- The Washington Times - Monday, August 30, 2010

THE BECKLASH

So he had to wear a bulletproof vest. Fox News host Glenn Beck himself revealed Monday that he was wearing serious protection beneath his light blue shirt at the “Restoring America” rally on Saturday, at the request of his wife, Tania. Mr. Beck’s critics - who already had been eyeing news photos from the event for such evidence - were ready for the habitual pounce.

Glenn Beck is so paranoid that he could not face his own fans without wearing a bulletproof vest. This fact not only speaks volumes about Beck, but also the mental stability of his fans. Ironically enough, Beck claimed that he is not a fear monger,” says Jason Easley of Politicususa.com, a liberal blog.

Meanwhile, the sputtering classes are still going on - and on and on - about Mr. Beck’s remarkable rally 72 hours after the fact, arguing over the number of attendees, his prowess in the religious arena, his faith (Mormon) and the ultimate trajectory of some straightforward talk about the spiritual life of America.


Glenn Beck’s rally was large, vague, moist, and undirected - the Waterworld’ of white self-pity.” (Christopher Hitchens, Slate)

“A great PR stunt, but that’s all it was.” (Charles Karel Bouley, Huffington Post)

“Save the Beck-bashing for later. … Criticizing the rally itself plays into its impresario’s unclean hands by suggesting that liberals disdain patriotism, religious conviction and even diversity.” (Michael McGough, Los Angeles Times)

“What exactly are Glenn Beck’s credentials as a theologian?” (Elizabeth Tenety, The Washington Post)

“Will Glenn Beck get ‘left behind’?” (Bob Zerull, Zoiks Online)

A BOEHNER MOMENT

The American Legion’s annual convention was on former President George W. Bush’s radar back in the day; he attended the patriotic event multiple times during his terms in office. President Obama? Missing in action at the group’s 92nd gathering, which begins Tuesday. Mr. Obama will be busy preparing for a major prime-time speech on Iraq from the Oval Office, rather than on the dais before the nation’s largest veteran’s service organization.

Not so House Minority Leader John A. Boehner. The Ohio Republican will journey to Milwaukee with a perhaps unwelcome preamble and reality check for Mr. Obama’s speech, to be delivered just hours before the president steps before network cameras for his big moment.

“He will address the situation in Iraq as well as the records of those folks who originally opposed the troop surge,” a spokesman tells Inside the Beltway. “And he considers this an honor to address an audience with such a distinguished record of service to their country.”

Mr. Boehner credits the surge strategy - opposed by Mr. Obama and also Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. - as the catalyst for advancement in Iraq, and the much ballyhooed shift from combat to advisory role for remaining U.S. troops. “With all due respect to them, our troops who have served so courageously in Iraq deserve the credit for the success of the surge and, along with the Iraqi people, the turnaround in Iraq,” Mr. Boehner says.

See the live webcast here: www.legion.org.

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