CARLSON UNBOUND: On cable, our favorites were peaceful and easy!


At Salon, a young journalist spoke: Late last Friday afternoon, a peaceful, easy feeling prevailed oner blue tribe cable.

News of Donald J. Trump's indictment had been released the day before. As we noted yesterday, viewers were rewarded with some good strong tribal reinforcement on Friday's Deadline: White House.

In just the first three minutes of the show, Nicolle Wallace made two (2) references to the presence of "our favorite reporters and friends." She also assured us that "our legal friends" would be on hand to explain the whole darn thing.

We had even been granted one "lucky for us"—all in the first three minutes! Also, Trump was ritualized as "the twice-impeached, disgraced ex-president." That was the first thing she said!

Right at the start of her show, an all-new and newly relaxed Wallace favored us with a shower of incantations. Blue tribe viewers would be rewarded for the next two hours with a peaceful easy feeling concerning events in Wallace's narrow world.

Elsewhere, earlier in the day, a young reporter at Salon had exhibited better judgment.

That young reporter, Samaa Khullar, is a senior at NYU. She had watched red tribe cable the night before.

She had derived no peaceful, easy feeling from what she had seen that night. We had watched red tribe cable too—and we'd been alarmed by what we saw. 

In Friday morning's report, we posted the transcript of one especially startling segment from Thursday evening's Tucker Carlson Tonight. Shortly after noon that same day, Khullar's report appeared at Salon, beneath this dual headline:

Fox News stokes fears of political "violence" over Trump indictment
"I hope you're ready for whatever's next," one pundit said. "If that's what they want, let's get to it"

The overwritten, fuller headline was a bit less than fully artful. That said, Carlson's program on Thursday night had indeed seemed to stoke fears of such violence, or had perhaps done something a great deal worse. 

Later that Friday, the city mice would laze about on Deadline: White House. More alertly, Khullar seemed to think that there were certain things the public needed to know.

The young reporter's aim was true. Her report began as shown:

KHULLAR (3/31/23): Fox News host Tucker Carlson had a meltdown on his show Thursday night after news broke that a Manhattan grand jury indicted former President Donald Trump in a hush-money case, calling it a targeted "political purge" against Republicans. 

"The rule of law appears to be suspended tonight, not just for Trump but for anyone who would consider voting for him," Carlson said on his show. "This is what it seems to be. It is a political purge." 

"It almost feels they're pushing the population to react," he said, referring to Democrats. "'We think they're demoralized and passive, let's see if they really are.' At what point do we conclude they're doing this in order to produce a reaction?"

While Carlson implied that there might be "retaliation from red states," his guests were much more straightforward in their warnings of political violence.

There had been no peaceful, easy feeling on Thursday's Tucker Carlson Tonight! 

Carlson's guests had indeed been fairly straightforward in their "warnings" of political violence. For ourselves, we'd say that Khullar was being a bit soft with her use of that particular word. 

At one point, one guest had moved beyond "warnings." Still and all, for better or worse, Khullar had chosen to start a bit slow:

KHULLAR (continuing directly): Comedian Adam Carolla asserted that "people are going to go out and protest. Somebody is going to do something stupid and then they're going to fire up the DOJ, just like January 6th." 

Carlson then claimed that Republican voters were being "pushed into a corner." Carolla responded: "I feel like it's to get them to react so that the government can now swoop in."

The Deep State was going to lock them all up! At this point, Khullar posted a tweet which noted that Carolla was "the third Tucker Carlson guest tonight to claim Trump supporters are being set up to react violently." 

The specter of violence had been general on the Carlson show. At this point, Khullar described the remarkable segment we ourselves had transcribed:

KHULLAR (continuing directly): Sports columnist Jason Whitlock then accused Democrats of "agitating for unrest" and cautioned that he is "ready for whatever's next."

Whitlock's rhetoric closely resembled the former president's calls to action from his supporters after the 2020 election. "I hope every other man out there watching this show, I hope you're ready for whatever's next," Whitlock told Carlson. "If that's what they want, let's get to it."

Khullar offered more detail about Whitlock's extended remarks. 

As we noted last Friday morning, Whitlock seemed to have gone well beyond a mere "warning" about future violence.  It seemed to us that he was offering an obvious call to arms. 

