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December 23, 2014 / 1 Tevet, 5775
 
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Posts Tagged ‘Rush Limbaugh’

Purim Meditation: After Rush Limbaugh Insulted Me

Thursday, March 8th, 2012

On  Purim Radio talk show host Rush Limbaugh made fun of me. He said I was “so morally loose,” I should make a video of my daily behavior “so everybody could enjoy it.”

I’m not sure what prompted it, I hear he’s been badmouthing many folks recently, maybe he didn’t even mean to pick me, maybe my name just happened to be on his desk while the microphone was on, stranger things have happened.

It wasn’t a biggie, really, I’ve been called worse. When my wife heard what Rush had been calling me, she said she wasn’t surprised. So maybe it wasn’t even such a bad thing that Rush did, maybe he even meant it as a caution, so I would go ahead and mend my loose morals.

I never did anything wrong to Rush, though. Once in a while I would comment that his show wasn’t really my cup of tea. Was the term “cup of tea” offensive? Did it imply that I thought Rush was the kind of person who drank tea? Was Rush offended because I said he drank tea? Because, in reality, I didn’t. I only said his show wasn’t my cup of tea, which really implied I was the one drinking tea, except not Rush’s tea, someone else’s tea, perhaps.

Maybe Rush was just on a tear, having called Georgetown law student Sandra Fluke even worse names than he did me. Maybe Rush’s show was just plateauing, and he decided to insult everyone in North America, and just to make it interesting, he started with folks who were pretty much anonymous.

“Anonymous?” Rush must have roared at that memorable editorial staff meeting, smacking Snerdley across the back of his head the way he likes to do when he’s self-satisfied. “I’ll show you how I take this supposedly ‘anonymous’ person and turn him or her into a star overnight, faster than any of those TV shows where it takes them weeks to make you famous.”

So, maybe Rush insulted me on a dare.

But here’s the funny thing, as soon as news came out that Rush insulted me, people started empathizing with me and writing Rush’s advertisers to stop sponsoring him because of what he said about Yanover.

I was particularly touched by a guns and ammo mail order service that said they’d had it up to here with Rush’s on-air brutality, and that insulting Yanover was just something you didn’t do.

As more and more sponsors were starting to leave him, Rush’s secretary called and asked what he could do to get me to forgive him. I wasn’t sure what to ask for. Finally I told her the back yard grass was a little tall, it being winter and such.

Rachel Maddow invited me to come on her show and say something bad about Rush in return, but I can’t stay up that late, not on school nights, anyway.

Many rabbis announced they’re no longer listening to Rush because of what he said about Yanover, and they asked their congregations to tune away as well.

So, after all was said and done, it wasn’t such a bad thing to be insulted by Rush Limbaugh.

When he’s finished mowing in the back, I’ll probably ask him to fix the shed door. My wife says we should just let him go. The poor man hasn’t been himself.

I bet he’ll do a fantastic job on that door.

Twilight Of The Radio Gods?

Wednesday, March 2nd, 2011
The interview with John Batchelor on the front page of this week’s Jewish Press should clarify, for anyone who still doesn’t get it, why Batchelor’s show is thriving while many of talk radio’s erstwhile Big Names suffer declining ratings.
Batchelor’s answers to interviewer Sara Lehmann’s questions offer a marked contrast to the prefabricated, often inane, talking points endlessly repeated by too many right-wing hosts. Really, how many times in a given hour can a listener with an IQ above room temperature abide hearing how Ronald Reagan was a precursor of today’s Tea Party activists (he was nothing of the kind) or how Sarah Palin is Abe Lincoln in heels (she is nothing of the sort) before feeling the need to slam the radio against the nearest wall?
In the introduction to her interview with Batchelor, Lehmann quotes from an article by John Avlon. In that piece, radio executive Randall Bloomquist, referring to the drop in listeners experienced by the likes of Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Mark Levin, tells Avlon, “if we ever want to grow, if we want to expand, we’ve got to be doing more than 18 hours a day of ‘Obama is a socialist.’ “
The Monitor saw this coming three years ago. In a piece written for Commentary magazine’s Contentions blog, your always modest correspondent vented his frustration with the way conservative radio hosts were treating John McCain even as it was becoming obvious that McCain stood a better than fair chance of winning the Republican presidential nomination later that year.
“The relentless pounding of McCain,” I wrote, “while certainly popular with some conservatives, has elicited a growing backlash among others, with a number of conservative bloggers expressing disdain for the tactics of Limbaugh and company – some of them saying they can no longer bring themselves to listen to the very voices that for so long had constituted a focal point of their day.”
I admitted to knowing that feeling, noting that my own personal moratorium on Limbaugh and Hannity (I’d listened only sporadically, and never enthusiastically, to the various other hosts who had taken to treating McCain as though he were a Trotskyite trying to crash a conservative ball) began in stages, since old habits and loyalties do die hard.
I’d begin each day thinking that maybe the attacks on the senator would at long last start to diminish, in number if not intensity. But within minutes of either host opening his show the sliming would pick up right where it had left off the day before, with little or no regard for nuance or perspective. I’d switch to sports talk for an hour or so before returning to Limbaugh or Hannity, only to once again find myself muttering at the radio and reaching for the dial.
I noted that while “talk radio has, with rare exceptions, always been the thinnest of intellectual gruel, the rise of conservative talkers – which took place in the years just before the Internet changed everything about the way we consume news – was a galvanizing event for those of us who always saw through the neutral posturing of the Walter Cronkites, the John Chancellors, the Roger Mudds of that era. At last we had a slice of mass media we could call our own and by which we could help sway policy and elections and stay connected to fellow conservatives across the country.
“But talk radio is already something of a dinosaur, a rusted hulk lying on the side of the information superhighway. How could it be otherwise, in an age when we can log on and directly link to thousands of conservative websites and blogs – when we can communicate, unfiltered and instantaneously, with like-minded people not just across the country but around the world?
“Sean Hannity can insist all he wants that John McCain is a liberal, but simply by Googling McCain’s lifetime voting record we can see for ourselves that if he’s a liberal, words have no meaning. Rush Limbaugh can loudly champion Mitt Romney as the second coming of Barry Goldwater, but a quick Internet search is enough to confirm that Romney is anything but.”

