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Saturday 24 January 2015

Murdoch Doggies Protest Too Much

[Update at end of post]

Yesterday’s edition of the Super Soaraway Currant Bun devoted a two-page spread to pushing the crude and false equivalence between the continuing trials of a number of the paper’s own journalists - something which is of interest to very few people except those involved, their families and the Murdoch empire - and Police investigations into those who have recently returned to the UK from the Middle East.
That's what I think of youse judicial process, ya bladdy Pommie drongoes!

SUN MEN IN THE DOCK … JIHADIS ON THE LOOSE” is the not at all subtle comparison, as readers are told “Outcry as journalists face retrial” (Outcry from whom? You jest) and then get the same proposition rammed down their throats with “Just 1 in 5 I. S. Brits are charged”. A pile of notebooks is seen balancing on the scales of justice against an assortment of automatic weapons and explosives (but, for some reason, no knives).

Faithful - and reliably vicious - Murdoch retainer Trevor Kavanagh has been wheeled out to proclaim “A risk to our free speech & press”, which, roughly translated, means for him the freedom to have any old pack of lies published and backed up by a phalanx of expensively-remunerated lawyers, and screw any poor soul who gets in the way, especially those without the money to take the Sun to the cleaners.
The campaign extended to the Times, sadly no longer a paper of record, where an editorial titled Trial and Error tells readers “The prosecution of journalists is turning into an expensive witch-hunt”. The Sun’s own editorial again presses home the hacks-v-ISIS meme, and for good measure wants readers to “Look over there at Charlie Hebdo” (the Sun, when it came to publishing the cartoons, was of less than perfect courage).

However, and here we encounter a significantly sized however, the Sun’s false equivalence is so blatant that calling it out is not difficult. The “why don’t you go and catch some proper criminals” meme has been wheeled out at traffic wardens, Police motorway and main road patrols, and those investigating fraud and other white-collar crime so often that it no longer enjoys any credibility.
What the journalists are on trial for is charges involving potentially criminal behaviour. If it’s a crime in law, it’s there to be prosecuted. The CPS, which the Sun is also kicking, is there to prosecute crime. Those returning from the Middle East and not being charge, on the other hand, may not be criminally inclined. One of their number is featured in the Sun’s report: London’s occasional Mayor Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson!

And on top of all that, what the Sun and Times are not telling their readers is that those journalists are only on trial because the Murdoch empire has shopped them to the Police. So what the Sun is saying is “How dare you put our hacks on trial on the basis of information we passed you in the first place, because we thought you’d then go away and leave us alone, except you haven’t, so it’s not fair”.

This attempt to bully the authorities won’t work. The Murdochs are now a busted flush.

[UPDATE 25 January 1620 hours: just to underscore the Sun's campaign against the Police and CPS, today has brought another attack on both.
The request for more funding - £50 million is hardly a massive sum by today's terms - is rubbished as "obscene", there is talk of a "luxury travel binge", despite the cost of first class rail fares falling significantly over the years, and then Kier Starmer is somehow included, despite not being at the CPS any more. Perhaps that's because he's contesting a seat for the Labour Party in May.
The Met gets it in the neck for having a small number of officers suspended and on leave, with the Sun managing to forget that these include the Police whistleblowers that the paper has been encouraging to come forward, and the force to protect - like putting them on "gardening leave". Once again, Rupe's downmarket troops are playing both sides of the field.
Then there is the obligatory editorial, talking of "high-profile witch-hunts" and "splashing the cash on luxury travel" before readers are asked "Do these people have no shame?"

Well, in the case of the Murdoch press, whose hacks are on trial because their employer shopped them to the authorities, clearly not. Ah, the rank stench of hypocrisy once more]

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