The Radio Equalizer: Brian Maloney

29 April 2006

Rush Limbaugh, Rush Limbaugh, Rush Limbaugh

IT'S RUSH-BASH 2006!

For Mainstream Media, Unhinged Anger Exposed





Like drunks crashing a frat party just as the first kegs arrive, wire service reporters and cable news anchors had a blast tearing talk host Rush Limbaugh to shreds Friday evening. Disregarding any remaining journalistic standards in their partisan newsrooms, details of Limbaugh's plea deal with Florida prosecutors were savagely twisted to serve their political purposes.

While early AP reports focused primarily on Limbaugh's "arrest", later versions were changed to more closely follow what had really taken place.

Same reporter, wildly different copy throughout the evening.

What happened? Did a managing editor later show up to read Brian Skoloff the riot act?


From the first version (Palm Beach Post):


Rush Limbaugh surrenders on prescription drug charge


By BRIAN SKOLOFF
Associated Press Writer

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Rush Limbaugh was arrested Friday on a prescription fraud charge after reaching a deal with prosecutors that will see the single count dismissed if he continues treatment and doesn't violate the law, Limbaugh's attorney said.

The subject of a three-year investigation, Limbaugh surrendered to authorities on a warrant charging him with fraud to conceal information to obtain prescriptions, said Teri Barbera, a spokeswoman for the Palm Beach Sheriff's Office.

The 55-year-old conservative radio commentator came into the jail at about 4 p.m. with his attorney Roy Black and left an hour later after being photographed and fingerprinted. He posted $3,000 bail, Barbera said.

"He just kind of came in and he left," Barbera said.


Second version (Seattle Times):


Limbaugh reaches settlement in drug case

By BRIAN SKOLOFF
Associated Press Writer

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Rush Limbaugh reached a settlement with prosecutors Friday in a fraud case involving prescription painkillers, though the conservative radio commentator maintains his innocence.

Limbaugh turned himself in to authorities about 4 p.m. on a warrant for fraud to conceal information to obtain a prescription, the first charge in the nearly 3-year-old case, said Teri Barbera, a spokeswoman for the state attorney. He was released an hour later on $3,000 bail.

Limbaugh's attorney, Roy Black, said his client and prosecutors reached a settlement on a charge of doctor shopping.

Under the deal, Limbaugh would eventually see the charge dismissed in 18 months if he continues treatment for drug addiction, Black said.


And look at the differences in this third version (Fort Worth Startle-gram):


Deal in Limbaugh's case lets him avoid guilty plea

By BRIAN SKOLOFF
Associated Press Writer

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Conservative radio commentator Rush Limbaugh and prosecutors in the long-running prescription fraud case against him have reached a deal calling for the only charge against him to be dropped without a guilty plea if he continues treatment, his attorney said Friday.

Limbaugh turned himself in to authorities on a warrant filed Friday charging him with fraud to conceal information to obtain prescriptions, said Teri Barbera, a spokeswoman for the Palm Beach County Jail. He and his attorney Roy Black left about an hour later, after Limbaugh was photographed and fingerprinted and he posted $3,000 (?2,390) bail, Barbera said.

Prosecutors' three-year investigation of Limbaugh began after he publicly acknowledged being addicted to pain medication and entered a rehabilitation program. They accused Limbaugh of "doctor shopping," or illegally deceiving multiple doctors to receive overlapping prescriptions, after learning that he received about 2,000 painkillers, prescribed by four doctors in six months, at a pharmacy near his Palm Beach mansion.


Note: despite the time stamps on these pieces, as best as I can tell, they are in the correct chronological order.


Meanwhile, pro-terrorist news agency Reuters was up to its usual dirty tricks, even bringing unrelated racism allegations into the story (excerpted here):


Limbaugh charged in Florida drug fraud probe
Fri Apr 28, 2006 7:48pm ET165


MIAMI (Reuters) - Conservative radio commentator Rush Limbaugh turned himself in to police in Florida on Friday and was charged with prescription drug fraud as part of a probe that began more than two years ago, authorities said.

