Rush Limbaugh, after four days of putting the nation through a cultural, gender, sexist, and misogynistic war, has “apologized” and within his apology he has revealed the roots of his madness. Limbaugh, who spent half this week calling a college student aÂ â€œslutâ€ and a â€œprostitute,â€Â then demanding she post online videos of her having sex, released a short statement (in full, below,) in which he reveals that every moment of his 35 years on the air have merely been “absurdity,” and that his comments and positions are not meant to be taken seriously. In other words, Limbaugh retreated to his supporters’ (faulty) default position that the conservative radio talk show shock jock is merely an “entertainer.”
To be clear, he is not merely an “entertainer.”Â And to be clear, were he merely an “entertainer,” he would still be held to the same standard as every other human being in this nation.
“For over 20 years, I have illustrated the absurd with absurdity, three hours a day, five days a week,” Limbaugh’s statement reveals. “In this instance, I chose the wrong words in my analogy of the situation. I did not mean a personal attack on Ms. Fluke.”
Shorter Limbaugh: “Officer, I didn’t know the gun was loaded.” Or, slightly longer, shorter Limbaugh: “I’m sorry, I thought I could get away with murder like I always do.”
But the gun is loaded, Rush, and you yourself, every day, go to Walmart, buy the gun, buy the ammunition, load the bullets, and shoot. Every day. “Three hours a day, five days a week.”
Limbaugh in this case reminds me so much of RedState founder and CNN contributor Erick Erickson, who immediately upon being hired at CNN was forced to issue an apology for his comments. His excuse? Essentially, “I was just talking like I do with my friends and neighbors.”
The lack of self-awareness of both Erickson and Limbaugh is astonishing. Were they both 18, perhaps we could understand — although not excuse — their daily atrocities, their daily assaults on this county. Alas, they are not.
But what is perhaps even more frightening is that is would seem Limbaugh is taking his marching orders — or at least his words — from Erickson.
“For over 20 years, I have illustrated the absurd with absurdity, three hours a day, five days a week,” Limbaugh’s statement said today.
â€œSo of course Rush Limbaugh was being insulting,â€ wrote Erickson Friday morning. â€œHe was using it as a tool to highlight just how absurd the Democratsâ€™ position is on this.â€
If that don’t beat all.
Rush Limbaugh is a 61 year old multi-multi millionaire who heads — albeit, unofficially — the Republican Party. And he has now headed it into shame, disrepute, misogynistic attacks, and we are left on the sidelines, watching the implosion.
Limbaugh has lost many corporate advertisers, and many companies lost by those advertisers, and possibly for the first time in his life he has been forced to apologize for his actions.
But his apology is not enough, not satisfying, not fulfilling. It is empty, shallow, the excuse-ridden day-late homework assignment of a fifth grader who copied it while looking over his shoulder at someone else’s work.
In short, he’s cheated again.
For locked within his non-apology apology is the fact that he still just doesn’t get it. He still has no idea what the issue is really all about.
“I chose the wrong words in my analogy of the situation,” Limbaugh says.
Limbaugh apologized because he finally realized that even he could go to far, and his comments all week had not only weakened the nation, not only weakened the Party, not only weakened his bank account, but had weakened his brand.
But, in fact, he didn’t choose the wrong words. He chose the wrong analogy. And he chose the wrong analogy because he doesn’t understand the situation to begin with.
Limbaugh’s ignorant comments — aside from the ad hominem attack on Sandra Fluke — reveal, as Rachel Maddow discovered, that Limbaugh thinks that women have to take a birth control pill every time they have sex. Limbaugh’s comments reveal that he thinks contraception is merely something women use to ensure they don’t get pregnant. And Limbaugh’s comments reveal his belief that the proper and default condition for women is to be pregnant.
“I think it is absolutely absurd that during these very serious political times, we are discussing personal sexual recreational activities before members of Congress,” Limbaugh’s apology continues. If that were true, Limbaugh would have annihilated not Sandra Fluke, but Darrell Issa, who convened a U.S. House of Representatives hearing in which five men representing various religions were caught “discussing personal sexual recreational activities before members of Congress.”
After claiming, “I did not mean a personal attack on Ms. Fluke,” which — clearly — he did, Limbaugh says, “I sincerely apologize to Ms. Fluke for the insulting word choices.” That’s how Limbaugh’s “apology” ends. Note, it doesn’t say, for “my” insulting word choices. It doesn’t say “I apologize for using her as a target.” It doesn’t say, “I apologize for attacking all women.” It doesn’t say, “I apologize for my ignorance, I will explore the issue more in depth and consult with women in order to gain a better understanding of this issue that literally affects every person in America, directly or indirectly.”
“I chose the wrong words in my analogy of the situation.”
“I sincerely apologize to Ms. Fluke for the insulting word choices.”
