Rush Limbaugh is dead. He’s being hailed as a “forceful” and “groundbreaking” voice on the Right. In fact, he was a vile, vindictive villain constantly spewing vicious vitriol. If you were vulnerable or marginalized, he wouldn’t hesitate to heap his scorn on you. If there was a nutjob conspiracy theory against Progressives, he’d give it a full airing on his show. In fact, Limbaugh and Rupert Murdoch did more to poison public discourse in the United States than anybody else, with the exception of the spawn of their toxic airwaves, Donald Trump.
Limbaugh, of course, was a big Trump fan. They fed upon their malice like two bad boys at a frat house, bringing out the worst in each other. Their tactics were mirror images: lying while accusing their opponents of lying; ridiculing enemies with juvenile epithets; complaining of unfair treatment by “the media” when they dominated the media; acting like they were rebelling against the straitjacket of “political correctness,” while lashing out cruelly against anybody who didn’t fully embrace their brand of orthodoxy.
Limbaugh once bloviated to his audience that the “genius” of Donald Trump was that Trump didn’t come right out and say “’[his target of the week] does X!’ No, he says, ‘I’ve heard that he does X’” – as if this “genius” technique isn’t employed by every smartass in middle or high school trying to put one past his teacher.
Trump rewarded Limbaugh by bestowing on him the Presidential Medal of Freedom. This so degraded the award that President Biden will probably have to rename it, so the honorable recipients he selects won’t be tainted by being in the same club as Limbaugh.