Kathleen Parker on the 'Glenn Beck Program'
Glenn Beck's rally on the Washington Mall Saturday continues to draw extensive interest from our readers as they ponder the message and what that huge, peaceful crowd of folks was all about. Their discussion today centers on Kathleen Parker's argument that the gathering was right out of the Alcoholics Anonymous playbook.
First of all, as happens sometimes with Parker, there are accusations that this is exactly the kind of drivel you would expect from a liberal Democrat. Parker tends conservative. Then there are charges of treason from those who know that and see a problem with rightish columnists questioning the right.
And finally there is an extended discussion about Parker's central point about the AA playbook. As she writes, "For Beck, addiction has been a defining part of his life, and recovery is a process inseparable from the Glenn Beck Program. His emotional, public breakdowns are replicated in AA meetings in towns and cities every day." More than 350 folks have weighed in at this writing.
We'll start with bryan37, who wrote, "I'm no fan of Beck, but this nothing more than an ad hominem attack. It really borders on being a little sick. Does Parker ever have anything insightful to write? I just never see it"
To which binkynh accurately replied, "Actually, Ms. Parker usually tends to veer rather republican. So sorry her column is suddenly so annoying to you today!"
And bobmoses asked, "Oh, is the Post's token conservative attacking conservatives again? Lord knows she would never criticize a liberal. People keep telling me that Parker is a conservative.If so, why does she only attack conservatives?"
dougd1 said, "One reason Beck gets so much attention is that many people, though they won't come out and say it, view him as extremely dangerous. He slings out lies revisionist history, fear and hatred to over 3 million people a day (on his tv show)... Whatever the cause, it's important ot keep in mind that Beck is dangerous and that Fox "news" supports his lies, revisionism, fear- and hate-mongering."
bocatty asked, "Kathleen - was the content of Beck's message upsetting? Where would the addict be without the 12 steps and adherence to a higher power? America might try it - We couldn't do any worse in our self centeredness."
LWittgenstein2 wrote, "Astute and accurate. Beck is a "dry drunk" pontificating on the barroom stool of national TV. Parker is perhaps the most reliable journalist observer whose Republican credentials verify her ability to see reality, beyond mere partisan stridency."
kickoradell said, "He violates virtually every tenet of AA and he is a dry drunk. We prefer our anonymity. If you can't improve on silence, be quiet.
A Friend of Bill W."
And pmackinnon1 wrote, "Dry drunk...how unoriginal. The very same quack diagnosis was used against another recovering alcoholic, George Bush. Is this a life long charge that is to be leveled against every successful person who has conquered an addiction? Or, is it just reserved for people we can't stand or are unable to understand their popularity. In either case, it's elitist and despicable."
Citi__Street said, "It's downright scary that despite his wacky demeanor Beck sometimes make more sense that the entire leadership team of the GOP!"
spamagnet987 wrote, "...The question isn't whether or not Beck is messed up -- he's just a messenger. The message is that Congress and the President and the federal government are messed up. Congressmen pocket travel per diems while fleecing the taxpayers, and Obama keeps ignoring the will of the voters while plunging this nation into a bottomless pit of debt. Yep, the tidal wave is coming, and the Leftist model of government doing everything to us is about to end. All your ranting won't change that."
Chippewa said, "I've lost count of how many articles and columns the WAPO has run over the past two weeks, almost unanimously bashing Beck. The onslaught continues today. It's become the WAPO's surge. If he's such an idiot, why pay so much attention to him? Could it be because he's viewed as a threat to the Chosen One? Can't have that now, can we???"
sailhardy wrote, "Media preoccupation with bashing Beck and Sarah Palin is alarming. There are plenty of more important things going on in the world. Journalism is dying."
IowaHawkeye said, "...smart people study their adversaries, and Ms. Parker's inability to think and write critically about political figures she disapproves of (Palin and Beck, here) does not serve her middle-of-the road politics. It serves her opponents."
dandrbelf wrote, "Hee Hee! First Gerson, now Parker. The conventional conservatives have noticed what an albatross the loony right is. May the Tea Party split the right-wing vote and hand bigger majorities to the Democrats! Payback for watching that idiot Ralph Nader hand George W. "frat boy" Bush the presidency."
We'll close with Calabrese99, who said, "Beck is undoubtedly certifiable. But we should be asking the question what conditions and actions give such a person prominence. Is he a product of the teabaggers or of general conditions? It appears that we have me the enemy and they are us."
All comments on the Parker column are here.
September 1, 2010; 8:50 AM ET
Categories: Tea Party | Tags: AA, Glenn Beck, Kathleen Parker
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