Thus spake Jason Whitlock in reaction to Trump's indictment. To her credit, Khullat didn't stop there. She even reported what Glenn Beck had said:

KHULLAR: Radio host Glenn Beck echoed Whitlock's inflammatory remarks.

"They wanted violence from the right from the beginning," Beck told Carlson, arguing that Democrats were purposely trying to provoke Republicans by indicting Trump. "They can't wait [for] it. They need it. They want you to strike out. Why? Because then they can close the cage."

Beck also predicted that the country would be "at war" by 2025.

Khullar linked to videotape of Beck's inflammatory but fuzzy segment. 

(With whom would "the country" be at war by 2025? Beck wasn't specific about that, but the air of great menace prevailed.)

Carlson's hour last Thursday night was one of the most remarkable hours we've ever seen on "cable news." Lucky for us blue tribe viewers, if we watch Wallace's two-hour program each day, we city mice will never be required to know what the country mice are saying.

We get to enjoy an easy feeling, reinforced by our favorites and friends. We won't be forced to lose our mellow by knowing that there's a bad moon rising over there in the other tribe.

Last night, our blue tribe pundits adopted a vaudevillian air during the 8 o'clock hour. A peaceful, easy feeling had been replaced by the lamebrain mugging and clowning our tribe has come to love.

We'll give you excerpts this afternoon. For now, let's end with this:

Carlson's program last Thursday night involved a bad moon rising. That said, his programs had possibly been even uglier, and more dangerous, on Tuesday and Wednesday nights.

On blue tribe cable, you aren't encouraged to know such things. The New York Times and the Washington Post also avert their gaze in the face of such peculiar, disturbing events.

The mainstream press and our own blue tribe have played it this way forever. At this site, we've long said that it's an unwise way to play.

Nicolle reassured us with incantations. Last night, Rachel massively clowned.

Last Friday, shortly after noon, a very young reporter spoke at Salon. A very large tree fell in the forest, and nobody heard a sound!

Tomorrow: Tucker on Tuesday and Wednesday nights

Friday: The Post and the Times look away


  1. tl;dr

    Whoa. Your tribe's latest endeavor, widely perceived as a blatant political persecution, prompts warnings (sorry: "warnings") of political violence, in some quarters.

    How dare they! ...those who sound warnings, obviously; not those who carry out what's widely perceived as a blatant political persecution...

    ...thanks for the laughs, dear Bob. And thanks for documenting this tiny (really negligible, all things considered) portion of the recent liberal atrocities...


    1. That that widely, lowlife. Yeah to the good people of New York for hectoring (peacefully) Mao’s creepy friends off the street yesterday.,

  2. This idea that MSNBC is newly peaceful, relaxed, easy, is Somerby's conceit today. You could take a snippet of Wallace on Friday and show it together with one from a few weeks back (when she was presumably more uptight) and I'll bet viewers wouldn't be able to tell which was which. Because this isn't about how Wallace actually appeared but about what Somerby wishes to accuse her of today.

    1. He is apparently complaining because Wallace didn't try to whip her audience into a frenzy over Carlson's garbage. Somerby misses the frenetic hate-filled energy of Carlson's demagoguery and somehow thinks it is Wallace's fault for not imitating Carlson, not Carlson's for being hysterical over invented crises.

      Meanwhile, Somerby himself says nothing about Don Jr.'s publication of a photo of the Manhattan judge's daughter, making her a target of the frenzied mob whipped up by Carlson. Because this is what Republicans do, and that is apparently A-OK with Somerby, who thinks the greater crime is remaining peaceful in the face of right-wing incitement.

      Oddly, the MAGA crowd didn't come out to defend Trump yesterday. Maybe they are tired of his shenanigans too. Or maybe they just don't want to be arrested again for being Donald's fall guys.

    2. "Maybe they are tired of his shenanigans too."

      Don't hold your breath.

  3. "Also, Trump was ritualized as "the twice-impeached, disgraced ex-president."

