Not God but a swastika
So black no sky could squeak through.
Every woman adores a Fascist,
The boot in the face, the brute
Brute heart of a brute like you.
(Sylvia Plath, "Daddy")
To say that Andrew Sullivan has issues would be like saying that the Chernobyl Nuclear Plant had a couple of safety problems. Rarely do we get to see a person so clearly being driven around by Forces They Do Not Understand, someone so feverishly playing out their deeply rooted psycho-sexual deformities on so grand a scale, and yet so blissfully unencumbered by self-knowledge that they practically parody themselves with eerie pitch-perfection.
Sully is a satiritst's Perfect Storm. It almost (I said "almost"!) makes me feel bad about going after him, but he's been so omnipresent lately, bawling like a wounded calf on NPR's "All Things Considered", then shlepping over to the TV talk shows and back again that I feel compelled to make some sound of protest, if only for my own sanity.
Andrew, Andrew, Andrew…an English, gay, Catholic, "conservative Republican" in America. How many of you out there get the sense that Andrew has spent his whole life pining for men who absolutely positively will not love him back? I mean, how many patriarchies can you stalk at once? The Catholics? The Republicans? Andy, I hate to have to tell you this, but they're just not that into you. You are their useful idiot, sure. You're part of their propaganda wing, but you will always be a pawn, a water-carrier, a low-level courtier in the Reich Wing's palace intrigues. They still think you're disgusting, but if you're willing to do their work for them, they're not going to try and stop you.
But then again, you like the taste of boot, don't you? This is precisely your problem, and it's the same problem Ann Coulter has. It's a weird combination of transference and projection. You are an altar boy in the Holy Cathedral of the Authoritarian Cult because you're frantically chasing your absent father. I hate to be so Freudian about it, but it was perfectly clear to me back in 2004 during the vice-presidential debates when you revealed that Dick Cheney makes you go all funny-in-the-pants:
Well, I could easily be wrong, but I have a feeling Cheney will crush Edwards tonight. The format is God's gift to Daddy. They'll both be seated at a table, immediately allowing Cheney to do his assured, paternal, man-of-the-world schtick that makes me roll on my back and ask to have my tummy scratched. (Yes, I do think that Cheney is way sexier than Edwards. Not that you asked or anything.)
But that's the thing, you and Annie C and Lucianne Goldberg and Drudge and all the other jackboot-fetishists hate anything that seems feminine, or yielding, or well, anything like your mothers. And you've projected that on to liberals and Democrats. You think we're the mommy party and god knows, you HATE YOUR MOTHER! It's alllllllll about Daddy.
And that's some fucked-up shit. Case in point, look how your crowd went after Cindy Sheehan, or Hillary Clinton, or particularly the vehemence of Coulter's attacks on the 9/11 widows. Those women remind you of Mommy and you hate, hate, haaaaaaaaaate her, don't you?
Sully's new cant is what's probably to be expected in the months ahead. As the Bush administration goes necrotic there will be a tremendous effort to amputate it from the rest of the Republican party before the gangrene can spread. We're already seeing this species of apologism in the recent remarks of former President Clinton:
DES MOINES, Iowa (Reuters) – Former President Bill Clinton told Iowa’s Democratic Party faithful on Saturday that the actions of “an extreme sliver” of the Republican Party have backfired and “profoundly divided” the country.
“You cannot blame the entire Republican party for this reason. The entire government of the United States, the Congress, the White House and increasingly the courts for the last six years has been in the total control not of the Republican party but of the most ideological, the most right wing, the most extreme sliver of the Republican Party.”
With all due respect, Mr. President, that's a bunch of hooey. And I think both you and Andrew Sullivan know it. With Republicans contolling everything since you left office, we've had a chance to experience all the wonderful colors of the Republican rainbow from the credit card industry to the Dobson true-believers to the oily Ralph Reed faux-believers to the Charles Krauthammer hysterics to card sharps like Jack Abramoff to bullying corruptocrats like Tom DeLay. I do believe that we've hit every stop on the way down to where we are now. The Republicans have been like little fat kids in a giant candy-store for years now, and the results speak for themselves.
It particulary irritates me to hear Sullivan trying to distance himself from the Iraq War and the disastrous consequences of the Bush administration's decision to invade that country. He was the freaking captain of the cheerleading squad that led us into the war. He was the first to question the patriotism of dissenters, to demonize pacifists, and to bash the (in hindsight) very reasonable and sensible people (LIKE ME!) who in 2003 were saying, "Maybe invading a deeply tribal muslim nation with a history of thousands of years of conflict isn't such a good idea."
But where's Sully now?
"All of this [bad news from Iraq] forces us to making the toughest decision yet. The status quo is unacceptable. We must either ratchet up our effort or cut our losses. If I had confidence in the leadership, I'd back the former. Under Rumsfeld, I have zero confidence in any effort to stabilize Iraq. But we know this president is simply immune to pressure unless forced. So vote Democrat. Give them partial responsibility for the war effort – before a presidential election. And force Bush finally to take some responsibility for the chaos he has helped create."
I'm sorry, Sully. You don't get a pass. You weren't just enabling the drunk violent father to terrorize the neighborhood, you were fixing his drinks. You need to "take some responsibility for the chaos" YOU helped create.
But that's our Andrew, ever the wind-sock. Whichever side is on top, right?