Archive for Glenn Beck

RIP “Glenn Beck”

Posted in current events, opinion, politics with tags , , , on June 30, 2011 by Kyle Fleming

Do you really believe that I could, or anybody here at Fox News could, just make things up and remain on the air?… If I get out of control and start leveling baseless charges that can’t be backed up, guess what happens: I’m fired. I lose my job.

After two and a half crazy years, Glenn Beck is off of Fox News. Earlier today, Glenn Beck took a wistful look back on his time on Fox, trying to prove that his going off the air was his choice, and not because he was fired, or because of his nearly 400 lost advertisers thanks to organizations like Media Matters (which made the montage of Beck clips above) and the Stop Beck Campaign.

While I didn’t see the final episode, I certainly heard a lot about it from people on Twitter who were live-Tweeting, and apparently, what a show it was. He spent the whole hour talking about his new venture, GBTV, an Internet TV station where Beck has free reign over what is broadcast, which, given what he was getting away with on Fox, could be anything.

Love him or hate him, you have to admit that Beck is one of the most charismatic TV/radio personalities out there. You may agree with what he says, or you think he’s completely insane, but you can’t help but admire how he gets people talking.

What I like best about the above video, though, is that is apparently illustrates Beck’s tenure on Fox News. At first, he was this charismatic television host that, while he said some pretty controversial things sometimes, was generally fun to watch. By the time he left the network, he was pretty much a misinformation machine, wildly shouting whatever was the first thing that came to his mind. With all of his talk of the approaching “Perfect Storm,” “Spooky Dude” George Soros, or Islamic Fascism and Marxist Socialism, he was essentially reduced to the blabbering idiot you see from about 9:23 on.

While Beck is now off of cable television, there’s still a media empire at his disposal: radio, Internet, books. All of it can be used to say whatever he wants to say, however controversial, confrontational, and just plain wrong it is. Beck has constantly said that he only looks like a buffoon on TV because people take his words out of context, but even in context, it’s hard to believe that people would take the hatred that he spewed seriously. And in some cases, Beck’s word is Gospel truth.

In the spirit of Beck, who has made many a point by playing audio of “their own words” to incriminate them, I refer you to the last few moments of the Media Matters video which includes a quote from the Eric Massa episode (one of the most deliciously awkward episodes I’ve ever witnessed), because I feel it accurately sums up how most of the world felt about the Glenn Beck Program:

America, I’m gonna shoot straight with you: I think I’ve wasted your time, and I apologize for that.

Good-bye, Glenn Beck. Good luck. And good riddance.

Just how much did Beck’s lost advertisers affect the decision to cancel the show? See the numbers here.

Also, check out The 50 Worst Things Glenn Beck Said on Fox News, his top five failed predictions, and how Beck manipulated his audiences time after time.

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8/28 – Historic Day, or Waste of Time?

Posted in current events, politics with tags , , , , on August 30, 2010 by Kyle Fleming

Saturday marked an historic day for America. 47 years ago Saturday, Martin Luther King, Jr., gave his “I Have A Dream” speech at his March on Washington, calling for equality, having people judged not by the color of their skin, but the content of their character. The Civil Rights Movement was put into action on that historic day.

And on Saturday, Glenn Beck called for the movement to be taken back.

In his speech, Beck said that the civil rights movement was about “people of faith looking for equal justice”. Beck’s speech was highly religious, as he had stated in several interviews that the event was to be apolitical.

But while Beck’s rally is meant to bring America “back to God” and be a sort of rallying cry for the Tea Party, all it really did was gather a bunch of people together to hear Beck wax prophetic for an hour.

I’ll admit: I was not at the rally, nor did I watch or listen to coverage about the rally. I was busy driving home from Colorado that day, listening to whatever came on my Zune during my trip. But I was receiving live Tweets about the rally, ranging from news of the rally to snarky comments about the rally and Beck himself (my personal favorite: @HookerAddict: “Dr. King’s dream is alive, cuz I’m judging the F___ out of the content of Beck & Palin’s character.”)

The main idea I’m getting from all of the coverage is that the rally was far from powerful. A reporter from the Daily Kos said that if the “Master Plan” was revealed on Saturday, no one got it, because no one at the rally was really paying attention. And while the rally was generally a peaceful event, like all Tea Party rallies, it had its fair share of lunatics causing trouble and wearing T-shirts with hateful, racist slogans on them.

Glenn Beck, commentator-turned-revivalist, appeared to miss the mark. Glenn Beck is powerful to the masses when talking history and politics, but apparently not as powerful when preaching. Whether the 78,000 or 87,000 or 500,000 people in attendance received a powerful message is purely individual. And whether or not Glenn Beck “stole” MLK’s historic day is yet to be determined.

