Why Are People Mad At Rush Limbaugh When Liberals You’ve Never Heard of Are Jerks, Too?

Is it fair to single out the most powerful man in radio's commentary for attention?

Glenn Reynolds and AllahPundit both point to a Kirsten Powers piece from over the weekend making a point several OTB commenters have made:

Yes, it’s true. Chris Matthews, Keith Olbermann, Bill Maher, Matt Taibbi, and Ed Schultz have been waging it for years with their misogynist outbursts. There have been boycotts by people on the left who are outraged that these guys still have jobs. Oh, wait. Sorry, that never happened.

There are at least four problems with this analysis.

First, in every example, the target was a pretty major public figure–a presidential or vice presidential candidate or a big time pundit–not a law student nobody ever heard of before she testified before Congress. That put them into the arena, raised the bar on the level of rough and tumble they should expect, and gave them a big time soap box from which to defend themselves.

Second, most of the examples cited in fact inspired minor fits of outrage, followed by apologies much more abject than Limbaugh’s. Schultz, who called Laura Ingraham a “right wing slut,” was quite profuse. Recall, too, that Olbermann and Maher have been fired by past employers for making offensive remarks. As was Don Imus, whose politics are hard to characterize.

Third, Limbaugh is a serial offender. He’s constantly making remarks that are borderline racist and sexist. He’s been trafficking in the “feminazi” meme for going on a quarter century now.

Fourth, and most significantly, Matthews,  Olbermann, Maher, Taibbi, and Schultz are as fleas to Limbaugh’s 800 pound gorilla. And, no, that’s not a fat joke. Limbaugh is far and away the most important figure in American political media and has been for a generation.

Indeed, that there is “no liberal Rush Limbaugh” has been a particular point of pride for Rush Limbaugh for as long as I can remember. He’s long argued that all the big name liberals who have been given talk radio shows have flamed out. Whole networks, like Air America, have failed. Al Gore’s Current TV? A joke.

Someone noted this morning that there was some sort of flap involving Mike Malloy and yet that it’s not receiving the same coverage as Limbaugh’s “slut” remark. My honest reaction: Who the hell is Mike Malloy?

While I think many people, especially Limbaugh himself, overstate Limbaugh’s role as a thought leader and decider in Republican Party politics, there’s simply no question that he’s an enormously powerful figure.

The closest analogues on the left that I can think of with similar clout are Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert. They’re hugely influential–in some ways, even moreso than Limbaugh. But they’re comedians first and commentators second and they intentionally appeal to an elite audience, whereas Limbaugh aims for a mass audience.

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.

Comments

  1. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Why Are People Mad At Rush Limbaugh When Liberals You’ve Never Heard of Are Jerks, Too?

    Thanx James, I needed the laugh.

  2. mantis says:

    Indeed, that there is “no liberal Rush Limbaugh” has been a particular point of pride for Rush Limbaugh for as long as I can remember.

    It’s a point of pride for us liberals too. As I said on the other thread, the left gets embarrassed when a blowhard on our side says something offensive. The right treats theirs as gods for doing so. His audience loves him even more for lying about Fluke, calling her a slut, a prostitute, and demanding sex tapes of her. They ignore the apology because they know it’s insincere.

  3. Doesn’t she realize that by pointing out others’ “hypocrisy” she herself is being hypocritical?

    If it was wrong for Maher et al. to make those comments, and the conservatives went nuts in each of those cases, why aren’t they upset about what Limbaugh said?

  4. Hey Norm says:

    Cue Drew and Jenos in 3, 2, 1…….

  5. Kylopod says:

    But they’re comedians first and commentators second and they intentionally appeal to an elite audience, whereas Limbaugh aims for a mass audience.

    Not to mention that neither of them has ever said anything remotely as offensive as Limbaugh’s “slut” remark.

  6. @Timothy Watson:

    If it was wrong for Maher et al. to make those comments, and the conservatives went nuts in each of those cases, why aren’t they upset about what Limbaugh said?

    This. A thousand times this.

    The weird part about the “where was the outrage when X said Y” is that it is deployed as means of excusing Limbaugh. And yet, the very logic of their argument suggests that Limbaugh deserves criticism (or, else, none of this matters, in which case what X said doesn’t matter, either). This is a self-nullifying position no matter which way it is argued.

