Episode Three of Who Rules Your World? Begins: The Leak Retribution Event

Episode one of Who Rules Your World?, pitting Barack Obama against Rupert Murdoch, passed mostly under the radar. The “privatize education” event ended in an early draw when the darling of both contestants, Michelle Rhee, resigned in disgrace for a cheating scandal. Though in truth, Murdoch’s loss of a big NY state contract (the contract opportunity arose out of Obama’s Race to the Top program) and Obama’s determination to continue his reforms using executive orders tips the balance to the President.

Episode two of Who Rules the World?, the illegal wiretap cover-up, has thus far been a clear Obama win. Within weeks after taking office, Obama reaffirmed the state secrets invocations of his predecessor. And while al-Haramain still fights to impose penalties in its successful case against the government, Obama has otherwise succeeded in shielding the government for any accountability for illegal wiretapping. Crucially, John Brennan, who had a role in the illegal wiretap program, has suffered no consequences for his role in the scandal.

Rupert’s son James has not enjoyed the same luck Brennan has. He had to resign from BSkyB to prevent News Corp’s hacking scandal from endangering the rest of the corporation’s business plans. Add in the substantial fines News Corp has already paid and the likelihood that a number of people involved in its illegal wiretap program will do jail time, and it’s clear that Obama has won the illegal wiretap coverup hands down.

Episode Three of Who Rules Your World?, leak retribution, might be more interesting. Sure, the retribution against Jeff Sterling for his employment dispute with John Brennan and John Kiriakou for revealing members of the torture squads (a program Brennan also had ties to) are ongoing. But the case against Thomas Drake for exposing the graft involved in NSA’s illegal wiretap contracts blew up in spectacular fashion; plus, the failure of the retribution against Drake has led to more revelations about the illegal wiretap program.

Meanwhile, we’re just beginning to see how News Corp will respond to the efforts of Fox Mole, now exposed as Joe Muto, for passing embarrassing videos to Gawker. It will be particularly interesting to see how Fox balances retribution with a desire to prevent any more embarrassing revelations. Though of course, Fox is hampered because unlike Obama, he can’t make Fox Mole unemployable by withdrawing his security clearance. Unlike national security whistleblowers, Muto’s employment prospects probably just got a lot rosier, as other news outlets scramble to add to News Corp’s discomfort.

It’s probably just as well that Obama is winning Who Rules Your World? by such margins at this point. I wouldn’t want Rupert to get smart ideas about trying to compete in the assassinations category.

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2 Responses to Episode Three of Who Rules Your World? Begins: The Leak Retribution Event

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JimWhiteGNV RT @CJonesScout: Egbunu (14), Finney-Smith (13), Robinson (13). https://t.co/Le9dXn3aax
emptywheel I wonder how many times Rahm has said "fuck" in the last 48 hours?
emptywheel @Thomas_Drake1 Phone dragnet was switching (USAF is part of) move to more automation. 12333 would be already. Do they not notice? @thegrugq
emptywheel I love how official photographers photograph Lynch w/her tall (Johnson) & taller (Comey) colleagues & manage height. https://t.co/FS1KbXyJtW
emptywheel RT @digiphile: On this #GivingTuesday, please consider registering to be an organ donor to give the gift of life: https://t.co/x1e01r3XJG
emptywheel @lib_ertarian_ I don't think they have--they still want to save the Senate. They just can't control the monster they created.
emptywheel Shorter the entire GOP: The only thing that can save us from the monster we created is Hillary Clinton! https://t.co/tGb7yf4zjP
emptywheel The "Club for Growth" not growing. https://t.co/tGb7yf4zjP https://t.co/U8Dr7Gev1R
emptywheel Great news! @onekade and I have not yet melded our brains which means we're twice as scary to the powers that be.
JimWhiteGNV The force is with the #Gators on Star Wars Night. https://t.co/2Cw4Mdwu0n
emptywheel RT @JasonLeopold: Good summary here: Interesting Tidbits from the House Intelligence Authorization https://t.co/NUGvXCtser via @emptywheel
April 2012
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