Friday, April 25, 2008

Rush is Back

I have to admit for the first time in years I've been tuning into the Rush Limbaugh Show daily on my lunch breaks. Back in the early 90's, I built houses in the summer with my father. We'd listen to Rush every day at lunch.* Back then, there weren't as many options for news and Limbaugh picked up a lot of stories that you just couldn't get anywhere else. Nobody else covered Al Gore asking "Who are these guys?" when looking at the busts of our first four Presidents in a museum. Nobody else was particularly thorough when covering the government shutdown. It was new and fresh and the content was unique.

Nowadays we have a lot more reporting options. There are at least a few news outlets like CNN and Fox News who actually try to hire competent conservative analysts instead of patsies who make the other side look better. Back then it was Limbaugh and Firing Line and that's it. There are even comparable popular radio talk show hosts these days. And to be honest, for a long time Rush just got a bit stale. When Athens started broadcasting a sports radio network, it got most of my attention during my lunch hour. I'd switch to Limbaugh and listen for a few minutes on occasion but I never stayed long.

In the past few weeks largely thanks to Operation Chaos**, that's started to change. The show is amusing again. I doubt that Operation Chaos is really having a significant effect on the primary process but Rush is covering the primaries while keeping it interesting by wrapping it up in this whole Operation Chaos theme. He's also angering people who are taking the idea way too seriously and that's further amusement in and of itself.

If you haven't listened in a while or if you've never listened, you might give the 12PM - 1PM time slot some attention. That's the monologue hour and it's usually when he trots out his best material.

* We don't listen to the radio and work unless it's Sunday and a Cowboys game is on the radio. I don't understand that rule of no radio-listening but it's an unsaid custom of anyone working with my family. And by "my family" I mean any of the 30-40 involved in the business of residential construction. I even find myself steadfastly turning off any sort of radio or TV while doing any constructionish work.

** From the wiki: "An effort promoted by Limbaugh to cause chaos in the Democratic Party primaries by encouraging Republican voters to either cross over or change parties (depending on state election law) in order to vote for whichever candidate is trailing, thus prolonging the primary process."

3 comments:

Cousin Pat from Georgia said...

See, I listened to Rush back in the day and I was fascinated by his take on many subjects. He was also very good at phrasing certain topics in ways where to disagree with him looked idiotic. He was funny, and while he was still mostly entertainment, it was worthwhile to tune in and see what the other side's talking points were.

Having done a few brutal road trips in the past weeks, I had a chance again to listen to ol' boy. I found him banal and immature on a level that really does a disservice to his listeners. He went from politics-as-entertainment to middle-school-funny and that's just not very worth a listen.

Dante said...

Yes, because the term Feminazi, the Algore and Count Taxula skits, and the song "In a Yugo" were entertainment on a much higher level than the current "middle-school-funny." Perhaps you were previously in middle school when you thought the show funny? It's the same level of humor its always been.

You're not playing the part of seminar poster, are you Pat? :)

Cousin Pat from Georgia said...

Strange, back in the day, I was in middle school. No wonder he seemed to make more sense back then. I could relate to "obnoxious" better.

No, the difference was back then he was quick witted if immature entertainment - but what I heard was poking fun at policy.

Last time I heard him he spent 5 minutes of air time making "uuuuhhhhhhh" and "aaaaaannnndddd" sounds. There's a lot of difference between immature name calling on one hand and grunting into the microphone on the other.

But, hey, whatever the listeners want, right?