Category Archives: Ilana Mercer

Monica’s Back. In time for Halloween.

English, Gender, Hillary Clinton, History, Ilana Mercer, Pop-Culture

Talk about a throwback culture. The bullying lobby has made whining a national pastime. This group has some cheek calling out Monica Lewinsky for setting back their cause. What cause? Thou Shalt Not Offend? Here are some bully headlines from Drudge:

‘She’s setting us back years’…
‘She doesn’t know what she’s talking about’…

Nothing could make this scribe listen to what Monica has to say today. However, here’s the column written in March of 1999 for Canada’s North Shore News. It probably appeared in the Calgary Herald as well, but I cannot quite recall. It seems a lifetime away. Have I been in the trenches that long? The insights are still good, the writing overwrought (being brutally self-critical is the first rule of writing).

©By Ilana Mercer

After watching Monica Lewinsky’s TV debut, I realized who in all this was the real hero. The man who stood bravely between the public and this caricature of a woman is no other than finger-in-the-dyke, Kenneth Starr. It is the independent counsel we must thank for delaying the unleashing of the histrionic Monica.

Menaces like Monica are a product of the times, as is the TV-pimp, Bawbawa Walters. These sorry prototypes are carefully nurtured by the education system. Girls are raised to believe that “like” they deserve everything “and stuff.” That empowerment means they can abandon reason and realistic self-appraisal because they are “totally great.” Feelings rule. Venting and pouting are the only ways of being, and if a guy doesn’t return your calls, President or “whatever,” he’s a jerk. Above all, your sexuality, the true meaning of which evades these shallow sisters, is your shrine second only to your self-esteem.

Monica, of course, blames her woes on a “low self-esteem.” What else? Her demeanor, however, was anything but demure. Her admirers chose “self-possessed” to describe her brazen countenance, although “arrogant” is more apt. If anything, this girl suffers inflated self-importance with a dose of grandeur. Monica threw tantrums when the president of the United States shied away from blowing his sax over the phone for her. And the “pres.,” says Monica, should have broadcast their “relationship” to the world had he any decency. From where Monica is perched, the president’s men had no right to come between her and her lover. This is a woman whose chunky self-esteem is a match only to her keister.

Next, Monica says “sorry.” Fully 66 percent of those polled thought Monica’s apology to the First Wife and daughter was a sincere one. What the public now accepts as an apology is another sick sign of the times. Monica said she was contrite yet proceeded to peel-off layer by layer every scab that ever formed over the sorry affair. This exercise in expiation she carried out in view of millions of people. Apologies have, indeed, become nothing but Oprah-moments, where victims and perpetrators collaborate, under the media’s gaze, to belittle the meaning of loss and injustice.

The reactions in the media to Monica are a useful litmus test for the quality of commentary in the press. The Canadian National Post came tops, consistently assigning wry descriptions to the “bubble head.” Second was the New York Times, referring to the interview as “… a giddy Cosmo version of self-realization, a tale told in the psychosexual language of magazine covers that urge their readers to own their sexuality.”

The Globe and Mail, and the Vancouver Sun vied for a position on the lowest of rungs. Gaseously effervescent was the Globe and Mail’s John Allemang’s string of superlatives: “all-consumingly sensuous, frank, lucid, articulate, focused,” blah, blah, blah. Even her voice, “High, gentle and firm,” gave this man the hots. The Vancouver Sun upped the ante by dignifying Monica’s book with a review.

The reviewer called the book “delicious,” and offered a sample of Andrew Morton’s lumpen prose, showcasing these linguistic vacuities: Monica is analytical, sharp, brilliant, with a photographic memory … ad nauseum. Morton, who told Princess Diana’s “story,” is popping up under every rock with details about the genesis of Monica’s “pain,” which all lead to no other than Torry Spelling’s birthday party snubs. Spelling has a lot more to atone for than a bunch of dreadful films.

Monica’s heft is no longer upon us, although others will step forward to fill the only impression she ever left on the cultural stage, to paraphrase Sir William Shwenck Gillbert’s witticism. When they do, be mindful that girls like Monica don’t get betrayed; they simply star (no pun intended) in their own destructive passion plays. Monica shared her stain-filled affair with anyone who would stand still long enough to listen. And Monica selected her cast, including the sneering Linda Tripp and “Bomber Bill.”

©Ilana Mercer
A version of this article appeared in The North Shore News
March 9, 1999

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Me And The Idiocracy

Healthcare, Ilana Mercer, Intelligence, Internet, Media, Politics, Technology

“Dying For Obama’s Deadly Dogma” must be rather good, if a total of four twitter twits saw fit to “un-follow” me, subsequent to its posting.

I’m used to the Idiocracy! To paraphrase Mark Twain, I can live for two months on a good compliment from worthy, literate people like my editor at Quarterly Review. He wrote:

“Intellectuals are fated to be outcasts.”

And this from the gifted, successful, mystery novelist Sibella Giorello:

“In a word: BRILLIANT.”

