Friday, January 18, 2013

Glenn Beck, a troll

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Glenn Beck has been defined on this Review in several ways. He is a brilliant, reactionary, yellow propagandist. He is an unabashed liar and a hypocrite. He is a cult of personality and a fake populist. He may be a narcissist, and he may be a megalomaniac. During her show, Rachel Maddow came up with another label for people of his ilk and pointed to Mr. Beck specifically.

Listen to her make the case, via MSNBC:

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Do you doubt that Beck says things just to provoke, that he's a troll? Then consider the following list of gems from Mr. Beck and remove any doubt.

not likely that even he believes this nonsense

    —Glenn Beck, arguing that the Cash for Clunkers program was nothing more than a secret government plot to gain access over your computer, July 2009
  • ''I know the progressives are using progressive tactics. They're not using Nazi tactics. The real answer is the Nazis were using early American progressive tactics. And that's not my opinion, that's historic fact.''

    —Glenn Beck, Fox News, Jan. 20, 2011
  • ''I am not saying that Barack Obama is a fascist. If I'm not mistaken, in the early days of Adolf Hitler, they were very happy to line up for help there as well. I mean, the companies were like, 'Hey, wait a minute. We can get, you know, we can get out of trouble here. They can help, et cetera, et cetera.'''

    —Glenn Beck, comparing government bailouts of auto companies to actions of German companies during the rise of Hitler, Fox News' Glenn Beck show, April 1, 2009
  • ''This is a moment, quite honestly, that I think we reclaim the civil rights movement. It has been so distorted and so turned upside down because we must repair honor and integrity first, I tell you right now. We are on the right side of history. We are on the side of individual freedoms and liberties, and damn it, we will reclaim the civil rights moment. We will take that movement, because we were the people that did it in the first place. ''

    —Glenn Beck, on his march on Washington, which he held on the anniversary of Martin Luther King's ''I Have a Dream'' speech, Fox News, May 26, 2010
  • ''You have three people in the White House that are in love with eugenics or whatever it is you would call it today. ... Please dear God, read history. Please dear God read the truth of what these people have said in their own words, and ask yourself this one question: Do you trust these people enough to give them control over who lives and who dies? Because that's what health care is when you have no other choice but to go to the state.''

    —Glenn Beck, comparing health care reform to Nazi eugenics
  • ''Roosevelt...Am I wrong by saying there was a good portion of people that thought, 'Holy cow, I'm glad he's dead. He was turning into a dictator.'''

    —Glenn Beck, on FDR, who was wildly popular after being elected four times, bringing America back from economic collapse, and leading the Allied powers to victory in World War II (May 21, 2010)
  • ''This is what Hitler did with the SS. He had his own people. He had the brownshirts and then the SS. This is what Saddam Hussein — so — but you are comparing that. And I — I mean, I think America would have a really hard time getting their arms around that.''

    —Glenn Beck, claiming Obama's 'civilian national security force' is the same as what Hitler and Saddam Hussein did, Glenn Beck, FOX News' Glenn Beck show, Aug. 27, 2009
  • ''Every night I get down on my knees and pray that Dennis Kucinich will burst into flames.''

    —Glenn Beck, in 2003
  • ''When you see the effects of what they're doing to the economy, remember these words: We will survive. No -- we'll do better than survive, we will thrive. As long as these people are not in control. They are taking you to a place to be slaughtered!''

    —Glenn Beck, on FOX News, Nov. 3, 2009
  • ''You got to have an enemy to fight. And when you have an enemy to fight, then you can unite the entire world behind you, and you seize power. That was Hitler's plan. His enemy: the Jew. Al Gore's enemy, the U.N.'s enemy: global warming. Then you get the scientists — eugenics. You get the scientists — global warming. Then you have to discredit the scientists who say, 'That's not right.' And you must silence all dissenting voices. That's what Hitler did.''

    —Glenn Beck, linking Al Gore's campaign against global warming to Hitler's campaign against the Jews, 'The Glenn Beck Program,' April 30, 2007
  • ''So here you have Barack Obama going in and spending the money on embryonic stem cell research. ... Eugenics. In case you don't know what Eugenics led us to: the Final Solution. A master race! A perfect person. ... The stuff that we are facing is absolutely frightening.''

    —Glenn Beck on his radio show, March 9, 2009
  • ''I want a chastity belt on this man. I want his every move watched in Washington. I don't trust this guy...This one could end with a dead intern. I'm just saying, it could end with a dead intern!''

    —Glenn Beck, on Sen. Scott Brown saying his daughters are ''available'' during his election victory speech
  • ''This is fascism. This is what happens when you merge special interests, corporations, and the government. This is what happens. And if people like you don't take a some point, you know what poem keeps going through my mind is 'First they came for the Jews.' People, all of us are like, well, this news doesn't really affect me. Well, I'm not a bondholder. Well, I'm not in the banking industry. Well, I'm not a big CEO. Well, I'm not on Wall Street. Well, I'm not a car dealer. I'm not an autoworker. Gang, at some point they're going to come for you.''

    —Glenn Beck, on closures of auto dealerships under the bankruptcy deals of GM and Chrysler, ''The Glenn Beck Program,'' June 10, 2009
One could go on and on with the absurd and provocative nonsense that Mr. Beck, quintessential troll, has spouted over the years. It worked to build up his audience, and it has made him rich. What kind of people listen to absurd nonsense like this -- and these quotations barely scratch the surface of Beck's ridiculous, false claims -- and take him seriously? Gullible, reactionary people who want these claims to be true don't seem to realize that Beck has entertainment value, and nothing more.

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