The thing that bothers me most about the rally was that there was a lot of rhetoric, but not a lot being done about it. You can talk equality and fighting back and restoring honor all you want, but when you have no bite to back up the bark, it’s hard to take a movement seriously. Not to mention that, in true Beck fashion, much of what was talked about on Saturday will be largely forgotten when it comes time to tear down social justice and everything progressives are doing to tear down America.

What is for certain is that Washington, DC, had a gathering of people who banded together to exercise their First Amendment rights. Whether they will follow through with their call to arms is another story.

While you may not agree with everything the fringe Conservatives do–and Lord knows I don’t–you can’t help but be impressed by a self-professed rodeo clown who managed to gather a group of like-minded people in an effort to change America.

Obama’s Not Evil, Stop Marketing Him As Such

Posted in current events, politics with tags , , , , , , , , , on June 25, 2010 by Kyle Fleming

I was wondering to myself today why I continue to watch Fox News when I know it upsets me. For everything else I’ve experienced in life, when I’m upset or frustrated with something, I remove myself from the equation. But for some reason, the torture I subject myself to when I watch Fox News makes me want to watch more. Secretly, I think it’s because I’m finally proud to be smarter or have more common sense than someone, but really, I’m not exactly sure what it is.

This was blatantly obvious when I was watching Fox last week, and the ticker across the bottom mentioned that Obama’s BP speech was the first time he addressed the nation from the Oval Office. It read, “Obama is the first President to not address the nation from the Oval Office within his first year.” W. Bush did it twice in his first year, including after 9/11. Clinton had also done it a couple of times in his first year.

Maybe it was because I was completely ready to be offended by something, or maybe it was because I was absolutely wiped from six hours of working with day camp kids, but to me, that read like Obama was a terrible President by not addressing the nation from the Oval Office. I mean, seriously, Bush did it twice. Why couldn’t Obama even do it once?

Probably because it doesn’t really matter where the President addresses the nation? The Oval Office is just as good of a backdrop as the Lincoln Memorial, or the Washington Monument, or the Gulf Coast. In fact, any backdrop that is at least relevant to the subject matter of the speech is a good back drop. Sarah Palin announced her resignation outside, next to a hydroplane, and not in her governor’s office. But no problem with that, because Palin is an outdoorsy sort of gal, so it made sense.

But it wasn’t just the location of the speech that got Fox News uptight, but the language used. Obama mentioned that we are “waging a battle” on containing the oil spill, and introduced a “battle plan” to fight it. “We will fight this spill with everything we’ve got,” said Obama. “And sadly, no matter how effective our response is, there will be more oil and more damage before this siege is done.”

Leave it to Fox News to call out Obama on his choice of words. “It’s too militaristic,” said Glenn Beck. All of the war metaphors were upsetting him. We’re declaring war on an Oil Spill? Isn’t that a little bit silly?

I’ve got three words for Glenn Beck: “Don’t Retreat, Reload.”

The “battle plan” from Obama is nowhere near the literal call to arms that was given to the Tea Party. Don’t retreat, reload. As in, don’t give up when people call you crazy; in fact, counter it with more crazy and violence. Bricks through windows not working? Try death threats and profanity. Not being noticed with your misspelled and grammatically incorrect (and factually untrue) picket signs? Feel free to spit on anyone you disagree with. And throw in a racial epithet while you’re at it.

Obama is not evil. He’s not trying to destroy America. That was Dubya’s job. Whatever crazy pills people at Fox News are inhaling, we better take them away, and hopefully the withdrawal symptoms are enough to knock some sense into them.

What BP Can Teach Us about Alternative Energy

Posted in current events with tags , , , , on June 21, 2010 by Kyle Fleming

It’s been over 60 days since the BP oil rig in the Gulf exploded, sending hundreds of thousands of barrels of oil into the water and onto the shores, and destroying much of that ecosystem. The images of oil drenched birds and turtles are infuriating, and are sending Americans into a rage, wondering when exactly we’re going to fix the damn thing.

I’ve not written about the oil spill, if only because everyone else is doing it. Every blog that I’ve seen lately has had an article or three on the oil spill, and the streaming video of the oil spilling into the water is on every major news network. Don’t get me wrong, I care about the environment. It’s just that everyone else is saying exactly what needs to be said, so why bother rehashing the same thing over and over again?

Because there are still some people out there that aren’t getting it.

Watching my buddy Glenn Beck last week, I was shocked to see him fully admit that the oil spill was awful, but then completely tear down those who are asking for more funding for alternative energies. It makes me wonder what is going on in that head of his. Is it really that bad to ask for research grants for safer forms of energy and prevent the waste that comes from accidents like BP’s?

Eventually the oil is going to disappear, plain and simple. There isn’t an infinite amount of dinosaurs buried under the surface of the Earth to make an oil shortage impossible. Especially if accidents like BP’s continue, it will run out faster than we care to imagine. What won’t run out, however, is the sun. Or wind. Or water. Or whatever geothermal energy comes from the Earth.