Limbaugh, best known as a brash and often moralistic talk show host, admitted an addiction to prescription painkillers in October 2003 after reports he was facing an investigation for allegedly using a housekeeper to illegally obtain drugs.

He was released on $3,000 bail after being held about one hour at the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office.

The investigation came to light in October 2003 while Limbaugh was embroiled in a controversy that forced him to quit his job as a television football commentator.

The controversy stemmed from comments some people saw as racist. Limbaugh said the media wanted Philadelphia Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb to succeed because he is black.


What in the world did Limbaugh's McNabb comments have to do with this case?


On the telly, Newsbusters and Expose The Left cover especially outrageous cable and broadcast news coverage, where "Rush arrested" was instantly plastered on screens.

Some of the unhinged graphics they captured from CNN and MSNBC are featured in this post. In addition, we've thrown in some kooky Air America anti-Rush propaganda just for kicks.

On MSNBC, Keith Olbermann seemed to react with particular glee at the thought of having a Limbaugh "mugshot". On one side of the screen, CNN also used that word.


Meanwhile, some liberal bloggers couldn't seem to decide whether they were thrilled ("Limbaugh arrested") or depressed ("Limbaugh gets off easy"). In reviewing sites, you'll find examples of each.

Don't expect this issue to soon go away.

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17 Comments:

  • Brian Wrote:

    "What in the world did Limbaugh's McNabb comments have to do with this case?"

    Nothing, but that doesn't stop you from bringing up the Gloria Wise fiasco in most all of your Air America/ Al Franken stories, does it?

    People who live in glass houses... , Brian.

    By Blogger Ezsuds81, at 29 April, 2006 03:12  

  • All Rush has to do is run down a laundry list of the holy hollywood elite (and Ted Kennedy, for that matter), and what they've been busted for (Coke, Heroine, etc, ad nauseum), and that should mute any idiots out there.

    Nobody on the right cares about this. We see it as the Political hack job that it is....

    But, some of our elected stalwarths, should come out and get some intestinal fortitude, for once, and hit the left for what they are...Stalinist, blacklisting, bigots.. If you threaten them, or their masters in the media, you go to the Gulag. The Left has been attempting to ruin anyones life, who gets in their way, for decades now. It would be really nice, if we fought back, for once.

    By Blogger moderator, at 29 April, 2006 13:22  

  • if Limbaugh, never said "all drug useres should be shippd away on an island away from society", maybe the media would have his back. America HATES hypocrites. This is not hard to get. He is not attacked because he is a Conservative, but because he lives the same kind of lifestyle he attacks others for.. America HATES hypocrites, and Limbaugh is a persfect example of this. The story is a GREAT story from a NEWS perspective, filled with IRONY. If the individual in charge of OMDCP was caught with drugs, it would be just as big a story

    By Blogger rightwingwhiner, at 29 April, 2006 13:43  

  • if Limbaugh, never said "all drug useres should be shippd away on an island away from society", maybe the media would have his back. America HATES hypocrites. This is not hard to get. He is not attacked because he is a Conservative, but because he lives the same kind of lifestyle he attacks others for.. America HATES hypocrites, and Limbaugh is a persfect example of this. The story is a GREAT story from a NEWS perspective, filled with IRONY. If the individual in charge of OMDCP was caught with drugs, it would be just as big a story

    By Blogger rightwingwhiner, at 29 April, 2006 13:44  

  • "There's nothing good about drug use. We know it. It destroys individuals. It destroys families. Drug use destroys societies. Drug use, some might say, is destroying this country. And we have laws against selling drugs, pushing drugs, using drugs, importing drugs. And the laws are good because we know what happens to people in societies and neighborhoods, which become consumed by them. And so if people are violating the law by doing drugs, they ought to be accused and they ought to be convicted and they ought to be sent up." Rush Limbaugh TV show (10/5/95)

    "In the audio link below, I go into detail about these non-thinking talking points that "you can't tell people what to do with their bodies" and "you can't legislate morality." First of all, we tell people what they can do to their bodies all the time--no cocaine, no prostitution, no throwing yourself off a building. Second, laws are nothing but defining morality!"

