Another War of Jenkins' Ear

Resist The Pointless

Posts Tagged ‘glenn beck

That’s Mr. Idiot to You, Roger Ailes

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Roger Ailes finds out that Pimpin Ain’t Always Easy:

More than 400 Fox advertisers told the company they did not want their commercials on Beck’s show. Beck’s advertisers were dominated by financial services firms, many touting gold as an investment.

Ailes dismissed the financial impact of the boycott but expressed some frustration with it.

Advertisers who get weak-kneed because some idiot on a blog site writes to them and says we need to stifle speech, I get a little frustrated by that,” he said.

One of Beck’s most prominent critics – David Brock, founder of the liberal watchdog Media Matters for America – said that “the only surprise is that it took Fox News months to reach this decision.”

“Fox News Channel clearly understands that Beck’s increasingly erratic behavior is a liability to their ratings and their bottom line, and we are glad to see them take this action,” said James Rucker, executive director of ColorofChange.org, which organized the advertiser boycott.

Unmentioned is Angelo Carusone, the “idiot on a blog” who moonlights here now works for Media Matters. But it’s worth pointing out that for a while he did this completely unpaid, basically pro bono. And if no one else can salute him for that today, the day Glenn Beck’s show’s death is announced, then at least I can.

Written by John Whitehouse

April 6, 2011 at 5:13 pm

Suicide Squad Six: The Few People Still Supporting Laurent Gbagbo

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A More Impressive Suicide Squad

Am I appropriating a classic comic story for a gimmick piece? You bet.

But there’s something about these 5 people supporting a thug who’s personally crippling a country. Laurent Gbagbo’s time has come and gone. By holding on to power despite universal criticism in the international community, he’s only set the stage for massacres both by forces allied to him and by those against him. Sure, they should each be punished, but Gbagbo had to know people would die for his stubbornness, even if he couldn’t predict how many would be civilians killed by the other side or by unallied militia forces. He did have to know what the result would be of handing out weapons to street gangs, essentially, and letting them loose in Abidjan. This is not a surprise.

Here’s what Think Progress wrote about Gbagbo:

The international community and the U.S. government have been united against Gbagbo, who has been fighting tooth and nail to retain power, and is accused ofcommitting numerous war crimes. Gbagbo has even attacked U.N. personnel and facilities, prompting the international body to launch a rare offensive against his beleaguered forces last night. Now, Gbagbo is reportedly negotiating a surrender and the conflict, which analysts just days ago feared could spin out of control, could now come to an end within “hours.”

And yet some people still defend him, outrageously, much like a team of evil supervillains working together against superheroes (shoehorning the analogy in briefly). They deserve to be named and shamed. Here they are:

Leading off, we have James Inhofe, Senator from the state of Oklahoma. Salon (also see oil connections here):

Chief among Gbagbo’s American supporters is Inhofe, who is the most influential Republican in the Senate when it comes to African affairs. Inhofe has been traveling to Africa regularly since the late 1990s and, while the trips are paid for by the taxpayer and typically involve some official business, the senator also engages in missionary work. He has been to Ivory Coast nine times and knows Gbagbo personally. That’s why, early on in the post-election crisis, when the State Department was frantically looking for intermediaries to reach out to Gbagbo to try to convince him to leave the country peacefully, the Obama administration asked Inhofe to talk to Gbagbo. But, according to a source familiar with the situation, Inhofe declined to do so.

It’s still not entirely clear why Inhofe wouldn’t help at a moment when it might have made a real difference; I’ve asked his spokesman for comment. But a letter to Hillary Clinton released by his office today offers some clues. In it, Inhofe explicitly takes Gbagbo’s side in the election dispute — even though all international observers and election monitors say that Gbagbo lost.

Inhofe writes: “From all the evidence I now have gathered, I am convinced that it is mathematically impossible for President Gbagbo to have lost the election by several hundred thousand votes.” The senator goes on to call for new elections.

The other wrinkle in all this is that Inhofe and Gbagbo share a connection to the Fellowship. Inhofe has said that he began taking his missionary trips to Africa at the request of Doug Coe, the so-called stealthy Billy Graham who leads the Fellowship. Ivory Coast has long been one of a handful of African countries that is “of special interest” to the Fellowship, according to Jeff Sharlet’s book about the group.

