Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Maureen Dowd is, and was, a High School Poem About Ophelia (JM)

With Maureen Dowd not submitting her column this Sunday, I have decided to take a trip to a little something I like to call, Classic Dowd

June 16, 1999

This is right before George W. Bush began his campaign which will culminate is an completely honest victory, with a total mandate for the many great changes he will bring to this land of ours.

Liberties; Freudian Face-Off

This title is important in so far as the part prior to the semi colon makes no sense and the part afterwards is entirely in a little something I like to call Maureen’s imagination.


Worst three words in the English language…

Al Gore is the Tin Man: immobile, rusting, decent, badly in need of that oil can.

Look, if you’re going to feed people Wizard of Oz metaphors at least warn us in the title. Also Al Gore is stiff, original material Maureen, perhaps someday they will let you write for a newspaper.

George W. Bush is the Scarecrow: charming, limber, cocky, fidgety, seeking to stuff his head with a few more weighty thoughts. (Dan Quayle and Gary Bauer are, of course, the Flying Monkeys.)

Cocky?! When in the world was the Scarecrow cocky, or charming or limber for that matter. Even 1999 Maureen Dowd didn’t care if her metaphors made any sense. She is like the Stay-Puft Marshmallow Man, overpaid, ridiculous and a terrible writer.

Al Gore is so feminized and diversified and ecologically correct, he's practically lactating.

Attention NYT, your flagship columnist just wrote that the Democratic contender for President of the United States, a former Vice President of the United States is “practically lactating” for being “ecologically correct”. Also I have no idea what she means by “feminized” and don’t even know how a person can be “diversified”, unless she is referring to his stock portfolio, in which case… Bravo, Al, fiscal responsibility is important. Just make sure you put it in your lockbox. See, I can make timely 1999 jokes too!

George Bush is all swagger, with macho campaign accessories of custom-made ostrich-leather black cowboy boots with ''G.W.B.'' emblazoned and a huge belt buckle with ''Gov. George W. Bush,'' as well as baseball statistics, pork and beans and a Betty Crocker wife.

I am not sure ostrich-leather counts as macho, but then here I am lactating all the time, so maybe I don’t know. But I do like baseball statistics… Oh by the way paragon of feminism, referring to a person’s wife as an accessory probably not so much helping the old cause.

Now comes the ''I am worthy, Daddy'' Freudian face-off of dauphins named after famous fathers and shaped by strong mothers.

This has nothing in the world to do with Freud. I wish this could be the scene in Annie Hall where Marshall McLuhan comes out and chastises a guy for not understanding his work at all. However, instead I would like it to be Freud and I want Freud to hit her with a shovel and video tape it and leave it a safety deposit box and then send a courier to me with a telegram in 2008 to come pick up said video tape. It would be an awesome cross between Bill and Ted’s Excellent Adventure and Back to the Future, Part III and Maureen would get hit with a shovel. Sigh…

Al is the Good Son, the early-achieving scion from Harvard and Tennessee who always thought he would be President. (So did his parents.) George is the Prodigal Son, the late-blooming scion from Yale and Texas who never thought he would be President. (Neither did his parents.)

As the robotic, plodding Mr. Gore tries to loosen up, the loose, quicksilver Mr. Bush tries to stay robotically on message.

The subtext of the Bush campaign is: What Bill Clinton did with Monica stinks; I was raised right and you can count on me to behave with more dignity. The subtext of the Gore campaign is the same.

This is some really deep and insightful analysis, thank you.

You don't often get to see a Presidential candidate bloom right before your eyes. But as W. debuted in Iowa and New Hampshire, Republicans, Democrats and journalists realized that he might just pull it off, at the same time he realized it, at the same time his parents, who had long assumed it would be Jeb, realized it.

As late as Christmas, W. said, he was 50-50 about running. As late as last week, he was nervous. On Sunday, when we talked by the sparkling Atlantic on the back porch of the family home in Kennebunkport, W. wore an Astros T-shirt and a big grin.

''All I can tell you,'' he said, ''is I was fairly anxious for the week leading up to this, but when I got up there in Cedar Rapids, it felt good. I think that's an interesting measurement.

The previous paragraph could be rewritten: “I, Maureen Dowd, got to sit in Maine and talk to George W. Bush. He’s fine.”

''I'm telling you, people out there, they're looking for something -- dignity, integrity, optimism, big themes. I know what I believe in. I believe the big issues are going to be China and Russia. There will be moments when situations, incidents will flare up. It's important for the President to think globally. But in the long run, security in the world is going to be how do we deal with China and how do we deal with Russia. People think the Russian situation, or used to think, Russia was not an issue. It's a huge issue. But if the East Timorians decide to revolt, I'm sure I'll have a statement.''

Alright, we can all agree this is hilarious for reasons that don’t involve Maureen. China and Russia… amazing… And East Timorians… excellent, way to go sort of half the country, great job being a democracy!

The statement, one hopes, will call them the East Timorese.

Maureen… people in glass houses…

''I think what's important for you to know is that I feel I know what to do,'' he continued. ''I really do. I may not be able to tell you exactly the nuance of the East Timorian situation but I'll ask Condy Rice or I'll ask Paul Wolfowitz or I'll ask Dick Cheney. I'll ask the people who've had experience.

Seriously American public, he said this. It was in a major newspaper. He, the guy you voted for said this.

''I'm smart enough to know what I don't know and I have good judgment about who will either be telling me the truth or has got some agenda that is not a right agenda. And I'm tough enough to tell somebody to kiss off if they're trying to put one over on me or on the country.''

If only he had been able to meet himself before he ran for President… of course, if George W. Bush met George W. Bush than I might never be born. Time paradox joke: check.

In a few short years, the Prodigal Son has become a popular politician, deft at working a room and skilled at domestic politics. But all those years that his father was so deeply engaged in world affairs, W. was still finding himself. So now he's starting from scratch, getting coached on foreign affairs.

W.'s father tried to reassure reporters on this matter by saying that his son has a good issues team. But you kind of want the President to be past the point of tutorials.

Albert Gore, Jr. LACTATES because he is an environmentalist. But you “kind of want the President to be past the point of tutorials.” I hate you more than cartoon mice hate cartoon cats, Maureen Dowd.

The Good Son, who was applying himself while his rival was finding himself, is not green. But he is beige, and so puckered in his pronouncements that his Hollywood pals want to coach him on how to talk to people.

One knows his subjects cold but can't heat up an audience. The other promises the global vision thing as soon as he gets his geography down.

It's going to be an interesting year, Toto.

Good call back… just awesome considering this article had nothing to with The Wizard of Oz other than the fact that you randomly chose to mention the Wizard of Oz. But actually I kind of think this is not a bad analogy. This is just kind of the way Maureen sees the relationship between her and her readers. She is the beautiful Dorothy traipsing across the Merry Old Land of Oz, seeing things that don’t exist because this imaginary land is entire in Maureen’s head. We are her dog Toto, along for the ride, recipient of idiotic condescending remarks. When secretly the dog is the only one who realizes that, in fact, that is not a Munchkin Maureen is talking to but a mailbox. You are delusional Maureen, and the test of time has proven it.

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