Thursday, July 14, 2011

Rupert Murdoch, Is The Powerful Bilderberger Losing Grip On His Power?

Timeline: Hacking scandal hits News Corp bid for BSkyB

The News Corporation building is seen in New York, July 13, 2011. REUTERS/Brendan McDermid

LONDON | Thu Jul 14, 2011 10:45am EDT

(Reuters) - Here are the main events in the phone-hacking scandal leading to Rupert Murdoch withdrawing his bid for British broadcaster BSkyB and closing the 168-year-old News of the World tabloid.

2000 - Rebekah Wade is appointed editor of Britain's best-selling Sunday tabloid News of the World. Aged just 32 and the youngest national newspaper editor in the country, she begins a campaign to name and shame alleged pedophiles, leading to some alleged offenders being terrorized by angry mobs. She also campaigns for public access to the Sex Offenders Register, which eventually comes into law as "Sarah's Law."

2002 - Schoolgirl Milly Dowler, 13, disappears in the London suburb of Walton-on-Thames in March. Her remains are found in September. Her murder was one of the most notorious of the decade and her killer was convicted only last month.

2003 - Wade becomes editor of daily tabloid The Sun, sister paper to the News of the World and Britain's biggest selling daily newspaper. Andy Coulson, her deputy editor since 2000, becomes editor of the Sunday paper. Wade tells a parliamentary committee her paper paid police for information. News International later says this is not company practice.
November 2005 - The Sunday tabloid publishes a story on a knee injury suffered by Prince William, Queen Elizabeth's grandson and second in line to the throne. That prompts complaints by officials of the royal court about voicemail messages being intercepted. The complaints spark a police inquiry.
January 2007 - The News of the World's royal affairs editor Clive Goodman is jailed for four months. Private investigator Glenn Mulcaire is given a six-month prison term. Goodman and Mulcaire admitted conspiring to intercept communications while Mulcaire also pleaded guilty to five other charges of intercepting voicemail messages.
-- After the two were sentenced, News of the World editor Coulson resigns, saying he took "ultimate responsibility," though knew nothing of the offences in advance.
May 2007 - Coulson becomes the Conservative Party's director of communications under leader David Cameron.

Ultimate Year Supply
June 2009 - Rebekah Wade becomes CEO of News International. She marries, for a second time, becoming Rebekah Brooks.

