Oh, but no one can step in and imitate Rush. With the exception of Mark Steyn, all of Rush's guest-hosts mostly make you think about how much better Rush is and: When is Rush coming back? (Steyn does his own thing, and it's brilliant. I prefer him to Rush.)
It would have been foolish for Rove to go all bombastic and over-confident on his first radio show, so Varadarajan's criticism is lame:
Rove, by comparison [to Rush], is a lightweight. What we learned today is that he does not have the voice for radio. By that I mean not just that his timbre is too thin, his tenor too brittle, but also that he has little oratorical or rhetorical structure, and no apparent ability to cast a spell over listeners.Ha. He's from Austin, Texas. He sounds like a character from the movie "Slacker." I found that charming ... disarming. Rush gets a lot of his oratorical power from his self-conception as an outsider — actively excluded from the power-elite in Washington. Rove is the opposite — so self-restraint is good.
Reading his weekly column in The Wall Street Journal, one was already aware of the modesty of his mind. In fact, his column has done much to baffle many Americans: How on earth did this man become the dark genius of the liberal imagination? Listening to him riff on the radio, one was filled with retrospective alarm: Was this the mastermind in the Bush White House?Oh, Tunku! Do you really imagine the President, in his confidential, private conversations, listening to a Limbaugh-like blowhard overwhelming him with a big rant? Try to imagine why Rove's style works in the context in which he was highly successful. Gentleness and friendly, quiet, sound advice... is it really such a puzzle?