Just Above Sunset Archives

February 1, 2004 - The problem with strong, educated women with opinions....













Home | Odds and Ends | Music Notes | Book Notes | Sidebars | Culture Wars Lost | Culture Wars Won | Gay Marriage | Jesus Flogged Repeatedly | Photography | Quotes | Links and Recommendations | Archives | Daily Commentary (weblog)




















The problem with strong, educated women with opinions?  They ruin everything!

 

In the magazine on last week I wrote about Teresa Heinz Kerry.   The idea was we're really not ready, should John Kerry become president, for an outspoken strong-willed first lady.   We have become accustomed to Laura Bush. 

See: Election Notes: Women! - Portuguese, born in Mozambique, fluent in French and four other languages!  Trouble.

So what would having a well-educated, outspoken and strong-willed first lady be like?  Tony Blair can tell us. 

A Times of London article says a new book details Cherie Blair's "displays of open animosity towards President Bush," which included picking a fight about the death penalty over dinner. 

If you hop over to FreeRepublic.com "A Conservative News Forum" you'll find the article and reactions. 

The article:

 

Cherie [Blair] said Bush 'stole' power and tackled him on executions 
January 24, 2003, London Times
Cherie said Bush 'stole' power and tackled him on executions
By Nicholas Wapshott in New York, Philip Webster and David Charter

TONY BLAIR has been embarrassed by his wife's displays of open animosity towards President Bush, according to a forthcoming biography of the Prime Minister. 

Cherie Blair is said to have made no secret of her conviction that Mr Bush "stole" the presidential election, and picked an argument with him over the death penalty during a private dinner. 

Although the Prime Minister was pragmatic about Mr Bush's victory, Mrs Blair was far less sanguine about the Supreme Court decision that gave him the keys to the White House.  She believed Al Gore had been "robbed" of the presidency and was hostile to the idea of her husband "cosying" up to the new President. 

Even as they flew to Washington for their first meeting with the presidential couple, Mrs Blair was in no mood to curry favour, the book Tony Blair: The Making of a World Leader by Philip Stephens, states.  "Cherie Blair still believed that Bush had stolen the White House from Gore," he wrote.  She asked more than once during the journey why they had to be so nice to "these people". 

Mrs Blair scarcely concealed her impatience as the Blair team debated on the plane whether the gift he had brought for the President, a bust of Winston Churchill, was of sufficient quality for the Oval Office.  They decided to find a better one and that Mr Blair would tell the President it was on its way.  Mrs Blair was annoyed at the fuss but was overruled.  Another bust was delivered months later. 

The book's disclosures of Mrs Blair's forthright views will cause embarrassment in Downing Street, because of Mr Blair's good working relations with Mr Bush, and the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, although they will not surprise officials or ministers who know her well.  She is known for expressing her views forcefully in private.

 

You get the idea. 

But the core is here:

 

Stephens writes that Mrs Blair behaved impeccably at her first meeting with the President "for all her outspoken resentment on the flight" and "to the great relief of her husband and aides" she had been at pains to make friends with Laura Bush. 

But when the Bushes came to Britain in the summer of 2001, Mrs Blair, "more tribal in her politics than Tony", according to a close family friend, embarrassed her husband.  As the two couples sat down to dinner, with the officials no longer there, Mrs Blair could not resist an argument.  She is a human rights lawyer and turned to the death penalty, a subject on which she has blunt views. 

Judicial executions were an immoral violation of human rights, an affront under the US Constitution as much as under European laws to the fundamental principles of justice, she said.  This opinion was delivered to a man who as Governor of Texas signed warrants for more than 150 executions. 

Mr Blair was reported to have "squirmed", even though he shares her opposition to the death penalty.  The author says that when he asked Mr Blair about the incident during research for the book he looked uncomfortable - all he would say was that Cherie had raised the issue but as far as he was concerned the United States and Britain simply had different systems.

 

Damn.  It's embarrassing when your wife is an actual attorney with strong views!  She might even express them!

But then it gets worse for Bush too. 

 

Stephens also states that later in the evening Mr Bush had been embarrassed by his wife.  Laura Bush had made it clear that her views on abortion were a great deal more liberal than his.

 

Really?  No one ever knew that.  Laura knows usually enough to keep her damned mouth shut.  A good woman. 

By the way, Stephens is a political columnist on the Financial Times and the paper's former political editor.  This biography of Blair was commissioned by the publishers Viking to meet an urgent demand from Americans for more information about the Prime Minister and his family.  The book will be published in here on February 5th and is expected to sell reasonably well. 

