Anarchist Text Owes Strong Sales to Beck

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Brimming with populist fervor, Glenn Beck has the power to force the resignation of administration officialssink political campaigns, and mobilize thousands of people against the enemies of liberty, justice, and the U.S. Constitution. An endorsement from Beck can be the equivalent of conservative seal of approval, while the victims of his diatribes are often sent running for the political hills (with exceptions, of course).

Therefore, it is with a strange sense of irony that one of Beck's long-winded rants against anti-American "-ists" (Marxists, socialists, anarchists, etc) should become an informal endorsement of the very ideas he loathes. Judith Rosen of Publishers Weekly writes that The Coming Insurrection, a neo-anarchist text written by the "Invisible Committee" and published by Semiotext(e)--"a small California press, best known for works of French cultural theory by Jean Baudrillard and Michel Foucault"--has spent much of the week on Amazon's bestsellers list.

The book's success is largely attributable to one of Beck's characteristic rants in July 2009, during which he declared, "I am not calling for a ban on this book. It's important that you read this book."

The book, which "rejects the official Left and aligns itself with the younger, wilder forms of resistance that have emerged in Europe against immigration control and the 'war on terror,'" has a sales spike every time Beck mentions it. The last one came, Rosen says, after Beck did a segment in which he called the book "quite possibly the most evil thing I've ever read." 
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.