    Also: James very much hits on the other major reasons that this line of attack is off the mark (and rather considerably at that).

  7. rodney dill says:

    @Timothy Watson: If by ‘she’ you mean Kirsten Powers. It doesn’t sound to me like she is letting him off the hook.

    Let it be shouted from the rooftops that Rush Limbaugh should not have called Ms. Fluke a slut or, as he added later, a “prostitute” who should post her sex tapes. It’s unlikely that his apology will assuage the people on a warpath for his scalp, and after all, why should it? He spent days attacking a woman as a slut and prostitute and refused to relent. Now because he doesn’t want to lose advertisers, he apologizes. What’s in order is something more like groveling—and of course a phone call to Ms. Fluke—if you ask me.

    But if Limbaugh’s actions demand a boycott—and they do—then what about the army of swine on the left?

    Are you calling this hypocrisy?

  8. Graham says:

    I don’t really see why anyone should have to justify their offense at Rush’s comments in the context of liberal commentators.

    Bill Maher and Keith Olbermann have said lots of things that I find crass and offensive. None of those things have anything to do with Rush Limbaugh here and now, and trotting them out as some justification for Rush’s behavior is absurd and childish. Bringing them out to change the subject of the discussion is devious, absurd and childish.

    If one believes Rush’s comments have merit, they should defend them on those merits. If they believe those comments are slanderous and vile, they should denounce them as such.

    “Both sides do it” is often true, but it’s not an excuse for rude, vicious, slanderous behavior from anyone.

  9. Neil Hudelson says:

    The closest analogues on the left that I can think of with similar clout are Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert.

    If Jon Stewart or Stephen Colbert called a conservative student a “slut” for testifying before Congress…I guarantee you there would be howls of outrage from liberals.

    It’s also something very hard to imagine, as they have never trafficked in such tactics or language, other than in an obviously satirical way.

  10. @rodney dill: Funny, for days on Twitter she wanted to know why liberals didn’t get so upset about sex trafficking, because, you know, there are so many people that have no problem with that.

  11. ernieyeball says:

    Is it fair to single out the most powerful man in radio’s commentary for attention?

    What does fair have to do with anything in life???

  12. rodney dill says:

    @Graham: About as well said as any comment I’ve seen on this topic.

  13. Brummagem Joe says:

    @rodney dill:

    Just a tiny bit of selective reporting? No? After the short ritual denunciation of Limbaugh 90% of her article was very much on the theme of…

    But if Limbaugh’s actions demand a boycott—and they do—then what about the army of swine on the left?

    Where all the qualifications mentioned by JJ were ignored.

  14. G.A. says:

    So blind with hatred and or indoctrination that you can’t tell a double standard.Does this apply to you, you be the judge.

    And can we knock off the innocent little collage student crap. she was a Obama plant and a full time activist.

    And please get a clue about what the man did and said. It was not anything like what the DUMB CUNT Bill Maher or any of the other scumbags on the left did or meant.

    Third, Limbaugh is a serial offender. He’s constantly making remarks that are borderline racist and sexist.

    and this is all in your mind I listen to his show since the beginning and am here to tell you that have been deceived.But I have done that before have I not?

    Dude apologize get over it and move on.

  15. rodney dill says:

    @Brummagem Joe: Was her intent to point out the mote in the left’s eye, while trying not to call more attention to the one in the rights? I believe so. I just went back to referenced article and read it. I don’t expect her to be leading a boycott on Rush, but it didn’t read to me like it left him off the hook either. I don’t follow her, but apparently Timothy Watson does on twitter. If he has more evidence of her being a hypocrite from this source he can share it.

  16. grumpy realist says:

    @G.A.: I don’t think the “Obama plant” helps your argument.

  17. michael reynolds says:

    And again, when Ed Schultz did it he DID apologize, and profusely, openly, obviously upset with himself. And he was suspended by MSNBC. Because we are NOT just like the dittoheads.

    For contrast look at the interaction between Cal Thomas and Rachel Maddow. Thomas made a crack about Maddow. He was disappointed with himself and took it upon himself without prodding to immediately call Maddow and apologize directly. She reported his apology on air and accepted it in full. Yesterday they had lunch and took a picture together.

