Glenn Beck out at Fox - what does it mean?
04/07/2011 - 09:08
James Besser

A lot of people are claiming credit for the demise of Glenn Beck's controversial Fox News cable show, announced on Wednesday, including the Jewish Funds for Justice.

““For over a year, JFSJ has stood up to Beck’s conspiracy theories, which often involve personal attacks on Jews and on faiths that pursue social justice,” said the group's president, Simon Greer. “ In November, 10,000 people joined our call for Fox News to cancel Beck’s program, and many other Jewish leaders, including the editors at Commentary magazine, Prof. Deborah Lipstadt, Rabbi Eric Yoffie and rabbinical leaders of the major denominations have spoken out strongly against Beck’s rhetoric. Today, we feel like our voices have been heard.”

I'm sure JFSJ played a role in what happened this week, although gauging how much of a role is difficult. There were plenty of non-Jewish groups that were offended by Beck's outbursts, contributing to the flight of advertisers and viewers alike.

And there may have been factors that had nothing to do with outraged viewers.

Today's New York Times reports that after he moved to Fox in 2009 Beck “was unhappy from almost his first day on the job, which happened to be the day before Mr. Obama was inaugurated. Even in his first year, he was contemplating an exit from Fox and wondering if he could start his own channel.”

Beck's drop in ratings played a role, the paper reported, but so did “fractures in the relationship” between Beck and Fox.

And maybe the mood of the country is changing just a little.

The economy, while far from recovered from the depths of 2007-2008, is on the upswing. Maybe the kind of anger that is Beck's stock in trade doesn't sell as well in an improving climate, and maybe that kind of populist rage is simply hard to sustain over time.

In today's Washington Post, columnist Dana Milbank writes “as the recession began to ease, Beck’s apocalyptic forecasts and ominous conspiracies became less persuasive, and his audience began to drift away. Beck responded with a doubling-down that ultimately brought about his demise on Fox. He pushed further into dark conspiracies, urging his viewers to hoard food in their homes and to buy freeze-dried meals for sustenance when civilization breaks down. He spun a conspiracy theory in which the American left was in cahoots with an emerging caliphate in the Middle East. And, most ominously, he began to traffic regularly in anti-Semitic themes.”

I have no clue what's in Beck's heart when it comes to Jews. He regularly expresses a strong attachment to Israel to a degree rarely voiced in the media. Yet, without accusing Jews of anything, he sometimes disseminates conspiracy theories that disturbingly echo traditional anti-Semitic canards.

His outburst against Reform rabbis suggested – at best - insensitivity and ignorance, although he apologized a day later. His virtual demonization of George Soros as a kind of personification of evil is scary to many in our community (but shared by some, as well, judging by the comments and letters to the editor we get every time we write about the issue).

If anybody thinks the Glenn Beck story is over and done, I suggest caution. Maybe the mood of the country is improving somewhat, maybe people are getting tired of the politics of rage – but with so many uncertainties in today's world, that could easily change.
 

Comments

I didn't Glenn Beck to tell me the ties JFSJ HAS TO Soros as well as The Jewish Federation they both give large monetary support to this Group.Soros also underwrites Media Matters as well as many other leftist groups.As far as leftist groups ties to Islamic groups just look at the ties of Code Pink http://www.google.com/search?q=code+pink+ties+to+islamic+groups&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a

And then we have the leftist ANSWER COALITION'S ties to Islamics http://miseryindex2008.blogspot.com/2008/12/israel-palestine-demonstrations-in-us.html Glenn Beck is right just as any group,and Beck has spared none have unsavory ties to Soros and other anti Israel groups so do Jews have their vehemently anti Israel characters.Beck is right in my opinion

The fact that liberal Jews may have played a role in Glenn Beck's leaving Fox is sad, indeed. 1) Since when is it Jewish, or liberal, or even American to demonize a media personality for exercising his free speech? He was the third highest rated cable program on TV - in the 5:00 P:M time slot! This would not be possible, if he weren't regularly presenting something of quality; something ordinary people liked. 2) I watched some of his programs on Judaism and Israel. I consider them the best I have ever seen on TV on those subjects. 3) Like Beck, I can't say anything good about George Soros, either. My guess is that the biggest reason so many liberal Jews feel Soros' pain from Beck's criticism, is that Soros is a large financial contributor to many liberal media, and political organizations. That's NOT a good reason to defend Soros or kneecap Beck. If Soros isn't anti-Zionist, I don't know who is. He contributes resources to groups that oppose and demonize Israel. If the hearts of US Jews bleed for a billionaire leftist who undermines Israel, then it is a sad time for all of us - not just Glenn Beck.

Hope you're happy, James...one of the few voices on TV who supported Israel and spoke out against the horror that was Itamar....good riddance, I say. We don't need no stinkin friends in the Media....we've got people like Katie Couric who make a moral equivalence between Jews building in Judea and Samaria and with Arabs murdering children.

Besides, we've got Barack Hussein on our side...you know the guy who said that the USA wasn't going to get involved in the internal politics of Middle Eastern countries when asked why we abandoned the people of Iran in their protests against the bogus election. Although with in a week or two he was condemning Israel for building in Judea and Samaria....hypocrisy????? Nah...he's our friend.

We're sorry, but due to the fact that no one wants anything on MSNBC cancelled -- they tend not to rate 10,000 viewers, much less 10,000 who want someone canned -- we're just going to continue laughing at this rant for a while.

How's that hopey-changey crap doing for you folks with families in Israel who want a new home in those terrible-awful-mean-selfish settlements, which Obama has denounced?

Morons...

Your statement that "He regularly expresses a strong attachment to Israel to a degree rarely voiced in the media" is accurate and on his part sincere. However, you next statement, "Yet without accusing Jews of anything, he sometimes disseminates conspiracy theories that disturbingly echo traditional anti-semitic canards" is mind-boggling and revealing. There are conspiracy theories constantly emanating from the leftist extremists and they are never called on this by the also-liberal media.
Also, in your last sentence you mention people getting tired of the politics of rage. Have you ever watched MSNBC? Make no mistake. Glenn Beck was targeted because he is a conservative Christian. This time they came for him and you did not defend him (and his first amendment rights). The next time they may come for you and yours. They will say you are not liberal enough.

All it means is that a strong pro-israel voice is not on tv anymore. And George Soros has won this one. That's all.

Very true.
But facts are such worrying things, aren't they...?

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