This is definitely not a Speak Your Branes rip-off…

You might well say that this post is the kind of thing that normally gets done (and far better) on spEak You’re bRanes, but I couldn’t begin to speculate about the remotest possibility of imagining what you might mean by that…

So, anyway, yes, this small rumpus about Vince Cable being caught saying what every Liberal Democrat (and every Labourite, and every Green, and even a surprisingly large number of Conservatives – don’t forget The Sun backed Blair) in the country actually thinks about allowing Rupert Murdoch to take full control of Sky.  Robert Peston has blogged about it all, and (very unusually for me) I ventured a small way into the comments.  Well, goodness me, what a rich vein of comedy I found there.

13. At 15:28pm on 21st Dec 2010, Honey wrote:

I support vince!! Preston the pest at large again!! I’m for free media and attack on murdoch!! Our media needs to be fair and free not monopolised by Murdoch!!!! Pest crawl underground!!!

I support a free media!!  But only if they’re attacking Murdoch!!  If they’re going to publish something that might be helpful to him then they shouldn’t be free to publish!!  What our media does and doesn’t do shouldn’t be controlled by Murdoch!!!!  It should be controlled by me!!!  That would be lots better!!

24. At 15:39pm on 21st Dec 2010, WrekinAir wrote:

A senior politician in the cabinet expresses concerns about a determinedly right-wing media mogul trying to expand his control?

Right on! That is what Vince was elected to do – his words may be injudicious but do we want a world influenced let alone controlled by one man’s views?

I thought that was what our fathers fought and died for in the mid-20th century – to prevent right wing megalomaniacs ruling our lives by their values whilst lining their pockets………

Robert, you need a sense of proportion and maturity – and a sense of history.

Yeah, Robert, you need to get a sense of proportion.  Can’t you see that writing an accurate story that might potentially make it slightly easier for one company to buy some shares in another is exactly the same as the second world war?  And you need to grow up, too!  Because, of course, making hasty and ill-considered comparisons with fascism and genocide is always the hallmark of a mature mind

29. At 15:44pm on 21st Dec 2010, Dan wrote:

Cant help but thinking the BBC are ultimately scoring a huge own goal by breaking this… oh well the truth is the truth…

And that’s precisely why the BBC matters, of course.  I don’t know I quite endorse all the over-excited chatter about this – it’s the regulatory framework that governs what Sky can and can’t broadcast, not who has the majority shareholding.  Still, the fact remains that this story will be of comfort to a direct competitor of the BBC, and they went ahead and published it regardless.  Journalists and editors working for the BBC evidently felt able to publish without worrying about internal reprisals, even though their editor-in-chief and employer is known to be strongly opposed to the takeover.  Sadly enough, it looks like the same can’t be said for The Telegraph, or the journalists and editors who work there.  This is what makes the BBC different, and so critically important.  Ironically enough, even News International apparatchiks have a reason to take note of that now, not that I expect they will.

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