"By the way, at no stage in the proceedings yesterday was phone hacking by journalists at the News of the World discussed — hacking that was so inadequately investigated during the New Labour years. That seems to have been long forgotten.No, it was the Press as a whole that was in the dock, with Mr Blair often the chief prosecutor.
Mr Blair created the most lethal Press machine ever known in this country. He sucked up to Rupert Murdoch more than was wise, seemly or necessary. It was he and his propagandist Alastair Campbell who were architects of the News International/No 10 axis — whose malign influence is still corrupting politics today — and I’m afraid his crimes dwarf any accusations he can ever level at his critics.
Put Dr David Kelly’s terrible death to one side. The spinning, the media manipulation and occasionally the downright mendacity of his administration eventually inflicted unprecedented damage to the trust between the media and the political class and in the process corrupted public discourse.
So it was with some disbelief, and a very heavy heart, that I heard Lord Justice Leveson at the end of the proceedings invite an eager Tony Blair to come back with his best ideas for the proper regulation of the Press. How he must have blessed the innocent judge! The thought of Tony Blair and Alastair Campbell determining how newspapers should behave takes us into hitherto uncharted realms of madness."