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John Stewart Vs. Rush Limbaugh Voters

As I sift through various news websites this morning looking for commentary on how President Obama's Monday prime time news conference was received by the public last night, one comment by a reader on one news site pondered how many John Stewart voters are there out there compared to Rush Limbaugh voters? I thought that's a brilliant question to ask in regards to how this whole national debate on the economic stimulus bill is being framed.

Much of the opponents of the economic stimulus bill fail to even mention one single provision of the large bill that they actually oppose and why. Most of the arguments I've seen are inch deep and shallow right wing philosophical arguments that simply don't believe in government action in regards to spending money, managing the economy or oppose education funding or some other important or worthy goal for American society. You begin to wonder if they oppose basic things such as funding for veterans hospital construction, school construction, Bureau Of Indian Affairs funding, highway construction, electrical grid construction, police or fireman jobs, then around what issue can you actually gain their support. To me they seem like a crazy group who are against anything that is needed, good or required for a decent society to live in. They are like the one group that oppose the bill that Obama referred to that you can never satisfy them around any reasonable goals. But of course there are another more pragmatic and thinking group that actually oppose specific provisions of the bill, and this seems to include but just three moderate Republican senators in it, although this number appears to be shockingly small indeed.

So I ask where does all of this public opposition come from? So I look at the two men who are so influential of so many with their editorial opinions, John Stewart and Rush Limbaugh.

John Stewart is a sharp contrast to Rush Limbaugh in so many ways. Steward was born into a Jewish household where education was a high priority and his own father was a physics professor and his mother was an educator as well. Stewart(whose actual family name was Leibowitz) was an excellent student in high school and graduated third in his class. And Stewart not only spent much time on the required school work, but extensively read leftist authors such as Eugene Debs as well. Although Stewart also excelled in college, he later took many jobs until settling into a career in comedy and television. John Steward seems to inspire his viewers to think about topics and to question authority. Stewart has also had a successful and happy marriage to his long time girlfriend.john stewart.jpg

Rush Limbaugh is quite the opposite. Although his father was a lawyer, Limbaugh wasn't a great student and only lasted a little more than two semesters before "flunking everything" according to his father and then dropping out of college. Limbaugh was also rated the equivalent of 4-F, or "unfit for military service" during the Vietnam War, and had a high draft number as well, so was not called up for service. Limbaugh has been divorced three times, has had serious problems with prescription drug abuse and has been accused of gross inaccuracy in many of the facts he cites. Limbaugh seems to tell his viewers what to think. And even refers to them as "dittoheads", which is actually far less than charming the more you think about what it really means.

Stewart helps to harvest a thinking group of Americans who question things enough that they look for good answers to things. They think about the issues. Limbaugh, by comparison is a know nothing blowhard, who acts as a leader for those who know even less yet, and need to be taken by the hand because they are mentally incapable to think very much for themselves, and leads them in wrong directions on issues like some "Wrongway Feldman" political version of Moses.

This current economic stimulus bill has largely been under so much public outrage because Rush Limbaugh has only managed to demonize it so successfully while actually hardly pointing to any real concrete reasons why to actually oppose it. He has managed to raise up an army of zombie followers, unable to think for themselves, who simply oppose the bill because Rush opposes it, while not being able to tell you a single thing about the bill.

Last night, the President made a very convincing and concrete case about what goals are good in this bill, and how serious he is at preserving the American economy. It was an image of a very serious and wise man who is an excellent president who cares about the health of the nation. Compared to many who oppose this bill, the president seems to have the genuine concern for the welfare of his country at his very heart.

I'd sure like to see an equal sense of concern for the welfare of the nation from those who oppose this bill, but generally I just can not find it. Many who oppose the bill just don't seem to be intelligent enough to reason that our society needs schools or veterans hospitals. It's too tough to sell such persons on reasonable goals for our society. They will always oppose anything good because that's their nature. Some people want to build up America, others just want to tear it down.

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Comments (17)


Two reasons to oppose this bill: Nationalized Health Care "oversight" (which will create immoral rationing of healthcare) and unconstitutional religious discrimination. That is more than enough.



