On a sour note

I was a little sickened by John’s post on Hitchens. Frankly, it made me reconsider blogging here at all. Not just because I’ve never thought much of Hitchens, not just because the post because garnered our first ever link from Politico, but because Hitchens (to his immense credit) is the last person on earth who would want an edict against having his corpse kicked.

Corey Robin (via) sums up Hitchens in the great man’s own words:

[On the use of cluster bombs by the US in Afghanistan] If you’re actually certain that you’re hitting only a concentration of enemy troops…then it’s pretty good because those steel pellets will go straight through somebody and out the other side and through somebody else. And if they’re bearing a Koran over their heart, it’ll go straight through that, too. So they won’t be able to say, “Ah, I was bearing a Koran over my heart and guess what, the missile stopped halfway through.” No way, ’cause it’ll go straight through that as well. They’ll be dead, in other words.

Sorry to be such a dick so close to the holidays. I usually read all the comments on my posts here, but I may not be too involved in these.

Update. John’s explanation makes perfect sense to me.

225 replies
  1. 1
    AxelFoley says:

    [gets a bucket of popcorn and some fruit punch]

  2. 2
    Corner Stone says:

    So, do we have restrictions on what we can post about in this thread?

  3. 3
    Belafon (formerly anonevent) says:

    Meh. If this site turns into FPers fighting over how annoying each others posts are, it’ll be boring. That’s what us commenters are for.

  4. 4
    PeakVT says:

    Maybe we should talk about Václav Havel instead.

  5. 5
    MacKenna says:

    I wasn’t able to post a comment in John’s thread because I had “nothing nice to say.”

    Hitchens supported and promoted the Bush administration and the invasion of Iraq to the end. I would chalk it up to his booze consumption, but that’s being charitable.

  6. 6
    amk says:

    @AxelFoley: egg.sack.lee.

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent): egg.sack.lee.

  7. 7
    JPK says:

    Drum had a take on Hitchens the other day that I thought was pretty much on the mark…

  8. 8
    clayton says:

    @Corner Stone: no, idiot.

  9. 9
    shecky says:

    Don’t let the door whack your ass on the way out.

    I keed, I keed…

    Yeah, Hitch supported the Iraq war. You know who else supported the Iraq war, don’t you…?

  10. 10

    As Kevin Drum pointed out, Hitchens’ politics were *always* contemptible. He basically went straight from being a Trotskyite to being a shill and cover for right-wing lunatics. There is a long British tradition, of which both Sully and Hitchens are examples[fn1], of erudition, sarcasm and writing ability to cover over hateful beliefs and a complete inability to think through policy choices. Being innumerate helps.

    [fn1] And I consider Matt Taibbi to be an example of an American trying desperately to follow a disreputable British tradition.

  11. 11
    Baud says:


    You know who else supported the Iraq war, don’t you…?


  12. 12
    DougJ says:

    @J. Michael Neal:

    Okay, I am reading these.

    That is a very good point about Taibbi.

  13. 13
    John Cole says:

    All I wanted to do was note his passing without having to spend the next week dealing with pissed off emails. You know, the daily ABL wars, the daily trolls, and the other shit gets taxing. I hardly heaped high praise on him (he was interesting and he did do it his way), I just wanted one thread where I didn’t have to deal with 50 fucking emails telling me “Look what your blog has turned into” because people decided to take the instant the man died and turn it into a pinata. Maybe Hitchens would have liked that. I just wanted a fucking break from whining emails.

  14. 14
    Nalbar says:

    He was a mean nasty drunk who enjoyed hearing about people getting blown up or tortured, who could write.

    Which if you distill down to what REALLY matters in a human being is;

    He was a mean nasty drunk who enjoyed hearing about people getting blown up or tortured.

    Quite like his hero, George Bush.


  15. 15
    Tiny Tim says:

    I don’t think the comparison with Taibbi is fair, but it provides a reasonable illustration. The basic question is: what’s hitch’s vision for domestic policy? 20 years of reading, no clue, aside from a couple of very specific issues.

