Rush Limbaugh

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RUSH: We have more on Joe Wilson, then we’ll get to Patrick Fitzgerald in just a moment, but I want to mix your phone calls in here because I don’t want to have people waiting for an hour and a half or two hours here before they get to go on the program. We’ll start in Fredericksburg, Virginia, with Susan. Great to have you. Nice to have you on the EIB Network, Susan.
CALLER: Thank you, Rush. I have always had a desire to be involved in public service, always thought that I would run for office, maybe the board of education, maybe something like that just to get involved with public service.
RUSH: Yes?
CALLER: But I will tell you that when that verdict came in yesterday, I literally felt sick to my stomach, and I’m thinking — and people like me are watching, people like me who are just… I’m a stay-at-home mom, husband is in the military, and very active in my kids’ school, and I would love to run for office. Why would I? Why would I put myself out there? They’re going to go through my taxes. If they can’t find anything on me, they’ll make it up, just like they did on Scooter Libby, just like they did with you when you landed from another country and Customs was waiting for you. I can’t imagine what your life is like, looking over your back. Even though you’re not doing anything wrong, you know they’re waiting for you. Why would anyone want to go into public service?
RUSH: Let me explain this to you. Actually this is a good question, and I’d like for you to change the term. Get rid of “public service.” That’s one of these Civics 101 terms. You hear a lot of people in public service, ?Yeah, I want to do public service. I want to give back to my community.? That’s all BS. This is activism, Susan. When liberals join the government, when they join bureaucracies, it is activism. It’s not public service. They’re not out there doing anything to serve the public. They’re doing things out there to control the public. They are attempting to amass power. The reason why I am so upset over people like Scooter Libby (the list is long) is because there are courageous people on our side who are trying to stop them. Ronald Reagan tried to stop them, and he did. Richard Nixon tried. There are any number of them that tried to stop them, and they’re willing to take the risks because they, too, believe.
It’s not public service. It’s about activism on both sides. It’s about believing with passion what you think is best for the country and going to the places necessary to make those things possible. In addition to people like Scooter Libby and Cheney and Rumsfeld and all these other people, Condoleezza Rice, who are now public enemy number one, they are there precisely because they are doing what they think is best for the country, and they are trying to stop this encroachment by the left in all these institutions that are out of reach of elections: the courts, the bureaucracies, the agencies, institutions of higher learning. That’s why this is serious stuff. That’s why Republicans and conservatives are being criminalized simply for being Republicans and conservatives.

Now, this is going to require a little bit more sophisticated behavior on the part of Republicans and conservatives who go into all this, as you call it, “public service.” They have to know they’re targets, and you can’t make friends with these people. As Clarice Feldman wrote in the American Thinker today, you cannot deal with them by taking the high road and going down the road of probity. You can’t sit there and say as president, ?Okay, anybody in my administration found guilty of leaking is out.? You can’t say that. Bill Clinton would never say that. If somebody in an agency tried to undercut the Clinton administration, that person was sought out, found, dispatched and gotten out of there.
Republicans are just not ruthless. Conservatives are not ruthless in many cases. So long we have been in the minority, so long we’ve been on the defensive, that we think that we can forge a new way by getting along, by showing these people we intend them no harm or all of this garbage. But people like Libby and others who engage this to fight the fight are not doing it for public service. They’re doing it because they believe in ideas, passionately so. They are, if anything, serving the country and what their ideals for the country are. You might want to say they’re serving the public, but it’s a whole misnomer. If you want to join the school board, the reason for doing it is not for “public service.” The reason is because your school board is screwed up and needs to be fixed and somebody needs to stand up and say it’s screwed up and fix it who is willing to take the arrows that come your way.
If you don’t want to do it, then don’t. I’m sorry to be yelling at you. I’m not yelling at you. But if you don’t want to do it, get out. I have a great life. I never imagined I’d have a life like this. Yeah, I’m a target. I have to make modifications in the way I live, but I understand that I’m a target in many ways. But as I’ve said, Susan, countless times after the incident you described and many others: I’m still here because you’re still there. I’m still here because my audience — who listen to me daily and know who I am and what I am — know that all the garbage said about me is untrue, and you’ve stood there and defended me. This is what doesn’t happen enough in Washington with other public officials who get in trouble. Conservatives run for the tall grass and don’t want the prosecutor coming after them.

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