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Monday, December 09, 2019

Tag: kanye west

Survey Shows Steep Rise In 'Classical Fascist' Anti-Semitic Opinion Among Americans

You may have gotten the uneasy sense in recent months that not only are we awash in a rising tide of antisemitism—from Kanye West’s diatribes to Donald Trump’s dinner date with both West and white nationalist Nick Fuentes to the return of neofascist hatemongers to Twitter—but that the tide is being amplified by a broader normalization of antisemitic tropes, judging from the gleeful hatefulness of the once-banned bigots who have come flooding back to Twitter under Elon Musk’s ownership.

You’re not mistaken. A new survey by the Anti-Defamation League has found that Americans’ beliefs in antisemitic tropes has increased dramatically since 2019, with 85 percent of the respondents saying they believe at least one anti-Jewish stereotype, compared with only 61 percent three years ago. They believe in more of them, too: Some 20 percent of Americans believe in at least six of the most common tropes, a sharp increase from 2019, when only 11 percent did.

Matt Williams, vice president of the ADL’s year-old Center for Antisemitism Research, told The Washington Post that the survey shows “antisemitism in its classical fascist form is emerging again in American society, where Jews are too secretive and powerful, working against interests of others, not sharing values, exploiting — the classic conspiratorial tropes.”

He added: “One of the findings of this report is that antisemitism in that classic, conspiratorial sense is far more widespread than anti-Israel sentiment.”

Titled “Antisemitic Attitudes in America: Topline Findings,” the survey found that, while there are still substantial rates of Israel-focused antisemitism, anti-Jewish sentiment revolving around longstanding bigoted stereotypes has notably surged. In particular, anti-Israel sentiments have apparently taken root among young people—who are nonetheless prone to embracing tropes. The two kinds of antisemitism “overlap significantly,” the study finds:

There is a nearly 40 percent correlation between belief in anti-Jewish tropes and anti-Israel belief, meaning that a substantial number of people who believe anti-Jewish tropes also have negative attitudes toward Israel.

It found that “young adults have more anti-Israel sentiment than older generations, and only marginally less belief in anti-Jewish tropes”:

While young adults (between the ages of 18 and 30) show less belief in anti-Jewish tropes (18 percent believe six or more tropes) than older adults (20 percent believe six or more tropes), the difference is substantially less than measured in previous studies. Additionally, young adults hold significantly more anti-Israel sentiment than older adults, with 21 percent and 11 percent agreeing with five or more anti-Israel statements, respectively.

The survey tested 4,000 respondents on whether they agreed with a list of sentiments that represent common antisemitic tropes:

  • Jews stick together more than other Americans.
  • Jews are not as honest as other businesspeople.
  • Jews are not warm and friendly.
  • Jews have a lot of irritating faults.
  • Jews are more willing than others to use shady practices to get what they want.
  • Jews have too much power in the United States today.
  • Jews don’t care what happens to anyone but their own kind.
  • Jews have too much control and influence on Wall Street.
  • Jews in business are so shrewd that others do not have a fair chance at competition.
  • Jews have too much power in the business world.
  • Jews do not share my values.
  • Jews always like to be at the head of things.
  • Jews are more loyal to Israel than to America.
  • Jews in business go out of their way to hire other Jews.

The ADL has conducted this survey periodically since 1964. The sharp increase in the number of people who believe at least six of these tropes between 2019 and 2022 (from 11 percent to 20 percent) puts those numbers at the highest they have been since 1992. As recently as 2014, that number was at nine percent.

“It used to be that older Americans harbored more antisemitic views. The hypothesis was that antisemitism declined in the 1990s, the 2000s, because there was this new generation of more tolerant people. It shows younger people are much closer now to what older people think. My hypothesis is there is a cultural shift, fed maybe by technology and social media. The gap is disappearing,” Tulane professor Ilana Horwitz, one of the survey’s reviewers, told The Washington Post.

“I like to tell my students: Kanye has more followers on Instagram than there are Jewish people in the world. So the extent to which Americans seem to believe these conspiratorial views about Jews is alarming,” she said. While Ye has more than 18 million followers on Instagram, he was recently booted from Twitter by Musk after tweeting blatantly antisemitic memes.

