Judge And Jury



The BBC has in times past appointed itself the ‘Official Opposition’ when it felt that Labour weren’t sufficiently rigorous in holding the Tory government to account, so the BBC took on the job itself.

It now looks like it has decided, in these straitened times of austerity, to take on the role of Judge and Jury, passing judgement on all and sundry…well, on selected targets anyway.

Here Nick Robinson tries to spin a story and create a ‘crisis’ for Cameron:

Hacking verdict: Prison for Coulson, questions for Cameron

On the day David Cameron walked up to the door of Number 10 as prime minister he was there – standing in a huddle of the staff who were about to move into new taxpayer funded jobs in Downing Street.

This story is, of course, not just about one man and the prime minister who hired him. It is about the hold the Murdoch empire had over British politics for years and the behaviour of those he hired.

Tonight a man who helped get his boss into Number 10 faces up to a new life – in prison. His former boss faces serious questions about his judgement.



Not sure why Cameron should ‘face serious questions about his judgment’ or why he should apologise for employing Coulson.  Only after extensive police investigations and a trial was Coulson judged guilty in law….all else is politically opportunist point scoring based on rumour and allegation solely intended to try and discredit Cameron…and the BBC is clearly still playing that game.

The BBC were all too ready to campaign for Islamist terrorists to get them released from Guantanamo and to make excuses for those who carry out the worst atrocities and yet harrumph loudly about Cameron employing someone who was at the time not even charged with any crime.


Joint appearance: Rupert Murdoch and Tony Blair together at a news conference in 2008


As for the ‘hold the Murdoch empire had over British politics‘……where are the questions from the BBC about previous incumbents of No10…or those who would like to move in there?……


Ed Miliband


All the time the Sun supported the Labour Party did the BBC raise any questions or doubts? Or ask questions about the Labour placeman at the Times, Tom Baldwin, feeding in Labour friendly stories to the paper and now a Labour communications spinner?  Does the BBC raise any questions about its own close links to the Labour Party?  Robinson describes Murdoch as ‘the most powerful media mogul in Britain.’….but that’s not true is it?  The Director General of the BBC is the most powerful media mogul in Britain…and his minions not only have the massive power and resources to influence the political narrative but are willing and able to deploy it in the service of the Labour Party.

And if the story is really about Murdoch and his hold over British politics shouldn’t the BBC be rather more rigorous and wide ranging in its investigations rather than seemingly restricting its censure to the Conservatives?  Perhaps they might like to ask why for instance Brown didn’t tackle Murdoch if he really believed his son’s medical records had been illegally accessed  and his financial records hacked as he now claims.



Robinson’s line seems remarkably similar to Miliband’s:

“I think David Cameron has very, very serious questions to answer because we now know that he brought a criminal into the heart of Downing Street. David Cameron was warned about Andy Coulson, the evidence mounted up against Andy Coulson, David Cameron must have had his suspicions about Andy Coulson, and yet he refused to act.

I believe this isn’t just a serious error of judgement, this taints David Cameron’s government because we now know that he put his relationship with Rupert Murdoch ahead of doing the right thing when it came to Andy Coulson’




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20 Responses to Judge And Jury

  1. Deborah says:

    As soon as I heard on Classic FM news that Coulson had been found guilty I decided not to switch to Radio 4 because I knew they would be going overboard on this story. And Rebbekah found innocent? I think I remember the BBC questioning the PM’s judgement on going riding with her husband. Will they now say it was OK for him to do that?


  2. thoughtful says:

    I don’t think the BBC has gone overboard on this story, although the bias is still strongly evident.

    Cameron has had a disaster of a day and the BBC only need report in balanced terms, because there’s no getting away from how bad it was.

    Worse still he refused to sack Coulson against all advice. It was obvious for all the see it was a potential time bomb, but worse than all of that he actually appointed Coulson to a No10 position !

    At a time when there were several stories which were more than just rumours circulating about him, Cameron stuck to his posh public school principles not to allow common sense to prevail when someone appeared to be bullying him, and now he’s paying for it.

