3.14.2007

Paglia Disses the Pols

Camille Paglia is a liberal guts. She can spot hypocrisy a mile away--and it doesn't matter one iota if its owner is liberal, conservative, gay or straight, black or white. She uses her keen intellect and wit to expose and obliterate without prejudice.

After a six year hiatus, Salon announced her return as a contributor to the online magazine with this banner:

After a six-year absence, our cultural high priestess and pioneering Web proto-blogger has returned! And nobody -- not Hillary, Obama, McCain nor Anna Nicole -- can escape her level gaze.
Today's four page Paglia musings Hillary vs. Obama: It's a drawl! is a must reads. She takes on Hillary, Ann Coulter, Dick Cheney, Newt Gingrich and pretentious liberals--among others.

Hillary

[Hillary's] aping of a black Southern accent from the pulpit was so inept and patronizing that it should get a Razzie Award for Worst Performance of the Year. At times, it approached the Southern Gothic burlesque of Bette Davis chewing up the scenery in "Hush ... Hush, Sweet Charlotte." Does Hillary Clinton have a stable or coherent sense of self? Or is everything factitious, mimed and scripted (like her flipping butch and femme masks) for expediency?

Obama

I loved the way Obama's campaign handled the dust-up -- some nice sharp barbs from an underling followed by the candidate's lofty assertion of statesmanlike unconcern. It made me take Obama seriously as a candidate for 2008 (rather than 2012) for the first time.

Senator Dianne Feinstein

I'm a longtime admirer of Feinstein and have sent small sums to her campaigns. Watching her field tough questions about North Korea, I was impressed anew with her analytic mind and her steadiness of character. She has that rarity among women politicians -- true gravitas.

Feinstein vs Hillary

Dianne Feinstein is far more presidential than Hillary Clinton, who alternates between smugness and defensiveness before pulling out that tiresome middle-aged mom card. Feinstein, even when maneuvering strategically, always seems genuinely focused on the idea at hand, while Hillary isn't really there -- she's just riffling mentally through her team's cue cards.

Coulter

[S]atirists who play on gender themes need some whiff of self-knowledge, or they look ridiculous. Is Coulter truly oblivious to her gender weirdness?

Gingrich

[W]hen Newt Gingrich announced last week that he had had an adulterous affair during the 1998 investigations of Bill Clinton, I burst out laughing -- not simply at Gingrich's hypocrisy, about which I was never in doubt, but at the comic mental picture of Gingrich in erotic extremis.

Liberals

"This kind of outreach to expose and remedy injustice represents the finest spirit of leftism, a practical, compassionate activism -- not the pretentious postmodernist jargon and sanctimonious attitudinizing that still pass for leftism among too many college faculty."

Democrats and FoxNews

What is this morbid obsession that liberals have with Fox? It's as if Democrats, pampered and spoiled by so many decades of the mainstream media trumpeting the liberal agenda, are so shaky in their convictions that they cannot risk an encounter with opposing views.

Cheney

I detest Cheney for having led the country into this disastrous, wasteful war, whose repercussions will be felt for generations here and in the Mideast. I know absolutely nothing about Cheney's family background, but I would bet on some ambivalent dynamic in his past with masculine authority figures, whom he internalized and carries around as a visibly heavy burden but whose oppression produced his sarcastic sneer, his one facial mannerism.

GWB

I feel pity for him -- he is a genuinely tragic figure who made the wrong choices and destroyed the promise of his presidency. As he blustered with dangling arms and stiff cowboy legs to the podium during last week's South American junket, I felt embarrassed at his lack of diplomatic courtesy and simple savoir faire. Confident manhood does not need to constantly strike poses.

Cheney and GWB together

There's something creepy about how Cheney, after heading the candidate search, insinuated himself into the vice presidency. It's an unsavory, toxic relationship, a vampiric pseudo-marriage like that of the shadowy, Machiavellian Roger Chillingworth and the impressionable, waffling Arthur Dimmesdale in Hawthorne's "The Scarlet Letter."

FoxNews

Fox is certainly disingenuous with its absurd "fair and balanced" motto. Oh, come on, give it up! Why can't Fox honestly admit its conservative agenda, as do major radio hosts like Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity, and simply argue that it represents a culturally necessary antidote to the omnipresent liberal line?

Capitalism

[L]eftists must be honest in turn about what we owe to capitalism -- without which Western women would have no professional jobs to go to but would be stuck doing laundry by hand and stooping over pots on the hearth fire all day long.