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Rush Limbaugh berates 10th grader’s school essay

by Brandon on May 15th, 2008

The best story I’ve heard this week by far was told today over lunch.  Apparently, a co-worker of mine named George listens to the Rush Limbaugh show in his car, and yesterday heard him discussing Barack Obama’s comments about similarities between the recent housing crisis and the lead-up to the Great Depression (link goes to transcript).  I imagine the comments were referring to the obvious similarities between those who obtained ridiculous sub-prime loans and those in the 1920s who bought stock they couldn’t afford on margin.  However, Limbaugh decided that Obama’s comments were the result of a crazy “liberal education” – and even remarks how “lucky” he is that he didn’t graduate from college, thus allowing him to escape the perils of actual knowledge.

To prove his point, Rush says he did some Google searches for “Great Depression” and then proceeds to attack each of the results as liberal propaganda.  Because we all know that college professors teach straight off of Google results pages.  So my friend is listening and hears something rather striking… the name of one of our mutual colleagues – Paul Alexander Gusmorino (“The Third!” – I love the way Limbaugh says that).  

Limbaugh found among the top results an essay written by Paul, entitled “The Main Causes of the Great Depression,” (link goes to essay).  He quotes Paul’s essay and refutes each of its claims, dissecting them as if they were part of a Harvard professor’s lecture on the subject.  He doesn’t pull any punches either.  “Mr. Gusmorino, you better check Karl Marx and see if you plagiarized him in putting this piece together.”

Ouch.  Those words would be harsh if they really were for a Harvard lecturer.  But that’s not who wrote this essay.  It was my friend who works as a Program Manager at Microsoft.

When he was in 10th grade.

From → Other, Politics

  1. Kathy permalink

    Thanks Brandon.

    To Tyro & the comments about filling 3 hours of airtime a day …

    One of the problems with having 5-6-7 (who’s counting, right?) 24×7 cable “news” stations is that television news, as a content sector, does not employ enough reporters to fill that big of a news hole. THAT’s why we have “news” that’s merely screaming heads — news that isn’t news, it’s some sort of Roman gladiator-type entertainment. Mindless for the masses.

    What Rush SHOULD have told his listeners is that many heads of Wall Street institutions and investors like Buffet have criticized the exotic loans (courtesy, Kevin Phillips) for, among other things, lack of transparency. Congress (with Presidential signature) relaxed the oversight rules so that we could get to a point where we have **reversed** many of the safeguards put in places AFTER the Depression.

    Rush: “We are learning that quite a few of these people who are abandoning their homes never lived in them, they were speculators, got caught in a flip.”

    NO, Rush – lenders were *competing* to give loans to people who had no incomes and no jobs — literally, no questions asked. That’s been documented.

    The people who wrote the loans got a hefty fee; the people who then packaged the loans to investors who were thinking that the risk rate was N%, when that turned out to be an order of magnitude or so too low, got hefty fees — to the tune of $100K A Month! Just out of college.


    But Rush would probably say that this just means that I hate America.

  2. Homey permalink

    I woder what grade the author earned on this essay?

  3. Though they tried, not one commenter, using logic or flame successfully refuted the specific point Brandon made: Rush made references to indicate that Gusmorino wrote from the ignorance gained via a liberal college education. Instead, this was a result of a geeky tenth grader gathering facts from multiple reference sources and distilling it to his own interpretation.

    It is a deliberate evasion not to address the merits of Brandon’s point: Rush convicted all colleges on evidence that had nothing to do with any college. And pinned that on Obama because of his college education.

    His evidence would be thrown out of any court as irrelevant. And the non-sequitur leap from a 10th grader’s essay to a well-educated man like Obama surpasses anything Evel Knievel hurdled in his career.

    I don’t expect intellectual honesty from such evasive commenters. Brandon, have you checked to see if WordPress has a plugin that will grant you more logical and honest dittohead trolls?

  4. Homey permalink

    This is also a great example of ‘The Google’ and our information society. The Google beparts wisdom and most consider it gospel. In our age of ubiquitous communication a friend of the author actually hears his name on the airwaves and breaks the story. What a time we live in!

