In case you haven't had enough, a few thoughts on News of the World
We ended the day with a launch down the Itchen, a lovely, watery green and spinning path, then landed and drank a whisky and ginger ale in a pub garden, where we mulled our thoughts on News of the World in England's green and pleasant land.
What perfect timing for those who wanted to stop Murdoch's acquisition of BSkyB. So perfect it's hard to believe it's accidental.
We admit to being astonished at British hostility toward the man who has provided an alternative to the propaganda churned out by the mainstream media in America.
You might not like Fox, but do you really want a monolithic press which covers for a president, refusing to mention that he has given billions to his cronies on Wall Street while throwing millions of Americans out of work? A monolithic cheering section which eviscerated Bush won't point out that Obama's anti-terrorist infringements of civil liberties are even worse that the previous administration's? A pusillanimous press which won't show Obama for the arrogant, grossly ill-informed politician he is - a perpetual motion candidate who hasn't figured out that America has 51, not 57 states. Puh-leese. So whatever you may think of Fox News or the Wall Street Journal, also owned by Murdoch, at least they present different points of view. This is exactly what we might have seen with Murdoch's control of Sky -- a viewpoint different than the massive monoculture of the BBC, the Guardian, and the Telegraph.
Was the Prime Minister an idiot to hire the tainted, ex News editor Coulson? Yes. And perhaps worse than an idiot. But consider the Guardian, which pompously whines that it warned the PM's top aides to avoid Coulson. Hello? Is the Guardian a branch of government? Has it forgotten the first rule of journalistic independence? Let the paper write an editorial warning and denouncing the hiring of Coulson. It has no business whispering in the PM's ear. It's pathetic that the Guardian doesn't see this.
Then there is the hacking. Appalling, as everyone has said, including those millions who rushed to ingest the tidbits provided by the News of the World. A man or woman's home is their castle, and not to be invaded, and so we deem their voice mail. But how many other papers are doing exactly the same thing? Ironically the Guardian had to admit that it was not so pure that hacking had not occurred in its ivory tower.
What about the police? They took bribes. Horrible. Extraordinary. Or is it? How many police took bribes? Who were they? Why has this part of the story faded?
When all is said and done, politicians have sold Britain out to the EU, and most of these papers have had nothing to say about it. Not a word.
It beggars belief.