Big fat idiot
EIB - Excellence in Broadcasting? More likely "Eating Indiscriminately in Burgerland."
Mass mind control artist Rush Limbaugh has convinced millions of brainwashed Americans that The Register is an "obscure UK tech site." In the US, Limbaugh is famous for using the country's highest-rated radio program to control millions of small American minds over more than two decades. He's also famous for being "a big fat …
A man whose never seen a war he didn't like - apart from Vietnam where he couldn't serve because he had to have a cyst removed from his arse.
To this day there's some question over exactly which of the two unpleasant painful excrescences was thrown away and which one got the radio show.
That not all Yanks listen to Right Wing radio. In fact, I do not know anyone who admits to following TBFI ... But then, I'm located on the left side of the Sierra Nevada Range ;-)
We're not all fat, either. Nor do we all eat fast-food, in fact I can't remember the last time I ate anything resembling fast food ... Probably when I was in College.
I spent a couple of weeks on vacation recently with a group of Canadians and Americans and I can verify that they are not all fat right-winged red-necks. In fact you couldn't hope to meet a better group of people.
As usual, It is just unfortunate that the idiots and politicians who mouth the loudest are seen as representatives of a nation. It is also unfortunate that these idiots are driven by some twisted mental and emotional instability that make them so prominent while the overwhelming majority of good, honest folk go about their lives earning an honest living in a quiet way.
BMI is *not* considered a reliable indication of obesity by anyone with a clue.
I am about 5'11", and weigh about 15 stone. My body fat percentage hovers around 4%. According to the BMI, I am obese with a BMI of just over 30 ... In reality, I am quite fit & healthy. I think nothing of spending an afternoon with my hooks, re-stacking the set-of-joints load of Alfalfa that was delivered into the wrong location. My field hands laugh at me, because I actually enjoy the exercise afforded by re-stacking hay bales :-)
Arnold "Da Governator", in his Terminator body, is considered obese, according to BMI.
But then, "Forbes" has never been known for it's medical knowledge ...
 That's a double-lorry load of 110 pound bales.
'cos it's based on a square and people are (strangely) three dimensional.
This makes people who are short or tall have an index that is meaningless.
Also - it doesn't distinguish between muscle or fat,
So, it's a pile of crap and needs to be replace by something that has a meaning.
Limbaugh isn't representative of America as a whole any more than any other burger-inhaling, loud-mouthed right-wing stereotype is. He just gets paid a lot more than they do and when he runs his mouth it's not just to his buddies, it's to anyone who'll tune in and listen.
Bottom line: he gets paid a lot to tell a sizeable minority of people what they want to hear. Think about that for a moment. His job is to get on the radio, be all shouty and get a certain audience demographic nicely riled up. In exchange, he takes home large piles of cash from his employer and corporate sponsors. Everything he says and does in public is calculated to achieve that end and if it helps elect people who are overly friendly to the hyper-wealthy, that's just cream on the pie for him. I'd be surprised if he truly believes half of the nonsense he comes up with, but he knows that his audience will and that's all that matters to him.
What kind of external stimulus do you think conditions such a reflex ? Inflamatory attitudes like that do not help.
If the tone of this radio figurehead is anti-intellectual it is partly because pseudo-intellects frequently denigrate his listeners. Those people are to some extent seeking solace. Not that I support the show - I have never heard it as I don't live in the US - merely to shift part of the blame for the show's popularity to critics like LaeMing.
I think you're wrong. Critics like LawMing aren't the problem; anti-intellectualism is the problem. If you try to please everyone all the time you will inevitably fail. In what universe then should we focus our attentions on attempting to please the lowest common denominator? We are talking about individuals that are more fiercely governed by group dynamics than individual analysis of the world around them.
If through genetics you were born with a decreased intellectual capacity then I understand a lack of desire to engage in a cerebral job. I have met individuals who fall into this category; in my experience they nearly universally respect intellectual endeavours despite not being gifted enough to participate. Lack of intellectual capacity is simply not an excuse; even with reduced processing power you can overcome your default emotional reactions to stimulus enough to attempt critical analysis. If you yourself are not capable of such analysis on your own you should seek answers from those who make their living doing so.
No, the sorts of people who form Rush Limbaugh’s audience are those who have made a conscious choice to reject principals such as logic, rational thinking and consideration of consequences. These are individuals who have made the conscious choice to think with their “gut” – to pursue instinctual responses above all else and allow their emotions to determine everything.
You cannot reason with these people; they have rejected it. To pander to them is to abandon everything that has allowed our society to climb (barely) past the feudal stages and develop science, technology and modern ethics. It is thanks to planning, logic, reason and science that we have increased literacy to encompass nearly the totality of the population of western countries. It is because we have learned to suppress our emotions enough to make rational decisions that we have stopped spamming babies, begun to eliminate racism and made huge inroads into gender and sexual equality.
I don’t have a solution for dealing with these people; in my personal experience it is nearly impossible. They are human beings…they deserve at least the basic considerations outlined in the UDHR…but by rejecting nearly everything except emotion and instinct they are also very different from the rest of the world. Not quite wild animals…but not exactly rational individual thinkers either.
How do you recommend approaching this segment of the population? Should we allow the gut instincts of the few to guide our civilisation? Should emotion overcome reason simply because the emotional are loud?
Please do tell…how does one make everyone happy? If you can’t make everyone happy…why choose the emotional over the critical?
As long as you're willing to drug the water supply.
Chemical happiness is still happiness!
Anon- because someone, somewhere would take that for an actual terrorist threat. If you do think it's a terrorist threat, calm down, it's not. Just sit down and have a nice glass of water.
Those in the midst of a culture war seeem least able to countenance peace sans complete victory. Those on its periphery are more apt to wonder what it is all for. Wars are invariably provoked by the other side, whilst our side is just defending basic freedoms. You indicate that you are fighting for intellectual pursuits and I don't doubt your sincerity nor do I question the actual endeavour. Where we disagree is the means. It seems to me that putting people into pigeon holes ("these people") is rarely productive. I don't believe there are any racists in the world, but that everyone: yourself and myself included is capable of racism unfortunately. Let's not go for the ad hominem. Though it may feel good, it is invariably counter-productive to the goal.
It isn't about "feeling good." It is about recognising that the purest of ideals simply aren't achievable. You cannot treat everyone as equal because they simply aren't. The choices some people make during the course of their lives, the beliefs they CHOOSE to cling too...these can make these individuals different. You do not choose to be smart, tall, gay, or of a certain ethnicity. Even weight is largely determined by genetics, though an individual can mitigate the hand they are dealt there.
There is no reason to discriminate people based upon the parts of their lives they cannot control. If however people make the conscious choice to reject reason and embrace pure instinct and emotion…that unbalances the scales. THESE PEOPLE – and that is not meant as an ad homenim attack at all – this group or categorisation of individuals are dangerous. They are dangerous because homo sapiens sapiens is only barely a domesticated animal. Remember that domestication takes a certain number of generations wherein the more peaceful animals are mated together whilst the more aggressive are held back from propagating.
Our species has been breeding to INCREASE hostility, hair triggers and xenophobic behaviour for at least ten thousand years. (Our recorded history.) Given that we went from a prey species to the planetary top predator in just under a million years, I would venture a guess that we have been at this rather breakneck anti-domestication for at least that long.
That means that homo sapiens sapiens does not exactly have kind, fluffy instincts. We are brutal killers, rapists and closed-minded tribalists at our very core. That is who we have had to be in order to survive right up until about the renaissance. That means we have only been breeding (in some areas of this world) selecting for docile mates for a mere handful of generations. It means that “civilisation” is a bloody thin verneer over savagery in all but the most lucky of individuals.
The difference between us and animals is…we can choose to rise above this. There are a few other species on this rock capable of suppressing their instincts, but none quite so successful as us. I argue that those who make the conscious choice to do so are those who have most advanced our civilisation. There is a balance: completely repressing our instincts to the point of a Vulcan-like prudishness has problems too. We do need to eventually mate…and we haven’t reached the point where we can repress our instincts and emotions all the time without going batshit crazy.
Still, putting our xenophobic tribalism, our savagery and our aggression in a bloody box and burying it deep within ourselves is most absolutely what is required if we are to advance as a society. Down every other path lies nothing less than ruin; we have ten thousand years of history to inform of this fact. That is not to say we should be weak; the price of freedom is constant vigilance.
We can however draw our strength from our emotions and instincts without letting those same elements of our individual make ups to rule us. It is what makes us capable of acting as individuals instead of nodes in a hive mind. “Those people” is not ad hominem…how can it be? “Those people” are by and large a group entity. Ruled by communal fears and passions…the truest expression of a hive-mind our species is capable of mustering.
They may even be right…their survival strategy got our species this far. The more extreme variations of it work well for ants.
I personally however reject it. I want no part of the hive mind. I have little (if any) respect for people who willingly surrender themselves to it. I am an individual, I critically asses my environment and make individual judgements based upon the information available to me at the time. I am in tune with my emotions; I recognise they exist, and what I am feeling. I consider the emotional ramifications of my decisions, but I absolutely DO NOT Let my emotions rule my behaviour.
If you want to talk about a cultural clash or a war, then that is the only one I am interested in fighting. The cultural war of intellectualism versus instinctualism. I posit to you that instinctualists are a threat to the continuation of the society I hold dear. Instinctualists have made conscious choices to try to regress our society…to make us less than what we have struggled for millennia to become. There is a true culture war brewing here…a WAR.
Part of war is dehumanising the enemy…something I honestly try not to do. They ARE human…this clash is about the choices made by people, not about some genetic difference. (We simply haven’t diverged for long enough for that to be possible!) What it is about however is determining where our species will go from here. I do not want to fight a war, literally or figuratively. I am perfectly happy with a segregation of society. Why can’t we simply declare X countries as refuges for rationalists and X countries as refuges for instinctualists? From my standpoint their beliefs have as much a right to exist as mine…I have no desire to exterminate those PEOPLE.
The instinctualists however will not give us much of a choice: we must submit to their chosen path and belief system or be ground down into the mud. Even if we managed to segregate our societies in such a way that we managed to create refuges of intellectualism, they would come for us. If history has taught us anything it is that this particular culture has only one way to end: us or them.
I choose “us”.
I'm from Alberta, Canada. I grew up raised by rednecks surrounded by rednecks who vote for rednecks while talking with rednecks about things that only matter to rednecks. The local conservative party represents itself with the colour blue. If you put a pig up for office and paint it blue, we'll vote for it. We’re the most fiscally, socially and culturally conservative chunk of Canada and I PROMISE YOU that rural Alberta could give any part of America you could name a run for it’s “ridiculously right wing, fundamental Christian uber-conserative money.”
Hell friend, I grew up 500 meters south of the largest Air Force base in Canada. To the south of us was a great big collection of fields and an Army base. To the east and west were farmers, more farmers some people a-farming and more cows than you could shake a stick at. The city’s changed since then: the fields are gone, the farmers moved north a ways. The two military bases are now one: Army. The jets have all gone north too.
The point is that I was not raised by “leftist mentors.” I was in fact raised to despise leftist liberal commie pinko scum like any God-fearing North American. Even got myself engaged to a lovely prairie harpy: grew up in the middle of nowhere Alberta indoctrinated by some religiosity folks so far gone even the Baptists kicked them out of their club!
None of that brainwashing took, though. I did eventually grow up to think for myself. I loved these things called “books,” yasee. These “books” things…they opened my eyes. They showed me a world that was more than the preconceptions and CONSTANT FEAR OF GOD/TERRORISTS/LIBERALS/OMFGWTFBBQ that I have been raised with. I learned about the true history of the cold war: how Communism failed due to the greed of individuals and how Capitalism lasted only a few decades longer. I learned about Socialism and how it was a reasoned amalgam of both ideas: a free market…but regulated to curb the worst of our instinctual excesses.
I learned about the scientific method, deductive reasoning and literary analysis. I learned that just because someone is Black, Gay, Male or Female they really aren’t all that different from me. I learned that the best part of Christmas wasn’t getting gifts from others…but the look on their faces when then open yours. I learned about myself and the world around me; that at the end of the day I am truly insignificant against the backdrop of SEVEN BILLION OTHER PEOPLE. Greed enriches only the greedy whilst cooperation enriches us all.
I then found that other people in this world think as I do. Outside this narrow-minded environment there are entire populations that believe in concepts like “the needs of the many,” “analysis of consequences before acting” and “generational-scale planning.”
I was raised a conservative sir, and I reject it.
There is no such thing as “leftist mentor,” because if you are truly a believer in intellectualism instead of instinctualism then you are a believer in the concept that an individual must choose their own path. A “leftist” won’t try to mentor you in their beliefs. Quite the opposite; they’ll help you sign for a library card, encourage you to read as widely as possible* and then make your own choices.
*”As widely as possible” means reading authors from all ends of various debates. It does not mean “go to the Library and read only these authors.” One cannot make an informed choice about which path in life they wish to take if they are never shown what the alternatives are.
Best comment ever.
I love how every time el reg takes a shot at an American we end up with debates about concepts too complicated for my head to hold all at the one time with participants ranging from the most intellectual to the most emotional, and from both sides of the pond.
I genuinely enjoyed your comment. Thank you.
More on topic, I agree with the sentiment that those who shout the loudest get noticed the most.
Reason is, by definition, reasonable - shouting is not.
However the flipside to this is that those who are reasonable know what shouting for the sake of it sounds like.
If you don't, just watch anything where a politician is asked an uncomfortable question, and listen - I mean really *listen* to the response.
That's what it sounds like.
Incidentally, I know a couple of teenagers for whom this is the way to win any argument about anything regardless of what the opposition says or does. It also doesn't matter whether or not they win in the end, just that they shout louder or get the last word.
I say let Rush say things if he wants.
As el Reg has noted, alot of it is just air.
I too spent my formative years in Alberta, with anti-Semitic teachers (Alberta is famous for them) and red-in-tooth-and-claw oil men, and I emerged non-red-neck, non-conservative, bookish, left-of-centre, and with a taste for opera and modern dance, the scientific method, rational argument, and tolerance.
Needless to say, I don't live in Alberta any more.
Beautiful countryside, though.
In my last post I used your counter-point to illustrate my ad hominem point. That was probably undeserved because actually I have been and continue to oppose LaeMing's too easy de-humanisation of people he/she disagrees with. One could even take a conspiratorial view of that post to suggest that LaeMing was trolling for the other team. No doubt Rush Limbaugh and his active followers understand that there are none so committed to the cause as the demonised. And they are not averse to some self-generated demonisation as means to an end. LaeMing's actual intent is irrelevant. My point remains that demonisation is counter-productive to achieving peace.
To one of your points, segregation is not an option. This idea reminds me of the fourth book in Gulliver's Travels in which the animalistic Yahoo are separated from the intellectual Houyhnhnm. If you read it keep in mind that it's a parody of utopian thinking in the Enlightenment.
In the real, messy world classifications are made and re-made all the time. There's effectively an infinite number of usable dimensions. Through billions of years of evolution animals' brains (including all humans' (including your definition of rational humans')) have become very effective at identifying useful dimensions for problems in their particular domain. I agree with you that rational thinking can sometimes be a useful dimension to categorise actors in our domain, but it's not not the one and only. We are all much richer, more complex and subtle than that. Acknowledging where an individual's strengths lie is a more reliable path to peace than to castigate them for their failure to meet your target on a single dimension.
I don't castigate them for failing to live up to my standards...I'm ****ing terrified of them. There is a difference. Part of being a tolerant individual is the acceptance that other ways of life are as valid as your own. Other beliefs are as valid as those you hold. Unfortunately, as with pacifism in physical conflicts, cultural pacifism only gets you erased from this world.
This is cultural WAR. There can be no peace so long as “those people” seek to destroy what I believe in. I am perfectly willing to let them cultivate instinctualism in their own corner of the world if they would be so kind as to allow myself and others who share my beliefs to cultivate intellectualism in ours.
The problem here is that this is not a belief that the majority of RL’s fanbase similarly hold. To wit: a majority would see me converted to their belief system or dead. Acknowledging that these individuals have a right to their belief does NOT mean that I should allow myself to be converted. It does not mean that I should not be allowed to raise my children such that they are exposed to my beliefs.
Peace takes two sides…and “converting the heathens to your way of life” isn’t peace.
No, peace does not take two sides. Rather it takes recognition that the whole sides thing was a false dichotomy in the first place. Reading your last post closely, apart from one or two words you might just as well be arguing from the 'opposite' point of view. Don't you think many of those whom you oppose feel fucking terrified of you and your ideas ? I expect they do. And if so, it is partly because it felt easier for you to draw a line and start attacking a position than to try to find common ground. Assimilation is a good thing in my mind. It is not one-way process.
I don't think this is any longer a fruitful discussion and I opt to discontinue it.
Well, good bye then. I think we'll never disagree. People who believe that everything is but points along a continuum and I are likely to never come to an agreement about anything philosophical in life. I do believe in the concept of “tipping points.” Things are good until you reach a barrier…after which they go dramatically sideways.
As to your point about my approach to cultural warfare not being dissimilar from that of RL’s fans…you are correct save one key point. I would be perfectly content to let them have their culture and society intact. They would not be content to allow me the same freedoms. Yes, we are both afraid of eachother: it’s the nature of war, whether that be cultural or physical.
