Emmett Tyrrell
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POSITANO, Italy -- I am in Positano, Italy, on the Tyrrhenian Sea, soaking up the sun and pondering the immensities. Pompeii is just down the road, or over the mountain, or somewhere nearby, and it seems to me that Pompeii is the future for America if things continue under Barack the Pitiable, not Rome as the left-wingers and the right-wingers seem to have agreed upon. Pompeii went out in a cataclysm. Rome gently declined with a few massacres and plunderings as sad punctuation marks.

Yet 2014 is just around the corner and quite possibly the beginning of the end for Barack the Pitiable, if the independent voters have their way and temperamental conservatives turn out to vote. It was the temperamental conservatives who stayed home in 2012, when President Obama won four million fewer votes than in 2008. I have called the left-wing electorate who believe all the fanciful claptrap of the left-wing demagogues -- the environmental apocalypse, the feminist apocalypse and so forth -- the moron vote. What do we call the temperamental right-wingers who abstain from voting if their conservative candidate is not tailored to their every preference? That vote has got to be the idiot vote.

Allow me to pass on to more pleasant subjects, namely, a monumental event solemnized by the Americanologist, Taki. I am also editing the next issue of the The American Spectator from Positano, and Taki has, with many scholarly notations, just sent in his reflections on a colossal event. Babs, as he calls her, has announced retirement.

He calls it a "stop-the-presses moment," the day Barbara Wawa announced her retirement from television, after about a century of appearances on the flickering screen with President Bill Clinton, Pee Wee Herman, President Anwar Sadat, every Kennedy ever heard of, most Bushes, half of Hollywood and so many others. Barbara Wawa is actually Barbara Walters. She was given, Taki tells us, the moniker Wawa by a fellow named Michael Thomas for some obscure reasons. The portrait Taki paints of her is not mean spirited. In fact it is rather gentle, even melancholy. He met her 59 years ago, when he was but 16 and accompanying an older Greek friend -- both were Greek nationals of considerable inherited wealth -- to meet a young girl, Babs as it turned out, in Miami Beach. His friend did not see her again for 38 years, when he visited the Barcelona Olympics, and she was seated in the royal box of Spain's King Juan Carlos. By then Barbara had made it. She was the most famous woman on television and she bridged two worlds, the world news and celebrity news. Under her they coalesced. So that now an utter idiot like Justin Bieber is confused with a president or a poet in the public mind.

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Emmett Tyrrell

R. Emmett Tyrrell Jr. is founder and editor in chief of The American Spectator and co-author of Madame Hillary: The Dark Road to the White House.
 
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