RUSH: This is Robert in Norfolk, Virginia. It’s great to have you, sir. You’re up first today. Welcome to the program, sir.
CALLER: The first thing was that I would say is (unintelligible) you sound like a great guy. Although I don’t think it’s ever gonna happen, I finally figured out what I was gonna say to you when I called. My neighbors —
RUSH: Robert, I cannot hear a word. I’m sorry. I can’t hear a word you’re saying. Would you, Snerdley, get him on a land line or some such thing if you can. I think what he’s going to say, he’s one of these guys that thought that I was a wacko, right-wing extremist jerk. He thought that everything I said was just out there and somehow he’s changed his mind. He just ran and talked to a liberal neighbor, and he found out I’ve been right on the money about it. We’ll try later.
Mike, Merrillville, Indiana, welcome to the program. Hi.
CALLER: Good afternoon, Rush. To push back from the evil liberal bias press, if John F. Kennedy was alive today, he would support Ronald Reagan and support Ted Cruz and the Tea Party. I think you could make a very good case with that.
RUSH: Well, if John F. Kennedy were alive today and still a Democrat, no matter what he thought back in the sixties, he wouldn’t be supporting Ted Cruz. That would be a tough thing to say. That’d be predicting 50-plus years of the future that nobody could know. But, I mean, folks, the way I opened the program today is the best way, a little pop quiz. What do you call a politician who’s pro-life? What do you call a politician for lower taxes, for a strong national defense who was a proud nationalist?
JFK loved America. He was proud to be an American. And you’d call that politician JFK. That’s who he was. We’ve played the sound bites of him advocating tax cuts. He was not in any way a liberal as you know liberals today. In fact, there are people who have engaged in predicting what would have happened the next two years if Kennedy had lived. And some of the best thinking on this — here’s the thing. The sad thing about this is you can’t tell the truth about the Kennedy presidency. JFK’s been martyred. This PR image of Camelot has been created and people don’t want to believe anything other than what they believe. But the fact is that the only reason Kennedy went to Dallas was he was in dire straits of maybe not even getting the Democrat nomination.
There was no Camelot when he was alive. I mean, the media had this love and this mystique, but Kennedy’s approval numbers were in the tank. He was in deep trouble. The trip to Texas was a political trip to try to gain support from that region of the country. People try to portray it as Kennedy took his life in his hands going over there. It’s the exact opposite. And even some of the most informed and scholarly thinking that I have found on this, Kennedy was not a big believer in the Civil Rights Act.
There’s some people who think that if Kennedy had been reelected, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 would not have passed in 1964, that it wouldn’t have happened. He was not at all a liberal in the sense that you know them today. Now, who knows what would have happened. I can tell you when we played those sound bites of JFK, the Economic Club of New York advocating tax cuts, Ted Kennedy got mad, made public comments about how we were distorting the memory of his brother, by actually playing sound bites of his brother.
RUSH: There’s a new book out by a guy named Ira Stoll, S-t-o-l-l called “JFK, Conservative,” and here’s the Amazon description of the book: “As Ira Stoll convincingly argues, by the standards of both his time and our own, John F. Kennedy was a conservative. His two great causes were anticommunism and economic growth.” That does not fit with the Democrats of today, folks. It just doesn’t.
“His tax cuts, which spurred one of the greatest economic booms in our history, were fiercely opposed by his more liberal advisors” within his administration. “He fought against unions. He pushed for free trade and a strong dollar. And above all, he pushed for a military buildup and an aggressive anticommunism around the world.” In fact, do you know where Kennedy was going to speak in Dallas? The Trade Mart. That’s where he was going.
After the motorcade finished, he was heading to the Dallas Trade Mart to make a speech. He was huge on free trade. “He fought against unions. He pushed for free trade and a strong dollar. And above all, he pushed for a military buildup and an aggressive anticommunism around the world.” Hello, Vietnam. This guy, Ira Stoll, says, “Indeed, JFK had more in common with Ronald Reagan than with LBJ.”
