With just one month left before the midterm elections of 2010, politicos of all stripes are about to gear up for the most important part of any campaign: Get Out The Vote (GOTV). After all the backyard barbecues, the bus tours, the thirty second ads, the hand kissing and baby shaking, it comes time to ensure that your supporters actually make the trek from porch to polling place.
Different candidates employ different methods of doing this. Some recruit phone-bankers to call every supporter and remind them of the need to cast their ballot. Some send mailers. Some spend less time motivating their own supporters than they do demoralizing those of their opponent. And some just try to scare the shit out of you with gruesome tales of the end of days and Satan’s imminent domination of your immortal soul.
The latter is the approach favored by notorious fear monger, Glenn Beck. It seems appropriate that election day is just two days after Halloween because Beck wants to make sure that you are as frightened as deer in a headlight factory. He has turned “Get Out The Vote” into “Threat Out The Vote,” and if you aren’t trembling by the end of his show your veins are pumping ice water. This is a call to arms on the part of Fox News who is initiating perhaps the biggest and most partisan voter drive ever attempted by a media organization. The following is from Beck’s TV program on 9/30/2010:
BECK: This is their shot. They have been waiting and building since the 1960’s. Well, if you’ve just been agitating and everything, you’re not good at ruling, and we’ve seen that right? We’re on to them. We know who they are. This is a nightmare. But they’re about to go back to agitating, because once they lose control of the House they have to. That’s what they’re good at.
It is important to know that the “they” to whom Beck is referring is the President, the Democratic members of congress, and their progressive allies in unions, churches, and advocacy groups, particularly those involved with the One Nation Working Together rally on October 2nd. He spent much of his program prior to this segment disparaging them and the tens of thousands of Americans who are expected to show up on the mall tomorrow in Washington.
Beck believes that these folks have been agitating for fifty years to reduce America to some sort of third world Marxist ghetto. Since Obama, and likely the majority of the other agitators, aren’t even fifty years old, Beck must view this as an inter-generational plot by subversives who have been shut out of power until only recently and have no experience governing. Not surprisingly, Beck’s facts fail to align with reality. For the past fifty years Democrats have had control of the House for all but 12 of them. And they even held the White House for 40% of that time. Nevertheless, Beck is on to us. He knows who we are. And he is predicting that we will erupt in some nightmarish fashion when we lose control of the House this November, as he predicts. So his prescription is…
BECK: You must overwhelm them in numbers. Get out and vote this November. Get someone else to vote. I don’t care how they vote, just get them to vote. Get off your couch. Get your neighbors off your couch. Be pro-active. You just make sure – are you registered to vote yet? Register to vote. Make sure people in your neighborhood are registered to vote. Get them out in droves and then stand peacefully arm in arm because I fear the trouble is just about to begin, and it will only get worse.
Who does this clown think he’s kidding? He spends hours and hours, day after day, castigating liberals as evil, as cancers that must be “cut out,” and now he pretends not to care how you vote? Let’s be clear, Glenn Beck cares very much how you vote. He just knows that if he gets his audience to the polls they will vote exactly as he has trained them to. So he is free to make ludicrous and disingenuous assertions that he just wants everyone to vote, without putting anything at risk. And then he can reassert what he regards as the real risk:
BECK: The “Sting” I believe happens maybe after January. If I’m right there’s not gonna be a lot of people in Washington that will offer peaceful leadership and the streets will not be peaceful. They will start protesting and agitating again. The peaceful leadership role will fall, unfortunately I believe, on your shoulders. Be ready to accept that challenge.
Beck is fond of forecasting future calamities. Last year at this time he warned that the stock market was going to collapse “sometime after Christmas” (it’s up over 12% since that prediction). In this case it involves some imagined conflagration that will erupt early next year after Democrats lose congressional power and take to the streets to wage war.
And therein lies the heart of Beck’s voter participation crusade. He is not seeking to motivate citizens to fulfill their civic duty and elect the candidates that best represent their views. He is terrifying them with monstrous bedtime stories about how they will be become tragic victims of evildoers who thirst only for blood. He is adamant that you turn out “in droves” and vote as if your life, nay your soul, depends upon it. Do you want to go to Hell?
And how does he want you to vote? Well, he says he doesn’t care. Were that true he would be conceding that it’s fine with him if you vote for the Satanic forces he feverishly opposes. That would be insane and obviously isn’t true. He very desperately wants you to vote, and to vote for Republicans only. He has stated clearly that he wants the Democrats to lose control of congress. He and his viewers know that there is only one other party that can achieve that end. This should finally put to rest his dishonest portrayal of himself as non-partisan. He is fanatically pro-GOP and the next time you hear him deny it you’ll know that he is lying, a skill he has mastered.
