Glenn Beck

'And So It Begins': 90-Year-Old Glenn Beck Delivers Dire Message From The Future

The best thing about Glenn Beck owning his own network is that he answers to nobody and so there is nothing to stop him from indulging every insane idea that he has, resulting in hour-long programs like last night's end-of-the-year recap in which a 90-year-old Glenn Beck recorded a dire message from the future about how 2014 was the year in which the whole world fell apart.

Living alone in an abandoned building with only a few tiny candles and a small fire for light and heat, future Beck somehow managed to scrounge up some batteries and video cameras with which to record his message. And even though the world in 2054 is apparently short on food and fuel and energy and everything else, future Beck still somehow managed to obtain stockpiles of footage from news programs that aired forty years earlier and even had the capacity to edit those clips into his dire message about how everything from Ebola, to ISIS, to the Federal Reserve all brought about the complete collapse of capitalism and society starting in 2014.

Beck specifically pointed to the standoff at Cliven Bundy’s ranch as a turning point in U.S. history, insisting that God told him at the time: "And so it begins."

There truly is no way to completely capture the ridiculousness of Beck's broadcast last night which, after the novelty wore off, ended up being just mind-numbingly dull, but this three minute clip of Beck explaining that 2014 was the year that "we all went dead inside" gives you a sense of what it was like.

"I'm not crazy," he explained. "I was naive, but I was not crazy":

The 2014 Equine Posterior Award: Vote For Your Favorite Right-Wing Extremist

It’s time to cast your vote for the winner of People For the American Way’s annual Equine Posterior Achievement Award, which recognizes the worst of the worst in right-wing extremism.

Our 2014 nominees outdid themselves this year in promoting conspiracy theories, inventing persecution myths and pushing bigotry, and now it’s your turn to decide who wins this year’s coveted award.

Ted Cruz: Last year's EPAA winner Ted Cruz didn’t run for office in 2014, but that didn’t stop him from rallying Religious Right voters. The possible 2016 presidential hopeful spent the year supporting anti-government rancher Cliven Bundy and helping to block the nomination of Debo Adegbile.

Cruz was an outspoken opponent of the proposed amendment to overturn Citizens United, claiming it would “repeal the First Amendment” and “muzzle” pastors. Also threatening the free speech of pastors, Cruz contended, are equal rights for LGBT people, to which he is as vehemently opposed as ever.

The Benham Brothers: After reporting on HGTV’s plans for a new home improvement reality show starring notorious anti-gay, anti-choice extremist David Benham and his brother Jason back in May, the Benham brothers have now taken their tale of "persecution!" throughout the Religious Right speaking circuit.

When HGTV dropped the show just hours after our first reporting on their anti-gay activism, including their claims that homosexuality is “destructive” and “demonic, Religious Right leaders from Pat Robertson to Bryan Fischer wasted no time in drumming up a “Christian persecution” narrative and declaring the Benhams modern-day martyrs. The Benhams enthusiastically embraced their new role, repeatedly likening themselves to ISIS beheading victims and making an appearance at the 2014 Values Voter Summit.

Gordon Klingenschmitt: What a year for Gordon “Dr. Chaps” Klingenschmitt! Klingenschmitt, whose whole career has been based on a myth about his supposed religious persecution in the military, used his “Pray in Jesus Name” program this year to spread the word that it’s basically child abuse for a kid to be raised by gay parents, and that transgender people are just in need of an exorcism and a spanking. (Of course, this is a man who once tried to perform an exorcism on President Obama.)

But in between spouting anti-gay vitriol and denouncing Obamacare, Klingenschmitt somehow managed to run a campaign for a seat in the Colorado House of Representatives and won! Congratulations to Colorado’s new anti-gay, demon hunting state legislator.

Jody Hice: Jody Hice is a Georgia Republican who won a seat in the U.S. House this year despite saying that women should ask their husbands for permission before entering politics, that homosexuality “enslaves” people, and that Muslims shouldn’t have First Amendment rights. He blamed everything from the Sandy Hook School shooting to the Penn State abuse scandal on the separation of church and state. He’s a big believer in the power of “blood moons” and he thinks our public schools are a lot like Nazi Germany.

And, again, he will soon be a member of Congress.

