On The View Glenn Beck Admits that He Doesn’t Check Facts

Glenn Beck was on The View today, where after being called out on a story he used on his radio show involving meeting Whoopi Goldberg and Barbara Walters on a train, he admitted that he doesn’t check facts. Beck said that he is not a journalist. He is a commentator on life.

Here is the video courtesy of Media Matters:

Beck got called out on his lie, and Barbara Walters said, “You are an investigative reporter.” Beck said, “No, I am not.” She said, “You are a reporter.” Beck said, “No, I am not.” She asked, “So, you check no facts at all?” Beck said, “No, I am a commentator. I commentate on life.” Barbara Walters then asked Beck numerous times if he checks his facts, and he wouldn’t answer her question.

Glenn Beck learned a valuable lesson today. He should never go on The View if Barbara Walters, who in a previous professional life was a serious journalist, is on the show. You can tell that her mind was blown by the idea that Beck has millions of viewers and listeners, but checks no facts. This is how television news has changed. Twenty years ago, Beck would not have gotten a job in television news without basic journalism skills.

It is not that hard to have both strong opinions and check facts. However, it is difficult to find a media figure on the right who actually uses facts instead of bluster and personality. People like George Will, and the late William F. Buckley don’t exist in any numbers in conservative media.

Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh have replaced serious conservative conversation. On the left, there are still people like Bill Moyers willing to intelligently discuss issues, but there is no equivalent on the right except for the above mentioned Will.

Since Glenn Beck doesn’t bother to fact check, this is why millions of people should not rely on him as a valid source of information. Beck has said in a number of interviews that he views himself as an entertainer, but too many people take his show for fact. I wish that I could say that was a problem limited to just a few people, but in cable news today, confrontation has replaced information, because arguments sell more ad time.

Update::

Beck blames illness, but says The View interview was ridiculous:

32 Replies to “On The View Glenn Beck Admits that He Doesn’t Check Facts”

  1. Ok – he actually does answer her question and specifically says “Of course I do” after being asked if he checks facts. I think you need to go back and watch it again.

  2. I watched this 7 times. I believe he says, “No, I don’t,”, but I will give it another listen, just to be sure, because unlike Beck, I don’t want to make stuff up.

  3. I went back and watched the clip again, and he clearly said no. If he did say, yes, why would he use the excuse of being a commentator, and dodge the question the repeated times that Walters asked it?

  4. I can see him plugging his nose while he calls in. He knows that he lied, and is just trying to cover his ass with this early morning email.

    Listeners of Glenn Beck you give this guy a free pass with his lies? You continue to listen to him misinform you over and over. How is this good for the country?

  5. Anonymous @Wed, 05/20/2009 – 16:58: In The View segment shown here, Beck says absolutely nothing remotely like “Of course I do”–those words, and anything like them, never come out of his mouth. Are you hearing things you’d like to hear? Maybe this is the main problem many people who admire people like Beck have–they literally hear words people aren’t saying. Depending on whether they agree or disagree with the person speaking, they hear either positive or negative things. Though the term “aphasia” comes to mind, that doesn’t accurately describe it, but you get the idea (or maybe not).

  6. I am not a Glenn Beck fan, but I clearly hear his saying “of course I do:. Are you guys watching another clip???

  7. I am not a Glenn Beck fan, but I clearly hear his saying “of course I do:. Are you guys watching another clip???

  8. What the hell are you all on about? He clearly says “Of course I do…” If you want to try to pin such a charge on him, you could do your readers the good courtesy of picking a clip where he doesn’t say the opposite of that which you claim he said.

  9. He says he checked the facts, who cares… have you watched his show??? So full of %$@# his eyes are turning brown!

  10. I listened 3 times It is very clear audio. He responds “Of course I do..”

    Hope this healthcare bill includes a cure for jungle fever.

  11. Around the 4 minute mark:

    Walters – You are an investigative reporter.
    Beck – No, I’m not.
    Walters – You are a reporter.
    Beck – No, I am not.
    Walters – So you check no facts?
    Beck – I do. I am a commentator. I am a commentator. I commentate on life.
    Walters – Do you ever check your facts?
    Goldberg – But you were wrong here…

    It gets very garbled when everyone talks over each other. Beck does let the whole facts issue drop after the initial statement that he checks his facts and actively avoids answering it when Barbara presses from around 5:30 on. What’s more of issue is the fact that he has a totally different recollection of an event with which he was involved than two other direct witnesses, both of which deny the event occurred as he says it did. He then admits it was he who came over as opposed to being beckoned by Walters in a shrewish voice, but insists he has witnesses of his own. He then launches into something the Amtrak people told him that is more or less irrelevant.

