Cognitive Dissonance

"Democracy! Bah! When I hear that I reach for my feather boa!" - Allen Ginsberg

Posts tagged Rupert Murdoch

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The Tables Are Turned on Murdoch

"The schadenfreude is so thick you can’t cut it with a chainsaw," wrote The Wall Street Journal in an editorial on Monday, defending Rupert Murdoch and the News Corporation. Well, yes, the schadenfreude is pretty darn thick…

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

Throughout his career, Murdoch has never just been satisfied with besting the competition, as most decent businessmen are. He’s not truly happy unless he has his foot on a competitor’s neck and is pressing it downward…

One feature of Murdoch’s career is that he’s never played by the rules that apply to other businessmen. That’s one reason I think he seems so shellshocked in those paparazzi photographs: unable in this dire circumstance to make his own rules, he simply doesn’t know how to react or what to do. On Tuesday, when he is excoriated in Parliament, it will be the first time he has ever truly been held to account. It undoubtedly won’t be fun for him. But there are many people who are going to take great glee in his misery — not unlike the way his newspapers have always taken such glee in the misery of others.

This is going to be marvelous (I hope). Side note: Any of you folks hear "Schadenfreude" from Avenue Q playing as you read this? I did.

Filed under Schadenfreude Rupert Murdoch politics news News Corp hell yes news international Fox News

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According to reports by CNBC, Rupert Murdoch is considering stepping down as CEO of News Corporation amid the hacking scandal in the United Kingdom and potential investigations in the United States. British police yesterday arrested Rebekah Brooks, the former CEO of News Corp’s News International group who resigned amid controversy just days ago. Britain’s two top police officials also resigned under a cloud over the past two days amid growing allegations of improper relationships between Scotland Yard officials and News International employees.

Somewhere, Roger Ailes just squealed like a schoolgirl and raised his hand, even though he’s not in line for succession. Yet. For funsies, check out "Troubles That Money Can’t Dispel" from the New York Times, which traces Murdoch’s woes regarding this scandal.

Filed under Rupert Murdoch politics phone hacking News Corp News International Fox

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9/11 victims 'may have had mobiles (cell phones) tapped by News of the World reporters'





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.

And to think that Murdoch is the owner of the Wall Street Journal.

Just closing down News of The World doesn’t solve the problem! Thanks for posting this.

Every time you think the Fox “News” crowd can’t sleaze any lower, they manage to ooze down to a lower level of sleaze.

So, I asked awhile ago if there was any low they wouldn’t sink to… here’s my answer. What dismays me is the lack of surprise I feel at this absolutely disgusting news.

Filed under Rupert Murdoch news international politics News Corp 9/11 media disgusting

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James Murdoch could face criminal charges on both sides of the Atlantic

Oh, this is just delicious:

James Murdoch and News Corp could face corporate legal battles on both sides of the Atlantic that involve criminal charges, fines and forfeiture of assets as the escalating phone-hacking scandal risks damaging his chances of taking control of Rupert Murdoch’s US-based media empire.

As deputy chief operating officer of News Corp – the US-listed company that is the ultimate owner of News International (NI), which in turn owns the News of the World, the Times, the Sunday Times and the Sun – the younger Murdoch has admitted he misled parliament over phone hacking, although he has stated he did not have the complete picture at the time. There have also been reports that employees routinely made payments to police officers, believed to total more than £100,000, in return for information.

The payments could leave News Corp – and possibly James Murdoch himself – facing the possibility of prosecution in the US under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA) – legislation designed to stamp out bad corporate behaviour that carries severe penalties for anyone found guilty of breaching it – and in the UK under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 which outlaws the interception of communications.

Tony Woodcock, a partner at the City law firm Stephenson Harwood, said section 79 of the 2000 Act enabled criminal proceedings to be brought against not only a company, but also a director or similar officer where the offence was committed with their “consent or connivance” or was “attributable to any neglect on their part”. Woodcock said: "This could embrace a wide number of people at the highest level within an organisation, such as a chief executive – not just the individual who ‘pushed the button’ allowing the intercept to take place or someone (perhaps less senior) who encouraged or was otherwise an accessory to the offence, such as an editor."

