Rush Limbaugh Essay, Research Paper
Rush Limbaugh has done much more than just change the style of talk
radio, he has become somewhat of a political leader for many Americans. He has
been the type of spokesman many people have been looking for. ?Why am I being
called the most dangerous man in America?? Limbaugh asks his listeners. ?
Because I am right, and I enjoy being right.? (June 3, 1995, The Philadelphia
Inquirer) Rush has caused people to change their views of the country and it’s
political leaders. He’s had many things that have built him up to the ?
political preacher? you see today. Rush’s early life, his major accomplishments,
and his personal life are just a few of the characteristics that make Rush the
leader he is today.
Rush’s early life affected who he is today in many ways. Limbaugh comes
from Cape Girardeau, Missouri, were he was born on Jan. 12, 1951. Rush, or
Rusty as he was called as a kid, was a chubby, insecure youth who craved but
rarely received the approval of his father, writes Paul Colford, author of ? The
Rush Limbaugh Story?. ?Rush got his first job as a shoeshine boy at the age of
13.? (People 7-24-95 pgs. 166-168) At the age of 16, serving as a disc jockey,
Rush got his first taste of radio. From there, Rusty began to work at several
different stations, none of which were getting him anywhere. During one of his
first radio jobs Rush went by the name Jeff Christie while working for KQV in
Pittsburgh. He was fired by a man named Jim Carnegie, who now says that he was
instructed to fire him, but as soon as Jim got his next job, he hired Rush again.
At the age of 28 Rush took a job organizing community events for the Kansas
City Royals. This paid him $18,000 a year. Rush spent five unfulfilling years
with the Royals. ?No fault of people at the Royals,? Limbaugh told Talkers, a
radio-industry magazine several years ago. ?I was just doing the wrong thing.?
(June 3, 1995, The Philadelphia Inquirer) In 1983 Limbaugh decided to try radio
again. By 1984 he was working as a talk-show host for a station in Sacramento
California. This is were he was encouraged to speak his mind, and form the
style he has today.
Rush Limbaugh has had many great accomplishments through his life as
well. ?Rush is viewed as having single-handedly saved AM radio, and I don’t
think that is an unfair characterization,? says Dave Rimmer, former WWDB-FM
program director, who added Limbaugh to the station’s lineup three years ago.
Dave also said, ?If Rush decided tomorrow that he was tired of talk radio, it
would be a crisis for many stations.? (June 3, 1995, The Philadelphia Inquirer)
When Rush’s ratings went up literally hundreds of AM stations made the switch to
talk radio. By now Rush had become a millionaire many times over. ?Limbaugh
delivered a one-two punch to the nation’s bestseller lists. Following his best-
selling The Way Things Ought to Be (1992), which sold over 3 million copies in
hardcover – making it possibly the best-selling hardcover nonfiction book ever -
with a new book See, I Told You So, which had the largest initial printing in
American publishing history, at 2 million copies, and immediately jumped to the
top of the bestseller lists.? (Brownstone and Franck, pgs. 228+229) These
books also brought millions to Rush’s pocket. In 1992 Rush developed a
television show that was a version of his radio program, ?The Rush Limbaugh
Show.? Rush became and still is a leader and positive role-model for many
Americans. I think Walter Sabo said it best when he said, ?People listen to
Rush to hear him bluster, make jokes, and say things the way they can’t at work.
They listen to him say things about women that we married guys can’t say.?
Rush isn’t just the voice on the radio or the face on TV, he also has a
personal life. When he is off the air, his friends say that he would more
likely stay in his New York apartment with Chinese take-out and a stack of
rented movies than be out hobnobbing with celebrities. Carnegie, his former
program director, says that in the old days they’d get together to drink a beer,
play a round of golf, or take in a ballgame – and talk. (June 3, 1995, The
Philadelphia Inquirer) Carnegie also said, ?I love the guy to death. He hasn’t
changed that much. Jeff Christie, now Rush Limbaugh, is the same way he was
over 20 years ago: highly learned, self-educated, politically motivated in
discussion, and always an entertainer.?
As you can see Rush Limbaugh has impacted the world as we know it like
few others have ever done, and he does this simply by speaking his mind. This
is what makes him such a great leader and spokesman for many Americans that
don’t feel as free to speak their mind. Rush’s early life, his major
accomplishments, and personal life have help form the leader that so many ?ditto?
today. As one radio executive says, ?At this point, the only person who can
hurt Rush is Rush.? (June 3, 1995, The Philadelphia Inquirer)