Rupert Murdoch Inc and How Roger Ailes Built the Fox News Fear Factory

I could spend a lot of time posting information to help people understand what’s happening with the Rupert Murdoch scandal, but honestly it would take too much time. But this is a very important story that people, especially Fox viewers, need to understand what’s been going on and the far reaching implications this story has for news media and our democracy.  My own background is in radio broadcasting and it’s been very frustrating watching the corruption behind the scenes Fox fans were oblivious too, now the atmosphere is ripe for exposing all the wrongdoing.
What we’re seeing right now is only the tip of the iceberg, this story is about to explode.  The fact that Republicon party member Peter King IMMEDIATELY called for an FBI investigation against Fox News as soon as the story broke in the U.S., that’s a clear indication he knows there’s a problem and is doing everything he can to distance himself from a media company that has served him well.
Fox News has done an enormous amount of damage to America by sharply dividing the country using hate, fear and racist langauge Fox creates imaginary division’s between right and left that don’t exist in the hearts of Americans. We all want the same things in life, we value freedom, liberty, hard work and no one wants a hand-out and how they’ve gotten millions of people to turn against those who are most in need is nothing less than criminal.
Posted below are links related to Rupert Murdoch Inc.  articles, including a must read piece from the Rolling Stone on how Roger Ailes built the Fox news empire,  hopefully this will help people understand how this could’ve happened in America.
Rupert Murdoch, Inc

FBI opens inquiry after report that News Corp. tried to hack phones of 9/11 victims

Saudi Prince Alaweed Bin Talal: ‘Fire Rebekah Brooks”

Phone hacking: News International chief Rebekah Brooks quits

Has Roger Ailes Hacked Americans’ Phones for Fox News?

Lefties giggle as Fox News burns

Prosecute Murdoch: by Eliot Spitzer

Wall Street Journal Employees Talk About the ‘Taint’

Murdoch Gives an ‘Unbiased’ Interview to His Own Editor

WSJ’s fluffy Murdoch interview

Murdochs Political Clout Around the World

Some Parliament Members Want Piers Morgan Questioned Over Phone Hacking Scandal

How Roger Ailes Built the Fox News Fear Factory

The onetime Nixon operative has created the most profitable propaganda machine in history. Inside America’s Unfair and Imbalanced Network

By Tim Dickinson
May 25, 2011 8:00 AM ET

The Chairman: Roger Ailes at Fox News. The network says his “dear friend” Rush Limbaugh, “is a reflection of him.”
Catrina Genovese/Getty Images

At the Fox News holiday party the year the network overtook archrival CNN in the cable ratings, tipsy employees were herded down to the basement of a Midtown bar in New York. As they gathered around a television mounted high on the wall, an image flashed to life, glowing bright in the darkened tavern: the MSNBC logo. A chorus of boos erupted among the Fox faithful. The CNN logo followed, and the catcalls multiplied. Then a third slide appeared, with a telling twist. In place of the logo for Fox News was a beneficent visage: the face of the network’s founder. The man known to his fiercest loyalists simply as “the Chairman” – Roger Ailes.

“It was as though we were looking at Mao,” recalls Charlie Reina, a former Fox News producer. The Foxistas went wild. They let the dogs out. Woof! Woof! Woof! Even those who disliked the way Ailes runs his network joined in the display of fealty, given the culture of intimidation at Fox News. “It’s like the Soviet Union or China: People are always looking over their shoulders,” says a former executive with the network’s parent, News Corp. “There are people who turn people in.”

This article appears in the June 9, 2011 issue of Rolling Stone. The issue is available in the online archive now.

The key to decoding Fox News isn’t Bill O’Reilly or Sean Hannity. It isn’t even News Corp. chief Rupert Murdoch. To understand what drives Fox News, and what its true purpose is, you must first understand Chairman Ailes. “He is Fox News,” says Jane Hall, a decade-long Fox commentator who defected over Ailes’ embrace of the fear-mongering Glenn Beck. “It’s his vision. It’s a reflection of him.”

Photo Gallery: Roger Ailes, GOP Mastermind

Ailes runs the most profitable – and therefore least accountable – head of the News Corp. hydra. Fox News reaped an estimated profit of $816 million last year – nearly a fifth of Murdoch’s global haul. The cable channel’s earnings rivaled those of News Corp.’s entire film division, which includes 20th Century Fox, and helped offset a slump at Murdoch’s beloved newspapers unit, which took a $3 billion write-down after acquiring The Wall Street Journal. With its bare-bones news­gathering operation – Fox News has one-third the staff and 30 fewer bureaus than CNN – Ailes generates profit margins above 50 percent. Nearly half comes from advertising, and the rest is dues from cable companies. Fox News now reaches 100 million households, attracting more viewers than all other cable-news outlets combined, and Ailes aims for his network to “throw off a billion in profits.”