Back in 2010, the Kennedy family demanded that Linda McMahon (then running for the Senate in Connecticut) pull her campaign ads that included clips of JFK talking about the benefits of tax cuts. We, I think, were the first to dig those up and play them way back in the ’90s on this program. They are in the archives, the Grooveyard of Forgotten Sound Bites, from the Economic Club of New York in 1962.
You ought to hear Kennedy talk about tax cuts and how they cause economic growth. “A rising tide lifts all boats.” He comes out against “government expenditures,” as he called them, and the Kennedy family got mad at us here. Well, there is no “us.” They got mad at me, because we were playing those sound bites as well. I’m telling you, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 probably would nota happened if Kennedy had been reelected.
Remember, it was his brother, the attorney general, who had wiretapped and was bugging Martin Luther King Jr., and that would be RFK. But now if you start asking if he’s alive today? I think if JFK were alive today, he and Bill Clinton would be inseparable. Can you imagine what those guys would be doing, if JFK were alive today? He and Clinton? I mean, Hollywood would just love it — and there is no way that JFK would have become Republican.
He woulda stayed loyal to the Democrat Party, and he would have moved, at least on the surface, to the left. (interruption) You don’t think so? Yeah, Reagan. (interruption) I know Reagan was the same kind of Democrat and left Democrat Party. But there’s no Kennedy that was gonna leave the Democrat Party, particularly one that had been elected president. It just wasn’t in the cards. With another one running for president, RFK, that just was never gonna happen.
Anyway, that I’m pretty sure of. But extrapolating from what we know of today into what would JFK be today and how would he fit in with the modern Democrat Party? Nobody knows. But we do know how what he was would fit in with ’em today, and they don’t. (interruption) What’s that? (interruption) Ha. Snerdley’s in there saying, “I know one thing for sure; he would love your show.” (laughing) You think so? You think with The Philanderer and all the fun we had with his brother, that he would love this show?
Again, that’s not known.
I don’t want to get caught up in the 50 years and what woulda happened. You know, “John John,” JFK Jr., he was not this full-fledged radical leftist that they are today. You know, JFK Jr. had that magazine, George, and he wanted me to write a piece in the inaugural issue, and I did, and after I submitted it, I forget what it was, but I asked him something. I said, “I want to change something. I want to pull something out,” and it was incendiary.
It was inoffensive but it was incendiary, and he tried desperately to get me to leave it in, and I said, “No, no, no, no. I have a gotta take it out.” The TV show staff one day was almost worthless because he had said he might come by to say hello, and I had told the TV show staff, “JFK Jr. may stop by.” He wanted to come by and meet me because I agreed to do the piece, but he never made it but the TV show.
The staff was just in a tizzy all day. It was the only time they’ve been unproductive, was waiting for JFK Jr. to show. (interruption) Look, I know, Hubert Humphrey. We’ve got sound bites of Hubert Humphrey, Democrat nominee in ’68. But Hubert Humphrey, Minnesota Democrat Farm Labor Party. This guy talking about family values, you would not believe that he was a Democrat. You wouldn’t believe that he was not a Republican. You talk about Hubert Humphrey and JFK?
I’m telling you, the theory that his assassination is what flipped the left in this country upside down and sent ’em into this out-of-control place they are now, I believe it. I think it did. They can’t get their arms around the fact that a communist killed their guy. They just can’t come to grips with it, and that’s why they have to revise history and make it like Dallas did it — this festering boil of rabid extremism, anti-government, right-wing hatred!
They really believe that, like I said in the first hour. They’re doing shows on sports networks with former Cowboys players claiming that that week they were all talking to each other about how worried they were that some right-winger was gonna kill the president when he got to town, and we’re supposed to believe this. Meanwhile, a communist — an avowed Marxist/communist — killed JFK.
That, by the way, folks, can make the case. That is what began the modern era of today’s Democrat Party and leftist movement blaming America for everything. That’s according to this book that I remember reading, and I went and found it. Camelot and the Cultural Revolution: How the Assassination of John F. Kennedy Shattered American Liberalism, by James Piereson. And it’s I think 2007, might be 2009.
