RUSH: The reaction to the passing of Roger Ailes yesterday morning has created some of the most nonsensical, uninformed, wild guess, bigoted analysis that I’ve seen. And some of it is among the most vicious I’ve ever seen. And among the most virtue is out there on Millennial blogs.
Such things as, “The worst thing that ever happened to America was that Roger Ailes lived, and wherever the ass of this nation is that gave birth to him needs to be eliminated.” Stuff like that. It is just wholly, totally despicable, reprehensible stuff. I would say that no matter who it’s written about. And I… Folks, I don’t care what you want to say: This kind of stuff wasn’t widely disbursed in our culture that long ago. I think the people have always been there.
I think reprobates have always been out there. I think scum have always been out there. They’ve just never had a way of being seen or heard. Now they have mechanisms to be seen or heard, and I can’t help but think that it over all coarsens our entire culture. There are no limits. There are no boundaries. There’s no remorse. There’s not even the slightest hint that these people think they are way beyond propriety and decency. But worse, it’s irrational.
These young little clowns don’t even know Roger Ailes, never knew him, have no idea what they’re even talking about. They are simply products of the hate that they’ve been taught.
RUSH: Okay, here we go. This is last night on CNN. Anderson Cooper 319 speaking with Brian Stelter, who is media whiz bang at CNN, knows everything there is to know about the media and the people in it. And is eminently qualified to render opinions and judgments on anybody and everybody in the media. Little Brian. And he does. So Anderson Cooper said, “On conservative media it’s deny, deflect, downplay. That’s basically what the coverage is in conservative media these days, right?”
STELTER: All about providing the counternarrative. Uh, the Trump White House helps do this, but really it’s pro-Trump media that help do this, provide a counternarrative for people to share on their Facebook pages, to share on Twitter and to discuss with their friends. I think we all feel more and more we’re in these echo chambers. We’re in these filter bubbles where people are sharing views they agree with. Fox is an unusual situation right now. The reins are quite soft by Fox standards. This is about providing the customers what they want. They may not be the best thing (snickers), though, in a democracy to be so focused on what the customers want as opposed to news consumers — or more importantly, voters, viewers.
RUSH: Now, right there, that last part of this comment is the thing I want to focus on. My entire career I have noted and observed that everybody is a customer. News is a business — and the watchers, the viewers, are customers. It’s the only business when the customers complain, they’re told they don’t know what they’re talking about. You heard the old adage, “The customer is always right.”
In the news business, when you complain about editorializing or unfair bias, you’re told one version or another of you’re too unsophisticated to know how they do what they do, and they don’t really care. They don’t care whether their customers are happy or not, because they’re not doing the news for their customers. CNN’s proven this for I don’t know how many years. They don’t have any! They’ve got alternative ways of making money like cable subscriber fees and advertising agents that buy time simply for liberal loyalty and so forth.
But they’re not buying a big audience. CNN doesn’t have it. Now, they supposedly look at the audience as viewers or as voters, and I think this is an important distinction for you to understand them. They have their narrative and they’re allowed to have their narrative, and their narrative is the only one. If somebody comes along with an alternative narrative, they’re fake, they’re phony, they’re playing games, they’re lying. It’s routinely said and believed that the Fox audience is dumb and stupid and is a bunch of mind-numbed robots.
And they’re being toyed with and played with by master manipulators who understand how to use emotion and manipulation to hook people into false narratives that aren’t true. They haven’t the slightest idea what Fox News does. It’s the most amazing thing. Fox News, up until recently, was running rings around everybody in the news business, ratings-wise. And rather than these people trying to figure out why it was happening, they demeaned it, they impugned it, and said it wasn’t real.
This would be like an AAA baseball team talking about the New York Yankees as though the Yankees haven’t the slightest idea who they are, what they’re doing, and that the Yankees are the frauds. And the AAA baseball team is really the answer to what’s going on in baseball. And MSNBC does the same thing, and the New York Times. All their media analysts look at Fox News as though it’s not news. It’s something else because it doesn’t do what the Drive-Bys claim is news.
