Glenn Beck Friday: Creepy, Maudlin, Hysterical Populism on Display

The clip below is illustrative of how religious emotionalism is easily translated, by a charlatan like Glenn Beck, into political emotionalism. And notice the Nazi-like volkish essentialism at work here. Implied by Beck is the notion that all true Americans can tap their inner American—and push the parasites (the liberal political and professional classes) out of the way, and so make America’s masculine and marshal greatness return. Also notice the blending of Evangelicalism with facile pop-occultism (secret inner principles for taking America back). Fascism is often accompanied by syncretistic religious blendings (in this case, Evangelicalism and Gnosticism). In short, this is a prelude to Umberto Eco’s “Ur Fascism” on contemporary display, with liberals standing in for the Jews as “other.” If an authoritarian populism ever fully took hold in America, this is what it would resemble:

About Santi Tafarella

I teach writing and literature at Antelope Valley College in California.
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