We will leave it up to the reader
to determine whether Rupert Murdoch has made serious errors in in judgment.
Rupert has supported a Conservative Far Right position especially when it
comes to Church and State issues. But, it is apparent from the data
collected, that the first amendment may be in danger from his past and
future actions as well as other constitutional sections. He has
supported deregulation of banks and the SEC causing the current economic
Rupert Murdoch's office stated that his position is that Certain Religions
aren't "Real" religions. What is a real religion, Mr. Murdoch?
What you have been practicing? He says on the one hand that only
certain Christian denominations are valid. Read the following and
remember: "By their Works may they be known." This is a summary of
information collected from several sources about Rupert Murdoch.
(Remember it is best to
investigate on your own when looking at allegations about anyone.
Don't believe us, think for yourself and investigate for yourself! And
remember, the First Amendment Coalition and Religious Freedom Coalition of
the South East do not represent any political party nor do we recommend any
The Big Lie At The Heart Of Rupert Murdoch's
Les Hinton Under New Pressure In Phone Hacking
James Murdoch Contradicted by His Ex-Legal
James Murdoch Accused Of Misleading Parliament
Over Phone Hacking
Justice Department Prepares Subpoenas in News
Want to Boycott Rupert Murdoch? Good Luck with
NOW A LIST OF
News Corp. Reports Political Donations
Who is Rupert
Republicans are the Enemy
A Letter from Rupert Murdoch (Satire)
News Of The World Closure Points To Murdoch
Did Wall Street Journal Honcho Cover Up
Murdoch Phone-Hack Scandal?
Murdoch's American Sins: Less Sensational, But
Rupert Murdoch Love$ God: World's Biggest Sleaze Mogul Also Getting
Rich from Christian Moralizers
The Phone Hacking Scandal Which Just Keeps Getting
REPUBLICANS ARE THE ENEMY AND TRAITORS TO AMERICA by R. Blackbird
Republicans are selfish, power hungry, hateful of the poor, disloyal
to the nation and its people, dishonest, avaricious, scornful of the
nation's history, the dignity of its institutions, its standards of
political morality, and its vision of advancement for all the
people. The Republicans love war as long as they and theirs do not
have to put on helmets and carry guns into the fighting. They use lies
to start wars that kill hundreds of thousands of innocents and thousands
of our own military service people. They love massive war-time profits,
unavailable to their rich masters if war is absent.
The Republicans hate the rest of us, which they must, in order to
pass away from themselves and onto us, the financial burdens and losses
their crimes, schemes and thefts cause. They are prolific, incessant,
and destructive liars. They are blasphemers for they insist that
their hateful and destructive deeds are the work of God. They are
apostates for they gleefully attack the poor, the immigrants, the
old and the sick, of whom God has commanded all of us to be mindful.
There is no reasoning with them, for all their logic is built on false
premises. There is no appealing to them for honor's sake for they have
lost all sense of shame and have no honor, there is no appealing to them
for the nation's sake for that it what they hate the most.
The Republicans are the enemy.
THE TRUTH ABOUT
REPUBLICANS BY GEORGE CARLIN
News Corp isn't a news corporation at
all. It's the lobbying arm of Rupert Murdoch's global conglomerate, in
the business of wielding influence.
July 22, 2011
Watching the phone hacking crisis
crack wide open over the last few weeks has left me puzzled about its
ultimate causes: what is it about News Corp that has produced these
I don't think we understand
very much about this. We can say things like, "Ultimate responsibility
goes to the man at the top," meaning
chairman and CEO. And that sounds right, but it still doesn't explain
how any of it happened. "The key people are criminals, liars, or
willfully blind..." We could say that, but then we would have to explain
how so many of them ended up at one company.
Puzzles like these have led
many people to the conclusion that there's a culture inside News Corp
that is in some way responsible, and I basically agree with that. Mark
Lewis, lawyer for the family of Milly Dowler, said after Rebekah Brooks
resigned: "This is not just about one individual but about the culture
of an organization." Carl Bernstein agrees.
He wrote this in Newsweek a few days ago:
As anyone in the business
will tell you, the standards and culture of a journalistic
institution are set from the top down, by its owner, publisher, and
top editors. Reporters and editors do not routinely break the law,
bribe policemen, wiretap, and generally conduct themselves like
thugs unless it is a matter of recognized and understood policy.
Private detectives and phone
hackers do not become the primary sources of a newspaper's
information without the tacit knowledge and approval of the people
at the top, all the more so in the case of newspapers owned by
Rupert Murdoch, according to those who know him best.
Bernstein tells us that one of his
sources is a former executive at News Corp, who says: "Murdoch invented
and established this culture in the newsroom, where you do whatever it
takes to get the story, take no prisoners, destroy the competition, and
the end will justify the means."
I think this is correct as far as
it goes, but now I want to introduce my theory of how this culture works
and why it exists in the first place.
When the news broke that the
hired the Edelman firm to handle public relations in the UK,
I thought to myself, "Edelman has a crisis response practice, but do
they have a denial division?"
Because to me that is the most
striking thing about the way News Corp has reacted to these events from
the beginning. Denial! Not only in the sense of deflecting questions
with "move along, nothing to see here..." (when, in fact, there is
something) but that deeper sense of denial we invoke when we say that a
woman is in denial about her unfaithful husband or a man about his
Denial is somehow built into
the culture of News Corp, more so than any normal company. It isn't
normal for the CEO to say,
as Murdoch said on July 15,
that his company had handled the crisis "extremely well in every way
possible," making just "minor mistakes," when the next day the executive
in charge (Rebekah Brooks) resigns, then a day later gets arrested,
followed by Murdoch's closest aide, Les Hinton, who also resigned in
hopes of reversing the tide of defeats.
Your top people don't quit for
minor mistakes, but no one in News Corp seemed troubled by that July 15
statement. The Wall Street Journal reported it without raising an
eyebrow. Murdoch was confronted with his "minor mistakes" quote in
Tuesday's parliamentary hearing but he turned down the chance to take it
back. Where does denial so massive come from?
Here's my little theory: News Corp
is not a news company at all, but a global media empire that employs its
newspapers – and in the US, Fox News – as a lobbying arm. The logic of
holding these "press" properties is to wield influence on behalf of the
rest of the (much bigger and more profitable) media business and also to
satisfy Murdoch's own power urges.
However, this fact, fairly obvious
to outside observers, is actually concealed from the company by its own
culture. So here we find the source for the river of denial that runs
through News Corp.
Fox News and the newspapers Murdoch
owns are described by News Corp, and understood by most who work there
as "normal" news organisations. But they aren't, really. What makes them
different is not that they have a more conservative take on the world –
that's the fiction in which opponents and supporters join – but rather:
news is not their first business. Wielding influence is.
Scaring politicians into going
along with News Corp's plans. Building up an atmosphere of fear and
paranoia, which then admits Rupert into the back door of 10 Downing
But none of these facts can be
admitted into company psychology, because the flag that its news-related
properties fly, the legend on the licence, doesn't say "lobbying arm of
the Murdoch empire." No. It says "First Amendment" or "Journalism" or
"Public Service" or "news and information."
In this sense the company is built
on a lie, but a necessary lie to preserve certain fictions that matter
to Murdoch and his heirs. And that, I believe, explains how it got
itself into this phone hacking mess. All the other lies follow from that
Strangely, I do not think that News
Corp people like Rebekah Brooks and James Murdoch are being insincere
when they pledge allegiance to the values of good journalism. On the
contrary, they believe that this is what their newspapers are all about.
And this is the sense in which denial is constitutive of the company, a
built-in feature that cannot be acknowledged by any of the major players
because self-annihilation would be the result.
Jay Rosen, associate
professor of journalism at New York University, is a leading figure
in the reform movement known as "public journalism," which calls on
the press to take a more active role in strengthening citizenship
and improving democracy. His book "What
Are Journalists For?" addresses
this topic. As a press critic and essayist, he has written about the
media and political issues for the Columbia Journalism Review, The
Nation, the New York Times, Salon, and Tikkun -- and almost daily at
Les Hinton, the close Rupert
Murdoch ally who was
forced out of his
role as the publisher of the Wall Street Journal thanks to the phone hacking
facing new calls from
two US senators for an investigation into his knowledge of phone hacking at
the News of the World.
Senators Barbara Boxer of
California and Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia demanded a new investigation
into Hinton on Wednesday, in light of recent revelations that the tabloid
may have hacked as many as 4,000 people. Hinton, the former chairman of News
International, told the British Parliament twice that phone hacking at the
company was limited to just one reporter who was arrested for phone hacking
in 2006. The senators
wrote to the Journal's parent company Dow Jones,
requesting an inquiry intowhether Hinton or
other senior Dow Jones executives knew about phone hacking at the parent
company's properties. Both are demanding assurance that "this kind of
misconduct has not occurred in the US" and that "senior executives at News
Corporation properties in our country were not aware of, or complicit in,
They also wanted to know if any
Dow Jones executives expressed concern about Hinton's hiring in 2007, in
light of his role at News International during the alleged phone hacking.
Hinton served as the chairman of News International from 1995 until 2007,
during which time the News of the World hacked the voice mailboxes of
celebrities, politicians and
murder victim Milly Dowler.
The tabloid also paid the legal fees for a News of the World reporter and
freelance private investigator who hacked aides to the royal family.
The new calls for an
investigation into Hinton are the latest developments in the News Corp.
scandal on this side of the Atlantic. The FBI is currently
investigating reports that News Corp. hacked the
voicemail accounts of 9/11 victims.
An excerpt from the
JILL LAWLESS - and
RAPHAEL G. SATTER July 20,
LONDON (AP) —
Murdoch's former legal adviser and a former editor contested
the testimony he gave to British lawmakers, saying Thursday he was
told years ago about an email that suggested the rot at his Sunday
tabloid was far more widespread than previously claimed.
Their statement could deal a blow to
the credibility of Rupert Murdoch's son as the family struggles to
limit the damage from a phone-hacking scandal that has already cost
the media empire one of its British tabloids, two top executives and
a billion-dollar bid for control of a satellite broadcaster.
Yard, which is still reeling from allegations that it turned
a blind eye to the scandal, was asked to investigate another
explosive claim: That journalists bribed officers to locate people
by tracking their cell phone signals.
The practice is known as "pinging"
because of the way cell phone signals bounce off relay towers as
they try to find reception. Jenny Jones, a member of the board that
oversees the Metropolitan Police Authority, called for the inquiry
into the alleged payoffs by journalists at Murdoch's now-defunct
News of the World.
James Murdoch, in a grilling by
lawmakers on Tuesday, batted away claims that he knew the full
extent of the illegal espionage at the News of the World when he
approved a massive payout in 2008 to soccer players' association
chief Gordon Taylor, one of the phone hacking victims.
Murdoch's News International had long
maintained that the eavesdropping was limited to a single rogue
reporter, Clive Goodman, and the private investigator he was working
with to break into voice mails of members of the royal household.
But an email uncovered during legal
proceedings seemed to cast doubt on that claim. It contained a
transcript of an illegally obtained conversation, drawn up by a
junior reporter and marked "for Neville" — an apparent reference to
the News of the World's chief reporter, Neville Thurlbeck.
