Rush Limbaugh is an American conservative radio and television talk show host whose shows are discussions primarily of politics from a conservative point of view. Limbaugh's commentary is intended to expose liberal fallacies and bias, report news that is underreported elsewhere, and support conservative principles in an entertaining manner. He does not claim to give an unbiased view of the facts; rather, his shows are presented as conservative political commentary on the news, though much news is presented along with the commentary.
Many progressive and liberal critics decry the lack of a balance between liberal and conservative viewpoints on Limbaugh's shows. Limbaugh's response to this accusation is to assert that most news reporting is liberally biased; as he says, "I am equal time." He also does not claim to be a neutral reporter, and contrasts his stance with the news media's claims of objectivity.
Liberals, on the other hand, enjoy exposing Limbaugh's own fallacies, misstatements, and bias. Comedian and political satirist Al Franken released a book and CD titled Rush Limbaugh is a Big Fat Idiot and Other Observations (ISBN 0440508649) which, among other political humor from a liberal perspective, included harsh criticism of Limbaugh and his allegedly meager fact-finding efforts.
Limbaugh started out in radio as a teenager in the late 1960s in his home town of Cape Girardeau, Missouri, using the name "Rusty Limbaugh". His father, a conservative judge whose wealth and power gave him considerable influence in Southeastern Missouri, had once owned the radio station where Limbaugh started his career.
Limbaugh achieved his first taste of radio success in Pittsburgh, as host of a Top 40 music radio show, using the name "Jeff Christie". It was in Pittsburgh that many of Limbaugh's trademarks developed, including a character named "Snerdley" and his claim to use a "golden microphone".
After several years in music radio, Limbaugh accepted a position as director of promotions with the Kansas City Royals baseball team. In 1988, Limbaugh returned to radio as a talk show host in Sacramento, California. After achieving some local success, he moved to New York City in the early 1990s and eventually became syndicated via a company called Premiere Broadcasting. Limbaugh refers on-air to the "Excellence In Broadcasting Network", or "E-I-B", however there is no such actual organization.
In September 2001, Limbaugh denied suggestions that his voice and diction seemed to have changed. However, in October of 2001, Limbaugh admitted that the changes in his sound were due to an almost total hearing loss.
Rush Limbaugh uses his own jargon, which is explained here:
- /Emotional punditry
- /Environmental wacko
- "/Updates" on everything from the Kennedys to homelessness.
- /Stack of stuff