RUSH: Mr. Snerdley, the Official Program Observer, is asking me if I still think that they’re not embarrassed by it. I actually don’t. Now, I have to tell you that I’m basing that solely on my knowledge of who they are, not anything that’s happened since. I don’t know. I’ve not tuned in CNBC since this happened. I’ve not heard Harwood or Becky Quick or Carl Quintanilla. I’ve not heard them say a word since the debate. I haven’t sought ’em out. I haven’t read anything… I just know them, Harwood especially. You cannot have the kind of arrogance these people have and at the same time feel regret. The two don’t go together. Arrogance and sorrow, arrogance and remorse cancel each other out. You can’t be both.
These people are the epitome of arrogance combined with condescension. I mean, they thought everybody on that stage was beneath them. Everybody on that stage was a pretender. Everybody on that stage is a doofus. Everybody on that stage is unqualified. Everybody on that stage is a joke, you name it, in one way or another, and they treated them that way.
I’ve learned a lot of things here in the years I’ve hosted this program. I’m telling you the thing they are probably marveling at is everybody talking about ’em. All the attention they’re getting. That’s the name of the game for everybody in the media. Contrary to what they tell you, everybody in the media wants to get talked about, wants to get noticed, and you know the old saw, as long as they spell the name right, it doesn’t matter what they say. Well, I guarantee you, in fact I would bet what’s going on is that the behind the scenes in the hallways at CNBC they’re probably being applauded by coworkers. (interruption) Well, I know they’re being made fun of in places. Late-night comedians are telling jokes about them, but, hell, that’s a badge of honor, too. Get mentioned on a late-night show.
I’m just telling you, the characteristics of arrogance and conceit, it’s hard for regret to permeate that, or embarrassment. (interruption) You really would, if you’re one of them? You’re telling me that if you are a full-fledged liberal Democrat that has an open animosity for these people, and in your mind you expose them for what they are — remember, the question was the bullet. The answer didn’t matter. The question was the bullet. They got the questions asked. They were able to shape opinion by virtue of the question. What they tell themselves is: “These people look defensive in answering, they look guilty. They didn’t beat us. We’re the moderators. We have the newscast the next day to tell people what really happened.” That’s the way they look at it. What did you ask me, embarrassed? (interruption). Ah, the rules are different for them. Snerdley said, “Their professionalism is under assault.” No, it’s not. Their professionalism is assumed.
They are card-carrying, accredited members of the Democrat Party. Their assignments are in the media, and they’re doing their jobs. They’re mischaracterizing. They’re impugning. They’re attacking Democrat-Republican opponents. Mission accomplished. Now, that’s not to say that there might be people, “You know what, we can do this better than the way these clowns did it. These clowns went overboard. They drew too much attention to what we really are.” There might be some of that going on in the hallways of leadership. But these people, nah. They showed up the next day and they’re smiling and going about their business. I guarantee you that the last thing they are is embarrassed.
Can you name for me the last Drive-By Media person you can remember being embarrassed about anything? Dan Rather embarrassed over forged documents, caught red-handed? Nope. They don’t think that way. It’s not how they get through the day. They’re introspective like a lot of people are, but their introspection is rooted in telling them how great they are. But it’s also rooted in their belief that the people on that stage are second class rubes. They’re jokes. I mean, they’re Republicans, for crying out loud. Nobody takes them seriously. They’re a bunch of racists and sexists and bigots, and they hate this and they hate that, and as far as these people on that stage last night are concerned, or two nights ago, I’m pretty sure they’re convinced they exposed a lot of that. So mission accomplished.
The closest I can remember, in answering my own question, would be Brian Williams. But I don’t even think Brian Williams was embarrassed. I think Brian Williams was conciliatory, but he never thought he did anything wrong. None of the lies he told were on the air. Why do you want them to be embarrassed anyway? What do you think is gained by… (interruption) Well, okay, let me put it to you this way then, if you think it’s an object lesson. If they were really embarrassed, and if they really had regrets, they won’t ever do it again. And do you think that’s gonna happen? Do you think there’s gonna be a change in the way the media treats Republicans because of what happened in that debate? I mean, a long-lasting, substantive change.
Do you think there’s going to be newfound respect? Do you think there’s going to be, “Senator Cruz, we’d like to apologize for what happened to you at the hands of our colleagues at the previous debate. We want to assure you that this won’t happen again.” Do you think that’s gonna happen? Do you think anything that those three knuckleheads did is going to change one iota of the way the left-wing media interacts and deals with or tweets, characterizes Republicans? The answer is no. So even if they are embarrassed, I guarantee you it didn’t even last overnight.
