March 12, 2003


THE TANGLED MAUREEN: I've never kept much of a secret of my distaste for New York Times columnist Maureen Dowd. It's not so much her politics as her annoying and very tiresome writing style, with her stream-of-consciousness pontificating, halfheartedly shallow Bush/movie analogies, and lack of any original reporting whatsoever.
But perhaps the most annoying component of Dowd's bag of tricks is the shear unimaginitiveness of her nicknames, a weakness unseen since the days of the championship-era Minnesota Twins. Just as Kent Hrbek was "Herbie," Rick Aguilera "Aggie," and Steve Lombardozzi "Lombo," Dowd has shown a complete lack of creativity in her mocking of the Bush Administration characters- Donald Rumsfeld is "Rummy," John Ashcroft "Johnny," and Paul Wolfowitz, in today's column, was christened as "Wolfy." It's a good thing Henry Kissinger resigned from his post on the 9/11 investigation panel, before Dowd had the chance to mockingly dismiss him as "Kissy." (Oh wait- she did mockingly dismiss him as "Kissy.")
Dowd could learn a thing or two about nicknaming her conservative political enemies from the anonymous proprietor of the anti-Andrew Sullivan blog SullyWatch. Not only does this blogger link at least once a day to Sullivan's infamous barebacking ad, but he has a whole array of humorous nicknames for him: The Blog Queen, Captain Bareback, Smalltown Boy, The Sage of South Goodstone, Randy Andy, etc. Even as a Sullivan fan, I laugh every time.
If the American political left's been missing anything lately, it's humor- and Maureen Dowd, I'm looking chiefly in your direction.

Posted by Stephen Silver at March 12, 2003 05:32 PM
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