    By contrast Limbaugh attacked a civilian, spent three days expanding on that attack, lied throughout, and issued a phony pseudo-apology only because disgusted sponsors were leaving in droves.

  18. EMRVentures says:

    To me a key difference is also the fact that when the Democratic vice president of the United States shoots a man in the face on a hunting trip and needs friendly confines to get his story out, he does not choose any of the above-named liberal sources. Nor do Democratic politicians apologize to Bill Maher or Keith Olbermann for criticizing them. Nor have any of those liberals been invited by the Speaker of the House to broadcast from the Capitol.

    Limbaugh is the GOP-approved voice of conservatism in a way that does not exist for the Democratic Party. As long as he enjoys the Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval from the GOP, he is uniquely appropriate as a target for criticism.

  19. rodney dill says:

    @Brummagem Joe:

    Where all the qualifications mentioned by JJ were ignored.

    True, given the qualification, I don’t see the attacks of the left to be necessarily equivalent to Rush’s attack. I just didn’t see hypocrisy as the issue.

  20. mantis says:

    From Powers’ article:

    Many feminist blogs now document attacks on women on the left and the right, including Jezebel, Shakesville, and the Women’s Media Center (which was cofounded by Steinem). But when it comes to high-profile campaigns to hold these men accountable—such as that waged against Limbaugh—the real fury seems reserved only for conservatives, while the men on the left get a wink and a nod as long as they are carrying water for the liberal cause.

    So she acknowledges that many on the left do go after misogynist and other offensive attacks on women (and she leaves many out of her list), but the point of her column is that the left never does this. From earlier in the piece, the lie she admits on page 2:

    There have been boycotts by people on the left who are outraged that these guys still have jobs. Oh, wait. Sorry, that never happened.

    Oh, they did happen, but it wasn’t good enough. You see, according to Powers, there is only one offensive personality on the right (Rush Limbaugh), while there is an “army of swine” on the left that is given a pass, but she admits they don’t actually get a pass. See, she thinks the left should rise up and start a unified boycott every time someone they’ve never heard of makes a comment Kristen Powers doesn’t like about, well, about pretty much anything. And if the left does not do that, they are culpable in the “routine misogyny of liberal media men” (as she expands it to include all liberal men in the media. Cute.).

    What Powers seems to not grasp is that her argument is that offensive things said by partisans from either side should be the subject of boycotts from the left. In her mind, the right has no place criticizing misogyny from either the right or the left. It’s all the responsibility of the left. One can only assume she is making a tacit acknowledgement that the right wing is itself misogynist by nature, and should not pretend otherwise by objecting to misogynist language from anyone.

    I should note that Powers counts Matthews and Taibbi as partisans, but one clearly isn’t and the other clearly hates Democrats nearly as much as he hates Republicans, leaving her with a comedian and a guy nobody watches or listens to as targets. Maher, on a great day, gets a little more than 1 million viewers. Shultz probably couldn’t get his own mother to watch his show. Limbaugh brags about having 15 million listeners, and is very influential in the Republican Party (Matthews, Taibbi, Maher, and Shultz have about as much influence over Democrats, combined, as one of Rush’s third world sex slaves).

    So there you go. The guiding light of the Republican Party is the equivalent of a crass (and not too bright) comedian and a 3rd rate nobody talk show host, and only liberals should speak out against misogyny. Thanks, Fox News’s Kristen Powers, for clearing all that up.

  21. Hey Norm says:

    The problem with Rushbo is that, as the de facto leader of the GOP, he is just vocalizing what the rest of them believe…and thus the lack of outrage from Republicans. They don’t really understand what the fuss is about.
    I kept hearing Republicans on the Sunday morning shows denying their war on women…but actions speak louder than words.
    Remember that this whole kerfuffle started with Issa’s all-male panel on birth control.
    They tried to redefine Rape.
    They tried to change the term used to describe the “victim of rape” to “accuser”.
    There’s the attacks on Planned Parenthood.
    They are trying to eliminate funding for the only Federal family planning program.
    There is the whole person-hood issue.
    And there is the Blunt Amendment which would have allowed any employer to deny birth control coverage for any reason they chose.
    There is the constant drum beat to overturn Roe v. Wade.
    Women are not stupid…trust me on this…I’ve been bested by enough of them to know. On election day they will have a choice. Rushbo just made that choice easier.

