Tag Archives: Rush Limbaugh

Boycotting Rush…

Andrew Sullivan raised a valid concern about efforts to pull sponsors from Rush Limbaugh’s radio show.

It’s a free country, but I get queasy with boycotts to target disgusting but free speech.

Writer Peter David is not a fan of boycotts, either. He has often stated that the answer to free speech (even disgusting speech) is more free speech. There is no shortage of outlets for the denunciation of Limbaugh’s idiocy (The Daily Show is but one). Shouldn’t we support an open dialogue and exchange of ideas?

Sure, but Limbaugh has never been about that. He’s not interested in the discussion of actual issues. The Sandra Fluke incident is a clear example. His sole goal is to make a lot of money doing what every 6 year old is trained not to do during kindergarten. He’s a shock jock. Some people compare him to Howard Stern but that’s an insult to Stern. Stern is not a bully. He makes fun of himself as much as he does anyone else. His political statements — when he makes them — are often crass but occasionally insightful.

Of course, that’s all personal taste. I don’t like NBC’s 30 Rock. I think it’s facile and empty with no legitimate laughs (as a friend once said about Family Guy, “A reference is not a joke). I could stage a boycott of 30 Rock but I wouldn’t make much headway on those grounds. Advertisers would not be ashamed to continue an association with the show just because I don’t think it’s very good.

What’s happening with Rush is that advertisers are ashamed. They can’t just dismiss the pressure from outraged groups. It’s hard to support a “personal taste” for referring to women as sluts and prostitutes.

It’s not about free speech. It’s about economics. Limbaugh should find it as profitable to spout his garbage as it is to self-publish your own Twilight fan fiction. If he’s talking about private citizens releasing sex tapes, advertisers should find him as potentially toxic as many advertisers find Stern, who has actual prostitutes on his show discussing their sex tapes.

Limbaugh has a right to be an ass for money. He doesn’t have a right to be a respected voice on any subject. During the 1992 presidential campaign, Bill Clinton criticized the rapper Sister Souljah for perceived racist statements. His words were far stronger than the tepid tap dance Republican presidential candidates had for Limbaugh.

Perhaps once this is all over, Republican politicians will feel free to describe Limbaugh’s more repugnant statements with the same scorn and contempt they usually refer for members of the same sex who want to marry.


Tags: , , ,

Herman Cain and the Tinkerbell Theory…

In the 20 years since Anita Hill accused Clarence Thomas of sexual harassment during his Supreme Court confirmation hearings, there’s been a standard pattern whenever similar accusations emerge. The accuser is either part of a “vast conspiracy” against the accused (e.g. Paula Jones) or has a financial motive. Herman Cain  — who looks to be about as inconvenienced by the multiple accusations against him as Thomas was — has gone to the mattresses and pursued both options. He has repeatedly stated that he’s a victim of the “Democrat machine,” which means he gives the Democrats more organizational credit than I do at this point. He also suggested that it was “common sense” to consider Sharon Bialek’s finances as a possible motive for her coming forward.

The first seems less than plausible in Sharon Bialek’s case because she’s a Tea Party Republican. However, a leopard can always change its spots if there’s enough money involved. So, the theory is floated that economoic desperation is leading her into the manipulative arms of “celebrity activist” lawyer Gloria Allred. I call it the Tinkerbell Theory because it only lives if conservatives wish real hard for it.

Allred appeared on the Sean Hannity show in which Hannity, as a good mouthpiece for the right, continued to pursue the “lying broke hussy” narrative.


HANNITY: I actually prefer when you’re on my side,  which is occasional. These are serious allegations. You said and made a big  point in your press conference — and I watched the whole thing — that your  client could have sold the story, it could have been about money. But it’s not.   Why won’t she rule out a book deal?

ALLRED: Well, she has no plans to do a book.

HANNITY: New York Times today — and how often do I  quote that –Miss Sharon Bialek has said, she is not seeking money, though she  has not ruled out a book deal at some point. That means that there still maybe a  financial motive here. And you made a big point saying that it wasn’t.

