WEDNESDAY, APRIL 16, 2014 - This Day In History
Rush Limbaugh Stole My Best Friend
Posted By jwilkes - Monday, March 9th, 2009 at 1:06 PM
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Rush Limbaugh, mug shot courtesy of Palm Beach County (FL) Sheriff's DepartmentI’ve never really had a problem with Rush Limbaugh. The talk show guru is incendiary and at times crass, stoking the flames of partisan warfare while throwing out ridiculously erroneous claims, like “I have a 99.6% accuracy rating.” But in the end, he’s an entertainer, no different in his never ending quest for infamy and attention than Howard Stern or Opie and Anthony, and no less provocative with his treatment of social issues like race and religion.

But the first time I ever really had a problem with the pudgy pundit was when he stole my best friend’s soul.

I don’t know if I could ever really say that my friend (let’s call him “Pete”) was liberal, or even-left leaning. He never really spoke about politics one way or the other. But when we went away to college years ago, he headed for the venerable Ivy League institution of Dartmouth College and settled down slightly to the right of center. No problem there.

In fact, it made my relationship with him quite interesting. Whatever my slightly-left-of-center opinion on social issues, or issues of defense, foreign policy, domestic policy, or the economy, he had another viewpoint. We’d exchange these kind of long treatises on government and policy (no doubt filled with delusions of academic grandeur), and I could always count on what was essentially a respectful exchange of differing ideas.

But when he graduated from the “Big Green” university in Hanover, New Hampshire, he took up a new hobby- talk radio. And the corpulent Limbaugh headlined his daily dose of political “information.”

What started off as, “I disagree with you on this, and here’s how I see it,” deteriorated rapidly into complaints about “liberals” and their quest to deceive the public. Next thing I know, he’s accusing me of being a socialist (just a note, I’m probably one of the most conservative- albeit loyal- Democrats in the state of California…which is quite an accomplishment if you ask me) and talking about vast left-wing conspiracies to hijack the media and put a reincarnated Joseph Stalin on the throne of Amerika.

And where is all this coming from?

“Rush says that liberals are all (fill in the blank).”

“You don’t believe me? You should listen to Rush, because he says…”

“If you support gay marriage, you also support polygamy and incest. Rush says…” Of course, I fired back at him that if he supports a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage, he might as well support one banning interracial marriage while he was at it. He didn’t have an answer for that one. I guess Rush hasn’t covered that yet.

The rate of degeneration of Pete’s mind is pretty astounding. When the late Republican Senator Craig Thomas was diagnosed with cancer back in late 2006 and a few insensitive media figures began running stories about the appointment process by the Democratic Governor (who would ostensibly have appointed a Democrat to replace Thomas) if the Wyoming legislator were to pass, Pete decried the moral repugnance of politicizing this man’s disease. I agreed. But last week when Limbaugh predicted that Senator Ted Kennedy- himself battling a particularly challenging form of brain cancer- would die before the implementation of any health care reform, my good friend was howling with laughter, praising Limbaugh for sticking it to “the drive-bys” (that’s Limbaugh’s less-than-affectionate term for the media).

The funny thing is that I can tell when he’s quoting Limbaugh (or more accurately, passing Limbaugh’s faulty logic off for his own), because he’ll mimic His Rotundity’s stupid buzz words- "drive-bys," "MSM" (that's main stream media), and "libs" among them. But the heavier evidence of the incredible atrophy Rush has had on this “Ditto-Head’s” brain is that when Pete’s backed into any kind of ideological corner, he starts talking about how much he loves America and how he wishes I could, too, but that liberals are inherently unpatriotic. They’re also racist (even though they try to pretend they’re not), government-loving, freedom-hating socialists who want to punish average hardworking Americans with higher taxes. (Wrong, we just think people like Rush- who just signed a $400 million contract over eight years- should have to pay a little more than a family struggling to put together $40,000 each year. In case you didn't know, that's the average US household income and about .08% of what Limbaugh pulls in annually...not 8%, but less than 1/100th of 1%).