Still, the difference is that overall intellectuals don’t believe in “converting” others quite so much. Oh, we debate. We banter endlessly and argue every little item about every little thing. We are however generally content to have all parties shake hand afterwards and go back to wherever they came from. There is a huge difference between the sorts of debates that I (and those I enjoy spending my time with) prefer and the emotion-drive “conversion of the heathens.”
Your argument seems to be that I should simply let them try to convert me – and everyone else I know – without ever saying “nien.” To open the gates of Troy and welcome the Greeks in. I think not. Our species has had ten thousand years to perfect the emotive conversion of someone else to one’s own beliefs. For only a few piddly decades have more than the elite of society been working on mental tools to ward such off.
With luck, our descendants will still be around in a few thousand years: I would dearly like to know what their take on the same debate would be after having had that time to adapt.
In the meantime, I’ll follow your lead and sign off from this thread. Despite the many arguments present, I wish a happy holiday season to everyone!
You either want more people to be deluded or you want fewer people to be deluded - just about *nobody* is neutral on that issue! Rush Limbaugh wants more people to be deluded. That makes it a matter of taking sides - democracy is based on the concept of informed citizens making collective decisions about the future of their country, not an ignorant herd who are kept "fucking terrified" of whatever happens to serve whichever party's backers.
Furthermore, opposing intolerance is not *being* intolerant. Trying to "find common ground" with intolerance is yielding to a demand that you diminish your own right to a point of view. That is a spurious concept of balance. Here's an analogy: demanding *all* of your garden doesn't give me a right to expect half of it!
Could someone please explain what this phrase means?
I hear it bandied about, and all I've been able to deduce is that "culture war" roughly means "loud discussions between people who want civil rights for all people and people who still wish to withhold rights from some excluded- group- du- jour".
Someone implied that this "war" began in the 1960s, when youth dared to express their disagreement with Vietnam, and their desire for social equality (black power, Chicano power, &c).
If any of this is true, why on earth should there be any argument (let alone "war") over extending equal civil rights to all?
All wars are "culture wars", by definition ... That said, allow me to answer:
"why on earth should there be any argument (let alone "war") over extending equal civil rights to all?"
I have no idea. But the followers of TheBigFatIdiot seem to think there are good reasons. My mind boggles at the thought ... Why, exactly, should TBFI's followers be allowed to tell me & my Wife, or the Gay guys at the end of my wife's rose garden, how to think and live?
Note that I'm not trying to tell TBFI's followers how to think and live. If they enjoy their ignorance, who am I to tell them otherwise? Hopefully they enjoy their bliss ... and don't mind when I point & giggle :-)
Wouldn't actually having credibility with "big fat idiots" and "small minded american's [sic]" actually be detrimental? I suspect pleasing the first quarter of the IQ bell curve is not a typical part of the “Science and Technology Webizine” agenda. (Indeed, I would argue it never should be.) El Reg does have a reputation to maintain and standards to uphold!
Rush Limbaugh isn't an idiot. He's a genius. He's figured how to get rich doing basically nothing. All he does is say whatever spiteful lies he can make up on the spot and people send him piles of money. I wish I were smart enough to find a gig like that.
I don't claim he's a particularly nice person, or that what he's doing is in the best interest of anybody but himself, but I've never understood why people call him an idiot. Sure, he'd be an idiot if he believed everything he says, but there's a reason the only people who believe it are a bunch of stupid trailer trash rednecks. You don't see them getting rich by spouting hate-filled drivel, do you?
"El Reg does have a reputation to maintain and standards to uphold!"
My initial response was: It does...? Good grief, hardly anyone's ever written than before...
My more considered response is "indeed it does". What this requires is some serious investigative journalism, with the results presented in an easily accessible medium. So one of the following:
a) Playmobile reconstruction of Mr L's minions extracting dossiers from El Reg, or
b) Reconstruction of the Moderatrix demonstrating to Mr L that stealing El Reg's glory does not go unpunished. (playmobile optional ;))
Ms Hilton since even she's always been certain about the difference of coming first or second.
"Hardly likely to win you any credibility points with the big fat idiots and small minded american's is it now?"
You are, either intentionally or by accident, making it sound as if Elreg was calling all Americans fat and small minded, which is not the case.
In my opinion, very few Americans* would feel insulted. After all, nobody considers himself small minded. :)
Please correct me if I'm wrong, but your comment seems to imply that Elreg should be triying to please this group of 'fat and small minded Americans'. How does one go about that? Should ElReg start using shorter sentences and lots of pretty pictures? A section of fast food recipes? A horoscope? .
I prefer ElReg the way it is, thank you. Small minded people have already enough mass media trying to please them. Most mainstream media nowadays has been designed for morons. o_0
*Note: Of course, I mean the Americans able to read and understand the article. Functionally illiterate Americans are likely to read this article as an attack against their country.
Just the ones that they are calling small minded, which is almost certainly correct.
I'm not disputing the accuracy of the claims, just commenting that if you upset about being refered to as an obscure tech site then perhaps writing a childish rant full of insults and name calling is not the most gracefull way of answering.
Sure, this right wing radio chap is an easy target, but still.
Better to rise above it.
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While I love El Reg, I am a listener of Rush. While most think that he is the arbinger of the mindless I would like to think that he is the one that make most "yanks" (as you call us) think out side the box that the mainstream media tries to put us in.
If all you watch is CNN, then I'd say that you are the one that's the zombie.
Hey, at least he gave you all credit. Rush can be quite the egotist and he could have taken all the credit.
From the other side of the pond...
A mindless zombie
" most think that he is the arbinger of the mindless..."
I can't figure out if you added an a and swapped the r and b, meaning that Rush creates idiots... Or if you meant a cockney accent, and that he presages idiots... Or if you meant that he chooses among the idiots those he deems worthy.
Anyway - bringer, harbinger, or arbiter, I think we can come to a solid conclusion that Mr. Limbaugh himself is a bar-bingeing backbiting hack, bringing crack-addled crap off the back-burner.
