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Louise "The Ghoul" Mensch has some explaining to do

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Louise "The Ghoul" Mensch has some explaining to do

Post  Guest on Tue 1 May - 21:35


'Astonishing' question Culture committee Tories must answer

If Rupert Murdoch is 'fit' to run News Corp, why were his phone hacking excuses so 'astonishing'?

Column LAST UPDATED AT 13:58 ON Tue 1 May 2012


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FOUR dissenting Tories have some explaining to do after refusing to back the main finding of the Culture, Media and Sport Select committee that Rupert Murdoch is not a "fit person" to run an international company and was guilty of "wilful blindness" over the illegal activities of his reporters.

As the Mole predicted, the committee was split on party lines on this crucial line in the report. With Tory chairman John Whittingdale abstaining, the committee was divided by 6-4 on paragraph 229 condemning Rupert Murdoch’s fitness to hold the broadcasting licence for BSkyB.

This would have been a devastating finding for Murdoch’s continued hold on the satellite broadcaster and Fox News in the US, but for the fact that the four Tory MPs on the committee – Louise Mensch, Therese Coffey, Damian Collins and Philip Davies – all voted as a block against it.

It is therefore likely to be dismissed as a politically-motivated finding by a group of Labour MPs and one Liberal Democrat (Adrian Sanders) led by Labour's Tom Watson, who accused the Murdochs to their faces at a hearing of the committee of being like a Mafia family engaged in criminal activity.

David Grossman, the Newsnight hack, asked Watson at the committee’s press conference why he had pushed this line to a vote and split the committee instead of pushing for a unanimous report. Watson said: "It’s a judgement you have to make whether you go for a weaker report and gain unanimity or whether you stand up for what you believe."

Even Louise Mensch, the Tory MP who had backed Watson in pursuing News International, refused to support the report, saying, "There was no evidence presented whatsoever – therefore we could not support it."

Defending Murdoch, Philip Davies said: "We have seen absolutely no evidence to suggest that Rupert Murdoch knew any of these things [hacking] were going on. If I thought he had covered up and managed crime I would be prepared to say he was an unfit person."

The committee was united in deciding to refer two of News International’s top executives, Colin Myler and Les Hinton, and its company lawyer, Tom Crone, to Parliament for misleading the Commons. They are the fall guys.

The Murdoch empire now faces ritual humiliation in Parliament when MPs discuss how to punish the three - whether to use the thumb screws or the branding irons or bring them before the bar of the Commons to be publicly admonished (a penalty last meted out to the late John Junor, editor of the Daily Express, in 1957).

There is one major potential winner from the report – Tommy Sheridan, the Scottish socialist jailed for three years for perjury in January 2011 after a libel trial involving News International. Tom Watson said his conviction was “unsound”, and his case should be reopened.

But the Tories on the committee also have questions to answer. Former Murdoch editor (Sunday Times) Andrew Neil asked on Twitter whether it was "wise of Tories to be seen to be siding against toughest criticisms of the Murdochs"?

But there is a far more difficult question. Before entering Parliament, Louise Mensch was a writer of fiction, a star of chick-lit. She chose to believe the story spun by Rupert and James Murdoch that they had no idea what was going on below them in the undergrowth of News International.

Nevertheless she voted with the other Tories for paragraph 163 of the report that says it was “simply astonishing” that James and Rupert Murdoch did not realise until December 2010 that their defence that hacking was limited to "one rogue reporter" was untrue.

She and her colleagues have to explain why their explanation was "astonishing" but she and the other Tory MPs chose to believe it. ·

Read more: http://www.theweek.co.uk/politics/phone-hacking/46596/astonishing-question-culture-committee-tories-must-answer#ixzz1teVIL7j3

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Re: Louise "The Ghoul" Mensch has some explaining to do

Post  Guest on Tue 1 May - 21:43

Matthew Pearson‏@mattpearson

Louise Mensch defending a multinational corporation that hacked a murdered girl's phone. I think people of Corby deserve better than that

And us, she calls "ghouls".


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