The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Tuesday, July 01, 2003  

Richard Cohen On Ann Coulter’s Treason

Richard Cohen writes (“Crackpot Conservatism,” Washington Post, July 1, p. A13):

I am happy to report that Ann Coulter has lost her mind. The evidence for this is her most recent book, Treason, a nearly unreadable slog through every silly thing anyone on the left has ever said. Coulter conflates dissent with treason, opposition with treason, being wrong with treason, being right with treason and just about anything she doesn’t like with treason. If the book were a Rorschach test, she would be institutionalized.

He’s a little late with that first sentence, but never mind. The rest of the column/review makes for great reading.

The book, he says, is “good news for liberals.” Why? “It suggests that the right, at least the hard right, has finally dumbed out.”

Judging from Cohen’s comments, it’s apparent Coulter’s grasp on politics -- on reality -- is exceeded in its tenuousness only by her grasp on history, her penchant for name-calling surpassed only by her racism:

“The left cut down a brave man,” she writes about [fromer Sen. Joe] McCarthy, forgetting that the ol’ red-baiter was censured only after he had tangled with the Eisenhower administration.

Coulter’s book contains the usual name-calling, the usual spinning of the facts, the occasional racial insult -- McCarthy, for instance, “took enemy fire from savage Oriental beasts” in World War II -- and it revives the charge from the 1950s that the Democratic Party is the party of traitors.

Gee whiz, I don’t even think William F. Buckley Jr. believes that stuff anymore. Hell, maybe he does. I wonder if he’s proud of the inevitable legacy he both spawned and fostered.

[Semi-Related Bonus No. 1: Bob Somerby of the Daily Howler yesterday said he will be taking on Michelle Malkin today. Nurses, prepare the sutures.]

[Semi-Related Bonus No. 2: See Brad DeLong, Ph.D., take down Lawrence “I’m not an economist but I play one on TV” Kudlow, Ph.D., M.S., B.S., on the significance of -- or better, lack thereof -- month-to-month changes in the monetary base.]

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