Hey, scholar of genocide/genocide denial here. Extremely worrying that the premier far-right talking head in America is now explicitly citing actual genocides to whip up a paranoid frenzy among his millions of viewers. Genocidaires always justify their violence as “defensive”. https://t.co/ggsfAQVVdw
— Jasmin Mujanovic (@JasminMuj) June 25, 2021
Preferably, of course, Those People, who are ‘dark’ and ‘dirty’ and ‘absolutely un-American’, people who ‘should never have been allowed’ to live in Tucker Carlson’s country in the first place. But if the victims turn out to include a few Good American Patriots, well: One, two, many Ashli Babbitts…
Tucker claims the NSA is spying on him pic.twitter.com/SZVO3NLaxB
— Acyn (@Acyn) June 29, 2021
A statement from NSA regarding recent allegations: pic.twitter.com/vduE6l6YWg
— NSA/CSS (@NSAGov) June 30, 2021
The NSA basically never comments publicly on identities of surveillance targets. Ever.
That they did so here shows how much they’re not going to let @TuckerCarlson play this game.
— Bradley P. Moss (@BradMossEsq) June 30, 2021
Everything old is new again…
“When [press baron] Aitken acquired the Daily Express his political views seemed to Kipling to become more and more inconsistent, and one day Kipling asked him what he was really up to. Aitken is supposed to have replied: ‘What I want is power. Kiss ‘em one day and kick ‘em the next’ and so on. ‘I see’, said Kipling, ‘Power without responsibility – the prerogative of the harlot throughout the ages.’”
Last week, the NYTimes‘ Media Columnist Ben Smith (formerly BuzzfeedBen):
… Mr. Carlson, a proud traitor to the elite political class, spends his time when he’s not denouncing the liberal media trading gossip with them. He’s the go-to guy for sometimes-unflattering stories about Donald J. Trump and for coverage of the internal politics of Fox News (not to mention stories about Mr. Carlson himself). I won’t talk here about any off-the-record conversations I may have had with him. But 16 other journalists (none from The Times; it would put my colleagues in a weird position if I asked them) told me on background that he has been, as three of them put it, “a great source.”
Mr. Carlson was particularly well positioned to be a source about the Trump administration. His Fox platform, where in May he had a nightly average of three million viewers, made him someone who mattered to Mr. Trump, a close follower of television ratings. He has a former reporter’s eye for detail and anecdote, and his observations can be detected in the lurid tales of Mr. Trump’s chaotic court and Fox’s own tumultuous internal politics….
And Mr. Carlson’s comfortable place inside Washington media, many of the reporters who cover him say, has taken the edge off some of the coverage. It has also served as a kind of insurance policy, they say, protecting him from the marginalization that ended the Fox career of his predecessor, Glenn Beck, who also drew a huge audience with shadowy theories of elite conspiracy.
“It’s so unknown in the general public how much he plays both sides,” marveled one reporter for a prominent publication who speaks to Mr. Carlson regularly.
Another Washington journalist in his orbit said he thought Mr. Carlson benefited from his value to the media.
“If you open yourself up as a resource to mainstream media reporters, you don’t even have to ask them to go soft on you,” the journalist said…
Carlson excretes juicy chunks for the media mudlarks; they’re not going to look a gift horse in the… let’s say, mouth.
Possibly related to Smith’s column:
News: @zengerle is writing a book on Tucker Carlson for Little Brownhttps://t.co/8d3sPFgqOP
— Charlotte Klein (@charlottetklein) June 21, 2021
A short postscript to today's @benyt story about the cozy relationship between many media/political reporters and Fox News' Tucker Carlson … https://t.co/7hyKKcQoIu
— David Frum (@davidfrum) June 21, 2021
Cynical note from an ex-Republican spinmeister, who knows how the game is played:
… One way to read the Ben Smith story is as a remorseful decision by one of the journalists who did business with Carlson to yank some of the protection bestowed by the transaction. But such transactions provide another benefit too, and this one cuts across the story Smith tells: Carlson’s “information” also buys him credulity. When reporters call Carlson for uncheckable anecdotes about his conversations with former President Trump, they make the following calculation: I know he regularly lies to his fans on television, but he would not lie to me on the telephone.
