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Researcher uncovers Rush Limbaugh's early tomb and artifacts

March 9, 2009 | 12:24 am

Choose one:

Rush Limbaugh is a perceptive pundit who says conservative and outrageous things to an ever-growing radio and even TV audience of like-believers who don't see their struggling party's leaders taking the rhetorical reins. And it is very good for his business.

Or:

Rush Limbaugh is an oThe number one radio talk show host conservative Rush Limbaughverweight, pompous pontificator who says the outrageous things that all evil Republicans believe in their hearts and they'll follow him to the end of the earth like lemmings because Michael Steele and John Boehner have no traction outside D.C.

And the GOP is dying from the overpowering successes of the new White House team, according to Barack Obama's chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel.

It's Emanuel with his successful experiences from the early months of the Clinton administration who's responsible for all the Obama successes so far -- the bipartisan outreach, the pothole-free Cabinet nominations and the snubbing of America's most stalwart overseas ally by presenting a toy helicopter as an official gift for British Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

Or some of both.

The Ticket wrote about Rush the other day because Emanuel and his morning conference-call advisor team of Carville, Stephanopoulos and the little guy Paulie came up with the idea that Rush isn't popular with a lot of people and if the chattering class was arguing about Rush they might not notice the evaporation of their 401(k)'s since election day.

And since the Nov. 4 election was so awfully close and Republicans have climbed up to -- what? -- 32% popularity now, the quartet wanted to link Rush with the Republicans. Or the other way around.

Which is kinda like trying to link Oprah and Michael Moore to the Democrats. It ain't really that hard to do; all three of them are pretty hard to miss out there.

Anyway, our blogging buddy Larry Harnisch, who so cleverly mines the archives of the L.A. Times newspaper for past print gems that fascinate online readers today over at the Daily MiDemocrat Rahm Emanuelrror, has come up with a feature story from the newspaper from 20 years ago when the man now calling himself El Rushbo did not have an e-mail address.

In those days people could still remember Rush's dim days as a spectacularly mediocre radio DJ, and the conservative broadcaster from Missouri was just beginning to build the commercial bonanza that has made him a multi-millionaire with 600+ radio stations listed here carrying his voice and thoughts to some 20 million faithful, curious and livid each week.

(In Los Angeles, it's KFI 640, KWDJ 1360, San Francisco KSFO 560, San Diego 600, all at 9 a.m. Chicago WLS 890 11 a.m. and in New York WABC 770 at noon.)

Not to mention the lucrative website and listeners club here, where the now-Miami-based Rush is today calling on his followers not to participate in the recession/depression that dominates the talk emanating from the hated Washington.

In those days of 1989 there was only one President Bush, and few outside Arkansas had ever heard of Bill Clinton. Back then, Emanuel was a go-fer for pols in the Chicago Democratic machine but eyeing this up-and-coming governor from Arkansas. That was so long ago that the Cubbies had still not won a World Series since 1908.

Back in those days Rush was targeting someone named Barney Frank and always quick to pounce on liberal hypocrisy. Oh, wait. He still is.

To see how the self-proclaimed great one saw himself in 1989, click here.

-- Andrew Malcolm

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Photo credits: Joseph Kaczmarek / Associated Press (Rush Limbaugh talking as usual); former office of ex-Rep. Rahm Emanuel.

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