Anatomy of an Impropriety, or Ann Coulter Vs. Bill Maher
By: Warner Todd Huston
The double standard of Leftists who are ignoring the outrage of Bill Maher — who alluded to his wish that Vice President Dick Cheney was assassinated â€“ while at the same time are wildly fanning themselves in mock outrage as if they had the vapors over Ann Coulter — for calling Democrat John Edwards a bad name — was on full display in the MSM over the weekend.
If you are a conservative who stays up on the “happenings” in conservative news, you’d have by now heard that firebrand Columnist Ann Coulter called Democratic Candidate John Edwards a “faggot” at the CPAC convention the other day. You are also probably aware of all the lefty types wading into the waters of high dudgeon over her typically button-pushing remark and you’ll have seen Democrats and their supporters coming out of the woodwork to claim astonishment at Coulter’s comment, demanding that conservatives distance themselves from her.
You’ll also have noticed that every upstanding Conservative and GOP candidate was falling all over themselves in compliance to denounce Coulter’s remarks.
Now, right here I’ll probably get myself in trouble with some conservatives who are in a permanent mode of “fed-up” and who always get a thrill out of Coulter’s work. I’ll get tsk, tsked by them because, well, I just don’t like her. Whenever I see her on TV, I stop paying attention, whenever I hear her on the radio I change stations, and I have long since stopped reading her columns. In fact, I see little difference between her and any of the hatemongers on the left like, for instance, a Bill Maher.
Of course, I am sympathetic to her core message of conservative values, but in my opinion she is no longer an effective conservative columnist having long ago diluted her message by a career that has advanced to the stage of “personality” instead of pundit. She is the H.L. Mencken of our times… minus the intellect.
Sadly, she obviously feels she has to say increasingly outrageous things to stay at the top of the news. In fact, at this point she isn’t much different than Whitney Houston, Paris Hilton, or Britney Spears all of whom seem to feel a need to continuously up the ante of crazy behavior to keep getting noticed.
In other words, Coulter no longer does much to aid the cause because her own fame — or more properly her infamy — has become her driving force, the cause having been eclipsed by her need to stay in the news. I feel, at this point, that she is hurting us on the right more than helping us.
Alright, that being said — and start the hate mail now — it just cannot escape notice how the two infamies, Coulter’s and Maher’s, are being treated by the MSM.
First of all let’s rate the relative outrages. Coulter called Edwards a derogatory name equating him to a man that likes homosexual sex, a name that is tinged with the cultural meaning of not being a “real” man, being an effete, and a weakling. OK, inappropriate in serious policy discussion, sure. But is it a hanging offense? Hardly.
Bill Maher, on the other hand, basically called for the assassination of a sitting American vice president! Of the two Maher’s comments are by far the more egregious.
Coulter’s comment is intemperate, childish, lowbrow, even frat house-like for its part, but it was just a derogatory name in the end. Maher wants people KILLED, for Heaven’s sake. But is the left cranking up the water-works and crying for his head on a platter? The big question is, where are all the MSM talking heads calling for Democrats to immediately distance themselves from his immoral behavior? In fact, where have they ever been for denouncing Maher’s ignorance? Since the 2000 election Maher has been just as caught up in the need for notice that Coulter is in the grips of with his every appearance seemingly geared to showcase an ever increasing intemperance, a wild eyed shrillness, and is filled with unstable verbiage.
If he isn’t infected with BDS (Bush derangement syndrome), no one is.
Now, let’s take a perusal of some of the gnashing of teeth and rending of clothes that the MSM has indulged in with Coulter over the last few days, shall we?
Outspoken U.S. conservative columnist Ann Coulter is drawing fire from Republicans and Democrats alike after publicly using a derogatory gay slur in reference to Democratic presidential hopeful John Edwards.
Ann Coulter outdoes herself – Conservative firebrand uses anti-gay slur against John Edwards
Coulter under fire for anti-gay slur
She’s a charmer, isn’t she? Here’s what’s I find funny: conservative friends will tell me that nobody really looks at Coulter as a serious person. With her calls for assassinations of public officials, general name-calling, and highly casual relationship with anything resembling facts, she’s the court jester, a source of entertainment whom nobody really thinks of as one of the grown-ups.
So Ann Coulter called John Edwards a “faggot.” All this proves is that the woman’s gaydar is seriously on the fritz. Last year she diagnosed Bill Clinton as a “latent homosexual” whose “promiscuity” is “reminiscent of a bathhouse.” Then on Hardball she called Al Gore a “total fag.” Meanwhile, Ted Haggard and Mark Foley stage 120 Days of Sodom right under her nose, and all she can say when confronted with the goods is “who knew Congressman Foley was a closeted Democrat?”
These conferences (CPAC) have historically been known for displaying what its own organizers would describe as over-the-top behavior, and one of the regular speakers â€“ Ann Coulter â€“ offered an example of it when she used an anti-gay epithet on Friday to describe John Edwards, the former senator from North Carolina and Democratic presidential contender.
