Attention Conservatives: This is why the correct answer was always, “What he said was inexcusable.”


Tod Kelly

Tod is a writer from the Pacific Northwest. He is also serves as Executive Producer and host of both the 7 Deadly Sins Show at Portland's historic Mission Theatre and 7DS: Pants On Fire! at the White Eagle Hotel & Saloon. He is  a regular inactive for Marie Claire International and the Daily Beast, and is currently writing a book on the sudden rise of exorcisms in the United States. Follow him on Twitter.

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231 Responses

  1. An acquaintance, of the sort where people just don’t understand why she isn’t a Republican, wrote something on Facebook pointing to this and saying “Every time I think of changing parties, they show me why I shouldn’t.”


  2. Avatar Aaron W says:

    I’d be careful drawing too many conclusions from a single poll if you don’t look at them in the context of all the other polling, but things have been looking better for Obama lately.

    Obama vs. GOP candidates:

    Obama job approval:

    I’d say this is much more ambiguous than what you’re trying to say here.Report

  3. Avatar Gruntled says:

    Every time the Republicans come up with one issue I might agree with them on, they bring up another half-dozen or so that remind me how foolish it would be to vote Republican.Report

  4. Avatar Aaron W says:

    I don’t know if it’s so clear cut as you’re trying to make it if you look at more than one poll. A quick look at Obama’s job approval and chances against Romney over at Real Clear Politics shows a more ambiguous picture.Report

  5. Avatar Stillwater says:

    Tod, I’ve been very impressed with your recent run of pragmatic arguments aimed at conservatives. And I don’t want to detract from them by suggesting this, but aren’t they all sort of a catch-22? You’re suggesting that pure pragmatics ought to make conservatives be more moderate in their speech and reasonable in their advocacy in order to reach the median voter. But by doing so aren’t you in effect asking conservatives to be something they’re not?

    I mean, presumably you think there is a silent majority of conservatives who aren’t speaking up against the lunacy, right? Or that you can appeal to the crazies running the asylum? But you’re arguments aren’t going to appeal to those folks – they drink koolaid by the case. And the silent, marginalized, discarded minority who are too librul for the crazy lunatic base to even stand next to don’t have Teh Power to punch back from within the Party. Something’s gotta give, right?Report

    • Avatar Gruntled says:

      Surely, there is a silent majority of Catholics who don’t believe in forcing their beliefs into law.

      Surely, there is a silent majority of “small business owners” who understand how laws favoring giant corporations will kill their businesses’ ability to ever grow.

      Surely, there is a silent majority of the middle class who understand that cutting taxes on the top 1% means having to hike taxes on everyone below.

      And yet… it seems not to be the case. They’re all convinced they will be struck by lightning, hit the lottery, win some lawsuit, invent some crazy-popular thing from their couch, and then oh no, they’ll have “a little less” obscene wealth, a “little less” in terms of maybe only 900 times more money than it’d take to never have to work again instead of a full 1000 times, if the “librul” side were running things.Report

    • Avatar BSK says:

      Well, certainy there is room to examine one’s principles, examine one’s actions, and see how much the latter support the pursuit of the former. If the treatment of women recently exemplified by Republicans is a core principle, then they ought to carry on regardless of what the polls say. If it is not, if there principles are something else entirely, and their recent actions preclude the likelihood of realizing those principles, it might be time for a bit of self-reflection and prioritization.Report

    • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

      “I mean, presumably you think there is a silent majority of conservatives who aren’t speaking up against the lunacy, right?”

      Yes, I think this is it.  And I think that you can talk to at least some people that are far to the other side.  Like, in the case we’ve been talking about this week, I have a hard time believing that if you were to have told the people defending Limbaugh a similar story that was non-political – say, it all happened with a bunch of managers at your office – they would mostly have been appalled, and argued that the “slut”-sayer should have been either disciplined or fired.  I think right now, though, everyone’s so conditioned to over-tribalistic responses.

      As I’ve spent the past 6 months here arguing, I think that the biggest obstacle to fixing our problem is entrenched tribalism.  Due to the whole talk radio FOX thing, I think the biggest perpetrators are those on the right, but I don’t think it’s just them.

      Mostly though, I remain buoyed by the knowledge that even though we like to pretend that we are all polar opposites, there is far more that unites us than separates us, and the stuff that unites is generally the more important stuff.Report

      • Avatar Stillwater says:

        Thanks for explaining. I agree with you that there can be sanity, but only without Hanity, in contemporary conservatism.Report

      • As I’ve spent the past 6 months here arguing, I think that the biggest obstacle to fixing our problem is entrenched tribalism.  Due to the whole talk radio FOX thing, I think the biggest perpetrators are those on the right, but I don’t think it’s just them.

        Like @ this very blog, RTod?  One respected commenter wants Limbaugh as dead as Breitbart and it passes without a raised eyebrow.

        Me, I don’t put a lot of importance on this type of cant except to be fatigued by it and wish it would stop clogging the pipes of adult discussion, whether it’s “Katherine”‘s or Rush’s or various denizens of the LoOG.  [Although she seemed a lot more literal about it, or at least made no attempt at wit or relevancy.]

        But take a look at National Review’s The Corner and you’ll see no defense of what Limbaugh said.  It was a junky riff, and Limbaugh kept digging deeper and deeper.

        Now there’s an entire dimension re the work of Jonathan Haidt to examine here, that the right values “loyalty’ far more than the left.  We could say this is backward, a “tribalism,” or we could say that lefties are far more willing to throw their own under the bus in service of their ideology.  Probably a bit of both are operating here.

        The right is loath to disown Limbaugh, the left sees not turning on him as a moral defect.

        —Or it’s just all cynical and demagoguery and the left won this round. The actual narrative will be known by few—the media certainly won’t report it, and I doubt more than a handful here of heard the whole clever game.  The Dems’ original plan was a MALE witness [the reliable separation of church&state reverend, Barry Lynn] in rebuttal, on the subject of religious liberty.

        Then they got a better idea—a woman, and change the subject to “the GOP war on women,” reliably parroted here @ LoOG.  Props to the Dems–well played, and you can indeed fool most of the people most of the time:

        Byron York writes:

        “The Democrats played games with us the day before [the hearing],” says a Republican committee source.  “After days of asking for a witness, they waited until the last minute, the afternoon before the hearing.  They asked us to invite Rev. Barry Lynn [head of Americans United for Separation of Church and State] and Ms. Fluke.  We said we’ll invite one, per standard procedure.  We formally invited Rev. Lynn, and the Democrats, at 4:30 pm, changed their mind and said they wanted Fluke.  We said too late.  They told Rev. Lynn not to show up the next day.”

        When the hearing took place, Democrats proceeded to clobber Republicans.  “Where are the women?” asked New York Rep. Carolyn Maloney as she looked at the all-male first panel for the hearing.  (Two women testified in the hearing’s second panel, but Maloney and her fellow Democrats ignored that.)

        James Taranto writes:

        The kerfuffle was no fluke but a left-liberal set piece. It started 2½ weeks ago, when the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee held hearings on the ObamaCare contraception mandate and its implications for religious liberty. The Washington Examiner’s Byron York reports that Democrats originally chose Barry Lynn of Americans United for Separation of Church and State over Fluke to testify for the anti-religious-liberty side.

        Then they sandbagged the Republicans. They asked, too late, for Fluke to be subbed in for Lynn, then told Lynn not to bother showing up. When the hearing took place, Rep. Carolyn Maloney (this columnist’s congressman, but don’t blame us) demanded: “Where are the women?” Although it was the Dems who chose Lynn over Fluke and the second panel of witnesses included two female members, liberal media dutifully propagated the “Republican sexism” charge. A week later, House Democrats held a mock hearing where Fluke testified.


        • Avatar Gruntled says:

          “The right is loath to disown Limbaugh, the left sees not turning on him as a moral defect.”

          The Left is correct here, and the “right” is showing their true colors more and more every time Rush, Santorum, and the rest open their mouths.Report

          • Yglesias on Twitter: ”The world outlook is slightly improved with@AndrewBrietbart dead.”   Get to work.

            The thing is, Rush was trying [& failing] to be funny and to make a point.  Whatever Yglasias was doing here, it was neither and I’m just not buying this outrage @ Limbaugh as genuine.  Bill Maher called Palin a c*nt, no?  The most mortal of rhetorical sins?  The outrage is conspicuous by its absence.



            • Avatar Chris says:

              I wonder how Haidt explains the “If you don’t get angry at everything, you can’t get angry at this thing” tendency conservatives are suddenly showing.Report

            • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

              Tom, I’m of two minds here.  On the one hand, I would say that I find this tweet far more repugnant than what Rush had said, especially coming right after Briebart’s passing.

              But c’mon… Democratic leaders don’t have to grovel and publicly apologize if they criticize Yglesias.  I think the offense is apples to apples, but I don’t think using the offense as  critiques of the two parties is.Report

              • Avatar Patrick Cahalan says:

                On the one hand, I would say that I find this tweet far more repugnant than what Rush had said, especially coming right after Briebart’s passing.

                Ditto that.  Very classless.Report

              • Tod, first I’m gauging the outrage of those here gathered, because we agree Yglasias’ is the more heinous.  I don’t think this outrage is genuine, I think it’s gamesmanship.

                We had one commenter wish for Limbaugh to be as dead as Breitbart, but that passes without any outrage.

                As for the politicians in the party’s treatment of Limbaugh—VERY germane, since for once we’re talking about the real world and not phony opportunistic controversy.

                I’m not sure we’ll find much in the way of defense of Limbaugh. Eugene Robinson reliably carries the opportunistic lefty meme, but those who know and like Rush know he wasn’t exactly serious, that he was trying to be incisive and that he did actually have a point he was trying to make.

                Completely different from Ed Schultz calling Laura Ingraham a slut and Maher calling Palin a see-you-next-Thursday [a c*nt].  Those were gratuitous and hostile—hateful–insults and not the way Rush Limbaugh goes about things.  Had he been gratuitously hostile and vile like that, I certainly would be willing to throw him under the bus, and permanently exiled from the polity.

                I’d have a hard time giving him a pass for spitting on someone’s grave as Yglasias did on Breitbart’s.  Some who hate Limbaugh and get their news on him via his critics like Media Matters might honestly believe Limbaugh had that sort of hate and vileness in his heart, but those who know him first-hand honestly don’t.

