Two well-known conservative journalists, Jonah Goldberg and Stephen Hayes, made waves last week when they publicly resigned their paid positions as Fox News contributors. Both men, now working for a publication called The Dispatch, cited the network's affiliation with "irresponsible voices" as the reason for their departure. The recent special of Fox firebrand Tucker Carlson on the January 6th Capitol riot appeared to be the final straw that pushed both men over the edge.
Personally, I've always enjoyed the work of both Carlson and Goldberg, even if there have been positions, observations, or arguments that each have made that I haven't agreed with. The same would probably be true of Hayes, though I don't remember any of his writing or commentaries that I've encountered specifically.
In their statement, Goldberg and Hayes called out Carlson's January 6th special as a "collection of incoherent conspiracy-mongering, riddled with factual inaccuracies, half-truths, deceptive imagery, and damning omissions."
"If a person with such a platform shares such misinformation loud enough and long enough, there are Americans who will believe – and act upon – it," they wrote.
For his part, Carlson – cable news' top-rated program overall – didn't seem overly concerned about the departures. "Our viewers will be grateful," Carlson quipped while addressing the situation.
From my seat, Fox is losing a reasonable and wise voice in Goldberg. It's disappointing that something couldn't be worked out, but it's not like the "Liberal Fascism" author is going to turn into a hermit. His opinions and ideas will still be heard and read, just as Carlson's are, even if through separate avenues.
The real question I have is why we never see this on the Left? Say what you will about Tucker, he doesn't hold a candle to the nuttiness of Joy Reid on MSNBC or the lie-factory that is Don Lemon on CNN.
That's not all, of course. MSNBC still features Rachel Maddow as their primetime star despite her now having been outed as peddling the lie of Russian election collusion for years. And CNN has rehired a man who was sexually pleasuring himself during a staff Zoom call.
Why are there never any respected progressive voices taking the honorable route, demonstrating a commitment to principles over profit, and telling the left-wing networks to take a hike until they get their kooky conspiracy houses in order?
Why doesn't Jake Tapper tell CNN they can find someplace else to send his paycheck if they want to continue being the network that platforms Don Lemon to lie about Ivermectin and Joe Rogan, or that allowed Chris Cuomo to use his position to shield corrupt family members in power?
Why didn't Chris Hayes tell MSNBC he wouldn't be associated with any network that would hire a man everyone knew had broken the public trust by making up asinine, exaggerated accounts of personal drama while sitting in the coveted Nightly News anchor chair?
Brian Stelter of CNN's hilariously titled "Reliable Sources" program just became immortalized in a meme'd chyron that will forever embody the utter lack of self-awareness in media:
I honestly don't know if the media is ever going to regain anyone's trust, but it sure would help if the list of journalists and commentators demanding high standards of personal integrity and professionalism among their colleagues was longer than just Jonah Goldberg and Stephen Hayes.