Monday, 5 September 2016

Keith Vaz: Justified Ancients Of Mu Mu

In terms of journalistic ethics, the central issue about the newspaper’s conduct is whether the article, and the method employed to obtain it, had a genuine public interest justification.

We have been here many, many times down the years, although somewhat more rarely since the Leveson inquiry...

First, let’s consider the matter from Vaz’s position. The paper intruded into his privacy. It was entirely up to him if he wished to engage the services of prostitutes. It was not a criminal act.

It is true that prostitution is not illegal and politicians have a right to a private life. But, however much one sympathises with Vaz, it is undeniable that he is compromised by his special position as the chair of a commons committee tasked with making recommendations about prostitution...

“We did not entrap him”, said the [Mirror] spokesperson. “We acted in the public interest and, in so doing, we omitted many other details of the meeting between the men and Mr Vaz.”

So this whole affair revolves around privacy. According to the editors’ code intrusion into a person’s privacy is warranted if there is a genuine public interest.

Among the definitions of public interest are the exposure of “serious impropriety” and the exposure of actions or statements by an individual that could be said to mislead the public.

The Sunday Mirror’s editorial made its stance clear. It conceded that “nothing Mr Vaz has done is illegal.” But, as chairman of the home affairs select committee, he held a powerful position...

Elected politicians, people responsible for making laws, must live by different standards to those who vote for them. As plenty of MPs have discovered in the past, they have to pay a price for the privileges they enjoy. Part of that price is the need to sacrifice an absolute right to privacy.

Some silly tosh from Professor Roy G on Media Guardian.

PS And an hilariously bad 'angry think piece' by Joe 'Moron' Morgan at Gay Star News.

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