In spite of that singular act, Twitter nonetheless has been deluged with hateful content since Musk’s takeover—particularly as Musk has restored the accounts of notorious neofascist hatemongers like Andrew Anglin. At the same time, Musk has continued to wink and nudge in the direction of the QAnon conspiracism cult, which is riddled with antisemitic beliefs.

Social media, however, are not the only source of this antisemitic tide. These attitudes have been embraced by mainstream Republican politicians and pundits—often in the process of promoting COVID denialism—including Fox News’ Tucker Carlson, who has made a habit out of promoting white-nationalist propaganda under the guise of criticizing liberals, ranging from “replacement theory” to far-right “masculinity” cults.

Earlier data from 2021 collected by the Anti-Defamation League demonstrates that recorded antisemitic incidents reached a 40-year peak in 2021—and the uptick primarily began in 2015, with Trump’s arrival on the political scene.

“Historians have called the period between World War I and World War II the ‘high tide’ of American antisemitism. I think we may have to rename that: I think we are at the moment living in the high tide of American antisemitism,” Pamela Nadell, the director of the Jewish studies program at American University, told Zack Beauchamp at Vox.

Reprinted with permission from Daily Kos.

Musk's Sudden Ban Of Kanye For Anti-Semitism Enrages Right-Wing Pundits

Rapper Ye’s December 2 ban from Twitter has become almost an act of martyrdom for some right-wing figures who have openly stated that antisemitic rants should be allowed on Musk’s free speech platform.

In the lead-up to his acquisition of Twitter, Musk declared himself a “free speech absolutist,” and soon began offering a “general amnesty” to previously banned accounts once he became the Chief Twit. The move was celebrated by right-wing figures who saw his takeover as a chance to reclaim a presence on the platform.

Despite Musk’s promises to ensure Twitter doesn’t become a “free-for-all hellscape,” harassment, hate speech, and conspiracy theories have flourished on the platform since he took charge. Accounts of a number of previously banned far-right and fringe actors have been restored, while some progressive and anti-fascist users have been hit with seemingly random and unsubstantiated bans.

Prior to Musk’s acquisition, Ye’s account had been temporarily restricted after an antisemitic tweet. His profile and tweets remained visible, but he was unable to create new posts. The post has since been deleted and Ye started tweeting again on November 20. (Musk claimed that Twitter made the decision to restore Ye’s account prior to his takeover.)

Ye’s return to Twitter commenced with his now-infamous “Shalom” tweet, and it was quickly followed by his two separate interviews packed with antisemitic tirades, including professing his admiration for Adolf Hitler. It was not until Ye tweeted a picture of a swastika interlaced with a Star of David that Musk banned his account on the grounds that the post promoted violence.

After Ye’s ban, many right-wing outlets were quick to cry foul on Musk for supposedly walking back his promises for a free speech platform. Some even took their criticism a step further and excused Ye’s post, incorrectly suggesting that his First Amendment right to free speech prevents Musk from banning him — as the new Twitter CEO has vocally opposed “censorship that goes far beyond the law” — or saying that the comments did not rise to the level of inciting violence. Fringe social media users similarly berated Musk’s decision, with some posts echoing the same antisemitism that got Ye banned. Nick Fuentes, a known white supremacist who has been working closely with Ye, lambasted Musk for bowing to “high pressure activist groups (Jewish)” and making Twitter a “controlled platform.”

While many of those critical of Ye’s ban have been quick to note that antisemitism and other forms of hate are protected free speech, countless experts and analysts have pointed to the very real and harmful effects of unchecked hate speech. High-profile instances of antisemitic speech like Ye’s have been accompanied by banner drops, instances of vandalism, and other acts that serve only to further hatred against Jewish people.

