Monday, July 18, 2011

Rupert Murdoch and The Number 13. Power Tower Tumbling Down?

Is Rupert Murdoch losing his powerful influence?  Here is a rundown of the power that he has held and gained to this point, as well as the use of his power that may have him tumbling down his great media empire Mount Everest.

First, Rupert Murdoch began his style of acquisitions and expansions of his power back in 1953 by purchasing the Sunday Times in Perth, Australia.  Not much later, he acquired newspapers in many areas, including The Daily Mirror and also acquired a small records company called Festival Records.  He followed that with the purchase of The Dominion.  This was just the beginning of his additions to his powerful empire.

It wasn't long before he started to get involved in shaping politics and events.  
"During the 1980s and early 1990s, Murdoch's publications were generally supportive of Britain's Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.[8] At the end of the Thatcher/Major era, Murdoch switched his support to the Labour Party and its leader, Tony Blair. The closeness of his relationship with Blair and their secret meetings to discuss national policies was to become a political issue in Britain.[9] Though this later started to change, with The Sun publicly renouncing the ruling Labour government and lending its support to David Cameron's Conservative Party, which soon after came to form a coalition government. Former Prime Minister Gordon Brown's official spokesman said in November 2009 that Brown and Murdoch "were in regular communication" and that "there is nothing unusual in the prime minister talking to Rupert Murdoch"."

If you didn't already know this, Rupert Murdoch has owned Sky Television.  This is a huge satellite television network that merged with British Satellite Broadcasting in 1990.
Rupert Murdoch has made many acquisitions throughout the years in the United States, including Fox Network.  Murdoch acquired Dow Jones in 2007.  If that doesn't say powerful (or power-hungry) I don't know what does.
Here is a link to a list of assets owned by Murdoch and News Corp.
Did you know that this phone hacking scandal actually started in 2006?  
 "Starting in 2006, there were allegations that individuals working for the News of the World, a now-defunct British tabloid newspaper published by News International—a subsidiary of Rupert Murdoch's News Corporation—had engaged in phone hacking. The scandal came to prominence in the midst of an attempted takeover of British Sky Broadcasting by News Corporation, which was forced to abandon the acquisition.[26] While the original allegations were limited to the hacking of celebrities, politicians and members of the British Royal Family, further allegations that victims of the phone hacking included murdered schoolgirl Milly Dowler, relatives of deceased British soldiers, and victims of the 7/7 London bombings generated widespread public outrage in the United Kingdom. The News of the World published its final edition on 10 July 2011 after 168 years of publication.[26]
On 6 July 2011, British prime minister David Cameron declared that a public government inquiry would convene to investigate the affair, once police inquiries had been completed. On 13 July, Cameron named Lord Justice Leveson as chairman of the inquiry, with a remit to look into the specific claims about phone hacking and police bribery by the News of the World, while a separate inquiry would consider the culture and ethics of the British media.[27] He also said the Press Complaints Commission would be replaced "entirely".[26]
The scandal attracted attention in the United States, where News Corporation is headquartered and operates a multitude of media outlets. On 15 July, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder confirmed that the Department of Justice was following up calls for an investigation into the company."
Perhaps 2006 was the year when things seemed to begin to unravel...


The PM, the mogul and the secret agenda

Tony Blair flies to California this week to address the annual get-together of News Corporation - led by one Rupert Murdoch. From Europe to broadcasting, terrorism to the direction of the nation, what is the truth about one of the most intriguing relationships in British public life?
...the guests checking in next weekend - globetrotting politicians, hotshot analysts and senior executives from Rupert Murdoch's mighty News Corporation - are not here to relax. They will gather for one of the media empire's legendary conferences, an intellectual beauty parade before one of the most powerful men on the planet. 

Careers will be made and broken this weekend, millions staked or withheld.

The man described by a Downing Street spin doctor as the hidden member of Tony Blair's cabinet is looking to the future: and the decisions Murdoch makes could change the way you read, watch, consume and, perhaps, even vote. 