                And so, that’s the difference, Tod, the particulars and the reality, not abstracting it so  much that every x equals every y.



              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                I’m not sure, Tom.  I think most people are talking about this faux pas in terms of the larger party and political issues.  That’s certainly what the posts were about.  (I otta know.)

                The only time I say people get too far into the weeds about Limbaugh (and I am certainly one of the guilty ones here) was responding to people who were defending him.Report

              • Avatar LaurNo says:

                I know this is a couple days old but I don’t want to let your statement pass about what Ed said. We should really be more careful of voicing opinions on things we aren’t darn sure about. He called her a ‘media whore’. There was no sexual connotation to it, if people are honest they will admit that. And I suppose you missed his immediate suspension and his (truly honest) abject apology? Since I’m commenting, I might as well add that I think a lot of Rush’s problem here is the hundreds of OTHER horrible things he has said in the past which makes the average person less than non-biased as to his intents. I don’t need anyone to tell me whether he spews hate or not, I have a brother who listens every day (and so, I do sometimes) and once had a job where I was forced to listen to him and I formed that opinion all on my own.Report

              • Avatar Mel McLaughlin says:

                Under the heading “You’re Not Entitled to Your Own Facts”…

                Appearing at the top of his Wednesday show, Schultz said that calling Ingraham a “right-wing slut” on his Tuesday radio show was “vile and inappropriate,” and apologized unreservedly to her, as well as to his wife, his family and MSNBC.

                “I am deeply sorry, and I apologize,” he said. “It was wrong, uncalled for and I recognize the severity of what I said.”



            • Avatar Patrick Cahalan says:

              The thing is, Rush was trying [& failing] to be funny and to make a point.  Whatever Yglasias was doing here, it was neither and I’m just not buying this outrage @ Limbaugh as genuine.

              I’m on board with Yglasias not doing either, 100%.  I’m not on board with Rush trying to be funny.  See Mike’s comment down below.  It’s not me!  It’s those other guys, they’re making me do it!

              This is the defensive retreat that a 7-year-old attempts, not a grown freakin’ man who spends his life in front of a microphone, ostensibly attempting to be part of the political discourse!

              Dude, you *cannot* make “slut jokes” funny in the context of women’s issues in politics.  Period.  And this is hardly the first time that Rush said something that people found misogynist, so even if he *was* trying to be funny, he’s a freakin’ idiot for thinking that people wouldn’t be offended.

              He’s not Chris Rock.  He’s not even Dennis Miller or Bill Maher, both of whom were comedians *before* they got into the political gig.

              He doesn’t care, Tom.  It’s part of his schtick.Report

              • PatC, those who know his shtick see it as theater and this outrage from his critics as theater too.

                In other words, I take none of this seriously, not him, not his critics—I don’t think there’s a sincere note being sounded on anybody’s part.  It’s all theater, kabuki, we all do the ritual dance and know our roles.

                But the First Amendment implications of the Obamacare contraception edict, I take very seriously, and as I noted in the first hours of this circus, Limbaugh hurt his own cause.

                And as I’ve said for days now, eventually this circus will leave town, and the First Amendment issue will remain.Report

              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                Do you not see it as a two way first amendment issue?Report

              • I meant the religious liberty part of the First Amendment re Obamacare’s contraception edict, sorry.  The original controversy, which will remain after this circus is over.


                I’m just not digging the administration’s style on this stuff.  This confrontation with the churches is unnecessary.  The gov’t could provide the contraception some other way without rubbing the Roman church’s nose in it.Report

              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                I get that.  But don;t you think there’s a second first amendment issue, now that we’re not just talking about churches? Because my understanding is that the issue is not a financial one, but that employers who are religious (but not necessarily a church) want to be able to structure what is going to be a federal program to encourage employees to make decisions about their personal lives based entirely upon their own religious doctrine?  Because really, that’s the stated goal, yes?

                Isn’t this a case of one group of people’s desire for what they consider their first amendment rights is in direct conflict with what another group considers its?Report

              • I really want to leave, Tod, as several hours worth of arguments and clarifications have just been rewritten and re-distorted.  It’s been an entire waste of an evening, right back to square one.  Square minus one…

                Elsewhere, not w/you and a few others.

                As to your own good faith question,

                structure what is going to be a federal program to encourage employees to make decisions about their personal lives based entirely upon their own religious doctrine?  Because really, that’s the stated goal, yes?


                if you’re talking about giving conscience exemptions to individuals as employers, I don’t think that one can fly, even if the church is making noises in that direction.  As you and others noted, you can’t exempt people who don’t like wars or waterboarding or a million other things the government spends money on.

                And no, I don’t think the Roman church is specifically trying to get their employees not to use contraception: they’re realistic enough to know they’ll buy it on their own.  The principle here is that the state is attempting to coerce the church into cooperating with what it considers to be immoral.

                This is no good, likely unconstitutional, and contrary to good sense and good will.Report

              • Avatar Jeff says:

                The gov’t could provide the contraception some other way without rubbing the Roman church’s nose in it.

                You’re still going with this line?  The bishops decided they were above the law, that their view of their religion trumps employment law, when every single case has shown it doesn’t.  They’re forced to hire divorcees, Tom.  They haven’t gone to war over that. Why not? Because they would lose that argument, even from apologists like you.

                Most people have realized that this never was a “religious freedom” issue.  What will it take for you to realize it, too?Report

              • Avatar Patrick Cahalan says:

                PatC, those who know his shtick see it as theater and this outrage from his critics as theater too.

                Tom, can’t someone make the same baloney defense of Maher and Schultz with this line?

                “Offense is in the eye of the beholder, and (my guy) is playing for (his in crowd) and thus (your crowd) getting bent out of shape is (your crowd’s fault).”

                But it’s the public sphere (less so for Maher, he’s not on the public airwaves, per se, but he said plenty of offensive crap before anyway).  The audience is everybody, not just (your team).Report

              • Avatar greginak says:

                Well its been said plenty of time that for Rush and lots of conservatives the highest goal is just to piss off liberals. Its all just trolling. Tom is just actually admitting it.Report

              • Pat, my point is I don’t care about Schultz, Maher or Yglasias either.  It’s all theater.

                In other words, I take none of this seriously, not [Limbaugh], not his critics—I don’t think there’s a sincere note being sounded on anybody’s part.  It’s all theater, kabuki, we all do the ritual dance and know our roles.Report

            • Avatar greginak says:

              Has anybody actually dissected and explained how Rush was trying to be funny?? I don’t hear it all. There was no joke involved. And if he was joking how does that explain his  inability to read or hear what Fluke said since she never talked about sex. Its all in the heads of R’s it seems that see Fluke as talking about sex. The entire “it was only a joke” sounds like gutless weasel words to avoid dealing with what he meant.Report

              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                Having heard the clip, I think you have to have the sense of humor where calling an opponent a slut is funny.  I’m not sure it’s the best defense under the circumstances.Report

              • Yes, Greg, it was dissected: It started with Ms. Fluke’s exaggerated claim contraception costs $1000 a year, unless that means 3 condoms a day.  Yes, there was a joke, there really was an attempt at humor, but it’s a waste of time explaining further for unsympathetic ears.



              • Avatar sonmi451 says:

                You and Rush do understand that birth control pills aren’t like condoms, right? You don’t take one pill before you have sex? It’s a regiment, you have to take the same number of pills whether you’re having sex once a month, or a gajiliion, bazillion times a month? That is, someone’s alleged “sluttiness” or “whoredom” does not matter one bit when it comes to the cost.Report

              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                I think Tom is saying that that’s what the joke was supposed to be.

                In Tom’s defense, he did say it wan’t funny.Report

              • Avatar greginak says:

                Tod- I admire your strenuous efforts to be fair and engage in dialogue. At some point crap is just crap…which is what “it was joke” line is. Conservatives have been trotting that out since Coulter was calling D’s traitors.Report

              • Avatar sonmi451 says:

                So the joke is it’s Sandra Fluke who is too stupid to know the difference between condoms and birth control pills? Look, I get the point, Rush thinks Fluke was exaggerating the cost. But instead of calling her out on that, he decided to make it about Fluke’s sexuality (not just sex in general, but making claims about a particular woman’s sexual history). Why? Because slut-shaming works, that’s why.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater says:

                What Greg said! This whole ‘Rush has a shtick and it’s funny, only when it’s not, but really he doesn’t mean any of it, he’s really just a big ole ball of love’ is just bullshit. The shtick is to insult anyone who disagree with the conservative line. It’s to create so much noise around liberal issues that conservatives can smugly feel like their arguments (well, let’s be real here, their views) can’t be answered. It’s to demonize anyone who dares to publicly advocate a liberal issue because ‘once you put yourself in the public spotlight, you have to put your big girl panties on’. The argument here, if there is one, seems to be that anyone who publicly advocates for contracpetion coverage has invited offensive and groundless personal attacks that have nothing to do with the argument presented. How is that defensible? How can that view be treated in an even handed way?


              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                Seriously?  You’re telling me I’m wrong with my pro-Rush rhetoric?

                You’ve been around this week, no?Report

              • Avatar Stillwater says:

                No. I’m saying it’s bullshit to give TVD a pass on this. His first reaction was to say that Rush was making a joke and the we shouldn’t get too caught up in it. Rush called the woman a slut, a whore, and demanded that she post sex videos online. How is that funny? TVD’s been an apologist about this right outa the blocks.


              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                No, I’m saying to people that are asking Tom why he thinks it’s funny, that he has said it isn’t.

                On the rest of it, I am still of the mind that Tom is wrong.


              • Avatar Stillwater says:

                Oh! Well. I might’ve been outa line there.

                But it seemed right at the time!Report

              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                Also, I’m not sure that the rest of that is correct.  Tom’s argument throughout all of this has been (I believe):

                1. The important issue is the religious liberty/contraception issue.

                2. Rush’s slight was bad, but was a piffle and distracting from the important issue #1.

                3. The left is concentrating on Rush because they know they will lose the religious liberty/contraception issue.

                In this, he is wrong.  Rush is certainly a piffle, or a least he should be.  I think it’s important because I think the media drives the party, not the other way around.

                I also think Tom is wrong because he believes there is no contraception issue, only a religious liberty one.  I think he is clearly wrong not only about that, but what will happen if the right continues to make it an issue.  It will hurt them – and it will hurt them badly.  If they’d been smart, they would have taken Obama’s original concession and declared victory.  Now they are in an untenable position of having to explain to 52% of the population that contraception isn’t healthcare, and they want their employers to have a say about it.  They are going to get killed.

