Tuesday, September 29, 2009

The Coulter Lesson

For years we leftward leaning folk have been lining the pockets of Ann Coulter. Yes we have. Let's not make the same mistake again by lining Sarah Palin's pockets as well.

AC is a mouthpiece. She holds no political office. Her only power (and source of wealth) is her mouth and the people who hire her to speak with it. Currently this is also true of the GOVERNOR WHO QUIT. She is also nothing but a hired mouthpiece with little to say of worth.

AC has made a bloody fortune by writing books about liberals who attack her. Yeah - it can pretty much be watered down to those simple terms. She self-righteously whines about how we whine about how mean she is. She scoffs. She mocks. We get mad. We yell & call her names. She gets asked back on talk shows to talk about the LOUD liberals complaining about her, she mocks, she smirks ad infinitum.

We leftward leaning folk VALIDATE her every time we mention her name. Every time we buy one of her books to rip her to shreds. Every time we even mention her books. She has the last LUCRATIVE laugh ripping us to shreds in turn in her next book! She loves us! We are fodder for her greedy egocentric appetite. If we would just IGNORE her she just might no longer be all that controversial. It takes two sides to spin a controversy and we continually play into her game like suckers.

S. Palin is on course do just the same thing. The title of her forthcoming book says it all - I refuse to actually name it - it deserves no such validation from me. You can bet that her publisher is COUNTING on we hotheads on the left EMBOLDENING SP to her followers by attacking her book. Just like AC. And an emboldened martyr sells books and speeches to her MANY faithful followers.

Let's not make her a martyr like AC - which is precisely what AC has always counted her riches on - our allowing her to play victim by our attacking of her.

So let's just pretend that SP hasn't written a book. OK? Let's be mute on the subject. Entirely. Let's refuse to be suckers this time. She's spoiling for a fight but who says we have to play? Sure some of her followers will buy it. And they'll try to needle us with what she says in it, they'll try to provoke a heated response. So let's NOT give it to them. Let's make SP sell her book (and her speaking engagements) on the merits (?!) of what it/she says and NOT on the merits of its author's self-manufactured martyrdom.


  1. Doh! I wish you had written this before I posted my blog this morning! lol.

    Seriously, I think if we don't talk about her it achieves the same thing as if we do talk about her: her status gets elevated. All things being equal I'd rather speak out against her and make my opinion known than have my silence misinterpreted as tacit approval and lack of a solid counter position.

  2. Zirgar - no offense - but I have heard the "silence misinterpreted" argument too many times, even from fellow Zoners - and besides, the lack of silence clearly doesn't work.

    Just once - let's give silence a try.

  3. Henceforth, by grace of the Great and Mighty Igjarjuk, as the night sweats with terror from the dreams of the dead Cthulhu, may the names Ann Coulter and Sarah Palin never be spoken amongst the living again ... at least until October the 8th when Captain Fogg returneth.

  4. I have always believed that ignoring pesky things is more effective at making them go away than constantly swatting at them - that just seems to encourage them so I'm with Squid on this one.
    While I do love a good book I can't imagine either of these inarticulate drones capable of producing such.

  5. Let's "pretend" that Sarah Palin didn't write a book? Of course this lazy, greedy, smug halfwit didn't write a book. Some hired hack wrote it, and it will be published under her name, and then they will both make a lot of money.

    Do you have any doubt about that?

  6. Well, you know my general philosophy on trolls, be they hard-copyite or intertubal: a minute spent on them is a minute you'll never get back. Maybe on occasion it's worth it, but more often than not, it's just a wasted minute.

    The creatures of small-mindedness and hate thrive upon those very vices, and have no trouble treating even the most justified and well-aimed anger as mere pettiness and injustice. The far right is a victim-culture and cannot abide even the mildest rational opposition.

    I don't need to read books by right-wing ignoramuses and hate-mongers. The truth is that they do just fine by generating a recursive stupid-loop amongst their own followers; they don't need us to play literary critic for them.

    How about a Hopkins quotation?

    "The lost are like this, and their scourge to be / As I am mine, their sweating selves; but worse."

  7. "I don't need to read books by right-wing ignoramuses and hate-mongers."

    Of course not. There's so much online, for anyone who cares. After all, who is going to buy the cow when the milk is free?

  8. Green Eagle,

    Apparently, somebody buys the hard copy because the wingers' books sell quite well. the Net has not entirely eclipsed physical print: "the fetishism of the commodity" ensures that, no? People want to own what they agree with, I suppose....

  9. Drats. You have a point here, Squid. But I had such a perfect snark-and-run post on her "book"... Cuz satirically speaking, Caribou Barbie is a gift that keeps on giving.

    Coulter, not so much.

  10. bloggingdino said... Apparently, somebody buys the hard copy because the wingers' books sell quite well.

    Rightwing think tanks and organizations like Newsmax and World nut Daily buy thousands of copies and give them away free to donators and subscribers. They don't actually sell that well.

  11. I live in Kentucky, where AC and SP are quite popular...

    Our local Barnes and Nobles posts a top 20 most popular books at our store and NEVER has Hannity, O'Reilly, Coulter etal, ever got higher than 15.

    Whatever sells they enjoy it is because organizations buy the books bulk.

  12. Well I dealt with an aggressive bully in the blogsphere by completely ignoring his attacks and his constant goading me by calling me names on his and other people's blogs.

    It drove him nuts--to the point where he kept copying my blog posts onto and writing about them on his own blog!

    I agree completely with SQUID.

  13. Shaw K,

    Yes, that sounds exactly right. I'm reminded by your comments and Squid's post of Oscar Wilde's quip, "the only thing worse than being talked about is NOT being talked about."

