Blimey – the Indie has actually got a story. And it’s a corker.
The Slog has always felt that the likelihood of Andy Coulson being unaware of what his evil Murdoch hacks were up to was about minus 600%. I posted on 7th September to observe that he is a Murdoch agent, and until we make politics free of money and influence, we’re always going to have these pillocks in our politics.
The anti-Coalition media, of course, are desperate to make this an issue about Cameron’s judgement. They’re probably right, but to me it’s very simple: keep the megalomaniacs out, and you’ll keep the Coulsons out.
To give credit where it’s due though, the Indie has done a good job here. Its hacks Brady and Hanning have established that Coulson’s successor at the NoW Rebeka Wade knew all about the skulduggery, and in fact exploited it to the full. Thus, they reason, Handy Andy must’ve known all about it too. The Indie nevertheless can’t resist letting its holy-holy self-imposed naivety show by writing that one potential hacking victim was ‘a target described simply as “Rooney”‘. That must’ve been Mickey Rooney, then.
Like tens of thousands of other writers here, in the States and Down Under, The Slog has maintained for years that Rupert Murdoch is only outside prison and destroying one culture after another because he is rich and powerful. People promoted into public life by this monster include Piers Morgan and the spineless obesity Kelvin McKenzie. For these acts alone I’d lock him under the stairs and give Jon Pilger the key.
But I’ve had a sense for some three months now that Murdoch may well be meandering down the same lane as Conrad Black and Robert Maxwell. There are three things, it seems to me, that Murdoch cannot deal with now, because they’ve gotten out of hand. First, his dependence on the UK soccer Premiership for income will be tested as this craziest of all crazy business models starts to implode over the next two seasons. Second, the spreading scandal of a Newscorp vividly denying any wrongdoing or hacking, when everyone from Wapping to Woomera knows that this is the sort of malpractice they get up to eleven days a week. And third, the abject failure so far of his mainstream paywalls.
Anyway, even if this is the first time since 1988 that The Independent has had a scoop, they deserve our gratitude. I’ve always said that dependency is only broken by taking away the source of it. Now that Lord Mandelson is no more, we can see how quickly the Indie has begun to recover. Hurrah.
In the meantime, it’ll be fun to see how long Fox News lets Peerless Moron have an easy ride at CNN – before spotting that his lips only move when he isn’t thinking. Which is why he never shuts up.