January 12, 2014

Describing what Chris Christie did to his deputy chief of staff Bridget Anne Kelly, Maureen Dowd adopts a "sly" sexual metaphor.

I did not think modern American columnists, especially females who want to be regarded as feminist, would repeat something like this without disapproval, but here's Dowd adopting and admiring it:
Calling his deputy chief of staff Bridget Anne Kelly “stupid” and “deceitful,” he threw her off the bridge, without talking to her himself or, as Niall O’Dowd slyly wrote in IrishCentral.com, even extending the courtesy of the old Irish wedding night admonition: “Brace yourself, Bridget.”
What O'Dowd wrote — and unlike the NYT, I'll give you the link — could have been ignored. I would have ignored him. But what's Dowd doing boosting the prominence of it? Obviously, she thinks it's delightful — delightful to invite us to picture firing as fucking and to laugh about the brutality of the way that fucking is delivered to a woman. Her name is Bridget, and there's some old joke about the poor sexual aptitude of the Irish man — I had to Google it — who, confronted with his virgin bride, prepares her for the experience with nothing more than the warning "Brace yourself, Bridget."

I thought the present-day convention was to be careful with humor that involves violent sex. To laugh at this joke — to admire its slyness — is to contribute to what has been called the "rape culture." Not only is the supposed sly humor rape-y, it's perpetuating the sexualization of women in the workplace. There's nothing sexual about the Kelly and Christie story, so why invite us to picture it in sexual terms? I thought we were being careful about things like this. So what explains Dowd's use of O'Dowd's crude humor? Why isn't she afraid of being denounced for sexism and misogyny?

I see 2 possible answers. One is to say that this humor demonstrates the equality of women, since if Christie had fired a man like this, we — at least some of us — would have felt free to engage in rape metaphors, saying "He fucked him" and so forth. If women want to play in big-time politics, they must be subjected to the same metaphors that we use against men.

But has Dowd been deploying metaphors of sexual violence against political males? I don't think so. So I'm going to presume that the second possible answer is the correct one. The thrill of excitement taking down the GOP presidential frontrunner has overcome normal judgment. There's real lust here. And the niceties of refraining from delighting in images of sexual violence don't seem to apply.


rhhardin said...

Just let the jokes work for themselves.

Sexual humor included.

Dowd isn't funny in print, but that's not a sexual humor problem.

I'd guess that brace yourself plays on normal intercourse being no fun for the woman.

I'd have done an Irish twins joke.

rhhardin said...

Girls need to stop seeing nagging as a political possibility.

Being the equal to men means stop nagging.

Meade said...

, he nagged... about nagging.

Curious George said...

Maureen Dowd Is still waiting ofr her "brace" moment. Well, I mean if you don't count her hairbrush.

furious_a said...

Maureen is projecting, she's lonely with just her and her cats.

Shouting Thomas said...

"... especially females who want to be regarded as feminist..."

Why in the fuck does any female "want to be regarded as feminist?" Gobblygook. What a silly assumption.

"... perpetuating the sexualization of women in the workplace..."

Jesus, what in the fuck is that? You mean female sexuality isn't there until we men activate it?

Let me state this definitively. Rape isn't going to cease to exist if we are successfully dragged through re-education camp by feminist morons who want to police our language.

Feminism is such stupid shit. Ridiculous. Why does any self-respecting woman make an ass out of herself by professing the dimwit ideology?

I regard any woman who professes feminism as a damned fool and a cowardly conformist.

grackle said...

Why isn't she afraid of being denounced for sexism and misogyny?

Because she is a prominent member of the very institution that would do the 'denouncing,' the MSM. Therefore, she can do with impunity all the things that her group would denounce if someone else had done them. Rules about "sexism and misogyny" are strictly for conservatives.

It's a bit like African Americans being allowed to use the "N-word," indeed MUST use the N-word in casual conversation amongst themselves in order to exhibit their bona fides as an African American. But woe to anyone else who would utter it.

Anonymous said...

Maureen Dowd Psychoanalyst Robot says:

The Inner Self of Maureen Dowd Knows Herself to be "Stupid" and "Deceitful," Hence Her Choosing These Words to Excerpt, A Way of Admitting Her Self-Loathing in Public Under a Veil of Plausible Deniability. She Takes Narcissistic Pleasure in This Sly Method, as Seen in the Freudian Use of "Slyly" That She Attributes to Another But Is -- in the Final Analysis -- Self-Reflecting.

