We've long noted the toadyism of Fox News' Peter Johnson, Jr. It turns out that Johnson is not merely the "legal analyst" he's described as in his Fox News biography - but he's also Fox News chief Roger Ailes' personal attorney.
In a recent article in New York Magazine about Ailes' contract negotiations with Fox News, there's this little nugget:
(Ailes') contract doesn't expire until next summer, but Ailes's personal lawyer, Peter Johnson, a frequent Fox News contributor and sometime guest host, is talking with Murdoch associates about the terms of a new deal.
Isn't it a bit of a conflict of interest for an attorney to represent his boss in a negotiation with their mutual employer? And how ethical is it to be presented as some kind of disinterested "legal analyst" all the while?
Writer Gabriel Sherman has some other juicy tidbits in the article, such as the revelation that Ailes, who is the third-highest paid News Corp. employee, earned $21.1 million last year and is currently seeking more:
(T)he pending breakup of News Corp., and the ongoing hacking scandal, means that Fox News will be the financial cornerstone of the newly independent television and movie-centric company. Fox News generated about 40 percent of News Corp.'s profits last year, and those profits have translated into more control for Ailes. At News Corp., executives describe Ailes's relationship to Murdoch as entrepreneur to investor rather than employee to boss. But one limiting factor on Ailes securing the epic payday he wants would be the fact that Murdoch and News Corp. COO Chase Carey earned $30 million and $24.8 million last year, respectively. It's hard to see Murdoch paying Ailes more.
Also, while Ailes has ensured some future stability for Fox News by renewing the contracts of Bill O'Reilly an Sean Hannity, negotiations with Fox & Friends host Gretchen Carlson have reportedly hit a snag:
According to one person familiar with the matter, Carlson and Fox have been haggling over her contract terms. Carlson is said to want to host her own show on the network, but Fox executives are resistant to the idea. This summer, as the talks dragged on, Carlson was conspiculously absent from Fox & Friends for days on end. One person said they were able to reach a short-term accord that would keep her on the curvy couch with Steve Doocy and Brian Kilmeade until the election. But after November, it's unclear.
Sherman's reporting on Fox News has been consistently excellent. I highly recommend the entire article.
Ellen, yes it is. But this is, after all, FoxNoise which we’re discussing. They live and breathe “conflict on interest.” And if they can keep that conflict from becoming public, all the better.
With all my love,
Aunty Headly, who has been having a fun time writing my popular Blog series The Fox “News” Spin Cycle, a compilation of which can be found at: http://notnowsilly.blogspot.com/search/label/The%20Fox%20News%20Spin%20Cycle
Retchin should tread carefully with her outrageous contract demands. The Fux Noise studios are full of younger, blond bimbos who will gladly spread their legs for an upskirt shot.