The Max Mosley allegations

It cannot have escaped your attention that yesterday The News of the World ran an extraordinary story about the FIA President Max Mosley. The paper has alleged that Mosley was involved in a “sick Nazi orgy with 5 hookers”. If the allegations are true, it could have big consequences in the political world of F1.

Like many F1 fans I am no fan of Mosley. Many have pointed out that there will be a fair few people — Jackie Stewart, Ron Dennis, Damon Hill, Martin Brundle — who must have been chuckling to themselves as they read the story. I chuckled as well. I would dearly love to see Max Mosley leave the FIA Presidency for any reason, and this looks like a pretty good opportunity.

Then again, what Max Mosley does in his private life should remain private. He is entitled to have whatever sex life he wants among consenting adults. I am not a fan of the News of the World brand of journalism which mainly involves secretly prowling around people’s bedrooms, where journalists really shouldn’t be.

Nevertheless, the “Nazi” connotations really take these allegations over the top. My impression is that the Nazi element of the story has probably been exaggerated by the News of the World. We all know how the whiff of Hitler sells papers. And Max Mosley’s connections with fascism are well-known and have not been hidden. He is the son of Oswald Mosley, Britain’s most infamous fascist. It is not too hard to imagine someone in the towers of News International concocting this story. The allegations are almost cartoon-like in their extremity.

It is useful to point out here that Max Mosley is apparently engaged in legal action with another News International newspaper, The Sunday Times, over an article written by Martin Brundle. So News International has an interest in undermining Mosley.

Nevertheless, there is seemingly damning video evidence. The footage is blurry and at no point do you get a truly clear view of “Max Mosley’s” face. The stills on the News of the World website are more convincing. But it wouldn’t be the first time a tabloid newspaper has faked such a video.

Nonetheless, the allegations in themselves are damaging to Mosley’s credibility. While everyone has the right to a private sex life, making light of Nazism and concentration camp victims in this way is rather different. A lot of people will be ready to make a connection with Mosley’s autocratic approach to ruling F1. Then there is the suggestion that the FIA is increasingly filled with Mosley lackeys and yes-men suppressing debate.

What is interesting is the fact that so few news outlets are covering this story. As F1Fanatic points out, the fact that so few dedicated Formula 1 websites are even mentioning this story is telling in itself. There has been not a peep on this massive F1 story from any of the biggest F1 websites. Look on Autosport, Pitpass, Grandprix.com, Planet-F1, ITV-F1, Crash.net — you’ll draw a blank.

This is becoming an all-too familiar reality. Remember last year when the FIA failed to properly censor sensitive documents? Not a peep from any of those websites either.

Mosley effectively controls the F1 media, even “independent” websites such as Pitpass. This is yet another reason why the F1 blogs and podcasts are becoming more important than the mainstream media. We do not need to bend over backwards to please the powers-that-be to get accreditation or even avoid an ear bashing.

The media should be able to stand up to Max Mosley’s bullying attitude. The fact that they don’t even appear to attempt to counter it any more makes me despair. The sooner Mosley is gone, the better. And if it takes a sex scandal to do it, then so be it.

17 comments

  1. In my point of view, I think that having no mention of this affair at F1 mainstream media is not a bad thing, even though it might be because of Mosley’s control. This stuff is disgusting, specially when it could totally be a fraud, being NOTW the source of it all. I’m no fan neither of Mosley nor Ecclestone, but I think it’s not fair considering all this shit as a valid reason to get them out of the F1 bussiness. There are many other reasons related to the way they rule this “sport” much more valid.

  2. Hi Can, thanks for commenting.

    I think it’s not fair considering all this shit as a valid reason to get them out of the F1 bussiness. There are many other reasons related to the way they rule this “sport” much more valid.

    I do agree there. Much as I’d like to see Mosley go, I’d rather he went because of his terrible decisions as FIA President, not because of what he gets up to in his private life.

