Joe, Rush, Sarah, and especially Ann: Say Adios

Remember that crazy woman in Pittsburgh who carved a backwards “B” into her own cheek and then claimed that rampaging black men had assaulted her because they saw a “McCain-Palin” bumper sticker on her car? Well, Ann Coulter’s routine on The View this morning proved that she’s just as crazy as the Pittsburgh woman (although, unfortunately, more politically influential).

Ann Coulter shills for a right-wing political movement dedicated to shredding the social safety net designed to provide assistance to poor working mothers by savaging these same single mothers as the scourge of society for rearing “70 percent of rapists, murderers, and other criminals.” She then weaves this diatribe into being part of a gigantic “Liberal” conspiracy to destroy everything that is wholesome, pure, and good in Coulter’s version of Norman Rockwell America.

She claimed today that “forty years of social science research” backs up her Dickensian, “Are there no workhouses?” worldview. But, whoa, does she leave out a lot! Little things that tend to undermine her “argument”: like forty years of social science scholarship documenting the feminization of poverty. But no one should expect Coulter to bother to Google Barbara Ehrenreich or Katha Pollit or Susan Douglas or hundreds of other scholars and researchers on the subject. Coulter’s “free market” prescriptions for addressing the feminization of poverty via draconian reductions in social spending contradict her whole take on the meaning of “victimization.”

Coulter’s pure, unalloyed, crystalline hypocrisy was on full display on The View when she kept whining about being “attacked” because a couple of smart women asked her to explain some of her bogus assumptions. Coulter, like Sarah Palin, is used to being surrounded by a gaggle of star-struck horny white Republican men who lob her soft balls and nod in agreement with all her übermenchen social theories.

What was most astonishing about her appearance on The View today was her shtick whereby she tries to cast herself as some kind of “moral authority” hurling stern judgments on other women’s lives. Sheez! Give it a rest already! Whoopi Goldberg summed it up as the segment was tossed to a commercial. She said to Coulter: “You can dish it out but you can’t take it.”

I’m glad Goldberg asked Coulter if she has any children or stepchildren. That is a relevant question. If someone is going to indict an entire group of women who struggle each day to pull together a livelihood for their children she should be prepared to answer personal questions about her own circumstance regarding children in a public forum. The women of The View asked Coulter about widows and women who left abusive relationships; do these women too provide fodder for Coulter’s attacks? Of course they do!

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I wish Ann Coulter would just go away. And I wish she would take Joe the Plumber and Rush Limbaugh and Sarah Palin and the whole Republican “movement” carnival act with her. But I know that will never happen. These right-wing corporate media darlings have access to piles of money to circulate their “ideas” in the public discourse as promoted through “books” and A.M. talk radio shows.

joseph-palmero.gifTheir authoritarian, racist, “eat the poor” ideology serves the interests of ruling corporate elites; so these barren, windswept notions will be shoved down our throats no matter how many Barack Obamas we elect. “Global warming doesn’t exist!” “Labor unions are evil and corrupt!” “Liberals coddle single mothers and single mothers raise children to be criminals!” “Cut corporate taxes and regulations and prosperity will ‘trickle down!’” “Ketchup is a vegetable!” “Trees cause pollution!” And so on, and on, and on.

by Joseph Palermo

Joseph Palermo is Associate Professor of American History at CSU, Sacramento. He’s the author of two books on Robert F. Kennedy: In His Own Right (2001) and RFK (2008).

Reprinted with permission from the author.

Articles by Joseph Palermo:

Published by the LA Progressive on January 14, 2009
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About Joseph Palermo

Joseph Palermo is Professor of History, California State University, Sacramento. Professor Palermo's most recent book is The Eighties (Pearson 2012). He has also written two other books: In His Own Right: The Political Odyssey of Senator Robert F. Kennedy (Columbia, 2001); and Robert F. Kennedy and the Death of American Idealism (Pearson, 2008). Before earning a Master's degree and Doctorate in History from Cornell University, Professor Palermo completed Bachelor's degrees in Sociology and Anthropology from the University of California, Santa Cruz, and a Master's degree in History from San Jose State University. His expertise includes the 1980s; political history; presidential politics and war powers; social movements of the 20th century; the 1960s; and the history of American foreign policy. Professor Palermo has also written articles for anthologies on the life of Father Daniel Berrigan, S.J. in The Human Tradition in America Since 1945 (Scholarly Resources Press, 2003); and on the Watergate scandal in Watergate and the Resignation of Richard Nixon (CQ Press, 2004).