Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
July 09, 2011

Murdoch Criminal Corp

Rupert Murdoch's media companies are neo-liberal ideological propaganda machines. It is no wonder that they are therefore, like News Of The World in the UK has now proved to be, also criminal enterprises.

The revelation that NOTW payed bribes to policemen, massively manipulated voice mail boxes to find other peoples private stuff it could sensationalize and that Murdochs News Corp tried to cover it all up, only confirm what many people already knew.

The British prime minister Cameron, who like his alter ego Bliar got elected with support from Murdoch's media and hired a former editor of NOTW as spokesperson, is now in a hot seat. Murdoch's plan to get a majority share in the BSkyB broadcaster, something Cameron earlier helped along, could now be in jeopardy. But Murdoch doesn't like to lose and he will certainly try, with Cameron's help, to trick his way around the legal issues. To Murdoch politicians are just his string puppets.

Back in January Adam Curtis posted RUPERT MURDOCH - A PORTRAIT OF SATAN which includes several old BBC portraits of Murdoch. The man has a legacy of lying, deceiving and breaking promises as well as working around the laws.

Murdoch should go down. Unfortunately, that is unlikely to happen.

Posted by b on July 9, 2011 at 01:36 PM | Permalink


I'm so glad you wrote about this. I'm an American expat living in England and my partner and I are soooo enjoying watching Murdoch and Cameron squirm. However, I have to say that I'm doubtful that anything will really come of this. Certainly Murdoch's empire will continue in the US... but if ever there were a time when he could be seriously damaged in the US, it is now. I wonder why this isn't being covered in the States... hmmm... I just wonder.

Posted by: Mrs Dog | Jul 9, 2011 1:56:39 PM | 1

hat the swine, rupert murdoch & his vassals suffer, brings great good health to me

that his horror laden haunted ships would all go down is just a dream but it is a just dream

the difference between news of the world & the guardian or even le monde & new york times is quantitative not qualitative - the human filth who serve one master, can without effort, serve another

from east & west, to north & south - they have revealed their real character beginning withe their coverage of latin america & their utter servility was revealed in the illegal & immoral invasion of iraq
these scribblers with too much drink in them who sanction slaughter in 'other' countries & suppression at home. listen to these sociopaths idolize the new phoenix program in afghanistan in their 'kill capture" exercise -​/videos/538/ there is no other description, other than filth, that describes the way they have polluted everything in civic life - this targeted killing is just murder as it was under the phoenix program where tens of thousands of vietnamese were murdered - special forces are specially stupid mistaking their slaughter for strategy. & it is made possible by the blood drenched scribblers

pleased as punch that everyone working at news of the world have no more work & only wish it was true on a grander scale - it is a great pity that the talentless crew who masquerade as a kind of a guild, who pretend their scribbling is writing, who mask their servility in pomposity & their emptiness with arrogance cannot occur all over the world simultaneously. i would not let one tear drop because the h-few who actually do their work are outside the institution of fear media has created. they are worthless beyond words

et me say this as brutally as i can, journalists are scum - almost without exception. it is not personal, in their treatment of me & my work they have been supportive & sympathetic but my concerns are small to the damage they do to communities & countries. they pollute the public & civic spaces & the liberal journalist is the fox to murdoch's wolves / they have not only debased language but;they have destroyed a possible public morality & turned every question into something sordid & more often than not, without sense. i detest what they do & what they have become - there is a site with all the 'discussions take place at the frontline club (& i know they have been supportive of wikileaks) but its normal exercises are those of a pornographic kind of vanity when it is not outright lies. & the younger they are the more obscene are their 'commentaries' - they know nothing, even of the world which they are supposed to be witnesses. they are servile vassals & they are ruled from the roll of dollars or they are seduced by their own violent pretensions - the phrases they use - nation conversations, back on track, compelling, game changer - hundred & hundreds of works & phrases that make me want to vomit. really they want to make me vomit. australia had its own moment - in this that i witnessed closely - whether the national times would target either abeles or justice murphy & of course they chose the easier target - by doing that they revealed who they served. nearly every major paper has had enormous problems of liquidity in their histories & where has that liquidity come from - to say that they are just gangsters like robert maxwell, tiny rowlands or conrad black is to say the obvious

Posted by: remembereringgiap | Jul 9, 2011 3:07:28 PM | 2

'rgiap@2: Amen, brother.

Posted by: ben | Jul 9, 2011 4:17:41 PM | 3


Recently in Truthdig, Chris Hedges has told stories about the New York Times, of the way that the institution creates anxiety and a toxic environment for the few who try to hang on in the interest of revealing some truth and who hope to remain mindful of justice. The paper, its editors and administration have driven many a good reporter away.