Because it seemed to implicate others
in the hacking, the email had the potential to blow a hole through
News International's fiercely held contention that one reporter
alone had engaged in hacking. If Murdoch knew about the email — and
was aware of its implication — it would lend weight to the
suggestion that he'd approved the payoff in an effort to bury the
Murdoch told lawmakers he was not
aware of the email at the time, but in a statement late Thursday,
former News International legal manager Tom Crone and former News of
the World editor Colin Myler contradicted him.
"We would like to point out that
James Murdoch's recollection of what he was told when agreeing to
settle the Gordon Taylor litigation was mistaken," they said. "In
fact, we did inform him of the 'for Neville' email which had been
produced to us by Gordon Taylor's lawyers."
News International quickly fired back
a denial, saying James Murdoch stood by his statement to lawmakers.
Almost at the same time, it announced
it had fired yet another journalist in connection with the scandal —
identified in the British media as a former News of the World editor
who now works at its sister newspaper, The Sun.
The request for a pinging inquiry,
meanwhile, stems from an allegation made by the late Sean Hoare, a
former News of the World reporter who spoke to the New York Times
about skullduggery at the tabloid.
Hoare — who was fired in 2005 — said
officers were paid nearly $500 (300 pounds) per trace. The paper
cited a second unnamed former News of the World journalist as
corroborating Hoare's claim.
Hoare was found dead on Monday at his
home near London; police say the death is not suspicious.
Pinging joins a host of alleged media
misdeeds being put under the microscope as police, politicians, and
the public weigh allegations that journalists at Rupert Murdoch's
News of the World engaged in years of lawless behavior to get
scoops. Murdoch's News Corp. is trying to keep the damage from
spreading to its more lucrative U.S. holdings, including the Fox
network, 20th Century Fox and the Wall Street Journal.
What began in 2005 as a slow-burning
scandal over one reporter's efforts to spy on voice mails left on
the phones of Britain's royal household has exploded into a crisis
that has shaken Murdoch's media empire and led to resignations of
two of Scotland Yard's most senior officers.
British politicians have felt the
heat too, with the country's top two party leaders falling over each
other to distance themselves from papers they once both courted
Prime Minister David Cameron's former
communications director — Murdoch newspapers veteran Andy Coulson —
came under fresh scrutiny Thursday after it was reported that he did
not have a top-level security clearance, which spared him from the
most stringent type of vetting.
And there was further intrigue
injected into the scandal after Britain's Cabinet Office released
correspondence showing that a senior official believed he had had
his phone broken into as recently as last year, when Coulson was
already in government.
Although the issue had been covered
off-and-on over the years, almost exclusively by the Guardian,
allegations of illegal behavior at the News of the World have
received feverish attention since a July 4 report alleged that
someone at the tabloid hacked the phone of 13-year-old murder victim
Milly Dowler in 2002 while police were still searching for her.
The temperature cooled a bit on
Thursday, with Parliament closed for the first day of its summer
recess, but the investigation appeared to be intensifying.
London's Metropolitan Police said
Wednesday it was assigning 15 more officers to help the 45 already
involved in the investigation.
Since the latest phone hacking
allegations emerged, London's police chief and the head of its
antiterrorist operations have resigned. So have Rebekah Brooks,
chief executive of News International, which runs Murdoch's British
newspaper division, and Les Hinton, the publisher of the Wall Street
Journal who formerly headed News International. Murdoch has shut
down the 168-year-old News of the World, leaving 200 employees
looking for work, and abandoned his bid to win control of lucrative
British Sky Broadcasting.
Shutting News of the World apparently
will also cost Murdoch's surviving British newspapers their
exclusive access to British athletes ahead of the 2012 London
Team 2012, an initiative supporting
British Olympians, had signed up News International as its official
partner to help raise funds for athletes. But without the News of
the World, Team 2012 said News International can no longer meet its
contractual obligations, and it is looking for new media partners.
Robert Barr and Cassandra Vinograd
contributed to this report.
James Murdoch was accused on
Thursday of misleading Parliament about his knowledge of phone
hacking at the News of the World by the paper's former editor and
Colin Myler, the former
editor, and Tom Crone, the former lawyer, issued a statement on
Thursday contradicting one of Murdoch's key claims in his
testimony before Parliament
on Tuesday: that he had signed off on huge payments to footballer
Gordon Taylor without knowing why he was doing so.
Murdoch said that his lawyers
had simply advised him that News Corp. was likely to lose if the
Taylor lawsuit—which accused the paper of hacking his phone—went to
court, and that he had authorized the company to pay Taylor hundreds
of thousands of pounds as a way to end the suit, even though he did
not know why, exactly, News Corp. was in such a compromised
But Myler and Crone issued a
statement saying that they had shown Murdoch an email from Glenn
Mulcaire—the private investigator who was jailed for phone hacking
in 2006—to the paper's then-chief reporter, Neville Thurlbeck. The
email purportedly shows transcripts of 35 of Taylor's phone
messages—clear evidence of criminal activity. Murdoch denied having
known about the email in his testimony to Parliament.
"Just by way of clarification
relating to Tuesday's CMS Select Committee hearing, we would like to
point out that James Murdoch's recollection of what he was told when
agreeing to settle the Gordon Taylor litigation was mistaken," the
statement read. "In fact, we did inform him of the "for Neville"
email which had been produced to us by Gordon Taylor's lawyers."
Murdoch issued a statement
saying, "I stand behind my testimony to the Select Committee."
If Myler and Crone are proved
to be telling the truth, then their statement is deeply troubling
for Murdoch. At best, he will have been found to have forgotten key
evidence of serious, widespread criminality at a company he was in
charge of. At worst, he will have deliberately misled the House of
The U.S. Justice Department is
preparing subpoenas as part of preliminary investigations into News Corp.
relating to alleged foreign bribery and alleged hacking of voicemail of
Sept. 11 victims, according to a government official.
Web of Connections
Learn more about who's who and
how they're all connected in the scandal over allegations of
voice-mail interceptions and corrupt payments to police.
The issuance of such subpoenas, which
would broadly seek relevant information from the company, requires approval
by senior Justice Department leadership, which hasn't yet happened, the
The issuance of subpoenas would
represent an escalation of scrutiny on the New York-based media company.
While the company has sought to isolate the legal problems in the U.K., it
has been bracing for increased scrutiny from both the Justice Department and
the Securities and Exchange Commission, according to people familiar with
the company's strategy.
The Justice Department has said it is
looking into allegations that News Corp.'s now-defunct News of the World
weekly in the U.K. paid bribes to British police. It has been unclear
whether the Justice Department or the SEC have begun formal probes.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation
separately has begun an inquiry into whether News Corp. employees tried to
hack into voice mails of Sept. 11 victims, people familiar with the
early-stage probe have said.
A person close to News Corp. said the
preparation of subpoenas is "a fishing expedition with no evidence to
News Corp. owns The Wall Street
Commenting on the FBI inquiry, another
News Corp. spokeswoman said: "We have not seen any evidence to suggest there
was any hacking of 9/11 victim's phones, nor has anybody corroborated what
are clearly very serious allegations. The story arose when an unidentified
person speculated to the Daily Mirror about whether it happened. That paper
printed the anonymous speculation, which has since mushroomed in the broader
media with no substantiation."
The spokeswoman also said the company
hasn't seen any "indication of a connection or similarity between the
events, allegations and practices being investigated in the U.K. and News
Corp's U.S. properties."
News Corp. and its recently bolstered
legal team expect a possible broad investigation by the Justice Department
into whether the alleged bribes paid to British police violated the Foreign
Corrupt Practices Act, or FCPA, according to the people familiar with the
company's strategy. The law is typically used to pursue charges against
companies that bribe foreign officials to give them business contracts.
News Corp.'s team also is anticipating
a possible FCPA-related investigation by the SEC, the people said. The SEC
also could examine News Corp.'s prior disclosures, one of the people said.
By law, companies must adequately alert investors to potential litigation or
business pitfalls on the horizon.
A spokesman for the SEC declined to
The company's U.K. newspaper unit, News
International, has declined to comment on the alleged bribes, citing an
ongoing police investigation. Former News International chief executive
Rebekah Brooks said in testimony to Parliament Tuesday that she had "never
knowingly sanctioned a payment to a police officer."
U.K. police are conducting two parallel
investigations into News Corp.'s now-closed News of the World, which is at
the heart of the British scandal. One is related to allegations of illegal
voice-mail interception and was opened in January; the other stems from
allegations of police bribery. In addition, the company is facing a raft of
civil suits. The U.K. government, meanwhile, plans at least two public
For the Justice Department and the SEC
to pursue News Corp. in the U.S. for allegedly bribing British policemen,
the agencies would have to rely on a broad interpretation of the FCPA, legal
Another possible infraction
investigators could examine: whether any payments were improperly accounted
for in the company's books and records.
In recent days, News Corp. has hired an
expert in the FCPA, Mark Mendelsohn, to advise it, according to people
familiar with the matter.
Mr. Mendelsohn, a partner in the
Washington office of Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP, couldn't
be reached for comment.
Thomas Catan and Russell Adams contributed to this article.
Excerpt from the Horowitz Report on huffingtonpost.com July
Where I Stand on the News Corporation Scandal
As details of the scandal surrounding my company, News Corporation, have
emerged in recent days – including employees hacking into mobile phones and
bribing the police – my defense has been consistent: I had no idea what was
Now, I’m sure many of you are wondering, how could I, Rupert Murdoch, one of
the most powerful men in the world, have no idea what is going on? The
answer, my friends, is simple: I get all of my information from my own
newspapers. If you relied on News of the World, The Sun,
and The New York Post for your information, I can assure you that
you wouldn’t have a clue what was going on, either.
Some of you aren’t buying this argument. You maintain that a media
titan like me would get his information from sources beyond newspapers –
like TV, for example. Well, that’s true. But in my case, the
only TV I watch is the Fox News Channel. So not only do I not know
what is going on around me, I know nothing about the theory of evolution,
global warming, or President Obama’s birthplace.
If you still don’t believe that I know nothing, here’s a final piece of
evidence: I paid $500 million to acquire MySpace. Case closed.
Now that we’ve established that I know nothing, let me address some of the
allegations about News Corp. that have come up in recent days: first and
foremost, that our reporters have regularly bribed the police to obtain
information. I am shocked and appalled by this charge. News
Corporation has a longstanding zero tolerance policy regarding information,
both the getting of it and the publishing of it. Going forward, we
will be subjecting our employees to a series of random information tests.
Any employees found to be possessing even trace amounts of facts will be
Finally, it has come to my attention that several of my company’s tabloids
have featured pictures of women with their shirts off. I am as shocked
by this news as you are and I intend to launch a full investigation.
In closing, I want to assure you that I intend to make amends for any and
all of the wrongdoing perpetrated by employees of News Corp. in recent
years. And to that end, I have plan: I implore the British government to
let me own 100% of the satellite broadcasting giant B-Sky-B. I have
made some grievous mistakes with the media properties I already control, and
the only way I can think of to make things right is by controlling even
Want to Boycott Rupert Murdoch? Good Luck with That -
Murdoch’s US Media Holdings Are More Extensive Than You’d Think
- And Their International Holdings Are Amazing.
