Few things annoy budding fascists more than being the butt of jokes. They especially hate it when their inferiors, when dirty, smelly little people commit the lèse-majesté of snarking at them rather than bowing down in submission.
The newest instance of this crime against social order occurred yesterday at the Turning Point USA (TPUSA) event in Phoenix, AZ. The target was NIAID’s Dr. Anthony Fauci. The offender was Fox News host Jesse Watters.
This is Watters’ setup: “All right, let’s just say Fauci comes to town. You gotta ambush a guy like Fauci, OK? You have to be respectful. First you identify yourself… ‘Do you mind, Dr. Fauci, if I ask you a few questions’ … Then you hit him with the first question…You have the goods because he’s been able to dodge and weave on ABC and NBC. No one’s ever hit him in the face like this. Not even Rand Paul has been able to get in his face and point with the grant in his face, so then he’s in trouble.”
Now you go in for the kill shot. The kill shot? With an ambush? Deadly. Because he doesn’t see it coming. This is when you say, ‘Dr. Fauci, you funded risky research at a sloppy Chinese lab, the same lab that sprung this pandemic on the world. You know why people don’t trust you, don’t you?’ Boom! He is dead. He is dead. He’s done. Now you do that — 30 seconds, it’s all you need. Now you get that footage to us, you get it to Fox.
Now you get that footage to us, you get it to Fox… Imagine Tucker Carlson teases that.” He added, “Give us that. That’s what we want. That changes the whole conversation to the country. I’ve authorized it. Just make sure it’s legal.
To what is Watters referring? He’s talking about the “ambush interview” technique popularized by CBS’s 60 Minutes show. “Kill shot”is just a question or comment that your target can’t possibly respond to in a coherent form.
His speech is not a call to arms. No one was demanding Fauci’s little head on a pike. But if you are a thin-skinned gnome with a monumental ego and no real sense of decency, what do you do? You claim that this was a call for a physical attack upon you.
It starts out with John Berman, who, if not a clinically diagnosed idiot, gives a good imitation of one professing indignant outrage over Watters’ schtick. How anyone who works in the same company as Brian Stelter, Chris Cilizza, and Jim Acosta can avoid wearing a paper bag over their head is beyond me. When your colleagues include credibly accused sexual predators (Sexual Misconduct on All Sides as Chris Cuomo Tries to Drag CNN Down With Him, Don Lemon Is Proof Chris Cuomo Was the Rule at CNN, Not the Exception) and your employer seems to have a corporate affirmative action program for pedophiles (Vile Details Emerge About Child Sex Abuse Allegations Surrounding CNN Cuomo Producer, Project Veritas Uncovers CNN Employee’s Grotesque Texts About His Fiancé’s Underage Daughter), maybe you should just sit down and shut up instead of being outraged by anyone or anything.
BERMAN: On the subject of divisiveness, Dr. Fauci, I’m not going to play it because frankly, I think it’s dangerous, but, Jesse Watters who is a Fox News entertainer was giving a speech to a conservative group where he talked about you. And suggested to the crowd that the ambush you with what he said was some sort of rhetorical kill shot. That was his exact word. I’m wondering how much that concerns you when you hear language like that about you and your well-being?
FAUCI: Well, John, that’s horrible, that’s just such a reflection of the craziness that goes on in society. The only thing that I have ever done throughout these two years is to encourage people to practice good public health practices — to get vaccinated, to be careful in public settings, to wear a mask. And for that, you have some guy out there saying that people should be giving me a ‘kill shot,’ to ‘ambush’ me? I mean, what kind of craziness is there in society these days? That’s awful that he said that. He’s gonna go, very likely, unaccountable. I mean, whatever network he’s on is not going to do anything for him. That’s crazy. The guy should be fired on the spot.
None of this is plausible or even non-ridiculous. The Federalist points to dozens of examples from CNN’s website and personalities using the “kill shot” phrase. For instance, this is Jake Tapper.
CNN’s Jake Tapper used the vocabulary in a 2016 conversation with “Dilbert” creator Scott Adams to describe Trump’s rhetorical mannerisms.
“Give me an example of something. Like the linguistic kill shot, whether calling Jeb Bush low energy or something else?” Tapper asked.
“Yes. So, the linguistic kill shot is finding some kind of an insult, if you can call it that, that sticks like other insults would not. He likes to pick things that are visual. You look at the person and say, yes, that feels kind of right. But he also picks words and phrases that haven’t been used before, so they haven’t been polluted by other meaning, which is a good technique,” Adams explained, re-using the term.
Obviously, Fauci sees his central role in the full-bore assault carried out on civil liberties in this country under the sham guise of pandemic response differently than many of us. To him, the businesses destroyed, the lives needlessly lost and ruined by drug addiction and missed medical appointments, and depression probably doesn’t matter. So when he whines that no one is being held to account, he sounds like O.J. Simpson’s anguish over Nicole’s killer getting away scot-free.
Two things are working here simultaneously. First, CNN is taking a dishonest shot at Jesse Watters because he works at Fox. CNN’s obsession with Fox is such that one wonders if Stelter, Tapper, and others have commissioned charts showing CNN beating Fox in rating and use it for self-amusement. The sad fact is that CNN is not racing Fox in the cable ratings; it is trying to stay ahead of Newsmax. The second thing going on is the most dishonest and most pathetic. Fauci is trying to use fake outrage to silence someone critical of him. He’s already engaged in this kind of disreputable behavior once before when he was actively involved in the character assassination of three well-credentialed epidemiologists who challenged the direction Fauci wanted to take in controlling the Wuhan virus.
New email dump showing Anthony Fauci and Francis Collins coordinating a propaganda campaign to attack the Great Barrington declaration last October. More coming soon so here’s a teaser… pic.twitter.com/hVrNkjAYaS
— Phil Magness (@PhilWMagness) December 17, 2021
Having Fauci trying to silence you is not a laughing matter.
Fauci also wanted Zerohedge banned from social media and the Great Barrington Declaration removed from Google. He succeeded in both endeavors.
— Hans Mahncke (@HansMahncke) December 21, 2021
Fortunately, it seems like Fox is not inclined to be bullied, at least publicly. Their official statement reads, “Based on watching the full clip and reading the entire transcript, it’s more than clear that Jesse Watters was using a metaphor for asking hard-hitting questions to Dr. Fauci about gain-of-function research and his words have been twisted completely out of context.”
My guess is that the octagenarian dwarf trying to trash out society and economy is on the way out. He can read polls as well as the next guy and knows that if he is still around with Republicans taking control of Congress in 2023, his life will change for the worse. He won’t be able to shoot his mouth off with impunity and brush aside Rand Paul’s questions with silly nonsequiturs. He will have no one to protect him. He’s used to deference and adulation, not to being held accountable for mismanagement and horrible decisions. His legacy is in danger, and he’s very dangerous.