Tucker Carlson will not likely order any bombs to be dropped nor issue any executive orders about immigration, ObamaCare or anything else. But his right-wing influence and expanding media reach make him the new Donald Trump, CNN’s Brian Stelter persuasively argued, except that Carlson is smarter, slyer and craftier.
STELTER: Here is my conclusion: Tucker Carlson is the new Donald Trump. Tucker has taken Trump's place as a right wing leader, as an outrage generator, as a fire starter and it's all happening on Fox just like Trump's campaign did, which means Rupert and Lachlan Murdoch are ultimately responsible.
I mean, think about all of the ways these two men are similar. Every day, Carlson is throwing bombs, making online memes, offending millions of people, also delighting millions of other, tapping into white male rage and resentment, stoking distrust of big tech and the media, generally coarsening the discourse, never apologizing for anything and setting the GOP's agenda. Sounds like a recently retired president, right?
Tucker tells the same conspiratorial "us versus them" story that Trump told. The same “they're out to get you story” that Trump told for years.
It is the paranoid style in American politics all over again and Tucker soaks up some of the same social media fury that Trump did. He stokes the same debates that Trump did ...
And Carlson is taking over Fox the way Trump once did. “Fox News is increasingly the Tucker Carlson channel,” Stelter pointed out. He has the highest ratings, “far ahead of anyone else on Fox,” including Sean Hannity, and “other shows re-air his comments all day long.” On top of all that, Carlson’s role at Fox is growing larger.
Carlson has long been dangerous. As I noted in my last post, his comments have literally endangered people he has targeted. But Stelter is right to make sure we all keep in the front of our minds that it’s “ultimately all about the Murdochs” and “how they're going to keep the profits flowing by giving the viewers more and more radicalized content led by Tucker Carlson.”
Guest Erik Wemple, of The Washington Post, pointed out why Carlson is more dangerous than Trump:
WEMPLE: They both traffic in hatred and they both traffic in lies.
And for the longest time people have warned that the next Trump will be savvier in terms of how he lies and that is exactly what Tucker Carlson is. He doesn't lie with every utterance, but he lies strategically and carefully and he lies in such a way that he gets them past his audience. And the rest of the world sits there and fact checks him and nobody else seems to care.
He pulls in 4 million people and … those 4 million people listen carefully and they take cues from Tucker Carlson.
Don’t say I didn’t warn you.
I highly recommend watching the full discussion. It's below, from CNN’s March 14, 2021 Reliable Sources.
I do wonder, however whether, it’s truly possible that he could become a serious contender to replace Trump. At least so long as he continues to present the same schtick on the TV, night after night after night. Especially when he expresses such open disdain for things America holds sacred. The recent attacks on the military and women (among others) could well be dangerous ground for him.