  5. McCain the Liar permalink

    Facts tend to have a liberal bias. Only dumbasses listen to the “big fat doper”.

  6. Elvis Oswald permalink

    Post 44(Steve D) makes a good point. Rush is the master of guilt by association.

    Since the very beginning, Rush has taken the most outrageous people, opinions, actions, crimes, etc. and tossed it on a huge pile of sh*t that he calls “liberal.” Then he simply associates his opposition with said pile of sh*t.

    Protester takes a dump in the street? Obviously all people opposed to the war are filthy hippies engaging in bio-terrorism.

    I think I read somewhere that when limbaugh was buying drugs, he drove a Cadillac. We all know that African-Americans prefer Cadillacs… and most African-Americans are liberals… Can you really trust a man that drives a Cadillac? We know what kind of people drive Cadillacs.

  7. Ben permalink

    Just to let you know, his name is spelled “Barack,” not “Barak.”

  8. ron permalink

    all you need to know about how smart limbaugh is is who he has supported and defended and apologized for for the last 12 years – the worst bunch of politicians in US history. the people that have dont absolutely nothing right for this country. and to think before the mid 90s I voted republican.

  9. chupacabra permalink

    Who is this Rush Lumbaugh person? We don’t get him down here in Ajo.

    Is he a DJ in Tucson or Phoenix?

  10. David permalink

    I checked out this website that Limbaugh refuted, and it would seem that there is no indication, other than that the paper has sources and is written in the same form as a school paper, that it was written by a 10th grader. While I have no doubt it was, this seems rather harsh. Besides, why have at least 64 comments on someone you hate so much?

  11. eric permalink

    You are an idiot. It does not matter who or how old the person that wrote this was. The article accurately conveys the conventional wisdom of pinhead liberal economists all around the world. I had a d-bag professor who spent the entire year of economics class trying to prove that it was only possible to get out of the great depression by implementing socialist economic policies. You are an uneducated, nutless and whining socialist loser who does not understand free markets and capatalism.

  12. Thanks Ben – I hadn’t even noticed the typo. It’s fixed =)

    Eric – Thanks for coming to my site and engaging in ad hominem attacks, even though I made no claims about what caused the Great Depression anywhere on here. Calling me a “socialist” is especially ironic, since I hate big government.

  13. CeeAyy permalink

    Eric… you expect us to believe that you studied economics when you can’t spell capitalism? I would imagine that word would have come up a lot. You probably just sat there in class wasting your time and money. Considering your dislike for your professor, I would bet that you didn’t do too well in his class.

    Anyway, can you provide more than name calling to back up your claims? What is a liberal economist? Could you even describe what that means? What qualifies you as an expert to talk about what is wrong or right? Considering the idea that you are a student, you are far from qualified to be an expert to refute economists from around the world. Can you demonstrate your understanding of free markets and “capatalism”… lol. Priceless… an economics student who can’t spell capitalism. Talk about uneducated… lol. Do you have any more buzzwords to share that your masters taught you?

  14. Actual History Teacher permalink

    For the record, American History textbooks HAVE contained revisionist history, traditionally. For instance, up until the last few decades they were openly apologetic of the pro-slavery stance of the South leading up to the Civil War. I encourage anyone who feels there is a liberal media bias to track down some actual high school textbooks at a used book store and read the amazing propaganda they contain. I mean: “Vietnam is important because it is the only war the US ever lost?” (actual quote from a US History texbook) What the hell is that? What about the War of 1812, for instance?

    There is a bias in US History teaching materials, but it is actually pro-conservative, pro-nationalist, pro-jingoistic and pro-imperialist. It’s there because the publishers of high school textbooks have to be careful not to offend anyone (even the states that still have pro-segregationists); Texas has more school districts than any other state, so they are the target audience. Maybe there is a liberal bias in US History teachers, but that’s because history teachers don’t get paid enough to consider Republican tax policy to be a good idea.

  15. Spazna permalink

    Oh what people get up to with that Google thing. So, I’m wondering if anyone has told MouthnoBrain man that he was jousting with a 10th grader? Sorry, I haven’t read the long string of comments.