ALLRED: There really isn’t. You know, I have spoken  with her. There is no financial motive. There is no one has offered us a book  deal. We haven’t looked for a book deal. She hasn’t talked to anyone about a  book deal. This is just complete nonsense. Let’s focus on what’s really —

HANNITY: You have been in celebrity media a long time.  That’s not nonsense, because you know and I know she’s going to get a book deal  off of it.

ALLRED: Well, no, I don’t. Because you know, what? She  has already told her story. And that’s what is important. And the critical point  where she could have made some money, she could have sold her story instead of  doing a news conference and telling everyone without any charge.

HANNITY: But at that point, she has no credibility, if  she tells her story later, it has more credibility.

ALLRED: No. She’s not — take the book deal off the  table. It’s not happening. OK?

HANNITY: Not happening?

ALLRED: I have represented people in book deals. And a  number of them — Amber Frey, Anne Bird — you know, from the Scott Peterson  case — even the jury, I represented.

HANNITY: All right. I got it.

ALLRED: You know, she has not asked me to represent her  to do anything with a book deal.

HANNITY: Here is a problem that I see with the story.  First of all, whatever happened to the idea, there was a severance payment to  her, which is very different from a legal settlement term. You’re a lawyer, you  know the distinction and difference. So, they came up with a severance agreement  that was supposed to be confidential.

ALLRED: Talking about the other — some other  women.

HANNITY: OK, right, but in that case. And I am  thinking, all right, so in this case, we don’t have that. In this case, we have  this. She goes to look for a job, she never worked for the Restaurant  Association. And I am putting this all together in my mind. Do you not  understand why people are saying, wait a minute, is this politically  motivated?

ALLRED: You mean as to Sharon?

HANNITY: As to all of these charges. We don’t know  except for your client with the specific charges.

ALLRED: OK. All right, well.

HANNITY: You said he’s a serial abuser, serial  harasser.

ALLRED: What I said was, Sean, if in fact, the  allegations of all four women are to be believed and are true, then he is a  serial sexual harasser.

HANNITY: If, but you didn’t say if.

ALLRED: Yes, I did. And if they are true then he is  also a serial liar and a person who disrespects the rights of women to enjoy  equal employment opportunity without the interference of sexual harassment in  the workplace.

HANNITY: All right. Here’s my question though, as we  follow the timeline of the story that she’s telling here, right? And she claims  that she wanted help. She wanted to get a job, right? Legitimate. She has a  history of bankruptcy. She has a questionable employment record that, you know,  job after job after job after job. Legitimate questions to check the credibility  of somebody. Now, when this allegedly happened, didn’t she get back in the car  with him after?

ALLRED: In the car?

HANNITY: With Herman Cain. Didn’t she stay with him after? Didn’t she spend time with him after this supposedly happened?

ALLRED: No, she asked him to take her back to the  hotel.

HANNITY: So, she got back in the car with him.           

Hannity does not hide his bias — openly stating that he and Allred are on different sides. He also seems to have an issue with quoting The New York Times. It’s not like it was from the op-ed page or a Jayson Blair article. Anyway, this is all an interesting twist. There are no questions about Cain’s integrity or background. There is no discussion of his motives for lying — he’s running for president, after all. Instead, there is boundless speculation about Bialek — that she is so financially and morally destitute that she’s willing to destroy a man’s reputation for the possible chance of a book deal at some point in the future. That certainly is motive for her to lie but only if she’s a complete psychopath. There’s no evidence that Cain fired her or refused to hire her for a job that would provide a somewhat reasonable — if still irrational — motive for such actions.

Hannity — most likely never having been in the situation that Bialek describes — makes the same mistake that countless other men have made whenever women made accusations regarding sexual assault. They seem to believe that after such an experience, a woman would never be in shock or confused. No, her behavior afterward must be highly calculated and logical or else she’s obviously lying.

