Rush Limbaugh

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RUSH: I sit here, my friends, and sometimes, you know, I sit and ponder. I ponder the evolution of my own career. I ponder the evolution of the job, which, to me, is not actually a job. And I ponder the sometimes remarkable changes that have occurred in what will be 23 years on August 1st. And today is one of those days. Ho! In addition to the fact that it is Friday.

JOHNNY DONOVAN: And now, from sunny South Florida, it’s Open Line Friday!

RUSH: One of our all-time favorite days of the week, Open Line Friday. This is where the unvarnished truth of just who the callers are and what they’re all about surfaces. It can also be Open Bomb Friday. It doesn’t happen much but it’s hilarious when it does. We had a bomb show about three weeks ago — well, maybe six weeks ago now. It was all of December? It was November? It’s been that long ago that we had the bomb show? By bomb, I mean, folks, if it had happened on my first week, I’d be history. And it was a best-of show, and if it had happened the first week you wouldn’t have ever heard of me. That’s how bad it was. That’s the risk that I take on Open Line Friday. On Friday we turn the entire content of the program, we go to the phones and it is up to the callers. It is not shepherded by me, supervised in any way. Whatever people want to talk about, especially if I don’t care about it. Monday through Thursday I have to care about it or they don’t get on the air, but on Friday, doesn’t matter. I mean there are a few rules. We’re not gonna promote boredom here. Not knowingly. So if there’s something you think needs to be discussed that hasn’t been or if there’s a point of view you think that was an expressed that needs to be, or if you have a question or comment, then this is your day. Telephone number is 800-282-2882. The e-mail address, ElRushbo@eibnet.com.

As I pause and reflect, there are massive changes that have taken place, just in terms of what is not only acceptable content for this program, but in fact what might be considered necessary. Now, there’s a news story today that had it happened any time in the first 20 years of this program, if I had spent time on it, I would have received calls from various program directors carrying this program all across the country, like Tyler Cox at WBAP in Dallas, Laurie Cantillo at WABC in New York, Robin Bertolucci at KFI in Los Angeles. They would have all called, “What are you doing? If you keep this up we’re gonna have to make a change.” And it would have been talking about anything to do with the US budget. It was death. Talking about the US budget was something only people 80 years old and older cared about.

And look at today. There’s a poll out. Marist has a poll and they’re a bunch of lefties. This is stunning to me. According to the latest Marist poll, Americans oppose raising the debt ceiling by more than two to one. Okay, that’s interesting in itself. And when you only measure people who have actually been following the issue, the numbers reason more lopsided. But get this. This is what’s amazing. “A majority of Americans, 57%, say they are closely following the news about discussions related to the debt ceiling.” I can tell you that 22 years ago that number would be less than 5%. Ten years ago it would have been barely 50%. In the 1995 budget battle you might have had some interest in it for a short period of time. This is stunning to me. It really is, in terms of what’s mattering to people. And it goes to a point that I have believed for a long time. Just as it’s a violation of conventional wisdom to say that Obama is eminently beatable, I think the majority of this country is us. We just don’t see it reflected anywhere. But we are the majority in this country, Tea Party conservatism, particularly if you look at the way people live their lives. We are categorized each and every day as the fringe, but we are not. We are the mainstream.

The way we believe. The way we live. The philosophies, the morality, all of it, we are the mainstream of this country. And it’s reflected in any number of places, if you want to accept it. It’s a tough thing for people to accept because they don’t see it reflected anywhere. They watch a movie and they don’t see the way they live reflected as respectable, admirable, or even normal. They read a book, same thing, listen to music. They look at who the White House invites to come read poetry. It ain’t from the majority of the country. It’s from a genuine true radicalized fringe, the media. The mainstream media is not the mainstream media any longer. The mainstream media is in the minority now. You have to add them all up together, but even when you do that they’re nowhere near as large and penetrable as they used to be. It’s been amazing for me to chronicle this.

I mean it would have been death for me to talk about this Marist poll at all. It would have been pointless for me to even try to convince you that it was worth knowing about, that it was worth you being interested in. And now here we are, in a leftist poll, the Marist, 57% of the American people are following it, and it’s two to one. It’s two to one that people do not want this debt ceiling raised. People ask me, “Well, how do you stay so optimistic?” This kind of stuff, these hidden little jewels out there, you’re not gonna see this reported in traditional media outlets. You’re not gonna see it heralded. This is a problem for our, quote, unquote, opponents or enemies. (interruption) No, I’m not in the business of taking credit, Snerdley. I’ll be glad to accept credit, but I’m not gonna go out there and take it. (interruption) Well, it may have started when I talked about baseline budgeting and so forth, but I think the real factor here making this relevant is life experiences.

People are finally now living the disaster that for 20 years we have been predicting would be brought about by liberalism. They’re living it now. People are a little bit more sophisticated than they’re given credit for. There’s no inflation we’re told. Why? “Well, because you can’t include food or energy prices. Traditionally they’re left out of the inflation calculation because price fluctuations are too volatile, they’re never stable enough.” Oh, really? So the fact that gasoline’s over four bucks a gallon, and hamburger’s gone up by two bucks a pound, we gotta throw that out? “Yeah, yeah, you can’t factor that in inflation.” Well, you may not, but the way it causes us to live means we cannot avoid it, so we know there’s inflation.

So a majority of the American people know they’re being lied to or misrepresented, misinformed, or even better, they now know what’s happening that they’re not being told about. That’s been one of the key powers the mainstream media has always had. It’s not just what they reported and how they commented on it. It’s what they chose not to report. It’s what they did not consider to be news. Even the young people of New York are catching on and moving out of the state. And who was leading that trend? Remember when I said to David Paterson, the governor — well, I didn’t say it to him specifically, but I said, “Look, if you guys are gonna raise taxes, I will lead the exodus out of town.” And David Paterson, the then-governor of New York, said, “Hell, if I’d-a known that’s all it took to get rid of Limbaugh, I’d-a raised everybody’s taxes sooner.” Everybody went, “Wow, that’s clever. That’s funny.” But in the meantime young people under 30 are telling pollsters they can’t hack it in New York. In the next five years if things don’t work out for ’em, they’re splitting the scene. They’re going to places where job opportunities are more plentiful, housing prices are more reasonable and what have you. So it all ties in here, this notion Obama’s unbeatable, that the country’s lost. It’s not.


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