“Then one day while I was still in college, I was taking the train from Minneapolis to Winona, and I had with me a copy of Burr, Gore Vidal’s 1973 novel about the Founding Fathers…America’s legendary Founding Fathers, according to Vidal, were all seriously flawed…The book horrified me. What it says isn’t true, I told myself, and I put it down…I realized a snide dismissiveness toward American history and American institutions had become the essence and thinking of the chattering-class gatekeepers of the culture.” – Michele Bachmann describing the exact moment she became a Republican as a young woman in her autobiography, Core of Conviction: My Story.
Remember how much fun we used to have mocking Michele Bachmann? We called her crazy. We dismissed her intellect. We obsessively fact-checked her like we thought the truth could possibly deflect the punishing fury of her mouth capoeira.
Well, look at us now. A bunch of Hermiones surrounded by platoons of Dolores Umbridges. How do we all like our facts now? Was Michele Bachmann an oracle? Did she foresee the counter-factual apocalypse now omnipresent in the global media as well as the White House? She did tell you she put that book down.
The scene Bachman crafts in her memoir is illuminating and deceptively clever. She juxtaposes the passing iconographic Midwestern American scenery from her fucking train window against her conscious rejection of a challenge to the sanctioned mythology surrounding America’s Founding Fathers made by a “chattering-class” gay man. She told herself it wasn’t true. She put the book down and chose an alternative set of facts. And she never looked back.
Look at her smiling at the camera while Trump gives her the thumbs-up with that dumb cartoon smug face. Look how happy she looks. She’s thinking to herself, I helped do this. I’m still the fucking Butter Queen at the Minnesota State Fair and there is nothing uncomfortable about the reality I have chosen. Suck it history losers.
What have we got to say to her that might dissuade her choices in reality? Never mind history’s most boring dinner party that is the Democratic primary contest right now. (I love you, Liz. Please save us.) I’m talking about scientists, historians, reporters, activists, decent humans – all liars, losers, and nerds now. An impenetrable force field has descended around the Children of the Creamed Corn and all the facts, logic, and empathy in the world has not been able to dent it. How did it get there? Trump didn’t conjure it. His hair does not power it. I think he might be the thermal exhaust port that leaves the Death Star ultimately vulnerable, but where the fuck is Luke?
Have you ever noticed how consistently physically repulsive conservative Republican men are? When you Google “most handsome Republican men,” you get Paul Ryan and Mitt Romney. Admittedly, Romney got a whole lot hotter when he hinted he might support impeachment, but he’s still an asshole. Kind of like, is it really okay to hang out with George Bush at a football game now that he’s no longer starting unwinnable wars using made-up intel just so his buddies can make money? I’m sure his accent is very charming. But, would you really want to hang out with any current conservative male legislators, leaders, or Fox News pundits? Are they at all intriguing? Could you make it through dinner with Mitch McConnell without vomiting because of the pouch? Could you have beers with Don Jr. without punching him in his greasy lipless face? How about a wine and cheese plate with Giuliani, trapped between a ficus and his verbal seizure, your sweater bedazzled with denture-spewed Triscuit flecks?
I think this current shit jacuzzi fraternity of beta barf boys should line up to kiss Michele Bachmann’s bleached asshole. In fact, there are a number of terrifying and freakishly charismatic women without whom I do not believe our present nightmare would have been possible. They are the dark Jedi masters of alternative realities. They do not fumble and sniff their words. Their presence in this Hellscape lends some kind of sinister, matriarchal legitimacy to idiots like Tucker Carlson and Trump. They are an elite cabal of malevolent mind-benders and I admit I’ve dreamt of sitting quietly under my invisibility cloak at their dark arts slumber parties with their ostrich feather slides, automated cabana boys, and bottomless Bellini bar.
Nine Women I secretly want to get drunk with only to find out if they actually believe the words coming out of their mouth:
#1 Michele Bachman
Sun sign: Aries
Favorite cocktail: Boxed Pinot Grigio.
