Tucker Carlson is right

Photo via Gage Skidmore

I didn’t see this until today, although it is a few days old. It’s a clip from a podcast Tucker Carlson did 6 days ago, called the Full Send Podcast.


Tucker comes off very well, and even if you dislike his persona on his Fox News TV show you might be surprised at how honest and relatable he is in a less produced environment. I certainly was.

I’ve always considered Carlson to be one of the most intelligent and annoying figures in media today. Oddly, the conflicting feelings are probably related. He has an incisive mind but comes off as arrogant, probably because he knows how smart he is compared to his guests.

His appearance on the podcast was quite long, but the clip I commend to you is not. It is Carlson’s analysis of the MSM and his own role in it. Watch:

Spot on, and actually very humble. This is a Tucker Carlson with whom you could argue happily for hours and learn quite a bit.

My experience in the media is hardly as extensive as Carlson’s, and most of it has been as a “source” and not a pontificator. But over the years it came clear to me that the role of the media in our societal ecosystem is at best tangentially related to keeping people informed. Its real role is to be the voice of power.


It’s not always the same power, and from that distinction, you get what little diversity there is in the media. But almost nobody rises to the top of the media ecosystem without becoming a mouthpiece for powerful interests.

As often as not the process by which this happens is not transparent. First, there is the selection process by which one rises. The more aligned with the interests of the powerful, the more likely one is to rise. Whenever you see a modest talent rising to high levels they are there because they are sufficiently good mouthpieces for the establishment.

Occasionally there are diktats from above, although not as often as you would expect as they are unnecessary. The narrative goes out organically and it just gets picked up by everybody as a group. There are always some handmaidens who are in on the joke, as it were, and they actually coordinate. But on the whole, it is groupthink, not a conspiracy, that keeps the narrative on track.

But deviations from the narrative are punished, and that message comes out loud and clear. We saw that, ironically, laid out clearly in the Dominion/Fox News lawsuit, but however much the MSM crows about the revelations they are at least as bad as Fox was on the 2020 election.


As a terminally online person, it is easy to see the narrative unfold in real-time on Twitter. In the past decade, the narrative formation takes place on Twitter, and you can actually watch the messaging coalesce from minor chaos at times to a consistent story quickly. The talking points go out and almost everybody gets on board.

Tucker’s off-the-cuff discussion about the media, and his admissions about his own role in the process in the past capture perfectly the way things work.

I couldn’t say it has always been thus, but it probably has. The relationship between the media and the powerful is symbiotic–good little reporters are the ones who get the leaks and the stories. Play the game and get the goods.

It’s dispiriting, but there is a reason the powerful usually win and the less powerful have to shut up, get into line, or face the consequences.

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