And the comments you will find at FreeRepublic.com "A Conservative News Forum" ...

 

"Cherie is nothing but an embarrassment, to her husband and the rest of the country.  The criminal-consorting, hypocritical, spurious 'human rights' lawyering, crystal gazing bit?  I wouldn't worry about anything this dumb cow has to say."

posted on 01/24/2004 1:00:06 AM PST by ScudEast

"Laura should have bitch-slapped her !!"

posted on 01/24/2004 1:12:07 AM PST by Rainmist

"Cherie Blair is L all the way.  Looney left liberal.  A chowderhead.  Britain is full of these cranks.  I will however give her credit for being woman enough to bear 4 children."

posted on 01/24/2004 1:24:07 AM PST by dennisw ("We'll put a boot in your ass, it's the American way." - Toby Keith)


John and his wife, Teresa Heinz Kerry, better watch their backs. 

 

And the backlash began this week.

 

See Howard Dean in a dress

Michelle Malkin, Townhall, January 28, 2004

 

It goes something like this:

 

Its only a matter of time before we witness another Howard Dean Moment in the Democratic presidential race - but not, I predict, from any of the Democratic presidential candidates.  Skulking in the campaign background is a ticking time bombette with a volatile temper and acid tongue who makes Dean look like Mr. Rogers on Prozac.

 

She's the wife of front-runner Sen. John Kerry, Teresa Heinz.  Formerly known as Maria Teresa Thierstein Simoes-Ferreira, the hotheaded widow of the late Pennsylvania GOP Sen. John Heinz is self-aggrandizingly known among her wealthy liberal friends and fellow environmental radicals as "Saint Teresa" (and that's pronounced Teh-RAY-zah, you ninny!). 

 

Though she has been married to Sen.  Kerry since 1995 - "I would have bashed him over the head" if he hadn't proposed, she, uh, joked - she only recently and reluctantly allowed herself to be known as "Teresa Heinz Kerry" in hubby's political brochures and during campaign events and press interviews.  "They'll call me Mrs. Kerry, because that's what's natural to them," she complained to Elle magazine last summer.  "I don't tell them to shut up...  I don't give a st, you know."

 

Okay then.  We'll just call her Howard Dean in haute couture.

 

You get the idea.  You can click on the link for the whole rant.

 

And of course Ann Coulter weighed in.

 

She concentrated on the girly-boy husband.

 

- "For over thirty years, Kerry's primary occupation has been stalking lonely heiresses."

 

- "Kerry is like some character in a Balzac novel, an adventurer twirling the end of his mustache and preying on rich women."

 

See Just a gigolo
Ann Coulter, Townhall, January 29, 2004

 

Once you read past the rant on Kerry's political failings, you get to the domestic issues:

 

For over 30 years, Kerry's primary occupation has been stalking lonely heiresses.  Not to get back to his combat experience, but Kerry sees a room full of wealthy widows as "a target-rich environment."  This is a guy whose experience dealing with tax problems is based on spending his entire adult life being supported by rich women.  What does a kept man know about taxes?

 

In 1970, Kerry married into the family of Julia Thorne - a family estimated to be worth about $300 million.  She got depressed, so he promptly left her and was soon seen catting around with Hollywood starlets, mostly while the cad was still married.  (Apparently, JFK really was his mentor.)  Thorne is well-bred enough to say nothing ill of her Lothario ex-husband.  He is, after all, the father of her children - a fact that never seemed to constrain him.

 

When Kerry was about to become the latest Heinz family charity, he sought to have his marriage to Thorne annulled, despite the fact that it had produced two children.  It seems his second meal ticket, Teresa Heinz, wanted the first marriage annulled - and Heinz is worth more than $700 million.  Kerry claims he will stand up to powerful interests, but he can't even stand up to his wife.

 

Heinz made Kerry sign a prenuptial agreement, presumably aware of how careless he is with other people's property, such as other people's Vietnam War medals, which Kerry threw on the ground during a 1971 anti-war demonstration.

 

At pains to make Kerry sound like a normal American, his campaign has described how Kerry risked everything, mortgaging his home in Boston to help pay for his presidential campaign.  Technically, Kerry took out a $6 million mortgage for "his share" of "the family's home" - which was bought with the Heinz family fortune.  (Why should he spend his own money?  He didn't throw away his own medals.)  I'm sure the average working stiff in Massachusetts can relate to a guy who borrows $6 million against his house to pay for TV ads.

 

And so on and so forth.   You have the link.

 

Coulter ends with this?

