On his Fox News program yesterday Glenn Beck was asking his panel for one book that is a must read. The Federalist Papers were suggested. Beck said, “The one that makes your head hurt. We need really smart people who can take The Federalist Papers and rewrite them for the common man,” so Teabaggers are so stupid because reading is hard.
Here is the video courtesy of Media Matters:
Beck said, “Of course the one who makes your head hurt. The one that makes your head hurt. You know what I think the problem is, honestly, I think guys like you. I think we need really smart people that can take The Federalist Papers, and rewrite them for the common man, change the language. I read George Washington’s farewell address, which is brilliant, but I mean I don’t know how anybody listened to these guys back then because it’s really difficult. You know what I mean? If we rewrite these things in common language, people can access them again a lot easier.”
This makes my head hurt on so many levels. Beck does not understand that the way the Federalist Papers were written is the way people spoke and wrote back then. These writings would not have been difficult to understand in their time period.
The essays that make up The Federalist Papers were written for the common man of the day. They appeared in three New York newspapers, Independent Journal, the New-York Packet, and the Daily Advertiser. They were not written for the readers of today, but they were in fact written for the “common man.”
What Glenn Beck is calling for is not a rewriting, but a reinterpretation of The Federalist Papers. He wants to them to Beckenized. Beckenization is a process that involves distorting history and cherry picking quotes and facts to match a right wing ideology. Changing the language of The Federalist Papers, would change the meaning of many of the essays.
If Beck wants a modern translation of The Federalist Papers, there are plenty of them out there. A translation is different than a rewrite. What Glenn Beck really wants to do is rewrite the essays so that they can be given a far right wing slant. Glenn did provide with an answer to why teabaggers are stupid. Much like Beck, they have no idea what they are reading.