Liberals can be really hateful people on television, and they know how to keep their audiences in a high state of panic over conservatives. They have zero fear of the “independent fact-checkers,” so they can just spew crazy stuff. But when they shovel the alarmism with a name like “Joy” or “Jolly,” it’s especially strange.

On May 30, MSNBC host Joy Reid announced at the top of her show “presidential candidate and toy-sized Mussolini Ron DeSantis unveils his authoritarian manifesto, vowing to destroy leftism and wokeism.” The graphic on screen under DeSantis was “THE DESTROYER.”

The trolling MSNBC host has to know that “toy-sized” DeSantis is about 6 inches taller than she is (5 feet, 5 inches) and that he’s not Mussolini. We’ll stipulate that a promise to “destroy leftism” can be upsetting to leftists and can imply something less than democratic.

Later, Reid claimed, “President DeSantis would ban artistic freedom of speech, of course, and wield the federal government like a sledgehammer against businesses who do anything that displeases him and other members of the far right.”

Then Reid predicted he would impose a federal abortion ban at six weeks, as he signed in Florida. “And there is a model for what (DeSantis) wants to do. Just look at China, Cuba, North Korea, Afghanistan or Iran, where the government censors the media or force feeds a strict conservative religious ideology to children in schools, deploys morality police to make sure you’re wearing what they want, learning what they want, doing what they want.”

Behind her on screen in capital letters was “SPREADING TOTALITARIANISM.” This is like the wildest direct-mail fundraising letter, only on a so-called news channel. Many years ago, Jeane Kirkpatrick suggested authoritarian regimes (generally placed on the right) would be easier to flip to democracy than totalitarian regimes (of communist hardliners on the left). Reid just throws these terms in a smear blender.

Speaking of “Joys” that are joyless, there’s also Joy Behar of “The View.” On June 1, Behar implied American conservatives would support executing homosexuals. “In Russia, you’re imprisoned if you’re gay. In Uganda, they just imposed a stringent law, life imprisonment or execution if you’re considered to be homosexual. Sixty-four countries, half of them are in Africa, criminalize homosexuality. The other half are all over the place. I mean, is that what we want our country to be, like Uganda? I mean, come on! Or Russia? I don’t think so.”

Then there is the former congressman David Jolly, who was defeated after one term by former Gov. Charlie Crist, who later lost to DeSantis by almost 20 points. So you can understand why he might be jealous of DeSantis.

On MSNBC’s weekend “Mehdi Hasan Show” on May 28, the angry Jolly warned DeSantis is a “very dark figure” who is “far more dangerous” than Donald Trump because he “is a culture warrior who wants to take us back 100 years and believes he can use the Constitution to that end, and ultimately, has a very dark vision of what America will be. So, the idea of pardoning January 6th convicts, if you will, at this point, is because he believes we are engaged in a real war that he has to win.”

Jolly was also quoted in a Politico hit piece on Casey DeSantis, the governor’s wife. She’s an “ice queen,” he said, underlining, “Both ‘ice’ and ‘queen’ are doing the work there.”

If you’re not a Democrat who loves all this fearmongering, you should avoid the punditry of Joy, Joy and Jolly. It feels like they’re all fierce competitors in an Olympic mudslinging competition.

Tim Graham is director of media analysis at the Media Research Center and executive editor of the blog To find out more about Tim Graham and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at


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