Her Use of "Threw her Off the Bridge" Gives the First Hint Into Her Compartmentalized Attraction to Chris Christie: Bridges Often Span Large Bodies of Water, Which -- Naturally -- Bears Allusion to the Large Body of the Governor. As Bodies of Water Hide Great Power and Force So Does Dowd View the Power and Force Inherent in Christie, Just Below the Surface: Her Inner self Wants to be Thrown Off That Bridge and Be One With Her Metaphor.

From This it is But a Small Jump to her Identifying as Bridget: She Wishes to be Overcome By the Power and Force of Christie, But -- Again -- Can Only Slyly Allude to it in Public.

While I Cannot Prove It, It Is Likely That She Wrote This Portion of the Column in Lingerie.

That Will Be Two-Hundred-and-Fifty Dollars, Please, Payable to Maureen Dowd Psychoanalyst Robot.

JoyD said...

Or, Maureen Dowd is just a jerk. Since that old shoe has been traditionally thrown at men, I'm making no sexist disparagement here. It's just personal. I've never liked her, and more often than not, skip her.

SGT Ted said...

Dowd is channeling Andrea Dworkin.

If Christie were a (D) she'd be all about how the woman deserved to be fired.

SGT Ted said...

And, she even fucked up the joke.

That's a Scottish joke.

Scottish Foreplay: "Brace yourself, lassie!"

Anonymous said...

A spinster once lovely as a rose
lived in dense thickets of prose
weaving feminist ideology
and partisan apology
for reasons she no longer knows

Bob Ellison said...

Is Niall O'Dowd a Maureen Dowd sock-puppet?

We need video evidence. Who has seen them together?

Anglelyne said...

Is there some reason we need to keep paying attention to Maureen Dowd? Why do "females who want to be regarded as feminist" not complain about the fact that a slot for "female pundit" in an important newspaper is given over to a snide, unserious gossip columnist?

dbp said...

Either Dowd or I am not correct about why the “Brace yourself, Bridget.” joke is funny.

I always thought it was because Irish men are renowned for their lack of endowment. Which is to say, the proper warning should be, "You may not notice this, Bridget."

Bob Boyd said...

I heard Irish foreplay is a six pack and a brick.

SomeoneHasToSayIt said...

I think you are missing the whole point of the phrase, "brace yourself".
It is not about what is about to be done (fucking), it is about how (abruptly, selfishly, and without grace).

So then to focus on the what-part, is just wrong-headed. But Dowd has captured the how of the 'sacking' (ha), nicely.

rhhardin said...

Dowd is funny and self-deprecating in interviews, at least with Imus.

The column is a schtik.

Four Imus interviews

1639059 Aug 26 2005 imuscut.dowd03.rm
1243689 Dec 20 2004 imuscut.dowd04.rm
1165379 Mar 27 2005 imuscut.dowd05.rm
1495809 Oct 26 2005 imuscut.dowd06.rm

real audio

Anonymous said...

What the...., Althouse?

"Violent sex?" "Rape-y"? Where did these come from?

O'Dowd just used an expression that makes fun of Irish people on their wedding night... about to have consensual married sex, apparently... no violence or rape or anything like that involved.

Besides, I think the phrase was used in a jocular way to note that the lack of warning before Christie declared her "stupid" and "deceitful" and fired.

How you get where you do, and with such crude wording (i.e. soaking the post with "fucking") is far beyond me...

Fen said...

So I'm going to presume that the second possible answer is the correct one. The thrill of excitement taking down the GOP presidential frontrunner has overcome normal judgment.

Dowd's reason has always been clouded by strong emotion, so it can't be your second possible answer.

"Brace it Bridget" is used only because Dowd likes it rough. She's in her Winter and fantasizing about her Glory Days.

Sam L. said...

MoDo thinks of herself as one of the "In Crowd". I think she's a hanger-on to the outskirts of the crowd.

Sam L. said...

bm3k, you are on FIRE! Bravo! Bra-VO!

RecChief said...

Fen's Law

rehajm said...

The thrill of excitement taking down the GOP presidential frontrunner has overcome normal judgment.

ref. see: Melissa Harris-Perry

Paul said...

Leftist politics trumps all. How did you "feminists" react to Bill Clinton's accusers including the woman he raped?

You circled the wagons and went after the "bimbos".


Roughcoat said...

