September 13, 2010
The Beck/Palin Roadshow: Take a Lesson
…So, I’m still filtering through this weekend’s 9/11 anniversary and mid-term visual theatrics (which I welcome you to sample via the Bag’s tweet stream.)
Overall, I continue to appreciate Glenn Beck’s brilliant reframing of the Tea Party* and the extremistic messaging of the far right, building on his huge rally in D.C. on the anniversary of MLK’s “I have a dream” speech. In this shot from Beck/Palin’s rally on 9/11 this weekend in Alaska (the timing, again, just a coincidence, right?), there are a number of impressive moves going on. Most notably:
1. Exploiting the double blackboards (partly playing off his signature prop for the cuteness effect), Beck/Palin use the anniversary of 9/11 to cloak their reactionary message — now couched in a lot of spiritual/evangelical and patriotic prescriptions and cliches — in the guise of a “high ground” academic lesson and a “teachable” moment.
2. The classroom/seminar staging is also a wonderful way to package Palin, given her primary motivation — beyond proselytizing her ideology and her own brand — being the continuous need to either cover up, or cleverly mock (those who attack) her lack of depth.