  22. David M says:

    The article was just a mess, it seemed like she was reaching for anything to support her thesis. Where it started to resemble parody was when she complained about someone calling Michelle Bachmann crazy. I’m sorry, but I’m always going to think she’s a lunatic

  23. @michael reynolds:

    And again, when Ed Schultz did it he DID apologize, and profusely, openly, obviously upset with himself. And he was suspended by MSNBC. Because we are NOT just like the dittoheads.

    I think the key might be as simple as there is this word, dittoheads, and that we all understand what it >means.

    Why is Rush important? Because as much as center-leaning Republicans might like to discount his importance, he has more than an audience. He has a political following.

  24. Sloppy in my html, I guess: dittohead

  25. Brummagem Joe says:

    Take a ride over to Redstate if you want to hear a little essay in Republicans as victims by Erick Erickson…yeah Erick, Limbaugh and the right are just helpless little victims being brutalised by vicious thugs on the left like Fluke, Boxer, Pelosi and co. Again this guy should get a gig as a Colbert script writer.

  26. Hey Norm says:

    According to something I just read the pill accounted for 30% of the convergence of men’s and women’s earnings from 1990 to 2000. Now it is crystal clear why Republicans are so against contraception!!!
    http://economix.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/03/06/the-economic-impact-of-the-pill/?smid=tw-nytimeseconomix&seid=auto

  27. Dave A says:

    Hi, long time reader first time commenter here from Michigan,

    In general I agree with your points, but I disagree with this

    First, in every example, the target was a pretty major public figure–a presidential or vice presidential candidate or a big time pundit–not a law student nobody ever heard of before she testified before Congress. That put them into the arena, raised the bar on the level of rough and tumble they should expect, and gave them a big time soap box from which to defend themselves.

    I don’t see how “having a soapbox” is relevant to separating how earned the outcry was towards Limbaugh vs. towards the mentioned liberals. The outcry at Limbaugh as well as Maher is because they both said something that was offensive and demeaning, and nothing that either Palin or Ingraham could say when given the opportunity to respond would make Limbaugh’s/Maher’s comments more right or wrong. They were simply wrong for directing slurs at women who they disagree with

    Also, in terms of the “rough and tumble they should expect”, I can’t see how that is really relevant either. I think that I have a higher chance of being the victim of a crime walking down the street in a rough neighborhood rather than a much less rough neighborhood, but someone who commits the crime against me is not relieved of some of their wrongdoing because I “should have expected it”.

  28. G.A. says:

    I don’t think the “Obama plant” helps your argument.

    Of course not, why have any facts at all whence discussing things here? Why do you think that I spend most of my time acting like a dumb wise a$$ nine year old liberal with what you have been taught are extremist racist anti science homophobic rhetorics of a wing nut…Dang you guys are slow and incapable of learning….

    Either that or I feed off of red button power!!!!

    Blagh, ima go kill me zombies and dragons…

    peace out flukers….

    Do any of you simple creatures even have any idea why I keep hammering away with fluke? lol….

  29. WR says:

    @Dave A: Just as there are different standards for slander against a public figure versus a private citizen, so there are different standards for vicious attacks against people who wield substantial power and influence — a highly rated talk show host, for instance, or a former vice-presidential candidate with a huge PAC — and against those who are completely without either — a law school student or a little boy who thanks the president for ensuring he has health care.

    The right refuses to acknowledge the power differential, repeatedly going after the weak and powerless and then wondering why they get condemned when no one cares what a millionaire comedian called a millionaire pundit.

    It’s not just the words Rush used, or the thoughts he used them to express. It was a three-day attack by a man who gets $50 million a year to talk to 15 millions listeeners against a civillian.

  30. steve says:

    “Are you calling this hypocrisy?”

    Yes. She forgets (?) to note that Schultz apologized, a lot, and was actually suspended for what he did. Olbermann was fired. Maher was heavily criticized. The Matthews examples are not on par with Rush’s. Also, as James noted, Rush went after a law student. The others went after fellow pundits, there should never be a punishment fro that IMO, and major political candidates.

    Steve

  31. KariQ says:

    There’s one other huge difference between Schultz and Limbaugh that isn’t mentioned often. Schultz insulted Ingraham in an absolutely inexcusable way, once, on one show. Limbaugh spent three days accusing Ms. Fluke of every disgusting thing he could think of.

