On his Monday radio show, Glenn Beck highlighted claims that before he started targeting a little-known, left-leaning organization called the Tides Foundation on his Fox News TV show, “nobody knew” what the non-profit was.

Indeed, for more than a year Beck has been portraying the progressive organization as a central player in a larger, nefarious cabal of Marxist/socialist/Nazi Obama-loving outlets determined to destroy democracy in America. Beck has routinely smeared the low-profile entity for being staffed by “thugs” and “bullies” and involved in “the nasty of the nastiest,” like indoctrinating schoolchildren and creating a “mass organization to seize power.”

As Media Matters reported, the conspiratorial host had mentioned (read: attacked) the little-known progressive organization nearly 30 times on his Fox program alone since it premiered in 2009, including several mentions in the last month. (Beck’s the only TV talker who regularly references the foundation, according to our Nexis searches.)

So yes, Beck has done all he can to scare the hell out of people about the Tides Foundation and “turn the light of day” onto an organization that actually facilitates non-profit giving.

And guess what? Everybody in America would have found out about the Tides Foundation last week if Byron Williams had had his way. He’s the right-wing, government-hating, gun-toting nut who strapped on his body armor, stocked a pickup truck with guns and ammo, and set off up the California coast to San Francisco in order to start killing employees at the previously obscure Tides Foundation in hopes of sparking a political revolution.


Thankfully, the planned domestic terrorist attack never came to pass because California Highway Patrol officers pulled Williams over for drunk driving on his way to his killing spree. Williams quickly opened fire, wounding two officers during a lengthy shootout. Luckily, Williams wasn’t able to act out the ultimate goal of his dark anger — fueled by the TV news he watched — about how “Congress was railroading through all these left-wing agenda items,” as his mother put it. Williams wasn’t able to open fire inside the offices of the Tides Foundation, an organization “nobody knew” about until Glenn Beck started targeting it.

Who is Byron Williams, what was his plan and how was he stopped?

According to CNSnews:

OAKLAND, Calif. (CBS/KPIX/AP) A California man accused in a shootout with California Highway Patrol officers in Oakland early Sunday told officials that he traveled to San Francisco and planned to attack two nonprofit groups there “to start a revolution,” according to a probable cause statement released by police.

 Bryon Williams, 45, a convicted felon with two prior bank robbery convictions, targeted workers at the American Civil Liberties Union and the Tides Foundation, said Oakland police Sgt. Michael Weisenberg in court documents.

 Officer Jeff Thomason, an Oakland police spokesman, claimed Williams targeted the two nonprofit organizations because of their political ideologies. The Tides Foundation works to advance progressive social change, according to its Web site.

 Williams was pulled over for speeding and weaving through traffic Saturday night on an Oakland highway. California Highway Patrol officers say once they approached his truck they found Williams alone, donning a bulletproof vest and armed with three guns, including a rifle.

 Police say Williams armed himself with a handgun and started to exchange fire with the officers, and a 12-minute shootout followed. More officers responded after Williams reportedly reloaded three different guns inside his truck, reported CBS affiliate KPIX. After the exchange two CHP officers were taken to a hospital where they were treated for minor injuries. Williams was admitted to a hospital and treated for gunshot wounds to his arms and legs.

If a radio or TV personality  continually rails against an individual or an organization, night after night, and that message is listened to by an unstable individual, there are bound to be negative consequences.  Beck gets on his show and hisses, blubbers, cries, and acts out against the current administration, Congress, members of congress, the President, the Tides, the ACLU, ACORN, Soros, just to name a few of his hit list.  Beck needs to tone it down before there are unalterable consequences.  Maybe while he is down on his knees, he needs to speak to his Lord about bearing false witness.  He really is out of control.  Fox News needs to rein him in. Need we say more?

