Editor’s Note: The views expressed in this and any other letter to the editor, past, present, or future do not necessarily reflect the editorial opinion of Home in Henderson.
What’s the difference between a radio and WIZS’s “Town Talk” personality George Rush?
That’s easy; you can stop the radio from producing damaging noise.
And in Vance County, that’s a mighty unfortunate reality.
In an area with such need as Vance County, one would hope that sincerity would be the cornerstone of any effort to better the place. It’s a fragile dilemma that cannot survive in the midst of wolves dressed in sheep’s clothing. Clearly, in a media format where opportunities could be seized to benefit all, the opportunities are being sold for the benefit of a handful that have damaged our past and likely any future as well. Sadly, Rush has chosen his part.
Rush’s recent behavior, on air and off, has become unacceptable and is approaching one that’s unforgivable. If change doesn’t come soon, with the exception of Bobby Murray, listeners may have to medicate themselves just to make it through the show.
Perhaps George’s obsession worsened some time after Vance County property owners decided they’d had enough of a recent wasteful and destructive county effort. Enough, that is, of what they knew had all but destroyed the City of Henderson over past decades and was now headed for the entire county. A battle ensued- Vance County property owners versus the “Sam’s Club of Henderson.” Whether by draft or volunteering, George’s membership to the club required that he advocate on their behalf. Mighty handy was that microphone connected to a transmitting antenna. Club Sam’s very own “infomercialist” was born.
However, fed up and armed with facts, property owners throughout the county stood their ground. The dust settled after each engagement and the casualties were tallied. Still, some of the wounded are uncertain about their future and a now shell-shocked George can’t seem to change his own channel after nearly two years of spewing misleading propaganda purely designed to gather support for the “boys.”
In fact, in light of a recent county employee’s resignation, George’s frequency of propaganda messages has increased. On the 8/9/07 edition of “Town Talk”, while sobbing over that resignation, Lieutenant Rush professed that those in Vance County are happy with their “tin roofs and lack of progress.” He blamed long-time property owners for the resignation of the county employee, a current Wake County resident originally from Maryland. Yet George never spoke of this “outsider’s” affiliation with “the club” or his part in the waste of millions of Vance County taxpayers’ dollars as “the club’s” snake oil salesman. Fortunately, a truck fully loaded with his snake oil, originally intended for sale in Vance County, will soon be headed for a Warren County sales event.
Still, Rush’s “tin roof” insult takes things too far. And make no mistake. By design, it was an insult.
Though Rush might like to deny it, before and after there was a County of Vance and a City of Henderson, there were “tin roofs” covering homes on lands surrounding WIZS where intelligent, productive and honorable people were born and reared. From under those tin roofs came people including my ancestors, who fought in wars, sweated in fields, provided for family members and gave to the community and nation in a sincere effort to build it for good and to provide freedom for all — a freedom that even allows irresponsible radio hosts to beat their gums in senseless and selfish ways over public airwaves if they so choose. In fact, property owners and businesses of past generations built an area here of prosperity only to have it destroyed by some of the programs and policies that Rush often advocates.
In just one example, George often criticizes the presence of Henderson’s excessive low-wealth rental homes crisis. However, John Rose, George’s “Town Talk” sidekick, known for occasional outbursts of wisdom, cited the source of the problem in a recent on air history lesson. According to Rose, government intervention to spruce up the downtown area some years back required an extensive accompanying “affordable housing” project. Now, George seems to think that that affordable housing effort, in the form of those excessive rental houses, isn’t so “affordable” to our area anymore. My, how things can change.
Still, George refuses to acknowledge that excessive government can be a problem and he advocates for more government intervention, calling it progress.
Rush portrays himself as a strong advocate of “land use management” so as to not harm others within our community and to attract responsible development. But perhaps he should demonstrate “airwave use management” so as to not bring harm within our community as a prerequisite before promoting his land use concerns. “Concealment and denial of facts” and “tin roof insults” can’t better the quality of our community.