  16. mikee permalink

    funny. rush calls ANYONE on revisionist history? really?
    and some fucknuts are buying it? really?

    Oh, this is america. It always comes back to that.

  17. eric permalink

    Alright, first of all I dont know what ad hominim attacks are and I do not know how to spell. I am not a student, that was many years ago. I do, however, have a better understanding of economics than any human who is considering voting for inexperienced and ultra liberal socialist Barack Hussein Obamama. First of all, this post about how funny it is that Limbaugh was berating a tenth grader about his essay is intellectually dishonest, and also embarrassing. Limbaugh was not berating a tenth grader, but rather the conventional liberal wisdom which it contains. It actually strengthens Limbaugh’s argument as the brainwashed tenth grader that wrote this probably believes this nonsense. If you are not a socialist than you are very ignorant or misinformed because that is what Barack Obama is. The great depression happened because life sucks and free markets are not perfect. They are however the reason the US economy leads the entire world in production and standard of living.

  18. Rick permalink

    Oh eric… Put the cool-aid down. That by the way was an Ad Hominim act. Which by the way means to attack the arguer and not the arguement. If you aren’t a student than you don’t understand economic, most econ students don’t understand economic. Your arguement is sufficiently vague enough to be obstensibly logical yet at the same time a complete non-sequiter, you’ll have to look that one up. He was attacking a 10th grader thinking he was a professor.

    Oh yeah and I believe the U.S. Ranks 14th in standard of living… Hardly a place for a leader eh? Than again I drink a different brand of punch.

  19. Fixd yr post.

    # yo Says:
    May 17th, 2008 at 8:13 pm

    another one that couldn’t get any hits on his blog unless he uses the pathetic great clown’s name.

  20. “yo” –

    So I’m not supposed to tell funny stories from my life if they involve the “great clown?” Thanks for that helpful insight. My site was doing just fine before this post, but I appreciate your concern.

  21. MuleMalone permalink

    Rush has always been an blithering idiot. I grew up a few miles south of Cape G, the blowhards boyhood home, and was in the same Boy Scout Council district as the fat butt. He was always the butt of lots of jokes and abuse because he was a know it all obese wussy who was always gonna have his grandfather’s law firm sue the teasers. He grew into a real nut.

  22. Gib permalink

    I happened to be listening to the show in question and the point is still valid; this professor quoted a report by a tenth grader. that would be sad enough, but isn’t it sadder still that the tenth grader wrote it in the first place?
    they’re not really teaching this liberal dribble are they?
    well, I guess someone has to flip the burgers and dig the ditches.

  23. Actual History Teacher permalink

    “well, I guess someone has to flip the burgers and dig the ditches.”

    Yep, that would be adherents of Intelligent Design.

  24. Bob permalink

    “well, I guess someone has to flip the burgers and dig the ditches.”

    Ha! That’s what the Dittoheads are for.

  25. Ben permalink


    Like your lib brethren, you fail to discount anything Rush said and instead make an unsuccessful attempt to discredit what he said by assailing his character. Typical. I must say, Obama’s idiocy is evident when he says such foolish things- we are nowhere near a depression. I just wonder, what in the world are you and your lib friends going to do when you can’t blame Bush for your hangnail, for it raining yesterday, and for the bird that is shitting on you car right now?

  26. Hi Ben,

    Thanks for commenting on my blog. I enjoy hearing back from my readers and having the opportunity to interact with them. However, in your case one question begs asking… Have you perhaps considered that you should actually read articles before you respond to them in such a childish fashion?

    First off, let’s start with the obvious. Obama’s comments were not “idiocy.” A reporter *ASKED HIM* if he thought we were entering a depression. He said no. The reported asked him if he thought there were any similarities between the current housing crisis and the lead-up to the Great Depression. He said, “Not really,” and added that some may consider there to be parallels between those who bought massive amounts of stock on margin in the 20s and those who bought houses with sub-prime mortgage loans in recent years.