Too little, too late Rush.
Finally, let’s be especially clear: Rush Limbaugh did not apologize out of sincerity. Limbaugh did not apologize after wrestling with his inner demons, or after soul-searching, or after consulting with his better angels. Limbaugh apologized after losing a half-dozen advertisers — and after knowing more were about to jump ship. In short, Limbaugh apologized because he finally realized that even he could go too far, and his comments all week had not only weakened the nation, not only weakened the Party, not only weakened his bank account, but had weakened his brand. And that, ladies and gentlemen, is the only reason Rush Limbaugh offered his three-paragraph apology.
Rush Limbaugh’s apology, full complete text:
For over 20 years, I have illustrated the absurd with absurdity, three hours a day, five days a week.Â In this instance, I chose the wrong words in my analogy of the situation. I did not mean a personal attack on Ms. Fluke.
I think it is absolutely absurd that during these very serious political times, we are discussing personal sexual recreational activities before members of Congress. I personally do not agree that American citizens should pay for these social activities. What happened to personal responsibility and accountability? Where do we draw the line? If this is accepted as the norm, what will follow? Will we be debating if taxpayers should pay for new sneakers for all students that are interested in running to keep fit?In my monologue, I posited that it is not our business whatsoever to know what is going on in anyone’s bedroom nor do I think it is a topic that should reach a Presidential level.
My choice of words was not the best, and in the attempt to be humorous, I created a national stir. I sincerely apologize to Ms. Fluke for the insulting word choices.
Actually, one last thing. What did Limbaugh write on his website one day before his apology was posted? It was called, “I’m a Danger to the Women of America?,” and included this:
So Pelosi arranges her own press conference for the woman, and the woman makes it clear (her name is Sandra Fluke) that she’s having so much sex, she can’t pay for it — and we should.Â She’s having so much sex, she can’t afford it.
She gives the numbers: $3,000 worth of birth control pills worth of sex.Â She’s paying anywhere from $35,000 to $50,000 a year to go to Georgetown, $20,000 room and board, and can’t afford the $1,800 to $3,000 a year for birth control pills and wants us to pay for it.Â I said, “What does that make her?”Â She wants taxpayers, the Democrats want taxpayers, to pay for it. They want to create a welfare entitlement program where we provide birth control pills, because pregnancy’s an illness. Pregnancy is a “women’s health issue.”Â So the woman comes forth with this, frankly hilarious claim that she’s having so much sex (and her buddies with her) that she can’t afford it.
And not one person says, “Well, did you ever think about maybe backing off the amount of sex that you have?Â Do you ever think maybe it’s your responsibility for your own birth control, not everybody else’s?”Â Nobody raises those questions.Â Amazingly, when there is the slightest bit of opposition to this new welfare entitlement being created, then all of a sudden we hate women! We want ’em barefoot and pregnant in the kitchen, all of these other things.Â So that’s where we are.Â And now, at the end of this week, I am the person that the women of America are to fear the most.
No, Rush, no one fears you anymore. Now, we merely pity and despise you. And that’s the way apologies work. No one is forced to accept them. You have to hope you have enough good will stored in your bank of gratitude to pay for it. And yours, Rush, has been overdrawn for decades.
When history has had its say on you, trust me, Rush, it will not have chosen the wrong words.
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‘Thinly-Veiled Incitement to Violence and Overt Racism’: Trump’s Truth Social Post Sparks Outrage
Donald Trump was permanently suspended from Twitter “due to the risk of further incitement of violence,” but on Friday night took his social media approach to his Truth Social website.
Trump accused Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell of having a “death wish” after a government shutdown was averted.
“Must immediately seek help and advise (sic) from his China loving wife, Coco Chow!” he said of Elaine Chao, who served in his cabinet for four years as Secretary of Transportation.
Trump’s post generated outrage online.
“Nothing to see here,” conservative lawyer George Conway tweeted. “Just a former president of the United States seeking to incite violence against the minority leader of the United States Senate and launching a racist verbal attack on the leader’s wife.”
Former federal prosecutor Shanlon Wu wrote, “Donald Trump using blatant racist tactics in his desperate attacks on McConnell by trying to ridicule Asian American former Secretary of Transportation Elaine Chao’s name calling her ‘Coco Chow’ — [McConnell] and [GOP] should call him out and reject his racist hate — will they do it?”
“Hardly shocking that Trump would threaten Mitch McConnell by capitalizing the words ‘death wish’ — dog whistle invitation to Trump’s extremist supporters — same Trump who believed his own VP Pence deserved to be lynched by the angry Jan. 6 mob Trump incited to violence,” Wu added.
Janai Nelson, the president of the NAACP Legal Defense & Educational Fund, wrote, “I double dare all major media outlets to call this what it is: thinly-veiled incitement to violence and overt racism.”