Three years later, I would take back none of what I wrote. If anything, the reaction in right-wing radioland to the election of Barack Obama and his first two years in the White House has served only to amplify the problems already evident in 2008.

 

Jason Maoz can be reached at jmaoz@jewishpress.com

Media Friends Top Ten

Wednesday, September 4th, 2002

The responses are still coming in to last week’s Top 25 (alphabetical order) listing of “Media Friends” of Israel as nominated by the Monitor’s faithful readers. Most of you who’ve e-mailed or faxed your reactions agree with most or all of the names, though a number of readers were livid over the appearance on the list of long-time radio host Bob Grant (see this week’s Letters to the Editor section for a taste of their wrath).

Just a reminder to those who took issue with the inclusion or exclusion of this or that particular name and whose responses were a tad personal: This was not a listing of the Monitor’s personal choices, but the results of a reader poll. Take heart, though; you’ll get your chance to bash us next week with the appearance of the Monitor’s personal list along with some reflections on readers’ choices and comments.

A number of readers were curious about the identities of those who came close to making the Top 25. Fair enough. Some of the more prominent media types in the just-missed category were columnist Don Feder of the Boston Herald; Fred Barnes of The Weekly Standard; radio talk show host Michael Medved; Brent Bozell of the Media Research Institute; Rich Lowry of National Review and Jay Nordlinger of National Review Online; Lawrence Kudlow of CNBC and National Review Online; John Leo of U.S. New & World Report; R. Emmett Tyrrell of The American Spectator and AmericanProwler.org; Martin Peretz of The New Republic; David Horowitz of FrontPageMag.com; and Tony Snow of Fox News.

An observation: The near-total absence of recognizable liberals from the names sent in should serve as one more indication that vigorous defense of Israel is found these days almost exclusively in the precincts of the right.

Before we get to the Top 10 vote-getters (all right, skip down for a quick glance and then return to this paragraph), here are a few comments from readers:

Henry Finkel (not, he assures us, the Henry Finkel who enjoyed a fleeting measure of fame as the Boston Celtics’ backup center in the late 1960′s and early 70′s) puts Rush Limbaugh at the top of his list. “Limbaugh,” Finkel writes, “has always been passionately pro-Israel, but never more than during the past five or six months as Israel came under increasing attack from Palestinian terrorists and European Jew-haters. And Limbaugh does not hesitate to criticize President Bush – whom he wholeheartedly supports - whenever he feels the president isn’t being supportive enough of Israel.”

Martin Holtzman of Palm Springs more than concurs with that assessment of Limbaugh. “He gave the best and most eloquent defense of Israel I’ve heard in years,” Mr. Holtzman writes.

Joyce Heller of Miami Beach is thrilled with George Will, who, she reminds us, has been defending Israel from its assorted enemies since he first began working as a columnist back in the mid-1970′s.

Will is also the top choice of Bernard Rosen, whose e-mail to the Monitor included helpful links to several recent columns by Will on Israel and the Middle East.

Ellen Singer’s list of nominations included Will and Top 25 finishers Steve Malzberg, Curtis Sliwa, Sean Hannity, Michael Savage and Rush Limbaugh.

Finally, the Top 10 vote-getters:

1: George Will

2: Rush Limbaugh

3: Cal Thomas

4: William Safire

5: Sean Hannity

6: Joseph Farah

7: John Podhoretz

8: A.M. Rosenthal

9: Michael Kelly

10: Charles Krauthammer

Jason Maoz can be reached at jmaoz@jewishpress.com

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/media-monitor/media-monitor-55/2002/09/04/

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