The chasm between Fox News and reality continues to grow wider every day. Their hosts and guests are devoted to spreading flagrant falsehoods and easily refuted disinformation that contributes massively to the volume of sheer ignorance in America. But worse, it isn’t just idiocy-inducing, it’s dangerous, and even deadly.
On Monday’s edition of Tucker Carlson’s White Nationalist Hour on Fox News (video below), he interviewed a frequent guest, Alex Berenson, whose primary credential for appearing on Fox is his facility for lying about subjects for which he has no knowledge or experience. In this case it’s the coronavirus pandemic. That’s a subject where studies have proven that watching Fox News actually increases fatalities.
Berenson’s prior Fox outings have seen him declaring that masks don’t work, asserting that lockdowns are ineffective and political, and advocating herd immunity by everyone deliberately getting infected. Were Berenson’s advice to be taken tens, maybe hundreds, of thousands more Americans would be dead. But that hasn’t stopped him from disgorging his anti-scientific blather, which Carlson eagerly agrees with.
Carlson introduced Berenson, noting that he was “baffled” by the new CDC guidance for those who have been fully vaccinated. Which might explain Carlson’s perpetual facial contortion. Berenson explained it to Carlson saying that the guidelines are “unrealistic” and that the vaccines themselves are phony:
“It is increasingly clear that the vaccines aren’t quite as effective as that 95% headline figure given. So the honest thing to do say is ‘Look vaccines aren’t 95% effective. They’re not gonna be the miracle that ends this tomorrow, or in a week or a month. We’re still gonna have to live with this on some level.'”
Berenson went on to offer the recklessly fatal advise that “You can drop a lot of the nonsense that we’ve been telling you need to do for the last year,” and that the CDC’s guidance is “totally unrealistic.” To which Carlson replied, in a moment of unintended self-awareness, “Yes, well, lying begets lying.” And who would know that better than Carlson?
Berenson has degrees in economics and history, but nothing relating to medicine or healthcare. Yet he he is presented as an expert on infectious diseases and pandemic management. His shoddy analysis contradicts doctors and epidemiologists with decades of actual relevant experience. But more troubling is that the Fox babble breeds public reluctance to get the vaccine that will not only protect them and their families, it will put the whole nation on a path to normality as virus transmission recedes and variants are suppressed.
Berenson and Carlson pretend to be interested in people being able to live more normal lives, but what they propose will only make that less likely, and only after more tragic loss of life. Why anyone would listen to Berenson is beyond comprehension. Last October he tweeted that projections of “500,000 US #Covid deaths by spring” was an example of the experts being “wrong over and over.”
Berenson may have a point. The actual number to date is more than 525,000, and it isn’t even Spring yet. That’s the sort of “expertise” that Fox News viewers are being fed on a daily basis. It’s a diet of dangerously ignorant lies driven by right-wing politics and ratings. And the sad part is that these cretins simply don’t care how many people suffer due to their egos and greed.
For good measure, in the same program Carlson displayed his rank bigotry by complaining about essential workers being prioritized for vaccine distribution. What bothered him about this is that many people in “essential” occupations are racial and ethnic minorities. Carlson concluded, therefore, that white people (who are currently way over-represented among those vaccinated) would be adversely affected. He called it “eugenics.” And aside from this being a disgusting display of overt racism, it’s also hypocrisy on a grand scale. After all, he doesn’t believe the vaccine is actually effective or needed. So what’s he bitching about? Other than his perception that people of color are being treated fairly for once.
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jfc. Berensen tells Tucker's huge audience that "It is increasingly clear that the vaccines aren't quite as effective as that 95% headline number," adds, "CDC is very afraid that there will be cases of people getting vaccinated and sick or dying, as has happened in Israel." pic.twitter.com/WYo2FH0bGg
— Matthew Gertz (@MattGertz) March 9, 2021
How Fox News Deceives and Controls Their Flock:
Fox Nation vs. Reality: The Fox News Cult of Ignorance.
Available now at Amazon.