As the Rush Limbaugh debacle begins to fade away in the minds of those with twittertentionspans, I’d like to ring a bell and call for a regrouping amongst those still paying attention. Early this week, Rush’s talk show syndicator, Premiere Networks began the process of withdrawing national advertising spots from his show for two weeks. Thinkprogress.org has obtained an internal memo stating that 96 advertisers like Ford, Geico and Subway, have asked that stations schedule their ads on “programs free of content that you know are deemed to be offensive or controversial (for example, Mark Levin, Rush Limbaugh, Tom Leykis, Michael Savage, Glenn Beck, Sean Hannity).” This brings the number of advertisers to drop Rush Limbaugh to a reported grand total of 142.
It seems to me that if we are going to claim that we’re fighting General Limbaugh and his GOP army in this War on Women, now is not the time to count coup. Now is the time to discuss strategy. Rush’s dead air and this memo from his bosses may be an indication that we are in the process of winning this battle, but we’ve not actually won it yet. I say this, because that bully is still on the air.
Consider Charlie Sheen, there are a lot of people who are a few crayons short of a pack in Hollywood, and they all mostly keep their jobs, but not Charlie. Contrary to those who’d make excuses for him, he lost his job not for being short an indigo, but for calling Chuck Lorre by his given Jewish name, calling him a “contaminated little maggot” and babbling about working with “fools and trolls.” When Don Imus used the offensive language that I won’t repeat here, he got fired. Mel Gibson and his anti-Semitic, racist, sexist behavior bubbled to a head in 2006 with his DUI and subsequent drunken rants. To my knowledge, Mel hasn’t gotten anybody worthwhile in Hollywood to work with him since, and no, I do not count that mess of a movie “The Beaver” as anything worthwhile.
So, here’s the question. If Don Imus, Charlie Sheen, and Mel Gibson are gone, why does Rush have a job? It is obvious that industry standard is to fire people who act like that. You’re supposed to fire them, tell them not to let the door hit them on the way out and call every one in town and tell them not to hire that S.O.B. When this happens, I’ll be happy to declare that we have won this battle.
The good news is, that as I mentioned before, we ARE winning… and we do know why. We are winning because we are fighting back. We are winning because we are using this magic tool that we have, the social media. We have been passing around petitions and memes and fabulous addictinginfo.org articles, and encouraging each other with angry or heartfelt rants. We are standing together as The 52% & The Men Who Love Us, and not surprisingly this unity and determination has gotten the attention of Rush’s advertisers.
It has shaken them to the point that we are no longer simply disrupting Rush Limbaugh, we are endangering the livelihood of others who would behave like him as well. It seems that if we can seriously stop Rush’s hateful voice, well, then we might just have won one of the most valuable strongholds in this War on Women. We will have won the point that we cannot be demeaned, silenced, or made less because of our gender or our sexuality. Firing Rush Limbaugh is saying to every man in power who ever asked for sex when he shouldn’t have, or shared fantasies about a woman’s sex tapes while ribbing his buddies at the water cooler, or did anything to make himself feel like a big man while making another human being feel dirty just for being a woman, “This behavior is disgusting and wrong and 2012 America simply will not stand for it.”
Now, I have to say, with a very strong wag of my finger, that we cannot win this battle if we do not adhere to the Doctrine of Clean Hands. The tools of social media can and will be used against our favorite liberal pundits as easily as we use it against Rush. Calling Sarah Palin or Ann Coulter sexist and untrue names isn’t acceptable. Nor can we call Rush Limbaugh or any of his buddies, vile names, no matter how aptly they fit.
I know, I know, I can hear you all groaning. I may have swallowed a little vomit myself. I understand that this is a painful request, but we can’t win that way simply because they cannot see the difference between calling Rush a fat liar, and a libelous rant that takes place over 9 hours and involves at least 50 unique ways of calling Sandra Fluke a prostitute. I don’t have the time, energy or desire to explain it to them. So let’s just win the easiest way, by being right, doing right, and acting right (in the leftest way possible). I think I can trust you to listen to the wisdom of my advice on being nice to old Rush, and so I with this great responsibility; I grant you great power… click here to be connected to Rush Limbaugh’s brand new Twitter account.
When you are done sharing with Rush your grief over his loss of advertisers and impending unemployment, get back to work. Write up more petitions, hound those advertisers, keep Rush in the hot seat till he is an out of work shock jock and the rest of his ilk are trembling in their pants for fear of their own jobs. If we keep the heat of the social media on Rush, Premiere Networks, and his advertisers, we may just win this battle and I believe that it is a battle worth winning.