British Business Secretary Vince Cable told folks he thought were loyal Liberal Democrat supporters--but were actually undercover reporters--that he has "declared war" on international media tycoon Rupert Murdoch. Murdoch's News Corp is trying to take over British Sky Broadcasting, but that move has to be cleared by Cable, who decides whether such a buyout would concentrate the control of the press in too few hands.
That's perhaps a noble task, but one must be careful about starting a war against a man with so many weapons of mass communication. Still, Cable moderated his boast by allowing that you must go to war with the army you have. According to the Daily Telegraph's Robert Winnette, Cable told the covert journalists:
I didn't politicise it, because it is a legal question, but [Murdoch] is trying to take over BSkyB, you probably know that... He has minority shares … And he wants a majority. And a majority-control would give him a massive stake.
I have blocked it, using the powers that I have got. And they are legal powers that I have got. I can't politicise it, but for the people who know what is happening, this is a big thing. His whole empire is now under attack. So there are things like that, that being in Government … All we can do in opposition is protest.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.