So I was on Facebook and one of the people I’m connected to re-posted a link to Rush Limbaugh’s site about how you shouldn’t trust the media when it criticizes 45. I felt compelled to comment that Rush IS the media. I feel it’s just disingenuous to suppose he’s somehow immune from the pressures to make money by entertaining your audience which have always shaped cultural information flow. The response was that, while he’s got an audience, he’s different because “he is correct most of the time.” I made an admittedly smug and dismissive comment about enjoying his kool-aid and he replied: “Conservative thought is about assessing reality using empirical data whereas Socialists suffer from too few facts and an elitist mentality. In spite of their moral relativism and denial to support their communal anti Christ delerium[sic], it is they who have quaffed deeply from that elixer[sic] of which you speak.” I challenged him to produce one non-trivial true thing Rush had EVER said, and he upped the ante, saying Rush was right “over 99% of the time.” Then he posted this:
How sad. Although I knew you were an average unrepentant dyed in the wool leftist, since you insist, among other things Rush is correct about:
climate change, liberals hating America, antifa and blm being terrorist organizations, socialism being the religion of the democratic party, and that liberals in general are bigotted, close minded, and generally hilarious, if not for the serious consequences their folly will guarantee for our nation. He is also right about liberal/progressives/socialists trying to tear down the principles of individual liberty this country was founded on and replace it with an oppressive government controlling it’s citizens. As a conservative and a Christian I voted for Trump to drain the swamp, the swamp is fighting back to preserve it’s power. Satan may look like he is winning but God is in control as all unrepentant reprobates shall discover upon Christ’s return to judge the living and the dead. I have been listening to Rush since 1988. It sounds like your prejudice and faulty programming have kept you from learning the difference between truth and liberal lies. Either that or you are deliberately embracing false doctrines in spite of being aware of truth. That is sad but very common since our educational system has been indoctrinating our youth in anti America propaganda for generations. Apparently you are nothing but a group think puppet with no ability to express or understand independent thought. I don’t like when Rush talks about sports, especially football, and I don’t revere him, nor am I a fan per se, but then…I am not a fan of anyone, living or dead, although I am merely a humble sinner saved by Grace and a servant of my living Lord, Jesus Christ.
We live in a sin cursed and dying world and the end is near. I know it will get worse and not better and that right up until the end it will seem Satan is in control, and that the struggle here and now is between the heathen and the righteous. In the context of American history the liberals and the Democratic party have been a divisive and destructive force but the Republic has prevailed thus far. The right offers Truth and Freedom in the concept enshrined that all men are created equal and endowed by their Creator with rights; but anti Christ leftists are the source of slavery, lies, & attempted thought control.
Since he gave me what I asked for, some assertions to respond to, I thought I’d do it properly, but out of respect for the fact that I was on his feed, not mine, and because I might want to refer to it later, particularly the climate change stuff, I thought I’d respond here and post a link.
I’ll leave it to you to identify yourself if you choose, but if you’ve read this far, please consider reading to the end and commenting here, or in your own feed if you are so moved.
Ok, by the numbers
“How sad.” – Fair enough.
“average, unrepentant, dyed in the wool leftist” – also fair enough.
“:Rush is correct about:”
Climate change: I found this: http://www.theblaze.com/news/2017/07/06/rush-limbaugh-destroys-stephen-hawkings-theory-on-climate-change-meteorological-porn/ , where he says “the smartest guy in the world is crazy.” This is a radio personality telling a physicist he’s wrong about meteorology. Neither are well qualified, but Hawking is more qualified, since astrophysics resulted in the original greenhouse theory as the only thing that could explain why Venus’ surface temperatures were measured to be so much higher than predicted, so since both are just expert opinions, and Hawking is expert in a more closely related field, he wins in court.