  16. 16
    clayton says:

    We’re on the same page DougJ. (I listened to you on the blogradio thing).

    I posed it to a friend of mine just today: would Mark Shields of all people be able to say on the News Hour of all places that the invasion of Iraq was a debacle back in 2006?


    But there he was on my teevee doing just that two days ago.

    And no real rebuttal from Brooks.

    We won.


    In 2011, my work is over run with Saudis on scholarships who want nothing to do with the culture they find themselves in. They are tearing our good program apart.

    All I can think about is that it was Saudis who started this mess, Iraqis paid the price (all of the Iraqis I have met hated Bush) and the Saudis think they got over on us.


  17. 17
    Adrian Haiwei says:

    I’m with you Doug. Hitchens did and wrote a lot of appalling things.

    Skewering Kissinger doesn’t buy you immunity from others pointing out your own egregious sins.

  18. 18
    DougJ says:

    @John Cole:

    Cool, I understand.

  19. 19
    bystander says:

    Ach, DougJ. For some of us, John Cole’s simple instructions were an immense relief. If ’tis to honor them that we speak of the dead (in kind words or ill), then I was happy to have no words to say at all.

    The most common error that any “public intellectual” can make is to read their own press. In the case of the newly departed, he not only read it, and believed it, he then began to model on it. The outcome was foreordained, and a cautionary tale for the rest of us.

  20. 20
    Guster says:

    This close to the holidays, all the FP snarking means they really are a family. It’s kinda sweet.

    Hitchens supported the Indefinite Detention Act, btw.

  21. 21
    kuvasz says:



  22. 22
    eastriver says:


    And what do you call someone who answers rhetorical questions, Einstein? (you’re not supposed to answer this one, either)

  23. 23
    Gwiwer says:

    I did find it delightfully ironic that there was a rule against kicking the corpse of a man who absolutely delighted himself in being as obnoxious as possible about every topic he ever found an interest in, but I’m making a concerted effort to be more positive and easygoing so I just ignored the thread and moved on. That concerted effort is still ongoing so I won’t say anything further. Just wanted to point out that the irony of it all wasn’t lost on me. I mean, we’re talking about a guy who apparently was invited to a Shabbos supper and then spent most of the meal going on a passionate anti-Judaism and anti-Israel rant to the mild horror of his Jewish hosts…

  24. 24
    middlewest says:

    I remember when “I’M TAKING MY BALL AND GOING HOME!!!!” was the sort of attitude that this blog used to mock.

  25. 25
    amk says:

    @John Cole:

    I just wanted a fucking break from whining emails.

    so the cowardly whiners here play the referee ?

  26. 26
    clayton says:

    @John Cole: There’s another way. Delete the email.

    I doubt that was not a solution. You just didn’t want some other wingnut blog to nutpick your comments.

    It’s all good Cole.

  27. 27
    DougJ says:


    I’m not doing it or threatening it, to be clear.

    I’m being honest.

    EDIT: Also too, I do agree with your point.

  28. 28
    clayton says:

    @eastriver: Hi Corner Stone’s friend. Nice to meet you!

  29. 29
    carpeduum says:

    I bet Firebagger Cole is awfully proud of that Politico link. He might even get an atta boy from Jane Hamsher.

  30. 30
    Adrian Haiwei says:

    I don’t get the knock on Taibbi. In my reading, Taibbi pretty much always picks the right targets and is about the only journalist I’ve read who expresses appropriate outrage that our political system allowed bankers to rip off hundreds of millions of Americans to the tune of trillions of dollars.

    I don’t think you’ll find him writing a defense of George Bush, Tony Blair, or Paul Wolfowitz any time soon.

  31. 31
    MikeJ says:

    If you don’t want people to say shitty things about you on the internet you should die.

  32. 32
    Marc says:

    DougJ: Amen.

    I hope a Glenn Greenwald link isn’t throwing a lit match on kerosene, but I liked his take on the hagiography.