Done and done, then.
It is perfectly good to watch Rush, O'Reilly and that tubby blond guy provided you also watch some non-Fox News.
Stewart* himself watches those guys.
Check out BBC News, or CBC Newsworld, or even just The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.
(* And Jon Stewart also quotes The Reg as an authoritative news source, which is probably what turned Rush on to watch this place.)
...to most of the world. I love The Register and read major portions every day. I've learned quite a lot and been quite amused.
I also listen to Rush, though not every day. I learn some things (filtered through other sources) and am often amused.
Methinks thou Protesteth Too Much!
I like Rush. I am a conservative person that can think for himself. But I think you guys have acted a bit childish. Got your pantihose in a knot over Rush, eh? Your response was very personally disparaging and small minded. I think it was unbecoming of you. I like the Reg too.
I contend that the majority of Rush's critics, especially the loudest and most obnoxious are those who have never taken the time to listen to the show, instead parroting on what they read on a liberal blog or saw on MSNBC one night.
Limbaugh does come across as extremely egotistical. It's part of his schtick, it's intended to be done tongue-in-cheek most of the time, although I'd say that there is a fair dose of sincere egotism there too. So what? If you don't like his style don't listen.
As to the mindless zombies, that's a handy excuse for the weak minded. If that many people in the USA were that stupid we'd have fallen off the map a lot sooner than we're about to. Don't get me wrong, I don't agree with Rush on all counts. In fact I think there are times when he deliberately takes an extreme view on some issue for the sensational effect of it, but he's far from alone in that. I know of several other radio and TV personalities that do the same thing for their own gain. If it were a crime, there wouldn't be much to watch or listen to.
Would I like a sensible, calm yet conservative talk show to watch or listen to? Sure. The problem is that like good news in the tabloids, it just doesn't sell, so don't hold your breath for it. Meanwhile I do listen, laugh at some of the antics, nod at some parts and shake my head at others. In the meantime, like the vast majority of this country (East of the Sierras and West of the Appalachians), I am a conservative. I am not a religious fanatic and believe that religion and government are best kept far apart. I believe strongly in individual responsibility and liberty, the two must go hand in hand. I believe Keynes was an absolute idiot, and every central banker on the planet is a clueless boob. I am not a Republican, and I am absolutely not a Democrat. I believe in individual choice, and the power of the States before the federal government. I believe that the Constitution should actually be adhered to.
What I hold true did not come from Limbaugh or any other on-air personality, I am not a mindless zombie, but I do find some common ground with the conservative talk show hosts, as do most of the people in this country, which is /why/ Limbaugh is #1 on the radio in ratings. Do you really believe that many people can be controlled by the words of one person? If that were true Obama's ratings wouldn't be in the gutter.
Believe in what you believe is right, don't follow /anyone/, get your information from the sources you trust, AND the sources that your trusted sources say not to listen to! Then decide for yourself.
Meanwhile, I'm proud to be a regular reader of this obscure little online tech publication. It makes me feel like I'm just a little cooler than I am.
That and I love a good pint of bitter, so I live vicariously through the staff of El Reg (since you can't find a decent beer within a thousand miles of my town) :P.
There you go - flame away.
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OK - I'm obviously on the wrong side of the pond to understand this; why do Americans "believe in Liberty" yet oppose Liberals? Is there some kind of twisting of the word liberal in Americanese that I am unaware of?
I guess I'd consider myself a liberal socialist (or possibly a social liberal at beer o' clock) - insofar as I believe in individual freedom within the constraints of society at large ... or in it's older, more basic concept - so long as you're not hurting anyone, do whatever you like.
("an it harm none, do what ye will.")
...from an American that is disappointed with most American politics.
Liberty is meant as you say, personal freedom. However, it is the debate over what the "constraints of society at large" are that gets otherwise sane people all frothy.
Examples. On the "conservative" end, there are few to no constraints on business, land use, gun ownership, etc. But that same demographic endorses constraints on civil union, scientific progress, financing the government, and who can become a member of society. These constraints are usually argued on the basis of Christian morality, and when Christian morality doesn't agree, they are argued instead on the basis of nationalism. Note that when I refer to Christian morality in this context, I mean mostly the evangelical interpretation thereof, which unfortunately leaves out a lot of the "love thy neighbor" lessons. To summarize, this mindset specifies that the individual must prosper, and that society will benefit if this is allowed to occur. However, the individual must prosper according to a set of moral rules that have been tweaked a lot in the last hundred years or so.
On the "liberal" end, the constraints on the individual are largely removed, and placed on society instead. For example, gay civil union is legal and drugs like THC are legal (but heavily taxed). However, due to heavier regulation on society as a whole, personal liberties are stifled by laws such as the DMCA. Small businesses suffer under one-size-fits-all legislation designed to reign in the larger corporate behemoths. These constraints are mostly argued on the basis of advancing society, or on the basis of protecting society from itself. To summarize, this mindset specifies that society can best advance when managed from the top, and that layers of organization and regulation will insure compliance. However, by limiting the resourcefulness of the individual, the desired progress is stifled.
Both sides are hypocritical. And thus I find both sides completely disappointing. Those of us caught between the extremes try to pick and choose the best of both sides, but American politics is extremely polarized, so there is rarely a viable centrist option.
Not badly put, most are just voting for the lesser evil (or so they think) anyway. only a handful are so nieve as to actually think ANY politition is actually going to be GOOD. It's a real shame you have to take a canidate, the good with the bad, when you really just want some of his/her policies, others you (almost assuradly) want left at the door.
You're looking at the glass as half-empty, when its really half-full.
Isn't it nice to know that Limbaugh considers The Reg an *authoritative* news site. He didn't try to second source your story. He didn't report it as "allegedly". He repeated your report as authoritative.
