Daily Archives: May 4, 2012

Rupert Murdoch and David Miscavige

Haydn James submitted an article published below that draws many parallels between media king Rupert Murdoch and squirrel king David Miscavige.

Here are a few things to take into consideration when reading Haydn’s piece.

Rupert Murdoch cut his teeth on bashing L Ron Hubbard and Scientology during the sixties in Australia.

Murdoch’s US (most notably Fox News) and UK media holdings have uniquely steered clear of the dozens of breaking stories about David Miscavige’s abuse that have run in most other media since the Tampa Times landmark 2009 series The Truth Rundown.

For a while I considered that might be due to something I was working on shortly before leaving Scientology Inc in 2004.  That was working with David Miscavige and Tom Cruise to recruit Australian media magnate heir James Packer.  Tom had reported that Jamie grew up with one of Murdoch’s sons – same exclusive schools, clubs, etc – and that Murdoch treated Jamie like a son. Miscavige relieved me of all other post duties to concentrate on working with Tom to recruit Jamie. The plan was to help Jamie with Scientology and to influence Jamie to win over Murdoch for Scientology in exchange (of course never disclosing the terms to Jamie).  I was involved in the help side of it and that was rewarding. But I left before the other side of the hidden bargain was carried out by Miscavige and Cruise.  

Whether that ever came to fruition may be of no import.  Reading Haydn’s post made me consider the Occam’s razor approach. Perhaps a more likely explanation is that Rupert Murdoch and David Miscavige are simply peas from the same L Ron Hubbard hating pod. 

Peas in a Pod

by Haydn James

Rupert Murdoch’s plight gives an interesting comparative and some insight into the world and precarious position of David Miscavige.

Murdoch, born Australian but now an American citizen, controls the second largest but arguably the most influential media empire in the world.  500 companies in 50 countries which includes The Wall Street Journal, New York Post, Fox Television and Twentieth Century Fox studios in the USA, four newspapers including The London Times and the hugely influential Sun as well as television in the UK. He is ranked as the 13th most powerful man in the world. For decades he has been a king maker, deciding and influencing through the coordinated policy of his media outlets who should assume political power in a number of countries, particularly Australia and England but he is not without major influence in the USA. He even took on and backed down the BBC, using his political influence to extract revenge for their opposition to his activities, arranging for their annual budget to be cut by sixteen percent.

If there is a major global elitist conspiracy of greed, Murdoch is a card carrying member. And I note that he acquired The News of the World newspaper in 1968, in England, just in time for its three year onslaught against Scientology and LRH — shades of Ron’s Journal 67.

So I have been watching with fascination as, expose by expose, piece by piece, the depth of corruption on the part of Murdoch’s empire was brought to light in the UK and USA. And I have noticed that the similarities and parallels with Miscavige are unmistakable.

Murdoch bought political influence for protection and to strengthen his media stranglehold, going so far as to create a media monopoly. It used to be illegal in England for one person to own and influence more than one major media outlet but Murdoch was able to change all that. And he became an American citizen so he could acquire and own media companies in the USA.  Like David Miscavige, Rupert Murdoch created, ostensibly, an unassailable position in the world in which he ruled. People feared him and most lacked the courage to speak out against his bullying and abuses. But Murdoch’s vast political and media influence to the contrary, he proved that no position is totally safe or secure.

Just like Miscavige, Murdoch ran his personal empire as a dictator, doing only what he saw fit and without regard to common decency or law. The sheer degree of power he wielded went to his head. He thought he was above the law. And when it looked like the truth about his operations might come to light, Murdoch used the same play book of dirty tricks that Miscavige used in attempting to silence those speaking out against him.

PIs were used by Murdoch to openly follow and harass critics, even British members of parliament. Dossiers were compiled on anyone who was or might become an enemy. Any dirt they could find was used to force critics into silence or ruin their reputation via whisper campaigns. High priced lawyers were used to threaten and shudder individuals, other newspapers, companies and lawyers into silence and if that failed they “settled” (with huge pay offs) those who could not be intimidated. All very familiar to independent Scientologists.

Like David Miscavige, Murdoch was mercilessly over the top when it came to running his empire. Journalists working for one of Murdoch’s newspapers were compelled to come up with twelve major scoops (good news stories) per year or they were summarily fired. As anyone who has worked in Scientology knows, that kind of fear and duress does not result in anything good. Murdoch’s empire was no different. In turn, the journalists put pressure on the private investigators they used to dig up dirt and stories. Desperate to keep their lucrative jobs, the PIs hacked and tapped the phones and media devices of thousands of people, including celebrities, and they paid members of the police (Metropolitan Police – Scotland Yard) to retrieve and pass along information they needed. The lines into the police were extensive. Mind you, I will say this, if Murdoch’s PIs felt under pressure to produce the goods they should try working for Miscavige – or maybe they have.
From the moment a tiny fraction of the truth leaked out the result was inevitable. Despite the fact that some members of the government, police and Murdoch did all they could to cover it up, the truth eventually broke wide open. One way or another, the truth came out. In another theme familiar to Independent Scientologists, when few dared to carry the story, a single non-Murdoch newspaper in the USA picked up the ball and ran with it which emboldened other media outlets around the world.

In response to the worldwide bad press, politicians in England turned on Murdoch, blocking his expansion moves. The infamous, LRH attacking, News of the World which had been in existence for many decades was shut down and closed and a number of Murdoch’s staff have been arrested. There are three ongoing criminal investigations in the UK, FBI investigations in the USA, countless civil lawsuits for invasion of privacy as well as parliamentary investigations into the actions of Murdoch, his family and his empire. The fallout is still raining down and will for some years.

But even Murdoch has a couple of advantages over David Miscavige. Firstly, he can claim, with at least a little credibility, that his empire is so vast he could not monitor it all. David (I micro manage everything) Miscavige cannot. Secondly, Murdoch has gone to great lengths to make and publish apologies for his offences, something Miscavige will never do.

Three additional observations come out of what is happening to Murdoch.

1. In the modern world, no amount of power, political or media influence can prevent the truth from coming out.

2. Dirty tricks only hasten the process.

3. (OSA staff should note this one).  The first ones arrested are the lieutenants.