|"Only dull people are brilliant at breakfast"
|"The liberal soul shall be made fat, and he that watereth, shall be watered also himself."
-- Proverbs 11:25
Mr. Beck says he believes every word he says on his TV show, and the radio show that he still hosts from 9 a.m. to noon each weekday.
He says that America is “on the road to socialism” and that “God and religion are under attack in the U.S.” He recently wondered aloud whether FEMA was setting up concentration camps, calling it a rumor that he was unable to debunk.
At the same time, though, he says he is an entertainer. “I’m a rodeo clown,” he said in an interview, adding with a coy smile, “It takes great skill.”
And like a rodeo clown, Mr. Beck incites critics to attack by dancing in front of them.
“There are absolutely historical precedents for what is happening with Beck,” said Tom Rosenstiel, the director of the Project for Excellence in Journalism. “There was a lot of radio evangelism during the Depression. People were frustrated and frightened. There are a lot of scary parallels now.”
The conservative writer David Frum said Mr. Beck’s success “is a product of the collapse of conservatism as an organized political force, and the rise of conservatism as an alienated cultural sensibility.”
“It’s a show for people who feel they belong to an embattled minority that is disenfranchised and cut off,” he said.
Joel Cheatwood, a senior vice president for development at Fox News, said he thought Mr. Beck’s audience was a “somewhat disenfranchised” one. And, he added, “it’s a huge audience.”
Mr. Beck has used phrases like “we surround them,” invoked while speaking vaguely about people who do not share his discomfort with the “direction America is being taken in.”
Labels: right-wing hatemongers