Archive for category Glenn Beck

Insane Right-Wing Ebola Conspiracy Theories

Media Matters offers a four and a half minute compilation of how right-wing media have been trying to spread unfounded hysteria and conspiracy theories about Ebola. Apparently it’s just part of the GOTV operation to make sure all the wingers show up at the polls on November 4. It’s hyper-partisan politics as usual, and the good of our nation and the world is not even a consideration.

Mario Machado on HuffPo:

Sure, FOX news gets away with blatant racism and nobody bats an eye because it’s just part of their act, but they are not alone in their uncompassionate reporting on the thousands of people currently suffering from Ebola.

…We speculate endlessly over the fictionalized and sensationalized prospects of an epidemic that will never become a legitimate threat within the US, but no one finds the time to even mention the horror that must face the individuals, the families, the health care workers and the citizens of an impoverished country who are slowly watching this unspeakably devastating disease spread within their midst. For the moment, we are too busy asking ourselves, “What does this Ebola outbreak mean for me and my life?” instead of the questions we should be asking, such as “How can we as a global community best act to stop this terrible disease everywhere?”

So whether anchors are talking about travel bans for everyone and anyone coming from West Africa, or discussing the domestic “Ebola epidemic” in regards to the few cases we’ve had in the U.S., it is important to realize that it is all just well-disguised racism and Western exceptionalism being paraded around under the banner of “national security.”…

More info:
The Ebola Truthers Have Arrived and Their Conspiracy Theories Are Completely Insane
POLITICO poll: Democrats in danger over Ebola
Poll: Majority Of Americans Worried About U.S. Ebola Outbreak
Gallup: One-Fifth of Americans Worry About Getting Ebola (Those would be the regular Faux News Channel viewers)

Politicians Who Say ‘I’m Not A Scientist’ On Climate Offer Their Advice On Ebola There is a method to the madness: Tea-GOPers always reject science when it runs counter to their political interests of the moment.

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Senator Mike Lee To Protest Government Shutdown He Helped Cause

Right-wing radio host Glenn Beck will join Utah Senator Mike Lee and various tea partyers Saturday to “clean up” national monuments by picking up trash on the National Mall.

Basically, it’s an incredibly lame attempt to blame President Obama for the Republican Shutdown that’s in Day 11 now. The Republicans can’t even tell us what they want anymore, while half a million federal employees remain on furlough.

Now that the Koch brothers have waved the white flag, the Republican Shutdown of the federal government is expected to end by the middle of next week. Senator Lee’s career as a highly-compensated trash collector will be short-lived, but at least he will have accomplished SOMETHING during his time in Washington at our expense.

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A Colossal Head: Glenn Beck’s Salt Lake City Show

Via Media Matters. Glenn Beck’s “Man In The Moon” show July 6 at the USANA Amphitheater. I have no words.


The Constitution: A Love Story

A wonderful meditation on the Constitution and its importance from Garrett Epps, at the American Prospect.  Read the whole thing, but here’s the passage that jumped out at me:

. . .  I believe the Constitution saved, if not my life, at least its promise and the promise of the lives of those among whom I grew up. In a moment of great need, the Constitution—belatedly, even reluctantly, but nonetheless decisively—came to my rescue. As a result, I have my own passions about the Constitution. It may be a strange parent, but it is not an abusive one.

Epps recalls his childhoold in the Jim Crow South as a member of “decent” white family.

Many whites were what we called “decent folk.” My family fell into this category. My parents were people of powerful goodwill who in their public lives modeled tolerance and kindness and who, by the time they died, had formed deep alliances across the color line. But in private, for years, our family lived a life defined by racial separation—our church, our schools, our clubs, our jobs—and when white peers spoke in ways that “decent folk” did not, we lacked the vocabulary to rebuke them.

Epps’ summary of the history of Jim Crow should be required reading – the Jim Crow south was a fascist state built on racism and supported by both official and unofficial violence.  I have an incredibly dear friend who, like Epps, was born in 1950 in the South but who unlike Epps is black.  She once told me a story of a family gathering at which her entire family had to lie on the floor for fear that the shouting, drunk rednecks driving down the road had guns and would fire them into the house.  Jim Crow isn’t the ancient past.

