At the end of Thursday’s All In on MSNBC, host Chris Hayes mocked the Fox News Channel for promoting Tea Party rallies in 2009, and then he compared that to promotional coverage of the Canadian Freedom Convoy. He protested it as a “Truly incredible display of the unique role that one network plays in American political life. For many years, Fox News has been operating this flatly propagandistic fashion.”
It might be fair to suggest it’s funny to promote an occupation of an urban area when it’s Canada and then oppose it with say, Occupy Wall Street. But Hayes seems oblivious to the idea that when the shoe was on the other foot in 2011, it was his company doing the “flatly propagandistic” stuff, like “Slow Jam The News: Fallon And Brian Williams Make Occupy Wall Street Sexy.”
HAYES: I`ve been thinking a lot recently about the idea of American exceptionalism, particularly as regards to pandemic, which has been on stark display throughout it. We had significantly lower vaccination rates, significantly more infections and deaths than our peer countries. And we have a right-wing media machine that has been a driving force behind a lot of that, cheering it on.
Hayes turned to Canadian journalist Stephen Marche, author of the book The Next Civil War: Dispatches from the American Future, a work of self-proclaimed “speculative nonfiction” promoted with this sunny premise: “The United States is coming to an end. The only question is how.” Marche theorized the entire protest is an imported fraud from America:
HAYES: Are you surprised Stephen to see Fox News take up this Canadian right-wing cause?
STEPHEN MARCHE: Well, not really, because I think, you know, one of the things that`s very clear to us here is that this is a kind of spillover to American political, you know, toxicity, and that what we`re in fact seeing is a what the — what the police chief calls a sizable element of U.S. involvement in the Ottawa blockade.
So yes, it`s not surprising to me at all that American — you know, American, right-wing people are the biggest supporters of this. It`s only a thousand people in Canada, it has absolutely no support from any mainstream party here.
They claimed the Canadian Conservative Party hates it, but they’ve been rushing toward the middle. They weren’t done in running down “toxic” conservatives:
HAYES: We`re talking about exceptionalism here. I mean, Ted Cruz, all that you`ve got — like Ted Cruz talking about the patriotic Canadian truckers, like American Republican politicians are running to embrace that.
MARCHE: Well, yes, I mean, I think, you know, one of the things is that America is a textbook country, you know, a book — a country, you know, on the brink of civil war, and that is spilling over across our border. That`s really what we see, is that toxic political American discourse, you know, coming here in a very, very horrible way. Yes, I mean, Ted Cruz is way more into this than any Canadian conservative politician, that`s for sure.
PS: In 2011, we singled out Marche for his syrupy and sickening valentine to Barack Obama in Esquire magazine:
[C]an we just enjoy Obama for a moment? Before the policy choices have to be weighed and the hard decisions have to be made, can we just take a month or two to contemplate him the way we might contemplate a painting by Vermeer or a guitar lick by the early-seventies Rolling Stones or a Peyton Manning pass or any other astounding, ecstatic human achievement? Because twenty years from now, we’re going to look back on this time as a glorious idyll in American politics, with a confident, intelligent, fascinating president riding the surge of his prodigious talents from triumph to triumph. Whatever happens this fall or next, the summer of 2011 is the summer of Obama.
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