The evidence of that November 2018 incident at Carlson’s D.C. house suggests that the calculation is radically wrong…
And yet even now, reporters pretend they are in control of this dangerous game. They are not. People who turn to an untrustworthy narrator for fabulous anecdotes get … untrustworthy anecdotes. The door was not cracked. No one threatened Carlson with a pipe bomb. The Times did not plot to terrorize Carlson’s children. And the self-aggrandizing, self-exculpating story just dispensed to the journalist looking to add a splash of color to the otherwise sinister record? If you can’t check the story, check the source.
But to circle back to Carlson’s #FauxNewsRwanda performative outrage… As many cynics have pointed out, if the NSA were ‘eavesdropping’ on Tucker, it would presumably mean that Carlson was communicating with overseas agents the NSA feels are hostile to America. Note from another journalist:
This chat was about his claim that the feds stole his damning Hunter Biden evidence. But turns out it was UPS all along, and he got it all back the next day and nothing came of it. Which he also tries to lie about here. Then it dawns on me he may have thought I was Roger Stone. pic.twitter.com/SPTE9VhOCb
— Roger Sollenberger found true love, suckers (@SollenbergerRC) June 29, 2021
Analysis: Tucker Carlson is in a credibility battle with the NSA — and so far he’s losing https://t.co/0UHwZb74O3
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) June 30, 2021
Enhanced Voting Techniques
So Fucker Carlson sees himself as the new Roger Ailes, but he can’t keep his story straight?
The rehabilitation and empowerment of this dangerous motherfucker is yet another crime the media is complicit in. Once again, I remind people of the Obama Whitehouse’s attempt to depower Fox and the way the media closed ranks to support them.
Assholes & idiots.
Driftglass (from February)
@ruemara: People who want media jobs and don’t care what they have to do to get and keep them.
@Another Scott: And was too stupid to duck when facing live fire on the Israel/Gaza border as he covered an intifada.
Why put up with this? He wants violence, let him find some.
hells littlest angel
Little Lord Haw Haw.
Gin & Tonic
When was he rehabilitated? And from what?
James E Powell
For the right-wingers who watch Tucker and repeat his every word, the NSA issuing a public statement denying that it is monitoring Tucker is conclusive proof that they are in fact monitoring Tucker.
If a journalist outs him, they lose all access. If they lose access they can’t “verify” anything so they can’t write an easy story, they have to dig and dig hard, and that’s actual work, for which they likely aren’t given time or money to accomplish, because that’s also only a future possibility that a story exists or will be worth the money to the publisher. And that’s given fucker’s study stream of bullshit. Also if they cover him, it seems highly likely that faux news will just make up something nasty about them. It’s a circle jerk, in a small circle of people who can’t really afford to piss off their competition too badly. The news business today is worse than useless.
@James E Powell:
The conservative side of our political world is upside down, bassackwards and still manages to spin in circles.
Villago Delenda Est
Why did the media mavens trust Fucker Swanson? Because access is the name of the game, not journalism.
Nuke the Village from Space. Only way to be sure.
As someone who works at an NSA facility I’m always amused when some dumbass thinks the NSA is spying on them.
Bonus joke I made up all by myself: Q: Why do NSA employees make such good boyfriends/girlfriends? A: Because they’re such good listeners.
ICYMI, the DoJ is still grinding through the insurrectionists.
Conspiracy charges against Mark Grods (8 page .pdf):
Those of us joking about the Teabaggers starting a revolution from their Hoverounds weren’t too far off… :-/
There was someone on Twitter says (IIRC, could be wrong) that the Conspiracy charges against Grods were a big deal because he’s an Oath Keeper and is cooperating.
Villago Delenda Est
@James E Powell: The NSA is monitoring Fucker’s contacts in Grand Fenwick, which is perfectly legal.
I see of Tucker Carlson only what his liberal critics post on YouTube. I get the impression that Carlson is a shrieking monkey that Fox “News” employs to shriek at irs viewers and keep them riled up. Fox News tells the courts he is a hopelessly unreliable narrator, not to be taken serioudly; meanwhile it presents him to its audience as a serious political commentator.
As a rule, I don’t take shrieking monkeys seriously. I have to wonder why this one gets so much attention from others in the media.
