Rush Eulogizes Kennedy By Comparing Health Reform To Slavery

Rush Eulogizes Kennedy By Comparing Health Reform To Slavery

››› ››› GREG LEWIS

Rush gloats that he was right in predicting Democrats would name health care bill after Ted Kennedy

By Greg Lewis

Predictably, Rush started his show today by discussing the passing of Sen. Ted Kennedy. In his opening words, Rush wondered how he would discuss the lion of the Senate -- and quickly noted that "we were his prey." Then Rush said he heard Chris Matthews on MSNBC earlier say that Kennedy turned the ball over to Barack Obama, who Matthews declared was the "last" Kennedy brother. Rush said he was beginning to think Matthews was the "last Marx brother."

Then Rush reminisced about catching "hell" when he "predicted" earlier this year that Democrats would use Ted Kennedy's eventual death as a sympathy trigger for health care reform. He played audio clips of various media figures making similar comments now to those Rush previously "caught hell" for, and noted that Sen. Robert Byrd has suggested that health care reform be named after Kennedy in the Senate. Rush gloated: "So I predicted -- well, anybody could have predicted this. We know these people like the back of our hands. Well, it doesn't matter. I predicted it, and I caught, you know, all kinds of grief for it out there."

Rush eulogizes Kennedy by comparing health reform to slavery

From this point, Rush stopped bragging and took his monologue in a different direction. Rush declared that in the health care debate, the experiences of Ted Kennedy are "instructive." He said the left is exploiting his death and legacy to push health care through. But, Rush noted, Ted Kennedy didn't have to face death panels, or government-run end of life counseling, and nobody told his family that he should take the "pain pill." If you want to move health reform forward, "let's do Tedcare for all" and make sure every man and woman gets the health care Ted Kennedy got.

Rush continued on this note after a quick commercial break. First, Rush said that Ted Kennedy was the "perfect example" of the redeeming aspect of liberalism -- the media will treat you as virtuous and saintly if you take money from people who work and give it to people that don't.

Then Rush said that Kennedy's struggle to live is what should be lionized, not his politics or work in the Senate. Rush called for those who "respect" Kennedy to put politics aside and embrace how he chose to live and die. Why support rationing when Kennedy did not? Rush said liberals would be doing a disservice to Kennedy if they turn his death into a metaphor for hypocrisy -- how can people who support rationed health care put Ted Kennedy's name on the legislation?

Rush continued:

LIMBAUGH: I'm being dead serious here. I think it would be a tremendous disservice to come up with a health care bill that we have now in the House and is floating around the Senate, the one that Obama's talking about, where the government is going to decide whether people like Ted Kennedy get to go through every aspect of survival that he did. Exercise their spirit. He had a spirit for life; he wanted to live. He did not want to die.

Now, Obama has said, well, we can't look at that, because costs -- looking at someone's spirit, will to live. Well, Ted Kennedy's spirit was to live, and he chose to exercise as many options were available to him to prolong his life. And to put his name on a health care bill that denies that to other people and say we're doing this in his memory is hypocrisy, and it would be insulting to his memory.

Rush being Rush, he took things a step further by going on to compare government rationing of health care to ... slavery. Slavery, explained Rush, was a sin because government allowed for human life to become nothing more than a budget item. Ted Kennedy's passing, said Rush, is a powerful reminder of the intensely personal will to live that we all possess. Kennedy didn't have to read a death book. Without irony, Rush made this declaration as he went into another commercial break:

LIMBAUGH: And sadly, Senator Kennedy now becomes a pawn. His death becomes something they can use to facilitate a political aim. And they will be saying things and doing things claiming this is what he wanted, this is what he inspired.

Rush is "a little uncomfortable [...] going after Senator Kennedy on matters of politics," but argues it would be "hypocritical" for Dems to put his name on health reform

After the break, Rush took a caller who thought it was "ironic" that Ted Kennedy didn't want people to have access to the elite health care that he had. Rush admitted to the caller that he was "a little uncomfortable today going after Senator Kennedy on matters of politics, which is why I chose to call it a eulogy." He then added: "I think it suffices to say that it would be as hypocritical as it could be to put his name on a health care bill that forces things on people that he was not forcing on himself. I think it would be an insult to his memory."

