Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Who, Me?

A Republican is telling Rush Limbaugh to stifle himself.

Responding to President Obama’s recommendation to Republican congressional leaders last week that they not follow Limbaugh’s lead, the conservative talkmeister said on his show that Obama is “obviously more frightened of me than he is Mitch McConnell. He’s more frightened of me, than he is of, say, John Boehner, which doesn’t say much about our party.”

Rep. Phil Gingrey, R-Ga., did not take kindly to this assessment in an interview with Politico Tuesday.

“I think that our leadership, Mitch McConnell and John Boehner, are taking the right approach,” Gingrey said. “I mean, it’s easy if you’re Sean Hannity or Rush Limbaugh or even sometimes Newt Gingrich to stand back and throw bricks. You don’t have to try to do what’s best for your people and your party. You know you’re just on these talk shows and you’re living well and plus you stir up a bit of controversy and gin the base and that sort of that thing. But when it comes to true leadership, not that these people couldn’t be or wouldn’t be good leaders, they’re not in that position of John Boehner or Mitch McConnell.”

Limbaugh’s reply was your basic bully-boy tactic of saying, “Hey, don’t blame me! I didn’t do anything!”

Not that I have a much sympathy for the Republicans right now, especially the leadership of the House and Senate who seem intent on voting against the president’s stimulus plan not because it’s not perfect — it’s not — or that it will magically solve all the economic issues — it won’t, by any stretch of the imagination, but because it was proposed by a Democrat, and that detail outweighs everything. But it’s also way too easy to sit behind a microphone — or a computer screen, for that matter — and rattle the cages just for the purpose of getting a reaction and call attention to yourself. Hucksters like Limbaugh have nothing at stake; they never run for office and they never offer anything constructive. In business, that’s called “MBB”; Management By Bitching. But if you can’t offer a viable alternative or solution to the problem, the response should be “STFU”: Shut The F*ck Up.

Mr. Limbaugh garnered a lot of attention by saying he hopes President Obama fails. Of course he does. It’s not that he’s anti-American; he’s just pro-Rush. He knows that if we change the tone in Washington and put a damper on the food-fight mentality in the interaction between left and right, Mr. Limbaugh and his fellow worm-tongues will be relegated to the ranks of the irrelevant. He’ll end up sitting in his big house in Palm Beach listening to the faint echoes of the fading past while he fiddles with the batteries in his hearing aids and wonders why nobody gives a damn what he thinks anymore.