    Well, he was twice-impeached and he is an ex-president. Any normal person would consider two impeachments a disgrace, along with the things he has said and done that they haven't gotten around to indicted him for yet. And isn't it a disgrace to have been the first ever modern president to be arrested, regardless of how his trial turns out? Many people would think so, although it doesn't seem to bother Republicans much. They are more upset that he got caught than that he committed a bunch of crimes. But on the left, we do consider crimes to be a cause for disgrace.

    1. Yes, and part of the Trump disaster is that the Press would jump from one pathetic misbehavior to another and then claim that he is just too many to keep track of. This was always a bit lame, so I salute Wallace for reminding Bob of what he would certainly , generously forget about his “disordered” friend.

  4. There is a lot more to note here, but for the 12th time, MSNBC DOES note the terrible Trump love at Fox. But it is not just Carlson, of course. They have also noted the Dominion case, but unlike Bob, not just to bemoan that FOX have been called liars.

  5. "Blue tribe viewers would be rewarded for the next two hours with a peaceful easy feeling concerning events in Wallace's narrow world."

    Why is Wallace's world narrow when she lives in the same world as everyone else in this country? And why is that supposedly a reward for us, those who watched her? Somerby doesn't explain much. This is all just assertion, trying to accuse Wallace of something without exactly saying what. Is it now a crime to be relaxed or feel peaceful? And why would that be?

    1. Somerby apparently thinks she is narrow for not watching what happens at Fox. But it seems like just business as usual over there. Trump is being portrayed as a terrible terrible victim, just like always. Why should Wallace repeat what happens at Fox, giving Carlson a second platform to reach lefty viewers? Somerby already does that.

      What pundits say is not news. It is ABOUT the news but it is not making any news. Carlson is a pundit, not a newsmaker. There is no reason to report or react to anything he says, especially when it is hateful garbage.

  6. Just to show fair’s fair, Rachel Maddow was at her giggly worst last night, and one wanted to throw something at the TV. Also should be noted, the panels on the “Clinton News Network” leaned hard for Trump last night. You never got the impression that any of them
    knew anything about white collar crime.

    1. Somerby doesn't like Rachel's giggling because giggling is a girl thing and he doesn't like women much. Do you feel the same way, @10:52? Or are you seeking balance for balance's sake and don't really care whether she giggle, chortles, or laughs in a pseudo-manly way? Carlson would giggle if he weren't so petulant all the damned time.

    2. I’m saying I can do without a grown women giggling insistently pretending She can’t say the word “Pecker” without laughing, and the rest of the panel pretending to find this amusing. Repeatedly. Same goes for the whole “tea bagging” thing Bob pummeled her for, a now rare instance of his being correct. She is not Taylor Swift and you are not 10. Grow up.

    3. Then don’t watch her, 11:41. I notice you didn’t mention whether her facts were correct. Just her giggling.

    4. Working "blue" makes it easier to get laughs, but people do laugh at sex-related jokes. Why shouldn't she use them when others do, without this sort of over-the-top disapproval? Somerby dislikes this stuff from women because of his Catholic upbringing, which divides women into two categories (Madonna, wh*re). Somerby thinks women should behave in a more ladylike manner. Grown adult women think that is misogynist bullsh*t and he demeans them when they do not (did you know Maddow stuffs cash in her pants, according to Somerby?). (* is so Somerby's new blog-screening software won't disappear my comment.)

      I thought the tea-bagging jokes were funny and about what the ludricrous members of that movement deserved, with the tea-bags hanging off their hats. They looked comical. And yes, the name of the Natl. Enquirer guy who is suppressing Trump's dick stories, is funny. I do understand, though, if men don't find this as funny as women do. It isn't as though men don't tell such jokes at women's expense, even Somerby does when he wants to disparage someone.

    5. Horse face comes to mind this week.

    6. First, I’ll watch what I want to watch and critique what I want to critique, the fact you develop fanboy crushes on your TV faves is your own problem. If you thought that teabag stuff was funny that’s a matter of taste, I believe Bob was correct that it does less the cause. I have the feeling “over the top” criticism of Maddow mean “any criticism” of your favorite star. Last night in particular called for seriousness and I didn’t need lesbian stand up night at the chuckles comedy lounge. I know, I know, what a giveaway!