Epps concludes with a condemnation of the right’s current much ballyhooed but dishonest proclamations of Constitutional faithfulness and devotion:

I think now of the corrosive agenda of the right wing, which in many ways is the same agenda the Constitution’s opponents have followed since 1787: sanctioned inequality, theocracy, localism, xenophobia, legalized exploitation. Today, their hostility masquerades as reverence. They dare to accuse patriots of treason; they demand obeisance to an imagined Constitution; they plot the destruction of the real one.

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When Good Christians Excuse and Defend Really Big Liars and Their Really Big Lies

Liar, liesI had a nice discussion with my good friend and OneUtah author, Ken Bingham this morning. Ken began our FaceBook chat by saying how disgusted he is with Rupert Murdock over the illegal wire tapping and something about “false conservatives.”  It should be noted that Ken was a devoted Fox, Drudge, Breitbart, Limbaugh (you get the point) fan during the Bush years.

To the question “who do you consider to be real conservatives,” he responded, “Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh.”

For me, this was an opportunity to raise a question that has plagued me for sometime. “But Ken, how can you endorse known liars?” To which he replied, “Give me an example.” So I chose a simple empirically demonstrable and clearly purposeful lie. After investing far more energy than should be required to get Ken to admit this was a lie, to my amazement, Ken began to defend Mr. Limbaugh, possibly the greatest liar in world history, by suggesting that if Limbaugh didn’t know he was lying, its not a lie, then he sabotaged this argument by with “lies are like bullets in war.” He followed that comment with “I’m not trying to justify lying” followed by another justification, “well Obama lies,” and “have you ever told a lie?” Finally, in a herculean effort to excuse Limbaugh’s lies, Ken said, “Rush is stating his opinion. By definition, an opinion cannot be a lie.”

Our painful conversation ended abruptly when Ken announced he had to go get ready for church. I suggested he confer with the Bishop about when lying is permissible, to which Ken responded, “I already know the answer to that question.”

So while Ken is in church struggling with his personal ethics and idolatry of material, vicious and slanderous liars and, in anticipation of his imminent return, I am posting below, only a few of Glenn Beck’s very, very many lies…as promised.

BECK: There Has Been “Zero Warming For Over A Decade.”
NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), The National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), The U.K. Met Office, And The World Meteorological Organisation Have All Stated That 2000-2009 Was The Warmest Decade On Record For The Globe.

BECK: Obama’s Trip To India Will Cost “$2 Billion.”
REALITY: This believable only Michelle Bachmann or criminally immoral enough to believe her.

BECK: The Obama Administration Loaned Money To Brazil In A Plot To Enrich George Soros.
REALITY: Bush Appointees At Export-Import Bank — Not Obama — Unanimously Approved a loan guarantee to an American company selling U.S. equipment, products and services to Brazil.

BECK: President Obama Proposed To Increase The Capital Gains Tax On “Every Single American Who Invests.”
REALITY: Obama Proposed Capital Gains Increase Only On “Upper-Income” Earners.

BECK: Promoting his Fox News special in Wilmington, Ohio — a city hit by significant job losses in recent years — Beck falsely claimed, “this town hasn’t taken any money from the government.”
REALITY: Wilmington Had Received Millions In Stimulus Funds As of November 22, recipient reports posted at showed that the city of Wilmington received at least $2.6 million in stimulus funds.


Rep. Matheson Votes For Higher Electricity Bills

MathesonHouse Republicans this week brought to the floor a Tea Party-inspired message bill that would have gutted the Energy Independence and Security Act, which requires light bulbs of all types to be at least 25 percent more energy efficient by 2012. The light bulb efficiency language passed the House in 2007 by a vote of 314-100, and was signed into law by President George W. Bush.

Rep. Joe Barton’s (R-TX) BULB Act — which failed under a suspension-of-the-rules procedure that required a two-thirds vote — is another example of Republicans pushing really hard on a symbolic button that doesn’t do anything. The bill bypassed the normal legislative process, including hearings.

What’s surprising is that our very own Rep. Jim Matheson (D?) voted with the Republicans to raise your electricity costs. Climate Progress points out that the current law will save consumers $12 billion a year.

Rep. Matheson hardly ever talks to the media, so we are left to guess what he was thinking. Maybe he’s been listening to Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck. Perhaps he owes Rep. Michele Bachmann a favor. Maybe he’s just happy to support anti-consumer legislation no matter who sponsors it. Otherwise, I’m at a loss to explain why he wasted his vote on a Tea-GOP attack on a practical energy policy that used to have bipartisan support.

Jon Stewart had the last word on this idiotic bill.

