RUSH: Let me expand a little bit on this theory that I posited right before the conclusion of the previous hour, and that theory basically is we’ve seen this. I’ve always talked about the Washington culture, and I’ve joked here, but it’s not really a joke. Over the course of almost 20 years, when I have to go to Washington, I say, ‘I’m not spending the night there.’ I’m not going to do my radio show from Washington. I mean, I love our affiliate there, WMAL, but I don’t want to get caught in that culture. I have no desire, it’s a whole different world, Washington is. It has nothing in common with the rest of the country. The people who are there have their own culture as well. It’s not just political, it is social. Everybody that works there and lives there wants to matter, and they want to matter prominently, they want to be big people, and they want to be liked. That place, Washington, DC, is dominated by a liberal culture, it always will be; it always has been. You ask yourselves constantly, you call here and you ask me, ‘What happened to the Republicans? What happened to them? I mean, they campaigned as big-time conservatives, they win the House in 1993, they get inaugurated in ’94, and look at now, where are we? We’re about to have a 70-seat deficit in the House of Representatives 14 years later.’
One of the things that I think happens is that these guys get up there and they come from mom and pop areas of the country, they get caught up in this culture, and of course they get caught up in wanting to improve and acquire power. It’s what these jobs are all about. In the media, in the House, in the Senate, it’s all about power. You gotta do things to climb the ladder. You like media approval. Everybody wants to be liked. This is a fact of life; it’s human nature; everybody wants to be liked. Some people deal with it better than others, but let’s face it, we all want to be liked. Very few of us are raised wanting to be hated. Hitler might have been one. But I don’t know too many people who are raised wanting to be hated. I wasn’t. I didn’t grow up wanting to be hated, and I know you didn’t, either. So when these clowns in this power structure of Washington target you and they hate you, what do you do? Well, you don’t like it. I mean, everybody wants to get along with people that are their neighbors, you want to get along with the people you work with. So I think one of the many things that happens here is the pull to be liked, the pull to matter, the pull to be a big guy.
That inspires weakness, causes weakness in a lot of people on our side, seeking the approval of the people that run the town, seeking approval of the people that run the social aspects of the town, seeking the approval of the media in this town. Liberals, by the way, ideologically are on a war footing constantly, and their one objective is to rid themselves of any meaningful conservative opposition. They have no desire to get along. They have no desire. They couldn’t care less about being liked except by their own, but they don’t care whether we like ’em or not. Our side cares. It’s all too prevalent. It’s all too obvious. And it’s nothing that’s relatively new. This is why I mentioned McCain and if you’ll think back, isn’t one of the reasons that those of you who have doubts and suspicions about McCain had them because he seems eager to be approved of by the people we know to be our political enemies. I told the House freshmen this when I went up there for the orientation. They asked me to come up there and speak at orientation, and I said, ‘Don’t be fooled. These people in the media are not here to like you. They don’t like you. They don’t think that you’re great. They’re not going to treat you as the majority. They’re going to treat you as temporary interlopers. They’re going to send Cokie Roberts out there to interview you, those big almond eyes. She’s going to bat those eyelashes at you and you’re going to melt, and you’re going to think the media loves you, and you think they’re going to treat you because you’re the majority the way they treated the Democrats for 40 years. It isn’t going to happen.’
As I said, go through the list of people, it’s a very small list that I’ve mentioned here, but there are countless other names. John Dean has been turned by the left. He’s now anti-Republican, anti-conservative. David Gergen used to be in the Reagan White House. Now, Gergen was never a doctrinaire conservative, but he sure wasn’t what he is today. David Gergen used to be the conservative on the MacNeil/Lehrer NewsHour. Now he’s at this Kennedy School or whatever and he’s a regular commentator on CNN, and he’s loved, and he’s respected. He can hold his head high. He has been allowed in the establishment, and he is considered a learned fellow. He has seen the light. He has abandoned his prior loyalties. Same thing could be said for Colin Powell. Same thing could be said for Armitage. And here was McCain; he was out there basically fostering this. He was the media’s favorite conservative. Why? ‘Cause he always attacked his own side. He attacked President Bush. They loved him. We resented it. We don’t like seeing this stuff happen out in the open.
Here comes McClellan. He’s just the latest. Everybody that knew McClellan is saying, ‘I don’t know this guy. This is not the Scott McClellan we knew. We never heard him say one word about any of this that he’s written in his book.’ Then McCain, by the way, speaking of McCain, he went out there with his McCain-Feingold campaign finance reform and basically neutered the money machine that led to advantages for the Republican Party. So it was all these things. This is why I’ve never gone there; it’s why I don’t want to live there; it is why I don’t want to get caught up. I don’t care. I am one actually who doesn’t care who likes me or dislikes me. I used to, but I don’t anymore. It doesn’t matter to me. I am at this stage of my life and what I do, I’m actually as proud of the people who hate me as I am of my friends, because they hate me for a good reason. That’s because I’m a problem. That’s because I pose them a great problem and because they can’t turn me.
