RUSH: The brilliant monologue that I gave on Monday on this program regarding Mrs. Clinton and the society in which we live’s perfection addiction, will not go away. The story will not go away, WCBS-TV went out on the street. They ran a news story like I used to be covered in 1988 or ’89. They actually used video of me from 1988, ’89! It’s exactly the way I got covered when I first started this show. It is just funny as hell, and we’re going to listen to it when we come back from this break. The story just will not die.
CBS in New York, WCBS, Channel 2. This is old school Drive-By Media treatment: take my comments out of context; play ’em for people on the street; go interview the obligatory feminazi (in this case, a local president of the NAGs: the National Association of Gals), roll video from 1988 of me, and the end of the story then pops up. This is how to media operated, folks, before their monopoly was broken. Here is a portion of the report by Scott Rapoport. Is that the guy that called you? Okay. We told him where to go and what to find to get the truth, right? You told him. You pointed him right to the website. You gave him secret passwords. He was very curious. Well, he was, but his editor wasn’t, because remember, the editor said, ‘Look at what Limbaugh said! Go do something with this,’ and the reporter called and said, ‘I want to find out what this is all about.’ So we directed him where to go to find out what it was all about. I’ll bet you he wanted to do a different story than what they made him do. I’m just not going to give him the benefit of the doubt, based on his original phone call to you.
RAPOPORT: Rush to judgment?
RUSH ARCHIVE: Will this country want to actually watch a woman get older before their eyes on a daily basis?
RAPOPORT: That’s Rush Limbaugh yesterday exploring the electability of one Hillary Clinton for president based on her looks and age?
WOMAN #1: That’s just so wrong in every possible way.
WOMAN #2: He is an idiot, so wha– what do you expect?
MAN: Oh, that’s preposterous. (laughs)
RAPOPORT: It seems it was this photo of the 60-year-old Hillary that led to Limbaugh’s questionable Clinton query, this despite the fact that some of Mrs. Clinton’s opponents aren’t exactly spring chickens themselves.
RUSH ARCHIVE: Men aging makes them look more authoritative, accomplished, distinguished.
WOMAN: Is this a joke? (laughs) Come on…
OSSORIO: It’s these types of comments that really make women mad.
RAPOPORT: Sonia Ossorio is president of the New York chapter of the National Organization for Women.
OSSORIO: It can serve only to really, really annoy people that anyone — even if they know it’s Rush Limbaugh — should say such ridiculous things.
RAPOPORT: Limbaugh says his Clinton comments are less about Hillary and more about an American culture where looks matter, like it or not.
MAN: Ugh. Well, I hope he is not right.
RAPOPORT: And for Rush, well, let’s just say there is no such thing as bad publicity. Scott Rapoport, CBS2 News.
RUSH: I haven’t heard a Ron Radio/TV reporter in a long time. Did you catch that guy’s voice? (Ron Radio voice impression) ‘Rush to judgment? … It seems it was this photo of the 60-year-old Hillary that led to Limbaugh’s questionable Clinton query.’ Then yesterday on the Fox News Channel, Martha MacCallum, The Live Desk, had this exchange with David Corn, the über-lib who I guess fled The Nation magazine. He’s now at Mother Jones.
MacCALLUM: It was a very unflattering photo, a recent picture of Hillary Clinton on the campaign trail. So Rush Limbaugh on his radio show asked this question: ‘Will Americans want to watch a woman get older before their eyes on a daily basis? And that woman, by the way, is not going to want to look like she’s getting older, because it will impact poll numbers. It will impact perception,’ and he acknowledged he’s probably going to get a lot of heat for that statement when he said it, but let’s go David Corn. David, fair picture or unfair assessment of how people perceive a woman president aging over the course of the job?
CORN: Listen, Rush Limbow (sic) is not the arbiter of what’s good taste or what American opinions or morals should be.
RUSH: I don’t know if he answered the question. The question was: it fair or unfair? He didn’t want to address it. Maureen Dowd addressed it in the New York Times today, and the gals on The View yesterday did. They knew what I was talking about, and they discussed it seriously and civilly — and Maureen Dowd doesn’t dispute what I said and actually backs it up and confirms it. I’m shocked.
RUSH: People don’t want the truth. See, everything that I have said was sympathetic. Everybody knows that heard what I said in that monologue about our culture’s ‘addiction to perfection’ and how it started and where it’s sustained — movies and television and so forth — knows that it’s the truth. Some people don’t want to hear the truth. Ergo, we get political correctness. You hear these people in the CBS clip? ‘Well, Limbaugh said it? Oh, ah, he’s an idiot.’ I wish Scott Rapoport… You know, I gave you the benefit of the doubt a moment ago. I got an idea for you. It’d just be a fun thing to do, and it’d give you a new story. I want you to grab your camera crew and I want you to go back out on the streets of the city, and I want you to run up to people and play a tape. I’m going to say it here right now: ‘Ladies and gentlemen, I’m just going to tell you this one time: the sky is blue. When there are no clouds and it’s daytime, the sky is blue.’ Okay, go out and play that for people, and get their reaction. I just uttered another truth.