Rush might not have been willing to bring "matters of politics" into the debate today, but his next two callers didn't show the same restraint. The next caller said there was a lot of hate in the country, as Chris Matthews had declared, because of what Ted Kennedy did to Clarence Thomas and Robert Bork and their families. Rush said the caller made an interesting point, although he noted he was going to try to avoid this topic today. The next caller lamented that the middlemen -- insurance companies and the government -- are what make health care an unpleasant experience, and that it was better to deal directly with doctors, as her family did and as she presumed Kennedy's family did. Rush said you can blame insurance companies, but it all "started" when the federal government got involved.

Rush continued on this theme for a few moments. The left has wanted national health care since FDR since it is the simplest and most direct power they can get. Then Rush explained how Democrats are no prepared to turn Senate rules upside-down by using reconciliation to get health care passed. Rush concluded the segment by saying that if the Senate puts Kennedy's name on the bill, it would be the biggest insult to his life they can ever come up with.

Rush confronted by caller on "death panels"

After another break, Rush closed out the first hour with a rather contentious caller who called out Rush on "death panels." The caller said it "grabbles" her that Rush talks about living wills like they're a bad thing. Rush denied that he said living wills were a bad thing, and at one point tried to shut her up by saying, "I'm not your husband." Yet the caller continued to challenge Rush:

CALLER: Well, let me ask you something, Rush. Do you have a living will? Do you have a medical directive?

LIMBAUGH: Yeah, but the government doesn't demand it, the government doesn't tell me I have to do it, and the government --

CALLER: No, the only difference is the government is paying for it. The government is paying for it.

As the host, Rush got the last word in:

CALLER: You do have a living will. And you do have a medical directive.

LIMBAUGH: Yeah, but, but --

CALLER: And that's a good thing. It's a good thing.

LIMBAUGH: -- yes, it is a good -- yes, but it's -- but not because as a federal panel it's making me do it. Not because the government's requiring me to do it.

CALLER: Federal panels! That -- you, no. I've read the legislation on the bill, and that is such --you're misrepresenting it severely.

LIMBAUGH: All right, you don't want to listen to reason -- you don't -- listen, Christine, it's real simple. At a certain stage of your life, Barack Obama and the executive branch will decide who gets paid, who gets covered, and who gets treated. And they're gonna make the decision based on how sick are you and how old are you. They may not be called death panels, but it's gonna be rationing of health care, it is gonna happen, and it didn't happen to Ted Kennedy. Now grow up here. You gotta get out of this liberal childishness you're in and grow up and open your mind here. Get a real job.

Rush likens Hillary Clinton to Nurse Ratched

The second hour began with Rush airing audio of Chris Matthews describing Obama as the next Kennedy brother. Rush also noted that it was the Republican Party that secured the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, but the GOP is being "aced out of" being passed the Kennedy legacy torch.

Then Rush observed that the Clintons had not released a statement about Ted Kennedy yet (they had), and mused about Camelot and the Clintons:

LIMBAUGH: And the first attempt at resurrecting Camelot with the Clintons -- and of course Camelot went to shreds when Bill got caught doing what Jack never got caught doing. Clinton got caught, and that's the end of Camelot. And of course, it's tough to have Camelot with Nurse Rached in the White House to begin with.

Then Rush went back to Matthews' remark, asking: "You know what would happen to me if I said of President Obama, he's the new brother? If I called him a brother?" This led right into Rush's knee-jerk reaction of invoking Obama's stepbrother living in Kenya: "Obama is not loyal to his brothers. His brother is still living in a hut." Rush spent the next few minutes talking about how the media's coverage this morning of Kennedy made him laugh because of the way they were making fools of themselves.

Next, Rush read a Denver Post article that was proof that Democrats were "faking" vandalism crimes against themselves. Then he quickly read a "circumspect" Associated Press article stating that "circumcision doesn't protect gays from AIDS virus." Rush quipped as he went to a commercial break that "maybe they're just not doing it right."

After the break, Rush corrected himself, realizing that the Clintons had put out statements on Ted Kennedy's passing. Rush accused the Clintons of waiting to release their statements later so that they stood out.

Rush says caller who confronted him on "death panels" is a "walking, talking cliché"

Then, with the help of the next few of callers, Rush trashed the caller from the previous hour, "Christine," who had challenged him on death panels. Rush took a caller who said "Christine" "harangued" Rush and was really "ticked off" about it. The caller went on to say that she dreaded having to go on Medicare next year, and wanted Rush to tell these kind of people that they don't need a handout from the government. Rush said the call had ticked him off because he couldn't get a word in, and continued to criticize "Christine":

LIMBAUGH: For you to have people call here -- "Oh, she's working three part-time jobs." Some people don't have any jobs because of this president. Some people don't have any hope of getting any jobs because of this president. Some people don't have any hope of getting any job because of this president, and she's out there, "Oh, I'm working three part-time jobs, they're not giving me any health care." Go buy it yourself. Get rid of the cell phone, get rid of cable TV.

