Rush Limbaugh was born in January 1951 and launched his spectacularly successful conservative talk show radio program in July 1988 on WABC in New York City. Rush met nationwide success very quickly after this; him being 37 years old at the time.
Rush Limbaugh hosted his last radio program on February 2, 2021 and died on February 17, 2021. After this the Rush Limbaugh program continued with various guest hosts doing remembrances of Rush and then the program shifted to covering news events of the day with segments from what Rush Limbaugh said previously regarding issues similar to what was in the current news so you could kind of imagine what Rush would say about the latest news if he were still alive doing his radio program.
Now finally the more complete transition to the next generation has come; the inauguration of the Clay Travis and Buck Sexton Show on June 21, 2021. Clay Travis was born in April 1979 and so is 42 years old; Buck Sexton was born in December 1981 and so is 39 years old. These are the designated successors to Rush Limbaugh meant to continue Rush Limbaugh’s legacy into the future.
Comparing 1988 to 2021; there was no backlash to speak of against feminism or general societal decline in 1988, hence the great success of the Rush Limbaugh Show, Rush Limbaugh being the first populist conservative, an everyman conservative anyone could identify with, not an elitist. Rush pioneered the backlash against liberalism and therefore became the king or the leader of populist conservatism with many imitators following in his foot steps once the success of his format and his style and his conservative views became manifest for all to see. In 2021 a large network of alternative conservative media sources and media programs are well established.
In the early years of Rush’s program, the early 1990s, he regularly made fun of feminists, mostly attacking them on the basis that they were complaining about nothing. Women were the most free they have ever been in the United States and yet they still complain about oppression and sexism. Feminists were cantankerous and bad mannered, always negative, always complaining, like leftists in general. They run around attacking men for no reason. They mess up dating between the sexes. Also Rush Limbaugh was against abortion.
Now in 2021 it is a bit odd but feminists are never really brought up anymore or talked about. Gender Theory is brought up a lot today, making fun of the people who want to erase any reference to someone being male or female, or alternatively those who try to erase the difference between being male or female are presented as a grave threat trying to undermine or destroy one of the foundational building blocks of human life and civilization.
Back 30 years ago I don’t think Rush Limbaugh talked about race much; when he did he complained about race hustlers or race grifters, black protest leaders who would stir up controversy in order to shake down some corporation into giving them money or some kind of affirmative action benefit for blacks. Now today the big issue is Critical Race Theory (CRT), claims that American society is systemically racist, an anti-white bias being a major theme in CRT. Also there is the fear today of uncontrolled immigration, immigration being a much bigger concern than it was 30 years ago; the fear that immigrants will be automatically heavily Democratic in their voting thereby tipping future elections to the Democratic side and also that immigrants will not assimilate and will bring in foreign values and foreign ways of doing things not compatible with how American society currently functions.
In the early 1990s Rush Limbaugh’s premise was that conservatism was a better way of doing things; conservatives used reason while liberalism was based on emotions. Liberalism didn’t work; that was the main problem with liberalism. In 2021 Rush Limbaugh’s premise was that conservatism was about preserving America as founded, honoring and continuing American exceptionalism, being proud to be an American and making sure something resembling the America we all know and love will be handed down to the next generation. Liberalism or Democrats are about turning America socialist and totalitarian and looting the great wealth that America has built up over time and turning America into a third world country; to make America not exceptional anymore. Republicans seek to preserve America as founded, Democrats seek to destroy America as founded.
After listening to the first week of the Clay Travis and Buck Sexton Show I can say that Clay and Buck do a good job of imitating Rush Limbaugh; different news stories to highlight and spend some time commenting on, audio sound bites from the opposition or to illustrate a point like Rush Limbaugh often did, light hearted banter regarding personal stories about living an ordinary life that was also a staple of Rush’s show. They do a faithful job of recreating the Rush Limbaugh experience for all those who miss Rush and wish he were still around to provide his insight and his commentary on the news of the day. Also the Clay and Buck Show continues to use a lot of the same bumper music that Rush Limbaugh used making one feel like the Rush Limbaugh Show is back again, that you are still listening to Rush in spirit.
The choice to have a duo replace Rush is interesting rather than a single man. It would be a lot of pressure on a single man to be named as Rush Limbaugh’s successor and people might consider it offensive for a new guy to be placed in that role since no one can be as good as or the same as Rush. Having a duo replace Limbaugh doesn’t put pressure on the successor to be exactly like Rush as much as possible and it makes it clear that no individual man is claiming to be as good as Rush or Rush’s successor. Also the dual host format enables the hosts to be friendly with each other and allows for friendly banter and mutual support giving the listener the feeling of being with friends and among friends.
At the same time the Clay and Buck Show is clearly different from the Rush Limbaugh Show in important ways; mostly that Rush Limbaugh’s pet interests and favorite story lines no longer are present in the new Clay and Buck Show. In certain ways this is a radical change; the dominant themes of the first week of the Clay and Buck Show are things that Rush barely talked about at all. There was heavy emphasis on the sharp rise in crime since the George Floyd protests; Rush hardly mentioned crime at all in the last months of his program. Clay and Buck put heavy emphasis on Critical Race Theory, Rush never talked about it much. Clay and Buck dedicated a segment to making fun of recent political correctness regarding going to extreme lengths to try to avoid the subject of gender or something being implicitly male or female; a long long time ago Rush would regularly do bits on the latest hilarity of political correctness but not recently, not for many years has he done spoofs on political correctness because Rush said the things that we joked about as conservatives being too ridiculous to be believed later were taken seriously by the culture and conservatives lost the issue involved. Basically Rush didn’t see political correctness as being funny anymore so he stopped making jokes about it.
The other major difference I saw in the new Clay and Buck Show is that fealty to Trump and loyalty to Trump was no longer the guiding principle. In the old Rush Limbaugh Show criticism of Trump was not tolerated and large parts of the program were dedicated to praising Trump and railing against the mainstream media’s conspiracy against Trump and belittling the elitist Republicans In Name Only (RINOs) and conservative think tank crowd. With the new Clay and Buck Show criticism of Trump, at least implicit criticism, was allowed and the hosts let the comment from the caller stand without being rebutted. Also new other Republican leaders such as Ron DeSantis were highlighted positively on the show; Rush Limbaugh would avoid giving other Republican leaders positive attention on his show unless it was a Republican leader favorable to Trump.
I definitely like this change in the Clay and Buck Show; that other Republican leaders are given a fair shake and not everything is about praising Trump and defending Trump all the time.
Another positive change; Clay and Buck have avoided conspiracy theories and conspiracy thinking to an admirable degree, more so than most Republicans today and more so than the late Rush Limbaugh who started to advocate different conspiracy ideas in the last 6 months of his program.
Regarding gender issues specifically, in the first week of the Clay and Buck Show it was mentioned that gender ideology is bad because it undermined or attacked the “functional” differences between men and women. I thought that was significant and important and good, to recognize that there are actual “functional” differences between men and women is a bit unusual in modern culture even on the mainstream right. Also of interest Voddie Baucham was quoted saying something against Critical Race Theory; Voddie Baucham being the most prominent black Christian Patriarchy pastor in America. To present Voddie Baucham in a positive light to a mainstream audience is quite encouraging.
I am pleased with the new Clay and Buck Show; it seems to be a worthy successor to the great Rush Limbaugh.
My Reflections on Rush Limbaugh
Rush Limbaugh advocating for Men’s Rights and Traditional Masculinity