I’m not sure I’ve ever before seen this massive and undisguised amount of partisan pressure to coerce voters to the polls emanating from a major “news” network. Fox News is placing itself firmly in the electoral battle and they have decided that getting out the vote is a first tier priority that deserves Beck’s unique and unnerving attention.
With a month to go it is imperative that Democrats match this Fox News effort and mobilize their voters with at least as much enthusiasm. We don’t have network to assign to the task so we must use more traditional tools. If you have never been part of phone bank, consider volunteering for one now. If you have never walked precincts, call your local Democratic party office and sign up. Organizations like MoveOn and Democracy for America are presently recruiting people for their GOTV projects.
Do it NOW! Because that ogre under your bed will get you if you don’t. (OK, I’m not quite as good at the fear mongering as Beck, but you should still do it).
7 thoughts on “Halloween 2010: Threat Out The Vote: Glenn Beck Shows His Bloody Hand”
I think since his ratings are so bad, he’ll eventually wind up doing some type of freakish televangelist show. I really think he sounds as if he has a brain tumor. He needs help.
I thought he was already doing a freakish televangelist show.
Like I’ve said before, these nut jobs DO NOT change minds. It’s also important to note that ‘independents’ that watch these crazed hate-fetishists have never and will never vote any other way than republican. The only thing that changes minds is unfiltered, wholly unmodified information. And if it wasn’t for newscorpse (and media matters, and think progress), I wouldn’t know how information could possibly get so fucked up as it makes it’
s way to people’s brains.
Do you honestly think if progressive and/or liberal ideas are clearly presented – anyone would actually vote for them? Please – do that – let’s air out those great left wing ideas – I would welcome it becaue then you would push what’s left of independents in the Obama camp to the conservative camp. Please – speak louder get your message out – it would be most helpful. That’s why we get double talk – so no one actually knows what these clowns will do if when they get power (see Barak Obabma).
Yeah, speaking with a duplicitous nature must be what gave him a landslide victory. Your logic is infallible Steve.
Who in their right mind would agree with womens’ suffrage and the abolishment of slavery? The creation of the United States? Not in my right mind. National highway system? You must be crazy! Free TV over the airwaves? MARXIST! Clean water act? UNAMERICAN! Clean air act? Not a chance! Electricity to every home in the country? What in the world for? Jesus Christ? What a hack! Nuclear energy? It’ll never work! Sending men to walk on the moon? What’s the point? Indoor plumbing? Don’t need it! National telegraph system? It won’t amount to much! Electric street lamps? Too expensive! Public transportation? MARXIST! Federal funding for advanced sciences and advanced engineering? But I want to buy a third car! Extra taxes imposed on companies that ship American jobs overseas but operate and make money in and from Americans? TAKE UP ARMS!
I could go on for YEARS sweet cheeks. What on earth makes you think progressivism is purely leftist? What makes you think it is exclusive to politics? HOW THE FUCK DID YOU GET THIS WAY???
Boy – you’re a foul mouthed emotional wreck. how did we all survive without progressives? I’m impressed with progressivism taking care of slavery and all the wonderful conveniences of life – well done. Maybe you definine progressive literally vs politically – but exactly who is running congress? answer – Politicians – maybe you can take back the progressive mantle from the politicians who stole it from you. They certainly give it a bad name.
Your faith in the government is inspirational – I’ve not seen a person living on government assistance living a good life – maybe we all can live on the government – that would be great!
Reread the comment, obviously you missed several things progressive politicians have done in over the last 200 years. There are also myriad of things I left out, and since you weren’t specific in your weak rebuttal I’ll take that as proof of weakness. Name one progressive thing any politician has done over the last century that’s been so outrageously detrimental to the country. I’ll bet every thing I own you can’t name anything other than what the sitting president has done with this newly founded demonization of progressive ideology that Glenn McCarthy has birthed. That being said, prohibition (of all kinds), gun control, and anything else that limits the freedom of EVERY citizen is not considered progressive. It’s considered backwards. Just because a politician may label them as progressive does not make it so. Also, I’d like to hear your definition of progressivism. Really, I would be thrilled to hear it. Also, name one (or many) non-progressive things any politician has done that would make me vote republican in the coming election. What is the definition of non-progressivism Steve? Why should I adhere to it? What will it do to help further our country into the next era of human development? I expect strength in your next response Steve, no more obvious observations and surly sarcasm, or I’ll need an avalanche of advil.
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