    (ETA: er, duh, I see he’s already up there. The piece was worth seconding anyway.)

  33. 33
    Raven says:

    @MacKenna: I’m with you. It’s Cole’s blog so I just held fire. Don’t mean nuthin.

  34. 34
    DougJ says:


    I already linked. He’s the via on Robins.

  35. 35
  36. 36
    clayton says:

    @middlewest: There are limits, you must admit. GBCW posts have been routinely mocked — when they are others.

    On this blog itself, when an FP, especially DougJ says that, it is serious.

    If you don’t really understand the history of this blog, don’t respond.

  37. 37
    Marc says:

    @Belafon (formerly anonevent): Amen to that as well.

  38. 38
    carpeduum says:

    @John Cole: Ok so that explains 1 post. What about the 99 others on other shit that makes people question your politics.

    Your are becoming quite the spineless firebagger. At least Greenwald doesn’t try make excuses. He sticks with his firebagger bullshit, doubles down, and doesn’t run from a fight like a little girl.

  39. 39
    Mark says:

    When Dick Cheney dies, and it will not be soon enough, I will absolutely heap steaming shit onto his still-warm corpse. Same goes for David Brooks and his wingnut-enabling ilk. But for somebody with a mixed record (and Hitchens had nothing less than that) I’m absolutely willing to separate my condolences from my disagreement with his views.

  40. 40
    MikeJ says:

    @MikeJ: Or shouldn’t die. You certainly shouldn’t type like me.

  41. 41
    Samara Morgan says:

    @John Cole: hahaha
    the mails WILL NEVER END, Cole.
    ichi, ni, san, JUMP!

  42. 42
    scav says:

    Actually, this thread of the purity police insisting that everything and anything he ever did is bad bad bad bad is going to be duller than the other one. Damning with faint praise (and praising with faint damns) is an art not all have mastered.

  43. 43
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    I think I know how you feel DougJ. If this was a basketball blog, I wouldn’t be able to stomach a tribute post to Kobe Bryant that forbid discussion of his being a backstabbing asshole.

  44. 44
    John O says:

    @Adrian Haiwei:

    Right on. Big Matt fan here.

    As to the thread, well, anything for a fuss, I guess. When Cheney goes, we’ll see if John makes the same rules.

  45. 45
    WaterGirl says:

    So Cole didn’t want to listen to a bunch of people spitting on Hitchens before his body was even cold. He didn’t say you couldn’t make any negative comments about Hitchens on his blog or you would be banned, he just didn’t want them on that thread.

    Then Doug posts this thread, which he surely regretted about 5 minutes after he did it.

    Can we just cut everybody some slack and move on?

    :: channeling my dad :: Why can’t you kids just get along?

    Edit: We are humans, not machines. We are allowed to be inconsistent and imperfect, right?

  46. 46
    MikeJ says:

    @Adrian Haiwei: He’s great at outrage, horrible at facts. He just doesn’t get anything right, but he yells a lot.

  47. 47
    handsmile says:

    Appreciate your posting this. The Hitchens hagiography ukase was perhaps an understandable gesture of civility, but was, at the same time, somewhat disconcerting and certainly ironic given this particular dearly departed.

    While not exactly tamping the dirt down, Steve M. at his “No More Mister Nice” blog offered a less sentimental appraisal on Friday:


    But I surely hope that most readers choose to click onto the Corey Robin link you provide above (where one will find much spirited commentary), rather than the “(via)” link, simply because I’ve read all the bashing of a certain Salon writer that I care to read over a single weekend.

  48. 48
    Raven says:

    @WaterGirl: Not when the crazy nipponese lady shows up.

  49. 49
    shecky says:



    Close enough.

    I keed, I keed…. again.

    I love Hitch for being the brilliantly vicious essayist. And have no issue with pointing out what an ex-Troskyite gin soaked popinjay he was.

  50. 50
    DougJ says:


    I love Hitch for being the brilliantly vicious essayist. And have no issue for pointing out what an ex-Troskyite gin soaked popinjay he was.

