Roger And Elizabeth Ailes Completely Incapable Of Not Being Litigious Bullies
We’re feeling sorta “dog bites man,” because we’re going to talk at you about how Fox News’s Roger Ailes is a thin-skinned bullyboy who doesn’t understand how free speech works, and this is not news to you. This week, Roger and his lovely bride, Elizabeth, would like to sue people for “liking” something on Facebook.
The Putnam County News and Recorder and its publisher, Elizabeth Ailes, have threatened to sue Cold Spring Village Trustee Stephanie Hawkins for libel because she refuses to remove a post on her Facebook page. Hawkins did not write the post but instead “liked” a comment by then-Trustee Matt Francisco, who accused someone of “following” him during the recent campaign.
Perhaps you did not know that Elizabeth Ailes runs a vanity newspaper in Cold Spring Village (rich people live in villages, duh), New York, where she and Ailes have settled? Perhaps you also did not know that this sort of behavior is par for the course for the Ailes family? Jesus Christ, people, where have you been?
[from 2011] Spy on reporters for the charming small-town newspapers they own? Check. Compulsively call the local cops because you’re convinced people are out to get you? Check. Start physical confrontations with the aging owner of a competing tiny newspaper and threaten to sue him? Check.
Let’s see if we can break down what is going on this time around. Wish us luck, because it is a shit-ton of small-town inside baseball politics.
There was a trustee, Matt Francisco, in this tiny town that the Ailes are ruining, and that trustee (we think that is maybe like a city councilperson, but for villages? who can say?) accused someone of following him during a recent political campaign, a campaign in which Mr. Francisco had the misfortune to be NOT the person Roger and Elizabeth Ailes wanted elected. And it actually sort of sounds like he was being followed!
[Reporter for Elizabeth Ailes’s newspaper, Tim] Greco wrote: “Despite the denial, the Francisco and MacDonald team is clearly in touch with Robinson and Williams. Francisco was outside their home Monday morning. And the PCNR has confirmed that MacDonald has attended meetings with Stephanie Hawkins, a current trustee, at Williams’ and Robinson’s home.” Greco did not say how he or the newspaper obtained the information. He also had reported on Dec. 18 that “Francisco was recently seen in a restaurant on Main Street having a lengthy conversation with James Geppner,” a persistent critic of the Butterfield development.
Francisco felt that way too, so he complained about it on Facebook, like you do.
The day the March 12 story appeared, Francisco complained on Facebook that his movements were “being tracked and reported” in the PCNR, without specifying who might be doing the tracking. Hawkins, a supporter of Francisco and MacDonald, then “liked” and consequently linked to Francisco’s post.
Now, with that simple click of the mouse, Hawkins has brought the full wrath of the Ailes machine down upon her. Because they have more money than God, the Ailes had their attorneys whip up not one, not two, but THREE LETTERS demanding she stop disparaging the good name of Roger and Elizabeth Ailes with her scurrilous liking of things on Facebook because they totally would never follow someone or intimidate someone blah blah blah ergo cogito sum ipso facto quid pro quo.
Fortunately, Stephanie Hawkins can hire lawyers also too, and they’ve sent a letter back to Ailes pointing out that people can actually say what they want, even if those things may not be things Roger Ailes likes.
In a response on March 28, two Manhattan attorneys representing Hawkins […] called the PCNR’s allegations of libel “baseless as a matter of fact and law,” stating that Hawkins “has every right to comment on matters of public interest and concern,” and to “voice her opinion with regard to individuals and entities that are subjects of or otherwise part of the public debate” and that “sending repeated letters to Ms. Hawkins at various addresses containing the same threats and meritless claims” is a calculated effort to intimidate and “must cease.”
Did you like all those law words strung together? Us too! Are you having trouble figuring out what the fuck is going on here? Us too! Let’s just cut our losses and note that Roger and Elizabeth Ailes are awful and we would hate to live anywhere near them because they would for sure sue us for this here Happy blog.