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bickster

Murdoch Scum

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I'm not for one second saying that justice should not be served fully... flip there have been enough miscarriages of justice to warrant a full defence. However the fact that people who are witnesses and bystanders are made to feel like criminals themselves under cross examination and that some victims are even put off pressing cases altogether is simply a step too far.

A balance has to be struck.

The balance is in ensuring that both the defense and the prosecution are allowed thorough and extensive evaluation of all possible lines of questioning.

The problem is not with the defense, the problem is with the support network around trials that leads to people not expecting or being able to deal with what rightfully should happen.

Nothing in a trial should ever be taken at face value without extensive cross examination, that that cross examination might upset is neither here or there, the balance of justice says it MUST occur.

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The problem is not with the defense, the problem is with the support network around trials that leads to people not expecting or being able to deal with what rightfully should happen.

In this case the sister of the victim categorically stated that the family liason officers had indeed prepared the family for the grilling that awaited them and for that they were grateful. However NOTHING prepared them for the task that lay ahead to such an extent that the mother collapsed after giving testimony, such was the ferocity of the questioning.

I have sympathy for the accused receiving a fair trial obviously but what price to pay? The law, the pursuit of law and the process of the law should be respected as well as feared.

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I have sympathy for the accused receiving a fair trial obviously but what price to pay?

Any price.

It's that simple.

If one innocent person gets sent to jail because a line of questioning was deemed too sensitive to be dealt with then there is a serious problem.

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Why are these systems so easy to "hack"? Something is very wrong with the mobile networks if they are are so easy to compromise.

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Why are these systems so easy to "hack"? Something is very wrong with the mobile networks if they are are so easy to compromise.

It sounds like it was as simple as telephoning the various networks and blagging the passcodes off them

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Why are these systems so easy to "hack"? Something is very wrong with the mobile networks if they are are so easy to compromise.

I read somewhere , that some geek found the hack back in the 90's and went to the NoTW with it so they could expose it .... Needless to say they acted on his info in ways he didn't imagine

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out of curiosity are the "Boycotting Murdoch" people reserving it purely for the NOTW and Sky sports or extending it to 20th Century Fox and Harper Collins etc

will you be doing turning off the TV whenever one of their films come on , walking out the cinema etc ?

Personally - watching less telly than ever. HBO bores me, so Sky have no chance.

The last film I saw at the cinema admittedly was Fox - 'Revenge Of The Sith', and it was crap.

My DVD collection comprises of: 2 x Tom & Jerry, 1 x Chris Cunningham and a Monty Python box set - bought by my ex 7 years ago, only opened this year by a house guest.

Most of our books come from the British Heart Foundation, most end up back there.

Lived pretty much Murdoch free since his news agencies took the lead in proclaiming Dubya the winner in the 2000 US election. Fox rather ignored reports of major voting irregularities in Florida - regarding both suffrage and the count. Recounts were ordered, but were fudged.

Who was the governor of Florida? Jeb Bush.

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I read somewhere , that some geek found the hack back in the 90's and went to the NoTW with it so they could expose it .... Needless to say they acted on his info in ways he didn't imagine

If that were true, why would they have needed to use a third party private investigator? I think the other poster is correct that it was a simple piece of social engineering. Which leads to the obvious question; what have the networks done about it? They've known for years so that's a pretty large does of negligence.

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Yeah thats true enough

I assumed the private eyes were finding out the phone numbers for them ?

Celebs I can understand they may already know how to contact but I doubt Milly Dowling's phone number was public knowledge ?

Be interesting to find out if their are insiders at the phone providers taking a bung though

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This is starting to get a lot of play in the US....I hope that there is an investigation into similar undertakings by News Corps here in the States. I'm sure if they did it in the UK they did it here, too.

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For years and years and years the private dicks have employed people who work in the call centres at vodafone, o2 et al. This gave them access to a list of numbers that called you or you called - and if on the same network, the name and address of these correspondents. So you speak to the dowler family and get their mobile, check out their favourite numbers. Bingo.

At least two of the major networks used to store the pin code for your voicemail in free text as well - don't know if they've remedied that yet.

And by giving people a default pincode, ie 0000 or last 4 digits of your phone number, and when most people access their voicemail direct from their mobile, bypassing the pin code - a lot of people are unaware it is still set at it's default.

The mobile companies have been criminally negligent in the protection of people's data and should be hammered by the information commissioner. But that doesn't let rupert off the hook - news corps crimes go way past negligence.

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Does anyone think there will be any long term damage to Rupert or NOTW over this or will it be business as usual in a couple of months time and everyone has moved on to the next big story?

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will it be business as usual in a couple of months time and everyone has moved on to the next big story?

this

the cynic in me says they already know what this next big deflection story is as well ....

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Does anyone think there will be any long term damage to Rupert or NOTW over this or will it be business as usual in a couple of months time and everyone has moved on to the next big story?