    Well put.

  51. 51
    Corner Stone says:

    @DougJ: It’s past time for you to move on DougJ. You’re being wasted here.

  52. 52
    Anya says:


    You know who else supported the Iraq war, don’t you…?


  53. 53
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    I think part of the problem is that Hitchens saw Al Qaeda as a bunch of god bothered fanatics out to push their god bothering on everyone else. So he supported the deserting coward’s little illegal conniption fit of aggression.

    The problem of course is, that the deserting coward was a champion of another set of god bothered fanatics. If it were possible to just wrangle all the god bothered fanatics on both sides into an artillery impact area, and allow the redlegs to go nuts, this would not be much of a problem. However, the thing is, whenever these god bothered fanatics go after each other, it’s never the leaders, who are pushing for the slaughter. They recruit others to do the actual fighting, bleeding, and dying. Furthermore, the action of the fighting, bleeding, and dying invariably involves, in true post 19th century fashion, a lot of collateral damage of people whose principle fault was living in the immediate vicinity of the combatants who are using all these various weapons that are highly explosive and destructive and totally unguided and directable. Even the “smart bombs”.

    When Cheney goes, I will not celebrate, because, like Broder, he’ll probably die of natural causes instead of being beheaded in a public square to set an example for others.

  54. 54
    BGinCHI says:

    Who the hell are the people around here who email Cole over and over to whine about stuff?

    Jesus. What the fuck are the comments for if not to do that and other things? John has enough to do with his social calendar, unruly pets, and figuring out where to put his Steelers tattoo.

    I email front pagers here rarely, but when I do it’s with an item that merits a post or to comment on something really specific (like to ask Tom about something in MIT’s writing program). Are people really just bugging them about stuff they post?

  55. 55
    patrick the pedantic literalist says:

    @J. Michael Neal: @DougJ:

    I can’t agree with either of you about Taibbi. Our complaint about Hitchens was that while eloquent, erudite, and sarcastic the ideas he used that eloquence to defend were appalling. Taibbi shares the writing traits, but in defense of people abused by the financial system and to attack the things Hitch was in support of. You seem to be attacking Taibbi for the similarity in style that you say you admire about Hitchens and simultaneously disregarding Taibbi’s purpose. That makes no sense.

  56. 56
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    @Corner Stone:

    Hush yo mouth. If Doug and his 17 trolling aliases left for greener pastures, BJ post counts would plummet by a third.

  57. 57
    Brandon says:

    @MacKenna: Aye, I had the same problem. As a Nation magazine reader since the early 90’s, I’ve been sick of Hitchens since about ’96. I was probably sick of Cockburn in ’95 then. The two of them can eat dirt for all I care.

  58. 58
    Raven says:

    @BGinCHI: People with too much time on their hands.

  59. 59

    @Corner Stone:

    @DougJ: It’s past time for you to move on DougJ. You’re being wasted here.

    Yes, because purity is much more important than open-minded debate.

  60. 60
    Raven says:

    @Temporarily Max McGee (soon enough to be Andy K again): Well goddamn, where’d you come from?

  61. 61
    WaterGirl says:

    @Raven: Since I never read her comments, I guess I wasn’t talking about her. :-)

    I’m having a frustrating day. I think I need to go look (again) at the sweet photo of Loneoak’s baby and his dog, and then take a couple of deep, calming breaths.

  62. 62
    BGinCHI says:

    Oh, and on CH.

    Hitchens was an irascible kicker against pricks, and the world needs more of that, especially amongst the PundiTards. Even when he was wrong he was more interesting than many who were right. If you read pundits to learn something, you are already reading in the wrong place.

  63. 63
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    The only time I’ve ever emailed John Cole was to report a glitch on the site that he asked people to tell him about if it happened.

    Otherwise, I figure he’s like me…doesn’t need a lot of email, and like me, he feels obligated to respond to someone. I’ve struggled to get over that impulse over the last 20 years of various online activities, but since I am deeply flawed I sometimes do not just delete and forget, unless it’s spam.

