Thursday, January 29, 2009

Rush Limbaugh is a Big Fat Bloviating Gas Bag

In a healthy country populated with an intelligent, enlightened citizenry, Rush Limbaugh would today be standing on the bread line - right behind (or perhaps in front of) Sean Hannity, Michael "Savage" Wiener and Ann Coulter. He probably would have ended up as a used car salesman or a clerk in a liquor store. His opinion would not have been taken seriously by anyone except maybe a sympathetic bartender.

Some bartenders are pretty good psychologists not to mention being fairly adept at feigning interest in the most boring of topics. There is a gentleman named Bill Vaughan who used to tend bar at the old Orange Inn Tap Room here in Goshen, New York. Heaven knows how many hours the poor guy spent listening to me waxing inebriate on all matter of subjects from the deplorable state of American politics to the age-old question as to who was the funniest of the two: Stan Laurel or Oliver Hardy? I would imagine that in a perfect society, no one other than a patient, world-weary and kindly mixologist would ever have bothered paying any attention to the opinions expressed by the likes of Rush Limbaugh.

His fawning audience of giddy, sycophantic little robots (who cheerfully refer to themselves as "ditto-heads") are spoon-fed a daily diet of ignorance, fear and propaganda under the guise of "excellence in broadcasting". One of the most annoying things about the man is his positively inflated opinion of himself. At the beginning of every broadcast he even compares himself to God, implying that his talent is "on loan" from the Almighty Himself. And he never gets tired of telling his clueless listeners how much power he has. That he has a lot of power and influence cannot be denied, but he never tires of reminding us of this unfortunate fact.

During the Democratic party's primary season he gleefully demonstrated that power once again when he instructed his moronic faithful to vote overwhelmingly for Hillary Clinton in states where cross-party voting was legal. His motivation was laughably obvious to anyone bothering to pay attention. The last thing the Republicans wanted was to have John McCain in competition with an articulate visionary like Barack Obama. Senator Clinton, they knew, was a sure loser. Had it not been for el Rushbo's electoral meddling, Obama's victory last summer would not have been the cliff hanger it turned out to be; it would have been a landslide.

And now he's at it again. Rush Limbaugh, in an effort to impress all of us with what a big and powerful dude he is, says he is going to "hijack" President Obama's honeymoon with the print and electronic media. He was a little vague on exactly how he was going to do this but you can be sure he was just as sincere as can be. He was telling his listeners in the same breath that the President is more afraid of him than he is of Mitch McConnell "which says a lot about the Republican party", he added. Oh really? While he may be "the most powerful Republican in the country at the moment", as some in the media are implying, they are ignoring the fact that the "party of Lincoln" is in the process of self-destructing. At this writing Rod Blagojevich is the most powerful Democrat in Illinois. How much does that reveal about the current state of the Democratic party? Not much.

The most jaw-dropping spectacle one can witness is the sight of Right Wing politicians dropping to their knees on the alter of the Church of Limbaugh. A couple of days ago, Congressman Phil Gingrey of Georgia had the unmitigated gall to criticize him in an interview with the magazine Politico and on MSNBC's Hardball with Chris Matthews. Someone (probably Rush himself) got the message to Gingrey that any kind of negativity directed toward the Great One was a mortal sin punishable by political ostracism. Gingrey got the message loud and clear. Withing twenty-four hours he was on his knees, calling into the program and begging Rush to be absolved for his transgressions:

"I clearly ended up putting my foot in my mouth on some of those comments, and I just wanted to tell you, Rush — and all our conservative giants, who help us so much to maintain our base and grow it to get back this majority — that I regret those stupid comments."

It was one of the most pathetic things I've ever been forced to witness. Theodore Roosevelt would have said of Phil Gingrey (as he once said of his boss, President McKinley):

"He has all the spine of a chocolate eclair."

After Rush made some distasteful, racist comments regarding the President (which I won't reprint here - even I have standards, thank you very much!) MSNBC's Nora O'Donnell tried to get Indiana congressman Mike Pense to condemn the remarks. Pense merely tap danced around the question, frightened to death at the mere thought of uttering a word that would cause the wrath of Limbaugh to come crashing down on his political career. Ms. O'Donnell ended the interview by asking, "You're on your way to be interviewed on the Rush Limbaugh Show, aren't you Congressman?"

