Crikey Says

Feb 20, 2014

Crikey says: Blair the crisis management consultant

The department screwed up, now Scott Morrison himself puts asylum seekers at risk. The crass commercialisation of the Anzac centenary. Critics rally around financial adviser reforms. A $1 billion federal budget saving: UK pensioners. Fairfax reports, and a Melbourne media merger. Plus Helen Razer on the public blame game.

Former Labor frontbencher Greg Combet is reportedly offering expert advice for a hefty $400 an hour. Tony Blair, the former British prime minister, hands his out for free. Of course, he'd never think of charging Rebekah Brooks, James Murdoch and other News Corporation lieutenants he considers mates. He was only too happy to help them dodge the ongoing fallout around systemic phone hacking and corruption at Rupert Murdoch's gutter newsrooms. After all, it was The Sun that put Blair in Downing Street and rallied support for his most controversial decision, to follow the United States into Iraq. This was the least Blair could do. The phone hacking trial threw up a juicy email from Brooks overnight, with Blair apparently advising her during an hour-long phone chat -- six days before Brooks was arrested -- to launch an internal probe to help clear her name. "It will pass," the caring ex-PM said, advising her to lay off the sleeping pills to "have clear heads". The most damning evidence to emerge from this saga won't be the dodgy practices of Murdoch's journalists and hired investigators -- that we could have guessed. It's the revolting relationships between the company and the most powerful people in Britain. You can begin to imagine some of the relationships that might be in place between Murdoch's men and Tony Abbott's government here.

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12 thoughts on “Crikey says: Blair the crisis management consultant

  1. Dez Paul

    Well put, ed. Frank and fearless (or honest and ballsy if you prefer). Some much of what’s wrong with politics and business nicely encapsulated.

  2. DiddyWrote

    If Blair ever did have any principles, it is clear that by this stage that he had jettisoned them all.
    In the beginning he may have convinced himself that it was necessary to do a deal with the devil in order to attain power but the cost was his soul.
    There is no sense he feels any revulsion whilst advising Brooks, even though the revelations of the hacking of a dead girls phone are still fresh in the news.
    You would think it would act as a cautionary tale but politicians still appear to be falling over themselves in order to ingratiate themselves with Murdoch and we are all the worse off for it.
    Revolting and nauseating.

  3. zut alors

    It’s especially critical to keep a clear head when ducking & weaving. Telling the truth tends to require less concentration, answers come to mind easily.

  4. Electric Lardyland

    Very well put, Zut.

  5. Danno of Arabia

    And Blair’s mention of the “Hutton style inquiry”?

    “You can begin to imagine some of the relationships that might be in place between Murdoch’s men and Tony Abbott’s government here.”

    I expect you will tell us?

  6. AR

    The only relationship between Mudorc & his minions is for the PM to bend over & hold his ankles.

  7. Bill Hilliger

    Some say no wonder Roopert shared his spouse with Tony. A gesture of thanks?

  8. Richard Murphy

    It’s time for testtostertony to void the ABC’s overseas broadcasting contracts with the Aust. government and hand them to the Murdoch media conglomerate nothing less will appease the Don.

  9. klewso

    The “Blot-Sheridan-Abbott daisy chain”?

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