While the UK phone-hacking scandal has been met with outrage in the US, the hacking itself is unlikely to prompt Washington officials into action. But because NI is a subsidiary of the US company, any payments to UK police officers could trigger a justice department inquiry under the FCPA. The 1977 Act generally prohibits American companies and citizens from corruptly paying – or offering to pay – foreign officials to obtain or retain business. The Butler University law professor Mike Koehler, an FCPA expert, said: “I would be very surprised if the US authorities don’t become involved in this [NI] conduct.” He said the scandal appeared to qualify as an FCPA case on two counts. First, News Corp is a US-listed company, giving the US authorities jurisdiction to investigate allegations. “Second, perhaps more importantly, the act requires that payments to government officials need to be in the furtherance of ‘obtaining or retaining’ business. If money is being paid to officials, in this case the police, in order to get information to write sensational stories to sell newspapers, that would qualify,” he said.

Granted, it’s James Murdoch, not Rupert. But hey, anything that’s a burr under that bastard’s saddle is something I can support. And let’s get some justice for the victims of these unethical bastards and their phone hacking.

Filed under James Murdoch Rupert Murdoch politics News of the World crime Fox News International Department of Justice bribery unethical conservative conservatives media monopoly

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News of the World axed by News International: Sunday edition of Murdoch's tabloid to be last

News International announced on Thursday that it is closing the News of the World after this Sunday’s edition, with no end in sight to the political and commercial fallout from the phone-hacking scandal after 72 hours of mounting crisis.

Sunday’s edition of the paper will be the last, News International chairman James Murdoch told News of the World staff on Thursday afternoon. Murdoch told employees at the 167-year-old title: "The News of the World is in the business of holding others to account. But it failed to when it came to itself".

Murdoch said in a statement: “Wrongdoers turned a good newsroom bad and this was not fully understood or adequately pursued.” Murdoch also conceded the company had "made statements to parliament without being in full possession of the facts. This was wrong".

He said “the News of the World and News International wrongly maintained that these issues were confined to one reporter” and that the company had passed information to the police which would demonstrate this. “Those who acted wrongly will have to face the consequences,” he said.

Murdoch also said in his statement to staff that he had authorised out-of-court payments to victims of hacking: “I now know that I did not have a complete picture when I did so.” He added: “That was wrong and is a matter of serious regret.”

It is the first national newspaper to close since Rupert Murdoch shut News International mid-market tabloid Today in 1995.

I bolded a few statements for this reason: Could you imagine any Murdoch saying this about Fox News? News of the World was a tabloid, so I imagine must be easier to say… However, this is a victory for those who still value some shred of integrity in journalism. This tabloid helped to build Murdoch’s empire, particularly in the US. Glad to see it go.

Filed under Rupert Murdoch News News Of The World news international politics media Fox fox news hacking UK government

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Missing Milly Dowler's voicemail was hacked by News of the World

The News of the World illegally targeted the missing schoolgirl Milly Dowler and her family in March 2002, interfering with police inquiries into her disappearance, an investigation by the Guardian has established.

Scotland Yard is investigating the episode, which is likely to put new pressure on the then editor of the paper, Rebekah Brooks, now Rupert Murdoch’s chief executive in the UK; and the then deputy editor, Andy Coulson, who resigned in January as the prime minister’s media adviser…

Milly Dowler disappeared at the age of 13 on her way home in Walton-on-Thames, Surrey, on 21 March 2002.

Detectives from Scotland Yard’s new inquiry into the phone hacking, Operation Weeting, are believed to have found evidence of the targeting of the Dowlers in a collection of 11,000 pages of notes kept by Glenn Mulcaire, the private investigator jailed for phone hacking on behalf of the News of the World.

In the last four weeks the Met officers have approached Surrey police and taken formal statements from some of those involved in the original inquiry, who were concerned about how News of the World journalists intercepted – and deleted – the voicemail messages of Milly Dowler.