    Naturally, I do a great deal of deleting forgetting in that regard, but I digress…

  64. 64
    Raven says:

    @WaterGirl: Yea, or hit the hay. “Sometimes a (wo)man needs to be alone and this is no place to hide”.

  65. 65


    Packers (minus the laptop) and Christmas shopping (done!).

  66. 66
    Raven says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: Ah, Laughter and Forgetting, not bad.

  67. 67
    Corner Stone says:

    @Anya: That’s it. Take me off your boyfriend list.

  68. 68

    @patrick the pedantic literalist: Taibbi lies, and he has zero ability to understand anything more complicated than a cocktail list. He’s *exactly* like Hitchens, except that he’s not as good a writer. Simply having the right targets isn’t enough; you have to have some idea about what you’re discussing, and Taibbi consistently doesn’t.

  69. 69
    Raven says:

    @J. Michael Neal: So you don’t like him huh? Bet he’d whip your ass one-on-one to 21.

  70. 70
    Corner Stone says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: I email Cole all the time. Sometimes it’s about football games, sometimes the weather. Sometimes about comfortable boxer shorts. And every couple days I ask him to ban a couple people. He’s usually into what I’m down with.
    Which is the main reason you haven’t seen any posters discussing cold fusion lately.

  71. 71
    Corner Stone says:

    Oops, I’ve said too much.

  72. 72
    carpeduum says:

    @J. Michael Neal: The funny part is a bunch of people on that orange site worship Tabababooey. Then again clowns like Moore post there so it’s quite the cesspool of firebaggers……

  73. 73
    Corner Stone says:

    @Raven: JMN couldn’t manage a crossover dribble before he got to the toilet.

  74. 74
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    I think Greenwald’s column makes very good points about the disgusting display that was the Reagasm. My hatred of that shitty grade Z movie star has not abated. He’s responsible for the sabotage of the post WWII consensus that a strong middle class, with prosperity for all, was a good idea. For the past 30 years he and his vile ilk have been working to undermine everything FDR tried to accomplish, to create a stable society where the maximum number of people lived content, happy, productive lives and saw a bright future for their children.

    Now we’re facing a resurgence of feudalist thought that the Founding Fathers specifically created this country to counter.

  75. 75
    DougJ says:

    @patrick the pedantic literalist:

    I like Taibbi, but I think his financial analysis is a bit too much about Hitchensesque put-downs and a bit too little about getting his facts right. I’ll still read him but not on that topic.

  76. 76
    Raven says:

    @Corner Stone: Did you know when you use the pie thing on moron’s like carpeduum it gives you a different silly pie thing when you refresh?

  77. 77
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @PeakVT: Yeah, I tried that suggestion earlier. It is apparently more fun to snipe at one another.

  78. 78
    Raven says:

    Does anyone else get weird captions in Spanish on these NBC games?

  79. 79
    Cassidy says:

    @Corner Stone: It’s time for you to move on, Corner Stone. You’re being wasted here. Please, don’t hesitate for us. Just go.

  80. 80
    burnspbesq says:

    My, aren’t we full of ourselves.

    Be gone. Who needs you?

  81. 81
    DougJ says:

    @J. Michael Neal:

    He doesn’t’ have that scary “kill all my enemies” thing that Hitchens does. That’s what I can’t’ take about Hitch in the end, he’s too into “kill ’em all”, even for people who like hyperbolic rhetoric.

  82. 82
    DougJ says:


    Right back at you.

  83. 83
    The prophet Nostradumbass says:

    @Raven: The game’s also on Telemundo

    @DougJ: That was pretty funny, coming from him.

  84. 84
    PIGL says:

    @J. Michael Neal: may I translate: he was a condescending, pseudo-intellectual, boorish, mean, drunken reactionary, an apololgist, nay an enthusiastic supporter for horrific crimes against humanity.

    The world is better of without him….and would have even better off without him a long time ago.