Texas State Board of Education: This year, we nominate the Texas State Board of Education for an Equine Posterior Achievement Award for their approval of social studies textbooks that were more about the ideological beliefs of the board members than, you know, actual history.

While the approved textbooks were an improvement on the original proposed content, which included blatant denial of climate change and negative stereotypes of Islam as a violent religion, the final editions emphasize the biblical influence in America’s founding, even going so far as to reference Moses as an influence on the Constitution and the Old Testament as the root of democracy.

Glenn Beck: This year Glenn Beck assured his viewers that his many prophetic visions and predictions would finally, definitely come true. It’s hard to imagine where Beck found the time for all his clairvoyance and divine inspiration, what with everything else he accomplished this year including devising plans to fix the VA and destroy ISIS. But 2014 hasn’t been a banner year for Beck. In March, he was sued for defamation after falsely accusing one of the victims injured in the Boston Marathon bombing of being behind the attack. (Unfortunately for Beck, a federal judge recently allowed the lawsuit to move forward.)

Pat Robertson: This year, EPAA staple Pat Robertson kept up the HIV fear-mongering with his assertion that you can get AIDS from a towel -- you may remember last year, when he accused gay people of intentionally spreading HIV by cutting people with special rings.

There was hardly a news story this year that Robertson didn’t weigh in on, from Michael Brown’s death to marijuana legalization, and even Robin Williams’ suicide. He spread the word about the demonic threat posed by Ouija boards and the serious risk of fighting climate change. But it wasn’t all doom and gloom for Pat Robertson his show can cure the neck injuries and asthma of its viewers, after all.

Ben Carson: Right-wing activist and potential presidential candidate Ben Carson kicked off 2014 with a rousing CPAC speech denouncing “extra rights” like marriage equality for gay people. Despite repeatedly speaking out against marriage equality and calling it a Marxist plot, Carson believes that gay rights supporters are trying to inhibit his right to free speech. Carson also shared his many opinions on the situation in Ferguson, Missouri, blaming Michael Brown’s death on his lack of a father figure, and accusing protestors of being part of a “me generation” started by women’s libbers.

Bryan Fischer: Bryan Fischer spent a lot of 2014 being grossed out, horrified, and otherwise offended by openly gay football player Michael Sam. After that, he said that commemorating Harvey Milk is a lot like honoring Jeffrey Dahmer, asked Michelle Obama to start an anti-lesbian campaign, and expressed his preference for sharia law and displeasure with Pope Francis. Perennial EPAA nominee Fischer also chimed in on Ferguson, claiming that Michael Brown was possessed by a homicidal demon.

Kevin Swanson: Religious Right broadcaster Kevin Swanson took to the airwaves in 2014 to warn his audience about the sinister motives of “The Hunger Games” movies, the potential for LGBT nondiscrimination laws to protect murderers and rapists, and the threat of “Antichrist” Presbyterians. But maybe most memorable were Swanson’s ruminations on popular culture, including his speculation that Beyonce may be possessed by a demonic spirit, and his claim that the Disney movie “Frozen” is a Satanic movie that turns kids gay.

Right Wing Bonus Tracks - 12/18/14

  • Perhaps declaring that "Jesus is the reason for the season" is not the best thing to say at a menorah-lighting ceremony?
  • Phyllis Schlafly continues to warn that Ebola will cross into America over the southern border.
  • FRC continues to pray against gay marriage: "Lord, the war on marriage is a war against God and man, for you said, 'God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.' Help us prevail in defending the cornerstone of all human relationships - the very image of God displayed brilliantly through the sacred union of a man and woman!"
  • Similarly, ALIPAC is praying against immigration reform by "calling on Americans to unite in prayer together to ask God for strength and protection against the corrupt and deceitful politicians that are destroying America."
  • Glenn Beck has named Hobby Lobby's Steve Green as his "man of the year."
  • Finally, tonight is Glenn Beck's end of the year special, in which Beck reports from the future that 2014 was the year in which everything was lost:

How Glenn Beck 'Accurately' Predicts The Future

Despite his terrible track record, Glenn Beck is genuinely convinced that his wild predictions about the future always come true because, as he said just yesterday, he can see the future.