Slideshow: An hour-by-hour look at how Fox disguises GOP talking points as journalism

The outsize success of Fox News gives Ailes a free hand to shape the network in his own image. “Murdoch has almost no involvement with it at all,” says Michael Wolff, who spent nine months embedded at News Corp. researching a biography of the Australian media giant. “People are afraid of Roger. Murdoch is, himself, afraid of Roger. He has amassed enormous power within the company – and within the country – from the success of Fox News.”

Read about the GOP’s dirty war against Obama

Fear, in fact, is precisely what Ailes is selling: His network has relentlessly hyped phantom menaces like the planned “terror mosque” near Ground Zero, inspiring Florida pastor Terry Jones to torch the Koran. Privately, Murdoch is as impressed by Ailes’ business savvy as he is dismissive of his extremist politics. “You know Roger is crazy,” Murdoch recently told a colleague, shaking his head in disbelief. “He really believes that stuff.”

Continued here:


Murdoch’s troubles spread to U.S.

Editors note: Over the years people have given me grief over saying Fox News isn’t a legitimate news organization. They lie, deceive and manipulate viewers and  it’s nothing less than a right wing propaganda machine.  Recently Jon Stewart said a national poll learned that Fox viewers are the most misinformed of all media outlets, pointing that out got a couple people quite upset with me. Thou doest protest a wee bit too much…

Well, apparently it’s only a matter of time before Fox News is exposed for the corrupt news organization that it is. Especially now that Rupert Murdoch has been exposed in the UK for running  a highly unethical, thuggish, criminal organization guilty of committing bribery, invasion of privacy, hacking phones and computers, and more.

As a result Murdoch’s kingdom in the UK is crumbling and it’s only a matter of time before the scandal snowballs in the US and Fox News is exposed for the filth and lies it spews. Anyone who believes any different has obviously never been exposed to a real newscast and doesn’t understand how they are supposed to be structured and produced. Having my education and professional background in radio broadcasting helps me to understand these things better than the normal layperson.

Using a technique called NLP, Neural Linguistic Programming, Fox news has literally brainwashed an entire segment  of people into believing an unreal, simplistic version of government that has nothing to do with reality. Which can be the only explanation for the completely unqualified, sociopathic group of people they voted into office last election. People who’s campaign’s were based entirely on simplistic talking points that have nothing to do with creating solutions for a very complicated reality.

Maybe, just maybe if Fox News and other authoritarian forms of mass media outlets can be exposed for what they are, people will wake up to the truth of what’s happening to our world.

By: Keach Hagey
July 13, 2011 08:27 PM EDT

The phone-hacking scandal that has engulfed News Corp. and Rupert Murdoch, its billionaire chairman and CEO, has definitely crossed the pond.

U.S. lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have begun calling for inquiries into whether the unsavory reporting practices of the company’s British newspapers have broken U.S. law and affected U.S. citizens, signaling the possible beginnings of the kind of political pile-on that forced News Corp. to shutter its biggest-selling newspaper in Britain, the News of the World, and withdraw from a huge pending broadcasting deal on Wednesday.

Michael Wolff, Murdoch’s biographer, said turning the spotlight to News Corp.’s U.S. holdings and operations operations is inevitable.

“What is happening in the U.K. is a nuclear meltdown,” said Wolff. “News Corp. will have to withdraw from the U.K.. It is essentially in full retreat. It will have to dispose of its assets there which are losing value by the minute, so that puts the U.S. in an interesting a peculiar position, that a company could essentially fold in one country and continue as though nothing happened in another country.

“So what it means is that the focus turns here,” he added, “and the analysis is going to be that this is a company that engaged in practices that are anathema to reasonable men.”

There is no indication of any wrongdoing at News Corp.’s U.S. media properties, which included Fox News, the Wall Street Journal and the New York Post. But at least four Democratic senators, a Democratic congresswoman and a Republican congressman – Peter King of New York – have asked the FBI, Justice Department and Security and Exchange Commission to look into whether News of the World journalists hacked the phones of 9/11 victims or broke the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act when it allegedly bribed police officers for scoops in the UK.

These calls come as group of News Corp.’s American shareholders, led by Amalgamated Bank, expanded their lawsuit against the company that argues that Murdoch has engaged in “nepotism” and self-dealing at the expense of shareholders, to include the phone-hacking scandal.

A News Corp. spokesman declined to comment.

The unraveling of the company in Britain has been dizzyingly fast.

In the last 24 hours, News Corp has withdrawn its bid for the remaining 61% of British Sky Broadcasting, or BSkyB, that it does not own – reversing a $12 billion deal a year in the making – and floated stories in its own Wall Street Journal that executives were considering dumping all of its British newspaper holdings in an effort to stop the scandal’s contagion.

