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Without wishing to pee in your New Year's porridge, there's a tremendously insightful, well informed but disturbing piece just published on GQ by Murdoch's biographer, Michael Wolff, about Roger Ailes being the ultimate beneficiary of the Hackgate scandal.

It's a nuanced piece, which points out the difference between Murdoch's brand of conservatism and the ferocious populism of Ailes: among its many revelations is that the Murdoch family actually wanted to support Obama over McCain, but were blocked by Ailes. It also explains the background to Wolff's semi-authorised biography of the News dynasty, which turned sour when it wasn't quite complimentary enough.

Murdoch's fundamentally buttoned-down, back-room, fiscal-and-regulatory, elite sort of conservatism was turned into a carnival of self-dramatising, exaggerated, simplistic, lumpen, family-value political caricatures.

He was gobsmacked - and all the more confused about his options, because he was also beholden to the Fox News money (as his newspapers fall, Fox News rises). His wife, children and closest executives were apoplectic when it came to Fox and Ailes.

Fox and the Murdochs reached a critical disjuncture during the Barack Obama election, with all the Murdochs, including Rupert, supporting Obama and Fox News portraying the future president as a Muslim and a terrorist.

Which is just about where I came in and sold out Ailes. One of the reasons I was invited in 2007 - shortly after Murdoch's takeover of the Wall Street Journal (an enterprise supported by the profits of Fox News) - to write a biography of the mogul with his full co-operation, was, in part, I came to understand, because I was a useful weapon in the increasing war against Ailes.

Wolff's contention is that -as Rupert fades and the dynastic succession fails (pretty inevitably after James' contorted defence of his non-role in Hackgate) the one big beneficiary will be Ailes. He is the future and Murdoch is the past. So will the fall of the House of Murdoch see the further rise of Ailes?

I hope he's wrong. As recent diaries have pointed out, the Fox brand is not selling so well and without the support of the wider News Corporation, will seem more marginalised and bizarre.

But talk away about all things FOTHOM related. And have a look at the video and chapter break of the crowd funded book I'm writing with Eric Lewis: Bad Press. The introductory chapter will be finished this week

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