Next up, and closely related: Pat Robertson. Salon again:

Despite the fact that Gbagbo looks as if he will be removed from office by forces loyal to his opponent as early as today, Christian right figures in the U.S. are still standing by the isolated strongman.

On “The 700 Club” today, Pat Robertson declared that Gbagbo is “a very fine man” and insisted that the election was “crooked,” even though the U.S., the U.N. and the African Union all said that Gbagbo’s opponent, Alassane Ouattara, was the winner.

Part of the dynamic that is clearly on Robertson’s mind is that Gbagbo and his wife are evangelical Christians — who have both attended the Fellowship’s National Prayer Breakfast in Washington — while Ouattara is Muslim.

Robertson was blunt today:

“This is a crooked election. But nevertheless the UN has said the other guy [Ouattara] won. Well, that may be. But the problem is that this is a country now that has been run by a Christian that’s going to be into the hands of Muslims. So it’s one more Muslim nation that’s going to be built into that ring of Sharia law around the Middle East. It’s one more country, one more danger spot, but we don’t seem to see that right now, do we?”

Next up, the Sultan of Silliness himself, Glenn Beck, who at least decided not to defend Gbagbo as much as smear Ouattara. via MMFA,in his own words:

BECK: What does democracy look like? Well, with Ouattara it’s sweet. We know our president says President Ouattara is the man. He’s a Muslim, but not officially the president yet because the current Christian president who has his own share of issues is refusing to allow a power change. Mostly because he fears that this guy [Ouattara] is going to round up all of this guy’s [Gbagbo] supporters and kill them all. Crazy talk we just heard from the president. Ouattara is the man.

Well, not quite. Even forces loyal to the Muslim president, like these guys, have slaughtered people, grabbed them out of their cars and set them on fire and now they’re beheading them too. And our president is supporting them which is great. So by the way, the death toll, about a thousand in three days over the weekend. So we got this guy [Obama] standing with this guy [Ouattara] who’s responsible for the scenes where people are [Beck makes a chopping motion].

Next, the guy who once said “Olympic games show clearly inequalities between the black and white races concerning, for example, athletes, and runners in particular. It’s a fact.” The one and only Jean-Marie Le Pen. From here:(and yea, the original is French. Sue me). Or see here.

The honorary president of the National Front, Jean-Marie Le Pen said that “victory of Ouattara will tip the entire of Cote D’Ivoire under Muslim influence” on Friday in his “Diary”aired on the website of far-right party. “The victory of Ouattara, it will be the tipping of the entire Cote d’Ivoire under Muslim influence, while far this influence was limited to the tribes of northern Côte d’Ivoire,” said Jean-Marie Le Pen. “The troops Ouattara, I still remember that these are Muslim troops, ” he has said.

On the fourth day of a lightning offensive, the forces of Alassane Ouattara, Presidentrecognized by the international community after the November election, was poised Friday to control the entire country. The fate of the incumbent President Laurent Gbagbo remained unknown. Criticizing also led intervention in Libya under UN mandate, Jean-Marie Le Pen has assured that “Mr. Sarkozy, General Pinocchio, is only the loincloth this operation globalist oil to taste” . “I consider (this) is akin to an act of international piracy because I think one day be proven premeditation in this case, which explains why it has exchanged immediately quasi-ambassadors with rebels’ he said. Brought to qualify the Libyan rebels, the honorary president of the National Front said they are “often people of modest extraction and untrained” and that “it seems that Ivory Coast it is a little same thing. “

Next, a change of course, the International Committee of the Fourth International. Or, to be short: Communists. In their own words:

After the second round of the November elections, the Western powers claimed that Ouattara had won the vote with 54 percent versus 46 percent for Gbagbo, but Gbagbo contested the results. He retained command of the bulk of the official armed forces. French and UN forces sided with Ouattara inside the country—guaranteeing his safety in the Golf Hotel in downtown Abidjan.

Ouattara’s power grab centres on a battle for influence inside the Ivory Coast’s officer corps, to convince them to desert the Gbagbo camp, together with the backing of the major imperialist powers that are citing the Libyan war as a pretext for intervention in Ivory Coast. As in Libya, the pretence of a fight to defend democracy is a thin disguise for an attempt to manipulate a bloody civil war to the advantage of the major imperialist powers.

