Okay, I like Kevin Drum, over at Mother Jones. I really do. However, sometimes he just gets fatalistic. His concern that the sponsor exodus happening right now to Rush Limbaugh
is some sort of slippery slope leading to the downfall of political shows in general is just plain ridiculous. Seriously. You would think a Boggart
came crawling into Kevin's home office just before he started writing his post.
And yet....there's an obvious slippery slope here. Lots of
advertisers already shy away from political shows of every stripe, and
this episode could begin to drive them all away. Why take the chance,
even on a host who doesn't usually cause national outrage? "Usually"
isn't never, after all, and in any case, you never know what a guest is
going to say. Better to stick with local blowhards and self-help shows.
Limbaugh is getting what he finally deserves. I couldn't be happier
about it. I just hope that down the road this doesn't turn into a
preemptive boycott of every political gabber out there who has even the
smallest chance of ever producing any national blowback. That runs the
risk of turning every show into a bland marshmallow. It wouldn't make
the world a better place.
What gets me is that Kevin is usually quite good at looking up research, or finding historical evidence to back up his claims. However, the above quoted post lacks both. So, all I can do is chalk this up to fear.
But why would he be scared? He blogs for a publication that exists financially by a totally different form of support. And what advertising there is is from companies with an explicit political agenda. They are not going to pull their ads because of some national outrage. Chances are they want that outrage to occur. So, it is not a fear of his losing his gig as blogger for Mother Jones.
I think Kevin is seeing this one tree as indicative of the entire forest. Or would somehow working in "one bad apple does not make the whole barrel bad" be the better metaphor?
Kevin is talking about Rush. I am talking about Kevin. I will stick with the tree/forest metaphor. If I was talking about Rush, then I could use the barrel metaphor.