Which is why Blair is going.
The fortunes of New Labour and News Corp have always been entwined, but just how closely is now emerging. The Observer can reveal the extraordinary efforts Blair and Murdoch make to conceal their relationship, even arranging clandestine meetings abroad because the tycoon regarded Downing Street as too public. Also clear for the first time is the belief among senior aides that Blair would have held a referendum on the euro had it not been for the Eurosceptic Murdoch newspapers.
It can also be disclosed that News International's latest lobbying offensive is against the BBC's bid for a significant rise in its licence fee. Murdoch fears the above-inflation increase would give the corporation an unfair advantage in developing new markets.
"On 8 May 2006, the Financial Times reported that Murdoch would be hosting a fund-raiser for Senator Hillary Clinton's (D-New York) Senate re-election campaign."
In 2007, News Corp had a representative, Andrew Knight, present at the annual Bilderberg Group Meeting.  Looking back to a post I wrote on the topic of Murdoch and secret societies, you can read more about that topic on this link.  Click Link Here
Regarding whether Rupert Murdoch has shaped the opinions of people on a global scale regarding politics and other agendas, here is just one snippet that may answer that question for you.
"In a 2008 interview with Walt Mossberg, Murdoch was asked whether he had "anything to do with the New York Post's endorsement of Barack Obama in the democratic primaries." Without hesitating, Murdoch replied, "Yeah. He is a rock star. It's fantastic. I love what he is saying about education. I don't think he will win Florida... but he will win in Ohio and the election. I am anxious to meet him. I want to see if he will walk the walk."
..."In August 2008 British Conservative leader and future Prime Minister David Cameron accepted free flights to hold private talks and attend private parties with Murdoch on his yacht, the Rosehearty.[57] Cameron has declared in the Commons register of interests he accepted a private plane provided by Murdoch's son-in-law, public relations guru Matthew Freud; Cameron has not revealed his talks with Murdoch. The gift of travel in Freud's Gulfstream IV private jet was valued at around £30,000. Other guests attending the "social events" included the then EU trade commissioner Lord Mandelson, the Russian oligarch Oleg Deripaska and co-chairman of NBC Universal Ben Silverman. The Conservatives have not disclosed what was discussed.[58]
In July 2011 it emerged that Cameron met key executives of Murdoch's News Corporation 26 times during the 14 months that Cameron had served as Prime Minister.[59] It was also reported that Murdoch had given Cameron a personal guarantee that there would be no risk attached to hiring the ex-editor of the News of the World Andy Coulson as the Conservative Party's communication director in 2007.[60] This was in spite of Coulson having resigned as editor over phone hacking by a reporter. Cameron chose to take Murdoch's advice, despite warnings from Nick Clegg, Lord Ashdown and The Guardian.[61] Coulson resigned his post in 2011 and was later arrested and questioned on allegations of further criminal activity at The News of the World."
Of course, Murdoch, being such a power player on a global scale, has representation within the most elite circles.  The Bilderberg Group, for instance.  He has had both Conrad Black and Andrew Stephen Bower Knight present at their annual meetings.  
Of course, if you look at the criminal past of Conrad Black, you don't wonder why he says this...
"Murdoch, just like Napoleon, is a great bad man"

Rupert Murdoch is currently on the membership roster for the Council on Foreign Relations, better known as CFR.

Rupert Murdoch has been represented on the Trilateral Commission as well.

Yes, Rupert Murdoch has been enormously powerful.  Actually, he has too much power for one man to least in his own, very large head.  Here are some of the egotistical things that he has said in recent years.

“We are in the midst of a phase of history in which nations will be redefined and their futures fundamentally altered,” wrote media mogul Rupert Murdoch in a recent memo to the management staff of News Corp, his global media empire, which includes Fox TV.
The provocative sentence is lodged within a long memorandum announcing the departure of the company’s longtime president and chief operating officer Peter Chernin as well as an upbeat pep talk about News Corps’ acquisitions and its plans for future growth in a world market where other media organizations will be retreating. Murdoch notes that News Corp is in a very enviable position, with $5 billion cash on hand and $3.5 billion in annual revenues."  
Rupert Murdoch: Without Me, Your iPad Is 'Merely An Empty Vessel'
steve jobs iPad apple AP
Rupert Murdoch's killer quarter has emboldened him, and his plans to charge for his content.
Speaking on the company's earnings call, he said "Content isn't just King, it's the Emperor of all things electronic."
He added later, without content the world's large flat screens, e-readers, and tablets would be "unloved and unsold."
Rupert, likely referring to the iPad, said it would be "merely an empty vessel" without content. It is not "powered by batteries," it is powered by great content.
He also mentioned that he's working on subscription deals with device makers, as this quarter proved that consumers are willing to pay for content.
To people that think content wants to be free, Rupert replies, "It sounds like B.S. to me!"

