Chafets was allowed to visit Limbaugh’s studio in Florida (sans haircut) also known as his “Southern Command.” Surprisingly, not even the paparazzi were able to locate this studio at the height of Limbaugh’s news-making drug problem. They discussed a variety of issues and events which are detailed in the book and cover everything from religion to family, including leisure activities, real estate and airplanes, and of course politics. Chafets puts it all together in an easy-to-read narrative in what this reader viewed as a non-biased report although Chafets has been branded by some as a “closet dittohead.” Perhaps, if you don’t criticize, disparage and defame Limbaugh, then you must be a loyal fan? Is it possible with a lightening rod like Limbaugh to be neutral?
Significant coverage is given to several of Limbaugh’s tactics. Susan Estrich, who ran the Dukakis 1988 presidential campaign says, “Rush is a master at framing an issue and creating a community around it.” His most famous example of that was Dan’s bake sale during the Clinton years. Clinton had asked school kids to have a bake sale to help reduce the national debt (symbolically). Dan Kay of Fort Collins, Colorado, couldn’t afford the subscription to the newly produced Limbaugh Letter and called the show for help. Rush sponsored a national bake sale to help. It mushroomed into an event which 35,000 people attended. Brennan’s restaurant in New Orleans sent a chef to serve 8,000 orders of bananas foster. A Colorado advertising company put up 15 billboards to help with the promotion and Limbaugh attended as well. It was a resounding success.
According to Chafets, two of Limbaugh’s most commonly used vehicles are satire and parody. These work well for both Limbaugh and his enemies. For him, he can hide behind the veil of satire and for his foes, well, they can hear what they want, declare it isn’t satire or parody and attack.
His favorite source for ammunition comes from his opposition. Limbaugh takes something his opponents say or do and turns it against them, often with humorous results and frequently controversial. To wit: In March of 2007, David Ehrenstein, a writer (who happens to be African-American) for the Los Angeles Times wrote that Obama was running for an unelected office that exists in the popular white imagination — the “Magic Negro”. Ehrenstein commented about Obama’s alleged “inauthenticity as compared to such sterling examples of genuine blackness as Al Sharpton and Snoop Dogg.” Limbaugh jumped all over it.