“The Fox Effect,” a new book co-authored by Media Matters’ founder David Brock, executive vice president Ari Rabin-Havt, and other researchers at the organization, takes an in-depth look at the corrupting influence of Fox News. Its president Roger Ailes has forced the network to advance a deeply-partisan political agenda that regularly contravenes traditional journalistic standards. The book also shares details about the qualities and characteristics of Ailes as a person. Here are the top five most telling quotes about Ailes found in “The Fox Effect”:
Ailes used homophobic slurs to describe George H.W. Bush’s clothing: “‘You can’t wear a short-sleeve shirt—you’ll look like a fucking faggot.” [The Fox Effect, p. 32]
Ailes explaining race before the Federal Election Commission: “When Republicans see Willie Horton they see a criminal, and when Democrats see Willie Horton they see a black.” [The Fox Effect, p. 34]
As Richard Nixon campaign consultant, Ailes advised that a racist should be given a question at a town hall: “As long as we’ve got this extra spot open. A good, mean, Wallaceite cab driver. Wouldn’t that be great? Some guy to sit there and say, ‘Alwright mac, what about these niggers?’” [The Fox Effect, p.24]
Roger Ailes explaining his concerns about social justice to rabbis: “Of course social justice means different things to different audiences, however it has been used in situations leading to fascism, socialism, and communism as well.” [The Fox Effect, p. 147]
Ailes to The Washington Post in 1972: “If you come out and say that a guy’s a commie, fag bastard, the public turns you off, not him.” [The Fox Effect, p. 144]
There have been rumors that Ailes is perhaps contemplating a “course correction” at Fox News, a purported attempt to regain credibility by moving away from the right-wing base. But as one right-wing media analyst noted, “Do people really think that anyone at Fox is going to kill the goose that laid the golden egg? I don’t think so.” Indeed, it seems quite unlikely given Ailes’ predilection for hateful and divisive rhetoric.