[. . .]

Despite the Western media campaign, Ouattara does not represent a “democratic” alternative to Laurent Gbagbo. A former high-ranking official at the International Monetary Fund, he will implement pro-market policies and depend critically on the threat of Western military intervention to retain power, amid the longstanding north-south tensions in Ivory Coast.

The war will deepen the major imperialist powers’ leverage to economically loot the Ivory Coast. A country of 21 million people and a major exporter of cocoa, gold and natural gas, it is widely regarded as the single richest country among France’s former African colonies. French troops have been deployed there since independence in 1960, by virtue of military accords signed between France and Ivory Coast in 1961.

And last, an old fashioned anti-colonialist perspective from Robert Mugabe‘s government of Zimbabwe. Government media:

In other words, there is a direct link between the hard-nosed material pursuits and interests of the empire on one hand and the fight by the same empire to “open up” media space in Africa, to those media houses, publishers and journalists who will faithfully project and preserve the prestige and credibility of the white racist imperialist, especially in times of crisis.

Therefore the search for African leaders who are thoroughly impressed with illusions of white power and with faint associations with such prestige and “credibility” always accompanies the scramble for material interests.

To take the back-side of that linkage and reality: the need to attack, demonise and isolate African leaders who are not impressed with illusions of the white man’s “prestige” and “credibility” is part and parcel of the deadly scramble for strategic material gains and interests.

That is why Africa and its traditional allies are shocked by the failure of the leaders of Nigeria and South Africa to see Libya and Côte d’Ivoire beyond the Western media caricatures of Colonel Gaddafi and President Laurent Gbagbo. Africa and its usual allies are shocked by the failure of the leaders of Nigeria and South Africa to resist the white racists’ demand to use Africa for the purpose of restoring illusions of the white man’s power, prestige and moral superiority, which the white man lost (if he ever had them), in the days of slavery.

Written by John Whitehouse

April 5, 2011 at 7:32 pm

On Yemen

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On Friday, this happened in Yemen:

Immediately after the noon Friday Prayer, snipers from nearby buildings opened fire on the demonstrators. According to volunteers who staff a makeshift clinic inside a nearby mosque, the more than 200 people wounded had been hurt by gunfire and rocks. The deaths from Friday’s attack more than doubled the number of demonstrators killed nationwide in the last month.

Gregory Johnsen on the western role in Yemen after somewhere near 50 (at least check) have been killed:

The US, the UK, and the EU are not the bad guys here, but their combined policy and public posturing could have been much wiser and much more proactive.  As it was, the US has consistently been behind the curve in Yemen, making reactive statements that lead many to believe it will never part with Salih because of his support on AQAP.  But make no mistake the responsibility for yesterday’s deaths falls on the shoulders of the Yemeni government.

Following yesterday’s attack President Obama strongly condemned the violence, but stopped short of calling for President Salih to step down.  I hope that privately the US is pressuring him to leave, but most sources suggest that this is not the case.  The US is too concerned about what will happen with AQAP if Salih leaves.

(I think this is a mistake and the longer Salih stays and the more the US is seen to be supporting him, the worse the AQAP problem will eventually be.  My opinion, however, has been dismissed.)

Others in Yemen have made much more sense.  Shaykh Abd al-Majid al-Zindani, a person who is on the “Specially Designated Global Terrorist” list, called for Salih to transfer his power to Vice President Hadi. (Ar.)

Johnsen on where this seems to be heading:

Oil production is also down as foreign companies are evacuating their staffs and tribes are preventing repairs on pipelines, foreign currency is at dangerously low levels and what seems to be happening is that Salih and his immediate family are showing their teeth, and demonstrating that they are not going to go without a fight.

The lesson from watching Tunisia and Egypt fall and then Bahrain and Libya remain, is that the tougher you are the longer you stay.  And Salih wants to stay.

Most Yemeni officials I know are bracing themselves for a massacre.