Three things she’s said: “He (Trump) is highly biblical and I would say to your listeners [that] we will, in all likelihood, never see a more godly, biblical president again in our lifetime.”
“I will tell you that I had a mother last night come up to me here in Tampa, Florida, after the debate. She told me that her little daughter took that vaccine, that injection, and she suffered from mental retardation thereafter.”
“Carbon dioxide is portrayed as harmful. But there isn’t even one study that can be produced that shows that carbon dioxide is a harmful gas.”
Michele is largely politically irrelevant these days, but I have to honor her place in evil empire history. She started as a tax lawyer. Mother of five, foster mom to twenty-three more, she and her husband ran a Christian therapy center that offered gay conversion therapy. She was Minnesota’s first Republican woman elected to Congress and she started the Tea Party Caucus in the House, you know, those guys that stormed closed-door impeachment depositions to have a pizza party. She fought to keep the Tea Party in the GOP instead of starting a third party. It looks like her wisdom paid off.
She was an early pioneer of the con with conviction. I think she was ahead of her time. I envision being stranded in an airport Applebee’s with her, sipping mango hurricanes, laughing about how historically accurate the Flintstones really was.
#2 Ann Coulter
Sun sign: Sagittarius
Favorite cocktail: Pappy Van Winkle, neat, double.
Three things she’s said: “I’m a Christian first, and a mean-spirited, bigoted conservative second, and don’t you ever forget it. You know who else was kind of “divisive” in terms of challenging the status quo and the powers-that-be of his day? Jesus Christ.”
“Long before there was discrimination against blacks, there was discrimination against white southerners. When large numbers of these country people moved north during World War II, they were aggressively excluded from neighborhoods, jobs, and homes – not because of their skin color, but their accents.”
“I want the Dreamers [deported] first. Keep the felons, get rid of the Dreamers. Because they’re arrogant about it.”
Oh Ann, tell me how Christian you are again, it tickles. Coulter is also a lawyer. She has written thirteen best-selling books and publishes a syndicated newspaper column. Ann manages to do that whole radical Nazi gay man thing while presenting as a cis-gendered straight woman. She’s never had children because, eww, and she’s never been married because none of the men she’s dated enjoy pegging that much.
She’s recently been blackballed from Fox and other conservative media outlets because she picked a fight with Trump over his lackluster xenophobia. She’s become the yappy, telegenic face for the segment of Trump’s base disappointed by his lack of progress in building the wall. She has been relentlessly unsatisfied with his tiny-handed capitulations. He’s responded by calling her crazy and cataloguing his many, unprecedented cruelties toward immigrants for her on Twitter.
She has yet to be moved. She is six feet tall and her unique superpower is forcing grown conservative men to defend the size of their wieners childishly in public. No matter how many times she claims to be antifeminist because of how Christian she is, she feeds solely on the terror of under endowed male egos. She is a classic and effective phallofascist. Republican men are actually afraid of her.
Remember when Wolverine killed Jean Gray? I think because I’m masculine but don’t have a penis, I could get close enough to Ann at her local leatherboy bar without my skin disintegrating. We would bro down over Fireball shots before she slurred her daddy issues into a urinal while I held her hair.
#3 Kellyanne Conway
Sun sign: Aquarius
Favorite cocktail: Hpnotiq spritzer.
Three things she’s said: “You’re saying it’s a falsehood. And they’re giving — Sean Spicer, our press secretary, gave alternative facts to that.”
“I’m not in the job of having evidence.”
“I never threatened anyone. Don’t use those words … No, no, no … If I threaten somebody, you’ll know it. If I threaten someone, you’ll know it.”
Kellyanne might be the queen. She’s the one barefoot in the Oval Office.
She was the Blueberry Princess, cheerleader, leading scorer on her field hockey team, and salutatorian in her high school. Her estranged grandfather was a South Jersey mobster. Abandoned by her father at three, she was raised by her mother, grandmother, and two unmarried aunts. She got her law degree with honors from George Washington University then founded her own polling company, WomenTrend, which consulted with companies and politicians on consumer trends, usually focused on women. She was the first woman to run a successful presidential campaign and it looks like she’ll outlast them all in the Trump White House, despite her husband’s well-publicized Twitter ridicule of her boss.