 

The Democrats' joy at nominating Kerry is perplexing.  To be sure, liberals take a peculiar, wrathful pleasure in supporting pacifist military types.  And Kerry's life story is not without a certain feral aggression.  But if we're going to determine fitness for office based on life experience, Kerry clearly has no experience dealing with problems of typical Americans since he is a cad and a gigolo living in the lap of other men's money.

 

Kerry is like some character in a Balzac novel, an adventurer twirling the end of his mustache and preying on rich women.  This low-born poseur with his threadbare pseudo-Brahmin family bought a political career with one rich woman's money, dumped her, and made off with another heiress to enable him to run for president.  If Democrats want to talk about middle-class tax cuts, couldn't they nominate someone who hasn't been a poodle to rich women for the past 33 years?

 

Ah, the core of the matter!  Kerry is a rich woman's poodle.

 

What a wimp!  And what a harridan!

 

My Australian friend who has been a resident of France for many years does not, of course, know who this Coulter woman is.  And she wrote this:

 

Knowing nothing of this writer - and most other Americans - is this writer a sad attention-seeking ugly middle-aged single moo who has a bone to pick with pretty men who have not fallen at her little plump feet because of her b-rate column writing status?

 

I think that she should stop bemoaning the evil Kerry's amongst other men of the world and consider womankind - or just go away and pen some bodice ripper of a romance.

 

Well, my friend doesn't know the author of the best-selling books Treason and Slander is considered a major spokesperson of the conservative right and on all the talk shows most every week, and a tall, thin, blond attorney.

 

Of course there's a lot of joking that shes really a man.  And a mean one at that. 

 

Of course Phillip Raines in Atlanta sums up Coulter this way:

 

Reading Anne is like listening to Tokyo Rose, a mouthpiece of hatred, crafting cruelty on the most flimsy suppositions.  Deep in the text of this boil on the ass of op-ed writers is the desperate whimper "No one has ever really loved me".  

 

More an example of a dominatrix than family values, her only physical accomplishment is dragging Paula Jones in a lawsuit that helped her client afford a nose job.  A man underneath it all?  Well, not much of a man. 

 

My prediction?  Her looks will not age well, her research will be increasingly shoddy and her misery will bring out the misery in others.

 

Joseph, who knows our Franco-Australian friend, Emma, adds this.

 

I was curious about what Emma would gather about Ann Coulter strictly by reading her piece, as Emma has never heard of her.  I guess it's even more obvious than I thought, at least to those who are not blinded by bileful hatred.  Emma thinks that this sort of thing is so laughable as to be harmless.  Emma has never been to America.

 

I tried to estimate what proportion of the American voting public takes this as serious political discourse.  I said 20%.  When one considers that in presidential politics 10% is a "landslide", that's a lot.

 

At least to the extent that this sort of thing appears in the British press (and it doesn't; not really) it's confined to media where it won't be taken seriously, at least not by serious people.  I think this stuff is dangerous because the weak are first attracted to the sound and the fury, and then believe whatever other "facts" are presented along the way.

 

I can see where this is going to go, however.  They're already trying to paint Kerry as "Clinton II" - an amoral opportunist and philanderer, sure, but these are not the gravest of offenses. 

 

While most of us are somewhat mystified by what made those on the right hate Clinton so intensely, I think that to those on the right, it's much more clear, not that they are necessarily able to name that which ills them.  The gist is this; here you have another man who may stoop to putting himself on the same plane with - or worse, be beholden to - a woman for something.  He's a man who hasn't taught his b**ch to shut up.  This is unacceptable.  God says so.

 

Thus, their portrait of Kerry as "goldbricker" is superior to that of Bush as the same by virtue of the fact that Bush, despite having come by his "success" even more passively than Kerry, is not beholden to a woman who might have some power in the relationship and might have something to say.  We all know how dangerous THAT is!

 

I also explained to Emma how at the state level, whoever has the power consolidates that power by constant redistricting, a concept that cannot even pretend to have as its aim a fair result representative of the public will.  She was certain that in France, this would trigger another revolution.  Perhaps, but what does a country of socialists like France know about democracy, anyway?

 

Yep, Joseph nails the bit about sexual politics on the head.  Quite so.

 

It only gets worse.

 

And as for our odd redistricting ways, no, we won't have a revolution.  We're fat, dumb and happy.  Let the Europeans, particularly the French, think about the big issues.  We have the Super Bowl and worrying whether we ought to consider electing someone so pussy-whipped at John Kerry.  You know.  Even bigger issues.