Try to find someone you love as much as Tucker Carlson loves telling his viewers to take a worthless horse paste instead of a safe and effective vaccine:
When Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) appeared on Tucker Carlson’s Fox News show on Monday night, the conversation turned to what could have been done differently to prevent the 700,000 coronavirus deaths we’ve seen so far.
In the course of discussing that, though, the two of them reinforced one of the bigger problems with stomping out the virus: specious conspiracy theories flowing up from the fever swamps of the Internet and social media through a U.S. senator on one of the most popular cable news shows.
Johnson’s brief appearance on Carlson’s show was the latest case study in their service as uniquely prominent vectors for coronavirus misinformation and innuendo — conspiracy theories that could very logically diminish the use of the most effective tool we have against the virus, vaccines.
The interview began with Johnson elevating something that, until Monday night, hadn’t really reared its head in reputable news outlets: the idea that ivermectin is being suppressed in favor of other, suspiciously similar and more-expensive treatments.
This began cropping up recently with news that Pfizer is testing an antiviral drug to treat the coronavirus — a drug the conspiracy theories have derided as “Pfizermectin” as if it were just repackaged ivermectin. Similar theories began cropping up last week when Merck announced its new drug, molnupiravir, was 50 percent effective in preventing death and hospitalization in covid-19 patients.
In making his case, Johnson even adopted the derisive name that has been ascribed to molnupiravir: “moneypiravir.”
Fourteen Words With Tucker Carlson has long been the most visible proponent of “replacement theory,” but this is certainly a new variant: