Paul Revere by Cyrus Dallin, North End, Boston

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Tuesday, February 17, 2009

WHY DO PEOPLE LISTEN TO THIS IDIOT?


From the February 13 broadcast of Premiere Radio Networks' The Rush Limbaugh Show:
LIMBAUGH: In addition, they have reformatted the bill -- they've made it a PDF file when they posted it. Now, for those of you that don't use computers, basically what that means is that it cannot be keyword searched. A PDF file is essentially a picture of a page. And, so, you can read every page, but you cannot keyword search it. It's not a text file as legislation normally is as posted on these public websites. They don't want anybody knowing what's in this; they want it happening as fast as possible so nobody can know what's in it.
"In fact, PDFs are searchable in multiple ways. In its Help Resource Center for Adobe Reader, a program that reads PDFs, Adobe Systems writes: "You can run a simple search, looking for a search term within in a single file, or you can run a more complex search, looking for various kinds of data in one or more PDFs. You can run a search using either the Search window or the Find toolbar. In either case, Reader searches the PDF body text, layers, form fields, and digital signatures. You can also include bookmarks and comments in the search.
h/t Media Matters
Also:
Really, O Hindenburg of Gasbags? You can’t search PDF files?
Obviously Adobe seems to think
you can.
I don’t know about other bloggers, but the fact that Rush is now the unquestioned voice and kingmaker of the Republican party just fills me with a sense of glee and uncontrolable mirth.
I just love hearing about his fatuous bloviations on subjects he knows nothing about--and then thinking about all the people who listen to him, nod their heads and say to themselves "Damn right!" These are the same people who encourage the Republican party to follow their leaders off the political cliff into the canyon of irrelevance.

36 comments:

Arthurstone said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Patrick M said...

Okay, I think I can agree with both of you.

It depends. You can make a PDF file searchable. Or you can do it exactly like Rush said. It's an effective way to pretend you're transparent but make people hunt for the crap. And as you didn't provide the link, I can't say one way or another.

However, upon searching, I found a copy of the Bullshit! package and confirmed it is searchable. So make of it what you will.

Wait, you did, with as much knowledge as Rush Limbaugh on this.

On a side note, Adobe reader sucks. Try Foxit reader.

Arthurstone said...

Why?

He offers up simplistic solutions to complicated issues and generally places the blame squarely where it 'belongs'.

Immigrants. Women. Blacks. Hispanics. The poor. Parkinson's victims. Spotted owls.

And his frightened, angry, confused and deeply conflicted core audience (75% male, 80% 'conservative') lap it up.

To put that into perspective, 76% of the general public NEVER listen to Mr. Limbaugh.

I get a sense each of Rush's audience members has one or more blogs to which they post regularly.

Cheers!

http://pewresearch.org/pubs/1102/limbaugh-audience-conservative-men

Arthurstone said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
dmarks said...

PDFs are an annoyance and inconvenient compared to text and HTML files. But of course they can be searched.

Shaw Kenawe said...

The link Arthurstone provided tells us a lot about Limbaugh's audience.

If you're male, old, very conservative, and not particularly well-educated, you're his core audience.

Patrick seems compelled to defend anything negative I post on the Gasbag and I don't understand why--Patrick IS male and conservative, but he's not old or under educated.

More on Limbaugh's audience from the Pew survey:

Testing Knowledge

Limbaugh's audience fared relatively well on the news quiz that was included on last year's news consumption survey: 36% of his regular listeners answered all three political knowledge questions correctly.

Respondents were asked to name the political party that had a majority in the House of Representatives (Democratic Party); the U.S. secretary of State (Condoleezza Rice); and the British prime minister (Gordon Brown).

Limbaugh's regular audience did not do as well as the regular Hannity & Colmes audience (42% all three correct). But Limbaugh listeners did better than regular O'Reilly viewers (28%).


[More proof of the claim that FAUX News listeners tend to be the least informed of the cable news listeners.But you knew that.]

Notably, both the Limbaugh and Hannity & Colmes audiences did relatively well on the quiz despite being not particularly well-educated.



Just 31% of people who said they regularly watched Hannity & Colmes are college graduates, as were 33% of regular Limbaugh listeners. A somewhat greater share of regular O'Reilly viewers are college graduates (38%).


54% of those who read the New Yorker Magazine and/or listen to NPR regularly are college grads.

The higher your education, the more likely you are an NPR listener. The lower your educational achievements, the more likely you are to listen to conservative talk-shows.

That's not my opinion; that's what the surveys revealed.

Anonymous said...

I can't believe the format used to post the bill is even an issue. It's positively insane.

dmarks said...

Posting information like this on the Web in PDF is not the best idea. But it is searchable.

dmarks said...

By the way, Shaw, this question is a little off topic. Still Limbaugh related though. In recent weeks, two Democratic US senators have spoken in favor of federal censorship of AM radio political content. I was curious as to what your thoughts were on the "fairness doctrine". I also know some liberals who strongly oppose it.

Handsome B. Wonderful said...

Oh I agree. As long as Rush, Hannity and Palin are the face of the Republican party the better the Dems do.

Shaw Kenawe said...

I don't believe talk radio should be "censored," but there's nothing wrong with a type of "Fairness Doctrine," that would allow as much left-wing radio talk as there is right-wing.

What are the conservatives afraid of? That they won't be able to compete in the arena of ideas? That their ideas are so without value that hearing from the opposite spectrum will change their listeners' minds?

There IS a stranglehold on talk radio, and it IS conservative and not a few of these talk show ranters give out WRONG information that riles up their base and keeps them ill informed.

If there is an opposition POV, perhaps people will actually use what little critical thinking skills they still have and make decisions for themselves instead of staying in an army of dittoheaded automatons.

Why are the hard right conservatives so fearful of the competition??

Anonymous said...

They are absolutely afraid of the truth; that the world is marching ahead, with or without them, that stem cell research is necessary, that although nobody like abortion, it isn't up to us to decide for a woman, that religion MUST stay out of rational thought and that gay people are here to stay. They're afraid that the truth means that God isn't going to come rescue them and that means they might have to get out of their barcoloungers and f'ing do something.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Media Matters documents all the wrong information Limbaugh and his ilk give off over the airwaves.

He's sloppy in fact checking and revels in stupidity, fear, and hate mongering. He definitely looks the swinish part for that job.

His newest slur is calling President Obama's housing rescue package the "Rezko Rescue Package." How much of the plan does this gasbag actually know in detail? But that doesn't stop his blubbering over the airwaves with his clever little titles and swipes at Mr. Obama.

The hilarious truth is that this overblown narcissist thinks the country is with him.

It isn't. The country is with President Barack Hussein Obama.

So in the long run, I suppose, he can't do as much damage as he hopes to do--not enough of the American people give a flying donut about his ideas or his opinions.

He's preachin' to a teeny, tiny minority of mostly old, conservative men who are under educated.

Heh.

Anonymous said...

Just as an aside, if you google "fat gasbag" it's all Rush.

Lush Rimbeau said...

Rush is in it for himself. He needs all the money he can make to feed his drug habit and to pay for his visits with his little boy "friends" in the Dominican Republic.

dmarks said...

shaw: "," that would allow as much left-wing radio talk as there is right-wing."

That's a form of censorship. A major form. Government control of content, to the point of micro-managing. Stations would end up playing music rather than be forced to air unpupular programs just to satisfy the government.

I'm kind of disappointed that you are one of those who wants the government to make editorial/programing decisions for the media.

"Why are the hard right conservatives so fearful of the competition??"

I think it is quite acceptible that radio statiosn remove content becuase it is unpopular. I think it is completely unacceptable that radio stations remove programs because the government is forcing them to replace these programs with "government-approved political opinion".

Actually, in practice, your idea would force stations to censor Limbaugh in order to avoid being required to waste hours airing unpopular programs.

This is bad for the exact same reason the government has no business telling the New York Times what to put on their op/ed pages.

He's a gasbag. Just turn the knob. No censorship or government control necessary on radio, newspspers, or other media. Freedom of the press.

Arthurstone said...

Fairness Doctrine?

I'm not certain at this point.

I think I'd rather the media companies which dominate the public airwaves be broken up.

Shouldn't be difficult.

There aren't many.

Disney, "New" Viacom (and its former parent CBS Corporation, the former "Old" Viacom), TimeWarner, News Corporation, Bertelsmann AG, and General Electric together own more than 90% of the media holdings in the United States.

Time said...

Sloppy? His hit air is intentional. He's entertaining, to bad more people don't check his facts. His hard core listeners don't care if he is misleading the facts, as long as his "gottcha" is successful.
Basically I believe the public should decide who's on the air and who is not. Although it is depressing to know that so many are duped by the false rants of a partisan.
Unfortunately, because of the way the license process is set up, voices can be silenced within the corporate saturation scheme. I think it's far to curtail a monopoly of radio licenses, from squeezing out an opposing view.

Shaw Kenawe said...

I'm kind of disappointed that you are one of those who wants the government to make editorial/programing decisions for the media.--dmarks

Were you as concerned when this happened under the Bush administration?

And I'm not for the government making decisions for the media, but I do understand that large multi-media corporations get real, real friendly with whichever government is in power and caters to that government.


Let's not be naive.

I think it is quite acceptible that radio statiosn remove content becuase it is unpopular. I think it is completely unacceptable that radio stations remove programs because the government is forcing them to replace these programs with "government-approved political opinion".

Are you not aware that during the Bush administration that the Armed Forces Radio had only one person broadcasting for talk radio--Rush Limbaugh.

Were you upset with the fact that a left-wing talk show was not allowed--I remember Ed Schultz talking about this in 2005. His show was NOT allowed to broadcast per the Pentagon--that was government deciding which show would get broadcast.

As I've said elsewhere, the right gets its panties in a twist when the left wants equal time.

Shaw Kenawe said...

I don't know why that link didn't work.

http://thinkprogress.org/2005/10/17/barber-cancels-shultz/

Capt. Fogg said...

D-marks. I give you a D

I suppose that the idea of allowing the accused - particularly the falsely accused - an opportunity for reply on a medium supposedly owned by the public is just too damned decent for Republicans and of course for people who slander and libel and lie - like Rush. I don't know if you own a dictionary, but I imagine that it defines censorship as preventing one from saying something and not as allowing someone else to reply.

Equating the Fairness Doctrine with censorship is quite the feat of prestidigitation, but I guess it's a necessary illusion if you're in the business of deception.

The fact is, that if you believe the "liberal mainstream press" is slanting the news, you'd back the idea that time has to be given to counter editorial opinion by people harmed by that opinion. Is this an admission then, that the right wing opinion shouters have no ground to stand on while the New York Times and CNN do? Is this an admission that it is Fox and Limpbaugh who are twisting like Chubby Checker on Crack? Seems only logical.

Nobody is proposing censoring anything, simply facilitating the right of self defense. People like Rush cannot defend anything they say and that is exactly why they fight the requirement to do so.

Of course if you like irony, the spectacle of people who defend domestic spying and the loss of habeas, crying "censorship" is bigger than any Hollywood epic with a cast of thousands. Too bad Wagner isn't around to write the score.

If the fairness Doctrine did nothing else, it might reduce the amount of speculative, tendentious and frankly false editorializing, and favor the reporting of actual news, but as the stupid and venal always far outnumber the rest, we won't be able to restore it - or anything else in the public interest someone can profit by abusing.

dmarks said...

shaw: "Were you as concerned when this happened under the Bush administration?"

Absolutely.

"As I've said elsewhere, the right gets its panties in a twist when the left wants equal time."

The concept of equal time is incompatible with the idea of a free press and the First Amendment.

The statements about radio by Harkin and Stabenow show that both of them want to censor independent speech they don't like.

As for Armed Forces Radio, there's also a problem there if there is just one station available. I think that should be scrapped so they beam a bunch of stations over.

Time said: " I think it's far to curtail a monopoly of radio licenses, from squeezing out an opposing view."

Once we approach a monopoly. Even Clear Channel owns 10% or so of stations.

Arthustone said: "I think I'd rather the media companies which dominate the public airwaves be broken up. Shouldn't be difficult."

But this is not necessary. Besides, over time, we are getting more "voices" added, instead of consolidation. We get new networks added.

I'd be concerned if any of them merged, however.

Arthurstone said...

dmarks typed:

'I'd be concerned if any of them merged, however.'

They did. They are. They will continue to do so.

Five companies control 92% of the 'public' airwaves.

That's public airwaves. We the citizens of the US of A own them.

http://www.nytimes.com/2007/06/02/opinion/02copps.html?pagewanted=2&_r=1

And frankly we aren't getting what we should from these clowns.

THE EDITOR said...

I endeavor to be fair and balanced at my newssite. It must be recognized however, because I am fair and balanced, I don't enjoy the remuneration of right wing billionaires as Mr. Limbaugh does. Mr. Schultz and the staff of Air America need to ingratiate themselves to left wing billionaires that own adio stations to get their message out. The problem being with this though, left wing billionaires don't spend money on propaganda with the same enthusiasm as right wing billionaires. An interesting conundrum has developed in our country. Free speech belongs to the ones with the most money.

dmarks said...

Arthur: They merged? When? The only one I recall is when CNN ate a small long forgotten cable news network. The other national news organizations come into being over the years, and have never merged: PBS, CNN, Fox, ABC, NBC. Even minor ones like C-SPAN stay independent from the others.

-----
Captain Fogg said: "D-marks. I give you a D"

I get an A when it comes to protecting the First Amendment, because I remember the idea of a free press. Mario Cuomo argued thusly against the fairness doctrine: "Precisely because radio and TV have become our principal sources of news and information, we should accord broadcasters the utmost freedom in order to insure a truly free press."

"I suppose that the idea of allowing the accused an opportunity for reply on a medium supposedly owned by the public..."

A particular station is privately owned. Your idea makes as much sense as forcing the New York Times to print editorials that the government wants them to print.

"I don't know if you own a dictionary, but I imagine that it defines censorship as preventing one from saying something and not as allowing someone else to reply."

That is exactly what happens when the government forces stations to remove content because of the politics involved.

"Equating the Fairness Doctrine with censorship is quite the feat of prestidigitation"

The Fairness Doctrine is a perfect example of censorship. Realizing this only requires respect for freedom of the press: that the press decides what is fair, not the government

"The fact is, that if you believe the "liberal mainstream press" is slanting the news"

I'm one of those that believes that, if there is a liberal press, it has the right to be as completely liberal and slanted as it wants to be (if it is), without government interfering in the content in the name of "Balance".

"you'd back the idea that time has to be given to counter editorial opinion"

No. Absolutely not. Editorial decisions should not be made by the government.

"Is this an admission then, that the right wing opinion shouters have no ground to stand on while the New York Times and CNN do?"

No. Just the fact that under the First Amendment, the shouters, CNN, and the New York Times get to decide what their content is.

"Nobody is proposing censoring anything"

Yet, two important US senators came out and said that it would be a good idea.

"People like Rush cannot defend anything they say and that is exactly why they fight the requirement to do so."

Regardless of his motives, he is on the side of justice to oppose this government effort to silence him. This issue turns Rush Limbaugh into free speech hero, just as Larry Flynt was turned into one.

"crying "censorship" is bigger than any Hollywood epic with a cast of thousands."

It is not a case of crying wolf when senators actually call for hearings in the Capitol to monitor editorial decisions.

"If the fairness Doctrine did nothing else, it might reduce the amount of speculative, tendentious and frankly false editorializing, and favor the reporting of actual news"

Interesting now that you think it is OK to censor political opinion (but not news). That's scary. So you think it is good that this censorship initiative would reduce the free expression of opinion. I doubt that many others here think that is a good idea.

dmarks said...

The Editor: It appears that your working definition of "propaganda" is "speech you don't agree with".

"left wing billionaires don't spend money on propaganda with the same enthusiasm as right wing billionaires"

I don't know about that. Ted Turner seems pretty enthusiastic, as are George Soros and many others.

Arthurstone said...

dmarks wondered:

Arthur: They merged? When? The only one I recall is when CNN ate a small long forgotten cable news network. The other national news organizations come into being over the years, and have never merged: PBS, CNN, Fox, ABC, NBC. Even minor ones like C-SPAN stay independent from the others.


Five companies control 92% of the public airwaves. Bear that in mind and those five companies work hard to expand buying up smaller outfits. That there are a huge number of outlets matters almost not at all when they are by and large owned and operated by the same handful of big, big media companies.