July 2009 - The Guardian newspaper says News of the World reporters, with the knowledge of senior staff, illegally accessed messages from the mobile phones of celebrities and politicians while Coulson was editor from 2003 to 2007.
September 2009 - Les Hinton, chief executive of Dow Jones and former executive chairman of Murdoch's newspaper arm in Britain, tells a committee of legislators any problem with phone hacking was limited to the one, already well-publicized, case. He says they carried out a wide review and found no new evidence.
February 2010 - The House of Commons Culture, Media and Sports Committee says in a report that it is "inconceivable" that managers at the paper did not know about the practice, which the legislators say was more widespread than the paper had admitted.
September 2010 - Members ask parliament's standards watchdog to begin a new investigation into the hacking allegations at the Sunday tabloid and its former editor Coulson.
-- Pressure for a new investigation grows after the New York Times reports allegations that News of the World reporters "routinely" sought to hack phones.
January 2011 - British police open a new investigation into allegations of phone hacking at the tabloid. Police had said in July 2009 there was no need for a probe into the hacking claims.
-- The News of the World announces it has sacked senior editor Ian Edmondson after an internal inquiry.
-- Coulson resigns as Cameron's communications chief.
April - News of the World chief reporter Neville Thurlbeck and Edmondson are arrested on suspicion of conspiring to intercept mobile phone messages. They are released on bail. The News of the World admits it had role in phone hacking.
June 23 - Levi Bellfield is found guilty of murdering Milly Dowler in 2002.
July 4 - A lawyer for Dowler's family says he learned from police that her voicemail messages had been hacked, possibly by a News of the World investigator, while police were searching for her. Some may also have been deleted, to make room for more, misleading police and her family into thinking she was still alive. Police later say that they have also been in touch with the parents affected by the 2002 murders in the town of Soham, where two 10-year-old girls were seized and killed by a school caretaker.
July 5 - News International says new information has been given to police. The BBC says it related to e-mails appearing to show payments were made to police for information and were authorized by Coulson.
-- The list of those possibly targeted includes victims of the London suicide bombings of July 7, 2005, and the parents of Madeleine McCann, who disappeared in Portugal in 2007.
July 6 - Cameron says he is "revolted" by allegations that investigators from the paper eavesdropped on the voicemail of victims of crime.
-- Murdoch appoints News Corp executive Joel Klein to oversee an investigation into the hacking allegations.
-- New claims reported by Britain's Daily Telegraph say the Sunday tabloid hacked into the phones of relatives of British soldiers killed in Iraq and Afghanistan.
July 7 - News Corp announces it will close down the News of the World. The July 10 edition was the last.
July 8 - David Cameron announces two inquiries, one to be led by a judge on the hacking scandal, another to look at new regulations for the British press. Cameron says he takes full responsibility for employing Coulson as his spokesman, defending his decision to give him a "second chance."
-- Coulson is arrested on suspicion of conspiring to intercept communications and suspicion of corruption. He is bailed until October after nine hours at a police station.
-- The News of the World's former royal editor, Goodman, is re-arrested in connection with a police operation looking at alleged payments to police by journalists at the paper.
-- Police search the offices of the Daily Star tabloid where Goodman freelanced. The Star is not connected to News Corp.
July 10 - Rupert Murdoch arrives in London to handle the crisis.
July 11 - Murdoch withdraws News Corp's offer to spin off BSkyB's Sky News channel. This opens the way for the government to refer News Corp's bid for the 61 percent of BSkyB it does not already own to the competition commission which will carry out a lengthy probe.
-- Allegations surface on the same day that journalists at several News Corp papers have targeted former prime minister Gordon Brown. Police confirm to Brown that his name was on a list of targets compiled by Mulcaire.
July 12 - John Yates, Assistant Commissioner at London's Metropolitan Police, who was criticized for deciding in 2009 not to reopen the earlier inquiry, admits at a Home Affairs Committee hearing he probably did only the minimum work required before his flawed decision.
-- In the United States John Rockefeller, chairman of Senate's commerce committee, calls for an investigation to determine if News Corp had broken any U.S. laws.
July 13 - News Corp withdraws its bid for BSkyB. The move pre-empts a planned vote in parliament that had all-party support for the bid to be dropped. The company statement leaves the door open to a new offer at some point.
-- Tom Crone, legal manager at News International, leaves the company, a source familiar with the situation says.
-- Cameron gives details of a formal public inquiry into the affair, to be chaired by senior judge, Brian Leveson.
July 14 - Rupert Murdoch refuses a request by parliament on July 19 to answer questions over the alleged crimes at the News of the World. James Murdoch says he cannot appear until August. Rebekah Brooks does agree to appear, but says the police inquiry may restrict what she can say.

Ultimate Year Supply
-- Police arrest a ninth suspect who media name as Neil Wallis, the former deputy editor of the News of the World.

Nick Clegg: Murdoch faces 'fit and proper' questions

Rules that could force Rupert Murdoch to give up his existing stake in British Sky Broadcasting will be tightened up, Nick Clegg has said.

