HACKGATE DAY 411: As the Sun rises on Sunday, will the sun set on Murdoch in the following days?

Portrait of the pornographer as a young man

Independent leads with prediction of ‘jaw-dropping Leveson testimony’

….and all human insincerity is present in the new Soaraway SOS

Independent on Sunday deputy editor James Hanning probably doubled the ratings of this coming week’s Leveson hearings when he wrote, in today’s edition, that ‘Dramatic new evidence to the Leveson inquiry is expected to unleash a “bloodbath” of bitter recriminations between police and prosecution officials arguing over failings in a series of investigations into allegations of phone hacking, computer hacking and bribery by journalists.’

Hanning –  a chap as well clued into the Hackgate saga as anyone – has used an army of News International moles to piece together an entirely convincing story about the Sun on Sunday launch being brought forward….to avoid being spoiled (or even ruined) by some of the evidence of Newscorp criminality about to spill out into the media. I am now well behind the music on this area – police and judiciary – of Hackgate, but given Mr Hanning is one of the more scrupulous and careful professionals around in the business today, I suspect a rearrangement of the furniture around our telly might be called for, starting tomorrow.

The Sino-American Digger may well have brought forward the launch of  The Pun on Sunday, but he might as well not have bothered. The Sun On Sunday – or as the Slog will henceforth refer to it, the SOS – turned out to be….um, The Sun, but on a Sunday. About as much imagination seems to have gone into producing the first edition as I spent cleaning my teeth this morning. Page 3 girl Kelly Rowland is ‘a Rowl Model but does she have the seX-Factor?’, ‘Nelson [Mandela] tum Op’, Katie Price with her own column (‘I would love to have met the war reporter Marie Colvin’), ‘Tanks but no thanks [petrol prices]’, ‘Piggy Beck Ride’ (Beckham’s new daughter), ‘Agony of Murdered Nikita’s Parents’…..onandonandonandon it goes, one lifeless pun after another, coupled with all that false intimacy the Murdoch tabloids assume they have with celebs. “‘ow’s yer tum Nels – awroight? Good on yer!” An entirely timely reminder why The Slog and millions of others would do anything to bury Newscorp and all who sail in her forever.

But there is one huge irony in the new Soaraway SOS leading with the gripping news that Amanda Holden’s heart stopped for forty seconds while having new baby Hollie. Over a 5-page spread, we learn that she lost ‘gallons of blood’ (the human body only has one to start with), docs – they’re never doctors in The Sun – used ‘special skills learned treating soldiers in Helmand’, ‘the NHS care was incredible’ (‘Aaaaarrrg), and Amanda ‘backs a charity set up in 1992 to help pregnant women over their problems’. Well she would, wouldn’t she?

Is this a newspaper in the spirit of The News of the World. No, it is not: all human insincerity is there, along with every inhuman asperity.

Meanwhile, the huge  irony is this: former Sun graduate, Mirror editor and all-round plank Piers Morgan poked his unpleasant nose into Holden’s marital business so much back in 2002, she became extremely wary of him…as the Romping Arse admits in his ‘book’ The Insider. What the Romper probably doesn’t know (but The Slog does) is that Holden* was tipped off about being phone-hacked on Moron’s watch as Blind Pugh Editor on the Mirror….and it was one of his employees who tipped her off. So if you’re feeling litigious Pierzipoo, bring it on: it’ll make for good fun in Court.

But talking of litigation, there is a profoundly nasty sign-off to the Holden spread:


This is the first Currant Bun I’ve ever actually handed over personal funds to read – and the first issue I’ve read at all since the late 1980s when I was pitching for The Mirror business. So I suppose this shit-ridden little  threat appears in all their fiction. These folks have worse antennae than Maria Callas, but while we’re here, I have three questions for Big Lawyer:

1. Was anyone else watching in Newscorp over the last twenty years, as your shower systematically corrupted every valued institution in the country I love?

2. Will you be watching the Leveson Enquiry next week when the profundity of your collaboration in this understain on British history comes to light?

3. Will you be watching over progeny James as his life disintegrates in the coming months? Or will your focus now turn to protecting  prodigal returnee Liz and her brother, Lacklustre Murdoch, as they’re put in charge of new products and Newscorp salvation respectively?

‘Our lawyers are watching’. Give me strength.

* Those pointing out that – despite that traumatic marital experience with the tabloids – Amanda Holden is still happy to take their publicity have a very good point. I don’t think it’s any defence of what Newscorp and other papers have done; but I do believe publicity junkies are their own worst enemies.

13 thoughts on “HACKGATE DAY 411: As the Sun rises on Sunday, will the sun set on Murdoch in the following days?

  1. “…new evidence to the Leveson inquiry is expected to unleash a “bloodbath” of bitter recriminations between police and prosecution officials…”

    I can’t wait :-)


  2. What?……. “These folks have worse antennae than Maria Callas”,
    Who knew that Callas had a faulty antennae? Did Jackie start that rumor?


  3. Yes, the ‘Our lawyers are watching’ sign off has been used for many years by The Sun and The Screws.

    It usually accompanies picture exclusives as a way of saying, it’s our copyright so eff off. I didn’t see today’s rag, but I’m presuming there were exclusive photos of Holden holding her baybee. She has exclusive rights to expolit her baybee and she chose the Currant Bun. Awww.