    One word that’s inexcusable versus three days of character assassination. Yet some how, we’re supposed to treat these things as completely equal.

  32. @WR: The one thing that’s getting left out of this is that it wasn’t just Limbaugh that was attacking Fluke. At least two commentators on Fox News, one being Michelle Malkin, attacked Fluke as a “slut” or with another synonym.

  33. An Interested Party says:

    Why do you think that I spend most of my time acting like a dumb wise a$$ nine year old…

    That’s just an act?

    Blagh, ima go kill me zombies and dragons…

    peace out flukers….

    Do any of you simple creatures even have any idea why I keep hammering away with fluke? lol…

    Nah, that isn’t just an act…

  34. Justin Christian says:

    @Dave A: DA, you make some great points but you are extremely naïve in your attempt to label what is morally wrong. Let me demo with one of my recent blogs:
    It’s a sad day when: A ‘DC Metro, officially sanctioned, forced upon the public, 24/7, hard copy ad: “Go to hell Barack”’ story makes the second page and creates little national interest – While — A ‘EIB Network, privately produced, not forced upon the public, aired and thence repeated only by choice, verbal monologue: “Sandra it’s about all the sex”’ story makes the top of the front page and creates a national firestorm. Why the great disparity?? It almost all P’s: the press, the in-power political party, and the poisonous politically correct pressure. End of comment. But not End of story. The world has turned upside-down and there are not enough king’s horses and king’s men to put all the pieces back together again.
    DA, obviously you haven’t noticed. The morality ship left the pier long ago and it ain’t coming back again.

  35. WR says:

    @Justin Christian: You’re defending Limbaugh demanding to see sex videos of any woman whose insurance pays for contraception and claim you stand for morality? What a loathesome parody of the worst of right wing thinking.

  36. Justin Christian says:

    @WR: WR, either you have a reading comprehension problem or you are extremely naïve. The authorities at DC Metro are allowing “Go to hell [President of the USA]” to be posted in front of me and my 3-year old. This is not a joke; it’s for real. Plus what’s with demanding to see a sex video?? Who needs it???? As it is much of the pop media is pretty darn close to a sex video. Are we living in the same world?! As for Rush Limbaugh: he’s a jerk. I never said otherwise. But I am balanced (this used to be preceded with ‘fair’ but that went out when morality left) and apparently you have a big problem with that.

    And as for morality; I used to stand for that kind of stuff. But as I clearly stated in my comment that ship is long gone. Let every man and woman decide what is right or wrong.

    It’s mis-labelers like you who cause most of the world’s problems.

  37. Jib says:

    Free Market At Work People! The real heat on on this is being generated on social media sites of the advertisers by regular folks who were angry with Rush. Lots and lots of them. It does not matter how bad this was compared to any other outrage, left or right. What matters is that it made enough regular folks angry enough to flood the social media of the advertisers.

    You have to be big and visible to make that many people angry. How bad what you said is not really important. It just has to be bad enough for someone to post a tweet or on a facebook page condemning it, which does not take much effort, and visible enough that lots of people will do it.

    (FWIW, I think it is pretty bad what Rush said, mainly because he keep digging deeper and deeper day after day, no ‘lost my head for a minute’. He is getting what he deserves)

  38. Jenos Idanian says:

    First, in every example, the target was a pretty major public figure–a presidential or vice presidential candidate or a big time pundit–not a law student nobody ever heard of before she testified before Congress. That put them into the arena, raised the bar on the level of rough and tumble they should expect, and gave them a big time soap box from which to defend themselves.

    David Letterman went after Palin’s daughter (and, in the process, called the “wrong one” a slut, in not quite those words). And Fluke, by choosing to make herself the face and voice of her cause, made herself a public figure.

    And this whole incident has been a great education on Ed Schultz. I thought he’d spent years and years saying incredibly dumb and offensive things, as well as occasionally getting involved in physical altercations, but apparently that was all a fiction and the only time he’s been anything less than even-tempered was when he called Laura Ingraham a slut.

    And apparently the standards for responsible behavior are on a sliding scale. The more popular you are, the more discreet you have to be. If you’re less competent as a commentator, you can be more and more offensive. Limbaugh can’t call Fluke a slut, but Bill Maher can call Sarah Palin and Hillary Clinton a c-nt.

