Marble Falls Crocodile tears are flowing down millions of faces over the sad fate of the newly jobless Tucker Carlson, while real tears may be dripping down the cheeks of former president Trump and his fervent fans. Turns out that there are real consequences when you cost your boss more than three-quarters of a billion dollars in real money for telling big fat whoopers about the 2020 election of the air, while collecting your paycheck on time every two weeks. Yep, the love is gone.
In the world of unreality where it turns out that many of the high and mighty live, some were surprised. Various reports indicate that Trump was surprised, as were people in his campaign camp. Other reports say that even Carlson was surprised. How is that possible? How can the rest of us move to that fantasy land? Do they only watch their own star turns on Fox News and the like? Have they never turned-on HBO and watched an episode of “Succession?” Have any of them ever heard the term “late-stage capitalism?”
I guess not. The rest of us know that if we have a fender bender in our employer’s vehicle, we could be looking for a pink slip, or if we miss a deadline that costs money, or a sale, or offended a big customer or supplier, we should be checking the ads and hoping they won’t oppose our unemployment claim. That’s the real world, not the world of fabulists like Carlson, Trump, and the rest still hoping that the alternative reality that credits fiction more than fact, often touted by Kellyanne Conway back in her day as Trump’s comms director, is actually the real deal. Keep in mind that the $750-odd million that Fox and the Murdoch clan will now be paying to Dominion for defaming their voting machine works in the election that doesn’t count their legal fees, so add another $50 mil, nor does it count their reputational damage and standing with advertisers which is likely another couple of billion before it’s said and done, or the drop in their stock on Wall Street. There was no way that Carlson could have just shrugged and said, “my bad,” and hung onto his job.
Look, thank god and Greyhound, he’s gone. If there’s one thing that emerged from all the depositions and revelations of the Fox-Dominion trial is that Carlson was a total two-face, kissing Trump’s rear end one minute, and putting the knife in his back the next. As the country song reminds, “if you don’t stand for something, then you don’t stand for nothing at all,” and that pretty much says it all about Carlson.
He’ll miss having a megaphone to millions. He’ll work again somewhere, somehow, but basically, he’ll follow Glen Beck down the memory hole. Remember him? This is a big country, and there’s a bunch of people who will continue to believe something, no matter how wild and wooly, from almost anyone, so there will continue to be a market for his mischief, but he’ll be like the C-level celebrities on game shows, except only on marginal cable channels, if he’s lucky.
For the rest of us, amazingly, we finally have something to thank Rupert Murdoch for, even as we can enjoy how much he has gritted his teeth, while waiting to fire Tucker Carlson for exposing how craven and enabling he was before and after 2020. The real surprise in this affair would have been Murdoch falling on his sword for his role in all this. We know that would be a dream that would never come true, so let’s celebrate this moment while we can before someone else steps into Carlson’s shoes over there, just as Carlson stepped into Beck’s. Sadly, the merry-go-round will start up again any minute and continue.