Friday, February 02, 2007

Molly Ivins, you will be sorely missed

Molly Ivins was one of the rare newspaper columists that could inject humor, subtly, innuendo, or sly turn of phrase in to her writing. Or should could hit you over the head with something outrageously funny. I have found her to be one of the most quotable columnists in the U.S. papers. She was a good ol' girl from Texas with a master's degree from Columbia University. She died this week after "a scorching case of cancer". She was one of the most quotable figures in U.S. journalism. I wanted to share of a few of my favorite Molly Ivins quotes.

As as a writer with the New York Times, she found herself in hot water for describing an annual chicken slaughter contest in New Mexico as a "gang pluck."

She said of one congressman, "If his I.Q. slips any lower, we'll have to water him twice a day."

After Patrick Buchanan made his infamous "cultural war" at the 1992 Rupublican National Convention, speech, she said his speech "probably sounded better in the original German."

One year, when the Texas legislature was about to convene, she reported "Every village is about to lose its idiot."

On herself studying at a private school, "I spent my girlhood as a Clydesdale among thoroughbreds."

On George H. W. Bush (Bush the First) she said "Real Texans do not use the word 'summer' as a verb."

On George W. Bush, whom she knew since high school, she called him "Shrub" and "Dubya" and when on to co-author Shrub: The Short But Happy Political Life of George W. Bush (2000) and Bushwhacked (2003).

On the New York Times, she felt that the Times drained the life from her prose. "I was miserable, at five times my previous salary. The New York Times is a great newspaper; it is also no fun." She often showed up for work in blue jeans, barefoot, and with her dog. Her writing was often fueled by "truly impressive amounts of beer."

On Dallas, "the kind of town that would have rooted for Goliath to beat David."

On the civil rights, the ACLU, and Bill O'Reilly, "I know that sludge-for-brains like Bill O'Reilly attack the ACLU for being 'un-American,' but when Bill O'Reilly's constitutional rights are violated, the ACLU will stand up for him just like they did for Oliver North, Communists, the KKK, atheists, movement conservatives and everyone else they've defended over the years. The premise is easily understood: If the government can take away one person's rights, it can take away everyone's."

After the 2006 elections gave the Republicans a pretty serious series of defeats, Washington was abuzz with the spirit of bipartisanship, she wrote: "The sheer pleasure of getting lessons in etiquette from Karl Rove and the right-wing media passeth all understanding. Ever since 1994, the Republican Party has gone after Democrats with the frenzy of a foaming mad dog. There was the impeachment of Bill Clinton, not to mention the trashing of both Clinton and his wife--accused of everything from selling drugs to murder--all orchestrated by that paragon of manners, Tom DeLay.... So after 12 years of tolerating lying, cheating and corruption, the press is prepared to lecture Democrats on how to behave with bipartisan manners. Given Bush's record with the truth, this bipartisanship sounds like a bad idea on its face. These people are not only dishonest--they're not even smart."

Even on her own "scorching case of cancer", she found her sense of humor. "First the mutilate you; then they poison you; then they burn you. I have been on blind dates better than that."



At 9:18 AM, Blogger Fran said...

I agree. Molly Ivins was a good journalist, an amazing writer, and a stater of the truth - her best characteristic, IMHO. RIP, Molly.

Thanks for sharing the quotes, several I'd not seen before.



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