From articles by
on care2.com on July 18 2011 and
on July 13, 2011
Following a weekend
when former News International CEO
Rebekah Brooks was arrested and
questioned for 9 hours by British police,
and when the chief of Scotland Yard, Sir. Paul
Stephenson, resigned, US legislators are divided about
whether to conduct a congressional investigation into
any possible wrongdoing in Rupert Murdoch’s American
news organizations. On Meet the Press on
Sunday, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said
he would like to see an investigation, while Sen. Jim
DeMint (R-S.C.) countered that “We need to let law
enforcement work here… We need to handle our own
business for a change,” as reported in
Sen. DeMint might
want to keep in mind just how extensive Murdoch’s News
Corp.’s holdings are.
magazine has put together a “heavily abridged”
list illustrated below.
to try and attack the business savvy Murdoch where it would hurt
him most: his pocketbook. It's a good idea. It's also going to
be downright impossible for anyone who consumes media of any
kind in today's world.
A list of News Corp's
holdings are below. We publish this not to deter you from
punishing News Corp, but to help you better understand what it
means to boycott a major company in the modern, synergistic
world. As you read, consider that this list is heavily
Fox Broadcasting Company, Fox News Channel, Fox Kids Channel,
Fox Business Network, Fox Classics, Fox Sports Net, FX, the
National Geographic Channel, The Golf Channel, and TV Guide
Fox Sports Radio Network.
publishes JRR Tolkien, CS Lewis, Lemony Snicket, JG Ballard, and
Neil Gaiman)and Harper One (The Religious Branch) which
published A Purpose Driven Life, as well as
Zondervan Christian Publishing House.
TV Guide, The Weekly Standard, Maximum Golf,
The New York Post, Wall Street Journal, The
Times (UK), The Sun (UK), The Australian
(AU), The Herald Sun (AU), The Advertiser
Foxsports.com, Hulu (part ownership), Scout.com, The Daily.
Fox (Avatar, The Simpsons, Star Wars,
X-Men, Die Hard, Night at the Museum),
Fox Searchlight (Slumdog Millionaire, Juno,
127 Hours, Black Swan, Little Miss
Angeles Lakers, Colorado Rockies, Australia and New Zealand's
National Rugby League.
NOW A LIST OF ALL
book publishing company
Christian book publisher
- Inspirio –
religious gift production.
- Australia published by
- Papua New Guinea
- UK and Ireland
newspapers, published by subsidiaries of
- News Group
- Times Newspapers
- US newspapers and
New York Post
Dow Jones & Company
- Consumer Media
– global, real-time news and information
– provides business news and information
together with content delivery tools and
Dow Jones Indexes
– stock market indexes and indicators, including
Dow Jones Industrial
- Dow Jones
Financial Information Services – produces
databases, electronic media, newsletters,
conferences, directories, and other information
services on specialised markets and industry
Financial News – leading Dutch language
financial and economic news service.
Community Newspapers – 8 daily and 15 weekly
- STOXX (33%)-
joint venture with Deutsche Boerse and SWG Group for
the development and distribution of Dow Jones STOXX
(33%) – Russia's leading financial newspaper (joint
and Independent Media).
- The Timesledger
Newspapers of Queens, New York:
Times, Whitestone Times, Flushing Times, Fresh
Meadows Times, Little Neck Ledger, Jackson Heights
Times, Richmond Hill Times, Jamaica Times, Laurelton
Times, Queens Village Times, Astoria Times, Forest
Hills Ledger, Ridgewood Ledger, Howard Beach Times
Courier-Life Newspapers in Brooklyn
The Brooklyn Paper
- Caribbean Life
(Middletown, New York)
- Alpha Magazine
- Australian Country
- Australian Golf
- Australian Good
- Donna Hay
- Fast Fours
- InsideOut (Aust)
- Lifestyle Pools
- Live to Ride
- Overlander 4WD
- Modern Boating
- Modern Fishing
- Pure Health
- Super Food Ideas
- Truck Australia
- Truckin' Life
- twowheels scooter
- Vogue Entertaining
(UK Based Magazine)
Music and radio
- Nashe (50%)
- Best FM (50%)
News Corp agreed to
sell eight of its television stations to
Oak Hill Capital Partners
for approximately $1.1 billion as of 22 December 2007. The
stations are US
These stations, along with those already acquired by Oak Hill
that were formerly owned by
The New York Times Company,
formed the nucleus of Oak Hill's
Local TV LLC
- News Corp Europe
a broadcast television network in Bulgaria. They sold
this to CME in February 2010.
(12,5%), a broadcast television network in Romania, in
partnership with Ismar International NVkkkk
a broadcast television network in Serbia (49%). They
sold this to Antenna Group in January 2010
a Turkish terrestrial channel (56,5%) (formerly TGRT)
Imedi Media Holding
(100%), a Georgian radio and TV broadcaster.
- Radio Imedi
(9%), a terrestrial channel in Israel.
(100%), a terrestrial channel in Latvia
(100%), a terrestrial channel in Latvia
(100%), a free channel in Italy
British Sky Broadcasting,
United Kingdom & Ireland (39.1% holding). In practice, a
SKY Network TV,
New Zealand (44%)
Italian satellite TV service
Latin American satellite TV service
Brazilian satellite TV servive
(49.90%), Germany's largest pay TV provider
(20%), an Indian DTH HDTV service (in partnership with
(25%), Australia, a joint venture with
Consolidated Media Holdings
Italian Broadcast and Production Company (with 2 HDTV)
an Asian satellite TV service having 300 million viewers in
53 countries (it acquired
(two prominent south Indian networks)
(17.6%), satellite TV network with landing rights in Hong
Kong, and select provinces on Mainland China.
Cable TV channels owned
(in whole or part) and operated by News Corporation include:
Fox Business Network,
a business news channel.
a channel airing classic TV shows & movies
Fox Movie Channel,
an all-movie channel that airs commercial-free movies from
20th Century Fox's
Fox News Channel,
a 24-hour news & opinion channel
Fox Sports Net,
a chain of US regional
television networks broadcasting local sporting events
linked together by national sports news programming. Local
channels include "Fox
Sports Southwest", "Fox
Sports Detroit", etc. (some
affiliates are owned by
Fox College Sports,
a college sports network consisting of three regionally
aligned channels, mostly with archived Fox Sports Net
programs but also some live and original content.
- Fox Sports
Fox Soccer Channel,
a United States
and satellite network specializing mainly in soccer.
- Fox Soccer
Plus, a sister network to FSC, but including coverage of
other sports, most notably
Launched in 2010 after News Corporation picked up many
of the broadcast rights abandoned by
when it stopped broadcasting in the U.S.
- Fox Sports Middle
East – English language sports network airing in Middle
East countries including Bahrain, Egypt, Jordan, Kuwait,
Lebanon, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, UAE & Yemen.
- Fox Pan American
Sports (37.9%) – joint venture with Hicks, Muse, and
Tate & Furst.
a cable network broadcasting reruns of programming
previously shown on other channels, but recently creating
its own programming, including the
Big Ten Network,
cable and satellite channel dedicated to The
Big Ten Conference,
launched Aug 2007 (49%)
National Geographic Channel
(joint venture with National Geographic Magazine) 67%
- National Geographic
Channel International 75%
National Geographic Wild
(joint venture with National Geographic Magazine)
Fox International Channels,
domestic cable channels offering different formats of Fox
programming in over thirty countries worldwide.
- Middle &
- Fox Latin American
Channels – channels available in over 17 countries in
- LAPTV (60%) (Latin
American Pay Television) operates 8 cable movie channels
throughout South America excluding Brazil.
operates 5 cable movie channels in Brazil.
- Hathway Cable &
Datacom (22.2%), India's 2nd largest cable network
through 7 cities including Bangalore, Chennai, Delhi,
Mumbai & Pune
- Total TV (20%),
Pay TV platform with JV partner KOO's Group majority
owner (80%). News Corp also has a 20% interest in the
KOO's Group directly
Fox Interactive Media
– website with sports news, scores, statistics, video
and fantasy sports
(27%) – online video streaming site in partnership with
The Walt Disney Company.
- Flektor – provides
Web-based tools for photo and video editing and mashups.
Entertainment – Internet entertainment portal (Includes
Labs – web development incubator (Includes the sites
- Strategic Data
Corp – interactive advertising company which develops
technology to deliver targeted internet advertising.
– sports simulation and prediction website. Also
provides fantasy-style sports games to play.
– 'India's no. 1 Entertainment Portal'
- ROO Group Inc (5%
increasing to 10% with performance targets)
News Digital Media
- REA Group (60.7%)
(69.4%), Sky Italia also holds a 30.6% share
- atHome group,
operator of leading realestate websites in Luxembourg,
France, Belgium and Germany.
(51%),provider of office management tools for
realestate agents in Belgium.
(50%), News International holds the remaining 50%
Publications, owner of hotproperty.co.uk portal and
magazine titles 'Hot Property', 'Renting' and
ukpropertyshop.co.uk, most comprehensive UK estate
property websites in Australia and New Zealand.
home renovation and improvement website.
- Square Foot
Limited, Hong Kong's largest English Language property
magazine and website
– Holding co. of Inside DB, a Hong Kong lifestyle
(10%) Hosts of
- New Zealand
– Conditional access technology and personal digital video
recorders (PVRs) (49%)
- Timothy Coville
- ITE, publisher of
PlayStation and Mobile games, and interactive television
(UK) – Telephony provider for media companies, bought in
(UK) – provider of cheap-rate telephone calls, particularly
for customers of Sky Television. Bought outright in 1999.
– Mobile Entertainment/Mobile Handsets
News Outdoor Group
– Largest outdoor advertising company in Eastern Europe with
over 70,000 ads including billboards and bus shelters,
operating in Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Hungary, India,
Israel, Poland, Romania, Russia (96 cities), Turkey &
- Maximedia Israel
(50%) – Russia sign and marketing material manufacturer
- Kamera Acikhava
Reklamclik (?) – leading outdoor advertising company in
Australian Associated Press
(45%) – real time news service.
(50%) – worlds leading provider of sporting information and
statistical analysis (a JV with
Fox Sports Grill
(50%) – Upscale sports bar and restaurant with 7 locations –
Washington (U.S. state)|Washington;
Texas; San Diego, California; and
Georgia (U.S. state)|Georgia.
- Fox Sports
Skybox (70%) – Sports fan's Bar & Grill at
and 6 airport restaurants.
News America Marketing
(US) – (100%) – nation’s leading marketing services company,
products include a portfolio of in-store, home-delivered and
online media under the SmartSource brand.
(9%) – Largest Arab entertainment company owned by Saudi
Al-Waleed bin Talal
– iPad only newspaper delivered daily.
- Making Fun – social
game developer for making games for social networking sites,
smartphones, tablets and other devices.
COLUMBUS, Ohio — Under assault in
a phone hacking scandal, News Corp. has met a self-imposed deadline
for reporting its 2011 political contributions online.
The company's board approved a new
disclosure policy for its political giving in April after two
donations by Rupert Murdoch, the Australian mogul who controls the
company, raised concern among shareholders.
Murdoch gave $1 million to the
U.S. Chamber of Commerce and $1.25 million to the Republican
Governors Association. He said the RGA contribution was intended to
help Republican John Kasich (KAY'-sik), a former commentator on News
Corp.'s Fox News. Kasich won the governorship.
