Watching Glenn Beck's documentary "Revolutionary Holocaust" really brought home just how shrewd and crass a propagandist Beck is.
The project, billed as an "exposé" of the "unseen history of Marxism, progressivism, and communism," was little more than an hour-long, overly dramatized denunciation of the already well-known, thoroughly examined, and exhaustively studied atrocities committed by the leading communist statesmen of the 20th century. It broke absolutely no new ground, except perhaps in its ridiculous assertion that "history has erased" the genocidal policies of Josef Stalin.
But that was never the point. Beck never intended to "expose" anything or teach anything new. The purpose of Beck's documentary was to link modern progressivism to the abhorrent violence the world saw under communism in the 20th century. Beck's intention is to undercut the current administration and very idea of progressivism -- or at least what he claims is progressivism -- by associating them with the strong emotional rejection people have to the Holocaust and Soviet pogroms, making them radioactive, something to be feared and abhorred. And he's doing it all under the guise of "education."
Take a look at how Beck closed out "Revolutionary Holocaust":
BECK: With 100 million killed, communism exists in a very exclusive club alongside with the planet's worst communicable diseases like smallpox and the bubonic plague. But it's not just communism. It is the truth of any government with too much power. Some government is necessary, too much is suicidal. Every all-powerful government has elements of what Marx called the "revolutionary holocaust," the relentless pursuit of nirvana and the price it's worth paying to get there in human life. It is only [in] understanding history that we can stop this from happening again, and again, and again.
Look at Beck's warning against governments "with too much power" turning to violence and hold it up against the things he's been saying in the past month about the progressive push for health care reform:
BECK: The way you boil this down -- I'm fascinated if I can connect with you here a little bit on. I haven't seen anything in American history like what is being played out right now unless I go back to the early 20th century with Woodrow Wilson and the early progressive movement with Teddy Roosevelt, prohibition, the Fed, income tax and the power grab that happened around 1915. [Glenn Beck, 1/18/10]
BECK: The progressives like FDR, Sunstein, Harkin desperately want you to be dependent on them and not dependent on yourself and God. Well, that's just a secondary thought. If God doesn't exist, if God is somehow another cut-out-of-the-rights process, you get all of your rights from government.
That is in essence what our founders fought against, government bestowing rights. It gives them power. Because what the government giveth, the government can taketh away. And if you disobey, guess who loses their rights? If you eat too many chips, you fatty fat fatso, guess who loses their right to health care? [Glenn Beck, 1/7/10]
Now combine all that with Beck's months-long campaign to link progressives to violence, and the picture becomes clear.
It's insidious in its nature and vile in its character -- he's using the slaughter of tens of millions as a tool to discredit those he disagrees with, and he's spewing this bile while wearing the good-natured face of an educator.