So much for the old saying about there being no such thing as bad press. Fox News this week continues to take a pounding at the hands of national, glossy magazines. Earlier this week it was New York magazine detailing the ego-clashing turmoil inside Roger Ailes' shop, and how the network's hard-right Obama hysteria is making it hard for the Republican Party to challenge Obama in 2012.
Now comes an expose from Rolling Stone, "How Roger Ailes Built the Fox News Fear Factory." Heavy on the Ailes biography, the feature details how the former Republican consultant used his partisan background to mold Fox and its "round-the-clock, partisan assault on public opinion," turning the so-called news outlet into "one of the most powerful political machines in American history."
Rolling Stone's Tim Dickinson notes how Ailes is "deeply paranoid" (he's convinced he's on Al Qaeda's hit list) and recounts this strange tale from the days of Fox News' founding in the 1990's:
Murdoch installed ailes in the corner office on Fox's second floor at 1211 Avenue of the Americas in Manhattan. The location made Ailes queasy: It was close to the street, and he lived in fear that gay activists would try to attack him in retaliation over his hostility to gay rights. (In 1989, Ailes had broken up a protest of a Rudy Giuliani speech by gay activists, grabbing demonstrator by the throat and shoving him out the door.) Barricading himself behind a massive mahogany desk, Ailes insisted on having "bombproof glass" installed in the windows – even going so far as to personally inspect samples of high-tech plexiglass, as though he were picking out new carpet. Looking down on the street below, he expressed his fears to Cooper, the editor he had tasked with up-armoring his office. "They'll be down there protesting," Ailes said. "Those gays."