Rush Limbaugh

doesn’t know the difference between a slut (promiscuous) and a prostitute (seller of sex services).  Married four times and childless for any of several possible reasons, he thinks birth control pills cost more the more sex you have.  He apparently enjoys pornography, and wants it provided to him by women whose birth control is paid for by insurance.  His idea of political discourse is to slime a young woman, about whom he knows nothing (including her sexual behavior, as though that were anyone’s business in any case), as a slut because she recited facts about how denial of birth control medicine for non-contraceptive use damaged her friend.

Sandra Fluke, who has been radiating unbelievable class through this whole episode, was not a public figure when Rush took his swing, invited to testify before a Congressional panel. I hope there’s a defamation suit cooking with a lot of zeroes in it.

John Boehner managed to force himself to murmur that the Rush’s slime was “inappropriate”, and immediately vitiating even that little demurral by saying in the same sentence that Democrats shouldn’t raise money on the episode.   I’m not aware that any other Republican, of the elected or pundit varieties, has gone on record to separate himself or herself from this turd (who has been doubling down on his first bet ever since). Rush Limbaugh is the ideological and spiritual heart and soul of the Republican Party, a secular pope who brooks and receives no rebuttal or criticism from his completely cowardly adherents.

Sadly, I’m also not aware of any reporters forcing Republicans to take a stand on their leader.  Maybe on the Sunday morning shows…but I’m not getting my hopes up.

There is a move to get advertisers to pull their buys from Limbaugh’s show; good. It would not be out of order also to draw a commercial bead on Clear Channel, a company that uses Limbaugh as a device to sell ears to advertisers.  Along with the advertiser boycott, how about getting as many people as possible to promise Clear Channel that they won’t listen to any of their stations until they clean house? publicrelations@clearchannel.com…pass it on.

UPDATE:  On Wolf Blitzer this evening, Rick Santorum will apparently savage Rush unmercifully.  Going all in to raise Boehner, he will come right out and say, on national television, that what Rush said is … wait for it…”absurd”  [update 21:30 PST: it occurred this way]. With this escalation, it’s only a matter of time before Romney has to throw caution to the winds and devastate Limbaugh with regrettable…Double Wow!

UPDATE 2: I gave Romney too much credit; apparently he agrees with Rush but would have phrased the sentiment better, perhaps with a little dog-whistle obbligato.

Author: Michael O'Hare

Professor of Public Policy at the Goldman School of Public Policy, University of California, Berkeley, Michael O'Hare was raised in New York City and trained at Harvard as an architect and structural engineer. Diverted from an honest career designing buildings by the offer of a job in which he could think about anything he wanted to and spend his time with very smart and curious young people, he fell among economists and such like, and continues to benefit from their generosity with on-the-job social science training. He has followed the process and principles of design into "nonphysical environments" such as production processes in organizations, regulation, and information management and published a variety of research in environmental policy, government policy towards the arts, and management, with special interests in energy, facility siting, information and perceptions in public choice and work environments, and policy design. His current research is focused on transportation biofuels and their effects on global land use, food security, and international trade; regulatory policy in the face of scientific uncertainty; and, after a three-decade hiatus, on NIMBY conflicts afflicting high speed rail right-of-way and nuclear waste disposal sites. He is also a regular writer on pedagogy, especially teaching in professional education, and co-edited the "Curriculum and Case Notes" section of the Journal of Policy Analysis and Management. Between faculty appointments at the MIT Department of Urban Studies and Planning and the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard, he was director of policy analysis at the Massachusetts Executive Office of Environmental Affairs. He has had visiting appointments at Università Bocconi in Milan and the National University of Singapore and teaches regularly in the Goldman School's executive (mid-career) programs. At GSPP, O'Hare has taught a studio course in Program and Policy Design, Arts and Cultural Policy, Public Management, the pedagogy course for graduate student instructors, Quantitative Methods, Environmental Policy, and the introduction to public policy for its undergraduate minor, which he supervises. Generally, he considers himself the school's resident expert in any subject in which there is no such thing as real expertise (a recent project concerned the governance and design of California county fairs), but is secure in the distinction of being the only faculty member with a metal lathe in his basement and a 4×5 Ebony view camera. At the moment, he would rather be making something with his hands than writing this blurb.