  • On the December 2 edition of The Daily Wire’s The Ben Shapiro Show, Ben Shapiro sharply denounced Ye’s antisemitism, but still asked: “Is what Ye is doing tantamount to incitement? I don’t think so because I have a very strict legal standard for incitement. So do I think Ye actually should be banned from Twitter? I think the answer is no. I don’t think that Ye should be banned from Twitter. … I actually don’t think that Musk should have done it.”
  • Infowars published an article bemoaning that “Musk said last week he was going to launch a ‘general amnesty’ this week and start unbanning people en masse if they hadn’t ‘broken the law or engaged in egregious spam’ but instead he has banned Ye over complete bulls**t.”
  • A December 2 article on Breitbart asserted that Ye’s suspension from Twitter demonstrates that Musk’s calls for “free speech absolutism” on the platform is “a fantasy.”
  • Tayler Hansen, an independent conservative journalist known for covering the January 6 Capitol insurrection, pushed back against Musk’s decision on Twitter, saying, “As a free speech absolutist this permanent ban doesn’t feel right— even if you vehemently disagree with what @kanyewest was saying today, he did not break the law. What is the official reason for Ye’s perma-ban?”
  • Conservative media pundit and virulent racist Ann Coulter also lambasted Musk for suspending Ye, arguing, “You believe in free speech or you don't, @elonmusk. Even the ACLU defended a Nazi parade on free speech grounds. This isn't even a parade. It's just WORDS.”
  • Newsmax producer Justine Brooke Murray defended Ye’s right to post anything on Twitter: “You can’t pick and choose when to support free speech. Let antisemites like Kanye publicly humiliate themselves. Remember Skokie, Illinois?”
  • Timcast Editor-in-Chief Cassandra McDonald tweeted, “Instead of saying I support free speech I’m just going to start saying I support the freedom to offend. It shouldn’t need to be said, but it does.”
  • Discussing Ye’s suspension on Fox News’ The Five, co-host Jeanine Pirro claimed, “America was founded on the concept of free speech. Hate speech is protected. … You’re free to say whatever you want.”
  • Actor Kevin Sorbo tweeted, “I may not agree with what Ye said yesterday. But he has the right to say it. That’s how free speech works.”
  • Podcast host Joe Walsh tweeted, “As an American, I will defend any American’s right to be an anti-Semite, or a bigot, or a racist. Because I will always defend free speech. But as a human, I will fight against all anti-Semitism, bigotry, and racism. Because I will always fight against evil.”
  • On Newsmax, conservative contributor Erin Elmore said, “The speech we should protect is the speech that offends us the most, and we do live in the United States of America and as conservatives, we’ve often said, ‘We're being censored, we're being silenced.’ Nobody should be censored or silenced.” Daily Caller reporter Brianna Lyman added, “It's very concerning for me to hear this, but nonetheless, Kanye has the right to say this. Now with Twitter specifically though, the biggest question is what is the official reason that Musk banned him. If it's because of what he said on Infowars, then Musk does not believe in free speech like he claims he does.”
  • Cartoonist Scott Adams tweeted, “If the limit to free speech is ‘inciting violence,’ free speech is an illusion. If Elon Musk gets to decide how much you incited violence with your free speech, are you free? Not even close. It doesn't matter who decides. It isn't a practical standard in a woke world.”

  • Conservative social media influencers Hodgetwins wrote, “Kanye said some crazy shit. Nobody agrees with him saying he supports Hitler and Nazi’s, but he shouldn’t of been banned. No laws broken, he didn’t incite violence. We can disagree with what people say but that doesn’t mean they should be permanently banned.”
Reprinted with permission from Media Matters.

Uh-Oh: Carlson Hid Ye's Anti-Semitism -- And Now He's Exposed As A Nazi

Ye, the rapper previously known as Kanye West, has spent the last several weeks ranting about Jewish people on social media and in a series of interviews. On Thursday, he took his antisemitic campaign to arch-conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’ program, where he repeatedly praised Adolf Hitler and decried the purported Jewish control of media and government.

Fox News could have had the story of Ye’s recent full dive into antisemitism as a huge scoop – but the network preferred to mint him as a right-wing hero. It should be a major embarrassment for what is purportedly a news outlet, but because the network is actually a propaganda channel, no one there appears to care.

Ye made virulently antisemitic comments during an interview that aired in October with Fox star Tucker Carlson. He told the Fox host at one point, “I prefer my kids knew Hanukkah than Kwanzaa. At least it will come with some financial engineering.” Ye himself appeared to recognize he had gone too far after telling Carlson, “Think about us judging each other on how white we could talk would be like, you know, a Jewish person judging another Jewish person on how good they danced or something.”

But Carlson and his bosses apparently had no interest in exposing Ye as an antisemite. The story they wanted to tell was that Ye was being persecuted for supporting former President Donald Trump. So Ye’s explicitly anti-Jewish comments were excised when Fox aired the interview, as Motherboard subsequently revealed. And when he aired the interview on October 6 and 7, Carlson praised his guest for being willing to “speak so honestly and so movingly about what he believes” and said he is “not crazy at all” (Ye has extensively discussed his long struggle with mental health).

