America's laziest fascist
May 19, 2004 8:54 PM   Subscribe

America's laziest fascist Inside Michael Savage's hatefest. I can't tell if this is offensive or just sadly pathetic. Salon: But if the first half of the event showcased Savage's ability to stir the faithful, the second half was an object lesson in how a performer can take his audience -- and his talent -- for granted. Basically, he bombed. He spent nearly 20 minutes sitting in a stuffed chair in front of a television set, free-associating as he channel surfed. Seeing footage of Jordan's King Abdullah, he screamed, "Kiss my ass! Shut the hell up!" To a soccer match in Spanish, he quipped, "Reminds me of my gardener." It was about as entertaining as watching a middle-aged man yelling at his living room TV. Savage eventually realized things weren't going well. "You don't like this shit," he said. "It's a bad act."
posted by skallas (43 comments total)

This post was deleted for the following reason: Poster's Request -- frimble

It's sad people have to live with conditions like this, when treatment is so readily available these days.
posted by Jimbob at 9:06 PM on May 19, 2004

His live show seems to almost contradict his "mission" to motivate the masses to rise up and overthrow the damn jewgayclinton liberal media.

Why waste his time just trying to just entertain people when he really wants to build a militia?
posted by ejoey at 9:11 PM on May 19, 2004

I actually love listening to this guy, he's seriously hilarious. One time he was going on and on about how left-wing American Jews who want peace with the Palestinians are worse then Nazis. Not equal to, but worse. I mean you can either laugh your ass off or go into deep depression. He is a good radio broadcaster though, he keeps up the comedy and is rarely 'angry' the way most right-wing talk show guys are. Instead he's just saddened by how stupid the world is and how anyone to the left of Mussolini is an appeaser. It's comedy gold.

The scary part is the audience, who are some orders of intelligence below the host, and don't seem to get the joke. I'm sure the Weiner does believe the kernel of what he's saying, but the rest is quite obviously hyperbole, shock-jockery, and fun with words. The fact that so many are ready to accept it as truth is a bit frightening.
posted by cell divide at 9:12 PM on May 19, 2004

He's just trying to live up to his brother Fred's success.
posted by GriffX at 9:15 PM on May 19, 2004

It's sad people have to live with conditions like this, when treatment is so readily available these days.

Well darling, that's why I drink!

Ohhhh... you meant treatment for him.
posted by stonerose at 9:26 PM on May 19, 2004 [1 favorite]

Something occurred to me while I was reading the article, after that lovely Visa commercial (I love Visa now, rocks).

Why bother writing this article, really? Seems like you're preaching to the choir. You're not trying to analyze Savage's success; nor are you trying to counter it with opposing arguments, etc. So what the hell's the point?

Fear. I presume that the author, as well as many who enjoyed this article, are scared shitless by Savage, not because of what he says, per se, but because he's convincing (his listeners) and has a strong following. And the author has no clue as to why this is occurring, or how to stop him.

I have to admit, I'm amazed by the shit on tv and the radio. And I do think that Bush has a strong possibility of being re-elected and the Repubs maintaining control of Congress. But what I also know is that social norms are cyclical and as long as the Dems/Libs are able to create a cogent, well-defined argument, they have nothing to worry about in the long run.

What am I afraid of? The Dems/Libs won't create a cogent, well-defined argument. That's what scares the fuck out of me, because as much as I despise "Savage-types", what I hate more is when people agree with me and use tactics like Savage to move their message.
posted by BlueTrain at 9:28 PM on May 19, 2004

I didn't say, "Don't post this." Please reread my comment.
posted by BlueTrain at 9:39 PM on May 19, 2004

Good analysis Bluetrain. As a historical Democrat voter, I find myself in a difficult position today where I fear that Kerry isn't the best candidate to fight Bush, where Congress and the Senate are slipping further away, and where Terry McAuliffe is still in charge despite presiding over the slow death that has been the Democratic party since 1994. It took a man like Howard Dean to show Dems that they can amazingly provide an alternative to a popular president and that people might like that. Now we have a candidate who comes up with "I voted for it before I voted against it" and other crap that gets blamed on speech writers. I am so frightened. Why can't my party get its balls back?

