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Why the Left is Targeting Rush Limbaugh
by Doug Schmitz
17 October 2003Rush

Why is it that conservative Republican controversies get more news coverage than the numerous scandals of liberal Democrats?

Do I like it when the thought police, the language cops and the political correctness enforcers pounce on an utterance and declare it illegal?  No, I hate it.  Am I delighted to see Rush Limbaugh attacked, ridiculed and forced out of his ESPN gig?  Absolutely. Justice is being served.
-- Dick Meyer, CBSNews.com editorial director, revealing his
liberal bias, as well as his sheer joy, in Rush Limbaugh’s personal suffering

For over 15 years, the Left and their vituperative moles in the liberal media have been waiting to find the Achilles’ heel of top conservative talk radio host Rush Limbaugh.  Unfortunately, ever since these liberal media vultures heard what it was from Limbaugh himself, they’ve been circling around their newly discovered Republican prey.

Fueled by a mixture of seething hatred and uncontainable joy, leftist reporters from across the country are probably giving each other high-fives and throwing confetti in full-scale Schadenfreude over Limbaugh’s October 10 confession of prescription drug addiction.

Undoubtedly, leftists like Eric Alterman, Michael Kinsley, Joe Conason and Molly Ivins couldn’t run to their keyboards fast enough to crank out their acerbic boilerplate distortions, designed solely to jump-start their latest 24/7 conservative witch hunt.

In fact, news of Limbaugh’s plight spread like wildfire, mercilessly dominating the headlines as they immediately stepped up their acid attacks against Limbaugh, who’s still reeling from their first politically motivated ambush: the October 2 carpet-bombing over Limbaugh’s non-racial comments that were specifically directed at the sports media.

Despite Democrats and their media allies charging Republicans with playing the alleged “politics of personal destruction” card when Bill Clinton was impeached in 1998 for lying under oath to a federal grand jury, these same Democrats are now seeking to destroy top conservative Republicans through their usual politics of personal destruction.

What’s more, pro-Democrat media operatives spent all day and night joyfully heralding Limbaugh’s personal and physical pain – and spared him no sympathy in the process: “Rush Limbaugh, an admitted drug addict,” cheerfully proclaimed an ABC News Radio reporter last Friday afternoon, just moments after Limbaugh’s admission on his radio show. 

In addition, Republican-bashers CNN and MSNBC also joined in the Rush Limbaugh feeding frenzy with non-stop coverage that went well into the weekend.  Predictably, Dan Rather & Co., Peter Jennings and Tom Brokaw, as well as the New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, and the Washington Post, weren’t far behind.

Reminiscent of the leftist media’s May 2 broadside of top conservative author Bill Bennett over trumped-up gambling addiction charges, the Far Left seems bent on showing complete merriment over the personal weaknesses of influential conservatives.

In effect, the leftist media have had plenty of anti-Republican fodder to feast upon with several GOP-related, albeit Democrat-hyped, controversies:

  1. Republican turncoat Robert Novak’s ‘outing’ of a CIA agent, which has been hyped up by husband Joseph Wilson, former Ambassador to Iraq and an admitted Bush-hater.  Now, both Novak and Wilson seem to care more about making a name for themselves than they ever did about protecting hers.
  2. The Arnold Schwarzenegger groping scandal, deliberately orchestrated by the biased Los Angeles Times, which has been a long-time supporter of the politically corrupt and alleged female staff-abuser Gray Davis.  In 1998, the Times disingenuously downplayed the more serious sexual abuse and rape charges against Bill Clinton.
  3. The Rush Limbaugh controversy that has trumped any seriously objective news reporting by the liberal media of far more controversial scandals involving prominent Democrats.  

Since Bush’s 2000 presidential victory, liberal Democrats, who have cared more about getting even with Bush than they do about the serious issues of the war against terrorism and the economy, are insanely angry – and out for blood. 

Ultimately, with all of these over-hyped Republican-related scandals, the leftist media have only one goal in mind: stopping President George W. Bush from getting re-elected in 2004 and silencing the conservative voice that has long been stifled in the elite media.  If they can’t get to Bush directly, they’ll eventually try by proxy. 

