By Dan Kennedy • The press, politics, technology, culture and other passions

Coulter’s final farewell

At least Ann Coulter made her departure from the national scene entertaining, in a sick kind of way. “We just want Jews to be perfected,” she told Donny Deutsch. And goodbye, Ann. Don’t let the door to the gas chamber hit you on the way out.

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  1. Anonymous

    I’m assuming that’s sarcasm Dan, as the Republican base loves Coulter more than they love any of the candidates currently seeking the party’s nomination. Admittedly though, her antics could use some toning down.

  2. Rick

    Don’t let the door to the gas chamber hit you on the way out? Is that supposed to be funny or are you trying to copy Coulter with assinine statements?I might have to report you to the thought police at media matters for that comment.

  3. JonGarfunkel

    Gas chamber doors? Really, what were you intending there?I haven’t been reading MediaNation in a few weeks, and I come back looking for some comment on the use of “swift-boating” on the Frost kid– another fine example of “citizen journalism” (and cowardly anonymous mudslinging) run amok)– and here’s the cheapest of cheap shots.I think what would be more valuable from a media critic who has a respectable position in society– a visiting assistant professor– is to stay above the fray and do some learning for us. I’m interested to know how many wingnuts are still with her.Debbie Schlussel– who still believes that George Soros was a Nazi collaborator– is sticking with Ann: “True religious Jews are not offended by Ann’s comments.” Michelle Malkin and Hugh Hewitt haven’t touched it yet.What distinguishes a pious person is the degree to which he or she wants to test his or her faith (and what distinguishes a blogger is the willingness to comment on every damned thing in the news). There’s no bigger test for Hewitt and Malkin– where do they stand?

  4. Steve

    Nothing Coulter says surprises me. My only surprise is that she continues to get any attention at all. With all that she has said and done already, I doubt this will make any difference in her desirability as a talk show guest or speaker.If it *does* make a dent in her bookings, I won’t be surprised when she (and her fellow travelers) cast it as “the Jews are trying to silence me”.Oy.

  5. Anonymous

    Well I had the same feeling untill I reflected a bit. You can say a lot of things, but if you plan on being a media whore,insulting Jews isn’t a course of action a non-destructive TV personality would want to take. But in a de novo age, can you effectively 86 a nutcase conservative? I don’t think so.

  6. Dan Kennedy

    Jon: You’re interested to know how many wingnuts are still with her. I’m not. I’m making the observation — and I believe I’ll be proven right on this — that she’s gone, that not even Fox will touch her anymore. Perhaps if she really grovels and begs for forgiveness, but other than that, no way. She’s outed herself as an anti-Semite worthy of the Nazi era (did you really find it that hard to wonder what I was getting at?), and no one is going to touch her after this.I would note, too, that I don’t write about what I don’t write about. Most people get that.

  7. Steve

    Dan – I don’t find Coulter’s comments anti-semitic (just monumentally and characteristically arrogant). I think Coulter is one of the sorriest wastes of oxygen on the planet, but I pretty much agree with Jon that most (I’d say “many”) Jews won’t be offended by her comments.Perhaps it’s because Coulter is an obvious nut-case and is easy to ignore. But since college I’ve heard similar things from evangelist Christians, even some who are my friends. It seems to be a matter of faith with some Christians that Jews would be so much better off if they all just accepted JC as their savior.I bet there are more Christians in the US who think that way than there are Jews in the US. Probably way more.

  8. Dan Kennedy

    Steve: Is it possible for certain sincerely held religious views to be anti-Semitic by definition? You bet.

  9. Zach Everson

    She’s going nowhere. American culture values ratings and shock over intellectual discourse.

