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Wednesday, March 14, 2012

What boycott??

The FlushRush campaign continues at full speed.  Powered mainly by MediaMatters of America, my fellow progressives are like Ruby on Once Upon a Time.  They're smelling blood, they're turning into wolves, and they're ready to pounce.

Their weapon? Basically blackmailing any sponsor they can find to get them to pull their ads from the Limbaugh program.  Someone said that the number is about 140.  That's literally more sponsors than commercials on that show.

But how successful IS the boycott?

Depends on whether or not you live in New York City.

Media Matters does say that a more reasonably sounding 52+ have bolted, and daily they post what they monitor from Rush's flagship, WABC/New York.

Now this blog is being written on Wednesday, March 14, 2012.  Here is the list of spots that ran on Rush's show this afternoon in the first two spot breaks:

Hour 1, commercial break 2

  • The Small Business Authority in association with the Corporate Tax Network
  • Imus in the Morning promo
  • New York City Correction Officers' Benevolent Association
  • John Batchelor Show promo
  • U.S. Army (, and the Ad Council

Hour 1, commercial break 3

[WABC news break]
  • Mark Levin Show promo
  • American Council on Education and Lumina Foundation (, and the Ad Council
  • U.S. Army (, and the Ad Council
  • Promo for Sean Hannity and Jason Mattera radio shows

The sponsors in bold, by the way, are paid ads.

And it seems that business for Rush is pretty sparse in New York.

But in Los Angeles, a different story, maybe?

This morning I was able to catch the first two break inside of Limbaugh's show on his West Coast flagship, KFI/LA via the online IHeartRadio app.  What I heard during the breaks was a much different story.

Remember, the paid ads are in bold.

Hour 1, commercial break 2

  • Attorney Barack Lurie
  • Charter Cable
  • Cars4Causes
  • Amberin
  • An investment product (could not get the name)
Hour 1, commercial break 3

  • Dotavo DSL
  • Regenix
  • Mountain View Tire
  • New American Funding Mortgage
  • The Gold Guys
And on the 2nd break, they loaded up so many commericials, KFI actually rejoined Limbaugh a few moments late.

Also, by the way, the all-bolds on my list were not mistakes.  Everyone in those spot breaks PAID to be on.

Now I am not saying that Eric Bohlert was not hearing what he heard.  I'm just saying he heard it in New York.  Not just in Los Angeles. In the past week, I sampled KNZZ/Grand Junction, CO and KTRH/Houston. All running fully sponsored breaks during Rush.

Which begs to ask the question: If the boycott is not working in Los Angeles, the largest media market in America, if it' not working in smaller markets, if it's not working in conservative enclaves like Houston, ii it's not working in the short, if the Limbaugh boycott is working ONLY in New York City and no where it really working?

Well, is it?

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

Rush Limbaugh: Where I Stand...

This is a clarification on my views on the Rush Limbaugh controversy. I know my views have been contrary to many of my good friends on Twitter and Facebook. All I ask is that you understand where I am coming from.

First, I have NOT gone over to the dark side. I am the same Obama-loving, beyond liberal leftie I have always been and shall continue to be,

Second, what Rush Limbaugh said to Sandra Fluke crossed the line. It was appalling in its condescension. The apology that Limbaugh gave was weak and should have been placed on the air first.


Six years ago, NBC aired a series called Book of Daniel. To make a long story short, A group called the American Family Association wanted the show cancelled simply because of its portrayal of people of faith. What they did was threaten companies that advertised on that show with a boycott if they didn’t pull their spots from the show. And though they swore up and down that they were not practising censorship, that’s exactly what they did: censorship by blackmail.

Look familiar?

Now eventually, Book of Daniel WAS cancelled, but because of bad ratings. But the AFA took the “credit,” and (if you have read my posts for the past six years you know) I have been fighting them ever since.

Now its us on the left who are censors.

Limbaugh has apologized to Fluke twice. Once on his website and again on his show. It may not have been the falling-on-your-sword type of apology, but he said he was sincere. Fluke, for her part, has rejected both apologies. That would be between the two of them.

This, though, has not calmed down the army of progressive Tweeters (at least in name) who have been calling for anyone who has run a spot on that show either intentionally or as a run-of-schedule spot that could be placed anywhere to pull those commercials from the show, in a mistaken notion that the sponsors support the show. In most cases, they are only supporting the station...this ain’t NPR.

Now here’s a partial list of sponsors who have headed for the exits: GEICO, AOL, ProFlowers, LegalZoom, Citrix, Select Comfort, and Quiken Loans. Now what do these fine companies have in common? They also sponsor PROGRESSIVE TALKERS like Randi Rhodes (who works for the same program distributor as Limbaugh), Stephanie Miller and Bill Press.

What that means is that all any CONSERVATIVE group can do is organize its own tweet campaign and pressure these same companies pull their spots from PROGRESSIVE hosts. And chances are they can pull it off.

So what we potentially have here is censorship via blackmail, with progressives and conservatives making like Tony Soprano to make sure their view is the only one available. Whether they realize it or not.

And it doesn’t stop there. Tasting blood, the StopRush contingent is now going after stations to pull Limbaugh’s show. Two already have as of this writing. However, one is in Hilo, HI...and the other is in a market in the East so small it can’t be found on a Hubble telescope.

Meanwhile, KFI in Los Angeles, WLS in Chicago, WABC in New York, and 500+ stations nationwide are still on the EIB Network.

I have tried to want to join the StopRush movement. The man is boorish, a pain in the ass, insulting, and...though I don’t believe he is racist...highly racially and sexually insenitive and ignorant. So are the TWENTY MILLION listeners he has every week. TWENTY MILLION.

But what stops me is the principle. Censorship is wrong. It is always wrong, even for what we think are the wrong reasons. Fluke does have the option to sue for slander and libel, and she may have a case. But censorship by any means is not and never is the answer.

I could go on, but there is one person who, as he usually does, succinctly sums it all up in 140 characters or less:

“Hate to defend #RushLimbaugh but he apologized, liberals looking bad not accepting. Also hate intimidation by sponsor pullout”-Bill Maher on Twitter

Finally, a personal note. I have developed many friends on Twitter. And some people actually have notice what I say, for which I am extremly greatful. I understand the passion. But my belief that the free exchange of ideas, even ideas I find abhorrent, such as Limbaugh’s statements to Ms. Fluke, is what sets this country apart from the others. On this one issue, I respectfully disagree. I hope this does not affect any friendships, and I know we will be on the same side again soon.