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Thursday, July 3, 2014

Conservative Talk Radio And Immigration

On June 10, 2014, conservative talk radio host Glenn Beck said the border crisis is part of a plot to pass immigration reform and ultimately return Arizona to Mexico. (YouTube screenshot)

On June 10, 2014, conservative talk radio host Glenn Beck said the border crisis is part of a plot to pass immigration reform and ultimately return Arizona to Mexico. (YouTube screenshot)

Tensions have been rising over the issue of immigration in recent weeks. The protest and town hall in Murrieta, California, is an example.

Conservative talk radio hosts blame Obama’s policies for the increasing numbers of migrant children arriving in the U.S., and attribute Eric Cantor’s loss to his support for immigration reform in the House.

NPR’s David Folkenflik talks to Here & Now’s Jeremy Hobson about conservative talk radio and its recent impact on immigration.


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  • M S

    What about Liberal talk radio and its impact on the debate? Anyone think NPR will address this question? Probably not.

    • Rick

      NPR IS the main liberal talk radio in this country. Commercial talk radio has been tried before and it failed miserably. Nobody listened to it. They cannot argue their point of view all day because the arguments fall apart when they actually get into the details.

  • ansapphire

    They are preying on peoples fears and prejudices. Someone is going to get hurt. I they are not colorful and carnival they are dangerous.

    • Rick

      Very generic, baseless criticism. Just like people who say that anyone who disagrees with Obama on any topic is”racist”. It’s an ignorant and lazy way to avoid actually discussing topics of substance.

    • dialyn

      Considering the number of lies that Beck and Limbaugh and friends have spread, the extreme nature of abusive language that they use, it is clear that their main mission is stir people up, to make them angry, and to chase logic and rational thinking out of the way. People quote Beck and Limbaugh as if they have any facts behind them but almost always it is innuendo and bloated exaggerations. I don’t know why people listen to their hatefilled language and seem to enjoy quoting misinformation, but, personally, I find their purposeful pursuit of hatred to be alarming. It is possible to be a conservative without resorting to extremist, violent provoking language, and it is possible to discuss differing views without bullying and shouting, but too many of these radio personalities seem to want to set fire to a building without knowing or caring who may be trapped inside. It is ridiculous to compare NPR with Beck and Limbaugh but, of course, that’s easier than actually addressing the issues of what kind of violence Beck and Limbaugh promote and why they continue to gain an audience of extremist followers.

  • ansapphire

    The problem of regular media is you guys are just blowing them off.

  • xsacox

    Who’s paying them to sell their point of view? I think we need to follow the money to determine honesty. I remember when Limbaugh said “I’m an entertainer, not a journalist”

    • Rick

      Kind of like all the corporate sponsors who make “donations” to NPR?

      And you think NPR isn’t beholden to the politicians who funnel taxpayer dollars to them? Many Republicans want to defund NPR. .. you think they are going to give them fair, unbiased coverage in their “news” stories? I don’t think so!

      • nannymm

        NPR gets no direct taxpayer money. It does receive grants from the Public Broadcasting Corp., a private corporation that receives taxpayer funding. But even that money is only a very small portion of NPR’s funding, approximately 2%. The vast majority of NPR’s funding comes from private donations. The Republican meme about “defunding” NPR is nothing more than red meat for their ill-informed base. It’s a lie that excites the low information republican base.

        • Rick

          It’s actually closer to 25%. I suggest you do some more research on this topic.

          • nannymm

            Only on Fox New and other right wing sites. Independent analysis and reporting backs up my figures.

          • Frog

            Fox News? How about directly for the Corporation for Public Broadcasting annual report under “Where Public Radio Stations Got Their Funding”: “For public radio, a much greater share comes from the private sector, but government still provides about one-quarter of the total.”


            What independent sources were you referencing?

  • Rick

    NPR has no credibility to cover this topic. Shows like Rush Limbaugh are commentary, not news. Rush makes no apologies for being conservative, and doesn’t masquerade as being “unbiased” like NPR does. Conservative talk radio also isn’t funded by US taxpayers like NPR is.

    I have heard a lot more truth about the illegal immigration crisis from conservative talk radio than I have from NPR. This show and others on NPR have largely ignored the immigration topic because it doesn’t fit their agenda and they know that the American people are not in favor of flooding our country with illegal immigrants who will take our jobs, drive down wages, and place a huge burden on our social services to feed, house, clothe, educate, and provide health care. Obama and the corrupt Democratic party are trying to permanently change the demographics of this country to create more loyal Democrat voters.

    • TripleKidney

      In this segment from Here and Now, they played a clip from Glenn Beck, where he was predicting that Arizona would be given to Mexico or whomever, due to all the illegal immigrants. Do you think Beck is correct in his assessment? Do you think that is a probable outcome of this situation? I think its pretty outlandish, and Beck et al say such outlandish things frequently, and yet have staunch defenders claiming that they are telling the truth.

