WATCH: Glenn's tribute to friend Richard Mellon Scaife

Below is a transcript of this tribute

Yesterday was a sad but joyful day for me. On Friday, a dear friend of mine took my call. We don’t speak all that often, maybe every month or so, but I called him up just to see how he was doing and to see how life was in Pittsburgh. And as I’m about to hang up the phone with him, he told me that he had just gotten a bad diagnosis and prognosis from the doctor. And so yesterday, I went up to Pittsburgh and spent some time with him.

He’s truly a man that I wish you knew, and I wish you could know him the way I do. He’s a man who has absolutely changed the course of this country several times. I think he is the man who is responsible for Reagan in 1976 and 1980. He knew this guy would be good, in his words, not as good as he turned out, but he knew he would be good in the 1960s.

His father helped bring down the Nazis and then made him promise at a very young age that he would help bring down the communists here in America. His great uncle was probably the most hated man by FDR and one of the most maligned and hated men of the entire progressive movement, mainly because he was the architect of the roaring 20s.

This young man from this amazing family grew up to do great things himself, all of which have, I believe, given us a chance to be free for just a few more years, and then we’re on our own. Among these things, he helped launch the Heritage Foundation, now headed by Senator Jim DeMint. But I believe what will be a bigger legacy than any bank or university bearing his name is the newspaper that he has guided, the Pittsburgh Tribune Review, one of the very few major newspapers that actually still searches for the truth and uses the truth as a keel because it has Dick as the guiding hand and his hand-picked team at the helm.

I got to know my friend, Richard Mellon Scaife, a few years ago when I was at FOX, and my office received a phone call. They said that Mr. Scaife wanted to meet me and get to know me, that he had watched my show every day, and that he had a few questions for me. Well, I told him that I would love to meet with him, but at the time I was so overbooked that I just couldn’t make the trip to Pittsburgh at the time.

I knew the meeting was one I shouldn’t miss when his team said if you could just get to the airport there in New York, Glenn, he would fly in, and we could spend some time on his plane chatting. I did, and that was one of the most movielike moments in my increasingly movielike life. There I sat with truly one of America’s great titans on his DC-9 on the tarmac of the Westchester Airport just outside of New York City.

Side note: It made me very happy. He let the engines run just to piss off Al Gore the whole time. But we spent some time getting to know each other, and then he got right to business. He spoke to me in depth of the communist movement here in America that he had watched since he was a kid. He quizzed me on my knowledge of the progressive movement, and then he gave me a personal play-by-play of the history that he had witnessed.

I spent much of the time honestly confused because it took me a while to realize that when he said names like Jack or Ron, he was talking about JFK and President Reagan. I had never met anyone who had personal relationships like this.

Yesterday, we were talking, and he talked to me about, you know, a couple of meetings that he had with J Edgar Hoover back in the 60s and the people that he had met. When I mentioned Patton, he said, “Oh yeah, he was a neighbor of mine.” He has met every president, good and bad, since FDR. In the end, he told me that he just wanted to see if I was really the man I appeared to be on television. He wanted to know if I really believed in what I was saying or if it was nothing more than an act.

He told me then about the dinner that he had with his father toward the end of World War II where his father made him promise that he would fight the communists in America and around the world. When he saw these same people whom he thought he had defeated come back online in American politics, I think, I don’t know, but I think Dick may have felt a little bit that in some way he might have dropped the ball. He hadn’t. He helped give us Ronald Reagan and the Reagan revolution. Because of that, the wall came down.

Over the years, I’ve met with him a handful of times. We’ve spoken about politics and the players, some of which we agree on, some of which we don’t. I have spoken to him about the tough things, the evil nature of Margaret Sanger. When I first brought up Margaret Sanger, he said, “Oh, come on, I remember her. She used to come over to my house, and she would have tea with my mother.” I mean, I can’t imagine what this man’s life has been like, but I do know this, he is a man that has truly lived.

I have read his book. I have read his press clippings. I have seen the best and the worst. I’ve seen the joy and the pain of his life from afar. Mistakes and all, he has left his mark on our world, and he continues to do so today. And most people on our side don’t even know about him. Long after he is gone, his legacy will still impact how we live. I have met those he has groomed to take over for him at the Tribune. He will leave it in good, decent, and honest hands, hopefully a long time down the road.

