New Yorker reporter Ryan Lizza caused a bit of a stir in the conservative media world today in a report he filed for the New Yorker about the ongoing debate in the U.S. Senate over an immigration bill that is currently opposed by many conservatives. According to the piece, the so-called Gang of Eight see the role of Florida Republican Marco Rubio as being to “neutralize” conservative talk radio and to get opinion hosts on Fox News Channel to either talk up the legislation or at least not oppose it.
In their view, Rubio, who was initially touted by many conservatives nationally as their great hope even though he was regarded far more skeptically by Florida conservatives, has succeeded in his assignment.
One of the most outspoken conservatives in the past few years has been Sarah Palin, the former governor of Alaska who was the GOP candidate for vice president alongside Arizona senator John McCain during the 2008 presidential election and a contributor on the Fox News Channel from Jan. 19, 2009, to Jan. 25, 2013, when she withdrew from the network staff to focus on “broadening her message of common-sense conservatism across the country.”
Less than five months later, the cable channel announced that Palin will return as a political analyst next Monday, a move that was hailed by Greta Van Susteren, host of the weeknight On the Record program, who wrote in an email to Politico.com that she is “delighted to have her back at Fox” because "it will drive her critics crazy!"
The Bradley Foundation, a private, independent grant-making organization based in Milwaukee, recently handed out its annual Bradley Prize to four men who have, in the words of the organization's mission statement, "(preserved and defended) the tradition of free representative government and private enterprise that has enabled the American nation and, in a larger sense, the entire Western world to flourish intellectually and economically."
Among the winners at the Kennedy Center event in Washington, D.C., was Roger Ailes, chairman of Fox News, the bete noire to the broadcast networks and other media elites.
It’s hard to pity someone as smarmy and self-righteous as Jonathan Alter. Still, with all the bad luck that the left-wing pundit has faced lately, it almost makes you want to consider it. Well, ok, not really.
May has been a tough month for the MSNBC contributor. First, an anecdote from his latest book was proven beyond doubt to be an outright fabrication. Yesterday, he was revealed by radio host Don Imus as a conniving, two-faced jerk. Now his reporting is being denounced as “patently, provably false” by Fox News president Roger Ailes.
Fox News boss Roger Ailes wrote a pep-rally memo to his employees in the wake of the James Rosen investigation news. Washington Post media blogger Erik Wemple called it a "masterpiece."
"For all those who wonder what it is about Ailes that endears his people to him — and that makes him such a good interviewee for any media reporter lucky enough to get an audience with him — just read this," he wrote:
Since its founding in 1996, the Fox News Channel has been the subject of much media scrutiny. Part of this was inevitable given that its creator, Roger Ailes, explicitly designed it to be different than the rest of the national media outlets which lean to the left.
As such, there has been a lot of journalism produced about Fox News. Some of it has been excellent. Much of it has been nonsense, including a hoax “study” purporting to show that Fox News viewers have lower IQs than average and actual real study claiming that people who watched the channel were “misinformed” about political issues. As it turned out, the non-hoax was incredibly shoddy as it basically determined that someone was “informed” if he agreed with the political opinions of Democrats and “uninformed” if he agreed with Republicans.
While most people have never heard of Roger Ailes, they have heard of his famous creation, the Fox News Channel. As basically the sole national mainstream news entity which is not operated on a left-of-center paradigm, Fox News has become almost public enemy number-one to the far left. For many of today’s illiberal liberals, the mere existence of Fox News is enough to induce spittle-flecked rants calling for its forceful closure by the government.
The sheer hatred leveled against Ailes and Fox News was why I was very interested to interview Zev Chafets, about his new biography, Roger Ailes Off Camera.
Dylan Byers of Politico reported that the new Zev Chafets book on Fox News boss Roger Ailes includes talk of his warm friendship with MSNBC host Rachel Maddow. Ailes wrote a blurb for Maddow’s first book, “Drift,” and told Chafets he knew praising Maddow would make MSNBC executives think he was trying to bring her over to Fox. “I don’t want to recruit her but they’ll think I do,” Ailes told Chafets. “Hell, they’re paranoid over there.”
“I think Roger’s vision is wrong, but he’s the most important Republican in the country,” Maddow told Chafets. Then she insisted he was so intellectually superior to the Republican rank and file:
Pot, kettle: New York Times book critic Michiko Kakutani reviewed Tuesday a new biography by Zev Chafets of Fox News president Roger Ailes under the headline, "A Soft-Focus Look at Fox's Tough-Talking Tough Guy." Kakutani faulted the book for relying on familiar stories and, of course, for Fox News's conservatie viewpoint: "There is little cogent analysis in these pages about how Fox News frames its reports from a conservative point of view, or the effect that this has had on the national conversation."
