Radio Wars Of Limbaugh And Huckabee – The Pro Vs. The Opportunist

1956 Zenith AM-FM radio, model Y724. The Y724 differs from the Y723 in that it has a handle, metal tuning graph and a tone control on the left. The radio has great sound on it's built in antennas for AM and FM reception. Image Credit: blogabillyboogie

By: Edmund Jenks – West Coast Editor

Rush Limbaugh has been getting a lot of attention lately, but the attention he has been getting from his envious detractors and critics play this card over the top.

Rush is the first to point out that he was wrong to utilize the tactics normally used by the left when he decided to point the absurd proposition that taxpayers should basically pay for non-health supports when he used the absurd tactic of name calling toward a person who was hand-picked by the Democrat Political Party and placed in a press conference to complain about the policies of a College she had freely chosen to attend.

For 25 years, Rush’s most entertaining moments happen when he takes absurdity to point out the absurd, for example, last week he said that “Democrats love to pour gas on a fire, which is absurd … have you seen the price of gas lately?”

That, right there, that’s funny!

Rush deftly points out the chaos the Democrat Political Party, led by President Barack Obama and the Senate’s Harry Reid, has created with their waste of taxpayer money “Green Economy” fiasco which has led to a 100% increase in gas prices at the pump, costing Americans a decrease in their economic freedom and ability to get jobs.

The issue here with Rush Limbaugh and the left’s effort to bring him down is more about silencing an effective voice to the opposition of political “control freaks” who own our media, educational systems, and (currently) the bureaucracy of Government through the Executive branch and the control of the Senate.

To this end, columnist David Frum posits that the entrance of former Arkansas Governor, 2008 Presidential candidate nominee contestant, and FOX News, once a week, weekend program host to the same national radio syndication timeslot just may topple and silence this hallmark of daily conservative thought.

Huckabee, who hasn’t even launched his radio program yet, the man who gave us all John McCain as the Republican nominee for President in 2008 and thereby, President Barack Obama and a 60 vote majority in the Senate, is going to unseat and silence Rush Limbaugh? … now THAT, right there, that’s absurd!

This excerpted and edited from The Daily Beast –

Mike Huckabee Brings on Rush Limbaugh’s Decline

Huckabee’s about to take the mike. Can he push Limbaugh off the talk-radio throne?
by David Frum Mar 12, 2012 1:00 AM EDT

Over 25 years in radio, Rush Limbaugh’s dominance of the AM dial has become a fact of American life.

Until, maybe, now.

Yes, Limbaugh’s tirade against law student Sandra Fluke has been a problem, inspiring more than 30 advertisers to flee his radio program in the past two weeks. But on April 2, Limbaugh will face a more-serious challenge. That’s when the new Mike Huckabee show launches on 100 stations in Limbaugh’s very own noon-to-3 time slot.

Huckabee’s competition threatens Limbaugh not only because Huckabee has already proven himself an attractive and popular TV broadcaster, but also because Huckabee is arriving on the scene at a time when Limbaugh’s business model is crashing around him.

To understand the power of Huckabee’s challenge to Limbaugh, you have to understand the strange economics of talk radio. Most talk-radio programs offer radio stations this deal: we’ll give you three hours of content for free. (Some programs—cough, Glenn, cough, Beck—actually pay radio stations to accept their content.) Those three hours will include 54 minutes of ad time. That ad time is split between the radio station and the show: each gets 27 minutes to sell.

In this world, Limbaugh is unique. He actually charges radio stations for his content: up to $1 million a year in a major market. Plus, he charges the highest ad rates in the business. Those two revenue streams—multiplied by more radio outlets than anybody else in the industry has—have made Limbaugh a very rich man. But those revenue streams always depended on Limbaugh upholding his end of the bargain: delivering the audiences. And on that count, Limbaugh has been notably failing.

As The Daily Beast’s John Avlon reported last week, the audience for right-wing talk has been shrinking since 2009. In some urban markets, Limbaugh’s audience has dropped by as much as half over the past three years. Limbaugh and other right-wing talkers have responded to this economic squeeze by a strategy familiar to Republican politicians: they have played to the base.

