Note from Glenn Greenwald: Below is the English translation of a column in Portuguese I wrote for the Brazilian newspaper Folha De S.Paulo
The most popular host in the history of cable news, Tucker Carlson, launched the first episode of his new show since his April 24 firing by Fox News. His first episode, which for now appears exclusively on Twitter, immediately went viral, watched by millions.
The reaction from the corporate media – which often has difficulty attracting anything close to his audience – was as predictable as it was negative. CNN claimed he "gave voice to some of the most extreme ideas in right-wing politics." The Washington Post called him a "far-right pundit" whose monologue was "tinged with conspiratorial thinking and drenched with disdain for other media and political figures." The Guardian asserted, with no evidence, that the episode was "greeted with widespread derision," and appeared particularly upset that he "abused the Ukrainian president, Volodymyr Zelenskiy."
But look at what he actually said. Doing so will reveal how empty the phrases "left" and "right" have become in American discourse: just weapons for stigmatizing dissent. To label someone "far right" now reveals almost nothing about one's actual views or ideology. It is simply a means for maligning anyone who rejects the western neoliberal consensus and who questions U.S. institutions of power.