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Just when I think a Beck week can't get any crazier...

Reported by Guest Blogger - September 27, 2009 -

Guest blogged by Aunty Em

I don’t know about you, but this is the week I’ve been waiting for. This is the week that frogs finally made the news.

Dateline Thailand: researchers found a fanged frog feeding on fowl. [Trying saying that five times fast.]

Oh yeah, and Glenn Beck boiled a live frog this week. Or didn't. Whatever the reason, suddenly frogs were everywhere on the tee vee cables and the innertubes. Missouri Senator Thomas Hart Benton seems both prophetic and Biblical when he famously said in 1848, “You could not look upon the table but there were frogs. You could not sit down at the banquet table but there were frogs. You couldn’t go to the bridal couch and lift the sheets but there were frogs. We can see nothing, teach nothing, have no measures proposed, without having this pestilence thrust before us.”

How did Benton predict the pestilence that is Beck 161 years before his time? I just ask the questions.

But I’m really getting ahead of myself.

This week’s overarching theme was Children’s Indoctrination in President Obama’s Socialist America and Theme Park™. But first Becky was on the same mission as the rest of The News Channel on Monday (Yeah. I know. It cracks me up to call it “news.”): Whine that POTUS wouldn’t appear on Faux Noise, but he appeared everywhere else.

“Does the President consider Fox some sort of enemy?”

Time for a song.

♪ ♫ ♪ There was a frog which swallowed a fly
I don't know why it swallowed a fly
Perhaps it's good. ♫ ♪ ♫

What was I talking about again? Oh yeah. After ranting that Obama would sit down with the evil leaders of Iran and Korea, but not Faux, Ben Gleck promised “kinda like an exclusive” interview with Obama “in his own words.” Then the Paragon of Partisan Journalism sliced and diced previous Obama quotes out of context to make a point which, quite frankly, eluded me.

Then we got a new flow chart to study for the week. This one wasn’t shaped like a tree with Woodrow Wilson at its roots. No, this one was more like a pyramid with the word “SOROS” at the top and all the minions his money can buy allayed beneath as it insidiously spreads out: Tides Foundation, Drummond Pike, Apollo Alliance, ACORN, Healthcare for America Now, SEIU < http://www.seiu.org/index.php>, The Stern Group < http://www.sterngroup.biz/>. Maybe more. I’m scribbling as fast as I can. It would help if Teach included handouts with his history lessons. Arrows and dollars signs connected all of these evil entities, because George Soros is rich, yannow?

Tangentially, if George Soros is paying big bucks to transform this country, I just want to let him know my cheque is late. If redistribution of wealth is the endgame, as Beckster, Scammity, O’Reilly, and the rest of The Eh Team insist, I want a piece of that. Tangent over. Move along.

Beck wrapped up Monday’s show with a segment stolen directly from Jay Leno: Jaywalking. A roving camera at Berkeley, California, hotbed of progressivism, asking students American history questions they couldn’t answer correctly. The inference being “libruls am dumm.” While I’d love to see the same questions asked at, say, Bob Jones University, Beck won no awards with this attempt at ‘found’ comedy. No one can really compete with CBC’s Rick Mercer, who has done this much better than either Leno or Beckzilla.

Tuesday was more of the same. Ben Gleck warned us “Something big is happening!” as he showed us the SOROS Pyramid of Evil™ again. Sounding almost wistful he said, “Nobody’s looking at SOROS,” so he erased the word “SOROS” and replaced it with the word “OBAMA.” How much clearer can he make it?

I watched the entire show and something “big” did happen, but I believe it was all behind the scenes. But again, I’m getting ahead of myself.

Back to this week’s theme, which if you recall, is Regrooving Our Children’s Minds With Obamatitus™. It’s a new vaccine, I think, that they want to give to all our school aged children. Hell, I don’t know. It’s easy to lose track when Beck starts spinning his web of conspirators, but then he showed us a video that he claimed was produced by Annie Leonard in conjunction with The Tides Foundation—the VERY SAME TIDES FOUNDATION ON HIS PYRAMID!!! That proves it!!!