Carlson’s seal of approval helped fold Ye into the right-wing coalition. Fox hosts followed their colleague's lead and spent days lauding the rapper’s bravery and honesty. And some Republican politicians, who frequently take their messaging cues from the network, joined in. All the while, Carlson and everyone else at the network with knowledge of the full interview stayed silent about Ye’s antisemitism — it didn’t fit the narrative.

But that weekend, Ye accused the rapper Diddy of being controlled by Jews in an Instagram post. After that service suspended him, he tweeted that he planned to go “death con 3 On JEWISH PEOPLE,” who he claimed “have toyed with me and tried to black ball anyone whoever opposes your agenda.” And that’s what he’s done over the following weeks, as he careened from interview to interview preaching anti-Jewish conspiracy theories, with a sidetrip to dine with Trump and a virulent white supremacist.

Meanwhile, after initially ignoring Ye’s antisemitic descent and continuing to tout him, Carlson has gone silent on the man he once praised as a “big thinker.”

Fox could have broken the story, if only it were interested in the news.

Does Carlson care? Does Fox News CEO Suzanne Scott? How about the Murdochs?

Apparently not. That isn’t what Fox is for.

Reprinted with permission from Media Matters.

Outrage Erupts As Kanye West Praises Hitler And Nazism On Infowars (VIDEO)

Disgraced rapper and antisemite Kanye West on Thursday praised Adolf Hitler while in an interview with far-right extremist and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones. Many have expressed outrage online.

“I see good things about Hitler,” West told Jones, as Consequence reports. “Every human being has something of value that they brought to the table, especially Hitler.”

In between those two remarks West launched into a plethora of lies about all the good things Hitler has done, including investing the microphone (false) and highways (also false.)

West doubled down, exclaiming, “I like Hitler,” and said, “the Jewish media has made us feel like Nazis and Hitler have never offered us anything of value to the world.”

West, who brought a white supremacist with him to dine with Donald Trump at Mar-a-Lago last week, today also claimed he loves everyone but injected antisemitic tropes about contracts and pornography.

“I think most Jews are great people,” Jones said, while claiming, “I agree there’s a Jewish mafia.”

West, who goes by “Ye,” astonishingly “took credit for popularizing antisemitism,” Consequence reports, “saying, ‘No one in high school knew what antisemitic meant until Ye made it popular.'”

That, too, is a lie.

The outrage online is palpable.

Rep. Ritchie Torres (D-NY) tweeted, “JUST NOW: ‘I see good things about Hitler, also. The Jews… Every human being has something of value that they brought to the table, especially Hitler.’
— Kanye West on far-right conspiracy theorist Alex Jones’ InfoWars show.”

“This is Nazism,” he added. “When are we going to say ENOUGH?”

Many pointed to a wildly offensive tweet posted by GOP Congressman Jim Jordan, who heads the House Judiciary Republicans. After nearly two months it was removed within minutes of West praising Hitler.

Rep. Eric Swalwell (D-CA) blasted Jordan, saying: “for 2 months you were cool with Jew-bashing.”

Sam Stein of Politico and MSNBC took a wider view.

“We’re all gawking at Kanye saying he sees ‘good things about Hitler’ but i can’t escape the absolute dread that people who know no better and look up to this man and stumble upon this interview will be moved, even on the margins, by him,” he tweeted. “This is not a clown show. It’s dangerous.”

As did actor Josh Gad:

“It’s not what Kanye West says that scares me. It’s that he has 30 million followers who listen to his insanity on top of a cheerleader in the form of the current owner of this platform. No one who says “I love Hitler” should be allowed any oxygen on any social platform (period).”

Ye praises Hitler, Nazis in livestream interview

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Just Another Day With Anti-Semites At The Former President's House

As we all certainly know by now, Donald Trump had some guests over for dinner last week at his home, the resort/hotel/club Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach, Florida. Trump claims he had invited his good friend Ye, formerly known as Kayne West, and was surprised when a well-known white supremacist, anti-Semite and public supporter of his, Nick Fuentes showed up as well. That Trump would be having dinner a couple of weeks after he announced his campaign for the presidency in 2024 with two notorious racists and anti-Semites is perhaps less surprising than the reaction to the fact of it.