                But some version of point 1, 2 and 3 are all I think Tom is arguing.  ANd while they’re wrong, t’s not like he’s been arguing that Rush was right.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater says:

                I disagree. Tom’s first argument was that taxpayers shoudln’t be compelled to pay for preventing the consequences of sexual activity. When the shit came down, he laughed it off, and said that there was a substantive point in Rush’s argument: about having other people pay contracpetion. And when the shit came down on that, he receded even further to the ‘well, this is really a religious liberty issue.

                Disingenuous dodging all the way thru.Report

              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                That might be.  I’ve only seen him do the ones I mentioned.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater says:

                Tod, I’m sorry for directing my anger in you’re direction. I thought – for a second there – that you were defending TVD on the merits. That was a mistake on my part. But really, this whole thing is just such a microcosm of the entire conservative movement that it makes me a bit irritable. I mean, in plain daylight we’re seeing the figurehead of modern conservatism call a woman who advocates for inclusion of hormonal contraception called unbelievable things based on fabrications. And for what purpose? To make a joke! And the really funny thing is that the smears have absolutely nothing to do with the argument she presented. They – Rush, whoever – just made it all up because it fits into their paradigm and their commitments: that women on BC are sluts.

                But when the shit came down, conservatives skipped right over that part and move on to how liberals can’t answer Rush’s deepdeepbigdeep point. And then when people do answer the bigdeep point, it moves onto something else. And once that’s answered….And so on. There’ll always be another argument for these folks because they already are committed to the conclusion.

                So, I apologize for putting you in the line of fire. You’ve done yeoman’s work trying to get these people to think a little more clearly.Report

              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                I think you’re right.  The whole reason I wrote my first post on this was because I think it does act as a microcosm of what’s wrong with conservatism and the GOP today.

                The part that I find the most fascinating, in an odd mad scientist way, is that what they’re doing right now is so obviously going to kill them come November, and I think most of them know that, and yet they seem unable to help themselves.Report

              • The original hearings were about religious liberty.  The constitutional problem remains religious liberty.  When the Limbaugh flap fades, it will still be about the constitutional problem and religious liberty.

                Limbaugh has nothing to do with the problem.

                I appreciate your efforts at clarity, Tod, but some folks are either stupid or disingenuous and can’t restate other people’s arguments fairly.  I don’t care which.  It took you hours to state my position fairly, and then when it was, Mr. Stillwater et al don’t care anyway and returned to their cant.

                They wasted my time, they wasted your time, and you barely got out of the way of their anger to disagree with me and save your own skin.

                There’s absolutely no point in attempting to moderate fair and civil discussion, let alone try to have one.Report

              • Avatar sonmi451 says:

                I don’t know, this doesn’t sound like a joke about how Sandra Fluke can’t tell the difference between condoms and birth control pills to me. It sounds like either a) Limbaugh in fact doesn’t really understand how birth control pills work or b) he does understand, and is deliberately trying to mislead people so he can put it the line about slutty slut Fluke having soooooooo much sex.

                Can you imagine, if you’re her parents, how proud of Sandra Fluke you would be? Your daughter goes up to a congressional hearing conducted by the Botox-filled Nancy Pelosi and testifies she’s having so much sex she can’t afford her own birth control pills and she agrees that Obama should provide them, or the Pope.

                The headline: “Sex-Crazed Co-Eds Going Broke Buying Birth Control, Student Tells Pelosi Hearing Touting Freebie Mandate — A Georgetown co-ed told Rep. Nancy Pelosi’s hearing that the women in her law school program are having so much sex that they’re going broke, so you and I should pay for their birth control.” Cybercast News Service. So what would you call that? So I called it what it is.

                Okay. Let me ask you a question. I might be surprised at the answer I would get to this question. Your daughter appears before a congressional committee and says she’s having so much sex, she can’t pay for it and wants a new welfare program to pay for it. Would you be proud? I don’t know about you, but I’d be embarrassed. I’d disconnect the phone. I’d go into hiding and hope the media didn’t find me. See, everybody forgets what starts this, or what started this whole thing. Or maybe they don’t! Maybe that’s normal behavior on the left now, for all I know.


                I mean, Rush mentioned birth control pills specifically.Report

              • Avatar sonmi451 says:

                Other choice quotes, so we all know what we’re talking about here:

                What does it say about the college co-ed Susan Fluke [sic], who goes before a congressional committee and says that she must be paid to have sex. What does that make her? It makes her a slut, right? It makes her a prostitute. She wants to be paid to have sex. She’s having so much sex she can’t afford the contraception.

                Why go before a congressional committee and demand that all of us — because they want to have sex any time, as many times and as often as they want, with as many partners as they want — should pay for it? Whatever, no limits on this. I mean, they’re going broke having to buy contraception!

                Okay, so this is a law student at a congressional committee asking for us to pay for the things that make it possible for her to have sex.Therefore we are paying her to have sex.Therefore we are paying her for having sex.We are getting screwed even though we don’t meet her personally!

                Ms. Fluke, have you ever heard of not having sex?

                So, if we’re gonna sit here, and if we’re gonna have a part in this, then we want something in return, Ms. Fluke: And that would be the videos of all this sex posted online so we can see what we are getting for our money.

                Folks, for all the hilarity that’s contained in what’s going on here .?.?. here’s a woman exercising no self-control. The fact that she wants to have repeated, never-ending, as often as she wants it sex — given.

                Did you notice in that sound bite Sheila Jackson Lee or Maria Cantwell or one of them talked about the strength that Sandra Fluke had to go before Congress, which is amazing. She’s having so much sex it’s amazing she can still walk, but she made it up there.

                Do you realize at the end of the day what’s happening here? The Democrats are putting on parade a woman who is happily presenting herself as an immoral, baseless, no-purpose-to-her-life woman. She wants all the sex in the world, whenever she wants it, all the time. No consequences. No responsibility for her behavior.



              • Avatar sonmi451 says:

                Coming from Rush, the woman-hating doesn’t surprise me one bit. It’s all the sex-hating I’m amazed at. Rush, who do you think straight men have sex with? Themselves?Report

              • Avatar Stillwater says:

                 It took you hours to state my position fairly, and then when it was, Mr. Stillwater et al don’t care anyway and returned to their cant.

                “Cant?” Tom, every argument, position, view, apology I’ve criticized you for expressing can be documented. Your first reaction to the Limbaugh Slutshaming was to wave it away as Lenny Bruce-esque. It was all just a big joke that wasn’t funny. When people asked you to justify the joke part of it, you said it was toy department shit and Rush calling Fluke a slut and a whore (53 times!) registered a 2 on the outrage meter. When people asked you to defend that, you said that FLuke went before the public and lied, so that permitted people to ridicule and embarrass her (by calling her a slut?). When people called you out on that, you said people were conveniently attacking Rush because they couldn’t answer his bigdeep point: that Ms. Fluke was arguing contraception is a right. (She argued no such thing, tho Rush certainly said she did.) When you were called out on that, you said Fluke’s demand that other people pay for services to prevent the consequences of voluntary sexual activity was downright risible (which again deliberately mischaracterizes Fluke’s argument).

                You’ve made all these arguments (do you want me to pull up the quotes?) along the way, even as you claim now that the real issue here is whether prohibiting exclusions of contraceptive coverage is a constitutional issue. So, if the real issue is a constitutional one, why make all these other entirely superfluous arguments? Is it just the same shtick that motivates Rush?Report

              • Avatar Chris says:

                Still, aaaaaand you’ve just played his game. I think he genuinely believes that there is a constitutional issue (though note that he remains completely uninterested in engaging arguments against that position), but over and above that, he wants to win a partisan fight, and he will say or do whatever he feels he must in order to do so. And really, by getting people to play along for this long, he has won in a way.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater says:

                Hah! I think you’re right! (dammit grumblegrumble)


              • Avatar BSK says:

                The problem is that some of us are looking to have stimulating conversation that helps us grow as individuals and some of us are playing games.  The former should not be faulted if they mistake the latter for the former.Report

              • Avatar sonmi451 says:

                Limbaugh has nothing to do with the problem.

                If the problem is religious liberty, why isn’t Limbaugh out there making this point? Why is he turning it into a circus about slutty women? He’s part of the problem for your side, no? Instead of fighting for what you claim really matters, he’s out there talking about sluts and whores.Report

              • Avatar greginak says:

                Yeah…except various kind of contraception can cost 1000 clams and ummm who brought sex into except for Rush. I’ll stick with the humor as weasel poop myself.Report

            • Avatar sonmi451 says:

              Yglesias’ tweet is abhorrent, but not surprising coming from him, the guy who tries to hard to be contrarian IMO. If I read his defense of the tweet correctly though, he was trying to make a point, namely:

              1) If you really believe in certain principles and values, then the death of a person fighting for the opposite principles and values would of course make the outlook for your chosen principles and values more promising.

              2) He’s taking Bretbart’s work seriously enough to think that Breitbart’s death would actually make a difference.

              I find it a load of BS, personally. First of all, life is not ALL about political principles and who wins and loses. Secondly, I don’t think the death of one person can have that much impact on who wins and loses anyway.


            • Avatar Gruntled says:

              “”The world outlook is slightly improved with@AndrewBrietbart dead.”   Get to work.”

              Let’s count up Breitbart’s actual record:
              – Made the world a safer place for vitriol and partisanship? Check.
              – Repeatedly, and with malice aforethought, produced highly edited videos used to attack his political enemies? Check.
              – A constant stream of public profanity about anyone who wasn’t sending money his way? Check.
              – Doing his level best to see that further and further right-wing persons got into CPAC, culminating this year when they had actual white supremacists like Peter Brimelow and Robert Vandervoort – while simultaneously making sure that CPAC kicked the Log Cabin Republicans, a not quite so right wing nutjob group, out? Check.

              I agree with Yglesias. One less Breitbart in the world makes it a brighter place, and the fact that I’m saying so now instead of hours after the jerk’s death makes no difference. He was the kind of man regarding whom, if I find myself in the same area as his casket, I’m likely to make a stop and fertilize the grass in front of the gravestone.Report

              • Avatar Chris says:

                I actually think Rush’s “slut” comments were much worse than Yglesias’, not just because Breitbart is dead so he doesn’t care, or because if he were alive he’d probably appreciate it (as Taibbi noted in his “obit”), but because unlike Yglesias, Rush was really insulting an entire gender, or at least the majority of that gender that uses birth control, and certainly all of them who use birth control paid for at least partially by insurance. Plus, Rush was using gender stereotypes and biases to try to influence a policy debate, whereas Yglesias was just being an ass on Twitter. So, while I think Yglesias’ tweet was pretty shitty, because even if you think that (and I’m sure plenty of people think similar things when people they dislike intensely die), and there’s no reason to say it outloud, I still can’t think of any sense in which what Yglesias did was worse than what Rush did.Report

            • Avatar Liberty60 says:

              I think a legitimate moral argument can be made that the world IS a better place without Breitbart.

              I use the passive voice because I am willing to be convinced otherwise.

              At the very least, I believe firmly that our national political dialogue is better off without his voice.Report

        • Avatar Chris says:

          The Democrats in Congress set Rush up!

          I know that’s now what you’re saying, but it damn sure looks like it’s what you’re saying.

          What you are saying is pretty much 99 territory, though.Report

        • Avatar greginak says:

          Tom- 1- There was very easy way the R’s could have avoided this devious nefarious trap. Let her speak and then not say stupid things. Just. Don’t. Say. Stupid. Things. That’s it. That is the ju jitsu like maneuver to avoid the Dem’s dastardly Testify Fu.

          2- John Derbyshire write for NRO Online so save all the encomiums to NRO’s dignity and giving  a poop about clueless offensive statements.Report

      • Avatar James Hanley says:

        “I mean, presumably you think there is a silent majority of conservatives who aren’t speaking up against the lunacy, right?”

        Indeed, it would be a bit strange to assume that the great majority are fully in agreement with the loudest and most obnoxious voices…in any group whatsoever.Report

  6. Avatar DensityDuck says:

    So let me get this straight:  Rush Limbaugh is personally responsible for the re-election of Barack Obama.

    “President?  Don’t tell me ’bout no President, boy, I pick the President.”Report

    • Avatar BSK says:

      We knew he was a politcal powerhouse!Report

    • Avatar BlaiseP says:

      Rush Limbaugh’s punk’d the GOP for years.  They’ve never once stood up to him until now.Report

      • Avatar BSK says:

        Did they stand up to him now?Report

        • Avatar BlaiseP says:

          I once had an architect friend, a rather bad drunk who used to come over and cadge cigarettes and Jameson Whiskey.   He told me this story.

          So he’s on the elevator heading up to work, the car’s full of women.   The door closes at the ground floor and he farts something terrible.   He’s headed to the sixth floor, half the buttons are lit.   The next time the door opens, all these women flee out of the elevator, their hands in front of them.   He’s left alone in the elevator, and must endure the ride up, the door opening several times before he can get off.  Nobody else wants to get in.

          That’s where the GOP is now with Rush Limbaugh.Report

    • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

      If it were just Rush Limbaugh it wouldn’t be an issue.Report

  7. Avatar Mike Schilling says:

    Did he learn his lesson?


    “Against my own instincts, against my own knowledge, against everything I know to be right and wrong, I descended to their level (the political left) when I used those two words to describe Sandra Fluke,” Limbaugh said.

    Jackass to the end.Report

  8. Avatar greginak says:

    Tod- Not sure if you are responding to me or not. Personally i blame Eric’s site redesign. I just find any  defense, like Tom is presenting, of its only a joke to be just crap. Like i said people have defended Coulter’s calling people traitors the same way. I don’t think it was ever a joke at all, just nasty sleaze. I haven’t said you have been pro-Rush, just that you are focused on maintaining a respectful dialogue.Report

    • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

      As I said to Still, you’re reading a defense that isn’t there.  I just said when everyone was correctly pointing out that the “joke” was’t funny, that Tom had never claimed that it was – and in fact has been maintaining that it wasn’t all along.Report

      • Avatar sonmi451 says:

        But saying a joke wasn’t funny is not necessarily denying that it’s a joke, right? I’m not taking issue with Tom for thinking the joke is funny, it’s that he tried to defend it as joke (that he found unfunny).Report

        • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

          Oh Sonmi, you as a woman should know that just because a misogynist is making a joke he thinks is a laugh riot doesn’t mean that he isn’t a complete offensive loser when he makes it.  You can be a maker of unfunny jokes, a douchebag and political crusader all at the same time.Report

          • Avatar sonmi451 says:

            Yeah, but by saying Rush was making an unfunny joke, aren’t we accepting the premise that he was just joking after all? I’m sorry, I don’t mean to get into the weeds with this, but I don’t agree with the premise that he was joking in the first place, regardless of whether people find the “joke” funny or unfunny. He was not joking or kidding, he  was making a specific type of argument – slut shaming – and then trying to defend himself with “oh it’s just a joke”.Report

            • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

              No, I don’t think so.  He was trying to be a misogynist bully, and in doing so make what he thought was a joke meant to demonize a woman he knew nothing about other than she had a different policy decision.  THe joke was vile, and offensive, and when that was pointed out he made an even worse “joke” the next day.

              I think that’s enough.  I don’t think trying to argue that he was trying to make a cruel offensive joke at a woman’s expense let’s him off any hooks.Report

              • Avatar sonmi451 says:

                 I don’t think trying to argue that he was trying to make a cruel offensive joke at a woman’s expense let’s him off any hooks.

                The problem is too often the “he was joking” line is used to get people off the hook (not what you were doing, of course, and hopefully not what Tom was doing as well). “If he’s just joking,then he must not really mean it, therefore we cannot judge/criticize/condemn him the same way if he HAD said it seriously”.Report

              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                Oh, I think you brought a lot of baggage there.  He was trying to be funny, but he meant it.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater says:

                 He was trying to be funny, but he meant it.


  9. Avatar Michael Drew says:

    This is a horrible thread.  Just horrible.  A bad moment for the League. This site is better than this.  Please, let’s drop this for the good of the site.  It’s making us look bad, trust me.Report

    • Avatar sonmi451 says:

      What, specifically, is “making us all look bad’?Report

      • Avatar Michael Drew says:

        Just getting into this so deeply about Rush, how bad is he, is he worse than (person), did (group) show enough outrage in order to be taken seriously in their denunciations of him, but wait, that’s a bad comparison because (person) is actually different from Rush because of how he relates to (party) blah blah blah blah blah blah blah.

        This place is supposed to be better than this; there was a time when there wasn’t a chance in hell an entire thread would fill up with this meaningless crap.  And this is like the third thread of it.  The first couple were slightly better and more understandable.  But I’m calling dreck now.  This is crap.

        Tom will want to say that this is what he’s been saying the whole time, but we all of course know that is BS.Report

    • Avatar sonmi451 says:

      Granted, I think it’s freaking depressing that the only thing that might induce some people to not call women sluts and whores is fear of electoral defeat, but given that that’s a fact, I don’t see anything wrong with Tod pointing that out.

      Or are you talking about the comments? We weren’t piling on TVD too much, we were?Report

      • Avatar Michael Drew says:

        I think it’s a little bizarre that he closed comments on the other post saying,

        Aaaaaand, we’re done here.

        You know what would really make this thread even better? A few more rounds of “You’re a poop-head!”, “No, You’re a poop-head!”

        Honestly, the thing that gets me is that I’m not shutting this down because of wing nut driver-bys, but site regulars.  I feel like my mom.

        …and then put this post up.   I’m not sure I could put together a post more sure to initiate a few more rounds of… than this post.  I understand Tod feels he needs to drive a particular point home, but it never quite works out that way in the comments, does it?  Which is more to the credit of this site I suppose, but this still is not the kind of thread I’d like to see us putting up.

        I know, I know, write a guest post.  We’ll see.  Right now I’m feeling below-replacement-value wrt to most of the OP-ers here (including Tod – I don’t mean to call him out, this is just a really forgettable thread).  I’m not saying I can make this place better, only that it almost always is better than this.  I could use a dense Rufus joint on someone with a name ending in -us I’ve never heard of ’bout now.Report

        • Avatar sonmi451 says:

          I don’t know, I’m not sure it’s a good idea for a blogger to edit his/her posts depending on what he/she thinks might happen in the comments. Many people don’t read comments, things that seem annoying and irritating as hell to us, plenty of readers of this blog won’t have a clue about.

          A post that touches on politics and political figure will always result in more disagreement and unplesantness than a post about some philosophical treatise or a post about GoT, no?Report

          • Avatar Michael Drew says:

            I don’t mean to criticize Tod.  I think it’s odd that he closed those comments but then put up this post.  And he’s already put up two posts saying what he thinks about Limbaugh’s comments.  I don’t see what value this added.  But I also am not saying I have a problem with it going up.  I just think the thread is worthless.Report

            • Avatar Michael Drew says:

              It also doesn’t matter that I think that, if others value it.  But I think that.Report

            • Avatar sonmi451 says:

              This thread is more about the effect of Limbaugh’s comment on Republicans’ electoral fortune, though, not about what Tod thinks about Limbaugh’s comment. Personally I think it’s too early to judge. There’s a lot of crowing on some liberal blogs about how Republicans are showing their true colors and voters will punish them for it etc etc – meh, feels like we’ve been there, done that too often before. I’m not optimistic.

              Hmm, I’m a little embarrased to admit this, but this sorta makes your point, doesn’t it? This is my first comment actually directly related to the OP, instead of being outraged at whatever BS Tom van Dyke was spouting. But it’s hardly Tod’s fault if some commenters (like me) are so easily distracted by Tom. The thing is, Tom just keeps saying it over and over and over again. Not a defense, obviously, but if you see him making an argument in one thread, you might be able to restrain yourself, but when he repeats it YET AGAIN in another thread, and another thread ….Report

            • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

              MD – This is a pretty fair criticism, and so I’d like to respond.

              First off, I agree with you about the threads in all of these posts.  The constant “they’re worse,” “no, they’re worse” has been… uninteresting?  FWIW, the purpose of these posts was never supposed to be about Rush, but rather how this little “tempest in a tea pot” was a good microcosm for what was wrong with today’s GOP – that they rose to power on the backs of this media machine, but now it’s killing them and even though I think they know they need to get off the bus they’re not entirely sure how.  The fist post laid out that argument, the second was because I was surprised to see the apology at all, and this last one because the poll results seems to confirm my point.  (Though I will confess that when I first posted, it had never occurred to me that people here would be defending Limbaugh’s comments.  My bad there.)

              If I had it to do over again, I’d probably do the second post again.  Pointing out that the GOP had just pushed Rush to do something I said they wouldn’t seemed the gentlemanly thing to do.  I might have skipped this last one, though.

              Also, I did not close the comments section in the other post because it had become uninteresting (though I think that it had).  I closed it because when I got up yesterday morning, the comments had ceased to be about Rush or R vs D at all, and were just a string of personal insults back and forth.  I can live with repetitive threads in my own posts, but don’t see a need to tolerate what I was seeing there.  As I’m doing this blogging thing more and more I’m realizing it’s an odd dance you try to do when you post here.  You want to push the conversation in more illuminating ways, but you can’t really tell people what to talk about.  And of course sometimes people go off on tangents that create a better conversation than the one you were envisioning.  Call it an art form for which I am still trying to learn the basics.

              All that being said, your criticism made me take a step back and try to think about how I might do things differently in the future, so thanks for that.Report

              • Avatar DensityDuck says:

                bbubububub sexisssmmmmmmmReport

              • Avatar sonmi451 says:

                Can we at the very least agree that calling a woman sluts, prostitutes and sex-crazed co-ed for the very tiny sin of testifying in Congress about birth control is sexist? Or is that just to fucking much to ask? Are people actually defending Rush turning a testimony about birth control into an interrogation about how manyt times a woman fucks in a month and how many men she fucks? Seriously??Report

              • Avatar sonmi451 says:

                Sorry, not really in the mood to change fucking into ‘fishing’.Report

              • Avatar DensityDuck says:

                Rush talking about sluts is exactly as sexist as “The Big Bang Theory” is anti-intellectual.  It’s possible for something to be really stupid without being a sign of creeping moral failure.Report

              • Avatar sonmi451 says:

                I’ve never seen that show, so I don’t understand the analogy. Out of curiosity, what WOULD you consider sexist?Report

              • Avatar Stillwater says:

                I’ll try! If it’s anything like racism, it simply doesn’t exist. It’s just something people like to accuse others of in order to score cheap political points. Is that about right DD?Report

              • Avatar DensityDuck says:

                I’m saying that someone matching some characteristics of your Picture Of A Racist (or sexist) doesn’t mean that they’re actually racist, etcetera.

                But hey I can understand how you would want to avoid that empathy thing, because if you start to admit that other people aren’t morally inferior then it’s really hard to justify indulging in hate.Report

              • Avatar Kimmi says:


                because it’s not like I don’t collect those damn stories — and disseminate them!

                you heard the one from washington, pa?Report

              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                Do you just put this phrase in randomly?Report

              • Avatar DensityDuck says:

                What I’m saying is that so many people seem to have a Two Minutes Hate conditioned response to perceived sexism that once they see it, they can’t ever see anything else.  No context, no explanation, no meaning, no nuance; SEXISM, the end.Report

              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                No, I get that.  What I found puzzling was that in this entire thread, you picked that comment to pull out the bu-bu-bu-bu.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater says:

                So, there really is no sexism then, just a conditioned response to inarticulately shout and grunt?

                Are you sure that you’re not projecting your own preconceived views onto the situation? I mean, lots of very intelligent people on this site have been arguing (not shouting) that what Rush and his defenders said is sexist. Are they all just unwitting victims of operant conditioning?Report

              • Avatar DensityDuck says:

                It doesn’t matter how hard you try to point out that “RUSH CALLED HER A SLUT” isn’t the issue, because, well, RUSH CALLED HER A SLUUUUUUUUTReport

              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                OK, then help me out.  What should I have said?Report

              • Avatar Stillwater says:

                DD, you’re very intelligent. I know this from reading your comments in Patrick’s property posts. So I know you’ll understand me when I say that Rush’s views and the arguments he made around them could be both an expression of misogyny as well as an expression of a substantive point.

                Is it beyond the realm of possibility that it’s both of those things?

              • Avatar sonmi451 says:

                It doesn’t matter how hard you try to point out that “RUSH CALLED HER A SLUT” isn’t the issue, because, well, RUSH CALLED HER A SLUUUUUUUUT

                I’m trying to be very, very civil here. (Deep breath). I’m guessing like TVD, you think the issue is religious freedom. Fine, there were already threads dedicated to that. After Rush said what he said, then there are threads dedicated to talking about what he said. Are we not supposed to talk about what he said in threads that are specifically about what he said, because, why? Religious freedom is the only issue, therefore we can’t talk ever about this thing that Rush said?

                So, once and for all, you think that calling a woman sluts, prostitutes, and sex-crazed co-eds is not sexist? That I don’t have empathy enough to understand what? Rush’s pain and deep, deep humanity?Report

              • Avatar sonmi451 says:

                Sexist is like the mildest rebuke for what he said .. wow, I thought people here would at the very least agree on this. Tod, maybe DD would faint or something when he realizes you actually used the word “misogyny” somewhere up there.Report

              • Avatar DensityDuck says:

                “once and for all, you think that calling a woman sluts, prostitutes, and sex-crazed co-eds is not sexist?”

                Given that my definition of “sexist” is “taking an action that causes a material disavantage to an individual for reasons which are based on assumptions of that individual’s inherent inferiority due to sex“, then no, I don’t think it’s sexist.  I think that it’s insults specific to gender, but I don’t consider that to be sexism.  Sexism would be “it’s not an insult to call her a slut”.  Sexism would be “women don’t get to have that job because women are inherently less competent in that area”.  Sexism would be “you aren’t going to read the rest of this post because your ovaries just exploded”.

                “Religious freedom is the only issue, therefore we can’t talk ever about this thing that Rush said?”

                See, that’s the thing.  We are talking about it, or at least we’re trying, but it’s hard to talk about it when someone says “what he said was sexist and anyone who disagrees that it was sexist is also sexist”.Report

              • Avatar Michael Drew says:

                Tod – just so you understand, I didn’t mean it as a dig on you or the posts.  I was just sick of seeing this debate go on and on like it was.  And to some extent, that is an overly negative, rotten-vegetable-tossing  kind of opinion to spout.  If people care about this, well, they should have it out. I just couldn’t help myself, partly because  I’m not without a position on it.  I just desperately wanted to avoid getting drawn in on it, so I made that comment instead.  I’m glad it was useful, because to some extent I regret the remark.  But I also thought it was worth at least voicing my impression of how this discussion might seem to uninvolved observers.Report

              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                Dude, I didn’t take it as a dig. In fact, the whole reason I thought out loud in response to you was because I was agreeing.

                I too am really tired of this argument. I was very serious about the thanks. As I’m figuring out this blogging thing comments like that are helpful.Report

              • Avatar sonmi451 says:

                I too am really tired of this argument.

                So, what’s the solution? People should just “take the high road”? Ignore it when some people make the same comments over and over again that what Rush said doesn’t matter and is not teh issue? I’m sure that would stop prolonged arguments, if that’s the important thing.Report

              • Avatar sonmi451 says:

                I don’t know, maybe I’m bringing my own baggage into it, or being uncharitable, but I’m feeling a lot of “this joint used to be so much better and high-minded, but now that the proles have descended, it’s gone to hell in a handbasket like those other awful, awful blogs” vibe around  here lately.Report

              • Avatar Michael Drew says:

                s451 –

                That’s because to oldtimers, it really truly is different – and mostly in absolutely amazing, powerful, wonderful ways!  But sometimes my Irish comes out (actually I don’t have any Irish, but WTH, it’s March 7. I’m one digit away.) and I just get nostalgic.  As I’ve tried to say a few times: any issue you think needs to be worked out or pursued – just say to hell with him, I care about this.  That’s more important.  I’m just some dude on the internet.  it’s worth keeping in mind, that’s what we all are.  The nice thing about opinions is that you can disregard them.Report

              • Avatar Stillwater says:

                I don’t know, maybe I’m bringing my own baggage into it, or being uncharitable, but I’m feeling a lot of “this joint used to be so much better and high-minded, but now that the proles have descended, it’s gone to hell in a handbasket like those other awful, awful blogs” vibe around here lately.

                I’m getting that vibe too. But like you said earlier, what’s the alternative? When you hear someone spout bullshit, you call them out on it. You can do it more civilly rather than less, but either way there’s an aspect to it which can legitimately be viewed as uncivil. And the merits of that claim will rest with folks that have been here longer.Cuz there was a time when… blah blah blah.

                But nostalgia is a losers game, really. So I say (FWTFIW) keep calling out the bullshit. With civility. Of course.Report

              • Avatar Michael Drew says:

                Tod – good, good.Report

        • Avatar Rufus F. says:

           I could use a dense Rufus joint on someone with a name ending in -us I’ve never heard of ’bout now.

          Really? I’ve just got something in my eye… one second…Report

  10. Avatar Will H. says:

    Some things from the other OP that I didn’t get to comment on:
    I have said for a number of years that talk radio was preventing the natural growth that would occur in the Republican Party. Talk radio probably served a useful purpose back in the 90’s at some point, but they have far outlived their purpose.

    All these hearings were about contraception only if you make it so. You have to buy in to the idea that the structure of policies should conform to a certain manner.
    I see nothing that would bar the purchase of supplemental insurance. I see nothing that would bar contraception coverage from supplemental insurance.
    Is contraception coverage one of the approved uses for HSA funds? Now, there’s a conversation we should be having.
    Here’s the difference between the Left & the Right:
    Sit down and take a good look at how many insurance policies you own.
    The Right says that if you need more insurance, buy another policy.
    The Left says that by including every point of insurance into one single onmibus policy, we can reduce our rates.
    But that only works when the underwriter is the same.
    Now, there’s a conversation we should be having.

    Yes, Rush says some really coarse things.
    Yes, he’s taken far more seriously than he should be by a great many number of people.
    No, that doesn’t mean everyone on the Right listens to him, believes him, or should stand up to denounce him.

    And seriously, if you’ve ever heard Michael Savage, you wouldn’t be worried about Rush nearly so much.
    There are a lot worse things out there.
    It’s just the latest on the flame circuit.Report

    • Avatar Gruntled says:

      Is contraception coverage one of the approved uses for HSA funds? Now, there’s a conversation we should be having.

      HSA’s are great if you are already rich enough to have one. The vast majority of Americans are living paycheck-to-paycheck as it is.

      Here’s the difference between the Left & the Right:
      Sit down and take a good look at how many insurance policies you own.
      The Right says that if you need more insurance, buy another policy.
      The Left says that by including every point of insurance into one single onmibus policy, we can reduce our rates.
      But that only works when the underwriter is the same.
      Now, there’s a conversation we should be having.

      The Right’s response assumes you could buy another policy. That is, if you have the money to pay for it, and you have steady employment, and you don’t have a PEC or other condition or situation that will stop you from getting to it.
      The Left’s response is based on one of the big flaws of the US economy today: many who are poor are poor not because of their own fault or mistakes, but because they had the bad luck to have a medical issue, or be involved in a car accident, or some other form of catastrophe that destroyed their lives while they didn’t have or couldn’t afford “insurance.” In the car accident case, many times they were hit by someone else who didn’t have insurance or didn’t have enough to cover the entirety of the situation, or they were hit by someone who then just ran off.

      And seriously, if you’ve ever heard Michael Savage, you wouldn’t be worried about Rush nearly so much.

      Savage is a tool, but he doesn’t have the audience Rush has. In fact, Savage holds it up as a point of pride that he’s so odious that even the usual right-wing noise outlets like Fox News won’t touch him with a 39-and-a-half-foot pole. Rush said a Savage-like thing, and Rush is the big name on the block, so it’s right that Rush receive his just desserts and lose sponsors and affiliates.Report

      • Avatar Will H. says:

        All of which shows that it has nothing to do with:
        1). Insurance generally, or
        2). Contraception, its use, access to it, lubrication as needed, or female sexuality generally.

        It’s simply a litany of ancillary concerns:
        a) affordability of coverage,
        b) access to coverage, pre-existent conditions,
        c) accident prone Americans.

        Don’t you think that assessing the issues clearly would be a good starting point to address those concerns?
        We already have all kinds of medical programs.
        We have the ones administered by the feds, Medicare and Medicaid; which we need to cap annual payouts per user.
        We have the State administered programs that provide pre-natal care and early childcare.
        We have mandated emergency room service for anyone that might need emergency medical service.
        Well, in some cases they want to make sure that you’re in district so that your taxes cover the ambulance services, or else they send you a bill.

        And consider this:
        With all this attention being paid to a national health package for so long, and with all of these programs going on, why is it that we’re really no closer?
        Why is that? I mean, really?

        Ok, so I’m convinced that contraception is a glaring gap in coverage.
        And I believe that some program somewhere ought to address that.
        I’m not sure if federal mandates to employers is the most auspicious vehicle available.Report

  11. I know the wingnut talking point is that Yglesias is just as bad as Limbaugh, but it’s completely incoherent and silly. I don’t take it particularly seriously because I don’t think they do either, beyond its propaganda value and as a tribalistic defense maneuver.

    I personally would not have tweeted what Yggy did, but I think the uncomfortable truth is that if we believe individuals impact the world, then the place to disagree with him is in arguing that Breitbart wasn’t that bad, not that the fundamental ethical framework he’s operating within is wrong.Report

    • Avatar DensityDuck says:

      That’d be great if people like Yglesias weren’t themselves making rude language a focus issue.  If it’s bad to say awful things about people then it’s bad no matter who does it.Report

      • Avatar BlaiseP says:

        Fact is, everyone is sick and tired of today’s Conservatives up the trees like a troop of vervet monkeys, screeching and hurling feces at anyone who dares to respond in kind to their doctrinaire, misanthropic and misogynistic tropes.   They stink in the nostrils of decent people everywhere.   They cuddle up to each other in an orgy of self-pity, cursing the world, every vestige of decency and honor long-discarded. Why shouldn’t Liberals respond in kind to the likes of Rush and Breitbart?Report

        • Avatar DensityDuck says:

          “everyone is sick and tired of today’s Conservatives up the trees like a troop of vervet monkeys, screeching and hurling feces at anyone who dares to respond in kind to their doctrinaire, misanthropic and misogynistic tropes.”

          That’d be great if it weren’t for the entire period from 2001 to 2008.Report

          • Avatar BlaiseP says:

            Ah, the Litany of Grievance.   Lectio sanctii Evangeli segundum Rushus Limbensis.   Verbum Domini.   Gloria tibi Domine.

            Harbour up every last stale crumb of obloquy, treasure it in the pyx of remembrance.   Back when it was “You’re with us or you’re against us” and Bush was scaring the rubes with mythical mushroom clouds  Rush had the temerity to call the troops who fought that war and disagreed with it “Phony Soldiers”    I have not forgiven him for that.

            Accipite et bibite, hic est enim calix sanguines Rushus.

            (here the choir of castrati break forth into song, in a soft minor key, singing)Report

          • Avatar Gruntled says:

            Limbaugh 2003-2007: had conservative politicians playing politics behind the scenes to get him out of federal drug charges. Limbaugh on illegal drug use: “Drug use, some might say, is destroying this country. And we have laws against selling drugs, pushing drugs, using drugs, importing drugs. … And so if people are violating the law by doing drugs, they ought to be accused and they ought to be convicted and they ought to be sent up.”

            Limbaugh, 2004, forced his way onto armed forces radio, shortly thereafter going on homophobic rants meant to trigger beatings of suspected-gay soldiers.

            Limbaugh, 2006, on Michael J Fox in an ad advocating stem cell research for Parkinson’s Disease treatments: “He is exaggerating the effects of the disease. He’s moving all around and shaking and it’s purely an act. … This is really shameless of Michael J. Fox. Either he didn’t take his medication or he’s acting.”

            Limbaugh, 2007: the “Barack the Magic Negro” bit.
            Limbaugh 2007: the “phony soldiers” bit.

            Anything I missed?Report

          • Avatar Kimmi says:

            COME ON NOW. Stark’s Funny. You gotta Admit that. He’s Funny!

            (and *someone* put the troublemaker into lawschool).Report

      • Avatar Kimmi says:

        It’s not bad, point blank, to say horrible things about someone else.

        It’s a bad thing ta mean ’em, or to say ’em without Any reason whatsoever.Report

      • Rush was talking about a non-public figure, Yglesias was talking about an eminently and intentionally public figure.

        The more interesting Q to me is the general one of why Americans are so queasy about speaking ill of the dead even when they’re public figures. I obviously think normal, private citizens should get at least that much courtesy—but when you become a public figure, isn’t being judged part-and-parcel? You get into a grey area, of course, when you’re talking about people who unwillingly became public figures (like Lewinsky or any number of politicians’ wives, mistresses or same-sex lovers) but if someone wants to be of influence, however small, it seems to me logical that their being criticized would be ethically if not normatively acceptable.

        For those who disagree: where’s the line between when it’s OK and when it isn’t? Or is there one? Is it wrong to speak ill of Gaddafi or Kim when they die? And do we not believe the world is a better place with them gone? If the answer is yes/no, then you can only really quibble with whether or not Breitbart cleared some threshold of negative impact—the basic logic is unimpeachable.eReport

        • Avatar Gruntled says:

          Can we make this the official song of the Rush Limbaugh show now?


        • Avatar joey jo jo says:

          blame chilon of sparta.  he stated:  de mortuis nil nisi bonum as a philosophical representation of the superstitions surrounding death.Report

        • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

          First off, I think there is a pretty big difference between Hitler, Stalin, or Kim and Briebart, Ted Kennedy or Robert Byrd.  (To take three of the top of my head that got some amount of “Hooray, they’re dead!” over the inertubes.)

          One of the inherent dangers in being politically active is that it has a tendency to make you forget that there is far more that connects us in the culture than separates us.  We have a tendency to begin to think that those that want a tax rate 2% less (or more) than we do are the most vile of history’s monsters, and their banishment is all that keeps us from an on-Earth apocalyptic wasteland.  But it just isn’t true.

          And when we get to the point where we cheer the death of someone who was on the other side of that fence, who simply argued for things (or in ways) that we do not agree with, I think we risk losing the best part of our humanity.Report

          • Avatar BlaiseP says:

            There is a practical difference between the likes of Ross Douhat, who exhibits some semblance of decency, and the likes of Andrew Breitbart, who drank too often from the Bottle of Outrage.   Even Douhat saw fit to give Rush a beating.

            What positive thing did Breitbart ever do?   Or Rush Limbaugh?   When did they ever acknowledge the tinest shred of decency in their intellectual and political opponents?   As such, what harm is done by pointing out this fact?

            Everyone has his own angle on the truth.  I’m doing my damnedest to come to terms with Libertarian thought, a completely alien political framework, one I’ve long opposed and still believe is fraught with error.    Outrage, like cheap whiskey, is plentiful and its effects well-understood.  It sells well enough.   But outrage is no substitute for honest debate, where a few kind words might sway someone’s opinion, demonstrating the  common ground you’re talking about, where the sum of opinions might lead to some greater insight.Report

            • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

              I guess what I’m saying is that cheering Briebart’s death only makes sense if you think that all of this stuff – this R vs. D stuff – is what’s really important in a person’s life, and the rest of all of it – our families, our faiths, our relationships, the day to day things we do to connect with people in our towns and schools and offices and neighborhoods that people who might read about us on the internet will never know about – is just kind of background noise.  I tend to believe the opposite.Report

              • Avatar BSK says:

                This.  This this this.

                Breitbart may have been a “threat” to humanity insofar as he was able to influence people who might have chosen to vote for politicians who might have chosen to pursue legislation that I might find objectionable and which they might have been successful in passing.  He was a threat to individuals insofar as he was able to manipulate situations and cause others to act (e.g., Sherrod), though required the efforts of many others as well.

                He was also a husband, a son, and a father of four.  Those people, especially those children, are without a loved one.  That is nothing to celebrate.


              • I don’t disagree that it’s nothing to celebrate, but this undersells the mendaciousness that defined his public career. He did not manipulate Sherrod into making a mistake — he brazenly and shamelessly edited video of an utterly inoffensive speech so as to make it as susceptible as possible to race-baiting. He attempted to ruin people’s careers & lives and had little regard for whether or not he had to lie repeatedly in order to do it. This was not just some guy with whom I happened to disagree.Report

              • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

                That’s all fine and well, but to those that might want to give a public shout out upon hearing the news I’d ask why not wait?  It’s not like if you don’t publicly decry him right now – while his family and friends are arranging things and mourning – that you’ll lose the opportunity.  He’s not going to be less dead.  You’ve got from now until the end of time to revisit and condemn his political legacy.  That doesn’t mean y’t don’t have to celebrate his legacy today, just don’t make it so that his loved ones have to deal with all of that noise while they’re trying to get through this.

