Fox News has lately been escalating their support for rightist, GOP candidates and causes. They have Sean Hannity and Dick Morris traveling around the country to stump for Republicans. They have Karl Rove raising tens of millions for GOP advertising. They even have prospective presidential candidates like Sarah Palin and Mike Huckabee on their payroll.
And now they have Glenn Beck pitching for the uber-rightist U.S. Chamber of Commerce (CoC). The same CoC that received $1 million from Beck’s boss Rupert Murdoch. The same CoC that is spending over $75 million in support of Republicans running for Congress.
On his radio program today, Beck announced that he was donating $10,000 to the CoC and urged his listeners to donate as well. He declared that he “would like to have this the largest day of fundraising for the Chamber of Commerce ever.” In his pitch he misinformed his audience saying that the US CoC was made up of the struggling local businesses that are downtown. That’s false. The US CoC is not affiliated with municipal CoCs around the country.
Beck’s pitch was largely based on the opposition to the CoC expressed by the administration. And if the administration is against it, well by golly, he’s fer it. However, the administration’s position is not really anti-CoC. It is against the solicitation of unlimited funds, some of which come from foreign entities, without disclosure. But Beck apparently is in favor of secret foreign enterprises influencing our domestic elections. He fervently expressed his affinity by saying that “They are us.”
Unless “us” are giant multinational corporations, I don’t think we are really them. What’s interesting about this appeal is that the CoC was a vocal supporter of some of the initiatives that Beck believes are destroying the country. The CoC backed the passage of the TARP legislation:
“The U.S. Chamber of Commerce lobbied for the creation of the TARP program and continues to support efforts to improve the program to ensure its success.”
And in urging the Congress to pass the Stimulus Bill, the CoC said…
“The global economy is in uncharted and dangerous waters and inaction from Washington is not an option. No package of this size can be perfect but we need a bill that will unlock capital markets, free up credit, and create momentum in the economy.”
TARP and the Stimulus Bill have been castigated by Beck as socialism and Nazism and harbingers of a future of government domination and slavery. They have been the backbone of his delusional tirades against an administration that he is convinced is purposefully trying to bring the nation to ruin. They have been roundly rejected by the Tea Party crowd as evidence of government and business corruption. Yet Beck is now shelling out $10K (a pittance for him) to one of the biggest backers of these policies, and urging his congregants to cough up their hard-earned money as well. Why?
Because Beck is, and always has been, a shill for Republicans and the conservative agenda. He regularly uses his program to advance the campaigns of GOP candidates and never misses an opportunity to impugn a Democrat. His behavior is perfectly aligned with that of his employer, Fox News.
This solicitation on behalf of an organization of big business lobbyists is a slap in the face to his Tea Party followers. If they had the ability to conduct their own analysis they would be horrified at his dishonesty and manipulation. Good thing for him that most of them can’t think for themselves and will follow his advice like the blind and obedient disciples they are. Let’s just hope that the rest of the American populace is paying better attention and has more common sense.