[Note to Tim Cook if you happen to be reading Mock, Paper, Scissors: Please do not move ahead with any plans to introduce Odor-ama technology. The stench coming from the National Review Online website is already too great to bear. –Thanks, Tengrain]
We once again find ourselves drawn to the National Review Online, where the World’s Best Son and legacy hire Jonah Goldberg hangs his fetid diaper and from time to time bangs out what he surely feels is witty repartee. Being one of the youngest writers at the oldest white supremacy pamphlets Doughy Pantload does bring a certain colorful pop culture influence to what is by now quite ossified and bleached white prose, like Buckley’s bones in the high desert of Arizona or wherever the hell it is that they have his relics stashed.
Anyway, he writes about the Clintons:
“There are legends in Little Rock of how a young Billy Clinton was on a school field trip to a laboratory when, through an unlikely series of events, a radioactive hustler bit him on the hand, giving him unearthly powers of flim-flammery and deception. The earnest lad was suddenly transformed.”
Or so says the son of the woman who set up Monica Lewinsky, who is seems to me is the radioactive hustler in this scenario, but let us not quibble over the details. Yet.
If you are still with us, then you understand that Bill Clinton, like Spiderman, has some extra-human abilities accidentally thrust upon him from a radioactive Goldberg.
Let’s try to keep following the narrative…
“I have no doubt Bill believes that he uses his powers for good, but with the pimpish midichlorians coursing through his veins, he can’t help himself. Over time, as he continually escapes the snares reality and morality typically set for mortal men, he has come to have a sense of entitlement and immunity about it all. Like the hazardous driver who’s never had a crash or the lucky investor who’s never lost money, he just thinks: This is the way reality works. Even when a black swan hits him in the grill, he talks his way out of it.”
He talks his way out of a black swan on his grill? Oooo-kay…
So now, Bill Clinton, as a Spiderman of sorts, is beyond mere mortal men, which is odd as he is fundamentally a mortal, and of course Spiderman is also a hero, so Jonah’s metaphor is already on strange, wobbly legs.
Let’s continue, shall we?
“The tragedy for Hillary Clinton is that she is all too human. As Bill’s mortal sidekick, she’s had a good ride. But whereas Bill has an almost Jedi-like ability to lie convincingly — “these aren’t the interns you’re looking for” — Hillary has no superpowers to fall back on. She just has to grind it out. Like Syndrome in The Incredibles or the entire cast of Kick-Ass, she has to compensate for a lack of raw superpowers through guile and technology — and minions, lots and lots of minions. They do her dirty work for her. They burrow into the bureaucracy and cover for her. They get appointed to commissions and erect firewalls against accountability. They tell her what she wants to hear and explain how all bad news is someone else’s fault. They scrub the paper trail. They even shove classified evidence in their pants, if that is what is required. As Renfield to her huband’s [sic] Dracula, Otis to his Lex Luthor, Gogo Yubari to his O-Ren Ishii , Alistair Smythe to his Kingpin, Tom Hagen to his Don Corleone, Bizarro World Radar O’Reilly to his evil Colonel Potter, she has amassed considerable resources and abilities of her own…”
So… Bill is immortal, Hillary is not? The Spiderman metaphor is cast asunder, and now the Clintons are mortal, buffoonish cartoonish villains from various assorted pop culture references. Instead of being arch-fiends, all of them end up being caught or killed—with the exception of Radar O’Reilly, and Blog only knows what that is about. Perhaps Jonah ate a bad shrimp?
“…His superpowers did not rub off on her [TG – Wait! I thought you just shifted them to cartoon villains?], and to assume they did is to confuse the elephant for the guy sweeping up behind it. The thing is, Hillary’s been riding shotgun on all those hairpin turns with Bill behind the wheel for so long she thinks she can do what he does. She can’t. It’s understandable, of course. The great ones always make it look easy.”
The great ones always make it look easy. Which includes writing, me thinks.
The thing with Jonah Goldberg is that he confuses being clever with being smart, and as he is neither of clever nor smart, his prose is just sort of tortured and stinky. Metaphors are hard to pull off, like a well-loaded diaper, and you must be prepared for what awaits when you try.