OK, I’m sick of this bullshit accusation that Jon Stewart was equating MSNBC as the opposite of FOX at his ralley. He was not. He was focusing on the larger issue of how politics is discussed in this country. And MSNBC is a part of that discussion whether you like it or not.
I think Jon’s politics are fairly clear. He has far fewer right wing guests than those from the left, and is constantly calling out FOX. But to isolate FOX and say it’s all their fault would just emphasize the us versus them mentality that poisons this society today.
While those on MSNBC are far more transparent and reliable when it comes to factual-ness, by responding to every outlandish freakout from the right they are doing nothing but contributing to the screaming match.
That is all.
I seem to recall that the current economic disaster began and in fact grew to its monstrous size under your President, whose policies were so short-sighted and reckless that he managed to turn a several billion dollar surplus into a near total economic collapse in eight years. The TARP was his program, a last minute bailout of his buds on the Street who had treated the money entrusted to them by the middle class as their own private casino funds, bet it all again and again in speculative endeavors that even they admit were absurd, and–gee whillikers!–ultimately collapsed under their own artificially propped up weight.
You may certainly disagree with Obama’s Keynesian approach to resolving the problem, but if you examine what is happening in the economy today there is little doubt that it is working. Not as quickly as everyone would like it to work, certainly, but then it took a very long time to create this mess, so fixing it in a little more than a year is and always was highly unlikely.
Still, let’s see what Obama has presided over thus far, shall we?
When he came in, the stock market was in free fall.
Today, it has completely recovered and is setting records.
When he came in, the American auto business was in danger of becoming extinct.
Today, Detroit may not be thriving, but the Big 3 are alive and well and looking to the future.
When he came in, Bush had paid out $700B in TARP money.
Today, all but $100B or so has been repaid.
When he came in, the nation was bleeding jobs, losing them at a pace that seemed assured to land us in another Great Depression.
Almost immediately, after passing the Recovery Act, the bleeding lessened. Every month of his administration, it has continued to lessen. Then, in December, the economy began producing jobs. Every month since then it has produced more jobs than the month before, with over 200K produced in April alone.
He has managed to accomplish something that Presidents have been trying to do since Teddy Roosevelt: get Congress to adopt a national health care policy that regulates the insurance industry and guarantees coverage without recision. It is not enough, but it is a start.
He has removed the banks as middle men in the student loan industry for the first time since Reagan put them there. Do you know when college education costs started skyrocketing? I’ll tell you: the Reagan administration. Hmmm… Again, it’s not nearly enough, but it’s a step.
Despite being fought tooth and nail by opposition whose only cohesive policy appears to be “say no to everything Obama wants,” he seems to be making headway against most of the big issues that faced him when he came into office. If the GOP would stop playing politics and start (oh, I don’t know) trying to govern, we could be well on our way not only to recovery but to a truly remarkable time in America. But the GOP would rather foster unrest and encourage anger and hatred and doubt than do anything positive at this point in their existence.
Truly, that’s too bad. When I look at the sorry state of the Republican Party right now, I just feel sad. It has been taken over by its worst elements. You ask me to “vote conservative”? I don’t think I could if I even wanted to. True conservatives are hard to come by in this charade of “tea party” extremists. When Bob Bennett gets kicked out of the Senate by his constituents in Utah for not being “conservative” enough, the world is out of whack. When Charlie Crist and Arlen Spector can’t find a place any longer within the GOP, something is seriously wrong with the party of Lincoln. When John McCain has to stoop to picking Sarah Freaking Palin as a running mate to appease the ultra right wing knuckle-draggers in his own party and then agree to allow her to foment vitriol in rally after rally to the extent that things got so out of control that even he had to step in at one rally and set his voters straight, someone has lost all sense of propriety. When the party becomes the home of bigots and birthers and men who show up to Presidential rallies wearing weapons, sanity has left the building. When the State of Maine, which usually remains somewhat above the lunacy and which has (to its credit) the only two moderate Republicans still allowed to roam free, loses its collective mind and issues a political platform that is so utterly (as one writer put it) “batshit crazy” that at one point it actually demands that the State of Maine officially oppose any attempt to create a one-world government, the whole party has officially come unhinged. Talk about giving in to the conspiracy theorists. Why don’t they just mandate tin-foil hats?
