On Jan. 3, I met Ann Coulter at an Italian restaurant on the Upper East Side. She was glowing, stunning, radiant. Better than ever. She was wearing a powder blue shirt, black pants, black boots and a cross around her neck made of diamonds. I hadn’t seen her since the Republican convention. Since then, the President had been decisively re-elected, her book How to Talk to a Liberal (If You Must) hit the New York Times best-seller list, where it remains, and some dopes threw pies at her during a speech she was giving at the University of Arizona and missed.
"I sort of like liberals now," she said, taking a sip of white wine. "They’re kind of cute when they’re shivering and afraid. They’re so pathetic and sad. They can’t come up with a fight. I mean, if the best you’re going to give me to argue about is Rumsfeld’s auto-pen ….
"I’m rooting for the faction of the Democratic Party—like Nancy Pelosi, quoted in yesterday’s New York Times, and I think this is the dominant faction—taking the position that our ideas are fine. That’s right, class, do not change anything about what we believe. We’ve just got to package the wine in new bottles. We need a new way of delivering our message, but the message is perfect!We just need to advertise RU-486 at NASCAR or something—that’ll do the trick!
"I think the trick is, they need to obfuscate their message," she said. "Democrats always have these open public discussions on how they can fake out the American people, so that’s one wing—let’s not tell them what we believe—and the other wing is, Our message is perfect. Ha-ha-ha-ha!"
Why was 2004 a great year?
"I’m thinking about putting up a reward on my Web page for any liberal who will mention either Afghanistan or the Kurds," she said. "I mean, 85 percent of Iraq is free, it’s beautiful—we have about 300 troops patrolling the entire Kurdish area. These poor beleaguered Kurds are free, are happy, are dancing in the streets, and liberals simply won’t mention them. I certainly thought Afghanistan was going to be a tougher nut to crack than Iraq—the Russians couldn’t take Afghanistan! They’ve basically been at war for a hundred years—even when nobody’s there, they’re at war with one another. We took Afghanistan in a month, and now they’ve had elections and women vote, and they didn’t vote for some crazy lunatic mullahs. So that’s a pretty good year."
The Iraqi people didn’t seem to have that great a Christmas.
"That’s right! But they’ll be opening Christmas presents soon enough," she said. "And then they’ll be happy. We’ll see, but things are going pretty well, and in most cases better than expected. We’re going to transform the Middle East by the time Bush leaves office, or it will be within shouting distance of there. I think Arabs flying planes into our skyscrapers will be as likely as a Japanese kamikaze pilot."
What would have to happen to make you say it was a bad idea to invade?
"That’s a good question. It would be a mistake if we just futz around and the whole country became like one long Falluja. I thought we were wasting way too much time on that. This is a war, let’s go in and win it. Just take the city! I think if it got to the point where it was going on for six, seven years, and it was just Americans patrolling without killing anyone—I’m getting a little fed up with hearing about, oh, civilian casualties. I think we ought to nuke North Korea right now just to give the rest of the world a warning."
Nuke North Korea?
"Right—and this is tied to my point that, in Iraq, let the Marines do their job. There may be some civilian casualties—that’s known as war. Americans can live with that. And when did we become the guardian of the world to prevent all civilian casualties, ever—how about our civilians?"
After we bomb North Korea, what’s the next country we should invade?
"Iran. Though that’s the beauty part of Iraq: It may well not be necessary. Because precisely what I’m saying with nuking North Korea—despite that wonderful peace deal Madeline Albright negotiated with the North Koreans, six seconds before they feverishly began developing nuclear weapons. They’re a major threat. I just think it would be fun to nuke them and have it be a warning to the rest of the world."
What about Mecca?
"Seriously, I think the rest of the countries in the Middle East, after Afghanistan and Iraq, they’re pretty much George Bush’s bitch," she said. "I think they know we’re serious: We have a President who can do what he thinks is right, whether or not there are a bunch of liberals carping, and no matter what the letter writers to The New York Times have to say about being ashamed for their country."