UPDATE: This is sad. Fred Upton Pushes Vote to Kill His Own Light Bulb Efficiency Standards

House Passes Tea Party Light Bulb Joke By Voice Vote.


Breaking: Islamo-Marxist Conspiracy Forces Glenn Beck Cancellation

Beck crying

Or something like that.

Glenn Beck will end his daily Fox News Channel program later this year.

His departure was jointly announced in a statement on Wednesday by Fox and Mr. Beck’s company, Mercury Radio Arts. The statement did not specify an end date for the show, called “Glenn Beck,” which has been telecast at 5 p.m. on Fox News since early 2009. Mr. Beck’s contract with Fox ends in December.

I’m guessing it wasn’t the lies (Faux News is OK with that). It was losing a million viewers and 300 advertisers.

More info: Why Beck Is Out At Fox: Poor Ratings And Paranoid Rants


Reflections on The Culture of Revolution

I was watching the documentary Morning Sun and was struck by something the narrator said near the end of the film.  Near the end of China’s disastrous Cultural Revolution, something odd happened.  People began to believe in increasingly bizarre conspiracy theories.  After almost a decade of cultural revolution, they had failed to root out their enemies and in fact their enemies seemed ever more present.  Certain high ranking leaders were “revealed” to have been traitors.  Something was wrong.

Regular purges didn’t work.  The mythology of the revolution was under attack.  The core, almost spiritual principles of the revolution were in danger.  People were straying from the “true path” and must be brought back into obedience to it.  And yet no matter how many enemies were named, how many punishments meted out, there was never success.

The only explanation the people could accept involved conspiracies, subtle, complex and successful, to undermine the revolution.  And they began believing those theories.  What made them dangerous was the fact that people in charge, people with power, actively believed in these conspiracies and they had the power to harm, to punish, to even kill, those the believed involved in the conspiracies.

As part of the Cultural Revolution, everything, even seemingly insignificant things, became massively significant.  A stray word, singing the wrong kind of song, wearing the wrong kind of hat, everything was loaded with significance.  Things which had been unremarkable before were now invested with massive importance.  Words and gestures were examined for hidden meaning.

I found myself pondering something.  At some point early in his presidency, Barack and Michelle Obama did a playful fistjab.  The kind people do fifty times a day.  The American right went crazy.  Was it a signal?  What did it mean?  Barack Obama addressed school children via satellite – just as many previous presidents have done – and the American right went crazy.  What subversive message was he going to give?  Can we trust him to speak to our children?  Good, patriotic parents should keep their kids home!  And so on.

Whether it’s bizarre theories about Barack Obama’s citizenship, odd conspiracies about using the White House to institute Islamic Law in the US, or whatever unfounded conspiracy the right is spinning today, since the moment he was nominated for the Presidency, the American right has engaged in a series of increasingly unhinged discussions of wild conspiracies.  When confronted, conservative politicians have either embraced those conspiracy theories (see Bachman, Michele) or refused to say that they know they aren’t true (see Boehner, John).

On a fairly regular basis, febrile emails spread across the American landscape, breathlessly claiming to report on the latest conspiracy to destroy America.  All the while, very real social, economic and political problems remain unresolved.

I’m not saying that the Tea Party is the American version of Mao’s cadres.  Yet, I find it provocative that both groups trade in conspiracy theories, engage in mythologizing revolutionary leaders, react to the world in similar ways.  It seems to me that both are reactions to failures of ideological policies to produce the expected results.  The Bush administration followed conservative doctrine almost to the letter and it ended in failure.  Worse, a black guy with a funny name won the Presidency.  The rightward tilt of the Republican congress, seeking ever more ideologically pure solutions to social problems, seems to me a strangely parallel response to the world as those who led the Cultural Revolution.

Nobody ever looks like Joe McCarthy.  That’s how they get in the door.  The true believers can’t believe it didn’t work and the only explanation must be some hidden, heretofore unexpected conspiracy to undermine the Reagan Revolution.

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Glenn Beck’s ‘Islamic Caliphate’ Freakout

From “Hardball” on MSNBC this afternoon, via Media Matters:

Glenn Beck probably doesn’t know that in Sunni Islam, the Caliphate was a form of representative government that pre-dates the Magna Carta. The institution began to decline in the 1200s, and was finally abolished by law in 1924. He probably also does not know that some Muslim countries were never part of the Caliphate, for example present-day Indonesia and Malaysia.

