World Politics

Thanks everyone for clearing up my confusion about UK tabloids. I kind of understand the importance of TNofTW shutting down now, but now I can't help but wonder why the UK would let themselves be ruled by the whims of a man who's basically running a monopoly over printed media in the UK. Maybe I'm just looking at this from an American perspective, but in today's modern world, what's the importance of a newspaper/tabloid? With news resources on the internet/tv/radio, I just can't fully understand the importance of a UK tabloid shutting down.

You have to remember that Rupert Murdoch owns quite a large amount of the media here. Not just newspapers. He owns shares in the broadcaster BSkyB. For almost twenty years Prime Ministers has close relationships with him because he had the influence to make or break them. TNofTW closed amidst phone hacking accusations. Claims that the phones of the victims of crime were hacked. I think in this country unlike in the United States - many people still rely heavily on newspaper but that will be put under pressure in the years to come.

Yesterday Rebekah Brooks the chief executive of News International has resigned and also Les Hinton, chief executive of the media group's Dow Jones has resigned. A personal apology has been put in newspaper adverts across 7 national newspapers. Also Mr Murdoch has personally apologised to the family of a alleged hacking victim - the murdered school girl Milly Dowler.

As you will know, in the US the FBI are investigating claims that the phones of 9/11 victims and their family may have been hacked into by Murdoch's press wing in the states.

I will also say this, Murdoch owns more media in the UK than in does in Australia or America - hence his influence politically here.
Thanks shazza_018 for helping me understand all of this TNoTW confusion. If only I'd paid more attention in World Gov't class in school...:lol:But now that its closed, I wonder what media outlet is going to take TNoTW's place. Looks like the UK citizens have a mess on their hands.
But now that its closed, I wonder what media outlet is going to take TNoTW's place.
Well that's easy Murdoch will still want a newspaper on sunday and there are rumours (plus some offical confirmation) that The Sun On Sunday (The Sun is/was TNoTW's sister daily paper) could replace the TNoTW as early as August but I won't keep my hopes up on that - the government and the House of Commons here has put so much pressure on Murdoch and that due to the fact that he has had to drop his BSkyB full ownership bid it's unlike he'll take on another newspaper because of what the government and parliament might say about that nevertheless something will have to replace TNoTW - the other newspapers are clueless as to how to lure in those 7.5 million readers that the TNoTW had. I say that after having seen todays frontpages lol.


Interesting development - Ex-News International chief executive Rebekah Brooks has been arrested by police investigating phone hacking and bribery at the News of the World. Will have to see what comes of that.
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It's the MP enquiry tomorrow (Tuesday) so should be very interesting to hear what gets said when they question Rupert Murdoch, James Murdoch and Rebekah Brooks. Also today an ex News of the World reporter was found dead; he had previously spoken out about phone hacking being more common than people thought. Plus David Cameron is being attacked because he had hired an ex NoTW editor as a PR advisor. Starting to think this has the potential to bring down the current Government or a fresh election campaign. Hope not though, as the other political parties are no better really.
It's the MP enquiry tomorrow (Tuesday) so should be very interesting to hear what gets said when they question Rupert Murdoch, James Murdoch and Rebekah Brooks.
Well I'm not sure what will happen with Rebekah Brooks since parliament got screwed over by the police cause they arrested her on Sunday - she'll properly say she can't comment as it might incriminate her :rolleyes:. The police seemed to acted stupidly on this one - it was arrest by appointment - atleast wait till Wednesday - seems very fishy to me.
I don't understand how a single American entrepeneur can hold so much power over the British government. I understand how one media conglomerate can make or break an election in the UK, but the News of The World is just a tabloid. Tabloids in America aren't really that important. Is it different in the UK?

just reading back over this for the first time in a while - the NOTW story is a massive one because it spreads to and affects so many media agencies and governments. can i just point out tho that murdoch *isn't* american, he's australian. his first really big power play, in fact, was when he essentially rigged an aussie prime ministerial election.

also, yes, tabloids really are that big in the UK - they can influence the general election directly (as far as i know ALL general elections in the uk since the early 80s have been won by whichever party murdoch's papers have publicly backed).

