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Glenn Beck Attacks Progressivism, Ergo, He’s A Dangerous Nut, Says Alleged Conservative Journalist.

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Posted on June 25 2010 9:00 pm

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Because Glenn Beck denounces progressivism, Matthew Continetti calls him a loon in the much-ballyhooed Weekly Standard article, The Two Faces of the Tea Party.

Continetti offers as proof of Beck’s lunacy his assertion in Glenn Beck’s Common Sense that, “With a few notable exceptions, our political leaders have become nothing more than parasites who feed off our sweat and blood.”

My gut reaction to that sentence was: And?

Are there any thinking Americans remaining out there who actually, naively, foolishly believe that the bulk of the nation’s politicians are interested in doing anything other than perpetuating themselves in office? That’s why there is a Tea Party movement that has been embraced by Americans everywhere and from all walks of life.

Perhaps Continetti lives in a Civics 101-induced hallucination in which politicians actually want to do the right thing. Most don’t and that’s why we’re in the mess we’re in today (and the voters have more than a little to do with it too, having voted for these scoundrels for so long — but that’s a discussion for another day).

Beck’s comment strikes me as self-evident, yet Continetti launches into Beck, writing

This is nonsense. Whatever you think of Theodore Roosevelt, he was not Lenin. Woodrow Wilson was not Stalin. The philosophical foundations of progressivism may be wrong. The policies that progressivism generates may be counterproductive. Its view of the Constitution may betray the Founders’. Nevertheless, progressivism is a distinctly American tradition that partly came into being as a way to prevent ideologies like communism and fascism from taking root in the United States. And not even the stupidest American liberal shares the morality of the totalitarian monsters whom Beck analogizes to American politics so flippantly. [emphasis in original]

That’s right. Progressivism is a “distinctly American tradition.” Like lynching, another distinctly American “tradition” for a time until decent people did away with it.

Continetti seems to be half-defending progressivism just because it’s made in America. But it’s not. It’s a uniquely American take on socialism, on the ravings of Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels and others, a foreign disease that even vast oceans could not keep from our shores. I’d like to see Continetti’s evidence for his novel claim that progressivism came into being to “prevent ideologies like communism and fascism from taking root in the United States.” That’s complete rubbish.

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