In recent days, Denver billionaire Phil Anschutz has been in the news due to his aborted promotion of a fifty-date Michael Jackson tour -- a reversal that could cost a fortune (although, frankly, Anchutz can afford to take the loss). But Forbes is taking notice of the moneybags for his media investments, many of which puzzle outside observers. "The Stealth Media Mogul" notes that The Weekly Standard, a conservative publication he recently purchased from Rupert Murdoch, is losing an estimated $5 million per annum, and his launch of "free tabloid throwaways" under the Examiner nameplate in cities such as San Francisco and Washington "seems like a puzzling fit in a collection of sports and show business properties," according to article author Dirk Smillie. Adds media analyst John Morton, "It's a marginal business whose success really hasn't been tested yet." The same can be said for his Examiner.com concept, which relies on contributions from bloggers such as UFOlogist Jeff Peckman to earn web hits and, presumably, revenue.
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Don't expect Anschutz to explain his theories, however. His spokesman, Jim Monaghan, points out that Big Phil has given three interviews in four decades, and he considers them to represent "three interviews too many." Mighty stealthy of him.