Only one day after this week’s catastrophic earthquake in Haiti, approximately 15 million Americans were treated to messages of devious stupidity and religious lunacy at incomprehensible levels.
That 5 percent of the United States population is the daily audience of talk radio shill Rush Limbaugh and detestable televangelist Pat Robertson. The typical repulsive rants of these degenerates are nauseating, but Wednesday’s set a new benchmark for vicious cretinism. On a day after thousands were killed or buried alive, it was business as usual for the ideologue hate-traders.
Limbaugh indicated president Barack Obama would use the country’s quick Haitian relief effort to improve his standing with “light-skinned and dark-skinned blacks” in the U.S. Limbaugh criticized Obama’s reaction time to the simpleton terrorist-wannabe who only scorched his crotch over Detroit, while somehow belittling his response to save lives in a destitute nation where folks make about $2 a day.
Over the last two years, Limbaugh has tirelessly disgraced the realm of communication I used to call my trade. From his half-witted fascination with the “Barack the Magic Negro” ballad to blatant lies regarding all things political, Limbaugh has created a new genre of advertiser subsidized propaganda. And just when I thought I couldn’t be shocked by his arrogant dogmatism, Wednesday’s broadcast left me dumbfounded.
On the unfathomably long-running “700 Club,” Robertson said Haiti’s fate was enacted by his god for the deal its inhabitants made with the devil to ensure freedom from the French in the late 1700s. My dislike of Robertson’s program dates back over 30 years, when as a child, the show was an hour of agony before my afternoon cartoons came on at my channel-challenged grandparents’ house. That displeasure has been repeated over my lifetime when the false-prophet Robertson says something socially ignorant enough to make the national news.
Robertson’s transgressions are too numerous to list but include a stint as a phony faith healer, venom-spewing toward anyone not living up to his twisted Biblical interpretations and lying about his service as a bartender in the Korean War. He was likely disappointed that the disaster didn’t hit Los Angeles or San Francisco so he could blame the state’s gays, medical marijuana users and pro-choice advocates for the carnage. If the Big One ever hits California, you can bet Robertson or whatever charlatan replaces him in death will do just that.
I have learned more about this country over the past year than at any time of my life, as the dark underbelly of America has exposed itself on the airwaves every afternoon. What we have brewing is a disturbed cult of stupidity, which is horrifyingly dangerous. Fed misinformation by opportunist mouthpieces, there is a sliver of us that has drawn battle lines and is arming itself, as evidenced by the nationwide ammunition shortages of 2009. Most of the misguided limit their reading to firearm manuals and thirstily consume the audio and visual strychnine produced by Limbaugh, Robertson and their ilk. The poison only further corrodes the minds of those whose world-scope is the size of a .22 bullet.
Al Qaeda and fellow Islamic extremists might be our leading adversary, but the psychotic fundamentalists within our borders are a solid No. 2. This perverted movement, which laid dormant in a servile slumber during George W. Bush’s reign, only occurs during Democratic presidencies. Bill Clinton’s eight years saw a massive spike in seditious activity. In 1995, Timothy McVeigh showed the damage one man could do when his truck bomb killed 168 innocent people in Oklahoma City, in the worst terrorist attack on U.S. soil prior to 9/11.
There was a time when broadcasted far right-wingers were comedic entertainment, but the days of Morton Downey Jr. are over. While plenty of level-headed people listen to Limbaugh or watch Robertson, Glenn Beck or Sean Hannity, so do McVeighs-in-training, and the absorption of their fatwa-like decrees regarding the Great Satan Obama have a menacing effect. Daily they throw gasoline on the fires of confused discontent, and if a domestic attack from within does occur, the fabricating zealot cheerleaders should be implicated.
After watching Anderson Cooper’s jaw-dropping live reports from Port-au-Prince, I ended Wednesday by flipping to Hannity on Fox News. Instead of discussing one of the worst tragedies in modern times, the self-congratulatory host dropped mindless knee-slappers while assailing those trying to improve health care. As I sat sickened, I envisioned those in living rooms or bunkers nodding in approval, and thought sadly, “Welcome to America, 2010.”