    Then there’s the Polish Prime Ministers comments about him, and the Polish PM is a bona fide Thatcherite !

    He’s lost in no uncertain terms over the appointment over the president of the EU.

    It’s been just about the worst day since Cameron took over as PM. The BBC don’t need to do anything except stand back and gloat.


    • hippiepooter says:

      Au contraire. The BBC always need to do something, if only just for the sheer malicious pleasure of it.

      As for the rest of your synopsis, do you have any reliable sources to back up your assertions, or just the BBC and the Guardian?


      • thoughtful says:

        please tell me which sources you regard as reliable, as last time some one claimed that Wikipedia was not reliable, whilst accepting the BBC info!


    • Seek the Truth says:

      It’s only his ‘worst’ day because the BBC has decided it is. The rest of us know better.


  3. mikef says:

    If Murdoch had continued to support Labour, then the hacking story would probably have never seen the light of day. After all, who really cares about publicity hungry slebs being hacked? Labour would have buried it and the BBC would have followed suit. But he changed allegiance – the worst crime in the lefty canon – and union thug Watson was bent on revenge, presented as a campaign for justice (pass the sick bag). The witch hunt against Rebekah Brookes and the rest was one of the most disgusting things I have ever seen in politics. The BBC should face serious questions over its vendetta.


  4. DJ says:

    It’s like Ann Coulter said, liberal journalism is like an Alzheimer’s joke. We’re supposed to be shocked that Camoron recruited a sleaze like Coulson instead of model citizen like Alistair Campbell?

    At least everyone got out alive this time!

    Ditto, the PM is meant to know the ins and outs of journalism, but a party leader can’t be expected to notice that a whole bunch of his MPs are committing fraud? Did no one think to ask Silliband when he first realised that Denis McShane’s office was, in fact, a garage?

    But the big thing we’re definitely not meant to notice is that despite the BBC describing her in terms they never used for Myra Hindley Rebekah Brooks was still cleared of all charges, unanimously. She was bang to rights right up until they had to provide actual ‘evidence’ in front of 12 normal people.

    Everything the BBC and Hacked Off – but I repeat myself – ever said about Brooks was a lie and now everyone knows it. Don’t expect anyone to raise that at the BBC.


  5. JimS says:

    I don’t hold any brief for Cameron but I can’t see that he did anything wrong.

    Aren’t we all innocent until proved guilty? What did Coulson’s past activities have to do with his job for Cameron?

    At least (so far) we have been spared the odious Alistair Campbell crowing. Why that ‘enemy’ of the BBC and the people keeps getting air time beats me.


    • thoughtful says:

      Perhaps you need to do some reading on the history of this case.
      It was a serious error of judgement on Camerons part, caused perhaps by stubborn pig headedness.
      Prime Ministers do not apologise lightly and if they’ve done nothing wrong!

      Just to make matters worse, after refusing to sack Coulson, Coulson resigned as a result of the growing scandal.


      • The General says:

        You are in common with Labour and the BBC, making a big deal over something which in reality and in the minds of most ordinary people, an inconsequential triviality.


  6. +james says:

    This is a case of the BBC still living in the 80s. They still think Murdoch as some Thatcherite newspaper magnet. But Murdoch has moved on yet the BBC has not.

    Murdoch is the owner of Fox, you know the movie and entertainment studio. I doubt if he has any real interest in Britain anymore. Most of his business is done the US and the East. he only backed Blair because the Sun likes backing winners. As soon as Labour was seen to lose back to supporting the Tories.

    I suppose the BBC hates Murdoch because they see him as a rival on the international entertainment stage. But then why should people be forced to fund the Beeb , just so the Beeb can have a pop at a competitor. If people don’t pay for Sky, Murdoch will just cut you off. If you don’t pay the Beeb you will be dragged off before a court and thrown into prison.

    Murdoch has a great maxim, you do something nice for me and I’ll do something nice for you. The BBC’s maxim is, you do something nice for me or I’ll do something nasty to you.


