How much do lefties dislike Glenn Beck? So much that the vitriol has bled over into low-rent, soon-to-be-obsolete publications like Playboy magazine.

In the December 2009 issue of Playboy, Thomas Frank "takes down" the Fox News Channel host by analyzing the conservative movement and how Beck rose to prominence. Frank, with an obvious need to meet a high-word count in mind, attempts to dismantles Beck by attacking his Christmas book, "The Christmas Sweater" and his other books, his admiration for Thomas Paine, his fear the U.S. Constitution is being trampled upon and his activist efforts to curb this intrusion by combating socialism, communism and other ideologies that could be deemed un-American.

Beck Response on his Nov. 12 program below

"Virtually every novelist in America fantasizes about being picked to appear on Oprah Winfrey's talk show. But now an increasing number of writers have discovered a new champion: Glenn Beck."

Hold onto your seats, for that's not a quote from the National Review or the Weekly Standard.

It's actually the opening paragraph of an absolutely glowing piece about Beck's impact on the book industry published Thursday by -- drum roll please -- the New York Times (h/t Mediaite):

MSNBC's Keith Olbermann Tuesday told Fox News's Glenn Beck to "Go to hell!"

Even worse, he did the same to members of Beck's 9-12 Project, an organization "designed to bring us all back to the place we were on September 12, 2001" when we were "united as Americans, standing together to protect the greatest nation ever created."

Apparently, Olbermann doesn't want Americans as united as they were the day after the attacks on the World Trade Center and the Pentagon, as during his "Worst Person in the World" segment Tuesday, he defiled people working towards this goal -- on national television no less (video embedded below the fold with transcript):

If you were a cable TV host whose audience size is obliterated by O'Reilly's, buried by Beck's, hammered by Hannity's and slam-dunked by Susteren's, would you really go around mocking someone else's ratings?

Appparently yes, if you're Ed Schultz. The host of the miniscule MSNBC program went out of his way this evening to belittle the ratings of Dennis Miller's radio show . . .

Schultz's snide comment came during his Psycho Talk segment.

Ever since long-time radio talker Don Imus inked a deal with the Fox Business Network to simulcast his morning radio program, he said he has been getting pushback from several acquaintances.

And as he explained and showed on his Oct. 28 program, he's not particularly pleased with the reaction about his deal with Fox News.

"I get this email and the e-mail says, ‘Sorry to see you've sold out to Fox Business, or whatever. But I am not surprised you sold out to Fox Business, disappointed.' Could you explain to me exactly what does that mean? When you walk in the door here, Roger Ailes or Neil Cavuto or what's the other fat guy's name? Kevin McGee? Not the other fat guy, that was unfortunate."

Former Fox News contributor Jane Hall said Sunday that one of the reasons she left the cable network was because she was uncomfortable with host Glenn Beck who she believes "should be called out as somebody whose language is way over the top and scary."

Fox watchers know Hall as one of the regular liberal panelists on Saturday's "Fox News Watch" as well a frequent guest on "The O'Reilly Factor" where she was typically paired opposite former CBSer Bernard Goldberg.

On Sunday's "Reliable Sources," with the discussion centering on the White House's battle with Fox, Hall disclosed the decision behind her departure (video embedded below the fold with partial transcript, relevant section at 8:20):

Throughout the previous administration, MSNBC host Keith Olbermann would nightly attack President George W. Bush and members of his administration and regularly bash some conservative personalities for being too cozy with Bush.

However, when he and his MSNBC colleague Rachel Maddow engage in the same brand of coziness, meeting with President Barack Obama earlier this week, it's no longer an indiscretion. Instead, it becomes justified - since Bush did it. Olbermann appeared on the Oct. 23 "The Rachel Maddow Show" and he and Maddow responded to critics. Maddow asked him to respond to particular comments from former White House Deputy Chief of Staff Karl Rove, now a Fox News contributor, that there would be an outcry had the Bush administration committed something similar.

Is Barack Obama turning into Spiro Agnew? The White House's attacks on the Fox News smack of the distaste for media opposition espoused by Nixon's vice president almost 40 years ago but are being met with a decidedly different reaction today by the elite media.

Pundits have wondered aloud since last week why the White House would pursue a strategy that seems to be boosting the ratings of a purported 'opposition' news network. MSNBC's Joe Scarborough posited today that the White House's attacks on Fox News are designed to prevent the mainstream media from picking up on stories damaging to the administration (video embedded below the fold, h/t to NB reader Kirk W.).

Every time Fox breaks a story on the radical connections of a White House advisor or appointee, the news is potentially damaging to the administration. But damage is only really done if the rest of the media picks up on the story, reports it, and turns it into a national news sensation, a la Van Jones.

Paul Krugman attacked the authors of the soon-to-be-released book SuperFreakonomics today for their audacious attempts to question the left's conventional wisdom on global climate change. He then touted the danger of attacking conservatives, and contended that liberal-bashing has always been the safer political and professional move.
I have a theory here, although it may not be the whole story: it’s about careerism. Annoying conservatives is dangerous [his emphasis]: they take names, hold grudges, and all too often find ways to take people who annoy them down... [Conservatives] snub anyone who breaks the unwritten rule and mocks those who must not be offended.

Annoying liberals, on the other hand, feels transgressive but has historically been safe. The rules may be changing (as [SuperFreakonomics authors Stephen] Dubner and [Steven] Levitt are in the process of finding out), but it’s been that way for a long time.

Veteran White House correspondent Helen Thomas, who has covered every president since Jack Kennedy, advised the White House to abandon their attacks on Fox News today. She attributed the administration's visceral reaction to the cable outlet to a naive sense of invincibility generally held by new presidents (video embedded below the fold).

Asked by Joe Scarborough of MSNBC's 'Morning Joe' what "we want our president to know and do," in reference to the title of her new book, Thomas immediately replied "stay out of these fights... They can only take you down. You can't kill the messenger."

Thomas's coauthor, CQ reporter Craig Crawford, added that "presidents are better off, Joe, when they punch up and not down."

Once again, the nightly train wreck known as CNN Headline News "The Joy Behar Show" took another jab at conservatism, particularly Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh. Only this time, Behar threw in a couple of old standbys for whom lefties are fixated upon assaulting - former President George W. Bush and former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.

Behar, on her Oct. 17 CNN HLN program, suggested to radio show talk host and former child-star actor Danny Bonaduce there was a trend - that people who have had struggles with chemical addictions are now outspoken, particularly those on the right that Behar disagrees with.

"Do you see a trend? Rush Limbaugh, Oxycontin. Glenn Beck, alcoholic, Danny Bonaduce, alcoholic ... and George Bush, ex-alcoholic," Behar said.

The feud between the White House and the Fox News Channel took another, thanks to one of Glenn Beck's viewers.

On Beck's Oct. 15 program, the Fox News host played a video sent to him of White House Communications Director Anita Dunn, who had previously slammed Fox News and called it an organ of the Republican Party. In the video, Dunn reveals her two favorite political philosophers - humanitarian Mother Teresa and Mao Tse Tung, Chinese revolutionary and Communist leader responsible for an estimated 70 million deaths (video embedded below the fold).

"A lot of you have a great deal of ability," Dunn said. "A lot of you work hard. Put them together and that answers the ‘why not' question. There's usually not a good reason and then the third lesson and tip actually comes from two of my favorite political philosophers - Mao Tse Tung and Mother Teresa, not often coupled with each other but the two people that I turn to most to basically deliver a simple point, which is you're going to make choices. You're going to challenge. You're going to say why not. You're going to figure out how to do things that have never been done before, but here's the deal."