What will liberals say when George Bush leaves office?
"They will say: ‘Many people would like to give George Bush credit for transforming the entire Middle East. But it was inevitable, it was going to happen anyway. It would have happened under John Kerry.’"
Have you met anyone in the administration?
"Briefly I met Gonzalez and Karl Rove years ago—very briefly, like at a dinner—and I’ve pretty much been attacking them ever since. I kind of avoid meeting politicians, because then I can’t attack them."
What would happen if you visited the White House?
"I was invited to the White House Christmas party, but I couldn’t go. I was busy. Maybe next year. But I’m not really someone who wants to meet people generally. It’s just not that big a thing for me. The one person I really want to meet and have my picture taken with is Jesse Helms. He kept America safe before Reagan came in. He was Senator No. He’s a great American."
How badly are Republicans hoping that the Dems nominate Hillary?
"It would be a lot of fun and I think they might well," she said. "The advantage Hillary has is the crazies—which is to say, the base of the Democratic party—love her, adore her, no matter what she says or does. She can come out for curbing illegal immigration. She could come out for parental notification and against partial-birth abortion and the crazies will still say, ‘No, she’s our gal. She is Madame Hillary.’"
Do you have a perverse admiration for her?
"Ewwww, no. As with John Kerry, I generally don’t admire people who get ahead on somebody else’s coattails. She’s like the anti-feminist. No, except she isn’t—because all feminists behave that way and pretend to be, ‘Oh, I’m a strong woman.’ They’re all weak and pathetic. Have you ever seen Citizen Kane? You know, he marries the nightclub singer and then wants to make her a great opera singer, because he controls all news in America; even though the audience is booing and throwing paper airplanes, all the headlines on every newspaper is ‘Susan Alexander Sweeps Chicago!’ That is what it’s like to be a liberal in America, whether you’re Susan Sontag or Hillary Clinton. No matter how pathetic and useless and everyone can be booing you, throwing paper airplanes—you can be incomprehensible like Susan Sontag, a ‘genius,’ a ‘public intellectual’! Did you try reading anything she’s ever written? What was the point of it? And Hillary, constantly voted the most admired woman."
What should we remember about Bill Clinton?
"Well, he was a very good rapist. I think that should not be forgotten. I don’t think it’s fading. I winced when I saw him on TV today—what is Bush thinking, what is that? It reminds everyone of basically the worst episode in American history: Clinton talking on the phone with Congressmen about sending American troops to the Balkans while being serviced by Monica Lewinsky under the desk. And liberals didn’t mind that—but they’re upset that George Bush waited 48 hours to fly back from Crawford, Tex. If they’d shown half the indignation they showed at George Bush for not immediately turning over the entire United States treasury to Indonesia—where the Indonesians are all wearing Osama bin Laden T-shirts, by the way. Did you see that the Sri Lankans would not accept medical teams from Israel? ‘It’s a natural disaster, we’re dying, send help! No Jews.’ Oh-kay. Lovely people."
What’s a major flaw of the Republican Party?
"They don’t trust themselves enough and they get nervous about running a real Republican. Our problem is exactly the reverse of the Democrats, who have to prevent the American people from understanding what they really believe. The more they know about what we really believe, the more they like us, as opposed to the image of conservative or Republican."
Would you do a TV show with Al Franken?
"No, he’s physically repulsive. TV—we’re talking about where people see you. I have friends I trust who are smart who would put together a good TV show, and they came up with some ideas. And I can tell you straight out, we’ve basically given up. There is no liberal worthy of debating me, and I won’t do a TV show unless I have a liberal counterpart."
"No. I promise you, she wouldn’t do it—she’s whiny, she’s not funny. What we’re looking for is good-looking, male, liberal, half a brain. They don’t even have to be smart.