The thing is that conservatism, true conservatism, is needed in this country. Just as yin needs yang, as dark needs light, as up needs down, so liberal needs conservative. Everything requires balance. Bush proved that. When the Dems were rolling over and playing dead, acquiescing to everything he asked for in his first term instead of using the fact that his majorities were slim to negotiate better bills, Bush rode roughshod over the Constitution, deceived us into an immoral and very costly war, became the king of the unfunded mandate, and spent years rewarding the richest people in the land and ignoring everyone else so that, just before everything went to hell, the gap between executive and worker pay was by far the largest it had ever been in history. The rich got richer and richer and the middle class and the poor could not make ends meet.
These were his legacies, Greg. His legacies, not Obama’s. Because he was a neocon, not a true conservative. I do not agree with conservatism, as you are well aware. But I respect it. It is honorable and sincere and those who believe in its philosophies truly have the best interests of America in mind when they run for offices under conservative banners. But the neocons? Uh uh. History will record–if they have not started us on an irreparable path to our own national destruction–that they were one of the greediest and most self-righteous groups of leaders ever, that their hypocrisy was matched only by their amorality, and that they presided over the systematic and intentional undermining of a system of checks and balances that had been in place since the Great Depression which, once gone, unleashed a torrent of cash into their coffers and aggressively destroyed the economy for everyone else.
Sadly, there would be no place in today’s GOP for any GOP President in American history save Bush and (maybe) Reagan. Pappy Bush would never make it. Nixon? He’s practically a liberal. Ford? Forget it. Ike? No way in hell. Do you what the taxes were like under Ike? The highest progressive tax rate was 90% for the income in the highest margins. 90%. Imagine that! And what did the poorest pay? Nothing.
Where is the party of these Presidents? Where is the party of William F. Buckley? Where is the party of Russell Kirk? Hell, Barry Goldwater, who was considered so outrageously conservative in 1964 that Lyndon Johnson’s voters actually believed the “daisy ad,” would be in the Democratic Party today. William Safire defined himself as a “libertarian conservative”; is there even room for that in today’s GOP?
This GOP has earned its “Party of No” moniker. John Boehner’s office actually began circulating templates opposing Obama’s SCOTUS nominee with “INSERT NAME” on them, the templates proclaiming (basically) the downfall of civilization as we know it if this nominee (whoever it happened to be apparently was unimportant) gets through. Despite the fact–the fact–that Obama has, from the outset, reached out to them time after time after time, angering his own constituents in the process by (in the opinion of many on the left) giving away the store before negotiations even start just to show his good faith, the GOP insists on maintaining the lie that he refuses to include them in anything. The health care bill is chock full of Republican ideas, but all you heard from them was “he’s shoving it down our throats.” The first thing Obama did in the Recovery bill was to agree to tax cuts despite the fact that Keynesian economics tells us that they are utterly counterproductive because it would, he thought, bring the GOP to the table. In the final Stim Bill, there were I think almost $200B in cuts. My taxes were lower this year; were yours? A study just today says that we are being taxed at the lowest rate since Truman. Good Lord! What does anyone have to complain about the job the government is doing with the little we are still giving them?
Don’t get me wrong. I don’t want to give them more. I can’t afford to. But I’ll tell you what: unlike the idiots who took the Washington Metro to anti-government rallies to chant against all taxes and government interference in their daily lives (“but keep your hands off our Medicare!”) and then bitch about the long waits to get back home on the (government-run) trains, saying that someone should have put more cars on duty for the rallies, I understand what I am paying for. I am paying for the infrastructure of this nation. Much of it is old and crumbling and in desperate need of repair, and, yes, in need of our tax dollars to make those repairs happen. But I wouldn’t be driving on interstate highways with excellent police protection to places that won’t burn down because fire codes are strictly enforced where I can eat healthy food that I know won’t kill me because health codes too are enforced (and I could go on) if it were not for those tax dollars. That’s just the truth. And I for one would not wish to do without any of these things. And, seeing the excellent job that the banks and the insurance industries have done of keeping college and health costs down through good old fashioned capitalistic free enterprise, and watching the way Wall Street has consistently screwed the middle class while padding its pockets, even during the current crisis–even while taking taxpayer handouts!–I think I’d rather have the government in charge and take my chances.
(Oh, and before you say “but Medicare is a shambles,” just stop. It’s not. It’s just underfunded. Thank you, Bush tax cuts. There is a reason those tea partiers are holding those “hands off my medicare” signs, and it isn’t because they like crappy health care.)
