Rush Limbaugh made national headlines when he visited tornado ravaged Joplin, Missouri, on the Fourth of July. Critics accused Limbaugh of exploiting the tragedy to hawk his new brand of ice tea, but the people of Joplin themselves seemed to appreciate their fellow Missourian’s rousing Independence Day speech:

Back behind the EIB Golden Microphone, Rush had strong words of condemnation for “cable news” pundits and their reaction to the Casey Anthony verdict: “They’re all card-carrying liberals. … You people in the media, if you really, really think she’s guilty and you want to feel better about this, just tell yourselves that she just waited a couple years to get an abortion and you’ll feel better. You’re feeling uncomfortable, right? Even Snerdley winced a little bit at that. Why did you wince, Snerdley? It’s brutal to hear. Exactly right. It’s brutal to hear. So is abortion.”

Michael Savage

Michael Savage was a lone voice, declaring that the sex assault case against IMF chief Dominique Strauss-Khan would unravel. Sure enough, that’s what occurred this week, but as noted here, Savage predicted that would happen over a month ago (FREE audio).

Savage had been steering clear of the Casey Anthony case but after the verdict was announced, he felt obliged to comment that media coverage of the trial was simply a “smokescreen” to distract from Obama’s destructive agenda (FREE audio).

On a slightly lighter note, Savage – a gourmand and an expert on nutrition – shared his thoughts on the eating of (non-kosher) pork and shrimp (FREE audio).

Sean Hannity

Sean Hannity was almost alone among conservative commentators when he expressed his reluctant support for the not guilty verdict in the Casey Anthony case.

He explained: “Most people probably started where I was. I thought she probably did it. Nobody can go dancing and hanging out a bar and partying up a storm and act the way she did when her child is missing. … That is not however what our system of guilt and innocence is all about. The standard of proof is on the prosecution. And the standard, rightfully, is very high, because we don’t want innocent people put to death or spending their lives in prison. I was at the 10-yard line, and all the prosecution had to do was bring me over the goal line. The problem is that the prosecution didn’t get me there.”

Hannity also talked to Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., about his new book, “The Great American Awakening,” with its insider account about passing legislation (or trying to) during first two years of the Obama administration.

Mark Levin

Bringing his expertise on the Constitution to bear, Levin commented on the ongoing “debt ceiling” debates, saying that if President Obama bypasses Congress using the 14th Amendment, he’ll have committed “an impeachable offence” (FREE audio).

Looking ahead to the 2012 election, Levin warned that only conservatism can save America – and Mitt Romney is not a true conservative (FREE audio).

Laura Ingraham

Alex Beam at the Boston Globe wrote a revealing column this week, starting out by asking, “Do you listen to right-wing talk radio? I do. … I have a soft spot for Laura Ingraham. I know, I shouldn’t admit it.”

Beam went on to mock one of Ingraham’s sponsors, Food Insurance of Utah, which sells “pallet loads of freeze-dried, packaged foods to the suburban survivalist market.”

Then Beam got a shock: “I make fun of these people, but consider this: Not so long ago, I was at a dinner party with four other families [in his liberal Massachusetts suburb]. They had respectable jobs, they were living the bourgeois life – and everyone at the table had emergency rations stashed in their basements. Except me, of course. I couldn’t believe my ears.”

Maybe the distance between the “two Americas” isn’t as great as people like Beam like to tell us.

Laura’s guests this week included an all-star lineup: Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., Major Garrett of Fox News and listener favorite Victor Davis Hanson, who tried to predict Obama’s strategy for reelection (FREE audio).

Glenn Beck

Glenn Beck and crew were on vacation this week, so Joe Pags and Dave Glover sat in as hosts.

Even when he’s away, Beck keeps making news. Reports say Beck is leaving New York City and “moving his family to a nearly 8,000-square-foot mansion in a Dallas-Fort Worth suburb. Beck will be renting it for $20,000 per month.”

And now, from the left side of the dial …

Ed Schultz doesn’t get it. Whenever he takes on Rush Limbaugh, it ends badly.

This week, he furiously took issue with Limbaugh’s quip after the Casey Anthony verdict, that liberals don’t usually get this upset over the death of a child – after all, they’re pro-abortion.

As usual, without refuting Limbaugh’s point, Schultz launched into a sweaty tirade of name calling and fact-free pontification. One media watcher shrugs it off as a couple of equally matched blowhards on opposite sides of the political fence, just doing what they do best to get ratings.

The trouble with that observation is that Ed Schultz isn’t imitating Limbaugh – he’s imitating the stereotype of Limbaugh that ill-informed liberals treasure, having never listened to his actual program.

Furthermore, as far as those ratings are concerned: Limbaugh has them. And Schultz doesn’t.

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