"The one person I really want to sit down with and figure out why he thinks he’s a liberal is Larry David," she said. "Because that’s the most brilliant TV show—it is conservative humor, and you can’t tell me it’s not. It’s all politically incorrect. And people I know who’ve worked with him say he’s really sweet, so there is nothing about him that should make him a liberal—and yet he flew from Los Angeles to Boston to sit at the Democratic National Convention.
"He can’t be a liberal! It’s got to be a generation thing. I’m sweeping the youth of America. I just noticed that most of my fans are college kids, I mean, it’s striking. And all these old people who ought to be conservatives still think of themselves as liberals. I would bet you anything if Larry David were 20 years old, he would be a right-wing lunatic."
Will Rudolph Giuliani ever be President?
"I love Giuliani, but I just think he needs to switch his position on abortion. We’re a pro-life party. And I don’t think half the country realizes he claims to be pro-choice. He’s a Catholic kid from Queens, he was in the opera club—c’mon! These New York Republicans, they don’t have a feel for the red states like I do. I give all of my speeches out in the red states—I know America and it is not New York. And they say, ‘Oh, now, we could run a pro-choice candidate and that would get moderates in the Northeast to vote for us—and those right-wing Christians, they’ll vote for us anyway.’ No, they won’t!"
She said she’s not a big fan of the current Mayor.
"I think anyone would be better," she said. "Michael Bloomberg is Marie Antoinette in all senses. He has no constituency to respond to, he’s raising taxes through the roof, he will not cut any programs, and by cutting out smoking … I mean, the tax base that has been hurt, the bars, the restaurants that have been hurt—it’s totally Marie Antoinette. In New York, people live in apartments the size of this table. Our dining room is the restaurant community of New York. We’re not all Michael Bloomberg, where we can invite people over to our huge hall and dining room. And to not allow people to smoke in our dining room is so Marie Antoinette. Oh, I loathe him."
Why do liberals often say violent things?
"Forget what they say, they are violent," she said. "They were slashing tires on Election Day. I was physically attacked this year. I hear MoveOn.org has a bounty for anyone who throws a pie in my face. Neither of those guys hit me. I think one is still in prison. It is a funny thing, that they ended up in prison—enjoying the benefits of gay marriage. One guy with a broken shoulder and one with a broken nose. And that was when I was traveling totally unprotected. Let ’em try it again, they’ll end up dead."
Condoleezza Rice being appointed Secretary of State is a huge deal, right?
"Yes, liberals are going to have figure out a way to cut her out of all the pictures. It’s going to be like Stalinist Russia: ‘Say, who’s that black woman standing next to Bush? No, never mind—it’s probably someone he’s arresting! It’s the maid!’ No, they’re going to start to notice. And it is I think curious, the issue Democrats have with blacks: They do not attack Spanish conservatives the way they attack black conservatives. With black conservatives, Democrats immediately go to the old racist stereotypes. It’s instantly that ‘they’re incompetent, they’re stupid.’ Look at the attacks on Clarence Thomas and Condoleezza Rice. They try to refuse to recognize her. They’re specifically engaging in racist attacks on her: ‘Oh yeah, not up to the job. She’s not competent. She’s a dummy.’ Bush, they tell us, is dumb, dumb, dumb, dumb. He is the puppet and the puppet master is Dick Cheney, or it’s Donald Rumsfeld and he’s just being run around by these wily neocons. But when it comes to Condoleezza Rice, she’s the puppet of the dumb guy—that’s how dumb she is."
Could she say something about black conservatives?
"During the gay-marriage debate, these black ministers would come on TV and say things no white conservative would say. ‘Sodomy? You’re going to burn in hell for that!’ And I realized to my delight that if we can get blacks to be conservatives, we have an entire race of Ann Coulters. They do not care about politically correct. It would be so much fun. And they are conservative! I’m going to specifically appeal to them. I decided it’s the only free speech I’m willing to give this year. I will go to a black church and talk about gay marriage. The brothers aren’t big on queer theory. The four groups most opposed to gay marriage are blacks, Hispanics, old people and blue-collar workers—i.e., the four pillars of the Democratic Party."