You could have heard the collective gasp from the media sphere if you were at the bottom of a coal mine in Siberia. The horror! The outrage! The whole un-thinkable-ness of it! The story was beaten to death. How could it have happened? Could Ye/Kayne West really have sashayed past the Secret Service-protected gates of Mar-a-Lago with Fuentes in tow? Reports of the dinner by “sources” say that Trump’s reaction to Fuentes was as predictable as it was yawn-inducing: “I really like this guy,” Trump told his friend Ye/Kayne West. “He gets me.”

You would have had to have been at the bottom of the aforesaid coal mine for the past six years not to know that a little fawning goes a long way with our former president.

And then came the reports of the mainstreaming of Fuentes that has gone on since he made an appearance at the so-called “Unite the Right” rally in Charlottesville in 2017. Here is our boy Nick in the company of current members of Congress Marjorie Taylor Greene and Paul Gosar and right-wing babbler Michele Malkin and former Rep. Steve King at something called the “America First Political Action Conference,” (AFPAC) which advertises itself as even further to the right than the “Conservative Political Action Conference,” (CPAC). Fuentes, it was reported, led cheers of “Russia! Russia! Russia!” and “Putin! Putin! Putin!” at the gathering, because…of course he did. The next day, he was roundly denounced – in a Tweet, naturally – by soon-to-be-former Representative Liz Cheney, because…of course she did: “All Americans should renounce this garbage and reject the Putin wing of the GOP now. The silence by Republican Party leaders is deafening and enabling,” because…of course it is.

Are you beginning to pick up on the fact that there is nothing new here, folks? Just another day at Mar-a-Lago, just another moment in the continuing saga of the descent of Republicans into less a political party than a herd of Brownshirts thundering through the media-scape without raising hardly a ripple? I mean, what has to happen in this country to rouse the decent against the dastardly? An election that was nearly stolen from the American people in front of their eyes didn’t manage to do it. A violent coup against the seat of our government, the Capitol, didn’t do it. Somewhere in the vicinity of 40,000 overt lies told by our former president while in office had no discernible effect.

And now we’ve got the same former president and current candidate dining in public at his resort/hotel/club with two out-of-control and out-of-their minds anti-semites, and all we’ve heard have been squeaks and chirps from the liberal media establishment about how terrible it is, and of course dead silence from the Republican Party, with the exception of a few brave souls like Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (!) who found enough backbone remaining in his normally gelatinous spine that he told the Atlanta Journal Constitution, “Racism, anti-semitism, and denial of the Holocaust have no place in the Republican Party and are completely un-American.”

Wow, you’d go that far, Brian? That’s taking a pretty big risk isn’t it, pal, given the political climate in your own so-called party. I guess we should consider it a story when a climate-change-denying, voter suppressing flat-earther like Kemp appears to come to his senses…but noooooo! In the next breath, he made a bunch of ads for his Texas-based Senate candidate Herschel Walker, and all was right with the world once again.

But the problem here isn’t that Trump refused to denounce Fuentes once he was caught consorting with him, because of course he didn’t. The problem isn’t that the “leadership” of the Republican Party has stayed silent, because of course they have. The problem isn’t the matter of fact-ness of Trump dining with these monsters. The problem is that 80 years after the Holocaust, we are still dealing with people like this piece of scum, Nick Fuentes, who deny that it happened and get attention for their criminal lies. Holocaust denial just never goes away. The anti-semitism of “Jews will not replace us” chants at the torch-lit Charlottesville rally of buttoned-down and khaki pants-wearing white boys just never goes away. The age-old lies that Jews somehow control the world’s banks and stage-manage economic inequality to their own benefit just never goes away.

But it’s the denial of the Holocaust that is the worst of it. The systematic murder of millions of Jews and Gypsies and gay people and political opponents of Nazism and intellectuals is something that not only happened decades ago but keeps getting repeated again and again and again. Nearly an entire people, Native Americans, were massacred during this nation’s founding. Certainly that was a genocide. It is unknown how many Black Americans were lynched and murdered during slavery, Reconstruction and Jim Crow, but certainly that was a genocide as well. Nearly a million were murdered during the Rwandan massacre in 1994, another genocide. The violence and destruction and starvation in Darfur killed 400,000 in 2003, another genocide. In Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1992, some 200,000 Muslim civilians were systematically murdered, and nearly two million became refugees at the hands of the Serbs, yet another genocide.