World Economic Forum,
Creative Commons Attribution License 2.0
Rupertgate Continues To Grow As Calls For
U.S. Investigations Begin
Posted: 12 Jul 2011 04:00
Jon Stewart and
The Daily Show, in the middle section of the above video, did an expose
on the Rupertgate phone-hacking scandal that's engulfing Murdoch and is
beginning to bleed into his American operations. A report is circulating
that 9/11 families were targeted as well.
answer may be yes: A
report in a rival British tabloid the Daily
Mirror makes an allegation that, if
proven true, many Americans will find just as revolting as the phone
hacking of 13-year-old morder victim Milly Dowler, maybe even more
Over the last few days, many people --
-- have asked variations of this question: Will the Rupert
Murdoch/News of the World phone hacking scandal, which some are
reach us here in America, where the modern-day Citizen Kane's
holdings including the Fox TV and movie empire as well as the Wall
Street Journal and the New York Post.
Did Murdoch's London-based News
of the World contact a New York City private investigator about
phone hacking American victims of the 9/11 attacks? The pair
chatted behind closed doors as a former New York cop made the 9/11
hacking claim. He alleged he was contacted by News of the World
journalists who said they would pay him to retrieve the private
phone records of the dead. Now working as a private
investigator, the ex-officer claimed reporters wanted the victim’s
phone numbers and details of the calls they had made and received in
the days leading up to the atrocity. A source said: “This
investigator is used by a lot of journalists in America and he
recently told me that he was asked to hack into the 9/11 victims’
private phone data. He said that the journalists asked him to access
records showing the calls that had been made to and from the mobile
phones belonging to the victims and their relatives. “His
presumption was that they wanted the information so they could hack
into the relevant voicemails, just like it has been shown they have
done in the UK. The PI said he had to turn the job down. He knew how
insensitive such research would be, and how bad it would look."
Indeed. That said, this article raises more questions than it
answers, and I would note a couple of major caveats. One, the story
is pretty thinly sourced, as we say in the business. Two, the Mirror
is a non-Murdoch-owned British tabloid driven by the same kind of
competitive pressures that led to this whole scandal in the first
But I think the significance is this: Given the scandal in the
UK, the American activities of Murdoch-controlled journalists -- at
both his British publications and his U.S. enterprises -- deserve
closer scrutiny, including from law enforcement. Maybe Murdoch's
journalists' alleged illegal activities stopped at the far shores of
the Atlantic, but we should find out for sure.
asked the question a few times as C&L has covered this story. Have Fox
News and/or other Murdoch entities applied the same phone-hacking skills
to the U.S.? Rupert Murdoch may be heading
off to answer questions before Parliament.
Corp. chairman and CEO Rupert Murdoch has been asked to appear
before British Parliament to answer question about his company's
phone hacking scandal, as well as his son James and News
International chief executive Rebekah Brooks.
culture, media and sport select committee, which has published
critical reports on the affair, has written to the trio of
executives inviting them to appear, the
News International said in a
statement: "We have been made aware of the request from the CMS
select committee to interview senior executives and will cooperate.
We await the formal invitation."
CREW is demanding
an investigation into Murdoch's stateside activities.
Ellen at Newshounds
has six good reasons to demand an investigation into the company's
activities here. And you can go to
Media Matters for a petition
demanding such action.
Scandal Woes Mount for Murdoch’s Wall Street
revelation yesterday that Britain’s former Prime Minister, Gordon
Brown, alleged that his personal information was obtained illegally
by Rupert Murdoch’s Sunday Times only intensifies the
pressure on Les Hinton, Murdoch’s longtime confidant and publisher
of the Wall Street Journal.
Hinton was already
for the phone hacking scandal because he oversaw Murdoch’s News
of The World when the tabloid appears to have engaged in
rampant phone hacking. Worse, Hinton oversaw an internal
investigation into the matter that James Murdoch now
"wrongly maintained that these issues were confined to one reporter."
with the Brown
allegations come additional woes:
Brown accused the paper of
getting his bank details, saying he was "genuinely shocked" by
The allegations widen the scandal that brought down
Britain's best-selling newspaper, the News of the World, to
other newspapers also owned by Murdoch's News International
Brown expressed dismay at the allegations Monday night and
has given investigators "all relevant evidence" he has about the
matter, according to a statement from his office.
"The family has been shocked by the level of criminality
and the unethical means by which personal details have been
obtained," the statement said. "The matter is in police hands."
Brown alleges the Sunday Times’ sting took place over a
Sunday Times during key portions of that span?
the scandal took off, their stock price has been failing so Murdoch
bought back a ton of shares:
Rupert Murdoch's $5bn News Corp buyback halts
The Guardian publishes a very good op-ed on
the media and its corrupt, elitist purposes:
This media is corrupt – we need a Hippocratic oath
job is to hold power to account. Instead, most of the profession
simply ventriloquises the concerns of the elite.
Murdoch now finished in the UK? As the
pursuit of Gordon Brown by the Sunday Times
and the Sun blows the hacking
scandal into new corners of the old man's empire, this story begins
to feel like the crumbling of the Berlin Wall. The naked attempt to
destroy Brown by any means, including hacking the medical files of
his sick baby son, means that there is no obvious limit to the
The papers cannot announce that
their purpose is to ventriloquise the concerns of multimillionaires;
they must present themselves as the voice of the people. The Sun,
the Mail and the Express claim to represent the interests of the
working man and woman. These interests turn out to be identical to
those of the men who own the papers.
So the rightwing papers run endless exposures of benefit
cheats, yet say scarcely a word about the corporate tax cheats. They
savage the trade unions and excoriate the BBC. They lambast the
regulations that restrain corporate power. They school us in the
extrinsic values – the worship of power, money, image and fame –
which advertisers love but which make this a shallower, more selfish
country. Most of them deceive their readers about the causes of
climate change. These are not the obsessions of working people. They
are the obsessions thrust upon them by the multimillionaires who own
The corporate media is a gigantic astroturfing
operation: a fake grassroots crusade serving elite interests. In
this respect the media companies resemble the
Tea Party movement,
which claims to be a spontaneous rising of blue-collar Americans
against the elite but was founded with the help of the billionaire
Koch brothers and promoted by Murdoch's Fox News.Journalism's
primary purpose is to hold power to account. This purpose has been
perfectly inverted. Columnists and bloggers are employed as the
enforcers of corporate power, denouncing people who criticise its
interests, stamping on new ideas, bullying the powerless. The press
barons allowed governments occasionally to promote the interests of
the poor, but never to hamper the interests of the rich. They also
sought to discipline the rest of the media. The BBC, over the last
30 years, became a shadow of the gutsy broadcaster it was, and now
treats big business with cringing deference.
Stain From Tabloids Rubs Off on a Cozy Scotland Yard
July 16, 2011
LONDON — For nearly four years they lay piled in a Scotland Yard
evidence room, six overstuffed plastic bags gathering dust and little else.
Reuters Tv/Reuters -
John Yates of the Metropolitan Police testified last week.
Inside was a treasure-trove of evidence: 11,000 pages of handwritten
notes listing nearly 4,000 celebrities, politicians, sports stars,
police officials and victims of crime whose phones may have been
hacked by The News of the World, a now defunct British tabloid
Yet from August 2006, when the
items were seized, until the autumn of 2010, no one at the
Metropolitan Police Service, commonly referred to as Scotland Yard,
bothered to sort through all the material and catalog every page,
according to former and current senior police officials.
During that same time, senior Scotland Yard officials assured
Parliament, judges, lawyers, potential hacking victims, the news
media and the public that there was no evidence of widespread
hacking by the tabloid. They steadfastly maintained that their
original inquiry, which led to the conviction of one reporter and
one private investigator, had put an end to what they called an
After the past week, that assertion has been reduced to
tatters, torn apart by a spectacular avalanche of contradictory
evidence, admissions by News International executives that hacking
was more widespread, and a reversal by police officials who now
admit to mishandling the case.
Assistant Commissioner John Yates of the Metropolitan Police
Service publicly acknowledged that he had not actually gone through
the evidence. “I’m not going to go down and look at bin bags,” Mr.
Yates said, using the British term for trash bags.
At best, former Scotland Yard senior officers acknowledged in
interviews, the police have been lazy, incompetent and too cozy with
the people they should have regarded as suspects. At worst, they
said, some officers might be guilty of crimes themselves.
“It’s embarrassing and it’s tragic,” said a retired Scotland
Yard veteran. “This has badly damaged the reputation of a really
good investigative organization. And there is a major crisis now in
the leadership of the Yard.”
The testimony and new evidence that emerged last week, as well
as interviews with current and former officials, indicate that the
police agency and News International, the British subsidiary of
and the publisher of The News of the World, became so intertwined
that they wound up sharing the goal of containing the investigation.
Members of Parliament said in interviews that they were
troubled by a “revolving door” between the police and News
International, which included a former top editor at The News of the
World at the time of the hacking who went on to work as a media
strategist for Scotland Yard.
On Friday, The New York Times learned that the former editor,
Neil Wallis, was reporting back to News International while he was
working for the police on the hacking case.
Executives and others at the company also enjoyed close social
ties to Scotland Yard’s top officials. Since the hacking scandal
began in 2006, Mr. Yates and others regularly dined with editors
from News International papers, records show. Sir Paul Stephenson,
the Metropolitan Police commissioner, met for lunch or dinner 18
times with company executives and editors during the investigation,
including eight occasions with Mr. Wallis while he was still working
at The News of the World.
Senior police officials declined several requests to be
interviewed for this article.
The police have continually asserted that the original
investigation was limited because the counterterrorism unit, which
was in charge of the case, was preoccupied with more pressing
demands. At the parliamentary committee hearing last week, the three
officials said they were working on 70 terrorist investigations.
Yet the Metropolitan Police unit that deals with special
crimes, which had more resources and time available, could have
taken over the case, said four former senior investigators. One
called the argument that the department did not have enough
resources “utter nonsense.”
investigator said officials saw the inquiry as being in “safe hands”
at the counterterrorism unit.
Interviews with current and former officials show that instead of
examining all the evidence, investigators primarily limited their
inquiry to 36 names that the private investigator, Glenn Mulcaire,
mentioned in one list.
As a result, Scotland Yard notified only a small number of the
people whose phones were hacked by The News of the World. Other
people who suspected foul play had to approach the police to see if
their names were in Mr. Mulcaire’s files.
“It’s one thing to decide not to investigate,” said Jeremy
Reed, one of the lawyers who represents numerous phone-hacking
victims. “But it’s quite another thing not to tell the victims.
That’s just mind-blowing.”
Among the possible victims was former Prime Minister Gordon
Brown, who asked the police last year to look into suspicions that
his phones were hacked. In response, Scotland Yard sent him a form
letter saying it was unclear whether the tabloid had eavesdropped on
his conversations, people with knowledge of the request said.
The police assigned a new team to the hacking allegations last
September after The New York Times published a magazine article that
showed that the practice was far more widespread and raised
questions about Scotland Yard’s handling of the case.
Shortly after, the police finally reopened those “bin bags.”
Now, the police are enduring the painstaking and humiliating
exercise of notifying nearly 4,000 angry people listed in the
documents that they may have been targets of what now appears to be
industrial-strength hacking by The News of the World. The chore is
likely to take years.
