There have been a couple of really good opinion pieces in the Washington Post recently about Tucker Carlson and his trip to Hungary (or was it Mordor?).
For example, Michael Gerson writes under the headline of “Tucker Carlson’s Hungarian adventure gives right-wing populists a new tagline: Disdain America first“. Here’s a little taste:
Tucker Carlson and the right-wing populists’ weird fascination with Viktor Orban’s Hungary — revealed during Carlson’s recent valentine visit to the country — is slightly less weird when you consider the context.
The country such populists leave behind when flying to Budapest — in their telling — is in pretty dismal shape. The United States is a nation in which the valiantly unvaccinated are assaulted by disease-ridden border violators and subject (in Republican Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’s words) to “a biomedical security state.” It is a nation in which the most recent presidential election was stolen by a nationwide conspiracy of Republican state election officials, Black mayors and Communist Chinese hackers. It is a nation in which pedophile socialists comprise a “deep state” dedicated to the confiscation of guns and Bibles. It is a nation in which Marxist advocates of critical race theory teach children to disdain America for all the wrong reasons — things such as slavery and segregation — rather than for the right reasons, such as the removal of Confederate statues and the very existence of Drag Queen Story Hour.
What’s a right-wing populist to do? Why, trade all that they hate about America for a two-bit authoritarian regime. Especially one that is racist. And especially one in which they don’t have to live:
All but the most committed political pilgrims will eventually fly home to the United States from Hungary. And what a disappointing return that will be — to a diverse, colorful country of gloriously varied traditions. But at least MAGA World now has an easily summarized foreign policy: Disdain America first.
But wait, there’s more! And there’s satire, which always gets my attention! Alexandra Petri headlines “Forget Hungary. Tucker Carlson is all about Mordor now.” (You knew I’d get back to that Mordor quip eventually!)
I certainly did enjoy my fun speaking engagements in Hungary and quality time with Viktor Orbán […] But that is all behind me now.
I am honored to announce I will be speaking next week at the Mordor Summit in Barad-dur at the invitation of Dark Lord Sauron! This is the future of conservatism, and I’m excited to throw open the Overton Window and let in the nazguls.
God, what a difference from America. Honestly, my country makes me sick, and I look forward to croaking that out next week before a rapt audience of trolls and, if I’m lucky, a balrog. A pluralistic democracy founded on free and fair elections in which what binds us is not ethnicity or the shared fear of the watchful, unblinking eye of Sauron, but an idea? Disgusting.