Just when it looked like Beck had the entire conspiracy wrapped up into one tight little bow, a switch somewhere deep in Tee Vee Master Control flipped. The picture cut to ‘talent,’ and I use the term loosely, throwing to President Obama speaking live at that very moment. The ‘talent’ (I’m sorry, but that’s the official tee vee term. Check your glossary.) said that Glenn would be back after the speech. I got the impression they were promising the entire speech.

While President Obama spoke on my tee vee machine, I was distracted by what I was hearing (in my head, from my decade of experience working in a top-rated tee vee newsroom in a greater metropolitan area). What I heard was the commotion this must have caused at Faux Noise Broadcast Headquarters. Almost immediately Beck would be screaming about losing his precious air time. I was sure he’d rant and rave that he was just about to make his point on the chalkboard. He might even be swearing. At least he would be cussing out Obama on a new conspiracy in my fantasy. His producer in the control room would take up Beck’s rant and start demanding they get the network feed back on Beck pronto. Somewhere in the dank, dark recesses of the vast Faux Noise Empire an executive decision would have to be made.

I’ve seen this process happen more than once. Imagine being in the middle of a live show and suddenly it all comes to a halt because of Breaking News. You don’t know when it’ll pick up and some poor Associate Producer (Ass Prod. Really.) has to figure out how to make up any of the lost time once they get back. If they get back. Everything’s on hold.

In the time it takes for an executive to make a decision, an executive decision is made. The ‘talent’ is rushed back into the studio, shoved in front of the camera once again, a switch is flipped, and suddenly President Obama is no longer on my tee vee screen. It’s the ‘talent’ telling the vast viewing audience that if we give a rat’s ass about The President of the United States of America, we can watch it all on the live web streaming feed machine on our computing box, but for now they’re going to go back to Beck, as the cliché goes, now in progress.

They gave The President of the United States of America only a few minutes -- about the length of a commercial break actually -- before someone in power determined that Glenn Beck was more important. I’m sure it was the right decision.

Nothing much more happened that day. Eventually Crying Boy did come back, but it seemed like the wind had been taken out of the sails of the U.S.S. Beck for the remainder of the show.

Wednesday’s show was the one that will almost surely make the Museum of Tee Vee History. Beck opened on a pot of water on a hotplate, which he assured us would eventually be on the boil. But first, he really wanted to talk to us about the hate mail he received after his interview with Katie Couric. Hate mail? Just because he said McCain would have been worse for the country than Obama? Really? Hate mail from Wingnuttia? You’ll have to show it to me because I certainly can’t believe that.

Then he was off—remember this is the opening 20 minute monologue that sometimes comes off as free association poetry. Wednesday he wove an incredible tapestry from the following elements and pop cultural references:

• Said President Obama promised to be a uniter and not a divider and sarcastically asked, “How’s that working out for you?” But I seem to remember another president who claimed to be a uniter, not a divider, and it wasn’t this one.

• Another off-hand reference to his newly bagged Refounders, as he put his hand over his mouth and coughed the word “bullcrap,” like a juvenile at the back of a classroom instead of the stellar journalist that he is.

• “Scooby Doo, Where are you?” as he implied ACORN would have gotten away with its nefarious deeds, if it wasn't for those meddling kids, Pimp and Ho.

• Name-checked Kathleen Kennedy Townsend, Sandy Stern (I don’t know who that is), Henry Cisneros, John Podesta, Harvey Hirshfeld, Eric Eve, Dave Beckworth. I think I got them all.

• Mentioned an award that John Podesta was given, at which “we” were kept out, whatever that means. This despite the fact Beck tried to limit the press from Saturday’s Big Event, when the Mayor gave Home-Town-Boy-Made-Good Beck the key to the city of Mount Vernon. Surely not another Courage in Media Award?

