It’s whoever buys the most commercials for his show. And right now, that’s Mike Lindell, the Minnesota pillow magnate? Wait, what? How do you get so rich shuffling pillows around?
Crap. If only I’d known that spending years in training in biology and spending decades teaching wasn’t a recipe for getting rich. I could have used my one life to buy foam, cut it into rectangles, and stuff it into fabric covers, and then society would have rewarded me with power, influence, and the ability to yell my crazy ideas at old people watching Fox News. I wasted my life, dammit.
Anyway, Tucker Carlson let Mike Lindell freely bellow lunatic conspiracy theories on his show, after the MyPillow guy had been banned from Twitter for being too dangerously wacky for even that medium.
On Tuesday night, pillow salesman Mike Lindell headed to Tucker Carlson Tonight, where his ads routinely kick in more than a third of the show’s advertising budget, to inform the world that he has been canceled. The night before, the MyPillow CEO had been permanently banned from Twitter after what a Twitter spokesperson called “repeated violations of our Civic Integrity Policy” related to misinformation pertaining to the 2020 presidential election.
I did a double-take on that one bit — so ads for pillows from one manufacturer constitute a third of the revenue stream for Tucker Carlson? I guess he would feel some pressure to avoid alienating the wild-eyed ranting buffoon.
I analyzed 3 months of Tucker Carlson's advertising. Th data shows just how few are companies willing advertise on the show.
During this period, there were a total of 745 minutes of ads.
MyPillow: 302 mins
All Others Combined: 443 mins
He's essentially a 1 advertiser show. pic.twitter.com/PEcSPt6YrN
— Angelo Carusone (@GoAngelo) June 11, 2020
He was, of course, on national TV to complain about cancel culture and being silenced. Irony is dead, but at least the corpse has a nice comfy pillow to lie on.
Lindell is also taking advantage of huge ad purchases on OAN and Eric Metaxas’s radio show to go on those programs to whine about how he can’t make himself heard anymore.
All this raises big questions in my head. Are pillows that big a deal for people who tune into Conservative Old People’s Media? I can’t remember when I last bought a pillow — maybe a decade or more ago, and I’m not feeling any pressing need for a new one now. I’m curious about cause and effect. Do people who need a new pillow spontaneously turn to Carlson and Metaxas to shop? Or does watching Carlson and Metaxas suddenly make one desire something soft to lie on? As I get older, will I start seeking pillows? We’re raising lots of flies in the lab right now, and fly larvae go into a wandering phase where they crawl up unto the side of their container to pupate — is this like a hardwired behavioral transition, too?
Lindell isn’t the sole advertiser, though. Other companies pouring money into the conservative trough are weight loss plans, Caribbean vacations, personal EKGs, and restaurant delivery services, which altogether paint an interesting picture of the typical Fox News aficionado.