    I don’t bother listening to Limbaugh, but every now and then the hysteria he provokes is entertaining. Limbaugh is kind of like a black hole, and I’m an astrophysicist; I don’t observe him directly, just on his effects on others. And it’s just as fascinating.

  39. @Justin Christian: Nice to see that conservatives have no problem allowing the government to censor political speech.

  40. G.A. says:
  41. Jenos Idanian says:

    Interesting chain of events, economically speaking:

    Carbonite dumps Limbaugh, investors dump Carbonite. And Carbonite suffers more than Limbaugh.

    It looks like catering to the demands of liberal Limbaugh-haters has a greater price than ignoring them. And I doubt Limbaugh has a shortage of companies willing to pay to get access to his listeners…

  42. bains says:

    First, in every example, the target was a pretty major public figure–a presidential or vice presidential candidate or a big time pundit–not a law student nobody ever heard off…

    OK, then where is all the condemnation against all those that lashed out against Joe the Plummer and the tea party protesters?

    Second, most of the examples cited in fact inspired minor fits of outrage, followed by apologies much more abject than Limbaugh’s

    Bullcrap. In your opinion they were more abject, but only because you are predisposed to dispise Limbaugh while tolerating if not liking the acerbic commentary of the nasty left.

    Third, Limbaugh is a serial offender.

    And Maher, Schultz, Pelosi, Reid, Schummer, Durbin, Wasserman-Schultz, Matthews, etc are not? Man, your double standards are reeking in this post James.

    Fourth, and most significantly, Matthews, Olbermann, Maher, Taibbi, and Schultz are as fleas to Limbaugh’s 800 pound gorilla.

    And this caps the double standard. So it is OK for major/intermediate/minor lefty players to issue despicable statements because they are not as prominent as Rush. Talk about situational ethics to justify ones own hate…

    James, your site is descending into John Cole like irrelevance.

  43. WR says:

    @Jenos Idanian: ” And Fluke, by choosing to make herself the face and voice of her cause, made herself a public figure.”

    And Jenos, the coward who changes his fake name every few months to run away from the lies he’s spewed, comes up with the right wing’s attitude about public participation in the nation’s affairs — if you dare to speak up for the rights of whoever the right hates — minorities, poor people, women — you deserve to be publicly slimed for days on end, not based on what you said but on whatever lies gives scum like Rush and “Jenos” a hard-on.

    Of course, phony “Jenos” never has to worry about this, since he spends all his time parrotting whatever bile he hears on talk radio. Even so, he hides behind his ever changing names, just in case anyone ever decides to apply his own rules to him.

  44. A fifth important difference: Limbaugh doubled down and tripled down on his vile remarks, going on for THREE DAYS and repeating over 50 times over those three days, that Fluke was a slut, that she wanted to be paid for sex, that she should post a video online, and on and on. NONE of those other famous people mentioned on the right did anything like that.

  45. bandit says:

    The great thing about being on the left is that you can twist your sanctimonious bullshit to rationalize anything.

  46. Rob in CT says:

    All the whining from Bain made me look up the Ed Shultz apology:

    Good evening, Americans and welcome to The Ed Show from New York tonight. Thomas Roberts will be here tonight anchoring the program, but first I want to take some time to offer an apology. On my radio show yesterday I used vile and inappropriate language when talking about talk show host Laura Ingraham. I am deeply sorry, and I apologize. It was wrong, uncalled for and I recognize the severity of what I said. I apologize to you, Laura, and ask for your forgiveness.
    It doesn’t matter what the circumstances were. It doesn’t matter that it was on radio and I was ad-libbing. None of that matters. None of that matters. What matters is what I said was terribly vile and not of the standards that I or any other person should adhere to. I want all of you to know tonight that I did call Laura Ingraham today and did not make contact with her and I will apologize to her as I did in the message that I left her today.

    I also met with management here at MSNBC, and understanding the severity of the situation and what I said on the radio and how it reflected terribly on this company, I have offered to take myself off the air for an indefinite period of time with no pay. I want to apologize to Laura Ingraham. I want to apologize to my family, my wife. I have embarrassed my family. I have embarrassed this company.