The messages were deleted by journalists in the first few days after Milly’s disappearance in order to free up space for more messages. As a result friends and relatives of Milly concluded wrongly that she might still be alive. Police feared evidence may have been destroyed…

The News of the World’s parent company News International, part of Murdoch’s media empire, said: “We have been co-operating fully with Operation Weeting since our voluntary disclosure in January restarted the investigation into illegal voicemail interception. This particular case is clearly a development of great concern and we will be conducting our own inquiry as a result. We will obviously co-operate fully with any police request on this should we be asked.”

Is there a low to which Rupert Murdoch and professional cronies will not sink? I’m curious.

Filed under Milly Dowler News International News of the World Rupert Murdoch crime disgusting journalists media politics UK

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To target Fox News over 'Nazi' label, rabbis make use of Murdoch's other media

A coalition of rabbis wants Fox News chief Roger Ailes and conservative host Glenn Beck to cut out all their talk about Nazis and the Holocaust, and it’s making its views known in an unusual place.

The rabbis have called on Fox News’s owner, Rupert Murdoch, to sanction his two famous employees via a full-page ad in Thursday’s editions of the Wall Street Journal - one of many other media properties controlled by Murdoch’s News Corp.

The ad is signed by the heads of the Reform, Conservative and Reconstructionist movements as well as Orthodox rabbis.

"We share a belief that the Holocaust, of course, can and should be discussed appropriately in the media. But that is not what we have seen at Fox News," says the ad, signed by hundreds of rabbis and placed by the Jewish Funds for Justice, a nonprofit advocacy group. Earlier this month, the group organized a letter-writing campaign asking Murdoch to remove Beck from the air.

The rabbis were prompted by Beck’s three-part program in November about liberal billionaire philanthropist George Soros, whom Beck described as a “Jewish boy helping send the Jews to the death camps” during World War II.

Ailes, in a November interview with the Daily Beast Web site, called NPR executives “Nazis” for their decision to fire Juan Williams, also a Fox commentator. He later apologized to the Anti-Defamation League, but not to NPR, saying, “I was of course ad-libbing and should not have chosen that word, but I was angry at the time because of NPR’s willingness to censor Juan Williams for not being liberal enough.”

But Ailes, in the same interview, defended Beck’s frequent use of Nazi references to describe his political opponents by attributing outrage over such remarks to “left-wing rabbis who basically don’t think that anybody can ever use the word ‘Holocaust’ on the air.”

View the ad here. An rather ingenious idea, and one I fully support.

Filed under Roger Ailes Rupert Murdoch Glenn Beck Nazi Nazi means Nazi Jewish Fund George Soros Brilliant glenn beck is an idiot STFU Wall Street Journal

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Why Fox News Loves the (Other) N-Word

We have Murdoch’s avuncular minister of propaganda, Roger Ailes, use the word Nazi constantly to describe Obama and the Democrats, particularly on the subject of health care or monetary policy We hear Fox’s primary predators Limbaugh and Beck aim their arsenal of vitriol and tears in concert with that word — mainly at Obama, but using it so that it even includes a Holocaust survivor such as the progressive billionaire George Soros — the perfect target for a new kind of totalitarian abuse.

Sherman’s law: The word Nazi can only be used in connection to the Holocaust. To trivialize that word as Fox News has done is to degrade the deaths of millions of innocents. It is quite simply pissing on their graves to promote a radical right wing political message.

* Initiating slow clap now*

Filed under Nazi means Nazi Nazi nazism Fox News Language abuse Roger Ailes Rupert Murdoch Rush Limbaugh Glenn Beck Fox

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GAWKER: Media Matters wins charity auction--and lunch with Fox News / News Corp. chief Rupert Murdoch. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA


That is going to be an awkward diner conversation.  I wanna watch!

Media Matters: “So, Rupert, how was your day?”
Media Matters: “Uh… please pass the salt.”
Rupert Murdoch: “SO YOU WANT A HANDOUT NOW?”

I think it will be the best meal ever. I really, really want to be a fly on the wall.

Filed under Media Matters Rupert Murdoch I want to go to there Faux News Fox