I don’t usually bother trying to get you to see “my” side of the political argument, Greg. Frankly, it’s not worth it. You are an amazingly smart guy, but you’ve spent too many hours watching Fox News and believing that you are seeing something that actually is true. Heck, I think Rush Limbaugh has even begun to believe the garbage he spews into the ether, and he was perfectly willing to admit several years ago that he is, first and foremost, an entertainer. (FWIW, I don’t think that Ann Coulter believes a word she says. I think she is a huge hypocrite saying whatever she thinks will sell books, and she’s found a ready audience on Fox. She’s become such a caricature of herself that she simply cannot be taken seriously and, unlike Rush, she never was an entertainer, so there’s no excuse.)
But anyway, for whatever reason, I just thought I’d give this a shot, even if it falls on the deaf ears I suspect it will. You think I have swallowed Obama’s Kool-Aid and I’m just echoing the party line, but I’m not. It’s the Fox News types, the Tea Partiers, who have swallowed the Kool-Aid, and it really is poison. As for me, well, I question Obama all the time. I’m very unhappy with the fact that Guantanamo is still open, for instance. And I am deeply disturbed by the fact that he has not issued an Executive Order–as would be within his authority–halting execution of DADT until Congress can eliminate it. I think that at least one of these SCOTUS nominees should have been a flaming liberal; Bush did not hesitate to appoint ardent conservatives. I also think he appeases the GOP too much, especially when they have shown again and again that they are utterly unwilling to compromise in any way. My feeling is that he should just say “screw it” and use his Democratic majorities to forge powerful left-leaning legislation, just as Bush did on the other side with far smaller majorities (and even with a Senate tie): if the GOP doesn’t want a part in things, the heck with them. But he continues to be a statesman despite everything. And you know what? After eight years of having a class clown as President, I sort of like that.
I do hope that you have read this thoughtfully and recognize that I am, though unabashedly liberal, ardently in favor of a strong, thoughtful, rational opposition party. At this moment in time, the GOP is not that party. I fear that it is heading down a road from which it may not be able to recover for a very long time, if ever. When the Democrats were in a similar position–hijacked by their fringes–in the early 70′s, they turned inward, re-examined their priorities, and ended up nominating Jimmy Carter. You’ll argue that he was a disastrous President. I have two responses: first, it was circumstances, not policy, that caused the problems of the late 70′s, and anyone in the White House at that time would have been in the same boat. He was tremendously unlucky and, distrusted by the still very active fringes of the party, received little support in Congress. Second, because of the above, he lost in 1980, setting in motion both the ensuing twelve years of Republican rule and the rise of the neocons, which ultimately led to Bush and the near-destruction of the American economy. A party hijacked by its fringes fails. Even winning the Presidency in 1976 became a failure for the Democrats because those fringes within their party refused to let Carter govern, aligning themselves again and again with the GOP across the aisle. So the fringes caused what amounted to two decades of disaster for the party.
And I hate to say this, but the Democrats on the fringe, though clearly outside of the realm of political reality, stood for something morally good. They stood for basic human dignity and welfare, for equal rights for everyone, for helping those in need. What does the fringe of the right today stand for? Hatred and distrust. Hatred of Obama, hatred of gays, bigotry, anger, distrust of government, lack of faith in even the evidence right before their eyes that Obama is in fact a US citizen. I am worried that a party that gives in to this kind of fringe will implode, never to return. A new second party will emerge, perhaps the Libertarians, who are in a good position, but it would be a shame.
Abraham Lincoln is often cited as the standard bearer of the GOP. They like Teddy Roosevelt too. And Ike. But these guys would not recognize the party of today. And they sure as heck would not want to be a part of it.
But that’s OK: they wouldn’t be welcome if they did.
Let’s target his advertisers eh?
I will try and keep this list updated, but here’s a few..
(UPDATED 01/14/10) – Unfortunately, or fortunately as the case may be, listening online only exposes a few of his advertisers, most of them local to the station i listened to. I’ll try and catch a radio broadcast tomorrow and get a more accurate list.
If you appear on this list and no longer advertise on Rush Limbaugh’s show, leave a message in the comments below and you will be gladly removed!
Barnes and Noble (His listeners read?)