Keller, whose on-camera comments are bland and vapid, represents the ascendancy of neocons inside as well as outside The New York Times. This process of ideological reconfiguration, first begun by the paper’s Editor Abe Rosenthal in the 1980s, was accomplished through a series of purges, persecutions, firings and dismissals as well as the appointments of those who, like Tanenhaus and Keller, have little allegiance to the tenets of traditional liberalism, tenets that made a free press possible. Senior editors such as Keller and Tanenhaus are products of the time. They do not question the utopian faith in globalization. They support preemptive war, at least before it goes horribly wrong. And they accept unfettered capitalism, despite what it has done to the nation, as a kind of natural law. The reigning corporate ideology has infected the Times as it has most other liberal institutions. Because this ideology does not challenge the status quo it is defended by these editors as evidence of the paper’s impartiality, balance and neutrality. ExxonMobil, Citibank and Goldman Sachs are treated with deference and respect. The inability to see that major centers of corporate power are criminal enterprises that are plundering the nation and destroying the ecosystem is evidence not of objectivity but moral bankruptcy. [...]
When you allow an institution to provide you with your identity and sense of self-worth you become an obsequious pawn, no matter how much talent you possess. You live in perpetual fear of what those in authority think of you and might do to you. This mechanism of internalized control—for you always need them more than they need you—is effective. The rules of advancement at the paper are never clearly defined or written down. Careerists pay lip service to the stated ideals of the institution, which are couched in lofty rhetoric about balance, impartiality and neutrality, but astutely grasp the actual guiding principle of the paper, which is: Do not significantly alienate the corporate and political power elite on whom the institution depends for access and money. Those who master this duplicitous game do well. Those who cling tenaciously to a desire to tell the truth, even at a cost to themselves and the institution, become a management problem. This creates tremendous friction within the paper. I knew reporters with a conscience who would arrive at the paper and vomit in the restroom from nervous tension before starting work.

Posted by: Copeland | Jul 9, 2011 5:23:52 PM | 4

Yes the NY Times is a shocking piece of rubbish, and yet, it has one redeeming quality: it too hates the Dirty Digger.

And there can be no doubt that the NYTimes, last winter, did play an important part in widening and deepening the campaign against Murdoch's excesses in Britain. It did this, of course, to hurt the WSJ's competitive drive against the Times's readership base, but it did it.

What Murdoch should do (you must do it Rupert to survive!!) is to wage a similarly ruthless campaign against the Times, taking aim at its Zionist propaganda for example.. I'm not holding my breath.

Posted by: bevin | Jul 9, 2011 10:24:30 PM | 5

The fact that "hacking" into the private communications of (some of) the powerful seems to be at the root of Murdoch's problems is perhaps a hopeful sign, somewhat akin to that of Nixon's bugging the DNC at Watergate. The drastic step of completely shutting down NOTW may perhaps be explained by the need to keep inconfessible links between Murdoch's Fleet Street flotilla and GCHQ, MI6, or other spookish organizations from bubbling to the surface. This, of course, is complete and unsubstantiated conjecture but, I think, not implausible given the symbiotic rapport between the establishment press and the establishment security apparatus. Needless to say, this applies in spades to the NYT and WaPo as well, although, as an outsider, I don't know how the "exchange of genetic matter" between the reciprocal host and virus actually takes place. (Eliot Spitzer might have clearer ideas.) Presumably such exchanges are usually carried out via indirection, cloaked in deniability, and sealed with discretion, but occasionally someone fails to grasp the essence of the gentlemen's agreement, as, in a similar vein, was the case with Joe Nacchio of Q-West.

Posted by: Hannah K. O'Luthon | Jul 10, 2011 4:17:25 AM | 6

Copeland@4: The media problem in a nutshell. A true sickness infecting the human before truth.

Posted by: ben | Jul 10, 2011 10:11:12 AM | 7

re: 1

However, I have to say that I'm doubtful that anything will really come of this.

As a Brit, even though in France, I'm sure that's true. The Brits are good at covering things up, better than the US.

On the other hand, right now, things are on the edge of breaking loose. From his point of view, Murdoch made a mistake in closing down the News of the World, rather than bluffing it out. It made a crisis out of a problem. Not that different from letting Lehmann Brothers fail. This is in a British context. Bluffing it out is not that difficult in Britain. Murdoch, not a Brit, and not in Britain, didn't understand that.

By the way, the Guardian did a pretty good job here, in digging several years ago. They've also done a good job on other revelations recently. I was sorry they had a dispute with Julian Assange. They are far from perfect - for example, their moderators on their comment site are significantly pro-Israel - but they are the nearest to an independent investigative journalism that exists at the moment in the mainstream, not brown-nosing the powers.

Posted by: alexno | Jul 10, 2011 2:43:30 PM | 8

'The man has a legacy of lying, deceiving and breaking promises as well as working around the laws'

how is this any different to any run of the mill democratic politician?!

Posted by: brian | Jul 10, 2011 6:05:49 PM | 9

r'giap #2

And let there be more and more great good health. I'm reminded of the beautiful>Conversations With Ogotemmeli by Marcell Griaule on the Dogon people of Mali - whereby they equate both breath and words as a vital transaction of moisture (being desert people) between the forces of nature.

