Tabloid conservatism

These “Junk Food Conservatives” see “conservatism” not as a philosophy but merely as a product to be marketed to willing and eager customers.—Dan W.

James R. writes:

I hadn’t listened to Sean Hannity’s radio program for a couple of years until I tuned in long enough today (Monday) to hear him announce that his guest would be Donald Trump, who would be discussing his ongoing feud with Rosie O’Donnell. I kid you not; you can go to Hannity’s website and find a poll where the viewer can pick a dog in this fight.

Obviously there must be a clamor from comtemporary conservatives demanding this “tabloid conservatism.” I would therefore like to make a couple of suggestions for future programming: (1) Sean could arrange a Paris Hilton-Madonna mud wrestling exhibition; and (2) he could provide a daily Barf-o-Rama update for his listeners.

Dan W. writes:

Haven’t listened to Hannity in a while myself. But what James R. describes doesn’t surprise me.

Remember when Michael Jackson turned himself in on child molestation charges? I was listening to Hannity as the news was breaking. From 3-3:30pm EDT was basically Hannity watching the FOX news coverage and doing a “play-by-play” of the unfolding events. By the half-hour news break Jackson had been lead in the sheriff’s department for booking. When he returned there was nothing happening so Hannity starts reading what the 1994 accuser had claimed Jackson did sexually to this boy. In COMPLETE and EXPLICT detail. So vulgar I’d rather not repeat it.

After doing so he began to take calls. His first caller (a woman) said; “SEAN!!! WHAT ARE YOU DOING!!! I’VE GOT KIDS IN THE CAR!!!” (she was indeed shouting). Suddenly Hannity gets all apologetic, but needless to say the damage was already done. I pretty much quit listening to him myself after that. Nor do I have any respect for him after that episode.

Nor do have any respect for Rebecca Hagelin either. In both cases my opinion is these “Junk Food Conservatives” see “conservatism” not as a philosophy but as merely a product to be marketed to willing and eager customers. I suggest Ann Coulter as another example of this.

LA notes:

Be sure to click on the Hagelin link. It is the most shamelessly sycophantic column I’ve ever seen, about none other than the great Sean Hannity. I keep saying I don’t get it. This guy has no talent, no brains, no charm; his voice is unbearable. He sounds positively stupid. I can’t stand listening to him. So what am I missing that other people see? What makes him so successful? Limbaugh at least has some genuine talent. But Hannity?

Mark P. writes:

Liberalism is so monolithic in the media that any bit of conservatism easily sells, even if that conservatism has liberal elements in it.

I would encourage readers to stop listening to Limbaugh and Hannity and to tune into Michael Savage instead. Of all the talk radio pundits, Savage comes closest to the views of VFR. It’s not without flaws, but it will be the kind of very pleasant surprise you get reading Ann Coulter’s Godless critique of evolution: You just couldn’t imagine such a good argument coming from the dippy blonde portrayed on the cover.

So don’t right-off talk radio until you’ve spent some time listening to Michael Savage.


Someone said to me that Hannity has charisma. I’m speechless.

(Whoops, now I’m going to get an e-mail from SANE telling me I’m “disingenuous in the extreme.”)

James R. writes:

Rebecca Hagelin describes Sean Hannity:

“I love to study human beings and their interaction with others. You can tell a lot about a person—especially a famous one—by the way he treats both the famous and the average. He looks each person directly in the eye as if they’re the only one in the room for that moment, listens intently to what they have to say and graciously accepts both compliments and criticism.”

This describes Bill Clinton to a T. On top of that, I was informed by an Arkansas Democrat operative, he could meet with the same group a year later and remember the names of everyone who was present at the previous meeting. I also read or heard somewhere that George W. Bush, during a pop quiz by members of the fraternity he wished to join, remembered the names of most of the fifty-some other prospective pledges. Style more often than not triumphs over substance hands down in contemporary American politics.

On the question of Hannity’s supposed charisma, Dan W. writes:

No, not on radio. I agree he has a rather poor radio voice. But on TV/in person yes. I compare him to Clinton in that regard.

While it may be phony as well, he comes off as personable, friendly. The kind of person you could sit down at a bar with, have a few beers and a friendly chat with.

In the case of Hagelin, she reacted to him in a way that is not atypical of women towards him. The phrase “…and drop-dead gorgeous.” trumps everything else.

Posted by Lawrence Auster at January 17, 2007 04:40 PM | Send

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