LOOKING FOR LIFE BEYOND CABLE NEWS AND FINDING THAT RESISTANCE IS FUTILE
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Tension is who you think you should be. Relaxation is who you are.
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Well, look who came to dinner!
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Category Archives: Glenn Beck
This ad appears at the top of the front page on Glenn Beck’s site, The Blaze. Brilliant marketing – that’ll bring in the new customers alright.
Remember Glenn Beck, the batshit crazy one who was a bit too much even for FOX? The one who found Communist-conspiracies hidden in the 1930 bas-relief sculptures of Rockefeller Center? The guy with the blackboard? The one oddly obsessed with Hitler?
He’s on his own these days, has been for a while. He now has an online “TV show” and his webzine The Blaze, always good for a little recreational surfing. There’s an article there today that has the right-wing noise machine all a-twitter.
The article is written by a guy who says he was at Columbia with Obama and also says Obama wasn’t really there. Let me repeat: he says he was somewhere with someone who wasn’t there. Or, Obama was there but no one saw him. Or Obama got terrible grades but he wasn’t there. Or, he was a foreign exchange student and also he wasn’t there. And his evidence is, well, here it is:
I smell something rotten in Denmark. Obama has a big skeleton in his closet. It’s his college records. Call it “gut instinct” but my gut is almost always right.
Reading it all will waste your time, but if you’re sufficiently masochistic, it’s here. Being at The Blaze put me in mind of Lewis Black’s classic take down of Glenn Beck. Pure comedy genius. And this one is worth your time.
Joy returns to TV! It is no longer the terrible, lonely wasteland it became after Glenn Beck left us. Because now, Lou Dobbs has taken up the chalk and returned to the FOX blackboard. Really.
From Kay this morning:
If my Irish father were still alive, he’d be bursting with pride in Irish President Michael D. Higgins. As am I – for both his sentiments and because he speaks in clear full sentences and doesn’t pause for applause, something that is absent in our country today. Our public political languages are now Bumpersticker and Gasbaggery. We have no orators.
I especially like his outrage at our moral failure regarding health care.
. . . which I was, if you count saying (two posts below) that he doesn’t matter anymore. Anyway, speaking of Glenn . . .
// Goldline, a company that used endorsements from Glenn Beck and other conservative icons to sell hundreds of millions of dollars to consumers, has been charged with theft and fraud in a 19-count criminal complaint filed Tuesday by local officials in California.
. . . marks the latest in a series of allegations leveled against the gold dealer, which pioneered the practice of weaving its sales pitches into broadcasts by popular conservative political personalities — including two former presidential candidates — to sell hundreds of millions of dollars worth of gold every year.
The complaint alleges that Goldline “runs a bait and switch operation in which customers, seeking to invest in gold bullion, are switched to highly overpriced coins by using false and misleading claims,” according to a statement released by the consumer affairs division of the Santa Monica City Attorney’s office.
I grabbed this little something from Goldline’s website; I’m sure Beck’s lawyers are screeching their outrage even now, insisting it be taken down – even though I thought I once heard Glenn say that Jesus wanted us to buy from Goldline.
David Barton belongs in a tent in Tennessee in 1911. But he’s a right wing fav instead just like ‘Pastor’ John Hagee who says the Catholic Church is the anti-Christ. Oh I could go on . . . I do go on. And on.
(Oy. This post got away from me. It’s long and should probably be two posts. But do check out the photo below.)
Did you know Newt Gingrich is a fan of David Barton? Barton is the ‘historian’ made famous by Glenn Beck on his FOX show, and who’s now all the rage in conservative christian circles. If I ever see the likes of Romney with this guy, I may start believing that the End Times really are near. Whoops! Too late. Already happened. Grab your children near . . .
BARTON: The Founders did not support slavery or engage in the practice.
Really? Washington, Jefferson, Madison were not the only slaveholders, but they were among the largest – owning hundreds of slaves each.
BARTON: The US fought the Revolutionary War because the Founders rejected the British Empire’s endorsement of slavery.
Really? The Founders were afraid or unable to deal with slavery when writing the US Constitution. They decided to let future generations deal with it.
BARTON: the Founding Fathers “already had the entire debate on creation and evolution,” and sided with Creationism.
Really? The theory of evolution was presented in Charles Darwin’s seminal volume, The Origin of Species. It was published in 1859.
This is genuinely crazy stuff and should be laughed out a fourth grade classroom. It would have been 30 years ago.
