Fellow Bay Area blogger Bookworm Room describes a phenomenon that every fan of Rush Limbaugh has observed when discussing Rush with a liberal who espouses tolerance, diversity, and the importance of being open to new and challenging ideas:
Me: I challenge you to listen to Rush for a half hour.
Him: No. He’s an idiot.
Me: Have you ever listened to him?
Me: Then how do you know he’s an idiot?
Him: He is. He’s a wacko. He doesn’t know anything.
Me: How do you know that?
Him: Are you trying to make me mad?
Me: No. But I do think that you should listen to him. At least then you’d have first hand knowledge of what he says and whether you agree or disagree with it.
Him: I’m not going to waste my time.
As Bookworm Room writes:
If you’d been around in 1894, you would instantly have recognized the name “Svengali.” He was the chief villain in George du Maurier’s blockbuster novel Trilby. The Svengali plot-line was a simple one: Trilby was an innocent (and tone deaf) laundress and model living in fin de siecle Paris. Svengali hypnotized her into bec0ming a great singer and the toast of the music world. When he suffered a heart attack during one of her performances, his spell over her broke, and she was left standing on stage, bewildered and humiliated. Since then, we use the word “svengali” to describe a person who steals the will of another with evil intent.
It’s become increasingly clear to me that liberals view Rush Limbaugh in precisely that light. And no, I’m not making the obvious point that the Obami and the Democratic party fear Rush’s bully pulpit and consistently demonize him. I’m talking about the rank-and-file’s fear that even listening to Rush for a moment or two causes a person to lose the will to be a liberal. Those liberals to whom I speak shy away from him, not because they disagree with what he has to say, but because they fear he will convince them that he’s right.
On the other hand, President Obama is doing his best to make listeners more receptive to Rush’s ideas. As is chief booster Chris Matthews, who castigates Rush for language Matthews and his fellow GE employees had no problem with from 2001 through 2008, while, like Frank Rich, uses plenty of extremist hate-filled rhetoric of his own.
Besides, we all know who was the original audio Svengali.
Related: Man nipples.