Why are Piers Morgan and Joe Scarborough defending Glenn?

During an appearance on Fox News’ The Kelly File earlier this week, Glenn admitted that he wished he would have done more to talk “about the uniting principles a little more instead of the problems” during his time on the network. His statements apparently took many in the media by surprise, but Glenn has found support from two very unlikely sources: CNN’s Piers Morgan and MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough.

“Here's what I regret saying the other night with Megyn Kelly. I regret leaving out: Has anybody else in the media asked themselves this question? Because all of us are responsible,” Glenn said on radio this morning. “And it’s not only just those in the media. How about all of us across the country? What role have all of us played [in dividing the country]?”

Last night during a segment with Ann Coulter on his CNN show, Morgan actually paused to ask himself that very question. In rare moment of being “self-reflective,” Morgan admitted that when he gets “over angry” or “abusive” to pro-gun advocates during gun debates, it “actually doesn’t help the debate.”

MORGAN: ...Because Glenn Beck was quite brave, I thought, to say what he said. If I'm being self-reflective – it doesn't happen very often – I might as well throw it out there. We mentioned guns. When I've done the guns debate, I can tell when I get over-angry. I get a little bit abusive to the gun people that it actually doesn't help the debate.

“That is good. A very good step,” Glenn said. “How many people in the media are looking for silence to think and to say, ‘What role did I play? Have I played a role? Can I be better today or tomorrow?’ That's what we all should be doing. And apparently Piers Morgan did this.”

MSNBC’s Morning Joe also got in on the action with Scarborough finding Glenn’s comments to be sincere.

“Joe Scarborough is not a guy who's never been friendly to us,” Glenn said. “And I don't think we've ever been friendly to him…When I left Fox, he said, ‘You'll figure out that, without Roger Ales, he's nothing.’ I mean think of the vitriol that guy had for me.”

SCARBOROUGH: You know, he came out this past week and also said, ‘If you are anti-gay, if you don't like a person because they are gay, you have no place in this country, don't call yourself a fan of mine.

I think what's fascinating about this is that if Glenn Beck were saying all this from a position of weakness that would be one thing. Glenn Beck, from what I saw, made like $90 million dollar last year. He has done on the Internet what the largest corporations in America have tried to do on the Internet. I mean, he has, he has somehow brought together TV and Internet and he's had an extraordinary year financially. So I think that's what's even more telling about this is that he's making these admissions from a position of strength.

I mean what do you think about it, Mika? Let's toss it around the table… By the way, I don't think anybody is more harshly critical of Glenn Beck over the past several years than me. I take him at his worth. But Mika, even some reason he's being conical in these things he's saying – that's even better because that means that he recognizes that there is a market for this sort of inclusive talk… I commend him actually. Not that he needs my commending at all.

“He's giving you the benefit of the doubt either way,” Pat said. “He's taking you at his word. He said that you are sincere. But even if you're not sincere, even if you're doing it for profit that means there's a market for it and you've realize that. You're tapping into. Either way he likes it.”

As Glenn explained, the purpose of TheBlaze is not to play to people’s cynicism. Actually, it’s the complete opposite. TheBlaze’s mission is “[to] tell stories of love and courage where the good guys win.” That mission is so not in line with anything anyone else is doing, however, so it is difficult for people to really comprehend it all.

“It's time they understand. It's time that they see,” Glenn concluded. “Because if we can get just a couple of people on their networks that say: You know what? I don't agree with Glenn Beck on a lot of stuff. He's, he's pro life. I'm pro-abortion. Fine. But you know what? We're not enemies with each other. We're not enemies. We're going to be doing serious battle on that front. But we do believe in the community of man… Are we going to disagree on certain points? Yes… [But] I'm not going to tell you how to live your life. You don't tell me how to live my life. And we can get along.”

The themes of healing and redemption appear throughout the Bible.

Our bodies are buried in brokenness, but they will be raised in glory. They are buried in weakness, but they will be raised in strength. — 1 Corinthians 15:43
It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick. I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners. — Mark 2:17.

