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

Joe the Plumber: Ban media from war


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. dd

    you people are such jecks. give the man a chance. war is hell. ever been to one. are you willing to go to one. been there done that. i dont see any of u going there to cover the war. i hope your toliets start overflowing and you cant find a plumber, because you are so full of crap

    January 12, 2009 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  2. Rory O Shea

    Kelley- I saw that movie, and even though it was a comedy, it was FRIGHTENING how much these people (Joe the Plumber, Sarah Palin) remind me of our horrible idiotic future!

    Why is the GOP so proud of being STUPID?

    January 12, 2009 02:37 pm at 2:37 pm |
  3. jms

    Is it really any wonder the Republicans lost the election? Do they really consider this man some kind of blue collar oracle and spokesman for their cause? Very sad.

    January 12, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  4. Len

    Ah come on, give the guy a break. He didn't ask to be picked as the Average American. He's taking advantage of the incredible luck he's had so far...what's wrong with that? To be honest, I don't see anything different in what he's saying about being in southern Israel than Anderson Cooper did just a week ago. I mean he's just saying what's happening, that's it.

    January 12, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  5. michael cook

    Connecting with B.S.ers Joe the Plumber and Sarah Palin were John McCains most tragic mistakes. Joe, or whatever your name is.... no one is buying your B.S., you are totally full of it, and we hate you. Now go away.

    January 12, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  6. Robin


    January 12, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  7. Saad from NJ

    CNN I love, respect and admire you for the most part. But please and I repeat PLEASE, stop reporting on Joe. We are a nation of moderate, educated, and sensible people. But just like in any other society in the world, we have exceptions. Why report on those exceptions. Why bring the mentally less fortunate to the limelight. So PLEASE stop reporting on Mr. Wurzelbacher. It's not doing anyone any good including Mr. Wurzelbacher.

    January 12, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  8. Al, California

    This is a trap for republicans: they have so many morons in their base, that in 2012 many will want Palin+Plumber run for presidency. Serves them right.

    January 12, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  9. Seth

    I think the media needs to be banned from covering this idiot. His 15 minutes are long over. ENOUGH ALREADY!

    January 12, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  10. Michael Anthony

    Much as I hate to admit it, I ACTUALLY AGREE WITH THIS.

    Let us all be honest enough, jokes about Joe the Plumber aside, that he is actually right!

    January 12, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  11. debra

    Hasn't his 15 minutes of fame expired? Sheesh.

    January 12, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  12. NICK

    We should leave JOE the reporter alone, can't you all see we may have another ERNIE PYLE in the making.... LOL

    January 12, 2009 02:38 pm at 2:38 pm |
  13. Tony in Maine

    Palin and Joe in 2012.

    Push SNL to the top of the charts.

    January 12, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  14. Marilyn

    The media has every right to report on what is being done in our name and with our tax dollars!! In fact, it is their duty!! What should NOT be reported on is this idiot running around overseas pretending to be something he is not and pretending to represent the rest of us.

    January 12, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  15. Doug

    At least he spoke a little bit about something he knows: showers!

    January 12, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  16. Texas Doc

    Evidence enough of the conservative/GOP war on intelligence and reason. C'mon people what kind of morons put ...a moron like Joe up to this? Republicans, that's who. Theya are laughing at you by doing this kind of stuff. Sarah Palin is another example of just how little they think of America.

    January 12, 2009 02:39 pm at 2:39 pm |
  17. Emi

    I'm Canadian and that's what i love American politics... ( no pun intended to our neighbours to the south ) You have one guy who makes a comment when they had the presdential race and now he thinks he's a reporter.. not for anything but who the hell is this guy and why is making any kind of noise in the U.S. next thing you know he'll be running his own talk show...You guys should seriously take this Joe " the plummber " out of the news because it's making the U.S look like a laughing stock....

    January 12, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  18. mary, colorado springs, co

    What has this plumber/politician/foreign correspondent have to say that anyone would be interested in hearing?

    January 12, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  19. Reality Check Richmond Virginia

    interesting observation coming from someone who is now a member of the media........though I'm sure there are more qualified people reporting for their middle school newspapers.


    January 12, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  20. Kim

    Who let this idiot out of his village?

    January 12, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  21. Brian

    I concur with his premise.
    Spin doctors should not be permitted in War Zones.
    Go for it Joe.
    You can't be any worse than some of the ones that are out there.

    January 12, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  22. Joe's Boss

    Joe should go back to removing the crap from toilets than spewing it from his mouth.

    January 12, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  23. Steve

    I Joe spent half as much time in a school to get his plumbing license maybe, and that is a BIG maybe, he would be legit at something.

    Every time he opens his mouth something stupid comes out.
    Please make him go away.Stop reporting on Joe the unlicensed plumber!

    January 12, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  24. MadMonk

    You go Joe! Don't let the idiots of the mainstream press (or those that suck them off) keep you from reporting the truth.

    January 12, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
  25. Alesia

    Joe the Joke got a JOB????

    January 12, 2009 02:40 pm at 2:40 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61