Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Rush Limbaugh, a Plea Agreement, a Vial of Rx Viagra, on a Sex Tour of the Dominican Republic

"Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar....except when it isn't."


Even though that icon of the rightwing, Rush Limbaugh, is one of perhaps 5 of the most visible and influential conservatives in the country promoting the Republican agenda and its values, I rarely write about him. The only time that I feel compelled to do so is when he makes it into the news because of brushes with the law. Those are opportunities that I seize, to exploit and expose the hypocrisy of Republicans' stated core values. I find them, Limbaugh's brushes with the law, the best times for object lessons.

And if I have to write about him, if I have to wade hip deep into that sewer, I will never pass up an opportunity to pass along this musical ditty: "Rush, singing, 'I'm a Nazi!'" - because he is such an ass to be capturing any amount of the public's imagination and attention.

[.......Break for musical interlude......]

Ahhhhhhhhhhh. Much better. Okay, I'm in the proper frame of mind to deal with that fat, pompous, hypocritical Republican ass.

This latest story on Rush Limbaugh: "Limbaugh's deal in a prior case could be at risk after Viagra found in his possession."
Investigators were trying to determine Tuesday whether Rush Limbaugh violated a deal with prosecutors in a long-running prescription fraud case when authorities found he had a bottle of Viagra that was apparently prescribed to someone else.

Limbaugh, 55, was detained for more than three hours Monday at Palm Beach International Airport after he returned on his private plane from a vacation in the Dominican Republic. Customs officials found Viagra in his bag, but his name wasn’t on the prescription, Palm Beach County sheriff’s spokesman Paul Miller said.

Limbaugh’s lawyer, Roy Black, said the prescription was written in Limbaugh’s doctor’s name “for privacy purposes.” The conservative radio host was released without being charged and investigators confiscated the Viagra, which treats erectile dysfunction.
It's men like Roy Black who give attorneys a bad name, and make it necessary for liberals like me to have to explain, protect and defend the complex beauty of the U.S. Constitution and the rule of law.

Here's the problem, Roy: Just two months ago, your client signed a deal with prosecutors after a lengthy investigation into allegations of doctor-shopping for prescription painkillers. I presume that you were sitting right next to him, read it over before letting him sign a plea agreement admitting to doctor-shopping? Limbaugh signed a contract which required him (among other things) to get his prescription medications from one doctor and reveal which pharmacy he would use to fill the prescriptions? Were exceptions written into the deal? A little more special treatment for Mr. Limbaugh? Exceptions for hemorrhoids, perhaps, or for cough syrup? How about for crabs, or scalp treatments, or thinning hair, or for, you'll pardon the expression, limp dicks?

I used the AP news outlet's write-up of this story as an example of another of my pet peeves these days: What happens when public relations' firms operate out of defense lawyers' offices? Lousy biased journalism. A hybridization of the rule of law and justice in America where the rich don't have to live under the laws that they make for everybody else to live under:
Limbaugh joked about the search on his radio show Tuesday, saying Customs officials didn’t believe him when he said he got the pills at the Clinton Library and he was told they were blue M&Ms. He later added, chuckling: “I had a great time in the Dominican Republic. Wish I could tell you about it.”
The AP listened to his radio show, an entertainment program, to get a comment from him on the legal peril he finds himself in??? Is this the new version of the "fairness doctrine," where everytime a Republican finds himself in trouble with the law, suspected of a crime, the media will include a reference to a Democrat no matter how irrelevant?

I'll bet all the money in the bottom of my purse that this is the work of a public relations firm working out of Black's office, hired to influence the public's perception of Limbaugh, taint and corrupt the potential jury pool, and pressure the prosecution to back off, let Limbaugh live outside of the rule of law that he and the Republican party impose on everybody else.

The AP:
It is generally not illegal under Florida law for a physician to prescribe medication in a third party’s name if all parties are aware and the doctor documents it correctly, said Mike Edmondson, a spokesman for the state attorney in Palm Beach County.
That would be news to these lawyers that the Orlando Sentinel spoke to:
Limbaugh's attorney, Roy Black, has said the two doctors prescribed the Viagra for Limbaugh under their names to protect his privacy. [And] three experts on medical practice said Tuesday that doctors could face disciplinary action for writing third-party prescriptions. But the three experts said Florida civil rules governing doctors and pharmacists require that the true patient's name and address be on the label. Doing otherwise "is technically a violation of dispensing and prescribing by the doctor," said Allen R. Grossman, a Tallahassee attorney who defends physicians in disciplinary cases. Grossman formerly was general counsel to the Florida Board of Medicine, which licenses and oversees doctors.

"Whether in normal circumstance anyone would care or not, maybe not. But the spotlight is on. In theory at least, that physician would be in trouble" with the medical board, Grossman said.

A spokeswoman for the state's various medical professional boards declined to comment on whether the actions by Limbaugh's doctors or pharmacist violated Florida's separate civil rules for medical professionals. The medical boards can impose disciplinary actions ranging from warning letters to fines to revoking licenses.

"The department is aware of it and we'll have more information on that later," board spokeswoman Thometta Cozart said. However, the three experts said state civil rules forbid doctors from prescribing drugs without a name or under a third person's name, as a way to prevent people from passing medicine to others.

"That would be considered a fraudulent prescription," said Lisette Gonzalez Mariner, a spokeswoman for the Florida Medical Association, the trade group for doctors. "You cannot do that. It's not commonly done and that's illegal."

