What we talk about when we talk about misogyny, religion, racism, and teh funny

While we wait to see the results of today’s primary that will surely force the end of Hillary Clinton’s campaign even if she wins, let’s tour the non-peer reviewed internets, shall we?by Anne Taintor

  • Bob Somerby has a really interesting ethnographic analysis today at The Daily Howler, arguing that the press corps’ dominant Hillary hatred can be traced to middle-aged “East Coast Irish Catholics” prominent at NBC and the New York Times, and the particular stew of “psychosexual lunacies” that their mid-twentieth century upbringing has wrought.  Check it out:  he writes that “[Maureen] Dowd and [Chris] Matthews are the press corps’ leading psychosexual nut-cases.”  Somerby (an East Coast Irish Catholic himself) also enlists the assitance of Gene Lyons, another East Coast Irish Catholic who affirms that it’s all part of the culture:  “Having basically grown up in a Maureen Dowd column, albeit with less wit and more profanity, I’ve known this variety of Irish Catholic misogyny forever. My sainted mother warned me against the cunning and duplicity of women almost to her dying breath. It’s a sorrowful remnant of sexual Puritanism.”  (We’ll just let that adjective “puritanism” used to describe Catholicism go this time, m’kay?  No one likes a pedant…)  Is the press corps–and possibly the nation–being driven by Irish Catholic psychosexual anxieties?  (Or does that question creep you out too much to consider writing a comment?)
  • In any case, you’d think the Irish Catholic luminaries listed above might have a few questions for John McCain and his endorsement by Pastor Hagee, who is just as insanely anti-Catholic as Cotton Mather, instead of pestering Barack Obama about his pastor, who might once have said something nice about Louis Farakkhan.  (Do you really think a white congregant from that church would have to answer those questions?  Think, people!)
  • I posted this in a comments thread below, but it deserves a promotion:  a clear-eyed analysis of the nefarious, dirty-trickster Hillary Clinton and her plan to win the White House by winning the Democratic Primary!  Who does she think she is?  It’s not like she’s also rebounding in the national pollsOh noooooo!  Quick!  Everyone, STOP VOTING NOW!  Your voting is disruptive of party unity and the democratic process!  (H/t to Correntewire, which also has a good roundup of people hating’ on the Hillary.)

UPDATE, March 5:  Dowd’s latest hairball is mind-alteringly stupid.  She writes that in the Democratic primary, “All the victimizations go tripping over each other and colliding, a competition of historical guilts. People will have to choose which of America’s sins are greater, and which stain will have to be removed first. Is misogyny worse than racism, or is racism worse than misogyny?”  That’s right–I guess if you’re a rich, white New York Times columnist, you can pick either/or on this question!  (Intersectionality, much?)  And the winner of the Democratic primary means that his or her single “oppression” will be erased for all Americans, as though with a StainStick!  Does anyone else find it, um, interesting, that the fifty-six year old Dowd sniffs at the support HRC has from older women, and tries to align herself with the views of a “post-feminist” nineteen-year old college student?  As patronizing as her comments are about African Americans (“vicim lock”, anyone?  What does that even mean?), she outdoes herself by furnishing further evidence of what Somerby (above) called “psychosexual lunacies.”  In her parting shot she ventriloquizes a putative college student, who shouts at President Clinton, “‘We love you, Bill!’ yelled one boy. ‘You did a good job, except for Monica.'”  Historiann votes for Professorblackwoman to get the big bucks at the grey lady to brain the place up.

What is wrong with Maureen Dowd?

maureen-dowd.jpgSeriously.  What is wrong with her?  And why does the New York Times pay her money to puke this stuff up?  In one column, she likens Hillary Clinton to Dick Cheney, Mommie Dearest, and (get this!) associates her with murderous mom Andrea Yates.  She actually uses the adjective “hysterical” and the verb “snipped” to describe Clinton’s response to a reporter’s question.  Her obvious loathing for women is only acceptable because of her own XX chromosome status–if she were a man, no editor would allow his work into print because of its obvious misogyny.  But, women who are willing to do the boys’ work for them are richly rewarded for their work, aren’t they?  (P.S. to Michelle Obama, who got an honory mention today:  If Hillary isn’t the nominee, you’re the next person Dowd will have in her sights!  UPDATE, March 3:  And we’re off!  Joan Venocchi concern trolls Michelle Obama in the Boston Globe on Sunday.  Isn’t it nice that she points out that it will be “A delicate line for Michelle Obama,” as though the unfair scrutiny she has already received is her fault?  Via firedoglake.)

