Glenn Beck is a carny, right?

I’m going to start this with the preconceived notion that Glenn Beck is a bit, um, over the top. And, admittedly, most of what I’ve seen of him has probably been a greatest hits composition of his nuttier nuttery. It’s possible that the bits of the show that I haven’t seen are well reasoned and thoughtful. However, I’ve seen enough that is paranoid and insane to say that nomatter how much of the other stuff is sane, it is undone by the rest of it.

That said, I have a hard time believing for a second that this guy really believes what he is spewing out. Sure, Limbaugh and O’Reilly probably play over the top with their actual beliefs and overplay the blowhard aspect for ratings. But, Beck, I don’t think cares what he is actually saying, as long as the people are tuning in. If his ratings start to fall, I think he would do a face turn, and go the other way with his beliefs to keep them up. To me, it’s not that he is a carny, it’s that he is so obviously a carny.

Am I missing something? Is he genuinely crazy? Does he really believe this stuff?

He’s an entertainer who dances and sings for whomever pays the most. Being a bit loony doesn’t hurt.

I’ll let my take on Glenn Beck boil down to this: he’s a perfect example for why abortion can’t be all bad.

Yes, he is a carny. I wish I’d thought of that description; I’ve always called him a snake oil salesman. When I have the time, I call him a lying, cheating, good-for-nothing, two-bit hustler. I think I’ll switch to carny.

That’s really totally unfair and beyond the pale. There are plenty of honest, hard-working, gracious, charitable carnies in this country of ours. Glenn Beck is more of a cross between a hyena and a magpie. Like a Hy-pie. Or a Pie-ena.

As someone whose lunacy doesn’t include masturbating in your own feces, GB is a carny sure but without the ‘wink wink’. So basically a lying, country destroying anti-patriot fuck-nut. He is one of the lowest of the low and I don’t for a second he believes anything he says.

I would like to coin a new oxymoron to describe what he does - “advocacy journalism”. This when you pretend to report all relevant facts but only report what supports your pre-existing thesis.

Actually, I think that for GB we need a sub-category to that, which I’ll call “jim jones journalism” or maybe “koolaide journalism.” In addition to acting more like an advocate than a reporter, you add factual statements that are known to be partly or whole fictitious. This includes self-aggrandizing statements that may or may not have some basis in reality. The only people who believe what you’re saying are the one’s who have already drunk the koolaide.

Crazy like a fox.


I think you’re missing a key point. In USA Today, he reported that he doesn’t view Democrats as evil, and actually has a few Democrat friends. Seeing as he makes a big deal about on his show about how everyone who disagrees with him is evil, it becomes clear that something he said is not the truth. And seeing as he was a shock jock radio guy first, my guess is it is the crap he says on TV.

Plus, did you see Stephen Colbert’s skewering of him?

I don’t know, you tell me.

I would say yes, he’s a total carny except I’m not sure how much he actually believes the stuff he says. Sure, he knows he’s an entertainer (which is what all these guys call themselves when they go too far and get called on it by people they respect or fear), but… the crying thing? I don’t know. He’s like a recovering alcoholic working as a bartender. For someone with his health history, what he does is the worst possible thing he could be doing.

OK. Sounds like we’re singing the same tune. So what am I missing exactly?

He’s basically Mancow without the strippers, dick jokes, fart noises or anything else that might offend his more socially conservative fans. A shock jock through and through, but one who wears a suit and tie and whose influence extends into the political realm.
Whether he actually believes his own schtick…well let’s put it this way. If he thought he could make a buck by taking a dump on the American flag, his pants would come flying down at warp speed.

Around here we just call that reporting.

His “crying” antics are surely faked, and he isn’t even a very good actor; I’ve seen 6-year-olds that could whip up more convincing tears on a moments notice.
I’m not claiming to be human polygraph, but when I watch his show much of his outrage/dismay/emotions seem very affected. It’s pretty clear he’s acting much of the time.

He once called himself a “rodeo clown”, an interesting choice of words. Because a rodeo clown does not entertain, rather he distracts an angry bull so the cowboy can escape harm. Replace “bull” with “public” and “cowboy” with “rich and powerful” and you’ve got the Reagan Revolution in a nutshell. Social wedge issues are there to keep the majority of the country fighting each other while the rest make off significantly better than bandits.

Advocacy journalism is not your invention, nor is it new, nor is it an oxymoron. So-called “objective journalism” is the more recent invention; it’s impossible to say whether it was ever a reality, and the current state of affairs gives one cause to wonder if it was just a passing fad.

This is basically how I’m seeing it too. Now, you can disagree with Olberman or O’Reilly or Limbaugh, and I have no doubt that all three, to one extent or another, play it up for ratings. But, I also have no doubt that all three have general beliefs in the direction of their rhetoric.

With Beck, he is so obviously pulling a carny routine that I have no idea how he is getting away with it. The clip posted from Colbert where Beck claims that if he is acting he deserves an Emmy is exactly wrong. His acting is terrible. The comparisons to Mexican soap operas is particularly apt.

How the hell is he getting away with this with his viewers?

This is pretty much how I see it; a shock jock who figured out he could make more money with a “political” schtick. Kind of ingenious, I guess, in a P T Barnum sort of way.

Depressing as it may be, apparantly people really are that stupid. :frowning:

I remember seeing Victoria Jackson on TV saying something about how much she has learned from Glenn Beck.

There must be other people out there who feel the same way.