If Vince Cable, for expressing his opposition to the Murdoch take over of BSkyB, is unsuitable to decide whether it is appropriate or not, then surely Jeremy Hunt is as well.
Apart from privately meeting James Murdoch, Jeremy as openly said he has no objection to the deal. This statemnet might not be as inflamatory as Cables’ ‘war’, but still shows that he has preconceived ideas about it.
The business secretary is supposed to look at the reports/evidence or whatever and then make his mind up. Jeremy Hunt and Vince Cable are two sides of the same coin. Cable is coming at it from the side of opposition and would need a great deal of persuasion to approve the deal. Jeremy Hunt is coming at it from the other direction and would need persuadeing that it is a bad idea. Both are going to be influenced not just by whether this deal is good for the media as a whole and the plurity of the press but also by their chosen ideology, party pressure and of course, what they think the public want.
The business secretary is supposed to be ‘quasi-judicial’ in these cases, but just like the home secretary when it comes to reveiwing whether to release prisoners with a minimum sentence, they never could independent of party politics.
At least with an organisation like OFCOM/monopolies commission (or whoever it is) in this case, or a proper judge in the case of prisoners, there won’t be the consideration of trying to please the electorate, the party, lobbyists, businesses. With a non-political organisation looking at it a better decision can be made. Of course what that organisation is and how it’s put together is another discussion.
Personal bias will never be iradicated, but why add to it?