RUSH: John in West Palm Beach, Florida, nice to have you, sir, here with us. Hello.
CALLER: Hey, Rush, how you doing? Mega dittos from a college conservative up at the University of Florida in Gainesville.
RUSH: Thank you, sir, very much.
CALLER: It’s an honor to speak with you. I just had to call to tell you that I’m a political science major up there, and every day in school I’m just pounded with liberalness. I mean I see it, I hear it, but I attribute it to you, my father, and my grandfather that I’ve learned the values of conservatism, and once you learn the values of conservatism, seeing all the liberalness in college just makes you proud to be a conservative.
RUSH: Not only that, it makes it impossible for the liberals to shake you.
CALLER: It does.
RUSH: I mean they can make you mad, but they can’t talk you out of what you believe.
RUSH: By definition, an organization or individual that is not conservative will eventually become a liberal. ‘Cause conservatism is a daily applied intellectual achievement or activity. Liberalism is not. Liberalism is one of the most gutless choices you can make, just sit around, you know, you feel bad about your country, feel bad about yourself, look for reasons not to feel good about it, see suffering, say, ooh, I hate to see that, think you’re a good person, after you see it, care about a bunch of things you didn’t cause, so forth. Liberalism is so damned easy it’s embarrassing. Conservatism takes some application. That’s why you are so far ahead of the game. You and others like you at universities all over the country are going to be the generation that are gonna straighten all this around.
CALLER: I agree, sir, and also to all those parents out there whose kids are going away to college in August, you know, teach those kids the value of hard work, and that hard work is what gets you things, not just sitting back. You know, teach your kids the difference between a privilege and a right, you know, teach your kids the right to life, and —
RUSH: I’ll tell you something, you’ve hit on something here. Teaching your kids the difference between a privilege and a right, teaching kids the value of hard work. I mean, you want to hear what the Oprahization of America has come to, try this story: ‘Eve Pidgeon watched the large group of kids, many of them laughing and chatting excitedly as they boarded a bus for summer sleepaway camp in Michigan last summer. ‘They just couldn’t wait,’ says Pidgeon, whose 8-year-old daughter Zoe was among the young campers. Then Pidgeon looked around and noticed something else: ‘There were no children crying — just parents.’ These days, camp leaders and family counselors say it’s an increasingly common dynamic. It used to be the homesick kid begging to come home from camp. While that still happens, they’ve noticed that it’s often parents who have more trouble letting go. They call it ‘kid-sickness,’ a condition attributed in large part to today’s more involved style of parenting. Observers also say it’s only being exacerbated by our ability to be in constant contact by cell phone and computer, as well as many parents’ perception that the world is a more dangerous place.
‘For leaders at many camps, it’s meant that dealing with parents has become a huge part of their jobs. … ‘It was nothing for our mothers to send us away for two months. We were their jobs 24 hours a day, so perhaps they needed a respite,’ Pidgeon says. ‘They perhaps didn’t ache for their kids on a daily basis, as working parents do.’ Before Zoe went to camp last summer, her mom loaded her daughter’s backpack with stationery and stamps, since the only way she was allowed to contact her family was through handwritten letters.
‘Both her parents, who are divorced, and Zoe’s younger brother Ben wrote to her often. But as they watched their mailboxes each day, nothing came. The family frantically checked the camp’s Web site, where photos of campers were regularly posted. And her mom took some comfort in that. ‘I could see she was immensely happy, her smile so big it must have hurt her cheeks!’ Pidgeon says. But still, no letters, even after she sent a fax to the camp that read ‘Zoe Pidgeon: Write to Your Mom Right NOW!!!’ … Bob Ditter, a therapist who works with children, adolescents and families in Boston, has acted as a consultant to camps since the early 1980s and says he hears stories like those all the time. He says there’s something to be said for a parent who cares, but not to the point of becoming a ‘helicopter parent,’ a term used for parents who constantly hover over their children.’
You know, we are out of whack. We are 180 degrees out of phase. I had to go to summer camp. I was talking about this with Snerdley this morning. I hated it! I despised it. The little bus showed up at seven am. The summertime you’re supposed to sleep late after having to get up early every day to go to stupid school! Then here comes the little bus with all these little kids I didn’t care a whit about, and the bus chugs off to some stupid farm, there was no air-conditioning out there. The only exciting moment was when they gave you Kool-Aid at about noontime, you had baloney sandwiches with cheese on it, not even any mayonnaise. I hung around where the adults were because they had a radio in there. I remember listening to Palisades Park by Freddy Cannon. What year would that have been? ’63, ’62, whatever it was, and I’m sitting around, I’m listening to some of the tunes on the radio, and my parents got reports back I wasn’t socializing with the kids. That’s damn right. They’re out there kicking stupid balls around, avoiding cow chips out there. I never understood it. It was for a week and it was the most dreaded week of the summer. It made me actually wish for school, ’cause it was like seven o’clock — and my mother was never happier than when she put me on that bus.
My mother never cried a whit. My mother might have cried when I got home. But she did not cry when she put me on the bus. And now parents are crying ’cause the kids are going to summer camp, and the kids obviously like it ’cause they’re living with their hovering parents day and night asking, ‘How do you feel? Is everything okay? What can I do for you? Let’s be friends.’ All that stuff. ‘How’s your self-esteem? Did you learn anything in conflict resolution today?’ I mean, these mothers are like little Barbie dolls, just pull the string on the back and the mother repeats the report. The kids are all, ‘Give me a break, Mom. I got a chat here going. I got a text going here with Zeke.’ So Zeke arranges to go to summer camp that little Zoe went to and everything is hunky-dory and mom is sitting there crying about it. (interruption) No, that cute little picture of me in the New York Times Magazine on Sunday, no. Dawn is asking a question. That was a family vacation. That was down in Panama City, Florida. That picture was taken out there on the Gulf of Mexico.
Anyway, back to the phones. We had this brilliant student from the University of Florida talking about parents teaching their kids right and wrong and so forth. Can you imagine how distressing it is to a kid to be put on a bus to go to summer camp and there’s your mom crying her eyes out? What kind of confidence is that? ‘Mom, should I stay? You seem so upset.’ The kid’s probably saying, ‘That’s okay, she’ll get over it. Get us outta here!’