It’s time to tell Ahab to stop: In yesterday morning’s New York Times, two of the newspaper’s columnists were killing time in the future.
Despite the fact that it’s 2013, Frank Bruni was pondering Jeb Bush’s degree of interest in the 2016 White House race. And needless to say, Maureen Dowd was beating the meat concerning Hillary Clinton and her vile husband and daughter.
Dowd’s column was so awful that it cries for a great deal of treatment. In our view, it’s inane to be writing about the 2016 campaign at this point. We will suggest that, when columnists do so, they show us they don’t care about anything happening now, in the year 2013.
That said, it’s increasingly obvious that Dowd, and the Times itself, are determined to restore their earlier themes about the vile, evil Clintons. In her tortured inanity, Dowd has already revived Gennifer Flowers, one of the most ridiculous figures of the past twenty years—and look how yesterday’s column started!
We’ll include the headline. Try not to step in the puns:
DOWD (8/18/13): Money, Money, Money, Money, MONEY!Good God! The Lincoln Bedroom!
Clinton nostalgia is being replaced by Clinton neuralgia.
Why is it that America’s roil family always seems better in abstract than in concrete? The closer it gets to running the world once more, the more you are reminded of all the things that bugged you the last time around.
The Clintons’ neediness, their sense of what they are owed in material terms for their public service, their assumption that they’re entitled to everyone’s money.
Are we about to put the “For Rent” sign back on the Lincoln Bedroom?
Dowd’s column is headlined in monomaniacal fashion. Does she know that the money involved in the “Lincoln Bedroom” era has been rendered comically obsolete by the era which has come after it?
The big bucks of the Clinton era has been made into a joke. At the time, of course, newspapers like the Washington Post and the New York Times struggled to make a scandal out of the “Lincoln Bedroom,” in keeping with a monomaniacal era of pseudo-scandal aimed at both Clintons and at Gore—an era the “press corps” didn’t abandon until the Chosen Lad, Younge Bush, had screwed things up in Iraq.
In the case of the “Lincoln Bedroom” pseudo-scandal, the most appalling part of their effort was the way they swelled the number of overnight guests the Clintons had entertained at the White House, not all of whom had actually used the Lincoln Bedroom. To get the total number of guests to an appropriately shocking number, they added in 72 overnight visits by teen-aged friends of Chelsea Clinton’s.
(For background on the Lincoln Bedroom, see THE DAILY HOWLER, 5/16/05.)
Scandal! Children invited to slumber parties were added to the list of those who had slept in the Lincoln Bedroom! In this way, the guild showed the world that it will truly do and say anything to peddle the themes it enjoys.
And then, omigod! How perfect!
In May 2005, USA Today’s Judy Keen reported an intriguing fact: “About a third of the 152 adult guests who slept at the White House or Camp David last year were fundraisers or donors to President Bush's campaigns.”
The numbers involved in Keen’s reporting were similar to those involved in Clinton’s Lincoln Bedroom “scandal.” Keen quoted a Washington watchdog, who thought this too was appalling:
KEEN (5/15/05): Larry Noble of the Center for Responsive Politics, a non-partisan watchdog group, said that while the practice of inviting donors to spend the night at the White House and the presidential retreat isn't new, it doesn't look any better than when it sparked a scandal during the Clinton administration.For our money, we weren’t shocked when Clinton had his overnight guests, nor did we care all that much about Bush. But of one thing we can be certain:
From that day to this, you haven't heard a single word about Bush’s Lincoln Bedroom guests. And now, the biggest crackpot since Ahab himself is back on the Lincoln Bedroom.
Of course, when Dowd dreams her dreams about the Lincoln, she pictures herself in the big comfy bed. Dear Jack slips in after bombing Beirut to ravish her in unspeakable ways. Well—to borrow from Bobby Collins, that’s what she says on the inside! On the outside, Dowd starts more of her lunatic loathing of Clinton and Clinton and Clinton, an obsession she’ll with which she’ll carpet-bomb the homeland for the next several years.
Last Friday, Dowd’s stable-mate, Paul Krugman, couldn’t even bring himself to name the press corps as he discussed the guild’s refusal to perform its most basic duties. Now, Dowd has made it clear that she plans to revive poisonous themes and hammer them at the public.
In comments, many Dowd readers are already showing that they don’t understand the sheer absurdity of columns like the one she penned yesterday. (Why should they, when professional journalists simply refuse to help them understand?) In part for that reason, we’ll spend some time each day this week reviewing yesterday’s poisonous column, which flowed from the broken soul and tortured brain of America’s craziest “journalist.”
Yesterday, the public editor took out a couple of arrows about Clinton too—and Krugman can’t even bring himself to name the name of the guild. It will be up to us the people to fight back against this curse.
All week long, we’ll be making suggestions about how to do that. Paul Krugman has no plan to help. Neither does anyone else.
Krugman made that clear last week. Dowd is making something else clear:
Faced with the specter of Dowd and her hatred; faced with her newspaper's tired old themes; we the people will have to fight back hard. And we’ll have to fight back by ourselves.
Tomorrow: Dowd pimps a large nothingburger