    I see his being an atheist as nothing more than his reflexive contrarianism….and although I too am an atheist, I found his book trite and obvious, far from the work of genius it is hailed. He gains no merit for this position: as someone in MI-5 put it, his pessimism was nothing but a cover for viscious snobbery. To hell with him, and if he had an immortal soul, to hell with that too.

    Hitchens was a lower-middle-brow’s idea of what a British public school intellectual sounds like. As so many before him (I’m speaking of YOU, sully), he managed to trade that impression to fame and fortune, entirely unmerited.

  85. 85
    patrick the pedantic literalist says:

    @J. Michael Neal:

    I’m not sure anyone in the political genre writes as well as Hitch did — at least on this side of the ocean. But Taibbi writes better than most. And, from reading your comments over time, I know you are an accountant and understand what happened on Wall Street with considerable detail and can call Taibbi (or me) on much of it. But I think Taibbi has the basics of it and is eloquent in his outrage of sociopaths playing poker with other people’s money and the harm they do.

    As for lying, I’ll just say I don’t know.
    I did enjoy the pictures of the ows people carrying giant squids on wall street. It is a metaphor that works.

    And really, having the right targets is pretty damn important.

  86. 86
    Corner Stone says:

    @Cassidy: Shouldn’t you be breaking orbital bones of illegal immigrants somewhere?
    Tough guy.

  87. 87
    a hip hop artist from Idaho (fka Bella Q) says:


    I love Hitch for being the brilliantly vicious essayist. And have no issue with pointing out what an ex-Troskyite gin soaked popinjay he was.

    I think this sums up my view better than I could (especially on meds for my recently wrenched back). Thanks.

    I also totally get why Cole wished for less than a deluge of emails on the behavior in a Hitch-is-dead thread. Because it is a known thing that there are people posting here with too much time on their hands.

  88. 88
    carpeduum says:

    @Raven: Wow, I’m on your pie filter. Thanks for pointing that out over and over again…..oh wait…

  89. 89
    PIGL says:

    @J. Michael Neal: He is not exactly like Hitchens. You are an untruther. Hitchens is dead. I am sorry you don’t like Taibbi, but your criticisms this far are without substance or merit.

  90. 90
    Cassidy says:

    @Corner Stone: Never felt the need to punch an illegal immigrant. Mos tof them are just hard working people trying to make a living. You, otoh,…

  91. 91
    carpeduum says:

    @PIGL: lol….now the Tabababooey defenders are crawling out of their cracks.

  92. 92
    The prophet Nostradumbass says:

    I love this bunch of revisionist nonsense from another contemptible slime ball, Alexander Cockburn.

  93. 93
    WaterGirl says:

    @Cassidy: Any word on the recent possible job opportunities? Last I saw a post from you, it said you had a pretty good week, with an upcoming interview, I think.

  94. 94
    Corner Stone says:

    @Cassidy: I just figured a pathetic chump like you who had failed otherwise needed to prove what a tough guy you were. And beating down some people who had no defense against seems right up your alley.

  95. 95

    I, too, never understood the Hitchens-lust. His writing made Mencken look concise; his arguments included everything he could gather in their defense except logic and reason; his politics were motivated by ego and contrarianism.

    A few months ago, I was trying (and failing) to make sense of something he had recently written, and a colleague summed it up best: “It’s a drunk thing; you wouldn’t understand.”

  96. 96
    MikeJ says:

    @PIGL: I’ve never been sure if Taibbi is a liar or just incompetent. I sort of came down on “he doesn’t care one way or the other about the truth, as long as he can write outraged copy.”

  97. 97
    fasteddie9318 says:

    What we need is a pie filter for iPad.

  98. 98
    PIGL says:

    @carpeduum: I’m not defending Taibbi, I’m insulting you. Get back to me when you figure out the difference.

  99. 99
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Corner Stone: You have been more of a vicious ass than usual recently; holidays got you down?

  100. 100
    PIGL says:

    I enjoy sour notes, sour ju-jubes, sour gummy bears, almost ripe but sligtly sour apricots and crab-apples.

