Entries Tagged as 'Rush Limbaugh'

Which is More Useless? Limbaugh or a Classics Major?

November 2nd, 2011 at 1:48 pm 87 Comments

Dear Mr. Rush Limbaugh,

I see you have let your own educational insecurities shine through in your latest rant in which you “bravely” attempted to decipher the “sad-sack story” of a Classical Studies scholar. Bravo. If only you had taken a philosophy course about the Sophists, you might have been better at debating your point. Unfortunately, your rhetoric fails you and you blunder through your argument, proving the limited grasp you have on the concept of higher thinking.

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Cain Was Not Playing A ‘Race Card’

October 4th, 2011 at 2:03 pm 111 Comments

There is a difference between being post-racial and racially blind. Herman Cain’s resume is as long as my driveway. He is highly intelligent and energetic, prostate a mathematician and Navy man who exudes positivism and confidence and has accomplished much. He will tell anyone who listens that he owes much of his success to the opportunities afforded him by the USA. This is a someone who has expressed no residual anger against the USA for the stains of the racist past, sale ones which Mr. Cain, patient as a Black man growing up in Jim Crow Georgia, surely experienced first hand. Instead he has chosen to base his message on America’s best todays rather than its worst yesterdays.

Now, he has been reluctantly pulled into a controversy over an offensive word that was reportedly etched on a rock outside of a hunting ranch leased by Governor Rick Perry. Apparently the word “Niggerhead” was what it read, until painted over after some time in the early 1980s by Perry. Still, Cain has been repeatedly asked, what does it say about his opponent for the nomination?

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Limbaugh: How Dare Cain Find “Niggerhead” Offensive

October 4th, 2011 at 7:34 am 127 Comments

After a story this weekend unturned the most famous rock in the recent history of presidential politics, some made a prediction which I hoped would prove incorrect: The person most at risk of harm from a racial controversy in the GOP race would prove to be Herman Cain. Cain has thrived in part by reassuring Republicans on race. The speech that won him the Florida CPAC straw poll passionately denied that there was any racial component to opposition to the Obama administration. But what would happen if Cain deviated from this script?

He deviated this Weekend. He said of the painted stone on the Perry Hunting tract: “Since Governor Perry has been going there for years to hunt, I think that it shows a lack of sensitivity for a long time of not taking that word off of that rock and renaming the place.”

The next day Rush Limbaugh took to the airwaves to blast Cain: Click here to read more

Decline and Fall

David Frum August 11th, 2011 at 12:16 pm 66 Comments

Conor Friedersdorf laments in The Atlantic about the tendency of some conservatives to fixate on the supposed decline & fall of the Western world.

Why single out conservatives? Much of modern environmentalism is a literature of doom. Nobody would call writers such as Gore Vidal, Edmund Wilson, or George Kennan “conservative,” yet they devoted half their careers to prophesying the end of everything.

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Limbaugh Loses a Listener

August 10th, 2011 at 1:39 pm 69 Comments

Conservative writer and radio host D.R. Tucker is no stranger to challenging conservative orthodoxy. On FrumForum he published his Confessions of a Climate Change Convert and now he has written about why he can no longer support Rush Limbaugh.

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David Frum July 29th, 2011 at 2:38 pm 205 Comments

I listened to about 45 minutes of the first hour of Rush Limbaugh in the car today.

The dominant theme of the hour, repeated over and over: “You” – meaning, Limbaugh listeners – are not “losers.” It’s Obama’s who’s a “loser.”

The word “loser” must have been repeated dozens of times, half as reassurance (that’s what you are not!), half as epithet (that’s what President Obama is!)

The psychological interpretation of what’s going on here is almost too obvious to remark. But what I can’t decide is whether it’s more sinister or more sad.

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Clear it with Rush

David Frum July 25th, 2011 at 3:29 pm 37 Comments

I heard Rush Limbaugh talk in his first hour today about the details of the Boehner plan. I was in the car returning from the gym, and I just assumed I’d missed the release of the plan earlier.

But no. Limbaugh indeed got the scoop.

It’s worth noting that for all the conservative obsession with the dreaded Mainstream Media, it is really the Republican party that is far more in thrall to its pet media organizations. A Democratic plan proposal can survive the disapproval of the New York Times. But Rush Limbaugh has veto power over the GOP as now constituted.

It’s incredible, it’s self-defeating, it’s absurd … but it’s the way it is.

Conservatives Dismiss Pay-To-Play in Talk Radio

David Frum June 16th, 2011 at 11:55 am 105 Comments

Politico’s story yesterday about pay-to-play on conservative radio got the usual ho-hum treatment from most conservative blogs — that is, when it got any mention at all.

Here’s Ed Morrissey at Hot Air.
The claim that “Those fees buy them a variety of promotional tie-ins, as well as regular on-air plugs” describes all commercial radio, not just talk shows and not just conservatives.  Advertisers buy time to get those on-air plugs, and usually pay extra for live reads and promotional tie-ins.  It’s about as explosive a revelation as the fact that car prices vary depending on how well a consumer dickers, or that mail-order products can differ in quality.
Next week from Politico: Boiling water can often be unsafe for bathing
Everybody does it folks, nothing to see.
But the ho-hum attitude skiddles over some important questions, beginning with these two:
1) Michael Harrison of Talkers magazine may say that Rush Limbaugh and Glenn Beck are in the same business as the local top-40 disc jockey. I may agree. For all I know, Ed Morrissey may agree. But do the listeners agree? Or do they imagine they are hearing information from a trusted, reliable source? If so, the hired nature of that information is troubling.
2) Sponsorship is not just a radio issue. Radio practices have spread throughout the conservative media world, to television and newspapers as well. A New York Times editorial writer cannot moonlight as an investment adviser. Rachel Maddow does not operate a political consulting business, accepting fees from clients who might be interested in what she has to say on air.
Those standards are not, unfortunately, consistently upheld by their conservative counterparts.

