Tucker Carlson’s prostitution problem

Tucker Carlson burst onto the CNN airwaves in the mid 1990s. A cherubic fresh-faced conservative whose main purpose seemed to be laying up easy shots for the liberal pundits.

Then Carlson’s star faded with his boyish good looks. His career on CNN came to an abrupt close after Jon Stewart roasted him on Crossfire. By then, the Conservative movement was concentrated on bilking angry white males with overpriced investments in gold coins. The conservative noise machine had no use for the frivolous bow-tie-clad pundit, preferring female shock pundits who were easy on the eye.

Most conservative pundits can rely on ‘wingnut welfare’, the funds that Scaife, the Koch brothers and other billionaires provide to those who sing the praises of parasites like themselves. But Carlson had made himself apostate during the George W. Bush administration. Carlson’s account of Bush mocking the execution of Karla Faye Tucker gave the world a pre-election insight into a sick mind the Bush campaign was desperate to hide.

Tucker Carlson by Gage Skidmore.

Tucker Carlson by Gage Skidmore.

By the end of the Bush administration there was no space left for Carlson in the world of cable news. Too much of a lightweight for CNN and MSNBC, and not quite talented enough to claim a spot as a regular Fox News anchor. With no front-rank anchor seat on offer, Carlson started his own outlet, The Daily Caller, which was originally positioned as a right-leaning alternative to The Huffington Post.

Following the death of conservative activist Andrew Breitbart in March 2012, The Daily Caller made a concerted bid to replace him in the yellow journalism stakes. A few months after Breitbart’s death, Daily Caller “journalist” Neil Munro interrupted the President during a press conference for no apparent reason other than demonstrating his hostility.

It takes more than being rude to grab Brietbart’s crown, however. Last November, the Daily Caller claimed that Senator Bob Menendez (D-NJ) had slept with three prostitutes while visiting the Dominican Republic. The allegations were repeated ad-nauseam in typical right-wing echo chamber fashion, which some might have considered rather odd given Carlson’s earlier opinion on whether a Senator consorting with prostitutes was a legitimate news story:

CARLSON: I wish David Vitter were a Democrat. I wish he were a liberal Democrat. I wish he were Russ Feingold, because then I would defend him every bit as zealously as I am defending not what David Vitter did, but his right to be unbothered by the rest of us for something that`s none of our business.

Go read the whole thing on Digby. This might count as a dramatic reverse of principles, but Carlson has finally learned that you have to check your principles at the door before the movement conservative club lets you inside.

Now this might have simply remained an example of how the GOP propaganda machine works, but it then became something else entirely as the Daily Caller’s story fell apart.

First one, and then all three, of the prostitutes said that they had been paid to lie about having sex with Menendez. None of the women had even met him. But Carlson stood by his story, refusing to allow it to be spoiled by such a little thing as evidence showing it to be a fraud. And then last week, Melanio Figueroa, the Dominican lawyer at the center of the scandal, not only said that he had paid the women to lie, but claimed that he had been paid $5,000 by the Daily Caller to do so.

Carlson has naturally taken great great offense at the suggestion he would have fabricated the story. There is of course only the word of a self-confessed liar against his. Then again, Carlson does not appear to notice the irony in the fact that for three months he was loudly telling the world that the word of Figueroa, the self-confessed lliar, and three prostitutes was more credible than the word of a US senator. But now that Carlson’s name is being dragged through the mud, suddenly Figueroa’s word is of no account.  Funny how things change.

In the end, the story is about prostitution — just not the type that involves sex.

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  • Wildeye

    “In the end, the story is about prostitution — just not the type that involves sex.”

    Well said and nicely done!

  • http://twitter.com/BillFromDover Bill from Dover

    And would that be a promotion from a worm to a rat?

  • http://twitter.com/BillFromDover Bill from Dover

    “I can’t really see any value in what Carlson does for a living.”

    He does something for a living?

  • 1nancy2

    I never could stand that little, nasty weasel. Even happier I don’t have to see his face on my TV.

  • SkippyFlipjack

    Great post.

  • http://twitter.com/Hyta_n Hyta N

    No one knows the actual truth from reading this article. All we know is that the article makes a claim. HOWEVER there are other sides to this story. Now going after someone like Menendez is going to create all kinds of defensive moves by those under fire. Menendez isn’t going down easily, and the FACT that the Dr who benefited by gaining an import/export position through his donations to one particular party including individuals beyond Menendez does not make Menendez look ultra clean either. So now we are saying Senators don’t lie? Hello? Anybody home upstairs? They all lie, Senators, article authors, all of them. Why they even made propaganda inside the US to US citizens allowed in the most recent NDAA. Anyway what does Carlson have to say about this? http://dailycaller.com/2013/03/22/lawyer-behind-menendez-prostitution-allegations-recants-blames-news-organizations/

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Leonard-Waks/1523779699 Leonard Waks

    This story was as phony as a $3 bill right from the beginning. All three girls conveniently testified that they had turned 18 just AFTER Menendez paid them for sex. I mean, its one thing having your ducks lined up in a row, and another thing watching your ducks behave like trained seals. Anybody who believed this story in the first place is a real jerk.

