Sorry Liberals, Glenn Beck Did Not Tell Viewers to Shoot People in the Head
Left-wing bloggers are touting their latest smear of a conservative radio talk show host and as you would expect, there's absolutely nothing to the charge.
The target this time is FNC host and radio talker Glenn Beck. In a segment last year, Beck warned establishment liberals that encouraging the far-left revolutionary types could end up backfiring in dangerous ways. "You're going to have to shoot them in the head," he warned, when the uber-leftists find out that the center-leftists aren't really on board with their revolutionary endgame.
Clearly, as Patterico notes, "you" in that sentence is referring to the establishment left, and "them" is referring to the wackos who want to do away with capitalism and "American imperialism" and such - you know, the folks who think Hugo Chavez's brand of dictatorship is just swell (video and transcript below the fold).
You can find the full transcript of the segment here, but this is the key portion:
But what the politicians don't understand, the ones who have co-opted these revolutionaries and brought them in the process, is they are dangerous. Why? Why? Well, because a lot of them have called for violent revolution in the past and they never distanced themselves from it…
Tea parties believe in small government. We believe in returning to the principles of our Founding Fathers. We respect them. We revere them. Shoot me in the head before I stop talking about the Founders. Shoot me in the head if you try to change our government.
I will stand against you and so will millions of others. We believe in something. You in the media and most in Washington don't. The radicals that you and Washington have co-opted and brought in wearing sheep's clothing — change the pose. You will get the ends.
You've been using them? They believe in communism. They believe and have called for a revolution. You're going to have to shoot them in the head. But warning, they may shoot you.
They are dangerous because they believe. Karl Marx is their George Washington. You will never change their mind. And if they feel you have lied to them — they're revolutionaries. Nancy Pelosi, those are the people you should be worried about.
That should make the context clear: Pelosi had better be careful of the nutjobs she co-opted for her own ends, Beck warned, since they really do believe in violence. But the Nutroots aren't about to let context get in the way of a good Glenn Beck smear. The far-left Fox-haters are in full attack mode.
I know, I know, another day, another Fox News smear. There is nothing particularly novel about the tactic. But let this serve as a warning to all would-be media parrots. Do not take the claims of the left's faux-muckrakers at face-value.
*****UPDATE: In a followup post, Patterico notes that one of the lefty bloggers making a ruckus about Beck's comments - and accusing him of directly inciting his viewers to murder via this segment - "is business partners with a guy who was convicted of setting off numerous bombs — including one that literally blew off a man’s leg." Pot, meet kettle.
*****UPDATE 2: In response to reactions from a few readers, here are a couple clarifications I should make. First, I'm not sure why Beck thought it would be neccesary for the establishment left to shoot its revolutionary partners once the latter found out that they'd been played for fools. Apparently he thought violence would neccesarily ensue and that one group would have to off the other. I have no idea how he arrived at that conclusion.
Clearly this statement was pure hyperbole. Beck often attributes his most controversial statements to a tongue-in-cheek attitude. Maybe the 10 words the left is fixated on were just an overly-dramatic (and ill-advised) means to get accross just how volatile and dangrous he thought the situation was. Maybe he actually does think the two groups will eventually turn violent towards each other. I have no idea. I can't read the man's mind.
Is the statement an example of civil, moderate discourse? Of course not. But that fact does not excuse the lies certain folks on the left are trying to push.