All week conservative leaders have been celebrating the 20th anniversary of Cape Girardeau native Rush Limbaugh's nationally syndicated radio show by calling in comments of praise. Rush initiated the first three-hour talk program on basically dead-at-the-time AM radio. Since then, others have followed, but no liberal radio program has been successful.
To quote Mark Levine (now on talk radio):
"Rush is the counterweight to the liberal media complex. He is the answer my dad and millions like him were hoping for. Those of us who were alive and attentive during the 1960s and 1970s know what it would be like if there wasn't a Rush Limbaugh.
"Rush didn't have to buy a newspaper or television network to be heard. By the force of his brilliance and talent, he took the dying AM radio band and turned it into the most consequential and thriving media forum in the nation. Every day at noon Eastern time, millions and millions of Americans tune into the Rush Limbaugh Show to listen to Rush deconstruct the day's events, skewer the liberal mindset and educate about America's greatness. There's really nobody like him -- on or off the radio. He is a uniquely American icon. His influence on American culture is of a kind with Mark Twain and Will Rogers.
"Think about Rush's living legacy: He has created a genre of public discourse that reaches every corner of this nation -- and beyond. He entertains and educates millions and millions of people every day as they go about their daily routines -- in their homes, offices, automobiles and other venues. He discusses current events, history, economics, law -- you name it -- in a seemingly effortless way. He not only speaks from the mind, but from the heart. He believes what he says and takes joy in tweaking the powerful. And most of all, Rush is sincere in his affection for his audience, and they for him. It is a bond that has withstood the test of time, and multiple efforts to break it.
"There is also the private Rush Limbaugh. Despite his enormous fame and busy schedule, Rush always has time to listen, give the best advice he can to those who solicit it and lend a helping hand when needed. In my darkest moment, when I suffered a heart attack, Rush wanted to get me the best medical care in the country. But his kindness isn't limited to family and friends. He is extraordinarily generous to many charities, including those which support our troops and law enforcement and battle cancer. He does these things not for accolades, for he doesn't seek them, but to make a difference where he thinks he can.
"We all owe Rush a debt that can never be fully repaid. Because he is so good at what he does and so effective as a national force, he takes the slings and arrows that would otherwise be aimed at the rest of us. His example gives us the courage to stand up for our principles and face down the vitriol of too many of our adversaries. And that's what a leader does -- a conservative leader and a leader in the radio industry.
"Rush, congratulations on 20 years of -- as you rightly say -- excellence in broadcasting."
Not so incidentally, Rush's brother, nationally syndicated columnist David Limbaugh of Cape Girardeau, helped negotiate Rush's recent $400 million multiyear contract and Sean Hannity's $100 million contract announced last week.
The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.
-- George Bernard Shaw
The spin master, Rafael Nadal, ripped powerful topspin and sidespin shots to dethrone Roger Federer in a Wimbledon marathon that was the greatest match of all time.
In becoming the first player since Bjorn Borg in 1980 to pull off the spring-summer doubles -- winning on the clay of the French Open and the lawns of Wimbledon -- Nadal defied conventional tennis wisdom. It's long been thought that no player relying on high-bouncing topspin and cutting sidespin can thrive at Wimbledon. And it's hard to recall a player ever applying more action to his shots than Nadal does. A recent study commissioned by the International Tennis Federation found that while the ball rotates 2,500 times per minute on the average pro's shot, it rotates twice as much on Nadal's.
Yet in winning Wimbledon the 22-year-old Nadal confirmed what some U.S. television viewers already suspected: Simply calling something a "no spin zone" (in this case, a grass court) doesn't necessarily make it so. It turns out that Nadal's unique combination of spin and brutal power is ideal for Wimbledon's surfaces, especially when it plays as slowly as it did this year. His shots kicked so sharply upon landing that they should have required turn signals. "All the time," complained Nadal's dumbfounded first-round opponent, Andreas Beck. "I was thinking, what the hell's going on?"
-- Jon Wertheim, Sports Illustrated
Reverse spin ... stalled: When the Democrats took control of Congress in 2007, and oil was $50 a barrel and corn $2 a bushel, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid promised an energy plan. We're still waiting for it. Today, crude oil is $134 and corn is $6.50. It's pretty clear who's to blame: Congress. In fact, House and Senate Democrats have obstructed any progress in America's fight to regain some semblance of energy independence.
"Now is the time for Congress to move and get something done," President Bush said all the way back in August 2003. He's still waiting, and so are we.
-- Investor's Business Daily
Gary Rust is chairman of Rust Communications.