And this: https://www.rushlimbaugh.com/daily/2017/07/20/sustainability-professor-to-stop-climate-change-stop-having-babies/ where he says how terrible it is that people care about global warming and air conditioning and overpopulation. – Again, no facts here to dispute, it’s just bile. I disagree with his conclusions, but since it’s mostly just class-action ad-hominem attacks, there’s nothing to dispute except why anyone would listen to such a mean-spirited blowhard.
And this: http://dailycaller.com/2015/04/20/limbaugh-climate-change-one-of-the-biggest-scams-ever-perpetrated-on-the-people-of-the-world-audio/ where he says: “the whole idea isn’t “even worth a factual discussion” – that’s been my problem with him so far, but then this: “there hasn’t been any increase in the world’s temperature for 18 years.” – the first fact, it’s false, but it isn’t just invented. There was a surface air temperature study widely quoted by climate change deniers: http://www.climatedepot.com/2015/11/04/no-global-warming-at-all-for-18-years-9-months-a-new-record-the-pause-lengthens-again-just-in-time-for-un-summit-in-paris/ which is mistakenly assumed to prove that anthropogenic global warming has not been measured in that period. In fact, global warming is driven by high altitude warming, and the “pause” in warming of the troposphere measured here is easily explained by a solar minimum over that period coupled with increased aerosol emissions, both human and volcanic. More importantly, tropospheric fluctuation is a tiny fraction of the global energy balance. Most of the trapped heat is in the ocean, where there is a wealth of evidence of steady warming over the exact same period: https://www.skepticalscience.com/no-warming-in-16-years.htm and overall temperature in the longer term is also demonstrably higher: “Over the last 30 years, Hansen’s analysis reveals that Earth warmed another 0.5°C, for a total warming of 0.9°C since 1880” – https://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/Features/GISSTemperature/giss_temperature2.php
Then there’s my own experience. In the 1990 I began studying this stuff at the U of M – Steve Running of the Forestry department was running early CO2 models and the ozone hole was a big deal. Rush didn’t believe that either. In 1995 he ranted about how it was all a myth because it has been limited to “occasional reduced levels of ozone over Antarctica. In fact, at that time there was a 3% global reduction and up to 20% reductions had been measured in the high northern latitudes. http://www.albany.edu/faculty/rgk/atm101/ozmeas.htm#pinatubo He also claimed that the Pinatubo eruption had more than 1000x the effect on ozone depletion than all human sources combined, thus human contributions were negligible. In fact, the sulfur dioxide from Pinatubo did not reach the stratosphere where ozone depletion does the work of shielding us from high energy photons, is much less efficient than CFCs at destroying ozone, and washed out of the atmosphere within a couple years, making it’s cumulative effect about 1/50th that of human sources, making Rush wrong by a factor of 50,000. Then time went by, the ozone hole got worse until CFCs and hCFCs were banned, then it got better and now it’s fixed. QED. Rush wrong again – this is about when I stopped listening to anything he had to say because he was always wrong.
Then he says: “even if it were to happen exactly as the models say, it’s not the end of anything… there’s no evidence of it… Temperatures have risen and fallen throughout the history of the universe and — the earth is still here and the population has grown exponentially during all of these fluctuations in temperature… there is no consensus” — Sure, not the end of anything except our way of life. Humans might survive, but the vast majority of modern cities will be underwater, I’d rather not let that happen. Even the US military has accepted that global warming is happening: Defense Secretary Jim Mattis called climate change a “driver of instability” that “requires a broader, whole-of-government response.” In 2014, the Pentagon released a Climate Change Adaptation Roadmap that declared “climate change will affect the Department of Defense’s ability to defend the nation and poses immediate risks to U.S. national security.” Another Pentagon report in 2015 called climate change a “threat multiplier.” http://www.military.com/daily-news/2017/06/02/trump-may-doubt-climate-change-pentagon-sees-it-looming-threat.html Temperatures have risen and fallen, and far from populations growing “exponentially during all those fluctuations” – sometimes the vast majority of life on earth dies as a result. Add to that the fact that the rate at which climate is now changing and at which we are already losing species is utterly unprecedented in the fossil record, and the cause for alarm becomes clear. https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/mass-extinctions-tied-to-past-climate-changes/
The problem with Rush’s position is that it’s like waiting to call the fire department until the flames are actually engulfing your bedroom instead of when you hear the kitchen smoke detector go off. By the time you reach the standard of proof he wants, it’s too late to prevent catastrophic climate change. The ozone hole was a quick, obvious fix to a simple problem caused by human impact on a fairly small set of well understood chemical reactions. Climate change is infinitely more complicated.
