No wonder the White House wants to muzzle talk radio.

While the left clings to old fashioned, unsuccessful tactics like that ridiculous “Glenn Beck boycott,” conservative talk radio continues to innovate and influence political power brokers and their all-important constituents.

Case in point: this week, the House Republican Conference held a “virtual radio row” to get their message on health-care reform to voters back home. More than 40 Republican members of Congress spoke with some 20 talk radio hosts and 25 bloggers across the country.

According to “Talkers” magazine, “This is the third such ‘virtual’ radio row (so-called because the radio hosts aren’t physically gathered in one location) the House Republican Conference has organized this year.”

Meanwhile, PBS scolded conservative radio talkers by using familiar mainstream media weasel words:

“For many,” the taxpayer funded public broadcaster intoned haughtily, these radio hosts “push the limits of acceptable public rhetoric.”

No word on who those “many” are, of course; no doubt that’s a synonym for “the lefties who work here at PBS.”

And inevitably, PBS raised the sinister specter of leftwing boogeyman, Father Coughlin. What they fail to mention (as usual), is that that 1930s radio “hatemonger” attacked FDR from the left. Coughlin was a radical socialist in many respects. But that doesn’t fit the liberal media narrative.

Rush Limbaugh

Rush Limbaugh’s interview last Sunday with Fox News’ Chris Wallace (FREE videos) annoyed all the usual suspects, like the leftwing “watchdogs” at Media Matters and New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd.

They were particularly perturbed by Limbaugh’s dismissal of President Obama as an inexperienced, immature “man child.” He also warned that Obama’s agenda represents “the biggest snatch of freedom and liberty that has yet occurred in this country.”

At the American Thinker, Limbaugh’s good friend, former professional football player turned pastor Kenneth L. Hutcherson, ably defended Limbaugh against those spurious charges of “racism” that came up during Rush’s failed bid to buy an NFL team:

“This is extremely personal to me. It’s about a friend,” Hutcherson said. “When I look at Rush, I don’t see a white man; I see a friend. I don’t see a talk show host (a very famous talk show host); I see a friend, and friendship overrides color and political stances. I don’t see a controversial figure, but a man whose heart and thoughts I know, and a man who is not a racist.”

Rush found another supporter in comedian Jackie Mason, who produced a scathing WorldNetDaily video commentary condemning Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton as “two well known bigots” (FREE video).

On Wednesday’s show, Limbaugh offered trenchant analysis of that all-important election in New York District 23 (FREE transcript):

“By the way, folks, one more thing about New York 23: When this all started, look at where Doug Hoffman was. He was down there in last place, nobody had ever heard of him. He was at 20 percent,” Limbaugh said. “And despite all the incompetence and despite the party being against it, remember the Republican Party ran ads against Hoffman. Remember this now. And he still climbed, with 45 percent of the vote, he still ended up there. … And all this is done in 30 days? You need to keep all this stuff in perspective about New York 23 and again not buy into the media template on this at all.”

Glenn Beck

An attack of appendicitis forced Glenn Beck to leave his show after the first hour on Wednesday.

In keeping with his show’s wacky, self-deprecating humor, Beck’s producer Stu joked on Twitter: “Glenn’s appendix was a communist revolutionary. He demanded it be immediately removed.”

Speaking of Twitter, fans are encouraged to send their good wishes to Beck via @glennbeck.

Predictably, leftists reacted with sick jokes and “prayers” for Beck’s death.

Earlier in the week, Beck posted a video “blog” about “the battle for the soul of the Republican Party” (FREE video).

Starting December 3, a new live production of Beck’s seasonal story, “The Christmas Sweater,” will be simulcast in select movie theaters nationwide. Tickets are on sale now
(FREE video).

Dennis Miller

Good news for Sarah Palin fans: She’ll be Dennis Miller’s guest on Nov. 20 to talk about her hotly-anticipated memoir, “Going Rogue.” You can listen live starting at 10 p.m. EST at Miller’s official radio show site (podcasts are available to paid subscribers only).

