On the way to Rochester today, I listened to about a half hour of a replay of Glenn Beck's radio show and maybe a little less of a replay of Sean Hannity's, both from this past week. If you're wondering why a liberal like myself would do such a thing, I occasionally tune in to conservative talk radio because I think that living with a lack of the opposing viewpoint to your ideology is as bad as surrounding yourself with yes men and nodding heads. (This is the same reason I lurk the forums of other NHL teams.)
I've heard mostly negative things about both personalities, but probably more negative things about Beck. Perhaps that's because Beck is a bit more famous (or infamous), or perhaps people just perceive him to be worse. What I heard today did not support those notions.
Beck talked mainly about the death of Osama bin Laden, praising Obama for following through on a promise he supposedly made as a nominee to "send planes into Pakistan if that's what it took," and criticized Bush for essentially saying "that's now how things are done, he'll learn that if he's in office." He also talked about how the celebrating in the streets of bin Laden's death made him a bit uncomfortable and reminded him of those that celebrated similarly for September 11th, which I think is a fairly liberal viewpoint. All in all, I thought Beck made sense more often than he didn't, and while he said "we should thank god" way too much for my liking, he wasn't terrible to listen to.
Contrast that with Sean Hannity who immediately set out to minimize the accomplishment of catching and killing bin Laden, saying that Obama hadn't done anything substantial. He then had a guest speaker on to discuss the religion of Islam. Holy shit was that guy fucking bonkers. The worst of it was when the guest said he had "spoken to terrorists" and been told "they get their inspiration from the Quran" which therefore meant that "Islam is not a religion of peace." (Perfect time to ask if he held the same opinion about the Westboro Baptist Church and Christianity.) He went on to say that moderate Muslims are "not radicals yet," and a bunch of other shit that I really can't remember because there was so much stupidity and I may have blacked out while driving. All this time Hannity just verbally nodded his head while the guest (again, not a caller, guest) went on his rant.
Now granted I may have just listened to a good show of Beck's and a terrible show of Hannity's and they're closer to the stereotypes than I could glean from a half hour. From what I heard, it seems like Beck has good intentions with a lot of his thoughts, but is kind of stupid and let's his emotions run away with his words from time to time. I know he's said a lot of shitty things, but compared to Hannity, he came off looking like a saint.
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