May 4, 2019

Whatever he thinks of the Mueller report and the Russia investigation, why on earth would Very Serious Journalist Glenn Greenwald team up with white nationalist hero, liar and gay basher Tucker Carlson to attack other, far more legitimate journalists and Democrats? We may have an answer.

Greenwald has been railing against the Trump/Russia story since before the 2016 election and in ways that have endeared him to Fox’s prime time Trump triumvirate: Sean Hannity, Laura Ingraham and Carlson. The latter has repeatedly hosted Greenwald for some friendly chats demonizing the left, the mainstream media and the Russia investigation. Carlson also helped promote the dog rescue/homeless employment operation run by Greenwald and his husband and called it “the lord’s work.” (See, Carlson doesn't hate all gays!)

Thursday night, Greenwald appeared in studio to help Carlson fight the war on the Russia investigation (and the left and the media) with flat-out falsehoods: For example, Greenwald told Carlson last night, “what Mueller found was that the entire conspiracy theory was a hoax, that there's no evidence to establish that it's true.” Greenwald got a delighted laugh from Carlson by going on to accuse the media of making "tons of money exploiting people like con artists, and now it's kind of like the leader of an apocalyptic Doomsday cult, who keeps promising the world is going to end on a certain date and then the day comes and the world still goes."

Greenwald’s interpretation is either sloppy, ignorant or dishonest or some combination thereof. He should know that Mueller did not say there was “no evidence” of conspiracy, he said the investigation “did not establish” a conspiracy. That is not the same as “no evidence” and Greenwald should know better. In fact, Mueller explicitly said so in his report:

Although the investigation established that the Russian government perceived it would benefit from a Trump presidency and worked to secure that outcome, and that the Campaign expected it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian efforts, the investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities.

A statement that the investigation did not establish particular facts does not mean there was no evidence of those facts. (Vol I, pages 1-2, my emphases added)

In reality, Mueller found a lot of alarming behavior between Trump and the Russians. As Vox pointed out, there is plenty of evidence that the Trump campaign actively worked with the Russian government to improve its chances of winning that did not amount to a crime: “The report is littered with evidence Trump and his staff were open to Russian interference in the election. Mueller explicitly concludes that ‘the Campaign expected it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian effort.’”

How on earth did Greenwald miss all that? Greenwald may be deeply annoying, self-righteous, and sanctimonious but he is not stupid or ignorant.

But putting that aside, why would any self-respecting journalist, which is what Greenwald considers himself (and he won a Pulitzer Prize to show for it) go on Fox News to air such beliefs with such inflammatory, Fox-friendly rhetoric? It may well be that Greenwald comes to his opinions honestly (although self-servingly, as I’ll explain in a bit). But surely he must know that Fox, the network of the debunked Seth Rich smears, birtherism and Benghazi bends its “analysis” to fit its politics. Even Carlson has to know that Fox would be shouting “Lock her up!” 24/7 if Hillary Clinton’s name replaced Trump's in the Mueller report.

Yet Greenwald sounded more interested in pleasing Fox News viewers or the Fan in Chief last night than in providing facts:

GREENWALD: I think the reason that you're seeing so much intense rage toward Bill Barr is because they know what he's now going to do, which is what journalists should be doing, and at least some of us are which is asking the question, which is now for me the central question in American politics -- how is it that our discourse has been drowned out for almost three years by a conspiracy theory or really a set of conspiracy theories as inflammatory and as dangerous as you can possibly get? That turned out to be totally untrue.

I’ve been very critical of Donna Brazile for not challenging Fox’s agenda but at least she counters the spin to some degree during her appearances. If Greenwald has any concerns about Carlson spreading blatant white nationalism, misinformation or misogyny, he didn’t think it worth mentioning.

An excellent Alternet post suggests an explanation for Greenwald’s head-scratching behavior:

There are two more plausible explanations [rather than a desire to support Trump], both of which may be true. He knows he was a part of Russia’s efforts to influence the 2016 election, spreading hacked emails from the Russian sock puppet Guccifer 2.0. He’s been in a defensive crouch ever since, which also stems from his ideological alliance with WikiLeaks. And second, he hates the Democratic Party so much that he’s been warped into playing a role in the right-wing media’s defense and promotion of Trump.

Is Greenwald too naïve to realize he is providing a helping hand to Fox’s propaganda (and thus Trump’s PR messaging) with every such appearance? Or does he just not care? Oh, and by the way? Trump just boasted about a lengthy phone chat with Vladimir Putin. It lasted more than an hour and covered the “Russian hoax.” Think the country’s most unpopular man to sit in the Oval Office won’t be looking for more help from his Election BFF?

Whatever Greenwald’s justification or rationalization for this behavior, he really should reconsider.

Watch Greenwald act as a Fox News pawn above, from the May 2, 2019 Tucker Carlson Tonight.

(Transcript excerpts via Fox News)

Republished with permission from News Hounds.

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