About Glenn Beck’s Extremist Rhetoric

Media • Views: 4,791

Michael A. Cohen has a piece in Politico today about the over-the-top irresponsible extremism and conspiracy theories promulgated by weeping Glenn Beck: Extremist rhetoric won’t rebuild GOP.

Watching Fox News’ new sensation Glenn Beck is not for the faint of heart. It is a disquieting entree into the feverish mind of a conspiracy theorist who believes, among other things, that the government wants to remotely control our thermostats, that the relaxing of the ban on stem cell research — as well as efforts to prevent global warming — is reminiscent of Nazism, that the Federal Emergency Management Agency might be setting up concentration camps [Slightly off here - Beck actually semi-debunked that story. – ed.] and, finally, that the country is on the path to socialism or possibly fascism but definitely some “-ism” that should be avoided.

Yet for all of his conspiracy-addled and occasionally tear-filled declarations, Beck has become the new darling of the conservative right. His show is a regular stomping ground for Republican congressmen and party pooh-bahs like Karl Rove, Sarah Palin and Michael Steele, and his ratings rival those of Fox stalwarts Sean Hannity and Bill O’Reilly. According to The New York Times, Beck has become “one of the most powerful media voices for the nation’s conservative, populist anger.”

Populist agitators such as Beck are nothing new, particularly in times of economic instability — and they aren’t restricted to the right. During the Bush years, liberal anger over the administration’s policies bred bizarre conspiracy theories of its own, like accusations that the Sept. 11 attacks were an inside job.

However, Beck’s paranoid style is seeping into the discourse of conservative politics, which should be of concern to Republicans. The charge that President Barack Obama is a socialist, first raised in the 2008 campaign, has become a de rigueur epithet heard not only on talk radio but in the halls of Congress. Calls by China to consider replacing the dollar as the global reserve currency have been met by bizarre warnings from congressional Republicans that the Obama administration wants to scrap the greenback for a new global currency. Thirty-four House Republicans have even signed on to a constitutional amendment that would prevent this from occurring, though no such proposal is being considered.

He’s right. This turn toward the extreme right on the part of Fox News is troubling, and will achieve nothing in the long run except further marginalization of the GOP—unless people start behaving like adults instead of angry kids throwing tantrums and ranting about conspiracies and revolution.

Jump to top

Create a PageThis is the LGF Pages posting bookmarklet. To use it, drag this button to your browser's bookmark bar, and title it 'LGF Pages' (or whatever you like). Then browse to a site you want to post, select some text on the page to use for a quote, click the bookmarklet, and the Pages posting window will appear with the title, text, and any embedded video or audio files already filled in, ready to go.
Or... you can just click this button to open the Pages posting window right away.
Last updated: 2016-01-01 10:29 am PST
LGF User's Guide RSS Feeds

Help support Little Green Footballs!

Subscribe now for ad-free access!Register and sign in to a free LGF account before subscribing, and your ad-free access will be automatically enabled.

Recent PagesClick to refresh
A Bold New History of the Battle of the Somme British generals have long been seen as the bunglers of the deadly conflict, but a revisionist look argues that a U.S. general was the real donkey By Andrew Roberts; Photographs by Simon NorfolkSMITHSONIAN MAGAZINE | SUBSCRIBE JULY 2016 “On ...
William Lewis
38 minutes ago
Views: 46 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
WWI ‘Soldiers’ Appear Across UK in ‘Moving and Powerful’ Somme TributeFor those who missed it earlier, this may be the most touching tribute I have ever heard of. This morning, with little prior publicity, thousands of mostly young volunteers dressed up in World War I uniforms and fanned out to ...
Shiplord Kirel
1 hour, 11 minutes ago
Views: 51 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 0 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
God’s Will Not Done?: Disgraced Former Navy Chaplain Loses Bid for Public Office It’s time for an update on Gordon Klingenschmitt. The former Navy chaplain tumbled from the lofty heights of the Colorado legislature this week when he lost a Republican primary race for state Senate. According to the Denver Post, veteran ...
Thanos
4 hours, 12 minutes ago
Views: 134 • Comments: 1 • Rating: 3
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Can You Hear Us Now? t is why, Russell Berman wrote in May, "The white, working-class voters that embraced [Hillary Clinton's] message of resilience in 2008 have deserted her for Bernie Sanders in many primaries in 2016." But I offer this not as a ...
Thanos
6 hours, 49 minutes ago
Views: 139 • Comments: 1 • Rating: 1
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Charles Bradley & His Extraordinaires - Full Performance (Live on KEXP) kexp.org presents Charles Bradley & His Extraordinaires performing live at KEXP. Recorded May 23, 2016. Songs:Nobody But YouThings We Do For LoveAin't It A SinChanges Host: Cheryl WatersAudio Engineer: Jackson LongCameras: Jim Beckmann, Alaia D'Alessandro & Scott HolpainenEditor: Scott ...
Thanos
7 hours, 59 minutes ago
Views: 96 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Obama and Biden Join Clinton on Campaign Trail Next Week US President Barack Obama will join Democratic White House hopeful Hillary Clinton on the campaign trail for the first time next week, days before Vice President Joe Biden also stumps with her, Clinton aides announced Thursday. Obama is set ...
Thanos
10 hours, 46 minutes ago
Views: 227 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 12 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 1
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 1
This GOP Senator Is Open to Supporting Hillary Clinton Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) is open to the possibility of supporting presumptive Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton, a woman she respects despite her “very different philosophies” when it comes to politics. In an interview on former Obama advisor David Axelrod’s ...
Thanos
10 hours, 47 minutes ago
Views: 365 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 1
Tweets: 31 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 1
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 1
Obama to Replace Coin That Robber Took From Park Ranger, 94 - SFGate The nation’s oldest park ranger was beaten in her Richmond home by a man who broke in and robbed her of a special commemorative coin given to her by President Obama, who sent word to her boss Thursday that ...
Thanos
11 hours, 48 minutes ago
Views: 201 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 1
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Tory Leadership: Ministers Urging Gove to Pull Out Michael Gove is coming under growing pressure to abandon his bid to become Tory leader, the BBC has been told. Sources have told the BBC government ministers are trying to persuade the justice secretary to make way so the ...
Thanos
11 hours, 54 minutes ago
Views: 139 • Comments: 0 • Rating: 0
Tweets: 1 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0
Austria Presidential Poll Result Overturned Austria's highest court has annulled the result of the presidential election narrowly lost by the far-right candidate of the Freedom Party. The party had challenged the result, saying that postal votes had been improperly handled. The Freedom Party candidate, ...
Thanos
11 hours, 55 minutes ago
Views: 181 • Comments: 1 • Rating: 1
Tweets: 2 • Share to Facebook
Shares: 0
Likes: 0
Comments: 0
: 0