Megyn Kelly talks during a Republican presidential primary debate in Des Moines. (Chris Carlson/Associated Press)

In July, former Fox News host Gretchen Carlson sued network boss Roger Ailes for sexual harassment, setting in place a flood of similar allegations that ended in the ouster of the longtime Fox News chairman. Not everyone responded to the civil complaint with foresight and aplomb. For example, Fox News personality Brit Hume:

Judge the victim, in other words. Subsequent events cast shade on Hume’s tweet, as Carlson received a settlement of $20 million from 21st Century Fox plus a genuine apology. When confronted about his initial reaction by the Erik Wemple Blog, Hume just happened to be in an un-chatty mood.

Megyn Kelly, Fox News megastar and Carlson’s former colleague, has outlined the dynamics behind dealing with a sexual harasser who also happens to be one of the most powerful people in American media. In “Settle for More,” her new memoir, Kelly details her own treatment by Ailes not long after she joined Fox News in the mid-2000s. It was so creepy: Ailes reportedly fantasized to Kelly about seeing her in the “very sexy bras” she must have in her possession, among other suggestive remarks that he sprinkled around helpful professional advice. In January 2006, Kelly alleges, Ailes attempted to grab and kiss her. She says she pushed away, yielding a question from Ailes: “When is your contract up?” Ailes has denied all of these allegations.

She says she reported the matter to a supervisor, who “vouched for Roger’s character.” Ailes remained firmly atop the ratings-killing network that he had piloted from Day One. “I didn’t want to sue. I didn’t want to blow this up. Like most sexual harassment targets, I just wanted it to stop,” writes Kelly. It did. Thanks to her skills and hard work, Kelly got promoted to key daytime slots by Ailes and eventually to her current prime-time position. Twice she was promoted by Ailes amid maternity leaves — evidence alone that the world is a strange and unpredictable place.

“Settle for More” includes an indirect brushback for Hume, whom Kelly regards as the “greatest professional influence on my journalism career.” Reflecting on the media melee that swallowed the Ailes-as-accused-sexual-harasser story, she writes:

Many reporting on the Roger situation seemed to revel in the fall of a conservative giant. Some also seemed to forget about the humanity of his victims, resorting to victim blaming or shaming. Perhaps it was the Fox News connection, but questions surfaced a little too frequently, asking why these women didn’t just quit. Why it took them so long to come forward. And why, for that matter, they chose to look so alluring on the air.

Enough of raising eyebrows over the conduct of sexual harassment victims, Kelly urges. It’s the job of management, she emphasizes, “to ensure that a company has ethical leaders who comply with the law, and to make certain that women feel safe to report any incident.” And another, absolutely critical point: “Roger maintained complete control at FNC — over the talent, the management, everyone. Not only did these women fear for their jobs, they feared being attacked by his PR and legal teams.”

And then there’s the power disparity. In a compelling interview Tuesday morning with George Stephanopoulos, Kelly was asked whether she ever wishes she had come out earlier in a public way. “Listen, it’s hard to say no to that because I know now the number of women targeted and it’s disturbing, but realistically and this is one reason I wrote about it in the book — realistically, that would have been a suicide mission for me and my career because I had been there 12 months,” said Kelly, outlining a set of considerations that guys such as Hume don’t often encounter, if ever.