America’s dependency on oil is as frustrating as it is destructive; besides oil spills, there is also the destruction of ecosystems to build oil rigs on land. Sometimes the destruction of that ecosystem means that many species go extinct; it messes with migration patterns, mating rituals, and habitats in general. A lot of oil is wasted, in the form of plastics and the excess waste from gas and oil use in cars.

And yet, some people still think that moving to alternative energies is a terrible idea, and will ruin the foundation of America, a foundation, mind you, that had little to do with oil and a lot to do with freedom from oppression.

There are countries in the world that have already accepted the use of alternative energies. And in fact, many people talk down about alternative energies only when we talk about getting rid of oil. They have no problem with the millions of wind turbines that exist in America, and they hail the use of hybrid cars that run on electricity. But the moment someone starts talking about nuclear energy is cheaper and more effective than oil, it turns into a huge deal.

I say let’s cut the dependence on oil as soon as possible. Wind energy, solar energy, nuclear power, geothermal energy, water power, and all other forms of alternative energy is better for the earth in the long run. Some will cite studies that say that alternative energies aren’t as effective as oil, but that’s because they’ve never been allowed to surpass oil.

I believe that given time, alternative energies will be the norm, and we will wonder how we were ever addicted to oil in the first place.

What is a Christian?

Posted in religion with tags , , , , , , on April 14, 2010 by Kyle Fleming

Christianity gets a bad rap. Most world religions do, but for some reason, especially in America, Christians are the loudest complainers.

Christians in America feel they are being “persecuted” for their beliefs. Every December, Bill O’Reilley does his “Attack on Christmas” special, where he complains that Christmas is being attacked based solely on public school not allowing Christmas carols to be sung or the installation of “Holiday Trees.” Glenn Beck, over and over again, talks about how Christians are being held back and repressed in the name of tolerance.

The problem that I see with these different “repressions” and “attacks” is that they aren’t attacking the Christians themselves, but rather the label they fall under. For a while, I refused to be called a “Christian” because of the stigma attached to it.

Ask anyone who speaks out against Christianity what they hate about Christians, and everyone you ask will give you a different answer. But mostly, the Christians that are being hated are closed-minded, intolerant, ignorant individuals, who cling to religion and guns and views anything that is different from their “Utopia” as evil. Christians vote Republican, eat red meat, and usually live in rural areas. Christians will happily tell you that you are going to hell, and will shove Christ down your throats with scare tactics.

I found this website recently that does a great job of this tactic. It starts off discussing the deaths of rock stars, and how the rock and roll culture leads straight to Hell. The practical side of me likes to think that it doesn’t, and the logical side of me knows it won’t, but for kicks, I read the tract.

At the bottom of the page, you’ll notice that, after all of that propaganda, you’re given a choice: CHOOSE LIFE, and rid your system of rock music and be welcomed into Heaven, or CHOOSE DEATH, and burn in Hell after you die because of your music choice. For kicks, I decided to choose death, and was immediately brought here.

This page talks about my awful choice of rejecting Jesus Christ as my Savior, and goes on and on and on about the eternal lake of fire that my condo will be next to for all eternity. After reading all of this, I’m given another choice, my last chance: Accept Jesus Christ, or reject Him. Again, for kicks, I chose to reject Jesus. And oh man, did I make the wrong choice.

This page talks about the torment of Hell. It’s all about Hell, using Biblical descriptions about Hell and how much I will suffer by going there. It talks about how National Geographic and PBS both accept that Hell is a real place, and by rejecting Jesus, that is where I’m going. The page is black, the text is red, as if to prove that I’m a wicked person.

This, from the same people who believe in a God of love, will scare me into salvation. That is not what people want.

So what should a Christian be instead? Exactly what Jesus preaches. I feel like I’m repeating myself every time I say it, but that’s what is said, and it was said to be the most important commandments: “Love your God… and Love your Neighbor.”

The simple act of loving someone is all that someone might need to be brought to Christ. Jesus isn’t angry or upset or mean. Jesus is Love. Religion and Christianity shouldn’t be something scary or something that causes you to fear the unknown realm of death. Religion and Christianity should be something that is desired.

To answer the question in the title: A Christian is one who is loving, not scary.

If the majority sets a good example for the rest of the world, maybe Christians won’t be as “persecuted” as everyone thinks they are.

Your Children Are Not Being Indoctrinated

Posted in pop culture with tags , , , , , , , , , on March 5, 2010 by Kyle Fleming

Normally, I don’t have a problem with Glenn Beck. In all honesty, I’m a huge fan of the show. Occasionally, he makes some great points, and he tries his best to be in the middle ground, calling out Republicans along with Democrats. Normally, I don’t have a problem with him. But every once in a while, Beck says something, or has a topic, that is absolutely ridiculous, and it frustrates me to the point where I can no longer think straight.