Rush then stated that the caller "was a walking, talking cliché." If the nation was comprised of "Christines," explained Rush, we wouldn't be functioning. Obama wants a nation of "Christines." Rush concluded that it was "torturous" talking to her.

The next caller said he didn't want to wish anybody harm or death, but he wouldn't miss not seeing Ted Kennedy in Washington anymore. Rush again said that Kennedy was the lion of the Senate, and they were his prey. Then Rush took a caller who was also upset about "Christine," who as this caller said, wanted her to pay for her medication.

After another break, Rush read Mark Steyn's declaration that there could be "birth panels" in the UK. Rush said that passing health care in Kennedy's honor would be hypocritical and insulting. Rush chimed that Obama is preparing to pass an "extinguished torch" to future generations, and the torch would be one of fascism.

Rush criticizes McCain for "psychobabble" about special interests and for being respectful to Obama

Then Rush moved on to Sen. John McCain's town hall event yesterday, which was worse than Rush thought. Rush aired an audio clip of McCain saying that he did think Obama respected the Constitution, but they disagreed on the role of government. Rush said it was problematic that the people in the audience didn't trust Obama, and people are "scared to death" of him. Rush explained that Obama doesn't respect the Constitution because he sees it as a series of "negative rights."

Rush was also upset that McCain spoke out against special interests during his town hall yesterday:

LIMBAUGH: Folks, that is just vacuous psychobabble, in my humble opinion. We need to take this country back from the liberal Marxists that have taken over. We don't need to take it -- the special interest that we need to fear is fascism.

Rush came back from the next break and re-aired in its entirety the audio of his conversation with "Christine" from the previous hour. Afterwards, he said that everybody knows a "Christine" in their life, and you can't get through to them because they're mind-numbed robots. The next caller on the program wanted to highlight Ted Kennedy's work on immigration reform in 1965. Rush also mentioned that Kennedy "gave us" HMOs and then became the number one opponent of them. Rush continued his rant against liberal policies, and how liberals are allowed to act like spectators, which Hurricane Katrina was a "great example" of.

Rush: Obama is "giving aid and comfort to the enemy"

Rush got the final hour started by noting that Massachusetts Gov. Deval Patrick said he would support changing state law to allow him to appoint an interim successor to Kennedy. But then Rush moved on to the topic he really wanted to talk about -- the CIA memos that were recently released and the pending investigation of Bush interrogators. Rush said that if he were a CIA interrogator, he would tell Eric Holder to start the trial this week. Rush criticized Obama for hiding from the investigation.

After a quick and unfunny "comedy" skit about Obama requiring detainees to be treated with respect, Rush declared he would "love to do a Jack Bauer" on Holder and Obama by having a jury tell them to take a hike. Rush went on to read extensively from posts by Steve Hayes and Andy McCarthy. Rush summed up their thoughts as well as his own:

LIMBAUGH: And what the Obama administration is saying by investigating the interrogators, and by getting all bent out of shape over these -- these tactics that were used against these poor terrorists and his effort to villainize the United States as the world's demon, he's basically saying, "Look, we don't want to see bad things happen to people. I really would prefer 10,000 Americans get killed than we mistreat a terrorist. Because I want to preserve American ideals." That's what the hell he's saying, and that's what he's doing by investigating these people. He's giving aid and comfort to the enemy here. And there's nothing moral about what he is doing.

He added: "The Obama administration sees its job as protecting those who have and will wage war against American citizens. That's his view. That's the way this administration is acting -- protect those who have and will wage war against innocent American citizens."

After the break, Rush took a caller who was at last night's town hall with Rep. Jim Moran (D-VA) and Howard Dean. The caller claimed that Dean was unable to speak because the caller and others booed and heckled him. Rush applauded this, and played a few audio bites of the shouting that took place. The next caller on the program declared that Rush was a "champion" for poor people for speaking out against health reform. Rush said the call made his day.

After another break, Rush took on "brain-dead, mind-numbed liberal" Connie Schultz for saying that Americans trust Obama on health care. Rush said that people have lost trust in Obama and he's not going to get it back because everything is getting worse. Rush also said that we're more vulnerable to a terrorist attack than ever before, and defended Sarah Palin, saying she didn't start any hate language with her death panel comment.