But Barton is not a one-off just doing his thing on Beck’s show. He is a name in the Christian Reconstructionism wing of the Republican Party. And there are a lot of them. The photo below was taken at Ralph Reed’s most recent gimme-your-money-suckers event put together for the rubes by his Faith & Freedom Coalition (they use the ampersand in the logo see, cuz it’s more logoish). Feast your eyes upon those who would lead America into a new 18th century.
Richard Lee – author of the American Patriots Bible, something the Twelve Apostles meant to get published but just didn’t get around to it.
Ralph Reed – first rate con man coordinated scam on Indian tribes with Jack Abrahmoff. Made them both rich.
Glenn Beck – Mormon. Megalomaniac. Got rich demagoging (seems to work every time).
Pastor John Hagee – Evangelical, preaches that the Catholic Church is the “whore of Babylon” as found in the Book of Revelations. McCain was ‘grateful’ for his support in ’08.
David Barton – da man
Jim Garlow – says gay marriage will lead to enslavement of Christians. Honest.
Tom Mullins – leader of Christ Fellowship church with a gajillion parishioners or whatever. Not crazy best I can tell.
Robert George – led boycott of this years’ RNC convention cuz they allowed gay Republicans to attend or something.
Glenn Beck’s blog, The Blaze, saw this story and found journalistic merit therein. And of course they got all kerfuffle.
The Onion: Planned Parenthood Opens $8 Billion Abortionplex (in Kansas).
That’s the name of Glenn Beck’s spicy seditious blog where gather all his acolytes so get alerts on what to be afraid of whenever they can’t catch the show.
Kind of a gay name, isn’t it?
Glenn Beck is crashing and burning. I don’t think I’ve ever seen one of these guys implode so quickly. He really is Lonesome Rhodes – except the rubes he’s been huckstering are his soul brothers in conservative media, mostly activists and bloggers. Even Andrew Breitbart, the new king of all media via his Big Government web base, is a little pissed. Beck’s been snatching unattributed content from his sites.
The full story is in The Daily Caller.
A number of conservative activists and bloggers say they’re furious at media magnate Glenn Beck for what they call content theft. Over the past several years, Beck has relied on video, audio and written content from others to fill his radio and television shows, as well as his websites. Often he has credited his fellow conservatives for their work. Yet in many other instances say dozens of conservative journalists who spoke to The Daily Caller, he has not, often taking elaborate steps to cloak the origins of the material.
. . .
A remarkably large number of conservative writers say they feel robbed. During the March 18 airing of his television program, for example, Beck ran a portion of video created by a Chicago-based blogger who calls himself Rebel Pundit. The blogger, who does not publicly reveal his name, says he was initially pleased to see Beck running his video, which featured left-wing protesters demanding amnesty for illegal immigrants. He was soon shocked, however, to see that Beck’s staff had obscured the watermark logo of his website, RebelPundit.com, from the tape.
He doesn’t need FOX, he thinks he’s Oprah. From the New York Times Business section today:
Glenn Beck Contemplates Starting Own Channel
First, an aside: Here, now, and right up there next to the essential new noun ‘truthiness‘, comes an essential new verb, ‘acorned’. I found it this morning and apologize to the original author for already forgotting where it came from. It’s a very good new word, so I expect we will see it everywhere soon.
Now, on to the post: NPR has a posted a detailed examination of the latest James O’Keefe sting. He’s the guy who considers himself a muckraking journalist. He’s not. He’s a muckraking fabulist. Some months back O’Keefe took down Acorn with a fraudulent report. He tried to do the same with Sen. Mary Landreau but he got caught, breaking into her office and files. That’s a crime and he pled guilty. Most recently, he took down a bit of NPR’s credibility the same way, using wildly edited surepticious audio and video. Guy has a terrific record. His success is only possible in our current cable news and internet climate where any video must be shown long before it’s truthiness is ascertained.
I can’t summarize what NPR has at the link (a bit late guys!) but here’s a bit from Jonathan Turley’s post:
For example, the tape released to the public shows Schiller laughing with the men as they described how their “organization sought to spread the acceptance of sharia across the world.” NPR notes that “[i]n reality, as the longer tape shows, that laughter follows an innocuous exchange as Schiller and Liley greet the two supposed donors at their table.” Other more disturbing claims of misleading edits are contained in the NPR analysis.
Also, it seems that Mr. Glenn Beck may be correct about the looming apocolypse. How else to explain that Beck’s own website The Blaze and its editor worked together with NPR on deconstructing the O’Keefe hack job.
