And, most ominously, he began to traffic regularly in anti-Semitic themes.
This vile turn for Beck reached its logical extreme two weeks ago, when he devoted his entire show to a conspiracy theory about various bankers, including the Rothschilds, to create the Federal Reserve. To make this case, Beck hosted the conspiracy theorist G. Edward Griffin, who has publicly argued that the anti-Semitic tract "The Protocols of the Elders of Zion" "accurately describes much of what is happening in our world today."
Griffin's Web site dabbles in a variety of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories, including his view that "present-day political Zionists are promoting the New World Order."
A month earlier, Beck, on his radio program, had described Reform rabbis as "generally political in nature," adding: "It's almost like Islam, radicalized Islam in a way."
A few months before that, he had attacked the Jewish billionaire George Soros, a Holocaust survivor, as a "puppet master" and read descriptions of him as an "unscrupulous profiteer" who "sucks the blood from people." Beck falsely called Soros "a collaborator" with Nazis who "saw people into the gas chambers."
Fox deserves credit for finally putting an end to this.An end to what? Reread the paragraphs above and look for any meat to Milbank's anti-Semitic libel of Beck. This was an act of preemptive anti-anti-Semitism. As I pointed out back in January, forces were already gathering to snuff Beck's voice out.
The problem with Beck was not that he is anti-Semitic (he's highly pro-Semitic), but because he's an autodidact. He reads books, and then he gets up and rambles about what he's learned as he tries to connect together his new knowledge.
The problem with Beck was that he was aÂ potential loose cannon. And we can't have that.