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. Justin from New Haven, CT

    The media is the reason this idiot even gets any attention.

    January 12, 2009 04:51 pm at 4:51 pm |
  2. Not Surprised

    Compared to this guy, Fox News seems almost credible. What a goob! I'd like like that minute of my life back, please.

    January 12, 2009 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |
  3. Jacko

    Is Joe Jewish? Why is he over there and who paid for his trip?

    January 12, 2009 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  4. Chris in VA

    Keep blabbing on, Joe - or Sam - or whatever your real name is - you have become the comic relief in the midst of a tragedy....not even Comedy Central could make you up...

    January 12, 2009 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  5. Vito 1502

    If Joe wants to 'know the whole story behind it half the time", then he is in the wrong location to get the other half. The 'story' from the Israeli side has been told to no end, and extremely overdone.

    He needs to get over into Gaza and "experience" what it's like to have things "dictated" from a high explosive point of view.

    Clarksville, TN

    January 12, 2009 04:53 pm at 4:53 pm |
  6. California Gold

    I think we ought to send Joe the Plumber to negotiate a peace. That's the next logical step for him. He seems to have such a firm grasp of international politics, a thorough understanding of regional and religious beliefs, why yes. Let Joe the Plumber swagger in, sit down at the table, slap a plumber's wrench on the table, finger a roll of teflon tape with a menacing look and tell these governments to stop with the bombs because “So you can’t plan your day, you can’t take a picnic.“ Pure genius!!!

    January 12, 2009 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  7. Concerned for all Americans

    How sad this man is still allowed on television. The media should be banned from reporting? Where is this guy from? Russia!? I bet he feels president Bush has done a super job and that the White House press should be barred there too. Genius. I can see why Mccain based his entire campaign on you...

    Memo to the plumber. If it were not for the media this war might have never been found out for what it really was. A sham and a lie. When the media does its job people are informed and leaders are kept in check.

    January 12, 2009 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  8. T-Dub

    This is more about generating hits on the pjtv.com website than it is about real journalistic insight.

    January 12, 2009 04:54 pm at 4:54 pm |
  9. beartrack

    Ban this bozo and stop giving him coverage.

    January 12, 2009 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  10. Matt in Oregon

    "Unload on the boy," "take quick showers," ... yowza. Paging Dr. Freud.

    January 12, 2009 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  11. Shannon

    What an idiot.

    January 12, 2009 04:56 pm at 4:56 pm |
  12. The Watcher

    Leave Joe alone!! He's just there to record a historic palestinian extinction event. The SUICIDE of a nation by an armed force. Really the Palestinian government wants the Hamas to make sure the extinction is complete. Hamas is Palestine and Palestine is Hamas, just look at the logical facts shall we??. No goverment, no laws, no army, no economic resources, all the marks of nation in its death throes.
    Who in there right minds would intimdate a nation that has the power destroy another nation at will.
    There is not a person on this planet that can withstand bombs and bullets... but yet! the Palestinians remain in the area of conflict and impervious to that fact destruction will occur in that area. Cries of dead women and children flood the media.........Please!! Who are the responsible palestinian man or woman that leave children in a combat zone. Rational and humane thoughts would be to get women and children to a non-combative zone. Have you not notice in the majority of media pictures that a palestinian male without a single scratch on him carrying an injured child, where was he?? Please Mr.Hamas launch your rockets from my back yard and you run for safety , I will stay here and watch artillary and bombs and see glorius heaven from my porch.

    I fear the Palestinian Nation has seen it's last footprint on this planet.

    Have a better after-life Palestine

    January 12, 2009 04:57 pm at 4:57 pm |
  13. Jonny

    joe, you are just another turd in the toilet of stupid opinions. go back to plumbing.

    January 12, 2009 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  14. SoCal Bob

    I can see it now. Joe the Plummer, Caribou Barbie's Secretary of State.

    January 12, 2009 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  15. Meka


    January 12, 2009 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  16. Ashley

    He clearly has no clue what he's talking about.

    January 12, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  17. SoCal Bob

    Sheesh... Make that "plumber."

    January 12, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  18. bfudd

    Who gives two good s..ts what this guy has to say. Is his 15 mins not up yet? Hey Joe shut the hell up and get back work cleaning porta jons.......

    January 12, 2009 04:59 pm at 4:59 pm |
  19. Morgan

    Don't you mean the media should be banned from talking about Gaza, Joe? Don't go there because the terrorist F-16's might actually hit you.

    January 12, 2009 05:00 pm at 5:00 pm |
  20. TexAnnie *-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-*

    This nutcase nobody thinks wars should not be reported by the media- what, so that way any military atrocities can be kept secret. Oh yeah, that's the zealot Republican way of thinking, isn't it?

    This guy is a nobody with no clue what he's doing. He's being USED by the far right media for their own doing, and he's too stupid to figure it out.

    January 12, 2009 05:01 pm at 5:01 pm |
  21. Davis

    Old Joe continues to burnish his know-nothing credentials. What a joke. How and why does this jerk remain a public figure. Close the door on Joe.

    January 12, 2009 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  22. Esam Ali

    "Wurzelbacher described the hardships of daily life in the southern Israeli town of Sderot" ... would you dare stay for one minute at the other side? Mr. plummer?? ... I agree with Lisa M. Bloom that you should stick your head in the toilet where it belongs...

    January 12, 2009 05:02 pm at 5:02 pm |
  23. Douglas Babb

    "Not only is there no god, but try getting a plumber on weekends." – Woody Allen

    Douglas Babb_Princeton_KY

    January 12, 2009 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  24. Wayne from Fullerton, CA

    I partially agree with Joe that some media should not cover this war.
    That media being Pajama Media and any other media outlet stupid enough to hire Joe the Plumber as a reporter.
    If I wrote a fiction book about the idiocy of this guy, it would never sell because no one would believe it.
    If I were a Democratic strategist and came up a plan to discredit conservatives that followed this scenario line by line, I would have been fired in a second because of the absurdity of the plan.
    Truth is surely stranger than fiction only because ignorance is so much more conveinant than truth.

    January 12, 2009 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  25. Seriously

    Stop playing! is this is an early April Fool's joke? This is not real. Are we being pranked??

    January 12, 2009 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
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