RUSH: Carrie in Grantville, Georgia, I'm glad you waited. Welcome to our program.
CALLER: Hi, Rush.
CALLER: Hey, can I first say that you are a recognized figure over SpongeBob in our household?
CALLER: Yeah, we really appreciate that. I also share your humor on the global warming and the Lotto ticket holder.
RUSH: Thank you. Thank you very much. I'm a little confused. Did you say I'm a recognized figure over SpongeBob?
CALLER: Oh, yes, you are.
CALLER: My children know Rush Limbaugh over SpongeBob, trust me.
CALLER: Yeah, they're 12, nine, and six, and they know Rush -- and here in Georgia, it's a great thing. So dittos to you.
RUSH: Thank you.
CALLER: And let me get to my point here. I was watching. I have a couple of points and then a question for you.
CALLER: I was watching -- well, I didn't get to see the YouTube thing. I had to watch it this morning, and I watched it very --
RUSH: Golly! It was bad enough watching it live. You actually TiVoed it?
CALLER: No. No, sir. No, sir. There were a few more important things in our household that needed to be TiVoed like Shrek the Halls, and stuff like that.
RUSH: How did you watch it today if you didn't see it last night?
CALLER: On the computer!
RUSH: Ohhhh. Oh.
CALLER: Ah, the wonders of technology.
RUSH: I never think of that, because I cannot hear things on the computer.
CALLER: I understand. I understand.
RUSH: So I don't watch videos or anything like that on the computer. I don't even think to do that.
CALLER: Well, the minute my kids were on the school bus, I was there in my bathrobe watching it, and I was just watching it, and I was just excited, disappointed, and thrilled by all of the candidates. I hate to say it, but as a huge Fox News network junky, it really dawned on me that CNN is just such a Clinton Mafia follower -- and I hate to be so brutal in saying that, but they really are a Clinton Mafia follower.
RUSH: There is a reason why they are called the Clinton News Network.
CALLER: Yes. I totally agree, and I just think a lot of the questions that were submitted were absolutely edited. They were absolutely formatted to not get to the issues of what the Republican Party stands for. I think that CNN kind of looks at the Republicans like a stepchild would look at their stepparents.
RUSH: No, it's not that. It's really not that. It's that they're all a bunch of libs in there, and they laugh at and impugn, think conservatism is a bunch of kooks, and so their purpose last night was to expose conservatism and conservatives as liberals as CNN see them.
CALLER: But you don't think that the underlying effect is that most people do rely on Republicans to be to a higher standard and a higher format, as like a stepparent would, you know what I mean?
RUSH: What are you saying? You think the Republicans shouldn't have gone?
CALLER: Oh, no! Not at all! I think they did a magnificent job challenging the stupidity that was asked upon them. I think they did a magnificent job. But I think as stepparents, a lot of stepparents are thrown into silly situations also to where you're human and you get tested and challenged in awkward ways that, normally, you would never be challenged in -- and I think that Republicans are held to a higher standard than Democrats, because I think ultimately most people look at Democrats as being kooky and kind of off balance.
RUSH: You know, my problem is, the Republicans did okay last night within the context of the questions asked, but I don't think anybody really shined in a substantive way. Huckabee had the greatest comedy line. Rudy Giuliani had, you know, the "sanctuary mansion" line, but I look at this in a different way. I try to put myself in the shoes of people who are not conservative -- and, sadly, there are those people there, and I'm not talking about liberals, but maybe just moderates, independents, whatever you want to call them -- watching this thing, this thing tried to make a joke out of conservatism. I don't care how well the Republicans did; I don't think any of them realized what was happening here and was able to call CNN on what was happening and change the course of this thing. I know that there were the rules and you had to answer the questions posed by the debates, but this thing was nothing more than a continuance of the caricature of conservatives as racists, sexists, bigots, homophobes, and all these other clichéd things. I do think it's up to the party and the candidates to have a little sensitivity to this and branch out from all this rather than answer the questions submitted in the context of "Okay, you're a racist. You tell me what you think of the Confederate flag," and, "Okay, you are a homophobe. You tell me what you think of gays in the military." They were fine within this narrow context, but there was so much potential here and such an opportunity, and I just didn't see it materialize. But that's just me.
Michael in western Colorado, I'm glad you called, sir. You're next on the EIB Network.
CALLER: Yeah, mega dittos from the grand valley of western Colorado, sir.
RUSH: Thank you.
CALLER: It is an honor to speak to you.
RUSH: Thanks very much.
CALLER: Hey, listen, last night... You know, I'm not a big computer freak but I do know about the YouTube deal and all that, and as soon as I knew that they were going with CNN on this deal, I started watching it, and as soon as the guy, Cowboy Bob, came on with his guitar and started singing, I went, "This is a Ringling Bros., three-ring circus."