Pete is a perfect example of the Limbaugh effect. Take a respectful, informed political discourse, and he’ll turn it into a display of ugliness and pettiness. That’s why, less than a month into Barack Obama’s first term, Limbaugh proclaimed his desire for the president to fail (this, notwithstanding Limbaugh’s whining eight years ago that Democrats wouldn’t get behind George W. Bush…which they eventually did). Pete, of course, readily agreed.

Limbaugh is everything that is nasty in American politics, rolled into one huge talking…well…thing. He eschews the kind of sound and reasoned debate put forth by conservatives like William F. Buckley and Brit Hume in favor of knock-down ratings boosters, no matter how much damage they do to the American landscape.

Former Rep. Joe Scarborough (R-FL) and host of Morning Joe wrote an incredible piece called “The Loyal Opposition” that every person who fears that deep down he or she might be a political hack (myself included) should read. But if you don’t, at least take a look at this part:

“I am greatly concerned that it will put us deeper in debt without giving us enough bang for the buck. In fact, that bill violates just about every economic belief that I hold dear. But that doesn't mean I question Democrats' character any more than it means I am cheering against the president. For the sake of America, I hope I am wrong. If I am, it wouldn't be the first time.

In 1993, I had great concerns about Bill Clinton's tax increase. I thought it would harm the US economy. I was wrong. Two years later, Bill Clinton and Democrats across America were sure the Republican budget cuts would cripple the economy. They were wrong...That creative friction did great things for America's economic strength.”

Bravo, Joe, well said. Rush, Pete…I hope you’re reading this.



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Discussion:
but your friend has gone over to the dark side and is not coming back.

Sheesh!
[ Posted at 3:46 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
"dork side?"
[ Posted at 4:32 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
lol
[ Posted at 4:38 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
I mean really...I couldn't stand a friendship with a Rush ditto head.
[ Posted at 3:46 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
it is one of the pod people. Very sad and disturbing.

I remember being a young and impressionable teenager when first exposed to Limbaugh. I wouldn't consider myself special, but I recognized instantly that whatever he was, I wasn't and had no desire to be. So in reality, I owe a lot to Limbaugh for truly defining my politics and setting me on a path towards becoming a progressive and liberal.
[ Posted at 3:48 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
perhaps he'll one day have the good sense to know who his true friends are.

[ Posted at 3:49 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] OMG - Guest-asius
I don't believe Joe Scarborough said anything I can respect!
Wow.
[ Posted at 3:49 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] shocked me too! - Guest-vc2
n/t
[ Posted at 3:58 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
and i'm okay...
[ Posted at 3:51 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] ditto - Guest-N in Seattle
(or should I say "dittoes"?)
[ Posted at 4:34 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
it's really sad. She is about as ignorant as it gets. You can't talk to her about politcs, she will just mention muslim or socialist or something worse. We actually had to cut her off when she called our dear president the "N-word".

I don't allow hate speech in my home.
[ Posted at 3:51 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] Mine is the same she delights - Guest-Patricia Bruner
in sending photocopies of right wing rants against President Obama to our house. It raises her son's (my husband) blood pressure and she thinks it's funny.
[ Posted at 4:07 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
That's what happens when you're comfortably retired with nothing else to do.
[ Posted at 4:15 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
...and so is being willfully ignorant.

I think your friend decided to intellectually check out, and his doing so is not your responsibility - only his.
[ Posted at 3:53 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
he eyes get glassed over, their motions stunted like some peyote imbibed prairie dog..and if you look closely at the hairline, you can see the Limbaughtomy scar. Usually they end up sitting in front of a radio for prolonged periods, shrieking expletives, and I'll toss them a rutabaga or a parsnip to nibble on.
[ Posted at 3:54 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] or some arugula? - Guest-freedomjoe
Ha, they'd sooner starve.

