Snark: to annoy or irritate

"Snark" has been in English language dictionaries since at least 1906, and Lewis Carroll used the word to describe a mythological animal in his poem, The Hunting of the Snark (1874). Most recently, the word has come to characterize snappish, sarcastic, or mean-spirited comments or actions directed at those who annoy or irritate us.

At first, this blog was just going be a place to gripe, but because it's more satisfying to take action than it is to merely complain, now most of the posts/reposts suggest ways to get involved in solving problems.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

The Fat-Head's Newest Target

The latest target of Glenn Beck's paranoid conspiracy fantasies has been receiving death threats. Enough is enough. Ask advertisers to Drop Fox now.
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A message from People for the American Way:
Drop FoxGlenn Beck's latest conspiracy theory target is a 78-year-old professor who, 45 years ago, published an article with her husband which posited that people overwhelming the welfare rolls could put enough stress on the system that it would force the need for certain reforms to help the poor.

The result? City University of New York professor and longtime advocate for the poor and working class, Frances Fox Piven has been receiving repeated death threats on online message boards and has personally received angry and violent emails.1

Beck has chosen to escalate these attacks even after the sad instance of political violence we recently experienced -- and are still recovering from -- in Arizona. Amidst calls to bring an end to incendiary, violence-causing rhetoric, Beck is doubling down, and if his network and advertisers simply sit back and watch, they must be held accountable for any violence this rhetoric may reap.

This is over the line, even for Beck. Tell advertisers to Drop Fox right now. 
Advertisers' sponsorship of the network that gives Beck his platform is unacceptable. Let these companies know that Americans are watching them and are ready to hold them accountable.

Beck says that the Frances Fox Piven and her now-deceased husband's goal was to "intentionally collapse our economic system," and he traces every paranoid fantasy of liberal plots to destroy America and capitalism (the mythical "voter fraud" by ACORN, health care and financial reform, the Obama presidency itself) directly to what he calls the "Cloward-Piven Strategy" (Cloward being Piven's late husband).

In light of the escalation of violent, rage-filled comments directed at Piven by presumed Beck fans, groups like the Center for Constitutional Rights have been calling on Fox News to make Beck cease his personal attacks. But Fox refuses. According to the New York Times:
Joel Cheatwood, a senior vice president, said Friday that Mr. Beck would not be ordered to stop talking about Ms. Piven on television. He said Mr. Beck had quoted her accurately and had never threatened her.

"'The Glenn Beck Program,' probably above and beyond any on television, has denounced violence repeatedly," Mr. Cheatwood said.
Mr. Cheatwood, that is simply not true. Here's what we know:

Byron Williams, the would-be assassin of staff of the ACLU and the Tides Foundation in San Francisco, who was stopped by police in a shootout in July 2010, cited Glenn Beck as his inspiration, specifically singling out Beck programs from June of that year in which Williams said Beck had "been breaking open some of the most hideous corruption." It was on his Fox News show of June 10 that year that Glenn Beck said, "You're gonna have to shoot them in the head," in reference to Democrats such as then U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi who he described as a Marxist "revolutionary" and "communist."

Now this cycle is starting to repeat itself right before our very eyes! 
Enough is enough. It's very important that after you take action, you share this petition with others -- recommending it to your friends on Facebook is one great way.

Thanks for standing up to right-wing bullies and their dangerous attacks.
-- Ben Betz, Online Communications Manager


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