Customer Service Department
122 Fifth Avenue, 2nd Floor
New York, NY 10011
Bose Wave Radio
1-800-WWW-BOSE (1-800-999 2673)
Framingham, MA 01701
6460 Hollis Street
Emeryville, CA 94608 USA
Citracal – Mission Pharmacal
Bennett Kennedy – Citracal Product Manager
P.O. Box 786099
San Antonio, TX 78278-6099
Diamond Home Improvement Center
2380 So. 6th street
Klamath Falls, OR
300 N. Lake Ave., Suite 1111
Pasadena, CA 91101
Web contact form
General Steel Metal Buildings
1075 South Yukon, Ste. 250
Lakewood, Colorado 80226
Toll Free: 1-888-98-STEEL
Gospel Rescue Mission
120 SE J Street
Grants Pass, OR 97526
Phone: (541) 476-0082
Fax: (541) 479-9427
Home Valley Bank
P.O. Box 817
Grants Pass, OR 97528
877-955-7082 Toll Free
51 Sawyer Road
Waltham, MA 02021
Laser Shield Home Security
Lear Financial (They sell those cheap gold coin rip-offs. Seem to market exclusively on Fox and right wing radio)
429 Santa Monica Blvd
Santa Monica, CA
Toll Free: 1 800 965-0580
Fax: (310) 656-3280
6515 S Rural Rd
Tempe, AZ 85283
Phone: 480 682 5100
Fax: 480 682 5101
32045 Castle Court
Evergreen, CO 80439
Mid-West Life Insurance Company of Tennessee
9151 Grapevine Hwy.
North Richland Hills, TX 76180
Phone (800) 733-1110
Mission Pharmacal Company
10999 IH-10 West Suite 1000
P.O. Box 786099
San Antonio, TX 78278-6099
Telephone: (800) 531-3333
TOLL FREE 866-355-4657
GRANTS PASS 541-956-4444
Neptune Society of Northern California
12070 Telegraph Road ..107
Santa Fe Springs, CA 90670
Oreck Upright Vacuum Cleaners
100 Plantation Road
New Orleans, Louisiana 70123
Online contact form
235 East 42nd Street
New York, NY 10017
20555 Victor Parkway
Livonia, MI 48152
P.O. Box 593330
Orlando, FL 32859-3330
Guest Relations Hotline
1 Civic Center Plaza, Suite 506
Poughkeepsie, NY 12601
12855 Flushing Meadows Drive
Saint Louis, MO 63131
*Scottrade flaks claim they haven’t advertised with Rush for years. Feedback, please, folks!*
Select Comfort Corporation
6105 Trenton Lane N
Minneapolis, MN 55442
Smart & Final
PO Box 512377
Los Angeles, CA 91001-0377
Sunshine Natural Foods
128 SW H St.
Grants Pass, OR 97526
The Swap Shop
3291 East Sunrise
Ft. Lauderdale, FL
Phone – 954.791.$WAP
THE HARD-TO-ANTICIPATE PARANOIA…. It’s generally wise for prominent political figures to consider how critics might interpret their words. If a team of detractors are studying every syllable, just waiting to pounce on something they can use, it makes sense to be cautious. There’s no benefit in giving rivals ammunition.
But in this environment, it’s hard to anticipate just how paranoid some people will choose to be.
Yesterday, for example, White House Office of Health Reform Communications Director Linda Douglass appeared in a three-minute video to debunk one of many bogus far-right claims. The White House blog post on this noted:
There is a lot of disinformation about health insurance reform out there, spanning from control of personal finances to end of life care. These rumors often travel just below the surface via chain emails or through casual conversation. Since we can’t keep track of all of them here at the White House, we’re asking for your help. If you get an email or see something on the web about health insurance reform that seems fishy, send it to email@example.com.
This hardly seemed controversial. There’s an aggressive campaign underway to mislead Americans, and the White House wants to help set the record straight. If some especially pernicious lies are making the rounds, folks can let the White House know directly, so officials can get the truth out.
Except, that’s not how the right sees it. RedState interpreted this to mean “the White House wants you to report … anybody publicly opposing” health care reform. Soon after, Rush Limbaugh had embraced the same line, and Malkin wasn’t far behind. Naturally, Drudge joined the fun.
By late yesterday, House Minority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.) was asserting that the White House wants Americans to report on each other. Today, Sen. John Cornyn (R-Tex.) appears to have completely lost his mind.
Cornyn says this practice would let the White House collect personal information about people who oppose the President.
“By requesting citizens send ‘fishy’ emails to the White House, it is inevitable that the names, email, addresses, IP addresses and private speech of U.S. citizens will be reported to the White House,” Cornyn wrote in a letter to Obama. “You should not be surprised that these actions taken by your White House staff raise the specter of a data collection program.”