    And I have been in this business since 1978, and I have made a lot of mistakes. This is the lowest of low for me. I stand before you tonight in front of this camera in this studio in an environment that I absolutely love. I love working here. I love communicating with all of you on the radio and the communication that I have with you when I go out and do town hall meetings and meet the people that actually watch. I stand before you tonight to take full responsibility for what I said and how I said it, and I am deeply sorry.

    My wife is a wonderful woman. We have a wonderful family. And with six kids and eight grandkids, I try to set an example. In this moment, I have failed. And I want you to know that I talked to my sons especially about character and about dignity and about the truth. And I tell you the truth tonight that I am deeply sorry and I tell them every day that they have to live up to standards if they want to be a successful human being in life. And I have let them down. 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.

    To the staff here at MSNBC, I apologize for embarrassing the company and the only way that I can really make restitution for you is to give you a guarantee, and the only way that I can prove my sincerity in all of this is if I never use those words again. Tonight, you have my word that I won’t. Laura Ingraham, I am sorry. Very sorry. I’ll be back with you in the coming days.

    Worlds of difference. I literally don’t know anything about Ed Shultz. I can honestly say I’ve never watched MSNBC news/opinion in my life. He might be a total tool. But in this instance, which the Rush-defenders keep trotting out as some sort of defense of Rush, he manned up and did it right.

    The proper Conservative comparison is, of course, Cal Thomas (as Michael Reynolds mentioned upthread).

  47. An Interested Party says:

    James, your site is descending into John Cole like irrelevance.

    And yet you still visit…

  48. jenos idanian says:

    @WR: Joe the Plumber and his tax records were u available for comment.

  49. bandit says:

    @WR:

    if you dare to speak up for the rights of whoever the right hates — minorities, poor people, women

    Good projection.

  50. Jenos Idanian says:

    @bandit: True dat. You should see WR go after minorities, poor people, or women who dare venture away from the liberal party line. They have no business straying from the reservation/plantation…

  51. An Interested Party says:

    @bandit:

    Oh sweetie, twisting sanctimonious bull$hit to rationalize anything hardly has a liberal bias…Doug would be correct to note that both sides do that…

  52. Thanks for providing this information on the internet.

  53. Eric Florack says:

    Fourth, and most significantly, Matthews, Olbermann, Maher, Taibbi, and Schultz are as fleas to Limbaugh’s 800 pound gorilla. And, no, that’s not a fat joke. Limbaugh is far and away the most important figure in American political media and has been for a generation.

    That’s a product of more people agreeing with him.
    That said, however, let’s get real. The issue here is it’s OK for leftists to spout their bile. Let anyone from the right do it, and they must be silenced.

  54. William Van Vechten says:

    Nice! Well written, thank you! Will you join me in filing an obscenity complaint with the FCC? https://www.facebook.com/notes/yum-van-vechten/i-just-filed-an-obscenity-complaint-with-the-fcc/3403489843310

  55. white collar crime kills says:

    Wow. I have not watched Schultz. I’d read that he was like a ‘leftie’ rushlike blowhard. But that apology is sickeningly excessive 🙂
    In contrast (but this recollection also based only on what i’ve read), Lushbo’s ‘apology’ consisted mostly of “it wasn’t my fault that some people were offended”, which hardly strayed from his reputation. And he posted on his website, instead of announcing on his broadcast. (I think he later did broadcast an apology)

  56. Heartland Patriot says:

    The woman in question is no little precious baby student…she’s a THIRTY YEAR OLD ACTIVIST. She chose Georgetown because she wanted to make it her mission to FORCE them to cover contraceptives and abortifacients. She wanted to put herself in front of the American people; she made herself a public figure. She put her “love life” in front of the American public. She stated that she had to cough up $3K for birth control while in law school…for 3 years of law school, that equates to an average of $1K a year…at $50 a month for EXPENSIVE birth control pills = $600, that leaves $400 for “other forms of birth control”, ie, condoms. Look up the price of a box of quality Trojans: $18 gets you 36 of them…do the math on that: ($400/$18)x36=800. Then, 800/365 days = 2.2 sexual encounters a day, every day of the year, averaged…a LOT of people in the general populace might consider a woman that has that much sex to be a bit more than “lucky”…in fact, they might call her a SLUT!