RUSH: Once again, ladies and gentlemen, your host is being blamed partially or totally for the lack of compromise in Washington, DC. Last night on some website — and Larry King now has a show. The name of the website is Ora.TV. That’s where Larry King is hanging out, and he had Barney Frank as his guest, the former congressman from Massachusetts, and Larry King said, “The art compromise is dead, Barney, what happened to it?”
FRANK: Part of it is the ideological rigidity of this Tea Party group. But thereÂ’s another factor. They live in parallel media universes. The left is over here listening to their programs, MSNBC or The Huffington Post, the rightÂ’s watching Fox News and Rush Limbaugh. If you are trying to compromise with the other side, your supporters say to you, “Why are you giving in?” And you say, “Well we don’t have the votes to do what we want.” And they say, “Oh, how can you say that? Everybody I know agrees with us.” People on the left and all the people on the right, they only talk to people and hear from people who reinforce them. So if somebody from their position says, “You know we need to work with the others,” they see it as a betrayal, because they believe they’re in the majority
RUSH: I understand why Barney Frank thinks that. It’s a popular misconception of people on the left, because they don’t listen to us. They don’t know what we believe. They think they do, but they have never endeavored to really understand it. They’ve tabbed it as extremism. See, the left, if you can understand this — and this is true — the left thinks that we are ideological. They aren’t. Liberalism to them is not an ideology. Liberalism is just what is. They call themselves pragmatists. They think that they look at things issue by issue and decide based on what’s best, and they think they’ll go along with anything as long as it’s best.
But they discount totally and automatically conservatism cause there’s no pragmatism there. It’s all ideology, in their mind, and therefore it’s disqualified. Ideologues are extremists, they’re wackos, in their view, and they don’t see them that way. Now, you who listen to this program know that what Barney Frank just said may apply to some, but not to me. You learn more about liberalism on this program than you will watching MSNBC. You will see the examples of liberalism on MSNBC. You will see the examples of liberalism on CNN, or you’ll read liberalism in the New York Times, the Washington Post, but nowhere do they explain themselves.
Only on this program I am able to give you the liberal position, any issue you want. I’m able to not only tell you what their position is gonna be, I’m able to tell you why. I’m able to explain the way they arrive at their conclusions. I know them as well as they know themselves, but they haven’t the slightest idea, for example, who I really am or who any conservative really is because it’s beneath them to try to find out.
This idea that — they have a point here, in a way. In their world was hunky-dory up until 1988. They had a monopoly on everything. They had a monopoly on what was news. They had a monopoly on what wasn’t news. They had a monopoly on what the commentary of the news was. There wasn’t any national conservative media. National Review, maybe, a magazine here or there, but certainly in broadcast media there was zilch, zero, nada.
And then quite innocently in 1988, along came the EIB Network, and then a couple, three years later other talk show hosts sprang up. Then in 1996 here came Fox News, and that blew up their monopoly, and that blew up their worlds. They had never had to compete. They owned it, they dominated, they had a monopoly. Now they have to compete, and so they’ve decided that rather than anything involving them be problematic, what has happened instead is that people like me have come along and have succeeded in destroying compromise by dividing the country. We have made it overtly and overly partisan, and the people like you who listen to this program only listen to this program, in their view, and you do not know what they think.
That’s the flaw, you see. You don’t have to listen to them because I tell you. You don’t have to watch MSNBC because you know, ’cause you listen to this program, you know as much about liberalism as you can stomach when I explain it to you here. So your decisions that you agree with or the decisions that you make are the result of your own independent thought. You’re not mind-numbed robots, and you are not purposely avoiding compromise.
It’s the other side that won’t compromise. The other side defines compromise as us giving in. They’re the pragmatists. They’re never wrong. We’re the ideologues. We’re always the extremists. But it is all rooted, folks, this perplexity that they have over the fact that there’s no compromise anymore, they blame me. You’ve heard it before I don’t know how many times.
How many Republicans in Congress are supposedly afraid to disagree with me? And that leads them to never compromising, and it’s therefore too partisan and it’s all because of conservative media. Everything was just fine when there wasn’t a conservative media and the Republicans had 120 members in the House, and half of them never showed up day to day. That was just great. But now it’s a whole different thing.
Let’s jump forward to number three. Peter Orszag, who is a former member of the Regime, he was early on a member of the Obama economic team, was on CNBC Squawk Box last night. Becky Quick, the cohostette, said, “Why do you think the moderates have disappeared?” See, they’re obsessed with this. There aren’t any independents anymore, did you know that? There are no more independents because of me, because of Fox News. They’re gone. The independents have become partisans. They’ve chosen sides now, and they’re either left or right and nobody is getting along and nobody’s compromising, nobody is able to escape this rigid partisanship that exists out there.
So Becky Quick said (paraphrasing), “Peter, oh, my God, oh, my God, what do you think the moderates have done? Why have they disappeared? I mean, there used to be plenty of moderates.” I’ll tell you where they are. (laughing) They’re in the Republican Party, if you want to know, Becky. If you want to find the collection of moderates today, you want me to name names? I’ll be happy to name names in the Republican Party. I’m talking the elected class, the political class is where you find ’em. And they lose. That’s why liberals love ’em. Anyway, here’s what Orszag said. And keep in mind what you just heard Barney Frank say.
ORSZAG: We are increasingly surrounding ourselves with like-minded people. Physically, so neighborhoods are becoming polarized and virtually because your Twitter feed and what TV you watch and what have you, is more aligned with your thought process, and that causes polarization. It basically causes people to go to extremes. And it’s not clear how that reverses.
RUSH: Right. See, the argument that has taken hold on the left is this, that they own every media and pop culture outlet except for us and Fox, and because they no longer own it all it’s your fault and it’s my fault that we have divided the country up and made ’em partisans and uncompromising. They own everything in the media. They own books, for the most part. They own television. They own certainly pop culture and entertainment TV, ditto movies. Music, they own that. They own what we consider the Drive-By news media.
They’re the ones so close-minded. They’re the ones that don’t want to live next door to Republicans. They’re the ones that don’t want conservatives on campus. They are the ones that are exclusionary. It’s fascinating to me. They blame everything on us, and this is why TIME Magazine back in 1995 had that cover story on me, “Is Rush Limbaugh Bad for Democracy?” And of course we’re not a democracy. That’s a faux pas anyway. Democracy does not equate to individual liberty and freedom, but the word is thrown around as though it does.
One more Barney Frank sound bite. Larry King, after Barney’s answer about why all the partisanship and why the lack of compromise because of watching Fox News, King said, “What do you make of the Tea Party there, Barney?”
FRANK: I wish some of my liberal friends were more like them. They are a very disciplined group. They have their views and they go out there and fight for them. I told some of the people in the Occupy Movement, the difference was that the Tea Party people were serious about politics and the Occupy people were having a good time emotionally, having demonstrations and cheering. The Tea Party people were organizing and voting.
RUSH: Well, the Tea Party people are real. The Tea Party people are mom-and-pop citizens that sprang up out of anger and fear over Obama’s spending and Obamacare, any number of things. Occupy was a manufactured movement in reaction and in response to the Tea Party. It was totally made up. There was nothing genuine about it. They were just a bunch of people that were recruited to sit out there and pitch tents, cause trouble, engage in civil disobedience, and make it look like it was a bigger popular uprising on the left than the Tea Party was. But it was pure fake and phony, plastic banana, good-time rock ‘n’ roll.