I Was A Ghoul For the GOP
I realize that Chris Matthews having Ann Coulter on his show is something akin to Larry King interviewing Paris Hilton, i.e. red meat for those who slow down to gaze at car wrecks. But the entire event was a complete mutant sideshow from start to finish, and devoting an hour to her noxious bilgewater really challenges the idea that Matthew is a Serious Journalist.
Matthews wonders if Coulter’s criticism of Monica Lewinsky’s legs coursens the public discourse. That this should be his main complaint with what she does is absurd. As Saul Alilnsky noted, “Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.” It is the ideas that Coulter uses such tactics in the service of (reinforcing vicioius and ugly stereotypes, pounding the poor back into the ground on behalf of the powerful) and the cruel and bigoted depths she will plumb to do so (up to and including the ridiculing of John Edwards’ dead son) that should disqualify her from taking part in any meaningful discussion.
Her eliminationist rhetoric is vile, and she says shockingly ugly and painful things simply to elevate her walking freak show in the public eye and generate book sales and outrageous speaking fees. Nobody is saying, as she claims, that she shouldn’t be allowed to speak (as if she cared about the rights of anybody but her vicious harpy self). But she should be permanently relegated to the hermetically sealed wingnut ghetto where her pestilential nonsense will not be mistaken for rational thought by virtue of the legitimate platform being granted to her.
Having Elizabeth Edwards on to rebut her I’m sure was ratings gold and may well have done some good for the campaign, but I really don’t see what good it did in the long run. As Digby notes, Coulter and her grotesque fan base get off on that kind of confrontation. Look at how awkard, skittish, angry and amped up she is in the clip above. The whole thing just serves to further her weird need to be on the receiving end of acrimonious attention. She’s a black hole of animosity. There is nothing hopeful or positive about her.
For my part, I think Matthews should have asked her what she was thinking wearing a black cocktail dress in the middle of the afternoon on a news show for the ostensible purpose of discussing politics. As TRex has noted, that thing can probably stand up by itself now. I guess she thinks she’s peddling a good dose of sex with her sewage but really it looks more like necrophelia.