    7. 12:24: well, if you want to watch people whom you despise, that’s your business. Were her facts correct? You didn’t mention anything about that.

    8. 1. You are talking to more than one person in this thread.
      2. I don't watch Maddow, don't like her much, am not a fanboy, but I also think Somerby's criticism of her is unfair, partisan, and perhaps a bit homophobic, based as it is on subjective personal reactions to her and not problems with her work. The latter have never been convincing to me. I think Somerby has targeted her as a major opponent to Trump and right wing efforts and that is why he says mean things about her (as he has for years now).
      3. Make whatever criticisms you want, but don't expect others to agree with them.
      4. I don't see why last night called for any particular seriousness. We don't have to feel bad for Trump just because his chickens are coming home to roost. He did this to himself and how he may experience consequences, just like the rest of us do for our actions.
      5. Maddow likes to do her show her way. As 11:46 said, you don't have to watch her. And no one is suppressing your freedom of speech here by suggesting that you avoid watching things you don't like. I'm pretty sure I wouldn't find Somerby funny, if I were to watch his standup routine, since I don't like the way he conducts himself here. To each his own.

    9. Maddow has gotten too many facts wrong in the past to count.

      "- Biden laptop was "Russian disinformation"
      - Lab leak was "debunked"
      - Trump had secret server with Alfa Bank
      - Russia put bounties on US soldiers"


    10. These are controversies, not mistakes of fact. A mistake of fact would be saying that Trump was impeached three times (instead of 2). A controversy is when Maddow reports one view being circulated while others hold a different view.

      For example, during the presidential debates Biden said that Trump was unwilling to pursue those bounties with Russia and Maddow reported that. Biden later decided, based on intelligence, that there was low confidence in that story. That doesn't mean that Maddow got the facts wrong. The story changed with new info.

      Reporters do the best with the information they have at a given point in time. That understanding does change with more info, as has happened with the lab leak. Even now, no one knows for sure how covid originated, but the idea that it came from a lab is not the consensus view, not considered the most likely explanation (i.e., has been debunked) even after the DOE released a new report a few weeks ago saying it had low confidence in the lab leak explanation. Most experts believe now that the lab leak is still way less likely than that it came from a natural source.

      Some of the things on your list are a difference in belief between Fox and more mainstream media sources. It has been reported on the left that leaked info from the Biden laptop have been pushed on social media by a Russian (such as the dick pics). That different info circulates on the right doesn't make this story wrong. In this case, the story was in the Wall Street Journal:

      Disagreement with what Maddow says doesn't constitute wrong facts on her part.

    11. Snoozorama with the rationalizations. You're boring.

  7. "Lucky for us blue tribe viewers, if we watch Wallace's two-hour program each day, we city mice will never be required to know what the country mice are saying."

    Carlson is not a country mouse. He was born in San Francisco, lived in San Diego (La Jolla) and went to college in CT. He now lives on a barrier island in FL, a wealthy enclave. It would be a naive mistake to think that Carlson's scripts arise from the mumblings of the conservative grassroots. Country mice are the people who send money to Trump, not the ones who make policy or come up with the crazy ideas.

    None of the voters are actually mice, Somerby's demeaning term. Given that there are way more interviews with Trump supporters than Biden supporters, we already know more about those supposed country mice than we do about progressive and liberal city mice. That is the media's fault, but oddly not what Somerby is saying today.

  8. Somerby doesn't know this, because he isn't a parent, but when a toddler throws a tantrum, the best way to diminish that behavior is to ignore it. That is what the adults at the other media are doing with Tucker Carlson and the goons on the right. There isn't going to be any civil war -- you idiot Somerby. Carlson and the right are just telling the court that if they aren't nice to Trump they will all hold their collective breaths (metaphorically speaking).

    1. Obviously, Somerby is upset with Nicolle because she isn't all scared and nervous over the threats of violence the right wing has been making. We are supposed to be scared, very afriad, and rush to do whatever will appease the right, but that isn't happening. I think Nicolle's peaceful, easy feeling is just right under the circumstances.

      Why shouldn't we all feel better knowing that our justice system works and even Trump is not above the law?

  9. Somerby calls blue voters city mice, but here is a fundraising message I just got from Jon Tester, a blue politician:

    "I grew up on my family’s farm and it’s still home today. That explains a lot about me.

