From the Atlantic wire:
The Players: Glenn Beck, a conservative provocateur who has a burgeoning news site called The Blaze ; Andrew Breitbart, a conservative provocateur who’s run his own news site Breitbart.com and conservative-slanted Big aggregation network.
The Opening Serve: Glenn Beck hasn’t been shy about voicing his opinion on Newt Gingrich ever since the former Speaker of The House began to surge in the polls. We noted he played a little bit of gotcha journalism with Gingrich, but Beck took it a step further and went on Fox Business this past weekend to air his grievances:
If you have a big government progressive, or a big government progressive in Obama… ask yourself this, Tea Party: is it about Obama’s race? Because that’s what it appears to be to me. If you’re against him but you’re for [Newt Gingrich], it must be about race. I mean, what else is it? It’s the policies that matter.
The Return Volley: Beck’s comments didn’t fall on deaf ears, and spurred Andrew Breitbart to call into Stephen Bannon’s show/podcast this weekend. Slate’s Dave Weigel notes that Bannon, the director of the Sarah Palin documentary The Undefeated actually lives in a home rented by Breitbart. With that kind of home-court advantage, Breitbart begins going after Beck as soon as the interview began, referring to him as a “snake” and a “race-baiter.” […] From there, with a little bit of urging from Bannon, Breitbart goes off on a wayward tangent explains how Glenn Beck steals material from people, Breitbart included and how he criticized Breitbart’s handling of the Shirley Sherrod story.
What They Say They’re Fighting About: […E]ven though Breitbart says Beck has committed the grave sin of pulling the racism card, the fight isn’t really about that.
What They’re Really Fighting About: The history between these two and The Blaze’s burgeoning success. You’d think that these two conservative flame-stokers would be on the same side of the issue on a lot of things, but apparently that isn’t the case. And it stems back to something Breitbart mentions: The case of Shirley Sherrod. Back in July, Glenn Beck had stepped up to bat for Sherrod, who had resigned after Breitbart’s Big Government posted an edited speech she gave to NAACP earlier that year. Couple that with Beck taking apart James O’Keefe, Big Government’s cover boy, on his Blaze news site earlier this year and you’ve got yourself the real reason why Breitbart seems all to happy to jump on Beck’s “race-baiting.”
Who’s Winning Now: Beck. There’s a reason that Breitbart is pounding chest and yelling louder than ever about Beck’s transgressions, and it’s because there’s a threat there and there’s a bit of jealousy. Breitbart obviously sees the growing popularity of The Blaze and its encroaching on the Big network’s readers, which is why the vitriol is flowing freely from Breitbart’s end.
Who do you root for in this fight? It’s sort of like asking someone: If you were up to your neck in diarrhea, and someone threw a bucket of vomit at you, would you duck?