Thursday, March 21, 2019

Glenn Beck's Overton Window Part II Ch 4 through 7

This is my read through of Glenn Beck's The Overton Window, presented for your entertainment only. The first installment can be read here.

Chapter Four

When we left the book, Noah's daddy, the eeevil Arthur Gardner, was lecturing incoherently about how easy it is to destroy democracy with advertising, or something. (Seriously, the main problem with this novel is the incoherence of the writing. Often I can't even decipher what Beck/Beck's ghost writer is trying to say.)

Chapter Four starts with Noah in the hallway outside the boardroom. His daddy has sent him out with a list of phone numbers. No names -- this is so mysterious, Noah thinks. Because I guess this is his first day working for his father.

He calls the phone number and issues invitations to a meeting with his father. He marvels at how rich people have assistants to answer their phones, even at six o'clock on a Friday afternoon! Why, maybe even they'd have people answering their phones 24/7! How incredible would that be?

No one gives a name at any of these phone numbers -- because that's how conspiracies work, I guess -- but Noah hears someone speak off the line during the last phone call, and realizes that it's the "next U.S. treasury secretary, assuming the election went as forecast." Right now this man was the President of the Federal Reserve. (Gasp!)

Then Noah goes into his father's private kitchen (if there's a private kitchen, why was he eating Tootsie Rolls in the employee breakroom) and burns the slip of phone numbers. As one does, in a conspiracy.

Chapter Five

Nothing much happens in this chapter. Noah takes a stroll down some hallway somewhere in the big corporate office building his father owns, and narrates for us the exhibits there, which showcase the past work done by his father and grandfather and so on.

But first we get this odd story: No clocks are allowed at Doyle & Merchant (the name of his daddy's PR firm). Once, a woman had glanced at her wrist watch while Arthur Gardner was rambling speaking. Not only was she summarily fired, but Arthur banned all watches and clocks from the business from that point on.

This is what I mean when I say Glenn Beck has no idea how businesses work. Can you imagine running an organization of any size, never mind a global PR firm, if no one had access to a clock of any sort? Do we just show up for meetings when the whim takes us, or what?

Anyway. Among the PR triumphs that Doyle & Merchant have pulled off over the past hundred years, we learn, are the state lottery; pet rocks; teeshirts with Che Guevera on them (what saps, wearing teeshirts featuring "the century's most brutal killer"); and the First Gulf War. Also, D&M has done the PR work to elect every President except Jimmy Carter and Nixon.

If I ran an evil empire like this one, I don't know that I would put displays of my evil deeds out on public display like this. That doesn't seem like a good way to run a conspiracy.

Noah feels what might be guilt. Apparently the work D&M do is news to him. He decides to go meet the uppity temp worker, better known as his One True Love. Though apparently he's forgotten he's in love with her. Now she's "a naive young woman" who needs to be taught a thing or two. (Sometimes Noah talks like he's 12, and sometimes like he's 62.)

Chapter Six

Nothing much happens in this chapter. (I think I'm going to be saying this a lot.)

Noah catches a cab instead of taking one of the D&M limos (why would he? Also, would he? He's the son of the richest man in the USA. Is he going to be riding in cabs?)

The driver of the cab is an immigrant from the "Middle East." While trying to drive them out of a traffic jam, the driver runs them into a military checkpoint (one in the middle of New York City, apparently) and they both get pulled from the cab and interrogated. Noah is released once he remembers he's the son of the richest man in the country. This takes him awhile, mind you.

The cab driver remains in custody. Noah feels what might be guilt over this, as he walks away. Vague guilt seems to be Noah's main emotion, when he isn't channeling a cranky octogenarian.

We don't find out why the military checkpoint is here, what the interrogators wanted, or how they knew Noah was in the cab -- as they seemed to have. They also know he's on his way to this patriotic meeting, which might be why they stopped him? Except that doesn't make sense. Why interrogate Noah? Why not grab up the organizers of the meeting? It's not like they're hiding. They're putting notices on bulletin boards all over town, in fact.

Chapter Seven

Nothing much happens in this chapter.

Having lost his cab driver, Noah decides to walk the rest of the way to the meeting. Because that's what the only sons of the richest and most powerful men in America always do.

The most powerful descriptor gets added in this chapter. Arthur's not content to be rich, Noah tells us, he also wants power.

Most of this chapter is Noah walking and thinking things we already know -- his father owns a PR firm, it's a powerful PR firm, people are dupes who can be manipulated by PR forms, fap fap fap.

At the end of the chapter, he reaches The Stars'n'Stripes Saloon, which is where the meeting is being held, because of course it is. And it turns out to be filled with "Right-Wing nutcases" and "knuckle-draggers," as Noah calls them now.

I'm sure he'll learn better soon.

For the record, we're 18% of the way into the book, according to my Kindle. Almost nothing has happened.

This seems to be a feature of Reactionary books -- lots of padding.

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