22 July 2011

News Corp Empire

It all appears to be imploding.  It begins to have the feel of Egypt in the final days of the Mubarak regime.

I'll just provide you with some links in case you, dear reader, aren't  up on all this and want the materials for a quick catch-up.

On June 23, an Old Bailey jury found  Levi Bellfield guilty of the murder of Milly Dowler nine years ago.  Never mind about the particulars now -- the verdict re-opened old wounds at News Corp., wounds its rivals were in a position to exploit.

Here's what The Guardian had to say on July 4, about Milly Dowler, and the hacking of her voice mail: click.

Miss Dowler's disappearance goes back to 2002.  For a bomb that went off after ticking quietly for nine years, this one made quite a mess.

Then on July 6, reports appeared that the particular Murdochian property involved in the Dowler matter, the News of the World, had also hacked  the phones of thr families of victims of the July 7, 2005 London terrorist attacks

For perspective, it has long been understood that the tabloid press in the UK will do anything for a scoop on the Royal family or wealthy celebrities.  A lot that would have been winked at in such a context was exciting outrage now that ordinary folks were the victims.

Murdoch decided he had to throw someone or something under the proverbial bus.  It was the "News of the World" (NotW hereafter) itself -- he closed that paper, one which had been around since 1843, on July 10 of this year, assigning 200 working people to unemployment.

But who had been the relevant underling?  Rebekah Brooks was the editor of NotW from 2000 to 2003, the perod of Milly Dowler's death.  She had since become a crucial lieutenant to Rupert Murdoch.  Murdoch initially gave every indication that he would stand staunchly by his woman. 
But the heat became too much for him.  On July 14th, a large investor in News Corp., Alwaleed bin Talal bin Abdulaziz al-Saud, demanded her resignation, and on the 15th, she complied.  Things have gotten even worse for our Ms Brooks.  She was thereafter arrested.

Further, this has also become a scandal about corruption at Scotland Yard.  Years ago, Brooks admited to parliament that under her leadership, the NotW paid police officers for information -- an admission causing consequences both for her organization and for theirs just now.

And there is a mysterious death to throw into the mix.  The sort of death that may have absolutely nothing to do with the rest of this, but that will keep conspiracy theorists intrigued.

For another spiking of the weirdness factor, there was the attempt to push a "pie" into Murdoch's face while he testified before Parliament, an attempt warded off by Murdoch's Chinese tigress of a wife, Wendi.  Look at the YouTube.  Wendi is sitting behind her husband. She's wearing the salmon-colored jacket.  She's a former volleyball player, and she certainly appears to be spiking the attacker's head

The above links will give you, roughly speaking, this story thus far.  Perhaps with the addition of one or two points from here.

Conclusion: the vollyball move won't save the empire, which is troubled by internal rot, not just external idiots with pseudo-pies.

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Knowledge is warranted belief -- it is the body of belief that we build up because, while living in this world, we've developed good reasons for believing it. What we know, then, is what works -- and it is, necessarily, what has worked for us, each of us individually, as a first approximation. For my other blog, on the struggles for control in the corporate suites, see www.proxypartisans.blogspot.com.