Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Let's Take Rush Limbaugh Down a Few Notches

This is myth - but like all good myths, it has enough elements of truth in it: People who love Howard Stern listen to him for 15 minutes. People who hate Howard Stern listen to him for 45 minutes.

Right now, I think Rush Limbaugh has about 20 million listeners on an average week. That's huge. As an elected official, you can imagine how intimidating this would be: if you come out with anything that doesn't fit Limbaugh's ideal of conservatism (pay no mind to his ass-kissing of Wal-Mart, yet he is decidedly against giving illegal entrants citizenship - even though companies like Wal-Mart and McDonald's have directly or indirectly done more to encourage illegal immigration than any governmental action) - this elected official (especially presidential) will have to contend with at least 20 million politically active "Dittoheads." many listeners are like me, who treat Limbaugh like an early-morning episode of Saved By The Bell: a small hate fix to get the blood boiling? I'm not suggesting a boycott - he has every right to be on the air, but just as a curious experiment, I'm wondering what would happen if only the listeners who hated the bile he spews were to stop listening...for a month. That would distill his audience numbers down to the ones who swear by the gospel of Rush. I'm willing to bet that about a quarter to a third of his audience would disappear. It would be interesting to me and I'm sure a few others. It would be REALLY interesting to advertisers who have lost about five million listeners.

That is one thing that Rush has on Air America. That station may not be accessible to the majority of listeners, but even in markets airing Air America, none of the talent is incendiary enough to get a large amount of conservatives to listen to get their blood boiling. Al Franken is just too nice to elicit a "Ohhh...god, I'm so pissed off - did you hear what that a-hole said today?!" reaction. Most conservatives just shrug and turn it back to the "preaching to the choir" sermons of Dr. Laura and Sean Hannity.



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