So, far Hannity is the classiest of Cain’s supporters, including Cain’s own lawyer, Lin Wood, who said “others should ‘think twice’ before making accusations” — as if the inevitable media scrutiny that is bound to occur is something Bialek didn’t consider. She just woke up one morning and thought she’d threaten the career of a powerful man. What could go wrong? Rachel Maddow called it a ‘remarkable moment,’ because a lawyer was telling potential harassment victims to “shut up,” and seemingly threatening them with some kind of retribution if they didn’t.” Indeed, Tom Hagen was usually more subdued and tactful when representing the Corleone Family.

Rush Limbaugh, from whom one should expect nothing and — if you actually listen to him — will receive even less, reportedly “slurped as he pronounced Bialek’s name ‘buy-a-lick'” and Dick Morris on FOX News “wondered when a Playboy spread would come.”  Aside from being a professional woman and mother, Bialek is 50 years old and Hugh Hefner is not generally inclined to feature women only half his age in his magazine.

Hannity meanwhile allowed Cain’s chief of staff, Mark Block, to flat-out lie on-air and claim that Karen Kraushaar, who also accused Cain of sexual harassment, was the mother of a Politico reporter. (Politico was the publication that first broke the sexual harassment story regarding Cain.)

“You’ve confirmed that now, right?” Hannity asked.

“We confirmed it that he does indeed work at Politico, and that’s his mother, yes,” Block said.

In reality, Josh Kraushaar has not worked at Politico for 17 months – and he isn’t related to Karen Kraushaar.

These gentlemen — and I use that word in the most sarcastic sense possible — apparently think bullying and intimidation is the way to counter sexual harassment allegations (though, I guess that’s in character for someone accused of doing what Cain allegedly did). He could stick with the facts and not with the people who made the claims — most of which occurred before he was even running for office — but I guess that’s my own Tinkerbell Theory.

Leave a comment

Posted by on November 11, 2011 in Political Theatre


Tags: , , , , ,

Ann Coulter On Herman Cain: Our Blacks Are Better Than Their Blacks…

Ann Coulter On Herman Cain: Our Blacks Are Better Than Their Blacks | Mediaite.

Well, of all the crazy things Ann Coulter has said, this probably ranks around the middle:

“They harangue blacks and tell them ‘you can’t be a Republican, you can’t be a Republican,’ it is so hard for a black to be a Republican,” and then complain when conservative events are mostly white-attended, Coulter argued. “Maybe you shouldn’t harangue them so much!” Coulter also told Hannity the source of why liberals “detest conservative blacks” is that “it is ironic in a cruel, vicious, horrible way… that civil rights laws were designed to protect blacks from Democrats,” and now there are “liberal wimen using laws to protest blacks in order to attack conservative blacks with these vicious, outrageous charges.”

Coulter is responding to recent sexual harassment charges against GOP presidential candidate Herman Cain.

The heretofore surging Republican presidential candidate Herman Cain was lifted by news Saturday that he was tied with Mitt Romney at the top of the Des Moines Register’s poll of likely Iowa caucus attendees. Then he was hit by heavy turbulence when Politico reported that, as head of the National Restaurant Association in the 1990s, he was at least twice accused of sexually harassing behavior by women who left after receiving payments from the trade group.

Promoters of racial tolerance Coulter and Rush Limbaugh immediately argued that the release of this story was racially motivated.

“This is not a news story, this is gutter partisan politics, and it’s the politics of minority conservative personal destruction is what you’ve got here,” the conservative radio host said, also mentioning The Post’s story on Florida senator Marco Rubio (R). “We cannot have a black Republican running for the office of President. We can’t have one elected.”

Limbaugh said that Cain was targeted because of his conservative views and skin color.

“Anything good that happens to any black or Hispanic in American politics can only happen via the Democrat Party. If it happens elsewhere, we’re going to destroy those people a la Clarence Thomas.”

“It really is about blacks and Hispanics getting too uppity. That’s what this is,” he said. “You don’t achieve in American politics as a Republican… try it and we’re going to destroy you.”

