Comment by Michael Collins
Allow me to be perfectly candid. Rupert Murdoch is sacrificing his son’s reputation and future to hold onto power for just a few months longer. News Corporation shareholders are in full revolt over the liability created by shoddy management in the UK and the absurd political positioning and mischief in the United States (among other things). Murdoch is letting son James, formerly heir to the News Corporation throne, take the hits for the phone hacking scandal in the United Kingdom. Of greater significance, James is the patsy for the loss of the BSkyB acquisition (the remaining 61%, News Corp already owns 39%). This will likely cost News Corporation $40 billion in gross revenue over the next five years had the acquisition been approved. (Images: Hubert Burda Media, L, World Economic Forum)
The BSkyB acquisition was a cinch until the Guardian broke the phone hacking scandal on July 4, 2011. Within days, the three major parties agreed that the acquisition should be postponed for at least the duration of the slow-moving investigation established by Prime Minister David Cameron (a year, by the estimate of chairman, Lord Justice Levenson ).
An objective analysis of the House of Commons committee hearings featuring father and son would have to feature Rupert’s memory lapses and his deferral to son James to fill in the details. It has been downhill for James since then. He had to defend positions that made no sense while father Rupert simply said he didn’t recall much. People close to Rupert Murdoch often repeat that he lives for one thing, his print properties Rupert knew what Rebekah Kelly was up to, no doubt, and he had to know about phone hacking. But it is James who is taking the fall.
Murdoch is a modern day Abraham (absent the command hallucinations) ready to eviscerate his son for just a few more months of power.