Friday, October 13, 2006

A few words before he goes.


Yet another anecdote about how crazy Hitchens has become. Yeah, so he's crazy. Why indulge him? Why invite him to debates and dinner parties in the full expectation of receiving an earful of spit-flecked, purple-faced insults? There cannot be that much entertainment value in watching someone disintegrate. There is some speculation that Hitchens is merely succumbing to alcholism, and worry expressed that this will send him to an early grave - but there is no reason for anyone who is not family to be concerned about that prospect. And at any rate, it isn't true. He may be drinking, he may be self-loathing, he may be consoling himself by ranting away like the fucked old ex-prize fighting misantrhope that he is. But this doesn't explain anything. Hitchens - to be sure, a redoubtable polemicist against the personnel in his time - has always had his nose parked squarely in the fundamentals of capitalism and empire. Or as I put it elsewhere, this is not a noble mind overthrown, even if there was some kind of regime change post-9/11. Even if, that is to say, the shade of Kingsley Amis took control from that moment of "exhilaration".