RUSH: Ladies and gentlemen, when the Mark Sanford news broke, I lamented he could have been our JFK. And over at the garbage network, MSNBC, they didn’t get it. They actually thought I was comparing JFK and Sanford’s policies, not their philandering. Yesterday I knew they’d get it but they wouldn’t understand it, and I was right. I know these people. Yesterday I went through the timeline of the Michael Jackson career, and I pointed out that Michael Jackson flourished, I mean, Michael Jackson epitomized the individual. He was weird, you know, screwball. But he wasn’t part of a group. And you don’t hear anybody covering Michael Jackson songs. Who else has recorded Billie Jean? I mean not even the Hollyridge Strings, which covered the Beatles. Nobody covers a Michael Jackson song, that’s how unique it is. He flourished when? Thriller, Bad, Dangerous, the big sellers all during the eighties during the Reagan administration. Then we get to the nineties and Michael Jackson languished under Clinton and Bush. And, sadly, Michael Jackson died under Obama. This was commented on MSNBC twice yesterday. Here’s the first.
SHUSTER: Rush Limbaugh said on his radio show today about the death of Michael Jackson and his successes. Watch.
RUSH ARCHIVE: He reached a level of success that may never be equaled. He flourished under Reagan, he languished under-Clinton-Bush and died under Obama.
SHUSTER: That is wrong on so many levels.
HALL: So many levels, that is wrong, but, you know what?
SHUSTER: Poor Rush.
RUSH: That was David Shuster and Tamron Hall trying to figure out what to say about it. All they could do is say, ‘It’s just wrong on so many levels, but you know what? Poor Rush.’ Later, F. Chuck Todd got in on this during Hardball and F. Chuck Todd was filling in for Chris Matthews.
TODD: Leave it to Rush Limbaugh. Check out how the conservative radio entertainer is spinning the death of pop star Michael Jackson.
RUSH ARCHIVE: Michael Jackson’s biggest successes, and as it turns out his final successes, real successes, took place in the eighties. He flourished under Reagan, languished under Clinton and Bush, and died under Obama. I mean, the facts are facts. The timeline’s the timeline. Let’s hope the parallel doesn’t continue.
TODD: It’s always Reagan, right? It always is.
RUSH: (laughing) And then, and then not so much about that, but over on NPR at PBS, the Fresh Air host Terry Gross spoke to Dan Balz, B-a-l-z, for those of you in Rio Linda, he’s at the Washington Post and Gross said, ‘Do you think the Republican Party, a lot of people in the Republican Party see Limbaugh and other right-wing talk hosts who say extreme things as being helpful to them or harmful to them?’
BALZ: Most Republican officeholders see them as they are, which is that they speak to a part of the base. They do it sometimes in ways that are outrageous, that elected officials can’t get away with. But, again, they’re not prepared to take them on. They’ve got to work around them. Most of the people who want to be leaders of the Republican Party don’t want to get into an argument with somebody who has an audience as big as Rush Limbaugh’s, and we’ve seen numerous examples of that. On the other hand, most smart Republicans don’t think you can get elected president of the United States by speaking the way Rush Limbaugh does. But Rush Limbaugh gives demoralized Republicans, you know, some energy.
RUSH: So a psychoanalysis of the Republican Party and me by Dan Balz, B-a-l-z, the Washington Post. (interruption) What are you saying in there, Snerdley? That wasn’t a bad analysis. For Drive-By and State-Run Media, not a bad analysis.
RUSH: I need to correct myself, ladies and gentlemen.
What is it, Oxford? Is that the name of the town, Oxford, Florida? Find it on a map. Google it! I want to find out how close it is to Port St. Lucie. I need to be corrected. Apparently Michael Jackson songs have been covered. I said they hadn’t. The song Smooth Criminal was covered by the group Alien Ant Farm. You ever heard of them? Apparently they shot to number one. It was the first song off their album and they shot to number one in Australia with it, the Billboard chart. (interruption) Miles Davis covered Human Nature? Okay. And Chris Cornell covered Billie Jean. And then some people are telling me that, ‘Hey, Rush, come on. Weird Al Yankovic.’ Now, come on, don’t… (laughing) He covered Beat It with a song called Eat It.’ You gotta leave Weird Al out of this. I remember Beat It, though. We almost lost our Kansas City affiliate over this. You remember the Pee-wee Herman story? Pee-wee Herman was caught in the back of a darkened theater having fun with himself. So I thought it would be appropriate to use Beat It as the theme song for the continuing legal update news on that and we almost lost our Kansas City station over that. It took real diplomacy to hold on.
RUSH: I asked for the Michael Jackson bump. I admit, only ten seconds of preparation time for the broadcast engineer. He said he had put it away. Put it away? It’s a computer file, right? You closed it. Well, then, do you have our Pee-wee Herman update? People to want hear this, and I think we’re safe. Okay, while we’re playing just a little bit of this, some people listening today didn’t hear the Pee-wee Herman Update back then. Go find Blood on the Dance Floor.
(playing of Pee-wee Herman spoof)
RUSH: Just a little bit of it. I know it’s going to bug people. I think we’ll survive. I’m sure it’s going to bug people.