Posted by: Chris | December 11, 2010

What Motivates Glenn Beck

Christopher Hitchens’ description of the paranoid right fits them to the tea:

I remember encountering this same mentality a few years ago, when it was more laughable than dangerous. I didn’t like Bill Clinton: thought he had sold access to the Lincoln Bedroom and lied under oath about sexual harassment and possibly even bombed Sudan on a “wag the dog” basis. But when I sometimes agreed to go on the radio stations of the paranoid right, it was only to be told that this was all irrelevant. Didn’t I understand that Clinton and his wife had murdered Vince Foster and were, even as I spoke, preparing to take advantage of the Y2K millennium crisis—remember that?—in order to seize power for life and become the Nicolae and Elena Ceauşescu of our day? These people were not interested in the president’s actual transgressions. They were looking to populate their fantasy world with new and more lurid characters…

In the recent past, government-sponsored policies of social engineering have led to surprising success in reducing the welfare rolls and the crime figures. This came partly from the adoption by many Democrats of policies that had once been called Republican. But not a word about that from Beck and his followers, because it isn’t exciting and doesn’t present any opportunity for rabble-rousing. Far sexier to say that health care—actually another product of bipartisanship—is a step toward Nineteen Eighty-Four. Ten percent unemployment, on the other hand, is rather a disgrace to a midterm Democratic administration. But does anybody believe that unemployment would have gone down if the hated bailout had not occurred and GM had been permitted to go bankrupt? Why not avoid the question altogether and mutter about a secret plan to proclaim a socialist (or Nazi, or Jew-controlled: take your pick) dictatorship?

Reality is never a sufficiently exciting story for the conspiracy theorist.

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Responses

  1. What Motivates Glenn Beck « The Lure…

    Here at World Spinner we are debating the same thing……


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