Monday, March 03, 2008


This morning I decided to pick up a book I've had on the shelf for ages, that Buckley kid's No Way to Treat a First Lady.

Not just because we're all still keening over the loss of WFB and have Buckleys on the brain -- I had been thinking for some time that this was an opportune season for once again revelling in the satirical verbgasms of WFB's son and heir Christopher [looking winsome at left], in his thinly veiled fantasy about the White House murder that might have been, had certain lamps and ash-trays taken a fatal path.

Talk about last minute -- I've started the book just 24 hours before what may be the final day when it can be assumed absolutely that any literate American will understand what it's about. After tomorrow, when Hillary Clinton's political career will likely be dealt its mortal wound, the relevance and recognition factor for Buckley's hilarious (Hillary-us) novel will have begun their warp-speed plummet. Catch it while it's still maximum fun, people!

The reality-based inspiration for Buckley's tale of a First Lady accused of "assassinating" her POTUS-husband [after he's found dead in the bed next to her, following an energetic tryst in the Lincoln bedroom with a donor's wife and then the ensuing marital smack-down] is clearly the embattled Clinton-on-Clinton White House marriage during the Lewinsky period -- a fact which might have him courting accusations of slander were he not to draw a clear, chronological distinction between his aptly-named lead character, "Beth MacMann" (Lady Bethmac) and the former First Lady, on page 21, calling Beth
a far cry from Hillary Clinton, who contented herself with taking care of her husband and giving the occasional tea for congressional wives.
Uh, yeah. We all recognize that woman.

[and it's not just because this is a Hillary item]

Feminist eye-con Gloria Steinem displayed her customary grace and perspective while out on the stump for Mrs. Clinton in Texas. Money quote:
Suppose John McCain had been Joan McCain and Joan McCain had got captured, shot down and been a POW for eight years. [The media would ask], ‘What did you do wrong to get captured? What terrible things did you do while you were there as a captive for eight years?
[Audience laughter -- at what???? This passes for wit? Not to mention that it makes no sense whatever.]
I mean, hello? This is supposed to be a qualification to be president? I don’t think so...I am so grateful that she [Clinton] hasn’t been trained to kill anybody. And she probably didn’t even play war games as a kid. It’s a great relief from Bush in his jump suit and from Kerry saluting...from George Washington to Jack Kennedy and PT-109 we have behaved as if killing people is a qualification for ruling people.

Let's have a memory moment -- it's 2004 and Ms. Steinem has hit the political trail again:
Steinem still has the leggy looks of a rock star -- and enough edginess to bring a room full of punk rockers to their feet. She did that in November when she introduced the feminist punk band Le Tigre while on the road stumping for Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry.
John Kerry -- hot rocker and baby-killer. What a relief not to be campaigning for that guy again!

Mrs. Clinton hits on yet another winning strategy.

No comments: