Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Beck versus Soros: Day Two

Part 1

Part 2

Part 3

Part 4

Part 5

Part 6

Part 7

What's fascinating and obviously scary about Glenn Beck's fanatical conspiratorial rantings is NOT how many times he lies or distorts. That's a long list in its own right. No. What's fascinating and scary is how reminiscent this all is. On night one of the conspirator's wet dream Glenn gave us numerous antisemitic memes (oh, but Glenn's not an antisemite! He LOVES Israel.) such as Soros' Jewish background, referencing antisemitic attacks against him, classic imagery and terms that serve as convenient dog whistles to those who "know" what's "really" going on.

Beck has been steeped in far right conspiracy thinking for years now. His guiding light, if you will, is none other than Willard Cleon Skousen, a far right Mormon "historian" that even the Mormon church, not to mention mainstream conservatism, rejected as being so beyond the bounds that he laid in well deserved obscurity till Mr Beck decided to resurrect his bizarre notions and propel them to #1 on Amazon. To better understand Beck's conspiratorial milieu, especially with regard to his spouting off on Soros, Klousen is essential. It's a bizarre, if internally consistent, melange of far right anti-communism of the JBS variety combined with some very "peculiar" Mormon beliefs. Mormon beliefs not only about America's founding, but also about end time prognostications.

Anybody who knows me knows I enjoy poking fun at Beck. He is beyond outlandish and has even described himself as being a rodeo clown. But in the last year or two he has morphed into a surpassingly effective demagogue to millions of viewers who listen to his words as though he were a modern day prophet. As an aside, I'm not a fan of George Soros. I'm sure he does good stuff. But it's pretty evident that he's ruthless in his business dealings and has his own mega-maniacal ego that is larger than life. Yet, as powerful as he is, I'm pretty sure he's not the Prince of Darkness. Though I suspect Beck, in his own darker moments, thinks those very thoughts. I suspect that may betray more about Beck than anything he's analyzing.

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