"Umm, I think so, Nora" replied an utterly fearful Mike Pense.

"We need to stop giving them coupons where they can go buy all kinds of junk. We just don't have the money. They're taking out, they put nothing in. And I'm sick and tired of playing the one phony game I've had to play and that is this so-called compassion for the poor. I don't have compassion for the poor."

Rush Limbaugh

"Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth"

Jesus of Nazareth

Like all of the Right Wing, media talking heads, Limbaugh is a hypocrite of Olympian proportions. In his book which inspired the title of this piece, Rush Limbaugh is a Big, Fat Idiot and Other Observations, the Soon-to-be Senator from Minnesota, Al Franken, wrote as follows:

"Given his feelings about the poor, you might find it surprising that Limbaugh has himself fed off the largess of the government in the form of unemployment insurance. Was Rush temporarily disabled? No....This self-described "rugged individual" and scourge of government handouts had the gall to file for unemployment at a time when he was able-bodied and spending his days sitting around the house eating junk food, too lazy to mow his own lawn."

One could literally go on for pages listing the contradictions and hypocrisies that are personified in the man's very being. The amazing thing is that there are many people - an estimated twenty million or more of them - who still take this asshole seriously! The most unpleasant aspect of my job is that I have to listen to Rush Limbaugh. That is not meant to imply that I listen to him every day, or for the full three hours that he is on the air - I can just take so much. But I do tune into his program a couple times a week and listen to it for as long as my stomach will allow (My endurance record is slightly over two hours). I have to do that in order to be able to comment intelligently on the bullshit he puts forward as fact. That might seem like a masochistic way to spend an afternoon but, hey! - A man's gotta do what a man's gotta do. About once a month I'll also tape an entire installment of Fox and Friends. I even read Ann Coulter's book Treason cover to cover. How's that for patience? It's all a simple case of "Know Your Enemy", you know what I mean?

From all that I have read and watched and listened to, the one common denominator that is shared by Rush Limbaugh and his compatriots on the Far Right is that they appeal to the very worst angels of our nature. And quite often, the recipients of their hateful ire are the most helpless among us. For the last thirty years, thanks to the abolition of the Fairness Doctrine, these people have dominated America's national political dialogue. It's high time we take it back, don'cha think?

Rush Limbaugh is not unique to American history. Three quarters of a century ago the opinion media was polluted by the minds of people like Westbrook Pegler, George Sokolsky and Walter Winchell. While they were all able to enjoy great fame and treasure while they were alive, death would find the three of them consigned history's garbage heap, forgotten and disgraced. Indeed, during the thirties and forties Winchell was arguably the most famous man in America. And yet when he died in 1972, the only person who bothered to show up at his funeral was his daughter. Do you remember the name Walter Winchell? Don't feel bad if you don't; not many people do.

Rush Limbaugh, too, will suffer posterity's indifference. Of that you may be completely certain.

Tom Degan

Goshen, NY


"Rush Limbaugh is a Big, Fat Idiot and Other Observations" by SENATOR Al Franken


As I was editing this piece, President Obama was on television signing into law the Lillie Leadbetter Act. After eight, long years, it is a beautiful thing indeed to hear the commander-in-chief speak in complete sentences, free of grammatical errors. [sigh].

For more recent postings on this electronic cesspool of liberal propaganda, kindly go to the link below:

"The Rant by Tom Degan



At 12:14 PM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

Tom, regarding your "Afterthought", I totally agree. It's more than a beautiful thing.

As far as the thoughts and ramblings of Rush Limbaugh, I have to admit I've never listened to his radio program, although I have overheard his mutterings on the radio in the background while visiting coworkers' offices or cubicles. I never felt the need to tune-in, on my own, simply because I didn't have to. I instinctively realized his whimsical meanderings were worthless, and unacceptable, because I knew the type of people who admired him. That's all I needed to know.

