Monday, January 23, 2006


Jane Hamsher

PORTRAIT OF A LADY. What I first noticed as an annoyance at a year ago -- nasty reviews of conservative books by lefties who obviously hadn't read them -- has escalated to become the internet's newest form of ad-hominem assault and battery. Michelle Malkin today flags the large-scale hate campaign orchestrated by Jane Hamsher (who blogs at against Kate O'Beirne's new book on its Amazon page. While La Malkin devotes most of her attention to the mugging by phony review of Fred Barnes's new book, she also informs us that Ms. Hamsher, who refers to Kate O'Beirne as "sandpaper snatch" and worse, has been invited to defend her new hobby at a live Washington Post roundtable discussion.

For those of you who don't know who Jane Hamsher is, I thought I'd share a couple of excerpts of her own contributions to prose. (Warning: NSFW). Here is her response to "jurassicpork," a sympathetic reader of her blog who nevertheless objected to the ugliness of the assault on O'Beirne:

jurassicpork -- I don't need to read that fucking book to know it's dangerous, I see her face all the time on cable news and read enough exerpts [sic] to confirm that the worst is not even close. Her eliminationist rhetoric is disturbingly omnipresent and there are critical times in its dissemination cycle when it is vulnerable to counter-attack before it can do its damage. That time is now, not six weeks from now when everyone's had themselves a good, considered read-through.

This is not a book club. We are not here discussing the fine points of literary style. The effectiveness of making an example of someone like Kate O'Beirne depends on hitting them during peak interest time, right as the book is being released. I'll leave the tea sipping to the literary critics, this is politics down and dirty. Nothing more, nothing less.

What's much better, of course, is Hamsher's own contributions to the world of art and literature. She was, for example, one of the original producers of Natural Born Killers (not to be confused with the director, writer, or any creative role other than owning rights to a screenplay and hanging grimly on to the income opportunity during the making of the movie). On the literary side she wrote a book about her big lucky breakthrough, which represents a marvelous addition to the thriving field of personal journalism. Here are the first few paragraphs of that masterpiece:

Well, you get the idea, I'm sure -- a distaff Hunter Thompson. It's called Killer Instinct, but it probably could have as easily been named Fear and Loathing in Hollywood. Her other producer credits include From Hell, the umpteenth reworking of the Jack the Ripper legend, and Permanent Midnight, a sweet little movie about a real-life comedy writer who used to take his infant daughter along on his heroin buys. The works of, you know, a progressive and idealistic charm princess.

I'm not providing links to her blog, her Amazon page, or her movies because I'm not soliciting abuse of her. I'm just suggesting that you remember the name. It may come up again.

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