As a (former) Rush baby, it absolutely pains me to write this about a man I once admired. But when hypocrisy rears its ugly head, one should point it out.
It’s not as if Limbaugh veered off course recently. He’s been careening in this direction for quite a while. In the Era of Trump, many pundits and personalities have forsaken principle because the GOP is the party in power.
And power means everything to them.
Once upon a time, Rush Limbaugh rightly lambasted President Obama for how the deficit was ballooning under his watch.
…that’s no excuse for what Obama is doing. If anything, that ought to cause some belt tightening. Obama ought to be looking at it and saying, ‘Okay, I’m inheriting a trillion-dollar deficit. We don’t have any money to spend.’ He’s doing just the opposite. ‘We need to spend even more!’ This is not good.
Those days are over. There’s a Republican in the White House and now, apparently, anything goes.
Early Friday morning, a Republican majority passed a bloated, two-year spending bill that was quickly signed into law by President Trump. This is seen as a victory by too many in D.C. Senator Ted Cruz “reluctantly” supported it in the end but individuals like Senator Rand Paul fiercely opposed such a bill in his speech on the Senate floor, and rightly so.
Don’t you remember when Republicans howled to high heaven that President Obama was spending us into the gutter? Spending us into oblivion? And now Republicans are doing the same thing.
And so I ask the question: whose fault is it? Republicans? Yes. Whose fault is it? Democrats? Yes. It’s both parties’ fault!
In response, Rush Limbaugh spoke of his…indifference to spending. What once enraged him now barely causes that needle of concern to move. He just does not care.
I probably should not admit this, because it changes for me day to day. But I have to tell you, this whole budget thing, I think I’m immune to it now. I realized I’ve been caught up in this budget business for as long as I’ve been hosting this program, and I realized a couple things.
I know I’m sounding kind of cynical here, but it’s not cynicism. It’s a realization that all the arguments, the budget fight every year is the best weapon the Democrats have to portray Republicans as racists, sexists, bigots, homophobes, of no compassion, who hate and want to starve kids. It never changes. Meanwhile, we’re told that the national debt’s gonna wipe us out, that the deficit’s gonna wipe us out. We’ve gotta get a handle on the deficit. It’s growing because the national debt is growing.
And the kicker…
…I know theoretically all this is bad, but in the real world all of the apocalyptic warnings I grew up hearing have yet to happen. The national debt has not choked us. The national debt is not destroyed us. We may be living in the middle of the destruction and don’t see it yet, but for some reason I didn’t get caught up in it.
This is nothing but willful ignorance and a blatant disregard for reality. And why? Because D.C. is under Republican control at present and they just secured a legislative victory.
Fiscal conservatism used to be a driving force for at least a portion of the Republican party. Now, that is all but forgotten in favor of a “win.” I guess I should not expect much from those who joyously supported a politically inexperienced, disreputable, reality-show celebrity to be commander-in-chief. Over the last two years, they’ve proven themselves to be concerned with flash over substance. Principles have been pushed aside and the GOP has morphed into another disappointing choice on the ballot.
It’s Rush and others who make individuals like myself feel politically homeless. The stalwart defenders of character breathlessly and continuously endorse a man whose words and actions undermine everything they used to uphold. Those who held Democrats to task for runaway spending are now immune to it, and only because of politics.
Smell that? It’s partisanship at its most putrid. And Rush Limbaugh is a figurehead.
Unfortunately, Rush has a legion of fans – dittoheads – who either lack critically thinking entirely or outright refuse to tap into that part of their brain. They run on autopilot, listen to his show, absorb his talking points, agree with them simply because he’s the King of Conservative Talk, and then turn on Fox News.
We shouldn’t wonder how Donald J. Trump got elected in 2016.
I am actually saddened that a pundit whose show I used to enjoy has grown into such a partisan hack. There was a time when Limbaugh’s principles were the driving force behind his punditry. Now, it’s just the love of partisan power.
We all should take issue with the outrageous spending bill that just passed. If not, you should check yourself.
Perhaps you’ve gone the way of Rush, too.