Adam L Silverman
What everyone needs to keep in mind is that last Saturday night in Ohio, Trump held a rally and had 5,000 attendees. Half of which left early because they were bored with the 95 minutes of greatest hits. Carlson holds a one hour rally every night viewed by well over a million people. The highlights are then promoted on social media by those who agree with him, as well as hostile foreign actors like Russia. Russian state media, which at this point is all of Russian media, loves them some Tucker Carlson. So does their Foreign Ministry. During the day, Tucker does an hour or two each day for Fox’s streaming service, which is watch be thousands more.
And Tucker is giving his audience the straight, uncut stuff. I don’t know whether Carlson will run for president in 2024 or not, but given what he’s messaging and the reach he has with the size of his audience – directly or indirectly through social media amplification of each show’s greatest hits – he’s certainly as big, if not a bigger threat at this point than Trump.
They get paid to listen to the people that make the most noise.
@Adam L Silverman: That rally had people driving in 50 miles on a two lane highway. 5000 people would be pretty congested. Sucks for Welington. Sucks more for the attendees. These guys are very weak on logistics, aren’t they?
Adam L Silverman
@guachi: And in this case especially, as you know even better than I, if they did have some collection on him it would be, at least initially, incidental collection because the collection target was someone else. And the only reason anyone would know it was him, beyond the initial collectors who would follow protocol and mask his identity, which would be classified is if what had been collected on the target was of such great concern that they needed to unmask the masked American citizen so they could make sense of what they were looking at.
Best case scenario someone is yanking his chain to get him riled up with a bogus claim. Not best, but not worse case scenario is he’s simply fabricated the whole thing as agitprop for his own purposes. Worst case scenario is that he was emailing or texting with a foreign national outside the US who is a really bad actor and the foreign actor’s side of the communication was so problematic, they had to get permission to unmask who he was communicating with to make sense of it.
None of these speak well of Tucker. First option is he’s exceedingly gullible. Second option is he’s psychopathologically malicious. Third option is he’s involved with someone planning to and/or actually undertaking actions harmful to the US and its interests.
Adam L Silverman
@sab: That was the upper limit of attendance I’ve seen reported. I have no idea how accurate it is.
It isn’t that they’re weak on logistics, it’s that they don’t care about the marks they’re fleecing.
Gin & Tonic
If Carlson is talking or texting with Kilimnik or Prigozhin (as I suspect he is) then he’s certainly smart enough to know that the NSA has every word.
James E Powell
Kevin McCarthy is jumping on the bandwagon, demands that Devin Nunes investigate the NSA. Former NSA Director General Hayden gave a detailed response.
Adam L Silverman
@Gin & Tonic: He’s clearly in regular contact with GG. We know who GG is working for even if he isn’t formally working for them. I’m always curious as to who GG is in contact with. So…
Adam L Silverman
@James E Powell: Devin Nunes has no subpoena power or, really, any power as the ranking member of the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence. McCarthy can tell him to investigate, but Nunes has no ability to do so. Not that it will stop him and his merry bad of mayhem makers from producing a bullshit minority report.
Also, I’m very casually professionally acquainted with the NSA Director. My impression is he has a very low tolerance for bullshit.
Not that many years ago, a court case against Fox included a finding of fact that no reasonable person should believe anything that Tucker Carlson says. Be that as it may, he is ginning up the overly armed white nationalist with a daily heap of DARVO – deny attack reverse victim offender. He’s a clear and present danger as Lachlan Murdoch intends.
The average conservative wingnut doesn’t understand this. They just see further confirmation that there is a deep state within the government. And if the deep state hates Tucker Carlson as much as it hates their hero Donald Trump, then Carlson must also be someone worth listening to.
Instead of a bum, which is what he is.
Here’s the tweet I was thinking of (Twitter is back up for me):
Yeah. And kinda hard to ignore the obvious suggestion that Fox viewers are not reasonable persons.
The Tucker Carlson spying thing has already made right wing news rounds. I heard about it from a coworker today, who claimed it was proof of the evil intent of the socialists running the country. While on break I pulled up Rueters, AP, and the BBC, yet none of them had a story of Tucker being spied upon. This was merely confirmation proof of liberal media bias, in my coworkers eyes.
@laura: More than that, Fox’s lawyers said that Carlson couldn’t be trusted.
