It became apparent that Dennis had the ability not only to communicate big ideas to someone like me – someone who was already embarking on a career in the same line of work he has mastered – but also to connect with guys and gals my own age who don’t “follow politics” or any of the cultural battles waging around them. Prager has the knowledge to educate, the capacity to motivate, and the tenor and personality to circumvent the “I didn’t care for his tone” excuse most apolitical Americans use to obfuscate their intellectual laziness. (See, I’m still working on that whole “tone” thing myself!)
After a few memorable opportunities to come to Los Angeles and spend time with my hero, and after hearing Dennis say many times on his show that he wanted to find ways to bring his brand of “Speak softly and carry a Big Idea” conservatism to a younger audience, the hamster wheel of ideas in my head began spinning.
Here’s where things get really interesting.
On April 12th, in the year of our Lord 2011, while simultaneously parsing the Hebrew participle for my graduate school course in “Biblical Hebrew” and listening to comedian Adam Carolla’s podcast – the most popular in human history, by the way – I heard Carolla and guest Joe Rogan discussing the cultural and economic decline of their state of California. Amidst the ranting, and right as I was about to switch my iPod over to a Frank Sinatra playlist for the rest of my Hebrew conjugation bonanza, Adam said the following combination of words that I, like Samuel L. Jackson’s “Mr. Glass” in the movie Unbreakable, had been searching for.
There’s this super smart guy named Dennis Prager who I listen to every morning while taking my kids to school, and he always says…
This was it. This is what Bono and the lads from U2 should have been looking for. And I had found it.
Immediately my mind filled with all of the pertinent facts. Carolla is culturally relevant. He’s a touring stand-up comic. He is twenty years younger than Dennis Prager. He’s politically incorrect. He’s a beer-drinking, car-loving, sports-watching, red-blooded American male who worked his way up from a childhood on food stamps in North Hollywood to a beautiful home and family up in “the hills.”
Because he actually was that working-class stiff (some try and pretend to be) for the first thirty-plus years of his life, and specifically because he was in the insanely regulated construction and contracting business, Adam knows first-hand how soul-crushing big-government bureaucracy can truly be.
And so it was that after years of listening to Adam and hearing him give away little hints as to his true feelings about key flaws in progressivism, everything came together in one glorious moment: Adam has been listening to Dennis all along, too! He may not be a Tea Party conservative, but this guy “gets it”! And he loves Prager to boot!