Here’s what Rebekah Brooks, once Rupert Murdoch’s favorite flame-haired executive and now on trial in London with her erstwhile lover (another Murdoch favorite), is guilty of:
True, the former News International chief executive stands charged with approving payments to British public officials when she edited the Sun, currently Britain’s stupidest newspaper. And true too, both Brooks and her co-defendant/ex-lover Andy Coulson once edited the News of the World, which is now defunct, but used to hold the title of Britain’s stupidest newspaper. And true finally, various people working for that now extinct newspaper were fond of hacking into the telephones of actor Hugh Grant, singer Paul McCartney, various athletic hunks, assorted politicians, rival journalists, and, unfortunately, teenaged kidnap victims, and both Brooks and Coulson, not being complete idiots, had to know that the information retrieved on all of these people wasn’t very likely the result of a few psychic abilities.
Yet is tapping phones a terrible idea for anyone who works for a media outlet? Generally, yes. But maybe not in Britain.