So, for many Christians, it's no surprise to hear that people of faith live longer lives.

Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; save me, and I shall be saved, for you are my praise. — Jeremiah 17:14.

But it is certainly lovely to hear, and a recent study by a doctoral student at Ohio State University is just one more example of empirical evidence confirming the healing benefits of faith and religious belief.

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Moreover, the study finds that religious belief can lengthen a person's life.

A joyful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. — Proverbs 17:22
Lord, your discipline is good, for it leads to life and health. You restore my health and allow me to live! — Isaiah 38:16

The study analyzed over 1,000 obituaries nationwide and found that people of faith lived longer than people who were not religious. Laura Wallace, lead author of the study, noted that "religious affiliation had nearly as strong an effect on longevity as gender does, which is a matter of years of life."

The study notes that, "people whose obits mentioned a religious affiliation lived an average of 5.64 years longer than those whose obits did not, which shrunk to 3.82 years after gender and marital status were considered."

And He called to Him His twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every affliction. — Matthew 10:1

"The researchers found that part of the reason for the boost in longevity came from the fact that many religiously affiliated people also volunteered and belonged to social organizations, which previous research has linked to living longer. The study provides persuasive evidence that there is a relationship between religious participation and how long a person lives," said Baldwin Way, co-author of the study and associate professor of psychology at Ohio State.

Prayer is good medicine, and faith is a good protector.

In addition, the study showed how the effects of religion on longevity might depend in part on the personality and average religiosity of the cities where people live, Way said.

Prayer is good medicine, and faith is a good protector.

And the power of the Lord was with him to heal. — Luke 5:17
Heal the sick in it and say to them, The kingdom of God has come near to you. — Luke 10:9.

In early June, the Social Security and Medicare trustees released their annual report on the fiscal health of these programs, and the situation looks dire. Medicare is scheduled to run out of money in 2026 (three years sooner than anticipated), while Social Security is expected to run out in 2034. The rising national debt is only one of the well-known financial struggles the millennial generation faces. The burdens of student loan debt, high housing prices (thanks to zoning restrictions), stagnant wage growth, the rising cost of healthcare and lingering aftershocks of the Great Recession are among the biggest sources of economic anxiety millennials feel.

Progressive politicians have been very successful at courting the youth vote, partly because they actually promote policy ideas that address many of these concerns. As unrealistic or counterproductive as Senator Bernie Sanders' proposals for single-payer health care or a $15 an hour minimum wage might be, they feel in theory like they would provide the economic stability and prosperity millennials want.

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Republicans, on the other hand, have struggled to craft a message to address these concerns. Fiscal conservatives recognize, correctly, that the burden of the $20 trillion national debt and over $200 trillion in unfunded liabilities will fall on millennials. Some conservatives have even written books about that fact. But the need to reform entitlements hasn't exactly caught millennials' attention. Pollster Kristen Soltis Anderson, in her book The Selfie Vote, notes that millennials generally view protecting the safety net as more important than reducing the deficit.

Clearly, Republicans have a problem. They need to craft solutions that address the millennial generation's struggles, but they can't seem to sell entitlement reform, their biggest policy preference that addresses those problems. The Republican approach to wooing millennials on policy is failing because talking about stopping the debt from reaching an unsustainable level is long-term and abstract, and offers few immediate tangible benefits. A new approach to both pave the way for entitlement reform and give millennials an immediate financial boost is to first reform not entitlement spending, but the payroll tax: specifically, by partially (or wholly) replacing it with a value-added tax.