the other thing is that it's not *just* that the tabloids are big here - he also owns a couple of the broadsheets. his editors (of the NOTW at the time of the alleged hacking) have both claimed ignorance that it was going on - which makes them either incompetent (because part of the job of editor is to know where your reporters are getting their info) or liars.

but the really serious issue is that one of aforementioned editors (andy coulson), after he "resigned" from the news of the world after the original phone hacking scandal a few years ago (he denied all knowledge, one of his reporters went to jail, and believe me he only resigned because if he hadn't he'd have been pushed, hard) wound up being hired by david cameron - who was then merely tory leader - as his press advisor. now for a guy to advise the future prime minister on all things press related who has been subpoeanad in a criminal case and who has - in all likelihood - lied through his teeth about it, is NOT a good idea. this story goes right to the top.

the issue isn't so much about the scope of the press - although that is a big deal too, it's more about the fact that our government have been in bed with these papers despite knowing they have, at the very least, dubious (and as we now know, illegal) methods. and that's before you even start on the fact that the tabloids were bribing the police both for information as stories came up and to keep quiet their underhanded methods. given how cosy they all are, i would be extremely surprised if the government weren't also involved.

the fact that rebekah brooks hung on to her job right up til her arrest caused only one question over here in the uk "what dirt does she have on cameron? murdoch? coulson? other politicians? the police? anyone?" - there is no way she'd have stayed with that much power unless she had a hell of a bargaining tool.
Some sad news in Canadian Politics today. NDP/Opposition Leader Jack Layton has passed away at the age of 61. Layton won the opposition seat in the Spring election which is the highest the NDP has ever seen in Canadian Politics. Layton had won a battle with prostrate cancer but lost this latest round. I never cared for the man's politics but that doesn't mean I can't admire the man for sticking to his beliefs his whole political life. R.I.P Mr Layton.

Jack Layton dead at 61

North Korean leader Kim Jong-il dead

(Reuters) - North Korean leader Kim Jong-il died of a heart attack while on a train trip, state media reported on Monday, sparking immediate concern over who is in control of the reclusive state and its nuclear program.
A tearful television announcer dressed in black said the 69-year old had died on Saturday of physical and mental over-work on his way to give "field guidance" - a reference to advice dispensed by the "Dear Leader" on his trips to factories, farms and military bases.
Kim Jong-un, Kim Jong-il's youngest son, was named by North Korea's official news agency KCNA as the "great successor" to his father, which lauded him as "the outstanding leader of our party, army and people."
Video from Chinese state television showed residents of Pyongyang, the North Korean capital, weeping while KCNA reported people were "writhing in pain" from the loss.
"We will have victory in our revolution today and tomorrow because we have comrade Kim Jong-un," KCNA quoted 55-year-old Ho Song-chol as saying.

Though people were crying on the streets of Pyongyang, life appeared to be going on largely as normal with light traffic and an occasional tram or trolley bus passing by in weak winter sunshine.
Little is known of Jong-un who is believed to be in his late 20s and was appointed to senior political and military posts in 2010.
KCNA said the elder Kim died at 8:30 a.m. on Saturday (2330 GMT on Friday) after "an advanced acute myocardial infarction, complicated with a serious heart shock." Kim had suffered a stroke in 2008, but had appeared to have recovered.

South Korea, still technically at war with the North, placed its troops and all government workers on emergency alert but Seoul's Defense Ministry said there were no signs of any unusual North Korean troop movements and President Lee Myung-bak called for people to carry on with their normal lives.
Lee held talks with President Barack Obama over the telephone as the United States is the main guarantor of South Korea's security. Seoul was also due to hold talks with government officials in Tokyo later in the day.
"Up until tonight, if anybody had asked you what would be the most likely scenario under which the North Korean regime could collapse, the answer would be the sudden death of Kim Jong-il," said Victor Cha, a Korea expert with the Center for Strategic and International Studies think-tank in Washington.
"And so I think right now we're in that scenario and we don't know how it's going to turn out."
The White House said President Barack Obama had been notified of the reports of Kim's death and it was closely monitoring and in touch with South Korea and Japan.