A Series of Inquiries
Scotland Yard’s new criminal inquiry, dubbed Operation
Weeting, has led to the arrests of a total of nine reporters and
editors, with more expected. And the police have opened another
inquiry into allegations that some officers were paid for
confidential information by reporters at News of the World and
The Metropolitan Police itself is now the subject of a
judicial inquiry into what went wrong with their initial case, as
well as into the ties between the department’s top officers and
executives and reporters for News International.
At a parliamentary committee hearing last week, three current
and former officials who ran the case were openly mocked. One member
of Parliament dubbed an investigator “more Clouseau than Colombo.”
At the hearing, the senior investigator in charge of the
day-to- day inquiry, Peter Clarke, blamed The News of the World’s
“complete lack of cooperation” for the shortcomings in the
department’s initial investigation.
While editors were not sharing any information, they were
frequently breaking bread with police officers. Andy Hayman, who as
head of the counterterrorism unit was running the investigation,
also attended four dinners, lunches and receptions with News of the
World editors, including a dinner on April 25, 2006, while his
officers were gathering evidence in the case, records show. He told
Parliament he never discussed the investigation with editors.
Mr. Hayman left the Metropolitan Police in December 2007 and
was soon hired to write a column for The Sunday Times, a News
International paper. He defended the inquiry that he led, writing in
his column in July 2009 that his detectives had “left no stone
Three months later, Mr. Wallis, the former deputy editor of
The News of the World, was hired by Scotland Yard to provide
strategic media advice on phone-hacking matters to the police
commissioner, among others. Scotland Yard confirmed last week that
the commissioner, Sir Paul, had personally approved nearly $40,000
in payments to Mr. Wallis for his work.
But when Mr. Wallis was interviewed last April by a New York
Times reporter working on a story about the hacking, he did not
disclose his new media role at Scotland Yard. In the interview, Mr.
Wallis defended both the newspaper and the vigor of Scotland Yard’s
A person familiar with the hacking investigation said
on Friday that Mr. Wallis had also informed Rebekah Brooks about The
New York Times’s reporting. Ms. Brooks, who resigned on Friday as
chief executive officer of News International, has maintained that
she was unaware of the hacking.
International spokeswoman said the company was reviewing whether it had paid Mr.
Wallis at the same time.
It is unclear whether Scotland Yard knew about Mr. Wallis’s
activities. While The New York Times was working on its article last
year, Scotland Yard was refusing to answer most of the detailed
questions that The Times submitted to it in a freedom of information
Scotland Yard did not reveal that Mr. Wallis had worked for
them for a year until Thursday night, about 10 hours after he was
arrested at his west London home in connection with phone hacking.
“This is stunning,” a senior Scotland Yard official who
retired within the past few years said when informed about Mr.
Wallis’ secret dual role. “It appears to be collusion. It has left a
terrible odor around the Yard.”
Mr. Wallis did not return calls seeking comment.
He had worked as second in command at the tabloid under Andy
Coulson, who left the paper in 2007 after the private investigator
and the reporter were found guilty of hacking into the phones of
members of the royal family and their staff.
Shortly after, Mr. Coulson was hired by the Conservative Party
to lead its communications team. Last year, David Cameron brought
Mr. Coulson to 10 Downing Street when he became prime minister. But
Mr. Coulson could never escape the glare of the hacking controversy.
Once Scotland Yard decided to reopen the case, he resigned from the
post and was arrested on July 8.
It was not until last autumn that the police were forced to
confront their own mistakes. By then, they were facing an escalating
stream of requests by people who suspected that their phones might
have been hacked. Two dozen people had also brought civil cases
against News International, which was compelling the police to
release information from Mr. Mulcaire’s files.
The documents were seized on Aug. 8, 2006, from Mr. Mulcaire’s
home in Cheam, south of London. Mr. Mulcaire, a 40-year-old former
soccer player whose nickname was “The Trigger,” was nothing if not a
meticulous note-keeper. On each page of the 11,000 documents, in the
upper-left-hand corner, he wrote the name of the reporter or editor
whom he was helping to hack phones.
Also seized from his home was “a target list” of the names of
a total of eight members of the royal family and the household
staff, and 28 others, which Scotland Yard’s investigators used as
their first road map of Mr. Mulcaire’s activities.
‘A Mutual Trust’
From the beginning, Scotland Yard investigators treated The
News of the World with deference, searching a single desk in its
newsroom and counting on the staff’s future cooperation. “A mutual
trust” is how one police investigator described the relationship.
Leaders of the Metropolitan police decided not to pursue a
wide-ranging “cleanup of the British media,” as one senior
investigator put it. Mr. Hayman, the investigator in charge, said in
testimony before Parliament last Tuesday that the inquiry was viewed
as “not a big deal” at the time.
The police charged only Mr. Mulcaire and the royal affairs
reporter, Clive Goodman. When the case was done, the evidence went
into plastic bags in a storage locker, several officials said. It
was occasionally reviewed but a complete accounting would not be
done until late 2010.
And yet as recently as last year, Mr. Yates told two
parliamentary committees that a full accounting of all the evidence
had been done.
“It is important to recognize that our inquires showed that in
the vast majority of cases there was insufficient evidence to show
that taping had actually been achieved,” Mr. Yates said on July 9,
Mr. Yates said investigators presumed that the
material in the files was for legitimate purposes since it
was the job of both Mr. Mulcaire and Mr. Goodman “to gather
personal data about high-profile figures.”
numerous occasions Mr. Yates assured the public that all those affected had been
He said the police had “taken all proper steps to
ensure that where we have evidence that people have been the
subject of any form of phone tapping, or that there is any
suspicion that they might have been, that they have been
The parliamentary committees declined to pursue the
In the fall of 2006, Sir Ian Blair, then the police
commissioner, had the option of assigning the case to the
Specialist Crime Directorate, the division that handles
homicides, robberies and the like. It had 3,500 detectives
at its disposal and could have reviewed every document,
several former officials said.
The man leading the unit, Tarique Ghaffur, was known
among his colleagues for refusing to toe the line. Mr.
Ghaffur had led an internal inquiry into the police
harassment of a prominent black activist and concluded that
the man had been the victim of “unreasonable targeting by
It was not until July 2009, three years after the
evidence was seized, that Mr. Yates ordered some of the
names in Mr. Mulcaire’s files to be put into a database,
former officials said. But it fell far short of a complete
accounting, they said.
In one instance, the police thwarted a deeper look at
their handling of the evidence.
Last autumn, four people, including John Prescott, the
former deputy prime minister, and Brian Paddick, a former
senior police official, sought a judicial review to
determine why Scotland Yard had not notified all the hacking
In response, lawyers for the police claimed that none
of the four plaintiffs’ phones had been accessed.
Last February, a judge ruled against going forward
with an inquiry. Within days, several plaintiffs received
word from the police that their phones might have been
“The court was misled,” said Tamsin Allen, who is
representing the defendants. “It was pretty outrageous.”
A judge recently decided to open a new review of why
Scotland Yard did not notify everyone in Mr. Mulcaire’s
“I still don’t think we know the extent of what the
police did and did not do because we are only about half-way
down into the murky pond,” said Chris Bryant, a Labour
member of Parliament who is one of the four plaintiffs who
applied for the judicial review.
A Toxic Atmosphere
Current and former officials said that shortly after
Scotland Yard began looking into the hacking, five senior
police investigators discovered that their own phones might
have been broken into by The News of the World.
At last week’s hearing in Parliament, Mr. Hayman, one
of the five, denied knowing if his phone had been hacked.
So far, only 170 phone-hacking victims have been
A second police operation is now trying to determine
how many officers were paid for information from journalists
working at The News of the World and elsewhere. One of the
challenges, a senior officer said, was that the journalists’
records contained pseudonyms instead of the officers’ names.
There is suspicion that some pseudonyms were made up by
reporters to pocket cash from their editors, the officer
The atmosphere at Scotland Yard has become toxic.
“Everyone is rowing for the shore,” said a former senior
Scotland Yard official. “Everyone is distancing themselves
from this mess.”
Sue Akers, who is leading both police inquiries, said
the department faced a deep challenge to repair its
“I think it is everybody’s analysis that confidence
has been damaged,” Ms. Akers told Parliament last week. “But
I am confident that we have got an excellent team who are
working tirelessly to get this right.”
She added: “I hope that I do not have to come back
here in five years’ time to explain why we failed.”
anything-goes approach has spread through journalism like a contagion. Now
it threatens to undermine the influence he so covets.
The hacking scandal currently
shaking Rupert Murdoch’s empire will surprise only those who
have willfully blinded themselves to that empire’s pernicious
influence on journalism in the English-speaking world. Too many
of us have winked in amusement at the salaciousness without
considering the larger corruption of journalism and politics
promulgated by Murdoch Culture on both sides of the Atlantic.
The facts of the case are
astonishing in their scope. Thousands of private phone messages
hacked, presumably by people affiliated with the Murdoch-owned
News of the World newspaper, with the violated parties
ranging from Prince William and actor Hugh Grant to murder
victims and families of soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.
The arrest of Andy Coulson, former press chief to Prime Minister
David Cameron, for his role in the scandal during his tenure as
the paper’s editor. The arrest (for the second time) of Clive
Goodman, the paper’s former royals editor. The shocking July 7
announcement that the paper would cease publication three days
later, putting hundreds of employees out of work. Murdoch’s bid
to acquire full control of cable-news company BSkyB placed in
jeopardy. Allegations of bribery, wiretapping, and other forms
of lawbreaking—not to mention the charge that emails were
deleted by the millions in order to thwart Scotland Yard’s
All of this surrounding a man
and a media empire with no serious rivals for political
influence in Britain—especially, but not exclusively, among the
conservative Tories who currently run the country. Almost every
prime minister since the Harold Wilson era of the 1960s and ’70s
has paid obeisance to Murdoch and his unmatched power. When
Murdoch threw his annual London summer party for the United
Kingdom’s political, journalistic, and social elite at the
Orangery in Kensington Gardens on June 16, Prime Minister
Cameron and his wife, Sam, were there, as were Labour leader Ed
Miliband and assorted other cabinet ministers.
Murdoch associates, present and
former—and his biographers—have said that one of his greatest
long-term ambitions has been to replicate that political and
cultural power in the United States. For a long time his vehicle
was the New York Post—not profitable, but useful for
increasing his eminence and working a wholesale change not only
in American journalism but in the broader culture as well. Page
Six, emblematic in its carelessness about accuracy or truth or
context—but oh-so-readable—became the model for the
gossipization of an American press previously resistant to even
considering publishing its like. (Murdoch accomplished a similar
debasement of the airwaves in the 1990s with the—tame by today’s
far-lower standards—tabloid television show Hard Copy.)
Then came the unfair and
imbalanced politicized “news” of the Fox News Channel—showing
(again) Murdoch’s genius at building an empire on the basis of
an ever-descending lowest journalistic denominator. It, too,
rests on a foundation that has little or nothing to do with the
best traditions and values of real reporting and responsible
journalism: the best obtainable version of the truth. In place
of this journalistic ideal, the enduring Murdoch ethic
substitutes gossip, sensationalism, and manufactured
And finally, in 2007 The
Wall Street Journal’s squabbling family owners succumbed to
his acumen, willpower, and money, fulfilling Murdoch’s dream of
owning an American newspaper to match the influence and prestige
of his U.K. holding, The Times of London—one that really
mattered, at the topmost tier of journalism.