That puts The Reg ahead of the NY Times, ABC, NBC, CBS, CNN, CNBC, PBS, CBC and BBC on Rush Limbaugh's "authoritatabilityness scale".
What do you mean "mainstream media"? Rush has the highest rated radio show in the country! It's Fox that's the highest rated cable news channel, not CNN. It doesn't get much more mainstream than that. I wouldn't call you mindless, but there are certainly some lapses in logic in your post.
There seem to be a few out and about - note some of the 'thumbs' down here and there.
No actual fanbois - they haven't managed to get over the spluttering and coughing yet -- but they will all be noting down names and text to report to thier masters in due course.
We are the enemy/enema.
Since they're a bunch of mindless zombies they probably :
a) never find the site because it's not a .com
b) never try to find the site cause Rush told them not to do it .
c) being mindless zombies the Great Vulture in the Sky ( /me bows to the Great Vulture )
will protect us from their evil ways and keep their comments off this site.
PS . when registering t the Register , wanna be vulture applicants should be asked whether they are Limbaugh fans, and all that answer yes be forever banned from the site and thrown to the vultures. err .. if we fed vultures with them , they would sue us for cruelty against animals
Forget it , time for a few beers
I love the idea that RL was the first to release that amazon was hosting wikileaks buy quoting someone who had released the information first! Fabulous leap of imagination there...
Wonderful logic! I invented the mobile phone you know, it was my idea. Now how do I sure nokia/apple/sony erricson et al?
I've been reading The Register a long time, a very long time.
I listen to Rush on occasion.
I've said some things here that *might* not be appreciated by some. Too bad.
I own a Smb (five employees so emphasis on the S)
I can barely keep the lights on after the Great Recession (over back in March or something, wasn't it?).
And I've done my share of bitching about it.
Every damn Fed or equivalent Government Type will be watching us now!
Yeah... think about that.
Hands up if you hadn't heard of "EIB" before?
*Puts hand up*
You've got to appreciate the way he contradicts himself in that sentence though, you can give someone a lie with all the information to disprove it, right there, and they'll believe it anyway.
This side of the pond we have the Daily Fail, which can easily contradict itself over the course of a week with substance X categorically proven to cure cancer, then a week later being proven to definitively cause cancer, and may even turn you into a job-stealing immigrant.
Sometimes I despair, but to pretend these things don't happen would be indulging in the very same ignorance that brings me down..
Rush gives kudos to the Reg and how is he thanked? A childish rant from the bowels of the staff room, followed by a tsunami of bilge from the so-called "geniuses" who inhabit the pages of the Reg. I suspect the causes are typical geeky ignorance of real politics along with unhealthy doses of mind-deadening socialism spoon-fed over a lifetime. Tsk.
Don't get me wrong tho, I peruse the Reg every day. The coverage to be found here is normally head and shoulders above other sources, but not today, alas.
I was listening to Rush when he mentioned The Register. Taken in context, his comment was not derogatory.
What we have happening here in America is re-education. Because of the internet, Rush, Fox News, Glenn Beck and hundreds of others, the general population is exposed to the "other side". For years, as you know, the media was dominated by liberals, but that is no longer the case. The goal of Rush, as the term EIB suggests, is education and it is working. Witness the past election. People's opinions formed under the assault of liberalism in the press and public education are being changed.
If it keeps up we may be fortunate enough to elect Sarah Palin and a majority in congress with a tea party slant. Freedom and free markets ... now that's an environment for the pursuit of happiness.
For those of you interested in hearing first hand, liberalism debunked, tune in to Rush onWABC-AM on the internet at 1800 UCT, Monday to Friday.
Almost forgot … Ann Coulter, Ayn Rand. They're great too.
Hit 'go' instead of 'troll'? Entirely possible.
I can't imagine someone daft enough to (a) put Ann Coulter and Ayn Rand in the same sentence (they're both repulsive, but at least Rand was thoughtful), (b), suggest that the media, owned entirely by enormous conglomerates with usually-very-conservative boards, has or ever has had a left-wing bias, and (c) think that 're-education' is a term that should be used in a positive way.
And even if one assumes all of that to be true, what seismic shift is it that transformed the media from liberal to conservative in two years, and how did Rush, Fox News, Glenn Beck, and hundreds of others have a huge effect in 2010, as stated, but fail utterly in 2008? They all had shows, they were all popular, they all existed, the media was owned by and largely staffed by the same people.... so what righteous tidal wave of freedom was it that altered all of that in the course of a few months?
Not only that, I find it difficult to believe that any thinking conservative (and they are some, despite too-loud protesters here) would want Palin elected. You're talking about someone who doesn't think that people south of Alaska know how to go camping. Really, Sarah? Really?
"Not only that, I find it difficult to believe that any thinking conservative (and they are some, despite too-loud protesters here) would want Palin elected."
Well, Barbara Bush herself (that'd be the Shrub's Mum for those of you too young to remember) said that Mrs. Palin should stay in Alaska.
As for camping, remember when "camp" was something that boyscouts did with tents? Oh, you mean that's what Mrs. Palin meant? And here I thought she was talking modern political theater ...
I've been reading El Reg for, well I'm not sure but over a decade at a minimum. I don't keep up with the ramblings of Mr Limbaugh beyond what others point out. There seems to be a cottage industry built up around shooting down his stupidity. I see you've joined in on the fun. Enjoy.
Anyway, the entire nation doesn't hang on the words of Rush, Beck & Hannity, there are still a few of us holding out in the hills.
..."Who was the first [out of all my favorite political opponents and more general gripe-targets]?"
I would apologize for the fact that one might so need a decoder ring in order to decypher the "hidden" meanings of statements of that US opinion broadcaster, but - I must realize - I'm not responsible for his (oh so popular) brand of obsessiveness.
"The Moderatrix" is improper nomenclature. The correct term is "Our Divine Moderatrix", and you better believe it or the Moderatrix will get on your case big time.
