BECK, GOLDBERG, AND HITLER COMPARISONS…. On Monday’s edition of Glenn Beck’s hopelessly bizarre Fox News program, the host discussed General Motors’ bankruptcy, and the federal intervention to save the company, with the National Review‘s Jonah Goldberg. If you’re already thinking, “Uh oh,” you still might be surprised by their chat.

Beck began by explaining to viewers that “Liberal Fascism,” Goldberg’s book, is necessary to “understand” what has “destroyed our country.” Beck added that Goldberg’s book “began to open my eyes,” and prompted the Fox News host to do “an awful lot of research.”

The notion of Beck using “Liberal Fascism” as a springboard for genuine academic research is literally laughable, but let’s move on.

Beck asked his guest if there are “any examples in history where this kind of stuff has happened — what’s happening today — and what does it lead to?” He was vague about what “this kind of stuff” included, but presumably it dealt with the government rescue of GM. Goldberg responded with the comparison that Beck wanted to hear:

“Well, I mean, we saw — I mean, it’s funny. I mean, again, you know, I’m not calling Barack Obama a Hitler and I’m not calling him Nazis and all the rest. But, you know, in fascism, we saw the people’s car. We call it the Volkswagen, where the state said what we’re going to do is we’re going to take over the auto industry — government and business and unions are going to get together and we’re going to create cars to fill a political need rather than a market need and give people these cars.”

Any thought that begins, “I’m not calling Barack Obama a Hitler, but….” is a big hint that a lot of nonsense is sure to follow.

What does the GM rescue have to do with the Nazis and Volkswagen? Literally nothing, but Goldberg seemed quite pleased with himself for drawing the comparison, and Glenn Beck found all of this fascinating.

These guys really are beyond parody.

Steve Benen

Follow Steve on Twitter @stevebenen. Steve Benen is a producer at MSNBC's The Rachel Maddow Show. He was the principal contributor to the Washington Monthly's Political Animal blog from August 2008 until January 2012.