I didn’t know Dick in his prime, which is my alcoholic code for his drinking days. I know Richard Mellon Scaife today. As life has made him movie rich, life has also humbled him, and it is in the quiet times that a man becomes truly wealthy. They say you can judge a man by the company he keeps, not those who pop in for a check or an endorsement or whatever but those who are there around him.

I have seen those who are with him and at his side every single day. I see the love and loyalty they have for him and the love and loyalty he has for them. I don’t know what the world will, and especially with the left, what they will say about him, but I will say this, Richard Mellon Scaife is my friend. It’s an honor to know him, to learn from him.

In the end, I thought of this on the plane on the way up to Pittsburgh, I don’t think I’ve learned enough. This man is a living history book. I have never met anyone like him. I told my wife when I got home, “Honey, we will never have the chance to meet another man like that ever again.” They don’t make them like that ever again. And if I perhaps had a better sense of priorities, I would have spent more time grilling him for the knowledge that he alone has witnessed firsthand as it has impacted history.

In time, I hope that there are those who are at his side every day today that will tell his story that he has taught them, and I hope to empower them. In the meantime, I went to Pittsburgh yesterday to learn something new yet again from my friend, to have a laugh, to share a few stories of great American heroes, and to learn more about them. We’ll continue to have our phone chats from time to time, and if I’m lucky enough, I will be able to spend a few more hours with him in the weeks and months ahead, but they will mean more to me now.

It’s strange and I think unfortunate how we have to learn things. Friday, that call with my friend when he told me about his diagnosis, unfortunately it said something else to me – hopefully this time I’ll learn it – stop all the things in your life that seem to make you busy. Instead, find the people and the things that have real meaning in your life and invest your time there. Once again, my friend, Richard Mellon Scaife, has made my life better because he lives.

On Wednesday's TV show, Glenn Beck sat down with radio show host, author, political commentator, and film critic, Michael Medved.

Michael had an interesting prediction for the 2020 election outcome: a brokered convention by the DNC will usher in former First Lady Michelle Obama to run against President Donald Trump.

Watch the video below to hear why he's making this surprising forecast:

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On Thursday's "Glenn Beck Radio Program," BlazeTV's White House correspondent Jon Miller described the current situation in Virginia after Gov. Ralph Northam (D) declared a state of emergency and banned people carrying guns at Capitol Square just days before a pro-Second-Amendment rally scheduled on Martin Luther King Jr. Day.

Jon told Glenn that Gov. Northam and the Virginia Legislature are "trying to deprive the people of their Second Amendment rights" but the citizens of Virginia are "rising up" to defend their constitutional rights.

"I do think this is the flashpoint," Jon said. "They [Virginia lawmakers] are saying, 'You cannot exercise your rights ... and instead of trying to de-escalate the situation, we are putting pressure. We're trying to escalate it and we're trying to enrage the citizenry even more'."

Glenn noted how Gov. Northam initially blamed the threat of violence from Antifa for his decision to ban weapons but quickly changed his narrative to blame "white supremacists" to vilify the people who are standing up for the Second Amendment and the Constitution.

"What he's doing is, he's making all all the law-abiding citizens of Virginia into white supremacists," Glenn said.

"Sadly, that's exactly right," Jon replied. "And I think he knows exactly what he's doing."

Watch the video to catch more of the conversation below:

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Ryan: Trump Louisiana Finale

Photo by Jim Dale

Part One. Part Two. Part Three.

At the end of Trump rallies, I would throw on my Carhartt jacket, sneak out of the press area, then blend in with everyone as they left, filing out through swinging doors.

Often, someone held the door open for me. Just 30 minutes earlier, the same person had most likely had most likely hissed at me for being a journalist. And now they were Sunday smiles and "Oh, yes, thank you, sir" like some redneck concierge.

People flooded out of the arena with the stupidity of a fire drill mishap, desperate to survive.

The air smacked you as soon as you crossed the threshold, back into Louisiana. And the lawn was a wasteland of camping chairs and coolers and shopping bags and to-go containers and soda cans and articles of clothing and even a few tents.

