt that she will last long under such circumstances. :D


Ozstein July 22, 2011 11:14 pm (Pacific time)

Phone hacking is an insignificant crime compared with the abomination of Rupert Murdoch's other rackets.
For the last ten years in particular, as the leader of the Zionist media pack which pervades, manipulates and perverts the opinion the entire western world, Murdoch has propagated a constant deluge of lies, misinformation, cover-ups and racist xenophobia in relation to pivotal events such as 9/11, 7/7, Saddam's WMDs, the true nature of the GFC, Osama bin Laden's second death - and the list goes on, while the seminal issue of the daily genocidal atrocities inflicted upon Palestinian men, women and thousands of children by the Israeli regime are rarely mentioned in the Murdoch media. Millions of deaths have resulted from the sinister deceptions perpetrated in particular by Murdoch's Fox News in the service of the fascist Zionist regime in America and Israel, whose Prime Minister received 29 standing ovation from the supine American Congress recently for promoting more wars. Time and time again Murdoch has been the propaganda megaphone of the belligerent and evil corporate war machine currently bent on obliterating the people of Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Somalia, Yemen, Libya, Syria and Iran with DU weapons of mass destruction and inexorably bringing the world to the brink of WW3 in pursuit of little more than the self-enrichment of a chosen few power hungry psychpaths.
So, unless the scrutiny moves from the relatively trivial issue of phone hacking to exposing Murdoch's complicity in the most egregious crimes of our era, particularly his misprision in the cover-up of the truth about 9/11, the bloody legacy of his tyranny will continue for some time to come yet. The only thing that will save us from a nuclear catastrophe is for the independent media of the world to stop being intimidated by Zionists like Murdoch and to defy their dead and withering hold on what is presented in the media as the truth.


Karl July 22, 2011 6:37 pm (Pacific time)

Does anyone have any proof of criminal wrongdoing by Mr. Murdoch? Or is he just guilty because he has an organization that is head and shoulders beyond the mainstream news, which by the way, includes outfits like the NY Times, who are constantly reporting on confidential documents, including "hacked" phone calls. Also, has anyone provided any proof of a consistent pattern by the FOX network of intentionally misleading their viewers with false information? Or is it just sour grapes because they have an audience, which includes nearly 40% liberals, that prefers their network over the propaganda ones some of you out there follow like baby ducks? FOX has a well balanced presentation of all ideological views, but it also has pundits like all the other networks that rally for their favorite political group. Just the same they have people of all different parties on their shows and are provided time to address their issues and agenda's. They are treated quite well as compared to the MSNBC thugs. It's just that FOX, unlike the other networks, allows for conservatives to have the time to fully develop their points. This no doubt rankles those who cannot debate with facts. This has been a winning formula, and will continue. I keep waiting for evidence of some malfeasance on their part, but all we hear is innuendo and sourgrapes.


Debbie Menon July 22, 2011 4:58 am (Pacific time)

Dan Cooper was one of the people who helped create the Fox News channel with Roger Ailes. Deep in the bowels of 1211 Avenue of the Americas, News Corporation’s New York
headquarters, was what Roger called the Brain Room. Most people thought it was simply
the research department of Fox News. But unlike virtually everybody else, because I had
to design and build the Brain Room, I knew it also housed a counterintelligence and
black ops office. So accessing phone records was easy pie.” http://www.thenation.com/blog/162016/has-roger-ailes-hacked-american-phones-fox-news

and
http://www.thenation.com/blog/162083/rupert-murdoch-has-gamed-american-politics-every-bit-thoroughly-britains

Editor: Thanks Debbie!


Karl July 22, 2011 10:54 am (Pacific time)

An analysis coming from the NY Times, or any other losing competitor to the Murdoch organization is essentially nothing more than sour grapes chatter. Sorry folks, FOX is just getting stronger as are other conservative fact reporting news groups. The change has been going on for around 15 years now, and it's not going to stop anytime soon. Just look at the internals of any professional poll, for the internals is where you find what the public demands, not just what they want.

Editor: Is it comedy hour?


uke July 22, 2011 10:29 am (Pacific time)

murdoch is a zionist


uke July 22, 2011 10:26 am (Pacific time)

given what is stated here is true to any sane person, murdoch's obvious zionist political persuasion is a very big support pillar of the israel lobby all over the western world.