(*Upton Sinclair’s book The Jungle exposed the practices of the American meat processing industry leading to wide reforms – and no doubt saving thousands of lives.)
The oddness of Glenn Beck is beginning to cause unease among those Republicans who think winning the occasional election is a good idea. It’s not just Bill Kristol. There’s also this from The Washington Monthly post linked below:
Joe Klein noted over the weekend that he’s “heard, from more than a couple of conservative sources, that prominent Republicans have approached Rupert Murdoch and Roger Ailes about the potential embarrassment that the paranoid-messianic rodeo clown may bring upon their brand. The speculation is that Beck is on thin ice.”
Apparently little Billy Kristol said:
When Glenn Beck rants about the caliphate taking over the Middle East from Morocco to the Philippines, and lists (invents?) the connections between caliphate-promoters and the American left, he brings to mind no one so much as Robert Welch and the John Birch Society. He’s marginalizing himself, just as his predecessors did back in the early 1960s. [National Review chimed in and said ‘dude.’]
And then Glenn Beck said:
I don’t even know if you understand what conservatives are anymore, Billy. People like Bill Kristol, I don’t think they stand for anything any more. All they stand for is power. They’ll do anything to keep their little fiefdom together . . .
And then Beck accused Kristol of failing to see that:
“we are fighting the forces of evil on this planet. . . . I think he’s still trying to get Bob Dole elected. Have you done a minute of research Bill?”
. . . I present this, in which Mr. Bill O’Reilly shines as the voice of reason. Thin on facts but no matter – still the voice of reason.
Okay, my head is exploding. I sinned once again by exposing myself to Glenn Beck. It’s kind of an anthropological fascination. People will be writing about this guy for generations – I can see textbooks exploring the crazy. He just said:
“Code Pink is pretty damn cozy with the Muslim Brotherhood.” And Bill Ayers and Bernadette Dorn too! (Weathermen from the 1960’s anti war movement). Also ACORN. And The Tides Foundation – all his usual bugaboos. Oh – and Code Pink is under the protection of Hamas, the terrorist! group! (from the democratically elected government of Palestine). All of these groups have some kind of carefully hidden agenda that involves . . . dum de dum dum . . . social justice! and . . . . dum de dum dum . . . ethnic cleansing! Really, ethnic cleansing. I only heard part of it, so I don’t know if he named PBS and Barbra Streisand.
Rupert Murdoch better be making an awful lot of money.
Let me set the stage for his amazing claim today: an element of the theology of Shia Islam is that, like many religions, they await a sort of ‘messiah’, known as the Twelfth Iman. Okay, ordinary religious stuff – the theology is of course deep and complex, but it’s pretty much about a messiah. (Perhaps blogfriend umersultan can flesh this out for us.)
So, Beck. I tuned in and found out he’s making a documentary – and he’s going to show his viewers how remarkably the Twelfth Imam sounds exactly like the dreaded anti-Christ.
We shouldn’t let this man anywhere near a microphone.
This is taken from a radio program segment from way back in March 2001. It’s the somewhat famous Beck program in which he screams at a woman caller ‘bitch, get the hell off my program’. But the rest is new to me – the part in which he launches his little ‘people I’d like to kill with a shovel’ segment. (It’s short.)
From the story in The Christian Science Monitor: Glenn Beck’s dozens of attacks on The Tides Foundation, are being linked to the attempt by a “heavily-armed man [Byron Williams] to assassinate employees at the San Francisco-based [Tides] Foundation, which funds environmental, human rights, and other progressive projects. The attack in July was thwarted in a shoot-out with police in which two officers were wounded.”
The Tides Foundation, in case you don’t remember, is the outfit no one ever heard of till Glenn Beck targeted them on his TV show devoting himself to attacking them hour after hour, day after day.
Said the gunman: “I would have never started watching Fox News if it wasn’t for the fact that Beck was on there. And it was the things that he did, it was the things he exposed that blew my mind.”
After the shootings, “Rep. Peter King (R-NY), senior Republican on the Homeland Security Committee, said in an e-mail to Media Matters: “It is important that everyone in public life, whether on the right or on the left, realize that words have consequences.”
I think that’s what the Pima County Sheriff said. And so, oddly, did Byron Williams.
The journal Nature has an editorial this week. They’re not thrilled about the current rise in the anti-science mood in the country, enabled by an anti-science administration (hint: not Obama) and broadcast widely by the likes of Rush, Beck and Palin and FOX.
