VAN NATTA: Tucker Challenged the Powerful


Tuesday, April 25, 2023

The “sworn enemy of lying, pomposity, smugness, and groupthink” was fired from the most popular news network in the nation. Tucker Carlson’s departure from Fox News is a gift to the powerful – no longer will there be a voice on cable news that consistently attacks both parties and interviews a diverse array of voices. 

While many have well-meaning disagreements with Carlson’s views, no one can deny his show deviated from the hivemind consensus of corporate journalism.

Tucker Carlson platformed individuals spanning the political spectrum, from nationalists and conservative pundits to anti-war activists, radical feminists, and PETA representatives. Carlson was willing to challenge the prevailing orthodoxy, whether it be on foreign policy, Big Pharma, immigration, or social issues. His show was not always as intent on offering differing viewpoints and thought-provoking conversations. In its early years, he would often have stereotypical liberals with fanatical views that he would then ruthlessly mock on live television. While it was fun to watch, it was not exactly conducive to healthy political debate.

However, his show evolved over the years to consistently feature left-wing guests, (some of whom he previously vehemently disagreed with like Glenn Greenwald) to engage in substantive conversations. Ironically, Tucker’s critics often castigated him as a threat to “democracy.” 

Supposedly, “democracy” is when all the networks parrot the exact same talking points, and the NSA spies on the journalist refusing to do so. One can disagree with Tucker on any given issue while still recognizing that he played an important role in defending free speech through diverse voices on his show.

One of the main issues with modern journalists is that they serve powerful interests instead of challenging them. Instead of focusing on the corruption of major pharmaceutical companies, most journalists promoted their products and shamed anyone with concerns. Instead of asking Biden administration officials if the Ukraine-Russia conflict is in America’s national interest, journalists berated anyone with reservations as “Russian propagandists.”

Tucker Carlson, on the other hand, frequently questioned and attacked those in power, from politicians to corporations. He even criticized many Republicans, including former President Trump. Carlson openly disagreed with the president’s strikes against Syria and Trump’s decision to kill Iranian General Qassem Soleimani. He also challenged Sidney Powell and Rudy Giuliani’s claims that the 2020 election was stolen by “coordinated fraud,” and instead focused on Big Tech’s role in censoring speech. He routinely railed against corporate interests like Amazon and billionaires like the Koch Brothers, and his economic populism drew criticism from the laissez-faire right.

While other news shows were sponsored by companies like Pfizer, Tucker asked legitimate questions and had medical experts with varying views on his program. Questioning Big Pharma is too controversial for many in the media, and Carlson seemingly crossed a line when he noted Pharma’s influence over American media in his monologue on April 19, 2023.

Carlson gave a voice to American citizens who were ignored by the media. He platformed regular people the ruling class dismissed: residents of East Palestine, Ohio, small business owners, parents, and female athletes, among many others. He also routinely highlighted the good in America and dedicated part of his show to upstanding citizens with his “Employee of the Month” segment. On his final show, Tucker ate pizza with a Cocco’s Pizza employee who courageously intervened in a high-speed police chase.

Tucker Carlson did what corporate journalists rarely do, he challenged the powerful and stood up for the powerless. He expressed views about war and Big Business that contradicted the mainstream Republican Party and offered an alternative perspective to his audience. His show was a refreshing change from the drone-like unanimity of corporate media. It is unclear what Tucker Carlson will do next, but his willingness to tell the truth in a climate hostile to it will be missed.

Erin is a college senior pursuing journalism and writing. She enjoys reading, art, and listening to podcasts about politics. She can be found walking her golden retriever, Gus.

The views expressed in this article are the opinion of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Lone Conservative staff.

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About Erin Van Natta

Erin is a college senior pursuing journalism and writing. She enjoys reading, art, and listening to podcasts about politics. She can be found walking her golden retriever, Gus.

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