This is exactly why the leftist media are targeting Rush Limbaugh, who has been the strongest and most influential voice for the GOP.  He’s also done what the liberal media establishment has refused to do for years: tell the truth about Democrat improprieties, as well as honestly and objectively report on the political and military successes of the Bush Administration with the war on terrorism. 

Limbaugh single-handedly paved the way for honest reporting to emerge from such fair and balanced media sources as Fox News and WorldNetDaily.com.  They have disseminated the stories that the pro-Democrat press doesn’t want you to hear.  Had it not been for Limbaugh, the rest of the world would have never known the Democratic Party’s deeply rooted corruption (i.e., the Clinton Administration) and media spin. 

This is also why Democrats and their media friends want to politicize Limbaugh’s medical problems.  Because they’ve been so insanely preoccupied with bringing down Bush for nearly three years, they will do whatever it takes to make it happen by swaying public support away from Bush – even if it means trying to make Limbaugh a casualty of their political wars.

In fact, the Left and their media cohorts seem to be pathologically programmed to “get” top conservatives to the point of obsession. 

On his October 9 program, conservative talk show host Mike Gallagher told of Hollywood leftist Ed Asner’s threat against conservative talk host Sean Hannity, which is a telling tale of the Far Left’s out-of-control behavior toward conservative Republicans.

Gallagher recently bumped into Asner at a cocktail party and was making small talk with Asner. The conversation suddenly changed when Gallagher mentioned Asner’s past on-air interactions with Hannity.

Subsequently, Gallagher told of his exchange with Asner:

“I’ve seen and heard you with Sean Hannity.  Sean’s a good friend of mine and I’ve enjoyed your exchanges.”  Suddenly, [Asner] stopped laughing.  His eyes narrowed, his smile went away.

“Hannity’s next, you know,” [Asner said].  I had no idea what he was talking about.  “What do you mean, Ed?”  “Hannity’s next,” he repeated. 

“We’re going after him just like we went after Limbaugh.  And you saw what happened to Rush this week, right?”

“I froze.  At first I thought he was just trying to joke around.  But looking at him, watching him, seeing how his jovial mood dissipated at the mere mention of my friend Sean's name, well, it was more than a little unsettling.

“To think that he was going to actually take credit for Rush’s resignation from ESPN was simply astounding.  And to hear him threaten the career of an award-winning and heralded broadcaster like Sean was bizarre.”

Gallagher’s conversation with Asner is a revealing look at the unmitigated arrogance of the American Left and their complete intolerance for differing political discourse.  It also addresses their insatiable appetite for revenge on conservatives who offer any kind of constructive criticism.

As Gallagher correctly assessed on his October 12 program, Limbaugh has become the victim of political correctness – the insidious cancer that has dominated the Left.

That being said, the leftist media will continue hammering at this bone they’ve been thrown about Limbaugh as the topic – that they have created – heats up.
For example, CNN’s liberal anchor Aaron Brown was visibly struggling to fight back a smile as he led his October 10 program, reporting the illegal drug allegations against Limbaugh.

While these leftist propaganda machines continue cranking out distorted, politically-motivated accounts of the alleged charges, the following revelation from Limbaugh’s admission has been deliberately omitted from most of their stories: “So I’m only going to say that the stories you’ve read, the stories you’ve heard, contain inaccuracies and distortions,” Limbaugh said, addressing the supermarket tabloid-paid allegations last Friday.  “And I’m going to clear those up when I am finally free to speak about them.”

Rather than seek the truth and report the facts, the leftist media, smelling GOP blood in the water, decided instead to circle around the shark pool and attack.
So why is it that conservative Republican controversies get more news coverage with less compassion than the numerous scandals of liberal Democrats?

The answer is simple: the Left is angry, and whenever they spot a weakness in the GOP, their radars are up for fresh Republican fodder and they’re looking down with condescension.

The Left’s complete intolerance for the conservative voice is so great that Eric Alterman callously admitted in a February 13, 2003 Esquire magazine interview, after Limbaugh’s successful cochlear implant surgery, he actually wanted Limbaugh to lose his hearing: “I hate to say it, but I wish the guy would have gone deaf.  I shouldn’t say that, but on behalf of the country, it would be better without Rush Limbaugh and his 20 million listeners.”

