This was before Rush Limbaugh’s cruelty toward Sandra Fluke. It was in the midst of his racism, but, of course, he’s always in the midst of racial slurs that are presented in the form of dog whistles, like his song “Barack the Magic Negro.” These appeal to the embedded fear and hatred within his audience, people who long for the good old days when old white guys ruled everything. Of course, the same goes for his misogynistic comments, suggesting a prehistoric view of women, of the days when men were men and women were possessions.
His vitriol flows like a poison river, snaking into the ears of the gullible, but is Limbaugh a true believer? What is the America he believes in?
He gave us a hint a while back in an NBC interview when he was asked why he spouts his outrageous stuff. “It’s all about the ratings,” said Limbaugh. Not a word about American values. Not even a nod to true beliefs. It was the ratings and the advertising money the ratings bring to him. Rush Limbaugh’s true belief is simple and pure: More money for Rush Limbaugh.
Lawrence O’Donnell calls Limbaugh a comedian, this not to suggest that he has comedic skills, but to separate him from people who actually know something. That is to say, Limbaugh is in the entertainment business. And in that spirit, he gives the people in his audience what they want, so they tune in. Advertisers are assured of many ears into which to pour their commercial messages and Limbaugh makes lots of money. That’s it.
And it is likely the same for the rest of the hair-on-fire radio and television crazies who spout sociopathic lies and insinuations. Perhaps some of them are true believers – there is no way to determine that.
Nevertheless, once again the advice of Deep Throat rings true: Follow the money. Then you’ll know why they say those things.
Copyright 2019 by Jack Altschuler
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