Part 4—Extremely bad feminist speaks: Last Sunday, in The Sunday Review, the New York Times subjected its readers to a vast mountain of bullshit.
It's just about the highest platform the famous newspaper possesses. And good lord, the bullshit was vast!
Inside The Review, on the op-ed page, readers were subjected to a Maureen Dowd column, in which, according to Dowd, Daddy Stood Up to the Klan. The alleged event allegedly happened in 1947, before Dowd was born.
As a general matter, the column was Dowd's way of showing us how much she despises Donald J. Trump, the disordered fellow she rather plainly endorsed all through last year's campaign.
Elsewhere in the section, we were exposed to some of the silly piffle typical of The Review. As the nation reeled from Charlottesville, Loudon Wainwright offered a list of his ten favorite swimming holes, world-wide. And not only that! In an "opinion" piece headlined "9 Eclipses, 4 Continents," globe-trotting Dava Sobel told us why she never misses an eclipse, no matter where it takes place.
In fairness, it wasn't the fault of Wainwright or Sobel that their pieces may have seemed a bit foppish on this particular Sunday. Sobel has written a string of well-regarded books, the most recent of which was plugged in her essay's identity line. In his essay on swimming holes, Wainwright cited a song he wrote, "Swimming Song," which appeared in 1976 on one of the greatest albums we know about, Kate & Anna McGarrigle.
(The late Kate McGarrigle was Wainwright's wife at the time. On the album, the McGarrigles answered a long-standing question: if we could hear the choir of angels, what might they sound like?)
In fairness, let's not stop there. The Sunday Review never fails to offers its readers the dumbest thinking available, generally tricked up to resemble high erudition. Last Sunday, readers got to read a piece by Pamela Paul, editor of the Book Review. Perhaps as a tribute to sacred Thoreau, she started out like this:
PAUL (8/20/17): Recently, I gave up my electric toothbrush. There was nothing wrong with it. It was, in fact, an upscale model, and when I used it, I felt certain my teeth were not only getting cleaner and whiter but also perhaps even better aligned. And yet, my old manual toothbrush, poking out of a mug on the vanity, beckoned. One night, as I wearily approached the sink, I realized the last thing I wanted to experience was the frantic whir of yet another spinning gizmo. I plucked out the old-timey toothbrush instead, and never looked back."Dumbnify, dumbnify," Thoreau once wrote. Or at least, he wrote something like that.
I deliberately downgraded.
The Sunday Review rarely fails to put well-disguised examples of dumbness on vivid comic display. That said, on this particular Sunday, the genuine insult to readers' intelligence came when the Times pretended to assess Donald J. Trump's reactions to Charlottesville.
The Sunday Review offered a package of essays addressing this topic. Inevitably, one was by a requisite figure—the repentant former white nationalist, the one who has seen the light.
No formulaic rumination is easier to read and digest. But the main reaction to Donald J. Trump appeared in the form of a pair of essays which ate the bulk of The Sunday Review's first page.
One of these essays was written by the utterly silly Julius Krein. The youngster launched a pro-Trump journal in February, but now confesses that he was wrong, oh so completely wrong.
The matching piece was by Roxane Gay. If we had to pick one word, we'd call it a disgrace. A con.
Krein is an utterly silly, unknown child; Gay is a major writer. Her current book, Hunger, recently spent five weeks on the Times' best-seller list. The identity line of last Sunday's essay said this:
"Roxane Gay, an associate professor at Purdue University, is the author, most recently, of 'Hunger,' and a contributing opinion writer."
More specifically, Gay is a regular "contributing opinion writer" for the New York Times. She has held that position for several years. Therein, we'd have to say, lies part of this morning's tale.
Krein confessed that he'd been wrong, oh so wrong, in his recent support for Trump. In her shorter, matching piece, Gay had a different confession to make.
Silly ridiculous Krein confessed; the better-known Gay did too. What follows should make liberals angry—furious, disgusted, resentful:
GAY (8/20/17): Throughout the 2016 election, I did not do as much as I could have done to support Mrs. Clinton’s presidential bid. I contributed money to the campaign, but I didn’t volunteer or try to get out the vote.In the dictionary, next to "faux," those bogus remarks should appear.
Of all the men and women running for president, I found her to be the most qualified, comprehensive in her understanding of domestic and foreign policy, progressive and charismatic. I wanted to write about her and engage rigorously with her ideas far more than I did. But I didn’t. In part, I did not have the energy to deal with the inevitable backlash, from corners right and left. In part, I was trying to understand the popularity of Bernie Sanders because so many people I respect supported him and his ideas. And of course, there was that overconfidence, which, in hindsight, I am ashamed of. Nothing should be taken for granted in a democracy.
I don’t think that I, as an individual, could have swayed the election in a meaningful way but I know I could have done so much more and I did not. I hold myself accountable for that. I am increasingly concerned with accountability because our country is being led by a man who believes he is accountable only to himself and enriching his coffers rather than the more than 300 million people he was so narrowly elected to lead and serve.
It pains me to think about what could have been. It is even more difficult to face the way things are.
Poor Gay! She "wanted" to write about Candidate Clinton, she says. In truth, we're not sure the words "wanted to" mean what she thinks they mean.
