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Is Glenn Beck Good for Conservatives? Horowitz vs. Frum

10/04/2011

In this special edition of Frontpage Symposium, we approach the subject of the role of bold talk radio hosts in the Conservative Movement’s quest to defend America. In a current debate, noted conservative intellectuals David Horowitz and David Frum disagree about whether Fox News’ Glenn Beck is an asset or a liability. From Frum’s New Majority blog and Horowitz’s NewsReal blog, the two have confronted each other directly on this issue. Now they have brought their dialogue to Frontpage Magazine. On Monday, September 21, they fought Round One of this debate. Today they join us for Round Two.

FP: David Frum and David Horowitz, welcome back to Frontpage Symposium.

David Frum, what is your response to David Horowitz’s comments in Round One of your debate?

Frum: David, your response in the first round is a real service. It focuses the issues very clearly and tightly in a way that helps everybody understand this discussion better, whatever side they ultimately end up on.

It’s bad luck for you that we are having this discussion in the same week that Glenn Beck a) expressed his enthusiasm for a Hillary Clinton presidency, b) stated that he thought Obama a better president than John McCain would have been, and c) wished that he could travel back in time to vote for Ron Paul. Now do you see what I mean when I call Beck “unscrupulous”? He’s an act, a showman, as indifferent to the future of conservative politics as he is to the facts of Cass Sunstein’s career. I agree he’s a very good showman, a natural TV talent. But he cares nothing, David, about politics in the way you care about it, and you are in for more nasty surprises if you continue to place your hopes in him.

In this, Beck is very different even from Rush Limbaugh and Mark Levin. I’ve crossed swords with these other broadcasters for other reasons. I believe that their rage and extremism repel more supporters than they attract. But at least these broadcasters do know a lot about politics and hold considered and coherent worldviews. Beck, by contrast, is a random walk, capable of reaching any outcome. And I have to believe that after Beck’s performance over the past couple of days, you probably inwardly agree with me.  […]

continue reading at FrontPage Magazine.

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