What is this? Like, the tenth Limbaugh post in a row?
No, not really. This one is a little different. It's a public service message on how to apologize. Or actually, how NOT to apologize, using Limbaugh's apology as an instructional template.
(Yeah, this is a Limbaugh post. Who am I kidding?)
So let's look at the text of the apology, as it appeared on Limbaugh's website on Saturday. My comments will be in bold.
“For over 20 years…
Sorry. Have to stop already. First of all, the proper way to apologize to a person is to apologize to that person. When Ed Schultz called Laura Ingraham a "slut" on his radio show, he apologized (on his television show) and then took himself off the air for a week. But before he did any of that, he called Laura Ingraham on the phone and apologized personally. He didn't bury his apology on some Saturday website posting.
"For over 20 years, I have illustrated the absurd with absurdity, three hours a day, five days a week.
Rule number two: Don't start off your apology by discussing your resume and success. An apology isn't about how great or successful or wonderful you are a person.
In this instance, I chose the wrong words in my analogy of the situation. I did not mean a personal attack on Ms. Fluke.
Rule number three: Don't lie. On its face, Limbaugh meant it as a personal attack on Ms. Fluke. He spent three shows, three hours each, on the subject — repeatedly talking about how much sex Ms. Fluke has.
I think it is absolutely absurd that during these very serious political times, we are discussing personal sexual recreational activities before members of Congress. I personally do not agree that American citizens should pay for these social activities. What happened to personal responsibility and accountability? Where do we draw the line? If this is accepted as the norm, what will follow? Will we be debating if taxpayers should pay for new sneakers for all students that are interested in running to keep fit?
Rule number four: In an apology, your opinions about the surrounding circumstances or the atmosphere are irrelevant. You did wrong. Be contrite. Say it. Don't use the apology as a launching point for your opinions about other things.
In my monologue, I posited that it is not our business whatsoever to know what is going on in anyone’s bedroom nor do I think it is a topic that should reach a Presidential level.
Rule number five: Don't shift focus. You may have been trying to make a point when you hurled insults at someone for three days straight, but that is irrelevant.
My choice of words was not the best, and in the attempt to be humorous, I created a national stir. I sincerely apologize to Ms. Fluke for the insulting word choices.’’
Rule number six: Understand what you are apologizing about. Here, it sounds like Rush is saying "I wish I had found better words to say that you want to have sex all the time." In fact, I suspect that is what he is saying.
And that ends Rush's "apology" and hence, my analysis of it. The last point is the most offensive, for as he later explained on his radio show, he was only apologizing for his "word choice" with respect to using the words "slut" and "prostitute". That's it.
So, here's a list of things that Rush said about Ms. Fluke (as well as women in general), for which he doesn't apologize… (and remember, he could be talking about your girlfriend, mother, daughter, sister, or YOU):
March 1, 2012:
Limbaugh says Fluke is "having so much sex, it's amazing she can still walk". He also asked "Who bought your condoms in sixth grade?" During the same show, he said:
So, Ms. Fluke and the rest of you feminazis, here's the deal. If we are going to pay for your contraceptives, and thus pay for you to have sex, we want something for it, and I'll tell you what it is. We want you to post the videos online so we can all watch.
March 2, 2012:
Limbaugh he offered what he said was a "compromise" to contraception coverage: purchasing "all the women at Georgetown University as much aspirin to put between their knees as possible". He continued that saying he "[ran] some numbers" on contraception costs and arguing that contraception coverage was "flat-out thievery" that would force taxpayers to pay to "satisfy the sexual habits of female law students at Georgetown". Later, he dismissed concerns over lack of access to contraception coverage and mocked Fluke's congressional testimony, affecting a baby's voice and pretending to cry, saying: "I'm going broke having sex. I need government to provide me condoms and contraception. It's not fair." He asked, "Ms. Fluke, have you ever heard of not having sex? Have you ever heard of not having sex so often?"
He continued, saying that Georgetown should establish a "Wilt Chamberlain scholarship … exclusively for women". He described Fluke as "a woman who is happily presenting herself as an immoral, baseless, no-purpose-to-her life woman. She wants all the sex in the world whenever she wants it, all the time, no consequences. No responsibility for her behavior."
March 3, 2012
Limbaugh defended his previous comments about Fluke and complained that "not one person says that, 'Well, did you ever think about maybe backing off the amount of sex that you have?". Limbaugh said that requiring insurance companies to cover contraception is "no different than if somebody knocked on my door that I don't know and said, 'You know what? I'm out of money. I can't afford birth-control pills, and I'm supposed to have sex with three guys tonight.' " On her parents being proud of her he said, "I'm gonna button my lip on that one."
He went on to say that if his daughter had testified that "she's having so much sex she can't pay for it and wants a new welfare program to pay for it," he'd be "embarrassed" and "disconnect the phone", "go into hiding", and "hope the media didn't find me".
He continued later, "Oh! Does she have more boyfriends? They're lined up around the block. They would have been in my day." He continued that Fluke testified that her "sex life is active. She's having sex so frequently that she can't afford all the birth-control pills that she needs. That's what she's saying."
Remember, Rush said he wasn't attacking Fluke personally. And for everything about, he doesn't feel the need to apologize.