Rush Limbaugh and the politics of Facebook groups

July 2, 2008 at 10:52 am Leave a comment

So I’m loving this New York Times Magazine profile on Rush Limbaugh. Since no one is in the office today except me and the awkwardly adorable web designer, I am alternating between tabs: a Google search on antisemitism in Indonesia when someone walks by, the article when I’m alone. Full disclosure: I actually sort of love Mr. Limbaugh, mainly for his pure lack of reverence for the political process:

Operation Chaos was a triumph of interactive political performance art. Limbaugh appointed himself Supreme Commander, deputized his listeners and turned them into merry pranksters…Operation Chaos drew a crowd, which is what Limbaugh does for a living. It got people laughing at the Democrats, which is what he lives for. And, ever the devout capitalist, he turned an extra buck by peddling Operation Chaos gear. The stuff flew off the cybershelves of the E.I.B. store, the biggest seller since his Club Gitmo collection (‘my mullah went to Club Gitmo and all I got was this lousy T-shirt’).

I mean, I’m sorry. Yeah, election tampering bad, Gitmo bad, bad bad bad. But that—all of that—makes me laugh. And also:

“Anticipating a question,” Limbaugh said when we pulled into the garage of his secluded beachfront mansion in Palm Beach, “why do I have so many cars?”
I hadn’t actually been wondering that. Very rich people tend not to stint on transportation. …
“I have these cars for two reasons,” Limbaugh said. “First, they are for the use of my guests. And two, I happen to love fine automobiles.”

Someday I would love to be in a position in which I can happen to love fine automobiles and ask myself, out loud, for the benefit of someone else, why I have so many of them. A girl can dream. Anyways.

I just don’t see Mr. Limbaugh as much of a threat or even really worth commenting on, politically-speaking, mainly because I sort of lump him into the same sort of category as Ann Coulter and Sean Hannity: he’s a shrewd moneymaker whose haters are almost more exhausting to listen to than the moneymaker himself. A quick search on Facebook (always an excellent social barometer) turns up the following groups:

Rush Limbaugh is a big fat racist, drug addicted, lying, hypocritical IDIOT
People Who Would Have No Problem With Rush Limbaugh Dying In A Fire
Rush Limbaugh is a fucking idiot
Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter and Michael Savage are Satan incarnate

Zing! You tell ’em, Facebook liberals! Fiery rhetoric! Also like all of these groups point over to “I bet I can find 1,000,000 people who dislike George Bush!” Zing! Dislike the power! Honestly, what is the point of creating these groups? I don’t get it. Why do they care? Is the offensive commentary of a few cashcows so offensive to them that they believe creating some internet-based howl of rage will reverse the current of money flowing into these peoples’ bank accounts? Wouldn’t it be better just to ignore them, rather than reinforce the stereotype that liberals are whiny, sensitive, and useless?

Also, haven’t we already kind of figured out that there are probably more than a million people in this country who don’t particularly like our president?


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The sandwich skeptic

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