It's an old joke and has long since ceased to be funny among those to whom it's an old joke. Which is to say, Irish Americans. But, speaking as an Irish American steeped in Irish American traditions, I can tell you that the joke was/is meant to be self-deprecating in the true and very admirable way Irish people of talking down about themselves--to keep from becoming too puffed up, the avoidance of which is a virtual obsession with the Irish. But if you want to regard it as rape-y and in bad taste, that's okay too.

Roughcoat said...

I should add ... if you were attending, say, a First Communion celebration in an Irish American household in the Chicago area, and you were about three hours into the celebration, and everybody was sort of half-way schnockered and sitting around in the family room talking and drinking and singing and just generally enjoying the "crac" (Google it is you don't know)and there was Irish music playing on the speakers or better still there were musicians playing music, and somebody got around to telling this joke as somebody always does--well, the whole group would roar with laughter, and I mean the WHOLE group, ladies too ... hell, it's likely that it was a nice proper Lace-Curtain girl who told the joke.

Roughcoat said...

So, what I'm saying, is ... you severe Lutherans or atheists or leftists or whatever up there in Wisconsin there [sic], just lighten up why dontcha. Or don't lighten up, whatever.

Roughcoat said...


"They had to cancel Christmas in Ireland because they couldn't find 3 wise men or a virgin."

When an Englishmen tells this joke fisticuffs ensue. When an Irishman tells the joke the laughter is loud and general.

William said...

"Brace yourself Brigid." I don't see how that statement can be interpreted as in any way rape-y. A sensitive Irish Catholic man recognizes how distasteful and disgusting the sex act can be for a well bred woman. He doesn't prolong her ordeal by engaging in such kinky and sordid practices as foreplay. He gets this messy but necessary procreative work over with minimal time wasted and effort exerted. Far from being rape-y, it expresses a sensitive awareness of a woman's spirituality.. It's one reason why Irish Catholic marriages are so durable.

Saint Croix said...

There's real lust here.

I had to read this sentence twice, and then I was like, "oh, bloodlust."

Althouse is introducing an interesting (and very moralistic) interpretation of lust, as something quite evil. Bloodlust, you think of this urge to destroy, to kill, to savage. She's arguing that Dowd is overcome with lust, with a savage urge to destroy a human being.

The thrill of excitement taking down the GOP presidential frontrunner has overcome normal judgment.

Interesting that Althouse is accusing Dowd of lust. She's destroying a human being out of her own passion. And note how Althouse has stripped this of any sexuality. She's not accusing Dowd of lusting for Christie (yuck) but of lusting for his destruction. It's uni-sex lust, asexual lust, lust that has nothing to do with sex and everything to do with politics.

Brian said...

Althouse like to excerpt a phrase and analyze it to death. But the truth is much more mundane. Maureen Dowd has always been a sub-par writer: Lazy, uncreative, repetitive and stupid. Dowd used that phrase because it was the first one that came to mind when she discovered that the aid Christie fired was named "Bridget."

Gahrie said...

It's an English joke..."lie back and think of England".....

cokaygne said...

The media have a long history of misogyny towards women who are not liberal Democrats. Think of Bill Clinton's "bimbos" and the savagery of the attacks on Sarah Palin.

In the old country that extended to Margaret Thatcher, who, as my father used to say, was the only politician with balls.

Paul said...

"In the old country that extended to Margaret Thatcher, who, as my father used to say, was the only politician with balls."

Or as I've heard it said MT was a man without a penis.

Mutaman said...

"MODUS OPERANDI: Favors piquant reversals, e.g., complains about sexism mainly when she perceives it among liberals "

Proving Roy right once again.

Mutaman said...

"MODUS OPERANDI: Favors piquant reversals, e.g., complains about sexism mainly when she perceives it among liberals "

Proving Roy right once again.

Biff said...

As Whoopi Goldberg might say, "There are 'women,' and there are 'women women.'"

To many on the Left, it seems, women who are conservative or who are active in GOP politics aren't "women women," so anything goes.

EMD said...

That bitch is, if nothing else, timely.

Alan Albin said...

A mother of four doesn't just dump her husband unless she's got someone new (and "better") lined up already. There needs to be some investigative reporting re: any hanky panky between Bridget and Stepien, or maybe one of her other mentors, Russo. I just don't see her rolling in the hay with the Fat Man, but I suppose that's possible, too.

David R. Graham said...

Aren't Dowd and Huffington known for sleeping around?