Cornyn asked Obama to cease the program immediately, or at the very least explain what the White House would do with the information it collects.
This is what politics in America in the 21st century has come to.
Steve M. added, “I don’t blame the Obama people for the wording — it’s written in a way that makes perfect sense to sane, reasonable people. But the RedState blogger and Rush Limbaugh (and Malkin and, clearly, the GOP leadership) want crazy people to get upset.”
Quite right. All of these far-right clowns almost certainly recognize reality here. To help overcome lies and whisper campaigns, the White House wants to know what folks are hearing so officials can respond with the truth. Cornyn, Cantor, Limbaugh, et al, however, need to fuel right-wing rage, and since reality won’t do the job, they’re reduced to trash like this.
Rachel Maddow talks to Rep. Anthony Weiner, who threw down the gauntlet on health care reform, and forced the Republicans to vote on an amendment abolishing Medicare.
Rachel reports on the battle going on between those in Congress who are representing the interests of the insurance companies, and those representing the interests of their constituents.
Maddow: As for the many, many cries against a publicly funded insurance plan, well Democratic Congressman Anthony Weiner of New York is all over it. Congressman Weiner has cast himself as the health care version of Clarence the Angel, forcing everyone in Congress to think what life would be like without a very popular, already existing publicly funded health insurance plan. Congressman Weiner introduced an amendment tonight that would eliminate Medicare. Of course Mr. Weiner didn’t actually want Medicare to be eliminated. But he did want to force every conservative on the House Energy and Commerce Committee to have to go on the record that their position on the government run health plan upon which forty three million voters rely. In other words, really Republicans? You’re against government funded health care? Care to go on the real record with that? Care to vote to kill Medicare?
Rep. Weiner goes on to explain why his amendment went down in flames and that the Republicans just hate any government run health care, unless it’s Medicare and they are forced to say whether they’d really want to get rid of it. He then tells Rachel about a very bold move he’s going to make on health care reform.
Weiner: But it does lead us to the next logical step where I need my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to start to come to, and that is not why have a public option, but why have a private option at all? If we know for example that the one experiment we have is very successful in publicly funded health care through Medicare, why do we even need the insurance companies? What constructive role are they playing? We know they’re taking tens of billions of dollars each year and putting it into profits that should be going into health care, so tomorrow I’m going to be taking the next step and offering a true single payer health care plan, and I wanted people today to start to think about, “hey maybe that’s the way we do it”. It’s simpler, and we know that it works.
All I can say is amen brother. I think the Democrats have been wrong not to push for single payer and make the Republicans and Blue Dogs walk back from that. The Republicans are going to try to kill any reform whether it’s single payer, or even the compromised position of a public option. I think getting a decent public option in place would lead to single payer, but I don’t understand why they started there. If Congressman Weiner is willing to get enough of them on board with him to fight for single payer, and try to get some real reform passed, I’m with him. I guess we’ll be finding out how this plays with the leadership shortly.
Andrea Mitchell did a segment yesterday afternoon about Rush Limbaugh’s insane attack against Obama’s Supreme Court nominee by saying Sonia Sotomayor was tearing down Martin Luther King’s dream about race relations, I kid you not. Bob Shrum went off on Pat Buchanan after the MSNBC Republican analyst went into a racist diatribe about Sonia Sotomayor and President Obama.
I don’t think I’ve ever seen him get into it like that before. Buchanan is arguing that the civil rights movement was about protecting the rights of white people. I think. The viciousness with which Buchanan talks about race in America and Sonia Sotomayor is appalling, and frankly I don’t know how he sleeps at night.
Limbaugh: Now, you want to enshrine racism on the Supreme Court. It’s a setback for civil rights. Dr. King, you judge a person by the content of their character, not the color of their skin. it seems that all of his proponents have forgotten his number one goal…
Yes, Limbaugh actually tried to frame this debate using MLK’s best wishes against Obama and Sotomayor. Can you believe that? Pat Buchanan does.
Mitchell: Do you disagree with anything Rush Limbaugh said?
Buchanan: Yeah, I do agree, I don’t agree with some of the terms, but I do agree Sonia Sotomayor [he pronounces her name wrong, probably on purpose] does believe in race-based justice basically at the expense of white males and to advance people of color. The truth is that’s what Barack Obama believes as well.