I don’t go to the White House Correspondents Dinner. I’ve told you over and over what a phony charade that is. For one night, all these people gather, 1,200 people at the Washington Hilton, the president shows up as the butt of everybody’s jokes when he’s a Republican, and all the Republicans in the room sit there and they laugh at it, too, and they shake hands with all the liberals in the press and in the government and everywhere and act like we’re all just one big happy family, for one night, and it’s all phony. None of it’s real. Well, one part of it’s real, and that is our side hoping to be liked by the Democrats and the liberals that are in the White House Correspondents Dinner room itself. If Scott McClellan were right about this administration, Scott McClellan’s book would not have come out. Here he is portraying a picture of the Bush administration as constantly campaigning, lying, deceiving, all this conspiracy going on in private meetings that McClellan wasn’t allowed to be part of. See, to a lot of us, one of the problems with this administration has always been that they are not what McClellan and the left says they are. They are not confrontational. They are not ideologically aligned. They don’t do battles ideologically.
If the Bush administration were what McClellan says it is, then somebody like the ruthless Jim Baker — remember, now, how long ago was it, just a few months ago that we got the first excerpt from McClellan’s book. I forget what it was, but the press went gaga over this thing. I forget what the excerpt was. If the Bush administration were what Scott McClellan says it is, when that excerpt came out, they would have found the ruthless Jim Baker or some such, and they would have summoned little old Scott McClellan to a come-to-Jesus meeting. They would have said, ‘You know, Scott, your little book here, not a good idea for your family’s future. The little book that you’re going to right here, Scott, it’s really not good for your future.’ And then they’d give him some job at the Carlyle Group, at the Blackstone Group, where he never had to show up. They’d pay him off and they’d just put him somewhere, a no-show job at one of these Republican things, and be rid of him. But they don’t play hardball politics like that, that’s not what this administration does. If this had been tried, if McCurry or some other spokesman in the Clinton administration had done something like this, let your mind wander, folks, and think what would happen to that guy.
RUSH: Dale in Las Vegas, thank you for waiting, sir. You’re next on the EIB Network.
CALLER: Nanodittos, Rush.
RUSH: Thank you, sir.
CALLER: Okay. Anyway, you speak so poorly of Scott McClellan; it’s telling everybody in the world that he has struck a raw nerve.
RUSH: Is that right?
CALLER: Yes. Something he said was very sensitive and maybe even true. You know it and I know it.
RUSH: No. (laughter) I don’t know it. All I know is that the people that know Scott McClellan don’t know this Scott McClellan. He’s never said anything like this before. He wasn’t in half the meetings if not more — and of course the motivation that he has for this is certainly what people are questioning.
CALLER: Well, I’ll tell you what. You never believed me when I called you a year ago. I told you three things and you said I was Mr. Gloom and Doom. I said that the Republican Party was gone, I said McCain was a sham, and I said the economy was down the tubes — and at the time you said, ‘Well, the stock market’s up high,’ and you also — Uh, anyway, the price of oil at that time was $60 a barrel.
CALLER: Today it’s $127.
RUSH: Yeah. Coming down.
CALLER: I got two big predictions for you.
RUSH: Good! I can’t wait. What are these?
CALLER: Obama becomes president, Israel is toast, and I’m really story to say that. I’m a Reagan Republican, and I know what this means to the whole country, and I’ll call you back in a year and a half if you still have a microphone and we’ll talk about it.
RUSH: (laughing) All right, Dale, I’ll look forward to that. You know it and I know it.
CALLER: Okay, thanks.
RUSH: You bet. Here’s Candy in Marengo, Ohio. Nice to have you with us on the EIB Network.
CALLER: Hey, Rush. How are you?
RUSH: I’m great! Thank you.
CALLER: Listen, you know this whole Scott McClellan thing?
CALLER: Even Reagan had his Michael Deaver, and it just seems like these people are really well versed at being able to ferret out these moles and to be able to twist them in the back of the current president.
RUSH: Wait a second. What did Deaver do?
CALLER: He wrote a tell-all book, don’t you remember, about how terrible the Reagan administration was and how the press touted it as being just, ‘Now we can see who the real Reagan is.’
RUSH: Oh, yeah. I have a vague memory of this. You know, Stephanopoulos also wrote a tell-all book on the Clintons, but I think it got swept under the rug. I really don’t remember it. But regardless, Stephanopoulos is now a senior journalist at ABC. I’d forgotten the Deaver book, and I’m still not fully up to speed on it. Would you put it in the same category is this?
CALLER: Absolutely. Absolutely. And the reason I do… I did not read the book because I was a Reagan supporter and still am, but the reason that I did not read it was because the media made such a big deal of who ‘the real Reagan’ was now. Now we could see who the real Reagan was and now we knew what he was really like.
RUSH: Well, all it does is confirm the theory and confirm the thing that bothers me the most about all this, and that is the culture of Washington and what it takes to get along there; what it takes to be approved there; what it takes to be insulated from these kinds of attacks. I gotta tell you: Scott McClellan is forever going to be an expert on the Bush administration. He is going to be a most-favored-status guest on cable TV. You know, maybe he couldn’t find a gig. Maybe one of the problems was he couldn’t find work! So he writes the book hoping that this will get him a job with the Drive-By Media somewhere down the line. Who knows?