The Hangover News
ANOTHER ONE OF DAVID CAMERON'S FRIENDS WAS ARRESTED
Rebekah Brooks resigned from her job as chief exec at News International on Friday morning. At midday on Sunday, she was arrested after keeping an appointment with cops at a police station in London.
Bookies are currently offering odds of 16-1 that David Cameron will soon join his friend in the waiting room at Chipping Norton's local Jobcentre Plus.
The phone hacking story is currently moving so quickly that this information will probably be irrelevant, incomplete or wrong by the time you read it.* In fact, it's no longer just a phone hacking story, it's now a political collusion story and a police corruption story, too.
[*Edit: we were right – Sean Hoare, the ex-News of the World reporter who first told everyone about the phone hacking practices at the 'paper, has been found dead at his home in Watford. Police say they're not treating his death as suspicious at this stage.]
The latter is why Sir Paul Stephenson resigned from his job as boss of the Met on Sunday.
Stephenson is mates with Neil Wallis, who was deputy editor at the News of the World when people there were hacking everyone's phones.
Stephenson also paid Wallis to work for two days a month as a PR consultant at the Met, and enjoyed a free, five-week stay at a luxury spa resort Wallis' PR company promoted.
All this while the newspaper Wallis used to work for was being accused of criminal activity.
Before he left, Stephenson made a speech to the media. He said he was completely innocent and would have no problems sleeping at night.
"I have heard suggestions that we must have suspected the alleged involvement of Mr Wallis in phone hacking," he told the press phalanx.
"Let me say unequivocally that I did not and had no reason to have done so. I do not occupy a position in the world of journalism; I had no knowledge of the extent of this disgraceful practice and the repugnant nature of the selection of victims that is now emerging; nor of its apparent reach into senior levels."
Stephenson said that he was quitting because he wanted to take some heat off the Met and not distract his former charges from the job at hand. What really stitched him up is that he didn't tell anyone that he'd hired Wallis.
In his statement, he implied that he'd failed to do so because he didn't want to embarrass Cameron by making clear the link between Wallis and Andy Coulson, the former Downing Street aide and ex-News of the World editor who has now lost two jobs because of all this.
There's no serious suggestion that the Prime Minister's position is under threat just yet, but there's a palpable feeling that we're currently only eyeing the tip of a gigantic iceberg made out of crime.
The Daily Mail ran a story claiming that Cameron hired Coulson at the behest of Rebekah Brooks, because he was more "acceptable" to News International than another candidate. The silence of the PM's own cabinet has been pretty deafening, too.
Meanwhile, Brooks was still in a jail somewhere at midnight last night and Chris Evans won't be pressing charges after finding out someone hacked his phone.
Without wanting to get too sexy-stential about things, almost as interesting to observe as the case itself has been the self-destructive, conversational schadenfreude that's accompanied it.
The police, the government and the media – the people we expect to keep a world of shit as far away from our societal fan as possible – all seem to be doing turd jobs of covering their own arses.
It you hate Murdoch and his coterie of powerful underlings, it must be gratifying to watch as they're destroyed by the same thirst for scandal their 'papers helped foster in the British public.
Click through to read about more things that happened this weekend.