Under the current Social Security model, workers pay for the benefits of current retirees through the payroll tax. This system creates the illusion of a pension program, in which what you put in is what you get out, but in reality Social Security is a universal safety net program for the elderly paid for by taxes. The payroll tax falls on workers and is a tax on labor, while the value-added tax (VAT) is a tax on consumption imposed at every part of the production process. Assuming that this policy change is revenue-neutral, switching to a VAT will shift the responsibility for funding Social Security and Medicare away from workers, disproportionately poorer and younger, and onto everyone participating in the economy as a whole. Furthermore, uncoupling Social Security funding from payroll taxes would pave the way for fiscal reforms to transform the program from a universal benefit program to one geared specifically to eliminating old-age poverty, such as means-testing benefits for high-income beneficiaries, indexing benefits to prices rather than wages or changing the retirement age.

Switching from the payroll tax to the VAT would address both conservative and liberal tax policy preferences.

Switching from the payroll tax to the VAT would address both conservative and liberal tax policy preferences. As the Tax Policy Center notes, the change would actually make the tax system more progressive. The current payroll tax is regressive, meaning that people with lower incomes tend to pay a higher effective tax rate than people with higher incomes. On the other hand, the value-added tax is much closer to proportional than the payroll tax, meaning that each income group pays closer to the same effective tax rate.

For Republicans, such a change would fit conservative economic ideas about the long-run causes of economic growth. A value-added tax has a much broader base than the payroll tax, and therefore would allow for much lower marginal tax rates, and lower marginal tax rates mean smaller disincentives to economic activity. According to the Tax Foundation's analysis of a value-added tax, the VAT would be a more economically efficient revenue source than most other taxes currently in the tax code.

Not only would replacing part or all of the payroll tax provide an immediate benefit to millennial taxpayers, it would also open the door for the much-needed entitlement reforms that have been so politically elusive. Furthermore, it would make the tax code both more pro-growth and less regressive. In order to even begin to address the entitlement crisis, win millennial support and stimulate the economy in a fiscally responsible manner, Republicans must propose moving from the payroll tax to the VAT.

Alex Muresianu is a Young Voices Advocate. His writing has appeared in Townhall and The Federalist. He is a federal policy intern at the Tax Foundation. Opinions expressed here are his only and not the views of the Tax Foundation. He can be found on Twitter @ahardtospell.

Glenn was joined by Alanna Sarabia from "Good Morning Texas" at Mercury Studios on Thursday for an exclusive look at Mercury Museum's new "Rights & Responsibilities" exhibit. Open through Father's Day, the temporary museum features artifacts from pop culture, America's founding, World Ward II and more, focusing on the rights and responsibilities America's citizens.

Get tickets and more information here.

Watch as Glenn gives a sneak peek at some of the unique artifacts on display below.

History at the Mercury Museum

Alanna Sarabia interviews Glenn Beck for "Good Morning Texas" at Mercury Studios.

Several months ago, at the Miss Universe competition, two women took a selfie, then posted it on Instagram. The caption read, "Peace and love." As a result of that selfie, both women faced death threats, and one of the women, along with her entire family, had to flee her home country. The occasion was the 2017 Miss Universe competition, and the women were Miss Iraq and Miss Israel. Miss Iraq is no longer welcome in her own country. The government threatened to strip her of her crown. Of course, she was also badgered for wearing a bikini during the competition.

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In an interview, Miss Iraq, Sarah Idan, said:

When I posted the picture I didn't think for a second there would be blowback. I woke up to calls from my family and the Miss Iraq Organization going insane. The death threats I got online were so scary. The director of the Miss Iraq Organization called me and said they're getting heat from the ministry. He said I have to take the picture down or they will strip me of my title.

Yesterday, Miss Iraq, Sarah Idan, posted another selfie with Miss Israel, during a visit to Jerusalem.

In an interview, she said that:

I don't think Iraq and Israel are enemies; I think maybe the governments are enemies with each other. There's a lot of Iraqi people that don't have a problem with Israelis.

This is, of course, quite an understatement: Iraq, home to roughly 15,000 Palestinians, refuses to acknowledge Israel as a legitimate country, as it is technically at war with Israel. The adages says that a picture is worth a thousand words. What are we to do when many of those words are hateful or deadly? And how can we find the goodness in such bad situations?