Sunday, November 14, 2010

Ten Minute Hates

The Times does some fact-checking on Glenn Beck and his vile take on George Soros, a target-rich environment were there ever one, and finds this interesting tidbit:

Oddly, Mr. Beck’s conspiratorial reading of the recent history of Eastern Europe puts him in complete agreement with Iran’s intelligence ministry, which for years has been working to discredit the country’s reformist leaders and their calls for fair elections as the puppets of foreign plotters...

In an animated television program produced by the ministry for Iranian television in 2008, Mr. Soros was imagined conspiring in the White House with Senator McCain, the C.I.A. and Gene Sharp, a proponent of civil disobedience, plotting to overthrow Iran’s government with the help of Iranian reformists.

The obvious parallel, which the article doesn't make, is that Beck and the Iranian government use Soros as a convenient Other to demonize, to rally the faithful against a largely manufactured extrinsic enemy, diverting them from real enemies closer to home and their failures. Soros is becoming, ever more frankly, the full equivalent in the real world of Emmanuel Goldstein, who, in '1984', was the subject of 'ten minute hates' orchestrated by the Party as part of keeping their subjects in line. The addition of ever franker anti-Semitism only adds to the ugliness.

This isn't just wrong-headed right wing ideology or policy commentary. Perhaps it never was. It needs to be called by its name and utterly rejected. Not least, I might add, by right wingers who lose every bit of their legitimacy, but, alas, far too little of their faithful's support and the media's acquiescence, with silence on the matter.

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