Left-wing conspiracy against Rush!

By Geraldine Sealey

Published May 28, 2004 4:19PM (EDT)

Poor Rush Limbaugh, he's just sitting there minding his own business and Al Gore picks on him, and David Brock picks on him, and so does Salon's Eric Boehlert. It's so bad, Rush told his listeners this week, "There's something going on. I mean, every day now somebody is out there trashing me and mentioning my name from someplace."

After Boehlert's piece about Rush Limbaugh and his ugly rhetoric being pumped over the taxpayer-funded airwaves of the armed forces, Brock started a petition asking Donald Rumsfeld to remove Rush from military radio. Salon started offering free subscriptions to servicemen and -women.

Now, the National Review has come to Rush's defense, saying Brock's effort was based in large part on a story in the "anti-Bush online magazine Salon."

Let's revisit what Rush said about Abu Ghraib and see just how indefensible this kind of language is.

From May 4: CALLER: It was like a college fraternity prank that stacked up naked men --

LIMBAUGH: Exactly. Exactly my point! This is no different than what happens at the Skull and Bones initiation and we're going to ruin people's lives over it and we're going to hamper our military effort, and then we are going to really hammer them because they had a good time. You know, these people are being fired at every day. I'm talking about people having a good time, these people, you ever heard of emotional release? You ever heard of need to blow some steam off?

A day earlier, Limbaugh observed that the American troops who mistreated Iraqi prisoners of war were "babes" and that the pictures of the alleged abuse were no worse than "anything you'd see Madonna, or Britney Spears do on stage."

LIMBAUGH: And these American prisoners of war -- have you people noticed who the torturers are? Women! The babes! The babes are meting out the torture.

LIMBAUGH: You know, if you look at -- if you, really, if you look at these pictures, I mean, I don't know if it's just me, but it looks just like anything you'd see Madonna, or Britney Spears do on stage. Maybe I'm -- yeah. And get an NEA grant for something like this. I mean, this is something that you can see on stage at Lincoln Center from an NEA grant, maybe on Sex in the City -- the movie. I mean, I don't -- it's just me.

Geraldine Sealey

Geraldine Sealey is senior news editor at Salon.com.

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