July 30th, 2009 at 05:42am
First filed 3:02am
About half an hour ago I had the great pleasure of discussing government healthcare with Rush Limbaugh. It took half an hour of hitting “redial” and hearing two “this is not a free call” announcement per call to get through, but it was well worth it.
I took the decision yesterday that I had to call Rush regardless of how long it took to get through, after hearing him talking about the Obama administration’s proposed healthcare payment bundling for doctors…the similar bulk billing scheme has been such a massive success (sarcasm, if you hadn’t noticed) in Australia that I needed to draw the comparisons.
Many, many thanks to Rush’s staff for making me the first caller of the day.
I’ll grab the audio for you later, after it gets podcasted.
Update 5:42am: OK, here we go with audio. First though, one of the interesting things about being on a show with an estimated minimum audience of 14.75 million people (Talkers Magazine, based on Arbitron ratings data) is that people react. I’ve had some reaction on Facebook which has been great (I’ve never had a program director comment on one of my calls to talk radio before) and I’ve also been interested by some of the other reactions. “usazombie” on Twitter summed up my call thusly:
guy from au called rush Limbaugh and said things suck in au too
Well, sorta…close enough. The deranged people over at Media Matters who dedicate multiple people to scrutinising and commenting on every single second of the Limbaugh show in some bizarre effort to discredit him, declared me to be an “Aussie gentleman“…I was hoping for worse.
Rush took a call from an Aussie gentleman who said that Obama’s health care payment proposal sounds similar to the system they have in Australia, which is a mess. Wherever in the world socialism and liberalism has been tried, it hasn’t worked, said Rush, who asked if the caller can say with any knowledge whether Australian doctors are refusing to treat Medicaid patients. The caller said they’re not refusing treatment, they’re just opting out of the payment system. Rush said he has a friend in Australia right now who sent him this story about aborigines crashing a Wilderness Society party, which Rush said is just hilarious. The caller said it’s not just the aborigines who are upset with the Wilderness Society, a lot of people hate them because they’re shutting down the economy. Obama is doing the same thing here, said Rush. The caller wrapped things up by expressing his hope that the U.S. government follows Australia’s lead and doesn’t impose cap-and-trade. Rush said Harry Reid is trying to get it passed as part of the health care bill. It’s one of those things where they propose an amendment on Friday afternoon and have no debate. They’re going to try and get this done without anyone knowing about it because they know it’s in trouble.
One more break and Rush was back with a correction — it’s not cap-and-trade that they’re trying to sneak into the health care bill, it’s card check.
As deranged as Media Matters may be, they do provide a useful service just in case I need to check back over what day and time it was that Rush said something or referred to a story, long after the archives have disappeared from Rush’s site. At least they aren’t wasting their efforts entirely.
Anyhoo, without further ado, here’s my call to Rush. I’ve included the full segment as I think it leads in to the call quite nicely. If you want to skip ahead to the call, it starts at one minute and twenty seconds.
Audio courtesy of, and copyright to, The Rush Limbaugh Show and Premiere Radio Networks
That was fun!