Bill Moyers Journal: Rage On The Radio

Here's one for the memory banks from Bill Moyers Journal, September 2008, talking about the rise of hate talk on right wing radio, and Glenn Beck sayi
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Here's one for the memory banks from Bill Moyers Journal, September 2008, talking about the rise of hate talk on right wing radio, and Glenn Beck saying he'd like to kill Michael Moore along with some other right wing screechers doing their best to incite violence in the name of keeping their ratings up.

RICK KARR: Michael Savage isn't the only right-wing talk-radio host who launches blistering, even violent, verbal attacks on people and groups he doesn't like. Glenn Beck, for instance, fantasized about murdering a liberal filmmaker.

GLENN BECK: "I'm thinking about killing Michael Moore and I'm wondering if I could kill him myself, or if I would need to hire somebody to do it. No, I think I could. I think he could be looking me in the eye, you know, and I could just be choking the life out of him. Is this wrong?"

RICK KARR: Michael Reagan, son of the former president, suggested that people who claim that "nine-eleven was an inside job," a U.S. government conspiracy, deserve to die.

MICHAEL REAGAN: "Take them out and shoot them. They are traitors to this country, and shoot them. But anybody who would do that doesn't deserve to live. You shoot them. You call them traitors, that's what they are, and you shoot them dead. I'll pay for the bullet."

RICK KARR: Neal Boortz went after victims of Hurricane Katrina.

NEAL BOORTZ:"That wasn't the cries of the downtrodden. That's the cries of the useless, the worthless. New Orleans was a welfare city, a city of parasites, a city of people who could not, and had no desire to fend for themselves. You have a hurricane descending on them and they sit on their fat asses and wait for somebody else to come rescue them."

RICK KARR: Muslims are some of Boortz's favorite targets.

NEAL BOORTZ:"It's Ramadan and Muslims in your workplace might be offended if they see you eating at your desk. Why? I guess it's because Muslims don't eat during the day during Ramadan. They fast during the day and eat at night. Sorta like cockroaches."

RICK KARR: Reverend Chris Buice says he's heard that kind of language before.

REVEREND CHRIS BUICE: If you look at the history of like situations like in Rwanda in 1994, the talk radio was a big part of leading to the conditions that created a genocide. The Hutu radio disc jockeys would call the Tutsi cockroaches. There's the sense that these aren't human beings. You know, they're not human beings with children or grandchildren. These are cockroaches. And when you hear in talk radio that liberals are evil, that they are traitors, that they are godless, that they are on the side of the terrorist. That's hate language. You don't negotiate with evil people. You don't live in community with people you consider to be traitors.

RICK KARR: Millions of Americans tune in to right-wing talk radio every day. Rory O'Connor is a media critic and a liberal himself who's written a book on shock-talkers. He says not all of these broadcasters use violent language. But they do all share a predilection for outrage and, he says, they're all practically addicted to constantly cranking up that outrage.

RORY O'CONNOR: Here's the real problem. When you shock somebody, if you come back the next time and you apply the same stimulus, it's not shocking any longer. It's already happened. So you have to ratchet it up a little bit. So how do you cut through? How do you really shock? I think that in order to continue to outrage, you have to constantly be jacking up the pressure. And ultimately, there's gonna be some deranged person out there in that audience who's gonna say, "You know what? That's a good idea. Let me act on that."

GLENN BECK:"The fusion of entertainment and enlightenment."

RICK KARR: Entertainers — that's what a lot of the shock-talkers call themselves. O'Connor says, maybe. But their words can motivate their listeners to act.

RORY O'CONNOR: Now first and foremost, we have to recognize that many of them are employed across multiple platforms. So they may say something on their radio show, but they may repeat it on their television show. They may then repeat it in their newspaper column. They may repackage the ideas into their best-selling books.

Keith Olbermann said he was looking for everything anyone can find on Glenn Beck. Maybe this one makes the list on his show this week.

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