What we have here is a failure to communicate…

There is currently a great deal of  attention being given to Rush Limbaugh, although in Cleveland the current top story is over another unsavory topic -multiple murder and suicide. 

Questions:

0: Who is Rush Limbaugh?

1: What is this talk radio format, of which he is a participant?

2:  Is this talk radio format an acceptable form of communications?

3: Is it factual, that is, does it seek after the truth, and after multiple sides of the story?

4: If not, what can be done?

5. Is Rush Limbaugh ‘good’ for America?

6. Is He good for the GOP?

7: Is he as highly approved as some of his advocates think?

0: Rush Limbaugh was born in 1951, and dropped out of  Southeast Missouri State University  after two semesters and one summer, with a very undistinguished record.  He became a disk jockey, and then moved into talk radio.  With ” the repeal of the Fairness Doctrine — which had required that stations provide free air time for responses to any controversial opinions that were broadcast — by the FCC in 1987 meant stations could broadcast editorial commentary without having to present opposing views”, and this launched conservative talk radio.  (From wiki: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rush_Limbaugh).  He uses the term “Excellence in Broadcasting” network, but that is a fiction – there is no such entity.

1. The format of this type of programming has two characteristics:

 o Opinion and editiorial content are stated as fact.

 o The dialog is controlled, e.g., if a caller got through and challenged what was being said, the host can hang up, and then reword statements to their advantage.

2.  The result is illusion, not reality: no, it is not a form of broadcasting the truth, and not an acceptable form of communications. 

3. As an example of this show’s disconnect from reality, consider: “During the February 14(2006) broadcast of his nationally syndicated radio show, Rush Limbaugh invented a racial component to explain Iraq war veteran Paul Hackett‘s departure from the Ohio Democratic Senate primary race. While reporting on Hackett’s decision to withdraw from the Democratic primary race against Rep. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) for the seat currently held by Sen. Mike DeWine (R-OH), Limbaugh asserted: “And don’t forget, Sherrod Brown is black. There’s a racial component here, too,” adding that “the newspaper that I’m reading all this from is The New York Times, and they, of course, don’t mention that.” In fact, Brown is Caucasian — a point on which Limbaugh was corrected later in the program.” (From: http://mediamatters.org/items/200602160001), and in fact Sherrod won the seat.  This is an example of ignorant,  irresponsibe journalism, and even a miniscule knowledge or research of the facts would have avoided it.  Give him an ‘F ‘ on this – a grade familiar from his college career.   Also see mediamatters, or “Rush Limbaugh is a big, fat liar” by Al Franken for a nearly endless list of other such examples.

4. We can restore the Fairness Doctrine, and move on from there.

5. He appears to be racist, and anti-female, among other unsavory characteristics: hard for to find much good there.

6. Politico’s Jonathan Martin had the scoop: “Top Democrats believe they have struck political gold bydepicting Rush Limbaugh as the new face of the Republican Party, a full-scale effort first hatched by some of the most familiar names in politics and now being guided in part from inside the White House.

The strategy took shape after Democratic strategists Stanley Greenberg and James Carville included Limbaugh’s name in an October poll and learned their longtime tormentor was deeply unpopular with many Americans, especially younger voters. Then the conservative talk-radio host emerged as an unapologetic critic of Barack Obama shortly before his inauguration, when even many Republicans were showering him with praise.
Soon it clicked: Democrats realized they could roll out a new GOP bogeyman for the post-Bush era by turning to an old one in Limbaugh…”  see: 

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/03/06/weekend-opinionator-the-party-of-limbaugh-a-conservative-debate/

This dialog then, is of benefit to Democrats.

7: Apparently not – see: http://zdrake.blogspot.com/2009/03/rush-limbaugh-polling-hes-not-popular.html

“..a failure to communicate The Truth”.

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