See if people go, ‘Well, that’s Limbaugh! So what? He’s an idiot!’ I would love, Mr. Rapoport, for you to get the reaction of New Yorkers on the street to a simple truth, and find out how controversial the sky being blue can be made because I’m the one saying it. ‘It may be. It may be, but he’s a jerk still. He’s still a jerk. What does he mean by that? What is he even talking about it for? What does it have to do with anything?’ (laughing) Mr. Rapoport, you got a goldmine here, if you just go do this. Now, Maureen Dowd. As I mentioned, the girls on The View yesterday, treated it intelligently. They did it in a civil fashion, and Maureen Dowd… Let me give you some excerpts from Maureen Dowd’s column: ‘Yet it’s true that looks matter in politics… It is also true that perfecting the outer shell has become an obsession in this country… Mitt Romney, Barack Obama and John Edwards almost always look good, and pretty much the same, in dark suits or casual wear. Fred Thompson always looks crepuscular and droopy. Often Hillary looks great, and sometimes she looks tired, heavier or puffier…
‘Since this is the first time we’ve had a woman who was a serious contender for president, it’s been an adjustment to watch her more changeable looks, and to see the lengths she goes to get the right lighting and to make the right wardrobe choices. … [H]er campaign is devising strategies to humanize her and make her seem more warm and maternal. The public still has no idea of what part of her is stage-managed and focus-grouped, and what part is legit. It’s pretty pathetic, at this stage of her career, that she has to wage a major offensive, by helicopter and Web testimonials, to make herself appear warm-blooded.’ Now, Maureen Dowd just hit Hillary harder than I did in that monologue, while accepting and agreeing with the premise. But elsewhere in the Drive-By Media — over in the sandbox, over in the playground at PMSNBC — Dan Abrams, desperate for publicity, desperate to get noticed. Dan Abrams’ middle name is ‘Notice Me,’ and I’m helping. Well, I’m helping, because they need help over there. I’m doing all I can to help Abrams. He tries to imitate me. (laughs) I haven’t heard it yet. He tries to imitate me. We have a montage of him promoting his upcoming segment last night on me.
ABRAMS: (hokey music) The far Right now finding a new way to attack Hillary Clinton. Questioning whether she’s too old to get elected. As Rush Limbaugh put it (Limbaugh impression), ‘Will the country want to actually watch a woman get older before their eyes on a daily basis?’
ABRAMS: Coming up next: Right wing radio talk show host, Rush Limbaugh has found a new reason to go after Hillary Clinton.
ABRAMS: Coming up: Rush Limbaugh goes after Hillary Clinton asking if this country will ‘actually want to watch a woman get older before their eyes on a daily basis.’
RUSH: Okay, so when he got around to doing the segment they had Tony Blankley on and Stephanie Miller, and Abrams says, ‘Did aging in office hurt Hillary’s husband, Bill?’ Dan, did you read what I said? Dan, you gotta be careful. When you want me to notice you, I’m going to notice you — and hen you’re an idiot, I’m going to mention it. And you’re an idiot. I pointed out that men, society looks at aging men and say they get more distinguished; some say they get more handsome, more authoritative, and so forth. I said it’s unfair. It’s the way it works. It’s sadly not that was the when women age. Sadly. Read it! It’s in there, Dan. Anyway, ‘Did aging in office hurt Hillary’s husband, Bill? He was 54 when he left office. Reagan, ripe old 77. What about Margaret Thatcher? You know, look, I don’t quite get what the allegation is. Joining me, again, Stephanie Miller, Tony Blankley. Tony, what do you make of this, I mean is this the right’s not-attack attack on Hillary?’
BLANKLEY: Look, it may not be fair, but it’s true that in politics — in TV broadcasting, in any public figure — people pay attention to your appearances. One of the things we were all talking about was Gore won’t be running for president unless we see that he’s losing weight. Americans usually elect a taller man president. The hair dye and the facelift are the staples of people who are on television, men and women alike. So the fact is that we do pay attention. I think that it’s unfortunately the case, whether you’re a man or woman and you’re running for president you need to look as good as you can look.
RUSH: Absolutely! It’s the television age. But Abrams, as it is often the case in a sandbox, didn’t listen to his own guest’s answer, and turned to Stephanie Miller, who is a babe on some days. She knows what I mean. So Stephanie, this seems to be a back door way to attack Hillary. Is it?
