WBEC SOILED THE BED IN ITS DECISION TO PULL RUSH (WHO WAS RIGHT, BY THE WAY!) … plus … DO YOUR CIVIC DUTY AND NEVER VOTE AGAIN, SUCKERS
By DAN VALENTI
PLANET VALENTI News and Commentary
(FORTRESS OF SOLITUDE, MARCH 7, 2012) — Pittsfield radio station WBEC pulled the plug on Rush. WBEC soiled the bed.
The Issue Isn’t Censorship but One of Politics and Political Correctness
The issue isn’t so much censorship, since, by definition, AM commercial radio — via its programming directors — chooses to air some shows but not others. To say that a radio station practices censorship because of a programming decision phrases the situation imprecisely.
WBEC’s hasty decision to boot Rush Limbaugh leans toward censorship because The Rush Limbaugh Show has been a winner for WBEC and it had a solid local audience. It leans that way but doesn’t get there (separating Rush the man from Rush the showman is an essential point).
Trust me from having done it: The most difficult thing for a radio show to do is win an audience. We built our talk show from zero to a ratings smash and ran for 14 years. People will listen a few times, but they won’t come back unless it proved satisfying. The same is true for launching a blog, which we did from zero and, with no advertising and only the strength of our words and arguments, now has a daily audience of many thousands and growing.
In other words, WBEC, it appears, did not make a strategic decision with Limbaugh, a show that had found its audience. It reacted in knee-jerk fashion because of vile political correctness, the ridiculous and hypocritical notion that it’s OK for one side to employ fiery, abusive, and even crude language in framing political issues but not OK for the other. Bullspit, we say. Big, bolshy yarblockos to anyone who pulls away from words out of fear.
Having done countless thousands of live talk shows, it’s inevitable that on occasion, of those dominions of words a few will be spoken and immediately regretted. The spoke word doesn’t allow revision, unlike writing. You speak it, and it goes. The best thing at that point is apologize, if necessary, and move on. Rush apologized. He has moved on, and so should America.
We say this noting that EVERYTHING in the public marketplace of ideas these days is a political issue.
Rush Was Correct in His Points on Contraception and Taxpayer Obligations
There are no longer economic, social, or cultural issues, they way there are and longer typewriters and three-channel TVs. It’s all — ALL — politics. Thus, ideology robs this country and its local communities of the ability to intelligently debate, discuss, and deliberate important, mutually affective issues.As Sports Illustrated might say, another sign that Armageddon is nigh.
Rush Limbaugh was 100% correct when he said the Sandra Fluke fluke roiled a sour mash made entirely of politics. At that point, no intelligent discussion is possible. We listened to Limbaugh’s arguments about contraceptives and taxpayers’ obligations to pay. He made perfect sense. He used ignorant words. He apologized for the words but stood up for his beliefs. For that, WBEC pulled the plug, in doing so taking a large, steamy dump on its audience.
For now, on this Rushed Wednesday, that shall be our comment. We will have more to say on this later in the day or tomorrow as we work on other assignments, these for dough and with deadlines. Also, we may have more to say about this tomorrow on WBRK AM 1340, as THE PLANET guests with The Fat Man from 10:30 to noon. Tune in. Give us a call is you wish.
DO YOU CIVIC DUTY: DON’T VOTE … OR BE PLAYED FOR A SUCKER … YOUR CHOICE
We must be under the microscope, because a lot of people have commented on something they did’t even see on THE PLANET. Many noticed that …
We didn’t say one word about yesterday’s election. Election for what? Who cares? Yeah, Mr. Mitt roared to a huge victory in the Bay State. Meredith and Clifford Nilan night even have been elected to the Ward 3 Pittsfield Democratic Committee. Who cares?
Our, “What, Me Worry?” approach forms part of a new strategy. Try to keep up with me on this.
Elections Have Become Non-Literal and Therefore Do Not Matter
Rather than issue the usual, tired reminders urging folks to vote, we decided to ignore yesterday’s “election.” The quotes are there because elections in America have become non-literal. They are every bit as figurative as the use of simile, metaphor, and personification in speech or writing. Such is the price one pays when democracy (even republican democracy) becomes — like communism, socialism, totalitarianism, and any other political “ism” you can mention — an abstraction.
Are you shocked to hear this? Good? Are you not shocked? Even better.
An election remains the only example we can think of off the top where an effect actually precedes the cause. This ‘impossibility’ becomes possible when campaign outcomes are preordained, as they are when those who DO NOT vote year after year form electoral majorities. We won’t bother explaining further, because we have done so, only not as out in the opening, a million other times using millions of other words. Ad infinitum, ad nausem, as my Latin teacher used to say. But …
Democratic political systems can no longer be considered “real.” In the end, they comprise people who have dropped a key part of their humanity in service of themselves.
The End of History and the Regurgitation of Pragmatism
Throughout the ages, thinkers have drawn up democratic systems on blackboards, wrinkled flip charts, and even old, ink-stained parchment. At certain times throughout history, the employment of these systems may have born resemblance to the thinking that gave them birth (i.e., the founding of America and the French Revolution). The “eternal rush” ushered in by social media, however, has destroyed history, severing the umbilical that once connected political theory with day-to-day reality.
Along with everything else, smart phones, Twitter, texting and the like have devoured pragmatism, turning it from a day-to-day skill useful in making the many decisions involved in living a life and into a regurgitated new form. This up-chucked mass, too, is political, and it has turned pragmatism into a distorted form of cynicism. For the first time in my life, I refuse the label of “cynic,” because it no longer retains its honorable perspective .
Theoretically, every system still works like Utopia. I can read Marx and marvel: “Hey, this should work.” Same with Thomas Hobbes’ Leviathan and Madison’s The Federalist Papers. In reality, though, Utopia is never an option. It never was, of course, but at least in a time that pre-dates “the eternal hurry,” we had the time to construct systems that bore a reasonable resemblance to their ideological forms.
THE PLANET has thus concluded that it’s impossible to transfer political theory from the think tank into the actions of men and women as they live their day-to-day lives, both privately, personally, and publicly. Unless you guard against it, those lives, too,have become political.
Voting is for Suckers, Ladies and Gentlemen
We did not vote yesterday. We may not vote ever again. This is not apathy. This is pre-eternal-hurry realism. This is the part of civics that no one wants to address. Government in these here Disunited States, at all levels, operates like a perpetual motion machine having been set in transit eons ago by the flick of an idealist’s finger. Each articulation sets off the next one until you arrive where we are today, dominos toppling dominos, with the robot shells of public office enclosing human beings in thought-sapping cocoons, independence eaten away.
When The System has been corrupted in this way, as it has in Pittsfield city government to keep this local, it makes no difference who gets in. The motion of government has moved beyond human difference.
Do your civic duty. DON’T VOTE.
TOO LONG HAVE WE LABORED TODAY AT THIS ADDRESS, THOUGH WE SHALL RETURN AT SOME POINT, WITH A NILAN-MOORE UPDATE AND, ON THE LIGHTER SIDE, THE JIMMY BROWN-CHUCK GARIVALTIS PHOTO AND THE STORY BEHIND IT. MEANWHILE, THE FOOLS REMAIN HAPPY THAT HE KNOWS NO MORE.
“OPEN THE WINDOW, AUNT MILLIE.”
LOVE TO ALL.