Why ‘Patriot Purge’ Was the Last Straw

(Editor’s note: Jonah Goldberg’s syndicated column appears in the Los Angeles Times on Tuesday and runs in The Dispatch and other publications on Wednesday. We are running this as a supplement to the brief post from Jonah and Steve on Sunday night explaining their decision to leave Fox News.) 

As we shared with Dispatch members and readers on Sunday, Steve and I quit Fox News after more than a decade each as contributors. The decision was a long time in coming. Like Ernest Hemingway’s description of bankruptcy, it came gradually and then suddenly.

The sudden part came thanks to Fox host Tucker Carlson’s streaming special Patriot Purge. It’s a perfect example of propaganda that weaves half-truths into a whole lie. It insinuates that the January 6 riot at the Capitol might have been a “false flag operation,” orchestrated by the FBI or the Deep State. Worse, it suggests the Biden administration is coming for the “real patriots”— i.e., Trump voters. “The domestic war on terror is here,” says one of the “experts” in Patriot Purge. “It’s coming after half of the country.”

This dangerous nonsense was the last straw for me (and Steve). It was an unhappy decision for us. We have many friends at the network, and there are many people, particularly on the news side, that do good, honest journalism.

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