  10. Anonymous

    Jon: You’re interested to know how many wingnuts are still with her. I’m not. I’m making the observation — and I believe I’ll be proven right on this — that she’s gone, that not even Fox will touch her anymoreI dunno, Dan–I hope you’re right, but I wouldn’t bet on it. Did you hear about what John Gibson said the other day, re: the Cleveland kid? Something to the effect of remarking that he knew the kid was white when he heard that he killed himself, because a black kid would have gone on to kill again. Kinda makes Bill O’Reilly’s comments about that restaurant seem almost quaint, eh? In a way, you’re falling into a bit of a trap, here, Dan. I think too many of these slugs have survived because too many utterly reasonable people like you think the latest comment by Coulter, Malkin, et al. will most certainly come across so bad to the public that the marketplace of ideas will finally shut them out. But they keep coming back, and coming back. I know you’re an avid Bob Somerby guy–this seems to be his constant theme: that the old strategy of just holding our noses and saying “I’m not going to dignify that with a response” has proven to be a disastrous one. But again, I hope, with all my hoping powers, that you’re right.

  11. John Farrell

    I’m making the observation — and I believe I’ll be proven right on this — that she’s gone, that not even Fox will touch her anymore.Please, God, I hope you are right.:)

  12. Anonymous

    I’ve always considered Coulter to be the Leslie Van Houten of the rabid right, although where Van Houten was actually physically attractive, Coulter is merely thin and blonde, which equals attractive to a certain percentage of males. With her latest comment she has symbolically carved the swastika into her forehead.But I fear that Dan is being far too optimistic to believe this will hasten her departure from the national scene. She should claim she had a blood sugar problem, go into the bulimics’ version of the Betty Ford Clinic (there isn’t a Nancy Reagan clinic, is there?) and come out smelling, if not like roses, like Bill Bennett or Rush Limbaugh.

  13. Sean Roche

    I don’t think the Coulter critics understand how deeply different this is from her usual bile.What Coulter said was only offensive to the extent that the fundamental beliefs of a huge number of Americans are offensive. Tons of strictly religious Christians believe that embracing Jesus is the only true path to salvation. The necessary corollary is that everyone else is less perfect. Christian evangelism is predicated on the notion that people should reject any other form of worship as inferior. Mormons established themselves as world leaders in ancestry research because Mormons believe that praying for dead non-Mormons will give those dead Jews and other non-Mormons a chance at salvation … a chance at perfection.If Coulter’s comment is offensive, then sincerely held religious belief is offensive. One cannot escape the roundtrip.Unfortunately for Coulter, her days are probably numbered as a media gadfly, because she’s exposed an unseemly and unresolved aspect of the Christian right. Yes, it’ll raise her profile among right-wing evangelicals. My guess, though, is that the adulation from the Christian right is less what she longs for than her current notoriety and income.The other fallout is going to be on the Republican candidates. How are they going to distance themselves from Coulter’s remarks without alienating the right-wing base and giving fodder to the Democrats for the general election.

  14. Anonymous

    Well said Sean. She was thoughtless and ignorant but aligning herself with religious far-rightists was unproductive, unless she just had a “Saul on the road to Tarsus” experience. Ironic that many of her detractors START with the conclusion they should be working toward, (hence “conclusion”), just like her. It bears repeating, left and right are entitled to their own opinions but not their own facts. Coulter has been factually accurate an alarming number of times.

  15. Peter Porcupine

    She sold her last book to me with her crack about taking away the right of women to vote. How OBTUSE! How disrespectful of hard-working conservative women!Now, she’s entered a whole new world of stupid – as if Imus decided his ‘ho’ comment wasn’t enough, and went on to talk salaciusly about little girls.The Wingnuts are ANGRY at being made to look like rubes. I am more of a Goldwater, economic conservative myself, but I have many friends and associates among the neo-cons and social conservaives, and they deeply resent having their entire philosophy discredited with a flip comment.