Read more:

On Forbes list of the most powerful people in the world, Rupert Murdoch is number 13.  I guess it's just not his lucky number.

Here is his profile for the "World's Billionaires" page on Forbes.   

Of course, you already know the newest regarding the Hacking Scandal and Rupert Murdoch.  Here is an update in the case you haven't read the newest in today's news on this political and media scandal.

London police feel the heat in UK hacking scandal

Updated 02:03 p.m., Monday, July 18, 2011

LONDON (AP) — Britain's tabloid phone hacking scandal walloped the London police force Monday, as the rapid-fire resignations of two top officers were followed by claims of possible illegal eavesdropping, bribery and collusion. U.K officials immediately vowed to investigate.

Prime Minister David Cameron, feeling the political heat from his own close ties to Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. media empire, cut short his trip to Africa and called an emergency session of Parliament for Wednesday so he could address lawmakers on the scandal.

The crisis has triggered upheaval in the upper ranks of Britain's police. Monday's resignation of Assistant Commissioner John Yates — Scotland Yard's top anti-terrorist officer — followed that Sunday of police chief Paul Stephenson — both for links to an arrested former executive from Murdoch's shuttered News of the World tabloid.

The high-profile resignations came on the eve of a highly anticipated televised public grilling of Murdoch and his son James by U.K. lawmakers.

The scandal over Murdoch journalists hacking into cell phones for scoops and paying police for information has taken down top police and media figures with breathtaking speed and knocked billions off the value of Murdoch's News Corp. The media baron was already forced to shut down the 168-year-old News of the World tabloid, accept the resignations of top deputies in Britain and the U.S. and abandon his dream of taking full control of a lucrative satellite broadcaster, British Sky Broadcasting.
Britain's police watchdog on Monday said it had received allegations of potential wrongdoing in connection with phone hacking against four senior officers — Stephenson, Yates and two former senior officers. One of the claims is that Yates inappropriately helped get a job for the daughter of former News of the World editor, Neil Wallis, one of 10 people arrested in the scandal.

The Independent Police Complaints Commission said it was looking into the claims.

Yates insisted he had done nothing wrong. "I have acted with complete integrity," he said. "My conscience is clear."

But the government quickly announced an inquiry into police-media relations and corruption.

"Who polices the police?" asked Home Secretary Theresa May as she announced an inquiry into "instances of undue influence, inappropriate contractual arrangements and other abuses of power in police relationships with the media and other parties."

As more details emerged about ties between senior police and News Corp. figures, London's police force is under intense pressure to explain why its original hacking investigation failed to find evidence to prosecute anyone other than a single reporter and a private investigator.

Yates was the official who decided two years ago not to reopen police inquiries into phone hacking and police bribery by tabloid journalists, saying he did not believe there was any new evidence to consider.

Detectives reopened the investigation earlier this year and now say they have the names of 3,700 potential hacking targets — celebrities, politicians, other journalists and even murder victims.

Cameron is under heavy pressure after the resignations of Stephenson and Yates, and Sunday's arrest of Murdoch executive Rebekah Brooks — a friend and neighbor whom he has met with at least six times since entering office 14 months ago.

Brooks was arrested on suspicion of hacking into the cell phones of celebrities, politicians and others in the news and bribing police for information to fuel sensational scoops for her gossipy tabloids.

Cameron's critics grew louder in London as the prime minister visited South Africa on a two-day visit to the continent. The trip was already cut in half by the crisis and Cameron trimmed another seven hours from his itinerary as his government faced growing questions about its cozy relationship with the Murdoch empire.

Read more:

Here is what has been posted as the apology for the scandal...official apology letter from Rupert Murdoch.

Rupert Murdoch 'sorry' ad

What do you think of Rupert Murdoch, his power, and this scandal?  Please 
comment.  Thanks for reading!

Newspapers are opened to show the advertisement apology for News International and photographed at a news vendor in central London, Saturday, July 16, 2011.  News Corporation chairman Rupert Murdoch signed the company advert entitled "We are sorry",  which appears in British national newspapers Saturday.  The News International publication News of the World is accused of hacking into the mobile phones of various crime victims, celebrities and politicians. Photo: Sang Tan / AP

No comments: