Cameron is right, Leveson is wrong: legislation would be a Rubicon too far
David Cameron doesn’t often get it right, and even less often gets my support. But he does here.
On one side we have Leveson calling for legislation that he claims is not legislation. Surprisingly, many people have fallen for this.
On the other side we have Cameron, who doesn’t want to cross the Rubicon with legislation.
In the middle we seem to have a majority of the people siding with Leveson, and a majority of the learned saying, ‘sorry, Cam, the Rubicon has already been crossed so we might as well go the whole hog.’
In my humble opinion the people have been fooled, and the learned are more concerned with showing off their own learning than being realistic.
A Rubicon has been crossed – but not the Rubicon. The press is already regulated – that much is true. But I think the Rubicon that worries Cameron is primary legislation specifically aimed at the press – and that, I agree, is a Rubicon too far.
The people have been fooled into thinking we need new legislation. We don’t – we already have legislation coming out of our ears. What we need is enforcement of the laws we already have – had that been done, there would probably have been no press scandal at all.
The problem here seems to be ignored – the police, who should have enforced the law but themselves broke the law, colluded with the lawbreakers. Yet they are getting nothing like the opprobrium leveled at the press.
And we the people also need to accept our own share of blame. Journalists broke the law in order to pander to the tastes of the public who consumed their articles. If nobody bought sensationalist newspapers there would be no sensationalist newspapers. That excuses nothing; but we should accept that it helps to explain some of it.
The bottom line is simple: don’t add to the ridiculous amount of legislation that already brings us close to being a police state; simply make better and more efficient use of the laws we already have. That will be enough.