Between the Post, Fox
News, and the Journal, it’s hard to think of any other
individual who has had a greater impact on American political
and media culture in the past half century.
But now the empire is shaking,
and there’s no telling when it will stop. My conversations with
British journalists and politicians—all of them insistent on
speaking anonymously to protect themselves from retribution by
the still-enormously powerful mogul—make evident that the
shuttering of News of the World, and the official
inquiries announced by the British government, are the
beginning, not the end, of the seismic event.
News International, the
British arm of Murdoch’s media empire, “has always worked on the
principle of omertà: ‘Do not say anything to anybody
outside the family, and we will look after you,’ ” notes a
former Murdoch editor who knows the system well. “Now they are
hanging people out to dry. The moment you do that, the omertà
is gone, and people are going to talk. It looks like a circular
News of the World was always Murdoch’s “baby,” one of the
largest newspapers in the English-speaking world, with 2.6
million readers. As anyone in the business will tell you, the
standards and culture of a journalistic institution are set from
the top down, by its owner, publisher, and top editors.
Reporters and editors do not routinely break the law, bribe
policemen, wiretap, and generally conduct themselves like thugs
unless it is a matter of recognized and understood policy.
Private detectives and phone hackers do not become the primary
sources of a newspaper’s information without the tacit knowledge
and approval of the people at the top, all the more so in the
case of newspapers owned by Rupert Murdoch, according to those
who know him best.
As one of his former top
executives—once a close aide—told me, “This scandal and all its
implications could not have happened anywhere else. Only in
Murdoch’s orbit. The hacking at News of the World was
done on an industrial scale. More than anyone, Murdoch invented
and established this culture in the newsroom, where you do
whatever it takes to get the story, take no prisoners, destroy
the competition, and the end will justify the means.”
“In the end, what you sow
is what you reap,” said this same executive. “Now Murdoch is a
victim of the culture that he created. It is a logical
conclusion, and it is his people at the top who encouraged
lawbreaking and hacking phones and condoned it.”
Could Murdoch eventually be
criminally charged? He has always surrounded himself with
trusted subordinates and family members, so perhaps it is
unlikely. Though Murdoch has strenuously denied any knowledge at
all of the hacking and bribery, it’s hard to believe that his
top deputies at the paper didn’t think they had a green light
from him to use such untraditional reportorial methods.
Investigators are already assembling voluminous records that
demonstrate the systemic lawbreaking at News of the World,
and Scotland Yard seems to believe what was happening in the
newsroom was endemic at the highest levels at the paper and
evident within the corporate structure. Checks have been found
showing tens of thousands of dollars of payments at a time.
For this reporter, it is
impossible not to consider these facts through the prism of
Watergate. When Bob Woodward and I came up against difficult
ethical questions, such as whether to approach grand jurors for
information (which we did, and perhaps shouldn’t have), we
sought executive editor Ben Bradlee’s counsel, and he in turn
called in the company lawyers, who gave the go-ahead and
outlined the legal issues in full. Publisher Katharine Graham
was informed. Likewise, Bradlee was aware when I obtained
private telephone and credit-card records of one of the
All institutions have lapses,
even great ones, especially by individual rogue
employees—famously in recent years at The Washington Post,
The New York Times, and the three original TV networks. But
can anyone who knows and understands the journalistic process
imagine the kind of tactics regularly employed by the Murdoch
press, especially at News of the World, being condoned at
the Post or the Times?
And then there’s the other
inevitable Watergate comparison. The circumstances of the
alleged lawbreaking within News Corp. suggest more than a
passing resemblance to Richard Nixon presiding over a criminal
conspiracy in which he insulated himself from specific knowledge
of numerous individual criminal acts while being himself
responsible for and authorizing general policies that routinely
resulted in lawbreaking and unconstitutional conduct. Not to
mention his role in the cover-up. It will remain for British
authorities and, presumably, disgusted and/or legally squeezed
News Corp. executives and editors to reveal exactly where the
rot came from at News of the World, and whether Rupert
Murdoch enabled, approved, or opposed the obvious corruption
that infected his underlings.
None of this is to deny
Murdoch’s competitive genius, his superior understanding of the
modern media marketplace, or his dead-on reading of popular
culture. He has made occasionally dull newspapers fun to read
and TV news broadcasts fun to watch, and few of us would deny
there are days when we love it. He’s been at his best when he’s
come in from the outside: starting Sky News, which shook up a
complacent British broadcasting establishment; contradicting
conventional American media wisdom that a fourth TV network
(Fox) could never get off the ground; reducing the power of
Britain’s printing trade unions that were exercising a
stranglehold on the U.K. press.
But Murdoch and his global
media empire have a lot to answer for. He has not merely
encouraged the metastasis of cutthroat tabloid journalism on
both sides of the Atlantic. But perhaps just as troubling,
authorities in Britain may respond to popular outrage at the
scandal by imposing the kind of regulations that cannot help but
undermine a truly free press.
The events of recent days
are a watershed for Britain, for the United States, and for
Rupert Murdoch. Tabloid journalism—and our tabloid culture—may
never be the same.
Bernstein’s most recent
book is A Woman in Charge: The Life of Hillary Rodham Clinton.
Excerpt from an article by
Nakashima at huffingtonpost.com on July 7, 2011
News Of The
World Closure Points To Murdoch Savvy
LOS ANGELES — Rupert
Murdoch's decision to close the 168-year-old weekly British tabloid at
the center of a phone-hacking scandal is an example of what the
controlling shareholder of News Corp. does best – seize the news agenda,
and when necessary, cut his losses.
He's also got his
eye on a much bigger prize.
Analysts say the
surprisingly bold move to shutter News of the World, a financial
pipsqueak, is the best possible way to stem the flow of damaging
headlines at rival newspapers and clear regulatory hurdles that
stand in the way of New Corp.s' pending multi-billion-dollar
acquisition of British Sky Broadcasting, a cash cow that will boost
earnings of the media giant.
News of the World,
accused of hacking into the phones of regular citizens, is "a drop
in the bucket" compared to News Corp.'s overall $46 billion market
capitalization, said Collins Stewart analyst Thomas Eagan.
He pegged the
tabloid's value at an optimistic $650 million, or 25 cents per
share. That's far less than the 70 cents that News Corp. shares have
fallen since Wednesday when it was revealed the tabloid hacked into
the voicemail of a murdered girl, potentially harming a police
investigation, and jeopardizing the company's proposed takeover of
"I think it
assuages some of the concern over ongoing problems at `News of the
World,'" Eagan said. "It's unclear what it means for the actual
(BSkyB) deal approval. But I would think that it would tend to
assuage some of the concern."
newspaper amid an industry-wide decline in print advertising revenue
and increasing its stake in a profitable and expanding pay TV
company will actually improve News Corp.'s profitability.
Most have a "buy"
rating on the shares, thanks in part to an improving TV ad market,
the recent decision to sell off money-losing social network Myspace,
and its thriving cable channels such as Fox News.
Its TV and movie
businesses accounted for practically all of the company's $1.06
billion in operating profits in the third quarter through March. The
publishing division containing newspapers contributed $36 million,
or less than 3 percent of the total, while Myspace and related
Internet businesses lost $165 million.
News Corp. shares closed
down just 4 cents at $17.43 on Thursday after being up most of the day
following the announcement of the paper's closure.
"At some point
when the smoke clears, we're optimistic that investors will
ultimately return to analyzing News Corp. on the merits of its high
quality media business, which first and foremost include its TV
businesses," said Barclays Capital analyst Anthony DiClemente.
government on June 30 already gave its qualified approval, allowing
News Corp. to purchase the 61 percent of BSkyB that it doesn't
already own, on the condition it spins off Sky News as a separate
News Corp. made an
initial offer of 700 pence per share to buy the 61 percent of the
shares it doesn't already hold, valuing BSkyB at 12.3 billion pounds
News Corp. may have to go as high as 900 pence per share to persuade
shareholders to sell out.
At the time of the
qualified approval, the tabloid's headline-grabbing hacks appeared
to be limited to celebrities and politicians, to whom it was
prepared to pay compensation.
sentiment was inflamed anew after it was revealed this week that the
paper's targets included missing children, the relatives of soldiers
slain in Afghanistan and the families of victims of London's 2005
prompted the U.K. media regulatory body, The Office of
Communications, to release an unusual statement on Thursday,
confirming that "it has a duty to be satisfied on an ongoing basis
that the holder of a broadcasting license is `fit and proper.'"
into whether News Corp. would pass this subjective standard of
propriety was seen as potentially derailing Murdoch's BSkyB bid.
"You don't even
want that question being posed if you're a media business do you?"
said Louise Cooper, a markets analyst at London-based BGC Partners.
"This is, to me, Murdoch taking back control."
Analysts see the
BSkyB deal approval being delayed until at least September, as
Culture Minister Jeremy Hunt is not expected to give his final
go-ahead before the U.K. Parliament goes into recess on July 18.
Despite the public
outcry, many analysts think Britain will still sanction the
takeover, since officials have already said that threats to
competition will be resolved with Sky News' spin-off.
Excerpt from an
article at alternet.org by
Adele M. Stan on July 6,
One of Murdoch's
UK papers is in trouble over hacking private cell phones, including
one belonging to a murder victim--and some familiar US faces may be
part of the coverup.
involving phone-hacking by a right-wing newspaper tabloid owned by
Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation is threatening the administration
British Prime Minister David Cameron.
Now the scandal is boomeranging back to New York, engulfing the top
executive at the largest-circulation newspaper in the United States,
the Wall Street Journal.
To clean up some
of the mess, Murdoch has called upon the talents of former Bush
administration Assistant Attorney General Viet Dinh, whose views on
privacy are enshrined in the U.S.A. PATRIOT Act, and Joel Klein, New
York Mayor Michael Bloomberg's union-bashing former schools chief,
known for his phony claims of test-score
Jewel and the Screaming Slime
mogul likes to crown his empire with a jewel, and Rupert Murdoch is
no exception. Having made a fortune acquiring screaming tabloids and
making them scream louder, and acquiring a media company, Fox, now
known for its ideological rabble-rousing, Murdoch wanted to buy his
News Corp a little respectability. And so, in 2007, he purchased Dow
Jones and its Wall Street Journal, the pinstriped,
grey-at-the temples, oxford-shod media presence of the global
As CEO of the Dow
Jones Company, of which WSJ is a part, Murdoch installed
Les Hinton, who had previously run News Corp's British newspaper
empire, known as News International. Now it appears that Hinton may
have won his prize spot for his part in an apparent coverup of a
multi-year phone-hacking operation that likely involved an editor
who went on to serve as the prime minister's spokesperson, and
another who would go on to run all of Murdoch's UK papers.
Today, in Britain,
Murdoch's tabloid empire is facing the ire of the public, a Scotland
Yard investigation and the yanking of the curtain on its political
alliances, thanks to a long-running scandal involving the hacking of
voice-mail accounts by agents of its reporters and editors -- a
scandal given new life when the Guardian, a liberal rival
to Murdoch's right-wing outlets, revealed a cruel hoax played by News
of the World on the parents of a murdered teenager. Eager to
break news on the disappearance of 13-year-old Milly Dowler,
editors at NOTW hired a private investigator to
hack the girl's cell phone.