Karl July 22, 2011 7:43 am (Pacific time)

Regardles of what Murdoch's critics say, they are not registering anything beyond their own failed liberal agenda. Justin you provided some excellent examples displaying the hypocrisy of outfits like the Times. I see the U.S. Justice Department is reving up to start an investigation. That is a distraction. My guess is that after Obama loses in November 2012, he will be issuing many many pardons.

DJ: Failed liberal agenda? I don't think so.The evidence points in the other direction. In the last century or so society has introduced social security, unemployment insurance, minimum wages, maximum work hours, safety standards for the workplace, the end of child labor, etc.., etc. I wouldn't call that a failure. I would call that significant progress compared to conditions of the century before. You just don't get it, do you? 

See: Conservatives are winning battles, but losing the War 


E.L.Enin July 22, 2011 2:40 am (Pacific time)

The CRIME is much greater than wiretapping.......since the QUEEN'S HOUSEHOLD , MEMBERS OF PARLIAMENT, THE HOUSE OF LORDS were wiretapped and in some cases "blackmailed"....LESE MAJESTE...it is a crime of TREASON against the STATE .........not since Nuremberg have such wicked Devils been exposed to Justice...may humanity and civil society triumph........


Puzzled July 22, 2011 1:28 am (Pacific time)

Chair of the Select Committee John Whittingdale, is not only Facebook friends with Elisabeth Murdoch and Rebekah Brooks, but is also a Facebook Friend of Les Hinton!


Justin July 21, 2011 6:48 pm (Pacific time)

n fact, it's quite easy to believe Murdoch was unaware of what News of the World reporters were doing --particularly considering the striking absence of any evidence to the contrary.

Murdoch is an American who owns television networks, satellite operations and newspapers all over the world. As he said in his testimony this week, News Corp. has 53,000 employees and, until its recent demise, News of the World amounted to a grand total of 1 percent of News Corp.'s operations. What about all the illegally obtained information regularly printed in the Times? Was Pinch Sulzberger unaware his newspaper was publishing classified government documents illegally obtained by Julian Assange?

Did he know that in 2006 the Times published illegally leaked classified documents concerning a government program following terrorists' financial transactions; that in 2005 it revealed illegally obtained information about a top-secret government program tracking phone calls connected to numbers found in Khalid Sheikh Mohammed's cell phone; and, that, in 1997, the paper published an illegally obtained phone call between Newt Gingrich and Republican leaders? John Boehner, one of the participants in the Gingrich call, sued McDermott for violating his First Amendment rights, which resulted in a court ordering McDermott to pay Boehner more than $1 million.

 If only Murdoch's minions had hacked into the phones of George Bush, Dick Cheney or Donald Rumsfeld, liberals would be submitting his name to the pope for sainthood.

But now the rest of us have to watch while the mainstream media pursue their personal grudge against Rupert Murdoch for allowing Fox News to exist. They demand his head for owning a British tabloid where some reporters used illegally obtained information, something The New York Times does defiantly on a regular basis. I totally agree with the above statement "Transparency is the best disinfectant." Let the sunlight be fully shined on to all. Bet some outfits don't want that process to apply to them.

DJ: You need to read more outside of Faux News:

Joe Nocera in the NYT wrote:: “Although I generally admire entrepreneurs who build giant companies, Rupert Murdoch, despite giving us Homer Simpson, generally has not been a force for good over the course of his long career. His Bill O’Reilly-ed, Glenn Beck-ed Fox News has done a great deal to coarsen the political discourse. His tabloids have lowered the standards of journalism on three continents — and routinely broken the law on at least one of them. He had dumbed down his prestige papers, like The Times of London. He has run roughshod over cross-ownership rules meant to prevent one man or company from having too much power — and then used his lobbying might to get those rules diluted. He has put kowtowing to China ahead of freedom of the press, even killing a book set to be published by his HarperCollins unit that the Chinese authorities objected to. He has consistently used his media properties to reward allies and punish enemies. It’s a long list."

Roger Cohen wrote: “Murdoch is a flawed genius whose very ruthlessness has now led him to his comeuppance. He knew, more viscerally than anyone, what postmodern societies wanted to satisfy their twisted appetites and he provided that material in all its gaudiness. I don’t think he created those appetites. But he sure fed them.”

And journalist David Carr, writing this week about the Murdoch empire says: “That organization has used strategic acumen to assemble a vast and lucrative string of media properties, but there is also a long history of rounded-off corners. It has skated on regulatory issues, treated an editorial oversight committee as if it were a potted plant (at The Wall Street Journal), and made common cause with restrictive governments (China) and suspect businesses—all in the relentless pursuit of More."

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