And now it’s happening again in Ukraine, where thousands of civilians are thought to have been murdered by the Russian army since February of this year. They are still digging up mass graves and single graves in Kherson after the Russians were driven out recently. There won’t be an authoritative total of the murders for months, even years, but it is clear already that the killings have been planned, sanctioned, and carried out by the Russian army.

History repeats itself because it is denied and swept under the rug and is unstudied and forgotten. Donald Trump and Nick Fuentes and before them David Duke and his ilk are not just propagandists for a lie. They are facilitators of modern genocides. Lies beget murders which beget more lies which beget more murders.

As a species, we seem unable to stop the ongoing Holocaust that is humanity. But we can fight against it by teaching and learning and remembering.

Lucian K. Truscott IV, a graduate of West Point, has had a 50-year career as a journalist, novelist, and screenwriter. He has covered Watergate, the Stonewall riots, and wars in Lebanon, Iraq, and Afghanistan. He is also the author of five bestselling novels. You can subscribe to his daily columns at and follow him on Twitter @LucianKTruscott and on Facebook at Lucian K. Truscott IV.

Please consider subscribing to Lucian Truscott Newsletter, from which this column is reprinted with permission.

Obsessed With Hitler For Years, Kanye West Praised Nazi Dictator's 'Power'

Kanye West had an “obsession” with Adolf Hitler, praised the genocidal fascist dictator responsible for 17 million deaths for all he was able to achieve and for the power he was able accumulate, and even wanted to name his 2018 album “Hitler,” according to a CNN report.

“He would praise Hitler by saying how incredible it was that he was able to accumulate so much power and would talk about all the great things he and the Nazi Party achieved for the German people,” a business executive who worked for West, now known officially as “Ye,” told CNN.

That executive also “told CNN that the artist created a hostile work environment, in part through his ‘obsession’ with Hitler.” He “reached a settlement with West and some of his companies over workplace complaints, including harassment, which CNN has reviewed.”

He also said “that West spoke openly about reading Mein Kampf, Hitler’s 1925 autobiographical manifesto, and expressed his ‘admiration’ for the Nazis and Hitler for their use of propaganda.”

CNN adds that Van Lathan Jr., a former TMZ employee, confirmed he has heard West make antisemitic remarks.

“’I already heard him say that stuff before at TMZ,’” Lathan said during an episode of the ‘Higher Learning’ podcast earlier this month,” CNN reported.

“I mean, I was taken aback because that type of antisemitic talk is disgusting. It’s like, I’m taken aback any time anyone does that, right? But as far as [West], I knew that that was in him because when he came to TMZ, he said that stuff and they took it out of the interview. … He said something like, ‘I love Hitler, I love Nazis.’ Something to that effect when he was there. And they took it out of the interview for whatever reason. It wasn’t my decision.”

West’s antisemitism, which can be traced back nearly a decade, has made top headlines in the past few weeks after VICE reported on leaked antisemitic and other remarks he made to Fox News that were not included in his interview with Tucker Carlson.

West ran for president as an independent in 2020 but reportedly had “regular” conversations with Jared Kushner.

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Why Carlson Hid Kanye's Anti-Semitism (And What That Shows About Fox)

Fox News host Tucker Carlson clearly hoped to use his interview with Kanye West (now known as Ye) to advance his own political agenda by highlighting the rapper’s “White Lives Matter” commentary and support for former President Donald Trump. But at the conclusion of their sit-down, Carlson had a problem: West peppered the interview with toxic anti-Semitic comments, as well as conspiracy-minded rants which suggested that he was in the throes of one of his well-documented manic phases.

Carlson responded to this conundrum by simply cutting the worst of West’s bigotry and paranoia from the version of the interview he aired last week, Vice’s Motherboard revealed on Tuesday, after obtaining original footage from the interview. The deceptive editing points to how much leeway the Fox host thinks he has from the network brass, as well as the deceitful way he handles his show.

Carlson knows where the line is for antisemitism on his show

Tucker Carlson Tonight revolves around an antisemitic conspiracy theory. The host posits that a cabal of global elites controls the heights of U.S. politics, media, culture, and business, and is using its power to corrupt American children, destroy western civilization, and replace its population with immigrants.

