Michael Rectenwald – April 26, 2023
Why did Fox News fire Tucker Carlson? Some claim that Tucker had planned to leave the network all along, and merely resigned. He had even had a studio built in his own home. He was fed up with Fox and decided to call it quits, so the story goes. But this theory is belied by the fact that Tucker’s production team was taken entirely by surprise by the news. For instance, I received the following text message from Scooter Downey, a producer of Tucker Carlson Originals, in response to my query after the announcement: “No idea what’s going on. Crazy!”
Bill O’Reilly, who hosted The O’Reilly Factor, which appeared in the same time slot as Tucker Carlson Tonight, remarked that Tucker and his staff were blind-sided by the decision. “They were putting together tonight’s, Monday night’s program,” O’Reilly claimed. “They were actively involved with making the rundown as all of us do who go on television each night to talk to you. In the middle of that, boom. Tucker Carlson is history at the Fox News show. That’s how fast it came.”
The other major explanation given for Tucker’s separation from Fox has to do with the settlement of the Dominion Voting Systems defamation lawsuit. But the suit was filed in March of 2021 and Tucker wasn’t dismissed until April 24, 2023. Dominion demanded $1.6 billion and settled for $787.5 million. Tucker’s dismissal from Fox was not a condition of the settlement. Meanwhile, as Megyn Kelly pointed out, Tucker was not even among the promoters on Fox of the theory that elections had been rigged using Dominion. “He was not a reason for that 800-million settlement,” says Kelly.
Further, Tucker’s show was no doubt a leading money-maker for the network, or a major means for paying the damages. Why would Fox get rid of an income generator like Tucker Carlson just as the bill came due? The answer is that Fox is not as concerned about making money as it is about being a faithful servant of the regime.
Tucker crossed significant establishment redlines and has finally suffered the consequences. He consistently argued that the ruling elite hates the majority and consistently attacks it, that national sovereignty is being eroded, and that the electorate is being replaced. The redlines included his criticism of Volodymyr Zelensky and the U.S. involvement in the Ukrainian war, his criticism of the covid responses that destroyed the economy, his questioning of the vaccines, and his targeting by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) for various “offenses.”
In February, BlackRock Inc. increased its position in Fox Corporation (FOXA). BlackRock now owns 15.1 percent of the company. BlackRock’s enhanced position in Fox Corporation explains, in part, the Tucker dismissal, and it was a dismissal, not Tucker’s choice.
Why would BlackRock, headed by CEO Larry Fink, pressure Fox News to axe Tucker? For one, Tucker was known for his scathing criticism of Ukraine’s corruption, which put him at odds with the investment giant. In January, Carlson reacted derisively to a video of Ukrainian President Zelensky thanking BlackRock, J.P. Morgan, and Goldman Sachs for “rebuilding” the country. Tucker referred to Zelensky, not as a hero, as the establishment would have it, but as a dictator. Carlson has also been critical of BlackRock’s push for environmental, social, and governance (ESG) investing, claiming, rightly, that ESG is a means of circumventing legislation and thus subverting democratic processes. ESG thwarts the will of the people and installs a “climate change” dictatorship in its place.
BlackRock also has enormous holdings in pharmaceuticals companies, as one of the three largest shareholders of Pfizer, Johnson & Johnson, and Merck. And Tucker recently interviewed Robert Kennedy, Jr. A presidential candidate, Kennedy has lambasted the covid-19 vaccines as “deadly and worthless.”
Perhaps most significant was the ADL’s calls for Tucker’s removal. Tucker consistently claimed that the Democratic Party is attempting to replace the American electorate with illegal immigrants and the ADL called for Tucker to be de-platformed for holding to “the Great Replacement Theory,” as well as other views that the ADL forbids. The ADL had consistently pushed for Tucker’s dismissal. On The Megyn Kelly Show, after Kelly noted that the ADL was once again pushing for Tucker’s firing, Tucker said, “fuck them.” And Tucker struck back at the ADL on his own show.
Following Tucker’s dismissal, the ADL’s Jonathan Greenblatt celebrated Tucker’s firing on Twitter, where he also accused Tucker of spewing “antisemitic, racist, xenophobic and anti-LGBTQ hate to millions.” He also acknowledged that the ADL had “long called for his firing”:
It’s about time. For far too long, Tucker Carlson has used his primetime show to spew antisemitic, racist, xenophobic and anti-LGBTQ hate to millions. @ADL has long called for his firing for this and many other offenses, including spreading the Great Replacement Theory.
The Dominion defamation suit was not the impetus for the removal of Tucker Carlson from the Fox News line-up. Nor did Tucker walk out of Fox on his own accord. Tucker was axed by the regime’s henchmen, who work together to silence dissent, pummel the population with endless propaganda, and gaslight their victims with lies that represent the precise inverse of the truth. As a propaganda apparatus of the ruling class, Fox News is not primarily interested in profit. Its raison d’être is to serve as controlled opposition. And Tucker was out of the establishment’s control.
“The media,” Tucker recently said, “are part of the control apparatus…not only are they part of the problem, but I spent most of my life being part of the problem, defending the Iraq War, like I actually did that.” That is, Tucker came to recognize that the media are ideological state apparatuses whose functions are to indoctrinate, mislead, and support the reigning regime and their narratives, whether past, present, or future. Tucker attempted to subvert those media functions and became a danger to the regime. It is no wonder that he no longer works for Fox News. The question is how he lasted so long.
Originally published at Mises.org. Michael Rectenwald is the author of twelve books, including The Great Reset and the Struggle for Liberty: Unraveling the Global Agenda, Thought Criminal, Beyond Woke, Google Archipelago, and Springtime for Snowflakes. He is a distinguished fellow at Hillsdale College.