MotherJones MJ93: Giving Rush good phone

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How to get on radio talk shows–especially right-wing shows like Rush Limbaugh’s–and stay on long enough to say your piece:

  • Screeners pick which calls get on the air, so respond succinctly and coherently to their inquiries. You increase your odds of getting on if you’re youngish (twenty-five to forty) and are calling from a smaller city or town (most calls to nationwide shows come from cities).

  • Make it clear to the screener that you have something specific, different, and intriguing to add to the subject under discussion. It’s best if you have an exciting personal experience to recount.

  • Once on, quickly say something germane, then move to whatever you really want to discuss. The best device for changing direction without being hung up on is to appeal to the host’s ego with a line like, “There’s something else that’s been bothering me that I’d like your opinion about.”

  • If the host is rude or combative, don’t argue–you will lose. Instead, seek an opening so you can say something like, “I agree with that part of what you say, but…”

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