Friday, February 27, 2009

Thursday talk radio update I

Thursday was the last day (except for a Friday rerun) of Bill O'Reilly's radio show. He no longer draws much mention here because I usually teach German during his show, but this actually is something of a loss.

My liberal friends tend to lump O'Reilly in with Hannity and Limbaugh, but that's quite unfair. O'Reilly has his annoying quirks, but he is the only one of the bunch who made a genuine effort to be fair to Democrats in the presidential race. And he is something of an environmentalist, by talk radio standards.

At worst, he is far more listenable than the alternatives. Limbaugh wants America to fail. Hannity's show has become a three-hour-a-day Obama bashathon. Glenn Beck seems to have become utterly unhinged. Savage already was.

Without public radio, hope would cease.

No wonder Democrats are happy to get along without the Fairness Doctrine. If you were Obama, wouldn't you love having Limbaugh and Hannity as the voice of the Republican Party? You bet you would.


Jay Larry Lundeen said...

Bias has slain the truth. I'm not saying David Crisp should like Hannity, Limbaugh, et al, but at least they should be judged by more than a knee-jerk. Hannity consistently lays out why he doesn't swoon over Obama, and makes a good case if personal responsibility and smaller gov't turns your crank. Limbaugh has repeatedly said that he hopes Obama fails so that an assault on capitalism will be thwarted. Apparently some ears stop listening after the word "fails." Michael Savage's bombast is surprisingly accurate in his skewering of both major political parties. What's sadly ironic is that while Hannity & Company are trotted out for their weekly drubbing in this blog, seldom is heard a discouraging word for those on the left. Step back for a moment and look at a president elected after only two years in the Senate, most of that time spent running for president. The mainstream media plundered the life of Sarah Palin while giving Obama a total pass. No serious vetting in sight. Ever wonder where Obama's hundreds of millions of Internet contributions came from? No, of course not. . . but had that amount of unsourced money poured into Republican coffers, Chris Matthews & Company would have been all over that like a grizzly bear finding honey. And just a little over a week ago Obama insisted that his massive stimulus bill be passed without the 48-hours guaranteed for Republican review. Too important to be slowed down; but oddly, Obama didn't sign it for four days. Apparently, a flight on Air Force One to Chicago for a haircut and a pick-up game of hoops was more important. Meanwhile, a thousand-page bill, with spending beyond conception, and 9,000 pork earmarks awaited his signature. And not a word from the mainstream press about this obvious ploy to shunt Republican input. There was a time when the media prided itself in challenging power. But now, rather than hold the feet of all politicians to the fire, the Dems get their shoes shined and those on the right get thrown into the fire. There are a great many very reasonable people who have grown weary of not only the general bias in the media, but also their inability to see or change this obvious fault.

Dave Rye said...

Come on, David. "Limbaugh wants America to fail" is a blatantly unfair sentence, atypical of you.
(Usually when you're unfair, you're more subtle about it--smile.)

You are equating Obama's succeeding with America's succeeding. To a conservative, restructuring America's economic system by, basically, replacing capitalism with socialism is failure for our country--and irreparable failure at that. Liberals, of course, delighted in pouncing on that one sentence from Rush Limbaugh and distorting its meaning by quoting ONLY the one sentence, rather than including any sentences that preceded or followed it.

On the other hand, your adopting an animal shelter cat, that otherwise would have been euthanised, is such a great thing to do that this political stuff becomes only a secondary consideration.

Mark T said...

Another talk radio host, Thom Hartmann, has gone searching for the text of the Fairness Doctrine. Apparently, it doesn't exist - that is, there never was a formal doctrine - it was just an accepted way of doing things. It was understood that the airwaves were public property and ought to be open to all views, even those that did not have the backing of commercial advertising - the thing that keeps liberals mostly off the air. (Judging by the last election, there is no shortage of liberals.)

Hartmann could cite only one instance in which the FCC actually went after a radio station for unfairness.

And, also news to me, the Doctrine only applied to radio - not TV.

Anonymous said...

Just listen to Rush's own words: [South Carolina Governor Mark Sanford] "just had to say, 'We don't want the president to fail.' Hell, we don't."

A Republican president led this country for eight years, and a Republican Congress led it for ten years. They handed over a government with a deficit in the trillions, a war on two fronts, and an economy in collapse. Why aren't Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity complaining about that? Why aren't they at least allowing a grace period for Obama to see if this current administration can help begin to pull the country out of this mess?

If we were better off now than we were when George Bush took office, I would be less impatient with the bloviating. But we're not. We have one kid in college and another heading to college in a year. Our home has decreased in value. Our assets are worth half what they were just two years ago. If my husband is laid off (my work doesn't provide health insurance), we won't have health insurance; nor will our children. I want Obama to succeed because if he succeeds, I succeed, my kids succeed, our country succeeds.

Mark T said...

Limbaugh was taken out of context. He's easy to do that with - he says things that please his audience that aren't meant to be repeated out of camp. But he was taken out of context.

We have businesses that are failing in the private sector that will probably be taken over by the Federal Government, made healthy again, and turned back to the private sector. That's the Conrail model.

The US has never been "capitalist" in any meaningful sense - we've always had a good measure of state subsidy of industries considered important or cutting edge, like computer, aviation, railroads, telegraph, and others. Often we have used defense contracts to help favored businesses, a cloaked subsidy - like, say, Halliburton.

The word "capitalism" is so murky these days that it hardly has any meaning - it's like "democracy" and "fascism" - used so generally that specific meanings don't apply. But I note that "socialism" is finally being used in its true sense - outright ownership versus subsidy.

The US has always been a mixed economy - the poorer you are, the more exposed to the market. Government bailouts for the rich are nothing new.