On Monday, Fox News' Tucker Carlson had a lot to say about the coronavirus. On one hand, he insisted on referring to it as "the Chinese coronavirus," and complained that the left "says it's racist" to "blame China" for the disease.
But on the other hand, he also took a swipe at politicians who have downplayed the threat of coronavirus — and at times, appeared to be trying to speak directly to President Donald Trump.
"If we're being honest, people on the other side have not been so helpful either," said Carlson. "People who you trust — people you probably voted for — have spent weeks minimizing what is clearly a very serious problem. It's just partisan politics, they say. Calm down. In the end this is just like the flu, and people die from that every year. Coronavirus will pass, and when it does, we will feel foolish for worrying about it. That's their position."
"No doubt these people have good intentions as they say this — many of them, anyway," continued Carlson. "They may not know any better, maybe they're just not paying attention. Or maybe they believe they're serving some higher cause by shading reality — nobody wants to be manipulated by a corrupt media establishment, and it is corrupt. And there's an election coming up, best not to say anything that might help the other side. We get it. But they're wrong."
"The Chinese coronavirus is a major event," said Carlson. "It will affect your life. And by the way, it's definitely not just the flu. In a typical year, the flu in this country has a mortality rate of about one in a thousand. The overall death rate for this virus, by contrast, is as high as 3.4 percent. That's 34 times deadlier."
Carlson went on, in a seeming plea directly to the president, to say that the "surest sign of strength" is to "tell the truth," and that "tax cuts and lower rates won't reopen factories that have shut down to contain the virus."