Monday, January 26, 2009

Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity denounce George Will and David Brooks

Last night I was watching Sean Hannity interview Rush Limbaugh and it all became clear. The conservative movement is badly splintered. On one side you have the likes of Charles Krauthammer, George Will and David Brooks and on the other side you have the likes of Sean Hannity, Rush Limbaugh and Michael Savage. I will identify them as the “thinking-conservatives” and the “peasants-with-pitchforks-conservatives.” The pitchfork conservatives label this division as between “so called conservatives” and “genuine conservatives.”

I really hate that we have this division. A movement that is in the minority does not need to be split in two. I would not have wanted to verbalize this division. I would prefer to ignore it. But Limbaugh laid down the gauntlet. He apparently wants to read out of the movement anyone who is not a ditto head. Below are excepts from the Hannity-Limbaugh interview (link):

HANNITY: What about all these — these so-called conservatives that met with Obama? Were you invited to that dinner?

LIMBAUGH: No, I wasn't. I wasn't.


HANNITY: I wasn't invited either.

LIMBAUGH: No. The blueprint is there. Let me — here's what's going on in the Republican Party. And it's really not new. These people that we're talking about, the northeastern blue blood Rockefeller Country Club types, they didn't even like Reagan. They — Reagan was an embarrassment. They believe that he was the dunce, an amiable dunce.

But what it's about, Sean, is abortion. These northeastern moderate liberal Republican types all have wives. I know this is going to sound pedantic and simplistic. But I have experienced it and this is how I know it. These guys that we are talking — they are big-money people. They are contributors, donors, fundraisers, they are just embarrassed to be in the same party with people in the (sigh) of who are pro (laugh) and they go to NASCAR races and that's — that's at the heart of this.

They go to the convention, the Republican convention with these people they think are hicks and hay seeds. 24 million of them without whom they couldn't win. So it really is about that. They won't say so publicly. But it — and it's not just that. But that's a large part of it, the Obama — it's a great — if you have time for me to analyze.

HANNITY: We have plenty of time.

LIMBAUGH: Does anybody, anybody with even half a brain really believe that Barack Obama went to dinner with a bunch of conservatives to have his mind changed?

HANNITY: Good point.

LIMBAUGH: If he did, there are some genuine conservatives he could have talked to. He could have invited us. He could have gone to Human Events. He could have gone to some people at the Heritage Foundation. He doesn't want his mind changed. He is co-opting these people. He's bringing them in. He wants the establishment media inside the beltway, punditry and so- called journalism, to be afraid to criticize him. I mean if he's broken bread with them and he's made them feel good about themselves, and given them an inside view of exactly who he is, it's going to be very difficult for these people to criticize him. I don't think for a minute that he cared to have his mind changed.

Pardon me, but I am greatly offended. Brooks and Will are “so called conservatives?” They are the bright lights of the movement! As far as I can determine, both George Will and David Brooks were Reagan enthusiast. Both are pro-life. The difference is that Brooks and Will analyze issues and make rational arguments; Hannity and Limbaugh rant and play to peoples prejudices. Brooks and Will appeal to the intellect; Hannity and Limbaugh appeal to the gut.

Now, I will admit that I do see a certain class or regional division within the Republican Party as well as within American society in general. I have often felt that there is a certain segment of society that looked down their nose at those of us from the South or Middle America. I myself am not a NASCAR fan, but I know what Rush means. I am a son of the South. I am a Tennessean and proud of it. I love country music. Thank God I’m a country boy! Just because I talk slow does not mean I’m dumb.

This southern inferiority complex or regional chauvinism or class resentment however is not the basis of the division within the movement. It is not about NASCAR or accents or style. I am a southern boy with an accent who likes country music so I am not a “northeastern moderate liberal Republican.” I certainly am not a “blue blood Rockefeller Country Club” Republican. If there is a Will-Brooks vs. Hannity-Limbaugh division within the conservative movement it is not a regional or class division but a division between those who think and those who simply emote.

It this is the division that Hannity and Limbaugh want to force upon the conservative movement then I would much rather identify myself with the George Will- David Brooks branch of the conservative movement than the Hannity-Limbaugh branch of the movement. I refuse to accept their labels however. We should not let the peasants-with-pitchforks hijack the movement of Buckley, Brooks and Will and claim the mantel of Reagan. We conservatives who read and think should not accept the label of “so-called conservatives.”

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  1. I would call the dynamic dodos, pinheads. I just don't know if Bill O. would agree with me.

  2. ooooo, "Dittohead" clever indeed.

    to me they're just a bunch of angry undercover lovers; waiting to have undercover pillowtalk when they hope america is not listening.

    They Already Know - Barack Obama Keeps it COOL.

  3. And thus the reason I have never cared for Rush or Hannity; they are essentially partisan hacks with no real tolerance for nuanced positions. Give me Buckley, Will, or Brooks any day of the week.

  4. Here Here !!

    January 26, 2009 2:25 PM
    Blogger VH said...

    And thus the reason I have never cared for Rush or Hannity; they are essentially partisan hacks with no real tolerance for nuanced positions. Give me Buckley, Will, or Brooks any day of the week.

  5. Rod, though I disagree with your views of Rush, I agree that he was out of place to be blasting George Will and David Brooks.