Wednesday, September 01, 2010

Glenn Beck: An Ego in Search of a Message

Glenn Beck has annoyed me for the eight years I've known of him. I couldn't fully articulate why until this weekend. I always thought his over-the-top antics would fizzle out on radio as more people yearned for serious analysis and less sarcasm. When he went to CNN, I figured he would be the next in the long line of radio personalities who wouldn't translate to television. But Fox intervened and his celebrity has taken off. Now he's writing novels and becoming a religious crusader. Don't think Mr. Beck hasn't noticed that his level of influence is at an all-time high.

Just as it is obvious that Mr. Beck is in over his head, it is just as obvious he has no clear understanding of his limitations. While I am glad he is informing large swaths of the public about subjects I have come to know and despise (liberation theology, for example), he is quickly turning into a clownish figure who would probably endorse a third party if he could figure out how to benefit. Couching behind his newly-found religious voice which gives him the pretense of humility, Mr. Beck appears to be every bit the narcissist our president is. Not only does he presume to be a political expert, he is now some sort of preacher of an ambiguous gospel. And why has he adopted this new religious tone?