Glenn: Be still and know that He is God

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After listening to Congressman Louie Gohmert (R-TX) hold Comcast Executive Vice President David Cohen’s feet to the fire on Capitol Hill on Thursday and speaking to David and Jason Benham on radio this morning about HGTV cutting ties with them over their Christian views, Glenn delivered an impassioned monologue in which he asked his listeners to “be still and know that He is God.”

Below is a rough transcript of the monologue:

I want to talk to you one-on-one here for a second. I had a really hard time with that last interview. It was really hard time. I went on yesterday, and we were talking about David and Jason Benham. Here are two guys that had a show that was supposed to air beginning next year on HGTV. And the national socialists have come out again it and decided they will silence anyone they disagree with. And yesterday, we read this story in the Washington Post about these guys. nd you know, they made them sound like the Westboro Baptist Church guys. They made it sound like they hate gays and they hate Muslims and everything else. And I said, on the air: If that's what they're saying, I don't want anything to do with them because Jesus doesn't teach anybody to hate. You could have a differing opinion, and I have many friends who have differing opinions. I have Baptists who quite honestly think I'm going to go to hell because of my faith. And that's fine. And I love them. And they are my friends. And I have atheists who think I'm going to end up in a dirt box. And I love them, and I embrace them. And they are my friends. I have members of my own faith that hate me because they think that I'm too loud and boisterous and whatever. And I love them. And I beg all of them to discount the messenger because I am wildly flawed. And I just try my best to do it.

This morning I came in, and I was talking to one of my good friends and a guy I consider a good counselor and I said, ‘I don't know what else I can do. I don't know what else God wants from me.’ I really am to the point to where I think that when I'm finished with my mission on earth, I will just drop dead – when I speak my last word that I was supposed to say because there are so many things in our lives that we're seeing full-fledged miracles on that just shouldn't happen, couldn't happen.

I don't know how Pat makes it in every day because of the extraordinary pain that he is in every day. And I know it's because of his faith and his sheer willpower that is making him stand every day. And everybody said that this network wouldn't work. And we'd never be able to get anybody to subscribe to it. And I am, quite honestly, very frustrated. And we started the show today with what Louie Gohmert and several other congressman and senators said yesterday in testimony on Capitol Hill against Comcast and their merger with Time Warner. And I will tell you that without getting into any details, or anyone in particular, it is companies like Comcast that stand in the way of you hearing the truth. It is companies like Comcast that now want to double in size by gobbling Time Warner, which is already in that sphere. And they are government regulated. They rely on special favors from the government and whoever the president is and all of the senators and everybody else. And so they kowtow. And they will kowtow to not only the government power, but they will kowtow to all of the sponsors' power. And then they will kowtow to all of the big networks like NBC – Comcast is NBC Universal – because that is nothing but a content company. And they've got all of these networks and they need all of that content, and those companies, when they become popular, they, quite honestly, I think some of them extort money out of these cable providers because they think they can. And they're irreplaceable.

The arrogance on all fronts is just astounding. And that's why when you call your cable company, they don't care about you. Honestly, they don't even care about the American market anymore. Truth be told, all they care about is expanding overseas because those are growth markets. They're expecting 20, 30, and 40% growth overseas. This market is collapsing. And so they don't care about you anymore. And that's the truth. And that's the truth that nobody will tell you. But I am seeing the game from the inside and it's despicable.

I really don't know what I'm doing. And that's not a surprise to anybody. But I believe in something. And I believe that good people coming together for a common cause can change the world. And the world is about to change entirely. Whether I like it or not, whether you're for it or against it, it's about to change. And it already is. And those with power are trying to get it to change their way so they will be able to gobble up even more power. And that's why they are so afraid of anybody that disagrees with them. They are terrified of them. That's why they don't want people like these two guys that had a stupid show on HGTV. What difference do they make? ‘Shut them up. Make sure they don't have a place in our society. Send the message very clear. You won't work. You won't eat. You won't be accepted anywhere in society. You'll be a pariah.’ Why? Because have you a different opinion. If you hate, that's one thing. But if you have a different opinion? Who the hell are we, America? Who are we?

I was so frustrated when I was speaking to them because I don't know what else I can do. And when they said, ‘There needs to be a network that will stand.’ I know that we are that network. That's what I was told to do, told to produce. I spend every dime that I make in this company. I don't have a big fat bank account anymore. I spent it all on this. And I'm glad I did. But there are companies like Comcast and others like that that don't care. They're protecting their future business. They're protecting their cronies. Important companies like HGTV who might have courage, but they didn't build a network that didn't care about advertisers who disagreed with them. I've tried to do that from the very beginning. I've tried to do that.

Your $10 a month if you subscribe to TheBlaze, that's what's kept us alive. We have sponsors. We have more sponsors than some. We actually make more money than some networks that have 60 million households. We have six million, and we make more money. But we also spend more money on production because everybody else is running old Three's Company episodes. We're not. And there's so much more that we have to do.

And I was frustrated during this because had they said there has to be a network. I don't know if they were saying that it should be like TheBlaze. But I wish I would have been in the position to say, ‘I'm going to do a little more checking on you guys, and if you guys really are who you appear to be here, we're proud to hold your show.’ If you can also understand that if I had money, I would do a show with Penn Jillette too because he doesn't hate anybody. He used to. He told me he hated people like me. But he doesn't now. He respects people like me, as long as you respect him. That's who we're supposed to be.

There's a story up on TheBlaze today, and it's tending to go everywhere about what Louie Gohmert and these other congressmen and senators said yesterday to the chairman of Comcast. I will tell you, it has been really hard to know what we know, to have the facts that we have, and to see what we have seen. This is the second network and maybe the third – the second network that we have tried to purchase outright and have been stopped because of my political or religious opinion. And that's okay. I was in Denver yesterday working on another deal because that one has fallen through now because of my political opinion. I don't know why this next deal will fall through.

And I get on to a plane every time. After I have given all that I can give, and I am asking the same question every time, ‘What else can I do? What is Your plan because I'm trying to work all the earthly plans and none of them are working. So You tell me. And it is up to You.’ And He's brought me to a point to where I literally cannot stand without Him. Our company can't function without Him. Our country cannot function without Him. And we are seeing men and women of all walks of life – I will stand with anybody who is homosexual that is losing their job because of haters who say, ‘We won't hire any homosexuals.’ I have stood in a theater with that very purpose. Someone was hating on one of the guys who was working on my staff who is homosexual. And he didn't know that I – oh my gosh – had two homosexuals on my staff and the other one wasn't out and flamboyant. And he came into my dressing room in tears and said, ‘I don't know how to work here, Glenn.’ He said, ‘I'm afraid of some of these people.’ And he told me what they said. And I went to the general manager, and I said, ‘We will not do a show here. And we will never, ever, ever do a show here again, if this is the way you treat people.’

I will stand with anyone who's decent and honorable and hard working. I don't know what – I'm not asking you to do anything. I guess the only point of this rant is: Be still and know that He is God.

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?