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July 19, 2011

The Wendi Deng Show

Wendi Deng responds to attack Parliament


“So now we know the real reason Rupert Murdoch married 42-year-old Wendi Deng: her kick-ass slam dunk. As the stupid git in the checked shirt sabotaged Louise Mensch’s questioning to attack Rupert Murdoch with a foam pie, Ninja Wendi jumped to his defence. And she didn’t hold back. Was her swift reaction and killer shot helped by years of playing volleyball? What a gal.”– from: Kapow! Wendi Murdoch brings girl power to Parliament (Lucy Jones/Telegraph)

The folks at Edelman, Murdoch’s spanking new PR consultants, must be kvelling. I’m not suggesting they had anything to do with the shaving cream attack on Murdoch in front of the Parliament hearing Tuesday. God no. But they might keep that crackpot in mind come Christmas.

Remember Karl Rove’s golden slogan, politics is TV with the sound off?

Wendi Deng Parliament hearing screen grab

Turning on the tube about twenty-minutes before the scary-close shave, I was already admiring how Murdoch was framed for such a long stretch of TV time between two attractive women, with the elegant, demure Wendi positioned perfectly between Rupert and James. (Of Wendi’s entrancing, sort of hypnotic jacket, The Globe and Mail claimed — and, actually, I wouldn’t put this past Edelman — it was: “reminiscent, ironically, of the one worn by Jacqueline Kennedy on the day of John F. Kennedy’s assassination.”)

Deng AP attack combo

Such is the power of political celebrity and the ever growing tabloidization of traditional news that Mr. Crackpot allowed Wendi Murdock to steal considerable thunder from the Murdoch testimony. So, instead of the solitary take-away of a pass-the-buck CEO and a nervous and obfuscating Murdoch son, a sympathetic co-star had a literally smashing world-wide introduction yesterday on “the Rupert Show,”, with that much mind share siphoned off by the much more mouthwatering storyline of “The Battle Cry of the Tiger Wife.

(Stay tuned for a “part 2″ where we drill down on the more subtle optics from yesterday’s hearing.)

(photos 1 and 3: Reuters/Parbul TV via Reuters Tv caption 1: Wendi Deng (2nd L) lunges towards a man trying to attack her husband, News Corp Chief Executive and Chairman Rupert Murdoch, during a parliamentary committee hearing on phone hacking at Portcullis House in London July 19, 2011. caption 2: Rupert Murdoch’s wife Wendi Deng (C) looks on as BSkyB Chairman James Murdoch and News Corp Chief Executive and Chairman Rupert Murdoch (R) appear before a parliamentary committee on phone hacking at Portcullis House in London July 19, 2011. Rupert Murdoch told the British parliament on Tuesday that giving evidence on the phone-hacking and corruption scandal that is engulfing his global media empire was “the most humble day of my life”.) (photo 2 : AP caption: In this combo made from images taken from video, committee members and Wendi Deng, wife of Rupert Murdoch, foreground left, react as a protestor, at left in checked shirt , tries to throw a paper plate covered in shaving foam over Rupert Murdoch as he gives evidence to a House of Commons Committee on the News of the World phone hacking scandal in London, Tuesday, July 19, 2011. Video of 42-year-old Deng jumping forward to smack a protester with a pie aimed at Murdoch’s face quickly went viral, and numerous fan pages quickly popped up on social networking sites such as Facebook praising her quick rapid reflexes.)

  • tinwoman

    Well, where to start?  Obviously conservative men crush on middle aged women who are conventionally attractive.  Michelle Bachmann and Sarah Palin better watch out, a new 40+ schoolmarmish type is usurping them in the fantasies of right wing men everywhere. 

    But why?  I think we can all agree that conservative men do not actually like powerful women.  Look at their reactions to Hillary Clinton or Barbara Boxer.  Boxer asked a military officer to call her by her proper title and they’ve never forgiven her.  And judging by the utterances of their icons, they sure do not like intelligent women.

    A few thoughts:

    Conservative men crush on women who appear to buy into their own narratives of violence and aggression towards the world (“Ninja Wendy”, “Mama Grizzly”, et al.)

    They crush on older MILF types for some reason I can’t fathom.  Dominatrix fantasies? 

    However these women must be feminine and polished, attractive in a conventional sense.  Pink suit, slender, high heels, hair long and well done, etc. etc. (Ann Coulter and her eternal little black dress and stilletos are a good example here).  No dowdiness for the conservative male!   Why?  Well, this puts the power back in his court.  Consider the following :

    “the power that high heels (or any traditionally feminine clothing) seems to convey is very sexualized power. And very sexualized power is false power, because in order to be sexy someone has to find you sexy, and so the power actually is in the beholder.”

    So sure, you can be a female executive or politician, but you better be one that dresses for the male gaze, and by extension, respects the *real* power in the room.

    And the whole pushy, bitchy, in your face thing–that’s just the conservative personality generally, male or female.  Like seeks like.

    Also, they like to crush on women that fit into categories they can understand.  “Liberal women” don’t fit easily into their narratives–an Asian lesbian lawyer is undefined to them, neither sweet Suzy Wong “I luv you long time” nor Ninja Wife–so they do the only thing they know how to do.  Mock and deride.

    Surely every old right wing guy in the TV audience dreamed of being Rupert and having an attractive wife half their age lashing out at their enemies for them–oh the bliss!  Also, in their minds, it proves that attractive women half the age of conservative asswipes can still marry such asswipes ”for love” and not for their fat, fat wallets–for what else does her hissy fit prove, if not love?

