Independent media columnist Stephen Glover claims today that the phone hacking allegations against the News of the World are an old story that the Guardian and BBC have used to bash Rupert Murdoch.
Glover describes Nick Davies, the Guardian journalists who broke the phone hacking story, as "the sort of journalist who can find a scandal in a jar of tadpoles."
He says: "If there is new evidence, let it be brought forward. What we have here is an old story re-heated, and re-presented by The Guardian and the BBC in the most sensational manner. Two and a half years ago I strongly suspected that Andy Coulson did know what went on while he was editor of the News of the World, and I still do. However, no new evidence has been produced that proves his involvement, and the outcry against him is merely a more raucous reprise of what was said two and a half years ago.
"Naturally I do not condone newspapers listening into the private conversations of celebrities, though I would have no problem in the case of a minister who was on the fiddle or betraying his country. I do know that the national press is weaker than it has been for more than a century, with most titles losing money, and I regret that, at such a time, The Guardian and the BBC should use largely old information to weaken it further."
Glover's view is not unexpected given that there is little love lost between the Independent and the Guardian. But an anti-Guardian sentiment is emerging in the national press, and not just among Murdoch-owned papers.
There seems to be a feeling that the Telegraph's scoop on expenses had MPs on the ropes but the Guardian has now given politicians a weapon to fight back against the press and demand tougher privacy laws.
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