One of the reasons that Beck is able to delude himself and his audience into believing this myth is because he routinely hedges his bets by insisting that he is "terrible at timing," which makes all of his predictions opened-ended, meaning that they can never be proven wrong since it is always possible that they simply haven't come true yet.

But the main way in which Beck is able to so "accurately" predict the future is that he constantly spews countless theories on his shows, so that whenever anything happens anywhere in the world that could in any way be spun as a confirmation of something he once predicted, he seizes upon it and takes a victory lap.

On his radio show today, Beck hauled out his trusty chalkboard upon which he wrote down his thoughts about President Obama, Russia, and the North Korea/Sony hacking incident in order lay out at least 20 absurdly vague predictions about looming global chaos and conflict:

  • Chaos in Russia
  • Russian expansion into the Ukraine and beyond
  • War with the West
  • War in the Middle East
  • War involving Syria and Iran and possibly North Korea
  • Chaos in Europe
  • Muslim extremists in Europe
  • Nazis/Communists/Anarchists in Europe
  • A caliphate in the Middle East
  • Terrorist attacks in Pakistan
  • Terrorist attacks spreading into India
  • Terrorism in Australia
  • Terrorism spreading into Asia
  • Communists in South America
  • Hyper-inflation
  • Border conflicts
  • Chaos in the United States
  • Race riots in the United States
  • Political chaos
  • Banking chaos
  • The rise of a police state

"It's what's coming," Beck warned.

Now that Beck has covered all of his bases, pretty much no matter what happens anywhere in the world in the future, he will be able to claim that he predicted it:

People Like Glenn Beck Are The True Victims Of Discrimination Today, Says Glenn Beck

Incensed by a new interview in which Barack and Michelle Obama discuss having faced instances of racism and a call by Samuel L. Jackson for his fellow celebrities speak out against police violence, Glenn Beck fumed on his radio program this morning that it is religious conservatives such as himself who are the true victims of oppression in America today.

"You want to talk about racism? You want to talk about bigotry?" Beck said. "Let me ask you: have you tried being me? Have you tried being a conservative? Have you tried being a Tea Party member?"

Claiming that conservatives in Hollywood have to meet in secret and conceal their views for fear of being blackballed by the liberal establishment, Beck declared that it is people like him who are the real victims of discrimination.

"I can't change what I believe," he bellowed. "I believe in God the Almighty. I believe in the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. There's nothing I can do to change that. Sometimes, believe me, I don't want to believe that; it's not fun all the time, it's not easy all the time, it doesn't make you popular all the time. I can't change it. It is who I am to the very fiber of my being. That's who I am. Do you think that I want to be a pariah?"

"Don't tell me about your problems, Samuel L. Jackson," Beck concluded. "Shut the hell up":

'I See The Future': Glenn Beck Begs His Audience 'Not To Listen To The Experts In This Country Anymore'

Citing the hostage situation in Australia, the economic crisis in Russia, and an anti-Islam protest in Germany, Glenn Beck opened his television program last night by declaring that he had predicted all of these things years ago, telling his audience not to listen to experts but rather listen to him because he can see the future.

"I'm bad on the timing," Beck said about his ability to make predictions, "but they all come true. God help us because I see the future and you better buckle up."

Promising that when he returns from his holiday vacation, he will reveal "one of the scariest scenarios to date," which seems to involve Russia and Iran possibly starting a global war in order to drive up the price of oil, Beck begged his audience not to listen to experts.

"We have shown you the caliphate before it came. We showed you al Qaeda. I warned you of Osama bin Laden in 1999, before anybody else was. We have shown you some really scary things that have happened," he said. "I beg you not to listen to the experts in this country anymore. The fools disguised in tweet jackets or ascots of the Ivy League campuses. The scholars and the experts and those who have been around in the State Department forever, blah, blah, blah. They couldn't find their way through an unlocked door in a locksmith shop. They come on TV and they lecture you about how is fine and everything was in a box. I have news for you: I believe it was the great philosopher Depeche Mode that said 'nothing is impossible.' Life is outside of the box now and if you're inside of the box, you'll suffocate":

Yes, people should absolutely listen to Glenn Beck since he has such an amazing record of making accurate predictions, such as his recent warning that President Obama's executive action on immigration and the Ferguson grand jury decision would lead to a race war, as well as his equally accurate prediction that Ebola was going to destroy America.