Conservative Media’s Pay-To-Play Deals

David Frum June 15th, 2011 at 4:23 pm 95 Comments

Why are conservatives so ready to accept behaviors in their own media that they themselves would damn as outrageous if they occurred in non-conservative media? This is an issue I address in my latest column for The Week.

Regular listeners to the Rush Limbaugh program will rarely, if ever, hear the broadcaster cite the work of the American Enterprise Institute. Or the Cato Institute. Or the Manhattan Institute. Or other right-of-center think tanks.

The rival Heritage Foundation does, however, get frequent and favorable mention on the most popular conservative talk show in America. In part, Heritage owes this attention to Limbaugh’s genuine admiration for the institution:

“There were a lot of people who nobody ever heard of who were responsible for people like me all over the country amassing and acquiring knowledge that’s not available in a classroom anywhere, or not very many classrooms, and then being able to explain it to people who have not been able to access that information. These are academics, people that work at think tanks, laboring in the basements in anonymity, writing, researching, publishing so that people like me — I include Mr. Buckley, but he was well known — but were are all kinds of people who were producing brilliant things, research, opinion pieces that I was able to access, and I was an omnivorous and voluminous reader when it came to public policy and current events and history and things.

“One of the places that was invaluable to me in acquiring a bedrock or foundation, understanding of conservatism — and Mr. Buckley was one, of course, and Ronald Reagan — but the Heritage Foundation, and to this day we quote work that comes out of the Heritage Foundation …”

But there’s another reason that Heritage gets such unique and favorable treatment on the Limbaugh program. It pays for it.

Politico reports:

“The Heritage Foundation pays about $2 million to sponsor Limbaugh’s show and about $1.3 million to do the same with Hannity’s — and considers it money well spent.

“‘We approach it the way anyone approaches advertising: Where is our audience that wants to buy what you sell?’ Genevieve Wood, Heritage’s vice president for operations and marketing. ‘And their audiences obviously fit that model for us. They promote conservative ideas and that’s what we do.’

“Last month, in the midst of a flurry of scrutiny of GOP presidential candidates’ stances on health insurance mandates similar to one included in the 2010 Democratic healthcare overhaul, Limbaugh took to the airwaves to defend Heritage’s past support for such a proposal.

“‘The Heritage Foundation to this day says they are being impugned and misrepresented in terms of their advocacy for such a thing,’ Limbaugh said, explaining that the venerable think tank ‘abandoned the idea once they saw it implemented’ and realized ‘it doesn’t work’ …”

(Read the whole Politico story here.)

Understand: We are not talking about commercials, separated from the main flow of editorial content. Heritage work is embedded and inserted directly into the editorial flow of the Limbaugh program, as if selected without regard to the money paid.

Also understand: It’s not just Limbaugh, and it’s not just Heritage.

Heritage pays for similar treatment on Sean Hannity’s radio program. FreedomWorks pays for mentions on the Glenn Beck show. Americans for Prosperity pays to be promoted on Mark Levin’s show. The endorsements often obscure the paid-for nature of the broadcaster’s endorsement.

Ditto for the relentless advocacy of gold purchases by almost every radio host.

Just imagine if the CBS Evening News were to accept $2 million from a pharmaceutical company, and then run news spots about the excellent benefits from taking that company’s medication. Imagine if the Los Angeles Times accepted $2 million from a company promoting a natural gas pipeline, and then published editorials advocating government approval of the pipeline route. Imagine if columnists at the Financial Times accepted money to tout British bonds or German stocks.

Shocking, right? Yet for millions of Americans, conservative talk radio is a news source much more trusted than CBS or the Los Angeles Times or the Financial Times.

Read the rest of the column here.

Down the Memory Hole

David Frum November 20th, 2009 at 10:30 am 11 Comments

“This [Sarah Palin] is a woman who has got into a position of leadership by sending very powerful sexual signals. And we see that in the way that men like her much more than women do.”

She’s Sending, but He Ain’t Receivin’

Did David Frum really say this about Sarah Palin? Apparently so, and on PBS:

This is a woman who has got into a position of leadership by sending very powerful sexual signals. And we see that in the way that men like her much more than women do.

With this line of attack, David seems to be channeling his inner Andrew Sullivan.

(By the way, when I saw her campaign in N.H., I was surrounded by moms with strollers.)

- Mark Steyn, NRO The Corner, Nov. 19, 2009.

“I’m sure I’m not the only male in America who, when Palin dropped her first wink, sat up a little straighter on the couch and said, “Hey, I think she just winked at me.” And her smile. By the end, when she clearly knew she was doing well, it was so sparkling it was almost mesmerizing. It sent little starbursts through the screen and ricocheting around the living rooms of America. ” – Rich Lowry, NRO The Corner, Oct. 3, 2009.

“Plus she’s a housewife. Before that she’s a babe. I saw a picture.”
-Rush Limbaugh, Feb. 28, 2008.