Also, regarding Savage. He frightens me because so many people agree with him. In college, on weekly ski trips, his was the only show that came in on the radio and I still recall his offer to give blacks reparations in the form of one-way tickets to Africa. This uneducated, hateful cycle is further exacerbated by underfunded schools that breed weak thinkers that breed underfund schools.
posted by crazy finger at 9:43 PM on May 19, 2004

The difference between the left and right:

The right stick with Bush, just to show solidarity, even though individually they know that George W. Bush probably isn't the best Republican for the job. They'll hold onto any media voice that pushes a version of their vision no matter how ignorant and warped it is.

The left, meanwhile, bitch and moan about their candidate, about his shortcomings, looking back and wishing for candidates who would have been better. They take opportunities to take a swing a Michael Moore because they "don't like his style", they have little arguments about idelogical purity, and segregate into little fan-clubs. "I'm not talking to you because you think we should at least hang around to try and sort out the mess we've caused in Iraq." "I'm not talking to you because you're not pro-choice!" "I'm not talking to you becuase you're not a vegan!"

Didn't solidarity used to be the catch-cry of the left? When was the right allowed to co-opt that?
posted by Jimbob at 9:54 PM on May 19, 2004

Anybody remember Andrew Dice Clay?

Just vaguely, you say?

Yeah. Like that. Same meat, different gravy.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 9:56 PM on May 19, 2004

I can't find him funny. I've tried. I fail when I remember how many people are listening to this shit and are taking it seriously. It's sort of funny when it's your moronic uncle who can't even hold down a job; it's not funny when it's a figure on primetime radio with an audience. I feel like I'm listening to Hitler in the 30s.

That's not hyperbole -- remember how Savage lost his t.v. gig:

"Oh, you're one of the sodomites," Savage said. "You should only get AIDS and die, you pig. How's that? Why don't you see if you can sue me, you pig. You got nothing better than to put me down, you piece of garbage. You have got nothing to do today, go eat a sausage and choke on it."

I don't believe in censorship but I can't believe somebody put that guy on primetime radio and that there hasn't been widespread revolt. Where's the outrage? Where are the boycotts? Where are the demonstrations?
posted by callmejay at 10:13 PM on May 19, 2004

I dunno...I mean, Clay just seemed like a garden variety jerk. Savage....the dude's an out-and-out fascist, no two ways about it.

Wasn't "America" proud that we helped defeat fascism? That we had seen the fruits of that tree? What the hell happened? Why is this popular?

I mean, I don't live in some kind of lefty-echo chamber latte town, but Savage just perplexes me whenever I hear him on the radio.

It makes me yearn for the good ole' days when the right wing fringe just hated the UN and wanted to bunker up in Montana.
posted by Snyder at 10:20 PM on May 19, 2004

I know, Snyder, but the pendulum just swings further with each cycle, and the centre of gravity moves nearer to the mainstream. Clay called himself a comic, Savage calls himself -- what? a 'pundit'? spare me -- but that's what I meant by 'same meat, different gravy'.

The meat under the sauce is the same slab of hate steak in both cases.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:30 PM on May 19, 2004

Mixed metaphors'r'us.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 10:30 PM on May 19, 2004

"I presume that the author, as well as many who enjoyed this article, are scared shitless by Savage..."


That's so insightful, BlueTrain. I suppose people who change the channel when Gigli comes on HBO are scared to death of Thanksgiving, too?

Gobble gobble.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 10:35 PM on May 19, 2004

LOL. Thanks, crash.
posted by dobbs at 10:51 PM on May 19, 2004

I think this is the one that's not safe for after lunch.
posted by quarantine at 11:12 PM on May 19, 2004

I think I see what you mean, stavros, but I was always under the impression that Clay was probably doing some sort of over the top parody of Brooklyn meathead-asshole, (whether or not his audience "got it" or whether the "parody" thing was an excuse to be a misogynistic racist asshole are other things entirely,) while Savage seems to be totally sincere. That's why I saw a difference in them, though I see your point that they are one and the same, just one is taken more seriously then the other.

