March 23, 2008

"They're tired. Dog-tired. The stallion makes heart-stopping speeches. And the beaver just beavers along."

Erica Jong — her mind addled by animal imagery — tries to write about Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton.
[T]he stallion is drunk on his own rhetoric. Why not? It's great rhetoric.

We need beavers and we need stallions. Beavers get the work done. Stallions inspire us. And they both have limitations. Stallions have fragile legs (think Barbaro). And beavers are nothing without their teeth....

So let's stop talking about race and gender and let the beaver and the stallion both serve our country — in their own inimitable ways.
Fabulous metaphors, Erica. I understood right away about talking horse that gets drunk and breaks its leg. I couldn't find that episode of "Mr. Ed," but here he is in his home state of Hawaii:

(Thanks to reader_iam for pointing me to this goofy HuffPo rant.)


Bob said...

Think Erica saw this image of Hillary?

Peter V. Bella said...

Erica is addled. Too much flying in fear or something.

I ain't even gonna touch those metaphors. Nope. Not me. No way. Today is Easter. Gotta behave.

AllenS said...

Erica Jong is your typical big city white girl. That's not a beaver, Erica, it's a muskrat.

Mortimer Brezny said...

Obama is a stallion.

Hillary is a beaver.


Trooper York said...

Lucy: Holy shit, a talking beaver!
(Epic Movie, 2007)

George M. Spencer said...

"So 9/11 came and went -- and whether it was an attack from abroad or a conspiracy of some sort -- is not the point of this essay. Perhaps it was a sort of Reichstag fire, perhaps not--the Bushevicks treated it as such and took the opportunity (long wished for and planned for) to pass all sorts of nasty laws restricting everyone's freedoms."

Eric Jong
Huffington Post
January 18, 2008

Meade said...

Then she says, "you don't read women authors, do you?"
Least that's what I think I hear her say,
"Well", I say, "how would you know and what would it matter anyway?"

"Well", she says, "you just don't seem like you do!"
I said, "you're way wrong."
She says, "which ones have you read then?" I say, "I read Erica Jong!"

EnigmatiCore said...

Hillary's hard-working beaver?

I need more coffee before contemplating.

rcocean said...

To a good satirist Erica Jong (on politics) is just one big straight line.

Roger J. said...
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Roger J. said...

If I recall correctly, fillys are more suceptible to cannon bone breaks (recall Ruffian). Is there a link between testosterone and bone strength in horses?

EnigmatiCore said...

Trying again after a cup of coffee.

Hillary's hard working beaver... with teeth!

I need to go back to sleep.

rhhardin said...

Erica overlooked protozoa.

First major speech by a one-celled animal.

United we stand, divided we reproduce

Then there's the skeletal structure, and the brain.

Hillary is the amoeba (``It looks like a grayish blob under a microscope'') and Obama the paramecium (``Able to move in all directions with its cilia'').

former law student said...

Beavis: She said beaver.
Butthead: Huhuhuh.

I couldn't take Jong seriously after reading this sentence: yet we have had great candidates before--think Al Gore Gore would have been "adequate" at best, most likely mediocre. Gerry Ford was greater than Gore.

bearbee said...

Is there a link between testosterone and bone strength in horses?

I am not a racing fan but I read that race horses are overbred, resulting in slender cannon bones or fragile pastern bone and fetlocks, to which are added toe grabs on their shoes that create further problems. In addition bones aren't fully devloped in horses until 4-5 years yet many are raced much earlier when bones are still maturing.

Drew W said...

Jong makes her commonplace lefty points -- Republicans are evil and those non-book-reading Americans are so stupid they enable those evil Republicans work their evil -- but the stallion-and-beaver business turns even this garden-variety screed into something that’s almost enjoyably incoherent. (It’s as if she’s never seen a “Block That Metaphor!” filler in The New Yorker.) Her main point, as far as I can tell, is that she wants Democratic politics to work out so that she can feel better. Good luck with that, Erica.

I know it’s Easter and my mind should be in a more uplifting place, but Jong’s piece reminds me of the first pornographic line of dialogue ever spoken on television:

June Cleaver: “Ward, I think you were a little rough on the Beaver last night.”

rcocean said...

"Gore would have been "adequate" at best, most likely mediocre. Gerry Ford was greater than Gore."

I can't by and watch Gore be insulted like this. Ford wins the "most mediocre POTUS candidate" sweepstakes going away.

He's the only President whose ratings went *down* every time he made a speech.

Chip Ahoy said...

She could have at the very least picked animals that are carnivorous, or better, cannibalistic.

Fen said...

Erica: That's safe enough since Americans don't read--especially not big thick books about history.

Erica, based on your "understanding" of what you read in those big thick books about history, perhaps thats best.

It's a rule of history that when an empire gorges on guns and forgets butter, that empire winds up on the scrap heap of history

Sure Erica, all wars are optional. This one is about enriching Haliburton. And the surge is not working. And the evil conniving GOP stole the 2000 election...

You're a pefect example of how knowledge in the hands of an irrational idiot can be dangerous. Perhaps you and Rev Wright can do a book tour together.

bearbee said...
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bearbee said...

So....the donkey is obsolete; being replaced by the stallver, or is it the beavion?

Daryl said...

How Jong chose the animals:

Beaver = Slang for Vagina = Woman = Hillary

Stallion = 40" Manhood = Black Man = Barack Obama

Maybe--maybe--Jong wasn't going for a genitals theme, but only an identity politics theme:

Stallion = Black Stallion = Black Man = Barack Obama

"Black Stallion, he used to take my breath away when I was a 12-year-old girl reading stupid books about horsies. That's exactly how I feel about Barack Obama right now! Erica + Barack = Barerica!"

former law student said...

Ford wins the "most mediocre POTUS candidate" sweepstakes going away.

Nah. Ford exhibited greatness by throwing himself on the Nixon grenade, pardoning him at the cost of his political career in the interest of ending the Watergate bullshit.

ballyfager said...

Well Bearbee, I am a racing fan (horseplayer in the vernacular) and I can tell you that the brittleness of thoroughbreds has increased markedly in my lifetime.

It is so noticeable that everyone agrees it is so but no one has come up with a definitive reason why.

Mortimer Brezny said...


Way to copy my post.

Daryl said...

Mortimer, your post doesn't begin to scratch the surface of what I addressed.

The fact that Jong chose to associate Hillary with a beaver and Obama with a stallion is mind-crushingly obvious upon even a cursory reading of Jong's article.

The deeper question--why she chose those particular animals to represent those candidates--was not addressed in your post. You said the connections were "Apt." Maybe you think your post insinuates everything that I laid out. I doubt most readers would agree.

vnjagvet said...
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vnjagvet said...

Didn't Erica write Long Jong Silver?

Or did she coin Hi Yo Baraka?

Leave it to Hillary?

Return with us now to the thrilling days of yesteryear. From out of the past come the thundering hoofbeats of the great horse Obama -- lookin' for Beaver.

Titus should be weighing in before long.