The Deputy Prime Minister said the Government will review laws on what constitutes a “fit and proper” owner for broadcasting firms. Anyone found not to meet that standard can be forced to give up their stake in a company.
Mr Murdoch and his team now face “big questions” under those rules, Mr Clegg said.
He also suggested changing market rules to put greater restrictions on media companies that grow over time.
Ofcom, the media regulator, has a legal duty to be satisfied “on an ongoing basis” that the holder of a broadcasting licence is ‘fit and proper’.
Simon Hughes, the Lib Dem deputy leader, has argued that if the regulator decides that James Murdoch or other figures from Rupert Mudoch’s News International are found to fall short of that standard, the company should give up its existing 39 per cent stake in Sky.
Mr Clegg suggested that recent events could mean the company fails the regulatory test. “Clearly there are now big questions about the fitness and properness of News International,” he said.
However, lawyers say that the current rules are unclear about when and how the test is applied.
Mr Clegg said that ministers will act to end that uncertainty as they overhaul media laws.

“The thing that is not clear to me is how fit and proper tests are applied,” he told BBC Radio Four.
“If you ask lawyers what they mean by a fit and proper test, they come up with different answers. So that’s one of the other things we can clarify in the months ahead.”
The Murdochs were this week forced to abandon a bid to own the other 61 per cent of Sky. Media analysts say that losing their current stake would be an even heavier blow to the family.
In a speech on media regulation, Mr Clegg also suggested that media ownership checks could be applied more often in future.
Under current law, anyone who proposes take over a media company is subject to a “plurality” test to see if the sale would give them too large a share of the industry.
That test is only applied when a sale is proposed. But Mr Clegg said there was a “very strong case” for applying the test as a media companies’ market shares change, for example “when a media operation becomes very big through natural growth.”  read more...
July 14, 2011 10:43 AM

Murdochs defy parliament in phone hack probe

LONDON - Media titan Rupert Murdoch and his son James defied the British Parliament Thursday and refused to appear next week before a committee investigating phone hacking and bribery by employees of their newspapers.
The committee said it had issued summonses to the Murdochs, setting up an extraordinary confrontation between one of Britain's most powerful men and a Parliament once seen as easily bent to his will.
The Murdochs' refusal was a dramatic snub of a body that forced them to abandon their ambitions of purchasing highly profitable network British Sky Broadcasting Wednesday after lawmakers from all parties united to demand that Murdoch's News Corp. withdraw its bid after a string of unsavory revelations about phone hacking and bribery by its reporters.
The Murdochs' flouting of Parliament may also allow them to delay potentially uncomfortable public appearances until the furor over the scandal has cooled.

It is highly unusual for witnesses to refuse to appear before parliamentary committees, which quiz everyone from business leaders to prime ministers on a wide range of issues.
Defiance of a parliamentary summons is illegal, and can in theory be punished with a fine or jail time. In practice, such measures have been all but unknown in modern times; the House of Commons last punished a non-member in 1957.
And it was not immediately how Parliament could enforce its summons of the Murdochs. Rupert Murdoch is a U.S. citizen who may not be legally bound by the order.

Rebekah Brooks, the British chief executive of the Murdochs' British arm, News International, said she would appear before the Culture, Media and Sport committee at a Tuesday hearing.
James Murdoch, the chief of his father's European and Asian operations, said he was not available Tuesday but offered to appear on Aug. 10 or 11, without explaining his inability to attend next week.

Rupert Murdoch said he would not appear at all, offering instead to speak before a separate inquiry initiated by Prime Minister David Cameron and led by a judge. He said he was willing to discuss alternative ways of providing evidence to parliament
"We will expect them to respond to the summons," said committee chairman John Whittingdale.
Whittingdale said he especially wanted to question James Murdoch, who stated when he announced the closure of the News of the World last week that Parliament had been misled by people in his employment.
"We felt that to wait until August was unjustifiable," Whittingdale said.

