Emmett Tyrrell

Rather surprisingly, the Democratic Party has made attacks on free speech a major weapon in its arsenal. Recently we reported in The American Spectator that Rep. Henry Waxman, chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee, proposed with some of his investigators a review of the transcripts of such conservative talk radio hosts as Rush, Sean Hannity and Mark Levin. The goal was to influence the Federal Communications Commission to reinstate the so-called Fairness Doctrine, thus allowing the federal government to shape radio programming. Waxman's response to our report at first was to claim he had been "misrepresented," then to denounce our report as "fictitious" and, finally, to play the bully. He demanded an apology.

My response was to tell him that I would apologize for our thoroughly accurate report once he does the "decent thing and purchase(s) a toupee." I think we all can agree Henry Waxman would look less menacing as a blond. His next gambit was to protest, "I certainly support the First Amendment." I cannot claim that this was in response to my offer of an apology, but I can tell you that he has yet to purchase a toupee and that that bald head of his puts many of us in mind of Mussolini. Has he ever been to Rome?

My guess is that the Democrats' threats to the First Amendment will continue. Yet an even better bet is that Rush will continue to get the better of these brutes. From all I can tell, the 41 Democrats' attack on him made him genuinely angry, but Rush has a gift. He remains cool under fire and responds with devastating weaponry, wit and humor. In a free and open society, those weapons defeat the Democrats' phony indignation every time. Rush left the 41 Democrats looking like clowns … and cheapskates. So far as I have been able to tell, not one has yet to send the Marine Corps-Law Enforcement Foundation a check.

Emmett Tyrrell

R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr. is founder and editor in chief of The American Spectator and co-author of Madame Hillary: The Dark Road to the White House.
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