If the shoe fits, the idiom goes, wear it.
The wearer, in this case, would be Brian Stelter. Stelter, as you may know, is the host of CNN’s risibly named “Reliable Sources.” (If Hunter S. Thompson were still among the living, one suspects CNN would have given him a show called “Sobriety Today,” judging by how reliable and well-sourced Mr. Stelter’s punditry tends to be.)
He’s also a big fan of President Joe Biden’s Disinformation Governance Board — the proposed, much-derided “Ministry of Truth,” which may or may not still be an extant thing, depending on whom you listen to.
The shoe, in this case, is a quote from George Orwell’s “Nineteen Eighty-Four” — the dystopian novel from which the concept of a “Ministry of Truth” emerged, for those of you who endured a Common Core education. And the man who helped pair the dystopian shoe to the foot of its wearer is Fox News host Tucker Carlson.
During his Monday show, Carlson noted that the recently departed head of the Disinformation Governance Board, Nina Jankowicz was “by far the most entertaining person Joe Biden has appointed to anything.”
Unfortunately, she was a bit too entertaining; Carlson noted that Jankowicz “was so ridiculous, and provably so, that she’s out.”
In case you missed it, Jankowicz was prone to fun mistakes like this attempt at disinformation-related musical theater parody, as well as less-amusing faux pas like repeatedly declaring the Hunter Biden laptop a piece of Russian disinformation or saying that, as a verified Twitter user, she should be able to “edit” or “add context” to tweets she doesn’t like from non-verified sources:
— James Woods (@RealJamesWoods) April 29, 2022
(Here at The Western Journal, we’ve been on top of Biden’s Disinformation Governance Board from the beginning and dismantling the Orwellian bent behind it — as well as the profound unsuitability of Jankowicz to even be considered as its head. We’ll continue opposing any government effort to limit speech. You can help us by subscribing.)
“But at CNN, they are sad. They wanted her there forever,” Carlson continued. “And the eunuch [Stelter] is particularly exercised over this.”
Carlson then played Stelter’s take on the Disinformation Governance Board, which he characterized as a righteous effort quashed by a “conservative meme.”
“This Department of Homeland Security board that was gonna try to bring together different parts of the government and what they’re doing to try to stop people from getting tricked by lies on the internet sounded logical, but this thing was doomed to fail. It became a conservative meme, they called it the ‘Ministry of Truth,’” Stelter said.
This isn’t the first time Stelter has railed against those questioning the Disinformation Governance Board, either. Earlier in the month, he said it was “mostly a Fox world story” and that the board “sounds like common sense”:
“But when I Google this, all I see is, like, ‘Joe Biden’s Ministry of Truth,’ and ‘they’re gonna’ … — there’s this incredible backlash to something that sounds like a basic government bureaucracy,” Stelter said.
Carlson mocked Stelter’s rhetoric about stopping people from being “tricked by lies,” dismissing the idea we needed “some 80-year-old guy who can’t even speak a complete sentence to help me figure out what’s real.”
“That’s his view, he loved the idea of a Ministry of Truth,” Carlson said of Stelter.
“Brian Stelter is in fact, assuming he’s a real person, basically lifted directly from the pages of ‘Nineteen Eighty-Four,’ the Orwell novel. In the novel, the eunuch is called Tom Parsons. Parsons works as a flack for the Ministry of Truth and here’s how George Orwell, almost 80 years ago, describes Parsons. And as we read this, ask yourself, ‘does this sound like anybody who has a weekend show on CNN?’”
The Orwell quote: “He was a fattish but active man of paralyzing stupidity, a mass of imbecile enthusiasms. One of those completely unquestioning, devoted drudges on whom, more even than on the Thought Police, the stability of the Party depended.”
“Now, we’re not saying that’s a perfect, word-for-word description of someone who currently has a media analysis show on CNN, we’re gonna let you judge,” Carlson said.
“But in case you’re wondering, was George Orwell a prophet? Yeah, clearly he was.”
In a nutshell, that’s Stelter: An adipose man who believes he and his ilk ought to be the gatekeepers of all you see and hear in the media, except that his “gatekeeping” involves little more than lazily amplifying the Democrats’ message.
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It’s important to point out that the physical descriptions are not what is really important here. Physical attributes are irrelevant when it comes to intellect and honesty.
What matters here is the “paralyzing stupidity” — utter venality, in Stelter’s case — of characters who have so willingly substituted the dishonesty of their political masters for their own judgment, and expect others to go along.
(In the novel, Parsons ends up jailed for his own thought crimes, and actually defends the Party for his own arrest. Sadly, It isn’t all that hard to see Stelter in that role either.)
If Stelter were a declared pundit, fine. Carlson obviously isn’t pretending to be an unbiased source of information, after all.
The problem is that Stelter is nominally a media analyst, someone who puts himself forth as a level-headed arbiter of information quality. And he seems to really believe all he’s doing is telling you what news is fit to consume.
It’s just that all the news that’s fit to consume, at least from his view, happens to be from establishment-controlled media which skews heavily to the left.
The Tom Parsons shoe, alas, fits Stelter all too well.