When you hear the name "Rush Limbaugh" mentioned by liberals and the press, the adjectives "controversial", "polarizing", "bombastic", "inflammatory", and "shock-jock" are often mentioned. Actually, such descriptions are also used to characterize Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity, Bill O'Reilly, and anyone who opposes liberal policies and positions. Although these on-air personalities are generally regarded as the "Dark Side" of politics by Democrats, they also enjoy great ratings on the air waves.
I contend the reason they are condemned by the left is not because of what they say, but how they say it. After all, conservative doctrine is well known and rather predictable. Yet, people tune in regularly to get their daily dosage of conservative viewpoints. The difference lies in their tactics; whereas the liberal media is more covert in their spin on politics and world events (at least they like to believe they are), Rush & Company are more overt and unafraid of a good argument, some would even call it an "in your face" form of broadcasting. They actually relish a good challenge and welcome the opportunity to spar with virtually anybody. Whereas liberals like to spin their agenda using repetitive subliminal messages through the media, conservatives have become more proactive and animated in their discourse, which leads to better ratings.
Liberals have been orchestrating attacks against conservatives for quite some time; yet, when someone like Rush & Company openly fights back, the opposition is appalled and cries foul. Since they will not publicly debate Rush & Company, for fear of losing, the liberals vilify them through innuendo and sniping. Such attacks doesn't discredit or deter them one bit; In fact, it emboldens them. Any time the liberals openly attack them, on the air or in print, their ratings actually go up, not down, and fills their coffers. In addition to confounding the liberals, it puts them in a no-win situation with Rush & Company; if they attack them, they invigorate their ratings; if they do not, they suffer guilt by silence. Rush & Company, of course, are cognizant of this and know they have nothing to lose.
The Democrats only have three options to thwart Rush & Company; first, they can continue their program of vilifying the opposition, which only makes them stronger; second, they can publicly debate them, whereby they run the risk of losing an argument, or; third, they can completely ice them out by not recognizing them in any manner or form. As Oscar Wilde correctly observed, "The only thing worse than being talked about is not being talked about." Then again, Rush & Company has already developed legions of devoted followers. I'm betting they will simply continue with the first option.
I find it interesting that personalities such as Keith Olbermann and Chris Matthews are not considered "controversial", "bombastic", etc. They can hardly be called newscasters as they openly spin liberal doctrine. Yet, they are not criticized by the press. Hmm...I guess what is good for the goose is not good for the gander. If you say you agree with Rush & Company, you are openly accused of being "as crazy as they are." Yet, the opposite isn't true.
One thing is for sure, Rush & Company is not going away any time soon and will continue to publicly gnaw away at liberal principles (and become rich in the process). I'm not so much convinced the left despises them as much as they are afraid of them. Regardless, whether you love them or hate them, it all makes for great political theater.
Keep the Faith!
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Tim Bryce is a writer and the Managing Director of M. Bryce & Associates (MBA) of Palm Harbor, Florida and has over 30 years of experience in the management consulting field. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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Copyright © 2012 by Tim Bryce. All rights reserved.