While discussing the recent dust up over Rep. Andre Carson's remarks that "Some of them in Congress right now with this tea party movement would love to see you and me -- hanging on a tree" and Rep. Allen West's threat to quit the Congressional Black Caucus if they did not condemn Rep. Carson's remarks, CNN's Wolf Blitzer asks Mary Matalin to weigh in. What we heard next was some full blown wingnut praise of Glenn Beck and his revisionist history of the black Founding Fathers.
MATALIN: Well, it's not representative of great American black leaders. You know, Glenn Beck did an astounding, remarkable series on the civil rights struggle in this country, including black Founding Fathers. And that Congressman, and Maxine Waters who said all the "tea party" can go straight to hell, they're not in that great tradition. And they should be condemned. And a huge attraction, a significant attraction, and this is quantified in the polls, to Barack Obama, among white people was his promise to be post-racial. This is retro-racial and not only should the CBC condemn it, the President should condemn it.
Matalin's fellow CNN contributor, Donna Brazile was not amused to say the least. A bit later in the segment Matalin also said this about Beck after accusing Donna Brazile of never having watched any of his clap-trap on Fox, not that I'd blame her if she hasn't. Watching too much of that stuff is enough to rot someone's brain.
MATALIN: Did you see any of his programs? Did you watch any of his remarkable documentaries on the founding and the black Founding Fathers and the scholars that he had on and the scholarship that he did and the accolades that he received in the black community? This... you're making your point that you were disregarding earlier, which is we're just judging people and saying things about people, without even knowing who they are or what they've said.
This is not a show about Glenn Beck, but he's the furthest thing from a racist. And I think why we have to have this conversation is what happens with Democrats and liberals is you don't, you oppose their policies, then they brand you a racist.
Coming from someone who worked for Dick Cheney, this sort of flame throwing is not that surprising from Matalin. Blitzer did at least ask her about Beck calling President Obama a "racist" with a "deep-seated hatred of white people," but neither Brazile or Blitzer called out Matalin properly for her praise of Beck's revisionist history of the civil rights movement and the Founding Fathers on his television show before Fox finally canceled him.
AlterNet has more on the supposed "remarkable series" Matalin mentioned here -- Glenn Beck’s Shocking Drive-By on African American History:
In a moment when the absurd met the bizarre, Beck was recently awarded an honorary doctorate by the most esteemed Liberty University—a seeming confirmation of his position as America’s most dilettante and grossly amateurish historian. While serious students of history after much hard work, reading and scholarship offer carefully formulated narratives of our past and present, Beck proceeds with unadulterated, untempered confidence as a scattershot, partisan, hack. In short: History says whatever Glenn Beck deems it does–a formulation which is ultimately dependent upon how the political winds blow on any given day.
However, Beck’s recent show, creatively titled “The Black Founding Fathers,” was even by his ratings driven modus operandi too much to stomach. It was an assault on taste and reason. There, Glenn Beck did a drive-by on the history of Black Americans, as well as on Progressive and forward thinking Americans everywhere. On that show, Beck extended a hand of friendship to tell a more “inclusive” story of this country’s founding, while simultaneously spitting on the memories of those very same African American visionaries who risked death so that America would be a full democracy in keeping with its radical potential.
The Black Founding Fathers
As is typical for him, on The Black Founding Fathers show Beck offered a very duplicitous narrative. There he outlined a “hidden” history of black American triumph and success in the face of discrimination and bigotry at the time of the United States’ founding. Given that Beck has displayed a not too veiled hostility to black Americans in the past, his efforts to highlight this often forgotten part of our nation’s history was surprising.
What he did next was shocking in its boldness: Beck then proceeded to use the history of African Americans as a step-stool upon which to advocate for the elimination of Ethnic Studies programs and to present the Framers and the Constitution as essentially anti-racist in intent and form. It was both fascinating and oddly perverse to watch Beck and his guests bastardize the history of Black Americans in the service of a white washed U.S. history. Sadly, the pioneering and politically radical history which Beck attempted to mine for his show is only useful to him to the degree that it uplifts a narrative of American exceptionalism and White American triumphalism. Read on...
And here's more on Beck's racism from Media Matters:
And here's more from our own David Neiwert:
If Glenn Beck is the "furthest thing from a racist" Matalin is aware of, she's keeping some pretty bad company.
UPDATE: Media Matters has more on this segment which might explain Matalin's praise of Glenn Beck here -- Why Is Mary Matalin Randomly Bringing Up Her Business Partner Glenn Beck On CNN?:
According to her CNN bio, Matalin is the editor-in-chief of Threshold Editions, an imprint of publisher Simon & Schuster. Threshold has published most, if not all, of Beck's recent books. In fact, it's publishing Beck's The Snow Angel next month.
That fact didn't come up as Matalin randomly injected Beck into the conversation on CNN.
Is Matalin concerned about the flagging profile of one of her most productive authors now that his Fox News show has ended and his rally in Israel was met with little fanfare?
An on-screen graphic during the segment did describe Matalin as the editor-in-chief of Simon & Schuster's "conservative imprint," but there was no mention of its relationship with Beck.
More analysis on the segment there and Matalin's conflict of interest as well.