FLASHBACK. Ashley Judd's Great South African Adventure

My colleague Mickey White posted on Ashely Judd’s (I think she might have been famous at one time, but who knows?) epic rant at the Women’s March. If you are thinking you are dealing with a mature and sane woman, then Judd’s behavior strikes one as peculiar. But when you realize that Judd is shallow and rather stupid person who has no core values or beliefs beyond her own celebrity, well, it all makes a lot more sense.

Let’s hop in the Time Machine and take a trip back to 2007 or so and visit RedState co-founder Josh Treviño, who also blogged as Tacitus at the now defunct tacitus.org. In Josh’s day job, in 2005, he’d had to travel with Ashley Judd on a trip to South Africa and gave one of the most hilarious accounts of a brain-dead out-of-control celebrity feeding on their own ego I’ve ever read. Unfortunately, Judd’s lawyers didn’t think it was all that funny (lawyers and cops never think it is as funny as you do) and he was forced to take the essay down (it was cheaper than the alternative). Fortunately for Western Civilization, copies still exist. This one via Ace of Spades. Some highlights:

And what, you ask, was travel with Ashley Judd like? For starters, there were the little things:

She obsessively wiped down her little VAIO laptop with alcohol wipes. To sterilize it. As she did after. every. use. (In her Glamour confessional, she did mention this as a “control” compulsion.)

She was badly constipated, perhaps because she chowed down on Powerbars with alacrity. And she talked about it a lot.

She was prone to making pronouncements about her spirituality. After an interviewer asked her about it, she replied: “Church and religion are SO important to me. The God thing, the Jesus thing, the Buddha thing, so important to me.”

And then there were the bigger things.

My first meeting with her was in the South African Airways lounge in Cape Town. She showed us this photo of her rallying the Cats fans at a Kentucky basketball game. She said, “Have you SEEN this photo? I LOVE this photo. We weren’t doing so well, and so I came out at halftime — even though I was on crutches! — and rallied the crowd. And they SAY….” — dramatic pause — “….that that made the difference in bringing us victory.”

More? You want more?

Meanwhile, we went to clinics. We went to an orphanage. We went to Soweto. And we saw horrible things. Dire things. Things like a kid so poor he glided past us on a single rollerblade. Yeah — one on one foot. That impressed me. And every place we went, Ashley Judd swooped down like a good Southern matron and hugged the small children. She cried with destitute mothers. She stroked the heads of poor black people. The photographers from Glamour and Conde Nast loved it. And then, she’s back in the car, and Ashley is tired, and Ashley is sick, and Ashley needs acupuncture. I asked the YouthAIDS senior person whether maybe Ashley was a bit spoiled, and she told me the story of how Ashley refused to do their first promotional tour to Cambodia unless she was allowed to fly British Airways first class all the way. “That’s quite an expense for us as a humanitarian organization….but we ended up having to do it.”

A profound love for humanity, but no time for humans: the very picture of the narcissist celebrity leftist.

Fast-forward a few days. The road to the De Beers mines in Cullinan is a long one, and so there was plenty of time for Ashley Judd, teapot in hand and this time with a cup, to hold forth on the critical issues of the day to the captive audience in her Land Rover. I sat behind her and listened to her monologues on her constipation, her preferences in clothing, and her water temperature preferences:

“You have to drink warm water — body temperature is best — because otherwise the cold makes your gut clench up and the body has to expend energy warming it. That’s why I never use ice.”

Oh, there is much more:

And then there was her participation in the great moral struggles of the modern era:

“I was so thrilled to meet Bishop Tutu. He has been such a hero to me. I used to listen to records of his speeches smuggled out in the 1980s. He so inspired me, with his fight against these forces that totally perverted and distorted what spirituality and religion are supposed to mean. I really think that his fight then echoes my fight today in my own country. I’ve gone and spoken with so many of these Evangelicals and these conservative churches, trying to open their eyes to what faith is supposed to be about.” Sigh. “It’s so much like Bishop Tutu’s struggle.”

Historical NB: in the 1980s, Bishop Desmond Tutu was internationally known and his speeches were widely available. Furthermore, no one smuggled anything out on records. I’m just saying. On the positive side of things, Judd is one of the few Americans I’ve spoken with to appear to grasp that apartheid was at bottom a theological problem: although comparing the Afrikaner perversion of Dutch Calvinism with Christian conservatism in the United States is damned foolish.

And on to the finish:

For lunch, we went to a delightful open-air restaurant run by an elderly Boer couple. We drank rooibos tea and scarfed down biltong in the heat of a veld afternoon, and all was lovely. Ashley Judd regaled us with tales of profound human suffering:

“I will never fly Virgin again. Last time, Dario and I were in the first-class section, and they seated us where we could hear EVERYTHING going on in the galley. Clink, clink, clink, the whole time. I asked them to stop, and the little motherfuckers gave me such attitude. It was horrible — my husband saw what was coming, and he reached out to hold my hand, and I bawled all the way from Los Angeles to London.”

Later, emerging from a Catholic-run mental-retardation care facility with some particularly horrific cases of human misery, she leaned over to confide, “My sister could never handle this. Not like I can.”

Ah, Wynonna. Fragile, glasslike Wynonna. Not durable and hardy like your sis.

Read the whole thing. You really owe it to yourself.