The dropping of the BSkyB deal came after calls to do so from Prime Minister David Cameron, a staunch Murdoch ally in the past, and British politicians of all three major parties – an incredible reversal of political fortune for Murdoch in a country where he has exerted outsize influence.

The catalyst for this seismic shift was the report that News of the World journalists had hacked the voice mail of Milly Dowler, a 13-year-old girl who was missing and later turned up dead, and given her family false hope that she was alive after they deleted voicemail messages to make room for new messages.

“If you look at what happened in Britain, the outlines of this phone hacking scandal were known for a long time, and the country pretty much yawned,” said Rem Rieder, editor and publisher of American Journalism Review. “But when the hacking of the phone of the murdered 13-year-old girl came out, it changed the stakes completely. Murdoch’s political allies as well as his political rivals turned on him, and the whole situation has just snowballed from there.”

Allegations that the phones of 9/11 victims were hacked could have a similar emotional – and political impact – even if, to date, there is no evidence beyond the Daily Mirror report that the allegations are true.

But the story was enough to get King, whose Long Island district includes people directly affected by the attacks on the World Trade Center, to call on the FBI to investigate, even if it meant dinging the parent company of several media properties with whom he said he has had good relations.

“I don’t want to sound sanctimonious, but when it comes to September 11th, I really don’t care about politics one way or the other,” King said. “I know and get along with Rupert Murdoch, I get treated well by Fox and the New York Post, but I lost so many friends and neighbors, it’s a personal thing for me.”

King said it was precisely because he has seen the snowballing of the backlash in Britain that he asked the FBI to get to the bottom of the allegations ahead of the upcoming 10th anniversary of the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

“There is definitely going to be a media feeding frenzy over the next several weeks,” he said. “With the 10th anniversary of Sept. 11th coming up, and with the likelihood that more allegations or stories are going to come out, it’s going to be such a hardship on the families that I wanted to call on the FBI to conduct an investigation to get to the bottom of it.”

His call joins a joint request by Democratic Sens. Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia and Barbara Boxer to both the Justice Department and the SEC to investigate both the 9/11 victims hacking allegations and the charges of lawbreaking under the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act.

New Jersey’s two Democratic senators – Sen. Frank Lautenberg and Robert Menendez – have also also asked for an inquiry, as has Rep. Louise Slaughter of New York.

Justice Dept. spokesman Laura Sweeney confirmed the letter had been received but had no further comment.

Over the years, News Corp.’s U.S. tabloid, the New York Post has seemed to model itself on Fleet Street, but there is no evidence it engaged in any of the practices of the News of the World.

At this point, the greatest scandal-related risk may reside not at the Post but at the Wall Street Journal. Les Hinton, CEO of Dow Jones, the Journal’s parent company, was once chairman of News International, the News Corp. division that runs its British papers. In 2007, Hinton testified before the British parliament that the phone hacking scandal was the work of a lone reporter – a statement that turned out not to be true.

His role in the scandal has increased pressure on him, to the point that Christopher Bancroft, a member of the family that sold Dow Jones to Murdoch, said he “probably ought be moved aside.”

Bancroft also told Pro Publica that, if he had known what he knows now about News International’s phone hacking scandal, he would have pushed harder against his family selling the paper to Murdoch.

But while News Corp may be taking public relations beating on both sides of the Atlantic, there has been a silver lining for the company’s American investors.

The withdrawal from the BSkyB deal leaves an extra $12 billion on News Corp.’s books, helping to send the stock price up 1.7% in trading Wednesday. That, on top of the $5 billion stock buyback the company announced earlier this week, is good news for American investors.

Laura Martin, an analyst at Needham, noted the irony.

“Who lost here were the BSKyB shareholders, who were primarily UK residents,” she said. “So Rupert takes his money and goes home to buy shares. Who gets the money? U.S. investors. I think it will be good for U.S. shareholders and bad for U.K. shareholders. The great irony is that the politicians in the U.K .are the ones that demanded News Corp. drop the BSkyB deal.”

Analysts saw the withdrawal from the BSkyB deal as a political act. Though there was some early speculation that the company would just wait for things to blow over and make another move for the pay-TV broadcaster, by midday many analysts agreed that a later deal was unlikely.

And analysts said it was even more unlikely that News Corp would get rid of its U.S. newspapers – even money-losing ones like the Post, which is rumored to lose around $50 million a year, or the fledgling iPad experiment, The Daily. Murdoch has ink in his veins, and won’t sell the papers, even if many of his shareholders would like him to.

But the scandal may have shaken Murdoch’s grip on the company, Wolff argues.

“I think that the board will be forced into a position of having to exercise some real oversight,” he said. “And I think the inevitable conclusion to that will be to purge management of people named Murdoch.”