Fit and proper

Neither Rupert nor James Murdoch is a ‘fit and proper person’ to run the media in this country.

  • The Murdochs were either aware, or unaware, of illegal activities at the NOTW. Either of these alternatives is unacceptable; they should have been aware and are culpable if they were not. They are also culpable if they were.
  • Even if they did not sanction such activities, the behaviour of individuals within an organisation is strongly influenced by role models and messages coming from the top of the organisation, and not just the bare bones of any rules and regulations. The messages set by top management in News Corporation have been both negligent and poisonous.
  • They have shown weakness in leadership in failing to sack Rebekah Brooks.
  • Arguably, the reason they has done this is to use her as a human shield to deflect criticism from the top. This shows manipulation and cowardice.
  • They have shown contempt for the readership of the NOTW. Many people dislike this paper, but it is the largest selling paper in this country, and to shut it down at a stroke is to ignore the millions of British readers who have enjoyed it every week for 168 years.
  • This also shows contempt for the fabric of the culture of the UK to shut down a tradition on a whim for calculating personal gain. Few people if any had expected or asked for this shutdown.
  • They have also taken this action without thought for the livelihood of the thousands of small British businesses who depend on sales of the NOTW, some of which may have their business survival put in peril.
  • Some of these newsagents will be the only shop in (usually poor) areas of the nation, again showing contempt for the fabric of British society.
  • They have also shown contempt for the junior staff members at NOTW who were entirely innocent of the wrongdoings at the paper.

These points will be obvious to anyone who gives these matters any thought.

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