Beck: 'We Are A Nation That Will Destroy Themselves' By Mocking God

Continuing the theme from yesterday's radio program, Glenn Beck spent a good portion of today's show once again fuming that America is allowing God to be openly mocked, citing an incident in Florida where local elected officials walked out of a commission meeting when an atheist was invited to deliver the invocation.

The Supreme Court recently ruled that government meetings can be opened with prayer so long as there is no discrimination about who may give them, but Beck obviously disagrees with that position as he was absolutely livid that the atheist speaker used the opportunity to mock belief in God, declaring that "we are a nation that will destroy themselves" if we allow this sort of thing to continue.

After warning atheists that they should not be mocking God just based on the fact that they could be wrong about God's existence, Beck demanded to know "since when do we have to get snarky in our city council meetings at the moment of prayer?"

"We are a nation that will destroy themselves," he warned. "I promise you, in time we will all regret this. If we turn our back on the giver of all that is good, we will regret it":

Beck: 'Family Guy' Basically Re-crucified Jesus Christ

Glenn Beck is very upset about the most recent episode of "Family Guy," which featured a plot portraying Jesus Christ, as The Blaze puts it, "as a lying, sex-crazed adulterer."

After fuming that "it is not brave" for people to mock Christianity, Beck took a moment to attack "Saturday Night Live" as "the biggest group of pussies on the planet" for supposedly refusing to adequately mock President Obama, before he got back to venting his displeasure over this particular "Family Guy" episode.

"Every great, truly great, freeing act was inspired by the teachings of Jesus Christ," Beck declared. "Why would we take down just that man? Why would we make him into a joke? Out of all of the people you can joke about, all of the things you could do and did we sit here as a nation and laugh as he was mocked. Why not just put him up at the pillar again? Why not just whip him and beat him? Why not just publicly humiliate him? Why not just tear his clothing from him, spit on him, and when he asks for water, we give him vinegar?"

"Father, forgive them," Beck concluded, "they know not what they do":

Sorry, Glenn Beck: The Apple Logo Is Not A Secret Salute To Alan Turing

Glenn Beck received an advance copy of "The Imitation Game," the new film about Alan Turing's effort to crack the Nazi Enigma code during World War II and his eventual suicide after he was prosecuted for being gay, which was a crime at the time.

On his radio program today, Beck raved about the film, seizing upon the legend that Turing had taken his life by eating an apple laced with cyanide which, Beck claimed, has been secretly immortalized in the logo for Apple, which consists of an apple with a bite taken out of it.

"That's a salute to Alan Turning," Beck said. "Nobody knows that. Nobody knows that ... Isn't that amazing?"

This claim is, of course, little more than an urban legend, as Rob Janoff, the man who originally designed the logo back in 1977, explained a few years ago:

CB: What does the bite in the apple represent? Is it a reference to a computing term byte? Is it a reference to the biblical event when Eve bit into the forbidden fruit? Is the fruit itself referencing the discovery of gravity by Newton when an apple fell on his head while sitting under the tree?

RJ: They are really interesting, but I'm afraid it didn't have a thing to do with it. From a designer's point of view and you probably experienced this, one of the big phenomena is having the experience of designing a logo for whatever reasons you design it, and years later you find out supposedly why you did certain things. And, they are all BS. It's a wonderful urban legend. Somebody starts it and then people go "oh yeah, that must be it".

CB: Is it possible you were influenced subconsciously by these stories?

RJ: Well, I'm probably the least religious person, so Adam and Eve didn't have anything to do with it. The bite of knowledge sounds fabulous, but that's not it. And there is a whole lot of other lore about it. Turing the famous supposed father of computer science who committed suicide in the early 50's was british and was accused of being homosexual, which he was. He was facing a jail sentence so he committed suicide to avoid all that. So, I heard one of the legends being that the colored logo was an homage to him. People think I did the colored stripes because of the gay flag. And, that was something really thought for a long time. The other really cool part was that apparently he killed himself with a cyanide laced apple. And, then I found out Alan Turing's favorite childhood story was Snow White where she falls asleep forever afrer eating a poisoned apple to be woken up by the handsome prince. Anyway, when I explain the real reason why I did the bite it's kind of a let down. But I'll tell you. I designed it with a bite for scale, so people get that it was an apple not a cherry. Also it was kind of iconic about taking a bite out of an apple. Something that everyone can experience. It goes across cultures. If anybody ever had an apple he has probably bitten into it and that's what you get. It was after I designed it that my creative director told me: "Well you know, there is a computer term called byte". And I was like: "You're kidding!" So, it was like perfect, but it was coincidental that it was also a computer term. At the time I had to be told everything about basic computer terms.

