Dial W for Wonga

31 October 2012

I gather that self-important Labour MP Tom Watson has earned £10,812 in royalties for the book he recently co-authored on phone-hacking, Dial M For Murdoch. New parliamentary records show that Watson claims to have devoted 175 hours to the project. Despite shunning an advance from publisher Allen Lane, this means the MP has still made an average of £61 per hour for his work so far – a figure that will increase if the book continues to sell. There is no mention in the latest Register of MPs’ financial interests, where Watson has made the disclosure, of this cash being donated to charity or good causes. Surely Watson is not seeking to profit personally from the phone hacking affair?

When Watson flew to Los Angeles in October 2011 to attend the News Corporation Annual General Meeting he spent an impressive £6,300 on flights and hotels. Watson said he felt a ‘duty’ to attend the event to alert personally News Corp’s investors to wrongdoing at the company. His trip was short, taking place between 20 and 23 October, so that was some bill to rack up. Not that it hurt his wallet. The trade union Unite, which effectively bankrolls the Labour Party, paid the bill in full. Time for Watson to pay back the hard-working Unite members, whose subs funded him?

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Show comments
  • Baron

    One never can tell though, the courageous defender of truth, justice, transparent corporate responsibility may yet co-author another book ‘Dial B for BBC’ castigating a bunch that successfully covered up a peado preying on the vulnerable young for 40 years.

    On second though, perhaps not.

  • therealguyfaux

    One hell of a pisser for him and his aide(s) in Hollywood, one would imagine; “Billy Bunter” et co must have been naughty boys. But what happened in America stayed in America, except for the bill for it all. Interesting to find out how much of the Dial M money he’s really getting in the first place, from which he can donate to charity or not as the spirit moves him; if he’s the Internet whiz kid he says he is, I’m sure he’s Google’d “Offshore Holding Company,” or some other fictitious entity, which could negotiate the book deal on his behalf, and collect the royalties as well, and distribute them in a tax-efficient manner. In a more clearheaded moment in Hollywood, he may have attended to that sort of business.

  • Captn P

    Twatson is a hypocrite of the first order. Haven’t seen him commenting on the Saville affair.

    He is what is wrong, not what is right with this country.

  • Charlie Brown

    I’ve just done my VAT return, which included accounting for a trip to California for two days, just like Tom Watson’s. Mine came to a grand total of £1,479.44. But them I’m not an MP so I’m not legally obliged to fly business class, or perhaps first?

  • Shave

    He wrote a book and was paid £10812.

    “Is Tom Watson making moolah from Murdoch?” – No, that would be Mensch.

    • I_claudius

      Or Michael Gove

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