David Cameron, U.K. prime minister, is bracing for testimony from the now defunct News of the World editors that will reveal the indicated tight relationship between the P.M. and News Corp. publications.
ABC News reported some of the political donations of Rupert Murdoch and his media organizations and the recipients of those donations included some names that may surprise some. Names like Pelosi, Schumer, and even Obama. Names that have the (D) by them when they run for office. Names that also regularly get attacked by the Murdoch-owned pundits at Fox News.
This should really surprise no one paying attention to the media scandal in Britain. Murdoch has been shown to wine-and-dine prime ministers of different ideological schools of thought on his private yachts so the reality that he donates to both parties in the U.S. is logical and should be expected. Murdoch is simply an opportunist. Tighter campaign laws in the UK force him to use one type of tactic to buy influence there. Loose campaign finance laws allow him to more openly buy his influence here. He uses the tools (money) at his disposal to get his way.
Remember that these methods of gaining influence are not the illegal actions Murdoch’s organizations are under scrutiny for using. That he gives money to different political parties is no surprise as many corporations and wealthy donors do the same in the U.S. The fact that these donations are not illegal is what should concern people.
It is amazing we do not legislate campaign donations in a much tougher way in the United States. Let’s face it. When someone donates a large amount of money to many different people on separate sides of the ideological spectrum, it is not a donation because those recipients reflect the ideological philosophy of the donor. It is a donation to make sure legislation tilts in the interest of the donor. We have a word for that. It’s called a bribe.
Any rational and truly democratic society would call it what it is and make sure the laws would not allow this buying of influence to occur. The likelihood of corruption is obvious and the fact it has happened many times in the U.S. is no secret. In a democracy with an objective media, there would be an uproar calling for change. In a democracy where the biased-media is the one performing the corruption, the silence is deafening.
For background information on this story please view the Frontline episode linked here from yesterday’s post.