Glenn Beck's Miraculous Double Rainbow

After he and his co-host Pat Gray reasonably explained why Satanists are not entitled to equal treatment under the law because ... well, they're just not, Glenn Beck recounted on his radio show today a miraculous experience in which God saved his "Man in the Moon" show from bad weather.

Back in 2013, Beck hosted a three-day event in Salt Lake City that featured, as its main attraction, a large stage production of a program called "The Man In The Moon," in which Beck told the story of humanity from the perspective of the moon.

The show would "change the way we celebrate the Fourth of July," Beck promised, and it turned out to be so important that God even stopped it from raining that weekend so that it could be performed, as Beck explained today.

"I am not afraid of standing and saying that was a miracle," Beck said. "And we have seen them, starting at 'The Man In The Moon.' There's one that 20,000 people saw. It hadn't rained in a hundred years on that weekend. It rains on that weekend and I mean rained, it pours, it pours rain. What happens? We get together, all of us and we pray. 20,000 people, we pray. There's a double rainbow over the stage. It clears up. It was absolutely miraculous":

Beck: Allowing Satanic Display Is A Sign That 'Destruction Is Coming Our Way'

Among the five displays approved for the Florida Capitol this holiday season will be one produced the Satanic Temple and Glenn Beck is not pleased, warning that "destruction is coming our way."

Even though the Satanic Temple does not actually worship or even believe in a literal Satan, Beck's co-host Pat Gray was particularly upset by the news, insisting that the Constitution does not guarantee Satanists the right to equal treatment.

"There's nothing in the Constitution that says every religion is equal," he said. "There just isn't."

"I have news for ya," Beck chimed in, "destruction is coming our way."

Gray then returned to his cogent legal argument as to why other religions are not entitled to equal treatment under the law by explaining that "when Satanists come to you and say 'well, we want equal time,' you tell them 'tough, you're not getting it!'"

And why don't Satanists deserve equal time, according to Gray?

"Because you don't deserve it" ... unlike Christianity.

"Christianity has earned the right," Beck added, "not in the Dark Ages, but in this country, they have earned the right to be at the table":

Beck: Al Sharpton Is A Terrorist Cleric

Glenn Beck opened his radio program today by expressing his disbelief that a grand jury had failed to indict a police officer in the death of Eric Garner ... and then proceeded to spend a large part of the remainder of the program attacking Al Sharpton as a terrorist cleric.

Beck and his co-hosts were discussing a debate that took place between Bill O'Reilly and Tavis Smiley last night over the issue of police violence against black Americans, which somehow set Beck off on a rant against Sharpton, whom he declared was no different than a radical Islamic cleric.

"Al Sharpton's not a reverend, he's a cleric!" Beck fumed. "Stop calling Al Sharpton a preacher. He's a cleric. He's a dangerous extremist cleric."

When co-host Stu Burguiere attempted to point out that maybe the comparison was not quite apt, as Sharpton has never killed anyone nor called for anyone to be killed, Beck wasn't buying it.

"Really?" Beck asked. "Al Sharpton's not killed anybody? Can we look? Has there been any deaths in any of these marches? How much terror has been done on the streets of Ferguson? How much terror? What do you think this is? These are terrorist organizations! They are terrorizing the people of Ferguson. They are terrorizing the store owners":

Daniel Lapin Blames 'Dark Pathology Of Liberalism' For Ferguson, Kristallnacht

On his television program last night, Glenn Beck interviewed Rabbi Daniel Lapin about the unrest in Ferguson, Missouri, which Lapin said was motivated by the same beliefs responsible for Kristallnacht, the infamous Night of Broken Glass during which Nazi paramilitary forces ransacked, looted, and destroyed Jewish homes and business.