RPT-UPDATE 1-Murdoch's newspaper crisis causes jitters in US

Thu Jul 14, 2011 7:00am EDT
(Repeats analysis filed July 13)
* Three US senators call for investigation into News Corp
* Media pundits debate whether FCC license at risk
* Former Dow Jones stakeholder fears for WSJ reputation (Adds Christopher Bancroft comment)
NEW YORK/WASHINGTON, July 13 (Reuters) - When Rupert Murdoch swooped in to buy the Wall Street Journal in 2007, it sparked fears that the venerable newspaper brand would suffer by being housed under the same roof as News Corp's (NWSA.O) tabloids.
Those concerns have again arisen as the widening scandal over phone-hacking at Murdoch's British newspapers threatens to spill over to U.S. shores.
"I think the UK hacking scandal has the potential to damage the Wall Street Journal's reputation," said Jay Ottaway, whose family owned 6.2 percent of Wall Street Journal publisher Dow Jones & Co before it was sold to News Corp.
"However, I think it would be unfair since the quality of the people and reporting at the Wall Street Journal is much higher (than) at other News Corp newspapers and television properties," he told Reuters by email. The Ottaway family had voted against the sale of Dow Jones to Murdoch.
Beyond fears about contaminating the brand of one of the most-respected newspapers in the United States, the controversy could also taint Murdoch's broader media business in the United States, which ranges from print to television to films.
Three U.S. lawmakers on Wednesday urged the Department of Justice and the Securities and Exchange Commission to look into whether News Corp broke a U.S. law banning payment of bribes to foreign officials.
And some media pundits, including CourtTV founder Steve Brill, have raised questions over whether News Corp's U.S. broadcast license could be revoked, given that federal communications law requires owners of TV stations to be "of good character."
News Corp owns the Fox television stations and cable network Fox News.
Another former Dow Jones owner, Christopher Bancroft, has no regrets about selling the Journal to Murdoch.
The Bancrofts were one of the newspaper industry's most storied stewards until they sold Dow Jones for $5.6 billion to News Corp after an internal battle that pitted family members against one another.
"I have to thank Rupert for persisting and for buying the paper," said Bancroft. "The paper is still very, very good and it's growing...He hasn't sullied up the paper or changed it to the point that is unrecognizable and he's protected the franchise."
Analysts say it's too early to tell if there will be serious damage to Murdoch's U.S. business, but these calls raise the specter that his smeared reputation in Britain could have ramifications stateside.
"It wouldn't surprise me at all if others call for hearings and investigations, and perhaps they may even be held. There's going to be a lot of activity around this issue," said Jeffrey Silva, analyst with Medley Global Advisors.
"Because News Corp's Fox network is associated with the political right, any sort of revocation proceedings would be presented by Republicans as politically motivated and an attack on free speech," he said, noting the issue is particularly sensitive ahead of the 2012 U.S. presidential race as Democratic President Barack Obama seeks re-election.
"It will continue to be controversial and it will fuel existing partisan fire fights, but I don't think it will lead to revocation hearings. I don't think it will go that far," he said.
News Corp's British newspaper arm has been the focus of a widening investigation into phone-hacking that has roiled the British political establishment.
The scandal began at the 168-year-old News of the World, which News Corp shuttered on Sunday, after allegations that it bribed police officers for information and its journalists hacked into the voicemail of thousands of people, including a murdered teenage girl and families of British soldiers killed in combat.
News Corp on Wednesday pulled its bid to buy the 61 percent of British broadcaster BSkyB (BSY.L) it didn't already own, as outrage grew. [ID:nLDE76B1RA]
On Tuesday Sen. John D. Rockefeller called for an investigation of News Corp. He said that he was concerned that "the admitted phone hacking" may have extended to 9/11 victims or other Americans.
Senators Barbara Boxer and Frank Lautenberg joined in the call for an investigation of News Corp.
"The reported allegations against News Corporation are very serious and indicate potentially thousands of victims and a pattern of illegal activity," Rockefeller and Boxer wrote in a letter to the Justice Department and SEC.[ID:nN1E76C1L9]
News Corp and Dow Jones declined to comment.
Analysts said the U.S. Federal Communications Commission was unlikely to revoke News Corp's licenses for now.
"It's possible that more facts could surface. For example, someone could bring a complaint to the FCC that News Corp management knew about the campaign, but even so, it would likely just be a sideshow," said Rebecca Arbogast, analyst with Stifel Nicolaus and a former division chief at the FCC.
Arbogast said the standard for revoking a license on character grounds is high and rarely invoked. "There's no precedent whether a British conviction would count."
Most of the spotlight has been on Rebekah Brooks, who was editor of News of the World between 2000 and 2003, when some of the most high-profile hacking occurred.
While some companies are contemplating pulling advertising from Murdoch's British papers, there is little proof that they are doing the same in the United States. The Wall Street Journal is the top U.S. paper by circulation and one of the most respected.
But attention is now turning to Les Hinton, who headed up Murdoch's British newspapers during the scandal, and is now chief executive of Dow Jones. [ID:nL6E7I909A]
"How could it not be a concern?" asked Doug Arthur, a long time newspaper analyst now with Evercore Partners, about the potential impact to the Wall Street Journal brand.
"I think the benefit of the Journal is it's above the fray. It's carved out such a strong reputation for so long," he said, but added, "You cannot completely separate it from the muck." (Reporting by Jennifer Saba and Jasmin Melvin; Editing by Tiffany Wu)