I don't think Clay ever advocated genocide, but I realize that's kinda nitpicky.
posted by Snyder at 11:41 PM on May 19, 2004

Where does it end?

Precisely my point.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 2:04 AM on May 20, 2004

His latest screed against fifth columnists such as liberals, gays and atheists...

Uh-oh. Mind you, the guy simply would not be given air time here, the boycotts would be swift and effective. He has no international appeal either, but i'm sure he's not concerned with that.
posted by dash_slot- at 3:13 AM on May 20, 2004

Basically, he bombed.

[Disclaimer: I don't listen to talk radio, so all I know of this mook is what I've read online, and I don't know anyone else who listens to him either]

That's a good sign.

It seems to me more like he's a fart in the wind. Eventually, he'll be caught sodomizing baby ducks or something and he'll be relegated to the curiosity pile. People like him have come and gone for years. Father Coughlin, Billy James Hargis, Wally George. Limbaugh...easy come, easy go. I wouldn't be surprised if it was the Wills and Buckley's of the world leak whatever takes him down, since I imagine more sensible conservatives find this guy something of an embarrassment.

speaks volumes of how the media rewards certain POVs.

The media rewards ratings. And the ratings don't care whether you tune in to cheer him or revile him. He reminds of me of wackjobs I see on corners preaching that the Warren Commission secretly rules the world from a bunker in Iceland. Maybe they get my attention for a few minutes out of curiosity, but that shit gets old quick. And from the sound of things, Savage dosen't sound engaging enough to hold peoples attention for much longer, let alond convert anybody.
posted by jonmc at 7:49 AM on May 20, 2004

Anybody remember Andrew Dice Clay?

Except that "Diceman" was always pretty explicitly talked about by Andrew Clay as a character rather than a real person, and it seems he dropped that character as soon as it no longer was a cash cow.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 8:15 AM on May 20, 2004

"I presume that the author, as well as many who enjoyed this article, are scared shitless by Savage..."


Sorry, Crash, but BlueTrain is dead on the money here. I think Savage is as much of a jackass as anyone else, but it scares the crap out of me that he continues to be, essentially, rewarded for his behavior by not only his audience, but by the people who finance him, who ought to know better.

Anyone who bothers to pay attention knows that Savage doesn't believe what he says, he's just a pure, amoral candy-giver. There is no counter-debate to Savage's view, because he's completely willing to alter it any time he wants. And yet, he continues to get a pulpit and a paycheck.
posted by mkultra at 8:20 AM on May 20, 2004

Why is it that the FCC never goes after assholes like this?
posted by amberglow at 8:49 AM on May 20, 2004

Which BTW, liberals are not the only ones who cry conspiracy when they fail to play the ratings game. Both Dr. Laura and Rush Limbaugh flopped on television with much bellyaching.
posted by KirkJobSluder at 8:49 AM on May 20, 2004

Now, tell me its all about the benjamins, because really it aint.

In the case of Fox and Murdoch it's a combination of Murdoch's own political sympathies and the fact that there's a large right-wing audience that's a reliable moneymaker for him. I'll also grant you that the present political climate has made media outlets a bit skittish about controversial content. But if broadcasting right-wing propoganda started affecting these stations bottom line, it'd be gone. Even the right-wing Fox broadcasts the anti-right wing Simpsons. Why? Because it makes them a fuckload of money.
posted by jonmc at 9:35 AM on May 20, 2004

I'll also grant you that the present political climate has made media outlets a bit skittish about controversial content.

It's really chilling to realize that the current political climate doesn't consider Savage's angry, hateful comments controversial. But showing pictures of dead soldiers is.
posted by turaho at 11:27 AM on May 20, 2004

It's comedy gold

You're right. Hatred is hilarious. I'm so stupid for not seeing that before.
posted by archimago at 11:35 AM on May 20, 2004

I presume that the author, as well as many who enjoyed this article, are scared shitless by Savage, not because of what he says, per se, but because he's convincing (his listeners) and has a strong following.

He has listeners, a lot of listeners, and he has ratings which means he sells products. Plus he's funny, educated, outrageous, informative and speaks his mind. But mostly its the ratings.

