Further to the recent PP article about the influential Fox News anchor Glenn Beck, there has been an interesting article in the New York Times providing more information about Beck’s background and his activities. As previously discussed on PP, his fellow Fox News anchor Bill O’Reilly has described Beck as “the leader of the Tea Party movement”. The Tea Party itself has of course recently been exposed as being bankrolled & manipulated right from the start by the Right-wing billionaire Koch brothers, who have links to both the Republican Party and Fox News. Beck himself also has ties with the Republican politicians & potential 2012 presidential candidates Newt Gingrich (whose own racist remarks about President Obama were discussed on PP here) and Sarah Palin.
Readers are strongly advised to familiarise themselves with the previous PP article about Beck if they have not done so already. One of the best ways to further understand the various problems with Beck’s worldview and behaviour is to view footage from both his Fox News show and his various radio shows. Some of the following videos are very disturbing indeed.
1. Glenn Beck’s racist diatribe about Indians
He begins by attacking Indian doctors, and follows it with a lengthy bigotry-and-stereotype-riddled sneering rant about India itself, at one point even describing the River Ganges (sacred to hundreds of millions of Hindus) as a name that “sounds like a disease”.
Beck’s remarks may be placed into further context by the fact that he has unashamedly promoted viciously racist books by two Nazi-sympathising authors, one of whom (Elizabeth Dilling) not only attended Nazi party meetings in Germany along with speaking at rallies by Nazi groups in the US, but also described non-white, non-Christian people as “savages” along with calling Hinduism and Islam “debasing and degrading”. Beck himself has explicitly described Dilling as one of his ideological predecessors, ie. “people who were doing what we’re doing now”.
2. A compilation of Glenn Beck’s demagoguery
Numerous examples, including Beck’s remarks about his hatred of the victims of 9/11 along with his own desire to kill many people:
3. The impact of Glenn Beck’s extremely violent rhetoric
Beck previously used one of his radio shows to list the numerous people he’d like to “kill with a shovel” and “line up and shoot in the head”; full audio clip via Media Matters for America here. His continuing use of inflammatory rhetoric and deliberately violent imagery has dangerous real-world consequences in terms of the impact on Beck’s followers and the targets of his rage, as can be seen in the video below:
4. Glenn Beck’s rage attack at female radio caller over healthcare
This has become a notorious clip of one of Beck’s radio shows when a female caller was discussing healthcare and Beck starts hysterically screaming with rage at her. He suddenly goes completely berserk at around the 3-minute mark, and his reaction is far beyond what could be termed a simple (albeit heated) difference of opinion. You can listen to the full audio clip here.
5. Glenn Beck describes the historical slavery of African-Americans as “starting with seemingly innocent ideas”; see video via Media Matters for America here.
The horrific statement above speaks for itself. Beck’s claim that the transatlantic slave trade and the associated institution of slavery in America were comprised of essentially harmless small-scale free-enterprise activities until they were “ruined by excessive government regulation” is also a gross distortion of history, on multiple fronts.
On other occasions, Beck has even repeatedly compared Obama to Satan. You’ll be able to see the sheer scale of his hatred for Obama by the end of the first video in particular (the full version of the incident involved, along with an intelligent analysis of the dangers associated with Beck’s persistent use of such violent imagery and threats, can be viewed here). The second video includes Beck’s bizarre allegation that Obama’s presidency is essentially motivated by a desire for “racial reparations”. Beck has also recently claimed that Obama “may be the worst of all” “evil presidents”.
7. Glenn Beck encourages states like Texas to secede from the United States; see video here.
He made these remarks just a few months after Obama’s election. The last time there was secession, it triggered the American Civil War, resulting in 600,000 American deaths. This was the largest number of American fatalities in any conflict the US has ever been involved with in its entire history, and in percentage-terms it’s the equivalent of 6 million modern-day Americans being killed.
Tip of the iceberg
To describe Beck’s behaviour and opinions as disturbing would be a considerable understatement. Furthermore, the persistent undertone of violence in Beck’s rhetoric also has potentially dangerous consequences; not least because of the widespread access to guns in the US and the type of Americans who may be inspired to act on Beck’s inflammatory assertions, especially his visceral hatred of liberal, progressive people. There have even been instances when people opposed to Barack Obama have actually attended the president’s public appearances whilst “symbolically” wearing assault rifles.
Beck has also been increasingly pushing his propaganda via multiple websites and books as well as his established Fox News slot and radio show. His direct involvement in American politics is further reinforced by the fact that he has begun holding mass rallies involving an audience of (depending on the source) an estimated 87,000 to several hundred thousand people, as per his recent rally in Washington which Sarah Palin also attended.
Unfortunately, the video clips provided above are by no means isolated incidents where Beck is concerned. Readers can access more than 2000 further examples of fully-authenticated footage via Media Matters for America.
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