Thursday, November 1, 2007

Blog Watch: French Feminist Felines

Nothing brings out the DowdHaters like a good attack on a Democrat. When MoDo launched her left-handed Left Bank compliment to Hillary on Wednesday, it was bound to grab some attention. Molly Ivors of Whiskey Fire thought it was a disgrace to feminism:

It's hardly news that Maureen Dowd is a shallow, bitchy Mean Girl more interested in fashion and surfaces than policy. Her place on the NYTimes opinion page reveals the lie that feminism has accomplished all it needed to and we're done with it: she's taking a place which rightly belongs to Digby or Echidne or Katha Pollitt and filling it with gossipy crap, confirming with every word she writes snotty misogynist ideas about what women are interested in and what they're "really" like.
Zachary Drake would prefer the Times replace Dowd with Digby. As a dude, he can’t get as worked up about the feminism angle so he rants about why being French is some sort of veiled insult:
Maureen Dowd's gossipy style has always bothered me. It seems to reduce politics to some sort of middle school playground ritual about who is cool and who is not. And Dowd seems to often use silly comparisons and inversions that don't really illuminate anything.

And what was "French" about reforming American health care? Every industrialized nation has some kind of national health care, not just the French. She could have called it European, or Canadian, or British. And even if these characterizations were accurate, what do the alleged American-ness of Sarkozy and Frenchness of Clinton tell us about anything? What underlying dynamic is illuminated? What mystery is made clear? What policy implications does it have? It's not even very juicy gossip.
Speaking of Echidne, she pretty much nails the beef Dowd has with Hillary standing by her man.
You see, it's important to point out that Hillary is not a real feminist, because she elected to stay in a marriage after her husband's infidelity was revealed to all and sundry. Real feminists bugger off the minute such an insult is revealed, and real feminists are all about emotions.

It's less exciting to note that their ideas of feminism seem to include the demand that a woman is responsible for fixing the consequences of her husband's peccadillos, that all "less sophisticated" women need Hillary Clinton to defend them, and that for someone to be a girlfriend she must dish out all the dirt on her husband's infidelities and especially her own guilt in not somehow keeping him off those other women. But I do admit that I'd love to hear Rudy Giuliani dish out all the dirt on his own infidelities, girlfriend to girlfriend. Then we could braid each other's hair before we'd go out to vote together.

With friends like Maureen Dowd do Democrats even need any enemies?
At TPM Cafe, Todd Gitlin explains the whole Socks incident (and sneaks in a namedrop):
Dominatrix-detesting Dowd barged onto my breakfast table with the arresting report that Caitlin Flanagan in The Atlantic was "particularly bothered by Hillary’s callousness in dumping Socks, the beloved White House cat and best-selling author, on Bill’s former secretary Betty Currie."

On which momentous matter, Sidney Blumenthal writes me as follows: "Socks was Chelsea's cat. Bill got Buddy the dog. Buddy and Socks didn't get along. Chelsea went to college. Betty liked Socks and took him home. So, this is about Hillary's character?"
There you have it. Four bloggers from the left ready to throw MoDo off the island the minute she goes off message. And they call Maureen catty. Meooow.


Zachary Drake said...

Thanks for quoting me, but my name is Zachary, not Zachery.

Mo MoDo said...