11 thoughts on “Rush Limbaugh”

  1. It’s nice to see people talking about the degree of misogyny here. I know I’m better off than a lot of other places on Earth, but we could still use some improvement. I hope a lot of GOP women stay home this year. They have little to lose, since they won’t get the White House anyway, not with any of these clowns.

  2. Someone who scans Red Blogistan can probably report by now on whether the righties are rallying to Limbaugh’s defense. This is more interesting to me than any statement by the House Speaker, who has all that decorum stuff to worry about. I want to see the reactions of the much less refined and restrained bloggers who rarely feel the need to be couth. If they let Rush twist in the wind, that will be a sign that he has stuff to worry about. I look forward to reading what other are noticing in that domain.

      1. I took a quick peek at this (it was all I could stand) and I am newly amazed that any woman with self-respect could be a Republican. “Women’s health” is trivial, is a joke now? I don’t even know any words bad enough to describe this.

        If the GOP doesn’t have a problem with women after this, I will have soooo much less respect for conservative women. (You more or less used to be able to argue that you could be a conservative and a feminist.)

        There go their last one or two moderates out the door. And I can’t even be happy about it, because this is just sad.

        1. It’s been a half-hour and I’m still upset. I guess it’s time for women to start boycotting Catholic higher education. What a disgrace for Georgetown, treating women this way.

          1. The worst of all this is that unless Georgetown is a huge exception in higher education no money provided by Georgetown University goes toward student health insurance. Yeah, zero, zip, nada, none. Georgetown might negotiate student health insurance policies and rates, but they don’t pay for a penny of the premiums.

            I suppose it’s possible to argue that since money is fungible, students receiving scholarships funded from the University’s endowment could be using their money to purchase health coverage the Jesuits in charge of the school might not approve. But that is true whether the student purchases GU’s negotiated policy, or stays on his/her parent’s policy and reimburses them for the added cost (I can’t imagine a parent who would accept that) or buys her own ridiculously priced policy on the not-so-free market.

    1. I read the red blogs. They love this stuff. The Rush posts on this topic get high comment numbers, almost all approving. It’s why Rush has such a huge audience — there is an audience in place in this country that loves listening to those they disapprove of being insulted.

      Happily, I think, it’s also why there is no liberal shock radio. There’s no audience for it. Air America tried it. Fail.

  3. By the way, I just checked out this on Slate: http://www.slate.com/blogs/weigel/2012/03/02/rush_limbaugh_the_shaming_of_the_slut_shamer.html

    Someone named David Weigel essentially shrugged off what Limbaugh said about a more or less private individual on his show.

    So here’s my question: is he a real journalist? And is this what counts as reputable now? I never listen to Limbaugh. I turned off whatever that left-wing station was, the one that went under, the minute I heard some loser man refer to Candy Crowley as a “fat b****.” So, yes, I live in a bubble. I like the bubble. But when I come out of it, ever so briefly, I don’t expect such a blase attitude from publications like Slate.

    Am I wrong? And I thought this Erickson person was supposed to be semi-legit too, for a conservative. These attacks on private people are now considered okay? WTF?

    And don’t tell me it’s okay just because she testified. That, friends, is what’s known as a public service. First Amendment law is often wrong, so don’t even go there with me.

  4. I realize that it won’t happen, and I suppose I’m glad it won’t, but an appealing solution would be for Ms. Fluke’s relatives to black both of Limbaugh’s eyes.

  5. Thank you for providing the facts in your first paragraph! Such service allows me to continue to validate my reasons for seeing Rush Limbaugh as an untoward dick of a person! Oh, and he’s a coward who’d last no time in a hostile environment – he’d be da bitch!

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