While leftist media mudslingers like Alterman are drooling over this latest revelation, they’ll continue to make political hay out of a potentially serious medical condition.

But the real National Enquirer story these leftist media hacks are salivating over is whether Limbaugh will face possible – although unlikely – prosecution if the allegations concerning the way he obtained the painkillers drugs are true.  That’s what’s at the heart of the story.  They are waiting with baited breath once again to pounce.

Short of comparing Limbaugh to a heroin addict, CBSNews.com mockingly used the headline, “Will Rush’s Hard Line Haunt Him?” 

Conservative commentator Rush Limbaugh stunned listeners of his nationwide radio show by announcing on the air that he’s hooked on painkillers and is checking himself into rehab.

In the past, Limbaugh has decried drug use and abuse on his bluntly conservative show, mocking President Bill Clinton for not inhaling and often making the case that drug crimes deserve punishment.

Notice that CBSNews.com dotingly used the phrase “President Bill Clinton,” instead of “former President Bill Clinton,” which in itself is telling.  But those same leftist reporters who now sit in judgment of Limbaugh have been using their fellow Democrats’ ranting to nonchalantly mock Bush on a daily basis – something they never did with Bill Clinton.
What’s more, the CBSNews.com reporter also revealed a transparent dislike for conservatives when he or she referred to Limbaugh’s show as “bluntly conservative.”  By referring to Limbaugh’s past statements about drug crimes so early in the story, they’re immediately going for the jugular in a feeble attempt to discredit and defame him.  

This CBSNews.com reporter also erroneously inferred in the story that Limbaugh’s prescription drug use for a medical condition is somehow comparable to harder drug offenders.

Moreover, the Associated Press on October 11 omitted from its story the key fact about Limbaugh’s ex-maid, Wilma Cline, who previously served five years for cocaine possession.  Along with her boyfriend, Cline is a convicted felon and only claimed to have purchased the painkillers.
The AP, famous for citing “unnamed sources,” much like the National Enquirer, the New York Times and the Washington Post, reported that law enforcement officers would only speak to them “under the condition of anonymity” about the Palm Beach, Fla., State Attorney’s office investigation, when, in fact, that information was already made public.

Not surprisingly, there are many facts about the case the liberal media won’t report: Mainly that Limbaugh was never the target of the Florida Attorney office’s investigation:

  • According to Newsmax.com, if Cline tape-recorded her prescription drug sales as the Enquirer claimed (especially without Limbaugh’s knowledge), she’s guilty of a felony punishable by up to five years in jail.  In turn, Cline – not Limbaugh – could be the one going to jail if the Florida State’s Attorney’s office prosecutes.
  • Although so-called “unnamed” legal experts in the Enquirer story (who are outside of Florida) have repeatedly claimed Cline’s tapes were “the most legally problematic evidence against Limbaugh,” Assistant State’s Attorney James Martz told the Palm Beach Post that Cline’s recordings were illegally obtained and would therefore be inadmissible in court.
  • Martz’s office told the New York Daily News that Cline’s decision to sell her story to the Enquirer compromised an ongoing drug probe in which Limbaugh was not the target.
  • Regarding the comments on the strength of the case against Limbaugh without Cline’s tapes, Florida attorney Michael Salnick told the Post: “I think it’s legal suicide to go after a guy like Limbaugh with evidence as flimsy as this.”

What’s more, not only did the Enquirer pay Cline millions for her flimsy allegations, they also sat on the story until the October 2 ESPN brouhaha occurred.  Despite its editor’s claims that he wasn’t being disingenuous about the motive for printing the story, the timing is definitely suspect.  After all, this is the same cheap supermarket tabloid that has had to fork over millions of dollars for numerous Jayson Blair-style, fabricated stories.

As a result of the ongoing controversy, many leftist media hacks have been taking cheap shots at Limbaugh – namely New York Magazine’s resident liberal Michael Wolff and Al Franken, who uses the occasions to shamelessly plug his book of fabrications.

