Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Why I will buy the 'News of the World'

I shall buy the “News of the Wold” this Sunday for the first time in years – as a small protest at the nauseating hypocrisy of our politicians and the BBC.

The phone-hacking allegations aren’t good. If it’s illegal, it should not happen.

But the queue of MPs desperate to condemn News International via the BBC – effectively a commercial rival of BSkyB – is even more dismaying.

Usually, they fawn on Rupert Murdoch and employ his cast-offs like Andy Coulson but now they pretend they want to prove they are somehow more moral than him and his organisation.

Actually they want to seize the opportunity get their retaliation in for the stories his papers have written about them in the past – and the stories they fear may be written about them in the future.

Of course, those other papers not involved in phone hacking – largely because their editorial budgets wouldn’t stretch to it – are sanctimoniously clambering aboard the bandwagon in the hope of settling old scores.

But the real victim of this flammed-up furore will be press freedom. The result will be new regulations on the press, a reduction in the ability of newspapers to make mistakes – and a sharp increase in secrecy, concealment and hypocrisy in high places.

It’s what politicians want. It’s what Hugh Grant wants. It’s what the BBC seems to want as well.

Buy the “News of the World” and support freedom, democracy and the right to know (even if it does mean supporting the right of newspapers to make mistakes sometimes).

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