Roughly eight years ago, there was a nasty fight at 30 Rockefeller Plaza in New York. On one side was Roger Ailes, then - president and CEO of CNBC and its sister cable network, America's Talking. On the other side were NBC strategist Tom Rogers, NBC News president Andrew Lack, and NBC president Robert Wright. The fight was over a joint venture with Microsoft. (I know -- I was there, making the pitch with Ailes.)
"I've never seen a time like this," says Roger Ailes, chairman and CEO of Fox News and, for the past 20 years, one of the greatest architects of power in the country. Ailes has a gift: He knows what makes people stars. He's most famous for helping transform a fringy California governor, Ronald Reagan, first into a president and then into a legend. Ailes kisses frogs and turns them into presences. But now, as he assesses the art of power, Ailes has worries.