Thanks to both. You made my day.

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UPDATED: American Rabbis For Israel First (Good Column; Back Page On WND)

Ilana Mercer, Israel, Judaism & Jews, Left-Liberalism, Morality, Nationhood, Paleolibertarianism

“American Rabbis For Israel First” is the current column, now on WND. An excerpt:

“Here is an angry and cogent Israeli response to incessant provocation and violence, and one of the factors that triggered the Gaza campaign,” wrote a reader. In his missive, the reader had attached an article for my edification. Chief among the problems with the article is that its author, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, is not an Israeli. Rabbi Boteach is an American. Online, he describes himself as “‘America’s Rabbi,’ whom The Washington Post calls ‘the most famous Rabbi in America.”

Rabbi Boteach’s Huffington Post defense of Israel titled “Fed Up With Dead Jews” is thus not an “Israeli” response to the latest flare-up between Hamas and Israel, but a Jewish-American one.

Mistaking a Jewish-American defense of Israel for an “Israeli” one is understandable. When it comes to things Israel, very many American Jews sound like Israelis. While one would expect an Israeli to vigorously defend his homeland, in theory and in practice, one does not expect an American—Jewish, Muslim, Buddhist or Baha’i—to defend the interests of a foreign country, with the intensity ordinarily reserved for one’s own.

In “Fed Up,” Rabbi Boteach inveighs: “We have every right to be fed-up. No nation should have to live like this. No nation should have to die like this. … what we do know is that the option of dead Jews is no longer acceptable. We have a right to live.”

Rabbi Boteach and Israel are as one.

Far be it from me to question the Rabbi’s capacity to commit to two countries. Seamlessly does Boteach spread passion and “Kosher Lust” (his new book) wherever he goes. In question here is the unseemliness of dual patriotism; the conflict of interest, if you will. …

… Contra Boteach, my own passions are tempered by time and place. I live in America. My neighbors are American. This is my home. I may be a Jew, but I’m an American patriot first. My loyalties lie with my (war-weary) countrymen, first. …

An American writer’s intellectual energy ought to focus on American interests, first. Personal probity demands it! Otherwise, the columnist is a fifth column.

Read the complete column. “American Rabbis For Israel First” is now on WND.

UPDATE: GOOD COLUMN; BACK PAGE. From the Facebook Thread:

Kerry Crowel: “Whoa … Ilana, that is one hell of a good column.”

Ilana Mercer: “Kerry Crowel, thanks. I thought so. But it’s on second page, as usual, on WND. Second page is more or less the rule for one of the site’s longest standing columns. When thinking of where to publish next book, one takes into account the kind of promotion the column gets. Or no promotion, rather. But thanks for your kind comment.”

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Classical Liberalism, Europe, Free Speech, Ilana Mercer

It’s official and I’m delighted: JUNGE FREIHEIT, a German weekly newspaper of excellence, has welcomed me as a columnist. I thank my editor, Moritz Schwarz, for his warm welcome, cordiality and professionalism (the kind I’ve yet to encounter in the New World).

Our German readers can now follow this column and other worthy writers in JUNGE FREIHEIT.

UPDATE (6/15): The May 9 edition of JUNGE FREIHEIT features an interview with this writer about Into the Cannibal’s Pot. You’d be hard-pressed to find interested parties in the American print press—and the German press must navigate politically correct speech codes, enforced across Europe.

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Junge Freiheit On South Africa

Europe, Ilana Mercer, Multiculturalism, Race, South-Africa

For our German readers, the German weekly Junge Freiheit, to which I hope to contribute regularly, features an interview about Into the Cannibal’s Pot, conducted by Moritz Schwarz. Highlights of the English version should run in the US and South Africa in the coming months.

MORE @Junge Freiheit. (I suspect the archive has to be searched for this issue: © JUNGE FREIHEIT Verlag GmbH & Co. 20/14 /09. Mai 2014.)

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Flu Effects And Future Plans

Healthcare, Ilana Mercer,

Boring. Seven weeks after first contracting a virulent strain of flu that waylaid me for this long, I thought I was finally well enough to resume running. Yesterday, I covered my usual 3.5 miles and felt just dandy. The next day (today), the ribcage seized up in pain.

I would not have ordinarily visited the doctor, but since this pox has lasted so long, I went. It turns out that, as a result of coughing so long and so hard (and so long ago), I have Costochondritis.

Has anyone heard of “Costochondritis”? It has nothing to do with that shopping Eden, Costco. Rather, it’s torn or inflamed interstitial tissue “at the junction of the rib and its cartilage.”

More drugs, physical inaction and weight gain. I’ll have to make up for this by working on the new book, pain permitting.

On a happier note, thanks to a remarkably generous donor who came through today, I should be able to resume work on a special feature you’ll love, once I recover fully. Funds permitting, an app. too is in the works. Last year, Barely a Blog was made mobile-friendly. Make sure you upload the BAB icon to your mobile phone.

And stay tuned.

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