Rupert Murdoch, Bilderbergs, Council on Foreign Relations, Seizing The World!

How do I begin a post that can include seemingly limitless resources of information?

You may say that this is a continuation of the post I wrote earlier this week about the North American Union, globalization of government, and the New World Order theories.

Do you know who Rupert Murdoch is? If not, you need to do your homework because he is THE major force in globalizing the media sources you and I enjoy.

That's right GLOBALIZATION of media.

A little about Rupert Murdoch
"Murdoch bought the New York Post in 1976, making that paper famous for its salacious coverage of grisly crime. Murdoch decided to move into television, but US law mandated that only Americans could own US television stations; thus he was naturalized in 1985, and in 1986 purchasedJohn Kluge's Metromedia, using it to start America's fourth television network, Fox Broadcasting. In 1996 he started the Fox News Channel, delivering a staunchly conservative perspective on the news, as overseen by former Republican campaign wizard Roger Ailes. Murdoch's British papers solidly backed Margaret Thatcher, John Major, and Tony Blair, and his American mouthpieces have vocally backed Republicans since Ronald Reagan.During the 2002 and 2003 build-up to the invasion of Iraq, all of Murdoch's 175 newspapers editorialized for war."

"His companies' labor relations have sometimes been brutal, especially in England, where he led the industry in modernizing the printing process, laying off thousands of workers in the process. In 1999, The Economist reported that despite billions in profits, News Corporation had paid no corporate taxes for more than a decade, thanks to its complex international structure and the extensive use of offshore tax havens. In 2004, Murdoch purchased a penthouse condominium in New York City for $44-million. His net worth is estimated at about $7-billion."

GLOBALIZATION seems to be his goal...

Murdoch's Financial Media Assault
"...part of Murdoch's ambitions to build a global financial media powerhouse in print, the Internet and TV."

Investigation Into Murdoch's Operations
"investigation of Murdoch's operations in Australia, Britain, the USA and the Chinese People's Republic, amounts to this: as an international operator, Murdoch offers his target governments a privatized version of a state propaganda service, manipulated without scruple and with no regard for truth. His price takes the form of vast government favors such as tax breaks, regulatory relief, monopoly markets and so forth. The propaganda is undertaken with the utmost cynicism, whether it's the stentorian fake populism and soft porn in the UK's Sun and News of the World, or shameless bootlicking of the butchers of Tiananmen Square."

Not only does media globalization seem to be his goal, but he has aligned himself with powerful players in major areas of world domination or a New World Order.

He is a reported member of the CFR...

Murdoch & CFR
"The most powerful clique in these elitist groups have one objective in common – they want to bring about the surrender of the sovereignty of the national independence of the United States. A second clique of international members in the CFR comprises the Wall Street international bankers and their key agents. Primarily, they want the world-banking monopoly from whatever power ends up in the control of global government.

