Brad Slager: In an Effort to Slander Tucker and His Audience The Washington Post Invalidates Itself In the Process


    Brad Slager: In an Effort to Slander Tucker and His Audience The Washington Post Invalidates Itself In the Process

    Brad Slager


    Posted: Apr 30, 2021 11:00 AM

    The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of

    With the departure of Donald Trump the media have been on a search for their next target of scorn. Florida Governor Ron DeSantis has been the frontrunner for the scolds. Senator Tim Scott has become the newest, their latent racism becoming exposed in the process. Their clear favorite, for over a month now, has been Fox News primetime host Tucker Carlson. 

    This week the outrage experts were either too oblivious, or too eager to try scorching the man, to realize he was goading them intentionally. He delivered a monologue about the facial covering hysterics in this country, in so doing suggesting wryly that the militant mask mavens have their methods turned on them and should be shamed for the anti-science nature of their impotent shields. He went so far as to say that if you see a kid in a mask call child protective services.

    On cue, the leftists put this segment in their crosshairs — and on their timelines.

    Predictably they all clipped the opening, where he framed this call for cacophony against the melodramatics seen from mask-shamers. Two things are obvious in his cut: he was clearly joking, and his critics were clearly pouncing. 

    Taking the bait with a full swallow was Washington Post media critic Erik Wemple. In a deliciously self-invalidating effort he strove to ridicule both Tucker, and his easily swayed unthinking audience members, by finding the evidence that his viewers were taking marching orders and harassing fellow citizens across the country. He contacted over one dozen state children’s agencies to collect the data of new cases reported of abuse. Yes, seriously.

    Try to imagine being a reporter at a major news outlet and occupying yourself with this endeavor. Who exactly would see that clip from Tucker’s show and start rubbing their hands over their keyboard, preparing to compile all of the evidence that will display both how dangerously reckless the Fox News host can be and how gullibly slavish his audience is on any given night? Well, Mr. Wemple, for one.

    This is the same kind of thinking we saw from the press last year, when they claimed that Donald Trump inspired people to fight off Covid by ingesting aquarium cleansers, or that he allegedly told people to inject themselves with bleach to kill the virus. They desperately want the GOP base to be this mentally incompetent, but to do so they resort to conflicting accusations; conservatives are just too stupid to take a life-saving vaccine — AND they are so stupid they would gulp down poisonous fish tank solvents to fight off the very same virus. 

    Erik received a surprising dose of introspective contemplation from a cohort. Ben Smith, fellow media analyst from the New York Times, actually had a more sober/less hysterical assessment of the Tucker segment. “Possible that his TV audience is better attuned to when he’s joking than his Twittter audience, are….?” Well would you look at that. It seems at least one member of the media is starting to grasp what is playing out. “This was much Trump’s connection to fans — half the joke is knowing the media won’t get it.” 

    Now this has me completely off balance. If it is possible that some members of the mainstream press are starting to come around and understand this type of tactic then it could lead to them becoming likeable. 

    For the record, in referencing Smith’s comment, Wemple does not get it. His response to Ben explains everything, but not in the way Erik intended.

    For his investigative efforts he was rewarded with some firm data. He began receiving word back from the various agencies, but the numbers were not what he expected. Wemple did not get a listing of thousands of reports to state agencies from Fox viewers, there were not hundreds of instances of calls of child abuse, nor even dozens of instances of citizens engaged in verbal conflicts over adolescent mask-wearers. Once Wemple tabulated his returns he shared that the amount of times Fox viewers obeyed Tucker blindly on this matter, and the total figure came out to be — none.

    This, of course, did not sink in with the reporter. In responding to Ben Smith, Wemple said, “My experience with Fox News viewers based on years of interviewing is that they believe their favorite hosts.” This, from the guy who believed that Tucker was completely serious and delivering marching orders. His own data reveals that Fox News viewers did not ‘’believe their favorite host’’, but realized the mirthful point he had been making. 

    Considering this was a case of a reporter declaring he was going to set out to prove a point, and then was roundly disproven by being 180 degrees incorrect, he should in fact be the one hiding behind a mask — and it has nothing at all to do with viral safety, but shame.

    Published at Sun, 02 May 2021 11:16:07 +0000

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