Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by gdwdwrkr » Fri Oct 19, 2007 11:32 am

This very expensive letter can be read here
I think this letter is expensive in more ways than one. Time will tell.
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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by Big Squirrel » Fri Oct 19, 2007 12:13 pm

I've just read the letter. I try to keep up with what's happening on the other side of the pond but it isn't easy with so many competing claims on my time and attention. From what I've heard of Rush Limbaugh I've always thought of him as an egregious (that word again) individual. Can you expand a bit on this controversy for the benefit of those of us who would like to understand the situation in your country a little better?
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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by gdwdwrkr » Fri Oct 19, 2007 12:42 pm

The last third this transcript gives the seeds of the controversy.
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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by Shelley » Fri Oct 19, 2007 5:44 pm

I couldn't seem to figure out how to access the text of the letter on gdwd's EBay link, so I googled "Harry Reid smear full text" (which sounds like something else), and found this government site. However, I am still uncertain whether or not I'm viewing the text of the letter in question. Seems the actual letter is shy about exposing itself -- or my google skills need improving.
What really troubles me is the sentence before the "full text" of Reid quotes:

Democrats know that together, America can do better.

Politics aside, I think there is something grammatically incorrect about the above. I think "America" should be "Americans". I also think that there should be another comma after "that", or the comma after "together" should be deleted:

Democrats know that together Americans can do better; OR

Democrats know that, together, Americans can do better; OR (if one is married to America as a single entity rather than a collection of individuals)

Democrats know that, UNITED, America can do better.
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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by Big Squirrel » Fri Oct 19, 2007 6:04 pm

If you click on the letter on the ebay page you can enlarge it, making it legible.
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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by Erik_Kowal » Fri Oct 19, 2007 6:06 pm

Shelley,

Firstly, your point regarding the grammatical appropriateness of 'Americans' instead of 'America' is a valid one.

Secondly, I've had a look at your link, and the text displayed there is not from the letter in question.

The letter itself can be found on the following four pages, at least for the time being:

http://www.auctioncause.com/clientfiles/rush/1.jpg
http://www.auctioncause.com/clientfiles/rush/2.jpg
http://www.auctioncause.com/clientfiles/rush/3.jpg
http://www.auctioncause.com/clientfiles/rush/4.jpg

Page 1 contains most of the text, page 2 contains the remaining text plus some signatures, and pages 3 and 4 contain the remainder of the signatures.

As for the supposed controversy -- well, there really isn't one. What we have is a fuss being whipped up, so far with minimal success, by Bushies fighting a rearguard action either to combat their fear-mongering leader's record-breaking unpopularity or to distract from his disastrous actions. In other words, it's politics as usual. (I don't exclude the letter itself from that description, BTW.)

A sceptical person would be interested to know the true identity of the eBay seller, who identifies him/herself merely as 'rush-letter-for-charity' (no previous eBay history, and an eBay vendor only since 9 October 2007). How did this seller acquire the letter, which is dated as recently as 2 October 2007?

I can't help suspecting that the vendor is Rush Limbaugh himself, or a proxy acting on his behalf, with the primary intention of manufacturing some publicity around the ridiculous closing bid of $2,100,100 through sympathetic conduits like Fox News. For this reason I also suspect that the winning bidder is not genuine -- I'm willing to bet that $2,100,100 will not really change hands.

Thanks to the ability of eBay buyers and sellers to hide their real identities behind their handles, I don't have any concrete evidence to back up my impressions, but it smells like a political stunt to me.
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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by Tony Farg » Fri Oct 19, 2007 6:37 pm

Isn't a soldier who telephones a radio programme by definition a phoney soldier?
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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by Shelley » Fri Oct 19, 2007 8:05 pm

Thanks for providing the actual letter and signatories, Erik.
Now that I understand its context and, more importantly, to whom the letter was addressed and its intent, I'm disappointed that U.S. taxpayer monies were wasted on the administrative time and effort to compose, edit and even type any acknowledgment of anything Rush Limbaugh would spew. Even if it were possible, obtaining an apology from him is less than worthless, and for the writers of this letter to even engage in this pseudo-issue raises the likes of these media-pundit, limelight-addicts to a level they do not deserve . . . Blah, blah, blah.
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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by Erik_Kowal » Sat Oct 20, 2007 3:35 am

It appears that I was partly mistaken and partly correct.