  3. Great story all the same. Upper class powerful white person caught on tape with prostitutes reenacting Nazi stuff. Lesser people have been done in by this kind of stuff. If it was Shane Warne, it would just enhance his reputation. For Max, it seems that it is an opportunity to do him in.

  4. Wow, I will stay on the safe side of legality until this is confired – & the lack of a denial from Max is quite telling.

    However, if this turns out to be true there is no way he can stay on as the head of the FIA. It is the world governing body for motorsport, a industry in itself, he will have to go.

    Wonder what Ron Dennis is thinking?

  5. With other persons, I would defend the right to privacy. In this case, given the suspect and his role in F1, I really look forward to see his resign.

  6. I think that if Max Mosley should resign is completely out of question. This is and unjustifiable violation of privacy, and horrifies me that many people is asking him to resign. Nobody cares what Max Mosley does in his private life, and shouldn’t be judged by his father’s acts but by his own merits and demerits.

    Ponzonha:
    This is not the right way of getting rid of anyone. Privacy is a right for everyone, you like him/her or not.

  7. Consider for a second that the guy is not Max Mosley….Does anything oh this story make sense?. I think everybody already judged him assuming that he is the guy in the video.
    As everybody else, some people like him, some people don’t. As usual, it doesn’t matter if it is him or not, the damage is already done. Shame on this kind of journalism

  8. Let’s face it the FIA could just ignore it…

    Indeed it isn’t unlikely that even if they think he should go they wouldn’t do it straight away as they wouldn’t want to be seen bowing to the pressure of a British tabloid….or even to Rupert…who owns the NOTW and….The Times….who Max and the FIA are litigating against I recall…

    Hmmm… slightly reminiscent of the fake Sheikh stories that were aimed at Sven and Sophie….

  9. Samuel – I dont think this justifies an evasion of privacy cry. Max was (allegedly)with five prostitutes which, I believe, is illegal. You may feel that crimes committed behind a close door (apparantly not his own) is ok but it is still a crime.

    Personally, I have always liked Max and he has made me laugh with his self righteous judgements – particularly with his background.

  10. Everyone has a right to privacy, but that didn’t seem like the most private of situations to me.

    Surely as a President of a really well respected and powerful organisation, he should know better?

  11. In all of history guys should have known better…but somehow…quite a few don’t…

    From Ministers of War down…

    Can’t think why….

  12. Samuel, privacy is one thing. Mocking Jewish victims of the holocaust is another.
    So in your book it’s ok to do that as long as its not in the public domain?

    I think the world is now seeing Mad Max’s true colours (although I and plenty others have been telling everyone this is what he really is like all along), and do we really want someone with that warped mind running F1?

  13. Western democracies defend the right of privacy for everyone. The devil himself should have the right to maintain his private life private. I firmly believe in civil rights so for me Max is the only victim. Period. For me it’s the end of the story.

    If he committed a crime(certainly not by spanish laws and probably not by the laws of many European countries, don’t know in UK) he should be judged in the courts not in the media, and only the police with the authorization of a judge could take the video.

    About the whole Nazi issue. I believe it’s a excuse, because I can’t see svasticas or the like. May be the submission “stage” is a prisoner camp, but can’t see how this is necessarily related to Nazis.

    Moreover, I don’t think true Nazis would feel proud of be part of a BDSM fantasy. If it’s true(and i doubt it) it’s hardly a tribute to Nazism.

    Anyway, for me it doesn’t matter. If he in public condemns Nazism, and it his private life doesn’t harm anybody, nobody has the right to violate his privacy.

  14. Yes, let the police take action and use their full resources to get at the truth.
    Perhaps they can charge the NOTW?

  15. The “sale” of March Cars back in the ’70’s that apparently made Mr Mosley rich bears looking at, to put it mildly.
    Sex scandal, financial scandal…and look at the background of some of the other key F1 adminstrators.
    It really is time that the business put its affairs in order.