Glenn Beck Unveils His Next Nutty Idea to His Followers at His Summer Gathering: I'm the Man in the Moon
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Among the suspects of likely donors is Beck's friend, the businessman and philanthropist Jon Huntsman. Among the weekend's events was a Saturday morning "Walk for Hope" to raise money for the Huntsman Cancer Foundation. If people like Huntsman stepped up, Beck imagined the museum tour on an endless crusade across 50 states to educate and enlighten Americans about their (Christian-flavored) heritage. "We'll travel to every school, every home school, every county and state fair that will have us," Beck said. "I could go broke -- I have everything on the table for this."
Beck wasn't the only one with everything on the table. The "Man in the Moon" exhibit hall featured more than 100 tables crowded mostly withsmall conservative business and entrepreneurs. Self-published authors worked the room hawking Second Amendment fan fiction and anti-Obama spoofs of The Cat in the Hat. They competed for dollars with half a dozen makers of conservative political tees -- "Sure you can have my guns. Here, let me give you the bullets first" -- and as many dealers of survival seed packets and emergency food buckets.
I was perusing the products of one of these, Texas Ready Seed Banks, when its proprietor, a friendly woman named Lucinda Bailey, introduced herself. Along with her survival seed business, she also repped for a California maker of designer bomb shelters. When I told her that her basic model was bigger than my apartment, she thought I was joking. She shrugged when I asked how business was going. "I got a better response at last year's Beck event [Restoring Love] in Arlington [Texas]," she said. "This is a little different crowd. I probably would have been better off staying in Texas, where I do five gun shows a week and can't even keep up."
After a pause, she took back what she said about staying in Texas. The previous evening she'd dined with Beck's director of marketing -- "that was worth the trip right there," she said. The duo talked survival seeds, but mostly Bailey pressed Beck's people to extend an olive branch to the radio host Alex Jones, who has accused Beck of stealing his schtick. "The bad blood between Glenn and Alex needs to stop," Bailey said. "I want to get all the Patriots together." Then she picked up a packet of Texas Ready's "Piggy Bank" starter seed kit, and added, "And I want to feed them!" She recounted how she once had an appointment to teach Alex Jones and his staff to grow 2,000 pounds of food, but they cancelled at the last minute.
I could have talked survivalism and Alex Jones for another hour, but we lost each other in the swirl of conservative small enterprise. A writer of patriotic children's books thrust upon me a copy of his latest illustrated Freedom Fairy Tale for children, titled Communism and Socialism: Two Things You Don't Want Sneaking Up on You in the Dark. With my other hand I accepted a flyer from a patriotic composer whose album, Bill of Responsibilities, touted a lyrical collaboration with Glenn Beck. As she was telling me about the ways Beck inspires her music, I watched as behind her a rep from Thorn Pest Solutions placed a three-inch Giant Cave Cockroach into the palm of a young girl in a wheelchair. She beamed like it was a butterfly.