Time-Warner-AOL ring a bell? Newscorp? Sony?



http://www.globalissues.org/article/159/media-conglomerates-mergers-concentration-of-ownership#Concentrationofownershipiswheretheproblemlargelylies

TRUTH101 said...

Ted Turner sold his stations and George Soros doesn't pay anybody 20 million a year to spout off.There are no left or even center radio commentators on my towns radio stations unless you count the disagrees with everyone for the sake of independence Lou Dobbs


Sorry about the Editor. It's my persona froma local blog my daughter and I have. I forgot to sign out of it before typing last comment.

dmarks said...

"Five companies control 92% of the public airwaves."

This is 66% more national news TV outlets than there were back in the 1980s.

But I am not sure if those are what you mean. Are you counting affiliation for some of the content as control? Or you mean that 92% of local affiliates are outright owned by these 5 companies? None in my area (market) is actually owned by CBS, Time Warner, etc. They are all owned by small local companies.But I am interested to see if it is like this in other markets...

Are you saying that if you go to some place like New York or Seattle, you will typically find that more than 90% of the radio and TV stations are outright owned by Time-Warner and the other four companies?

dmarks said...

Truth: I call Lou Dobbs a racist demagogue. I've not gone as far as to call him "right" or "left". He appeals to both at times in his "populist" speech.

In my town, there are 3 full-time talk radio stations, and two part-time ones.

One of the full time stations is a typical talk radio station, with Limbaugh and others and couple of locals who would fall in the conservative side.

The next full-time radio station is an NPR news-talk station, with many talk shows by left or centrist hosts.

The third one is sports talk, so I do not count them politically.

The first part-time talk radio station airs strong left content from Pacifica, FAIR, The Nation, etc.

The second part-time talk radio station is a Christian station that airs Dr. Dobson and other "Christian Conservative" content when it is not airing music.

Anonymous said...

I can't scan my radio without hitting 2 or 3 right wing nutbags just like Rush. And don't bother calling in with a different opinion, they don't allow you on. Why? They don't have a valid argument. Plain and simple. Just saying.

Arthurstone said...

Media ownership is concentrated in an ever decreasing number of corporations. Likewise there is increasing vertical integration.


http://www.globalissues.org/article/159/media-conglomerates-mergers-concentration-of-ownership#VerticalIntegration

http://www.mediachannel.org/ownership/chart.shtml

http://www.corporations.org/media/

http://www.cjr.org/resources/index.php

dmarks said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
dmarks said...

"Media ownership is concentrated in an ever decreasing number of corporations."

When you look at all media, it is diversifying, not concentrating. The charts of vertical integration include parts of the media where the "bandwidth" is scare, such a TV, along with parts that do not matter at all when considering contentration: the book and magazine publishers they own are just a tiny fraction of all the book and magazine publishers out there.

The web, alternative weekly newspapers, low-budget book publishers and self publishing, and more all flourish, greatly outnumbering the parts of these controlled by the big companies.

I ask again: Do you have any examples of media markets where 92% of the TV and radio stations are owned by just those 5 companies? Or even most? If what you say is true, this shold be the rule.

Arthurstone said...

Great question dmarks. Finding out individual market breakout could be a weekend project for some willing individual. The link to the Columbia Journalism Review is particularly interesting.

Mark Crispin Miller is also quite interesting on the subject.

http://www.thenation.com/special/bigten.html

I am happy with the 90+% ownership concentration number based on net media revenue (Ad Age).

Another question even more worth pursuing is this one:

http://www.nytimes.com/2006/04/13/us/nationalspecial3/13nsa.html?pagewanted=print

How large a role does our government play in domestic surveillance/spying?

Excuse me.

Homeland Security.

Only libruls seem to abuse government functions.

dmarks said...

Are you capable of spelling liberal correctly?

Anyway: "I am happy with the 90+% ownership concentration number based on net media revenue (Ad Age)."

Revenue? So, is this really a matter of condemning for concentration, or condemning for how much money they make?

"How large a role does our government play in domestic surveillance/spying? "

Probably none at all. That evil Bush is out of office, after all.