    --RushLimbaugh.com (6/27/03)

    This one really pissed me off. First off it's untrue, Garcia died of a diabetes coma more a result of his insane concert schedule. Second, it ignores his contribution to music. Jerry's ties are also nicer than Rush's.

    "When you strip it all away, Jerry Garcia destroyed his life on drugs. And yet he's being honored, like some godlike figure. Our priorities are out of whack, folks."

    --Rush Limbaugh radio show (quoted in the L.A. Times, 8/20/95)

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 29 April, 2006 14:25  

  • Rush Limbaugh is a lying piece of filth. He makes his living preaching to his dumbed down rube choir, telling them what to thing, by repeating the big lies over and over. By far, he is the most hateful national figure in politics, and his lies and polemics are what has made civil debate very difficult.

    So excuse the hell out of my schaudenfreud, but I'm dancing in the streets over his plea bargain, 18 months probation, $30,000 fine, and the thought of him peeing in a cup in front of some probation officer.

    If it were Al Franken in the same situation, you morons would be screaming about obeying the laws and the DA giving him a slap on the wrist because he's a liberal. But your conservative values seem to not mean very much these days.

    Good, I'm enjoying your misery and hypocricy as well.

    By Blogger Dick Tuck, at 29 April, 2006 14:38  

  • Actually, "Richard", you can tell that he's a conservative because he actually submitted himself to the law and its machinations. If it were Al Franken, he'd spend a billion on a lawyer and blame it on some eeeeeeeevil conservative.

    Then again, if it were Al, no one would care because no one listens to him.

    I almost wish people like you would take control of the government in 2006. This whole "make snarky comments about everything rather than actually try to be an adult and fix problems" thing looks to be a lot of fun, and a lot less stressful on the ol' grey matter, too.

    By Blogger Darin, at 29 April, 2006 15:40  

  • What doesn't shock me is the orgasmically gleefulness you nuts on the left are having with Hush Bimbo's arrest.

    moderator put it nicely with Hollywood and their perpensity for drugging up--just watch any award show like the Emmys or Oscars--all they are to me are events to praise the left-wing anti-Americanism that is Hollywood so they can snort coke, pot, maybe even that new "cheese" combo!

    And all this is for the communist-run media is politics--PLAIN AND SIMPLE!

    By Blogger The Real Bob Anthony, at 29 April, 2006 18:15  

  • 1. Brian's headline is, "It's Rush Bash 2006! For Mainstream Media, Unhinged Anger Exposed" How perfectly fitting that we then have the hate-filled remarks from Dick Tuck and righwingwhiner.

    =-=

    2. Dick Tuck ...

    A couple of quotes from 1995? Is that the best you can do? That's nearly eleven years ago! (That quote from 2003 was not a denunciation of drug use but a commentary about the reality of laws.)


    =-=

    3. rightwingwhiner: "America HATES hypocrites."

    I assume that includes you. You should read an entire book that is just filled with liberal hypocrisy: Do As I Say (Not As I Do): Profiles in Liberal Hypocrisy by Peter Schweizer. I don't remember the MSM putting these tales on their front pages.

    By Blogger frankenlies, at 29 April, 2006 22:50  

  • Darin wrote: "you can tell that he's a conservative because he actually submitted himself to the law and its machinations. If it were Al Franken, he'd spend a billion on a lawyer and blame it on some eeeeeeeevil conservative."


    Seems to me his very highly paid lawyer has been fighting this in the courts for over 2 years. Not what I would call "submitting himself to the law"

    By Blogger Ezsuds81, at 30 April, 2006 02:18  

  • hey "frankenlies" my post was not the least bit hatefull. I explained to you why this is a NEWS STORY. The irony of a man who screams on the radio about "morals" "law an order" and "conservative values" is busted for something that he would attack someone else for doing, especially if that person was a "hollywood elitist" or "liberal". This IRONY is why this is a BIG news story. Not because Limbaugh is a conservatve. Same situation if the Drug czar got busted with cocaine, or if the head of the OMDCP (partnership for a drug free America) was caught sellnig acid to children. Those would be great news items filled with IRONY if they were to happen.
    Once more the right wing is whining and playing victim to the invisible non-existant "lib media" "Frankenlies" is whining away like a little baby, and accusing me of hate. All I did was explain why this is a news story with wings.

