Thoughts from an active pensioner who is now somewhat past his Biblical "Use-by date"

"Why just be difficult, when with a little more effort you can be bloody impossible?"

Monday, 18 March 2013

Press Freedom

A few Quotes from the media and other sources

Not my usual read, but an extract from the Sun's editorial today:
"Ten years after the 2014 Regulation of the Press Act, MPs are fiddling expenses on an industrial scale. But Sun readers have no right to know.

"Our Boys are fighting another war with shoddy kit while their families live in squalor on MoD bases. But Sun readers have no right to know.

"Indeed in 2024 you know nothing of any Government failings or the personal activities of MPs, peers, judges, celebrities or sport stars.

"Such stories fall foul of Privacy Czar Lord Grant, the Labour Peer once known as Hacked Off Hugh, who can veto them under draconian amendments to the 2014 Act which ended 300 years of Press freedom" 

A quote from Hitler:
"The organisation of our press has truly been a success. Our law concerning the press is such that divergences of opinion between members of the government are no longer an occasion for public exhibitions, which are not the newspapers' business. We've eliminated that conception of political freedom which holds that everybody has the right to say whatever comes into his head"

The First amendment to the US Consitution:
"Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

The farce of the situation is that any form of censorship will be the beginning of the end for our national press. People, particularly the younger generation, will turn to the internet for their news. Indeed, my son-in-law already sits at the breakfast table reading the news on his iPad rather than from a newspaper or watching it on TV.
News from the internet will be subject to less controls than apply to the media at present and rumour will abound doing far more damage than the news media ever did. Look at the problem faced by Lord McAlpine over Twitter. He has money and could afford to employ experts to track down the perpetrators and take legal action, but ordinary people such as the Dowlers or McCanns certainly wouldn't be able to do so and so would be worse off than at present.
Some newspapers have certainly behaved badly, but where they did, they broke the law and should be prosecuted under existing legislation.

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