  • http://poodyheads.wordpress.com/ Papa Bear

    Damn straight! At least whores perform a service…

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    Tucker’s Pucker just made the ‘D’ list.

  • cole3244

    you are correct, i apologize.

  • olandp

    Again, that is insulting to whores.

  • silas1898

    Indeed. Hard to believe that was 14 long years ago and the echo chamber becomes more and more insulated. The red meat of those “olden days” looks so tame today.

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    Re: your last point. Yes, apparently that was the rationale for revealing Shrub’s mocking taunt, that it would be more bloody red meat for the GOP base masses. “Oooh, he’s tough and has no mercy for a convicted murderer!” What idiots like Carlson didn’t realize at the time was how it would be perceived by people who were undecided about Bush — which is one of the occupational hazards of living inside the right-wing echo chamber.

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    Well, it seems that bribing people to make false criminal allegations against a sitting member of Congress is considered a matter serious enough for FBI investigation.

    I’d love to see that preening hypocrite Carlson get what he deserves.

  • silas1898

    Little Tucker. Failure from the Alex Keaton School of Republican suck-ups. It’s sad how the wingnut punditocracy is always wrong, yet the corporate media drools all over them.

    He should be prosecuted, if the money trail leads to him. Even if he gets off or gets a slap on the wrist, it would be worth it. Maybe diaper boy will help him out.
    We do owe him a small debt for the Karla Faye Tucker insight, even though the idiot probably thought it made Dumbya look tough or something.

  • cole3244

    carlson is not a prostitute they have a code and are professional, he is a whore, a whore of the worst kind, one that will say and do anything to smear the opposition, ergo he is a conservative, also in the unethical, immoral, & pompus category.

  • Snarki, child of Loki

    If Tucker ran afoul of FCP, the monetary damages from libel will be the least of his worries. Federal prosecutors can bring incredible pressure to bear on witnesses, and given the quality of Tucker’s associates, you can be sure he’ll get ratted out.

  • MyrddinWilt

    That is why I said that he was prostituting himself. I didn’t call him a whore as most whores do at least attempt to bring their customer’s pleasure. I can’t really see any value in what Carlson does for a living.

  • melbach007

    me read you long time.

  • olandp

    That is insulting to whores.

  • olandp

    I thought, for a moment, from the headline that hookers were refusing him as a client, but that probably wouldn’t be news. As for dragging Tucker’s “name through the mud,” how can you drag something through the mud when it actually lives there. Yellow journalism would what Tucker aspires to, it would require a giant step up.

  • MyrddinWilt

    If the allegation that the Daily Caller paid money to the source knowing the story to be false was proven to be true, even the ‘public figure’ defense would not apply.

    Jail time is rather less likely. Telling deliberate lies is not a criminal matter or else Fox News would have been out of business long ago.

  • HeartlandLiberal

    This whole article is one fantastic, good piece of writing, leading up to the final punch line sentence. Outstanding reporting and analysis on an issue. I have to think of comparing it to Jonathan Swift’s famous style of leading the reader in step by step, than whacking them with the truth at the end.

    By the way, comparing Tucker to a whore seems awfully appropriate. That is how the right wing works. Breitbart and his minions. The astroturf orgs that created the Tea Party. Faux Noise Nutwork.. All whores for the dollars of the Koch brothers and their ilk.

  • Snarki, child of Loki

    If Tucker/Daily Caller paid bribes in DR to further their business interests, that is a violation of the FOREIGN CORRUPT PRACTICES ACT.

    I’m sure a detailed and thorough examination of their books and bank account records will resolve this, followed by federal indictments, conviction, and some vacation time in Club Fed for BowTieBoy.

    Don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time, ya little Tucker.

  • http://nomadicpolitics.blogspot.com/ Nomad

    Wonderful article. I enjoyed it very much.

  • http://twitter.com/BrianCBock Brian C. Bock

    I do think we should judge Little Tucker by his own standards. A Dominican Lawyer says Tucker’s organization paid to have hookers frame the senator. Well, if the baseless accusation of a Domincan lawyer is good enough for Tucker, it’s for me!

    And supposedly, it was someone named CARLOS who worked for the Daily Caller.

    C-A-R-L-O-S …. Hmmmm….
    C-A-R-L-S-O (N)?

  • Quilla

    Heh. Petard.

  • samiinh

    T.C. is a first class d-bag, always has been always will be.

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