But even more than the total size of the audience, radio advertisers care about a measure called TSL: time spent listening. The people who listen longest are of course the most ideologically intense.
The difference this time is that Limbaugh’s advertisers and his stations had already begun to feel ripped off. To quote my station-manager friend again: “I don’t mind paying for content. But I do mind paying for trouble.” So advertisers revolted against the TSL strategy, with Sears, JCPenney, and many other sponsors dropping the show. Many of the local advertisers who buy their ads from the local stations rather than from the syndicators have been ordering that their purchased minutes be placed on some less-controversial program.

Limbaugh, it’s true, remains a big talk-radio star. He’s seen trouble before and rarely apologized for it. He could assume that even if Sears had departed forever, core talk-radio advertisers—LegalZoom,, Sleep Number beds—must sooner or later return to the No. 1 show in talk radio.

However, Limbaugh’s calculation that his core advertisers must return always rested on the assumption that there was nowhere else to go. Suddenly, in the worst month of Limbaugh’s career, somewhere else has appeared: a lower-priced alternative, with big audience reach and a host an advertiser can trust never, ever to abuse a student as a “slut” and “prostitute.”

The new Huckabee show’s slogan is “more conversation; less confrontation.” “I don’t want it to be a show that every day, every hour, pushes everyone’s buttons to raise their blood pressure,” Huckabee says. “I figure the cost of high blood pressure is enough already.”

Huckabee’s politics are emphatically conservative of course, both on social and economic issues. Yet his politics differ in important ways from those of the Limbaugh-influenced Republican electorate. “I don’t see a pathway for a person of my point of view getting through the land mine of the Republican primary. If that were to change in four years, if the Republicans were to get more serious about governing, not just campaigning—if we focused on what we were for and not just what we were against—then I might be a viable candidate.”

The less-strident Huckabee approach arises both from his experience as a long-serving governor in a Democratic-leaning state and from Huckabee’s famously genial temperament. “I have to believe that there are people who are highly opinionated but who actually find it informative and engaging to find out what the other side is thinking,” he says. “And not through a shouting match, but through an adult-level, civil conversation.”
Huckabee explains his appeal as driven by his choice of topic. “I want to do a show that has politics. But I don’t want a 100 percent political show.” It’s also a matter of tone and style. Limbaugh’s lascivious “joke” about wishing to see a Sandra Fluke sex tape was only the latest in a career of demeaning and prurient remarks. Only a few days beforehand, Huckabee was sitting down with Meryl Streep for a warm and easy talk before a studio audience.

Rush Limbaugh won’t vanish from the radio of course. But the overpriced Limbaugh program is highly vulnerable to economic shocks. “If just one station in a top-20 market replaces Limbaugh with Huckabee, it’ll be an earthquake,” remarks a veteran of the radio business.

And you can already hear the first tremors.
[Reference Here]

David Frum and his “establishment media” friends have it all wishfully wrong – Huckabee will end up a lot like a Geraldo Rivera (UN-listenable), in that, he will pose to be an alternative in the arena of Conservative talk radio, but to be frank, these folks care for opinion that has red meat on the bone, where Huckabee has already admitted to a path of failure through its slogan “more conversation; less confrontation.”

Prediction: Huckabee’s milktoast Moderate political policy approach will, by default, increase Rush Limbaugh’s (strong Conservative analysis approach) TSL: time spent listening.

** Article first published as Radio Wars Of Limbaugh And Huckabee – The Pro Vs. The Opportunist on Technorati **

About the Author

Edmund Jenks - West Coast Editor Biography: Edmund Jenks is the Managing Editor of five Weblogs: MAXINE, Symblogogy , Oblate Spheroid, Carter’s Second Term, & notes from The EDJE. He provides consulting and relationship services and has been republished by Pajama’s Media, LATimes, Execupundit, Library Clips, Japan Only, Planet CellPhone, The Grocery List, BlogoWogo, Instapundit, PoliticalOpinions, Slate, AOLnews, WIRED, and WSJ Online …to mention a few. He’s also a Feature Page Manager for Motorsports and Feature Page Editor for Tech & Biz on NowPublic, member of the Motor Press Guild, registered citizen journalist on BlogRoll of Pajamas Media, and has appeared on Pajamas TV. Edmund Jenks has joined the Politisite team with his expertise in National Politics with a West Coast Conservative Flair. We are honored to have Ed as part of our growing portfolio of journalists and commentators.

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