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19 May 2017

Roger Ailes Dead- Fox News co-founder passes away at 77

The scandal-plagued, ousted co-founder of Fox News, Roger Ailes, has died at 77.

Complications from the last week's fall and head injury and other health problems reportedly resulted in his death.

Let's have a look at how he became one of the US's most powerful figures in politics and media before being brought down by sexual harassment charges at Fox News last year.

In context

Fox News founder Roger Ailes dead
Grateful for the opportunities his country gave him


Grateful for the opportunities his country gave him

Before launching Fox News, Ailes was a media strategist for Republican Presidents Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, and George HW Bush.

He was one of the Republican Party's most influential personalities.

His network was integral even to President Donald Trump's successful run for the White House.

Ailes's wife, Elizabeth stated he was a patriot profoundly grateful for the opportunities the country gave him.

Power and Ruthlessness

In 2016, writer Gabriel Sherman stated, "Ailes' power and ruthlessness allowed him to take over the Republican Party and mold it to fit his paranoid world view." Sherman authored Ailes's 2014 biography named 'The Loudest Voice in the Room'.

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Turned Fox News into a "booming voice" for conservatives

In the early 1990s, Ailes was President of CNBC, which he left for co-founding Fox News with Rupert Murdoch in 1996.

As Fox News's Founder, Chairman, and CEO, Ailes had a clear vision of what he wanted the channel to be.

He took Fox News to the top and made it a profit center for Murdoch's 21st Century Fox.

Ailes's conservative views set narrative for Fox News

Conservative Views

Ailes's conservative views set narrative for Fox News

Ailes ran Fox News under the "fair and balanced" slogan, which conservatives felt was a much-needed antidote to the traditional media's perceived liberal slant.

His conservative views set the narrative for the channel's stories.

Critics denounced Fox News as a "cynical and polarizing" right-wing propaganda machine.

It was difficult for critics to determine where his agenda ended and the Republican Party's talking points began.

Roger Ailes - A brand of pseudo-journalism?

Eric Boehlert of Media Matters for America stated: "He (Ailes) helped market a brand of pseudo-journalism that revolves basically around hate, rhetoric, divisiveness, pitting people against each other. That seeps into the culture and into politics."


Treatment of women brought his downfall

Sexual harassment accusations by Fox News's female employees brought Ailes's downfall.

In Jul'16, former Fox News anchor, Gretchen Carlson sued him claiming he made sexual advances toward her and hurt her career after she rejected him.

On 21 Jul'16, he was ousted from the Fox network; he received $40mn in an exit agreement.

He later began advising Donald Trump's Presidential Campaign.

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