ARC's 1st Law: As a "progressive" online discussion grows longer, the probability of a nefarious reference to Karl Rove approaches one

Friday, April 13, 2007

Note to the Nutroots - Imus No Right Winger

H/T to Don Surber for the LATimes article

While waiting for my flight home last night, overheard a couple of 20 / 30-somethings talking about some shock jock guy who got fired. They had no clue who he was, when he was on the air, or what he had said other than it was racially insensitive (or however you choose to describe it). Then they said, he's some talk radio guy like Limbaugh, O'Reilly, etc, etc...

Well, Media Matters is out with this "list" of insensitive remarks by Glenn Beck, Limbaugh, O'Reilly, and Michael Savage. Most of them are listed simply because they don't comport with a liberal political perspective - few are on par with what Imus said.

Just to remind Media Matters and others on the Left who are now going to be eager to use similar tactics to eliminate conservative talk radio, Imus was a platform for Democrats to get their message out - not a platform of conservative thought.

Democratic politicians lose a soapbox with Imus
His show gave many of them a way to reach a national audience of white males -- a crucial voting bloc.
By Peter Wallsten, Times Staff Writer
April 13, 2007

WASHINGTON — They came by the hundreds that hot August day in tiny Johnson City, Tenn., gathering on an asphalt parking lot to meet Rep. Harold E. Ford Jr. It was not just that he might become the state's first black senator. More than that, even in Republican eastern Tennessee, the Democratic congressman was a celebrity — a regular guest on Don Imus' radio show.

And today, with Imus' career in tatters, the fate of the controversial shock jock is stirring quiet but heartfelt concern in an unlikely quarter: among Democratic politicians.

That's because, over the years, Democrats such as Ford came to count on Imus for the kind of sympathetic treatment that Republicans got from Rush Limbaugh or Sean Hannity.

Equally important, Imus gave Democrats a pipeline to a crucial voting bloc that was perennially hard for them to reach: politically independent white men.

With Imus' show canceled indefinitely because of his remarks about the Rutgers University women's basketball team, some Democratic strategists are worried about how to fill the void. For a national radio audience of white men, Democrats see few if any alternatives.

"This is a real bind for Democrats," said Dan Gerstein, an advisor to one of Imus' favorite regulars, Sen. Joe Lieberman (I-Conn.). "Talk radio has become primarily the province of the right, and the blogosphere is largely the province of the left. If Imus loses his microphone, there aren't many other venues like it around."

Jim Farrell, a former aide to 2000 presidential candidate and Imus regular Bill Bradley, said the firing "creates a vacuum."

This week, when Sen. Christopher J. Dodd (D-Conn.) was asked by CNN why he picked Imus' show to announce his presidential candidacy, Dodd explained: "He's got a huge audience; he gives you enough time to talk, not a 30-second sound bite, a chance to explain your views; … and a chance to reach the audience who doesn't always watch the Sunday morning talk shows."

Though Imus was a regular destination for the likes of Dodd, Ford, Lieberman, 2004 Democratic presidential nominee Sen. John F. Kerry and others — as well as such GOP figures as Sen. John McCain of Arizona — his influence has long been debated.

Talkers Magazine ranks him far below Limbaugh and liberal Ed Schultz in terms of power. His audience is dwarfed by many others, and he is not heard in some major markets [though his show was simulcast on cable TV]. One senior Democratic strategist, requesting anonymity to avoid insulting some of his party's power players, said the show was no more than a "locker room for middle-age politicians."

Not all high-level Democrats were drawn to the self-styled "I-Man." Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton (D-N.Y.), a party presidential front-runner and a frequent target of Imus' jokes, said she never had the desire to appear.

Sen. Barack Obama (D-Ill.), the other current front-runner, appeared once — but he was the first presidential candidate to call this week for Imus' ouster.

Ford strategists believe his relationship with Imus was central to earning credibility in the eyes of white voters in conservative regions of Tennessee. "That's how I got to know Harold, seeing him on Imus," said Ben Scharfstein, owner of the One Stop convenience store in Johnson City, who turned over his parking lot that August day for the campaign event.

But even Scharfstein said he had now had it with Imus. "I'm going to have to turn Don off now," he said. "His ego has gotten ahead of himself, and that's not worth watching."

And Ford was hardly leaping to the defense of his radio ally despite repeated on-air pleas from Imus to appear in his defense. Ford on Thursday called Imus' statements "reprehensible," though he added that Imus was a friend and a "decent man."

Harold Ford at least has the courage to stand by someone who he considers a friend. Gregory, Matthews, Russert, Dodd, and the rest of the sniveling elites treat him as persona non grata.

And, again.... this isn't the first time that Imus has said something shocking - it's just the first time that the Libs & Media Elite felt ashamed enough to avoid his program. Perhaps his ratings were in a death spiral.

Your Co-Conspirator,
ARC: St Wendeler

Comments (5)
Monterey John said...

I'm a bit embarrassed to admit I was a fan of Imus despite his unexplainable support for Kerry and much else on his program. for the most part, I just liked him. I have a soft spot for misanthropes.

But he is no right winger. He is a traditional macho dude but with a liberal political bent. It just goes to show, you don't have to be a conservative to hold some rather nasty prejudices.

Come to think of it, maybe this episode has some utility afterall.

libhom said...

Claims that Imus, a right-winger, is liberal reminds me of when the right-wing noise machine kept spreading rumors that Mark Foley is a Democrat. There's a rightist sucker born every minute.

St Wendeler said...

Imus is not a conservative by any stretch of the imagination. Nor is he a progressive ideologue. However, he is an elitist who supports democrats (Hillary for NY Senator, Kerry for Pres, Dodd, etc) and always - consistently - toes the establishment line, yucking it up with a drunk David Gregory about how stupid W. is, pondering how great the next Dem presidential candidate would be, etc.

I suppose in your eyes Kerry & Hillary are both right-wingers as well...

Anonymous said...

I have a solution to ALL of Don Imus's problems-
New Name-
REV. Don Imus-
All will be forgiven

St Wendeler said...

Nah, then he'd just be some right-wing Christian Conservative...

And back to libhom, I forgot to point out that the ueber-right wing Los Angeles Times agrees with me that Don's primary beneficiaries were the Dems.