Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Did Glenn Beck Waste Your Time?
Tonight Glenn Beck did a full one-hour interview with embattled former Congressman Eric Massa, who has made some serious allegations about Rahm Emanual and other leaders of the Democrat party. All this comes as Massa has resigned Congress amidst a firestorm of allegations of misconduct, as well as concerns about a recurrence of cancer.
During his radio show this morning Beck had a discussion with Michelle Malkin, during which Malkin seemed to excoriate Glenn simply for the very idea that he would have Massa on his show, let alone for the full hour.
Beck tried to reason with Malkin, attempting to explain to her that it is better to at least hear what Massa had to say, rather than brush him aside and not ever get the opportunity to hear what may (or may not) be worthwhile information.
Malkin's argument went to the credibility of Massa based partially on his current situation, but she also came across (in my opinion) as highly partisan, essentially saying that since Massa's not "one of us" he can not be trusted and should not be given any benefit of doubt. She also brought up the inconsistency of Massa's story, which certainly needed to be taken into consideration.
Beck seemed to believe that Massa has nothing to lose, and that Massa might be one of the whistle-blowers Beck has been looking for. Beck is also a big believer in redemption, which probably led to his willingness to allow Massa an opportunity to testify. Beck made it perfectly clear that he intended to be very direct in his questioning, and that he had a backup plan in case the whole thing went south.
Unfortunately Massa had nothing of real substance to offer come airtime of Beck's Fox News Channel program. Glenn tried and tried to bring Massa to a point where he could open up and name names, indict anyone of poor character... anything. Massa waffled about, not really saying anything of substance. Sadly it seemed that every time Beck came up on a commercial break Massa acted as if he understood what Beck was asking of him, yet when the show resumed he was back to square one.
Clearly Glenn wanted to interview the man Massa seemed to be based on his now famous rants against Rahm Emanuel, Nancy Pelosi, and Washington leadership in general. Instead Massa seemed to be on a media tour, looking for his last fifteen minutes before he rides off into the sunset. He didn't even really want to discuss the same issues he was so willing to carry on about just a couple of days ago.
One must wonder what happened to Eric Massa over the last 24 hours for him to clam up and appear to be a totally different person than expected. Is everything he said on those now famous recordings all lies? Has Massa been threatened? How can a man who just a couple of days ago was casting wild aspersions about The White House and Congressional leadership suddenly seem to havbe nothing to say? Was there a payoff involved?
All in all, I think Massa looked a bit like a cornered rat; still dangerous and perhaps capable of inflicting damage out of desperation, but not the formidable predator he perhaps once represented. I also think he's scared for his future and may have either held back, or may be guilty of more than we know.
At the end of the program Beck apologized to the viewers, stating that he had wasted their time. I don't believe this is completely true. While it was certainly not the most entertaining hour of television, I think there may be something to be learned from today's interview.
Certainly if nothing else it is extremely odd that a Congressional ethics investigation was initiated and acted upon so quickly... just ask Charlie Rangel or Chris Dodd.
I don't know that we'll ever hear the whole truth, but the shocking contrast between Massa's previous quotes and today's interview speaks volumes, and in my opinion indicates there is more to the story than meets the eye.
There's a lot.. and I mean a lot more discussion about this topic at Memeorandum, and over at Just a Conservative Girl you can read an opinion from JACG, who simply wants everyone to "Let Massa go away."