June 26, 2004


Instapunk has a great essay on how leftizoids use Rush Limbaugh as an excuse for their most egregious excesses...without, of course, contaminating themselves by actually listening to the man.

...The only problem with all this is that it's not true. Limbaugh's fabled ego is in large part a manufactured persona, one that cleverly counterpoints his confident and often satirical monologues about politics. Every time he returns to his standard self-congratulating refrains -- "I, in my infinite wisdom, have figured out more than the amateurs in the audience can do by themselves," "I, who can discover the truth, making zero mistakes, with half my brain tied behind my back" -- he is winking through the airwaves at his ditto-heads, reminding them that they are hearing personal opinions inflated with sarcasm and a profound sense of fun. He is sharing his most important message of all, not to take it all too seriously, because in that direction lies misery.

That's why one of the most enduring, and sometimes infuriating, aspects of Limbaugh's radio persona is his insistence on a Reagan-like optimism. Many of the ditto-heads, far from echoing his pronouncements, try to penetrate that optimism with anecdotal evidence from the heartland of the myriad ways that American liberty and culture are in decline. He is unfazed by such sermons and seeks to reassure them that all is not lost....

...Nor is he mean. He is courteous to callers, and even when it becomes obvious that the angry person at the other end of the phone has lied to the screener in order to vilify him, he allows them to make their principal point, and he attempts to respond with reason or humor rather than hostility. He may hit the kill switch after an exchange or two, but usually he does so only after a caller has begun repeating himself -- the equivalent, on radio, of the dreaded 'dead air.'...

The caricature Limbaugh, (and the caricature dittoheads) are part of a larger caricature, the "wingers," proto-fascist knuckle-draggers, cartoons cherished by people who would never dream of asking an actual right-winger (like me) if the story has much connection with reality.

It's all rather pathetic, but, well, I suppose if you are going to undercut your country and your President in time of war, and lend moral support to blood-drenched fascist dictators, you need a wee bit of a fig leaf. So you invent some new "fascists" on the right, and, presto, the left is once again "anti-fascist."

I myself don't think "fascism" actually exists, either now or in the past. All those regimes which are generally agreed to be fascist are actually socialist movements tricked-out in some scraps of right-wing or nationalist or conservative rhetoric to try appeal to a wider audience. Which is why scholars have found it impossible to agree on a definition of fascism.
But it's one of those things which, since it didn't exist, had to be invented. Leftists find fascism essential to justify their brutal usurpations, and the so-called fascists get to claim to be fighting "socialism." It's win-win.

Just as the Left was anti-anticommunist, so too then are they anti-antiterrorist --Robert Spencer

Posted by John Weidner at June 26, 2004 5:50 PM
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