Kellyanne’s superpower is her tenacity. She also commands a subtlety that often escapes her sensationalist sisters. The hardest part about finding crazy shit Bachmann and Coulter said was narrowing the choices. With Kellyanne, her warped oral bravado usually requires context. Taken independently, her words almost seem innocuous, kind of like, “you have a nice pizza joint here, be a shame if something happened to it.” She is a willing favorite of mainstream news shows precisely because they know she will calmly and enthusiastically dismiss all visual, written, or oral evidence that contradicts her pronouncements of reality. Many liberal-leaning journalists make at least a portion of their living having self-righteous fits in her presence. It only makes her stronger, like sweet, sweet fetal tissue injections.
The only way I see having cocktails with Kellyanne is if she has me kidnapped and brought to her blueberry lair under the abandoned Taj Mahal in Atlantic City. There, she plies with me Long Island slushies (I use a long crazy straw because I’m tied to Elizabeth Warren’s golden retriever,) while she shares her list of the seventy-four people who will survive the approaching “asteroid,” right before she feeds me to all the unpaid contractors kept in old tiger cages.
#4 Laura Ingraham
Sun Sign: Gemini
Favorite cocktail: Bombay Sapphire (because colonialism) and steak with extra straws.
Three things she’s said : “‘White privilege’ — how about the privilege of being a protected member of a class that you can never criticize, lest you be called racist? That’s privilege. I think Victor Davis Hanson called it ‘minority privilege’…, that the people who are the most protected are the people who are the first to say ‘white privilege,’ because then, you can’t ever criticize them again.
“But the thing that’s really sad about it, guys, is that innocent Brits and people traveling to London and all over the western Europe, now the price they have to pay for multiculturalism is the risk that you’re walking on the sidewalk and a man will — or a woman — will purposefully mow you down. And then while you’re maybe finishing your cappuccino in a cafe, or having a drink, someone will put a knife to your throat and slit it with the attempt, perhaps, to behead you. That’s what we all have to live with for the free and open society that [London Mayor] Sadiq Khan and all these other multiculturalists want Britain to become.”
“Oh we have a new transgender update for you as well. Oh no, new transgender news for all of you who are bathroom-goers and public — you use public restrooms? I think a lot of people are going to be walking around with just Depends on from now on. They’re just not going to use the bathroom. Adult diapers, diapers for everybody. No one’s going to be going to the bathroom. You have little kids, there’s going to be no bathrooms. We’re just going to all wear Depends. Everyone will just be happy. Then you’ll be in your own bathroom. Everyone’s bathroom is just their own clothes, OK? So this is what we’re going to go to.”
So Laura has a gay brother who publicly criticizes her and she’s never been married. Her adopted daughter is from Guatemala and her two adopted sons are from Russia. Her brother has confirmed that their father was emotionally abusive and a Nazi enthusiast. My gut tells me that Laura is a closeted lesbian. She wrote numerous opinion pieces for her college newspaper against the gays in that ‘I hate myself so much’ way and she just looks like a volleyball dyke.
To overcompensate, as we all do, she also became a lawyer. She clerked for Clarence Thomas before writing six best-selling books, syndicating her own radio show, and landing her own Fox News segment. On Fox, she is especially fond of the “white replacement” narrative and the “libs won’t let us have any fun anymore” whine. She famously lost substantial corporate sponsorship after berating a teenage Stoneman Douglas shooting survivor as a whiner. She most recently experienced backlash when she accused impeachment witness, Lt. Col. Vindman of espionage, despite being a decorated veteran.
I think Laura is the third wheel that Anne and Kellyanne invite out for cocktails when they want feel superior. The three have dated many of the same men. I haven’t tracked the dating timelines, but I wouldn’t be surprised if Laura was the comfortably unavailable third option for men after being scarred by the other Heathers.
