by Scoobie Davis
My Conversation With Ann Coulter
Ann Coulter was on fellow wingnut Michael Savage’s radio show tonight (the guest host was Lars Larsen). This time, I posed as “Russell.” This conversation is interesting in many ways. Here is the Columbia Journalism Review article I mentioned. And you can read about the New York Times columns and Falwell’s statements I accused Coulter of misrepresenting in Slander here (scroll down to “Ann Coulter’s Slander: The Title is Correct—But for the Wrong Reasons.”) I’m reporting; you decide. Did Paul Krugman make accusations about Slander and then failed to back them up? I doubt it. Krugman is too smart and Slander is too full of lies for Krugman to back away from such a challenge. There’s only one way to find out; someone should contact Krugman and ask him.
LARSEN: Russell, welcome to the Savage Nation. You’re on with Ann Coulter.
SCOOBIE: Thank you. Thank you. I got a good look at Treason and it has striking rhetoric and I just wanted to ask Miss Coulter: have there been any prominent liberal critics of Treason as there were of Slander. In fact, the Columbia Journalism Review supported the contention of liberal bloggers like the Daily Howler and Scoobie Davis Online who wrote that you were playing fast and loose with the facts and you made grievous misrepresen—
LARSEN: Let her answer the question, Russell, or I’ll drop you. Ann--
COULTER: Name one.
SCOOBIE: There were criticisms of her last book--
LARSEN: Give one of the criticisms, Russell.
SCOOBIE: That she misrepresented what people say--
COULTER: Name one.
SCOOBIE: such as Frank Rich—
LARSEN: Name one. Name one.
SCOOBIE: Yeah, on page five of Slander, she misrepresented two New York Times articles as well as misrepresenting the rhetoric of—
LARSEN: What was the misrepresentation, Russell. Let’s get it specific so she can answer it.
SCOOBIE: Okay, Absolutely. She said in terms of Jerry Falwell’s outrageous things that he said right after September 11th—Coulter wrote that it was because Falwell said something about gay marriage—which was not the case. In fact, Falwell said outrageous things and she downplayed Falwell’s outrageous—
[LARSEN DISCONNECTS SCOOBIE—I'M USED TO THIS]
LARSEN: Okay, Ann. Go ahead and respond to that.
COULTER: [inaudible] the article. No, Keep him there.
LARSEN: Oh, I dropped him. Sorry.
COULTER: Oh well, let me just say that is an example of, well, what is always done to conservatives—what was done to McCarthy. They call in with wild demagogic charges: You lie; you misrepresent things; you destroy reputations. But they can never actually name one. What is this babble about Frank Rich? On all of these web pages, which actually are great. The Daily Howler, I believe, is the one put out by Al Gore’s roommate. I have not read all of these but I have seen some of the alleged misrepresentations and it’s always something like “She called Al Gore a clod. Well, he’s not a clod. That’s a lie. That’s a lie. I demand a correction.” [Larsen chuckles] Look, I assure you, I’m published by Random House. They would correct anything—I would be enthusiastic about correcting any mistakes that were found. Despite all of the gnashing of teeth and the complaints about opinion being a factual mistake, there were none.
LARSEN: Ann Coulter is my guest. Her book is called Treason. Ann, we’ll be back in just a moment...
[NOTE: I TURNED OFF THE RECORDER AFTER THE STATION BREAK STARTED; AFTER LARSEN AND COULTER WERE BACK ON THE AIR, THEY BAGAN TO DISCUSS MY CALL; I TURNED ON THE RECORDER WHEN LARSEN WAS IN MIDSENTENCE]
LARSEN: --as the last one that we had.
COULTER: It illustrates the book’s point better than I could, especially after a long day.
LARSEN: Unbelievable. And you know I do at some point--
COULTER: Can I mention one other thing?
LARSEN: Go ahead.
COULTER: This has been a big liberal approach to go around claiming: their lies. Their lies. They seem not to even know what the meaning of truth is since it’s always something that isn’t a lie like the incoherent babble we got at the end there about Falwell or a Frank Rich column. The Frank Rich column had nothing to do with Jerry Falwell. Paul Krugman, an op-ed writer for the New York Times, was going around New York apparently saying that you know what Ann Coulter says in Slander is wrong. We’re going to get a correction on that. But he was saying this primarily at dinner parties and cocktail parties so we only got it back through the grapevine. Someone at my publisher starting calling his office asking to know what those corrections were because we certainly want to make them. Never did get a response from him. [Both Coulter and Larsen laugh]
LARSEN: And this is a guy who could have demanded it in print since he has a regular column.
COULTER: Oh yeah, no, they love talking about lies. They can never actually produce them though—much like they never produce any innocent victims accused by Joe McCarthy.
LARSEN: Exactly. Let’s take this call from Ellen from Maine...