Carlson’s innovation is that he generally deracinates these familiar antisemitic tropes. While open white supremacists might argue, for example, that Jews are using immigration to replace the white population with a black and brown one, Carlson tells his viewers that elites like the financier George Soros (who is Jewish) are replacing “legacy Americans” with people from “far-away countries” in the “third world.”

Carlson’s stated worldview is close enough that neo-Nazis regularly praise his show for mainstreaming their blood-soaked positions. But Carlson’s careful use of language, and his furious denials that he is a racist, give the Fox brass just enough plausible deniability that they can continue to defend and support his program.

You can see this balance play out in what Carlson included from his interview with West and the clips Motherboard published that were left on the cutting room floor.

In: West’s suggestion that Jared Kushner, former President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and White House aide, worked on Middle East peace to “make money” and his comment about Jared and his brother Josh, “What they’re about is making money.” That language aligns with the antisemitic trope of the money-hungry Jew, but it’s apparently palatable to Fox because West did not specifically mention that the Kushners are Jewish (West even asked Carlson whether those comments had been “too heavy handed,” to which Carlson replied, “We're not in the censorship business”).

Out: Nakedly antisemitic comments in which West more explicitly mentioned Jews, including his statement, “Think about us judging each other on how white we could talk would be like, you know, a Jewish person judging another Jewish person on how good they danced or something” (which West himself told Carlson went too far and asked to have edited out) and his remark, “I prefer my kids knew Hanukkah than Kwanzaa. At least it will come with some financial engineering.” Those comments are so obviously bigoted that they apparently could not be aired on Fox in an interview meant to promote its subject.

Carlson could have responded to those comments by changing the way he intended to frame the interview; instead, he cut out the comments to preserve his narrative.

Carlson’s edits left his colleagues in an uncomfortable position, as they were apparently unaware that West’s interview had featured naked anti-Semitism. Many of them responded to the interview as it aired by praising West’s wisdom and authenticity, and promoting his support for right-wing ideas as a boon to their movement. They were then forced to make an abrupt about-face after West spent the weekend on a social media tirade against “JEWISH PEOPLE” he claimed had “tried to black ball anyone whoever opposes your agenda.”

For his part, Carlson simply pretended the anti-Semitic outburst had not happened when he ran another segment praising West on his Monday broadcast. He hid the anti-Semitic comments West made on social media from his viewers, just as he had hidden the anti-Semitic comments West made to his face.

Carlson Knowingly Lies About West’s Mental State

Carlson stressed to his viewers as he promoted his interview with West that the rapper’s well-documented mental health issues are a fabrication of journalists who want to shut him up — and he presented his sit-down as an antidote that would allow his audience to come to their own conclusions.

“The enemies of his ideas dismissed West as they have for years -- as mentally ill, too crazy to take seriously,” he alleged at the top of Thursday’s show. “But is West crazy? You can judge for yourself as you watch what we're about to show you.”

Carlson added that he did not find West to be “crazy,” adding, “In fact, we've rarely heard a man speak so honestly and so movingly about what he believes, but again, you can judge for yourself.”

Carlson returned to that theme later in the program.

“We told you at the top, you'd be able to assess for yourself whether West is crazy, as virtually every single media outlet on planet Earth claims every day, all year long,” he said. “Is he crazy. As you try to assess that, ask is what you just heard over the past 40 minutes any crazier than what you see on television every day? The lies, the lunacy presented to you with a straight face as reality?”

“No, he is not,” Carlson concluded. “He is not crazy at all. He is a big thinker, though."

It’s easy to see why Carlson is so defensive about West’s mental state. If West is “crazy,” in Carlson’s words, then the Fox host is a despicable hack taking advantage of a vulnerable person’s “lunacy” for ratings and political advantage.

But Carlson is being deceptive in two ways.

One is that West’s struggles with bipolar disorder are not a media creation, but something that he has publicly discussed in detail for years.

“When you’re in this state, you’re hyper-paranoid about everything, everyone,” West told David Letterman in a 2019 interview. “This is my experience, other people have different experiences. Everyone now is an actor. Everything’s a conspiracy. You feel the government is putting chips in your head. You feel you’re being recorded. You feel all these things.”