One highlight this week was Miller’s entertaining chat with Pat Sajak of Wheel of Fortune fame. Besides being a rare show biz conservative, Sajak is also a radio station owner. His WNAV 1430 AM station in Annapolis, Md., just picked up Miller’s show, so he called in to welcome Miller to the “family.” Sajak is a smart, funny guy who has lots of great anecdotes; for example, he talked about his time as a military DJ in Vietnam (yes, just like the character in the Robin Williams movie!).

Fred Thompson

Fred Thompson was the first talk radio host to endorse underdog Conservative candidate Doug Hoffman for that all-important N.Y. 23 election. The day after the election, a philosophical Thompson analyzed the results of that race, along with the good news from New Jersey and Virginia, with Jim Geraghty of National Review Online.

Unlike lots of conservative talk radio hosts, Fred Thompson has actually fought and won elections, so his insights are particularly valuable (FREE audio).

Laura Ingraham

Before that New York election, Laura Ingraham asked her listeners to react to Newt Gingrich’s endorsement of Doug Hoffman’s GOP rival, whom many believed to be a Republican-in-name-only, or “RINO.”

In her email newsletter, Ingraham reported, “Listeners’ reaction to Gingrich was overwhelming. No less than 95 percent of callers and e-mailers were outraged. For them, the country is already way beyond party affiliation; why fight for the RNC if it no longer represents core conservative values like fiscal restraint, individual liberty and a pro-growth agenda? ‘If he doesn’t want to be part of the solution, he needs to get out of the way,’ wrote one listener in Kansas. And from a mom of five in Syracuse: ‘He may be a brilliant thinker and writer, but he’s soooo ’90s.’ Ouch.”

G. Gordon Liddy

WND editor and founder Joseph Farah sat in for Liddy on Thursday (FREE audio).

Liddy’s producer Franklin called in with regular live updates from the big Capital Hill rally organized by Rep. Michelle Bachmann, R-Minn.

Liddy’s audio archives are free, so if you’re a history or military buff, you’ll want to listen to his interview with two real-life World War II Navajo Code Talkers – the men who transmitted secret messages in their rare native dialogue (because it was the one “code” the Germans couldn’t break) (FREE audio).

Other topics on the show this week ranged from Moses’ influence on America to exposing Scientology and included interviews with David Horowitz and Mike Huckabee.

Hugh Hewitt

Mark Steyn spoke to Hugh Hewitt a couple of hours after the horrible domestic terrorist attack at the Fort Hood Army post (FREE transcript):

“There’s something bizarre about the FBI rushing out a statement saying, ‘Oh, don’t worry, this has nothing to do with any broader, bigger picture, so don’t give it another thought. It’s just one of those crazy things that could happen anywhere,'” Hewitt said. “I don’t understand … and the fact that the bureau does this, I think, is a worrying glimpse of a kind of politicization of crime scene investigation, and I don’t like it at all.”

He continued, “If this is sudden jihad syndrome, and if there looks like there’s the kind of conspiracy going on within Fort Hood between this major and two other people, then that has extremely serious implications. Twelve people dead – that would be a bad day in Afghanistan. And if essentially what happened at Fort Hood is driven by the same forces as in Afghanistan, then effectively that is just the domestic front of the same war.”

Mark Levin

It was classic Mark Levin, when he mercilessly mocked a Democratic caller, Obama fan and professional bureaucrat. One for the “best of” clips (FREE audio)!

He also fired up the crowd at the Thursday rally in D.C. (FREE video).

Meanwhile, on the left side of the dial

For people who call themselves “progressives,” leftist can be surprisingly retro. When I heard they were still going after Dr. Laura Schlessinger, I felt like I’d entered a 1990s time warp.

But it’s true, as the Radio Equalizer reports. The analytical geniuses at the Los Angeles Times looked at Dr. Laura’s rankings and got their story absolutely wrong. Her new station’s ratings aren’t down. They’re up.

“In other words, in just one month, Dr. Laura is already beating her old station in some demos and threatens to do so soon in others,” the Equalizer reports. “Will the paper issue a retraction? Don’t hold your breath.”

No wonder more people than ever don’t trust the mainstream media to get basic facts straight.

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