(The following is the full text written by Beau Friedlander that was posted to the Huffington Post at 8:18 a.m. on August 30, 2010, and removed by the editors later that day. The page that previously hosted the article is now running the following: “Editor’s Note: This piece was published directly to the Huffington Post by its author. It didn’t meet our editorial standards and has been removed from the site.”)
Rupert Murdoch and the Koch brothers are happy to throw money at the rising tide of right wing lunacy. Breitbart offered $100,000 for JournoList, the email listserve that brought down WaPo blogger Dave Weigel this June.
Why did they do it? Because they stand to make a lot of money off the anti-black president movement, and they are rich enough to imprint their beliefs on the American sheeple.
High net worth progressive Democrats don’t do this as much, perhaps because they’re not typically in cahoots with Boeing or Monsanto or Halliburton, et al. Also, there are fewer anti-communist, religious crackpots on the left.
Before we get to the reward money, a little “Tea Baggers for Beginners.”
In cultural terms, the original neoconservatives who birthed the baggers were way more frightened by the Broadway musical “Hair” than the film “Rosemary’s Baby” (both from 1968). A mock ad might go like this: “Afraid your daughter might hook up with a black guy (or the nation may choose one to be president)? Have a problem with that homosexual and or promiscuous son or daughter? Does your son need a haircut? Do you often find biblical characters charred into your toast? Then do we have the movement for you!”
A certain breed of brilliant liberal started the neocon movement in reaction to the civil rights movement and the counterculture. They believed in a social order that benefited the wealthiest Americans in unimaginable ways, and they benefited by lending considerable brainpower to the cause. It seemed to these first neocons that the counterculture’s open society might reveal that the emperor had no clothes. They were tasked with obviating that eventuality, and were paid handsomely. Ironically, these anti-communists stole Marx’s opium (i.e., religion) and distributed a far more potent version (evangelical, ultra-orthodox) for free.
(No such thing on the left.)
Enter Glenn Beck, the farce part of the intellectual tragedy sired by the neocon founding fathers Irving Kristol and his historical sidekick Norman Podhoretz.
Beck touts religion, because he says the battle for America’s soul is at stake. It is all about morality, propriety, and doing what’s right. But Beck’s conception of religion is all about control. He replaces God with an ersatz myth about self-reliance and a position of moral superiority spun in ways that magically seem to privilege the few at the expense of many (this includes the anti-Middle East / Islam thinking that led to the war in oil-rich Iraq), etc.
Glenn Beck talks about what’s right a lot. Propriety comes from the same root as property, and that does seem to be the issue. As the culture changed in the 60s, so did neighborhoods. This was the heyday of blockbusting and race-baiting. We are in similar territory with a black president right now. His successful campaign is proof positive that the counterculture prevailed over the conservative movement. And the neocons are mad as hell about that.
Glenn Beck is also a Mormon. It matters. His religion typifies the noble lie that the neocons originally set out to defend against the counterculture—Archie Bunker’s America—where a woman’s place was in the home and with baby, and an African American’s place was in a ghetto. (Mormons revere women much like Hindis do the cow, and they didn’t accept African Americans in their ranks at all till 1978—draw whatever inferences you like).
The new conservatives are true believers in the “One Right Way”, and Democrats only rarely agree on the one best way to go. But we can all agree that Fox News is a bad influence on America.
It is time to pop the tea baggers’ favorite balloon (so what if it will be replaced by another?), and with that in mind I hereby offer to negotiate a $100,000 payday to the person who will come forward with a sex tape or phone records or anything else that succeeds in removing Glenn Beck from the public eye forever. I am not offering the cash myself, but I will broker the deal and/or raise the money for what you bring to the table. (And it better be good.)
If you have the goods, or if you want to contribute to a slush fund to buy more takedowns (probably not tax deductible), please contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org.