Thursday, January 14, 2010

On Haiti: Rush Limbaugh is a F$%&ing A$$

Part of the transcript:

This will play right into Obama’s hands — humanitarian, compassionate. They’ll use this to burnish their, shall we say, credibility with the black community — the both the light-skinned and dark-skinned black community in this country. It’s made to order for them.
To which I say at the top of my lungs: FYYFF!

This is the worst play of the race card I've heard in a long time. For Rush, the US Government, which happens to be led by Obama, sending immediate assistance to a country in which perhaps 100,000 people have died in a horrible tragedy, is nothing more than a ploy to gain some race-hustling credibility. And yet the only person making the US Government's response to a humanitarian crisis caused by an unexpected national disaster a racialized event is Limbaugh. I had very little respect for the man before. I have none now. Piss off, Limbaugh.


Eric said...

While I think Rush's words are highly offensive, I do think the Obama administration bears some responsibility for many conservatives having this perception of them. Let's not forget, one of the first messages we got from the White House after Obama got there was that they weren't going to "let a good crisis go to waste." That set the tone for this kind of rhetoric, and was every bit as offensive as what Limbaugh (who makes a living saying offensive things) said, but liberals were just as guilty about shrugging their shoulders about (or defending) Emmanuel's comment then as conservatives are likely to be about Rush's now. I'd like to see the the national discussion take on a more respectful tone, and that's why I don't listen to Limbaugh much (even though I agree with most of his politics), but I do think there is a double standard when it comes to taking offense about these things.

What got covered up in the coverage of this statement is the sentiment Rush was expressing, one that I tend to agree with, that when American tax dollars, extracted by threat of force from citizens, are used to give aid to foreign countries, then individuals should not feel obligated to give more. They are certainly free to do so, but even if they believe in the validity of such obligations, the government has taken it upon themselves to meet them on our behalf, and as such this responsibility has been lifted and there is no shame in not giving more (which is why it is even more amazing that Americans and American corporations give so much of themselves in these situations).

Huck said...

Eric - I agree that Rahm Emmanuel's comment was stupid and grossly cynical. But it's not the stupidity and cynicism that bothers me about Rush's comment. It's not even the complaint, that you seem to be drawing from Rush's statement, that the US Government's response to this crisis by committing taxpayer dollars to providing relief is somehow misguided. If that's all Rush had said, I would have shrugged it off as typical Rush bombast and probably not commented on it at all. But, Eric, it's the blatant racist nature of Rush's comment that I take offense at. Here we have a guy who supposedly detests the race-card playing politics of the left doing EXACTLY (and again, because it's not the first time) what he claims to despise, and ONLY because we have a black man in the White House. They hypocrisy, not to mention the bald-faced inhumanity, of Rush's comment is blatant and disgusting. The fact is that there's absolutely nothing that Obama is doing with this situation in Haiti that any US President wouldn't be doing. Hell, white and waspy Ronald Reagan would have responded in exactly the same way. Why Rush has to reduce this to a race thing -- no, scratch that because it's actually worse --why Rush has TO FABRICATE a racialized argument about US foreign disaster assistance, makes his comment rise to a whole new level above anything Rahm Emmanuel said.

And, Eric, I think you might have to revisit this notion of a "double standard" because I can point to moments when conservatives use crises, such as the Undie Bomber, as a means not only to pummel Obama but also to fundraise for campaigns on the national security theme, or even as a basis for implying, as the Cheneys have done, that Obama is a traitor for his decision to prosecute the Undie Bomber in civilian courts, without so much as a shrug of the shoulders from conservatives, too. So what Emmanual said is more like a "standard" (as opposed to a double standard) in which both consevatives and liberals cynically use "crises" to their political advantage without much criticism from within the party militants. You and I can agree to the distastefulness of this practice overall, but your imputation of this as a particularly distasteful practice of Democrats exclusively just doesn't wash.