Morton Downey Jr. The Pit Bull of Talk-Show Hosts

Morton Downey Jr. tells off his guests -- and his audience

He bounds into the studio with a flurry of high-fives for his raucous fans. Once the show is under way, he paces the stage hungrily, a cigarette dangling from his knuckles and venom dripping from his toothy grin. Liberals are "Pablum pukers"; the current presidential candidates are "baboons." Guests or audience members who rile him are fair game for ripostes like "Don't be a smartass with me, punk," or an escort out the door. He ignites the crowd -- mostly young males who appear to be bused in from the stands of some local sports arena -- into bursts of cheering,...

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