"Former Congressman John R. Rarick warned:

"The CFR, dedicated to one-world government, financed by a number of the largest tax-exempt foundations, and wielding such power and influence over our lives in the areas of finance, business, labor, military, education and mass communication media, should be familiar to every American concerned with good government and with preserving and defending the U.S. Constitution and our free-enterprise system. Yet, the nation's right to know machinery – the news media – usually so aggressive in exposures to inform our people, remain conspicuously silent when it comes to the CFR, its members and their activities.

"The CFR is the establishment. Not only does it have influence and power in key decision-making positions at the highest levels of government to apply pressure from above, but it also finances and uses individuals and groups to bring pressure from below, to justify the high-level decisions for converting the United States from a sovereign constitutional republic into a servile member of a one-world dictatorship.

"Who are some of the past and present members of this anti-American operation? Dick Cheney, Condoleezza Rice, Colin Powell, Donald Rumsfeld, Porter Goss, Alan Greenspan, John Bolton, Paul Wolfowitz, Gen. Richard B. Myers, Henry Hyde, Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton, George Bush Sr., Sandra Day O'Connor, George Soros, Christopher Dodd, Diane Feinstein, Gerald Ford, Bill Frist, Newt Gingrich, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Katherine Harris, Teresa Heinz, Antonia Hernandez – President of Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Gen. John P. Jumper – current Air Force chief of staff, Joseph Lieberman, John McCain, Rupert Murdock, David Rockefeller, Diane Sawyer and Tony Snow."

Additionally, he has affiliations with the Bilderberg Group. What is the Bilderberg Group?

Bilderberg Group
"The Bilderberg Group or Bilderberg conference is an unofficial annual invitation-only conference of around 130 guests, most of whom are persons of influence in the fields of business, media and politics."

"The original intention of the Bilderberg Group was to further the understanding between Western Europe and North America through informal meetings between powerful individuals. Each year, a "steering committee" devises a selected invitation list with a maximum of 100 names. Invitations are extended only to residents of Europe and North America. The location of their annual meeting is not secret, but the public and press are strictly kept at distance by police force and private security guards so the group can work their agenda. The contents of the meetings are kept secret and attendees pledge not to divulge what was discussed. The group's stated justification for secrecy is that it enables people to speak freely without the need to carefully consider how every word might be interpreted by the mass media."

Bilderberg Attendees
Notice that Rupert Murdock is among the list of Bilderberg attendees.

If belonging or associating with these organizations is not enough to convince you that he means to dominate the world media and means to cultivate world views, the following may help you understand this further...

Murdock Admits He Tried to Shape Public Opinion on Iraq
Must Watch The Video!

More Murdoch
Rupert Murdoch is supporting the Clinton campaign.
Rupert Murdoch is a major supporter of Iraq.

Rupert Murdoch Loves Hillary Clinton
"Conservative media mogul Rupert Murdoch will host a fundraiser for liberal New York Sen. Hillary Clinton, the Financial Times reports."

Well, he has recently made a new acquisition...

Rupert Murdock, Wall Street Journal Takeover
"NEW YORK – Rupert Murdoch completed his $5 billion-plus deal to acquire Dow Jones & Co. Thursday, adding The Wall Street Journal to his global media conglomerate News Corp. and ending a century of control by the Bancroft family."
"The deal places Dow Jones into the fold of News Corp., which also owns the Fox broadcastnetwork, Twentieth Century Fox, Fox News Channel, satellite TV businesses in Europe and Asia, MySpace, the New York Post, as well as a large group of newspapers in Murdoch’s native Australia."

This is someone we all must stay aware of.

Additionally, regarding mainstream media...they only give you the information they are told to give. The trust is disappearing quickly regarding the actual facts-vs-fiction covered on the news regarding topics, even as broad as Iraq. At this point, I'm not a paranoid person, but who do you trust to give you the whole truth?...The only answer is to go through multiple resources and to KEEP YOUR EYES OPEN.

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