Though conservatives owe a tremendous debt to both mediums of talk radio and cable TV for giving conservatives a voice (whereas, we were once shut out by the major networks monopoly, these new venues have given us an opportunity to get our message out), I can't help but feel that some of these talk show hosts have essentially metastasized into the used car salesmen of the conservative movement.
As Medved (an especially thoughtful radio host) notes today, we could all take a lesson from William F. Buckley, who usually found a way to smash the arguments of his liberal opponents in a respectful and intelligent manner.
But sadly, some conservative hosts have "tarted up" our movement with acrid accusations, in an effort to reach the Hoi Polloi who buy the books and tune in religiously. Many of these folks probably owe more to P.T. Barnum than they do to say, Burke, Hayek or Kirk.
Regarding Mr. O'Reilly's point, I, for one, would not want to take responsibility for everything that commenters say on this blog site. It is probably axiomatic of the blogosphere that comments often evoke paroxysms of rage. The beauty of Townhall, of course, is that there are diverse opinions here. By the same token, it's not fair to blame Ms. Huffington for everything her commenters say over there ...
I'm also surprised that Mr. O'Reilly specifically chose to traduce the Huff Post. I've been on debate shows opposite some of their bloggers and writers, and have found them to be friendly and intelligent (though obviously philosophically misguided). Certainly, there are more egregious examples on the Left than that one ...
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