I feel like Laura probably has her own top-secret power closet lesbian underground social scene in DC. They all have adopted children and probably dogs. What if I was their transman dog-walker that they’re obligated to label a public restroom rapist, but Laura secretly valued my perspective. We stealth meet at Olive Garden over Chianti and breadsticks, Laura sobbing over Kellyanne’s lack of attention, while simultaneously berating me over what I can bench.
#5 Sarah Huckabee-Sanders
Sun sign: Leo
Favorite cocktail: Skinny Marg
Three things she’s said:
“I volunteered to join Mr. Trump’s campaign because he is a champion of working families, not Washington-Wall Street elites.”
“Just because reporters say something over and over and over again doesn’t start to make it true.”
“It is very biblical to enforce the law”.
Those eyebrows though. The husky Southern drawl. The pearls and the waggy finger. Sarah Huckabee Sanders has never lost control of a Sunday school class. She wasn’t a mean girl in high school. She was the plainer girl that got to be around the mean girls because of her loyalty and hard work. She didn’t get her law degree or write a best-seller. She started working on her father’s political campaign when she was eight. If you see pictures of her older brothers, it’s easy to imagine Sarah being daddy’s favorite. She’s always been a team player.
Sarah is the soccer mom among she-sharks. What she lacks in intrinsic sadism, she’s made up for with consistency, diligence, and longevity. The Mueller Report revealed that Sarah actually admitted to lying to the public when investigators pressed her for details regarding the firing of James Comey and Jeff Sessions. That fact, coupled with the fact that mean girls and Republicans will always betray the pudgy girl in the end, makes Sarah Huckabee Sanders my one candidate for future redemption.
I predict that after her kids are out of the house and she’s heard just one too many narcissistic temper-tantrums, she will pull a full Tammy Faye. I’ll encounter her plucked arches thirty years from now, as the Grand Marshall of some small-town Pride parade, and she’ll let me ride on her rainbow-mirrored podium float. We will drink Cosmos from a flask while she rambles in non-sequiturs like “Melania was a Russian sleeper agent” or “that Ingraham sure was a bulldyke” or “ya know I saw his balls once.”
#6 Stephanie Grisham
Sun sign: Leo
Favorite Cocktail: Corpse Reviver #2
Three things she’s said: “I worked with John Kelly, and he was totally unequipped to handle the genius of our great President.”
“As you know, Donald Trump has traveled the country and world talking to children about Lebron James well-being, healthy living, and the importance of responsible online behavior with Donald Trump Be Best initiative.”
“We’re really focused on quality of the experience over quantity of attendees.”
Where did this crazy-eyed death eater come from? She honestly scares me on a personal level, mostly because she’s always making some version of this puppet-master face and she seems to have been elevated to her current role in a more unusual way than the rest of her cohort, meaning of course that she was likely hatched by Satan or inserted by a hostile dictator. Her only credentials seem to be two failed marriages, losing two jobs over embezzlement then plagiarism, and two DUIs where she ignored all court orders for fines and treatment before being recruited from Trump’s local campaign office in Arizona to play local press liaison for his national campaign stops in 2016. She then became Melania’s press secretary before replacing Sarah Huckabee as the White House’s press secretary. She once physically shoved North Korean soldiers out of the way so that American journalists could access a meeting between Trump and Kim Jong Un. I highly recommend the video. Her only taste of the notoriety she has always known was her destiny has come from her rabid devotion to Trump’s defense narrative. I’m fairly certain she crushed Jeffrey Epstein’s larynx with her mind and the video evidence was erased by the dark matter in her soul.
Whereas the other women on my list seem to have crafted lives prior to their role in Donald Trump’s political career, Stephanie has hitched her entire opportunistic soul to Trump’s cult of personality. She will not break character until that moment when the GOP begins its inevitable cannibalistic orgy buffet. The coming apocalypse will begin with Stephanie and Melania toasting each other with chilled Russian vodka over the bloated, orange, Louboutin stiletto-pocked body of the Republican Party, while I move into the shipping container buried in my back yard.