18 Thoughts to “Who the Hell has ever heard of The Tides Foundation anyway?”

  1. e

    the american people owe glenn beck an enormous debt of gratitude for exposing the ideology and nefarious forces that propel our president and the members of his regime. glenn’s enormously high ratings on his cable and radio programs are testament that millions of his fellow countrymen and women get it.
    meanwhile, glenn’s competitors on cnn and msnbc have lower ratings than the cartoon channel

  2. That’s because the Cartoon channel has valuable content.

  3. Wolverine

    An organization dedicated to a specific course of action which would result in society being changed to match its own ideological desires should not be openly criticized by those of an opposing viewpoint just because some whacko may decide to take personal action? That covers a whole lot of territory. Can’t criticize the policies of the President or Congress because some whacko may cause the Secret Service, the FBI, and the Capitol Police to go into action. In effect, we should all just shut up about politics and the future of the country and go to sleep. O.K. But you have to be fair about this. Left and Right. No more outraged railing against Cuccinelli, Stewart, Governor Brewer, Sheriff Joe, et al. Shoot, now you have me reluctant even to say something bad about those Westboro people. Who knows when a whacko might decide to……

  4. How do you know what the Tides Foundation espouses? Are we to take Beck’s word for it? Who is to say they are wrong. how about the ACLU? You and I might not like them but they do have a right to exist.

    Beck is over the top. Remarks like some of his lock and load remarks are incendiary. People whose opinion and words reach a wide audience have a greater responsibility than the average person to choose our words carefully. You can say you don’t like an organization and why without calling for people to drag out pitchforks.

    I have NEVER called for violence against Cuccinelli, Stewart, Brewer, Sheriff Joe or Westboro Baptist. I have suggested that a couple (Cuccinelli and Stewart) be voted out of office. That is certainly not violence against their person.

  5. From Huffington Post:

    Just listen to Glenn Beck:

    * Progressives “are sucking the blood out of the republic” and are “gonna start getting more and more violent.”

    * “To the day I die, I am going to be a progressive hunter.”

    * “[Y]ou will have to shoot me in the forehead before you take away my gun” and “before I acquiesce and be silent.”

    * “This game is for keeps”; “[Y]ou can shoot me in the head … but there will be 10 others that line up.”

    * “There is a coup going on. There is a stealing of America”; “God help us in an emergency.”‘

    I have never said anything like the above about any one I rail against. Am I supposed to simply be silent about people I don’t believe are fit for office? Because I describe what I believe to be true about people in office I am now compared to Glenn Beck?

  6. e

    i would never take at face value any quotes spouted by the huffington puffington post, media matters, or any other left wing cabal dedicated to sullying the character of prominent conservative personalities. the bottom line is glenn is correct, there is a coup going on in america, it has been going on for half a century and more; we didn’t get from dwight eisenhauer to barack obama overnight. thankfully we still have recourse to the first amendment, no thanks to the honorable susan bolton and her likeminded radicals who would like us to just be silent and acquiesce as our country and freedoms are being frittered away. from these cold dead hands!

  7. Slowpoke Rodriguez

    Your tags should read “far left”, “media matters”, and “nutroots”. I was driving to lunch the other day when this was on. Glenn wasn’t claiming he did anything, it was James Rucker that made the statement. But, well, media matters….you know.

  8. Are you denying Beck has said those things? I hope not.

    Yes, this did hit about a week ago. It’s just making it to the blog today. Too much else was going on.

    No one will address the point which is that Beck has very inflammatory speech that stirs people up. I feel he needs to be more careful about what he says. He isn’t the only one but this one nearly had disasterous effects.

  9. @Moon-howler
    Why should he be careful? He’s making a mint and has no scruples about how he does it. Just another political-media ho or media-political ho. Not much difference between any of them.

  10. He continually talks about being on his knees and telling us he is a man of God. Is he lying and character assassinating for God? He should walk to walk if he is going to talk the talk.