What the Salon dot com saps do when they simper to the choir is to stir up support for government censorship in the form of the "Fairness" Doctrine, and nothing more.

You can just "skip" it if you don't like it, right?
posted by hama7 at 2:29 PM on May 20, 2004

Except that "Diceman" was always pretty explicitly talked about by Andrew Clay as a character rather than a real person

I did not know this. [/carson]
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 4:43 PM on May 20, 2004

Savage on Arabs:

From the May 12 Savage Nation:

Right now, even people sitting on the fence would like George Bush to drop a nuclear weapon on an Arab country. They don't even care which one it would be. I can guarantee you -- I don't need to go to Mr. Schmuck [pollster John] Zogby and ask him his opinion. I don't need anyone's opinion. I'll give you my opinion, because I got a better stethoscope than those fools. It's one man's opinion based upon my own analysis. The most -- I tell you right now -- the largest percentage of Americans would like to see a nuclear weapon dropped on a major Arab capital. They don't even care which one. They'd like an indiscriminate use of a nuclear weapon. They want this over with. One thing people cannot live with, which is an undefined, limitless conflict, which is what we have now. They can't take it. They want this war over with, and they want it ended like the war against Japan. They'd like Big Boy dropped on one of the little cities over there. They don't care where. They don't care any more. The American people have had it up to here with this garbage.

In fact, Christianity has been one of the great salvations on planet Earth. It's what's necessary in the Middle East. Others have written about it, I think these people need to be forcibly converted to Christianity but I'll get here a little later, I'll move up to that. It's the only thing that can probably turn them into human beings.

I'm going to give you one further example from my background as an anthropologist just so that you -- I'm trying to put context on this because you can go crazy if you don't have the context on this, because I'm going to lead up to something of what we must do to these primitives. Because these primitives can only be treated in one way, and I don't think smallpox and a blanket is good enough incidentally. Just before -- I'm going to give you a little precursor to where I'm going. Smallpox in a blanket, which the U.S. Army gave to the Cherokee Indians on their long march to the West, was nothing compared to what I'd like to see done to these people, just so you understand that I'm not going to be too intellectual about my analysis here in terms of what I would recommend, what Doc Savage recommends as an antidote to this kind of poison coming out of the Middle East from these non-humans.

From the May 11 Savage Nation:

Most Americans don't know who these guys were. They thought they were just dragged off the street, which is the disinformation being put out by the communistic anti-American Red Cross. Well, you trust the Red Cross? You must be joking. Take a look at what they've done to the Jewish people in Israel. The lies they've spewn about Israel. A little country [Israel] surrounded by racist, fascist bigots who don't want anyone but themselves living in that hell hole called the Middle East.

Savage on minorities:

From the May 12 Savage Nation:

And as the churches have been emptying out, the mosques have been filling up, in France and Germany. We all know that but we're all looking other way. And now street gangs of young Muslims are beating up and killing people in France and of course you don't read about that either. Because during a revolutionary period you've got to understand that there's a story line and the storyline is they're the oppressed minority and therefore they can do no wrong. It's very much like the American minorities here in this country. You can never hear about the bad things they do. It's hush-hush but if a Timothy McVeigh should come along, then it gets front page coverage. Because the story line goes that white male, Christian, heterosexuals are evil and all of the others are -- are -- are victims and only getting their just rewards by fighting back.

Savage on immigrants:

From the May 12 Savage Nation:

For example, here's a newspaper called The San Francisco Chronicle where I live. It was once a really good newspaper when I moved here in '74. It's [the San Francisco Chronicle] become a pornography rag, anti-American and just nothing but around-the-clock stupidity, and written on the lowest possible level. Now it could be because of the large number of immigrants here, I don't really know. Maybe they figure if they keep it simple, the storyline -- I don't know.

Savage: Arabs are "non-humans" and "racist, fascist bigots".
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:39 PM on May 20, 2004

I've heard this guy a few times in my trails thru the US AM-band and he is one nasty li'l bastard (which says a lot considering the competition).

Freedom of speech? You are having a laugh.