Podcaster Fred Wellman said, “Elaine Chao was Trump’s Secretary of Transportation for 4 years and he just called her the ridiculously racist nickname ‘Coco Chow.’ Yes…you are a racist if you still support this broken *sshole.”
Jonah Goldberg, the editor-in-chief of The Dispatch, wrote, “Look, I think the gross bigotry, stupidity, dishonesty, and demagoguery of this is obvious on so many levels and I’m embarrassed for the country. But, because no one else will, I feel I have to point out he also misspelled advice.”
Republicans suggest defunding Veteran Affairs even though it helps 9 million vets
Republican legislators are starting to suggest defunding the Department of Veteran Affairs (VA), the office founded in 1989 to assist with veteran needs. The VA assists with getting veterans mental and physical healthcare, educational opportunities, community support, and other everyday housing and living needs.
An Arizona legislator, captured on video participating in a mock congressional hearing, said he supported shutting down the department.
“That’s sort of what I’m thinking because … I hear no good stories. I had zero in my district,” the legislator said in a video posted by the far-right watchdog group Patriot Takes. “So I guess it’s a matter of us leading the fight to defund it.”
Republicans held an offsite, mock Congressional hearing where they plotted to defund and shutdown the VA.
Healthcare for veterans is on the midterms ballot. pic.twitter.com/PAKFCQZk7Y
— PatriotTakes 🇺🇸 (@patriottakes) September 30, 2022
A second video, posted by the same account, showed Republican Florida Representative Matt Gaetz advocating for defunding the VA while speaking at an event held by FreedomWorks, a conservative and libertarian advocacy group.
“This is my question to the group. Is it savable? Why not abolish the VA, take all of the money that we are otherwise spending and go to an any willing provider system inside of our communities?” Gaetz says in the video. “And then, if people get bad care, they can vote with their feet and you don’t have a two-tier system of healthcare in this country with our veterans and then with everyone else.”
Generally speaking, Republican policies favor the privatization of all government functions, thinking that a “small government,” “free-market,” “for-profit” privatization provided by a corporation can solve any market ill.
In reality, if entire communities are deprived of VA access, U.S. military veterans will be left largely on their own to get their life needs met after militaries service. Those who lack money or transportation won’t be able to “vote with their feet” and find a local care provider to handle their specific issues… they’ll either have to spend massive amounts to get such essential care or just go without.
Republican leaders are now floating abolishing the VA and stealing veterans’ health care. And if you think that’s unlikely remember that 84% of republicans in Congress voted against veterans’ cancer care this year. https://t.co/BV1msdniP5
— Bill Pascrell, Jr. 🇺🇸🇺🇦 (@BillPascrell) September 30, 2022
In late July, 41 Senate Republicans voted against a bill aimed at protecting veterans exposed to toxic materials during their military service. The legislation would have expanded care to 3.5 million veterans exposed to toxic burn pits. It would have also added 23 toxic and burn pit exposure-related illnesses to the VA database, Newsweek reported.
After massive blowback, Senate Republicans re-voted on the bill and helped it pass.
Patriot Takes posted the video hoping that it would encourage veterans and military members to vote in the upcoming mid-term elections.
Red states are lining up to stop Biden’s student loan forgiveness plan
Six red states — Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, and South Carolina — are suing the administration of Democratic President Joe Biden over Biden’s plan to cancel up to $20,000 in student loan debt for individuals making less than $125,000 a year.
The Biden administration based its plan on a 2003 law. According to the Justice Department, the law, initially meant to help military members, says that Biden can reduce or erase student loan debts during times of national emergency.
The red states’ lawsuit, filed Thursday in Missouri, said that Biden’s plan was “not remotely tailored to address the effects of the pandemic on federal student loan borrowers.” The lawsuit adds that, since Biden recently declared the COVID-19 pandemic as over, he can’t use it as a justification for his wide-scale debt relief plan, ABC News reported.
“It’s patently unfair to saddle hard-working Americans with the loan debt of those who chose to go to college,” Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge said of her state’s lawsuit. “The Department of Education is required, under the law, to collect the balance due on loans. And President Biden does not have the authority to override that.”
The states argued that Biden’s plan inflicted a “number of ongoing financial harms” to student loan providers and also “will ultimately disrupt revenue to state coffers.” They also argued that Biden’s plan violates the Administrative Procedure Act, a law regulating how federal agencies ensure that presidential policies are well-reasoned and explained, the aforementioned publication reported.
Despite these claims, the White House has said it will continue with its plan, confident it can survive a court challenge.
“Republican officials from these six states are standing with special interests, and fighting to stop relief for borrowers buried under mountains of debt,” White House spokesman Abdullah Hasan said Thursday. “The president and his administration are lawfully giving working and middle class families breathing room as they recover from the pandemic and prepare to resume loan payments in January.”
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