January 12th, 2009
03:01 PM ET
5 years ago

Joe the Plumber: Ban media from war

ALT TEXT

Samuel Wurzelbacher, aka Joe the Plumber, is in Israel. (Getty Images/Israeli GPO)

(CNN) – ‘Joe the Plumber’ Wurzelbacher told a group of journalists covering the conflict in Israel and Gaza that he didn’t think the media should be allowed to report on war.

“I think media should be abolished from, you know, reporting,” Wurzelbacher said. “You know, war is hell. And if you’re gonna sit there and say, ‘well, look at this atrocity,’ well you don’t know the whole story behind it half the time, so I think the media should have no business in it.”

Wurzelbacher arrived in Israel on Sunday to start a 10-day assignment for pjtv.com, a Web site run by the conservative media outlet Pajamas Media. The plumber-turned-foreign correspondent said he wanted to cover Israel’s side of the conflict, because he thought the media was slanting the story to make it look like “Israel’s being bad.”

In his first day as a reporter, Wurzelbacher described the hardships of daily life in the southern Israeli town of Sderot.

“I’m sure they’re taking quick showers, I know I would,” Wurzelbacher said. “So you can’t plan your day, you can’t take a picnic.“

Wurzelbacher said he thought Israel should have attacked Gaza sooner. He told a group of reporters that he was a “peace-loving man,” but that "when someone hits me, I'm going to unload on the boy.”

He got a first-hand taste of reality in Sderot, when his group heard sirens warning of a rocket attack. With cameras rolling, Wurzelbacher and his group ran into a shelter.

“I’m in the bunker, I’m sitting there angry, outright furious, that I’m letting this terrorist dictate what I’m going to do because they’re firing missiles,” Wurzelbacher said. “It was fear at first, then outright anger, and then me wanting some kind of retribution. I’m not a person that runs from things, but when it’s a missile, you run.”


Filed under: Joe the plumber
soundoff (1,513 Responses)
  1. cancer

    No wonder McCain lost the election, between Palin and Joe the plumber, there is no were else to go but down.

    January 12, 2009 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  2. herbie

    I would beleive Joe the Plumber any day before I would beleive the propagandist that are railing against him. How smug your little personal attacks sound. You scared to discuss the content of what he says?

    January 12, 2009 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  3. Matt in Oregon

    I think I'm going to be sick. I guess this is John McCain's lasting legacy - creating this little Napoleon oaf.

    January 12, 2009 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |
  4. LKN Raging

    Gives everyone a clear idea of this guy's notion of open democracy, doesn't it? I'd be interested in his take on the newspaper's coverage of the Civil War, newspaper's and radio correspondents' coverage of WWII, and television coverage of the Korean War. They'd probably be hung as spies in Wurzelbacher World ("Wurly World").

    And for a group calling itself "Pajamas Media," no less.

    Somebody please give us a rousing chorus of 'Holiday Road' here. "Look kids, it's a fraud!"

    January 12, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  5. John

    Joe, when your 3rd grade teacher covered the civics segment of the curriculum, (s)he probably mentioned this thing called the US Constitution, which came with some stuff called the Bill of Rights, which started out with the 1st Amendment. Go look it up.

    January 12, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  6. Tim from Toledo

    Is it just me – or does he represent the media now? He is there doing a 10 day story....as a journalist wannabe.
    What an idiot. Why do we give people like this any attention at all?

    January 12, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  7. T.R.

    No one seems to care that Hamas is a terrorist organization, they have killed so many innocent people in Israel. We are getting one sided reporting.

    I bet Joe turns out to be a good reporter, give him a chance. Of course if he is not biased against Israel a lot of people will hate him.

    I am sick and tired of reading about how bad Israel is, how good the other side is.