I want to get to this Bush campaign thing. Wait, wait, wait. Grab sound bites eight and nine. This would be a good time to do this. Last night on the Fox Business Network, After the Bell, the host of that program is David Asman. And he spoke with Howard Kurtz, the Fox News Channel’s Media Buzz, media critic. That’d be Howie Kurtz. Used to be the Washington Post. Howard Kurtz’s job is to go on Fox and tell the viewers what the media is doing good and what the media did bad. He is the media critic. So he’s on there on the Fox Business Network, and this first bit’s 30 seconds. It’s Asman talking about something I said on the program here yesterday.
ASMAN: Rush Limbaugh said the following, and I just want to get your reaction. Let’s play the tape.
RUSH ARCHIVE: That show was designed to kill every one of those candidates. That debate last night was designed to take them all out. That debate last night was to grease the skids for Hillary Clinton. That was the sole purpose of that debate last night.
RUSH: So Asman says, “Howie, what’s your response? Limbaugh said the whole purpose of that debate was to take out those Republican candidates.”
KURTZ: Well, that goes too far for me. I’m not gonna say that the people at CNBC were deliberately trying to knock out all 10 Republican presidential candidates —
RUSH: Stop the debate. How many were they trying to take out then? If it wasn’t all 10, how many were they trying to take out? You heard what he said. That goes too far for me. I’m not gonna say that the people at CNBC were deliberately trying — you think they’re embarrassed? Not even somebody at a competing network will properly characterize what they did, Mr. Snerdley. “That goes too far for me. I’m not gonna say the people at CNBC were deliberately trying to knock out all 10 Republican candidates.” Okay, cue that back to the top and I’ll let the whole answer go by and not stop it or interrupt it this time.
KURTZ: I’m not gonna say that the people at CNBC were deliberately trying to knock out all 10 Republican presidential candidates. But the thing is, and, look, these debates are hard to moderate. Fox got some criticism for aggressive questioning at the Cleveland debate. But it’s very important to at least come across as giving the candidates a chance to respond, not constantly interrupting them, not being snarky, and a lot of people, you know, on Twitter and elsewhere and lots of other media critics — I’m not the only one out here — thought it was just a train wreck for CNBC.
RUSH: It was a train wreck, and I’m not the only one. Twitter, oh, yes, the sewer that is Twitter thinks that it was a train wreck for CNBC. But you gotta give the candidates a chance to respond. You can’t just be snarky, stuff like that. So there’s a little bit of circling the wagons there. I mean, media people are the media. They hang in. Don’t blame Kurtz for that. If he throws them overboard, he’s throwing a lot of people that do what they do overboard, and they’re not gonna do that.
I’ll tell you the news media, you talk about unity and solidarity, these people are like a union. They hang tough, they hang together no matter what, because they will not allow, for example, a Dan Rather and whatever he does to destroy their reputation, too. That’s why they gave him an award after that whole Bill Burkett thing. So somebody needs to ask Howie, “Well, if they weren’t trying to take out all 10, ’cause that goes too far, how many were they trying to take out?”
RUSH: So, Mr. Snerdley, has been peppering me with questions, actually the past two days. “You don’t think they’re embarrassed?” I said, “No, I don’t.” But looky here from CNN’s money.com website. “‘Shell-shocked’ CNBC Staffers Had Long Flight Home — For the CNBC employees who boarded a charter plane right after Wednesday’s bruising GOP debate, the redeye flight was physically smooth but emotionally turbulent. People were exhausted, but also rattled and worried. ‘We were shell-shocked,” one source said.
“The poor reviews were piling up — declaring CNBC the biggest loser of the night — and the moderators Carl Quintanilla and Becky Quick knew more would be published by the time the flight landed in New York. So for some flyers, it was a sleepless night. But there was some laughter and some liquor to lighten the mood — and some speculation about how high the ratings would be.
“At 12:30 p.m. Thursday they found out: 14 million people watched, easily making the much-derided debate the most-watched program in CNBC’s 30-year history. Because advertisers paid $250,000 apiece, it was ‘also the most profitable night in the network’s history,’ an NBCUniversal executive crowed.”