See, Pat needed to disavow some of Limbaugh’s rhetoric to try and outdo it apparently. When Shrum came in to respond, Buchanan attacked his own record of political victories … and that set up the fireworks.
Buchanan: You’ve got that hostility and bigotry toward white males in America…
Yes, they are trying a race baiting reversal on civil rights. It’s astonishing. I didn’t know white men in America were so persecuted. Pat uses the Republican talking point and the distorted passage from her Berkeley talk against Sonia too…. Keep it white and male, you Republicans. It’s what you do.
The changing of the roles in the ideological landscape of 2009 has been nothing short of entertaining. During the past eight years, right-wingers across the land were shouting “love it or leave it,” meaning that, if you have a bone to pick with our Republican government, then you could leave the country and go elsewhere. I seem to recall they even referred to us dissenters as ‘traitors’ or worse.
Hey, love it or leave it, right?
Rather than use positive means to make America a better place, many of them are hell-bent on standing in the way. And unlike the left, who just wanted to end a meaningless war and make this country a better place for all, the right-wing just wants to wreak havoc. We are seeing it with many of our elected Republican officials, who are behaving like whining children. And much of this attitude seems to be coming from an expected place – right-wing talk radio.
And at least one radio owner has gotten fed up with this unconstructive attitude. The owner of Genesis Communications has stepped forward to cry “enough, already”:
That fingernails on the chalk board you hear across the radio airwaves are the voices of talk hosts attempting to take on Barack Obama. Bold yes, smart, maybe not. There are a limited number of hosts that have the mental capability and entertaining personality who can pull this off succesfully. We have several in our company on the national and local level.
There is risk in this. Risk of more regulation in a Democrat controlled government and risk of losing listeners. The constant pounding by so many in unison on “why this guy is bad and we are all heading to hell” is causing listener fatique. The information may be accurate, but without balance, may not be wise. Our Industry is an industry of entertainment. If we do not entertain while informing, we lose credibility and we lose market share. The great hosts entertain first, criticize second and inspire third. There needs to be some balance between talking about Obama and other life experiences. Putting a smile on a listener’s face in this environment is a challenge that needs to be met. Bash away at Obama all you want. Don’t forget, however, that talk radio listeners want to hear opinions, but they also want to get away from the significantly stressful reality they are experiencing. They are looking for solutions, inspiration and entertainment.
If a host cannot entertain and inspire, they should find another career. Right now, Talk Radio has too many hosts that need to find other careers.
Now, Bruce is obviously a conservative. But at least he’s talking sense. Rather than be the voice of negativity and hatred, right-wing talk radio needs to get back to the original mission of entertaining and inspiring. I especially get the feeling he’s talking about Rush Limbaugh.
Over the past six months or so, Limbaugh has been the most vocal proponent of obstructionism. He even came out and said that he hopes President Obama fails. Now, saying that while the United States is in the middle of devastating economic turmoil isn’t very inspiring, is it? Does Limbaugh actually want us all to succeed? Honestly, I don’t think he really cares, just so long as it doesn’t affect him. Because in Limbaugh’s America, it’s all about what’s good for him. The rest of us can just go pound sand.
And in his most recent expression of inspiration, he seemingly wants this whole country to fall apart, going so far as to work for the demise of America’s automobile industry. Yes, he is encouraging a boycott of General Motors.
“Nobody wants to support an Obama company,” he said, not too long after GM filed for bankruptcy reorganization and a government bailout (and subsequent majority ownership). Limbaugh also said, “a lot of people are not going to buy from Chrysler or General Motors as long as it is perceived Barack Obama is running it, because people do not want his policy to work here because this is antithetical to the American economic way of life.”
The fact that he wants this country to fail, if only to spite people he doesn’t like, says volumes about this disgusting pig of a man. For a quarter century, Limbaugh has painted a vivid picture of his so-called ‘ideal’ America, and his idea of a land of opportunity. Thing is, the only opportunity that matters to him is his own. Who cares about the rest? It’s all about him. He doesn’t give a shit about you or I.
Even the Democrats agree. “While it’s not surprising that Rush Limbaugh would root for the failure of a national institution for partisan political gain, it is surprising that the other so-called leaders of the Republican party are silently going along with him given how many hard working Americans rely on GM for a living,” said DNC spokesman Hari Sevugan.
To be fair, even Limbaugh’s clones are getting in on the act. “Every dollar spent with GM is a dollar spent against free enterprise,” conservative talker Hugh Hewitt wrote online last week. But these guys seem to just parrot whatever comes out of The Messiah’s big mouth.
