10 thoughts on “The Cultural Roots of Rush Limbaugh and the Republican Party

  1. I thought All In the Family was just hysterical. Fans of the show knew he was a biggoted asshole. If comedy is done correctly you can laugh at yourself. Jewish comedians have made fun of themselves all the time. Comedy that is mean-spirited is not funny, but if done correctly I can laugh at fat jokes or jokes about women, etc.

    I don’t think Limbaugh got his ideals from All in the Family. Those ideals have been around forever – just passed down from generation to generation.

  2. The best part is his insidious “they.”
    “They ruined the country. They tell us to buy all this shit. Then they tell us we can’t use it. CONSPIRACY!”

    Such good satire.

  3. Much like Poe’s Law says, these days it is impossible to make a satire of conservatism. Every time you think you’ve hit rock bottom, they get worse, and it seems to be at an accelerating rate.

    A couple of reference points: Back when Air America Radio was still a thing, I heard a lot of high praise for a movie called “The Candidate” with Robert Redford. I watched it and I didn’t get it at all. I had to read reviews in order to understand that at the time it was made, people considered it to be a brilliant satire of a candidate with no political convictions of interest, who became popular because he looked good on TV. I was like, “Yeah, and? That’s just the way it usually happens now.”

    Similar reaction to “Network.” The joke was about sensationalism on network TV. Thirty years later, with cable news acting pretty routinely like the station in the movie, it simply wasn’t funny.

    In the 90’s, Tim Robbins directed and starred in Bob Roberts, a satirical mockumentary about the most ridiculous caricature of a right wing politician imaginable. Today, standing next to Bachman and Santorum, Bob Roberts sounds like a moderate. I’m not even kidding.

  4. Just so everybody knows, the actor (Carroll O’Connor) who played Archie here was, in real life, a liberal who did a commercial for George McGovern in 1972, turning the “radical” label back on Richard Nixon and the republicans.

  5. Archie was only funny to us left-wing pinko commies, and to the few right-wingers who were dim enough to not realize the show was satire from start to finish.

    Limbaugh has never been funny at all…..

  6. I never did find Archie Bunker very funny. TV became a lot more crude, imo, after that show was on the air.

  7. But it was crude without being funny-crude. They copied some of the content and tried to top it, without understanding why the original was so good in the first place.

  8. My partner and I re-watched Bob Roberts last year and had the same reaction. We remembered it being a hilarious satire. On re-watch, it was just scary and seemed like another far-right conservative. A shame how far things have moved; even the conservative idols of yesteryear would be thrown out for being too liberal today.

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