I know it’s been terribly fashionable to disdain the wakeup call ad, but I’ve got news for you blogboyz:  women 40 and older don’t always see the world the same way younger men (and Maureen Dowd, who’s closer to HRC’s age than she’d like to admit) without children do, and most of them don’t read your blogs.  I don’t see how this ad is “fearmongering” at all–this comparison with the “Daisy” ad is ridiculous.  Most parents go on occasional if not nightly patrols like the one shown here, and the ad is clearly connecting Clinton to a sense of vigilant maternal protection.

My diagnosis of Dowd is that she’s pathologically envious of other Baby Boomers (women especially, but consider her treatment of Al Gore too) who have accomplished something she hasn’t, and she suspects that her position is  highly conditional–that is, she’s only welcome in the boys’ club so long as she does her catty bitchiness routine.  It’s sad for a person of her stature to be so obviously insecure–but then, a strong, confident, tough woman would never get a job as as the token girl on the op-ed pages of the New York Times

Cue the Wagner: Helicopter Parents

helicopters.jpgHelicopter parents:  are they 1) a media creation hyped by the New York Times?  Are they 2) a regional problem of the New York Times readership basin (i.e. the orange schmear on the map of North America demarcating the urban corridor from Boston to Washington D.C.)?  Or 3) are they everywhere now? 

Historiann has had only a few phone calls or e-mails from parents in the past 11 years.  Usually, they were writing or calling so that they could hear the bad news from me directly–why their daughter wasn’t in fact graduating next weekend, or why their son who swears he had a “B” average before the exam failed the course entirely.  They’ve been uniformly respectful to me although disappointed by their child’s academic failings (which seemed to be not a total surprise to them, in most cases).  It was kind of sad, and I got the impression that they were trying to hold their kids’ feet to the fire rather than to plead their cases or bully me.  While I think Baby Boomer parents have fostered close relationships with their adult children, I haven ‘t seen too much evidence that these relationships are detrimental.  So far, I might vote for option #1 or option #2, but I’d like to hear from the rest of you out there, now that we’re approaching mid-terms and the zero-hour for students to withdraw from your classes.

(Update on Funeral Blogging:  thanks for the condolences–you’re all very kind.  Still light blogging as I’ll be in the ancestral homelands for the rest of the week, and am now poaching a mysterious wi-fi connection. . .)

We loves teh funny!

sarah-silverman.jpgMy apologies–I don’t know how to embed a video yet into a post.  (My brother-in-law has set this website up, and I don’t think that I’m allowed to have the keys yet for that particular vehicle.  Plus, he’s paying for the hosting, which I think might have something to do with this.)  Anyway, if Superbowl LIXIXIVVICMQ isn’t really your thing, and you’re really, like, “whatevs,” every time you’ve heard the New England Patriots’ winning streak described as “historic,” click here for some real entertainment.  (Warning–not work safe, not family viewing, etc.  If it were, it wouldn’t be so freaking hillarious, right?)  Sarah Silverman = Historiann – 2 years + teh funny. 

The Huckabeast with Two (or more) Backs

Over at Washington Monthly, and with the assistance of the L.A. Times, Kevin Drum looks behind the aggregate numbers of the drop in abortion rates reported recently by the Guttmacher institute.  He writes, “here are the basic numbers: excluding miscarriages, the pregnancy rate among women aged 15-44 has dropped by 13 per thousand since 1990. At the same time, the abortion rate has dropped by 8 per thousand. By itself this isn’t conclusive, but it strongly suggests that the reduced abortion rate is mostly due to fewer unwanted pregnancies in the first place. If increased regulation were the prime driver, you’d be more likely to see the pregancy rate staying about the same while abortions drop, and you’d be more likely to see bigger drops in states with more regulation. But that hasn’t been the case. So yes: better access to contraception, better education, and better access to the morning after pill seem to have made a difference over time. For anyone who’s pro-life but not anti-sex, that ought to be good news.” 

Well, good news for all of those pro-life, pro-sex, non-misogynists out there.  Yeah, that’s a big constituency.  (Wait–I think I know that guy.  Hello, Bill!)  And, like, duh, the feminist answer to unwanted pregnancies turns out to be the correct one.

Meanwhile, in pro-life, anti-sex news, Mike Huckabee says that homosexuality is the same as polygamy, child molestation, and bestiality (hat tip to Greg Sargent at the the Talking Points Memo Media Borg for that pickup.)  But he’s not judging–God is.   (Why does God have such a dirty mind?)