"When the dark pathology of liberalism, not so much a doctrine as a sick and twisted pathology, manages to strip Judeo-Christian belief out of American society, congratulations guys, welcome to Ferguson," Lapin said. "You succeeded."

When Beck then asserted that the people behind the protests in Ferguson are the same people who were behind Occupy Wall Street, Lapin readily agreed.

"Same people, same beliefs, same nihilism, same delight in destruction," he said. "You know, it's Kristallnacht in Germany":

Judge Allows Glenn Beck Boston Marathon Defamation Lawsuit To Move Forward

Following the Boston Marathon bombing last year, Glenn Beck set out on a mission to prove that the government was engaged in a massive conspiracy to cover up the truth, during which he repeatedly asserted that one of the victims who was injured in the attack was really an al Qaeda operative responsible for the bombing.

In the weeks following the bombing, Beck repeatedly insisted that Abdul Rahman Ali Alharbi, a spectator who was briefly considered to be a "person of interest" by investigators though quickly exonerated, was really an al Qaeda "control agent" and the "money man" who had financed the entire operation and had recruited the Tsarnaev brothers to carry it out.

In response to these unfounded claims, Alharbi eventually sued Beck for defamation and slander, and Beck's lawyers responded by trying to get the lawsuit thrown out on the grounds that Alharbi was "involuntary public figure" which would require Alharbi to prove not simply that Beck made false accusations against him, but that he did so with "actual malice."

Of course, it was Beck himself who continued to focus attention on Alharbi, meaning that Beck's legal team was essentially arguing that Alharbi became a public figure as a result of Beck's attacks ... which they said means that Alharbi cannot now sue Beck for those very same attacks because he was a public figure.

Needless to say, this novel legal argument did not get very far with the federal judge hearing the case:

A federal judge has rejected a bid by conservative commentator Glenn Beck to toss out a libel lawsuit filed by a Saudi student Beck repeatedly accused of funding the 2013 Boston Marathon bombing.

In a ruling Tuesday, U.S. District Court Judge Patti Saris said the suit brought by Abdulrahman Alharbi could go forward notwithstanding claims by Beck, his website The Blaze.com, and firms connected to his radio show that the Saudi's role in events near the finish line of the marathon made him a public figure. If deemed a public figure, Alharbi would have found it difficult or impossible to proceed with the suit since he would need proof of actual malice: namely, that Beck intentionally lied or recklessly disregarded the truth.

...

"Choosing to attend a sporting event as one of thousands of spectators is not the kind of conduct that a reasonable person would expect to result in publicity. Quite to the contrary, a spectator at an event like the Boston Marathon would reasonably expect to disappear into the throngs of others, never attracting notice by the press. Because he did not 'assume the risk of publicity,' Alharbi does not meet the definition of an involuntary public figure," the judge wrote.

Saris went on to note that Beck continued to level allegations at the Saudi student for several weeks after authorities made clear Alharbi was no longer under investigation.

"Even if a private person meets the definition of an involuntary public figure as a matter of bad luck during a public controversy, the status is of limited duration.

Glenn Beck Theorizes That Progressives Want To Reinstate The Alien and Sedition Acts In Response To Ferguson Unrest

On his radio broadcast today, Glenn Beck played a clip of Nation of Islam leader Louis Farrakhan threatening to "tear this goddamn country up" in response to Ferguson, bizarrely suggesting that progressives would now seek to use such threats as an excuse for President Obama to bring back the Alien and Sedition Acts through executive order.

Facetiously playing the role of a naive progressive responding to Farrakhan's remarks, Beck said that the only proper solution is to reinstate the Alien and Sedition Acts so that "if you say anything against the country, we can put you in prison."

Linking this to President Obama's plan to provide millions of dollars for body cameras and training in an effort to help improve relations between local police departments and minority communities, Beck mockingly said that "if only we could get that Alien and Sedition Act back, we'd be a perfect nation, wouldn't we?"

"We'd have somebody that could take it into their own hands," Beck continued, still in character. "We need somebody who is going to start taking matters into their own hands and just getting the job done":

David Barton Falsely Claims The Average Welfare Family Receives $61,000 A Year In Benefits

As we noted just earlier today, just about every statement that is made by David Barton needs to be fact-checked because, more often than not, the claim he is making turns out to be entirely false.

