17 May 2007

A Man Of Good Will

Most of the time Christopher Hitchens is such a compassionless contrarian, one hesitates to agree with him even slightly. Occasionally, though, he hits all the marks and delivers a denunciation so viciously erudite, you have to admire the form if not the content. Case in point: Hitch's utterly unmagnanimous anti-elegy for Reverend Teletubby on Anderson Cooper 360 below. (BTW, see also his piece for Slate.) In this case, the accuracy of content's gravy, but you have to respect the rhetorical quality of such sucker-punches that dismiss Falwell and his brethren as "Chaucerian frauds" and characterize the man himself as "pinching his chubby little flanks." It's vintage vituperation, pure vinegar without even a drop of pseudo-palliating wine. Enjoy.


How's this for a TV show: Hitchens and Anthony Lane conducting weekly excoriations of popular and/or intellectual culture? Now that'd be a bitch-fest worth tuning in to see.

GEEKY FOOTNOTE: Observe Hitchens' sentence in the article: "The evil that he did will live after him." Kewpie dolls and laurel-leaves if you can catch the paraleptic implications thereto. (Or should I say rendered unto? )

3 comments:

nic said...

He's such a bitch! I also caught his 'smackdown' debate with Rev. Al Sharpton about God at the NYPL earlier this week. I didn’t get through all of the audience Q&A but I was tickled when the first person to the mic mentioned that the only time Hitchens claims to have prayed to God was to achieve an erection... Sharpton had some fun with that (“Was it a miracle?”).

I must admit that I get sucked into Hitchen’s tirades and then usually feel nauseated afterwards. I’m even going to his session at the Booked! series in Toronto and yes, I'm hoping he's full of piss and vinegar.

Dr J said...

I read an interview in which Hitch mentioned pleading for wood. Very funny. Whatever else, Hitch is eminently readable, and though I seldom agree with him, he has a great sense for turning phrase.

Pious Labours said...

Hitchens is the only person alive today I know of who has no reservations about completely, utterly, and unapologetically excoriating someone, even if it is a "man of faith," like Jerry Falwell. Gotta give him kudos for that, especially with our current nauseating degree of PCness.

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