    By Blogger rightwingwhiner, at 30 April, 2006 15:03  

  • Yep. The Compassionate Left on display.

    Hope Rush gets well soon.

    By Blogger eLarson, at 30 April, 2006 17:46  

  • rightwinger:

    So the controversy isn't that Rush necessarily did anything bad, it's just that he doesn't use his microphone to promote the bad behavior that he eventually participated in? In other words, if Rush had only said kind things about drug users than no one would blink?

    Sounds more like a problem with the media than a problem with Rush. What he did was either wrong or it wasn't and I don't see why someone should be further condemned because he speaks out against societies ills and at some point in his life happens to get swept up into it? It may reflect poorly on him but it doesn't change his message. That's kind of the typical escape-hatch for the left - any moral corruption is worse when conservatives do it because liberals after all excuse it and condone it!

    Rush's drug problem was Rush's drug problem. Typically when people talk harshly of crime and justice in regards to drugs, I think of crimes committed against other people in the name of drugs. Selling street drugs to kids, drug-related violence, people living off the taxpayers so they can sit and home and destroy lives...those are the things that hurt society the most, not some rich slob popping painkillers while no one even suspected he was doing it.

    Like someone said, he was right - he was defeating liberals with half of his brain tied behind his back!

    By Blogger OttO, at 30 April, 2006 23:52  

  • "Tuck" and "Right Wing (gibbering monkey)"

    Here's a secret message: None of this Oxy Shit will change the fact that, come tomorrow morning, Limbaugh will still be on 600 stations, and Air Idiot will continue to die on the vine.

    By Blogger TC, at 01 May, 2006 02:05  

  • Otto: Rush's problem is Rush's problem, fine. So why were you not defending say robert Downey Jr. when his drug problem was exposed??? You only say this because you love Rush. Again IRONY makes a good news story. If Rush never screamed about "druggies" it would never even make the press to begin with. Most people do not give a damm about Limbaugh, so if he never acted like a hypocrite, it would get ZERO PRESS. Limbaugh created his own bad press by being a hypocrite.

    T.J: yes, the slimeball will still be on 600 radio stations with his over 65 year old audience. So why are you losers whining about the media covering this, if it does not matter? Why are you whining "lib media" as usual???????

    I could do this all day. not a single right winger will be consistant in their logic

    By Blogger rightwingwhiner, at 01 May, 2006 11:05  

  • rww:

    Did YOU defend Robert Downey Jr? I don't think I ever commented on his problems. Are you really comparing the two situations? Maybe Downey was only criticized because he played a fatalistic drug abuser in a movie and he should have known better!?

    Again, feel free to stop generalizing about me. I've tuned in to Rush probably about four hours in the last six months. I understand that perhaps YOU see EVERYTHING through partisanship first, reality and fairness second, but you don't have to lump everyone in with your thought process. You are no different than those who you criticize only you don't allow yourself the burden of being weighed down by morality.

    Explain what makes Rush a hypocrite? You say that if he didn't scream "druggies" no one would care. I think I already addressed this. But of course people would care because he is a conservative. William Bennett didn't crusade against gamblers but it didn't stop the MSM from tearing him apart when they found out he liked to (gasp!) play high-stakes cards!

    So again, Rush's problem isn't that he developed a drug addiction, it's that he never promoted drug use or excused drug users! Ooh, what a villain! If only he had the moral 'clarity' of a leftist then he would be a hero and a victim!

    Is this for real?

    By Blogger OttO, at 01 May, 2006 23:41  

  • If Rush never screamed about "druggies" it would never even make the press to begin with. Most people do not give a damm about Limbaugh, so if he never acted like a hypocrite, it would get ZERO PRESS. Limbaugh created his own bad press by being a hypocrite.

    The moral --- don't get back surgery that doesn't fix the problem. Rush was asking for a drug problem, probably.

    It's amazing how rarely Rush actually talked about drugs that the left seems to think it's ALL he discussed.
    -=Mike

    By Blogger MikeinSC, at 03 May, 2006 03:08  

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