Wednesday, August 26, 2009

New Heights of Incoherence?

I'm always amazed (I don't know why) at the mindless idiocy of the American public--whether it's the fact that Thomas Friedman's trite panegyrics to globalization continually make the best-seller lists or that Rush Limbaugh has millions of listeners (although no one can agree on how many millions).

Because I'm a masochist I did a Google News search for "Rush Limbaugh Ted Kennedy" to see to what new lows of tastelessness that troglodyte could sink. What I got instead was a bizarre "tribute" to Kennedy that reached a new level of incoherence even for him--the "him" being Limbaugh, not Kennedy.

He basically tried to appropriate Ted Kennedy's name and prestige to the cause of opposing health care reform:

Will there be a single liberal to come forward and embrace Senator Kennedy's example of seeking and securing the best medical care available? Ted Kennedy, lion of the Senate, the United States government was never a partner in his death.

Limbaugh seems to have forgotten that Kennedy fought for universal health care (i.e., "socialized medicine") from 1973 until his death (he also seems to have forgotten how to form complete sentences). Or perhaps he's saying we should follow the examples of hypocrites? Surely as a veteran, Ted Kennedy was eligible for treatment in VA hospitals.

Limbaugh went to say that

to put his name on the health care bill...and say, "We're doing this in his memory" is hypocrisy, and it would be insulting to his memory.

I'm not sure when Rush got so protective of Kennedy honor, considering he joked about Kennedy's impending death last March, or that he has long been in the habit of calling Kennedy "Swimmer," one among many of his several tasteless references to Chappaquiddick. He also said that he would "vomit and puke"* on anyone who joined the predictable chorus of praise for Kennedy's life and work today.

And then, with through-the-looking-glass logic so demented it's brilliant--because you know his listeners will buy it--Limbaugh says that health care reform would be a disservice to Kennedy's legacy because

he did not inspire a health care plan to deny people their own right to die, and seek to live, in their own way by their own choice. He didn't. He was not limited in any way.

And in a feat of mental gymnastics comparable to the antebellum arguments used to justify slavery, Limbaugh states health care reform would mean

elites get one way of being treated and the rest of us another way. I thought it was a right.

Read all the way to the bitter end. You'll find it.

In my (very brief) days of teaching English I apparently did my students no favors by trying to teach them to write and think logically. Otherwise they could have been talk radio hosts making millions.

*"Vomit and puke?" Does Limbaugh think those words mean two different things?

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