The Post’s Dana Milbank, in a column for the Saturday paper, observed: “Ann Coulter used an anti-gay slur to describe John Edwards (the line drew applause) and asked: ‘Did Al Gore actually swallow Michael Moore?’ When a questioner asked Coulter why she praises marriage but broke off so many engagements, she responded by calling the questioner ugly.”
The Minnesota Daily, a University Paper, even tried their hand at the story:
The remark is so filled with bigotry it’s surprising anyone would have the gall to say it in public, even if they believe it in private.
And that was the coverage by just a few news sources this weekend. There is a lot more where those came from. Imagine what it will be as the early part of the week rolls on and the “real” MSM pundits get a crack at this story from their weekend off work.
Naturally Democrat party spokesmen were all over the comment, too.
DNC Chairman, Howard Dean immediately released this statement: “There is no place in political discourse for this kind of hate-filled and bigoted comments. While Democrats and Republicans may disagree on the issues, we should all be able to agree that this kind of vile rhetoric is out of bounds. The American people want a serious, thoughtful debate of the issues. Republicans–including the Republican presidential candidates who shared the podium with Ann Coulter today–should denounce her hateful remarks.”
Naturally, the man the comment was aimed at, John Edwards, had plenty to say, as well. Edward’s campaign manager David Bonior said in an e-mail message: “John was singled out for a personal attack because the Republican establishment knows he poses the greatest threat to their power. Since they have nothing real to use against him, Coulterâ€™s resorting to the classic right-wing strategy of riling up hate to smear a progressive champion.”
Even Human Rights Campaign President Joe Solmonese got into the act with the following: “To interject this word into American political discourse is a vile and disgusting way to sink the debate to a new, all-time low. Make no doubt about it, these remarks go directly against what our Founding Fathers intended and have no place on the schoolyard, much less our countryâ€™s political arena.â€
Solmonese went on to say, “It is clear that some in the Republican Party plan to run in 2008 the same way they did in 2004, by using discrimination to divide the country and rally their base. But, 2008 is not 2004, and this time the politics of fear and smear will not work. The American people are tired of those who would rather divide than unite.”
(Those last three comments can be seen here: Ann Coulterâ€™s Done It Again)
OK, we get it. Ann was a nitwit and said something inappropriate. How can anyone even be surprised any more?
Now, for the Right’s part, there isn’t anyone with any standing in the conservative community who is seen to be supporting Coulter’s nonsense. All the GOP presidential candidates denounced her remark almost immediately (as can be seen in any of the linked stories above). Sean Hannity tried to gently distance himself from the kind of comments Coulter made and the right’s favorite blogger, Michelle Malkin has also denounced the blond bomb…uh, shell.
Well, there is all the mess over Ann. It’s got everyone abuzz, for sure.
Now, let’s turn to Bill Maher’s most recent comment.
As reported on Newsbusters, on his HBO program “Real Time”, Maher thought a “funny joke” was offered by Congressman Barney Frank who said that the bomb that recently missed vice president Cheney on an overseas visit was “wasted” because it didn’t kill him (to audience laughter and applause, I might add).
The exchange went on:
Maher: But I have zero doubt that if Dick Cheney was not in power, people wouldnâ€™t be dying needlessly tomorrow. (applause)
Scarborough: If someone on this panel said that they wished that Dick Cheney had been blown up, and you didnâ€™t sayâ€¦
Frank: I think he did.
Scarborough: Okay. Did you sayâ€¦
Maher: No, no. I quoted that.
Frank: You donâ€™t believe that?
Maher: Iâ€™m just saying if he did die, other people, more people would live. Thatâ€™s a fact.
Now, here is a definitive listing of all the outrage exhibited over Bill Maher in the MSM and by GOP sources:
Bill Maher: Better If Cheney Is Dead
Newsbusters (as noted above)
Noel Sheppard’s blog Bill Maher is Sorry the Assassination Attempt on Dick Cheney Failed
There you have it.
No Republicans finger wagging over Maher’s comments. No Democrats rushing to the microphones to denounce Maher’s constant over the top rhetoric. No MSM reports of Maher wishing the VP were assassinated.
And, this isnâ€™t a lone comment by Bill Maher, either. His wasn’t the kind that might make people want to give him a pass because it was so unusual. Maher has been outrageous with his over the top rhetoric for some time, even losing a job over it when ABC decided not to renew his TV contract for his old show, â€œPolitically Incorrectâ€. He’s called America a stupid country with stupid people, said that torture is worse in Iraq now than it was under Saddam, said that Bush couldn’t find his ass with two hands, was heard telling Christians to “go screw”, called RNC Chairman Ken Mehlman “gay”, said that Laura Bush is like Hitler’s dog… well, I could go on and on and on.
Now, for her part, Coulter has said that her Edwards comment was “just a joke”. I am sure Maher would have the same retort when his outrageous comments were pointed out.
But, the more salient point by contrasting these two people and their “jokes” is the way that the MSM treats them.
They ignore Maher.
They constantly and instantly pounce on Coulter.
NEITHER personality can be considered too serious a commentator on political or societal events, but only Coulter is focused upon by the MSM. Predictably, a hatemonger from the left gets a pass by the MSM, yet one coming from the right is made infamous by the very same people.
Interesting, wouldn’t you say?