CNN's Howard Kurtz made a comment Sunday that might raise some conservative eyebrows.
In a Reliable Sources discussion about comments Fox News's Roger Ailes made in a new book about him, Kurtz said, "I think this president works very hard and doesn’t take many vacations" (video follows with transcript and commentary):
While being ignorant of the facts is not as bad for a journalist as deliberately suppressing them, not knowing what you’re talking about can be far more embarrassing—and amusing.
Soledad O’Brien, the soon-to-be-former host of CNN’s “Starting Point,” proved that point definitively yesterday when she revealed that she had basically no knowledge of the new favorite story among left-of-center journalists, the supposed racism of Fox News president Roger Ailes.
On Wednesday night’s edition of “PoliticsNation,” MSNBC host Al Sharpton and “The Cycle” host Touré Neblett claimed Fox News president Roger Ailes used racist “dog whistle” language when he called President Obama “lazy” in a newly released biography.
Sharpton started by reading a portion of the quote in the book.
During the Wednesday edition of her CNN program “Outfront,” host Erin Burnett and her producers just could not stop themselves from deriding Kentucky Republican Rand Paul’s filibuster effort to block a Senate vote on John Brennan, President Obama's choice for CIA director.
While the show did give some serious discussion to the substance of Paul’s concern on behalf of Americans’ civil liberties, during the introduction of the segment, Burnett treated the matter rather flippantly and featured a graphic of the senator entitled “Sen. Paul Drones On… And On…”
Gabriel Sherman of New York magazine is a media writer with a flaw. He wrote about Fox News without seeming to think he had to watch it. On Monday night, he wrote an article hotly claiming that Fox News hosts were ordered not to talk about gun control after the Newtown shooting (except for Fox News Sunday).
Jeff Poor at The Daily Caller unloaded a painful box of facts on Sherman about all the examples of gun-control talk over the weekend. Sherman’s report was anonymously sourced and loose on the facts:
After Karl Rove disagreed with other Fox News Channel contributors that President Obama had won re-election on the night of Nov. 6, a reporter for the New York Magazine website has claimed that network president Roger Ailes was “angry” at the GOP strategist's “tantrum,” which led to Rove being “benched” from the cable channel for 27 days.
In a story on the subject, Gabriel Sherman relied on many anonymous “sources” to claim that “Rove's meltdown” resulted in his banishment by Ailes, who sought to “reposition” the news channel “in the post-election media environment.” In truth, according to Fox officials who spoke on the record, Rove has been less of a presence on the channel because the election has ended.
MSNBC's Rachel Maddow has been nominated for a Grammy Award for her book Drift: The Unmooring of American Military Power. The extremely liberal MSNBC host was recognized in the spoken-word category for the audiobook version of her New York Times bestseller.
Maddow's nomination is an apt opportunity to remind our readers that an assortment of reviewers have critically panned the progressive commentator's polemic about the military-industrial complex for its blatant misrepresentation of history and glaring omissions.
On the eleventh anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, the horrendously liberal website Salon published a piece with the truly absurd headline, "Fox News’ War on Muslims: Roger Ailes, Bill O'Reilly and Sean Hannity have stoked Islamophobia -- and encouraged right-wing ignorance."
The contents - excerpted from Nathan Lean's book “The Islamophobia Industry: How the Right Manufactures Fear of Muslims” - were stocked with misinformation about America's leading cable news channel:
"A little perspective would inform [Chris] Hayes’ inflated sense of self-worth, particularly when he attempts to demean the notable careers of others."
That's how Mediaite editor Noah Rothman concluded a scathing piece written to address a misleading charge made by the MSNBC host in a recent Talking Points Memo (TPM) interview. Fox News is captained by Roger Ailes, who is "a lifetime, hard-right, conservative ideologue Republican partisan," as opposed to MSNBC's president Phil Griffin who is simply an apolitical "someone who worked in TV," insisted Hayes. Rebutting that charge, Rothman offered a review of Ailes's storied history in the television industry that dates back to the early 1960s, some 20 years before Griffin got his start in TV (emphasis mine)
MSNBC host Chris Hayes granted an interview to the liberal blog TPM-DC and dissed most of his MSNBC colleagues. When asked what he watched before he snagged his weekend gig, he admitted “I would say Rachel’s (Maddow) show is the only cable news show that I’ve ever really watched consistently or routinely. Morning Joe sometimes.” Ouch.
Of course, now that he’s on Team MSNBC, he claimed “Our network is on all the time. I’ve learned to appreciate the craft of television hosting much more. Like Martin Bashir’s amazing preternatural equilibrium on set and talking and managing a show.” Hayes also aped Maddow in contending ridiculously that MSNBC has such higher standards than Fox News, with a much higher level of discourse: