Rush Limbaugh is an entertainer. Plain and simple. You can call him a bigot…a racist…a pundit…a loudmouth…a screwball…a rightwing blowhard…the defacto spritual leader of the far right Republicans etc etc etc. As despicable as I find his “act”, Rush Limbaugh also happens to be a genius.
That’s right…a genius! He has built a ratings empire with his hate speak and ultra right wing political rantings and has taken full advantage of our polarized society. He has translated it into cold hard cash.
What better way to create a gigantic audience than by making inflammatory comments? Limbaugh has spoken at length about many sensitive subjects ranging from birth control to immigration legislation to women’s rights and minority treatment. Plenty of heated emotions to be found there.
Limbaugh has offended just about everyone at one point or another and that is the whole point. By aiming at the lowest common denominator he manages to grow his legion of followers. He’s done a wonderful job of creating false controversies, and then jumping into this fantasy fray with all of the appropriate solutions.
Many people believe (myself included) that Limbaugh is an outspoken promoter of a list of unsavory attitudes including racism, homophobia, and misogyny. His quotes have been well documented. He has referred to children on government-assisted lunches as ‘wanton little waifs and surfs,‘ implies gay men are ‘pedophiles,‘ characterizes women as ‘semen receptacles,’ and calls documented immigrants a ‘lazy’, ‘invasive species’ of ‘mollusks’ and ‘spermatozoa’.
Limbaugh’s demographic is fairly obvious.. His audience is 76% male. Between the ages of 35 and 60…79%…White 95%…no children…76%…and one thing the polls don’t measure…they are fairly angry white men. Angry at minorities ruining the country. Angry at women and minorities in the work force stealing their jobs. Angry at liberals who spend their money and want to take their guns away. Are any of these supposed ‘slights” real? Does it even matter? Limbaugh plays into the dissatisfaction many older white men have with their lives and the perceived state of the country. He stands on the sidelines and pokes and prods his listeners into a frenzy and then of course feeds then his own unique brand of “solutions”. And they eat it up!
Limbaugh is a genius.
Rush Limbaugh has made a fortune being a cheerleader, a bully, a crybaby, and an out and out hypocrite. Let us not forget his comments stating that (paraphrased) drug abusers should be put in a cage and the key thrown away. Why then hasn’t he suffered this fate that he so eloquently advocated for others? He is an ENTERTAINER to millions of listeners who can’t do without his brand of commentary.
Limbaugh is a genius.
In my opinion, and in the opinion of many of his advertisers, Limbaugh’s comments have crossed the line on several occasions. Apparently his “over the top” comments, particularly the Sandra Fluke fiasco, has led to a steady loss of ad revenue by companies that have decided Limbaugh’s hate radio is not in their best interests.
This loss of ad revenue has been supported by a massive grass roots campaign undertaken on social media to boycott products that are being promoted on Limbaugh’s show. As they say money talks.
In a story in DAILY KOS, dated Feb. 20, 2015 by Leslie Salzillo, (a noted investigative reporter and liberal author) “The home of ‘hate radio’ including The Rush Limbaugh Show, has had a bad day, bad week, bad quarter, and bad year. Billboard Magazine reports IHeart Media (formerly Clear Channel) just posted a 2014 quarterly loss of over $119 Million” The company has carried a large debt load since its leveraged buyout six years ago, with long-term debt currently topping $20 billion, according to filings with the SEC. Meanwhile, the sponsor boycott against Limbaugh via StopRush, BoycottRush, Flush Rush and the social media coverage by news outlets large and small, is thriving. The sponsor petition hit 100k about 10 days ago and has picked up 17k more signatures since then, some being signees from the far Right Wing. Rush is so hard up for sponsors these days, he’s been caught sponsoring himself. We know Rush Limbaugh is being funded by the Tea Party, which is funded by the Koch brothers. That funding is most likely the reason Limbaugh is still on the air, and one can’t help wonder if Bob Pittman is also being funded. Why else would he continue to air The Rush Limbaugh Show on approximately 600 radio stations nationwide when Limbaugh is dragging the radio industry down? Rush has also been losing radio stations.
Will Limbaugh survive the downturn in advertising support? That’s anyone’s guess. But as long as he continues to stoke his offensive fires, the swirling controversy will continue. A wise mean once said “any publicity is good publicity”.
Limbaugh is a genius.