Rush Limbaugh, a famous American radio station who died of lung cancer at the age of 70, caused heated controversy in the American political media a few days ago because he “reshaped the media and Republican politics.”
After Limbaugh was diagnosed with terminal cancer a year ago, Trump awarded him the “Presidential Medal of Freedom.” When Melania, the first lady at the time, hung the medal on the slightly ill-looking Limbaugh, all the Republicans present stood up and applauded and cheered, while the Democrats all sat in silence. This scene appropriately reflects Limbaugh’s status and influence-he is a hero in the minds of conservatives and a dangerous element in the hearts of liberals.
Limbaugh was born in a small city in Missouri. There were many well-known lawyers and judges in his family. Limbaugh was obsessed with radio stations since he was a child, and he did not hesitate to drop out of college. In the 1990s, Limbaugh began to become the main microphone of American conservatives. His main platform, “Rush Limbaugh Show”, was organized by the “U.S. Premiere Radio Network” and broadcasted on more than 600 radio stations nationwide approximately three hours a week , It is conservatively estimated that 15 million people regularly listen to the program.
Ten thousand people listen to the program regularly. After entering the Internet age, the Limbo talk show also has a corresponding APP that can be downloaded. Limbaugh is one of the highest-paid media professionals in the United States. Forbes stated that his pre-tax income in 2018 was $84.5 million.
Limbaugh’s success has a “social need” factor. The United States began in the Franklin Roosevelt period and went through a long period of liberalization, which eventually aroused a backlash from conservatives; from the Reagan period, the United States as a whole began to “turn right.” This trend of social thought needs to speak up, and the mainstream media in the United States is mostly liberalized. The emergence of Limbaugh just meets the needs of conservatives.
Limbo’s programs are easy to understand, “good at simplifying complex things,” and his laughter and curse in the studio have become spiritual food for a large number of ordinary people.
And he was more offensive, disregarded the facts, and had no bottom line in his comments on many key events. For example, he called feminists “feminist Nazis” and later attached this label to Hillary Clinton; he insisted that Obama did not prove that he was born in the United States; he said that climate change was a scam and that Biden did not win the 2020 election. Wins and so on. Critics therefore accuse him of inciting hatred and creating divisions, and that he is the most dangerous person in the United States.
Limbaugh said that he knew he had offended many people, but he was “not afraid to offend people.” In fact, after he had the ability to call the wind and the rain, many people did not dare to offend him. Republican presidents all praised him.
The success of Limbo’s talk show has a huge impact on conservative media and political parties. After Limbaugh, a group of hosts from Fox News, as well as a group of conservative media professionals such as the radio talk show host Alex Jones, have all become “easy to understand, fierce, disregarding facts, and not afraid of offending people”. The way, and this way is very effective. The conservative people who have long received information from these media believe that only Limbaugh and these media are right.
Some politicians in the Republican Party have also transplanted the strategy of “easy-to-understand, creating divisions and disregarding the bottom line” into the political realm. The peak maker is Trump. From this perspective, it is not an exaggeration to say that Limbaugh “shaped the media and Republican politics.”
However, some people believe that Limbaugh has made conservatism more radical and narrower, and in the long run he hurts true conservatism. This statement is reasonable, but the world is changing, and the trend of thought is also changing. On the one hand, Limbaugh made conservatism narrow and radical. On the other hand, people cannot deny that various factors (including more radical leftists) made conservatism more radical, which led to Limbaugh’s success. With this kind of complementarity, it should be very difficult for the United States to return to the traditional era of disputes between liberals and conservatives.