I hate learning that I am a peddler of conventional wisdom, but apparently I am: I read the long NYT thing on Tucker Carlson and realized my belief that Tucker is on the downslope of his career is just that:
But there’s good reason to believe Mr. Carlson will be the exception that proves the rule. For one thing, unlike previous stars who have left Fox News, Mr. Carlson departed when he was still at the height of his power, making his firing all the more sudden and shocking. Three days before his sacking, he gave the keynote address at the Heritage Foundation’s 50th anniversary gala. Two weeks before that, he browbeat Texas’ Republican governor to issue a pardon to a man who had been convicted of murdering a Black Lives Matter protester in Austin.
More important, at Fox, he exercised power in ways that were new and unique for a cable star. He was a sophisticated political operator as much as he was a talented television host — to an astonishingly unsettling degree, as he continued to thrive while making racist and sexist comments and earning the praise of neo-Nazis. Like Donald Trump — to say nothing of other Republican politicians and conservative media figures — he gave voice to an anger, sense of grievance and conspiratorial mind-set that resonated with many Americans, particularly those on the far right. Unlike Mr. Trump — not to mention his motley crew of cheerleaders and imitators — Mr. Carlson developed and articulated a coherent political ideology that could prove more lasting, and influential, than any cult of personality. Mr. Carlson has left Fox News. But his dark and outsize influence on the conservative movement — and on American politics — is hardly over.
Oh, well. I’ve been wrong before. I hope I’m not, in this case, because I’d really not like to see that guy’s mug anymore. And to think I felt so, so hopeful after the November elections.
Anyway. My friend who worked in publishing gave me a name for those things they sell in the checkout lines of grocery stores, the ones that aren’t magazines, exactly, but not books, either: Bookazines. One-off publications, often under a trusted brand (Cook’s Illustrated has zillions of ‘zines), dedicated to a single topic. I have no idea if Meredith, now known as Dotdash Meredith, published this, but it was on their rack on Saturday:
That guy. Why do they all look like that? For a demographic whose self-image is of rugged individualism, why do they ALL look like that? Shaved head, beard, perma-scowl. Anyway, I snapped a pic and posted it on Twitter, and as sometimes happens, a bell rang in the back of my crowded brain. I got into my picture archives and whaddaya know, March 2020:
Same typeface, same subtitle (“survival guide”), same point of sale: My local Kroger, in a safe suburb. Yes, people died of Covid here, but in far fewer numbers than in our next-door neighbor, poor, black Detroit. And if you feel you need to “prep” here, I offer this advice often offered on the internet: Touch grass. Go outdoors, feel the breeze on your face. Consider that maybe when a ball rolls into your yard, you don’t need to shoot the children who lost control of it.
Man, doesn’t that sound fatuous? Of course you need to shoot those people, just as you need to shoot your neighbors when they object to you firing you AR-15 (!!!) in your yard (!!!!) because you woke their baby:
The attack happened near the town of Cleveland, north of Houston, on a street where some residents say neighbors often unwind by firing off guns.
Goddamn, I’m downgrading Texas from “wouldn’t visit with an engraved invitation” to “don’t even want to fly over in an airplane at 36,000 feet.” The mountains of Afghanistan sound less dangerous.
Moving on, I googled the coronation date for King Charles and came up with a Wikipedia page that is truly a one-stop shop for everything you need to know about the event, coming this Saturday, the 6th. The coronation episode of “The Crown” is my favorite of favorites — when all the crowned heads put on their coronets! the bitterness of the abdicated ex-king! — and while I don’t expect to be glued to whatever screen carries Charles’, I will likely watch the highlight reel. The wiki, no doubt curated by an army of regal-philes, has deets galore:
Due to Elizabeth’s advanced age, Charles’s coronation has been planned for years, under the code name Operation Golden Orb.
…Charles will be attended by four pages of honour. They are Prince George of Wales, Lord Oliver Cholmondeley (son of the Marquess and Marchioness of Cholmondeley), Nicholas Barclay (grandson of Sarah Troughton), and Ralph Tollemache (son of the Hon. Edward Tollemache). Camilla will also be attended by four pages of honour.
(I chuckled over that one, only because I chuckle every time I see “Cholmondeley” spelled out. It’s pronounced “chumley.”)
Of course, Camilla will get her due, as well:
The Queen will be anointed without a screen or canopy and then presented with the Queen Consort’s Ring. She will then be crowned by the archbishop of Canterbury using Queen Mary’s Crown. The crown was removed from display at the Tower of London for modification work in February 2023. The crown will be reset with the Cullinan III, IV and V diamonds and four of its detachable arches will be removed. It will be the first time a queen is crowned using another consort’s crown since 1727, when Caroline of Ansbach used the Crown of Mary of Modena. The decision not to use the Crown of Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother avoids a potential diplomatic dispute with Pakistan, Afghanistan and India, which have all made claims of ownership of the Koh-i-Noor diamond in the past. This will be the first coronation of a consort since that of Queen Elizabeth (later known as the Queen Mother) in 1937. Camilla will be handed the Queen Consort’s Sceptre with Cross and the Queen Consort’s Rod with Dove, before walking over to her own throne beside the King, where she will sit.
OMG I can only imagine the Cult of Diana will seethe over this one! It’s gonna be great. I can’t wait.
Hope I live that long! Better get my Prepper Survival Guide to help in case there’s a zombie apocalypse before then.
OK, then, the world await us, but likely not until tomorrow. Have a great week, all.