meatballs from the furniture store

I’m always wary of Salon–politically, I’m generally in synch with them, but I find nearly eighty percent of their content infuriating (and, as regards the other twenty percent, I always make the mistake of looking at the comments, which are invariably nauseating).  It’s like a bad relationship, really:  I just keep going back, and I keep getting hurt.

Happily, the always-wonderful Kyrie O’Connor went and spotted The Poetry of Glen Beck (arranged by Hart Seely and Tom Peyer) for us, and it really makes up for months of heartbreak.  Beck is a total nutcase, and he represents pretty much the worst America has to offer, but laid out on the page, his words create an almost-lovely portrait of American right-wing paranoia, and it’s immensely more palatable than actually listening to him.

It (the Poetry, not the lunacy) reminds of me Anna Deavere Smith’sTwilight: Los Angeles project, in which she interviewed a couple dozen Angelenos about the 1992 LA Riots and their aftermath.  Word for word, she built their responses into poetic monologues, and then took them on tour as a one-woman show, as well as making a film version.  Like “The Poetry of Glen Beck”, Twilight turns a collection of unstructured human thoughts and words into a poetically coherent, readable and enjoyable portrait of a nation struggling with its own cultural dysfunction.

I like Beck better this way.  He’s a much better accidental poet than he is a pundit.  Salon promises more tomorrow, I’ll let you know if it’s as good as the first batch.

 

(* Yes, she’s also President Bartlet’s National Security Advisor.)

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