And this is why Fox News is racist

Roger Ailes, the head of Fox News, said this in a Vanity Fair interview:

Obama’s the one who never worked a day in his life. He never earned a penny that wasn’t public money. How many fund-raisers does he attend every week? How often does he play basketball and golf? I wish I had that kind of time. He’s lazy, but the media won’t report that.”

So let’s break this down with starting with the obvious point that Obama is black.

1) Obama’s the one who never worked a day in his life.: Unemployed black man.

2) He never earned a penny that wasn’t public money. How many fund-raisers does he attend every week?: Public money = welfare = Obama is an unemployed black man on welfare.

3) How often does he play basketball and golf? I wish I had that kind of time.: Obama is an unemployed black man on welfare who plays basketball.

4) He’s lazy, but the media won’t report that. Obama is a lazy unemployed black man on welfare who plays basketball.

The only words we’re missing here to make it full Klansman is “shiftless,” “watermelon” and “he lives in public housing.”

This is the message the head of Fox News wants to put out to the public every day. … Wait … stratch that. … This IS the message his network puts out to the public every day.

And this is why I get pissed off every time I sit in any public waiting room (a doctor’s office, a car dealership, a hotel lobby, an airplane terminal) and see the television set tuned to Fox News. Whenever I can, I go up to the set and change the channel to the Cartoon Network. At least then I’ll discover something worth knowing.

(Oh, yeah. And Roger Ailes is fat.)



So, any new News Corp. atrocities, recently?

Lots of news this week related to Rupert Murdoch’s media giant, News Corp. This part, though, isn’t an atrocity:

Robert Thomson, former editor of The Times and currently managing editor of the Wall Street Journal, is to become chief executive of a new publishing arm of Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp. …

The announcement is part of a major restructuring of News Corp, which is being split into two businesses: a dominant TV and film arm, called Fox Group, and a newspaper and book publishing division, which will retain the News Corporation moniker. It is this company which Thomson will head.

According to The Guardian, the main assets of News Corporation will be News International’s UK titles The Times, The Sun and The Sunday Times, the WSJ, the New York Post, the Australian and other News Ltd papers and the HarperCollins book publishing business.

And despite the hand-wringing by Russia Television in the following video clip, what appears to be the foundation for an atrocity doesn’t quite meet the mark:

The argument is that a company can’t control a newspaper and a television station in the same market (which, by the way, Rupert already does with the WSJ, the New York Post and the Fox station WNYW in New York).

But under the restructuring of News Corp., the publishing arm is being separated from the TV and film arm. FCC approval to buy the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times, both now struggling, is irrelevant. The publishing company, called News Corp., doesn’t have television stations. The TV and film arm, called Fox Group, doesn’t have newspapers. With the creation of two corporate entities that trade separate stock (which Wall Street has demanded for years), it doesn’t matter if Murdoch serves as chairman of both companies.

It sucks, but it’s all legal.


The thought of Rupert owning three major newspapers in three major media markets has to give one pause. Especially after this was reported by Bob Woodward in the Washington Post:

Roger Ailes, the longtime Republican media guru, founder of Fox News and its current chairman, had some advice last year for then-Gen. David H. Petraeus.

So in spring 2011, Ailes asked a Fox News analyst headed to Afghanistan to pass on his thoughts to Petraeus, who was then the commander of U.S. and coalition forces there. Petraeus, Ailes advised, should turn down an expected offer from President Obama to become CIA director and accept nothing less than the chairmanship of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the top military post. If Obama did not offer the Joint Chiefs post, Petraeus should resign from the military and run for president, Ailes suggested.

The Fox News chairman’s message was delivered to Petraeus by Kathleen T. McFarland, a Fox News national security analyst and former national security and Pentagon aide in three Republican administrations. …

McFarland also said that Ailes — who had a decades-long career as a Republican political consultant, advising Richard M. Nixon, Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush — might resign as head of Fox to run a Petraeus presidential campaign. At one point, McFarland and Petraeus spoke about the possibility that Rupert Murdoch, the head of News Corp., which owns Fox News, would “bankroll” the campaign.

