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Pick On Someone …

Your own size!

Limbaugh has been bad-mouthing women for years, but then he made the fatal mistake, the unforgivable error for the media, he attacked an ordinary individual, someone with whom people could relate.

This isn’t written down anywhere that I know of, but it is a hard and fast rule.

Consider – The News of the World had been invading people’s privacy for over a century, but then they hacked the cell phone of Milly Dowler, a school girl who was abducted and then murdered. The paper was shut down and James Murdoch has resigned from the board of the corporation that owned it to escape further ‘personal problems’ as an in-depth investigation continues with multiple arrests being made.

Don Imus had been an annoying jerk on the radio for years, saying outrageous things about people that entire time, but them he made an incredibly stupid remark about the Rutgers women’s basketball team – a small group of readily identifiable individuals, young university students. He passed into history.

Andrew Breitbart gained infamy for the hit-job he organized on ACORN with heavily edited video tapes, and was being feted by all kinds of people as a ‘new muckraker’. Then he did the same thing to Shirley Sherrod, and his star dropped like a rock. Lying about groups is safe, but don’t lie about ordinary people, especially people who will sue you.

Sandra Fluke was the line that should never be crossed, because people will react. Advertisers know this, and they fled the scene. There is power in the individual, as evidenced by politicians using the stories of individuals to make their talking points. Everyone can relate to ordinary people who aren’t rich or famous, in a way they can’t relate to those who have power. As one advertiser put it – ‘I have daughters Ms Fluke’s age’.

Limbaugh will exit stage right. Maybe not immediately, but he has made himself and his program a liability to advertisers.

7 comments

1 ellroon { 03.07.12 at 1:52 am }

Please may you be right. (I mean … correct.) Let him go count his gold coins with his fourth wife and leave the air waves alone…

2 jams o donnell { 03.07.12 at 6:26 am }

I am fortunate that we don’t have anyone nearly as vile as Limbaugh on our radio stations. He is clearly an ignorant piece of shit… Look at what he said about the LRA.

There’s always the late, great Bill Hicks’s piece on Limbaugh to give one perspective:

http://youtu.be/JIT-SYVPV8s

Not for the faint hearted!

3 Bryan { 03.07.12 at 11:34 am }

Ellroon, the show is syndicated, so contracts have to expire, but no one who carries his show wants to lose money doing it. Advertising pays the bills, and if there are no advertisers, there is no show.

Jams, you have libel laws that favor the plaintiffs, perhaps too much, but it is a lot easier to sue someone like Limbaugh in the UK. That’s why broadcasters keep a leash on their rabid dogs. In the US the only requirement is that you make money.

Live by the dollar, die by the dollar.

4 Steve Bates { 03.08.12 at 12:33 am }

Someone on a thread at upyernoz’s place (Snarki?) suggested that Breitbart should be buried under an oak tree, so that his grave is seasonally covered with acorns.

It is lamentable that money talks even louder than Rush Limbaugh, but I’ll take whatever relief I can get from chronic liars and abusers of power.

5 Bryan { 03.08.12 at 1:10 am }

The Supreme Court has decided that money is speech, and it’s the only language that most politicians and VSPs understand.

I caught a clip at my Mother’s of Limbaugh playing ‘the Black Knight’ – “It’s only a flesh wound.” He was saying that 3 new advertisers had signed on to replace the advertisers he lost. Well, except that 3 is not equal to 40+, and the ad rate probably went through the cellar floor to get any new ads.

People are angry and are letting advertisers know about it. Before the wingnuts were the only ones who did this, and they got catered to. Advertisers want to sell stuff, not deal with angry people. They don’t like controversies.

Oh, almost forgot … oak trees are planted over vampires as a safe-guard in some of the folklore I have read.

6 Badtux { 03.08.12 at 11:28 pm }

Rush will always be able to find advertisers to fill his ad space, because anybody still listening to Rushbo is gullible, and scammers *love* advertising to gullible people. I came across Rushbo on my radio while traveling and couldn’t believe all the ads for scams that filled his show, whether it was Gold Line, Lifelock, or whatever. Just one scam after another.

Of course, one problem with relying on scammers to support your radio show is that you have to get the cash up front, you can’t bill them net 30 like ordinary advertisers, because they might be in jail 30 days from now… and of course to get them to pay cash, you have to discount your rates *heavily*. The Rush Limbaugh show is losing money hand over fist to feed the Rushbo’s giant ego err salary, but Clear Channel appears willing to lose money on the Rushbo forever rather than just cut their losses and let him sue them for canceling his show, which has another 5 years or so left on Rushbo’s contract…

7 Bryan { 03.09.12 at 12:24 am }

Maybe someone should ask Mittster why Bain Capital supports Limbaugh, since Bain is the majority partner in Clear Channel.

Of course, it might be a money sink as a tax dodge, so maybe they don’t care if it makes money or not.

One of my clients in SoCal was a PR/Ad agency and I worked with their accounting people, so I’m aware of the pressure to drop rates when anything negative happens. There is going to be a lot of interest when the next ‘book’ is issued on audience numbers, which should be soon. I’ve heard ‘You should be paying us to even consider running ads on your station with the numbers you have in the book’ when rates were being discussed.

You need the numbers, and the demographics to get good rates, otherwise the ad agencies will low-ball you to poverty. No one will miss an opportunity to push a rate cut. OTOH, they probably made some money from political ads during the primaries in the South, but those are ending.