Certainly no listener could have missed his hard-nosed, nearly two-year advocacy for what is now known as the unspeakable “z” word in Vance County. Also know as “countywide zon*#@,” George promotes it as a panacea and labels all opposed to it as those unworthy of any consideration. After all, to him, they’re just “tin roof” people. However, upon a lengthy, factual and thorough study, Vance property owners confirmed the movement as a countywide “historically standard rape and pilfer power grab” by the “Sam’s Club of Henderson,” of which Mr. Rush proudly holds membership and never leaves home or a microphone without it. Another case closed.
George is no novice to damage control procedures either. However, the good soldier Rush recently came dangerously close to swallowing his teeth, lips, a microphone, two chairs and a large desk in a flurry to insure WIZS listeners that “nothing inappropriate happened” at a reported “unannounced secret meeting” attended by selected “Sam’s Club of Henderson” members at the local Chamber of Commerce. Though reported to NOT be in attendance, Rush assured listeners all was well. After all, just because he wasn’t there doesn’t mean he didn’t know what happened. “Club” members have special abilities, as we’ve long known.
History shows that anyone willing to hand over individual rights, futures, dreams, opportunities, etc., to George and his associates, are readily promised a sailboat for travel that needs no wind or water. Unfortunately, a close inspection of the facts too often reveals that George’s products aren’t returnable and the price paid is never refundable.
Whereas people should be afforded forgiveness of mistakes, George’s intentions are increasingly questionable. Repeated “wrongdoing” is hardly a mistake. There comes a point in time when even the most selfish should acknowledge the results of their actions.
But some just refuse.
And just what does George mean by the word “progressive” anyway? He has told listeners that he carries a concealed gun, which by permit is legal here in Vance County, yet illegal in his hometown of Chicago. So in George’s dictionary, which area is “progressive” in that case? And by the way, why can’t he trust “his government” for protection?
Maybe a better question is just how many “types” of dictionaries he holds?
Rush is clearly not a leader; he’s a cheerleader. And cheerleaders never know the game plan; they just simply want their team to win. More fake than a Hollywood model, Rush’s “economic development for all campaign” is like a novice hunter practicing with a new game-calling device. It makes a noise, but it’s not the real thing; and long-time residents of the area damned well know it.
Rush isn’t telling anyone news when he speaks about needed improvements for our area. Neither is he fooling anyone when he invites the “power players of the area” in for the “community forum series on WIZS” in which he tries to educate listeners about the wonderful people trying to bring jobs to our area. Rush’s “sincerity” really shines when he shields the panelists from normal format policy and won’t let callers ask pertinent questions of them. After all, Rush just can’t risk blowing the “club’s” cover.
But Rush’s cover is blown. He’s a “club” operative.
And longtime Vance County property owners know that Vance County needs a cure, not just a promise of one or something that only allows the “cells of a disease” to benefit from “robbing a whole body’s nutrition.” Many of those people and their families that have lived here for generations prior to Rush’s move here some 27 years ago, know the historical elements of our local demise and are determined to stop it from spreading. The local long-time saboteurs of free-market enterprise can no longer be tolerated. George’s persistent comradery with some of those destructive elements of our past is a source of concern enough, let alone his advocacy for their involvement in our future.
The downfall of this community is due in large part to the dirty deeds of a handful that have maintained control for too long. Had Rush moved here from his hometown of Chicago sooner, he might know the wicked truth and just might not want to be a part of its continuation.
Still, George has unlimited opportunities. Realistically, every time George speaks into the microphone at WIZS, he has an opportunity to bring about and build a better life for our area. And there are viable ways to do that of which he could speak. He could genuinely focus on improving our area’s educational opportunities, crime rate, teen pregnancy problem, tax rates, quality of life issues, etc. These are the items that would bring economic development opportunities to ALL people in our community, not just the rich elite.
But it’s clear that George has made some decisions and he’s not going to fool anyone around here about it. George is a member of an organization that is founded on a selfish creed. When George opens his mouth, “Sam’s Club of Henderson” is heard loud and clear. The voices say they care, but the actions prove they don’t. He can quip about long-time residents being “satisfied” with the norm, but the facts suggest that George is the one that’s really “satisfied” with our norm and promotes more of it for the future.
He can talk about solving problems in Vance County all he wants with whomever he wants — on air or off. But despite any effort, until George permanently cancels his “Sam’s Club of Henderson” membership, WIZS listeners and Vance County residents can never expect a “RUSH” for real solutions.