    When I was a kid, I lost three fingers on my left hand while working in our family’s butcher shop. I don’t even remember putting my hand there — but I can damn sure remember rushing to a local doctor.

    Here’s why I’m telling you this: just like my $12 flattop haircut from my local barbershop back home and my collection of dirt-stained t-shirts, my background is a big part of the reason I remain grounded and focused amid the partisan politics and nonsense happening in our government.

    With all the chaos in Washington (especially now), you need somebody who will fight to protect our public lands, create good-paying jobs, and ensure rural communities have hospitals within driving distance in case of an emergency.

    I’m pretty different from most people who end up in the U.S. Senate. I’m just a dirt farmer trying to do what’s right for the people in my state and across the country.

    I’m officially running for reelection, so here’s the part where I ask: Can you become a Founding Donor of my campaign -- by splitting a contribution with Southern Progress -- to help us block Mitch McConnell from retaking the Senate?

    You don’t need ten fingers to know right from wrong and you can bet I’m going to spend every single day trying to do right by working families, farmers, students, and veterans here in Montana and across the country.

    I appreciate your support, and anything you can pitch in today will go a long way for our grassroots campaign.

    Jon Tester, Senator, Montana

    Maybe Somerby doesn't know that there are blue voters in the country? We have several of them here in CO, a blue state that has only one major city (Denver) but a lot of reasonable farmers and ranchers who despise Trump (and some who don't, like anywhere). Even our most conservative areas almost sent Lauren Boebert packing. So this country/city, rural/urban dichotomy that Somerby keeps emphasizing is a political fiction intended to disparage Democrats, many of whom are more like Jon Tester than Chuck Schumer.

    And where does Somerby himself live? Baltimore, MD, and yet he is as red as the sky with the sun setting over the Rockies. Go figure!

  10. The second amendment is evil.

  11. "Carlson's program last Thursday night involved a bad moon rising."

    Carlson is a deadhead, so a different song lyric might be more appropriate.

    1. He’s not much different than the other Fox commentators. Interesting Bob has had nothing to say about Trump’s well noted confession to Sean.

  12. Republicans are feces.

  13. This is hilarious and it should make Somerby furious, given that it includes a bunch of juvenile humor at Trump's expense:

    Scroll down to see the sketch artist's pictures of what might have happened during the closed hearing.

  14. Bill Maher, who had now made jokes about Paul Pelosi’s assault, had often warned liberals to keep their critical views nice in that the Right are violent and dangerous (,used to bother him, now I’m not sure) this isn’t exactly new. Striking that Bob wants MSNBC to protect him.,

  15. Carlson, Beck, Whitlock, and Adam Corolla are not going to be on the front lines in the War for Donald. They will stick to their virtue signaling and continue to rake in the bucks.

    Both Beck and Whitlock are saying that the Democrats “want you to strike out” and “If that's what they want, let's get to it."

    “Why? Because then they can close the cage."

    So, Beck and Whitlock are urging right wingers …to do exactly what the Democrats want them to do, and get themselves “caged”? Is that great advice?

    Nothing happened yesterday.

    Are right wingers really so miserable that they need to start some sort of war? They have it pretty good.

    Even Somerby scoffed a bit at Beck. Given that the idea of a shooting war is ludicrous virtue signaling, Somerby just seems to be saying nothing more profound than “right wingers are upset that Trump was indicted and definitely won’t vote for Democrats now.”

  16. Arkansas Trump-lite governor Huckabee-Sanders eagerly accepted the promise of federal disaster relief money from the hated Demonrat Deep Stater Joe Biden, after last week’s devastating tornados.

    But once that money gets deposited, man, that’s when the shooting war is gonna start!

    (Unless another tornado intervenes…but then totally, after that…)

  17. All in all, a lazy cut-and-paste of yesterday's first post.

    1. That's what he does nearly every day.

  18. One reason a violent protest never materialized is because, contrary to Somerby’s embellished version, Whitlock’s “rant” was in reality a sleepy, low energy recitation of right wing talking points, repeated animatronically. When the most passion you can muster is paint by numbers, you’re not likely to inspire.