In Monroe, in the dark, the Trump supporters bobbled over mounds of waste like elephants trying to tiptoe. And the trash was as neutral to them as concrete or grass. They plodded over it because it, an object, had somehow gotten in their way.

It did not matter that they were responsible for this wreckage.Out in the sharp-edged moonlight, rally-goers hooted and yapped and boogied and danced, and the bbq food truck was all smoke and paper plates.

They were even more pumped than they had been before the rally, like 6,000 eight year olds who'd been chugging Mountain Dew for hours. Which made Donald Trump the father, the trooper, God of the Underworld, Mr. Elite, Sheriff on high horse, the AR-15 sticker of the family.

Ritualistic mayhem, all at once. And, there in Louisiana, Trump's supporters had gotten a taste of it. They were all so happy. It bordered on rage.

Still, I could not imagine their view of America. Worse, after a day of strange hostilities, I did not care.

My highest priority, my job as a reporter, was to care. To understand them and the world that they inhabit. But I did not give a damn and I never wanted to come back.

Worst of all, I would be back. In less than a week.

Was this how dogs felt on the 4th of July? Hunched in a corner while everyone else gets drunk and launches wailing light into the sky? configurations of blue and red and white.

It was 10:00 p.m. and we'd been traveling since 11:00 a.m., and we still had 5 hours to go and all I wanted was a home, my home, any home, just not here, in the cold sweat of this nowhere. Grey-mangled sky. No evidence of planes or satellites or any proof of modern-day. Just century-old bridges that trains shuffled over one clack at a time.

And casinos, all spangles and neon like the 1960s in Las Vegas. Kitchy and dumb, too tacky for lighthearted gambling. And only in the nicer cities, like Shreveport, which is not nice at all.

And swamp. Black water that rarely shimmered. Inhabited by gadflies and leeches and not one single fish that was pretty.

Full of alligators, and other killing types. The storks gnawing on frogs, the vultures never hungry. The coyotes with nobody to stop them and so much land to themselves. The roaches in the wild, like tiny wildebeests.

Then, the occasional deer carcass on the side of the road, eyes splayed as if distracted, tongue out, relaxed but empty. The diseased willows like skeletons in hairnets. The owls that never quit staring. A million facets of wilderness that would outlive us all.

Because Nature has poise. It thrives and is original.

Because silence is impossible. Even in an anechoic chamber, perfectly soundproofed, you can hear your own heartbeat, steady as a drum. A never-ending war.

I put "Headache" by Grouper on repeat as we glided west. We were deadlocked to asphalt, rubber over tarface.

And I thought about lines from a Rita Dove poem titled "I have been a stranger in a strange land"

He was off cataloging the universe, probably,
pretending he could organize
what was clearly someone else's chaos.

Wasn't that exactly what I was doing? Looking for an impossible answer, examining every single accident, eager for meaning? telling myself, "If it happens and matters the next year, in America, I want to be there, or to know what it means. I owe it to whoever cares to listen."

Humans are collectors and I had gone overboard.

Because maybe this wasn't even my home. These landmarks, what did they mean? Was I obvious here? When I smiled, did I trick them into believing that I felt some vague sense of approval? Or did my expressions betray me?

Out in all that garbage-streaked emptiness — despite the occasional burst of passing halogen — I couldn't tell if everything we encountered was haunted or just old, derelict, broken, useless. One never-ending landfill.

Around those parts, they'd made everything into junk. Homes. Roads. Glass. Nature. Life itself, they made into junk.

I cringed as we passed yet another deer carcass mounded on the side of the road.

As written in Job 35:11,

Who teaches us more than the beasts of the earth and makes us wiser than the birds in the sky?

Nobody. Look at nature and you feel something powerful. Look at an animal, in all of its untamable majesty, and you capture a deep love, all swept up in the power of creation. But, here, all I saw were poor creatures who people had slammed into and kept driving. Driving to where? For what reason? What exactly was so important that they left a trail of dead animals behind them?

So I crossed myself dolorously and said an "Our Father" and recited a stanza from Charles Bukowski's "The Laughing Heart"

you can't beat death but
you can beat death in life, sometimes.
and the more often you learn to do it,
the more light there will be.