  11. Wolverine

    #4 is easily enough answered, Moon. The motto of the Tides Foundation and their offshoot called the “Tides Center” is, in their own words, “Supporting Progressive Social Change.” They claim to be engaged in all sorts of social change projects; but what the Tides really appears to be is a sort of “pass-through” organization. They facilitate the transfer of funds from donors to other “progressive”groups. This allows the donor to avoid being connected publicly to the organization receiving the funds. The funding trail ends at the Tides front door. The Tides collects a transfer fee. So, let us say that you have a bizman who is privately very liberal but whose income depends heavily on the goodwill of his more “conservative” customers. He can make donations to the Tides with an agreement that the money, less the Tides usual fee, will go to the “progressive” organization he selects. He never gets connected to that “progressive” group. His customers will never know. Clever, no? A bit sneaky as well, but, what the hey. It’s politics.

    But, that is not the point here. The point is whether Beck has the right to criticize the Tides on his TV show and should have any particular constraints put on him in the course of that criticism. And, if some whacko watches Beck and then decides to take action on his own, is Beck responsible for that action? Well, he certainly has the right to criticize. And the Tides, through their public involvement in social change (and political change by extension) certainly cannot claim to be exempted from criticism. To put the shoe on the other foot, Beck, through his advocacy of a point of view, is also opening himself up to legitimate criticsim by those who do not agree — like you do, Moon, very often, as is quite within your rights. So, what it comes down to in my opinion is whether you can accuse someone like Beck of being the cause of violence by a third person just because of the vehemence of his own arguments pro or con on a particular issue. I don’t see where you can do that unless Beck actually calls for such violence. Then it becomes a radically different story. Otherwise Beck is only exercising his constitutional rights of protest and criticism. One of the problems I see in our contemporary society is that political criticism is too often being cast as “hate” and that the “hate” is then considered a possible cause for violence by a third party. We keep that up and then translate it into restraints on speech and we will all be the losers.

    I personally do not watch television, being about as personally put off by all the screaming back and forth as Mo Davis obviously is. When I see Beck, it is only on this blog or on other blogs with imbedded videos. Do I myself wish he would tone down his act in some cases? Sure do. There are times when he applies a hurt, in my view to, his own intentioned case. I feel the same way about Maddow, especially when she directs that demeaning smirk into the camera and begins to drum her fingers on the desk. But I have absolutely no authority to try to dictate to either one of them how to run their shows. The ultimate judge is audience, and, from the ratings, Beck’s audience is staying with him. I presume the same for Rachel.

    Let us suppose that you personally directed a communication to Beck telling him in no uncertain terms that you disagree strongly with his broadcast modus operandi and demand that he cool his jets. The answer back? Well, probably the same answer I see here at times when somebody presumes to tell the Moonhowler how to run her blog. And I believe both of you would be right. His TV show. Your blog. First Amendment rules. You don’t like how I do my business, you can always go elsewhere.

  12. Wolverine

    Moon, please block out #12 and #13. There are times of late when I have typed something out and submitted it and the blog responds by a slow send and then a reversion to the standard response that the connection has been lost. Don’t know if this is on your end or a problem with my own connection. Unfortunately, I am not getting that other response I see elsewhere which says, in effect, “Hey, you already said that.”

  13. Done re Blocking remarks. I don’t know why you aren’t getting the message. Far be it from me to understand this blog’s moods.

    I think all TV personalities have a moral responsibility to not incite violence or say things that might lead others to act accordingly. I don’t think Maddow’s eye rolliing is quite the same thing, even though it might be as equally annoying as all the screaming and crying.

    So its the how and and what he says I would criticize, rather than his right to bash a particular organization. I rather like some of the organizations that the Tides Foundation sponsors or has sponsored. And I understand why Glenn Beck doesn’t like them. For example, I am glad Media Matters is out there. It provides another voice. I like the Pew Institute.

    Glenn Beck is over the top. For me, he is high comedy. For someone like the man in the article, he is a catalyst. I think anyone who reaches out to the public, from blogs to TV and radio has a personal responsibility to attempt to be truthful, to the best of their ability and to consider who might be reading or listening.

    Beck fails the responsibility sniff test, in my book. Just the fact that he called the president a racist and mimicked his daughter makes my point.