They deleted some messages, giving Milly's family false hope that
she was still alive and receiving her messages. Then the paper
reported on the family's renewed hopes, based on the evidence
created by NOTW.
revelation comes on the heels of news that the paper hacked the
voice-mail accounts of actors Sienna Miller and Jude Law, as well as
staff members on the royal payroll (including Prince William's
communications chief). The scandal has been unfolding for years, a
genie reemerging from its bottle with renewed vigor. (Reuters has an
Dead Girl's Parents
that prompted today's furor -- the 2002 hacking of Milly
Dowler's cell-phone -- is just the first in a spate of allegations
over the last 24 hours implicating News of the World in
similar operations on the voice-mail accounts of victims
of the terrorist bombings
of the London subway system in 2005 and possibly the cell-phone
accounts of other murdered children. There are also credible
allegations that the tabloid was paying law enforcement sources for
This all comes as
the British Parliament is about to give the go-ahead for News
Corporation to purchase outright BSkyB, the nation's dominate cable
TV service, in which it already holds a majority stake. Now the
deal may be off.
But here in the
U.S., an unseemly tale is unfolding about the steady unraveling of
ethics at the Wall Street Journal since Murdoch's purchase
of the paper and the appointment of Les Hinton as its CEO.
Street Journal Chief?
In January 2007,
during an earlier blip of the News of the World hacking
scandal, Hinton, then executive chairman of Murdoch's News
International operation, assured
that he had conducted a thorough investigation of the scandal and
determined that only Clive Goodman, the News of the World
reporter assigned to cover the royal family, was involved. The
newspaper's editor, Andy Coulson, had no knowledge of the systematic
hacking of royal voice-mail accounts, Hinton said in testimony
before the House of Commons culture committee. (Coulson went on to
become communications director for Prime Minister David Cameron.)
Guardian reports that
News of the World staffers claim that Coulson, who resigned
his government post in January,
knew all about the hacking operation.
Rebekah Wade Brooks, who now has Hinton's old job in the U.K., is
Murdoch appears to
be quite concerned about a U.S. angle on the scandal. As early as
last month, according to the British paper, the Independent,
a team of U.S. attorneys
"to investigate the extent of phone hacking at the News of the
As is typical of
the Wall Street Journal since Murdoch's purchase, the paper
did not disclose today
the role its chief executive played in delivering misleading
testimony before the British parliament. This is not surprising.
AlterNet has previously reported on
the paper's apparent partnership with David Koch's Americans for
Prosperity Foundation, a relationship that is never disclosed in the
Journal's reporting on the political activities of
Americans for Prosperity, despite the fact that one of its editorial
board members, Stephen Moore, has accepted at least $150,000 in
speaking fees from the AFP Foundation.
did, however, disclose that it has paid settlements to several
celebrities whose phones were hacked by the News of the World,
and that those settlements were part of the work of a
management-standards committee "overseen by News Corp. board members
Joel Klein and Viet Dinh," who are also "deal[ing] with police."
Dinh, while an assistant attorney general in the Bush
administration, "played a key role in drafting the administration's
USA Patriot Act," according to the Washington Post.
Where are the
good-journalism watchdogs and groups are paying keen attention to
the more sensational aspects of this latest Murdoch scandal, only
scant attention (Media Matters being the
is being dealt to the Journal's abysmal editorial standards
regarding full disclosure and political involvement. The hacking of
individual phones constitutes an horrific breach of individual
privacy, and the News of the World's reporting makes a
travesty of the idea of journalism ethics.
double-dealing of the Wall Street Journal -- its failure to
disclose its executives' involvement in either the British
phone-hacking scandal or the American political group from which at
least one receives compensation -- corrupts the political culture of
the United States. It's almost like somebody's afraid of Rupert
Adele M. Stan
is AlterNet's Washington bureau chief. Follow her on Twitter:
July 14, 2011
Disgusted, Satan Returns Murdoch’s Soul (Satire)
– In a blow that many insiders saw as the last straw for
embattled media titan Rupert Murdoch, Satan today returned Mr.
Murdoch’s soul to him and demanded his money back.
“Rupert Murdoch has done my bidding for decades, but that
relationship is now terminated,” read the terse statement from
the Prince of Darkness, who close associates said has been
“disgusted” by Murdoch’s recent activities.
Purchased by Satan in
Melbourne, Australia in 1951, Mr. Murdoch’s soul is
estimated to have a current value of nine dollars (US).
Around the media world, observers were stunned by this latest
setback for Mr. Murdoch, who in Satan is losing one of his
closest and most powerful allies.
But according to Ian Langramstone, who at his post as the
University of Nottingham has studied Mr. Murdoch’s
relationship with Satan for years, the slap in the face from the
Lord of Misrule should not come as a surprise.
“Satan never wants to be the last one to desert a sinking ship,”
said Mr. Langromstone. “He always takes his lead from
In what many saw a tacit admission of the depth of his current
problems, Mr. Murdoch today cancelled plans to purchase the
remainder of the British government that he does not already
Excerpt from an article
posted on huffingtonpost.com by Will Bunch July 7, 2011
For more than three decades, as global press baron
Rupert Murdoch amassed more and more power over both the
journalism and the politics of the Western world --
usually to the detriment of both -- the question
lingered in the air. What, if anything, could possibly
bring down the empire of this turn-of-the-millennium
Citizen-Kane-without-the-sled, a man who seemingly had
the power to pick American presidents
collected British prime ministers
as easily as
cards on the way to fame and billions of dollars?
not long after Murdoch celebrated his 80th birthday, we
may finally know the answer.
wasn't the years of influence trading on a global scale,
but his paper's ruthless treatment of a murdered
13-year-old and her family.
That's always the way, isn't it?
The stunning news
today is that Murdoch is shutting down his reportedly
most lucrative publication, the sleazy British News of
the World tabloid, in the wake of a phone hacking
scandal marked by intercepting messages left for the
slain girl, Milly Dowler, in a way that impeded the
police probe and gave her parents false hope she was
still alive. The power of the scandal seemed a fitting a
bookend to a week in which we debated what kind of news
pushes our buttons -- and why.
It was only Tuesday here in America that a nation
staggering from a years of a high unemployment -- with a
crisis of governmental gridlock looming --
stopped to absorb every detail of
a lurid Florida murder case
-- and that shouldn't surprise anyone: It's as easy to
get emotionally wrenched by the death of an adorable
2-year-old and the flaunting of bad motherhood as it's
hard to wrap yourself around the true meaning of $14
trillion, or understand why there are no new jobs in
Viewers prefer human dramas involving total strangers
over the ideological debates that affect our actual
lives; likewise, journalists crave these simpler
morality plays of good and evil -- where the facts are
smaller yet objectively provable or disprovable -- over
the ever-so-complicated big picture. In American
politics, we saw a president impeached for lying about
an extramarital affair of no national import, while no
punishment even close to that was seriously discussed
for his successor who invaded a sovereign nation under
false pretenses, leading to the deaths of tens of
thousands of people.
now it's the simple memory of a slain Brtitish teenaged
girl -- with the added shock that family members of
casualties in that Iraq War and in Afghanistan were also
phone-hacked, and reports of police officers taking
bribes from journalists -- that brings the world's
largest media empire to the edge of the abyss.
now, there's still a big disconnect between the uproar
over the Murdoch empire in Great Britain -- salacious,
tabloid-style crimes committed by tabloid journalists --
and closer scrutiny of the press baron's operation in
the United States, which in addition to the highly
profitable Fox television network also includes the
politically influential Fox News Channel, the Wall
Street Journal, and the New York Post among its outlets.
Would Argue There's No Disconnect At All.
are important differences but also key similarities
between the way that Murdoch -- an Australian by birth
who amassed a lot of a fortune first in the UK and
finally in America, where he is now a citizen -- does
business on either side of the Atlantic. The common
denominator is a seamless rinse-repeat cycle of using
his media power to gain political influence and then
using that influence to gain greater wealth. In England,
the dirty tricks and apparent lawbreaking of The News of
the World helped Murdoch on the wealth side by selling
lots of newspapers with scoops about racy murders and
celebrity gossip -- but it's less clear how that
pseudo-journalism mucked up the nation's broader
U.S. of A., it's a different story, and it cannot be
understated. Here, Murdoch's sins were less sensational
-- but more important, arguably a matter of life and
death on some stories. With his most audacious move, the
invention of the Fox News Channel, Murdoch and his
minions created a vortex of misinformation and emotion
draped in an American flag that changed a nation's
politics for the worse. That affects a lot more people
than phone hacking, no matter how heartless that was.
Murdoch had help from brilliant, cynical aides on both
sides of the pond. In England, it was the massively
ethically challenged, wild-eyed redhead
in America, it is the frumpy and grumpy
the only man to run the Fox News Channel since it was
launched in the mid-1990s. As recent documents have
shown, Ailes -- who learned the American conservative
politics of middle-class resentment at the foot of the
master, Richard Nixon -- was
long involved in a scheme for a conservative TV
counterweight to the so-called "liberal media."
But it took the arrival of Murdoch years later to
execute the plan with the vision that a conservative
cable news network could make millions in profits while
wielding influence on a scale that a "Headless
Body in Topless Bar"
newspaper could only dream of.
Ailes and Murdoch -- with a typical disregard for the
consequences -- created a monster as their FNC grew in
popularity over the course of the 2000s. They held onto
to their millions of viewers by playing to their
emotions, and to what they felt was true about America
-- regardless of whether it was actually true. Over the
years, misinformed Fox viewers wielded more and more
clout over a directionless Republican Party that in turn
drove the U.S. body politic, with disastrous
Iraq and the war on terrorism:
America's misguided "pre-emptive war" in the oil-rich
Persian Gulf would not have been possible unless the
9/11 attacks and a response to terrorism became
conflated with Saddam Hussein's Iraq, which for all its
horrors had nothing to do with the assault on the World
Trade Center and the Pentagon. The Fox News Channel, and
its parade of
GOP-talking-point infused hosts
and military "experts," helped to make sure that
wrongful conflation took place, as later evidence
A 2003 poll by the
Program on International Policy (PIPA) at the University
of Maryland and Knowledge Networks found
that regular Fox News viewers were significantly more
likely than other news consumers to believe one of three
significant falsehoods about the Iraq war -- that Iraq
was somehow connected to 9/11, that weapons of mass
destruction had been found in Iraq, or that global
opinion was in favor of the war. These jingoistic myths
-- most heavily adopted by Fox viewers -- fueled years
of continued fighting in a war in which thousands of
Americans and Iraqi civilians died needlessly.
It's hard to believe in 2011, but there was a time a few
years ago when a majority of Republicans, just like a
majority of all Americans, believed that man-made global
warming was real and needed to be addressed in some
fashion. That was before a parade of global warming
skeptics and outright deniers on Fox News Channel -- a
development that was actually encouraged by FNC top
management. Most famously,
FNC's Washington bureau chief wrote in a December 2009
memo " we should
refrain from asserting that the planet has warmed (or
cooled) in any given period without IMMEDIATELY pointing
out that such theories are based upon data that critics
have called into question."