“Liberals hating America” – this is easy. I’m a liberal, I love America, Rush must therefore be wrong. QED. Rush hates American liberals, therefore HE hates America – that is no less convincing a tautology, and it is just as completely wrong.
“Antifa and BLM being terrorist organizations:” They may embrace violence as occasionally necessary, but terrorists terrorize civilians as a tactic, that’s the definition. Standing up to other violent protesters doesn’t count. Nor do occasional riots and looting make the rioters and looters terrorists, it makes them vandals and thieves, it’s different. When organizers stage a peaceful protest, even knowing there might be fights with belligerent, beweaponed opponents, terror is not on the agenda, confrontation is. Yelling into the face of an armed opponent isn’t terrorism. The fact that their race scares people is not their problem.
“Socialism being the religion of the democratic party.” Socialism is “a political and economic theory of social organization that advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole.” – The Democratic party has a very small number of true socialists, and a large number of people who like some socialists ideas like The New Deal, and nationalized single-payer health care. It only qualifies as a religion if it involves worship, or even just holding that idea most sacred. I know a lot of Democrats, rank and file, party operatives, candidates, office holders. None of them want full-blown socialism, they like private enterprise, they just want some social programs in the mix.
“Liberals in general are:”
“bigotted” – there are bigots everywhere, but leftists tend to be prejudiced against things that are under people’s control, like politics, beliefs, displays of wealth, people who say certain things. People on the right are often prejudiced against ideologies, hairstyles, etc., also, but they are far more likely to be prejudiced against people for things they cannot control, race, gender, sexual orientation, country of origin. Who is more bigoted? Also, a bigot accepts any information that reinforces their prejudices. When the content creators behind a bunch of Eastern European companies generating completely fabricated political stories for US consumption were interviewed, they said they made mostly content for the right because when they tried it on the left, somebody would look up the facts and debunk the story within the first few comments and the thread would die. The money is in selling fake news to the right. Ofc there are lefty click-bait sites like occupydemocrats, but they are a tiny share of the market. https://www.buzzfeed.com/craigsilverman/how-macedonia-became-a-global-hub-for-pro-trump-misinfo?utm_term=.ryg61j6WoL#.ljvv1Bv5JO – then there’s crimes, which are vastly more common on the right:
close minded – In a highly polarized environment like ours, one side always views the other as close minded, but
, and generally hilarious – ok, you can think we’re funny. I’d rather that than all the outrage the right pours forth. The left is outraged, too, but the right is apoplectic: http://www.science20.com/news_articles/left_versus_right_which_side_really_meaner_liberals_or_conservatives-76138
“If not for the serious consequences their folly will guarantee for our nation.” – I flatly disagree, but this is just opinion.
“liberal/progressives/socialists trying to tear down the principles of individual liberty this country was founded on and replace it with an oppressive government controlling it’s citizens.” – I’m not a fan of authoritarianism of any stripe, but I see much more danger of Fascism than, say Communism. The deligitimization of the press, the “big lie,” the militarization of the police force, these are all tactics 45 is using against democracy and they are right out of the National Socialist playbook. But I do not understand how you can decry the left for attacking individual liberty when their policies are to ban Muslims from visiting, leftists from demonstrating, gays from marrying, and trans-gendered soldiers from serving, or even peeing in peace.