And if you want one more reason, the Congressional Budget Office and many economists are saying that doing nothing would actually be the best action of all ("do no harm"). But doing nothing wouldn't do anything for the egos of those in Washington...


Lee Ward:

Alan - You state that the CBO say doing nothing is the best action -- but then you provide a link to an article that -- from what I can tell at first glance -- doesn't even mention the Congressional Budget Office.

How very "Limbaugh" of you...

gdb in central Texas:

Here you go Lee - CBO says "stimulus" plan will not help in the short term, will be detrimental in the long term and the economy will be out of the current recession, without intervention, by the 3rd to 4th quarter of 2009.


Lee Ward:

Nice piece of bullshit you got down there in Texas, gdb.

You linked to Bob Sunshine's testimony January 8, 2009.

The stimulus bill was introduced January 24, 2009.

Bob Sunshine was not commenting on the stimulus bill, gdb.

CBO says "stimulus" plan will not help in the short term, will be detrimental in the long term and the economy will be out of the current recession, without intervention, by the 3rd to 4th quarter of 2009.
...is total bullshit.
Lee Ward:

In fact -- the CBO says this bill will have a positive effect short-term:

The Congressional Budget Office (CBO), a non-partisan group of analysts who's job it is to provide information to the Congress on their potential action, said the stimulus bill would likely have a positive short term effect...

but that increased national debt will have a long-term (10 year) detrimental effect.

Of course, everyone knows the Democrat swill reduce the national debt - just like Clinton did - once the economy is back on it's feet.

Man - Republicans are worth crap any more - you just can't trust 'em.

I agree with Alan. Do you know everything that's in that plan?

Stop attacking the intelligence of your opponents and start doing some studying. If you can't see why the stimulus is a bad idea, then I feel sorry for you.

P.S. I'll give you a hint: the government doesn't owe us a thing . . .

Lee Ward:

And furthermore, in January 27 written testimony before the House Budget Committee, Congressional Budget Office Director Douglas W. Elmendorf wrote:

"[I]n our estimation -- and I think the estimation of most economists -- all of the increase in government spending and all of the reduction in tax revenue provides some stimulative effect. People are put to work, receive income, spend that on something else. That puts somebody else to work."

Lying Republicans - who's surprised by that?

But why would they want to run our nation into deeper economic trouble?

Because Rush Limbaugh told them to, that's why - to defeat the dreaded Liberal beast.

Lee Ward:

"If you can't see why the stimulus is a bad idea, then I feel sorry for you."

The Limbaugh-bots are free to explain why they think it's a bad idea - but do it without the lies... if that's even possible for you folks.


1) it will increase the federal deficit and debt, which is a general drag on the economy

2) it will increase the intrusivness of government into personal health choice of individuals

3) $4B pay off to ACORN

4) a lot of the spending is one time shots, which do nothing for long term economic growth

5) most of the spending happens in 2010/2011 anyways

there's five good reason for you, Lee.

and what is wrong with opposing it on philosophical grounds? i firmly believe that we need less government intervention in the economy. in my opinion governement acts as a brake on economic activity.

oh, and our politicians are idiots when it comes to any and all economic, tax, and monetary policies. my god, they can't even do their own taxes right.


Nice, thoughtful post, Paul.

In the future, though, in case you're trying to google him or something, Jon Stewart's first name is spelled "Jon."

Lee Ward:

Ke-future spews the Right wing kool aid

ACORN isn't in the stimulus bill, chowderhead. You've been sucking up the right wing lies for so long you can't tell truth from friction.

In a February 6 fundraising email "[p]aid for by The National Republican Trust PAC" and sent to his mailing list, Fox News contributor Dick Morris claimed of the economic recovery plan: "Outrageously, the Democrats want to give almost $5 billion to groups like ACORN [the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now]. As you know, ACORN has been accused of massive vote fraud in many states." Morris added: "With billions in hand, ACORN will be able to register more Democratic voters. That's what this is all about."

In fact, as Media Matters for America has repeatedly documented, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 does not mention ACORN or otherwise single it out for funding; ACORN itself has said that it is ineligible for the funds and has no plans to apply for them.

Morris' claim is based on a misrepresentation of a provision of the bill that would appropriate $4.19 billion "for neighborhood stabilization activities related to emergency assistance for the redevelopment of abandoned and foreclosed homes as authorized under division B, title III of the Housing and Economic Recovery Act of 2008."

