This is so the worst thing you're going to read all day.

Actual headline: Forget the tea party, what about the crumpets?

Actual subhead: Everybody knows some poor fool who married a woman like Christine O'Donnell or Michele Bachmann.

Actual lede: "To the connoisseur of American political theater, the most entertaining aspect of the 2010 election season has been the rise of the right-wing cuties -- political celebrities whose main qualification is looking terrific on television. From where I sit, in a comfortable chair in front of the tube, the GOP Cupcake Factor has enlivened an otherwise dreary campaign season."

Actual location of this article:

Whoops your progressive media got rank misogyny all up in it.

Not to mention a dose of disablism: Sarah Palin, Michelle Bachmann, and Christine O'Donnell aren't "crazy"—they're just assholes. And I shouldn't need to point out to someone as smart as Gene Lyons that there is a rich tradition of trying to marginalize and demonize women by calling them mentally ill, or hysterical, or "unhinged."

Just because they're women one doesn't like who promulgate policies with which one disagrees doesn't make it acceptable—i.e. not misogynistic—to invoke one of the most recognizable silencing strategies used against powerful women for all of documented history.

And, for the record, this shit isn't new. These conservative ladies are hiking a trail blazed by the loathsome Phyllis Schlafly before I was even born. She might not have held elected office, but this path was first forged in the footsteps she left marching against the ERA. She ain't known as the First Lady of Conservatism for nothing.

Disappearing her, and the conservative women who have followed her, in order to treat Palin, Bachmann, and O'Donnell as some new trend in conservative fuckery, isn't exactly feminist, either.

Oh, the irony.

Yeah, I know none of these ladies would piss on me if I were on fire, but, as I've said many times before, I will continue to defend Sarah Palin et. al. against misogynist smears not because I endorse her or her politics, but because that's how feminism works.

But I'd prefer not to be obliged in the first place.

[H/T to Shaker wisiti. Related Reading: Vanity Unfair, Same Boat; Grab a Paddle, Sarah Palin Sexism Watch, Part 28, On Choice, Parity for Palin.]

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