The Nauseating Hypocrisy Of Gloria Steinem

Gloria Steinem + Bill Clinton+ Monica Lewinsky=Sauce Bearnaise, at least to me.

When I read that Gloria Steinem had boarded the Harvey Weinstein Ethics Train Wreck —which she had helped start rolling when she tossed her alleged principles into the crapper to make excuses for Bill Clinton ; my favorite was when she shuffled off her previous position on inequalities of power making genuine consent impossible to say that every boss has a right to hit on a female subordinate once—I really didn’t want to revisit the topic. Her defense of Clinton during the Lewinsky scandal almost literally made me ill, and you know how Sauce Bearnaise syndrome works. (Don’t you?)

The aging feminist icon told The Guardian that she would not write the infamous May 22, 1998 New York Times column today, but that she does not regret writing the column then, because “What you write in one decade you don’t necessarily write in the next. But I’m glad I wrote it in that decade.” Translation: Outrageous hypocrisy you can get away with in one decade won’t always fly later.

Especially when it enabled two decades of sexual harassers, abusers and rapists with power who brutalized countless women, right, Gloria?

But Gloria’s credentials as an ethics corrupter needs to be renewed, and I am grateful to Jonathan Turley for taking the time when my queasy stomach couldn’t handle it. I couldn’t say it any better than the professor, who wrote in a blog post today (read the whole thing, here):

 …Steinem’s current position is as opportunistic and transparent as her 1998 column…In that column, she said that it was not sexual harassment for Clinton as Arkansas attorney general to allegedly sexually assault multiple women or, as President,  making advances on women working for him. At the annual comedy benefit for the Ms Foundation for Women, Steinem held forth on her rather contorted (and distinctly unfunny) logic:

What?  I am not even sure what Steinem means by “there’s probably more known about other women now.”  The column was written on March 22, 1998.  That was after all of the women had come forward or been named from Broaddrick to Flowers to Jones to Willey to Tripp to Lewinsky.  It was after after Clinton declared “I did not have sexual relations with that woman, Miss Lewinsky.” It was after Hillary Clinton denounced these women as little more than “bimbo eruptions.”  It was after the Starr report detailing these accounts.  Indeed, she wrote the column just before impeachment. In other words, Steinem rationalization is . . .  Clintonesque.

Among the allegations that Steinem knew about at the time was the claim of rape by Broaddrick… that respected investigatory journalist Lisa Myers and others found credible. …Of course, such open hypocrisy will have little effect on Steinem or her followers. Indeed, the adoring crowds still following Clinton demonstrate the ability of people to rationalize conflicting positions.  The same phenomenon is apparent in the Roy Moore controversy with people struggling not to believe a remarkably broad collection of women, former neighbors, former colleagues, and security officers.

Steinem once said that “Women may be the one group that grows more radical with age.” Perhaps so, but in Steinem’s case, the same cannot be said for honesty.




18 thoughts on “The Nauseating Hypocrisy Of Gloria Steinem

  1. More known about women? WTF does THAT mean, Gloria? What more is it that you know, exactly? Other than self serving opportunity when you see it?

    Never mind me. Long day. Tired.

    And now I’m pissed off to boot.

      • Your posts don’t piss me off. It’s just that I think I’m living on another planet. I have kick-ass, brilliant, kind, endlessly giving women in my life who are my closest girlfriends and who make me a better person by simply being in their proximity.

        I’ve raised some pretty wonderful young men, and a daughter who owns her own space, takes responsibility for it and is also kind and giving.

        When I was young, my early 20’s maybe, I thought we were all in this together. I now find myself lost in the woods.; like somehow the Susan B. Anthony, Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks path we were all on was hijacked by anger, revenge, hypocrisy and opportunity.

        Somewhere, somehow the message of “I want to walk along beside you” became “I want to destroy you”.

        It serves no one.

        • Oddly enough, I feel the same way, about every aspect of your post, Sylph. I have two boys and a girl; I felt the same way during the eighties, and I feel lost and bewildered at where we are today.

          Passing strange, no?

      • No, Jack. Pissed off is good. (Sometimes I even get pissed off at you.) It’s like the maxim — attributable to too many to name — about Art … that it should comfort the disturbed and disturb the comfortable. Re-exposing the steinems is cathartic; thus, when the catharsis, the warm anger, is exhausted, one is comforted. My yardstick for one of your new exposés is how much it disturbs me — the more it does, the closer I need to look at it, to examine it in the light of my personal biases (which regularly disturb me just by having to come to terms with those I hadn’t recognized before) as well as what, if any, action I might want to or need to take. This is all good. If somewhat painful.

  2. ”What more is it that you know, exactly?”

    She knows that the right people will quickly assimilate her staggering earlier deceitfulness and focus on the task at hand: undermining Righty with a Senate seat in the balance.

    As fate would have it, another is experiencing a rough patch right across the WI state line from you, but if she’s taken a stand on Franken, I haven’t read it.

    From “The Week” (one of the only two magazines [Sports Illustrated] we have delivered) Ryan Cooper (no Righty, he!) leaves little to the imagination:

    “Democrats must demonstrate their moral seriousness on this issue.

    ”Indeed, it would go no small distance to making up for the tawdry history of the late 1990s, when some feminists like Gloria Steinem cynically leveraged their cultural credibility to excuse President Clinton for an inherently abusive relationship with a 21-year-old subordinate.” (bolds mine)

    <That will leave a mark!

    “Long day. Tired.”

    I used to love driving between Hudson/River Falls/Prescott and LaCrosse along Big Muddy on Hwy 35 this time of year in the dark & seeing the radiant Christmas arrays in the distance.

    Look across the St. Croix River, there must be all manner of colorful light displays illuminating the MN bluffs; how calming.

    • Hudson itself is quite delightful. And while getting off at exit 2 means that I hit less traffic, I often take exit 1 on purpose – just so I can drive through my little glittering downtown with charming shops and lovely restaurants, see the lights reflecting off the St. Croix, and take joy in the fact that I get to live here.

  3. Gloria has simply deployed a flotilla of Authentic Frontier Gibberish. No other explanation. She’s adopted the old “If you can’t dazzle them with your brilliance, baffle ’em with your bull shit.” Frankly, among the faithful, she’s invulnerable. And she’s preaching to the choir. So it won’t much matter.

    • “ ‘If you can’t dazzle them with your brilliance, baffle ’em with your bull shit.’ ”
      That’s a gosh dang standard, OB, and well over half my schtick.

      It’s still on the table…right?

      • I learned the lawyer equivalent during my clerking after my second year. I was allowed to tag along to a hearing. A divorce. No complicated issues. The plaid jacket guy representing the other side was pretty unimpressive but I did notice one thing he knew: If you said something, someone might believe it. If you wrote it down, it was even more likely someone would believe it. And if you cited a case that you purported stood for what you were saying, you were pretty much home free.

      • “ ‘If you can’t dazzle them with your brilliance, baffle ’em with your bull shit.’ ”

        a.k.a the ‘Garfield the Cat life philosophy. Words to live by, in some situations.

  4. Especially when it enabled two decades of sexual harassers, abusers and rapists with power who brutalized countless women, right, Gloria?

    It also enabled the candidacy of the Honorable Donald J. Trump.

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