    January 12, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  8. laurie

    I am stunned. Is this really happening? Joe the Plumber is now a reporter? Why doesn't he ban himself from the war (because aftrerall, why should the world have any idea what's going on there?) go home and return to fixing broken garbage disposals. I'm sure the conservative right has no problem getting their news from a completely unqualified, biased and ignorant source–that's the only kind they'll listen to, anyway. I just cannot believe this is in the realm of reality.....

    January 12, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  9. Debby

    It seems Joe the Plumber is getting ahead fast while the liberal bloggers on here are going backwards. hahaha

    January 12, 2009 03:29 pm at 3:29 pm |
  10. Beth from Virginia

    And isn't that exactly what HE'S doing there? Reporting on the war? And I was so afraid there wouldn't be anything entertaining in the news after the presidential campaigns were over!

    January 12, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  11. ced

    LMAO! In light of all Joe's recent career endeavors (i.e, plumber, author, country music star, now war correspondent), I think he doesn't even like any of these careers. I think he probably prefers to be Joe the Six Pack and will really be good at it.

    January 12, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  12. SL

    Sounds like Doc is jealous!!!

    January 12, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  13. Kimn8R

    "Joe the Moron", live from Israel? No wonder the United Staes is hated throughout the Mid-East. This guy doesn't know his hind end from a hot rock about anything, and some one out there is stupid enough to buy this toilet jockey a plane ticket. I hope it was a one way ticket.

    January 12, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  14. Joe the moron

    When will this guy stop milking his five minutes of fame. Nows hes a war correspondent because he couldnt hack it as a plumber. What a moron.

    January 12, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  15. Barack wins and America loses

    Finally have someone fair and balanced instead of the Whackos from the left that stole the election with their left wing agenda to elect the bigges liberal of all mankind. Yea, the one called big ears from Chicago.

    January 12, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  16. Michael

    What does Joe the Plumber have to say about the high rate of unemployment among the Palestinians in Gaza?

    January 12, 2009 03:30 pm at 3:30 pm |
  17. Michael

    What does Joe the Plumber have to say about the high rate of unemployment among the Palestinians in Gaza????

    January 12, 2009 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  18. Kevin McLeod

    Let's hope he connects with the line of fire. I promise, I would then admit he is a national hero.

    January 12, 2009 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  19. John in Ohio

    Thanks, you nazi.

    Go back to cheating on your taxes.

    January 12, 2009 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  20. Tom

    This guy's 15 minutes were over a long time ago. Shame on the media for keeping him in the spotlight.

    Joe, just go away. No one cares what you have to say.

    January 12, 2009 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  21. John "the senator"

    Please someone send him into Gaza and leave him there for a couple of weeks. Both sides have to share the blame but if we could reach a peace agreement by threatning to leave the plumber there if they do not stop, I think that would work.

    January 12, 2009 03:31 pm at 3:31 pm |
  22. Veeve

    I pray that there are no more casualties on either side of this conflict; but if there MUST BE ONE MORE... LET IT BE THIS CLOWN!

    January 12, 2009 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  23. TESAP;SAVANNAH, GA

    LOL......... SO DID HE SAY THIS A MAKE-BELIEVE JOURNALIST???? SAD THAT THIS GUY WAS CONSIDERD THE VOICE OF THE REPUBLICAN PARTY............... WILL THEY PREP HIM TO RUN WITH PALIN?????? THAT WOULD BE BRILLIANT... FOR THE DEMOCRATS OFCOURSE...........

    January 12, 2009 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  24. jean in MN

    I can hardly wait for the Palin/Joe the Plumber ticket in 2012 – simply for the sheer entertainment value! What a fruitcake.

    January 12, 2009 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
  25. Just a citizen

    The media has a place, in war reporting and everywhere – its the media's bias that does not. Joe is right – war is tough. War has casualties. Imagine if the media showed nothing but casualities during WWI and WWII - and tried everything in their power to turn the american public against the wars - it would be a different world - and not for the better. If the media is going to report – they should be darn certain to report both sides equally and not just bolster their own ideals.

    January 12, 2009 03:32 pm at 3:32 pm |
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