- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 30, 2001

Bitter aftertaste

"Days after completing her book, 'The Final Days,' Barbara Olson died aboard the airliner that terrorists skyjacked and flew into the Pentagon.

"Detail by shocking detail Olson lays out an indictment of Bill and Hillary Clinton's relentless arrogance, greed and corruption.

"Olson quotes comedian Dennis Miller: 'We've all been watching in astonishment these past few weeks as the Clintons merrily parade their greed and corruption past us like a garish Mardi Gras float powered by the drivetrain of Bill Clinton's gargantuan sense of entitlement. You almost have to admire the sheer audacity of granting pardons to two tax-scamming billionaire fugitives named Rich and Green. If the symbolism were any more obvious, Andrew Lloyd Weber would be writing music for it.'

"Barbara's beautifully written book is relieved with much wit, but this laughter catches in the throat and leaves a bitter aftertaste. The Clintons did evil things not in a Fellini 'Satyricon' fantasy but in our White House, using our taxes, and selling our government (in ways far beyond renting the Lincoln Bedroom) for their personal profit."

Lowell Ponte, writing on "Last Will and Testament," Oct. 26 in Front Page at www.frontpagemag.com

High priestesses

"The dirty little secret of the mommy wars is that most women do not talk and think about motherhood and babies, born or unborn, the way [Naomi] Wolf and other contemporary feminists do. Whether they consider themselves pro-life or pro-choice is beside the point. Most women do not revel in the bloody details of 'reproductive choice'; most do not think of themselves as potential child abusers and killers; and most do not experience pregnancy and childbirth and motherhood as personal catastrophes.

"But our pro-choice activists, our orthodox feminists, do from the troops who woman the battlefronts of NOW and NARAL and Emily's List, to the aging ghouls who flaunt their own children's pacifiers as they march for the destruction of other people's babies. What it would take to truly satisfy these souls is something that fortunately enough we may never know."

Mary Eberstadt, writing on "Feminism's Children," in the Nov. 5 issue of the Weekly Standard

Superhero solutions

"An unprecedented assault on mainland America is being turned into sentimental psychobabble, an occasion for nationwide counseling.

"But, this time, it doesn't work. These mandarins of calm and counselling sound as desperate and misguided as those people who have been buying gas masks, bio-hazard suits and anti-anxiety drugs. Beneath their words is the fear that everything they have thought or taught for the past 12 years is now meaningless.

"The Cold War ended in 1989 and, with it, the immediate likelihood of global nuclear conflict. Certainly the spectre of an environmental apocalypse haunted the 1990s but, compared with nuclear winter, it seemed remote. Above all, it seemed fixable.

"Furthermore there was always the safety of isolation in Fortress America. There the people could console themselves with violent Hollywood fantasies that were invariably resolved by a home-grown superhero. Not any more.

"'Superman or Bruce Willis aren't going to turn up and sort this one out,' observes Peter Wilson. 'People have been living an unreal life among ever more violent images of frenzy and terror. This is for real and it breaks through the strange veneer that has separated people from reality.'"

Bryan Appleyard, writing on "It's the end of the world again," in the Oct. 21 Sunday Times of London

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