It’s the most amazing psychological circumstances that they set up to justify the fact that Fox was killing them. They had to tell themselves, “Well, no, Fox is not killing us because Fox doesn’t do what we do. Fox doesn’t do the news. Fox doesn’t do honesty. Fox simply is manipulating customers.” You heard it here: There’s disdain for the idea customers or consumers in news. And yet it’s a business. Here’s the next bite. Anderson Cooper says, “Well, look at Roger Ailes. His death was announced today. He created Fox News. The blending of entertainment and journalism was something he pushed forward and made pretty big.”
STELTER: I was speaking with a Fox source today who said, “Ailes understood President Trump’s base long before there was a President Trump, long before, uhhh, Trump even entered the race.” Ailes understood there was a disaffected portion of the country to program to, and that’s what Fox continues to do but nowadays — uh, partly Ailes created Fox — it’s been joined by many other conservative media outlets that all reinforce this counternarrative.
RUSH: Well, he’s got his timeline a little out of whack. We started here in 1988, then Rush Limbaugh the TV show that Ailes exec produced from ’92 to ’96, and then a bunch of other radio talk show came and Fox went on the air in 1996. But that notwithstanding, the idea that Ailes knew Trump’s base before Trump did? It’s just a great little open window into how they see you, if you’re a Trump voter, if you’re the…
Well, if you don’t watch CNN — if you don’t watch MSNBC or CBS, ABC, or any of the big media — you are something of an aberration. They don’t even want you in their audience, because you’re… I mean, you don’t believe the truth, you don’t believe the right narratives — and of course, the disaffected portion of the nation he described is automatically illegitimate and not worthy of listening to.
RUSH: Just one more thing about this second bite that we played. You notice how little Brian continues to believe that CNN represents the majority of people in the country and that Fox and conservative media represent the disaffected portion? You look at a map. Look at a map of counties any way you want to look at it, states in this Country, and you gonna find out where the majority actually is and why we’re so frustrated.
We’re winning elections. We’re doing everything we can at the ballot box. We are the majority in this country, and it’s evidenced over and over election-wise. It may not be apparent in pop culture, in places like this where the left owns. But we’re continually marginalized over here the disaffected this and that. It’s CNN that doesn’t have any audience, relatively, and yet they sit here and they tell themselves that they’re ruling the roost and the king and queen of whatever. It’s a serious misjudgment.
You know, I remember talking to Ailes all during the four years of Rush the TV show. When he left, when we shut down the TV show… He went over to CNBC, and created what is now MSNBC. It used to be called America’s Talking. It’s where he met his wife, Beth. She was a programmer there. And he was attempting with… He ran CNBC for a while and created a whole new channel for NBC called America’s Talking, which eventually became MSNBC when Microsoft got involved.
But he had run-ins with executives over at NBC because even there he was trying to slowly transform the network into a semblance of balance. He wasn’t trying to go all conservative, all the time on it. And he was frustrated by some of the roadblocks that were in his way. I remember going to Patsy’s (we went to dinner at Patsy’s more than anywhere else, West 56th between 8th and Broadway) and talking about the possibility of a conservative-oriented cable network.
He told me one day after he had had his first initial conversations with Rupert Murdoch that he thought was actually possible. He was thinking about it long before, of course, it actually went on the air. But it was a pet project and a dream that came true. And as I say, he met his wife when he was over at NBC. This would be around ’95 and ’97. He was doing the NBC stuff while executive producing Rush Limbaugh: The Television Show, which was, you know, a forerunner to much of what you see on TV. Think Comedy Central and all of that.
But I have to tell you a little bit about — just a short little bit about — Elizabeth, especially in light of recent news. I have to tell you, folks, there is… Roger Ailes was one of the luckiest men on earth. I have never seen a woman more devoted and more loyal and more supportive. The only reason I mention this… I’m not trying to embarrass anybody, but part of the coverage yesterday from some of these “biographers” and others was that they were separated and that Roger was suicidal, and I can tell you unequivocally…
They only live a half mile from me. I can tell you unequivocally that there is literally nothing to any of that. Zip, zero, nada. Roger’s death is not to do with any of the pressures of what had happened and the aftermath. He never cracked. He was still thinking about the future. So many people are wanting to have other people think that they are so close to people who end up being principals in news stories. I mean, it’s just amazing. Princess Di. Remember when she passed away and there were all these people showing up to place flowers at the memorial and all the people in the parade?