Note that when she does, outraged, anguished cries of "but I didn't know" will be to no avail. Ignorance is no excuse.
as long as the register maintain to be "an un-American gear-head rag read by no one" it's fine by me.
I like gear-head stuff :-)
And lets be honest, El Reg does behave sometimes like "an elephant in a porcelain shop". Though it's sometimes funny as hell. I do understand that not everybody likes that to-the-point (or far off as much as possible) witty UK-humour. But then again I also liked Monty Python or blackadder (or even hi-de-hi for that matter).
"I learned about the true history of the cold war: how Communism failed due to the greed of individuals and how Capitalism lasted only a few decades longer. I learned about Socialism and how it was a reasoned amalgam of both ideas: a free market…but regulated to curb the worst of our instinctual excesses."
I don't dispute your main point, but I will correct your terms: socialism and communism failed everywhere they were tried. Every state in Europe, for instance, has a mixed economy, where the state provides many services but persons and corporations own the majority of the means of production. The nice places to live in this world are all _social democracies_, all of which have _mixed economies_ ranging (from left to right, very roughly) from Denmark (nice place #1?) to the U.S. to Turkey. There are a few socialist states still around like Cuba, Vietnam, and one communist state, N. Korea. Capitalism, which is the private sector of mixed-economy states, can only begin with some structure. To prevent its devolution to mafia or warlord (failed) states, two kinds of regulation are vital: democracy, which is the regulation of the public sector (government), and financial laws which regulate the private sector.
Oh, and Paris because she is Palin's nicer half.
You and I obviously come from two different schools of Political instruction. "Mixed Economies" are socialism. At least in my instruction. They are a slightly more capitalist-leaning form of socialism than some place like Cuba…but they are socialism nonetheless. In Communism, the means of production (virtually all of them) are owned by the state. In Socialism, only certain (usually vital, or projects too large for private endeavours) industries are owned by the state. In Capitalism, virtually nothing is owned by the state.
Simplistic, but you get the drift. If you want to argue over semantics, we could be here a very long time. I was raised to understand there being a fairly huge difference between “Communism” and “Socilaism.” Goodly chunks of Europe, Pacific Asia and Canada would all qualify as “Socilaist” according to my instruction. If you don’t like the use of that term in that context, feel free to substitute your own nomenclature. I argue the nomenclature doesn’t matter, merely the information the word was intending to convey.
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and I listen to Rush nearly daily .. he's great .. I'm a libertarian myself .. so Rush is just wrong on Iraq and Afghanistan IMO .. but that's ok .. Conservatives in America don't mind different views , it's the Liberals here that have to march in lock step or risk punishment by their peers ..
I prefer Walter E Williams hosting the Rush Limbaugh show .. Karl Rove was a pretty cool guest host a few weeks ago too ..
I can hear you liberal brits wincing from here .. hahahha
Cade Metz reports from San Francisco where they just re-elected Nancy Pelosi to the Senate and Jerry Brown as Governor .. not to mention Arnie as Governor before that .. and Gray Davis before that ..
So, from a San Francisco based El Reg writer, I would expect no less that Rush / Fox bashing ..
it's ok .. luser ..
Who is Rush? Rush is a political pornographer, pandering to a lot of mental masturbators. There's nothing like having your adrenal gland stroked by an expert.
The problem is that the ones being pandered to have so little self-awareness that they can't comprehend that they are being manipulated, and so believe that they are listening to news with some grounding in reality when in fact it is simply entertainment.
The last time some called Rush an entertainer, the fan bois went barking mad.
Is this a troll? Yes, yes it is.
Well, does anyone reading and posting on El Reg imagine that the insult will energise the Register to lead in the IT Field rather than just report on developments?
IT isn't difficult to do if you know the secret/knack.
Or will the East lead the way with that particular and peculiar skill, with El Reg picking up crumbs, rather than feasting on success, whilst reporting on IT?
I really feel horrible when I see The US and UK people bash each other over such nonsense.
Anyway, here's the deal. I live right where Rush's career started -- Sacramento. Alongside others like Christine Craft back in the day on KFBK. (Yeah, I've been here long enough to remember this)
Anyway, As outside countries and folks can probably tell, there's something wrong with the United States right now, I will try to put some light on the problem.
The problem Today, is much deeper than a single agency within the United States. But to break some of this down, We have to start with an agency called the FCC. The FCC was supposed to use it's engineers and authority to regulate POWER and FREQUENCY of the public spectrum, in the public interest. (As tech's you all likely can understand this makes sense) But what's happened is the opposite, the public spectrum is now basically corporate owned and the engineers are used to enhance corporate interests over that of the public's interests. The FCC chair is a presidential appointee, so your going to get SOME bias that way, but this isn't the depth of the problem. Anyway, somewhere down the garden path, the FCC failed it's original mission (doubt you can even find this ORIGINAL mission statement anymore)
So what Americans have now is corporate media owned public spectrum.
But let's look back in time again. Back in the day in the 90's I'll say, most Americans were hard at work with building, constructing, and labor, computers were not a part of daily life like now where you could look facts up instantly and catch "Journalists" in lies like you can today.
So we have KFBK and Rush around lunch time every day on one of the loudest stations out there on an AM blaster shooting skip and reaching an ever growing audience who's only source of information was AM, FM, and UHF/VHF broadcast spectrum.
Somewhere along the line, Corporate media learned if they follow government programs and positions, they have nothing to fear from negative complaints (from the public) in their public file.
So for the few people who know the truth about things, catching Rush in half-truths and spin, or outright lies really have no consequences. Since a hand full of complaints isn't enough to bring the station's frequency allocation under scrutiny by the FCC.
This situation has allowed many similar stations (with this knowledge) to propagate over the the same time-line.
The other thing going on, is the Democrat vs Republican paradigm. In the 90's you were one or the other or you didn't matter. So you've got millions of people listening to this rubbish around lunchtime every day during the work week, and few if any had the resources to verify or validate anything, Rush became gospel to them. You either listened to Rush, or you plugged your nose/ears where you were exposed, or forced to listen to it.
