(Images: AAP/Ben Rushton; AP)

The Meghan and Harry saga that has dominated the news this week signifies as equal parts meaningless pantomime and an illustration of how power works.

Piers Morgan’s role is no different.

Partly in the journey between Meghan Markle declining to go for a second drink with Morgan (“Meghan Markle ghosted me. I really liked her, this is why it hurts,” he said in 2018) and his seemingly obsessive focus on destroying her ever since.

But also how a man like Morgan has found himself in a position to do so — an amazing talent for falling up.

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Morgan started out in the cesspool of 1990s Fleet Street, his shamelessness and ability with self-promotion guiding him into the editor’s chair of the News of the World, until he was transferred to the Daily Mirror (having apparently been too grubby for News of The World which, you may remember, is the Murdoch tabloid so grubby it had to be shut down). Morgan, despite all manner of circumstantial evidence, remained clear of the phone hacking scandals.

He had to leave the Mirror after it published photos reportedly of British soldiers apparently torturing Iraqi prisoners that were later shown to be crude fakes.

He has barely been off the TV in UK and — even more bafflingly — in the US since. Indeed of all the takes Morgan elicits, the one I feel is missing is bafflement at this odd little man judging a talent show and holding political interviews.

And so to Markle, where Morgan’s completely predictable apoplexy on Good Morning Britain was met with equally predictable backlash and his less predictable departure from the show.

The departure trailed a lot of “I believe in freedom of speech”/tweet with a Churchill quote stuff. You know the drill.

“If I have to fall on my sword for expressing an honestly held opinion about Meghan Markle and that diatribe of bilge that she came out with in that interview, so be it,” he said.

Of course, the fact that he actually just stormed out and quit because he was being criticised for his words never factors in. And none of this will prevent him tripping into another high profile gig.

Alan Jones gets a co-billing this week for his reminder that whatever culture war battling we see overseas, our own after dark grifters will find a way to echo it back to us in new and ever more contemptible ways.

It doesn’t sound like much, maybe, although it should: there is nothing Alan Jones wouldn’t say.

So there’s the predictable gushing about Morgan’s “frankness and forthrightness” which will apparently outlive the woke people who are offended by “anything and everything”.

Again: Morgan said something, was criticised for it, and then quit. He is a martyr to literally nothing.

Then there was some dog-whistling bullshit denying the fixation on Markle was racist. “No matter your colour, it is the behaviour we object to,” he said.

So far, so obvious. But then came his assertion that the best character assessment of Markle was “how she has treated her father”.

Jones asked what kind of person “abandons a parent”. “And now, as a grandparent, Mr Markle hasn’t seen his grandson.”

I suppose you and I are a bit old-fashioned, but there are many words of testimony to the value of a father. This millionaire daughter can speak to a billionaire media figure and trash an historic and well-regarded institution. But the millionaire daughter … has no time to speak to her father.

Decent caring people express thanks for the special relationship between fathers and daughters.

Regardless of what one thinks of Markle, the invocation of her father — who staged paparrazzi pictures of his daughter for money, who sent the press a private letter she had sent him and who now makes his living doing interviews criticising her — is utterly vile.

That Jones — who once said then prime minister Julia Gillard’s recently dead father had died of shame — would now pontificate about the “special relationship” between father and daughter maybe shouldn’t be shocking. The man incited a fucking race riot, after all.

But it quietly illustrated that there is nothing beneath his dignity, no slight sense of decency that tells him he ought not to say something.