  14. Glenn not only does not incite violence, he, in no uncertain terms, begs his supporters to be peaceful and is now asking them to NOT even RESPOND with violence, if attacked.

    And the President’s own words and actions, if they had been done by a white President, would have been called racist. Mimicking his daughter was in poor taste. Funny, but, in poor taste and he apologized. However, it was Obama who first brought his daughter’s comments into the political fray, in yet another inane personal anecdote.

    Glenn Beck, while inflammatory, is accurate on the basics and probably on the whole, at least 95% of the time. He’s the one demanding that other journalist prove him wrong. Nothing yet….

  15. All parents mention their children. You and I have both done it here. They are part of our life experience. However, no one came along and mimicked us for doing it.

    Glenn Beck hasn’t gone and said to shoot someone in the head. However, he has said stuff that incites others:

    Just listen to Glenn Beck:

    * Progressives “are sucking the blood out of the republic” and are “gonna start getting more and more violent.”

    * “To the day I die, I am going to be a progressive hunter.”

    * “[Y]ou will have to shoot me in the forehead before you take away my gun” and “before I acquiesce and be silent.”

    * “This game is for keeps”; “[Y]ou can shoot me in the head … but there will be 10 others that line up.”

    * “There is a coup going on. There is a stealing of America”; “God help us in an emergency.”‘

    And don’t forget about the unhinged response when health care reform was passed in March: “Get down on your knees and pray. Pray. It’s September 11th all over again, except that we didn’t have the collapsing buildings.” After financial reform passed last week, Beck told his audience, “Your republic is over.”

    It doesn’t have to be a direct order. In fact, I have heard him tout the Ghandi like about violence, all along while he sows the seeds for people to do otherwise.

    I listen to Beck almost on a daily basis. I know what he does. I think it is UnAmerican. I would label him an O’Reilly pinhead almost daily. I don’t feel that way about O’Reilly.

  16. Hmmm….the Progressive ideal and agenda IS antithetical to the American way of life. They are sucking the blood out of the republic and HAVE gotten violent

    He is hunting progressives in the government and exposing them.

    He says that he will defend himself if you try to disarm hm or silence him, both acts of violence AGAINST HIM.

    He states that politics is NOT a game anymore. He has had death threats

    There is a coup going on. The Administration is centralizing power within the executive and has assume unconstitutional powers unheard of.

    He is right. The republic is over if all of the financial “reform” fill is enacted and enforced. When combined with HCR, it is the most intrusive act of government ever.

    O’Reilly doesn’t educate people. He’s a blowhard.

  17. Do you really believe all that, Cargo?

    So you think the only way to have a country is an ultra conservative version of America?

    The founding fathers were not conservatives.

    Plenty of public figures get death threats. Doesn’t make it right.

    He asks for most of his criticism. O’Reilly is sometimes a blow hard. However, he does hold people accountable. Beck is a crybaby and a drama king. I do not believe his information he is ‘educating’ us with is correct.

  18. This violent imagery is what has to stop: (From WaPo 7/31/10)

    Beck has at times spoken against violence, but he more often forecasts it, warning that “it is only a matter of time before an actual crazy person really does something stupid.” Most every broadcast has some violent imagery: “The clock is ticking. . . . The war is just beginning. . . . Shoot me in the head if you try to change our government. . . . You have to be prepared to take rocks to the head. . . . The other side is attacking. . . . There is a coup going on. . . . Grab a torch! . . . Drive a stake through the heart of the bloodsuckers. . . . They are taking you to a place to be slaughtered. . . . They are putting a gun to America’s head. . . . Hold these people responsible.”

    Beck has prophesied darkly to his millions of followers that we are reaching “a point where the people will have exhausted all their options. When that happens, look out.” One night on Fox, discussing the case of a man who killed 10 people, Beck suggested such things were inevitable. “If you’re a conservative, you are called a racist, you want to starve children,” he said. “And every time they do speak out, they are shut down by political correctness. How do you not have those people turn into that guy?”

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