But before we get to that history, it's worth going over exactly what happened this week to our erstwhile defender of white people, Mr. Limbaugh. Here's the falsehood he peddled to his listeners on Tuesday:
There’s a professor…a liberal professor named Noel Ignatiev, and he is actually teaching—and I am not making this up—he is actually teaching and telling white male students to commit suicide to benefit society.In mid-stream Limbaugh was informed by one of his staffers that the story of this lecture was actually a hoax. But, if the comment boards on the right-wing websites that also picked up the same tale are any indication, right-wingers had no problem believing it was true. And think about the absurd sense of victimhood a white person would have to feel to (a) believe this actually happened, and (b) be concerned that such a sentiment could have any effect on his or her actual life.
This stuff plays into exactly the kind of white identity politics right-wingers like Limbaugh feed into. The right-wing base's political strategy now consists in large part of stoking white fear that the all-powerful minorities (ha!) and their liberal, white, race-traitor allies are going to somehow oppress white people. The practitioners of white identity politics have become experts at playing the victim.
Fear-mongering of course is not limited to the right or to race-baiters, it is as old as the Republic, as Richard Hofstadter explained in his still essential classic essay, "The Paranoid Style in American Politics." Limbaugh, however, has made ginning up race-based anxiety among whites a real specialty of his.
Follow me below the fold for one of the most disgusting examples from Limbaugh's decades as a media figure.