Final Note:  An officer from the 1st Armored Division, Muhammad al-Shamiri, was killed yesterday in the square in Sanaa, reportedly by a sniper.  His death comes after the 1st Armored Division, which is headed by Ali Muhsin al-Ahmar refused to attack the protesters. (Ar.)  I’m not sure what to make of all this maneuvering and much of it is still rumors and unattributed quotes – but it seems as though there is consensus building on removing Salih his sons and his nephews and leaving most others in place.

I have no relevant particular insight into Yemen, nor the United States that Johnsen does not have. But I would add that the electoral incentives may help explain the decision making here: there is much more risk of being hurt by being perceived as soft on terror if the successor is not as useful against Al Qaeda as Salih than there is harm from the ties America currently has to Yemen. I don’t know how to fix that – I don’t think Obama is very good at shucking public opinion concerns, but on the other hand I don’t see anyone down the line being more willing.

On the lighter side, I’m sure Glenn Beck will take notice that socialists and Islamists in Yemen are both on the opposition. Defending the massacre would be a new low, even for him.

 

Written by John Whitehouse

March 19, 2011 at 12:39 pm

Glenn Beck: Willful Misinformer Extraordinaire

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A New Logo Suggestion For The Waters Advocacy Coalition

New Logo Suggestion For The Waters Advocacy Coalition

Many detractors believe that the StopBeck effort is a waste of time.  I respect this position.  And, I certainly acknowledge that there are bigger issues to tackle.  I have always maintained that the StopBeck action is one of many to come.  And, that in the meantime we can walk and chew gum at the same time.  Meaning, we can combat Glenn Beck’s vitriol and intentional deceit while addressing other matters.

But, to those who think that Glenn Beck can just be ignored. Well think again.  You see, corporate funded right-wing propagandists are eager to use Glenn Beck to peddle willful distortions and lies.  Take for example the Waters Advocacy Coalition.  Judging by the name, you’d think they were interested in protecting clean water.  But, it’s just the opposite.  They’re actually an industry funded right-wing group that seeks to kill the Clean Water Restoration Act, a bill that would strengthen the Clean Water Act.

The Clean Water Restoration Act has, shockingly, strong support in the Senate.  The biggest hurdle for this legislation is in the House.  But, it hasn’t even been introduced there yet.  This is in part due to the efforts of propagandists like the Waters Advocacy Coalition.

The problem for these groups is that the Clean Water Act is actually quite popular.  So, they can’t just come out and oppose legislation that will give people exactly what they want by improving an already popular law.  Instead, they rely on fear and on sociopaths like Glenn Beck to willfully peddle their distortions.  See today’s New York Times regarding this issue (emphasis added):

“The game plan is to emphasize the scary possibilities,” said one member of the Waters Advocacy Coalition, which has fought the legislation and is supported by the American Farm Bureau Federation, the National Association of Home Builders and other groups representing industries affected by the Clean Water Act.

“If you can get Glenn Beck to say that government storm troopers are going to invade your property, farmers in the Midwest will light up their congressmen’s switchboards,” said the coalition member, who asked not to be identified because he thought his descriptions would anger other coalition participants. Mr. Beck, a conservative commentator on Fox News, spoke at length against the Clean Water Restoration Act in December.

And there you have it.  It’s all a giant scam that benefits a few large interests, but injures the rest of us.  And, like it or not, Glenn Beck’s willingness to participate in such deceit does and will continue to have a noticeable impact on your life.

If like me, you wonder why Fox News is willing to keep Glenn Beck around despite him losing 119 sponsors, just look above.

And so we press on…

Written by Angelo

March 1, 2010 at 10:14 am

Glenn Beck Now Believes In What He Calls “A Scam”

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As Glenn Beck continues to hemorrhage sponsors, his public relations team is working hard to push back against the notion that Beck is a dangerous willful misinformer of the masses.  One example of this push back is a puff piece that ran in USA Weekend last weekend.

One aspect of the piece is notable in that it reveals just how little regard Glenn Beck has for the truth given how wildly inconsistent it is with previous claims that he has made.

Glenn Beck, noted global warming denier, suddenly “believes in global warming.”

There are countless examples of Glenn Beck trashing the notion of human-caused (or human-influenced) climate change.  Here’s just example: On December 8, 2008, Glenn Beck said about global warming (emphasis added):

Yes. We know that it’s a bunch of bullcrap. How do we know it? Because we’ve engaged in something I like to call common sense. Just when you get really down and you say, “There’s not a single person on Earth that gets it anymore,” know that, yes, Americans know the global warming thing is a scam.