It’s rare for me to be writing a blog topic at the same time that the topic at hand is still in process. Yet here I sit, watching Glenn Beck rant and rave over something that isn’t a big deal, because it’s not a deal at all. Apparently, the “progressives” are indoctrinating your children by telling them that they are just as intelligent, if not more intelligent, than you. It’s an abomination, and it’s all the progressive Democrats’ fault. “Aren’t you shocked that people are using your children this way?” he just asked.

There’s one problem: your children aren’t being indoctrinated. Beck used an Al Gore quote–“There are some things about our world that you know that older people don’t know”–as proof that progressives are taking over your child’s mind. But really, all this quote (which, by the way, is taken extremely out of context) says is that, in changing times, the younger generation has a better idea of the world than older folks. It’s common sense.

In the speech, Gore uses the Civil Rights Movement as an analogy of changing times. The quote, in context…

When I was your age and the Civil Rights Revolution was unfolding, and we kids asked our parents and their generation, ‘Explain to me again why it’s okay for the law to discriminate against people for the color of their skin color? And when our parents’ generation couldn’t answer that question, that’s when the law started to change. There are some things about our world that you know that older people don’t know.Why would that be? Well, in a time of rapid change, the old assumptions sometimes just don’t work anymore because they’re out of date.

… is not a huge deal. Not only is this common sense in a changing world, it’s also a clever ploy to build up a child’s self-esteem. If a child feels that his or her efforts are worthwhile, he or she will be more inclined to make a difference in the world.

But Glenn Beck doesn’t seem to see this. He seems to see any sort of push to support children–future leaders of the world, mind you–as some Islamo-fascist-socialist-communism ploy to destroy America. This whole show just seems to be a distraction from some other humongous  problem; he says in the rant before the commercial break, “I can’t teach God in school, but I can make kids pledge allegiance to the Earth? The Earth is God now! The Earth is greater than human beings!”

I understand Glenn Beck is a proud American, and I can kind of see how pledging allegiance to the Earth goes completely against that. But, really, the Earth is greater than the people who live on it. Any slight change in the natural world can completely wipe out the human race. And my religious upbringing tells me that God not only created everything, but is also in everything. God created the Earth, and God is the Earth. I would gladly pledge allegiance to the Earth, because I am pledging allegiance to God in this way.

If anyone is watching the show, you know how awkward this suddenly has become. He spoke directly to “progressive bloggers,” and quoted Malachai 4:6–“He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers; or else I will come and strike the land with a curse.” He says that this verse says that indoctrinating our children is evil. And he also recommended that I spell EVIL in capital letters. Just for kicks, I’ll go a step further: EVIL!!!!!!!!!!!1

But again, Beck is quoting out of context. Chapter 4 of Malachai, in its entirety:

1 “Surely the day is coming; it will burn like a furnace. All the arrogant and every evildoer will be stubble, and that day that is coming will set them on fire,” says the LORD Almighty. “Not a root or a branch will be left to them. 2 But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its wings. And you will go out and leap like calves released from the stall. 3 Then you will trample down the wicked; they will be ashes under the soles of your feet on the day when I do these things,” says the LORD Almighty.4 “Remember the law of my servant Moses, the decrees and laws I gave him at Horeb for all Israel.

5 “See, I will send you the prophet Elijah before that great and dreadful day of the LORD comes. 6 He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and the hearts of the children to their fathers; or else I will come and strike the land with a curse.”

Looking at the passage as a whole, it actually says that the EVIL!!!!!! world will be destroyed unless the hearts of the fathers are turned to the hearts of the children, and vice versa. God himself is saying that unless children and fathers learn from each other, the world is going to be struck down.

But I digress. The real reason this episode of Glenn Beck is bothering me so much that I felt like I had to blog as the show is in progress is because throughout the whole show, Beck has been talking down to my generation. The whole episode has been a “Get Off My Lawn, You Crazy Kids!” episode, with Grampa Beck telling us kids that our generation is out of control, just like, I’m sure, his grandparents told him when he was young. He was born in 1964, after all.

I’m not a fan of people being condescending to me. But that’s all this was. It was Glenn Beck Knows Best, and because I am younger than he is, I am an idiot.

Thanks, but no thanks, Mr. Beck. The fact is that the world is changing. My generation has a greater access to knowledge than your generation did. And in fact, I may go out and buy “Eric’s Book” (Generation-We by Eric Greenberg, in case anyone was wondering), just because. I appreciate you trying to protect me, but everything in this show had no evidence. I was always taught that to have an effective argument, I need claims and evidence. Sadly, this show only had the former.

To my generation: This show should be incentive for us to get out there and change the world even more. Don’t even think about politics, don’t think about being “too progressive”. We have a higher calling, and we need to do everything in our power to change our world before our world changes us.