As if to help drive home this point for us, Barton appeared on Glenn Beck's radio program today and absurdly declared that the "average welfare family" receives $61,000 a year in government benefits, meaning that in many states they earn more than teachers and secretaries.

"Right now, if you are on welfare, you make more than a teacher in eleven states and you make more than a secretary in thirty nine states," Barton said:

Barton's figure comes from a document produced by the Republicans on the Senate Budget Committee, led by Sen. Jeff Sessions, back in 2012 that was, not surprisingly, entirely misleading.

As experts at the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities explained, this figure was derived by relying on "a series of serious manipulations of the data that violate basic analytic standards and are used to produce a potentially inflammatory result:"

Counts payments to hospitals, doctors, nursing homes, and other medical providers — including payments for care for sick elderly people at the end of their lives and for people with serious disabilities who are institutionalized — as though these payments are akin to cash income that is going to poor families to live on.  The single largest area of federal spending in the Sessions comparison is health care spending.  Close to half of all of the spending that Senator Sessions portrays as income to poor households consists of payments to hospitals, doctors, and other health care providers through Medicaid, the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), or smaller health programs.  The majority of this health care spending is for the elderly or people with disabilities, including end-of-life care and nursing home care.

...

Counts, as spending on poor people, benefits and services that go to families and individuals who are above the poverty line.  As noted, Senator Sessions divides the cost of a broad set of programs by the number of households with income below the official poverty line.  Yet many of these programs, by design and for good reason, serve substantial numbers of low- and moderate-income Americans whose incomes are above the poverty line.  For example, 65 percent of the lower-income working households receiving the Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) in 2011 had incomes above the official poverty line.  Many programs do not cut off benefits abruptly at the poverty line, for two reasons.  First, many hard-pressed families and individuals modestly above the poverty line have significant needs; for example, an elderly widow living on only $12,000 a year is above the poverty line.  Second, abruptly cutting off benefits at the poverty line, rather than phasing them down gradually as income rises, would create large work disincentives.

...

Long-term care alone constitutes 28 percent of all Medicaid costs — and a larger share of Medicaid costs for seniors and people with disabilities.  A substantial share of Medicaid spending on long-term care is for seniors who had middle-class incomes for much of their working lives but whose long-term care needs now exceed their ability to pay for that care.  In 2010, private nursing home care averaged $83,585 per year, assisted living facility costs averaged $39,516 per year, and home health aide services averaged $21 per hour.  In 2009, the average long-term care cost for a Medicaid beneficiary receiving such care was $34,579, a figure sure to be somewhat higher today.

By including the costs of such care in the calculation of the average spending per poor household, the Sessions analysis creates a misleading impression that typical low-income families and children receive extravagant benefits.  Providing a frail senior with nursing home care does not mean that the typical low-income family with children is receiving huge amounts of benefits that give it a high standard of living ... Older people, people with disabilities, and people with serious illnesses incur far higher health care costs than do healthy individuals, but that doesn’t make them “higher income” or give them a higher standard of living than healthier households have.  Similarly, a low-income family with a child who has a serious disability is not “well off” because Medicaid covers the child’s sizable health care costs.  A middle-income household with a member fighting cancer doesn’t suddenly become “high income” when the family’s insurance covers costly cancer treatments.

Once again, Barton's claim is entirely false, as the average family on welfare does not, in any way, receive $61,000 a year from the government.

Glenn Beck Calls For Department Of Education To Be Shut Down Based On Facebook Mom's Anecdote

A rather manic Glenn Beck spent an entire segment of his radio broadcast today speaking with a woman who posted a message on his Facebook page about how her daughter's kindergarten teacher had reportedly told her students not to listen to anyone who was not their teacher. Even worse, this teacher was also allegedly refusing to honor the pilgrims during a class segment on Thanksgiving on the grounds that they were "terrorists."

Beck, of course, was absolutely infuriated by these anecdotes, saying there were analogous to the Hitler Youth and  declaring that the only solution was to get rid of the Department of Education entirely.