    See?  You can be the most vicious old billionaire prune on the planet, almost universally hated, and somewhere, out there, is a lovely woman who really does care.  The conservative dream.

    • http://www.bagnewsnotes.com Michael Shaw

      Thanks for the analysis. It’s really intriguing to me how much gender is a powerful theme in our politics right now, thus coming under the eye of The Bag. Looking back on Clinton/Obama for a moment, I assumed that race took precedence somehow as a topic of national importance and need for discussion. Looking at the cultural and political tensions/fissures surrounding gender roles and also the emergence of gay rights as an issue and a movement, though, I’m certainly feeling differently.

    • Liberalismisamentaldisorder

      Wow, you really are ignorant.  Conservative men LOVE powerful women with VALUES!  That is why they do not like Hillary Clinton. 

      Your comments are childish and naive, like all liberals.

  • tinwoman

    Well, where to start?  Obviously conservative men crush on middle aged women who are conventionally attractive.  Michelle Bachmann and Sarah Palin better watch out, a new 40+ schoolmarmish type is usurping them in the fantasies of right wing men everywhere. 

    But why?  I think we can all agree that conservative men do not actually like powerful women.  Look at their reactions to Hillary Clinton or Barbara Boxer.  Boxer asked a military officer to call her by her proper title and they’ve never forgiven her.  And judging by the utterances of their icons, they sure do not like intelligent women.

    A few thoughts:

    Conservative men crush on women who appear to buy into their own narratives of violence and aggression towards the world (“Ninja Wendy”, “Mama Grizzly”, et al.)

    They crush on older MILF types for some reason I can’t fathom.  Dominatrix fantasies? 

    However these women must be feminine and polished, attractive in a conventional sense.  Pink suit, slender, high heels, hair long and well done, etc. etc. (Ann Coulter and her eternal little black dress and stilletos are a good example here).  No dowdiness for the conservative male!   Why?  Well, this puts the power back in his court.  Consider the following :

    “the power that high heels (or any traditionally feminine clothing) seems to convey is very sexualized power. And very sexualized power is false power, because in order to be sexy someone has to find you sexy, and so the power actually is in the beholder.”

    So sure, you can be a female executive or politician, but you better be one that dresses for the male gaze, and by extension, respects the *real* power in the room.

    And the whole pushy, bitchy, in your face thing–that’s just the conservative personality generally, male or female.  Like seeks like.

    Also, they like to crush on women that fit into categories they can understand.  “Liberal women” don’t fit easily into their narratives–an Asian lesbian lawyer is undefined to them, neither sweet Suzy Wong “I luv you long time” nor Ninja Wife–so they do the only thing they know how to do.  Mock and deride.

    Surely every old right wing guy in the TV audience dreamed of being Rupert and having an attractive wife half their age lashing out at their enemies for them–oh the bliss!  Also, in their minds, it proves that attractive women half the age of conservative asswipes can still marry such asswipes ”for love” and not for their fat, fat wallets–for what else does her hissy fit prove, if not love?

    See?  You can be the most vicious old billionaire prune on the planet, almost universally hated, and somewhere, out there, is a lovely woman who really does care.  The conservative dream.

  • Pingback: Michael Shaw: Reading the Pictures: Murdoch Testimony: Missing a Few Marbles? | FierceReason.com

  • Markcaywood

    That “attack” was staged by Murdoch’s people to make him and his young chinese spy/wife sympathetic.

  • Anonymous

     As to the Clinton/Obama choice, my then-84 year-old father, a liberal Iowa Democrat, said during the campaign, “If it’s between Clinton and Obama, Obama will win. They’ll accept a black man before they’ll accept a woman.” He was talking about Democrats and it still surprises me that he called it so accurately.

    I wonder, if the national contest had come down to a woman and a black man, how his prediction would have fared.

  • Megan

    We may yet find out.

  • jonst

    TopCathy, it’s always about race or sex.  It couldn’t be that the people of Iowa simply disliked Clinton and or her positions. It could not be that they liked Obama’s positions. It couldn’t be that they simply wanted a change…..i.e. Bush, Clinton, Bush, Clinton.  Nah, it could not be that.

  • Anonymous

     Go away.

  • Glenn

    Like the former half-term quitting Grifter? Those kind of values?

  • Anonymous

    As I remember it, Clinton and Obama were broadly similar in their views, so people had to choose based on something else. Sure, I heard some people complain about the Bush, Clinton, Bush, Clinton issue.  My father thought it was more basic than that, even for liberal Iowans.

  • jonst

    TopCathy…..yes, it is certainly possible that your Father was correct. But in this case, I doubt he was. I would argue, actions have consequences. The Clinton’s ran and governed against what THEY called the Left Wing of the Party. AKA ‘Democrats who disagreed with the Clinton’s on anything’. This is also known as the ‘bash a hippie’ strategy. Well, the base of the Iowa party is a labor/liberal dominated group. I would argue. Harkin and Fred Harris still resonate in Iowa. So….the ‘hippies’ had long memories…..and ambushed her in Iowa.  Of course all this turned out to be ironic…..Obama is an ever bigger triangulator…..he loves to talk tough……to his base.  Well, his day might be coming soon too.  We’ll see. The best thing he has going for him is the other side is insane.

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