Rupert can’t live forever, so I wonder what happens when the next generation of Murdoch’s takeover. So far the jury seems to be out on whether they are up to it

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Does anyone think there will be any long term damage to Rupert or NOTW over this or will it be business as usual in a couple of months time and everyone has moved on to the next big story?

I expect Murdoch's gameplan was to distance himself from it as much as possible, ringfence it to being only about the NoW, pressure Cameron behind the scenes to allow the BSkyB purchase to proceed uninterrupted, make a couple of sackings and a public apology, and stress that it was all a very long time ago. That might have worked, though his brazenness in backing Brooks was a mistake, underlining as it does that he really thinks he can get away with it and tell us all to take a jump. It also makes it about NI, rather than ringfencing the NoW, which is a tactical blunder.

Things have changed.

It's deeply damaging that beyond the Dowler case, there's now stuff about hacking relatives of dead forces people. The British Legion have dropped them, and the head of a forces charity described their actions as "a betrayal". This goes to the heart of what they pretend to stand for, with all the hypocritical bullshit about "our boys" and the rest of it. If there's one thing which more than anything else will hit sales, it's this.

That can only strengthen the case for advertisers stepping back. If it's not only a moral and image issue, but if the rags are reaching less consumers, it's also about cost-effectiveness. No doubt they will massively cut advertising rates, but that may not be enough to stem the tide.

It's now made the front pages in the US, about NI and Murdoch and "the tabloid culture he represents" rather than about the NoW. Global reputational damage.

His son and his little protegee may face criminal investigation. Cameron will try not to have a judge in charge of the investigation, but won't be able to swing it. The long list of people suing for damages has just become a lot longer.

Meanwhile, Cameron is suffering badly from his incestuously close relationship with this bunch of scumbags. This piece from Peter Oborne in the Torygraph illustrates the extent of the damage Cameron is facing.

David Cameron is in the sewer because of his News International friends

In the careers of all prime ministers there comes a turning point. He or she makes a fatal mistake from which there is no ultimate recovery. With Tony Blair it was the Iraq war and the failure to find weapons of mass destruction. With John Major it was Black Wednesday and sterling’s eviction from the Exchange Rate Mechanism. With Harold Wilson, the pound’s devaluation in 1967 wrecked his reputation.

Each time the pattern is strikingly similar. Before, there is a new leader with dynamism, integrity and carrying the faith of the nation. Afterwards, the prime minister can stagger on for years, but as increasingly damaged goods: never is it glad, confident morning again.

David Cameron, who has returned from Afghanistan as a profoundly damaged figure, now faces exactly such a crisis. The series of disgusting revelations concerning his friends and associates from Rupert Murdoch’s News International has permanently and irrevocably damaged his reputation.

Until now it has been easy to argue that Mr Cameron was properly grounded with a decent set of values. Unfortunately, it is impossible to make that assertion any longer. He has made not one, but a long succession of chronic personal misjudgments.

He should never have employed Andy Coulson, the News of the World editor, as his director of communications. He should never have cultivated Rupert Murdoch. And – the worst mistake of all – he should never have allowed himself to become a close friend of Rebekah Brooks, the chief executive of the media giant News International, whose departure from that company in shame and disgrace can only be a matter of time.

We are talking about a pattern of behaviour here. Indeed, it might be better described as a course of action. Mr Cameron allowed himself to be drawn into a social coterie in which no respectable person, let alone a British prime minister, should be seen dead.

It was called the Chipping Norton set, an incestuous collection of louche, affluent, power-hungry and amoral Londoners, located in and around the Prime Minister’s Oxfordshire constituency. Brooks and her husband, the former racing trainer Charlie Brooks, live in a house scarcely a mile from David and Samantha Cameron’s constituency home. The two couples meet frequently, and have continued to do so long after the phone hacking scandal became well known.

PR fixer Matthew Freud, married to Mr Murdoch’s daughter Elisabeth, is another member of this Chipping Norton set. When Mr Cameron bumped into Freud at Rebekah Brooks’s wedding two years ago, he and Mr Freud greeted each other with exuberant high-fives to signal their exclusive friendship.

The Prime Minister cannot claim in defence that he was naively drawn in to this lethal circle. He was warned – many times. Shortly before the last election he was explicitly told about the company he was keeping. Alan Rusbridger – editor of The Guardian newspaper, which has performed such a wonderful service to public decency by bringing to light the shattering depravity of Mr Murdoch’s newspaper empire – went to meet one of Mr Cameron’s closest advisers shortly before the last election. He briefed this adviser very carefully about Mr Coulson, telling him many troubling pieces of information that could not then be put into the public domain.

