Christopher Buckley has written fiction, non-fiction, plays, poetry, and dozens of articles for prominent publications. I have enjoyed his work, but this, "No Way To Treat A First Lady", is absolutely the best piece of writing he has done. In satirical pieces he has written in the past there was often spirited debate about just who was being put through the meat grinder, not so this time. Often real names are used with only the last named thinly disguised, and as a rule if a person is mentioned they are generally next in line for being flayed. There are times a writer is said to have a metaphorical rapier like wit; Buckley uses a rapier but his drips blood.
There are times when he simply has a bit of fun when giving the First Lady the moniker of Lady Bethmac. However most of the time he is out to score and for that I applaud him. He describes one attorney who you will immediately recognize as having been part of a certain dream team for a Heisman trophy winner. He describes the attorney as not being satisfied with acquitting a multiple murderer, but needing to stand in front of the press while blood still drips from his client's shoes.
Buckley was clearly incensed by the events in Brentwood and the farce that followed in both the criminal and civil courts. Where else but in America can you be found not guilty and walk free, and then be found responsible for the same crime. The latter is still not really an issue for one need only relocate to a friendly state like Florida, which in addition to being a state that is unable to successfully conduct an election for dogcatcher also welcomes certain dregs of society and happily protects their assets.
Great satire is hilarious, exceptional satire is also about and contains a great deal of serious thought on the people and subjects it touches and then shreds. This is a very amusing book to read, but when also acknowledged for the social commentary it contains, the book is elevated well above a humorous read.
Buckley the elder is an established man who has earned a place in the pantheon of great writers, thinkers, and modern persons that have earned the respect to be as skilled in a variety of disciplines as to have renaissance used to describe their talents. Christopher, or Buckley the younger, did not fall far from the paternal tree. He did land in soil more acidic and perhaps more accessible to readers than his father. In any event we are fortunate to have another Buckley that will continue to offer a unique view on life.