Now, if I were an honest person at CNBC, and I’m an honest person, CNBC and the biggest ratings I’ve ever got as a business channel was a debate of Republican candidates, I would seriously question what I’m doing the other 364 days of the year. I really would. Here you are, you’re a business channel. You know what CNBC really is is the crony corporate channel. I mean, that’s really what it is. It used to dominate. The numbers were never really huge because it’s a really localized market, but they used to dominate the genre. And they don’t. I mean, you could put the audience in a thimble. And yet here comes this debate, and they got tune-in like they’ve never had before.
They had tune-in, and it wasn’t because of them. It wasn’t because of what they do. It was just the only place you could go to watch what was on. People wanted to see the Republican debate, and they went to the trouble to find out — I had to tell 10 people Wednesday night where to find CNBC on DirecTV. They didn’t know where it was. And since they knew I knew, they didn’t want to go to the trouble of finding it themselves. Then people said, “I don’t know where it is. I have XFINITY, I don’t have DirecTV.” I said, “I’m sorry, I can’t help you. I don’t know what it is on cable channels from market to market. You’re on your own. Google XFINITY, have your location services turned on, and you might find the channel.”
Nobody knew where it was. When I told them it’s channel 355 on DirecTV, they said, “You mean, it’s only five away from Fox News?” Yeah, it’s that close to Fox News. “And I’ve never seen it?” Guess not. So here you are, you do crony business news, and that’s what they do, they chronicle the workings of government and business together. And they do it from a pure left-wing standpoint and here they run a debate that people never watch that network tune into. If I worked there, I’d say, “You know what, it’s possible to draw 14 million people to this channel, it’s possible to do it, but it ain’t happening with what we do normally here, so what do we have to change?” That’s not how the media works today. They blame the audience for being too stupid to watch the brilliance that they broadcast.
Anyway, back to this story. There was simultaneous crowing and cringing on Thursday,” after the charter flight landed back in wherever, New York, New Jersey. I guess they moved over to New York right now. CNBC used to be in Fort Lee. “Employees who spoke on condition of anonymity for this story wished for a ‘do-over’ and pointed fingers of blame for the chaotic production. Some pointed all the way up to CNBC president Mark Hoffman, who was also aboard Wednesday night’s charter. … Now there are even calls for changes to future primary debates and predictions that CNBC won’t be in the running.”
Well, we know that now. None of NBC is in the running. And they don’t care, folks. Well, now, I take that back. The F. Chuck Todds of the world would love to have their shot at these guys. I’m sure that the F. Chucks and the ranking talent at NBC’s upset by this, ’cause now they don’t get their shot. They don’t get direct access to take these Republicans out. That would disappoint them. But right here it is Snerdley: “‘Everyone feels pretty embarrassed,’ one veteran staffer said.” You’re not talking about the staff, are you? You want to know if Quintanilla, Becky Quick, and Harwood are embarrassed, right? Well, there’s nothing in here about that. This is a story about shell-shocked staffers.
“After the debate, staffers wondered aloud: Will people remember the gripes about Quintanilla, Quick and John Harwood? Will they remember the audience’s boos and the analysts’ comments that CNBC ‘lost control’ of the debate? They second-guessed the opening question of the debate, when Quintanilla asked each candidate, ‘What is your biggest weakness and what are you doing to address it?’ Did it start the debate off on the wrong track?”
What do you think, staffers? Can I translate the question for you? What is the primary reason you’re an SOB? What’s the worst personality characteristic about you that you will admit to and just be done with it? What it really means is what the hell is really wrong with you? What about you do you dislike the most? In your self-loathing day, you Republicans, what is it about yourself that you really hate? That’s what the question meant. Of course it was downhill after that. It was the first note I made, and I couldn’t believe that some of them actually answered it. But there was that built-in Republican effort to be humble and cooperative and what have you.
Jay in Columbia, South Carolina, Open Line Friday, back to the phones. Great to have you here. Appreciate your patience and all that Hello, sir.
CALLER: Thank you, Rush. We need a new strategy to defeat the mainstream media and the left, and I have one in two parts, so just bear with me. Give me 15 seconds to lay it out and then give me your feedback. The mainstream media —
RUSH: 14, 13.
CALLER: — do not get their credibility by interviewing Democrats.
RUSH: 12, 11.
