This is pretty fascinating – Geraldo Rivera takes on the conspiracy theorizing about Building 7 and says, “It is an intriguing topic, I certainly am much more open minded about it than I was, and it is because of the involvement of the 9/11 families and all of these engineers and architects…” The irony about Fox is that as damaging as it is, it is the only news network that will take on conspiracy theories – some of which may be valid. If the UFO issue was ever to be discussed on mainstream news, it would more than likely start on Fox.
Glenn Beck is creating a generation of conspiracy theorists on the right. What happens when a Republican is elected president? Will he keep on theorizing about the “end of America” or would it be the end of his show? Even if he had less to talk about, he’s riling up a bunch of people to see the government as nefarious. Maybe, finally, they’d start seeing the right as just as corrupt as the mainstream left. People aren’t going to suddenly lose their paranoia. Nor should they – as some paranoia is justifiable. As much as people mock conspiracy theories, the people doing the mocking could probably use an extra dose of paranoia.
This is especially true on the left. There’s a post on Daily Kos today (as there is every day) disappointed in Obama’s call for bipartisanship. They say the same old things: Obama’s not a fighter, bipartisanship doesn’t work when the other side wants you to fail, etc. Most don’t take into account that the Obama administration likes the hysteria of the far right – so long as Obama’s agenda is seen as communist, he can be as conservative as he wants. “Compromise” is just a word for doing what he’s been doing all along – only making it more obvious.
And Fox sculpts this narrative, which is why it is – on balance – awful. But it also appeals to people’s lowest common denominator stupidity. And as much as I’d like the UFO issue to be intellectualized, it takes a certain leap from rationality to go down that path. And Fox seems to be paving that path. It’s a small step from calling George Soros an apocalyptic puppet-master to calling him an Ickean reptile. Not that I want Glenn Beck to go the full Icke, but it is only on the right that conspiracies are allowed to enter the mainstream.
Of course, it’s mixed together with blatantly false lies, so the real conspiracies are instantly discredited, but in a weird way, maybe this is how the fringe becomes legitimized. The fringe of the Republican party is fucking scary, but look at this: the same network that carries water for Bush is actually reporting on Building 7. MSNBC and other networks are too “reasonable” to ever bring this up. So there is some small percentage of value in having people more open to lunatic ideas.