It's interesting. You know, I use two words in 23 years that showed questionable judgment. Two words in 23 years. These entertainers and pundits on the left seem to use 23 obscene words every day or every two days. Back in 2008, the rapper Ludacris supported Obama. The two met in Obama's senatorial office and, in his rap song praising Obama, he called Hillary a b-i-itch. Obama smiled. You remember that? "Hillary hated on you," said Ludacris. "That b-i-itch irrelevant. Jesse talkin' slick and apologizin' for..." It was a special rap song written for Obama in which Mrs. Clinton, former first lady, the current secretary of state, was referred to as a b-i-itch.
Two words in 23 years? As I've noted, Limbaugh sexually insulted Sandra Fluke 53 times in three days. It was a lot more than two words. And those 23 years have included plenty more sexist words, as I document in my book, The Most Dangerous Man in America: Rush Limbaugh's Assault on Reason.
Amazingly, Limbaugh actually denounces Ludacris for calling Hillary a “b-i-itch.” Obviously, Mr. “two words in 23 years” would never do that.
Except that he did. In 2008, Limbaugh referred to Hillary Clinton as a “b-i-itch,” pretending to “translate” Obama's view of her. That same year, Limbaugh also referred to Clinton as a “b-i-itch” by comparing her to One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest character Nurse Ratched: “a lot of people think that she's Nurse Ratched. Nurse Ratched wasn't really human. Nurse Ratched was a mean b-i-itch.” And Limbaugh was certainly one of those people who thought Clinton was the “b-i-tch” Nurse Ratched. In 2007, Limbaugh declared, “Hillary Clinton is Nurse Ratched!” He also said Hillary Clinton "sounds like a screeching ex-wife.” He compared her looks to a Pontiac hood ornament. He's spread rumors that Hillary is a lesbian, and accused her of being mannish.
Nor is Hillary the only woman Limbaugh has publicly called a bitch. Limbaugh called Friends of the Earth international climate campaigner Catherine Pearce a "B-I-itch" after watching her criticize President Bush's State of the Union proposals on CNN. And on March 8, a few days after making his fake apology to Sandra Fluke, Limbaugh attacked a female Washington Post blogger for her “b-i-itchy opinion” critical of Rush. That was three days after Limbaugh complained about the degradation of popular culture in America: “The word bitch is common.”
Bitch is certainly not the only sexist insult in Rush's vocabulary. He's called Nancy Pelosi a “ditz” and a “complete airhead.” He called Kathleen Sebelius, the Secretary of Health and Human Services, a “ditz.” His nickname for Senator Mary Landrieu (D-LA) is "Cute Little Baby Fat.”
All female journalists are “reportettes” or “anchorettes” or “info babes,” and part of the vast “chickification of news” caused by “the chicks in high positions in the media.”
Rush particularly likes to insult the appearance of women and girls. In 2009, Limbaugh said about the late feminist Andrea Dworkin “she could be poster child” for the obese.
He called Amy Carter ugly, compared Chelsea Clinton to a dog on his TV show when she was 13 years old, and referred to Malia and Sasha Obama as the president's “two fat daughters.”
And like Sandra Fluke, liberal women are often the subject of sexual smears by Limbaugh, who declared about Anita Hill, “My guess is she's had plenty of spankings, if you catch my meaning.”
Perhaps the worst insult is the word Limbaugh proudly invented: feminazi. Comparing all feminists (including Sandra Fluke) to the worst genocidal regime in human history is an appalling smear that Rush Limbaugh has done over and over for decades.
This isn't about obscene words. It's about bigoted words. Rush Limbaugh is banned by the FCC from using obscene words, so he doesn't say them on his show. Bill Maher and other entertainers are perfectly free to use obscene words, so they do.
Now, I think Bill Maher is a sexist pig, and so are many entertainers and pundits, on both the left and (especially) the right. And yes, there isn't enough criticism of this sexism by feminists. But you don't see Bill Maher having a president invite him to the White House and bring him a birthday cake, as George W. Bush did for Rush. None of these sexists on the left can compare to Limbaugh, who is the undisputed king of sexist conservatives.
How can Limbaugh lie so brazenly, to complain about the “double standard”? Perhaps because he lives in a delusional bubble. Until Sandra Fluke, none of Limbaugh's sexist smears have attracted the slightest bit of criticism from the right. Limbaugh has been the beneficiary of a lifetime of double standards.
With Fluke, Limbaugh's mistake may have been to viciously target someone who isn't a celebrity, pundit, or politician, and to do it in pornographic ways, demanding to see sex videos of her, an act that finally alienated the Christian conservatives who have always supported Limbaugh and refused to criticize him.
But there's no evidence that conservatives are willing to criticize Rush for any of the sexist remarks he's made over and over for years before Sandra Fluke. Until they do, we can see clearly where the real double standard is. The double standard is embraced by the conservatives who for 23 years have embraced Rush Limbaugh as a leading voice of their movement while he repeatedly smeared women, as he still does.
Crossposted at DailyKos.