"There is no reform that is going to be good enough," Beck announced. "You have to shut down the Department of Education. It must be turned off ... The only way is to shut down the machine. You have to reboot the entire system and wipe the hard drive. That's the only way":

Glenn Beck Seeks To Become The Walt Disney Of Jesus Stories

Last week, Glenn Beck hosted an hour-long, commercial-free television special during which he discussed the myriad health problems he had faced in recent years, with the big takeaway being that he has decided to shift the focus of his company toward telling stories in an effort to change the culture.

To that end, Beck's company has announced that it is producing on a family program called "History House" and a scripted drama about Nikola Tesla and Thomas Edison, as well a film about a warrior Santa tasked with protecting Jesus Christ and another super-secret Spanish-language film called "The Revolutionary" that will also apparently be about Jesus.

In order to fund all of these projects, Beck is selling t-shirts and various pieces of artwork, as well as tickets to a "Keys to the Kingdom" event where, for $5000, attendees will get to spend an entire day at Beck's studio where they will have an opportunity to look behind the scenes at all of the projects that Beck has in the works.

Beck spent the last segment of his radio broadcast promoting these fundraising efforts along with Ben McPherson, whom Beck has hired to bring all of his visions to life, and the two explained that the fundamental purpose behind every project they do is to turn Beck and his The Blaze network into the Walt Disney of Jesus stories.

"I'm modeling everything on Disney," Beck said, explaining that his network was built in order to have a platform from which to spread his vision and stories, all of which are going to be about Jesus in one way or another. "We are driven by telling the story of Christ in every way we possibly can."

"It shouldn't be overt," McPherson added, "but it should always point to him in some way."

"You will always see in everything that we do, there will always be something that you go 'oh my gosh, look at that, I wonder if they knew [that was a reference to Jesus]?'" Beck said. "Yes. Yes we did. Yes we did."

Right Wing Bonus Tracks - 11/20/14

  • Janet Porter's "Heartbeat Bill" has been resurrected in the Ohio legislature after passing out of a House committee today on a party line vote.
  • Laurie Roth asserts that "Obama and his progressive army hates Christians and Jews – remember that. As a communist-Islamic, Obama views us all as infidels and goes after us by attacking our historical and moral high ground, attacking our freedom of speech and rights in general."
  • Michele Bachmann says that President Obama's immigration action is designed to turn millions of "illiterate" immigrants into Democratic voters.
  • Glenn Beck continues to be very profound: "Small minds cannot comprehend big spirits. To be great, you must be willing to be mocked, hated and misunderstood."
  • Finally, speaking of Beck, he warns that by taking executive action on immigration, President Obama will officially become be a dictator. But we thought Obama already became a dictator when Obamacare wasn't defunded. Or maybe it was during this year's State of the Union address. Obama sure has officially become a dictator quite a few times already.

Beck: The AP 'Just Raped Bill Cosby' By Asking About The Sexual Assault Allegations

Last night, the Associated Press released an interview that one of its reporters recently conducted with Bill Cosby in which the comedian refused to comment on the multiple allegations of sexual assault that have been leveled against him, after which he asked that any footage of him refusing to comment be cut from the interview.

Glenn Beck discussed to topic on his radio broadcast today and lashed out at the media, saying that "journalism is the most dishonorable, dishonest, callous, cynical, mean, stupid, stupid people and industry I have ever seen" and fuming that Cosby's reputation is being ruined because he is being unfairly vilified in the court of public opinion.

This is, of course, particularly ironic coming from someone like Beck, who is currently being sued for having spent several days in 2013 publicly accusing one of the victims of the Boston Marathon bombing of being an Al Qaeda terrorist responsible for that very bombing.

Cosby himself admitted during the exchange in question that "we didn't say that up-front [that questions regarding the allegations were off limits] because we thought that AP had the integrity to not ask" and the AP also clarified that it "had made no agreement to avoid questions about the allegations or to withhold publishing any of his comments at any time."

Despite being totally wrong about the very issue that served as the foundation of his entire rant, Beck nevertheless blasted the AP for asking Cosby about the allegations and then releasing the footage of him refusing to comment, saying that by doing so, "you've just raped Bill Cosby."

"You want to talk about rape? That's media rape, right there," Beck said. "You said you would not do that. Since when does your 'no' mean 'yes'? Do you know the definition of 'no,' sir? You've just raped Bill Cosby. You said you wouldn't do it. You just did it and then you blamed it on him. My gosh, maybe we should have a lesson on rape":

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