    Clearly, his “comments” made a lot of sense. At least, they made sense to anybody with a decent education and recollection of history. Calling his response “idiocy” does nothing to demonstrate any error or fallacy in what he said. It simply raises the question of why you are responding as if he said something which he did not.

    You also trotted out a popular Republican straw man, the “you blame Bush for everything” fallacy. Bush was not mentioned in this post, nor in Obama’s comments that triggered Limbaugh’s ill-conceived response. You are the only one implying that this blame exists, and then attacking this argument which only you have presented.

    As I’ve already stated, this blog post was meant only to share my amusement at the fact that a colleague of mine was mentioned on Rush’s show as some sort of authority on economics. And perhaps to point out the irony of Rush attacking the well-researched views of a 10th grader with his on-the-spot invention of artificial statistics and facts about history that fit his bizarre, likely drug-induced worldview.

    Yet you responded by demonstrating your irrational devotion to Rush and all that he stands for, perpetrating preposterous lies and then attacking those lies viciously, as if slaying these lies (of your own creation) proves that you and your cohorts are the only vanguards of truth. This is a typical strategy for the uneducated and inexperienced, and it may work to convince those of similar intellectual vapidness.

    Perhaps with some years and soul-searching, you’ll develop an appreciation for honest debate and the validity of differing opinions and perspectives. Until then, enjoy your time as fanboy cheerleader for everyone and everything that spites the “nasty libs” out there. I’m sure it will make lots of people on the internet very impressed with the size of your electronically conveyed manhood.


  27. Barbara permalink

    I wonder when I read these comments, do these dittoheads even know what “socialism” means? Obama is no socialist!

  28. Marcus permalink

    Conservatives want the government to be smaller because anything big mocks their tiny, little penise’s. Rush has a little, tiny Dink. I saw it. I was in the same basement as me at this guys house in the dominican. I was buying H from his nephew when he came in to talk to some guy about paying for a little boy to have sex with. They made him show his little shrivled up white dick to prove he didnt have any sores on it. I dont know how they could tell with all that fat around it. He had on like 900.00 sunglasses but i could see his pig eyes behind them there is no mistaking Lockjaw limbaugh.

  29. Robbie permalink

    Sorry for posting so late. I just found this blog by accident and have nearly pissed myself reading the comments. My 2 thoughts about this story are:

    1). Isn’t 10th grade where Rush usually finds his dates?
    2.) Eventually, if he keeps going younger and younger, he wil meet his intellectual equal.

    It’s unfortunate that we still have to discuss this hot air balloon. It’s even more disconcerting that people listen to his constant diatribe of lies and opinion and pass them off as fact. Really, quite sad!

  30. Shawn permalink

    So, what’s your point? Are you trying to make something out of the fact that Rush is critiquing a tenth graders essay, which is the result of his education in the liberal schools? Isn’t that the salient point? If a tenth grader is repeating the facts as though they are irrefutable and Rush points this out? Why did you bother writing this blog? You missed the point; it’s easy to find a kid in a liberal school repeating the rhetoric as it is taught without considering there may be an alternate view which is in disagreement with an assumed authority. I cannot be more appalled that you cannot see the point behind this. Learn to read between the lines.

  31. Arrowhead permalink

    Rush Limbaugh has what plants need. He has electrolytes! Brought to you by Carl’s Jr.

  32. Hey Brandon, I loved reading your Rush Limbaugh story. What a buffoon! Do his listeners actually know who or what they are actually listening to? Amazing.

    From a fellow Seattlite.

  33. Becky Grove permalink

    I’m a college student in England studying the impact of the economic boom, and I’ve been given the article ‘main causes of the great depression’ by Paul Alexander Gusmorino (the third) as part of an investigative essay assignment. Is it really the work of a 10th grader? My tutor seems to think he’s a reputable historian – he’s even set me the task of doing background information on him! No wonder I couldn’t find any biographies if he’s a program manager at Microsoft … Still have to cite him in my essay though. I’ll be having words.

  34. Terese permalink

    Regarding the Gusmorino paper, I found it by searching the New York Times for the term “Great Depression” and found the link to the essay there. Apparently the editor for that page thought it was good enough to include out of all the links that could have been placed there.

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