#7 Paula White
Sun sign: Taurus
Favorite cocktail: Kessler’s and Hawaiian Punch
Three things she’s said: “I think so many people have taken biblical scriptures out of context on this, to say stuff like, ‘Well, Jesus was a refugee… Yes, [Jesus] did live in Egypt for three-and-a-half years. But it was not illegal. If He had broken the law then He would have been sinful and He would not have been our Messiah.”
“Now we lift up our president. You declared in Jeremiah Chapter 1:5 that before he was ever formed in his mother’s womb, that you had set him apart and you had ordained him,”
“Each January, I put God first and honor him with the first of our substance by sowing a first fruits offering of one month’s pay… When you sow a First Fruits Offering of $75 or more, I will rush to you the book, the devotional and also a Paula White 2018 wall calendar! Track throughout the entire year prioritizing God with me!”
Paula White is everything you think a televangelist should be. Netflix docuseries White is the New Orange out in 2022. Paula heard the call at age eighteen. She set up her first tent revival ministry with her second husband at age twenty-four and by her early thirties, she replaced her husband as the leader of the seventh largest church in America. Her syndicated sermons aired on nine networks and she was the hottest preacher on BET. Of course her church was investigated by the Senate, and despite the fact she raked in over $150 million in 2004-2006, she let her ex-husband take the fall for that church’s bankruptcy while starting a new ministry all her own.
Trump supposedly called her in 2001, wanting to be her friend. She bought a condo in Trump Tower in 2003. She was the first woman to deliver the invocation at Trump’s inauguration in 2016 and she now holds an official position in the White House as a special adviser to the Faith and Opportunity Initiative. It’s easy to see why Trump likes her. Except for the fact that she came from poverty in Mississippi and she was the victim of sexual abuse instead of the perpetrator, she and Trump are largely the same creature. They are both their own brand. They are genuine unapologetic frauds, utterly American, like oversized anthropomorphic fast-food mascots who feed you shit sandwiches and laugh because you pay to eat them.
Paula and I dated briefly in the nineties so I’ve already seen her drunk. She kept cocaine in my dildo and spoke in tongues when I went down on her. Goddamn I miss the nineties.
#8 Ivanka Trump
Sun sign: Scorpio
Favorite Cocktail: Vanilla Stoli and Coke Zero.
Three things she’s said: “Everything about mediocrity kills me.”
“You can be born into privilege, or you can not be born into privilege. You can be born into the opposite extreme and into poverty. I think from there on, though, you really do have to make your luck.”
“All women benefit immeasurably by architecting their lives”
Self-made daddy’s girl. I almost didn’t include Ivanka in this list. She doesn’t fit the personality profile. She didn’t need ambition and sociopathy to weave gossamer fictions into a designer shroud for kleptocratic fascism. Her oral ipecac comes in the form of relentless vapidity and earnest oblivion. She’s the Marie Antionette we deserve. She would never advise us to eat gluten, but suggests self-care and resilience as key ingredients to our collective success parfait. She once played herself on Gossip Girl because that’s exactly who she is. Her mother was thirsty so she never had to be. She is her daddy’s flagship brand extension. No matter how uncomfortable or nauseous that makes the rest of us, she continues to use her exclusive, intimate access to her father’s and America’s coercive bravado to completely shit on the ethical considerations for conflict of interest we at least used to pretend we had. At some point, she started sitting on his lap on purpose and that’s just profoundly disturbing.
She never really had a chance to become interesting. I might sacrifice a Wednesday afternoon to meet her for Happy Hour at a bowling alley, but only to watch her put on rental shoes.
#9 Betsy DeVos
Sun sign: Capricorn (I’m ashamed to admit)
Favorite cocktail: Immigrant tears and Everclear
Three things she’s said: “My family is the biggest contributor of soft money to the Republican National Committee. I have decided to stop taking offense at the suggestion that we are buying influence. Now I simply concede the point. They are right. We do expect something in return. We expect to foster a conservative governing philosophy consisting of limited government and respect for traditional American virtues. We expect a return on our investment.”