How was her Christmas in New York?
"Oh, it was so much fun this year, because saying ‘Merry Christmas’ is like saying ‘Fuck you!’ I’ve said it to everyone. You know, cab drivers, passing people on the street, whatever. And they come up with the ‘Happy holidays.’
"‘Merry Christmas.’ I mean, it really is an aggressive act in New York."
If your fave's coach isn't Richard Williams, that's just her first problem...
I was there when the ALL BLACKS won the World Cup in 2011!!!
"I don't know that I changed all that much. They just found somebody worse." - Aging tennis bad boy Jimmy Connors, referring to John McEnroe, in 1984.
Don't know who Ann Coulter is but it's freaking obvious she is trying awfully hard to shock people. "It would be fun to nuke them" - who would think that? I bet you even George Bush doesn't think it's FUN to nuke people. How old is she? Is she just in highschool?
As a card carry liberal (It's a Mastercard, but you get my drift) I can't make a serious statement about Coulter. There's just no place to start. It takes a conservative, maybe even a conservative's conservative, to really give justice to what Ann Coulter actually is. To that end, rather than rely on my own flawed judgement, I sought the opinion of someone rather more conservative than myself. Dare I even say reactionary. Jonah Goldberg, editor of the National Review Online.
By Jonah Goldberg, NRO Editor
October 3, 2001 2:20 p.m.
As many of you may have heard, we've dropped Ann Coulter's column from NRO. This has sparked varying amounts of protest, support, and, most of all, curiosity from our readers. We owe you an explanation. Of course, we would explain our decision to Ann, but the reality is that she's called the shots from the get-go. It was Ann who decided to sever her ties with National Review — not the other way around.
This is what happened.
In the wake of her invade-and-Christianize-them column, Coulter wrote a long, rambling rant of a response to her critics that was barely coherent. She's a smart and funny person, but this was Ann at her worst — emoting rather than thinking, and badly needing editing and some self-censorship, or what is commonly referred to as "judgment."
Running this "piece" would have been an embarrassment to Ann, and to NRO. Rich Lowry pointed this out to her in an e-mail (I was returning from my honeymoon). She wrote back an angry response, defending herself from the charge that she hates Muslims and wants to convert them at gunpoint.
But this was not the point. It was NEVER the point. The problem with Ann's first column was its sloppiness of expression and thought. Ann didn't fail as a person — as all her critics on the Left say — she failed as WRITER, which for us is almost as bad.
Rich wrote her another e-mail, engaging her on this point, and asking her — in more diplomatic terms — to approach the whole controversy not as a PR-hungry, free-swinging pundit on Geraldo, but as a careful writer.
Instead, she apparently proceeded to run around town bad-mouthing NR and its employees. Then she showed up on TV and, in an attempt to ingratiate herself with fellow martyr Bill Maher, said we were "censoring" her.
By this point, it was clear she wasn't interested in continuing the relationship.
What publication on earth would continue a relationship with a writer who would refuse to discuss her work with her editors? What publication would continue to publish a writer who attacked it on TV? What publication would continue to publish a writer who lied about it — on TV and to a Washington Post reporter?
And, finally, what CONSERVATIVE publication would continue to publish a writer who doesn't even know the meaning of the word "censorship"?
So let me be clear: We did not "fire" Ann for what she wrote, even though it was poorly written and sloppy. We ended the relationship because she behaved with a total lack of professionalism, friendship, and loyalty.
What's Ann's take on all this? Well, she told the Washington Post yesterday that she loves it, because she's gotten lots of great publicity. That pretty much sums Ann up.
On the Sean Hannity show yesterday, however, apparently embarrassed by her admission to the Post, she actually tried to deny that she has sought publicity in this whole matter. Well, then, Ann, why did you complain of being "censored" on national TV? Why did you brag to the Post about all the PR?