CALLER: They are Democrats disguised as journalists. We have to recognize that when Republicans and conservative pundits grant them interviews, go on their Sunday shows or allow them to host our debates, we are the ones giving them their credibility. They don’t care what we’re saying or what point we’re trying to make. What’s important to them is the fact that we’re sitting there talking to them, giving them their credibility, and we can’t even see it. So as the mainstream media have proven themselves to be nothing more than the left-wing political hacks for the Democrat Party, we are immediately putting them on notice and at this moment forward we will no longer be granting them any interviews to the mainstream media, including the print media, nor will we be subjecting or candidates to debate in any of their future forums.
RUSH: I have long characterized something very close and very similar to that with the same reasoning — in fact, just yesterday — on who they are and they’re not our friends. By the way, it’s more than just they want us to give them credibility by showing up on their shows. They want access to us so that they can shoot at us in person. I’m talking about politically. Their objective is to take us out. And if you doubt that, can I give you some names? Ronald Reagan, Sarah Palin, Christine O’Donnell, Ted Cruz. Take your pick! Their objective…
Modern era, long ago, mid-long ago, what did they try to do? Mitt Romney. (impression) “My name is Harry Reid, and I know that Mitt Romney hasn’t paid his taxes in ten years. A friend of mine told me.” “Really? Who’s your friend?” “That’s not the point! You go ask Romney why he hasn’t paid his taxes in ten years.” “Okay,” and they go do. Their objective is to take out Republican candidates, particularly presidential candidates. So I have long said, “Why help them?” I know the answer to the question; I know why we do it.
We can’t be seen too cowardly. We can’t be seen not cooperating. We can’t be seen trying to achieve major things without the media. It can’t be done and so forth and so on. But at another level, at a certain point, something like CNBC happens, and now Reince Priebus has told NBC, “We’re outta there. We’re not doing another debate with you. We’re not gonna give you another shot at us like that.” But NBC will fix that when our guys go on Meet the Press, or what have you.
Anyway, Jay, you’re singing my song in a big way. I don’t think we can totally avoid them, but the way we do it now, we grant them their superiority. We grant them the assumption that they have the power to determine how we are presented and perceived. And then we go on these networks and on these shows in an effort to prove them wrong. I mean, the whole premise with which we appear on these networks, in my opinion, is flawed.
RUSH: Let me make the point in a different way. Somebody tell me, ’cause I didn’t have a chance to Google this during the break. When were the Olympics in Atlanta? Was that ’86 or ’96? It’s not really that important. It’s just a point of curiosity for me. Whenever it was, do you remember the name Richard… (interruption) It was ’96. Remember the name Richard Jewell? (interruption) Right. Why do you remember the name Richard Jewell? What happened to Richard Jewell?
There was a terrorist bomb that went off in a public area in Atlanta where a lot of visitors and fans of the Olympics in Atlanta were congregating. There was… It was a terrorist bomb. NBC News ran a story identifying an employee of the Olympics, Richard Jewell, as the guilty bomber. They said they had “sources.” They had evidence and so forth. Richard Jewell had nothing to do with it. Oh, and you know what he was? He was “a wannabe cop.”
Richard Jewell, he didn’t quite… He wasn’t gonna be able to pass the physical requirements, but he loved law enforcement. So he was a part-time, I think, security hire or guard in some way. He had something to do with secondary, tertiary law enforcement. They literally destroyed this man’s reputation. NBC News. They weren’t embarrassed by it! I mean, it was… Now, I know it was a matter of litigations and they publicly apologized.
But they weren’t gonna admit they guilt her because that would have meant even a bigger settlement or what have you. It took years for Richard Jewell to exonerate himself. When you ask me if these people get embarrassed over what they do? No, they don’t. That was not even an ideological thing. If Richard Jewell had been a Republican running for office in Atlanta, it would have been even worse. But there’s no… These NBC staffers, I mean, yeah. They may be, who knows, really embarrassed.
The behind-the-scenes people are the ones really bust their butts trying to get noticed and advanced, and they do want their work to be considered straightforward. Look at the Trayvon Martin case. The “white Hispanic,” what was his name? (interruption) George Zimmerman. Look at the 911 call. Somebody at NBC Miami literally edited the 911 call to make it look like Zimmerman was a flat-out racist, and that’s why he did what he did.
When it was exposed as a totally fraudulent, purposefully done edit to malign and impugn Zimmerman, was there any apology? Was there any expressed regret? No. The anger was, they didn’t get away with it. The anger was, they get caught. They’re agenda-driven, Mr. Snerdley, and they’re never gonna apologize for that, even when they make the mistake of exposing it. They’re just not. They’re not embarrassed of what they do.