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Roger Ailes: Off Cameraby Zev Chafets
Synopses & Reviews
When youve got Roger Ailes on your side, you do not lose.”—Rush Limbaugh
Roger Ailes is the quintessential man behind the curtain. He more or less invented modern politi­cal consulting and helped Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, and George H. W. Bush win their races for the White House. Then he reinvented himself as a master of cable television, first as the head of CNBC and, since 1996, as the creator and leader of Fox News, the most influential news network in the country.
To liberals, Ailes is an evil genius who helped polarize the country by breaking the mainstream medias long monopoly on what constitutes news. To conservatives, hes a champion of free speech and fair reporting whose values and view of Amer­ica reflect their own. But no one doubts that Ailes has transformed journalism. Barack Obama once called him the most powerful man in America”— and given that Fox News has changed the way millions understand the world, it may be true.
Yet for all that fame and infamy, very few people know the real person behind the headlines.
Journalist Zev Chafets received unprecedented access to Ailes and his family, friends, and Fox News colleagues. The result is a candid, compelling portrait of a fascinating man. We see Ailes in action at Fox News and hear him reflect on personal mat­ters he has never before discussed publicly. And we discover the heart of his sometimes surprising political beliefs: his profane piety and his unwav­ering belief in the values of his small-town Ohio boyhood.
Ailes loves to fight, but he is a happy warrior who has somehow managed to charm and befriend many of the people he has defeated in political campaigns and television wars. Barbara Walters, Rachel Maddow, Jesse Jackson, the Kennedy clan— all are unexpected Ailes fans.
Chafets also gives us an unprecedented look at the inner workings of Fox News and explores Ailess relationships with Bill OReilly, Sean Hannity, Megyn Kelly, Neil Cavuto, Chris Wallace, and the other stars he has nurtured.
Ultimately, Ailes is neither villain nor hero but a man full of contradictions and surprises. As Chafets writes, What will he do next? What stokes his competitive fires and occasional rages? How to reconcile his acts of exceptional loyalty and pri­vate generosity (even to rivals) with his impulse to present himself to the world as a ruthless leg breaker? What makes Roger run—and where, if anywhere, is the finish line? As Ailes himself might say: I report, you decide.”
The perfect gift for graduates forty commencement addresses about liberty, patriotism, tradition, and other conservative themes that are rarely heard on campus.
The college graduation speech has become another casualty of our age of political correctness. Historically, universities are supposed to be strongholds of tolerance, where any idea can be discussed--and tested rigorously to see if it has merit. Students should benefit from free expression and diversity of opinions, about current events and eternal questions alike.
But today, certain positions are considered too controversial for the fragile ears of liberal students, and for administrators who usually surrender to their demands. Its no longer unusual when a U.S. Senator like Ted Cruz, a pioneering neurosurgeon like Ben Carson, a Supreme Court Justice like Antonin Scalia, or a human rights advocate like Ayaan Hirsi Ali faces protests, disrespectful shouting, or petitions to have his or her invitation revoked.
Fortunately, Remembering Who We Are collects the commencement wisdom of a wide range of thinkers who are willing to challenge the liberal consensus on campus. Editor Zev Chafets has brought together a diverse group of speakers from many walks of life, from playwright David Mamet to Ambassador Ryan Crocker, from Governor Bobby Jindal to humorist PJ ORourke. For example, youll find in these pages:
Too many students now enter the real world after being taught that patriotism is misguided, that religious faith is for the foolish, and that free enterprise is unfair. The eloquent speeches in this collection will help them grasp the truth that America is flawed but fundamentally good; that faith can have intellectual depth; that capitalism is the worlds greatest force for fighting poverty; and much more.
The definitive biography of Jack Kemp, and why his legacy matters to todayand#8217;s GOP.
As todayand#8217;s Republicans struggle to broaden their base and promote reform, some are reviving the legacy of Jack Kemp, one of the most important Republicans of the 1970s, 80s, and 90s.
Kemp approached politics the same way he played quarterback for the Bills: with a refusal to accept defeat. Yet he was also willing to compromise to get things done, and his commitment to the working class and minorities attracted voters who usually rejected the GOP. He was instrumental in helping Ronald Reagan create an era of sustained and widespread prosperity.
Drawing on never-published papers and the Kemp oral history project, noted journalists Morton Kondracke and Fred Barnes trace Kempand#8217;s whole life, from his childhood through his pro football career to his unusually influential years as congressman and cabinet secretary. Despite many ups and downs, including failed presidential and vice presidential bids, Kemp proved that a and#147;bleeding-heart conservativeand#8221; could redefine what was possible in American politics.
About the Author
Zev Chafets is the author of fourteen books of fiction, media criticism, and social and political commentary. He has been a frequent contributor to the New York Times Magazine and a former columnist for the New York Daily News.
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