“As a conservative and a Christian I voted for Trump to drain the swamp, the swamp is fighting back to preserve it’s power.” – I hate this analogy on so many levels. First, swamps are vitally important both to the ecosystem in general and to human activity. Draining them all the time caused massive damage and is rightfully illegal in many situations unless you make a new one someplace else. Second, 45 himself is far more corrupt than the average Washington insider, you just can’t tell because he doesn’t even understand what ethics are, so he can’t tell when he’s violating them. Third, “draining the swamp” has taken the form of swinging a baseball bat around inside the government. He’s destroying all kinds of things, but, just as in his business career and his TV show, he is building very little.
“Satan may look like he is winning but God is in control as all unrepentant reprobates shall discover upon Christ’s return to judge the living and the dead.” – I respect your right to this opinion, although I find it a bit sad.
“I have been listening to Rush since 1988.” – I’m sorry for your loss.
“It sounds like your prejudice and faulty programming have kept you from learning the difference between truth and liberal lies. Either that or you are deliberately embracing false doctrines in spite of being aware of truth. That is sad but very common since our educational system has been indoctrinating our youth in anti America propaganda for generations.” – This is exactly what I would say to you, except I would substitute “conservative,” “reactionary echo chamber” and “decades”. Stalemate.
“Apparently you are nothing but a group think puppet” – Again, to me, this is how you sound.
“with no ability to express or understand independent thought.” – I don’t even think you even believe this is true of me, personally, you know me better than that. I think you just got on a roll and you were talking about the generic, faceless, liberal “enemy” by this point.
“I don’t like when Rush talks about sports, especially football, and I don’t revere him, nor am I a fan per se, but then…I am not a fan of anyone, living or dead,” – Good. My hope for the future rests on this eventually being true of most people.
“although I am merely a humble sinner saved by Grace and a servant of my living Lord, Jesus Christ.” – Congratulations.
“We live in a sin cursed and dying world and the end is near.I know it will get worse and not better and that right up until the end it will seem Satan is in control,” – Is this why you don’t care about climate change? Because we’re doomed anyway?
“and that the struggle here and now is between the heathen and the righteous.” – Not to me, it’s not. The “heathen?” That means everybody who isn’t Christian. And liberals are close minded bigots?
“In the context of American history the liberals and the Democratic party have been a divisive and destructive force” – The New Deal unified and rebuilt this country, giving ordinary Americans a chance at the American dream. Sure a lot of the oligarchs didn’t like it, but the people did and the Republic thrived as a result. Lincoln was a Republican liberal that rallied to preserve the Union against conservative forces defending their slave-driven economy by attempting to destroy the Republic. Rush himself has been using his sledgehammer of a show to drive a wedge between his audience and everyone else for many decades, I can’t think of any single person in the US who is a more divisive force than he is.
“but the Republic has prevailed thus far.” – Evidence of its resilience, to be sure.
“The right offers Truth and Freedom” – The right also offers propaganda and Fascism, from where I sit, it seems to be in greater helpings than the former, but that’s my bias.
“in the concept enshrined that all men are created equal” – That is not a concept given us by the right, it is a product of the European Enlightenment, the very authors of the liberal order against which you rail so vehemently. The author of that phrase in our canon is Thomas Jefferson. Who pronounced himself an Epicurian in a private letter. He was not a Christian, he was a Deist, as were Franklin, the organizers of the Boston Tea Party, most of the other contributors to the Constitution and the first 5 presidents of the US. He did not believe that God was an old, white guy, but a kind of sum of all the aspects of mind of all the beings in the universe, as did Epicurus. He believed space was full of other planets with sentient life on them. They believed that reason led you to God, not scripture. They did not believe in Churches or bibles or preachers or supernatural miracles. They believed in science, in the evidence of their senses, and the reasoning of well-trained minds. It is THESE beliefs, not the hierarchical dogma of religion which strives to keep each being in its allotted place in the divine order, that allowed a country to be founded on egalitarian principles. Most of the people who signed on to the Freedom of Religion clauses may have wanted only freedom from one particular sect of Protestantism gaining the upper hand over the other, but the document they signed was written by people who wanted freedom FROM religion in general. They believed Christianity was a good way for people who didn’t have the time to read the really important authors, like Lucretius (Jefferson usually carried a copy of De Rerum Natura around with him) and even Thomas Paine, to learn how to live a good life even if they didn’t really understand the how or why.