Mr Rusbridger then went to see Nick Clegg, now the deputy prime minister. So Mr Cameron and Mr Clegg – the Prime Minister and the Deputy Prime Minister – knew all about Mr Coulson before last May’s coalition negotiations. And yet they both paid no attention and went on to make him the Downing Street director of communications, an indiscretion that beggars belief.

So the Prime Minister is in a mess. To put the matter rather more graphically, he is in a sewer. The question is this: how does he crawl out and salvage at least some of his reputation for decency and good judgment? This is a potentially deadly moment. If the Prime Minister plays his cards wrong, his public image will change in a matter of a few days. From a popular and respected national leader, he will come to be defined by his ill-judged friendship with the Chipping Norton set. This kind of personal degradation has happened before. By the end, Harold Wilson was irreparably damaged by his friendship with dodgy businessmen such as the raincoat manufacturer Lord Kagan. The Macmillan premiership fell apart under the weight of revelation from Lord Astor’s Cliveden set.

So what must Mr Cameron do? First, he must speedily turn his back on Rebekah Brooks. The Labour leader Ed Miliband was right yesterday to call on Mrs Brooks to consider her position at News International.

At the moment, she is putting up the same defence as Mr Coulson when he was Mr Cameron’s senior aide in Downing Street – that she did not know what was going on. Even if we accept this defence – and there is no strong reason to do so because News International has published many falsehoods in this sordid saga – it still does not work. Mrs Brooks, first as editor of the News of the World and the Sun and now as chief executive of News International, was responsible for setting standards. Those standards, as the world now knows, were foul beyond human credibility and she bears much of the blame.

It may well be dangerous for David Cameron to ditch Mrs Brooks. She may have acquired a great deal of information about him and the senior members of his cabinet, both at those quiet Chipping Norton dinners and quite possibly through other, nefarious means. Mrs Brooks is cornered and liable to strike out. But that is a risk the Prime Minister must take.

Second, Mr Cameron must account for his actions. We need an explanation of how he came to hire Mr Coulson, what checks were made, what advice was taken. We need a checklist of those not so innocent social meetings with Mrs Brooks. Hitherto, Downing Street has kept quiet about Mr Cameron’s meetings with Rupert Murdoch, thought to be one of the very first visitors he received after being made Prime Minister. They now need to be made public.

It is essential this information be placed in the public domain because of the shocking decision made last week by the Coalition government to allow Mr Murdoch to entrench his monopoly power over the British media by purchasing the 61 per cent of the satellite broadcaster BSkyB he does not already own. This decision now stinks, and must be reversed.

Yesterday, David Cameron muttered some vague phrases about the possibility of a public inquiry into phone-hacking – showing that he has not woken up to the fact that the world has changed utterly over the past 48 hours. The horrifying revelations that Mr Murdoch’s journalists hacked into the phone of the missing teenager Milly Dowler and even into those of the families of our war dead have opened up a new level of horror about News International illegality.

The burning question now is whether the US tycoon Rupert Murdoch – whose journalists have shown such open contempt for ordinary decency – is a fit and proper person to own any British publicly quoted company, and whether it is not time that his media organisation itself should be forcibly broken up.

The Prime Minister has allowed himself to be horribly compromised by his connection with News International and its employees. He urgently needs to regain the good sense and basic morality that have made him seem such an attractive prime minister. So he must use this terrible scandal, which has brought such shame on all journalists, as an opportunity to clean up British public life. Judging by yesterday, our greatly diminished Prime Minister shows no real appetite to do so.

The damage is permanent, and probably irreversible. Whether it can be contained is now the question. Here's hoping not.

Still, it's lucky all this was just the actions of a single rogue reporter. Just imagine if more than one person had been involved.

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... everyone has moved on to the next big story?

The saddest thing will be if the public don't learn lessons from their own attitude to this story.

When it was the royal family and knees, celebs and shagging and politicians then people were rather shrugging their shoulders and not showing that much concern. Had one put it to the public a few weeks ago (or even a few days ago) that this might have happened to them, to people other than those with whom they may have not had much sympathy (Sienna Miller, Hugh Grant, John Prescott et al) then the reaction would probably have been, "Nonsense. Why would they do that? There would be no reason."

I think a real lesson that people ought to learn is about speaking up when other groups are the object of behaviour that people might feel is wrong rather than not really caring because it hasn't happened to them, yet.

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the wider picture of me is that it's coming to light now at a time to derail the BSkyB takeover .. it kinda suggest the info has been known for some time and is now being used for political gain ... wonder who is behind it all

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I don't buy that at all, Tony.

It's coming out now because the Police are finally, eventually, doing what they should have done years ago. They are going through the records properly and cross checking them against categories of people - people who were involved in 7/7, relatives of soldiers killed, relatives of kids abducted...etc.

The timing would have been "better" to stop the Sky thing about 6 months ago, while Cable was in charge of it - he could have killed the bid dead with plenty of back-up.

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