  12. @, there is no way in hell that he said “of course i do”. nothing even remotely close to that line came out of his mouth after the question. as a matter of fact, he want even able to assemble four words together soon enough after either instance of the question to constitute an answer to said question…let along “of course i do”.

  13. He said in the video above where he is talking on the phone with Fox: “24 hours Swine Flu.” Any one ever hear of the 24 hour swine flu? I’m sure that there are many who actually had the swine flu (h1n1) that really wished it lasted only 24 hours. What a jerk – trying to get sympathy.

  14. @, So you think it’s abhorrent for two people of different races to have a relationship, get married and have children?

    I can’t believe people still use the term “jungle fever.”

  15. Obviously you are suffering from Aphasia as well…

    “Of Course I do” was stated with .38 seconds to go on this video in response to the statement by Barb that ” you don’t check facts”?.

    Regardless of if you like or agree with someone… disputing video evidence is very ignorant.

    Grow up.

  16. I don’t get it.
    I’ve been wondering about this clip for a while now, so I finally went and watched it. Nowhere in the clip does it say he does not fact check. I think if he came out and said that he doesn’t fact check, those women would have screamed him off the stage or something. Or eaten him.
    Only Media Matters says he doesn’t fact check.

  17. Barbara asked him if he checks his facts three times during the clip. He answered “No” the first time, avoided answering the second and said “Of course I do” on the final time.

  18. To the question of whether or not he checks facts:
    The firt time asked he says “no, ma’am. I am a commentator.”
    The second time he ignores the question and keeps talking
    The third time he says, “Of course, I do”

    Seems like no matter what he’s talking about he tries to ignore what others are saying and have only his side of the argument on the table, I guess it’s eisier that way.

  19. I’ve always disliked Beck, even more than O’Reilly, though I like the rest of FOX News, but this was a lame attack on him, and if anything makes me question whether other such attacks on him might be taken out of context as well (particularly his quotes about saying he’s an entertainer).

    Look, I dislike O’Reilly because he talks over people and talks down viewpoints he doesn’t like, but at least he doesn’t need 4 other people with him to do it and a live audience acting like bloodhounds. Anyone watching in context can see he said “No” in response to the claim that he’s a reporter. Multiple attacks were being made against him at once, multiple questions being asked at once, why do you think he was looking to the left when answering the question instead of the right towards Walters? They look like they set that up, asking multiple questions at once, to try and catch him in it.

    At the 5:40-45 mark, it can be clearly seen he said he does check facts. The problem was they were all ganging up on him at once trying to force him into making wrong-sounding answers. Otherwise, why ask questions where one answer should be no and other questions where it should be “yes” and not giving him an opportunity to speak? This came across as an interrogation and a witch trial, not a serious interview.

    I don’t like some of Beck’s views either, or the way he presents his facts, but I can’t stand it when a group is hypocritical and dishonest about attacking a person. I will criticize FOX when they do it just like I will criticize groups like this when they do it.

    While I prefer others at FOX like Huckabee, Greta, Shepard Smith, Juan Williams, and Brett Baier, I don’t like the tactics which were used here on Beck.

  20. Those women are the most annoying people I have ever seen, I rather see Glenn a Trillion times, than any of these. They are rude and nasty, I dislike them even more now that I see that they are sack of dog poop. I don’t like you either “gooppy golberg”, I would never see a movie or a show with any of you. This is why this women piss me off, you crappy sack of crap!!

  21. I believe the term is “Theory-Laden Observation”, and I cannot stand Glenn Beck, however I do believe he said “No” upon being told by Ms. Walters that he was a reporter, and then went on to say he was a commentator, and that he commentates. What tends to happen when a person chain guns questions at another person is the answers get muddled up and can become out of order.

    There’s plenty of stuff to smack your forehead about when it comes to Glenn Beck. I once watched him rant for 20 minutes on how Woodrow Wilson was evil for being progressive. You don’t have to put words into his mouth. Not to mention, he’s in the business of controversy. Every time the pot gets stirred up over something he said, he makes coin off it.

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