Love the Limbaughtomy scar. I've seen a few and wondered what the festering ooze over the red burn marks could possibly be from....WHy didn't I think of LimpOne immediately?
[ Posted at 4:01 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
Thanks to Rush & FOX, it's impossible to have a rational, even-tempered discussion on politics with some of my family members these days. "Nasty partisan warfare" is a better term for it. Everything is a sweeping generalization about how evil liberals are, how global warming is a sinister socialist plot, how taxes are generally just like bank robbery, and how the Democrats are conspiring to take down the country. Name-calling is all too common. It's like he whips them up into a frothy rage, a lot like the two-minutes hate in George Orwell's 1984.
[ Posted at 3:55 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] It happened to my brother. - Guest-lineatus
My dad finally discussed things with him and kinda asked him to just chill. But for a while there, I really dreaded getting together - which sucks, because he's my only family member living in the area.
[ Posted at 4:15 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] You sure - Guest-cama2008
You're not talking about my parent's house?
[ Posted at 4:21 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] Of course not... - Guest-Lynnek
He's talking about MY mother's house! I think there are far more of us whose families have the "Republican disease" than we realize.
[ Posted at 4:33 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] He's talking about - Guest-dclarke
my sister-in-law's house.
[ Posted at 4:36 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] Damn put that big azz picture away - Guest-woodsjransom
I clicked on the link and BAM I got hit with that picture, scared the shyt out of me. Pete may read it and understand it. He will just do the republican ignore. I don't think Limp can read and even if he could we know he has a comprehension problem. ONE of the reasons he was probably such a failure in college.
[ Posted at 3:56 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
then I suspect you never really had a friend there anyway. I respect the views of my friends even when they don't agree with mine.
[ Posted at 3:57 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] Agreed. - Guest-jraymilton
If I tried to have all anarchocapitalist/cypherpunk friends, I'd have very few friends. I have friends who disagree with my politics, but we're still friends.
[ Posted at 7:46 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
has gone over to the Rush side. It is painful for the whole family, and his wife (a lifelong Republican) is starting to have problems with the mindset.

Rush gets his listeners worked up and angry and it can impact their view of the world. When you believe Rush's view of the world you become angry.

He's still my brother, but it has put a damper on the family. We carefully avoid any reference to anything that could be political. We just do not want to go there.
[ Posted at 7:47 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] Cut him loose - Guest-TheGreatLeapForward
and don't look back.
[ Posted at 3:59 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] FTA - Guest-joeditto
"Limbaugh is everything that is nasty in American politics"

I Totally agree!
[ Posted at 4:00 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] I understand - Guest-Cabinetman1
I haven't talked to my brother in 6 years. I am told he calls me " Gone off the deep end" for voting Obama. My entire family but him vote Democratic. He says I'm off the deep end.
He has satellite radio and can pick up Rush and Hannity everywhere, all the time. His daughter is 12 and sounds just like him. It's a disease. I'm not sure exactly why the ones that believe him do it so loyally. Maybe it's because they don't want to waste the time being informed by facts. It's a shame. He's a cancer survivor. Gets his insurance thru his wife's work, she works for the state of Texas. He rails against "taxpayers picking up the tab"...... he's been on that tab for 25 years. It's OK when they get it, but lets slam the door on any one else.
It's really torn our family up.
I don't get it.
[ Posted at 4:10 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
just don't talk politics, they can still be great people.
[ Posted at 4:11 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] I hear the talking points every day - Guest-realwischeese
At my work we have a group of long serving employees, white 50-60 ish (ishy) men who automatically come into the room and change the channel to Faux News. They rabbit out the same non sense in loud talk so everyone can hear what a moron sounds like. Everything is one big simple generality to these robo-turds. They are the dinosaurs going extinct, and I watch them quietly kepping that thought very much in mind. Disgusting idiots, empowered by Big fat idiot and Hannitee the Hater. They are a sizable,loud, disgusting, yet SHRINKING minority.
[ Posted at 4:32 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] Well Said - Guest-Joey Camire
I love the way you ended things on a positive note. It gave me a new found respect for Scarborough, he was pretty much nothing to me before that, neither positive or negative. It's that loss of respect that is being created by Limbaugh. I automatically lose respect for republicans because he exists... A mistake unfair to every republican, but propagated by the mass of his listeners. It could all be solved by the phrase "agree to disagree" as opposed to the fatalist viewpoints of people like Boehner, O'Reilly and Limbaugh.