Posted by: anna missed | Jul 11, 2011 4:50:04 AM | 10

I'm not sure that you've grasped the multi-dimensional scope of "problems" that the Murdoch empire is now contending with.

You've neglected to mention, or are unaware, that News Corp executives also lied on camera to parliamentary committees over a number of years, are reported to have withheld evidence from earlier police inquiries into phone hacking at the NOTW in the wake of the "rogue reporter" trial that led to the imprisonment of Glenn Mulcaire and Clive Goodman, that there are issues regarding NI's involvement in obstruction/perjury/conspiracy to pervert the course of justice in 2 criminal trials in the UK ( Tommy Sheridan, and the Morgan murder trial ), that there are still thousands of phone hacking victims that have yet to be publicly identified, that the compensation and legal costs that NI is incurring are going to tot up to, quite possibly, in excess of a billion dollars, that NI executives are vulnerable along so many different vectors that it getting quite literally impossible for them to make a public statement without further incriminating themselves ( see James Murdoch's statement of last week that opens him up to the possibility of criminal prosecution in the UK under section 79 of RIPA, and possibly, FCPA in the US ).

Today's biggest revelation is that the NOTW paid a Royal Protection officer for details of the Royal Family's mobile phones - try to imagine what the response in the US would be if, say, Laura Bush's mobile was hacked by The National Enquirer ( Espionage Act prosecutions? ).

Closing the NOTW didn't put a line under anything; Rebekah Wade, Andy Coulson, Les Hinton and James Murdoch are all in highly vulnerable legal positions.

We still don't know whether there is a substantive US dimension to this beyond the already serious issues of corporate governance - but if NI was engaged in similar hacking activities in the US, then the geographical scope of this will widen further.

My expectation is that News Corp will survive - but it will be in a very different form, with far less Murdoch family invovlement, and far less wasta.

Posted by: dan | Jul 11, 2011 7:58:18 AM | 11


GCHQ doesn't need to hack voicemails, as the security services have the capacity to directly intercept voice/data calls; what the NOTW was doing was, by comparison, amateur hour espionage, that left big grubby fingerprints all over the place.

Posted by: dan | Jul 11, 2011 9:18:57 AM | 12

it is wonderful that this scandal has finally gone beyond the local, buried isolated titbits - the links between the media, the gvmt, the police in GB - are all up front for anyone to see.

cameron is exposed as a media puppet, a salesman in a frozen suit, a front man with a good line of ponderous patter in the right accent.

next, what are ppl going to do about it?

@rgiap, they destroyed public morality for short term gain, favors, contacts, the high life, etc. as you say. they have no profession they are conduits for the PTB and paid in function of how much the powerful profit from them - the media types pay packet depends on how much their superiors are able and willing to hand down for exruciating essential services but exclusion and retribution can be swift so everyone toes the line - in the anglo world the middle to top journo scribblers have kids in private schools and all that, all that...

Posted by: Noirette | Jul 11, 2011 11:12:00 AM | 13

Dan @12 is undoubtedly correct: nevertheless, as I tried to indicate above, there may well be other "subterranean" connections or exchanges of "genetic material". There is, therefore, nothing surprising
in this Facebook friendship reported by Craig Murray,
which, at least superficially, does not involve the spooks. However, intelligence agencies notoriously "use" news media to further their ends, and Rupert Murdoch's various rags have almost certainly been so used over the years. Being able to cite specific instances would be wonderful, but, lacking "chapter and verse" for the present we are justified only by our faith (although some might call it our demonology).

After Robert Maxwell's demise in 1991 the Mossad practically advertised its involvement in his death(at least if one can believe the likes of Gordon Thomas ). Murdoch now occupies a somewhat similar position. One can only wonder what the future might hold for the Australian.

Posted by: Hannah K. O'Luthon | Jul 12, 2011 12:47:19 AM | 14

Well, the situation really has broken loose since yesterday, as I suggested earlier it could.

We've had a broadside from ex-premier Gordon Brown this morning, accusing News International of every crime in the book.

Cameron went into hiding yesterday, instead of showing up in parliament to face questions. Though I imagine he'll have to be there today or tomorrow. It's not looking good for him, whether he can control this crisis. If he has trouble, it will reflect on his competence.

Oh yes, and the police are being questioned on why they shut down their enquiry prematurely in 2007. Murdoch and co evidently had their influence, perhaps through the politicians. The reputation of the British police is in question.

All good fun, and the crisis has a good way to go yet.

Posted by: Alexno | Jul 12, 2011 7:25:06 AM | 15

This video of a (drunk) former NOWT guy is really amazing.

These people have no conscience: Former NOTW executive recounts phone hacking

Posted by: b | Jul 13, 2011 6:32:36 AM | 16

"These people have no conscience."

True. That is not enough to bring someone that big down. This is a bit like watching all those WTC buildings "spontaneously" collapse.

Posted by: rjj | Jul 16, 2011 8:16:01 AM | 17

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