These days I treat the news like a reporter was once instructed to treat Jerry Lee Lewis: if you don’t stand too close, you probably won’t get hurt. As a result, I’m just catching up with the context for Sam Bee calling Ivanka a “feckless cunt” on TV. On network TV no less, which was the doom of it. Context means nothing on network TV, and two words out of context can make or break a career.
The feckless cunt thing came up during a long bit about our new jack-booted wannabe storm troopers down at the ICE corral and their new hobby of yanking children away from their families for political reasons. Did I say political? Why yes, I did. It’s nothing but political, because the sole reason for it is to discourage families from coming to the United States. That’s whether they’re coming to file legitimate applications for political asylum, which is legal, or coming just for the great work opportunities, which, although we need the help, is illegal. ICE doesn’t care. They’re on a mission.
That’s an important subject. That policy makes the United States and every American citizen look terrible to whomever is watching, and the whole world is watching. Ivanka is a White House staffer who regularly shoots off her mouth on various media about policy issues, which makes her fair game for any sort of commentary that any American journalist or entertainer feels like throwing at her. She volunteered for the job, and that’s part of the job. John Bolton gets it worse, and so what? Anthony Scaramuci gets it fifteen times worse, and he’s been out of the job fifteen times longer than he was ever in it.
Besides the ever-important context aspect of this thing, Ivanka Kushner actually is a feckless cunt, in every sense of both words. Why are we even talking about this? Why is Ms. Bee in trouble? She is obviously worried about it. You can see it in the expression on her face. She’s got a show on network TV, I mean, it’s TBS, but that’s still a network. They pay you pretty good as long as you can move the ads that they charge a fortune for. That Ms. Bee is apologizing at all indicates to me that either she, or TBS, is under pressure from advertisers. At those prices, that will be corporate advertisers with lots of money to spend, and lots of options about where to spend it. Corporate advertisers who, coincidentally, are backing the play of our fabulous human stain of a presidential nightmare. So it’s “poor Ivanka” time (cue the phony tears).
Many people are wondering through all of this, “just what is a feckless cunt?” I have made a reputation as a polite, charming man and I am not one to go around calling women “cunts” unless the term happens to fit. Beyond the simple boundary of definition number one, definition number two would probably be, “a woman who has placed herself by some affirmative action or attitude beyond the requirements of polite consideration.” That’s the Fred definition that applies in this case, and I’m sure that Ms. Bee would agree with me. The women so described may be guilty of extreme aggression, extreme rudeness, or extreme pretention. (You may prefer, “pretentiousness.”) Ivanka qualifies as a cunt due to the fact that she is pretentious cunt if ever there were one.
On to feckless, upon the rocky shores of which word many a reader’s ship of understanding has been stove in. Various reporters and journalists are now having a field day imagining the confusion at the White House at trying to line the fecklessness up with the cunt thing, which, of course, they understand very well, since that is mere locker room talk. I’ll admit that feckless is off in the dark corners of my useable vocabulary. I sometimes confuse feckless with diffident, although this episode will surely clarify both words for me. Diffident means excessively shy due to lack of self-confidence; feckless means lacking good character, or being irresponsible. I confuse them because they are both words that I associate with rich kids, based upon my limited experience with the breed. Ivanka is not diffident, but she is definitely feckless. Being beautiful, from money, and married to more money, she casts her eye about her and finds only the need to strive for more money. She will climb upon any back that presents itself as a path upward on this trail. Just ask the kids who make her “designer clothes” over in the developing world. She lacks self-awareness like the Sahara lacks water. Now she’s on the team up at the White House, and the goal is to get even richer and grease the wheels of all of the other strivers after money before all else. That is a lack of character that shines like the blinding sun after a hurricane.
Ivanka, upon careful consideration, does turn out to be a feckless cunt. If language is to have any meaning at all, these words apply to Ivanka. She has earned them, and more, if you ask me. Samantha Bee was being gentle with her.