Friday, July 15, 2005

My Issue with Laura Ingraham

Well, folks, Here it is. The post I promised when I deviated from my plans to respond to charges of anti-liberalism. (Is that a real word?)

Laura Ingraham has a 3 hour syndicated conservative radio talk show. Usually, she devotes at least an hour of the 3 to commenting on what Hollywood has to say about Bush and his administration and policies.

I love Laura's radio program. She is a lucid, funny, intelligent apologist for the conservatives in America. She makes very good points with humor, sarcasm, and often righteous indignation. But I have this issue about her:

She seems to care about what Hollywood thinks. No, I take that back. She definitely cares about what Hollywood thinks, and that bothers me. Why, you say? Because the majority of the Hollywood types have no more clue about what is really happening in the real America than the Aboriginal Pygmies of New Guinea.

As I have mentioned before in this blog, one glaring example of this truth was the shameful display of ignorance exhibited by one Rosie O'Donnell on a recent airing of the chick TV program "The View", Which was hosted on that day by the aforementioned O'Donnell.

Those of you loyal readers of your humble uneducated blogger, may remember the post I refer to. The guest that day was Sean Hannity, an unapologetic conservative radio and television talk show host. As the interview with Hannity continued, Rosie became more and more visibly upset and eventually became red faced, screeching, "Abble Grabble, Abble Grabble!" over and over. For those of you who don't understand "Abble Grabble", She meant Abu Ghraib, the infamous prison in Iraq where Pvt Lindsey Graham helped fellow prison guards force some prisoners into some rather embarrassing positions.

But I digress. The point is this: As Laura herself has stated, and, in fact, wrote a book about it, Hollywood should stay out of the political arena if they don't know what they're talking about. I happen to disagree with that myself. I maintain it is a free country, and we are all guaranteed the right of freedom of speech, therefore the Hollywood types can scream "Abble Grabble" to their hearts content, and I will defend with my life their right to do it.

The issue I referred to is this: Laura continues to give these people credibility by constantly referring to their statements. I don't care what Hollywood has to say about anything but what they know, which is making movies, TV shows, singing, or whatever. To broadcast what they say, even if it is only to ridicule them gives them that much more of a forum. My opinion is this: If we ignore them, they will eventually do what Laura suggest they do. Shut up and sing.

So, my uninvited suggestion to Laura Ingraham is this: Shut up and comment on politics! And I mean that in a good respectful Christian way.

Just a suggestion from your humble friend and uneducated blogger.


tugboatcapn said...

One wonders why, when elected to the senate, everybody instantly becomes an expert on Energy, Economics, the Environment, Hydrogen Fuel Cell Technology, Space Aliens, Immigration Policy, and a whole host of other things that senators routinely comment on, and are asked to create policy on, which they know nothing about.
Musicians and actors are,as a rule, idiots who would be working at Dairy Queen if they hadn't gotten lucky (the true winners of life's lottery...)and should be roundly ignored and dismissed when they express opinions about geopolitical policy.
I don't get to listen to Ms. Ingram very often, as she isn't on the radio in my area, but i have listened to her before. I find her to be a very intelligent, articulate commentator, but she is a little too concerned with the opinions of Hollywood.
Great post!!

The WordSmith from Nantucket said...

Mark, I'm going to have to disagree with your conclusion here.

Yes, Laura does like to talk about Hollywood liberals quite a bit. That's because part of the gimmick of her show is to comment on Pop culture, and just lay bare how ridiculous some of their public statements are (the Hollywood Lefties, you are referring to, that is). The other part of her "gimmick" is to point out the liberal bias in the media. She does both very well; and does it in an entertaining fashion. If I had to criticize her show myself, it would be that as intelligent as she is, she's not always on the ball with specific facts and sometimes isn't great at debating an argument with dissenting callers. And sometimes, her hunt for liberal bias in the media, I believe, is stretching it. But overall, she's very good at what she does and I love her programming.

I don't think she is "giving Hollywood liberal credibility" just because she is giving them some free publicity. It is the other way around: the Hollywood fringe Left are giving her free material, without which her show would suffer. She doesn't simply give them a platform and airtime for which they can pontificate: she takes what may be less obvious to many people, and magnifies the ridiculousness of some of the statements and posturings of the Hollywood Liberals. They are getting plenty of media exposure, with their opinions going unchallenged. Laura changes all of that.

The thing about celebrities is, that even though I don't think most Americans do, indeed, put much stock into the political leanings of celebs, they do command a powerful platform, nevertheless, by nature of the business. Being in the public spotlight, millions of fans want to know all about them and will read up anything and everything. No matter how intelligent a newspaper is, they have zero influence if they have zero subscribers reading their rag. Celebrities, though, have the potential to reach a huge number of listeners; they also have a built-in audience and fanbase, and undoubtedly, do have some influence on these people. It may be because some bozo does think the celeb is a political genius; or it may simply be that said bozo isn't politically savvy, but if he listens to someone (and it could be anyone!) say, "Republicans are destroying the environment! Look at what they are doing...", he might believe it, without knowing the full story, and the other side of the coin. It isn't because he values the opinion of the celeb; it's only because the celebrity was able to reach his listening ear.

It's the same reason why celebrities are sought after for endorsements. It's their popularity, yes; but also their ability to reach a mass audience because they are in front of the cameras and on magazine covers so much.

Anyway, that's my two di-cents. Good post.

I don't agree with everything on Laura's program (which is a good sign, to me, since I don't want to be so partisan, that I become blind), but I thoroughly enjoy what she brings to the table on a consistent basis. She's different from the other programs and makes politics fun and a bit lighthearted. Even on-air, she will admit when they are just being "juvenile". And that's alright. It means they don't take themselves too seriously; afterall, sometimes you laugh at what they poke fun of in the Hollywood crowd and in our political leaders, and you know that sometimes it's well-deserved and other times grossly unfair...yet, you are left howling with laughter in boths instances.

Francis Lynn said...

Geesh Mark- ya got radical Lib ads running on your sidebar! Is this an Evil-Genius Karl Rove plot?