As Nick Davies pointed out neatly in Flat Earth News, when it comes to the fourth estate, “Dog doesn’t eat dog”. What Davies means is that newspapers don’t dump on their own kind, which makes his own investigations at the Guardian into the phone hacking activities at the Murdoch News Of The World unusual.
And an indication that Davies may still be ferreting around in pursuit of this story comes in a Comment Is Free piece today on the Guardian website from the iconoclastic Peter Oborne, who usually inhabits the realm of the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre at the Mail, but clearly needs the Guardian to allow him to break with the iron code of Grubstreet.
Oborne’s target is Young Dave’s right hand man, and Murdoch “family” member, Andy Coulson, whose explanation of the acts of routine criminality being carried out at the Screws he clearly does not believe. Oborne contrasts the entry into Downing Street in 1997 of, well, y’know, Tone – accompanied by Big Al - with the potential entry by Cameron with Coulson in tow.
And the conclusion he makes is that Coulson is tainted to a far greater degree than Campbell ever was. Oborne concludes: “As deputy editor and then editor of the News of the World, he was presiding over what can only be described as a flourishing criminal concern”.
[For those who still doubt the ability of papers to keep quiet about their own, the Guardian website also carries an interview with former Sun editor David Yelland, who, in discussing how his alcoholism coincided with his spell in the editor’s chair, noted that “When I went out and disgraced myself in public – as I did many times – I could silence the diary columns by calling a fellow editor”.]