Video: Beck, Michelle Malkin go toe to toe over Massa interview

posted at 12:10 pm on March 9, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

This starts off as an intellectual discourse on the use of apostates in political arguments, but descends to a pity party on Glenn Beck’s part when he goes after Michelle Malkin for criticizing his decision to give an hour to Eric Massa. It starts downhill at the moment that Beck says, “I don’t understand you people,” which takes the Boss Emeritus aback. The Right Scoop has the video:

Frankly, I don’t even know what set Beck off in the first place. Having Massa on the show for a segment might make some sense, but the decision to devote an hour to Massa is certainly open for criticism. Beck needs to handle criticism over an editorial decision like that among friends better than this. I worked for Michelle for two years and had open disagreements on policy, but it never took this kind of tone, nor did I ever think of it as backstabbing, as Beck seems to imply. In fact, both of us thought it was part of the process and made for better blogging and radio, which is why it had always been stressed that I could write what I want and argue what I believe here at Hot Air.

On the plus side, he makes up with Michelle towards the end of the interview, and he apparently apologized later. It’s not as unpleasant as the reaction on Twitter indicated, but it’s not Beck’s finest moment, either.

Beck says, “I’m not making this about him,” but at the same time he’s claiming that Massa “confirms” what the White House is doing. It only confirms it if Massa has any credibility. Claiming that Democrats are railroading him out of office when he’s resigning on his own makes his credibility very suspect. One can believe that the Obama administration is playing hardball with or without Massa’s testimony on this point, but relying on Massa undermines the argument if it turns out that Massa may be exaggerating or prevaricating for his own purposes — and as Michelle has pointed out, there’s certainly some evidence to bolster that interpretation.

None of us need to rely on Massa’s credibility for our arguments. We can note his statements and consider the context and Massa’s motivations, which is all Michelle asks of Beck in reconsidering his choice to give Massa a big megaphone tonight. It’s not bad advice, and perhaps Beck should give it more consideration, coming from a friend.


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I love it. “On the same side.” Both Malkin and Beck have trashed anyone on the right who has disagreed with them in the slightest without any allegiance to anything other than their own careers. This interview is the logical conclusion to the purges and the witch hunts: The last 2 people left in the tree house turn on each other.

It’s amazing to me how many people claim they’re on the same side but you better not deviate one degree or they’ll rip your throat out. There’s just no place for any other tactic… but theirs…”

Remember that the next time you rail against Teddy Roosevelt or John McCain or the GOP or whatever other person was on the same side to make a name for yourselves you crybabies. You made your careers on it, live by it.

Boxy_Brown on March 9, 2010 at 11:57 PM

Beck is self promoter and VERY flaky.
Let’s not hang our hat on his hook.

RobCon on March 9, 2010 at 11:59 PM

Why do we have to pick a winner and loser between Beck and Malkin on this? They had a difference of opinion. If Michelle thought it was a waste of time, and perhaps gave Massa a chance to help his career, she’s entitled to that opinion.

If Beck wants to seek out knowledge whereever he finds it, and share that with his audience, he’s entitled to do that, too.

Life is not about scoring points.

hawksruleva on March 9, 2010 at 10:57 PM

This pretty much sums up my take. I watched the Massa interview. Beck did not get any juicy news or smoking guns out of it. But he didn’t have a disaster either. While it was not the most compelling hour of television it was interesting to watch Beck try to pry something out of him.

In the end this entire debate was a tempest in a teapot. Let Michelle run her site and worry about what she says on television and Beck can look out for himself on his show. We can all work toward a happier day when the lefties are in a panicked disarray. Freedom is awesome isn’t it?

Hawthorne on March 10, 2010 at 1:07 AM

meh. I just watched the interview, yes it was a waste of time. So what? I’m sure a lot of us have passed time in worse ways. At least Glenn was honest about it and acknowledged it was a waste of time. He could have put some spin on it and made it sound so interesting. If Glenn hadn’t acknowledge this fact, these discussions wouldn’t be taking place.

long_cat on March 10, 2010 at 2:07 AM

Some of this might be because he is taking heat from people about “claiming Geert Wilders is a fascist.” Alas, in the sense that Beck uses the term he may be literally correct. We do know about Mr. Wilders’ activities in defense against the Qur’an, Islam, and Islamists. This is good.

Very little seems to have been published over here whether or not he is advocating small government. And certainly Europe is well past its center of gravity leaning over the pit of totalitarianism with too little to hold them from falling. Geert is not a Communist. But, if you lean towards extremely large government, that pretty much leads to either fascism or an unstable point between fascism and communism. So Beck may feel perfectly justified to use the F word of the second kind when speaking of right wing politicians in Europe in general.

This, of course, leads to heavy negative feedback in his email and twitter accounts. And that tends to make one testy. Michelle Malkin just happened to “be there at the wrong time.”

{^_^}

herself on March 10, 2010 at 3:14 AM

Michelle warned a friend, (Beck) that he was going to trip, if he goes near a stumbling block like Massa.

Beck tripped, but he had to find out for himself even
though he was warned anyway.

Beck apologizes to Michelle, then to the planet.

Michelle and Beck are still friends…

End of story….IMO….

Next…

dec5 on March 10, 2010 at 3:46 AM

After watching this clip, I am now convinced of what Mark Levin has suggested for some time: that Glenn Beck’s current political crusade is far less motivated by principle and honest beliefs than it is by his own ego and desire for attention.

Yes, some of what he does is a valuable public service…for now. But I don’t trust this guy, and I don’t think anyone else should, either. I think what we are seeing in this clip is the first signs of his eventual pivot.

