You guys remember Dinesh D'Souza, right? The guy who says that liberals were responsible for 9/11 because it's the gays, secularists, and Hollywood actors who made Osama Bin Laden hate us so much? Right. The man whose latest book was so ham-fisted and moronic that the New York Times called its publication "a national disgrace". I've never really understood what D'Souza's suggested alternative is. Should we act more like al-Qaeda so they won't hate us so much? Dinesh, I don't think your old friend Ann Coulter is really going to want to wear a burqa for the rest of her life, but I could be wrong about that.
But in honor of little Dinesh's brave work at making this country as much like Afghanistan under the Taliban as possible, I am going to pay tribute to him by proclaiming today National D'Souzaphone Day. What? You've never heard of a D'Souzaphone? Why, it's a brass (of course) instrument that only plays one note, ever. And somehow, in spite of whatever chromatic contortions the rest of the orchestra may twist itself into, the D'Souzaphone's one note is always, always out of tune.
So, let's see what pudding-headed Right Winger is playing the D'Souzaphone the loudest this week, shall we?
The competition is pretty stiff right now, what with Tom DeLay going on the talk show circuit only to have his ass repeatedly handed to him by a few journalists who aren't as comatose as Russert and the brain-donors at Pox News. Meredith Vieira called him out on his Stonewall Jackson act, saying that a man who cut and ran from the House of Representatives doesn't have any business telling other people in government to "stand and fight" and "never surrender". Then the Bugman went on Hardball and got pwn3d by Chris Matthews, which must be kind of like getting pistol-whipped and left for dead by Tinky-Winky the Teletubby.
Anyone catch the Bugman on Hardball pimping his new book? He's gone round the twist:
MATTHEWS: You say [Dick Army] was "drunk with ambition."
DELAY: Actually that's not what I said. What I said was "blinded by ambition. "Drunk with ambition" is a quote of a cliche.
MATTHEWS: Why would I underline it in the book?
DeLay babbles for a while as Matthews looks up the quote:
MATTHEWS: "He resented me for being the other Texan on the leadership team and he resented me for being in the way of his becoming Speaker of the House. Beware the man drunk with ambition."
DELAY: Uh, read the sentence before that.
MATTHEWS: That's what I just did.
DELAY: It says "blinded by ambition."
MATTHEWS: No, I'll read the sentence again: "He resented me…" It's right here in your book. You gotta read it. (Matthews hands him the book). I'm sorry Tom but it's there. It says "drunk with ambition."
DELAY: That is the cliche…but right up here, I don't have my glasses on, right up here it says "blinded by ambition."
So, apparently not only did DeLay get someone else to write his book, he clearly hasn't bothered to read it, either.
But not quite lame enough to take the prize. Nor is Tony Snow, who has resorted to stamping his widdle feet, rolling his eyes, and pitching up his castrated-barn-owl-with-asthma voice to ear-bending frequencies as he frantically tries to convince the White House Press Corps, the Congress, and the public that we can't believe our eyes, ears, or the 3000 pages of dumped documents about the US Attorney firings. Close, but no spit-valve.
No, the first chair in the D'Souzaphone section of the Right Wing Phil-moronic Orchestra goes to Jonah the Doughy Pantload, who may currently be our greatest American D'Souzaphonist. He has been groomed for the job since he was a child, raised in a veal pen and fed through a tube by his brownshirted termagant of a mother, who washed her hands of him as quickly as she could once she had secured him semi-gainful employment at the National Review.
Jonah has made a name (of sorts) for himself by conflating liberals with the German and Italian fascists of World War Two, even going to far as to dub Hillary Clinton the spiritual heir of Adolf Hitler. There's no subject in the world too esoteric or far-flung for Jonah to have an erroneous opinion about, and when he's not holed up in his study playing Minesweeper or watching Girls Gone Wild 4, he's busily spewing his incoherent blather into any media outlet that doesn't run faster than he does.
Interestingly, though, Goldbrick has hit a bit of a snag. He's having some trouble finishing his latest book.
Conservatives, perhaps because they fear being associated with D'Souza's arguments, have been at least as dismissive of his book as my fellow liberals; in National Review, for instance, Stanley Kurtz called it "badly wrong" and "seriously misconceived," and in the New Criterion, Scott W. Johnson said it was "crude and sophomoric." (D'Souza answers his conservative critics here.) I take the right's evisceration as evidence that, despite D'Souza's walk on the wild side, the majority of mainstream conservatives continue to regard Coulterism as anathema. D'Souza probably isn't helped by the conservative movement's growing sense that George W. Bush's presidency is not turning out to be its finest hour. This is a moment to reflect and regroup, not to indulge outrageous arguments.
In other words, it's a dreadful time to publish the other Coulterish-sounding book that graced Doubleday's spring list: Jonah Goldberg's Liberal Fascism.
Uh, is there a good time to publish a tome by that mental midget?
Even before the post-election Zeitgeist shift, Liberal Fascism was looking like what in Hollywood they call a "troubled production." Liberal blogger Roger Ailes (not to be confused with his conservative doppelgänger at Fox News), who has been tracking the release of Goldberg's book like a bloodhound, reports that its publication has been delayed at least four times.
There's no word whether or not the original title was "Chinese Democracy".
Goldberg first announced that he would write Liberal Fascism ("my plan is to discuss how many aspects of modern Left-liberalism actually resemble aspects of authentic fascism") in March 2003 and said he was looking for a researcher. In November 2006, Goldberg was once again looking for a researcher, this time "to help get my copious footnotes and the like in order" and to perform "some serious research-related stuff to do as we head into galley mode."
You know, cos it's, like, a serious, historical-kinda book and it's got all kinds of, like, complicated names and dates and stuff in it, and that stuff's, like, you know, hard.
Jonah. Suck it up and call your mama. I'm sure she'll be happy to finish writing it for you. I suspect she's been cleaning up after you all your life. Why blanch at this?
[Update, Mar. 22: Goldberg responds here. Money quote:
My book isn't like Dinesh's latest book. It isn't like any Ann Coulter book. It isn't what the Amazon description says or what the Economist claims it is. Or what Frank Rich imagines it is. It is a very serious, thoughtful, argument that has never been made in such detail or with such care.
Oh, well, I can't wait for that. It'll be a veritable D'Souzaphone Concerto, I'm sure.
Sometimes I try to imagine what it's like inside that rat's-nest Goldberg calls a brain. Through the centuries artists have had a hard time representing the processes of the human mind, but for Goldberg a loud recording of "Alexander's Ragtime Band" regularly punctuated by Kool-Aid Man yelling "Oh, yeah!" should just about cover it.
With any luck at all that book will go the way of O. J. Simpson's If I Did It, and disappear embarrassingly down the memory hole, never to be seen or heard of again. Although with the inevitable Wingnut Welfare Book Club buyouts, I suspect that whenever Pantload does get around to writing it, it'll automatically get payola'd right into the upper reaches of the NYT Bestseller List.
I'm so excited, I could just impale myself.