  16. O-FISH-L

    At 7:00 AM Dan said: “I’m making the observation — and I believe I’ll be proven right on this — that she’s gone, that not even Fox will touch her anymore.”Jeesh Dan, not only is your prediciton comically absurd, but you say “not even Fox News” as if it were some fledgling operation and not the top rated network in cable news. Also Dan, why do you label Ann Coulter an anti-semite when what she merely spoke about is something that millions of former Jews have LIVED?Look no further than Fritz Kohn aka “Fred Kerry”, the suicidal grandfather of John “Kerry”, your 2004 Democrat nominee for President. You know, the once-Jewish grandfather that the nominee claimed not to know about!

  17. Anonymous

    Just to point out, this…but I pretty much agree with Jon that most (I’d say “many”) Jews won’t be offended by her pretty much irrelevant. What is relevant is that people like me, who is not only not a Jew, but also not a Christian (I’m an agnostic, and one who doesn’t particular care whether a god exists) are offended by what she said. Jews aren’t the only group who are entitled to be offended by what a braying ass says.As I’ve said elsewhere (most recently at BMG), she is merely the filler between the commercials. We got Don “I’m An Ass” in the morning off the air by complaining to the advertisers. We also got Dr Laura Sh!tslinger off the major broadcast outlets the same way. Maybe, by complaining to the advertisers, we can make sure that broadcasters will not allow Coulter to continue polluting the airwaves.–raj

  18. Don (no longer) Fluffy

    I hope Ann reads all the insults contained herein. When she stops laughing, she can go the the bank and count all that money that keeps coming in. Geez, she’s just an entertainer. . . .

  19. Stella


  20. JonGarfunkel

    steve wrote:”but I pretty much agree with Jon that most (I’d say ‘many’) Jews won’t be offended by her comments.”Did I say that? Since I am guilty of misreading Dan’s Guardian column last night, I won’t throw a stone here. I would just say now that I was more offended by her original comment after 9/11 about seeking to convert Muslims. (That “old Texas” saying “Offend me once, shame on you, offend me twice, shame on… shame on… won’t get shamed again!”) Coulter herself doesn’t offend me; the fact that she has an audience does. The point I made (or tried to make) was that, for Coulter truly to be finished, it’s going to take more than Media Matters or Dan Kennedy to bid her goodbye. That’s why it’s more interesting what Hewitt and Malkin say. (that “old Vulcan” saying “Only Nixon can go to China.”) Hewitt is one of the leading evangelical-pundits; Coulter is espousing evangelical theology (which mainstream Catholicism disavowed); does Hewitt stand behind it? Does Dennis Prager stay associated with

  21. Anonymous

    Let me just predict that Ann Coulter will be on some Fox show before the weekend is out.

  22. Dan Kennedy

    For what it’s worth, Michael Savage was absolutely going off on Coulter last night. But maybe he’s never liked her. I don’t know.

  23. Steve

    Jon – sorry, that was me paraphrasing you quoting Debbie Schlussel.And yes I agree with your point – for Coulter to be through, it’s her people that have to disown her. After all, no one else is giving her an audience. Dean Barnett on Hewitt’s blog says “Idiotic. Disgusting. Stupid. Moronic. I guess you could say that Ann loves to shock us, but at this point, who’s shocked?” But I can’t find comments by Hewitt or Prager. And Dan – no I don’t think it’s anti-semitism. Her comments don’t perpetuate hateful and hurtful stereotypes of Jews – except, of course, that “they’re all going to hell”. But respectful people like our President express such sentiments, so I’m used to that by now.But the ADL agrees with you, saying that “Donny Deutsch [rightly characterized] her suggestion that Jews are inferior to Christians as anti-Semitism.”

  24. O-FISH-L

    At 6:32 PM Steve said:”But respectful people like our President express such sentiments, so I’m used to that by now.”Link, please.

  25. Anonymous

    Debbie Schlussel?How positively Prussian.–raj

  26. Steve

    The Architect: Karl Rove and the Master Plan for Absolute Powerby James Moore, Wayne Slater – p53 (hardcover edition)

  27. Anonymous

    Steve,The ADL has problems of their own…

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