“US citizens face economic problems that are all too real, and the country’s future crucially depends on education, science and technology as it faces increasing competition from China and other emerging science powers. . . . Yet the public often buys into anti-science, anti-regulation agendas that are orchestrated by business interests and their sponsored think tanks and front groups.”
We’re blind and probably deserve what we get.
It’s been quite a week:
- Glenn Beck turned from a populist demagogue into our very lord and savior come back to earth to teach us a new history of western civilization;
- a disturbed man saw a gap in programming at the Discovery Channel, so he grabbed his guns and bombs and headed off to have a chat with them – it ended badly;
- caterpillars ate a pretty green shrub near my front door;
- the Iraq War is over;
- the Iraq War is not over;
- and my 98-year old father has found yet another new reason for living (don’t ask).
(And since we’re measuring increments of time here, how about this little measurement: today is the 330th day of the ninth year of the war in Afghanistan.)
We may need more than an oldie today. A laugh? Yeah, a laugh. So, before we go all sing song . . . this is only a minute, do not let your eyes wander and pay close attention.
Here’s a perfect example of the casual use of equivalency in today’s media. Chris Cilizza, a columnist at the Washington Post and a regular on MSNBC, writes about Saturday’s Beckapalooza. He says no one really knows how many attended, saying:
“Estimates on the size of the rally have varied widely. According to one commissioned by CBS News, 87,000 people attended the event. Former Alaska governor Sarah Palin (R), who also spoke at the event, told a reporter afterward that she thought more than 100,000 people had attended. Beck said that the crowd was between 300,000 and 650,000, and Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), speaking at her own event after the rally, said that no fewer than 1 million people had been in attendance’
From CBS in their own report: “The company AirPhotosLive.com based the attendance on aerial pictures it took over the rally, which stretched from in front of the Lincoln Memorial along the Reflecting Pool to the Washington Monument. . . . AirPhotosLive.com gave its estimate a margin of error of 9,000, meaning between 78,000 and 96,000 people attended the rally. The photos used to make the estimate were taken at noon Saturday, which is when the company estimated was the rally’s high point.”
So what we learned from Chris Cilizza this morning (and passed as perfectly good reporting by the Post’s ‘editors’) is this: crowd size guesses pulled from the a**es of the sponsors carry the same weight as those arrived at by outside professionals hired by a news organization. Okay.
So, let’s just review. Estimates by Beck et al, as seen by Cilizza, worthy of reporting (at least they weren’t colluding – obviously), were:
Palin – 100,000
Beck – 300,000 – 650,000 (lottsa wiggle room in this one – either one thing or double that one thing. Somewhere in there.)
Bachman – 1 million by jeebus
Long time NY Times op-ed columnist Bob Herbert (he’s been there forever, but resists the trappings of stardom) departs from his usual measured tone today and goes after Glenn Beck. He says a lot of obvious and sensible things, as is his wont. This line, especially, sings:
“He makes you want to take a shower.”
A few nights ago, I recorded A Face in the Crowd so that tomorrow I could – if I wish – watch the real Lonesome Rhodes self-immolate while the cheap imitation ascends his coronation throne and gives his sermon on the mount down in DC. And then, if we’re all a little luckier than we’ve been lately, someone might arrange to leave Mr. Beck’s mic on.
As usual, Glenn Beck has been terrifying his viewers and listeners (and who the hell are these people?*) with tales of the ‘enemy’. You know the drill:
- Be afraid of Communists (okay, but dude, there really aren’t many of those left outside of China).
- Be afraid of progressives, liberals, democrats – i.e., anyone who believes differently than you or, said another way, the majority of this country who voted the democrats into office.
- Be very afraid of anyone who speaks of ‘social justice’. (calling Jesus!)
and now, be very afraid of two 1960’s radical groups who pretty much dissolved well over 40 years ago:
- SDS (Students for A Democratic Society) dissolved itself in 1969 after less than a decade.
- Then in 1969, The Weathermen (also known as The Weather Underground) took up the banner. They shut down in 1977.
Glenn – they’re phantoms. They’re not there any more. Ringo is 70 and the SDS students are grandparents.
* Maybe his audience tunes in for the entertainment value. That might explain his numbers. Gee, if advertisers realized that he was only performing, the ‘market’ might consider supporting him with dollars)
My weekly five minutes of Glenn Beck – he’s instructing his audience about liberals and journalists and how journalists have a low opinion of ‘the people’. And to illustrate his point, he is putting up quotes from Walter Lippman, long dead newspaperman. The quotes are tagged ” — Walter Lippman, 1922″.
Nearly a hundred years ago.