    Expect a long phase of currying favour with celebs by paying them for exclusives. It will have to be a lot more like Hello (withouth the Hello house style photos), with the money going to the celeb direct instead of to a private eye.

    Apparently Rebekah Brooks is going to cast herself as Good Girl this week by saying she was told by a policeman about the police investigation into Newscorp.

    Let that serve as a warning to any lackeythat ever wants to win her approval by grovelling to her.

    When the poo hits the fan – she’ll sell you out.

    Why did Piers Moron and his two convicted City Slickers just come into my head?


  4. [OT] – “Spanish revolt brews…”

    One of the gloomiest articles about the current state of play in ClubMed I’ve read for a while: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/comment/ambroseevans_pritchard/9107046/Spanish-revolt-brews-as-national-economic-rearmament-begins-in-Europe.html

    Though he swept into office as an apostle of orthodoxy, Mariano Rajoy has since delved into Madrid’s ghastly accounts and concluded that it would be “suicidal” to try to slash the budget deficit from 8pc of GDP to 4.4pc of GDP this year, as demanded by Europe’s fiscal Calvinists.

    Sixty years after the end of the war, Germany is again coming to be seen as an overbearing enemy, and an atmosphere of hostility is building up in a Continent divided between a rich and flourishing North and a South in danger of being reduced to a protectorate.

    No coverage of these Spanish riots on UK News channels…

    The popular pressure gauge has been rising for months but the mass protests of the last two weeks have had a new and sharper edge — even if you disregard the outbreak of violent street clashes with police in Valencia, already dubbed the “Valencia Spring”.

    The Euro is done, stick a fork in it!


  5. Well the saintly Ms Holden was paid £250k for her appearance in the SOS, nice work if you can get it!

    However it would be interesting if she was summoned to appear at the Leveson inquiry to say WHO on Mr Morons team informed her that her phone was being hacked.

    Equally puzzling is the behaviour of CNN, who still continue to employ Piers Moron, despite knowing what an unsavoury character he is…


  6. However hard it looks like this shower will all eventually come tumbling down, police, press and government, I suspect the can of really big juicy worms will never be opened. That can is tucked away on a top shelf out of view. The one being kicked down the street, for all to wonder and gloat at, is a decoy.

    Just one fat worm is hinted at with a story in The Sunday Times: ‘Apps spy on phone messages’ (which you cannot access without a subscription).

    But the gist of it below is at this link : http://www.theweek.co.uk/daily-briefing/45566/ten-things-you-need-know-today-sunday-26-feb-2012
    Companies, including Facebook, are using smartphone apps to spy on users’ phone messages and gather information about their lives. A Sunday Times investigation also found that some apps can access users’ internet history which is transmitted to third party advertisers, while other apps can remotely control a phone’s camera.

    My reading of the publication of this item is to set the ground for if and when it comes out that Screws Indigestible has been doing a lot more than just hacking mobile answer-phones or even computer e-mail. It is to say ‘look folks – everybody’s doing this stuff; its not really so bad and scary. Is the new normal’.

    See here an idea of what is possible: http://eubrainwashing.blogspot.com/2011/07/more-to-phone-hacking-than-accessing.html

    But the effect of such revelation still has the potential to be devastating for NI and the Mudoiks.

    The the can chock full of juicy worms could well go deeper than that. That is who helped, who allowed powers reserved for the highest levels of police investigation and state security to be usurped for ‘third-party’ surveillance. Surveillance not only of meaningless celebrity’s toilet habits but such that could compromise national security and those in positions of real power and authority. And deeper still; is it only the news rooms of NI that benefited from such knowledge and leverage that may have resulted or could this spying network have a darker beneficiary than just pennies on a news-stand.

    Trust that such could not occur, just because it should not occur, is misplaced.


  7. Piers Morons employment doesnt puzzle me , its just jobs for the boys courtesy of the big boss. The same big boss whos probably decided along with his “unsavoury” elitist mates that woes in Spain will not be shown on the MSM, at least not until Greece is sorted and those nasty Arabs have been dealt with!


  8. Rupert Murdoch’s Sun had led the attempted coup with an outburst of the kind of tabloid fist-waving which has itself been part of the distortion of power. The paper’s associate editor, Trevor Kavanagh, reacted to the arrest of 10 of his colleagues by launching a ferocious attack on Scotland Yard. It was full of the rhetorical flourish of great reporting but almost devoid of facts.
    Crucially, Kavanagh’s claim that the Yard was engaged in a witch-hunt against legitimate journalism was based on a bold assumption that, in the Sun’s history of paying sources for stories, “there is nothing disreputable and, as far as we know at this point, nothing illegal”. Never pausing to question that assumption, the Daily Mail joined in, reporting the arrests under the headline “Operation Overkill” and running a column by Richard Littlejohn which compared the police to the Stasi engaging in “a sinister assault on a free press”.

    On the question of alleged favouritism, the Leveson inquiry will surely be interested in the evidence disclosed by Paddick that when police in August 2006 went to search the News of the World, they were physically stopped from entering the accounts department and denied access to the computer and safe of the royal reporter Clive Goodman; and that the police responded by drafting a production order and then failing to use it. Paddick said: “It is not usual that a suspect would be permitted to fob the police off in this way.”



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