On the surface, Limbaugh appears to be biting the hand that feeds him. After all, GM has always been a huge advertiser on radio in general, and has even been a big sponsor of talk radio, across the ideological spectrum. And in this day and age, that kind of support is hard to come by. But does Limbaugh really care? Has he amassed so much wealth and power that he can tell his sponsors to stick it where the sun don’t shine. Remember, it’s all about him.
But is anyone really surprised by all of this? If you are not with him, you are his enemy. No grey areas. Limbaugh, on the surface, never misses an opportunity to wrap himself in the American flag, when it serves his own self-indulgent purposes. Yet in reality, he is constantly wiping his fat ass with it. America is only America if it feeds his own massive ego.
The late George Carlin once claimed that he didn’t think Limbaugh believed half the stuff he said on the radio. It was merely just for shock value. I have long felt that too, but it’s quite likely that over the years, he’s started to believe his own bullshit. That he actually thinks what comes out of his mouth is indeed the gospel. Millions of dollars, tons of ego gratification (and massive amounts of prescription narcotics) will likely do that. He constantly boasts about being an ‘entertainer’, yet he lost that focus years ago. Now he has a self-absorbed messiah complex.
What we have here is a hollow shell of a man, a lonely, pathetic figure cut off from reality in his ivory tower mansion on the beach, completely withdrawn from the concerns of his fellow man and woman. He doesn’t care about anyone, he is too wrapped up in his own greed. He has become a living, breathing embodiment of Charles Foster Kane, also a pathetic fictional creation who wound up consumed by his own ego and lust for power, spending his last days withdrawn from reality in a cavernous mansion, all alone, and not particularly liked by anyone.
Fame and fortune can be a double-edged sword. Some can handle it well. Music icon Paul McCartney is way more wealthy and popular than Limbaugh ever will be. But he still feels quite comfortable walking around in public, talking to fans, and has a solid reputation as one who is gracious and eager to please. McCartney has been known to use his own power and wealth for good things, such as the humanitarian causes he supports, devoted to bring peace and make a positive impact on the world. U2′s Bono is another good example. Sure, some may snicker at his self-appointed role as world diplomat. But he knows he wields tons of clout, and feels that he can use it for good. Limbaugh, on the other hand, cannot handle fame and fortune. It has made him greedy, selfish and narcissistic.
What good is all that money and power if you can’t use if for good? If it only makes you a self-loathing recluse?
So, why does anyone still give a rat’s ass about the unhinged rantings of this self-absorbed mound of self-indulgence gone awry? And why does the modern-day conservative movement, and the Republican Party for that matter, yield so much power to a former disc jockey with a drug habit and lust for Dominican boys? A man with serious self-destructive tendencies. If Republicans were smart, they would seek out better role models. And I don’t mean Ronald Reagan. Reagan’s been gone so long from the scene that most of what they think they know about him has turned into myth by this point. They need to take a check-up from the neck-up, and stop putting so much faith on flawed false prophets, or they may find themselves deeper in the political abyss. That goes for Newt Gingrich as well. He’s a failed political has-been with an axe to grind. He will get you nowhere.
After all, Rush Limbaugh, it is plain to see that he cares about nobody but Rush Limbaugh. If this country spirals into another Great Depression, he could give a shit, so long as it doesn’t hurt his bottom line. If he starts to lose income or sponsors, then we may see him break a sweat. But he has jumped the proverbial shark, in that he feels that if he’s too nice, he’ll lose fans. He thinks they still want blood. In short, he’s painted himself into a corner. And since he doesn’t know how to get out of it, he’s wrapped himself in his own insecurity and projected his own self-hatred upon the people who still hang on his every word.
Thing is, I don’t think Limbaugh just hates America. I think he hates everyone in it.
The Big Hate
By PAUL KRUGMAN
Back in April, there was a huge fuss over an internal report by the Department of Homeland Security warning that current conditions resemble those in the early 1990s — a time marked by an upsurge of right-wing extremism that culminated in the Oklahoma City bombing.
Conservatives were outraged. The chairman of the Republican National Committee denounced the report as an attempt to “segment out conservatives in this country who have a different philosophy or view from this administration” and label them as terrorists.
But with the murder of Dr. George Tiller by an anti-abortion fanatic, closely followed by a shooting by a white supremacist at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum, the analysis looks prescient.
