Right Wing Radio Week in Review: August 17-21

The mainstream media touted the news that President Barack Obama would be speaking to a “conservative talk radio host” this week to discuss his failing healthcare proposals.

I eagerly clicked on the link to this news story, anxious to see which of my favorite hosts had scored this programming coup.

The answer was: Michael Smerconish.

Who, you ask? Exactly. Why, he’s so “conservative” he supported… Obama for President.

In fact, the indefatigable “Radio Equalizer,” Brian Maloney visited Smerconish’s website, and discovered that the obscure radio host describes himself as… “not that conservative.”

And the credibility-challenged mainstream media wonders why they’re losing readers and viewers.

Glenn Beck was on vacation, but that didn’t reduce the liberal punditry’s obsession with the highly rated host. (In fact, MediaBistro.com simply switched their obsession to, well, Beck’s "controversial" vacation. Yawn.)

Amazingly, the obsession with Beck has now jumped the pond: the UK Independent wondered this week: "Is Glenn Beck Too Right Wing Even for FOX News?"

Back in the US, left leaning blogs trumpeted the success of the “Glenn Beck boycott” being run by a black activist group called Color of Change (after Beck called Obama a “racist” last month.) Too bad they spoke too soon.

A couple of quick phone calls revealed that some of the big-name advertisers said to be pulling their spots from Beck’s FOX News program were doing no such thing; a few were never Beck sponsors to begin with.

And of course, the boycott simply fueled a counter boycott. Color of Change claims its petition has thousands of signatures, but Beck has millions of fans – who actually shop at boycott targets like Wal-Mart. It’s pretty easy to see how this will end.
Unless you’re Keith Olbermann. The MSNBC host crowed on August 14:

A cheese company, a popular clothier, SC Johnson Wax, Procter and Gamble, Lawyers.com and two – possibly three insurance firms have now bailed out on ‘Glenn Beck. (…) How much trouble is Glenn Beck in after a seventh, possibly eighth major advertiser cancels its commercials on his programs?

But in a hilarious development this week, many targeted companies responded by pulling their ads from all cable commentary shows, including… low-rated liberal ones on MSNBC, like Olbermann’s.

Liberals never quite get the hang of the Law of Unintended Consequences, do they? Chalk up another embarrassing and expensive failure for the nation’s “progressives.”

However, failure after failure never seems to wear liberals out. This raucous healthcare debate has renewed calls on the Left for a reinstatement of the so-called Fairness Doctrine, or similar legal moves to essentially shut down conservative talk radio.

Before he left for vacation, Glenn Beck talks with Media Research Center’s Seton Motley about Obama’s new FCC Diversity Czar [Chief Diversity Officer], Mark Lloyd. who wants to require privately owned radio stations to pay a tax equal to their operating costs and had that money over to PBS and NPR). "Private radio stations, in essence, would be paying to fund the competition," explained one blogger, "not that they could survive this tax anyway,"  

Rush Limbaugh took Tuesday off to voice a 2010 episode of The Family Guy, so Mark Steyn sat in as guest host. Having lived in the U.S., Canada and the UK, Steyn is uniquely qualified to comment on their various health care systems. Steyn warned that the “nationalization” of health care always leads to “the nationalization of your body,” and joked grimly:

There’s going to be huge traffic accidents from Canadians fleeing Canadian health care south and Mexicans fleeing Mexican health care north. They’ll all collide around St. Louis and the entire Missouri health care system is going to be overwhelmed.

(Rush Limbaugh’s archives are members-only, so unfortunately you can’t download files of Steyn’s show. It would have been a good day for non-members to have software that would let them record his show, and others, without having to pay the hefty members fee. You can find out more about that software here.)

However, Steyn also did his usual Thursday stint with Hugh Hewitt, which featured a unique format – and you can hear that audio free.

Hewitt also spoke to Senator Jim DeMint, who has another cool sounding book out: Saving Freedom: We Can Stop America’s Slide into Socialism

Anyway, when Rush Limbaugh returned to the air, he wasted no time making a cheap “Uranus” joke about Barney Frank that got lots of negative attention, while an equally juvenile gay joke cracked by Chris Matthews this week was widely ignored.

Rush also regaled listeners with stories about all the Family Guy staffers who came up to him at the taping and whispered, “Pssss! I’m the only conservative who works here. Don’t tell anybody. Keep up the good work!”)

Veteran Washington columnist Robert Novak died this week, and talk show host G. Gordon Liddy invited a couple of other “old timers” and “insiders” – Pat Buchanan and Brent Bozell — to share their stories about their friend, “the Prince of Darkness”. Political junkies will enjoy this free audio.

And finally: Mark Levin told his liberal counterpart Ed Shultz to "stop sitting on a cucumber!" (Free audio.) No, really.

(Kathy Shaidle blogs at FiveFeetOfFury.com. You can visit some other sites to read more about about Conservative Talk Radio, and learnhow to record your favorite talk radio shows while saving money.

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