    W-dervish and Tao, well, that is darned good to hear about the books. I'll check the B & N and Borders nearest where I live since I've been meaning to go for a bookstore jaunt lately. Will see if they also don't stock wing-books.

  14. Pity 'Going Rogue: An American Life' wasn't written by Alexander Cockburn.

    There is a great story in the rise of Sarah Palin. But we definitely won't hear it from her.

  15. Palin Lectures Not Selling, No One Wants To Book Her. Story here. A synopsis:

    "The big lecture buyers in the US are paralyzed with fear about booking her, basically because they think she is a blithering idiot," the source said. "They don't want to tick people off."

    One small gift for Squid; one giant step for all cephalopods.

  16. Ann Coulter and Sarah Palin are busy whipping up the lunatic fringe. I'm not sure how ignoring them will make them go away or cause the lunatic fringe to stop reading their drivel.

  17. Matt,

    I think it’s true that ignoring them won’t make them go away – they have a devoted following, as we know from the “dittohead” phenomenon going way back. Apparently, such people are quite proud that they can’t think for themselves and are more than happy to sign on to whatever the most mean-spirited blowhards tell them to think. They have built up their own dimwitted “interpretive community,” to borrow a term from literary theorist Stanley Fish. And that community is no doubt every bit as resistant to liberal criticism as cockroaches would be to an all-out nuclear war.

    But seriously and at the same time, I think liberals and anyone free of the right wing’s clutches need to keep generating their own discourse, one not too heavily indebted to expressions of outrage over the latest crazy thing said by some right-wing whack job, even one with a large following. I think the well from which one draws rhetorical and intellectual sustenance is most conducive to the formation of a healthy interpretive community when it is not too tainted by stirring up such poison as we are like to ingest from the right’s print-and-pixel dregs. Maybe the trick is to avoid both philosophical abstraction and over-indebtedness to the moronicity from which we rebel. ’Twas ever the problem of rebels to be indebted to and bound by that against which they rebel.

    Example of dino-restraint: I saw a bizarro-quotation attributed to the current GOP Chairman today (it was about Tom Friedman’s “crazy” concerns that crazy people might incite violence) that I could go on and on about, but I leave it aside. “Go to, I’ll no more on it,” as Hamlet says, “it hath made me mad.” Michael would probably just say I’m insane to get all loose-marbled about his loony remark about Friedman’s nutty speculations about crazy people….

  18. Here's what needs to happen: someone will eventually have a chance to ask Sarah about her book. They should pick a chapter at random and ask her about the contents of that chapter. This need not be done in test format. "You say in this book ____, it's in the chapter where you talk about _____, could you explain a little about that?"

    Sarah will uhm and ahh and respond with word-salad because she obviously hasn't READ her own book.

  19. Sorry, Matt, I disagree. After her previous experiences with the likes of the merciless Katy Couric, she will launch into a prerecorded rant about liberals with their "gotcha" questions and their contempt for ordinary Americans' common sense, and the partisan crowd (the only kind she appears before) will cheer her on. You'll be lucky to escape with no broken bones.

  20. quoting myself... Rightwing think tanks and organizations like Newsmax and World nut Daily buy thousands of copies and give them away free to donators and subscribers.

    Received via email today...

    FREE OFFER: Get Sarah Palin's New Book Order Early, Be Among the First to Get It!

    Dear Reader: Sarah Palin's new book, "Going Rogue: An American Life," is due out on Nov. 17.

    Though it is not even available in bookstores, it's already a best-seller online!

    Newsmax wants you to get this book, which is being touted as offering "sensational revelations".

    Newsmax will be among the first to have copies of Palin's book.

    We have two incredible offers for Palin's book for you. To order it early:

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    Thank you. Newsmax.com

    Order Below Today
    Yes, rush me a copy of Sarah Palin's Going Rogue as soon as it is available — plus Newsmax magazine's special report Sarah Palin and "The Newer Feminism" FREE — a value of more than $39 with shipping included — along with my one-year subscription to Newsmax magazine. My total cost will be just $49.95 with automatic renewal.

  21. w-d, hmmm, think maybe they're trying to make that "best seller" hype a self fulfilling prophecy? :)

  22. Dervish, wow! That's an offer impossible to refuse.

    It also shows how desperate wingnuts are to push the doozy of a "book" out into the world.

    "Sensational revelations," I'm sure. The main one being a presence of full and grammatically correct sentences within the covers. Possibly.

  23. This mass distribution tactic has been a standard method the right wing uses to generate synthetic "best sellers" for at least a couple of decades. It is, in it's own way, comparable to their gross inflation of numbers at their tea parties- all an attempt to make what is really, despite all of the attention, a fringe phenomenon (and now a fringe party) look like a mass political movement.

    At least they haven't stooped to the old Scientology trick of simply hacking into the New York Times database, finding out what bookstores are used to establish their numbers, and sending Scientologists to those thirty or forty stores to buy lots of books.

  24. An update from Newsmax...

    Dear Newsmax Reader: Left-wing TV entertainer Keith Olbermann said on MSNBC this week that the only reason Sarah Palin's book is hitting the top of the online best-seller lists is because "right-wing" blogs — he then showed a picture of Newsmax's Web site — are buying the book in "bulk" to pump up sales.

    This is an outrageous lie — but not surprising from Olbermann. It's true Sarah Palin's book is hitting the top of the online charts. But the truth is that Newsmax has not purchased one book from Amazon.

    In fact, we are offering the book both FREE and at an incredible discount to Amazon. And this book is selling like hot cakes!


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