But his point, his overall thesis is that up until that time, Democrats believed in “progressivism.” They believed in Big Government. But they at least attached optimistic outcomes to it. They really believed they were helping America. They really believed they were helping families, helping people. Now they’ve just become, “The country’s horrible, it’s rotten, it needs to be reformed!” The liberals of JFK’s day did not think there was anything really major wrong with this country.
The liberals of today are a new breed, folks. I mean, they really are. I was talking to David Horowitz. I interviewed him for the current issue of the Limbaugh Letter. I don’t know if it’s out yet, but he grew up as a leftist. He grew up as a communist. His parents were communists. He grew up that way, but finally got out of it. You know his story, probably. He got really animated with me in the interview. He said, “We gotta stop this! They’re not leftists. They’re communists.
“They’re not liberals, they’re not progressives, they’re communists. They are authoritarian statists. They’re dictators. That’s who they’ve become. I know them. I grew up with and was raised by ’em.” He was animated. I’ve never heard him as animated as he was and as forceful. It is true. It’s a whole different breed, if you want to compare today’s left to the left of JFK. But that can’t be allowed to stand. The media and the Kennedy family, Jackie O primarily, have been on this mission to recast it all as Camelot.
You know, I’m a literalist. I never quite understood the comparison of the Kennedy administration to Camelot, because you know, in Camelot, it was Lady Guinevere who screwed around on King Arthur with Sir Lancelot. That’s not what was happening in Camelot. The Kennedy Camelot was exact opposite. That’s why I don’t get it. If you stop and think, if JFK was alive and Bill Clinton, can you imagine the Hollywood people wanting in on that action?
I’m gonna play some of these Kennedy sound bites. It’s not fair to talk about this stuff and not air it. This is December 14th, 1962, basically 11 months before Kennedy was killed in Dallas. The New York Economic Club, and Kennedy is making a pitch here for tax cuts and economic growth. As you listen to this, ask yourself if you can imagine Kennedy as a Democrat or any Democrat today, advocating this in any way.
KENNEDY: This administration pledged itself last summer to an across-the-board top to bottom cut in personal and corporate income taxes to be enacted and become effective in 1963. I am not talking about a quickie or a temporary tax cut, which would be more appropriate if a recession were imminent. Nor am I talking about giving the economy a mere shot in the arm to ease some temporary complaint. The federal government’s most useful role is not to rush into a program of excessive increases in public expenditures, but to expand the incentives and opportunities for private expenditures.
RUSH: There’s not a Democrat in office that believes this today. There’s not a one who would publicly say this and survive. “The federal government’s most useful role is not to rush into a program of excessive spending.” It’s not stimulus; it’s not bailouts. No. It’s to expand the incentives and opportunities for private sector growth. There is not a Democrat alive today who could get elected saying that or who would say it. Here’s the next. Again, this is 1962 in New York City.
KENNEDY: When consumers purchase more goods, plants use more of their capacity, men are hired instead of laid off, investment increases, and profits are high. Corporate tax rates must also be cut to increase incentives and the availability of investment capital. The government has already taken major steps this year to reduce business tax liability and to stimulate the modernization, replacement, and expansion of our productive plant and equipment.
RUSH: My God, he’s talking about profit. He’s for profit. And they’re trying to tell us that the wacko right wing in Texas wanted to get rid of this guy? It doesn’t fit. This is right up every right-winger conservative’s alley. Next bite, Kennedy. No explanation, just listen.
KENNEDY: Our true choice is not between tax reduction on the one hand and the avoidance of large federal deficits on the other. It is increasingly clear that no matter what party is in power, so long as our national security needs keep rising, an economy hampered by restrictive tax rates will never produce enough revenues to balance our budget, just as it will never produce enough jobs or enough profits. Surely the lesson of the last decade is that budget deficits are not caused by wild-eyed spenders, but by slow economic growth and periodic recessions. And any new recession would break all deficit records. In short, it is a paradoxical truth that tax rates are too high today and tax revenues are too low, and the soundest way to raise the revenues in the long run is to cut the rates now.
RUSH: John F. Kennedy, 1962. Not a Democrat alive today who would say that, who believes it, and who could get elected saying it.