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Froma Harrop
Froma Harrop
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What Limbaugh Is Really About


Too bad the Republican candidates had to comment on Rush Limbaugh's flaming attack on a female law student at Georgetown University. El Rushbo plays troubadour to the party's right wing from his home in its entertainment wing. The business of the entertainment wing is show business. That means making money off talk shows, books and TV appearances — and running the publicity machine at hysterical volume. It does not mean keeping the interests of the Republican Party foremost.

My take on Limbaugh is that he was losing his spotlight tan and needed a UV blast of attention. Thus the "conservative" radio personality called the self-possessed Sandra Fluke "a slut" and "a prostitute" for testifying in favor of requiring all employers to cover birth control. Elaborating further, he suggested that mandating coverage for contraceptives amounted to the public paying women to have sex. In return, the women should tape themselves in the act, he ventured, "and post the videos online so we can all watch." Attention he got.

President Obama called Fluke and said he'd stand by her, while his press secretary characterized the attacks as "reprehensible." But the Republican candidates — though already in hot water with many women voters — so feared Limbaugh's wrath that they issued mild responses. Mitt Romney squeaked out that "it's not the language I would have used." Rick Santorum offered that "an entertainer can be absurd." (Not just entertainers, Rick.)

Full disclosure: Limbaugh targets me on occasion. But though he's said such unflattering things as "she might be stupid," I don't mind much. She who dishes it out should be able to take it. In any case, my right-wing friends are so mightily impressed when the Great One finds me worthy of notice, they invite me to lunch and pick up the check.

I confess to a tiny soft spot for Rush.

In top form, he can amuse as well as irk. Meanwhile, he faces stiff competition, as others crowd the stage El Rushbo once dominated.

Sarah Palin was the Republican choice four years ago to stand one heartbeat away from the presidency. She's now on Fox talking about the media getting "wee-weed" over Santorum's Satan talk. Then there's Ann Coulter, the late Andrew Breitbart and an army of industrious online provocateurs.

Climbing the greasy pole of the 24/7 right-wing news cycle requires finding increasingly violent ways to express contempt for liberals and their attitudes. But having been at this for a quarter of a century, Rush is getting a bit old hat. Next to what else is out there, his Angry White Male riffs seem almost staid. Hence, the graphic amplification at the expense of a poorly chosen victim.

It's one thing to gargle vile things into the mike, even if they ultimately hurt the cause one purports to serve. It's quite another to offend advertisers. When advertisers go, so does the money. Several advertisers, perhaps having eyed the exits for some time, pulled out after the offensive remarks. That alone explains Limbaugh's eagerness to issue a rare regret.

Whether his media empire fully recovers remains to be seen. Abject apologies didn't work too well for talk radio king Don Imus. In a similar verbal belch, he called the splendid Rutgers University women's basketball team "nappy-headed hos."

As for Limbaugh's intended target, I imagine that she's tougher than he is. And women not in the business of responding angrily to swipes at their gender are laughing at the shtoopidity.

Which makes me want to end with a gem from the Rush Limbaugh Treasury of Humor: "Women should not be allowed on juries where the accused is a stud." Nyuck, nyuck, nyuck.

To find out more about Froma Harrop, and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate web page at




7 Comments | Post Comment
Rush doesn't get the fact that his Y chromosome disqualifies him from being an expert on women's health care. He is in good company, however, the U. S. Council of Bishops doesn't get it either.
Comment: #1
Posted by: Paul M. Petkovsek
Tue Mar 6, 2012 2:18 AM
One quote:

"Climbing the greasy pole of the 24/7 right-wing news cycle requires finding increasingly violent ways to express contempt for liberals and their attitudes"

deserves another:

"...such an unevolved, vulgar, mysoginist, bigoted, homophobic blowhole like Rush..." s loving liberal on CS pages

There is certainly dnough ugly talk being thrown in both directions.

Comment: #2
Posted by: Tom
Tue Mar 6, 2012 5:42 AM
@Paul M. Petkovsek, in total agreement, and let's not forget the Council of Bishops is the political and business end of the Vatican and Lamebaugh uses people and politics to further his business. Both want to feather their nests. Both have been bought and sold. miss the mark again, dweedle Dumb. Both quotes are true. Rush is guilty of all the above.
Comment: #3
Posted by: demecra zydeem
Tue Mar 6, 2012 8:45 AM
Make that three directions.
Comment: #4
Posted by: Tom
Tue Mar 6, 2012 9:44 AM
First, I would not have made the statements that Rush made (nor any of the ones made by Mahr and Letterman against Conservative women). Second, rush used a conditional "if-then" deductive reasoning question. The media seems to think that the conclusion that Fluke is a "slut" is a valid assessment, owing to the height of their outrage. Rational, thinking people understand deductive logic. Rush's mistake was thinking that the lamestream media is compnised of rational thinkers.
Comment: #5
Posted by: David Henricks
Tue Mar 6, 2012 7:58 PM
Reposted: my response to a recent David Limbaugh article, absolutely relevent:

I am hearing from some rumblers that Rush has pulled a publicity stunt, that the redneck, neandrathal, wife beaters, who listen to his station are foaming at the mouth about his vulgar attacks on Ms. Fluke. They love it, they're humping stuffed animals, and they're clamoring for more. I also hear that new advertisers are lining up to join the fun. The dittoheads love the cage fight and are screaming "what's next"? Rush's crowd are a debased group that would cheer at a dog fight. Don't forget, his crowd are the idiots that hunt and trap animals, The Dick Cheney, Sarah Palin crew. I hope that what I am hearing is wrong, if it is right the only reasonable recourse is to get him off the air. There is always a following on Rush that will cheer taking it to the lowest level, and we know from reality TV, that there is always a lower level, the lowest level being Rush's fans. They'll scream for more as long as they are allowed to.
Where are the Million Moms Now? Why aren't they marching on Rush's studio....Did you know that Clear Channel is owned by Bain (ie Romney's buddies) and Clear Channel owns Rush's station, is this confirmed, I heard it today? Would love to know if it's true.
God save the Republic. Pray that he is thrown off the air... And I'm not even religious !!!

New Post relating to today's article:

Nothing Rush says is for any redeeming purpose, he is a Shock Jock, the more he shocks the bigger his audience, there will always be an arena of fools coming to see the Lion eating the Gladiator, and roaring when the Lion wins. The only difference between Rush trying to shock us and the Romans trying to shock us, I believe the Roman's sold refreshments, has anyone seen a snack stand around Rush's studio? Rush is pure debased, low IQ entertainment.

Tom, Tom, Tom, You miss the point, my comments about Rush were not hateful rants against an innocent man, they were facts. The difference is: he is proveably all of my descriptions, Ms. Fluke, however, is neither a slut, nor a prostitute, she is a law student, there is a difference. I was factual, Rush is a liar. I'm sure you can see the difference...well maybe deal in hyperbolic, hysterical, diatribes......whatever

Comment: #10
Posted by: Bloom Hilda
Tue Mar 6, 2012 7:18 PM

Report this post

Comment: #6
Posted by: Bloom Hilda
Wed Mar 7, 2012 8:27 AM
"Tom, Tom, Tom, You miss the point, my comments about Rush were not hateful rants against an innocent man, they were facts. The difference is: he is proveably all of my descriptions"

Prove Rush is a "blowhole". I shudder to think what that gentle term refers to. Prove he is "unevolved"'. Prove any of your charges.

Less than 40 words on this page are mine, hardly a diatribe. So prove Rush is a "blowhole".
Comment: #7
Posted by: Tom
Wed Mar 14, 2012 12:13 PM
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