Morris also claimed ACORN has "been accused of massive vote fraud in many states," echoing a claim he made on the October 15, 2008, edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends, when he baselessly accused ACORN of "committing voter fraud."

In fact, ACORN does not stand accused of "committing voter fraud." While ACORN has, according to The New York Times, "acknowledged cases where canvassers submitted false or duplicate registrations," many states require ACORN to submit all registration forms it receives. Moreover, New York University's Brennan Center for Justice stated in a 2007 report titled "The Truth About Voter Fraud" that voter fraud is "fraud by voters" and "occurs when individuals cast ballots despite knowing that they are ineligible to vote, in an attempt to defraud the election system." During the October 15, 2008, segment, and in his email, Morris did not cite a single allegation to support his assertion that ACORN has engaged in "voter fraud."

Sad, pathetic lies from sad, pathetic people.

Spew bullshit, rinse, repeat...

When will you people learn America doesn't listen anymore?

Lee Ward:

The Acorn Lie is one of the more popular among the blind, thoughtless kool-aid lickers on the right.

Media Matters has previously documented other media figures making the false claim that ACORN would receive government money from the recovery bill, including CNN's Lou Dobbs, Fox News' Steve Doocy, Sean Hannity and Karl Rove, Rush Limbaugh, and Fox Business Network's Elizabeth MacDonald. Media Matters also noted that The Washington Times, The Hill, and the San Francisco Chronicle repeated the falsehood.

The ACORN lie is all part of a fundraising scam to suck money out of the dumb rubes - scroll to the bottom on this link


media matters is hardly an impartial observer and reporter of political matters, lee. but let's set aside the ACORN issue, i don't think we're going to agree on that one. what about the other issues i raised?

as for CBO quotes. here's one from a letter dated 2/4/09 sent from the directory of the CBO to Sen Gregg.

in it, he says

At your request, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has conducted an analysis of the macroeconomic impact of the Inouye-Baucus amendment in the nature of a substitute to H.R. 1 [the House stimulus bill]. CBO estimates that this Senate legislation would raise output and lower unemployment for several years, with effects broadly similar to those of H.R. 1 as introduced. In the longer run, the legislation would result in a slight decrease in gross domestic product (GDP) compared with CBO's baseline economic forecast.

In other words, yet another short term fix from the politicians that will cost us more in the long run.

here's an interesting article that talks about this and some of boondoggles in the bill.


While I hold no particular brief for Mr. Limbaugh, anyone that actually spends more than a minute or two listening to him realizes that behind the bombast is a man of ideas. You might not like them, but your attempts to demonize him are truly pathetic.

And Mr. Stewart has an undeniable talent for ridicule. But that has nothing to do with whether he is insightful or even sensible. I would characterize much of his humor as simply unfair and mean-spirited. I can't watch the man. Because his world view is so wrong, I have no appreciation for those intellectual gifts you seem to believe he possesses.

If he was so smart, why isn't he a conservative?


Fustian, he's not a conservative because he is a thin, intellectually competent, reasonably attractive individual. Maybe if he turned into a bilious, fat, brain-damaged individual, then he'd probably become a conservative. Also, the far-Right are the ones who really exploit mean-spirited-ness in politics. Look at how they treat their own moderate Republican politicians.


I think that Rush and Stewart should have a real debate.
No matter which way you lean, or what you think of each, I think many people would concide that Stewart vs. Rush would be the comparing of two political entertainment personalities that have differing opinions. It would get them both a lot of press, and I know I'd love to watch it. Maybe even each agree to do a spot on both shows just to keep it fair. Come on people make some noise and let's see if we can get anyone to listen. That's a fight I really, really want to see, and the guy that is correct can mop up the floor with the other guy! If you think Rush would win, let's see it. If you think Stewart would win, let's see that. I know, I know, the other guy from the one you like is too chicken, let's egg them on. FIGHT! FIGHT! FIGHT!


Long Live Rush! If everyone was a liberal democrate who whould work to suport the programs??? While libs run around looking for a teet to suck on, conservatives are out working. Plain and simple.


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