  7. Ember2014 says:

    I think David Cameron has very, very serious questions to answer because we now know that he brought a criminal into the heart of Downing Street. David Cameron was warned about Andy Coulson, the evidence mounted up against Andy Coulson, David Cameron must have had his suspicions about Andy Coulson, and yet he refused to act.

    Hang on, what proof does Robinson have that those warning Cameron had some Timelord ability to know the outcome of today’s court case, 4 years early?

    And do we allow “suspicion” and “due process” to have equal weight when considering the BBC’s lack of action with the likes of Savile and Hall?


    • Ember2014 says:

      That should read “Miliband” not “Robinson” despite the blurred lines of distinction these days.


    • thoughtful says:

      The proof is in the history of the case. Cameron promised when challenged that if Coulson was found guilty then he would make a sincere apology to the house.
      If he wasn’t being warned about ‘serious allegations’ then why would he make such a statement?

      Coulson was a potential time bomb, and with the nature of the allegations it’s not surprising this bad decision has returned to haunt Cameron.

      I remember this clearly, it isn’t all that long ago ! Coulson resigned in 2011.
      He’d already resigned from Newscorp in 2007 over allegations of phone hacking so it’s not as if he was untainted.
      in 2008 he was found guilty by an employment tribunal of bullying, and his victim was awarded a huge pay out of £800K
      Hardly anyone wins at the employment tribunals, the evidence was damning – it had to be.


  8. Old Timer says:

    I’m sorry but sob stories from celebrities don’t cut it for me. It wasn’t hacking the true sense of the word anyway. It was the interception of answer phone messages of people who were too dim to change the default passcode for messages and who in any case did realise that leaving personal messages on a an answer phone was not a bright thing to do. Even at my decrepit age I am apparently more with-it than the slimy Hugh Grant who has whined for Britain over this non-issue, and for what it’s worth I have more self-respect for myself than that dirty dog after being caught in a car in L.A. with a somewhat un-Divine creature. And yet this is the character of the people that the BBC and Leveson listened to.

    This whole debacle had been kept quiet by Blair & Brown until Labour were kicked out, when of course all of a sudden they saw themselves as the good guys. Good guys my backside! And then Cameron fell into the trap laid for him by the loud mouthed hypocrites of Labour. At least Blair knew how to use a ‘D’ Notice to keep things quiet. Anyone but Cameron would have seen this political missile coming from a hundred miles away and kept the lid on it but what did he do? He set up an enquiry. He loses every time he has any battle at all and will of course now have to now sit in this mess of his own making, whilst the BBC take the micky. I don’t want a PM who keeps saying sorry, I want one who wields a big stick for Britain and is respected.

    I’m sure he is a nice chap to have for dinner but he has about as much influence in the world as a damp tea towel. He needs to go and someone who will negotiate with UKIP needs to replace him. The alternative is Milliband as PM next year and we might as well appoint a donkey to run the country. Again!


  9. Guest Who says:

    Cameron can swallow the consequences of his own actions.
    I simply note that to ‘discuss’ a matter of ethical probity and good judgement, BBC Today this morning are deploying the Prescott, about as discredited a political albatross as it is possible to imagine.
    It’s almost like they don’t want this to be taken seriously, or really do find Westminster the petty political point-scoring game so epitomised by Nick Robinson’s partial, gushing ‘reports’ and ‘analysis’.
    Prescott… good judgement… ethics… really?


    • Span Ows says:

      They had him on day before as well rambling ad nauseam about HS3 and how bad an idea it was but actually when it was his idea it was a good one and the cities agreed and had the money but then Osborne chucked it out but now brought it back blah blah blah…did I say rambling ad nauseam?


  10. Agent S says:

    ‘Not sure why Cameron should ‘face serious questions about his judgment’ or why he should apologise for employing Coulson.’

    Eh, he’s apologised. Ooops Alan. As to why he might be asked questions, why don’t you ask David Vance? He seems to think its a fair question.