Tucker Carlson on Spiked Smear Job: 'I Never Ask My Reporters Where They Get Stuff'
Tucker Carlson, founder of the right-wing Web site, The Daily Caller, was a man on a mission -- a mission to discredit The New Yorker's Jane Mayer, who wrote a much-discussed article last summer on the role of Charles and David Koch in bankrolling the Tea Party movement. Apparently, the mission failed when his reporter failed to come up with the goods.
On Monday, Carlson was breathlessly touting a coming take-down of Mayer, according to Keith Kelly of the New York Post, a story that would purportedly demonstrate that Mayer had plagiarized Lee Fang of Think Progress and Paula Dwyer of BusinessWeek. According to Kelly, Carlson told him that this would be no mere right-wing hit on a liberal writer. "It's a bigger story than that," Carlson reportedly told Kelly. "From what I know at this point, it's an extensive piece."
By yesterday, however, the piece was spiked, never to see the light of the internets. Apparently, both Fang and Dwyer had nothing but praise for Mayer, and neither thought themselves to have been plagiarized. In fact, Mayer even cites Fang in her story.
Perhaps most telling of Carlson's operating methods was this comment, quoted by Kelly when asked of the source of the initial allegations:
In one email, "Olbermann" says that Griffin is "not my boss (thank god), nor is he intellectually qualified to be...I'll be anchoring on election night 2012, long after Phil Griffin has moved on to a job for which he's actually qualified, perhaps on QVC."
Carlson's patrons at the Cato Institute apparently have no qualms with his antics, which seem increasingly desperate.