The re-establishment of a caliphate is a goal of al-Qaeda, but there is no other support for the idea. Glenn Beck just brings it up because he loves fear-mongering and wants to imply that a fourth of the world’s population is engaged in some kind of terrorist conspiracy.

UPDATE: Only Glenn Beck could find a connection between ACORN and the Egyptian pro-democracy movement.

UPDATE: I had to do it, I couldn’t help myself. I watched a few minutes of Glenn Beck’s show today to see his reaction to Chris Matthews. You guessed it — Beck says the fact that people like Matthews think he’s a lunatic is proof positive he’s on the right track!

And he’s still busy connecting the dots, just like Russell Crowe in “A Beautiful Mind” (2001), only with more blackboards. You see, Code Pink and Bill Ayers are actually working with the Muslim Brotherhood and Hamas to re-establish the Caliphate (and the Weather Underground?). And some obscure university professors are involved somehow — it’s complicated. They are all part of the vast, ever-widening conspiracy that only Beck can see. Never mind that Glenn Beck probably couldn’t find Egypt on a map before last week!

UPDATE: The Right-Wing Nut’s Guide to Egypt

UPDATE: Media Matters: WATCH: Glenn Beck’s Week-Long Egypt Meltdown What Glenn Beck was saying while you weren’t watching.

Here are some low-lights from his week-long public meltdown that you need to see because, like virtually everyone in America, you weren’t watching while it happened. The fear, hatred, and outright lying spewed daily by Beck deserves a much larger audience just to demonstrate how low conservative journalism has fallen.

What do Bill Ayers, ACORN, the Tides Foundation, George Soros, the Weather Underground, the AFL-CIO, and Code Pink have to do with Egypt? Nothing. Except in Beck’s fevered imagination.


Rep. Gabrielle Giffords Shot; four to six others reported dead (updated)

According to MSNBC, Rep. Giffords was shot point blank in the head at a public event in Tucson.

There are few details at this point.

NPR and MSNBC are reporting the congresswoman is dead, as are six others.  The shooter is in custody.

UPDATE 12:50 p.m. – MSNBC is now reporting the congresswoman is in surgery – she’s not dead but she is very critical.


Will the Utah Legislature Embrace the Gold Standard?

Ron Paul gold coin

You can always count on the Utah State Legislature to bring the crazy. Following the lead of Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX) and Glenn Beck, Rep. John Dougall, R-Highland plans to introduce the “Utah Sound Money Act” to require the state to accept gold for transactions, and create a parallel monetary policy for intrastate commerce tied to the price of gold.

Under the legislation that has been drafted, Utah residents could mint their own gold or silver coins, a storehouse would be created to stockpile the precious metal and the Utah Defense Force, an arcane state militia that may be called and armed by the governor, would be responsible for securing the inventories.

This is beyond nuts. It’s hard to describe how insane it would be reimpose the gold standard in America. Think Progress tries:

Gold or silver standards leave a nation completely powerless to control its own monetary policy, often tying inflation rates to completely arbitrary factors such as the rate that gold is mined in South Africa, rather than to the interests of a national economy. Worse, it leaves a nation without one of its most important tools to push back against economic downturns. In the 1930s, the United States was one of the last major nations to abandon the gold standard, and this failure to act was one of the principal causes of the Great Depression.

Read the rest of this entry »


According To Beck University, There Are 157 Million Muslim Terrorists

Beck UniversityOn his radio program this morning, the Faux News host and headmaster of Beck University Glenn Beck warned, as he often does, that there is a dangerous group of violent radical Communists who want to overthrow the government, and lamented that the mainstream media refuses to cover this allegedly imminent threat. As a point of comparison to the dreaded Communists, Beck mentioned Islamic terrorists, saying he suspects that close to 10 percent of Muslims are terrorists.

BECK: What is the number of Islamic terrorists? One percent? I think it’s closer to 10 percent, but the rest of the PC world will tell you ‘oh no, it’s minuscule.’ Okay, well, let’s take you at your one percent. Look at the havoc of one percent of Muslims causing on the rest of the world!

According to a Pew report from last year, there are 1.57 billion Muslims in the world. Thus, by Beck’s calculations, there would be 157 million Islamic terrorists — more than half the population of the U.S. In reality, less than 0.00001% of Muslims are terrorists.

Related One Utah post: Why Does Mohamed Osman Mohamud Hate America?

UPDATE: Beck: “Do you really believe that I could … just make things up and remain on the air?”


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