Since Beck is now a global warming believer, does that mean that he’s also a scam artist, who buys into “bullcrap” and fails to use “common sense?” By his own standard, it would appear the answer to this query is yes. And, this seems fitting, because…

We know it’s not about intellectual honesty for Glenn Beck.  If it was, he wouldn’t spend several hours a day willfully distorting current news or history.

We already know it’s about not about bettering society for Glenn Beck.  If it was, he wouldn’t whip his fans up into hysterical frenzies with lies about Obama secretly constructing concentration camps or plotting to put sterilants in drinking water (both of which Glenn Beck has told his audience).

We already know it’s about about his fellow citizens.  If it was, then Glenn Beck wouldn’t mock the poor or consistently say such racist, sexist, bigoted and homophobic statements.

For Glenn Beck, it’s only about one thing: Glenn Beck.  He’ll peddle any distortion or hate nugget so long as he can monetize it.  Unfortunately for the rest of us, Glenn Beck’s selfish sociopathy has consequences. Those being scores of angry, frustrated, woefully misinformed, heavily armed, cult-like fans who now believe (thanks to Glenn Beck) that progressivism is a disease that must be hunted down and “eradicated.”

Glenn Beck’s indecency is in part why the StopBeck effort continues.

Written by Angelo

February 23, 2010 at 11:35 am

GlennBeck.com’s Draconian Terms Of Use Policy

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Back in late July and early August, Glenn Beck made a big fuss about the privacy policy for dealers using the Cash for Clunkers website. At the outset, I recognize that the language of the disclaimer was a bit off – and it’s worth noting that the government changed this language. However, Beck’s discussion of the issue was riddled with blatant falsehoods and extreme hyperbole – most of which are chronicled and debunked here as well as here.

In short, Glenn Beck not only misrepresented the terms of the policy and the relevant law, but he continued to spread misinformation even after accurate information was brought to his attention. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Angelo

February 1, 2010 at 4:18 pm

Posted in Law, Reasons To Be Miserable

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Glenn Beck Was Against Tying Political Movements To Historical Terrorist Attacks, Before He Was For It

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Glenn Beck is the founder of the Glenn Beck 9/12 Project.  In announcing the 9/12 project, Glenn Beck played a video clip of the 9/11 terrorist attacks and then said:

Are you ready to become that person you were (quiver, choke), that day (choke) after 9-11? On 9-12? I told ya, (voice shaking) for weeks, you’re not alone… You are the secret. You are the answer. (Choke, long pause) I’m sorry. I just love my country and I fear for it. (Long pause, wipe away tear).” [Video available here]

Since this announcement, Beck has repeatedly stated that the goal of the 9/12 project is to restore the feeling that pervaded the nation in the immediate aftermath of the 9/11 terrorist attacks.  Beck’s announcement in March 2009 laid the groundwork for a movement that built towards the September 12, 2009 rally in Washington, D.C.

A movement, eh? Hmm.  Interesting that Glenn Beck would choose to coincide his movement with the September 11 terrorist attacks, given his earlier comments about the Ron Paul fundraiser that took place on November 5, 2008 (Guy Fawkes Day):

It’s really not the way I would go, tying my movement in with a historical terrorist attack, especially in post-9/11 America.

In that same show, Glenn Beck characterized the fervent supporters of the Ron Paul Revolution as a growing domestic enemy.  He was also concerned that the movement might spiral out of control, given the use of the term revolution, saying:

The Ron Paul revolution, I think it`s meant to be a catchy slogan, but I fear some of his fringe supporters are taking the word “revolution” too literally.

So, the Ron Paul revolution is too risky, but Glenn Beck saying he is going to “re-found” America is perfectly acceptable.

Tying a fundraiser to Guy Fawkes Day suggests that Ron Paul supporters are domestic enemies, but Glen Beck directly linking his movement to the 9/11 terrorist attacks is a-okay.

Sounds to me like Glenn Beck was against the 9/12 Project, before he was for it.

Written by Angelo

September 21, 2009 at 3:35 pm

Posted in News Media

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