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Roger Ailes’ Secret Plan for GOP Propaganda TV

Roger Ailes’ Secret Plan for GOP Propaganda TV

Before launching Fox News Channel in 1996, FNC President Roger Ailes was a media strategist for Republican Presidents, Nixon, Reagan and H.W. Bush as well as a producer for Rush Limbaugh (see GOP Connections to Fox News page). It should be of little surprise to learn that Ailes would like nothing more than to push GOP propaganda onto Americans via a right-wing TV news channel, like Fox News.

A 300+ page cache of documents obtained by Gawker from the Nixon and Bush presidential libraries includes a memo titled, “A Plan For Putting the GOP on TV News.” The 15 page plan includes the opinion that “People are lazy. With television you just sit—watch—listen. The thinking is done for you.”

Today television news is watched more often than people read newspapers, than people listen to the radio, than people read or gather any other form of communication. The reason: People are lazy. With television you just sit—watch—listen. The thinking is done for you.

Knowing the differences between news and entertainment programming and the relative difference in rules, the plan was to circumvent the system and get GOP opinions into what they believed to be the “liberal media” and therefore delivered by who they saw as the enemy. Just as Fox News continues to claim to be the opposition to the mainstream media (of which they are part).

This is a plan that places news of importance to localities (Senators and representatives are newsmakers of importance to their localities) on local television news programs while it is still news. It avoids the censorship, the priorities, and the prejudices of network news selectors and disseminators.

The memo included handwritten notes from Roger Ailes, clearly stating his interest in making the plan a reality. Not only that, but using his media consulting experience to suggest changes and address possible repercussions.

Notes written by Roger Ailes in the margin of the memo.

Basically a very good idea. It should be expanded to include other members of the administration such as cabinet involved in activity with regional or local interest. Also could involve GOP governors when in DC. Who would purchase equipment and run operation—White House? RNC? Congressional caucus? Will get some flap about news management.

Ailes wanted in… here’s his note to Nixon Chief of Staff H.R. Haldeman:

Bob—if you decide to go ahead we would as a production company like to bid on packaging the entire project. I know what has to be done and we could test the feasibility for 90 days without making a commitment beyond that point.

The first version of the plan was to be called “Capitol News Service.” After Roger Ailes was fired by the White House, he was involved with Television News Incorporated (TVN), seemingly the subsequent version. As reported by Rolling Stone, TVN was financed by the President of Coors Brewing Co., Joseph Coors, and “was designed to inject a far-right slant into local news broadcasts by providing news clips that stations could use without credit—and at a fraction of the true costs of production.”

The documents obtained by Gawker include other “dirty tricks” memos. A memo from Roger Ailes to Haldeman involves a scheme to infiltrate a political opponent’s organization – “I would like to see us get one of our people inside the Wallace organization immediately.” There was also evidence of a “news” piece to be directed by Ailes and financed by a pro-Nixon front group that would have used two pro-war Democrats, who he calls “dupes for the administration,” to respond to a CBS News special.

Ailes was working on as a response to an anti-war CBS News special.

As you can clearly see, these examples demonstrate a direct GOP connection between Roger Ailes (American President of Fox News Channel) and a plan to air GOP propaganda on TV, disguised as news, plus other dirty tricks involving media manipulation. “Fair and balanced?” Really?

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Roger Ailes: White House May Have Had ‘Legitimate Complaints’ About Fox News

Without providing specifics, Fox News President Roger Ailes may have made an admission of guilt about the bias found on Fox News… at least as far as the claims that came from the White House.

ROBINSON: Do you subscribe to the statement of your news host Chris Wallace that the Obama administration is “the biggest bunch,” he said, “the biggest bunch of crybabies” that he’s dealt with in his 30 years in Washington?

AILES: That was his…

ROBINSON: They’re whining over nothing!

AILES: Well, I don’t think they’re whining over nothing and I think they have — look, there’s legitimate complaints that they could have. And I’ve had this dialogue with David Axelrod, who I like very much and, there are legitimate areas. I mean, Chris said that, that’s his words, that’s what he believes, and he had reason to believe that. But I don’t think its helpful to say that.

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Roger Ailes’ Reasoning for Cutting Away From Obama Q&A

Arianna Huffington asked Fox News president Roger Ailes why Fox News was the only cable news network to cut away from President Obama’s questions and answers session with House Republicans.

HUFFINGTON: Roger, you clearly are in ratings, but if you are in ratings, can you explain to me why FOX went away from the meeting the president was having in — why did you go away, 20 minutes before the end?

AILES: Because we’re the most trusted name in news.

Ailes’ response may be somewhat honest, but only if you consider who is placing their trust in Fox News and what, exactly, they are trusting… It certainly isn’t the truth. But, any rational person knows that you cannot be a trusted name in news if you don’t actually provide news.

Here’s what Paul Krugman had to say about the subject, after the interview:

HUFFINGTON: Their framing of the President is that he’s radical, that he’s taking us down a dark, fascist or Bolshevik future — depending on the day. And there he was, rational, charming, and in full command of his facts. So the narrative fell apart and so the cameras stopped showing what was happening.

KRUGMAN: Yeah, I mean it’s — I thought it was actually quite funny except it has real consequences. There you have Roger Ailes, with this powerful, popular news network, whining about how the media are unfair to Republicans. I mean, he is a powerful person in the media — and of course, you know, “Fair and Balanced” is truly Orwellian and we know that. So it’s clear that Fox — I felt like yelling to him, “you can’t handle the truth,” because that was what was actually happening on the Fox coverage.

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Fox News President Roger Ailes Slammed by Rupert Murdoch’s Son-In-Law

There is a rumor surfacing today that Fox News Channel President Roger Ailes has been fired; however, News Corp., the parent company, denies these rumors. News Corp. CEO, Rupert Murdoch has been silent on the issue, but his son-in-law, Matthew Freud, has been anything but…

Putting the rumor aside, let’s look at what Freud, who claims to represent the controlling shareholders of News Corp., had to say:

FREUD: The family is “ashamed and sickened by Roger’s horrendous and sustained disregard of the journalistic standards that News Corporation, its founder and every other global media business aspires to.”

Regardless of whether or not Roger Ailes has been, or will be, fired, there is certainly a line drawn between Ailes and the Murdoch family.

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