After Theresa May dispensed with the services of John Whittingdale, whose relationship with a known sex worker was somehow not interesting enough for at least four national newspapers to even mention - well, not before Byline Media and this blog had mentioned it - out went Whitto’s advisors and in came Karen Bradley, who represents the constituency of Staffordshire Moorlands, the area around the town of Leek.
Already close: Craig Woodhouse and Tory minister Amber Rudd
Whittingdale had become known, and not in any way flippantly, as the Minister For Murdoch. He was invited to Creepy Uncle Rupe’s parties. Under the watchful eye of News UK’s CEO, the twinkle-toed yet domestically combative Rebekah Brooks, Whitto and the dominatrix remained out of the Super Soaraway Currant Bun. And in return, Whitto made sure that Section 40 of the Crime and Courts act 2013 was not signed into law.
There's lack of bias and prejudice for you
Why is this important? Section 40 contains the incentives for publishers to join a press regulator that is recognised under the provisions of the Royal Charter on press regulation. Publishers refusing to allow those complaining about potentially defamatory articles to use a low-cost arbitration system - and force them to bet the house on going to law - might find themselves having to pay both sides’ costs, even if they won.
But now Whittingdale has gone. How would the Murdoch mafiosi exert leverage on his successor? Simples. They get the Sun’s chief political correspondent to go through the revolving door between press and Government. You think I jest? Craig Woodhouse is leaving the Baby Shard bunker to take up a post as Special Advisor (SpAd) to Karen Bradley at the DCMS. Murdoch once again infiltrates the corridors of power.
Incredibly made-up P1 story, that is
Think about that. The organisation that ran the late and not at all lamented Screws, which in its pomp was little more than a criminal enterprise, hacking, bullying, blagging, even on occasion burgling its way from one scoop the next, getting its man into the ministry that looks after regulating the press. They cheered for Young Dave and Bozza. They smeared and sneered at anyone from other parties. They also sneered at Leveson.
Wasn't at all close, was it?
The queue of those giving Woodhouse their congratulations for helping to create the new Ministry For Murdoch also rewards scrutiny: fellow hacks and pundits, some from the allegedly new media but who are already becoming assimilated into the establishment, politicians eager to ingratiate themselves with Don Rupioni, and even UKIP MEP Steven Woolfe, who was too dodgy even for his own party’s leadership ballot.
No pejorative or sneering attitude here!
Nothing shows more clearly how weak Theresa May’s position as Prime Minister really is: despite the Murdoch empire now being embroiled in yet another developing scandal in the wake of Roger Ailes’ enforced departure from Fox News Channel (fair and balanced my arse), its perceived influence is so feared that she clearly feels it’s worth the suspicion of yet more entrenched cronyism. This whole business stinks.
Woodhouse’s appointment is a blatant insult to all those victims of press misbehaviour. But, like the earlier appointment of faithful Murdoch retainer Trevor Kavanagh to serve allegedly independent press regulator IPSO, it encapsulates the widespread corruption engendered by, and for the benefit of, the Murdochs.