AUTHOR: Alexander Zaitchik at AlterNet, excerpting a portion of his book, Common Nonsense: Glenn Beck and the Triumph of Ignorance
LENGTH: 4,231 words
SUBJECT: 'How Glenn Beck re-invented himself as a crying conservative" (The answer: Mormonism)
TOTAL APPEARANCES OF THE WORD 'CRY,' INCLUDING VERB CONJUGATIONS AND THE NOUN 'CRYBABY': 25
RUSH LIMBAUGH'S SECRET GIRLINESS: "'Glenda' Beck apotheosizes the gender blending that has always been at the heart of right-wing talk radio."
INSTANCE OF 'PREMENSTRUAL' AND 'MORMON' APPEARING IN THE SAME SENTENCE:
He's not stereotypically premenstrual as much as classically Mormon. Like so much else that baffles people about Beck, his approach to public tears has been shaped in the crucible of his adopted faith. It was the lachrymose Latter-Day Saints who turned an amateur crybaby pro.
ORSON WELLES AND A WHALE: When Beck's "love of vulgar sentimentalism hit terminal freak velocity ... Anyone who looked directly into its light was sucked through a vortex and deposited into a strange land where Free Willy is Citizen Kane, and a sepia-toned Kodak commercial is capable of capturing all that is good and true about an America that never was."
WHY MORMONISM IS A 'DISNEY RELIGION': Its "orthodox culture that has replaced the tragic sensibility with a masochistic addiction to uplift"
ALSO: "The Church produces and promotes a steady stream of LDS-approved books, music, and films that form a G-rated Wellbutrin-fueled world unto itself."
BEST SENTENCE OUT OF CONTEXT: Anyone who has followed Beck over the course of his career knows that he never followed the Amazing Mr. Plastic Man into the basement, never drank from the Kool-Aid tasting of a truly loving cosmic consciousness."
FOLLOWUP TO SAID SENTENCE: "Nor did he lay down his sword."
CONCLUSION TO THESE MUSINGS: "Glenn Beck is still the same splenetic jerk he was before he found his Mormon Jesus."
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
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