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Tuesday 7 October 2014

Littlejohn’s Hacked Off Gaffe

The Daily Mail’s unfunny and talentless churnalist Richard Littlejohn is clearly concerned about the recent behaviour of the Police towards his pals in the press: “They used the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act (RIPA) — originally designed to protect national security — to trawl through thousands of confidential calls from a phone on our sister paper’s newsdesk” he gasps.
RIPA, Guv? It's grim, innit?!?

Yeah, phone calls – farsends of em! And how serious is that? “Keith Vaz, chairman of the Commons Home Affairs Select Committee, called the revelation ‘seriously disturbing’ and a ‘blow against Press freedom’”. That would be the same Keith Vaz that Dicky Windbag called an “ocean-going sleazebag” recently. But Littlejohn is right to be concerned, even if his manner is a little unfortunate.

They are using RIPA for a purpose for which it was never intended and, in the process, trampling all over the journalist’s right to protect his sources, which is a fundamental cornerstone of a free Press. All this was going on while the police were pursuing a number of journalists for hacking the phones of celebrities” he complains. And then he sells the pass.

Phone-hacking by a few journalists led to the long-running Leveson Inquiry into the entire newspaper industry. But the police believe they can hack phones with impunity, without bothering to get authorisation from a judge. They are acting as a law unto themselves. Perhaps it’s now time for a full inquiry into the culture, practices and ethics of the police”. And, as Jon Stewart might have said, two things here.

One, what the rozzers have done is not hacking, or even tapping. And the inquiry into the Police, and their relationship with the press, was intended to be the next part of what was the Leveson Inquiry. So why wasn’t Dicky Windbag speaking up at the time? On top of that, his headline today, “Where’s Hacked Off now the Police are at it?”, shows he once again can’t be arsed doing his homework.

Hacked Off, as any fule kno, are (a) in the vanguard of criticism of the apparent Police overreach, and (b) they were way ahead of Littlejohn. Dick would have known this, had he read his old paper, the Sun, which was reporting on the Lib Dem conference: “Former MP Evan Harris, who spearheaded the move in the conference hall, railed against the decision by cops to obtain Mr Newton Dunn’s phone records”.

The article went on “There was no judicial oversight or indeed any oversight for the police of that decision,’ he told activists. ‘The police authorised themselves to do that, something they cannot do under PACE (the Police and Criminal Evidence Act) and should not be allowed to do under RIPA. There must be greater safeguards’”. Evan Harris is Associate Director of Hacked Off. There’s your answer, Dick.

Littlejohn can’t be bothered to check before smearing. No change there, then.

1 comment:

Arnold said...

From the comments.
"And The Sun is using the Human Rights Act to defend itself from this "hacking". You couldn't make it up, Mr Littlejohn. could you???"