Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Murdoch Touch

I had speculated recently, in the glibly frivolous vein that inevitably presages disaster, that I might either be or be about to be of some interest to the FBI. It was not Hoover's lackeys I should have feared, however, rather the faceless minions* of Rupert Murdoch who have almost certainly hacked my cellphone. 

A Murdoch minion
This may appear to be one too many cries of 'wolf' from Miguel. But, as the game is up for Murdoch and his evil empire, as all the king's men are unveiled and their vile stratagems brought to the light of day, I am certain that my cellphone was hacked by the likes of Andy Coulson, Clive Goodman, and Glenn Mulcaire. How do I know this?

Fact 1A: Goodman had illicit access to sensitive phone conversations among aides to the royal family. Snippets of intimate conversations (such as one between Princes Harry and Andrew) have appeared verbatim in the British tabloids. 

Fact 1B: I have publicly claimed descent from several of the royal houses of Europe, including the Houses of Bourbon, Yquem de Montaigne, Sachsen-Coburg und Gotha, Stuart, Stewart, Stuert, Stowert (depending on which credit card I'm using), Halsingland und Gastrikland, to name a few; also claimed direct descent from their Royal Highnesses Bela II and Stephen V of Hungary, Edward II of England, Louis IX of blessed memory, Henri IV of Navarre and Clancy of Ireland, among others. 

(To a polite and discriminating readership, a man's legitimacy or b*st*rdy are neither subjects of proper conversation nor deserving of scrutiny amongst confidants. Enough that my royal pretensions and my wineseller's receipts by themselves place me unquestionably within the precincts of royalty.)

Uneasy lies the head with the little round jug

Fact 2A: Mulcaire admitted to hacking the cellphone of Gordon Taylor, head of the Professional Footballers Association. Professional Sport was decidedly on Murdoch's radar. 

Fact 2B: I have previously written of professional cycling in these pages. Among some of my circle, I am considered a cognoscento of the sport. I have made light of 'Cipo' (albeit not to his face); I know the proper pronunciation of 'Team Leopard Trek.' Admittedly, cycling is not football, and I am well aware of the differences: you see, in professional cycling young men wear very tight lycra uniforms, spend half their time looking out for traffic and the other half taking drugs, while in football very beefy men wear very tight lycra uniforms, spend half their time lying on top of one another, half their time slapping one another sur leurs derrieres, the third half taking drugs, and the final half using handguns in nightclubs. I am, in short, enough of the professional sportif to qualify for the technological attentions of Messieur Mulcaire.

"Uhhh . . . wrong ball, Ben."

Fact 3A: Mulcaire admits to hacking the phones of former members of Parliament. 

Fact 3B: While this seems to me the least fruitful line of investigative journalism anyone could imagine, still I suppose one does what one must do to keep up the appearance of doing a job properly. And while I have no pretensions to enter the august sessions of Congress in this life, the fact remains that I have influence with power. My inalienable droit de suffrage at the local polls has won me the ear of my own Representative, The Honorable Doug Lamborn, which you will have noticed is missing from its normal place alongside his head.

Doug Lamborn, R-CO 
(courtesy Rocky Mountain Taxidermy)

It seems a fair question to ask what the Murdoch organization might hope to learn from my phone conversations that would titillate a nation and sell newspapers. That's more than I know, or at least (to preserve my cachet) more than I'll say. Say only I was hapless collateral damage, a bug on the Murdoch windshield, an innocent casualty in a global hacking sweep. 

In the final analysis, of course, we are back to Square One - there is only one agency in the world with any possible interest in my secrets. The check will bounce, of course, but by then the FBI will already have whatever scant information it requires to dispatch their minions*.

* I want to thank Newt Gingrich for the return of the word 'minions.'

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