There is, however, one important thing that the D.H.S. report didn’t say: Today, as in the early years of the Clinton administration but to an even greater extent, right-wing extremism is being systematically fed by the conservative media and political establishment.
Now, for the most part, the likes of Fox News and the R.N.C. haven’t directly incited violence, despite Bill O’Reilly’s declarations that “some” called Dr. Tiller “Tiller the Baby Killer,” that he had “blood on his hands,” and that he was a “guy operating a death mill.” But they have gone out of their way to provide a platform for conspiracy theories and apocalyptic rhetoric, just as they did the last time a Democrat held the White House.
And at this point, whatever dividing line there was between mainstream conservatism and the black-helicopter crowd seems to have been virtually erased.
Exhibit A for the mainstreaming of right-wing extremism is Fox News’s new star, Glenn Beck. Here we have a network where, like it or not, millions of Americans get their news — and it gives daily airtime to a commentator who, among other things, warned viewers that the Federal Emergency Management Agency might be building concentration camps as part of the Obama administration’s “totalitarian” agenda (although he eventually conceded that nothing of the kind was happening).
But let’s not neglect the print news media. In the Bush years, The Washington Times became an important media player because it was widely regarded as the Bush administration’s house organ. Earlier this week, the newspaper saw fit to run an opinion piece declaring that President Obama “not only identifies with Muslims, but actually may still be one himself,” and that in any case he has “aligned himself” with the radical Muslim Brotherhood.
And then there’s Rush Limbaugh. His rants today aren’t very different from his rants in 1993. But he occupies a different position in the scheme of things. Remember, during the Bush years Mr. Limbaugh became very much a political insider. Indeed, according to a recent Gallup survey, 10 percent of Republicans now consider him the “main person who speaks for the Republican Party today,” putting him in a three-way tie with Dick Cheney and Newt Gingrich. So when Mr. Limbaugh peddles conspiracy theories — suggesting, for example, that fears over swine flu were being hyped “to get people to respond to government orders” — that’s a case of the conservative media establishment joining hands with the lunatic fringe.
It’s not surprising, then, that politicians are doing the same thing. The R.N.C. says that “the Democratic Party is dedicated to restructuring American society along socialist ideals.” And when Jon Voight, the actor, told the audience at a Republican fund-raiser this week that the president is a “false prophet” and that “we and we alone are the right frame of mind to free this nation from this Obama oppression,” Mitch McConnell, the Senate minority leader, thanked him, saying that he “really enjoyed” the remarks.
Credit where credit is due. Some figures in the conservative media have refused to go along with the big hate — people like Fox’s Shepard Smith and Catherine Herridge, who debunked the attacks on that Homeland Security report two months ago. But this doesn’t change the broad picture, which is that supposedly respectable news organizations and political figures are giving aid and comfort to dangerous extremism.
What will the consequences be? Nobody knows, of course, although the analysts at Homeland Security fretted that things may turn out even worse than in the 1990s — that thanks, in part, to the election of an African-American president, “the threat posed by lone wolves and small terrorist cells is more pronounced than in past years.”
And that’s a threat to take seriously. Yes, the worst terrorist attack in our history was perpetrated by a foreign conspiracy. But the second worst, the Oklahoma City bombing, was perpetrated by an all-American lunatic. Politicians and media organizations wind up such people at their, and our, peril.
Jon Voight, emceeing the GOP’s fundraiser on Monday (lunacy highlights added):
Obama really thinks that he is a soft-spoken Julius Caeser. He thinks he’s going to conquer the world with his soft-spoken sweet talk. And really thinks he’s going to bring all the enemies of the world into a little playground where they’ll swing each other back and forth. We and we alone are the right frame of mind to free this nation from this Obama oppression.
And let’s give thanks to all the great people like Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh, Bill O’Reilly, Laura Ingraham, Mark Levin, William Bennett, Glenn Beck, Hugh Hewitt, Dennis Prager, Michael Medved, Dennis Miller, Dick Morris, Ann Coulter, John Kasich, Michael Steele, Karl Rove, Newt Gingrich, Thomas Sowell, Victor Davis Hanson, Shelby Steele, Charles Krauthammer, Michelle Malkin, Fred Barnes and so many others. Let’s give thanks to them for not giving up and staying the course to bring an end to this false prophet Obama.
False prophet? Soft-spoken Julius Caesar? Obama oppression?
Jeesh! Psycho Talk pretty much sums it up. Welcome to the “modern” Republican Party.