Out here, nothing but darkness. Needing some light, by God. Give me something better than a Moon that hides like an underfed coward.

Jade told me about some of the more traumatic things she'd seen while working at the State Fair.

"Bro, they pull roaches out of the iced lemonade jugs and act like nothing happened."

"All right but what about the corn dogs?"

"You do not want to know, little bro."

She looked around in the quiet. "Back in the day, the Louisiana Congress refused to raise the drinking age from 18 to 21," she said. "They didn't want to lose all that drunk gambler money. So the federal government cut off funding to highways."

We glided through moon-pale landscape for an hour before I realized what she had meant. That there weren't any light poles or billboards along the road. Nothing to guide us or distract us. Just us, alone. And it felt like outer space had collapsed, swallowed us like jellybeans.

Like two teenagers playing a prank on the universe.

In the cozy Subaru Crosstrek, in the old wild night, brimming with the uncertainty of life and the nonchalance of failure, we paraded ourselves back to Dallas. Alive in the river silence that follows us everywhere.

New installments come Mondays and Thursdays. Next, the Iowa caucuses. Check out my Twitter. Email me at kryan@blazemedia.com

The Iowa primary is just around the corner, and concerns of election interference from the last presidential election still loom. Back in 2016, The Associated Press found that a majority of U.S. elections systems still use Windows 7 as an operating system, making them highly susceptible to bugs and errors. And last year, a Mississippi voter tried multiple times to vote for the candidate of his choice, but the system continuously switched his vote to the other candidate. It's pretty clear: America's voting systems desperately need an update.

That's where blockchain voting comes in.

Blockchain voting is a record-keeping system that's 100% verifiable and nearly impossible to hack. Blockchain, the newest innovation in cybersecurity, is set to grow into a $20 billion industry by 2025. Its genius is in its decentralized nature, distributing information throughout a network of computers, requiring would-be hackers to infiltrate a much larger system. Infiltrating multiple access points spread across many computers requires a significant amount of computing power, which often costs more than hackers expect to get in return.

Blockchain voting wouldn't allow for many weak spots. For instance, Voatz, arguably the leading mobile voting platform, requires a person to take a picture of their government-issued ID and a picture of themselves before voting (a feature, of course, not present in vote-by-mail, where the only form of identity verification is a handwritten signature, which is easily forgeable). Voters select their choices and hit submit. They then receive an immediate receipt of their choices via email, another security feature not present in vote-by-mail, or even in-person voting. And because the system operates on blockchain technology, it's nearly impossible to tamper with.

Votes are then tabulated, and the election results are published, providing a paper trail, which is a top priority for elections security experts.

The benefits of blockchain voting can't be dismissed. Folks can cast their vote from the comfort of their homes, offices, etc., vastly increasing the number of people who can participate in the electoral process. Two to three-hour lines at polling places, which often deter voters, would become significantly diminished.

Even outside of the voting increase, the upsides are manifold. Thanks to the photo identification requirements, voter fraud—whether real or merely suspected—would be eliminated. The environment would win, too, since we'd no longer be wasting paper on mail-in ballots. Moreover, the financial burden on election offices would be alleviated, because there's decreased staff time spent on the election, saving the taxpayer money.

From Oregon to West Virginia, elections offices have already implemented blockchain voting, and the results have been highly positive. For example, the city of Denver utilized mobile voting for overseas voters in their 2019 municipal elections. The system was secure and free of technical errors, and participants reported that it was very user-friendly. Utah County used the same system for their 2019 primary and general elections. An independent audit revealed that every vote that was cast on the app was counted and counted correctly. These successful test cases are laying the groundwork for even larger expansions of the program in 2020.

With this vital switch, our elections become significantly more secure, accurate, and efficient. But right now, our election infrastructure is a sitting duck for manipulation. Our current lack of election integrity undermines the results of both local and national elections, fans the flames of partisanship, and zaps voter confidence in the democratic system. While there's never a silver bullet or quick fix to those kinds of things, blockchain voting would push us much closer to a solution than anything else.

Chris Harelson is the Executive Director at Prosperity Council and a Young Voices contributor.