Is Glenn Beck’s Independence, USA The Next Jonestown?

On his webcast this week, Glenn Beck unveiled yet another publicity stunt intended to buy him some attention, at least from his congregation of disciples. This time it comes in the form of his “vision” of a utopian community where rich and poor will live together in harmony while shopping and farming and riding holy-roller coasters to Valhalla.

Glenn Beck Independence

This new society of egalitarian pilgrims would amass in Beck’s planned city of Independence, USA. He admits that there is no such place mapped out as yet and that the whole concept exists only in his imagination which is, to say the least, fertile. The development includes all the necessities that a demented doomsday prepper could desire. There would be farming land where residents could till the soil and produce their own food. There would be a mall with shops populated by craftsmen who would also teach the young’uns how to make their own rocking chairs and crossbows. He also plans a media center where he would produce entertainment “that would challenge viewers without resorting to a loss of human decency.” It is in that area that he would train new journalists in his techniques of lying and fear mongering. There would a research facility for…God knows what. Recognizing the need for diversions from all of this ecstasy, Beck plans to include a theme park. And of course, centrally located, would be a church for his parishioners to worship.

Perhaps most notable is Beck’s provisions for living space. He says that he will build “a residential area where people of different incomes could all come together and be neighbors.” Sounds a little socialist to me. But so does much of his concept that relies on all the people contributing to one another and to the greater good of the community.

What’s troubling is the notion that Beck wants to create a segregated community of followers who believe in his vision and will strike out on their own to build a self-reliant, communal society based on his twisted brand of evangelism and with him as its leader. Sound familiar? It is precisely what Jim Jones, a pastor from California, did when he assembled his flock in Guyana to form what he called Jonestown. That ended in tragedy with more than 900 disciples succumbing to poison-laced Kool-Aid.

Already Beck’s flock is getting excited about his new city proposal. They are leaving comments on his web site declaring their loyalty and wondering when they can move to the imaginary Independence. It’s sad to see that there are people who regard independence as fealty to a hate-filled, fear mongering, tele-prophet, who is only interested in his own fame and considerable fortune. Hopefully people will see through this charlatan before it’s too late, because it is difficult to see any good coming from this.


11 thoughts on “Is Glenn Beck’s Independence, USA The Next Jonestown?

  1. This is hardly new, there is an anarcho capitalist guy doing something similar, except not in the US, specifically for people to get out of the US. He may have borrowed the idea, but it’s certainly not original.

    • Originality is far from teh most important issue here.

    • Originality is far from the most important issue here.

      • Your are correct, but it does show a demand somewhere in the population for this kind of thing. I’m not sure following another Mormon is the right idea, but to each his own. I think his idea is flawed anyway since it appears to remain in the United States, which of course makes it more cost effective.
        This could lead to another Branch Davidian attack by the government eventually since I’m sure they will be heavily armed – as they should be.

  2. Oh my goodness. Ever since my in-laws turned into hardcore Beck followers at the beginning of Obama’s term, my wife has joked about them moving out to a cult compound with their guru. She’s not happy that the big plans for Beck-topia have finally been set in motion.

    I’m not too worried about it because I’m sure that the ultimate goal will never come to fruition – just like all of Beck’s big schemes, it will surely be abandoned quickly when he realizes that carrying it out would mean a lot of hard work and drudgery. But I wouldn’t be surprised if a lot of well-meaning folks get bilked of their hard-earned $$$ to finance the purchase of a big plot of worthless real estate in the middle of nowhere that will never be developed. Oh well.

  3. I did a paper on Jones and Jonestown at Uni. While Beck has many of the hallmarks of Jones, he is not Jones. Beck has not got what Jones had – a religion. There is something particularly resonant with Americans when it comes to religion. So far Beck has not been able to tap into that resonance enough to become a Jones. To do that he would have to drop his affected magic underpants faith and return to happy clappy Krystyhun Religulous Reich land. If he does, there is your strongest sign of an emerging cult.

    This Becktopia nonsense is more akin to the Freemen militia group idea or that of Bo Gritz and his militia community, or even the Elohim and Aryan Nations nutballs. Little Somalias On The Plain.

    Personally I smell a real estate scam – then again he has his quackadoodle faith’s first leader Joseph Smith to model that on, as Smith pulled real estate scams like rabbits from a hat.

    • Yeah, your analysis sounds right. The idea sounds a bit creepy to me, but it could just be Marks description. I think anyone would be better off just buying a farm on their own and keeping to themselves and just home school their kids – why follow anyone who could turn out to be different when placed in a position of power. He may feel he is the next Brigham Young.

  4. And will this happen to be located in Independence, Missouri, where Mormons believe Jesus will return? Did Glenn get a vision from Joseph Smith? Does he plan to re-establish the United Order and prepare for the end times? More news later, as failing to elect Romney, Glenn declares himself the new Prophet for the end times. How many of you Mormon haters are aware of all the subtle and not so subtle references Glenn makes to Mormonism? Why does the church support Glenn and sell his trash in the Deseret Book Store? They told me, because people want it and as long as there is demand (aka sales $) they will stock him on the shelves. I am disgusted by this. Glenn is an embarrassment to the faith. Why does he have Mormon followers? Are we so eager to be accepted that we fawn over this guy? Does anyone believe Beck will allow a society where all views, and those in opposition to his are freely exchanged? One day Glenn is holy, holy, and the next day he is putting the president’s image in a jar of urine. Wackadoodle doo. So much for respecting others and living in harmony. This will end sadly, like those who followed Jim Jones.Of course, there shall be many guns in Independence, for a last stand against the legitimate government of the US. Glenn will “take the country back” and restore the Constitution, which prophecy says will be hanging by a thread. This is a mixed up, twisted fantasy, combining Mormon prophecy, Skousen, Ayn Rand and whatever else Beck can patch together. If he just jumbles it all up and adds the right terms and phrases he can suck in masses of sheeple and take them all right over the cliff. Beware. Since Salt Lake is being over run by a those free agency sinners, the gentiles, boozers, gays, and tattooed homeless kids, What else can Glenn do to save us all? Start a new community, called Independence, of course. Once he has you in there, he will lock the doors and there is only one way out. Don’t drink the Kook-aid. I must go now, the Danites are coming for me.

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