Skip to main content

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

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site