Saturday, October 16, 2010

Glenn Beck, Nazi re-enactment apologist

You know that whole thing about Ohio Republican House candidate Rich Iott dressing up as a Nazi for some silly (and on some level rather nefarious) WWII re-enactment? (The Atlantic's Joshua Green weighed in on it here and here, our own Mustang Bobby here.)

Well, it seems that Glenn Beck, who's more than happy to equate progressivism with fascism, is a-okay with it:

On his radio show [earlier this week], Glenn Beck addressed the recent controversy around House Republican candidate Rich Iott, who reportedly dresses up in Nazi clothing for World War II re-enactments...

Beck was incredulous that this could be a campaign issue, arguing that Iott's dressing up as a Nazi was comparable to dressing up like Darth Vader or playing cowboys and Indians. Really?


Beck's defense is even more nonsensical when you consider his history of seeing Nazis and socialists everywhere on the left. He sees these fictional connections -- can you imagine how much hay Beck would make of a progressive who chose to play dress up in this fashion? For goodness sake he spun an entire story out of an ornament that had Mao on it that the White House was unaware of.

Darth Vader is fictional, as is much of the romanticism around "cowboys and Indians." The Nazis were very real, like the unit that Iott and his group apparently play as. Nobody is arguing about Iott's right to engage in this activity, but as a candidate for public office the decision to portray one of the worst forces the world has ever faced - for recreation - is going to arouse scrutiny no matter how Beck tries to dismiss it.

It's hardly surprising that Beck is a hypocrite on this, or that he's essentially an apologist for dressing up as a Nazi and getting the history totally wrong.

After all, for all that he talks up freedom -- "freedom" for him and those like him -- it seems he'd be far more comfortable with Nazism than with liberal democracy, given his opposition to progressivism and his view that America would be better off if only the clock could be rolled back to some utopian past of authoritarian bliss.

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  • I heard the whole segment that you are refering to. While it is easy to demonize anyone dressing up as a Nazi, as Iott has done, this is in reality a common war reanactment. There are many people that play war reinactments for various wars on both sides - there are even reinactments of Star Wars, in which Glenn Beck was refering to. Iott also plays reinactments for other countries as well, but mysteriously this information is missing from your preferred news sources. Nice try. By the massive number of comments on your blog posts, I sincerely hope you have a day job.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:29 AM  

  • Actually, we get $5,000 per comment, so thank you for contributing. It's a decent way to make a living.

    (And if you think this blog isn't worth your while, we'd be happy if you never returned.)

    This isn't about re-enactments, this is about a group that sanitizes the SS unit that it re-enacts. It gets the history wrong, intentionally or not, and the result is that Iott's group makes a brutal SS unit come across as just another group of soldiers. Not exactly the same as Star Wars. And it hardly matters if Iott does re-enactments for other countries. He does (or did) them for the SS, without much regard for what the SS actually did. I'm not saying he's a Nazi apologist, but he's evidently an ignorant fool. And, really, you don't think Beck would speak up if, say, a Democrat were found to have dressed up as a Bolshevik? But somehow it's okay for a Republican to dress up as a Nazi? Hmmm...

    By Blogger Michael J.W. Stickings, at 8:23 PM  

  • I believe the man said something about the Waffen SS "fighting for freedom" which if true says more about Lott than is required to make a judgment. This is not about war re-enactments, questionable though some of them might be. It's about whitewashing evil.

    "you don't think Beck would speak up if, say, a Democrat were found to have dressed up as a Bolshevik?"

    Our Foxy friends said nothing when George dressed up in African robes yet we're still seeing that picture of Obama.

    I'm sick of these coy and dishonest arguments. This anonymous jerk is more likely to be on some PAC's payroll than to have any interest in his country and I can only imagine what his "preferred news sources" might be.

    By Blogger Capt. Fogg, at 11:48 AM  

  • During the Battle of the Bulge in 1944, it was Waffen SS troops who murdered something like 350 GIs after they had surrendered. One wonders what a veteran of that battle would have to say to American politicians who find it "fun" to dress up as SS soldiers.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:51 AM  

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