Joey Camire
http://Blommit.com
[ Posted at 4:48 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] Been there. - Guest-neocongo
Sorry to hear it. It is very much like losing a friend to meth. Nothing to be done about it but say farewell. Unless they are a family member in which case you might apply the steps of Al-anon.
[ Posted at 7:20 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] I doubt it neo - Guest-MutedMajority
meth is much better than al-anon, and farewellish friends like you. Keep drinking your liquor til you kill enough brain cells, then the idea of a "higher power" becomes real, because you are half dead! Meth didn't take them from you, you rejected them isn't that the other half of the story? Not that you are an alchy, but most people who are so down on "hard" drugs have their heads up their asses and are the types who haven't done any, yet they "know" what alcohol did to them so...
[ Posted at 9:37 PM on 3/12/09 | Reply ]
[-] It'll wear-off. - Guest-nursediesel
The novelty will fade. Pete will come back with a different aspect to broaden his horizons. He'll settle into his true beliefs and to what he considers important.
[ Posted at 7:21 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
He's an older man who was always loving and involved. Now he sits alone in his shop, not working, but on the internet and listening to Rush. He's obsessed, angry, and lonely, except for his online dittoheads. It looks just like drug addiction or alchololism. Really sad. He even bought a fancy shotgun which sits next to his desk, loaded and ready to go to work fighting for the constitution and "his people".
[ Posted at 7:22 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
listening to Limbaugh. I haven't seen him since he showed me his arsenal and the canned goods/water he was stocking up on.
[ Posted at 7:24 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] This is your brain: - Guest-Knarfc
" "

(i. e., an open mind)

This is your brain on Rush Limbaugh:

"pus, hate, fear, greed, insensitive, foul, lies, waste, barren, etc., etc., lather, repeat, lather, repeat (do not rinse)"
[ Posted at 7:24 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
now that President Obama brought it to my attention. Rush talks about the economy and Obama talks about Rush; shouldn't it be the other way around?
[ Posted at 7:33 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] Excellent - Guest-Steven44
Observation
[ Posted at 9:39 PM on 3/12/09 | Reply ]
[-] I feel your pain. - Guest-Arenosa
My formerly liberal stepdaughter is marrying into a conservative family, and is adopting some of the wingnut talking points. We've agreed to avoid talking about anything political, but we used to be able to discuss issues.
[ Posted at 11:48 PM on 3/9/09 | Reply ]
[-] Repectable conservatives - Guest-The Bard of Wilmette
There are plenty of respectable conservatives around, including Joe Scarborough, who was referenced in jwilkes' comments. There are others, such as David Brooks, George Will, Peggy Noonan, etc. There are good intellectual arguments to be made for the kinds of policies these people favor, but they are conducted in the spirit of respect. We can disagree with the other side's policy positions or priorities, without attributing evil or corrupt motives to them. Rush is the kind of person who gives conservatism a bad name, if he really is a conservative at all.

When Mr. Bush conducted warrantless domestic spying and accumulated huge government deficits, any "conservative" with an ounce of principal should have condemned such flagrant abuses of conservative doctrine. Mr. Limbaugh is a right wing radical, something that should not be confused with being a conservative.
[ Posted at 11:39 AM on 3/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] Wow, how fast they forget - Guest-No Thanks... Rush is just a washed up junkie
I LOVE that people admire and look up to this LOSER!
Dont people remember the good ole days of Rush? You know the days of Oxycotton abuse... Viagra and God knows what else? He is an entertainer! To think that he has what it takes to run a political party is like saying Josh Brolin is really George W! Lets put it this way, I love Howard Stern,but that doesnt mean I want him to be the voice of the Democratic Pary! The sad thing is the more we (I) give this jackass attention, the LONGER he stays!
[ Posted at 12:42 AM on 3/11/09 | Reply ]
[-] Great site! - Guest-Jeff E
Keep up the good work :)
[ Posted at 5:24 AM on 3/11/09 | Reply ]
[-] Your math is slightly wrong - Guest-wvtechie
Ummm, your math is wrong. .08% is 8/100 of a percent which is less than one tenth of a percent.
[ Posted at 12:34 PM on 3/11/09 | Reply ]
.08% is not less than one hundredth of one percent. It is 8/100 of 1%.

