Attacks like these are designed to dehumanize the target by casting her out of her very gender, rendering her less than woman, indistinguishable from a “bag of meat” were it not for the facade of womanhood she paints on with her lipstick each morning. Makeup is deemed the only thing that sets her apart from an inanimate sack of undifferentiated flesh.

Compare Olbermann’s malicious vitriol to the “Bush in a skirt” line used repeatedly to slur Sarah Palin. “Bush” and “a bag of meat” are essentially interchangeable in the hateful minds of those attacking Palin and Malkin. And a skirt, like lipstick, confers only the trappings of femininity to the wearer, not authentic womanhood. The target is portrayed an “it” masquerading as female.

Olbermann’s vile attempt to reduce Malkin to a bag of faux feminine parts was only the latest episode in a career riddled with examples of rank misogyny.