Whenever I see film clips of him ranting-and-raving, with his arms flailing in an angry tirade of scorn and disapproval, I'm always reminded of film of Adolph Hitler. Agreeably, both of these men have employed methods that are very effective at creating hysteria and assigning blame. Unfortunately, they both have always appealed to the lowest common denominator in society.

At 2:05 PM, Blogger Pal-Val said...

Sigh...I was naive to think that once the "fool on the hill"--bush (lower case intentional) was gone, we wouldn't have to suffer the likes of limbaugh, ol'riled-up o'rielly, coulter and their ilk.
But those jerks thrive on being the center of attention. Limbaugh reminds me more of Mussolini than Hitler.
Sadly there are thousands of ignorant, paranoid and angry people out there that believe those hate mongers speak for them.
As you said, eventually the limbaugh's of the world will fade away in one form or another...but there will be others in the (right) wing ready to eagerly take their place.
I don't wish them ill..just wish they would lose their appeal and "be-gone foul beast"!

At 2:36 PM, Blogger charles moore said...

JG, I too have never listened to this gas bag- never been curious enough to waste time on someone that I know will annoy me. But to you and Tom, I would say that not only do I find it sad, but I find it deeply frightening that someone who projects such intense hatred can find an audience that actually thinks he is wonderful and on target. It does not say a whole hell of a lot for us as a people when there are some who actually agree with him.

At 2:54 PM, Blogger Ellis D., Esq. said...

There is only one way to say this...Rush Limbaugh is a fat piece of shit PERIOD !!!! The fact that some people listen to him is a sad reflection on the mentality of Amerikans. He should crawl back into the cesspool he came from !!

At 10:18 AM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

Pal-Val, I have to concur, there is a great physical likeness between Rush Limbaugh and Mussolini. The resemblance is uncanny. They could be brothers, or father and son, or grandfather and grandson. But the biggest common trait is they were both born with the capability and capacity for stirring hate and blame. These types of people are the black-eyes of the human race.

Fascists come in may shapes and sizes, they wear uniforms, business suits, or just jeans and t-shirts. And one thing's for sure: they didn't disappear with the end of WWII. They're alive, and well, and still delivering their message.

At 6:18 PM, Blogger Anna Van Z said...

What Charles and Ellis said.

At 10:33 AM, Anonymous Skepticat said...

Perhaps pimp or pawnbroker might be more suitable jobs for El Rotundo. Oh, wait, he already has earned the first job description.

You've been too generous throughout to this...person. May we now stop giving him the exposure and attention he so craves?

At 11:43 AM, Anonymous John said...

I've been cursed in conversation with the ability to craft the perfect response - just after the moment has passed.

The first time I heard limbaugh occurred while going to lunch with some guys at work. My ideologically challenged friend Hank fired up his van with the radio blaring. After a minute, I said, turn this asshole off! Surprisingly (I later realized), he did, rising in defense, 'Rush is the man... a font of knowledge...' Me; 'Isn't he a narcotics addict?' Hank; 'Those are prescription...' In a rare moment of quickness, I said, 'Hank, your head is so far up your ass, you'll never see light.'

We all know people like Hank. Anyway, that occasion got me thinking about his arguing technique. The fact is that he is more often regurgitating something he heard on the radio not actually formulating a thought, the method basically follows the following pattern:

1) State a political or policy position or most often some criticism.

2) Cite some statistic or historic legislation - it barely matters if it applies to current point or even if the statistic is completely wrong, being correct isn't the goal. In fact, this confounds opposition to your position. The more obscure the reference is, the better - as it automatically reduces the likely-hood of questioning that will reveal ignorance of the original claim.

3) Assign blame to political opponents via the citation.

4) Declare yourself the winner of the point.

5) Change the subject. If your opponent attempts to apply logic or facts that threaten your argument, resort to name-calling and taunting. Favorites are, liberal, you democrats are all the same, socialist, communist, etc... And the oldest trick is to put your patriotism in question with a dis-contiguous statement. 'You not in favor of the war? So why don't you support the troops.'

This is all to be done loudly and in quick succession taking advantage of the fact that this material is scripted. This type of delivery also benefits from lapses of truth and logic or irrelevant and obscure references as it forks your audience's thoughts as to how to craft a reasoned response - parroting the fat-man is intended to be a monologue not an exchange and examination of ideas or god forbid a discussion.