Ironically, Franken told CNN’s liberal anchor Aaron Brown last Friday night that Limbaugh was a “dishonest demagogue.”  This is rich. Especially coming from Franken, who has lied about his Harvard connections, among other serial fabrications, in his newest book.

Instead of challenging Franken’s many serial distortions, Brown repeatedly let Franken off the hook by not confronting his allegations against Rush.
Through Brown’s obviously quivering grin, it was almost as if Brown was tacitly agreeing with Franken.

“You’re seeing this as a media empire, aren’t you?” Brown sarcastically asked Franken.  Since when is Franken a credible source, anyway?
But it comes as no surprise that CNN would invite Franken.  CNN consistently gives Franken a platform to not only tout his book, but also to lie about conservative Republicans. And his blatant distortions have never been challenged.  

That’s the reason Franken won’t appear on Fox News – even though he’s been invited several times.  Franken knows he won’t be able to get away with lying about Limbaugh the way CNN allows him to do.  

So it’s understandable why Franken would feel right at home on CNN, the leftist network that covered up twelve years of Iraqi atrocities in order to keep their Iraqi propaganda bureau.  That’s why liberals like Wolff and Franken don’t have a problem with CNN’s bias.  

Brown ended his show by claiming that he felt bad about Limbaugh’s situation and wished him “the best of luck.”  That was shortly after Brown, Wolff and Franken spent the entire hour mercilessly tearing Limbaugh apart.

Like his CBS News.com colleague, $8 million man Dan Rather, also known for his partisan editorializing, opened his Rush Limbaugh segment by egregiously comparing Limbaugh to being part of an illegal drug cartel:

Talk radio’s Rush Limbaugh, who refused to talk for days about allegations of illegally abusing narcotics, today admitted he is hooked on drugs – the kind of painkillers often sold by powerful drug traffickers.  CBS News’ Jim Axelrod reports what we know and don’t know about Rush Limbaugh’s involvement.

While the legal issues concerning Limbaugh’s prescription drug purchases haven’t been officially verified, Rather’s stingingly biased take that Rush was “illegally abusing narcotics,” “sold by powerful drug traffickers,” was obviously a bit over the top.  

First off, Rather inaccurately implied that Limbaugh was already involved in illegal activity.  But, again, that hasn’t yet been confirmed.  Plus, Rather deliberately neglected to use the word “alleged,” thereby insinuating Limbaugh’s culpability.

Whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty, Dan?  Much like the rest of the leftist media, Rather is playing judge, jury and executioner in the court of public opinion – and playing loose with the facts for partisan reasons.

Among the Democrats who are trying to score political points from Limbaugh’s private pain was Democratic “presidential” candidate John Kerry.  Kerry was among 26 other Democrats (including Howard Dean and the anti-military general, Wesley Clark), all of whom had the audacity to call for Rush’s ESPN resignation.  

Since when does a candidate for the presidency try to stifle free speech?  Only when they don’t like what they hear – in this case, top conservative voices like Limbaugh.  It’s amazing that Kerry actually took a break from his daily spiel of bragging to the whole world about his supposedly valorous Vietnam service to make the call. 

During a recent political debate, Kerry launched an irresponsible and childish attack against Rush, poking fun at his addiction: “There are two ways you can lower prescription drug costs.  One way is you could hire Rush Limbaugh’s housekeeper…”  

The fact is Rush would never have gotten away with those kinds of remarks.  So why should Kerry get away with his comments?  But, nonetheless, the left-wing press continues to give Kerry, as well as other Democrats, free passes.

Would Kerry have wanted personal attacks launched against him when he was going through prostate cancer surgery in February?  Of course not. 

Rush was one of the first – despite his political misgivings about Kerry – to publicly wish Kerry a speedy recovery.  Where was Kerry’s sympathy for Limbaugh?    

Regardless of the endless attacks on his character (that the left-wing press let Democrats get away with), Limbaugh does know his loyal supporters – especially those of us who truly understand his unique and refreshing sense of humor.  

On October 11, the AP story told about Limbaugh’s hometown of Cape Girardeau, Missouri, where he shined shoes as a teenager at the Varsity Barbershop.  

