What a nasty lot of female would-be Masters of the Universe imperial America is turning out in these latter days!

Messalina was the wife of the Roman emperor Claudius, and she was not only notoriously lewd but an active, behind-the-scenes power manipulator.  She ended badly—executed by order of the senate.  Historians still debate how many of the charges against her were true and how many were fabrications of political enemies.  For the ancients, who already had the example of Cleopatra betraying Mark Antony at the worst possible moment, the lesson was clear: Women in power are a curse to good governance.  Such was pretty conventional wisdom right down to the dawn of the 20th century.  Of course, the horridness of the 20th century had nothing to do with an increased participation of women in politics.  But the onetime hope that women voters would make for kinder and gentler governments has proved a sad illusion.

Certainly, there were always counterexamples, despite Delilah, Jezebel, and Lucrezia Borgia.  Good Queen Bess was not always good, but she won the affection of many of her subjects and sought to serve the interests of her country.  Likewise, Queen Isabella—who, after all, bankrolled Columbus and helped to drive Islam out of her part of Europe.  But these were not behind-the-scenes powerbrokers but legitimate rulers.  So was Margaret Thatcher, a lawfully chosen ruler who was courageous, intelligent, and had a rational, if flawed, agenda.

In modern America the curse seems to have appeared with the consolidation of imperial government at home and abroad with the New Deal and World War II.  Eleanor Roosevelt was in a class all by herself.  The country sighed with relief with Bess Truman and Mamie Eisenhower in the White House.  Then came the celebrated phony royalty of not-very-bright and money-grubbing Jackie, which shows how debased American taste had become even by 1960.  We probably do not yet know all the evil committed by Nancy Reagan, with her promotion of bad advisors and astrological superstition.  It was reported that Barbara Bush vetoed a vice-presidential candidate because he smoked, leaving us with the clueless Quayle.  With the usual New England arrogance she undoubtedly helped to undermine the administration’s promises to social conservatives.  Then there is Madeleine Albright, who thinks war is a good thing.  And you thought the world got rid of that idea with Hitler.

But nobody can match Madame La Clinton, consiglieri and caporegime of the left wing, who took and takes the cake with unelected power-swaggering, and who by much testimony is not a very pleasant person to be around.  Polls have reported this possible future president to be one of the most popular people in America, which seems to indicate that Americans worship celebrities even when they have no accomplishments or merit and are not particularly attractive and likable.

Let’s also remember the unfortunate lady diplomat who gave Saddam the go-ahead to invade Kuwait, and Condoleezza Rice, who helped perpetrate one of the largest and most destructive lies in American history.

These, however, have been out-distanced by the Obama gathering of witches—Kagan and Sotomayor—on the Supreme Court, neither of whom would have been considered qualified even a few years ago, and both of whom are busy converting the former American society into a global Sodom and Gomorrah.  Your Honor and gentlemen of the jury, for my next exhibit I give you Susan Rice and Victoria Nuland.  Nuland has been criticized for using profanity and for offending allies in her vile leaked telephone conversation.  With the usual American shortsightedness, this criticism misses the point.  Why is this person, whom the people never vetted or voted for, acting as if the affairs of a great free nation were her personal game?

Let it not be said that I am against women.  I am a Southerner, and it is an article of my faith that women have a monopoly on the better part of human nature.  Nor do I deprecate the talents of the better sex.  My admiration for great female writers and women who have done great constructive public service is unbounded and often expressed.  I am the father of benevolent and accomplished daughters whom I cherish beyond all earthly things.  I have often remarked that female professors, man for man, so to speak, are better than their male colleagues.  I only want to make the point that one of the signs of decadence and corrupt times is unelected women exercising vicious and irresponsible power.  The bad men in power are more numerous and worse than the bad women, of course.  That is perhaps a topic for another time.