MILLER: Please! This is so sexist. Fred Thompson, I enjoyed his work as Gollum on Lord of the Rings. Give me a break! I mean, are we really going to put this as a standard of something we are going to judge our presidential candidates by?
RUSH: I’m not advocating it, Stephanie. You know, you people… It is amazing how the truth is just out there or what somebody’s actually said, and you have your little knee-jerk reactions. I am not asking the American people to look at Mrs. Clinton that way. I’m just asking if they will. Remember the story we had some months ago now — and it was one of these funny lighthearted things at first, but then I thought about it. It’s not. You know what the biggest fear among women who age is becoming bag women. They’re 55, 60, with no relationship and no job, and they worry about it. Look, the dirty little secret is the women listening to me know that this is a very factual assessment of our culture today, and it is very unfair, and it hurts, and it bothers them greatly. Now, one thing to argue against Hillary being harmed by this is that when you take Hollywood and television and look at the primary demographic there. Hollywood movies. Most of them are made for guys that still have acne, just reached puberty, you know, under 24. And they don’t vote. So it might not be a big deal. Television is a little bit different but still they aim for the lowest common denominator in terms of age demographics. So it may not be that big a factor. I was just asking the question based on that picture that was up. Do we have any more on this?
Let me turn the page here. Pages are sticking together. The paper in this printer, by the way, is really low grade. It sticks together, not at all like it is in Florida. Ah, let’s see. (muttering). Eh, it’s not even worth it. They just talk about Golda Meir and Margaret Thatcher and again miss the point. I was talking about AMERICAN culture, ladies and gentlemen. As I pointed out yesterday, if Margaret Thatcher or Golda Meir — by the way, Golda Meir, that was the 1950s and ’60s. It was different cultural altogether then — and, by the way, she didn’t care, and Margaret Thatcher didn’t care. It wasn’t what it was about for them. If Margaret Thatcher were running for president today, as she was when she was the Iron Lady, we wouldn’t have her mom doing television commercials telling us how wonderful she was when she was a kid and how nice she is. And we wouldn’t have focus groups and we wouldn’t have one day focusing on ‘change’ and the next day focusing on likability. If Margaret Thatcher were campaigning, we would be treated to a smorgasbord of great ideas, proposals for the future of the country. Nobody would even be thinking about that. The reason that this is even a subject is because Mrs. Clinton has made it one. She’s the one focusing on her appearance, her personality, and all these sorts of things. If she’s going to do that, I, ladies and gentlemen, am going to ask the question.
RUSH: To the phones we start in Spokane, and this is Janet. It’s great that you waited, and welcome to the EIB Network.
CALLER: Merry Christmas, Rush!
RUSH: Hey, same to you.
CALLER: Thank you. I live in the state of Washington, and our governor is a female, Christine Gregoire, and she wasn’t particularly pretty when she started office, but I have watched her age, and I have the same perception you do. It’s not pretty. And you think that, you know, maybe her handlers would pick up on it and try and help her.
RUSH: Let me ask you a serious question about this. You’re a woman.
RUSH: Does the whole concept of aging and appearance bother you? I know you’re not in politics, but here you are. You’re basically agreeing with my assessment about your governor out there, and it’s not pleasant to watch, but you’re saying this as a woman. Do you feel….queasy saying something like that?
RUSH: Wow. Brevity is the soul of wit.
CALLER: No. I don’t. I think — you know, especially if you’re in the spotlight like that, I think. It doesn’t look like she takes any great pains to boost her looks at all, and she didn’t start out particularly, you know, anything exciting, but…
RUSH: Well, actually, you know, something, there’s something to be said for that. Now, I can understand people wanting to look their best, and taking basic steps to do it, but I kind of admire people who are comfortable enough in their own skin to be who they are. They don’t have to go out and get hair plugs, don’t have to go out and wear toupees, don’t have to go out and do all these other things. They’re happy with who they are, and there’s something to be said for that, because it’s one thing to be genuine on the inside and genuine on the outside, but you start monkeying around with your outside, what does it say is inside you as well? You need to doctor that. But yet the pressure exists. Don’t forget, folks, this is another truth — and this one established me as one of the nation’s great thinkers, but it also has created decades of firestorms, and that is Undeniable Truth of Life #24, and that is: ‘Feminism was established so as to allow unattractive women easier access to the mainstream of American culture and society,’ and I’m sure in politics, you would have to acknowledge that it has worked. I’ll just say one thing. (Here comes another truth. I can just tell. I have empathy. I know some of you uncomfortable with all of this, but truth is the truth.) Remember when Jennifer Granholm was elected governor of Michigan? Remember how everybody went, ‘Wow, she’s so pretty! She’s so pretty. She’s blonde. Wow! Too bad she can’t run for president because she’s not born in America.’ Notwithstanding your own personal assessment of Mrs. Granholm’s appearance, the fact that people noticed it tells you what?