Although I recognize that newspapers are desperate to generate reaction these days, you have to wonder about the Los Angeles Times op-ed editors who opted not to challenge the bone-headed assertions in Andrew Klavan’s latest demonstration that he is not particularly bright — an op-ed piece titled “Take the Limbaugh Challenge,” which concludes that nobody who criticizes Rush Limbaugh actually listens to him.
Klavan, just to refresh your memory, is the same guy who wrote a Wall Street Journal op-ed, “What Bush and Batman Have in Common,” which concluded that the popularity of “The Dark Knight” was in fact an endorsement of the Bush administration’s handling of the war against terrorism, calling the movie “a paean of praise” to the former Commander in Chief. It made you wonder if he actually sat all the way through it, but let’s not get sidetracked in past stupidity.
Klavan starts out with a howler — namely, that you couldn’t possibly read the LA Times unless you were a bleeding-heart liberal from the get-go. He then proceeds to “the certainty” that if you disagree with the syndicated radio host, “You’ve never listened to Rush Limbaugh.”
For the record, I listen to Limbaugh quite a lot, and I recognize that he can be entertaining and that some of his more outlandish statements are obviously exaggerated for effect. Nevertheless, even moderates can find plenty in Limbaugh’s overheated, alarmist rhetoric that’s offensive, which is precisely why Democrats are doing everything they can to make him the voice of the Republican Party. It’s also why Limbaugh has become so indispensable to his core audience, since he can be more impolitic in demonizing liberals than most politicians dare to be.
Like other conservative talking heads, Limbaugh also has a vested interest in discrediting competing sources of information, which is a powerful marketing tool. In essence, personalities like Limbaugh, Sean Hannity and Glenn Beck bond themselves to their audience with a pitch that you can’t trust newspapers and the major networks, which is perhaps why Klavan makes the assumption that only a liberal could possibly endure reading the Times. I wonder how he feels about Democrats reading the op-ed pages of the Wall Street Journal or watching Fox News.
Klavan claims he listens to Limbaugh all the time and has “never heard the man utter a single racist, hateful or stupid word.” This only proves what I already suspected — namely, that Klavan is either conveniently or situationally deaf, or as the Batman piece already suggested, doesn’t have much operating between his ears.