  • Samulih

    “American people are not in favor of flooding our country with big companies who will take our jobs abroad, drive down wages to maximize profit, and place a huge burden on our social services to feed, house, clothe, educate, and provide health care for all the original residents of these US of As. Companies pay little or no taxes and send most of their money back to their safe haven banks in some tropical locations.. Rush and the ding dong high and mighty Tea Party is trying to permanently change the ideological basis of this country to create more loyal sheeps ready for brainwashing….”

    Rick, you troll you…..

    • Rick

      Please read the Community Rules and refrain from name calling.

  • Cacimo

    Pretty funny how Hobson and Folkenflik discuss right wing radio “rhetoric”, words like illegal and flood. How about left wing “rhetoric”. The refusal to distinguish between those who go through the arduous process of coming here legally and those who sneak in or overstay their visas. The oft repeated refrain that illegals are “living in the shadows” when in reality they are openly marching on Washington DC. With the stories NPR pushes their listeners are probably under the impression that every illegal immigrant brought to this country plans to become a doctor and has the grades to make that possible. When the reality is that large percentages do not even graduate HS.
    If NPR is so highly rated, why do they need to be government funded. Lets cut off the flow of tax dollars. In the current information age, the notion that the government needs to fund media is obsolete.

  • Frog

    I’m imagining the morning meeting where this story gets programmed:

    Managing Editor: “Okay gang, what’s today’s lineup?”

    Producer: “Umm..we have piece on former CCN anchor Miles Obrien, part 2 of the Death Penalty Debate, a piece on the U.S. Soccer team….”

    Managing Editor: “Yeah, Yeah. What about this immigration thing. There’s a lot of anger out there on that, isn’t there? Do we have anything cooking?”

    Producer: “Well…Politico just did a story on the new Gallup poll. The one where only 31% of the people approve of the way the President is handling immigration. We could get someone from Gallup to talk about how the American people feel about border security and why it’s failing…”

    Managing Editor: “Nada! Something else.”

    Assoc. Producer: “Well, I’ve been researching current immigration rules, their history, why we have limits on immigration and…”

    Managing Editor: “BORING! What’s Folkenflik doing? Get him on the phone. Maybe there’s some way he can tie together conservative talk radio and this immigration kerfuffle is SoCal.”

    Assoc. Producer: “Don’t we need some evidence?”

    Managing Editor: “People, do I have to do EVERYTHING? Tell him we need a few incendiary clips. Rush, Beck whatever. Have Folkenflik riff off that. Okay, you have your marching orders…this has to be assemble edited by 11:45. LET’S MOVE IT, FOLKS!”

    Am I close?

    • Rick

      Yes!!!! And I love how the people at NPR pretend to be experts on talk radio, when you know they never listen to it. The sound clips they chose were very random, as if they tuned in for 10 minutes and just used that. Did they ever consider having one of these talk show hosts on for an interview? They should interview Michael Savage! He would definitely put them in their place!


    “Conservative talk radio hosts blame Obama’s policies for the increasing numbers of migrant children arriving in the U.S.”

    More blatant B.S. lies from undereducated people like Glen Beck who should be earning minimum wage for the garbage he puts out to his undereducated base. There is no solution to the present immigration polices in America and for sure these illegal shave been immigrating illegally for the past 50 years or more, however, when a black President is in office, of course he is the one to blame. Because Republicans have refused to act on immigration, we now have triple the problem with the latest influx of thousands of children entering the U.S. monthly illegally. It cost huge amounts of money to enforce the control of our borders, yet the Republicans don’t want to fund the money for their non immigration solutions to the immigration problem. The crux of the immigration problem is in the home countries these people live in including Americas unquenchable thirst for illegal drugs. These people have been exploited from the time the Spaniards invaded their countries to rob these people of their wealth. Today, all these people want is to be free from drug violence and drug corrupted government exploitation, but when Americans are the number one consumers of illegal drugs on the planet, no immigration policy or solution will solve the immigration problem in America. If there are any jobs in Central America, the companies may be owned by American companies who such low wages that no one can survive or raise a family on ruthless cheap labor wages in these countries. These talk shows are mislabeled conservative, really they have noting to do with conservatism, they are blatant hate based people who don’t like anyone of color or who earns less then $50,000.00 a year.

    • Pleiades

      Are you really suggesting that the amount of wages one makes has to do with societial like and dislike of certain groups of people? Quite frequently I encounter people who are worth seven, eight and nine figures with a lot of hate in their hearts for certain groups of other people. One of the most prejudiced groups of people I encounter are well-to-do gays who have stepped on everyone to obtain their wealth, but many would lead you to believe that gays are one of the least prejudiced groups. That has not been my experience, and gays will prove such in their conversation if they think you are “one of us”.

Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

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