Watchdog group awards Glenn Beck ‘Misinformer of the Year’
By Stephen C. Webster
Monday, December 21st, 2009
After a long year hallmarked by bare-knuckle politics and a bevy of experimental attacks against a freshman president, a lone voice has resonated more than others in the war against reality.
Glenn Beck, the Fox News personality notorious for wandering, vague allegations of communism, racism and all-around quasi-evildoings within the Obama administration, has been named "Misinformer of the Year" by watchdog group Media Matters.
"When he wasn't calling the president a racist, portraying progressive leaders as vampires who can only be stopped by 'driv[ing] a stake through the heart of the bloodsuckers,' or pushing the legitimacy of seceding from the country, Beck obsessively compared Democrats in Washington to Nazis and fascists and 'the early days of Adolf Hitler,'" the group opined. "He wondered, 'Is this where we're headed,' while showing images of Hitler, Stalin, and Lenin; decoded the secret language of Marxists; and compared the government to 'heroin pushers' who were 'using smiley-faced fascism to grow the nanny state.'"
Among Beck's 2009 highlights, he most memorably:
*Was revealed for using Vicks to cry on cue
*Tried to usurp a satirist's Web domain for making fun of him on the Internet, then lost (and was publicly shamed for it)
*Lost dozens of advertisers (reportedly a total of 80) after activists launched a campaign over Beck's claim that Obama "has a deep-seated hatred for white people"
*Got caught by Jon Stewart advertising gold, then using his platform on Fox News to scare viewers away from the dollar
*Was named "fearmonger-in-chief" by the Anti-Defamation League for his racially-motivated attacks on President Obama
*Tried to blame the disastrous aftermath of Hurricane Katrina on ACORN and former White House adviser Van Jones
*And became the trigger that prompted a former Fox News pundit to turn against her former employer, telling CNN that Beck is "way over the top" and even "scary"
And that's just the beginning.
"After claiming, 'I think it would be just faster if they just shot me in the head,' Beck created a classic cable news moment when, in criticizing the president's policies, he pretended to pour gasoline on an average American, stating, 'President Obama, why don't you just set us on fire? For the love of Pete, what are you doing?'" Media Matters continued. "Beck would go on to use violent imagery throughout the year, distorting the face and voice of a 'concerned parent' who attacked Dunn for her Mao reference as if he were a mafia informant, purporting to boil a frog to illustrate that 'we've been tossed quickly into boiling water,' and invoking civil rights marchers having fire hoses turned on them to spur opposition to health care reform."