The second is that West reeled off several conspiracy theories during his interview with Carlson, as the Motherboard videos show. He suggested, for example, that “fake children” had been “placed into my house to sexualize my kids,” and that the fashion house Louis Vuitton had “killed” the designer Virgil Abloh, who died of cancer in 2021.

Those diatribes cut against Carlson’s argument that West is lucid, and thus an appropriate interview subject whose political views should be taken seriously. So Carlson edited them out of what he showed his viewers, even as he told them that they could make their own determination about West’s mental state from what aired.

That’s pretty typical — Carlson is a deeply dishonest person who has contempt for an audience he constantly cons. The Motherboard videos are just a new and compelling example demonstrating his duplicity.

Reprinted with permission from Media Matters.

White Nationalists, Neo-Nazis Celebrate Kanye West's Hate Spew

Far-right and neo-Nazi-linked extremists are embracing, celebrating, and defending rapper Kanye West’s recent anti-Semitic remarks.

On October 8, West lashed out at Jewish people, writing, “I’m going death con 3 On JEWISH PEOPLE.” In the same tweet, he claimed, “You guys have toyed with me and tried to black ball anyone whoever opposes your agenda.” West later tweeted, “Who you think created cancel culture?"

Here are examples of violent far-right and neo-Nazi-linked extremists celebrating West and his anti-Semitic comments:

  • Infowars celebrated West multiple times on October 9. Host Owen Shroyer said, “I did not hear one thing Kanye West said that was bigoted.” He later added that the backlash to his anti-Semitic remarks “only proves what he’s talking about is real.”

  • White nationalist and Holocaust denier Nick Fuentes posted on Telegram, “Kanye is going to be cancelled by the Jews for saying that the Jews invented cancel culture” and shared multiple memes celebrating the rapper. Fuentes also streamed West’s music on his Cozy.TV platform while wearing a West-inspired face covering. The title of the stream was “DEFCON 3.”
  • Daily Wire host Candace Owens on West's “death con 3” tweet: “If you are an honest person, you did not think this tweet was antisemitic.” Owens added that, “It's like you cannot even say the word Jewish without people getting upset.”
  • Anti-Semite and Gab founder Andrew Torba posted, “How do we get Kanye on Gab?"
  • Neo-Nazi blog The Daily Stormer published a story by neo-Nazi founder Andrew Anglin with the headline “Lying Jew Media Claims Kanye West is Mentally Ill for Going Death Con 3 on Jewish People.” On October 10, the header on the site’s homepage read “d e a t h c o n 3” and featured multiple stories celebrating West’s antisemitism.
  • Stop the Steal organizer Ali Alexander used West's remarks to suggest that Jewish people have “weaponized their trauma” and complained that “all of us are forced to learn their trauma.”

  • Far-right British extremist Tommy Robinson wrote that West’s statement “needs to be addressed” above a meme that appears to suggest that liberals are overreacting to West’s comments.
  • Neo-Nazi streamer Baked Alaska compared himself to West and wrote, “IT KEEPS GETTING BETTER AND BETTER” under a screenshot of one of West’s Instagram posts.
  • Former BlazeTV host Elijah Schaffer posted multiple tweets that appear to be in support of West.
  • BlazeTV host Jason Whitlock defended West’s remarks in a tweet, writing, “You can't question black entertainers' unhealthy relationship with non-religious Jewish power brokers in Hollywood.”
  • White nationalist and notorious antisemite Vincent James Foxx wrote on Telegram, “Kanye is going to do another Holocaust?”
  • Fascist streamer Dalton Clodfelter wrote that West’s remarks are “very admirable.”
  • Fuentes' cronies Tyler Russell and Brandt Wiggins both celebrated West’s remarks with posts on Telegram.
  • Failed congressional candidate and anti-Muslim bigot Laura Loomer defended West’s remarks with multiple posts on Gab. In one post, she wrote, “Ye does have a point in his posts.”
  • On violent white nationalist Gavin McInnes’ Censored.TV, host Josh Lekach said he admires West and claimed, “I don’t understand why you can’t talk bad about the Jews.” Lekach added he believes that West may be killed for his beliefs.

West’s anti-Semitic remarks came after he was criticized for wearing a “WHITE LIVES MATTER” shirt last week at Paris Fashion Week. He later appeared on white nationalist Tucker Carlson’s Fox News show to ramble about censorship, the media, his shirt, his career, and his family.

Reprinted with permission from Media Matters.