According to a Reuters story, "Conservative commentator Rush Limbaugh raised $2.1 million for children of fallen Marines and law enforcement officers on Friday by auctioning off a letter from Senate Democrats denouncing him for a remark about "phony soldiers." Philanthropist Betty Casey purchased the letter on eBay, which said it was the most expensive item ever sold for charity on the online marketplace. [...] [Harry] Reid, speaking in the Senate, saluted Limbaugh for raising the money on behalf of The Marine Corps - Law Enforcement Foundation, which helps children of Marines and law officers killed in the line of duty."
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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by Shelley » Sat Oct 20, 2007 12:39 pm

Good call, Erik! Some people will do anything to avoid having to say "I'm sorry, I was wrong". I don't hold with the Senate and Reid, though: Limbaugh does not deserve to be saluted for pouncing on an opportunity to take credit for a good deed built upon his own bilious rant. The people who deserve to be saluted are the young men and women who are brave enough to get up and do what their hearts tell them they must do -- on whichever side of the fence they must do it. My congressional representatives really stepped in it, and Limbaugh's the one smelling like a rose.
I should underscore that I'm glad that the children of Marine and law enforcement casualties will be getting assistance. They are deserving of everything we have to give.
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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by dalehileman » Sat Oct 20, 2007 2:07 pm

I agree with Squirrel and Shelley in that I'm inundated by the links and don't have all day to read them; so if somebody could summarize the controversy inn 25 words or less I'd be much indebted

Incidentally I can't imagine Limbaugh smelling like a rose, while his name suggests a sort of malodorous cheese
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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by gdwdwrkr » Sat Oct 20, 2007 3:16 pm

In as many words as it may efficiently take:
Radio commentator refers to soldiers who have not served, but who are quoted by media, as "phony soldiers".
Politicians ignorantly believe reports that commentator called all disagreeing-soldiers "phony soldiers".
Politicians write and sign, on government time, letter to commentator's boss, in an "egregious abuse of power", which asks for the censure of commentator, a violation of the constitution they are committed to protect.
Commentator himself lists letter on eBay, calling it a smear letter.
Philanthropist wins auction for $2,100,100.
Commentator matches amount in donation to charity, challenges letter-signers to do the same.
Smarmy weasel politician takes more government time to attempt to ride publicity coattails saying, "we never thought this letter would raise this much money", as if "we" ever thought about this letter raising money.
Find the transcripts. For God's sake think for yourself.
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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by Shelley » Sat Oct 20, 2007 8:36 pm

Big Squirrel wrote: If you click on the letter on the ebay page you can enlarge it, making it legible.
In returning to this thread to read James's concise, "fair and accurate", gently nuanced summary of this event, I went to the eBay page just to see what I was doing wrong. I finally figured out that if I scrolled down the page, all would be revealed. D'oh! That's happened more than a few times to me: you'd think I'd have learned by now. Everyone knows you have to look under "things" sometimes. Thanks for the prompt, Big, and thanks again, Erik.
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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by Erik_Kowal » Sun Oct 21, 2007 3:41 am

You're welcome, Shelley.

Dale, I agree with James (a.k.a. gdwdwrkr): it's time you did your own homework.
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Harry Reid/Rush Limbaugh Smear Letter

Post by gdwdwrkr » Tue Nov 20, 2007 1:07 pm

My sick sense of humor would love to see this auctioned on eBay...wonder how much it would fetch.
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