September 16, 2009

Re: The Beck Exception

Let’s agree to this, Jack: We’ll consider Glenn Beck under our tutelage. I praise Beck for his willingness to learn, and since, by his own admission, his formative years were a boozy, doped-up haze of spinning Top 40 records, he’s clearly in need of an education. (And I don’t think it’s presumptuous to suggest that he and/or his staff is reading Takimag and sites like it.)

Two things still bother me though. First, the Wall Street bailouts. Rush, Levin, and the Boys were all unequivocally against them; indeed, this seemed to be a rather easy, “libertarian” position to take. But Beck supported Dubya, and this pretty much make his warnings of Obama’s “socialism” ring hollow. And who knows what this man might recommend the next time the Dow plunges (which is probably going to be soon.) The second thing I don’t like so much is this “9/12 Project,” which seems to have subsumed the Tea Party protests. According to the Project’s website, 9/12-ness means “the place we were on September 12, 2001. … We were united as Americans, standing together to protect the values and principles of the greatest nation ever created.” Ah yes, do you remember the good ol’ days: back when we all believed in WMDs and thought Saddam and Osama were collaborating, and Congress passed the Patriot Act without hesitation. Good times.

To be frank, what I’ve liked about the Tea Party phenomenon is that the events have actually been quite radical, at least rhetorically, with movement types, normal Republican voters, and “End The Fed” activists all mixing together. Beck seems to want to grab hold of this grassroots protest against government and turn it into a 2004 vintage “Support the Troops—Vote Republican” demonstration. I guess we should have seen it coming.

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