Rush Limbaugh Sinking Clear Channel
The plaintive, hurt question of the late Molly Ivins, now who went ahead and ruined radio? has always stayed with me since her death, the wish for something good to listen to far surpassed by a yearning for a America with vivid sustaining music radio. There might be a chance to get it back before my view dims, but it was truly wrong to have Molly pass—who loved music radio—with only a bewildered question for an element of a country she deeply loved. Someone like Molly deserved far better than that from a country she served so profoundly all her life.
The obvious answer,1 as she and we all know, came via Think Progress and The Mahablog yesterday, our dear liberal friend Clear Channel Communications. Not only is this odious company the primal list-playing brain-dead factor in the corpse of American music radio, but they’ve also blessed the Republic with the contributions of Rush Limbaugh.
One could feel sorry for Clear Channel, in theory, for the massive hurt Rush Limbaugh has delivered to them recently. In purely objective terms this is very good news for liberals and Democrats,2 yes, and if there is a great deal of satisfaction from seeing the American music radio killer become deceased itself there is still no clear way to revive music radio, combined with a lingering sadness of what the Republic—and Molly—had to go through to get to this point.
Via the incomparable Eric Boehlert of Media Matters, heh, Clear Channel is broke and desperately trying to survive after just last summer paying out—for no clear reason other than likely juvenile infatuation and disgusting authoritarian veneration—a $100 million bonus to Rush Limbaugh. As this recession/depression continues to rip into the daily fabric of American life (sorry, Chrysler) it’s unclear whether Clear Channel will survive another year.
Sincere condolences to the Clear Channel employees who lost their jobs. It’s very good to see Rush blow up his company and his Party, yes, but never at the expense of other humans.
Which brings me to my last point, an overriding sadness at the vision of this noxious, hateful man who has caused so much damage and hurt to us all. Part of me should be cackling in glee at his inevitable and just fall, but, for reasons I can’t really fathom I just can’t muster it. Rush will likely never go away anyway, living on in some clanking sad form, but at least his Party and corporation will pay more than the Republic has, possibly with their very existence themselves.
 Radio, in a general or technical sense, is not “ruined,” and readers should note the careful use of “music radio.” Music radio still exists, of course, but all agree in a vastly inferior and underperforming state than existed 1940-1990. Even the market responded with a play in satellite radio, which even if does not make it empirically displays the sucky vacuum of current American music radio.
 I took the day off yesterday after Digby spat out fergwdsakes and Markos snarled (yet again) we’ll primary his ass after the Democratic Party humiliated itself and cranked up the base in utter disgust (for the 1,232nd time). The weather was lousy, California has a terrible oh so special election coming up and, as predicted, the noxious, odious Republican Wurlitzer whizzed and sputtered forth its long campaign of bigoted, smearing, discriminatory, loathsome patriarchal Supreme Court spin.
One should view the glass half full, being critical is the easier, softer way, Tom Robbins says the real way to win at the joke of life, appropriately, is to laugh at it. I am extremely tired of knifing our own people for constantly fucking up, all right? I would suggest to the Democratic Party, however—in the most humble terms and perspective possible, of course—that after the Senate shenanigans lately our people need a pick-me-up, something that affirms who we are while cheering us up. It’s not hard to do.
I would also note—again with the most discerning caution—that after days like Tuesday mere indifference should never, ever be used as the sole factor in explaining the notorious American model of non-participation.
Millions of Americans don’t vote and pay attention because they’re busy or don’t care or whatever. It’s because they made the perfectly plausible decision life is far too short to be exposed to the exasperating, endless filth of American politics. It’s simply too hard, life is difficult as it is. As junkies we see the good, too, not just the obvious bad, and know the terrible dangers of non-participation, but we should still note and hope the leadership understands we, as Democrats, really need to market what is good about us occasionally.