Rush has always, been one of those slimy kind of people where you can't just say things the way they are they have to be bent out of shape first. You know the drill, misleading headlines, out of context quoting, a plethora of corruption vs truth. For all practical purpose, Rush played the Republican card fully.
What the Reg has, is a guy with a big ego, who doesn't care who the true source of anything is, just as long as he can grab it, and mold it, and make his point which cow-tow's the government position, or drive R's against D's. The thing which must be understood here is when considering a corporation, and profit, D vs R goes out the window. D isn't vs. R anymore, D and R both support Corporate interests. In this they are the SAME. This doesn't mean if your registered D or R your Heart is the same as your enemy, YOUR HEART DOES NOT MATTER.
D vs R is institutionalized, you think your little heart matters when there's profits to be made on the HIGH end? Don't delude yourself.
I'm talking about Powerful forces, with large bankrolls. Who now have corporate person-hood. The only rule of the game is to be "With Government opinion" , as long as you can stay there, you can tell the public the sun is really the moon and you'll still be a journalist in the morning.
This is why we have these people with big ego's now, who you know, spray graffiti on the side of El Reg, and take a pee on the floor of your server room. They have Zero respect for you, you were simply used by Rush like I might use a Broken PSU to rip the fan out of. OR a propane torch on a circuit board to get the parts off. Leaving black and green toxic waste and a room full of smoke in it's wake. Of course the hand full of resistors, caps, diodes, semiconductors, plugs etc are taken and re-purposed for the new agenda.
Today we have an intermittent constitution. This allows oath breakers to run around doing whatever they want, and then hiding behind state secrets to protect them. This is also why not one bank of note-worthiness has been prosecuted, or taken into receivership.
Don't blame the American people for this situation. It's a combination of problems which the people don't have control over. The corruption is the Government, Not the people.
Which brings us back to big media. If all they do is go with the flow of government agenda, the people over time are no longer an informed population.
And I have to say, looking across the pond, I have to say you have similar problems over there. But understand Americans don't hate citizens of the UK, and Rush isn't an example of a patriotic American.
I served, He didn't.
but I think there's a flaw with one of the things you said cake:
"I argue that those who make the conscious choice to do so are those who have most advanced our civilisation"
That makes the Pope some sort of laser-shooting cybernetic genius in my book.
I guess my real question would be, how do you define a conscious decision and what enables it? I think that the fact that we can 'suppress' emotions is probably just an extension of the mating behaviour seen in apes (i.e. a weak subordinate male won't mess with the dominant one because he probably won't survive) and probably its benefits to society have allowed it to become more ingrained over time. Maybe I can better explain with a slightly unrelated example. Why is it that you don't, when you get home from the shops with some chicken, just tear into it and start munching? Is it really anything to do with suppressing instinct or is it because you're conditioned not to eat raw meat (because generally it's bad for you). Does your stomach turn slightly at the thought of eating raw beef mince? There's nothing wrong with eating it really, and there's all those lovely French sandwiches which take advantage of that.
This guy has been brainwashing American simplemends for years. Mostly made up of simpleminded religious fundamentalist, they have been the leading factors in irrational thought for years. They think that dinosaurs walked with humans, that a great flood eveloped the Earth, and that a grey haired old man that lives in the sky created everything.
- Reads The Reg and loves it
- Thinks Rush is pretty darn entertaining
- Thinks he understands when to take seriously both El Reg and Rush and when not to
- Agrees with Sarah Palin on many issues
- Does not want her to be President
- Eats an occasional Big Mac
- Is as intelligent as anyone reading this
- Like most people, doesn't want to be pigeonholed
- Understands however, that many people need to do so because ???
We're in agreement.
It's amazing how all it takes is for one person to take one thing Rush has to say out of context, and the nuts come out of the woodwork.
Someone in this chain of nonsense commented about socialism being some sort of balance between capitalism and communism... Geez, people, go back to civics class...
Rush is *not* evil. His comments concerning the Reg are from the eyes of someone who is unfamiliar with the tech circles; naturally, from his POV, the Reg is "obscure." I'm a NetWare consultant; from the POV of a die-hard M$ consultant, NetWare is a "legacy," "fringe" OS - yet, I work with it every day. A little perspective goes a long way.
I understand your confusion.
What you describe as the older, more basic concept of liberalism is now (to those who have heard of it at all) referred to as "Classical Liberalism" in order to distinguish it from the socialist oriented "modern" liberalism that is practiced today. What we now refer to as Liberalism would in other countries more likely be called socialism. Note to US Liberals: This is not a criticism, be whomever you want to be, it's my observation based on the actions of the Democrat party.
In a perverse twist, the modern liberalism removes individual rights and liberty in an attempt to induce "fairness" to the system. What exactly constitutes fairness, and who gets to decide is an open question, but generally the "haves" in society are demonized as having more than they deserve (although they earned it in some form or fashion), while the "have nots" are held up as victims of the despicable "haves".
The solution according to modern liberals is not for the "have nots" to earn their way to prosperity with the help of a free market and broad civil liberties, but rather for the government to take, through legislative force, taxation, etc., from the "haves" and give to the "have nots". A sort of perverse Robin Hood system where the honestly wealthy are robbed and the poor are dribbled just enough of the bounty to keep them dependent but happy voters.
The true motive for the system is to grow the size and power of government over the people, something the US constitution was intended to prevent, but which has been disregarded for decades. Both political parties are guilty of this, which is why you see the American voters first punishing the Bush Republicans in 2008 and then the Obama Democrats in 2010. We despise them both because despite their wholly opposite methods, the end result has been the same; bigger government, more wasteful spending, fewer personal liberties.
For a detailed explanation of Classical Liberalism, I invite you to read this: http://mises.org/daily/4596
Sorry for the confusion - it must be the language barrier ;)