“and endowed by their Creator with rights” – The paragraph above refers to “Nature’s God” – which is a clear and direct reference to the Deist concept of God as the sum off all things spiritual, an emergent phenomenon of nature, not it’s designer, so when it is said that it is “self-evident” that the rights are “inalienable” and that “a decent respect for the opinions of mankind requires that they declare the causes” God has been very deliberately left out of every important aspect of the process except maybe being a good word to describe how the world in which all these things are true was created. Everything else is just part of the natural order of things.
“but anti Christ leftists are the source of slavery” – Slavery has been in the historical record something like 4 times as long as Christ has, so cannot possibly be literally true. Slavery as an institution is decidedly anti-progressive, preserving it has historically been done by rightist actors, so it cannot be a comment on the actual, legal ownership of other humans, so it must be metaphorical. The best I can figure is a sort of oblique reference to this concept: https://www.google.com/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=1&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0ahUKEwibrev3xo7WAhVE5yYKHcqXBQIQtwIIKDAA&url=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.youtube.com%2Fwatch%3Fv%3DOi_KaZ53eDg&usg=AFQjCNG99jLIO2ZTUAc_RncakPzdnBc1QQ – that social programs for the poor are a secret plot to keep blacks dependent and subservient. Despite how crazy it sounds to me on the surface, I guess I can understand how somebody could look at it that way, but afaik there’s zero evidence in any writing from anybody involved with setting up the programs that it’s true. And even if it was, it would be just another sorry chapter in the long, sordid story of white supremacy’s dogged resilience. Given that the opposing ideas from the right have traditionally ranged from actual slavery to Jim Crow laws, to just cutting the programs to save money, I can’t see any reason to blame the left for the fact that white supremacy still survives as an ideology.
“Lies” – The left is the source of lies. Well, if you believe that truth is revealed by God, not discovered, and moreover that all the important truth has already been revealed and your job is just to recognize it when you see it, then any fact that doesn’t support your version of the truth must, ofc be viewed as either a lie or an error. Since the right has, in recent decades wooed and won over most fundamentalist Christians, that narrative has been intertwined so completely as to be presently inextricable, so I suppose you are obligated to regard the left as the source of lies. But it is very far from “assessing reality with empirical data”
“attempted thought control.” – Political correctness is possibly what you’re referring to here? Or maybe leftist totalitarian regimes in other places, like the DPRK or the former Soviet Union? If the latter, then it’s irrelevant. If the former, then maybe you don’t understand White, male privilege enough to understand why it’s necessary. It is an attempt to bring the egalitarian concepts our country was founded on into the way language is used. I’m sorry if you are upset by the inconvenience of seemingly arbitrary and divisive focus on race in everyday speech, but personally, I don’t mind having to think a little bit before I speak about whether my words will be heard the way I intend them, or if generations of oppression will color them emotionally in ways I hadn’t anticipated. It’s a price I’m more than willing to pay to level the playing field.
MARANATHA – I assume you’re using this shibboleth to signal to your oppressed, Christian brethren that you are an ally. Ok, fine, you’re entitled to feel oppressed and seek allies. That’s the nice thing about being entitled, you can do what you want.
(MAGA too) – I wish I had some confidence that the “Again” here meant something other than “the good old days when women and coloreds knew their place, fags were scared, the poor people were mostly immigrants and Catholics, and nobody had heard of ‘trans.’ ” – But I don’t. I know your history, and I know this is the golden age to which you wish to return. I cannot wish you success on this atavistic nightmare, I will fight tooth and nail to keep this country from being plunged again into those dark days.