KJS: Didn't Dr Laura get pulled for using one of her own assistants twice as a 'guest' & the Stop Dr Laura campaign?

I have to say tho', Dr Laura is considered the best entertainment in our vehicle. Getting that c*** Hannity after Rush is a major letdown.
posted by i_cola at 5:40 PM on May 20, 2004

the same slab of hate

Is that the same "hate" that you have for America, stavrosthewonderchurchmouse?

Because yours is far more irrational.
posted by hama7 at 5:59 PM on May 20, 2004

OK, so I guess this thread wasn't the final installment...

Chalk me up as another who doesn't equate hatred with humor. What I do find funny is that after hama7 calls this idiot "funny, educated, outrageous, informative" and stav supplies cross-section views of just how completely fucked-up this "informative" shit is (most Americans want a nuclear bomb dropped on the subhuman Arabs? I did not know that!), h7 comes back with a silly jab at a stav comment in another thread, completely ignoring the content immediately above as though the rest of us can't see it. Now that's comedy gold.
posted by soyjoy at 9:24 PM on May 20, 2004

Savage appeals to those who see no distinction between hating a country and wanting to drop a bomb on a country.

I don't want to paint the right-wing as filled with angry morons, but there is a significant, visible faction of right-wing commentators that likes to play to that demographic. And they're wildly successful. Liberals should be (and are) focusing on why people are angry and working towards changing those things. Idiots like Savage tap into the frustration of Americans. Instead of pointing out how our beloved leader has pushed us into these circumstances, he assures his audience that bombing a random Arab country would fix everything. I'm surprised anyone would consider him educated or informative.
posted by turaho at 7:13 AM on May 21, 2004

Let's see if we can all follow along:

Borders, Language, Culture, and the Paul Revere Society.


See the difference? Probably not. After all, the Canadian Mullahs have decreed that the Bible is "hate speech". Hilarious.

It's obvious you're just mad because this steaming pile of fun couldn't shine Savage's shoes.
posted by hama7 at 10:37 AM on May 21, 2004

So then hama7 is defending that irrational, ignorant garbage, meaning that the final, irrefutable nail has been hammered into his coffin, proving once and for all what a misguided, hateful, petty, ignorant waste of time he is.

I can finally say, without any hesitation or second thoughts, that I'd be perfectly ok with hama7 fucking himself, if I wasn't so afraid he'd reproduce.
posted by The God Complex at 11:09 AM on May 21, 2004

Here's a fun quiz for everybody: Which of the following words, when used to fill in the blank below, makes the statement a good example of Hate?

"Smallpox in a blanket, which the U.S. Army gave to the Cherokee Indians on their long march to the West, was nothing compared to what I'd like to see done to _______"

A) Arabs
B) Liberals
C) Michael Savage
D) hama7
E) All of the above
F) None of the above

Which answer do you pick, hama7? See the difference? Probably not.
posted by turaho at 1:45 PM on May 21, 2004

See how fun "black comedic stylings" are?
posted by hama7 at 3:09 PM on May 21, 2004

Oh, so Savage is actually doing a satire on how extreme, angry, and ignorant his audience is? Brilliant.
posted by turaho at 3:34 PM on May 21, 2004

Well, Savage's show is low rated in most markets with the exception of San Francisco. People want to hear feel-good conservatism from people like Sean Hannity, not the tripe coming out of Savage.
posted by calwatch at 3:44 PM on May 21, 2004

I'd be perfectly ok with hama7 fucking himself, if I wasn't so afraid he'd reproduce.

I'd pay to see it, as long as I had me a gun to dispatch the verminous waterheaded offspring as they popped out. [/savage]
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 5:30 PM on May 21, 2004

1. End Affirmative Action.
2. Close the Borders now.
3. Deport all illegal immigrants now.
4. Eliminate bilingual education in all states.
5. Require health tests for all recent foreign born immigrants.
6. Make tax cuts permanent.
7. Reduce the number of Federal Employees.
8. Tort Reform - Stop Class Action Lawyers.

Savage has some great ideas.
posted by hama7 at 7:39 AM on June 12, 2004

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