[Guest post by Jack Dunphy]
Today the Los Angeles Times devoted a portion of its front page and more than a thousand words to Rush Limbaugh, and like most liberal media organs that have examined what we might call the Limbaugh phenomenon, they fail in their effort to help readers understand it. This is a failure that might have been avoided had the writers merely listened to his program.
The article quotes Rich Bond, former chairman of the Republican National Committee. “The question is,” Bond says, “are we going to have an all-white-man litmus test under the Republican Party? Or is there room for diverse opinion on environmental issues, on the issue of right to life, the issue of taxes and spending?”
Thus the article advances the notion that Limbaugh’s views are retrograde, that today’s Republicans should somehow reach accommodation with those who advocate for increased government regulation on environmental issues, increased taxes and government spending, and, worst of all, abortion on demand.
Rubbish. As anyone who listens to Limbaugh’s program with any regularity can attest, he is not the least bit interested in finding accommodation with policies that are corrosive to freedom at best and immoral at worst. He has no interest in expanding the Republican Party by making it more like the Democrat Party. Rather, he seeks to expand it by persuading his listeners of the superiority of conservative principles, which, far from being “all-white” as Bond claims, are unbound by race or ethnicity. Limbaugh may find that this task grows easier as Americans come to realize the Obama administration and the Democrat-controlled Congress will not be delivering the peace and prosperity they so lavishly promised.
Update: Readers here on Patterico may not be familiar with my writing for National Review Online and Pajamas Media, but as I once explained on NRO (here and here), I was once a squishy-headed liberal, the kind of person who, had the Internet been around in those medieval times, would have written the sort of snarky, conservatives-are-evil comments that surely will soon be appended to this post. Needless to say, I’m not any longer, and I’m grateful to Mr. Limbaugh for his contributions to my education.