Mar 9, 2009 5 Comments ›› Pat Dollard
And Now, a Moment of Civil Discourse With Ann Coulter
By Dave Itzkoff
Ever wondered what would happen if a hapless reporter from The New York Times attempted to interview Ann Coulter, the writer, columnist and conservative firebrand? Hereâ€™s your answer.
Last week, we sent a few questions via e-mail to Ms. Coulter, the author of books like â€œGuilty: Liberal â€˜Victimsâ€™ and Their Assault on Americaâ€ and â€œIf Democrats Had Any Brains, Theyâ€™d Be Republicans,â€ for a story about her debate with Bill Maher at Radio City Music Hall on Monday.
Here in its entirety (with all capitalization intact and a couple of redactions to protect its authorâ€™s privacy) is the text of Ms. Coulterâ€™s reply.
from Ann Coulter
to Dave Itzkoff
date Thu, Mar 5, 2009 at 9:45 AM
subject Re: NY Times questions/Bill Maher debate
HELLO! ANSWERS IN CAPS BELOW!
On Mar 3, 2009, at 5:20 PM, Dave Itzkoff wrote:
Dear Ms. Coulter,
This is Dave Itzkoff at the New York Times; [your publicist had] given me your contact information and said youâ€™d be open to answering a few questions for a story Iâ€™m writing about your coming debates with Bill Maher.
Many thanks, in advance, for taking these questions â€” let alone opening an email from the New York Times.
Iâ€™LL HAVE YOU KNOW, I AM THE TREASON TIMES MOST LOYAL READER. I WAS HOPING YOUR EMAIL WAS A DISCOUNT SUBSCRIPTION OFFER.
For your background, I interviewed Bill by phone yesterday and will be attending the debate next week at Radio City Music Hall. Here are the questions I was hoping you could answer by Thursday, if possible:
*How did you first start getting booked as a guest on Billâ€™s â€œPolitically Incorrectâ€ show? What did you enjoy about appearing on it?
I DONâ€™T REMEMBER HOW IT STARTED, BUT PI WAS MY FAVORITE SHOW ON TV LONG BEFORE I BECAME A GUEST. IT WAS FUNNY AND POLITICAL AND UNLIKE MOST SNOOZEFEST POLITICAL SHOWS, BILL BOOKED GUESTS WHO DIDNâ€™T ALL AGREE WITH ONE ANOTHER.
*I know that Bill has very fond recollections of your days as a â€œPolitically Incorrectâ€ guest, but your more recent appearances on his HBO â€œReal Timeâ€ show seemed very contentious.
YES, I WAS HIS MOST FREQUENT GUEST ON POLITICALLY INCORRECT. DOES BILL HAVE A NEW SHOW?
Have the events of recent years put a strain on your relationship with Bill, or do you still regard him as a friend (politics notwithstanding)?
I LOVE BILL, BUT I HATE HIS RETARDED MOVEON.ORG AUDIENCE ALMOST AS MUCH AS HE DOES.
*How did the idea of these debates with Bill come about,
and what made you want to participate in them?
I THINK MY AGENT TOLD ME ITâ€™S A BENEFIT FOR SOME HORRID DISEASE LIKE RESTLESS LEG SYNDROME. ALL I KNOW IS, Iâ€™M GETTING A PRIVATE CAR.
Are they an attempt to foster more bipartisanship in the new Obama era?
YOU SEEM TO BE UNCLEAR ON THE CONCEPT OF â€œDEBATE.â€ THE IDEA, SINCE AROUND THE TIME OF, OH SAY, ARISTOLE, IS TO DERIVE TRUTH. I DO NOT BELIEVE THE POINT OF THE LINCOLN-DOUGLAS DEBATES, FOR EXAMPLE, WAS TO â€œFOSTER MORE BIPARTISANSHIP.â€
An opportunity to laugh at the current state of our politics (and/or economy)?
NO, THATâ€™S A NANCY PELOSI PRESS CONFERENCE YOUâ€™RE THINKING OF.
*Even though you and Bill are on opposite sides of the aisle, some people Iâ€™ve spoken to see the two of you as essentially performing the same professional function, even though youâ€™re a political commentator and heâ€™s a comedian. Do you see that as a fair assessment? Do you ever say things just to get a laugh, or just to provoke your audience?
I DONâ€™T SAY THINGS JUST TO â€œGET A REACTIONâ€ OR â€œPROVOKE MY AUDIENCEâ€ ANY MORE THAN ANYONE WHO TALKS ABOUT IDEAS DOES. I IMAGINE CHURCHILL HOPED TO â€œPROVOKE HIS AUDIENCEâ€ WITH HIS â€œWE SHALL FIGHT ON THE BEACHESâ€ SPEECH. Iâ€™M TRYING TO EXPRESS IDEAS, USUALLY ABOUT IMPORTANT ISSUES, AND IF A POINT IS MADE WELL THAT WILL TEND TO ELICIT A REACTION.
*Do you consider yourself as speaking for the conservative movement, or just someone who has attracted many conservative fans? Something else?
I THINK I SPEAK FOR ALL AMERICANS WHO THINK NEWSPAPER EDITORS WHO PRINT THE DETAILS OF TOP-SECRET ANTI-TERRORIST INTELLIGENCE GATHERING PROGRAMS ON PAGE ONE IN WARTIME SHOULD BE EXECUTED FOR TREASON.