Rush confronted by another caller on "death panels"

Then Rush took a call bemoaned the American entitlement mentality, which Rush explained started under FDR. After one more break, the next caller on the program said he was a respiratory therapist for 46 years, and is usually very conservative, but he disagrees with what Rush says on "death panels." He argued that more people need end-of-life counseling because he encountered so many patients during his years who had to be put on ventilators and whose families had no idea what to do next.

Seemingly ignoring most of what the caller said, Rush falsely claimed that the House bill "mandates end-of-life counseling" and stated that the " 'death panel' phrase Sarah Palin came up with is precisely controversial because it was accurate. It helped people understand exactly what was in store." Rush went on to repeat his argument that the left would exploit Ted Kennedy's death to push health care through, but that the greatest tribute to him would be for every American to get the health care that Kennedy got. To put his name on the bill, declared Rush, is hypocrisy and the most insulting thing the left could do.

Zachary Aronow and Zachary Pleat contributed to this edition of the Limbaugh Wire.

Highlights

Limbaugh eulogizes Ted Kennedy

LIMBAUGH: So I predicted -- well, anybody could have predicted this. We know these people like the back of our hands. Well, it doesn't matter. I predicted it, and I caught, you know, all kinds of grief for it out there.

[...]

LIMBAUGH: I'm being dead serious here. I think it would be a tremendous disservice to come up with a health care bill that we have now in the House and is floating around the Senate, the one that Obama's talking about, where the government is going to decide whether people like Ted Kennedy get to go through every aspect of survival that he did. Exercise their spirit. He had a spirit for life; he wanted to live. He did not want to die.

Now, Obama has said, well, we can't look at that, because costs -- looking at someone's spirit, will to live. Well, Ted Kennedy's spirit was to live, and he chose to exercise as many options were available to him to prolong his life. And to put his name on a health care bill that denies that to other people and say we're doing this in his memory is hypocrisy, and it would be insulting to his memory.

[...]

LIMBAUGH: I doubt that any of this will have an effect on anybody because passing the bill is what's first and foremost on the president's mind and on the Democrats' mind. And sadly, Senator Kennedy now becomes a pawn. His death becomes something they can use to facilitate a political aim. And they will be saying things and doing things claiming this is what he wanted, this is what he inspired.

[...]

LIMBAUGH: Well. I'll tell ya what, I'm a little uncomfortable today going after Senator Kennedy on matters of politics, which is why I chose to call it a eulogy or whatever in the previous mono -- what are you laughing at in there, Snerdley? What are you laughing at? Well, lookit -- I think it suffices to say that it would be as hypocritical as it could be to put his name on a health care bill that forces things on people that he was not forcing on himself. I think it would be an insult to his memory.

Outrageous comments

LIMBAUGH: And what reaction to this day do the Clintons have? And by the way, as of the program start today, 12 noon, we have not heard from the Clintons. As of 12 -- as of a little over an hour ago, the Clintons have not made a statement. Now, something's strange about that, folks, because you remember during the Clinton presidential campaign in 1992, it was revealed that he had gone to Washington as part of Boys Nation. He was a was a candidate from Arkansas Boys State, he got to go to Boys Nation and met JFK out there in the Rose Garden, and they found a picture of it.

And the first attempt at resurrecting Camelot with the Clintons -- and of course, Camelot went to shreds when Bill got caught doing what Jack never got caught doing. Clinton got caught, and that's the end of Camelot. Of course it's tough to have Camelot with Nurse Rached in the White House to begin with.

[...]

LIMBAUGH: You know what would happen to me if I said of President Obama, he's the new brother? If I called him a brother? But this is absurd on its face. And Obama is not loyal to his brothers. His brother is still living in a hut.

[...]

LIMBAUGH: You know, something else that McCain did yesterday. And this is a really -- this is so tired and worn out. At this town meeting, he said we have to take Washington back from the special interests. Folks, that is just vacuous psychobabble, in my humble opinion. We need to take this country back from the liberal Marxists that have taken over. We don't need to take it -- the special interest that we need to fear is fascism.

[...]

LIMBAUGH: And what the Obama administration is saying by investigating the interrogators, and by getting all bent out of shape over these -- these tactics that were used against these poor terrorists and his effort to villainize the United States as the world's demon, he's basically saying, "Look, we don't want to see bad things happen to people. I really would prefer 10,000 Americans get killed than we mistreat a terrorist. Because I want to preserve American ideals." That's what the hell he's saying, and that's what he's doing by investigating these people. He's giving aid and comfort to the enemy here. And there's nothing moral about what he is doing.

[...]

