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Tuesday 9 March 2010

Understanding A Little Less – 2

Credit to all three major political parties on one hot topic: none of them have attempted to use the recall to custody of Jon Venables for political advantage. After Justice Secretary Jack Straw made his Commons statement yesterday, he was questioned with some precision by his Tory shadow Dominic Grieve, with the Lib Dems also chipping in, but there was no grandstanding or points scoring merely for the sake of it.

The truce, though, did not extend to those cheerleading for Young Dave, and inevitably the Murdoch Sun has gone into characteristically crude party politics mode on the affair. What the Super Soaraway Currant Bun does not seem to get is that the saturation coverage given to this story, though it no doubt enables the rag to move more copies, can have unpleasant and even dangerous side-effects: the paper has also reported that a man living on the Fylde coast has been wrongly identified as Venables, and is now in fear of his life.

But this is routine for Rupe’s empire: at least one host on a cable network of differing political outlook to Fox News Channel (fair and balanced my arse) has received death threats for having the temerity to challenge the increasingly wayward assertions of “star” presenter Glenn Beck. Murdoch won’t be too worried about that, though: all that interests him and his clan is that the numbers stack up. The collateral damage is someone else’s problem.

Heck, it might even help shift more papers, and build better ratings.

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