    This is great fun, except for all the sour-pusses emerging.

  101. 101
    IM says:

    Actually I thought of Taibbi too as similiar to Hitchens. If Hitchens tried to anf failed in his Orwell imitation, Taibbi is trying much to hard to imitate Hunter S. Thompson.

    Sometimes it works. But I would like to hear more facts and analyses and less of world spanning squids. Evewn ig I like his political direction, the sloppy way wioth the facts is annoying. Seems to be a general exiled illness, by the way.

    Taibbi is much nicer and self deprecating compared to Hitchens, though.

  102. 102
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    @D. Cloyce Smith:

    I, too, never understood the Hitchens-lust. His writing made Mencken look concise.

    He was one of the few public intellectuals that was fun to listen to, especially if you like WWE-style beatdowns.

  103. 103
    Lolis says:


    Republicans have a lot of success with this method.

  104. 104
    LT says:

    Your weakest fucking moment here, DougJ. You considered leaving because Cole wanted people on his blog to not be complete assholes to someone who had just died. Even though that person had not done that – Cole wanted better.

    Fuck you. You fuck.

  105. 105
    carpeduum says:

    @PIGL: Do tell my little groupie. I have much to learn apparently. All I know is follow the money and Tabababooey certainly likes to sell books doesn’t he. Then sheeple like you buy them and come on here to keep the rest of us infRomed and the circle of life is complete.

  106. 106
    The prophet Nostradumbass says:

    @carpeduum: You’re not just stupid, you’re also boring.

  107. 107
    gnomedad says:

    Regardless of the reason, if John wants to set ground rules for one stinkin’ thread, then grownups ought to be able to comply. It’s not as if he runs this place with an iron fist.

  108. 108
    Bill Murray says:

    @John Cole:

    I just wanted one thread where I didn’t have to deal with 50 fucking emails telling me “Look what your blog has turned into”

    and you thought threatening to ban anyone that said anything bad about Hitchens was a good way to do this?

  109. 109
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @gnomedad: Grownups here? On Balloon Juice? Surely, you jest.

  110. 110
    Cassidy says:

    @WaterGirl: Things are looking up.

  111. 111
    WaterGirl says:

    @Corner Stone: Hey, Corner Stone. How is Cassidy a pathetic chump who has failed? He seems like a good guy to me, and I’m usually a pretty good judge of character. What am I missing?

  112. 112
    Cassidy says:

    @Corner Stone: And that’s one of your many problems, other than being a socially stunted prick of course. You figure a lot of things, but more often than not you’re stupid and wrong. Then you just get mean for no reason. I figure you can’t hold your own in an adult conversation so you act like a shit to hide your inadequacies. How’s it feel to be just like Perry in that regard? Personally, I’ve never laid a hand on anyone who didn’t deserve it.

  113. 113
    WaterGirl says:

    @Cassidy: Well, that’s great news. Maybe you can say more on another thread another time.

  114. 114
    LT says:

    So Cole says he did it only to not get emails?

    This is definitely going out on a limb but I call bullshit.

    The world has one less interesting person. He did it his way.
    And I am not going to tolerate your ugly corpse-kicking bullshit in this thread. If you have nothing nice to say, just move along. I’ll delete and ban anyone who can’t follow those simple instructions.

    Sorry John. But what I read in that is that the news hurt, the way it does and should when you hear about an early death, and you felt protective of the fucker.

    Good fucking on you.

  115. 115
    Shawn in ShowMe says:

    @Bill Murray:

    Well, when you put it that way I guess Cole was doomed either way wasn’t he?

  116. 116
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @LT: Your guess might be accurate, but Cole does seem to hate getting email.

  117. 117
    LT says:

    To get back to important things, ABL linked to this, I checked it out. Among other nonsense – We were “Breitbarted” by meanies like Greenwald about the NDAA – they got their facts wrong on how a veto override works. I corrected them in a comment.

    They deleted the comment. And banned me.