RUSH: That's right. In fact, Cookie, get me that opening guy. The opening wasn't even a question, I don't think. Give me this opening guitar guy with his lyrics about all these Republicans and the way that CNN opened this, because you're exactly right: three-ring circus. I think one of the...really what I guess was not an "undercurrent." It was patently obvious: CNN doesn't take these people seriously. CNN doesn't take these Republican candidates seriously. They're just like a walking bunch of jokes to be made fun of, to be caricatured, to be impugned and so forth, and it just offends me because it need not have happened. I warned these people back in July that exactly what happened last night was going to happen. I warned them not to do it!
CALLER: It offended me right off the bat, and I agree with your comment earlier. I've gotten all my news off the radio this morning because I didn't watch it, but, yeah, it blew me away when he started doing his deal, and they were panning the camera across all the candidates and you could tell that they were all very uncomfortable, and I agreed with your statement that if any of them had any nards at all, they would have just walked right off the stage and said, "I'm not going to be a part of this." It was horrific.
RUSH: Yeah, I know. It's easy to say that. You know, it's easy to say, "If I were there, I would have wagged my finger at Anderson Cooper and I would have said X, and walked out of that." It's easy to say that when you're not there, but, anyway, we're not those guys. They are who they are, and one thing I've learned from doing television: People watching always think they can do it better than the people on it. In fact, when I had my TV show, the most frustrating thing about it was I'd finish a 30-minute show and I thought it was just barnburner. I thought it was great, and I'd get home and I'd start checking e-mail from people, "Well, you really blew it. You know what you shoulda said?" blah, blah, blah, and, "What is that tie you're wearing?" All these things. Oh my gosh! I thought it was good, then when I thought I had a rotten show, people liked it.
RUSH: I've got nothing against the song stylist. It's not his fault they chose his piece to open the debate. Now, remember, YouTube was supposed to be questions and limited to just 30, 35 seconds. This is a minute twenty three.
(Playing of guitar song from YouTube.)
All during that they were panning close-ups of all the candidates as their names and their references were mentioned. It's nothing against the song stylist, but CNN picks this, and I'm telling you, this is exactly what I warned these people of back in July, this is demeaning, it does not promote the stature of what is being sought here in any way, shape, manner, or form, and it was an attempt here to diminish these people by introducing them to the audience and these one-line lyrics about each candidate.
David in Montgomery, Alabama, hello and welcome to the program, sir.
CALLER: Mega dittos, Rush.
RUSH: Thank you.
CALLER: I just wanted to point out that what happened to the Republican candidates on CNN helps explain why the Democratic candidates wouldn't debate on Fox. They knew what they had planned when they were on CNN, so --
RUSH: I couldn't more profoundly disagree.
RUSH: The reason that the Democrats are not going on Fox is not because they're afraid of what will happen there.
RUSH: Eh-huh. They are not going on Fox because they're trying to delegitimize Fox as a serious news outlet. They're trying to say, "We're not going to go on Fox. Fox is not even a news channel. We're not going to go on Fox." If they went on Fox, they would happen to appear before the largest audience they could get, and they would appear before some responsible journalists who might ask them some tough questions. But they wouldn't be caricatured and impugned and laughed at like was the case last night. They're not afraid of Fox. I keep hearing this, "If they're afraid of Fox, they're going to be afraid of Bin Laden." They're not afraid of Fox, they're just trying to delegitimize Fox and make people think, "Fox isn't serious, don't watch it," because Fox is an enemy to the Democrats. Like this program is an enemy, because it's a media outlet no longer under their monopolistic control. Eh-huh.
Jeff in Utica, New York, welcome to the program.
CALLER: Thank you, it's a great honor.
RUSH: Yeah. How you doing, Jeff? Thank you.
CALLER: I just wanted to touch on one part that you almost touched on just now. I haven't heard this yet, but first, I think it was a great success last night, and no, I did not watch it, and the reason I know it was a great success is because ten years ago or maybe when Bill was running for office, Bill, the Clintons, and the Clinton News Network would have got away with what they did last night, but because of you and the 25 million-plus that listen to you, they can't get away with it.
RUSH: No, and, in fact, you know something else, MSNBC, Scarborough and his gang, ripped them to shreds this morning over at MSNBC, and some of the other news outlets did the same. This has not been a good day.
CALLER: No, it's a good day. It's a good day for the New Media.
RUSH: Yeah. But look at it. You know this whole business with CNN, "We didn't know. We didn't know who these people were." I take you back. Presidential campaign, 1992, George H. W. Bush, the incumbent, appearing on Larry King Alive from San Antonio, Texas, and out of the blue comes George Stephanopoulos on the phone to argue with President Bush. Larry King acted stunned, and shocked, and amazed that George Stephanopoulos had gotten through. "George, is this really you?" There is a pattern here, ladies and gentlemen, the way CNN operates. It is not called the Clinton News Network simply for humor! There is a pattern. Part of the pattern is they are losing their audience. It is diminishing, as it should be, because they are trying to present themselves as something they no longer are. They are not a news network. They are part of the Democrat Party agenda, and they are trying to hide that, but it's no longer capable of being hidden.