Cylor on March 10, 2010 at 7:04 AM

It is not about Beck’s belief he should do the interview, it is about how he reacted to Michelle’s honest opinion that he shouldn’t do it. He was extremely rude and defensive, when he should have been able to reasonably defend his decision, rather than sink into the “you people” smear. That is what irritated me. It is reasonable that “you people” could be leveled at most of the Tea Party movement.

This was Glenn’s OJ Simpson, “Does the glove fit?” moment–don’t do an interview unless you know you have the facts. And don’t demonize your allies when they are lending you a hand was you are hanging from a cliff.

darkmetal on March 10, 2010 at 7:29 AM

It is not about Beck’s belief he should do the interview, it is about how he reacted to Michelle’s honest opinion that he shouldn’t do it. He was extremely rude and defensive, when he should have been able to reasonably defend his decision, rather than sink into the “you people” smear. That is what irritated me. It is reasonable that “you people” could be leveled at most of the Tea Party movement.

darkmetal on March 10, 2010 at 7:29 AM

Precisely, that is what convinced me that this is really about his own ego more than anything.

Cylor on March 10, 2010 at 8:35 AM

After watching this clip, I am now convinced of what Mark Levin has suggested for some time: that Glenn Beck’s current political crusade is far less motivated by principle and honest beliefs than it is by his own ego and desire for attention.

Yes, some of what he does is a valuable public service…for now. But I don’t trust this guy, and I don’t think anyone else should, either. I think what we are seeing in this clip is the first signs of his eventual pivot.

Cylor on March 10, 2010 at 7:04 AM

Beck has offered many valuable contributions. But stunts like this can discredit a growing national movement to rein in the many excesses of modern government.

His ethnic cleansing speech at CPAC was strike one for many of us who have worked hard within the party to bring conservative candidates to office yet realize that support for the GOP, flawed that it is, is far more preferable to Democratic control. How can he say that they are the same, and watch what the Democrats are doing every day? Which party is the reason cap and trade and ObamaCare are not law already?

Today was strike two. His ego allowed him to reject common sense and tarnish himself in a lame made for tv stunt. Hopefully others will see the wisdom of not leaning too much upon him as the face of the movement to take our government back long before he reaches strike three.

He can be a cog in the machine, even a large one, but we are in trouble if it looks like Beck is pulling the levers, IMO.

Caustic Conservative on March 10, 2010 at 9:04 AM

Now Mr. Beck is giving into the emotion of sympathy so that the Ex-Congressperson can have another means to whine for his perks.

Mr. Beck must realize that he is being used by a pervert and his feeling sorry for this pervert enough to allow him another avenue to whine, and his venue is not the place to have these people not US people.

MSGTAS on March 10, 2010 at 9:50 AM

Unfortunately,
Both sound like they lost some face in this exchange.
Michelle speaking as though she should be the last
word on how much air-time Beck should allow the asshat.
And Beck, the libertarian for broadbrushing MM the conservative with the “you people” backhand.

As it turns out, Glen apparently now agrees that Massa was
for the most part, was a waste of time, but fails to be fair handed with him at the end — I suspect that Beck began to feel the sting that Michelle’s warning had a point.

As for Ed and Michelle’s concern that Massa’s cred or lack thereof is important, it is what it is – and it doesn’t matter much to the insider revelations he brings. The portrayl of the foul-mouthed confrontations with Rahm Emmanuel have an undeniable ring of truth! And the image of the lil’ballerina swingin his stick, and pokin lawmakers whilst bare-assed in the congressional showers, will remain the icon for Obamma’s Chicago bully tactics.

“Let’s Roll”

On Watch on March 10, 2010 at 10:07 AM

Michelle is splitting hairs. Nothing wrong in trying to get more facts or context from even unreliable/ hostile sources.

virgo on March 10, 2010 at 11:32 AM

Becks right!

jsunrise on March 10, 2010 at 12:23 PM

I don’t agree with everything Michelle says but I don’t understand how Beck still has people watching him…I was duped, I was a big fan, now I can’t stand the sight and sound of him.
I don’t understand someone, who has done so much good, can turn around and give his fans the finger every day and then go into pity party mode when he proves himself to be a fool.
His ratings should be way down by now…no wonder he has teamed up with The Leprechaun. Desperation will do that to you.

Christine on March 10, 2010 at 5:19 PM

“You People” ? Beck needs to go back to drinking .

borntoraisehogs on March 10, 2010 at 10:23 PM

This exchange demonstrates and identifies two of the traits of MM that I love to bath in…
Her ability to see the bigger picture and her magnanimity …gotta love that lady…

jerrytbg on March 10, 2010 at 11:13 PM

And you’re both being insulting to Beck, assuming he was planning on “glorifying” Massa.

KittyLowrey on March 9, 2010 at 1:49 PM

I gave my opinion. Michelle Malkin warned Beck about Massa’s credibility issues, Beck became slightly indignant, and, as it turned out Michelle Malkin was 100% correct.

The Massa interview was an uncomfortable dud and Beck graciously admitted to Michelle Malkin that she was correct and he was wrong. Beck was not attempting to glorify Massa. He was giving a less than honest appearing “whistle-blower” a platform and it backfired on him, as Michelle Malkin warned it might. Beck did the right thing by admitting to her that she was right and he was wrong. I believe that Glenn Beck is a good guy but I have great respect for Michelle Malkin, which she has earned, in the trenches.

sinsing on March 11, 2010 at 8:10 AM

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