Likewise, pharmacists cannot dispense drugs to someone other than the name on the prescription label or their representative, said attorney Edwin Bayo, a former general counsel of the Florida Board of Pharmacy licensing board.

Doctors can sell medicine directly from their offices if they have a special license, but they must follow the same rule about labels, Bayo said.

Also, physicians who give patients free samples of medicine are supposed to put the patient's name on the label, Bayo said, but "99.9 percent of doctors in Florida do not do that."

The three experts said they never had heard of a doctor or pharmacist disciplined for issuing medicine under a false name, and went on to say Limbaugh's doctors could have shielded his name through legal means -- such as speaking only to the pharmacist or covering the label with a blank piece of paper.

"You don't have to bring your Viagra bottle when you leave town," Grossman said.
The issue here isn't what other people, who haven't signed agreements to get a diversion deal on a felony, can do.

I'll up the bet, include all of the change in my coat pockets, too, that Mike Edmondson gave that comment in response to the reporter asking if it was illegal for a person, not Rush Limbaugh specifically, to have medication on them that was prescribed for someone else.

And I'll also bet that the AP reporter got spun in twenty ways because Limbaugh couldn't come up with a straight story to explain why he would have taken the pills out of a prescription bottle and put them into an unmarked bottle, put the empty bottle in his luggage, carry the unmarked bottle on his person:
Rush Limbaugh was detained for more than three hours Monday at Palm Beach International Airport after authorities found a bottle of Viagra in his possession without a prescription.

Customs officials found a prescription bottle labeled as Viagra in his luggage that didn't have Limbaugh's name on it, but that of two doctors, said Paul Miller, spokesman for the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office.

[....]

Investigators confiscated the drugs, and the sheriff's office plans to file a report with the state attorney's office. Miller said it could be a second-degree misdemeanor violation.

Limbaugh reached a plea deal last month with prosecutors who had accused the talk-show host of illegally deceiving multiple doctors to receive overlapping painkiller prescriptions.

Two physicians got involved in this scam. He was caught with 29 tablets of Viagra. The reporting by several news outlets is a little confusing, but it looks like Limbaugh emptied the prescription bottle of Viagra (with two other physicians' names - one prescribing and the other as the patient?) into another unmarked bottle that he carried on him when his plane landed. He put the empty bottle into his luggage. Part of his plea agreement that he made with the state of Florida includes his submitting to drug testing on demand, which also includes body searches on demand. Limbaugh probably expected that the Feds might search the luggage of inbound planes, but not his person. I don't think that he really thought it through. It looks like Limbaugh was intentionally trying to deceive the authorities or else why would he have emptied the bottle?

Limbaugh addiction problems are only a part of this story - the early, initial part that brought him to the attention of the police. That was the medical part. I happen to agree that addiction shouldn't fall under the purview of the criminal justice system, but the Republican party disagrees. Limbaugh's got pull with the Republican party and their base. I don't. You would think he might have tried to motivate the base to pressure Congress on decriminalizing drugs all these years.

As reported by the Duluth News Tribute and by "60 Minutes":
Wheelchair user Richard Paey committed almost exactly the same violations of Florida prescription drug laws that radio personality Rush Limbaugh did, with a different result: Limbaugh's sentence, in May, was addiction treatment, and Paey's, in 2004, was 25 years in prison. Both illegally possessed large quantities of painkillers for personal use, which Paey defiantly argued was (and will be) necessary to relieve nearly constant pain from unsuccessful spinal surgeries after an auto accident, but which Limbaugh admitted was simply the result of addiction. (In fact, if Limbaugh complies with his plea bargain, his conviction will be erased.) Paey's sentence now rests with a state Court of Appeal. (Tampa Tribune, Feb. 8, 2006)
Limbaugh's current brush with the law is not about his addiction problems. It's about breaking the plea agreement, a sense of entitlement, and doctor-shopping. Again.

Usually I leave speculation about Limbaugh's sex life and the status of his relationship with "mistress" Daryn Kagan (of CNN), to those with a prurient interest in other people's sex lives.

However, Limbaugh is one of the most ardent opiners of conservative moral values, family values that require abstinence, because "no birth control is 100% effective, and doesn't prevent STDs." Marital-only sex, between "a man and a woman," and procreation only within marriage - "children need to be raised in loving homes by both a mother AND a father."

On the June 9, 2004 broadcast of The Rush Limbaugh Show, Limbaugh on AIDS:
"And one of the things that the AIDS activists said regularly back then was, oh, this is only a matter of time before it spreads to the heterosexual community. It's only a matter of time.

And they used that as one of the weapons to try to get people like Reagan to start talking about it from their standpoint. And of course it hasn't. It didn't, and it hasn't, other than in Africa, and in Africa it is being spread not just by, it's promiscuity that spreads this, if you want to know the truth. It's promiscuity.

But it hasn't made that jump to the heterosexual community."
Limbaugh has said of condoms, "Condoms only work during the school year":
The worst of all of this is the lie that condoms really protect against AIDS. The condom failure rate can be as high as 20 percent. Would you get on a plane -- or put your children on a plane -- if one of five passengers would be killed on the flight? Well, the statistic holds for condoms, folks."
Let's hope that Limbaugh spread his seed far and wide all over the Dominican Republican, one of the biggest sex tourism destinations in the world.

Without a condom.


1 comment:

ChasingMoksha said...

I read somewhere that the report is saying the pills were Viagra but they may really be the highest dose of Oxyconyin (sp?). Supposedly both are blue. If they were Viagra, then I am quite sure Rush was doing it up with 13 year olds.

I hate his fat ass.