In recent years, Fox News Channel has found a variety of
ways to spread
misinformation and outright lies
about the state of the world's climate
-- claiming, in the face of all
evidence to the contrary, that the world is actually
cooling -- and the plan has worked. A majority of
Republicans now believe that climate change theories
endorsed by 90 percent of the world's leading
climatologists are a hoax, and more importantly,
so do the political leaders they
opposition scuttled what appeared to be momentum for
climate change legislation in Washington, even as
the planet records its hottest
years on record and
predictions of future food shortages and natural
disasters grow more dire.
The 2010 elections:
The right-wing tide that changed the direction of
Congress last November was powered by a large turnout of
conservative voters, who once again -- as research
showed -- were misinformed on the issues if their
primary source of information was Fox News. It started
what the Pulitzer Prize-winning
fact-checking outfit Politifact called its Lie of the
Year for 2010 -- the
reporting on Fox News that President Obama's health care
plan was "a government takeover" of the system.
But that was just one area where Fox News viewers had
bad info, according to
a new report (PDF) by the Program
on International Policy Attitudes;
this study found that FNC watchers were much more likely
to think that their taxes went up (they were cut in 2009
for most Americans) or that health care reform increases
the deficit (it lowers it) or that Obama was possibly
not born in the United States.
There's more, but I think you get the idea. Meanwhile,
misinformed Fox viewers are the tail wagging the dog of
just ask the now former South Carolina congressman
who had the nerve to criticize the then-popular,
now-departed FNC host Glenn Beck before his 2010 primary
defeat. Increasingly, it's impossible to tell where Fox
News stops and the Republican Party begins, which is why
it wasn't surprising to hear that FNC's Ailes even
lobbied a would-be candidate, New Jersey's Chris
Christie, to enter the 2012 White House race.
Did Ailes think that would be good for the country or
good for ratings?
the kind of ethical question that doesn't get asked any
more at Murdoch's Fox News Channel than it was asked at
Murdoch's News of the World. But the stakes in this
country -- endless wars, looming environmental
disasters, lousy policies that are leaving America mired
in economic despair -- are far greater. So if you are
outraged tonight by what the Murdoch empire was up to in
Great Britain all these years -- and you should be --
than you should be doubly outraged by what they've
pulled off here.
only real question for America is what are we going to
do about Rupert Murdoch now?
Will Bunch on Twitter:
Who is Rupert Murdoch
Keith Rupert Murdoch, AC, KCSG (born March 11, 1931)
is an Australian-born media mogul, wrinkled-up
sourpuss, and a very dishonest person in our opinion
and many others opinions.
are learning more about Rupert every day and it
isn't flattering. As the owner of
several media outlets, as well as the majority
shareholder, chairman, and managing director of News
Corporation, Murdoch is single-handedly responsible
for the tabloidification of mainstream news across
the globe, in all formats.
While Rupert Murdoch does, in fact, come from the
Land Down Under, should you ask him if he “speaks-a
your language,” he probably won’t just smile and
hand you a Vegemite sandwich.
With a net worth of $4 billion, Murdoch ranks as the
132nd-wealthiest person on earth. Of course he’s
still getting his ass waxed by Bill Gates, the
entire Walton family, and the Sultan of Brunei. At
least he’s still beating Oprah.
Ted Turner wants to tear Rupert Murdoch a new one so
bad, he’d sell all his rights to the Oglalla
Acquifer—and throw in a used pair of Jane Fonda’s
panties—just to get him in the Octagon for one
Murdoch began exploiting humankind’s desire for
minute-by-minute updates on the comings and goings
of train-wreck public personages from his birth on
March 11, 1931, a birthday he shares with fellow
stiff old cranks Sam Donaldson and Antonin Scalia,
Bobby McFerrin, statutory rapist Joey Buttafuoco,
and the sixteen-year-old actress who bares her
little perkies in "American Beauty" (not
coincidentally Joey’s Buttafuoco’s favorite scene).
While Murdoch likes the world to think of him as
self-made, he is actually the son of a wealthy and
powerful Australian newspaper man and an Irish
noblewoman. Young Murdoch attended Geelong Grammar
school, a snooty Australian private school. For a
time, he also went to Oxford, a university whose
list of dick alumni outstrips even that of Harvard.
And we’re talking about salty, old-school,
Victorian-era dicks, too, like the kind that
subjugates whole races of indigenous peoples whilst
sipping tea and wearing monocles...
Rupert Murdoch’s father died in 1952; his dying wish
was for his son to become a journalist. While young
Murdoch did insinuate himself into the role of
managing director of "News Limited," his pursuits
were more along the lines of wheeling and dealing,
than writing and editing. For the next twenty years,
Murdoch proceeded to eat up nearly every media
outlet in the country and transforming them into
sensationalist rags, or, if already a sensationalist
rag to begin with, into outright libelous vehicles
for his own economic and political gain.
course, one must never underestimate humanity’s
appetite for crap. By the late 1960s, as Australia’s
leading purveyor, Rupert Murdoch had by all accounts
become the country’s most powerful non-elected
official. But then, at that time nobody really gave
a bloomin’ onion about Australia, not until 1988,
which saw both the release of Yahoo Serious’ "Young
Einstein" and the opening of the first Outback
Steakhouse. Naturally, for a megalomaniac like
Murdoch, this meant flinging his dick boomerang—or
“dickerang”—into the northern hemisphere.
Beginning in 1969, Rupert Murdoch began acquiring,
then systemically destroying the journalistic
integrity of, several large British newspapers,
including "News of the World," "The Sun," "The
Times," and "The Sunday Times." Along the way, he
also managed to spark several violent strikes by
British print unions, and collude with high
government officials to illegally quell said
With only so many Commonwealth citizens to swallow
his current events-based butt pee, Murdoch began to
focus his attention on the most tender, willing
mouth of all: the United States. In 1973, soon after
whetting his dick appetite by acquiring the San
Antonio Express-News, he founded Star, a supermarket
tabloid that blends celebrity gossip with blatant
fabrication, along the lines of “George W. Bush’s
Alien Encounter” and “Bat Boy Found… In Britney’s
Limo.” Murdoch also owns the "New York Post,"
perhaps the most laughable newspaper in America,
noted for its extensive use of dollar signs instead
of the letter “S” in headlines, no matter how
tenuous the story’s relation to finance.
1985, Murdoch totally dicked over his home country
of Australia by renouncing his citizenship and
becoming a naturalized U.S. citizen. He did this so
he could legally own American TV stations, cutting
his dick teeth by purchasing the Fox Network. So
maligned has this network been by pretty much every
comedian since Murdoch’s takeover, it is impossible
to write any kind of fresh jokes about it. Go ahead,
try. We’ll wait.
mere ten years later, Murdoch decided to enter the
cable news market with the Fox News Channel, a
24-hour cable news network that became a dick
incubator—or “dickubator”—of such giant throbbing
dicks as Sean Hannity, Glenn Beck, Greta Van
Susteren, and the grand-dick-daddy of them all, Bill
Murdoch also owns a 34% stake in DirecTV, as well as
the company that held MySpace.com. Good thing no one
goes on My Space any more, except pedophiles and
that guy who does “To Catch A Predator” on MSNBC.
Rupert Murdoch’s publications and cable news
channels have been branded as conservative, though
Murdoch himself could most accurately be considered
an opportunist. For instance, while his New York
Post did not endorse her, Murdoch hosted a
fundraiser for Hillary Rodham Clinton’s 2006 Senate
re-election. Even more telling, while most Fox News
commentators regard the Obama Administration as the
sixth sign of the apocalypse, Murdoch himself has
gone on record as a supporter. If only he used his
powers for good.
Like many dicks, Murdoch has a string of ex-wives.
In 1956, he married Patricia Booker, who was—what
else?—an airline stewardess. The two divorced in
1967, the same year he married Anna Torv, a cub
reporter from his Sydney newspaper. After sticking
it out for 32 years, they divorced. Seventeen days
later, at the age of 68, Rupert Murdoch remarried to
30-year-old Wendi Deng. Pretty impressive for
someone with such old balls. In fact, he’s recently
managed to sire two children. (There are rumors that
Rupert should get a paternity test) Again, if only
he used his powers for good.
News Corp. chairman
Rupert Murdoch and television executive Wendi Deng
pose aboard his yacht during their marriage voyage
in New York Harbor, Friday, June 25, 1999.
Eighty-two guests attended the private ceremony
Friday evening aboard ''Morning Glory,'' which left
from Chelsea Piers as a string ensemble played
Mozart. The couple were married by state Supreme
Court Justice Jacqueline Silbermann. (AP Photo/Grace
Studio, Tom Rollo)
Chairman and Chief
Executive Officer of News Corporation, Rupert
Murdoch and his wife Wendi arrive at the Elysee
Palace prior to the lunch opening the e-G8 Forum, in
Paris Tuesday May 24 2011. The two-day gathering is
bringing together Internet and media world gurus
like Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt,
Murdoch, and Facebook founder and CEO Mark
Zuckerberg. French President Nicolas Sarkozy said
Tuesday that governments need to lay down and
enforce rules in the digital world _ even as they
need to foster creativity and economic growth with
the Internet. (AP Photo/Jacques Brinon)
Murdoch, right, and his wife Wendi Deng, left,
poses on the red carpet prior to the opening
ceremony of the Shanghai International Film
Festival at Shanghai Grand Theater Saturday June
11, 2011 in Shanghai. (AP Photo/Eugene Hoshiko)
Wendi Deng Murdoch, is
Coming Out From Behind the Scenes
Last week, when
Wendi Deng Murdoch stole the show at the
parliamentary tabloid hearings with a sock to the
face of her husband's pie-wielding aggressor, it
seemed like the demure woman who calls Rupert
Murdoch her "hubby" had suddenly turned fierce. In
fact, Deng's impromptu reaction may have revealed
more about her true self than she'd like to let on.
previous two hours, Murdoch's 42-year-old third wife
had sat behind him and his son James, right in the
middle of the television camera's frame, dressed in
a pink blazer better suited to a Barbie doll than an
actual adult woman. She flipped her hair, patted her
octogenarian husband on the back and pointed to
herself, laughing, when Rupert mentioned that he had
taken his family to 10 Downing St. in the past,
always entering through the back door.
afternoon had a theatrical air, with everyone
playing a role: James Murdoch acted apologetic and
contrite while distancing himself from any
wrongdoing. Rupert, the billionaire media mogul,
channeled his inner Mr. Magoo, coming across as
doddering and perplexed.
For her part,
Deng seemed feminine. Soft. Doting. Strictly
ornamental. It's a persona she's been cultivating
their 1999 wedding, Murdoch announced that Deng, who
was born in China and holds a master's degree from
the Yale School of Management, would be stepping
down from her executive role at a News Corp.
subsidiary in Hong Kong. He described her as "busy
working on decorating the new apartment."
Ever since, her
public image has been that of a glamorous housewife
and doting mother to their two daughters, and
recently as a co-producer of the film "Snow Flower
and the Secret Fan." But behind the scenes, she's
also a shrewd businesswoman who has held great
influence over News Corp.'s investments in Asia, the
company's fastest-growing market. The Murdochs do
not like to advertise this fact, which should come
as no surprise: They're not exactly known for
A 2000 Wall
Street Journal profile reported that Deng frequently
accompanied her husband and stepson to meetings with
high-ranking Chinese officials, where she would
sometimes intervene "to smooth over potentially
Rupert Murdoch’s pastimes include collusion,
anti-competitive business practices, flying into
unpredictable rages, tax evasion, and bee-keeping.