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January 26, 2009

Rush Limbaugh Is Only the First Target of Obama’s ‘New’ Politics


Barack Obama, Democratic leaders and the media have made clear their rejection of George W. Bush’s “old” politics. You see, President Bush did not launch assaults on private citizens, nor did he ever label anyone as “unpatriotic” for disagreeing with him. Thus, Obama and his friends are now effecting the change they promised. Welcome to their “new” politics.


It began in December. When economically versed Republican senators had the courage to halt a multi-billion dollar giveaway to auto manufacturers and the United Auto Workers, it became clear how Democratic leaders intended to exercise their majority power.


At the first sign of resistance, the same people who only months ago hailed the infinite virtues of dissent swiftly implemented its demonization. Democratic Governor Jennifer Granholm called the Republican dissenters’ behavior “un-American.” Democratic Congressman John Dingell, who has received close to a million dollars from the auto industry and has extensive family and financial ties to General Motors, declared that the Republican senators had “unpatriotically” opposed the bill.


And that was before the elected Democratic Congress and president were even inaugurated.


From what we have seen since they did take office, Obama and top Democrats have left no doubt that their message of unity is literal – unity, around leftist ideals of course, is going to be achieved either through voluntariness or through coercion. And what better way is there to purge opposition than by eliminating Rush Limbaugh from the picture?


Some background is necessary. About 16 months ago, Limbaugh criticized anti-war propagandists who invented stories about having served in Iraq, appropriately labeling them “phony soldiers.” Top Democrats at the time alleged that Limbaugh had called real troops “phony soldiers,” faked extreme anger, and 41 senators, including Obama, signed a letter labeling Limbaugh’s words as “unpatriotic.” Four months ago, Obama launched campaign ads falsely asserting that Rush Limbaugh had spoken of Mexicans in a degrading manner.


Yet to left-wing cohorts, Rush Limbaugh does not only hate the troops and Mexicans. Apparently, he also hates America.


That is what the media reported when Limbaugh, some days ago, expressed his hope that Obama’s pursuit of big-government liberalism fails. Journalists, if we may stretch a word, took Limbaugh’s non-controversial comments and put them at the service of their favorite president since the last Democrat to occupy the White House.


CNN’s Rick Sanchez, for example, promised to air “the entire Rush Limbaugh commentary” on the subject, but decidedly played just enough of the audio to take Limbaugh’s language out of context. Sanchez then wondered in faux-puzzlement, “I guess it’s OK to say, look, I want liberalism to fail, because I’m anti-liberalism. But saying I want Obama to fail, is saying essentially in what is one of the most precarious times in our nation’s history, you want our country to fail, isn’t it?”


Yet disgracefully, Sanchez had cut off the audio of Limbaugh’s “entire” commentary right before Limbaugh said the following: “Why is it any different, what’s new, what is unfair about my saying I hope liberalism fails? Liberalism is our problem. Liberalism is what’s gotten us dangerously close to the precipice here. Why do I want more of it?”


The fact that this systematic operation to intimidate and demonize Obama’s opponents was launched so soon after his inauguration is tremendously perturbing. What is even more alarming is that Obama is not only a member of this campaign – he is the driving force behind it.


On Friday, Obama declared that “you can’t just listen to Rush Limbaugh and get things done.” Within 100 hours of taking office, the president of the United States proceeded to single out a private citizen for his mere dissent, effectively expelling him from the government’s marketplace of ideas, and with him the millions of listeners of the same political stripe. Not even President Bush, whom we are instructed is the quintessential embodiment of divisive politics, ever managed to approximate such behavior in eight years of attracting the most vile of personal and political attacks.


Welcome to the politics of hope ‘n’ change. Obama’s startling attempt to hang Limbaugh’s scalp on the wall is a warning that the new ruler does not want unity – he demands it.

© 2009 North Star Writers Group. May not be republished without permission.


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