Friday, April 10, 2009


I told you about Glenn Beck's on-air rant in which he imagined President Obama burning Americans alive (as he played the president while pouring simulated gasoline on a Fox News colleague playing himself). Salon's Alex Koppelman tells us what followed:

(Unfortunately, not captured in the video is what happened next, when Texas Gov. Rick Perry came on and Beck asked, "Governor, you're regretting being on this program at this point, are you not, sir?" Perry responded, "Not at all, Glenn Beck. I'm proud to be with you.")

Steve Benen says:

And that, in a nutshell, helps explain what's gone terribly wrong with conservative Republicans of late. Beck appears to be in desperate need of medication, and the chief executive of one of the nation's largest states is "proud" to appear on the show, just moments after Beck pretended to set a colleague on fire.

Credible, serious public officials would ordinarily want to avoid making eye contact with a deranged figure, but Gov. Perry was
delighted to chat with the Fox News lunatic.

But if you're right-wing, can you really be too crazy for Rick Perry? Remember the 2006 gubernatorial race?

Texas Gov. Rick Perry has drawn criticism from rival candidates for saying he agrees non-Christians are condemned to spend eternity in hell.

Perry was among some 60 mostly Republican candidates for Tuesday's midterm election attending a Sunday service at San Antonio's Cornerstone Church, where pastor John Hagee said in his sermon non-Christians were "going straight to hell with a non-stop ticket," The Dallas Morning News reported.

Afterward, Perry told reporters there was nothing in the sermon he could disagree with....

You know -- this John Hagee:

... While Hagee has long prophesized about the end times, he ratcheted up his rhetoric this year with the publication of his book, "Jerusalem Countdown," in which he argues that a confrontation with Iran is a necessary precondition for Armageddon and the Second Coming of Christ.

...He argues that a strike against Iran will cause Arab nations to unite under Russia's leadership, as outlined in chapters 38 and 39 of the Book of Ezekiel, leading to an "inferno [that] will explode across the Middle East, plunging the world toward Armageddon." ... The strike will provoke Russia -- which wants Persian Gulf oil -- to lead an army of Arab nations against Israel. Then God will wipe out all but one-sixth of the Russian-led army...

To fill the power vacuum left by God's decimation of the Russian army, the Antichrist -- the head of the EU -- will rule "a one-world government, a one-world currency and a one-world religion" for three and a half years.... The "demonic world leader" will then be confronted by a false prophet, identified by Hagee as China, at Armageddon, the Mount of Megiddo in Israel. As they prepare for the final battle, Jesus will return on a white horse and cast both villains -- and presumably any nonbelievers -- into a "lake of fire burning with brimstone," thus marking the beginning of his millennial reign....

Perry lives in a state where you go to that guy's church just before an election because it's smart politics. By that standard, hanging out with Beck probably seems kind of tame.

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