“Social justice and economics are both issues to me.”
“I think probably there, I would imagine that there’s probably a gun in the school to protect from potential grizzlies.”
Betsy is the queen of the Lizard People. She is a conspiracy theory wrapped in a pussy bow. It’s rare to see a Priestess of Xenu bring such public scrutiny to her evil order. It can only mean that we mortals cannot fathom the true depth of the Hell her cabinet appointment portends.
Betsy comes from a billionaire and married into the Amway billions. Her brother founded Blackwater. He wants to privatize national security, for all the nations. She has a major financial stake in a massive national chain of daycare facilities which might illuminate her resistance to universal early childhood education. She has investments in a national chain of elder care facilities under investigation for abuse and widespread Medicare fraud. She not only owns shares of a for-profit private prison contractor who houses child immigrants and benefitted bigly from Trump’s family separation policy, but her foundation is the major funder for a Christian foster care facility that has petitioned for and received permission to house those same immigrant children, only to later put them up for adoption without trying to reconcile them with their parents. Government funded child trafficking. Her special interest is education, obviously. She has been fighting to privatize public education for thirty years. She of course owns stakes in private for-profit colleges, but has even larger investments in debt collection firms that specialize in aggressive collections on student loan debt. She has recently been found in contempt of court for collecting on debts accrued by students defrauded by a discredited for-profit university. She also tried to defund the Special Olympics and made it much harder for students with disabilities to bring suits to gain equal access to services – ditto for LGBT students. The “School Voucher Programs” that have long been her passion are also a dog-whistle to white supremacists longing to re-segregate schools.
That paragraph was too big and there weren’t any jokes. Her family’s fortune is the 88th largest in America. Do not take for granted this tiny glimpse of rich, evil people plans. Betsy is also one of those rich Rapture ding-dongs who devoted millions to moving the US embassy to Jerusalem to bring about the apocalypse. This is very important to rich Republicans and none of us snowflakes really know why. What is the end game of conservative politics for the very wealthy?
The evidence points to not only an accelerating and ongoing extraction of all wealth and resources from almost everyone else, but also an erosion of expectations and hope. Generation Z seems to understand that they cannot reasonably expect affordable housing, healthcare, education, safety in public, or even a planet to age upon in their lifetime.
I began studying the origins of Christianity in the late eighties. I wanted to argue intelligently with conservative Christians because they were terrible people then, too. I was a big butch dyke and they really did not like me. They said a bunch of stuff that seemed very unChristian. I thought that if I learned the truth, I could helpfully point out how they were mistaken. Then they could stop being so mean.
After thirty years, I’ve realized what a poor career choice that was. The conservative movement in this country is a lot like Scientology. Only those with enough means to achieve Thetan Level 8 might eventually benefit from the religion’s secret mission. Everybody else is just in a cult. Except for Betsy, the women on my list are just mid-level enforcers. These are the ones who define and administer the purity tests. Don’t be swayed by some mealy-mouthed centrist in a NYT op-ed trying to remind us how we used to engage in civil conversation. There aren’t two sides to this. There’s facts and humanity and then there’s a fascist cult.
That’s what I have to remember every time I think I want to get drunk with Michele Bachman. Just because I have a John Waters fascination with the characters these women play and their varying levels of authenticity, doesn’t make them interesting. They should all be locked in a house with RuPaul and cameras in every room. I want a Survivor type format but Drag Queens versus famous Republican women. RuPaul’s the only one tall enough to defeat Ann. Weekly shade battles. Behind the scenes confessionals. Let’s face it, Maddow and Cooper aren’t the gays we need right now. Somebody call that Bezos creep. If he won’t pay taxes, he could at least give us this.
3 thoughts on “Gaslighting Goddesses”
Just more blathering from a nouveau-colonist. Not worth reading, I’m afraid.
I’m not familiar with “nouveau-colonist” and I cannot discern its implications toward my writing, but I’ve been waiting for years to have my first negative comment. Thanks Al.
Couldn’t agree more.