Customer Jerry Lawrence said of Limbaugh’s addiction: “Rush admitted a problem and that is the first step.  It is when you keep lying about it that you get in deep and lose respect.”

Just like a certain former president who wagged his finger before the entire nation and lied about his affair with a woman half his age.  Unlike Clinton, Rush has admitted to his addiction and is taking personal responsibility: “No governmental representative has contacted me directly or indirectly,” Limbaugh said in a statement. “If my assistance is required in the future, I will, of course, cooperate fully.” 

Unlike Limbaugh, pride wouldn’t let Clinton confess to his own addictions, which eventually led to $40 million in legal investigations over Clinton’s perjury charges, evidence tampering, and suborning and forcing witnesses to sign false affidavits.

Unlike the Left, who want to blame everyone else for their problems and won’t give their political opposition a pass, Rush is more of a man than Clinton will ever be for facing his demons – instead of using his power, like Clinton did, to lie and cover them up.

Libertarian talk show host Neal Boortz told Joe Scarborough that those people enjoying Limbaugh’s pain will have to live with themselves: “Rush will outlast the people taking glee over his problems.”

Last Friday night, Ann Coulter made an excellent observation about liberals when she told Scarborough that they seem to avoid their hypocrisy by having no standards of their own.  That way, it makes it easier for them to pass judgment on those on the Right.

Boortz also had an interestingly revealing exchange with Court TV anchor and admitted liberal Lisa Bloom, who kept badgering Coulter about Limbaugh’s possible legal troubles.

According to Boortz, Bloom was apparently taking great joy in Limbaugh’s misfortune: “It reveals your delight in Rush’s situation,” he told Bloom.  “This will never negate Rush’s influence.”

In fact, Premiere Radio Networks, Limbaugh’s distributor, said in a company news release:

“Rush’s health is our first priority,” said company president Kraig T. Kitchin about Limbaugh, who is a three-time winner of the Marconi Award.  “We are proud of his decision to seek treatment and join his 20 million listeners in looking forward to his return to the airwaves.”

In the end, before Democrats and their corrupt media cohorts continue condescendingly railing against conservatives Republicans, they should first look in the mirror at themselves for a change, instead of being so quick to cast the first stone.

Speaking of throwing stones, Newsweek’s in-house liberal Evan Thomas, known for his long-held disdain for conservative Republicans, mercilessly gutted Limbaugh like a fish in the leftist magazine’s latest front-cover edition.  
Thomas, who’s been a staunch Clinton apologist, ended his spiteful rant against Limbaugh by declaring:
“Limbaugh’s long-running act as a paragon of virtue is over.  Now the question is whether he can make a virtue out of honesty.”
Thomas, in his Newsweek hack piece, has severely underestimated Limbaugh.  Although Limbaugh’s addiction has made him dependent, he humbled himself enough to get help – and his far-reaching influence will never be diminished because of it.
Despite hateful leftists like Thomas, Wolff and Franken, who are now celebrating Rush’s misfortune, Rush will indeed be back – and better than ever.   

In the long run, the Left wishes to take out Limbaugh because media partisans like Dan Rather and CNN, who really control the elite media, no longer have a stranglehold on the ebb and flow of news and information; they are now being held accountable. 

That’s why they hate Limbaugh.  He’s been holding them accountable for distorting and slanting news to fit their left-wing agendas.  Ironically, it’s the Left who wishes to censor those of us on the Right.

The fact is: We on the Right actually welcome dissent and the liberal opinions of the Left.  It’s essential to a fair, accurate and healthy national debate.  But the Left seeks to stop alternative voices and opinions that divert from their political agenda. 

The truth is, the Left is so hungry to regain political power that they are willing, along with the sycophantic help of the leftist media, to try to take out anyone that gets in their way.

Leftists like Thomas, who insists on passing judgment on Limbaugh, need to be the ones showing compassion.  If they don’t, they, too, could find themselves on the receiving end.

Doug Schmitz is a conse
rvative columnist who regularly contributes to Etherzone.com, BushCountry.org and has been a guest columnist for Accuracy in Media (www.aim.org.). © Doug Schmitz.  All Rights Reserved.

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