That's still an incredibly small proportion but please be careful of indulging in exaggeration the way Limbaugh does.
[ Posted at 8:22 PM on 3/12/09 | Reply ]
[-] the great thing about living in AMERICA - Guest-A Fan of My Own
is we can speak our thoughts and opinions this way (if we have access to the internet)and all the other blessings we have been blessed with !!! it's o.k to agree /disagree with the one who is stirring the "pot'....the even greater blessing is being able to under-stand this is what makes us all UNIQUE AND SPECIAL...!!!
[ Posted at 9:40 PM on 3/12/09 | Reply ]
[-] Rush is fun to listen to. - Guest-McCainiac
He represents people who believe in a Republic. A lot of people don't like him because he isn't afraid to be a conservative. I'm guessing if they listened to him, they might like him as well. I was open to Obama. I listened to what he said and what he's done. Now I know he's Anti-American. 17 executive orders later, the dictator is establishing his rule.
[ Posted at 9:40 PM on 3/12/09 | Reply ]
[-] Just another junkie - Guest-regularff
looking for a fix.
[ Posted at 9:41 PM on 3/12/09 | Reply ]
[-] I am a Democrat but... - Guest-Kylsport
but never quite understood the liberal responses on this site. Based on my observations, I have been able to pin-point a liberal based on how they respond. I have found that most (not all) thought provoking and substance based arguments were posted by those ranging from moderate to conservative. I have learned this about liberal (as is true with some Atheists), they deal in only two emotions when the substance isn't there. They either ridicule or deal in fury.
[ Posted at 9:45 PM on 3/12/09 | Reply ]
The other thing about them is that they have the ability to dismiss whole segments of the political spectrum by pretending that they all adhere to the same cartoonish stereotype that they themselves just invented, and then pat themselves on the back for their thought-provoking and substantive ability to strike down this strawman.

(Just in case my tone wasn't clear, I'm using #1, ridicule.)

P.S. I can only assume that atheists resort to ridicule as a nervous reaction to the deranged absurdity of religion.
[ Posted at 8:41 PM on 4/10/09 | Reply ]
[-] Math - Guest-Joe
It's actually eight hundredths of a percent. .8 would be 8 tenths, .08 is 8 hundredths, and .008 is 8 thousandths. .08% is 8/100 of 1%.
[ Posted at 7:00 PM on 4/9/09 | Reply ]
I just read an anecdote elsewhere about a guy who locked out fox news on his 85 year old father-in-law's TV remote and told him the cable company dropped it. Apparently the guy's whole personality changed for the better.
[ Posted at 8:31 PM on 4/10/09 | Reply ]
umm... .08 is Eighter Hundredths which is more than 1/100th of 1%
[ Posted at 12:51 PM on 4/12/09 | Reply ]
[-] great post! - Guest-Ned
I enjoyed the post and reviewed and enjoyed some of the other posts as well. It's good to come across a site I don't fully agree with but have enough in common that it pushes me to grow in either defending my cherished ideas or incorporating new ones.

I sympathize with the lost of your friendship. Rush Limbaugh is like composted manure in a garden. I tiny amount can stimulate growth and development but pile it real thick not even weeds will grow!
[ Posted at 11:30 AM on 4/13/09 | Reply ]
Hey, if there is no right or left there can't be balance, Rush keeps things balanced to the middle. There are plenty of right haters just like left haters, but both make up a minority, and both are good for the country. Your friend is required, without him a large majority of people would not have a voice. Maybe you should go all the way left, you gys might get along better.
[ Posted at 4:59 PM on 4/14/09 | Reply ]

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