I was surfing around on some things about Rush Limbaugh and saw this
site and read some comments. I live in a politically
conservative part of the country and the only "talk" shows (parentheses because they screen their callers and decide who is
going to speak, and it's 99% of the time in favor of the host's viewpoint)and you can't hear anything on AM other than right
wing hate mongering. During a part of the day I can get some balanced discussions on PR on CM, but for the most part, they're
all trying to see who can scream the loudest and get people all worked up. I have a graduate degree in psychology and have
worked in the field for 25 years, and I often listen to Limbaugh in order to discern his methodology and cognitive "tools". Now,
I'm not calling Limbaugh a Nazi. He has the First Amendment just like I do. But the mechanism he employs is frightenly similar
to those written about by Joseph Goebels and utilized by Hitler, Himmler, and others. It's based on the following tenets:
1. Omniscience. You must assume that he's always right. This is foremost
Number One. He can't succeed with the remainder
on this list unless this one is accomplished first - at least in your mind. Can we all say "megadittos"? (Not very far from "sieg
heil," is it?)
2. Savior. He has very simple solutions for very complex problems, thus
taking all the confusion out of our modern, stressful,
complex lives, if only we would believe in him.
3. Clairvoyance. He knows what others are thinking, especially those
who oppose his views and opinions, and what
they "really meant" when they said something. And he tells you what they are thinking. They are all, every one of them
(e.g. "liberals", if there is such a simple all-encomapssing label) engaged in a sinister plot against you. And you will buy it.
After all, isn't he always right?
4. Polarization. If someone disagrees with you then they must be against
you. You are either a liberal or conservative.
There is no such thing in his mind as a moderate. Paint the whole thing in black and white, no in-between shades.
Draw a line in the sand. No compromise. You're either on one side or the other. And the other side is wickidly coniving
against you. You must always have an enemy. And he will tell you who they are.
5. Crusade. It is your ultimate duty to your convictions (remember,
he has told you "dittoheads" what your convictions are)
and to our Founding Fathers (he knew what they were thinking also) to rise up and strike out against these coniving, sinister, wicked liberals. That way the world will be returned to the way it was in the "good old days." (Whenever that was.
Actually, things are pretty good right now compared to when I was a youth and when my father was young. And I don't
mean just financially.)
6. Control. Do you really believe there is a true "open line Friday"
on his broadcast? Everyone is screened. That way,
he makes it appear as if almost everyone is agreeing with him and you. For example, Rush was talking about there being
no global warming, that these scientists didn't know what they were talking about and that they were influenced by the
"liberal media." Get it? Well, Bush's own committee that he commissioned to study the issue came back later and said
there is global warming due to man-made bi-products. The committee was made up of Nobel science winners and
members of the National Academy of Sciences. The next week, Limbaugh never mentioned the topic and no one
called in about it, or got on the air about it.
I could list some more but I've got to get back to work. Limbaugh walks
a thin line with the way he manipulates his
audience. I'm sure he's had lots of legal advice. Does anyone out there know what "Krystal Nacht" was in 1930's
Germany (not sure about spelling)? And no, I'm not Jewish. Remember reading about and seeing newsreels about
the book burnings?
I understand that he dropped out of college during his first semester.
And that great patriot and war hawk, Rush