And therein lies the atrocity. Rupert is using his media empire to put himself in a position to decide who the president of the United States is going to be. No big secret there. He’s already done it in the U.K. It’s common knowledge that anyone hoping to be the British prime minister has to seek an audience with, and get the blessing of, Rupert. That’s how Margaret Thatcher became PM. That’s why Tony Blair won. And that’s why David Cameron is in office now.

So let’s say Petraeus didn’t get caught in a sex scandal and that Murdoch did have control of the Los Angeles and Chicago papers: You’d have glowing reports about Petraeus being the man to run the country from Fox News and the local Fox affiliates across the country. Favorable editorials and major print coverage for Petraeus by the Wall Street Journal, the Chicago Tribune and the Los Angeles Times. The country is blanketed.

And if all had gone Fox’s/News Corp.’s way?

Rupert Murdoch would be the puppet master of the president of the United States. Making Rupert the most powerful man in the world.

Not the kind of thing you want to read while eating your oatmeal in the morning, right?

Oh, and while I’m at it, this is the front page of Rupert Murdoch’s New York Post today:

04subway1-cityroom-blog480Yes. Murdoch’s paper ran this. And yes, the man in the photo was killed by the train.

So maybe I shouldn’t have posted this photo with this item? But this posting is about News Corp. atrocities. You do need to see them to understand what this media company, and its chairman, stand for.

The soul of Fox News

A couple of significant magazine pieces have been published in the past month about Roger Ailes and Fox News.

New York Magazine
‘s profile featured gems like this:

Last year, tensions between Palin’s camp and Fox erupted over a prime-time special that the network wanted her to host. Nancy Duffy, a senior Fox producer, wanted Palin to host the show in front of a live studio audience. Duffy wanted to call the program Sarah Palin’s Real American Stories. Palin hated the idea. She complained to her advisers that she didn’t want to be a talk-show host. She wanted to just do voice-overs. More important, she didn’t want Fox to promote her name in the title of the program. Not that it mattered: Palin’s ratings were starting to disappoint Ailes anyway. Fox hasn’t scheduled any additional specials.

Ailes began to doubt Palin’s political instincts. He thought she was getting bad advice from her kitchen cabinet and saw her erratic behavior as a sign that she is a “loose cannon,” as one person close to him put it. A turning point in their relationship came during the apex of the media debate over the Tucson shooting. As the media pounced on Palin’s rhetoric, Palin wanted to fight back. She felt it was deeply unfair that commentators were singling her out. Ailes agreed but told her to stay out of it. He thought if she stayed quiet, she would score a victory.

“Lie low,” he told her. “If you want to respond later, fine, but do not interfere with the memorial service.”

Palin ignored Ailes’s advice and went ahead and released her now-infamous “blood libel” video the morning Obama traveled to Tucson. For Ailes, the move was further evidence that Palin was flailing around off-message. “Why did you call me for advice?” he wondered out loud to colleagues.

And Rolling Stone has done a huge piece that includes details like this:

Ailes knows exactly who is watching Fox News each day, and he is adept at playing to their darkest fears in the age of Obama. The network’s viewers are old, with a median age of 65: Ads cater to the immobile, the infirm and the incontinent, with appeals to join class action hip-replacement lawsuits, spots for products like Colon Flow and testimonials for the services of Liberator Medical (“Liberator gave me back the freedom I haven’t had since I started using catheters”). The audience is also almost exclusively white – only 1.38 percent of viewers are African-American. “Roger understands audiences,” says Rollins, the former Reagan consultant. “He knew how to target, which is what Fox News is all about.” The typical viewer of Hannity, to take the most stark example, is a pro-business (86 percent), Christian conservative (78 percent), Tea Party-backer (75 percent) with no college degree (66 percent), who is over age 50 (65 percent), supports the NRA (73 percent), doesn’t back gay rights (78 percent) and thinks government “does too much” (84 percent). “He’s got a niche audience and he’s programmed to it beautifully,” says a former News Corp. colleague. “He feeds them exactly what they want to hear.”

Read both to get a better understanding of the purpose of Fox News.