• And then back to the main theme of the week which, if you recall, was the indoctrination of our children through propaganda.

And that’s when Beck got to the whole point, which actually surprised the hell out of me because by then I was convinced he was just riffing on words, names and phrases Poetry Slam-like.

And the tapestry? He wove it into one big medieval (figurative) wall hanging of a heraldic shield with a frog on it: Why McCain would have been worse for America, the Katie Couric interview, the pot of now-boiling water and the introduction of the newest member of the Glenn Beck Comedy Players, Kermit the Frog.

Beck then reached into a terrarium that clearly held live frogs. There was no question in my mind because I saw more than one jump as he stuck his meaty hand inside to capture one. As he carried it over to the boiling water he patiently explained that if McCain had been POTUS, a frog in a pot slowly coming to a boil would die as it’s cooked to death. But, President Obama has set the pot a’boiling and the result is the Teabagging Festivals and Town Hall Chicanery.

And then comes the funniest tee vee sitcom moment since Mr. Carlson on WKRP said, “As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly.” Even The Beckereeno acknowledged the same inside tee vee pop cultural joke the following night, but I’m getting ahead of myself.

Real frog? Fake frog? What’s the diff? What’s important here is the impeccable comedy chops and timing Beck displayed as he tossed the frog into the pot of boiling water and then seemed a bit surprised that it didn’t jump right out of there. It was a triple-take worthy of Jackie Gleason.

Beck took pains to assure us the frog was fake, just like Penn & Teller show us how they do their magic tricks, by having Ambassador John Bolton confirm the fact that the frog was made of rubber. That’s right. The former United States Ambassador to the United Nations was there to confirm it was all faked. Bolton said some other stuff, but who really cares?

Beck ended the brilliant Boiled Frog Was A Fake Segment by talking directly to his detractors, those who are sending the hate mail. He stared us all down and made this dire promise, “When you’re all standing in line for toilet paper and bread, I’ll take back what I said to Katie Couric.”

But here’s the thing about Beck’s Little Froggie Went A’Courtin’ stunt. No one remembers WTF he was talking about. Just the frog. And really, isn’t that how it should be?

And it’s only Hump Day.

Thursday’s show was a doozy and I certainly hope I can do it justice. The opening monologue was the kind of flag-waving, support-the-troops, jingoistic folderol we haven’t heard since Arbusto&Co told us to go shopping and, oh, while we’re out, pick up some duct tape. It’s the closest he came to crying this week as his voice cracked and his eyes teared up a little. But he was unapologetic for his emotional display because back in the ‘80s, he met a Viet Nam Vet who said he had been treated badly after his service. Beck vowed right there and then to always honour the soldier.

Which is why he now felt qualified to lecture President Obama. He told the Commander-In-Chief to either follow the advice of his commander, or replace the commander with someone who agrees with the president. “If we’re not going to fight to win it,” he begged the Prez, “Please bring our troops home now!”

He complained that the troops are treated like garbage in the countries they protect and then jumped to how maligned our intelligence community feels these days. “How does the CIA feel?!?” Uh oh! He’s shouting again. “We stand with the troops and the police in uniform!”

It’s amazing how fast 20 minutes goes when you’re waving the Stars and Stripes, but it was time for the first break of the show. I was glad for this short respite because I think Pops, who is a WWII veteran, was close to joining the Minutemen, or something.

When Beck returned from the commercial break, he was clearly sad about something. He really had more important things he’d rather talk about, “but no, I have to address Froggate.”