We’re asking ourselves, “What in the world is going on here? This woman…” We knew she was popular, but what we concluded was that it was just a lot of people wanted to be in the story, that the cameras were on that place where everybody’s dropping flowers all the time, and you could get on TV by being in the story.
So a story like this happens like the death of Roger Ailes, and there are a lot of people who start calling the media, “You know, Roger was my best buddy. Roger and we sat around and…” It’s a fascinating thing about ego, particularly performers’ egos. And then people start making things up that they don’t know. And there’s always gonna be somebody willing to listen and reprint some of that stuff if it’s salacious.
One more of these, and then I’ve got two other things I want to run by you. One of them involves Andrew Cuomo. No, Chris Cuomo. This guy saying some stupid stuff. I mean, when I say “stupid,” I’m talking about IQ stupid stuff. Newt Gingrich has a great idea about Trump and the Washington press corps. But here, the last audio sound bite here on Ailes and television.
It was on Charlie Rose, CBS This Morning, and Charlie is talking to the NPR, National Public Radio, media expert, whose name is David Folkenflik, and Charlie Rose — who admitted to never understanding who Obama of any or what he was all about in an appearance with Tom Brokaw — said to Mr. Folkenflik (whispering), “What was it that Roger Ailes knew about television?”
ROSE: Was what it he knew about television, though? What did he understand that enabled him to do what he did and be as to work like George Bush 41, Richard Nixon, and others?
FOLKENFLIK: It’s a question about messaging. It’s a question about identifying storylines, both as a campaigner and as a guy on the air. He said, “You know, we know who the heroes are gonna be and the villains are gonna be. We know who the victims are gonna be and who the saviors are gonna be. We’re gonna give a story every day that people can latch on to and hold on to. As a newsman, it might not be the most important journalistic story to follow — might, in fact, ultimately prove shaky or even be based on a conspiracy theory. But if it’s something that our can latch on to, that’s gonna be something that our people can stay with us and know they can turn to us for the kind of news they want.”
RUSH: Wrong. Wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong. That doesn’t even come close to describing Roger Ailes or anybody else in management at Fox view of the news or journalism. It’s just wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong, wrong. It’s not complicated at all. You people in the mainstream media all do the same story the same way. There’s always something about the story you do that is slanted and biased, and there’s always a bunch of stuff you leave out. All we do is talk about the stuff you don’t talk about. We don’t make it up! We don’t create heroes and villains.
The heroes and villains are there. We just point ’em out. We don’t manufacture anything. You are the people that manufacture these things. You’re the people that create and assign status as heroes and villains. All we do is focus on the stuff you ignore — and when we do it, we don’t do it exclusively from any point of view. I spend as much time explaining the liberal view of whatever I’m talking about as I do my own view, so that I can compare mine to the liberal view as I try to persuade people.
I understand what these liberal journalists do better than they do. They are the least curious people among us. They don’t need to be curious. They already know everything. Such as Trump is a crook, such as Trump colluded with the Russians, despite there’s no evidence for it. So when we… That’s a good example. When we don’t follow that narrative, that there’s collusion, what are we doing? Why, we are toying with the minds of disaffected people and we’re creating a false villain!
We’re not creating anything.
We’re just doing the stories you people ignore.
We’re not combining campaign messaging with journalism or anything of the sort. We’re filling a vacuum that you people left. It’s amazing. All these mainstream media outlets, television networks, cable networks, newspapers, and no matter where you go on any of ’em, you get the impact same story and the exact same take on it. That leaves all kinds of opportunity for those of you who are actually trying to get to the truth. You people deal in “narratives,” which means you’re creating a reality you want people to believe. We don’t do narratives.
We just report what we see and comment on it.
We don’t create narratives.
Who’s got time to do that?
We don’t collude, either, so it’s not possible to create a narrative.