According to O’Reilly, whose own fall from grace mirrors that of the Fox News founder, Ailes never quite got over the manner by which he exited the media giant he helped build.

A longtime confidant of media titan Rupert Murdoch, Ailes was a central figure in conservative USA politics for decades. As a news man, might not be the most important journalistic story to follow, might in fact actually prove shaky or be based on a conspiracy theory.

“Roger is also credited in that ’84 campaign with refocusing the president after a disastrous first debate to go on and easily win the last debate that led to a Reagan landslide”. He was obliged to stand down previous year amid accusations of sexual harassment. “Viewers don’t want to be informed”, opines Chet Collier, one of the founders of Fox News, as quoted in Gabriel Sherman’s new biography of Ailes.

Mr O’Reilly was sacked from his top-rated show at Fox in April after reports surfaced that the network had settled lawsuits with five women who alleged he sexually harassed them.

Before Carlson’s bombshell legal action, Fox’s roaring success and enormous earnings (with some estimates that it accounted for almost a quarter of the parent company’s profits) insulated Ailes from any suspicion as well as from his past scrapes with the Murdoch sons over whom he would report to.

Hugely successful for the right-leaning network, that approach has been adopted by other media across the political spectrum.

It didn’t, and set ratings standards with the beginning of President Donald Trump’s administration. He helmed the Fox News Channel starting in 1996. “R.I.P Roger – you changed television as we know it”, – Bret Baier.

“I think it absolutely will push them closer to settlement, both because it will be legally virtually impossible to defend against these allegations, but it also gives them a little bit of a narrative about why they’d be settling now”, she said. Though he didn’t make it back to Warren after he left Fox News, he did reach out to friends in OH before his death. It was during Trump’s triumphant week at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland last July that Ailes’ tenure unraveled.

But as he prepared to celebrate Fox News’ 20th anniversary in 2016, both his legacy and job unraveled after allegations by a former anchor that he had forced her out of Fox News after she spurned his sexual advances. “CNN looks much more like Fox News than what CNN looked like in 1995″.

FOLKENFLIK: Kelly spoke on Fresh Air with Terry Gross late a year ago. Now what I see is a network that is waiting for another visionary to come in who can give it an identity, and I don’t think it’s necessarily being made to become, you know, more mainstream, more liberal.

From the start, Mr. Ailes steadfastly denied any political bias or agenda on the part of his network, whether in its message or its personnel. Instead, Ailes presents as a complicated figure, even to admirers.

Roger Ailes’ death has brought out an array of freaky euphemisms and sexist excuses from the conservative media as they try to eulogize the controversial man.

This has earned Fox News a remarkably loyal audience, along with some criticism that it wasn’t fulfilling news organizations’ traditional responsibility to inform and educate.

Roger Ailes was not a good guy.


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