By now it has occurred to me why Hank and too many others prefer to have their heads in their asses over being able to think rationally. We live in an addictive society. Think about it, we are all subject to it and it is part of the nature of humans to succumb to addictive tendencies. It happens to us all, from drinking to much, surfing the net, sugar, fat, television... whatever. This phenomenon is used by individuals, businesses and governments alike in thousands of different ways and influences nearly every aspect of society.

In the case of the windbag's fans, they stroke their own ego while mimicking the blowhard's behavior of running at the mouth through the prescribed pattern much the way a rat can be conditioned to run a maze. When they arrive at the point where they say I win - they receive their cheese. I wonder what label the late Sigmund Freud would place on this oral masturbation, maybe just pathetic.

We have been being rhetorically defeated by the intellectually lazy ditto-heads who exercise addictive practices. These people prefer not to think. If they did, they might be surprised to find who actually is doing their thinking for them as they ignore their being used as a propaganda conduit. What is most ridiculous of all is the paltry payment they accept in lieu of prostituting their ability to think.

It would be interesting if these idiots could come to realize that it is not limbaugh doing their thinking - but behavioral psychologists working at some ministry of propaganda.

Anyway, I have decided that until I figure out an reliable method to disrupt their monologues, it is best to ignore these fools instead of engaging them - then they get no cheese.

At 11:48 AM, Anonymous John said...

Oh yea, speaking of Freud, the photo says it all...

At 4:16 PM, Blogger Jefferson's Guardian said...

John, in response to your keen observation about Limbaugh's cigar-sucking behavior and the seemingly undeniable connection with Dr. Freud's work, do you refer to his oral fixation or his "latent" stage?

"Not that there's anything wrong with that!"

At 2:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ditto to all the above! WAIT! Does that make me a "ditto-head"? Well, you know, it is much easier to jump on the bandwagon than coming up with my own original thoughts. You know, American Idol is coming on, and I just can't be bothered with thinking right now. So whatever you say, I agree. Just don't make me think.....

tongue firmly in cheek,

Jo in AZ

At 10:13 PM, Blogger Anna Van Z said...

Jefferson's, I think the answer to your question may lie in the chatter about Limbaugh's foreign activities that's making its way across the internets. You've heard that dirt, right? Creepy, creepy stuff.

At 10:58 AM, Blogger Dave Dubya said...

One would think we'd be seeing less of Limbaugh after the election, but the pathetic reality is we are now seeing him all over the cable shows.

Within one week I saw him on CNN, CNBC, and MSNBC. I'm sure he was on Fox and the major networks as well.

I don't remember seeing Al Franken that much during the entire Bush Presidency.

I guess that's cuz the corporate media is so liberal.

At 12:11 PM, Blogger Sharon said...

Thank you, Tom, for reading Coultergeist so that we don't have to!

Speaking of early 20th century radio fear-mongers, let us never forget the godfather of them all, Father Coughlin.

At 12:30 PM, Blogger Tom Degan's Daily Rant said...

Dear Sharon,

How could I possibly forget Father Coughlin! The fact that he was a Catholic makes me shake my head in disbelief. There are two kinds of Catholics: The Father Coughlin/Cardinal Spellman Catholic and the Thomas Merton/Dorothy Day Catholic. I'm with the latter thank you very much.

And thanks for that link!

All the best,

Tom Degan

At 3:39 PM, Blogger Laneman said...

Greetings Tom!

Another great rant! The comedian is the worst person in the world!

Are you familiar with the Conceptual Guerilla? He has a podcast titled the "Limbaugh Lie of the Day" which is very good. I prefer CG's writing to his radio. Check out his defeat the right in 3:00 and other articles. Check it out at: and enjoy!

At 10:10 AM, Anonymous Jeffrey Page said...

Nice piece on Limbaugh. His ignorance and cruelty are there for all to hear every time he opens his mouth. Also, thanks for your kind words about the Limbaugh piece at Zest of Orange.

Best wishes

Jeffrey Page


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