Trouble is, his show isn’t professional wrestling…
O/T but wow! LAPD carting off 5K pounds of illegal fireworks seized earlier today, and the trailer of the simi-truck hauling them away just blew up.
I saw this ‘fireworks found’ story earlier and thought boy, what if they go off! (The fireworks, not the cops)! I guess this makes me a genuwine soothsayer. (Note: I wouldn’t joke if there had been any deaths.)
This Day of Rage NYTimes video is very good.
@JWR: I guess this story goes out with a bang?
James E Powell
@Adam L Silverman:
Did you read his response? I’d say he has no tolerance for McCarthy.
@JWR: Anyone setting off illegal fireworks anywhere in California that’s not 5 miles offshore needs to be sentenced to work on a California corrections fire detail for the remainder of the fire season (now Jan-Dec).
But hey, if some shitbag takes Carlson seriously and drives a van filled with fuel soaked fertilizer into Lollapalooza or something, ol’ Tucker’s defense is all cued up –
@Ksmiami: Heh. ;) The explosion video isn’t up yet, but the street was fairly narrow, and several cars were destroyed, and houses damaged. Also, just updated to 9 people injured, I would imagine the truck driver is included in that count, but this is happening right now, so not much accurate info yet.
@Adam L Silverman: Occam’s Razor leads me to a simpler version of Door Number Two.
Carlson, Greene, Gaetz, Gosar Gohmert (I keep asking what IS it with the G’s but nobody has yet provided an answer — could that be the Scooby-clue to unraveling the entire mystery?!?), not to mention Trump himself, are all — as many have observed in one way or another — performative parasites. They are indifferent to observable substance or truth; they are attuned entirely to emotional response, and not being stupid (strike Door Number One) and having come reasonably far in crowded fields, they’re pretty good at it. But in the end they’re disposable clowns.*
This is not to say they aren’t dangerous: quite the contrary, they are like children with machine-guns, who love the noise and the response they get but don’t care about the destruction they’re wreaking. And also as observed elsewhere, there’s a great deal of money to be made from them; they really are an argument for the hypothesis that Americans will “entertain themselves to death.”
About the only solace I take is that, historically, these fools fade fast. There have been a few exceptions — Limbaugh comes to mind — but it seems that mostly, being creatures of the entertainment world, they also are its victims, and Americans tend to … change the channel a lot.
There will be more after them, of course. They are responding to a “market demand” for imagined grievances of the comfortable and for authoritarian blood-and-soil tribalism, and those ain’t going away. But every step of the way they, and their replacements, alienate another couple dozen people with significant cognitive capacity, notably younger people for whom their tribal appeals have no relevance.
… or I’m wrong and we’re doomed.
* (no offense meant to professional clowns; quite the contrary)
I’m really curious what led Tucker to blow up these NSA accusations. I assume a reporter came to him for his response to some dirt, and this is his way to shift attention away from whatever’s coming. Not only that, he’s managing to get members of Congress to serve as his attack dogs.
@jonas: Very true. We are dry as hell. (Unless it’s for something important, like a gender reveal party. //)
@Amir Khalid: You make an excellent point. Fox should put a disclaimer on his screen about his words being unreliable as news and really just Droll Trollery.
FYI I am preparing a stern memo to the Murdoch combine to make sure they follow the above policy. Send money if you want me to press the case.
Check me if I’m wrong, but the only way the NSA can “spy” on an identifiable American citizen is 1. if that individual is communicating with a foreign target of NSA eavesdropping and 2. the communication raises enough concern that intelligence analysts in the FBI or CIA request a “unmasking”. This is what happened. e.g., with Michael Flynn. Who then lied about it. And then got his ass convicted for lying to the FBI. And then got pardoned by an equally corrupt president.
If, and that’s a big IF, Tucker Carlson was somehow surveilled by the NSA it’s because he was in communication with a suspicious foreign agent the US was keeping tabs on and subsequently unmasked because US counterintel people were wondering WTF was going on. It’s also important to keep in mind that the Trump administration requested more NSA unmaskings than all of its predecessors combined, so before he goes around whining about being “spied” on, Tucker can either explain who he was communicating with and why, or smoke Trump’s own “spying” on apparently everyone in the known universe and then stick it up his ass.