                My dad was a pretty vocal Republican and a pretty outspoken guy in his church vestry.  And he didn’t suffer fools (or those he thought of as fools) lightly.  And I know that he was a tough old-school bastard to work for. It’s hard for me to think he didn’t piss a quite a few people off in his day. But the day after he died someone had said to us “I’m glad he’s dead; the harm he was doing the church and this county and our office makes me say god riddance,”  my only thought would have been, “What an asshole.”Report

              • Avatar Elias says:

                Re: your dad, again–not a public figure.Report

              • Also shoulda been a contendah, no doubt.Report

              • Avatar BlaiseP says:

                I’ve already said I won’t speak ill of the dead.   He was a human being and I’ve also said he had small children.   He was loved by those to whom he was loving and if they mourn him, they do so with cause.

                But human beings are also liars and defamers.   He had enough evil things to say over the corpse of Ted Kennedy.   My friend’s wife has made his life a living hell.   She was a bad drunk, ruined her liver and is now in a nursing home.   She was personally cruel to me, cruel to my wife and cruel to my children.  When she is dead, my friend has planned a little party in the dark, where we are to piss on her grave.    Not sure I’m gonna carry it out but it was good for a laugh when he asked me to do it. But he still visits her in the nursing home, still buys her groceries, it’s a sore point between him and his current girlfriend. His own internal Decency Structures are still intact enough to care for her as a human being

                Let us not in our supposed decency deny what Breitbart did, or deny our urge to exhale with some relief knowing that bastard is dead and gone.   He was an extraordinarily vicious and cruel man and the world is well rid of him.Report

        • Avatar BSK says:

          “The more interesting Q to me is the general one of why Americans are so queasy about speaking ill of the dead even when they’re public figures.”

          I thought about this today on the ride into work.  I think there is a difference between talking ill of the dead and celebrating death.  Yglesias (who I will confess to knowing nothing about outside of people here referencing him) seems to be venturing a bit too close to the latter for my sake.

          I do not believe it appropriate to celebrate death.  I was bothered when my liberal friends celebrated the deaths of Reagan and Thurmond.  I was bothered by the tailgate-style festivities that followed Bin Laden’s death, though less so than in the prior situation

          That being said, I am also bothered by the over-romanticization of folks who have passed.  I am not going to suddenly sing the praises of Thurmond just because he has passed.  Out of respect for his family, I might opt for a ‘If you have nothing nice to say, say nothing,” approach for the time immediately following the death.  However, I would not hesitate to respectfully share my true feelings if engaging in a conversation about the man’s legacy.

          All this is to say that this is a tricky subject.  It is true that the world is better off without some people in it.  And I would have trouble begrudging a Jew in a concentration camp celebrating news of the death of Hitler, though it would be easier to make an argument that their celebration is more tied to the impact of his death on them and less to him, as a man, dying.

          Ultimately, my offense at the tweet in question has to do with the view of a man’s life (or more specifically, his death) as a means to an end.  Breitbart’s death might very well have made Yglesias’s goals more easily achieved.  But his death meant a great deal more than that, specifically to his loved ones.  It is possible that the gains realized by his passing outweight the losses, but using that to justify such a tweet is a really uncomfortable form of utilitarianism for me.  Yglesias shouldn’t have said what he said, at least not in the manner in which he said it and at the time in which he said it.Report

          • Avatar Michael Drew says:

            I’m not great with the tweet either, but I think it’s not right to say it’s a celebration of his death.  It’s an assessment, I agree a poorly time one.  It’s fine to say it’s ugly.  But the claim in this thread was that it clearly outshone Rush’s statements over the past week for vileness.  Well, okay, one can think that.  The suggestion was that anyone else was wrong not to think that, and therefore hypocritical in having a greater problem with Rush’s comments than Yglesias’ tweet.  People can have different views of what’s worse (though I have a hard time seeing how myself, but that’s just me) – it doesn’t demonstrate any hypocrisy or bad faith in those who have a greater problem with Rush’s comments.

            Sometimes I think that we think that because death is an absolute thing, we think that absolutely anything relating to it must of necessity be of far greater significance than anything merely relating only to interactions among the living.  I don’t see any reason for that view to hold.Report

        • Avatar DensityDuck says:

          “Rush was talking about a non-public figure”

          If being personally invited by Nancy Pelosi to testify in front of FUCKING CONGRESS doesn’t make you a public figure, then what does?Report

    • Avatar Michael Drew says:

      I agree with EI.  I’m no fan of speaking ill of the dead.  I didn’t think it was particularly fair some of what was said about Ted Kennedy after he died, ignoring much of the positive part of his public life.  But, apart from people who went truly overboard with it, I didn’t regard those views as beyond the pale – people were going to assess what they thought of the guy when he dies.  Some people have a real thing about not speaking ill of the dead and others don’t, and I don’t think that those who don’t need to apologize for it, so long as they don’t say obviously malicious things. I don’t think that saying on Twitter once that the world is slightly better off without Andrew Breitbart in it is one of those things – To have (or posture as having) an aversion to speaking ill of the dead that is that strong is a little over the top for me, and I have something of a thing about it myself.  I mean, it’s fine if you do, but you need to own it as something that sets you a bit apart, IMO.  Not everyone is like that.  BY contrast, do we have a divergence of opinion/instinct/tradition as to whether calling a woman a slut and prostitute and making defamatory statements about her sex life 52 other times on national radio is vile and unacceptable, whether it’s a joke or not?  I didn’t think we did.  But I guess mileage varies.Report

  12. Avatar wardsmith says:

    I’m so glad the Left was up in arms about this guy making his odious statements about death and destruction. Because after all that is death and destruction and Rush offended someone’s sensibilities. Oh so fair the Left. What’s that I hear? Oh yes, the usual deafening silence.

    Their God … keeps smashing them into little grease spots on the pavement in Alabama, and Mississippi, and Arkansas, and Georgia, and Oklahoma,” Malloy says in his broadcast from Friday. “You know, the Bible belt, where [in a mocking voice] they ain’t gonna let no goddamned science get in the way, it says in the Bible, blah blah blah blah blah. So, according to their way of thinking, God with his omnipotent thumb reaches down here and so far tonight has smashed about 20 people into a grease spot on highway 12, or whatever the hell highway they live next to.”— Mike Malloy, March 2, 2012Report

    • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

      Ward, I’ll basically parrot a response to Tom above:

      I think that you’re right that this comment is not remotely funny, and that it’s divisive and not remotely helpful.  The Hell with that guy!  On the other hand, come on…

      Mike who? If the leader of the DNC is made to grovel an apology for criticizing this guy I’ve never even heard of, then it seems a more appropriate comparison.  As I said to Tom, you have found something where the offense certainly seems apples-to-apples, but as an example of how the reaction to said offense can be used in a critique of party strategy it seems waaay apple-orangey.Report

    • Avatar Kimmi says:

      Up here in corn & cow country, I’d just like to point out that you yourself were ragging on the obvious institutional bias inherent in weather forecasting, specifically our outstanding meteorology dept. at Penn State.

      The hypocrisy, it burns.

      Perhaps if they weren’t so busy going gray with trying to defend their credibility from you doubtful fools, they’d have had time to do more fluid dynamics.Report

      • Avatar Rufus F. says:

        I just wanted to note that, a few days ago, someone at the bar I go to said that the problem with the US is that the Republicans are retarded. I told them that my father’s a Republican and he’s quick as a whip, which led the dude to apologize. But, in the days since, the silence from the left on that guy’s drunken comment has been deafening and reveals their deep hypocrisy, and so forth.Report

      • Avatar wardsmith says:

        Are you Kim1 confusing WEATHER with CLIMATE? Surely you wouldn’t dare, not after the millions of pages written by AGW proponents claiming exactly the opposite when record cold interfered with their climate confabs the past 4 years. But irony is most certainly lost on you, as are most thoughts requiring introspection.


        • Avatar Kimmi says:

          Steamed Hams, ward.

          This has absolutely everything to do with the fucking discussion, but I don’t really feel like explaining myself.

          Suffice it to say, fluid dynamics is a LARGE field. Modeling an even larger one. I know an expert in both.Report

    • Avatar James Hanley says:


      Who the fish is Mike Malloy?Report

      • Avatar wardsmith says:

        Not my fault no one wants to listen to liberals on the radio. Air America ring any bells? I could pick on Maher, but you’d just respond, “Oh, he’s just a comedian, they’re supposed to be edgy”.Report

        • Avatar Kimmi says:

          so now you’re defending rush screening his calls so nobody calls him on his bullshit?Report

        • Avatar James Hanley says:

          Really?  You know how I’d respond?

          Guess how often I’ve watched Maher’s show?

          But the fact that no one wants to listen to liberals on the radio is really freaking relevant to this discussion, eh?  They don’t have to distance themselves from this nutsack because they’re not listening to him in the first place.Report

        • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

          You really don’t see the difference between looking a how the GOP reacts to Rush and how the DNC reacts to this guy?  Seriously?Report

        • Avatar Rufus F. says:

          Actually, Ward, you know what would be a fair and honest question for you to ask? Something like: “Here’s this liberal radio host who nobody listens to who made this obnoxious comment yesterday: (insert comment here). Now, I’d like to ask the liberals here what they think of that comment because, on some level, it disturbs me to think that you fellow liberals might agree with that sentiment”. That’s a fair question.

