Re: Vidal Loco - (Page 89 of Arguably)
This title is a pun on vida loca, meaning crazy life, and this essay might rank as the bitchiest piece of writing ever. I have not read anything by Gore Vidal, so stand on the sidelines of this bitchfest gazing in awe.
Hitchens' gory hitpiece is at http://www.vanityfair.com/culture/featu ... ens-201002
A response defending Gore Vidal is at http://www.independent.co.uk/arts-enter ... 91507.html
- from the guy that Hitchens calls " a risible individual wedded to half-baked conspiracy-mongering".
Gore Vidal is praised at the start as the Oscar Wilde of our time, for combining tough-mindedness with subversive wit. But it quickly deteriorates, as Hitchens registers alarm at Vidal's praise for Timothy McVeigh, his blaming FDR for Pearl Harbor and his flirting with George Bush conspiracy theories on 9/11.
At the end, Hitchens says he is not committing literary patricide, but it appears this is only a disowning of paternity, not of murder. He says Vidal claimed that Hitchens had identified himself as Vidal's heir, when in fact that was always Vidal's own idea. So Hitchens still gets to compare himself to Oscar Wilde.
The dagger gets a real twist with Hitchens' comment that "Vidal in his decline has fans like David Letterman’s, who laugh in all the wrong places lest they suspect themselves of not having a good time." You can't get much more condescending than to imply there is no need to destroy some one's reputation because they have obligingly done the deed themselves through demonstration of abundant idiocy. No comment.