I was sure there was an exception for those.
@Danielx: Wait, there isn’t?!!
@bbleh: Write on, as those lefty boomers might have said back in the day. On the other hand, I do not welcome a world where tribe is irrelevant. Where it is preeminent, yes it is a danger. But FFSF (the last F is for Friends), tribes are the very heart of diversity. Vive La (Petite) Difference!
Those that agree to play by the rules and not juice up on steroids or privilege can get as FSM tribal as they want, says I.
Mr Kipling makes exceeding good cakes
Hkedi [Kang T. Q.]
@topclimber: I would suggest reading this article: https://extranewsfeed.com/tolerance-is-not-a-moral-precept-1af7007d6376
Kumbaya is a nice thing, and something to strive for, but the right declared war on everyone not them a LONG time ago as you know.
If only there were some field of endeavor in which people whose job it was to learn of things the public should know would then make that information widely known. That would make me marvel.
Adam L Silverman
@James E Powell: Not Gen. (ret) Hayden. I mean the current one.
Always… nice? in the original sense?… when someone who knows what he’s talking about agrees with my amateur conclusions…
@James E Powell: More likely one of the Five Eyes. They’re all forbidden to spy on their own people, so, say, Australia will mention to Great Britain, “You know we’d sure like to know what so-and-so is up to,” and then Great Britain mentions to New Zealand, “Your neighbor seems to suspect something about so-and-so. Know anything about that?” and then New Zealand says, “Well, I’ll just have a look, shall I? Oh, right, here’s what’s happening…” Nothing illegal that way. So General Nakasone says to somebody at GCSE, “I think somebody in government is feeding information to Tucker Carlson, but of course I can’t investigate anything in America,” and then the Brit says, “Oh, I’ll just have MI6 take a look, shall I?”
Bruce K in ATH-GR
@Villago Delenda Est:
Don’t discount the possibility that he’s also dealing with Freedonia’s intelligence apparatus (whose modus operandi appears to be right up Carlson’s alley).
Of course, reasonable people aren’t his target audience. The court ruling should have included a requirement that his show carry a statement that his comments are not to be taken at face value per his own defense in court, but the loons who make up his audience would just ignore it.
Maybe I’ve just gotten paranoid over the last year, but I find Carlson’s calls for genocide terrifying. The overt claim that a violent response to imaginary aggression against whites is needed shouldn’t be something we can laugh off.
@guachi: Gotta tell that one to my daughter … she’ll love it; for obvious reasons
I don’t think anyone knows what to do about it. I actually believe the first step is to admit we don’t know what to do about it- that admission will create the space to perhaps arrive at different or new approaches, but we’d have to get comfortable in uncertainty for a time and people just resist staying there. They want to go to “fix this”.
@guachi: So WE are the ones being monitored by the NSA.
I guess it was just a matter of time. I confess, I have many foreign connections…
If only there was some field of endeavor where a person could make himself useful by establishing a bunch of relationships of trust, perhaps by dropping info that seems to be special or revealing info, and then hoover up whatever he can to feed to his real boss.
Tucker was not the target. His CONTROLLER was the target, and Tucker is the spy that Donald Trump could never be. Hell, Tucker was Donald’s controller, right out there in the open: what he said, Donald did, because it came from their real bosses. And the NSA has it all, even if Tucker has better tradecraft than Roger Stone (I like how well he reacted when he realised he’d fucked up. Hope that lost him some nights of sleep)
I also like the NSA’s denial, and what they specifically did not say. Let’s all untangle this hell-web together, and I’m fine with them taking point: I consider it in a good cause. This is some Kim Philby shit right here.
Not hard to see why that would be. ‘Please show us the workings of how far you have tracked us down, to date, in total’. Of COURSE they demanded everything be unmasked: it’s not that they were trying to catch and stop the spies, they wanted a complete catalog of everybody who HAD been caught.
If you were run out of Russia and had that type of control over the NSA this is the first thing you would do. I wonder if the NSA was upset by this ‘show your work’ thing, or whether they just rubbed their hands together gleefully and got super Le Carre with it all. Like, fake and misleading reports to confuse the Russians through their dumb American proxies. Meaning the Trump administration: seems to me their people on the outside like Carlson are a lot smarter than their bozo puppet wrecking balls.