Listening to Ann legalistically dodge around trying to explain all this would have made Bill Clinton blush.
Ann also told the Post that we only paid her $5 a month for her work (would that it were so!). Either this is a deliberate lie, or Ann needs to call her accountant because someone's been skimming her checks.
Many readers have asked, why did we run the original column in which Ann declared we should "invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity" — if we didn't like it?
Well, to be honest, it was a mistake. It stemmed from the fact this was a supposedly pre-edited syndicated column, coming in when NRO was operating with one phone line and in general chaos. Our bad.
Now as far as Ann's charges go, I must say it's hard to defend against them, because they either constitute publicity-minded name-calling, like calling us "girly-boys" — or they're so much absurd bombast.
Ann — a self-described "constitutional lawyer" — volunteered on Politically Incorrect that our "censoring" of her column was tantamount to "repealing the First Amendment." Apparently, in Ann's mind, she constitutes the thin blonde line between freedom and tyranny, and so any editorial decision she dislikes must be a travesty.
She sniffed to the Washington Post's Howard Kurtz that "Every once in awhile they'll [National Review] throw one of their people to the wolves to get good press in left-wing publications." I take personal offense to this charge. She's accusing us of betraying a friend for publicity, when in fact it was the other way around.
And, lastly, this "Joan of Arc battling the forces of political correctness" act doesn't wash. In the same 20 days in which Ann says — over and over and over again — that NR has succumbed to "PC hysteria," we've run pieces celebrating every PC shibboleth and bogeyman.
Paul Johnson has criticized Islam as an imperial religion. William F. Buckley himself has called, essentially, for a holy war. Rich Lowry wants to bring back the Shah, and I've written that Western Civilization has every right to wave the giant foam "We're Number 1!" finger as high as it wants.
The only difference between what we've run and what Ann considers so bravely iconoclastic on her part, is that we've run articles that accord persuasion higher value than shock value. It's true: Ann is fearless, in person and in her writing. But fearlessness isn't an excuse for crappy writing or crappier behavior.
To be honest, even though there's a lot more that could be said, I have no desire to get any deeper into this because, like with a Fellini movie, the deeper you get, the less sense Ann makes.
We're delighted that FrontPageMagazine has, with remarkable bravery, picked up Ann's column, presumably for only $5 a month. They'll be getting more than what they're paying for, I'm sure.
— Jonah Goldberg
Proud to be an American
Not blind. Not uninformed. We are party to atrocities. But the response of the world after 9/11 is worth noting. Even our most dire enemies offered aid. We should all be so lucky.
We know who the homicidal maniacs are. They are the ones cheering and dancing right now.
We should invade their countries, kill their leaders and convert them to Christianity. We weren't punctilious about locating and punishing only Hitler and his top officers. We carpet-bombed German cities; we killed civilians. That's war. And this is war.
Just a note 'carpet bombing ... cities' are war crimes, which is why we don't do it. Coulter is, of course, free to advocate that anyway. I just wanted to point out that our avoidance of that as a tactic isn't a matter of misplaced delicacy.
Proud to be an American
Not blind. Not uninformed. We are party to atrocities. But the response of the world after 9/11 is worth noting. Even our most dire enemies offered aid. We should all be so lucky.
a typical crazed neocon which is why REAL conservativess like Pat Buchanan have left the Republican party...any doubt left that phoney Republican are for bigger government than the Libs??? The State is wonderful, especially when it commits mass murder...
Mao Asada & Yu-Na Kim figure skating
"Power always thinks...that it is doing God's service when it is violating all his laws." –-John Adams
"Progress should mean that we are always changing the world to fit the vision, instead we are always changing the vision." - Orthodoxy, 1908
"Progress is a comparative of which we have not settled the superlative." - Chapter 2, Heretics, 1905