The Real Tucker Carlson Scandal
By Cliff Kincaid
Many conservatives are despondent over Tucker Carlson’s firing. But they should wipe away their tears. Tucker used his show to promote some conservative causes, but he also spent a lot of time hyping inane and bizarre stories about UFOs, animal rights, and the virtues of conservative homosexuals. He even aired a show about cattle mutilations, supposedly committed by outer space aliens. The promo showed a cow being sucked up into a flying saucer.
“Tens of thousands of animals found dead, mutilated, and gutted,” said the Fox promo. “Who is doing it and why? In this shocking episode, Tucker searches for answers…”
What he was searching for were gullible viewers, willing to believe anything.
He pushed hot buttons and threw red meat, all of it designed to attract viewers and make money for Fox. I salute his coverage of the January 6 “insurrection,” demonstrating through the film footage released to him by House Speaker Kevin McCarthy that law enforcement authorities orchestrated or encouraged the attack on the Capitol. It was entrapment, designed to discredit the Trump movement.
But airing a show like this, while padding it with insights from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), demonstrated he was not a serious conservative.
In the latest such example, he interviewed PETA Director of Outreach Ashley Byrne “to discuss New York City’s rat problem, why humans are to blame and how to get it under control.”
Clearly, Tucker was making lots of money for the Murdochs before the Dominion lawsuit hit, with discovery in the proceedings exposing his double-talk about Trump and his supporters. Anyone reading the internal emails and text messages from within Fox had to admit that leading personalities like Tucker were two-faced and insincere.
Nobody with serious conservative credentials could defend Carlson in the wake of those embarrassing disclosures.
Equally important, on one issue where he remained steadfast and apparently serious, he became a vocal opponent of Ukraine’s ability to defend itself against Russia, and was compared to Walter Duranty, the former New York Times correspondent who whitewashed Stalin’s crimes against Ukraine when it was a Soviet republic.
No legitimate conservative would excuse or rationalize the mass murder of tens of thousands of Ukrainians.
Coming less than a week after the Dominion settlement, in which Fox paid $787 million, the timing of the firing of Tucker Carlson raises important questions. His double-talk about Trump and Trump supporters, as revealed in the Dominion suit, meant that Fox could not afford to go forward with the case and do damage control after Tucker’s predictable melt-down on the witness stand.
But the other important firing was that of the Fox News Senior Executive Producer of Tucker Carlson Tonight and Vice President of Tucker Carlson Digital Products, a defendant described in another on-going lawsuit as “the powerful gay man” behind the show and identified as Justin Wells.
The other lawsuit involves Tucker and this (former) producer, accused by his former head of booking, Abby Grossberg, of helping create a hostile work environment that included disparaging remarks about women and minorities.
The producer has defended himself in the past, in the face of criticism by the homosexual movement, by re-tweeting a statement that read, in part, “…under his vision, Tucker Carlson tonight boasts a heavy rotation of popular LGBT guests.”
This is true. Indeed, Tucker featured “Gays against Groomers,” an attempt to differentiate gays from gay predators. The “Gays Against Groomers” founder, Jaimee Michell, was on Tucker’s show, treated with kid gloves.
But Tucker was not alone in going soft on the gays. Richard Grenell , who is openly gay, was hired by Newsmax, a competitor to Fox, as a vice-president, “national security contributor” and “executive for international partnerships,” whatever that means.
The former Acting Director of National Intelligence, Grenell’s interview on the topic of Gay Pride 2020 is still available on the intelligence agency website, where he describes working with the Harvey Milk Foundation to launch global campaigns to decriminalize homosexual activity. This started under Trump.
Grenell said, “I am incredibly proud to work with my friend Stuart Milk. Stuart’s energy and personality inspires me. Our work to decriminalize homosexuality around the world is a monumental task.”
I don’t know why Newsmax has decided to go in a gay-friendly direction, an approach on a global level which strikes conservative Christians as Marxist imperialism. But it will not endear these concerned citizens with a nice feeling about the channel. It’s a bad move when the channel is trying to sound more conservative than Fox.
I wrote a February 18 column, “Fire Tucker Carlson and Don Lemon,” which has now come to pass on the same day. In my view, Tucker went over the edge with his promotion of a communist rally against Ukraine in Washington, D.C. His denigration of the fight for freedom in Ukraine, in the face of a brutal Russian invasion, is just unconscionable. He has openly complained about alleged NSA surveillance of his personal communications.
But the Abby Grossberg suit may have been what caused the Murdochs to fire Tucker Carlson and his producer. Fox News denies the allegations but the suit is still outstanding.
Glenn Beck says Tucker’s firing is “a dark day for the conservative movement,” adding, “We’re looking at the death of Fox News.”
Beck knows better than this. Once a host on the channel, he was fired by Fox after exposing George Soros. If Fox died, it died years ago.
The channel has always been about making money, but has gone through a series of sex scandals involving its founder, Roger Ailes, and one of its stars, Bill O’Reilly. It looks like another scandal with sexual or sexist overtones is in the making. This seems to be the real reason, on top of the Dominion disclosures, why Tucker had to go.