January 12th, 2009
03:01 PM ET
11 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. GA Independent

    Sad. People are dying over there on both sides and this bozo is given a platform.

    Can't we send him to Alaska? Maybe his mouth would freeze as well as his brain.

    January 12, 2009 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  2. monica pratt

    this guy is one ignorant JERK. "Media shouldn't be allowed to report on war because they don't know the whole story " – well, duh, that's what the media does – inform the public! If he's so against journalists, why is this moron pretending to be one?? His story sure was deep, "showers and picnics"... I would think the Palestinians have more on their mind other than planning a picnic. Good God, CNN, please stop covering this JERK! Monica / Victoria, BC CDA

    January 12, 2009 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  3. Amy

    Joe the Plumber is such a hypocrite. If media shouldn't report on wars he should follow his own advice! I can't believe people actually care about what he says. He's been discredited by so many yet news outlets continue to report on him and inflate his sense of self worth. Enough already.

    January 12, 2009 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  4. Gina, Baltimore, Maryland

    I know anything is possible in America. But Joe the Plumber? People will do anything for their 15 minutes. I'm shaking my head right now. Sigh.

    January 12, 2009 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  5. Chris

    He makes one good point that I buy–him being a plumber is not it. The media these days "spins" things their way which is not always the right or honest way. I have no issue with media covering the war just be honest about what your reporting and give us both sides. I have a hard time buying/believing anything the govt nor media tells us esp. after hearing that Egypt/Saudi Arabia loves Americans through the media eyes yet you go there and see for yourself this is not the case.

    January 12, 2009 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  6. Obit

    So many of you are filled with so much hate. You sicken me.

    January 12, 2009 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  7. Michael (Nashville, TN)

    Will someone please tell Samuel his 15 minutes of fame ended 3 hours ago.

    p.s. Holland, OH called, they want their idiot back.

    January 12, 2009 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  8. Melissa B ~ California

    Joe the plumber is just another republican moron, and his belief to censor the press, goes against the Bill of Rights and our founding father's ideals when they wrote The Constitution and The Declaration of Independence.

    January 12, 2009 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  9. vicarkatz

    Has Joe been sniffing the Draino again? Or was it Liquid Plumber?

    January 12, 2009 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  10. Susan

    What a jerk!

    January 12, 2009 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  11. Frank, Las Vegas

    Now it's Joe the Dummy..... he says the media shouldn't be allowed to report on the war. I guess he doesn't understand that HE"S now a part of the media! Please Joe (what ever you are this week), Please GO AWAY!

    January 12, 2009 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  12. Andy

    so he doesnt think people should report on war....but he is in Gaza reporting on the war.......hmmm interesting concept.

    January 12, 2009 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  13. Obama 08

    He's a correspondent there, so technically he's a part of the media... He doesn't know what he's talking about. GO AWAY!!!

    January 12, 2009 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  14. Kris

    Let Joe off the leash, he will go single handedly take care of business there .

    January 12, 2009 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  15. JoeBlowMe

    Seriously, why the hell does anyone care what Joe "the Plumber" thinks or says? Surely there are much more credible and experienced people talking about the war we'd care to hear from. Not this hack.

    January 12, 2009 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  16. john

    How is the media showing that 'Israel is the bad guy" ? The US has long history with trading and working with Israel and their government. Which is why the US wouldn't step in and help Lebanon, when Israel attacks them. Bush even said today that Israel has a right to defend herself and a cease fire can only happen if Hamas stops firing rockets. So, how is Israel being the bad guy? Let's see, maybe one thing is when they fire rockets and blow up schools full of children, including the UN school. So Israel has 20 or 30 deaths and wounded and Gaza has over 800 deaths and wounded. Its just like the US invading Iraq and killing civilians all over again.

    January 12, 2009 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  17. Mike Ft Collins , CO

    Why does the media keep providing this bonehead a platform? Is he news or are they just despirate for something to cover?

    January 12, 2009 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  18. Dave G

    Yeah, this guy is your average Joe...

    January 12, 2009 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  19. Blair Fell

    joe the plumber is an idiot. Although sending him to a war zone isn't a bad idea. fingers crossed.

    January 12, 2009 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  20. Michael

    Joe the Plumber as constitutional scholar and conservative war correspondent...well, why not? If a know-nothing babe with big hair and and over-sexed child can be a vice-presidential nominee, why can't a failed plumber become a conservative commentator?

    January 12, 2009 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  21. CD from CO

    Give me a break! Does Mr. Joe the Plumber know of the First Amendment that says we have freedom of the press? The press is out there INFORMING us of what is going on in the world. With all those people unemployed, he is the best pjtv can come up with as a reporter? He is incompetent, just like Palin and McCain were....go away. PLEASE go away.

    January 12, 2009 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  22. MMMM its good

    Hey Andy J. Czars aren't socialist they're facist ( opposite of socialism on the polictical spectrum). Know your history.

    January 12, 2009 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  23. Joe the Moron

    Joe the Putz

    January 12, 2009 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  24. J. Dean


    January 12, 2009 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  25. Chuck

    How can anyone take this guy seriously?

    Oh yeah, the state of journalism today; NEVERMIND……..

    January 12, 2009 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
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