Excerpts of Limbaugh's Acceptance Speech

Below are some excerpts from Rush Limbaugh's acceptance spech given March 29, 2007, as he received the first annual William F. Buckley, Jr. Award for Media Excellence. You can watch the video at MRC.org. I took the liberty of putting some items in bold for emphasis:

Thank you all very much. I know it's late. Brent told me to cut my
speech to forty-five minutes, rather than the hour and a half I was
going to go. I, there have two references tonight to my humility, and
I'm sorry the cover's blown.

Cal Thomas had to
leave. He had to catch a plane, but he came by and told me he wasn't
going to be able to hear my humble remarks. Brent has referred to it.

I,
I, I'm a little stunned by it, because it's, it's been referenced also
tonight I think by Cal that I do satire. And the humility that, that,
that I, I think I bring to what I do is borne of really the roots of
this award.

When, when Brent called me and said we've, we've got
this new award, the William F. Buckley, greatest conservative in the
world award, and you've won, won the first one. I think that's what he
said when he first posed it. And I said, 'well, that fits.' A little
humility there.

I said that is amazing, I, you know, we
conservatives don't get many awards, but we actually have an audience.
These PBS people and NPR people give themselves all these awards, but
nobody's ever seen the shows that get awarded.

We actually
have an audience, and so we are a threat, and we don't get awards. It's
an honor to get an award. It really is.

[...]

But you know,
I came along, and started this program, the current iteration of this
program is from 1988. It actually started in 1984 in Sacramento, but,
went national in 1988, and it just exploded. Nobody knew what was going
to happen.

There had been all these conspiracy theories that
Roger Ailes picked me out to go out and screw the left by coming up
with dominance on talk radio. I didn't meet Roger Ailes until 1992. But
there have been all of these conspiracy theories and it was just a role
of the dice.

It was a crapshoot. It was just, It was entrepreneurism at its best.

[...]

There was
no, it just, it just happened. And it it just exploded. And I started
receiving all of these, not accolades, but it, it grew fast.

And
the, the reason why was not because there was some new brilliance on
the scene. And it wasn't because, as the Left said, that there were a
bunch of mind-numbed robots out there being created by me, and others
like me, a pied piper.

It is because the, the views that I
shared, that I had the honesty and the ability to express, resonated
with a whole bunch of people who never heard those views expressed
anywhere in the, what I call now the Drive-By Media.

Those
people had been laughed at and impugned and, and made fun of. And all
of the sudden, here on the national stage was somebody saying the
things they already agreed with. Therefore, their opinions were
validated and they connected to it. And they, they joined it. But this
just surprised me, I mean, I always hoped when I moved to New York to
be number one in radio. But I had no idea that it was going to happen as
it did, and grow as fast as it did, and I owe my succes to a lot of
people who are a lot smarter than I am.

I mean, I, my
foundation for conservative--anybody can be a conservative, but if you
can't explain why, if you're just relying on your instincts, and
anybody can do that, and nobody is going to care to listen to it. If
you can explain it, inspire others to explain it, inspire others to
understand it, which helps them to explain it,then you create a little
army, that manifests and grows, among families, neighborhoods, and
communities.

And that's what's happened since, well, in my case, 1988, but it all
started long before I came along and that's the importance of this
award being named after Mr. Buckley. Many godfathers of this movement,
you could say Goldwater, Reagan, but if Bill Buckley hadn't done what
he did, none of the rest of this would have happened. And folks there
were, there are so many really intelligent conservative thinkers,
intellects. They've been laboring in the basements. They have been and
some of them still are.

And without the Bill Buckleys and all the other names. We could, we
could list these names that, that I have been able to benefit, from,
from their work. None of the rest of this, all would have happened. And
I'm forever grateful that it's just come to me. It's benefited me in
the process of timing. All of their work, all of their lives, happen to
coincide with mine. You know, the Media Research Center, I, I want to
go through some things here pretty quickly, because it is late.

Media
Research Center was at the beginning, and set a standard, and had the
guts to go after the left. And now, Brent and his organization are
being copied. For once, it's the left that's bringing up the rear.
Except they do it far differently than the way Brent's organization
does. They lie. They take things out of context. And one of the
problems with this is that the mainstream media, which again, I call
the Drive By Media does not listen to my show, or anybody else's show.

Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd is a writer living in New Carrollton, Md.