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Parris, Matthew

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The Times - United Kingdom | 18/03/2013

News of the World scandal leaves big mess

In the aftermath of the News of the World wiretapping scandal and the Leveson Report, British Prime Minister David Cameron has countered the opposition's demands for new press laws and will put his own plans for a Royal Charter for the press to a vote in the House of Commons today. The conservative daily The Times notes that too much damage has already been done: "Waves of anger, anxiety or loathing pass with sudden violence across our politics and instant modern communications amplify the ferocity with which storms blow up and blow away. The popular rage against MPs' expenses, the speed with which the public forgot that the whole story was uncovered through stolen personal records, the overlooking of the link between modern journalism's vicious investigation of MPs and MPs' dislike of modern journalism speak volumes about how febrile and perhaps shallow are these passions. The whole ill-considered Leveson process, the sins of the newspaper industry that gave birth to it and all the posturing and party politics since have already produced one consequence that will linger, and it is malign: a general belief that it's up to politicians to get a grip on what is in newspapers."

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