She wanted to write about Candidate Clinton. But as it turned out, she didn't!
It isn't that she was taken ill. It isn't that she submitted work which editors rejected.
Speaking a bit more precisely, Gay could have written about Candidate Clinton, presumably from a high platform. Here's why she says she didn't:
"In part, I did not have the energy to deal with the inevitable backlash, from corners right and left."
An ironist might say that Gay is blaming "both sides," not unlike Donald J. Trump! But in part, Gay chose to let Clinton twist in the wind because she didn't want to deal with the pain—didn't want to get negative feedback from folk on the right and the left.
Here's the second part of the reason why Gay didn't speak—and no, this doesn't exactly make sense:
"In part, I was trying to understand the popularity of Bernie Sanders because so many people I respect supported him and his ideas."
She didn't write about Candidate Clinton—during the general election, let's say—because she was trying to understand the popularity of Bernie Sanders?
You're right! On its face, that doesn't make sense. But those are two of the reasons why Gay, who wanted to speak up for Clinton, chose to sit it out. Here's an unflattering paraphrase of what she has actually said:
As Michael Jordan might have put it, Sanders voters buy best-selling books too!
Sanders supporters buy books too! In fairness, that thought may never have entered Gay's head. That said, it's fairly obvious that she chose to keep her thoughts to herself because she didn't want the pain of being criticized by Sanders supporters, among others. We'll suggest other groups below.
Unfortunately, major liberals have been making that type of choice for the past twenty-five years, ever since the barrage of weird attacks on Clinton and Clinton began. Our cowardly lions have constantly clammed, rather than challenge The Power. And sure enough! After twenty-five years of this self-serving conduct, the cowardice of our big liberal stars has finally sent Trump to the White House.
It's hard to find sufficient words of contempt for that passage by Gay. Or for the reactions of the inevitable liberal readers who flocked to comments to praise Professor Gay for her courage and her goodness in making this bogus confession.
Question: Has there ever been a music man whose trombones we didn't buy? To whose manifest bullshit we liberals wouldn't submit? Just read the reactions to Gay's confession and marvel at the way we liberals constantly claim that The Others are hopelessly dumb!
Why did Professor Gay choose silence, even when she "wanted" to speak up for Candidate Clinton? We've suggested one unflattering possibility. Now, we'll suggest two more:
Gay is a black associate professor at a major university. During the past campaign, her fellow assistant and associate professors spent a fair amount of time telling black voters to stay away from Candidate Clinton because on one occasion, twenty years before, she used a term which was in wide use at the time. ("Super-predator," a version of "sociopath.").
Admiring Clinton as she claims she did, Professor Gay could have shown a bit of courage and challenged this unwise stance. But she might have gotten some negative feedback, so she maintained her silence.
As a result, Sheriff Joe, a more recent super-predator, just received some very good news. Ain't liberal silence grand?
There was another specific arena within which the lofty Gay might have spoken. That other arena involves the New York Times.
As Campaign 2016 unfolded, the New York Times re-engaged in the 25-year war it had waged against both Clintons and Gore. Largely because of intellectual leaders like Gay, most people in the liberal rank-and-file remain unaware, to this day, that any such war has occurred.
As Campaign 2016 unfolded, the Times did some truly incredible work with which they extended this war. We'll mention just one example:
In April 2015, the Times published an astounding, 4400-word report on the scary uranium deal through which Secretary Clinton sold out the national interest. They published their absurd report in concert with a ludicrous book by a right-wing hack who was bankrolled by Steve Bannon!
Gay could have spoken up about that ludicrous, sprawling report, which Donald J. Trump still mentions. Later, she could have spoken up about the Times' over-the-top coverage of the email matter.
She could have spoken about that dying fellow's last few nouns. She could have spoken up about a wide range of ridiculous things the ridiculous New York Times did.
Why didn't Gay speak up? Dearest darlings, use your heads! The utterly useless Roxane Gay is "a contributing opinion writer"at the New York Times! And as we've told you for how many years, people who hold such posts, or dream of holding such posts, do not talk back to the Washington Post or to the New York Times.
Dearest darlings, use your heads! Such things simply aren't done!
They don't talk back to the New York Times, from whom they derive their careers. Indeed, that can be seen as the basic story of the past twenty-five years—as the basic story of the way Donald J. Trump reached the White House.
Poor Gay! She "wanted" to speak up for Candidate Clinton, who she thought was a fabulous candidate. But she decided to bail.
She didn't want to offend Sanders supporters. She didn't want to get name-called, as she would have been, by our team's assistant professors.
She didn't want to jeopardize her sinecure at the New York Times. And last Sunday, we in the liberal rank and file rushed to praise her for her goodness and courage! Is anyone dumber than our tribe is? Does anyone purchase more cons?
We offer one last observation:
The New York Times insulted its readers when it published that silly twaddle by the ludicrous silly-boy Krein. That said, Gay's companion essay was just as silly and just as faux. Just as scripted, predictable, dumb.
Each of those pieces was silly and faux. But then, little that isn't silly and faux makes it into print at The Sunday Review. (Daddy stood up to the Klan!)
Gay's confession reeked of faux. That said, we liberals love her a lot, and don't those royalties spend!