Today’s revelations have taken the phone hacking scandal to a new dimension and the politicians are playing catch up with the public’s outrage.
Today the scandal has hit the Police between the eyes casting yet more doubt over their botched Police operation investigating a section of the media which has been paying Police Officers for information. The money trail has apparently been traced back to the higher echelon’s of the News of the World and the name of Andy Coulson is being banded about as a possible pen to the cheques to the Police, although no proof has been yet forthcoming.
Many thought the depths to which the News of the World and other tabloid newspapers had sunk was bad enough, but the sick nature of the reporters moral compass comes further into focus as we now suspect that 7/7 bomb victims were subjected to phone hacking.
Today in the House of commons it was clear that all on both sides of the house were revolted by what they have learnt. Ed Miliband hit the right tone as he asked the Prime Minister questions regarding the issue. As the Prime Ministers Questions continued however, it was clear that David Cameron’s embarrassment was about to reveal itself as the name of Andy Coulson was brought up by Ed Miliband. Cameron’s irritation was clear, but the lack of judgement as discussed here in “Andy Coulson resigns and David Cameron begins to squirm” is clear to see.
Andy Coulson, when he resigned from the News of the World, was either in knowledge of what was going on, or was completely incompetent in his job. Either way he was clearly not fit to be taken on by the Prime Minister in such an important role. His closeness too to the Murdoch empire and to Rebekha Brooks is a further example of his judgement being tested.
Months ago it was clear that this issue would run and run and implicate far more people, but it was also clear that the Cameron government was just hoping the issue would go away. It won’t, and it is about to get a lot worse.
This is the second Prime Ministers Question Time that Ed Miliband has hit a nerve, too early to tell if he will be particularly effective in the future as leader of the Labour Party but it is good news to hold the government to account.
David Cameron diffused the situation somewhat by agreeing to 2 enquiries over the matter. However, the thorn in his side is the pending decision on the BSkyB take over. It is inconceivable that the government can hand it on a plate to their friends the Murdochs in this manner, with possible criminal charges in the offing for senior executives at news International.
Rupert Murdoch must be ready to bang heads together as this has all blown up exactly at the wrong time, and will cost him a MASSIVE AMOUNT OF MONEY. As Ford withdraws its advertising revenue, several other advertisers have done the same and the NOTW is quickly becoming a black hole of debt for News International and a viral brand. At a time of extreme competitiveness in the market place for newspapers, if the NI do not act quickly and decisively, it may be something the NOTW will not recover from.
As ever, money talks, and if anything will flush out the guilty, it is the fact that Murdoch is going to lose money.