Coulter and Limbaugh seem to be confused on motive. If anyone wants to take out Cain at this point in the race, prior to the first official GOP primary, it would be another Republican candidate. Based on the last debate I watched, there are a few dozen of them but the ones who have the least laughable chances are Rick Perry and Mitt Romney. Both of whom are seeing Cain lapping at their heels or potentially surpassing them. The Obama campaign is focused on Romney as a viable threat because he’s almost rational. Anyway, it would seem logical for the Democrats to wait and pull the pin on any grenade it had until much later in the primary race or even after a candidate had secured the nomination. The denials stemming from the other GOP candidates just reinforce this.

As for Clarence Thomas and his so-called “high-tech lynching.” Boo. Hoo. The guy was confirmed to the Supreme Court. It’s hard for me to find a narrative that comes close to tragedy here. OK, he had a tough job interview. I repeat: Boo. Hoo. It still grates that he pulled the racial victim card when the accusation was not about race but about gender. You’d have to be incredibly naive to believe that race was not a factor in President Bush’s selection of Thomas in the first place, and ultimately Thomas got the job. He still has it, demonstrating that he has better job security than any other black person in the United States. Is this the best Democrats can do to “destroy” people?

But let’s go back to the crazy lady.

With that as a framework, Coulter once again praised the conservative black people she had known, arguing that “our blacks are so much better than their blacks” because “you have fought against probably your family, probably your neighbors… that’s why we have very impressive blacks.” She went on to compare conservative black Americans to the family of the President, arguing that “Obama… is not a descendant of the blacks that suffered these Jim Crow laws,” that he was “not the son of American blacks that went through the American experience,” but the “son of a Kenyan” (a point she made with the caveat that she fully believed the President was an American citizen).

“Our blacks are better than their blacks”? That sounds like a discussion of college football in the South during the ’80s.

It’s probably not wise to bother asking but what’s the point of Coulter’s statement? Is the implication that the left prefers Obama because he’s “not the son of American blacks that went through the American experience”? Is the implication that Cain is better at connecting to American blacks because he did? But since when was “connecting to American blacks” a priority of the GOP? If it’s just about policies, then OK, Cain is preferable to Obama if you’re a Republican but why bring race into it?

As with the Thomas allegations, there is nothing really racially motivated about them other than that those accused claim they are. We don’t know the women involved in the Cain allegations — they could be white but that in itself wouldn’t prove anything either.

Cain might want to take some time to reflect on who his supporters are. Let’s recall what Limbaugh said about Thurgood Marshall, who Thomas replaced on the Supreme Court.

Noting that Kagan idolized Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall — she was a law clerk for Marshall — Limbaugh pointed out that, in a 1976 speech, Marshall “declared, according to a law review article she wrote, that ‘the Constitution as originally drafted and conceived was defective. Only over the course of 200 years had the nation attained the system of constitutional government and its respect for individual freedoms and human rights that we hold as fundamental today.’

“ ‘The Constitution today,’ the justice continued, ‘has a great deal to be proud of. But the credit does not belong to the framers, it belongs to those who refused to acquiesce to outdated notions of liberty, justice and equality and who strived to better them.’ ”

Rush continued: “The credit, in other words, belongs to people like Justice Marshall. So this is who Elena Kagan idolizes.”

And there’s Coulter’s statements about Martin Luther King:

Coulter writes in her book “Demonic: How the Liberal Mob is Endangering America,” that “Martin Luther King Jr. …used images in order to win publicity and goodwill for his cause, deploying children in the streets for a pointless, violent confrontation with a lame-duck lunatic: Theophilus Eugene ‘Bull’ Connor,” the Birmingham sheriff who was known to be easily provoked to brutality and violence to enforce racial segregation.

So, per Coulter and Limbaugh, “their” blacks are Clarence Thomas and Herman Cain and, if you’re on the left, “our” blacks are Thurgood Marshall and Martin Luther King (and possibly Obama if we can ever figure out whether he’s black or not. I think we’re still waiting on the FOX News pronouncement). I don’t think “their” guys are going to win the political version of the Heisman trophy any time soon.

Tags: , , , ,