It’s become very fashionable lately to avoid any mention of Ann Coulter. Like the slow-wit down at the package liquor store who hoists it out of his trousers if you pitch him a quarter, attention only rewards her, this argument goes. Without our rage and affront to feed upon, it’s supposed that she will just dry up and blow away, a forever-forgotten well-born aberration, and not at all a ghost of our time.
Watching the lines of bad haircuts and suits filled with gangly limbs stretching halfway down Calvert Street, I’m not so sure. Ann Coulter is an entertainer the same way a schoolyard punchout is an entertainment, but she’s unbelievably popular. Every book she writes is a best-seller, every TV talk show appearance is must-see TV, and her popularity suggest not the depths to which people will sink to get attention, but the significant size of that portion of the vox pop that really is longing for a Jester of the Apocalypse, someone to keep ‘em laughing while the bombs fall and the oil runs out. She’s the Joey Bishop of genocide, and while we might just live long enough to find her a quaint and possibly baffling relic of the past, for the time being, her Rat Pack runs the country. Right into the dirt.
Ann’s intemperate punch lines got her disinvited from CPAC’s official schedule this year, or so the story goes. The whole thing smacks of a publicity stunt, given that she’s right here, hagged out and surrounded by adoring hate-groupies as always, broadcasting on a Town Hall feed from hotel premises instead of via jerry-rigged webcam from a burnt-out gas station in Southeast somewhere. Her introduction glows like a freshly scrubbed toilet, calling her a woman of “unbelievable courage” who “doesn’t let left-wing pseudo-intellectuals push her around”. Never has one New Canaanite braved so much as does the supernaturally pampered Ann Coulter; courage has been redefined many times at this conference — always to describe people who have never had to suffer through war or horror, and often to specifically exclude one particular candidate who has — but the word is stretched as far as the language can bear to accommodate her bony frame, which won’t pick up a cup of coffee that an immigrant touched.
Showing her keen grasp of the fundamentals of comedy, Coulter starts her performance with a call-back to an earlier episode: Hillary’s campaign can’t use “I Am Woman” as its theme song, because it’s already taken by John Edwards. This is the point at which I’d normally say “Why doesn’t she just come right out and call John Edwards a faggot?”, but goddamned if she’s not ahead of the curve on that one. She does prove me wrong by not calling Barack Obama (or, as she puts it, “B. Hussein Obama”) a nigger, but she does say that his greatest accomplishment was being born half-black, and if he wasn’t, he wouldn’t be where he is today. This gets big cheers, being a familiar argument to anyone born after the passage of the Civil Rights Act: no darky can accomplish anything on his own. Darky do well, darky owes it all to massa. Massa feel guilty, yes sah, else ways darky ain’t do shit. B. Hussein, in Ann’s thoroughly-modern-Millie p.o.v., simply does not know his place. (The racial sensitivity doesn’t end there: later in the act, Ann says she could help Hillary Clinton with her fake accent, because “I actually know some black people.” No doubt: there’s the boy who parks her car, the boy who opens the door to her building, the boy who hands her a towel down at the health club…)
Before she launches into her half-hour invective against John McCain — who is apparently slightly to the left of Ward Churchill — she gets off a couple of pieces of vintage Ann Coulter shock-out-with-your-cock-out: her reaction to simultaneous terror attacks on two cities would depend on which two cities. Liberals hounded poor Rudy Giuliani because he supported “dripping water down their noses”. Comparing Hillary to Stalin is an insult to Stalin. It’s all very funny, and the YIFfies laugh clubbily except for a few awkward silences when they don’t get the joke because it has a sub-clause in it. Still, the funniest moment from where I’m sitting (hunched over between two nearly-abandoned booths in the Exhibit Hall) is her delivery of a line she apparently meant to be serious: speaking of the Republican Party, she says, “Conniving is not our strong point. Honor is our strong point.”
At one point, Ann confuses the crowd by busting out the word “contumacious”, and her blackleg dad smiles from the great beyond knowing all that tuition money for Cornell wasn’t wasted. But right up until the end of her performance, she tips the game: when she hits a particularly thorny passage, when she’s about to say or has just said something that would make any decent member of society upend a gallon of paint over her head, the person who laughs loudest at her joke is Ann Coulter. That’ll be the way for her until no one’s laughing anymore.
(A few more photos under the cut.)
The “Hugo Chavez Democrats” panel: look at all those empty seats. Maybe we really have silenced the right!
Andrew Breitbart: “And I am here to tell you that STEPHEN BALDWIN was that anonymous patriot who donated an entire bag of Rolos to the local veteran’s hospital!”
David Horowitz: “Oh, nothing. What are you doing?”
Kirby Wilbur: If the Hillarycrats reinstate the Fairness Doctrine, this man will only be able to afford one Bloomin’ Onion per meal.
Joseph Farah: No witch can defeat the power of his moustache.
Passages: American Milk Solids Council inks exclusive advertising deal with WorldNet Daily.