Today Capital New York describes a “big roll-out” for The Loudest Voice in the Room, New York magazine scribe Gabriel Sherman‘s forthcoming “tell-all” about Roger Ailes and his Fox News empire; Capital even went so far as to borrow the word “shitstorm” from one Matt Drudge (aka Ailes’ biggest fan) in anticipation of the ensuing smear campaign.
This is, of course, the same book that led Fox to fire its top PR guy Brian Lewis after accusing him of being Sherman’s main source (a claim we always doubted, given the Ailes team’s legendary sense of loyalty). Publisher Random House expects the same sort of aggressive response to the book, because “conservative media outlets have been attacking Sherman’s reporting for months in an attempt to discredit the author.”
Yet the book’s official site, worth visiting for its Wall Street Journal-style headshot illustrations, calls the tome a “deeply reported journey” inside the network, and we’re left wondering how Ailes will attempt to minimize its influence.
In the past, Fox has had anonymous sources claim that Lewis can’t be trusted and, therefore, Sherman can’t be trusted either. But the site says Sherman drew from “more than 600 interviews with people who’ve known Ailes over his remarkable five-decade career as well as a rich variety of other sources”. Tough to discredit so many people at once, isn’t it?
Most of Fox News viewers will probably dismiss the book as soon as they realize that its writer works for a publication with the words “New York “in its title that is NOT the New York Post. But what more can Fox do? We have a feeling Sherman won’t fall for a fake story, and we frankly doubt the effectiveness of sockpuppeting in related comment threads.
Here’s what we don’t get: why is Ailes so scared? His channel continues to outperform competitors even as its own numbers dip, and the book’s very subtitle calls the man “brilliant” and “bombastic”—two words with which he’d surely agree.
We have to say, we’ll be quite disappointed if the Fox organization doesn’t do everything in its power to convince the world that Sherman strangles puppies with American flags. We’ve come to expect no less.