In a three-hour Culture Media and Sport select committee hearing that was reminiscent of a particularly farcical episode of Yes Minister, the Murdoch tag-team acknowledged that they knew nothing about anything.
At one point, Murdoch stated, “I would like to answer that question, it’s a good question” and then proceeded to not answer the question. Significantly, Murdoch Senior seemed blissfully unaware of any issue that affected his UK business. Murdoch junior said he was “as surprised as you are” that News Corporation paid the legal fees of convicted criminal Glenn Mulcaire.
Most amazingly, considering the recent resignation of Rebecca Brooks. Murdoch senior stated that he was unaware that she had admitted in 2003 that journalists had paid police for information. Whoever briefed these guys (I suspect the guy in the green tie behind them who kept wincing whenever Rupert opened his mouth) had done a terrible job (or brilliant depending how you see it).
On top of all of this, Murdoch senior claimed he had “never heard of” Neville Thurlbeck, the News of the World’s former chief reporter. So, in light of all of this, I have to conclude Murdoch senior is either woefully ignorant or woefully malicious and has just massively mislead the Culture Media and Sport Select committee. I will leave it to you to guess which.
Rebecca Brookes has just come on – gotta dash, you never know what she doesn’t know!