          You know what’s not? “Here’s this liberal radio host that nobody listens to who made this obnoxious comment yesterday: (insert comment here). Now, unless you can verify that you’ve already made some sort of public statement against what he said, I’m going to decide you agree with what he said and call you a hypocrite or a liar”. But it’s a fun game to play. Since most people don’t, of their own accord, comment on every single thing that happens, you can probably catch anyone on that.Report

      • Avatar Chris says:

        I’m going to start a new blog, called Chris Apologizes, in which I apologize for everything everyone left of center says on Twitter, Facebook, or YouTube,  that might remotely be construed of as offensive to anyone. I’m going to start following everyone left of center on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube right now.Report

        • Avatar BSK says:

          First order of business, apologize for your own disregard of MySpace.  MySpace was awesome until that liberal Ivy League D-Bag had to go and ruin it with Facebook.  Your liberal bias is showing.  Your lack of respect for the preferred social media outlet for porn starts and indie bands is glaring.  You should be ashamed.Report

        • Avatar Jaybird says:

          I would like to call for civility on all sides, but I would like to point out that the other side is so egregiously bad that uncivil outbursts in response to the things they say is not only appropriate but perhaps even the only possible moral response available.Report

          • Avatar BSK says:


          • Avatar Rufus F. says:

            My concern with you Jay isn’t about civility but more about wife-beating. I mean, perhaps one could assume that you really do think it’s wrong to beat one’s spouse, but since I haven’t heard you explicitly say so, your silence raises troubling questions for me, and I think for all of us.Report

  13. Avatar wardsmith says:

    Carbonite led the advertiser exodus from Rush Limbaugh’s show. The Democrat-owned company continues to advertise on Ed Schultz’s show, despite the fact the Schultz is guilty of a thought crime nearly identical to Rush’s: Schultz called Laura Ingraham a “slut” on the air, and later apologized for it. As I argued on America’s Radio News on Monday, the only real difference between what Rush did and what Schultz did is the politics, since both Ingraham and Sandra Fluke are public figures. Schultz hit from the left, Rush hit from the right, but Carbonite has only canceled on Rush. Why?

    Honestly this is like shooting fish in a barrel. The one thing I can always count on the Left never doing is looking in a mirror.Report

    • Avatar Jesse Ewiak says:

      Again, Schultz apologized the very next day with an actual apology, not the half-assed piece of crap Rush put out. Also, again, when was the last time any Democratic politician had to apologize to Ed Schultz?Report

    • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

      Out of curiosity, why was Carbonite advertising on Rush’s show in the first place if the owners just want ad dollars to go to leftie shows?Report

      • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

        Also, the article you link to unbiasedly credits the decision for pulling ads from Rush’s show to a sudden drop in stock price to a 52 week low.  Which I think shows that Rush’s fans are not only organized, they’re are mother fishing proactive. They started tanking the stock 6 months ago.  That’s some impressive reach.Report

        • Avatar wardsmith says:

          Why not click on this link instead there Tod, one below the one you’re so willing to micro-scrutinize?

          I’ve never liked tu quoque arguments, but I’ve also loathed the Left’s continuous clamor of holier than thou righteousness all evidence to the contrary notwithstanding. Therefore you’ve seen me post links pointing out that Democrats have been the REAL racists in this country, that the “Southern Strategy” is a myth, and now that the Left is far from even-handed in its willingness to stand up for ALL women slandered (or blacks for that matter). Enough for now, I’ve used up my two links, but if I were a front-pager I could post a couple dozen more.Report

          • Avatar sonmi451 says:

            Just out of curiosity, do you link to those stuff because you personally actually believe them (Democrats are the real racist, southern strategy is a myth etc), or because you can’t stand the left being holier-than-thou? By the way, I hope you have a more recent argument for the “Democrats are the real racist!” argument than Dixiecrats and Robert Byrd was in the KKK. (Real racist as opposed to what, incidentally? Fake racist like Republicans?)Report

          • Avatar Stillwater says:

            but if I were a front-pager I could post a couple dozen more.

            Ward, I invite you to do that. Write the post, send it to someone with authoritah, and they’ll post it. Pretty simple, really. And I, for one, would love to read it.Report

          • Avatar Gruntled says:

            I have no problem saying the left wing is holier than thou. Especially when those on the right wing have set a bar for holiness that’s about three matchbooks high.

            All you have to do is step over it and learn to live and let live, and you’re already holier than the right wing.Report

        • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

          Ward, FWIW I don’t know how you’d peg me as a “leftist” other than the “you’re not with us, so you’re a leftist.”  I certainly don’t identify as one.

          Also, I’m sincerely confused as to what your point is.  Is it that people on the left are far more begrudging to admit error for one of their own, and vice versa?  If so this seems irrefutably true, and I’m not arguing against it.

          Are you saying that the CEO of Carbonite is a Dem and might therefore might more quickly pull the trigger on Rush than a left- or moderate political commentator.  OK, that seems pretty likely.  But so what?

          I’m not even challenging you at this point, I’m just honestly not sure what point it is you’re trying to make.Report

          • Avatar Wardsmith says:

            Tod by my estimate you’ve now written FOUR OP’s about Rush. You’ve written zero about Schultz. You may not think you’re “left” but many would beg to differ. That said it is wholly irrelevant to my larger point which I would have credited you with being perspicacious enough to understand. The left screams “foul” far more often than the Right. That still doesn’t excuse Rush but he WAS correct when he said he was acting “like the other side”. The Left acts like this so often it doesn’t even count as “news”.Report

            • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

              Ward, I actually wrote four posts about the GOP’s chances being diminished by its media machine. So I wrote about Rush. You are correct, I wrote nothing about whoever this other guy you’re talking about is. You know why? He is not relevant. To either party. At all. *At all.*

              If I’m going to do a “horse race” post on a left wing shock jock, they first have to be someone that is in some way influential. Or that someone has actually heard of.Report

            • Avatar Jesse Ewiak says:

              Again, Schultz apologized the very next night fully and without half-measures unlike Rush in a way that even Laura Ingram accepted the apology. In addition, Schultz attacked another public figure, maybe not in a good way with two epithets, but nonetheless, Ingraham’s a talk show host with a few million listeners. Oh, and the women on the left went after ole’ Ed that he should apologize.

              On the other hand, Rush has a history of such on-air incidents, his attacks increased each day, and he insulted Fluke with 53 different slurs and insults.

              Here’s Schultz’s statement for the record. Compared it to Rush. Also, may I add that Ed went off the air for a week _without_ pay.

              Ed Schultz apologizes to Laura Ingraham

              Ed Schultz did not host his show tonight, but he did open it with an earnest and at times emotional address to his viewers apologizing for embarrassing the network by calling Laura Ingraham a ‘slut.’

              “On my radio show yesterday, I used vile and inappropriate language with talking about talk show host Laura Ingraham. I am deeply sorry, and I apologize,” he said. “It was wrong, uncalled-for and I apologize for the severity of what I’ve said.”

              He also apologized to Ingraham directly, saying “it doesn’t matter what the circumstances are…what matters is, what I said was terribly vile” and not to the standards he normally holds himself to.

              He said he tried to call Ingraham directly to apologize, but she wasn’t around, so he left a message with his apology. He also met with MSNBC management and offered to take himself off the air “for an indefinite period of time.”

              Earlier this evening, MSNBC said Schultz would be off the air for a week, though Schultz made no mention of the timeframe in his remarks.

              A visibly shaken Schultz choked up at times, calling this moment the “the lowest of the low for me.”

              “I have embarrassed my family. I have embarrassed this company,” he said, a remark that New York Magazine’s Gabriel Sherman took as an indication of new MSNBC parent Comcast’s possibly laying down the law.

              “I have never been in this position before, to the point where it has affected so many people, and I know that I have let a lot of people down,” he said.


      • Avatar Liberty60 says:

        Just goes to show how diabolical the Left is at playing 11 dimensional chess.

        Ever wonder how come you never see Joaquin Phoenix and Rush in the same place and time?

        Oops, I have said too much!Report

      • Avatar Stillwater says:

        why was Carbonite advertising on Rush’s show in the first place if the owners just want ad dollars to go to leftie shows?

        Tod, that was genius. And of course, it goes unanswered. I think that’s revealing, no?

        The next comment is equally awesome, and just as reliably unanswered.Report

        • Avatar Wardsmith says:

          Right still I’ve got nothing better in the world to do than reply to EVERY comment anyone EVER makes. This on a smartphone that HATES the comment box. Blaise is right, the net is overrun with liberals who have no lives. My point continues to be studiously ignored. There is no massive elephant in the room the Left can rationalize away all bad behavior by claiming “but our pundits have no audience!” NiceReport

          • Avatar Tod Kelly says:

            Yeah, I didn’t take it as anything other than these threads are not our whole lives.Report

          • Avatar Stillwater says:

            Blaise is right, the net is overrun with liberals who have no lives.

            Hmmm. I’m not sure BP would agree with that interpretation of his comments. I think I’ll wait for corroboration before conceding the whole argument based on what you think BP said. As Captain Hammer once famously said, I remember it differently.Report

    • Avatar BlaiseP says:

      Suit the action to the word, the word to the action, with this special observance, that you o’erstep not the modesty of nature: for any thing so o’erdone is from the purpose of playing, whose end, both at the first and now, was and is, to hold as ’twere the mirror up to nature: to show virtue her feature, scorn her own image, and the very age and body of the time his form and pressure.

      If ever there was an o’erstepping the modesty of nature and so o’erdone from the purpose of playing, it is the Whinging Conservative.  The Liberals must shut their pieholes lest they offend the precious sensibilities of our Irate Conservative Brethren, entirely justified in their every excess by some previous Sling or Arrow from Outrageous Liberals.

      This is not shooting fish in a barrel.   It’s pinning down a rat at the bottom of the trash barrel with a piece of pipe.   Rush Limbaugh is Lo-Rent and so are his advertisers.   Look in the mirror, o ye Conservatives, and ponder why ye do so well on Talk Radio and so poorly on the Intertubes.   Could it be that someone else can press Reply and shoot down stupid arguments when they appear?Report

  14. Avatar Jesse Ewiak says:

    To be fair, from what I’ve read, Clear Channel sells a lot of ads in blocks, so you might be advertising on Rush without knowing it.Report

  15. Avatar Mopey Duns says:

    This thread is definitely the league’s finest hour. Certainly it exemplifies the sort of reasoned debate and civil atmosphere impossible to find elsewhere on the Internet.

    I just wanted to say bravo.Report

    • Avatar Stillwater says:

      That made me laugh. You’re completely correct! It’s like anyotherpageontheweb right now. Just a bunch of shit-slinging. And I’m most certainly a part of it.

      Well said. I’ll try to do better.Report

  16. Avatar Kolohe says:

    Personally, I find almost everything that advertising on the national talk radio shows and Fox news during the day to be sorta scams, or complete scams.  All the gold hucksters.  Charities with huge overhead.  “Sell your home” opportunities.  ‘Work at home’ opportunities.  Asbestos lawyers.  “Bad Drug” lawyers.  Heck, carbonite (and go to my pc) is selling what google docs will give you for free.  I think the last honest sponsor any of them had was Snapple. And right now, the superpacs are picking up a lot of slack, anyways.Report

  17. Avatar Gruntled says:

    Don’t forget the lame, hyper-expensive, terrible-tasting tea line.Report

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