The United States was committed to stability on the Korean peninsula as well as to its allies, the White House press secretary said.
Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda told ministers at a special security meeting to prepare for the unexpected, including on border affairs, Japan's top government spokesman said.
China, North Korea's only major ally, expressed grief and offered condolences.
Market players and regional powers will be on edge over what might happen next in the isolated state, whose collapsing economy and bid to become a nuclear weapons power pose major threats to northeast Asia.
Asian stocks and U.S. index futures fell, with South Korean shares tumbling as much as 5 percent, and the dollar gained after the announcement. The Korean won fell 1.8 percent.
Kim Jong-un was at the head of a long list of officials making up the funeral committee, indicating he would lead it, and a key sign that he had taken, or been given, charge.
But there will be enormous questions over how much credibility the younger Kim has, since he is only in his late 20s and has had little time to prepare for the role.
"Kim Jong-un is not yet the official heir, but the regime will move in the direction of Kim Jong-un taking center stage," said Chung Young-Tae at the Korea Institute of National Unification. "There is a big possibility that a power struggle may happen.
"It's likely the military will support Kim Jong-un," he added. "Right now there will be control wielded over the people to keep them from descending into chaos in this tumultuous time."

Kim Jong-il's sister and her husband have also been promoted to important political and military posts, creating a powerful triumvirate ready to take over the family dynasty that has ruled North Korea since its founding after World War Two.
Experts say Jong-un has the intelligence and leadership skills that would make him suitable to succeed his father. He is also reported to have a ruthless streak that analysts say he would need to rule the country.
There is likely to be an outpouring of emotion over Kim's death in North Korea, where the country's propaganda machine turned him into a demi-god. His funeral will be held on December 28.
On the streets of the South Korean capital, Seoul, however the death of a man whose country had threatened to turn the city into a "sea of fire" ranged from indifference to over-joyed.
"The whole earth should celebrate it as much as Christmas," said Kim Ok-tae, a 58-year old pastor.
"I am not at all afraid. I don't see any likelihood of North Korea lashing out unexpectedly."
Kim was the unchallenged head of a communist state whose economy fell deep into poverty during his 17 years in power as he vexed the world by developing a nuclear arms program and missiles aimed at neighbors Japan and South Korea.
North Korea, which tested a nuclear device in 2006 and again in May 2009, is seen as one of the greatest threats to regional security.
In 2010, the secretive North unveiled a uranium enrichment facility, giving it a second route to make an atomic bomb along with its plutonium program.
Cha said communication between China, the United States and South Korea was vital.
"Because these are the three key players when it comes to instability in North Korea. And the Chinese have been reluctant to have any conversations on this," he said.
"Now the situation really calls for it. It will be interesting to see how much the Chinese will be willing to have some sort of discussion."
The North has repeatedly threatened to destroy the conservative government of South Korean President Lee Myung-bak, who ended a decade of free-flowing aid to the North after taking office in February 2008.
It also has a reputation for provocative external action in response to internal pressures.
"Often in times like this, the regime will do something to demonstrate that it is still viable, powerful, still a threat," said Dane Chamorro, a regional director at risk consultancy Control Risks.
"It might be a missile test, some type of aggression or conflict."
Known at home as "the Dear Leader," Kim took over the reins of North Korea in 1994 when his father and founder of the reclusive state, Kim Il-sung, known as the Great Leader, died.
Tension between the two Koreas spiked to its highest level in nearly two decades in 2010 when 50 South Koreans were killed in two separate attacks on the peninsula, but relations have improved this year due to pressure from Beijing and Washington.
Alrighty, we have Presidental election. First round results are up soon. First yay is that there'll be 2nd round.
Between Conservative and Green

30 yrs we've had Social democrat president, finally it's over.

And my party, please forgive me not voting our candidate but goddamn even he's knowledge is amazing but he is so arrogant and annoying somtimes. I did plan that I can vote for him during the 2nd round but nah.

I voted for green one. I thought I never do this, I'd never vote Greens as a party and even this candidate (citygreen) is in a way so far away from me but he's so great.
I've always liked him. He accepts people as they are (e.g he is gay and there's been some MP who have said very anti-gay things and puff, they are meeting and talking. I know many gays would have been very upset and doesn't want to do anything with such kind of a person, but he just.. accepts the other's opinions are they are).
He is not arrogant, he doesn't attack against other candidates, he has done lots of work for UN.

Oh well, 2nd round is in two weeks, Conservatives will win that's for sure but.. numbers will be great to see.