Gore Blasts Murdoch
Former Vice President Al Gore has accused Rupert Murdoch of forcing Gore's Current TV channel off Sky Italia, wholly owned by Murdoch's News Corp, after Current hired liberal commentator Keith Olbermann to host a new talk show. In an interview with Britain's Guardian newspaper, Gore said that Sky Italia's decision came as "a complete shock" and that he was informed, off the record, that the decision to remove it was made at News Corp's headquarters in New York, although Sky Italia is based in Milan. "News Corporation is an international conglomerate with an ideological agenda," Gore told The Guardian . "It seeks political power in every nation [in which] they operate." Referring to News Corp's present effort to buy the stake in Britain's BSkyB satellite company that it doesn't already own, Gore said, "If anybody believes that [News Corp] will remain hands off if there are diverse opinions that do not agree with its ideological agenda then they are fools. This is proof positive of their abuse of power." A spokesman for News Corp told the Guardian "Current TV asked Sky Italia for double the carriage fee when primetime viewing had fallen by 40 percent in the past year. Sky Italia's offer was in line with the market and reflected the performance of the channel. It had nothing to do with politics."