He laid all the blame on, or gave all the credit to, producer Sarah, “the Stephen Spielberg of Network News.” [See? Even he mistakenly calls it news.] And then Beck really broke down the 4th wall of television and, for the first time I’m aware of, took us behind the scenes! We were shown the rehearsals for the previous day’s Dead Frog Extravaganza, which had been taped to make sure it was all going to work. This is exciting inside tee vee stuff that brings the actual process of making tee vee right to the folks. It’s as riveting as watching a man fling the dough of the pizza you’re about to consume. Beck even showed us the little, tiny, almost miniscule segment that had been pre-recorded to insert as B Roll into the live feed. The B Roll showed him reaching into a real frog’s terrarium with real live frogs. I WAS RIGHT!!!

As an aside: Huh? A pre-recorded segment? In a ‘news’ show? A pre-recorded segment slipped into the middle of a ‘news’ show to deceive the vast viewing audience? Did he really admit to that? It gets better, but I’m getting ahead of myself.

I was still scratching my head when everything went sideways. Beck was off on a new rant, which I predict will become a new theme of his in the fullness of time. It was proof positive that he doesn’t know or, to be fair, doesn’t care what comes out of his pie hole. It’s also proof positive, as if any is really needed, that his audience is too stoopud to question anything that comes out of his pie hole, even if it contradicts what just came out of his pie hole.

After just admitting he was play acting with a rubber frog the previous day, his voice rose as he now played the victim card over what his critics say about him. “I either believe what I say or I’m a fraud.” He said he’s been accused of “zombyfying America” and “If I’m acting, I’m the Best Actor. I should get the Emmy for Best Acting.” “Give me the Emmy.” “Put it on the frikin’ desk right next to the frog” “or shut your pie hole.”

I can just see Jon Lovitz shout, “Acting!”

It seemed like as good a place as any to put a commercial break. The segment was over. I was laughing so hard at this point I would have really preferred not to carry on, but Beck came back and showed us the newest bug-up-the-ass of Faux Noise, the Black History Month poem to President Obama. It’s not like this once-performed poem has replaced the Pledge of Allegiance, or has it? Beck never said.

“We can’t sing Christmas carols” he shouted, and suggested the line “we are all equal in his sight” should have had the capital letter “H” because we are bowing down to a statue of Obama, made by the NEA, and assured us that “George Washington would slap us all in the face.”

More cognitive dissonance followed: “We do have some Reformers that want to rat out their own party” followed almost immediately by “We got to unite on principles.” Then there was this whole Gift of Fear bullshit (if you’ve read this far, I assume you’re an adult and I’ll swear if I want to this far down the page) that he equated to the 6th sense often attributed to dogs. Who are we supposed to fear? He didn’t say, but I bet it is President Obama. Whatever. We’re supposed to listen to that fear.

And then they went to break and played a promo for Friday’s show. It had soothing music and promised us a LIVE studio audience comprised of Teabagging “Moms and Their Kids” (which sounds more like a Springer show) and “What are they worried about?” With the music and the gentle, anonymous voiceover it, sounded more like a promo for a Dr. Phil Show.

I’d like to describe Friday’s show, really I would, but Comcast was having that occasional technical difficulty we get here. The screen freezes in a blocky digital pattern for seconds at a time and then starts up again. You get three words every six or so words.

But it was still highly amusing, as I tried to make sense of it, to once again see the ‘talent’ break into the show and throw LIVE to President Obama’s press conference. While Obama spoke on my tee vee machine, I was distracted by what I was hearing (again in my head, from my decade’s experience working in a top-rated tee vee newsroom in a greater metropolitan area): Sweet nothing. I knew instinctively the Friday Beck Show had been pre-taped and the studio was currently ‘dark.’ While I could be mistaken, I don’t think they would have taken a chance that something could have gone very wrong if the show had been completely live. They seemed to stick with the speech for a while, but since Obama was now speaking three words out of every six because of Comcast, I flipped over to CNN so I could hear the President. I never did flip back. Forgive me, but I was punching out a little early. It had been a long week.

But not as long as it had been for the frogs of our world, who scientists say face mass extinction.

With all my love,
Aunty Em