LIMBAUGH: The Obama administration sees its job as protecting those who have and will wage war against American citizens. That's his view. That's the way this administration is acting -- protect those who have and will wage war against innocent American citizens.

Fire the call screener! A non-Dittohead got through!

CALLER: Hi, I wanna know how -- I'm curious -- you alluded to the fact of what a fighter Ted Kennedy was. How did you know he didn't have a living will or a medical directive? I mean, if he had -- of course he had the means to be able to use any kind of New Age and/or experimental cancer treatment because he had the means. But I'm in favor of a national health care program. I'm uninsured right now. I know two other people with the same problem I do. They're either working three minimum-wage jobs with no health insurance at all, or they're working a full-time job -- my one friend's working a full-time job and a part-time job, and they just took away her prescription health care coverage. She has no prescription, so she can't take her high blood pressure medicine. It isn't on the Wal-Mart list, she doesn't have the means to pay for it, and she makes too much money to get it from a pharmaceutical company. It just grabbles me you talk about living wills as if it were a bad thing. I have a 90-year-old father who has a living will --

LIMBAUGH: Wait a second. I did not say living wills are a bad thing.

CALLER: There is no death panel. They're allowing doctors --

LIMBAUGH: There are death panels --

CALLER: -- they are allowing doctors and paying for doctors to be able to discuss participation of a certain age --

LIMBAUGH: No, no, no -- wait a second. Christine -- Christine --

CALLER: -- to be able to write -- to know what their intent is at the end of their lives --

LIMBAUGH: Christine, I'm not your husband.

CALLER: -- and that is a good thing. That is a very good thing.

LIMBAUGH: Christine, you are just wrong.

[...]

CALLER: Well, let me ask you something, Rush. Do you have a living will? Do you have a medical directive?

LIMBAUGH: Yeah, but the government doesn't demand it, the government doesn't tell me I have to do it, and the government --

CALLER: No, the only difference is the government is paying for it. The government is paying for it.

[...]

CALLER: You do have a living will. And you do have a medical directive.

LIMBAUGH: Yeah, but, but --

CALLER: And that's a good thing. It's a good thing.

LIMBAUGH: -- yes, it is a good -- yes, but it's -- but not because as a federal panel it's making me do it. Not because the government's requiring me to do it.

CALLER: Federal panels! That -- you, no. I've read the legislation on the bill, and that is such --you're misrepresenting it severely.

LIMBAUGH: All right, you don't want to listen to reason -- you don't -- listen, Christine, it's real simple. At a certain stage of your life, Barack Obama and the executive branch will decide who gets paid, who gets covered, and who gets treated. And they're gonna make the decision based on how sick are you and how old are you. They may not be called death panels, but it's gonna be rationing of health care, it is gonna happen, and it didn't happen to Ted Kennedy. Now grow up here. You gotta get out of this liberal childishness you're in and grow up and open your mind here. Get a real job.

[...]

LIMBAUGH: Let me tell you something. I got a lot of email about that woman, Christine, and your reaction is identical to what a lot of people's reaction is. And it's actually very healthy. I mean, a lot of people had the same reaction you had, which is "Hey. go out and get it yourself. Stop depending on me."

CALLER: Yeah. Exactly.

LIMBAUGH: For you to have people call here -- "Oh, she's working three part-time jobs." Some people don't have any jobs --

CALLER: That's exactly right.

LIMBAUGH: -- because of this president. Some people don't have any hope of getting any job because of this president, and she's out there, "Oh, I'm working three part-time jobs, they're not giving me any health care." Go buy it yourself. Get rid of the cell phone, get rid of cable TV.

CALLER: That's exactly correct.

LIMBAUGH: If it matters that much to you, get rid of something and go buy it.

CALLER: It's all the entitlement mentality.

LIMBAUGH: Damn straight.

CALLER: It's mine because I want it to be mine, and if my neighbor has to pay for it, oh well.

LIMBAUGH: That's exactly right -- it's not -- she thinks that the government pay -- the government pays for Blackwater. That woman is -- she was a walking, talking cliché.

America's Truth Rejector

LIMBAUGH: Wait a minute, wait a minute. Lookit -- this death panel thing is not hard to understand here, folks. It's very simple. All you have to do is read [laughing] HR 3200. And that's scary. Nobody has written a bigger horror book than HR 3200. It mandates end-of-life counseling.

[...]

LIMBAUGH: I don't know what's so hard to understand about this. The "death panel" phrase Sarah Palin came up with is precisely controversial because it was accurate. It helped people understand exactly what was in store.

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