I must declare from the onset that I am flattered by Bill Winkler’s obsession with me. I first became aware of this when I read his article titled “Tea for Education.” One third of the piece discusses a new education advocacy group, of which former Highlands Mayor Anna Little is the state director. The remaining two-thirds are devoted to yours truly. Google it, because I sure as hell am not gonna link to it, seeing as how Winkler still refuses to even name any of the articles I’ve authored that he disagrees with. At least he mentions me by name and that is enough for the sufficiently curious to find me. I wonder if, after this post is published, he’ll change tactics and refer to me only as “The One With Whom I’m Obsessed.”
Unlike Winkler – who routinely engages in the sort of armchair psychoanalysis he routinely decries – I will spare my readers any effort to delve into his psyche for the what and wherefore of his particular pathology, except to point out that Winkler tends to project his various neuroses and emotional pecadillos onto those whom he criticizes.
This time, his flattery comes in the form of an article posted at CWA titled “Is Margaret Thatcher Living in Monmouth County?” in which Wee Willie Winky – having recovered sufficiently from his previous thrashing – once more attempts to match wits with everyone’s favorite Bulldog.
What struck me about Willie from the moment he initiated correspondence with me is the smarmy, faux-friendly condescension that oozes from every paragraph he writes – rather like a cross between Eddie Haskell and Mr. Rogers – complete with a weak, clammy handshake. Think of him as the “good cop” foil to Rob Eichmann’s “bad cop” buffoon.
His latest attempt at “friendly” persuasion involves a rather unpersuasive and condescendingly unpalatable attempt to lead me to the sweetness and light of the Truth that merits a brisk fisking:
In April, a prospective Socialist Party USA candidate was invited to speak before a tea party group in New Jersey. This candidate was in the process of securing ballot access. I don’t know if any of the tea party leaders or members signed his petition, but I’m certainly going to find out.
I’ll spare you the trouble, Winky: Mr. Noble did not present a petition of any kind at the meeting. Strike one.
Gene compared the act of inviting this candidate to something Margaret Thatcher would do.
Actually, no. Here is what I wrote:
If it’s quotes he wants, how about this gem from President Reagan’s ally and good friend Margaret Thatcher: “It pays to know the enemy – not least because at some time you may have the opportunity to turn him into a friend.”
I was merely pointing out that Mrs. Thatcher had the wisdom to always keep her options open. Looks like you’ve been reaching into the Jacobin forensics toolbox again and grabbed a crescent wrench instead of a surgical scalpel. I realize it’s a subtle distinction, Winky, but I’m sure that if you give it a moment or two of thought, a sufficient number of dendrites will sparkle in your brain and you’ll understand. Strike two.
… I don’t recall her or any leader of the Conservative Party ever inviting a socialist candidate to address an annual party conference – or a gathering of any kind. Come to think of it, I don’t recall a Republican National Convention or state or local gathering in which a Socialist Party USA candidate was invited to speak. And I’ve been to quite a few CPAC (Conservative Political Action Conferences) in the last 30 years and I don’t recall them ever having a Socialist Party USA candidate on their roster of speakers either.
Come to think of it, Bill, as you correctly pointed out, Barbara Gonzalez is no Margaret Thatcher. But then, nobody claimed she was nor did anyone ever claim the Bayshore Tea Party is the functional equivalent of either Britain’s Conservative Party or America’s Republican Party. She’s the head of a local Tea Party who invited the socialist candidate for county freeholder to address a membership meeting. As it turns out, the threat to our American way of life was a teenager. No Bayshore members were harmed or converted to socialism as a result of the meeting. The earth still revolves around its axis and life still goes on. Strike three.
Be of good cheer, Willy…this nursery rhyme’s for you:
Wee Willie Winkie runs through the town,
Up stairs and down stairs in his night-gown,
Tapping at the window, crying at the door:
Are you Jacobin Conservatives forevermore?
Hey, Willie Winkie, are you coming in?
There are no liberals here, just us conservative kin.
We’ve pledged our loyalty to the conservo-jacobin way,
But here’s a stubborn Tea Party that refuses to play!
I can see that you are bothered by the fact that a socialist was given a platform to vent his toxic ideology. That’s a good thing, because you’re going to be bothered even more at 1 PM today. Make sure to return then for the details.
I enjoy reading you Gene, but I think you are full of Hooey on this one.
I doubt you truly enjoy reading what I write, Bill. Rather, I suspect you deeply admire the gift I have for literary composition with much the same envy Antonio Salieri admired Mozart’s gift for composing music. In that vein, permit me the opportunity in praising your writing to bastardize Mozart’s praise of Salieri’s music: when one reads such words as you have written, what can one think but…Winkler.
You are promoting an indefensible position and, in the process, broadcasting the mistake made by others. After all those signs and posters carried through the streets with “Obama” linked to words like “Marxist” and “Socialist” – and with symbols like the hammer and sickle – what you have here is a “man bites dog” story. You just don’t have enough experience in politics to know it. If you did, you would talk about something else.
Do you have any idea how laughably pompous you sound, Bill? Here’s the reality check: you are a low-level, hired-gun, campaign drone with delusions of Karl Rove-hood who never made it to the national leagues and presently rents out his questionable talent on the state legislative level.
If “experience in politics” is all that was necessary to be correct, then EVERY seasoned politician or political operative would emerge victorious on election day. Clearly, that is not the case and just as clearly your vaunted experience does not in and of itself qualify you as a Delphic Oracle.
That’s a big problem with the tea party movement in general. They are new to politics – and there’s nothing wrong in that, everyone makes a start – but in many cases they possess what may be called the “sin of pride”. They simply cannot admit to a mistake. They hate it when they are told, and turn on anyone who tries to point it out to them.
Thus spake Wee Willy Winky – New Hope, Pennsylvania’s answer to a question nobody asked. What made this passage a howler is the fact that you can substitute “CNJ” for “tea party movement”and find yourself that much closer to the truth.
Gene, you admit to making mistakes. You wrote: “I have walked my own way in step to the beat of a drummer only I can hear for as long as I can remember… if I had a nickel for every time I screwed up royally, I’d…well…let’s just say I’d have a lot of nickels – at least I don’t have to search far or long to find the culprit.” But while admitting to “screw ups” generally, you seem unable to admit to them individually. The sin of pride?
Um, no, Bill. I stick to my guns when I know I’m right. That’s the difference between us: I’m not a political hack – yet I understand the realities of politics far more deeply than you realize.
Here’s your problem, Bill: you labor under the misapprehension that Bulldog Pundit is a conservative political website endeavoring to establish itself as a serious voice of the Conservative Movement. It is nothing of the sort. Perhaps the word “pundit” confused you. A bit of research on the term will clarify things.
In the meantime, please keep talking about me in whatever manner you choose to do so. As Oscar Wilde once quipped, “There is only one thing in the world worse than being talked about, and that is not being talked about.”