    Score one for ABL.

    EDIT: And if anyone goes there and sees near the bottom them saying anything other than something about how they’ve got the votes in the Senate to override the veto – no mention of the House – I’ve got a screengrab.

  118. 118
    LT says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: yeah but I’m still right.

  119. 119
    MacKenna says:

    @amk: Contrary to popular opinion one can speak ill of the dead.

    Just as one can throw an old codger in jail if he or she deserves it.

    People tend to be forgiving of the old and the dead.

  120. 120
    DougJ says:


    Good on you!

  121. 121
    LT says:


    I like Taibbi, but I think his financial analysis is a bit too much about Hitchensesque put-downs…

    Comments like this just crack me up. You may as well say, “I like Pink Floyd, except for how they play their instruments.”

  122. 122
    LT says:

    Kim Jong Il is dead or maybe.

    Can we kick that fucker’s corpse?

  123. 123
    gnomedad says:

    Let’s go kick Kim Jong Il’s corpse.

  124. 124
    LT says:

    @DougJ: Hopefully that was for the “Fuck you you fuck.”

  125. 125
    carpeduum says:

    @The prophet Nostradumbass: So this is your other handle. How many more do you have my little groupie?

  126. 126
  127. 127
    DougJ says:


    The world has one less interesting person. He did it his way.

  128. 128
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @LT: And who can blame him? Amirite?

  129. 129
    The prophet Nostradumbass says:

    @carpeduum: Other handle? What are you talking about?

  130. 130
    MacKenna says:

    @LT: I had a look at that link and these paragraphs stand out.

    Yes, NDAA was poorly written originally and even after the changes is a crappy bill; it was written in the Senate Armed Services Committee (McCain/Graham- hello), and as such is a nod to Republican authoritarian stances of the Bush administration. It was co-authored by a Democrat, whom many saw in the above shortened video from C-SPAN claiming the President had asked for “this language”.

    The bill is still rotten. It takes us in the wrong direction, moving us toward the militarization rather than the civilian courts this President and the majority of the American people desire. The bill represents the Republican approach to national security; one that the American people soundly rejected in 2008. Luckily the President got the language changed, because even if he chose to veto it, it would be for naught, as the Senate had 83 votes for it and it takes only 67 to override a Presidential veto.

    Thank you for linking to the quibbling narrative though.

  131. 131
    carpeduum says:

    Could a Cole post waxing poetically how the world is less interesting without Kim Jong be far behind?!

  132. 132
    Lojasmo says:

    As an atheist, I say “fuck Hitchens”. I have always hated his war-fluffing, drunk ass. The world is better off without him. I hope that, if there is a god, s/he visits hell just to bitch-slap his sanctimonious ass.

  133. 133
    LT says:

    @DougJ: DJ, you’ve got to give me a bit more. That comment looks to me like “You’re right.” amiright?

  134. 134
    dance around in your bones says:

    Gads, I don’t get it. WHY do people get so fucking upset on the internet?

    My husband died a few weeks ago, THAT fucking mattered.

    Kim Jong Il died tonight, I guess that matters.

    Two friends’ kids got into terrible trouble this weekend; one was shot dead in a parking lot probably in a drug deal gone bad; another caused the deaths of two people; that matters to the families of those poor people……

    Nothing else matters very fucking much at all.

    Ya know? Keep a sense of perspective, folks.

  135. 135
    LT says:

    What is with the drunk-hating on this blog?

  136. 136
    Corner Stone says:

    @WaterGirl: Do you think I pulled the “orbital bones” out of nowhere?
    Cassidy has physically threatened me on more than one occasion, and specifically said he wanted to break my face in front of my kid so that would teach him (my child) a lesson.
    Now mind you, I’ve never said or wished physical violence or retribution on anyone. Ever.

  137. 137
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @LT: Self-loathing.

  138. 138
    LT says:

    @MacKenna: That is what cracks me up. They admit the BILL SUCKS DONKEY BALLS – but let’s not dwell on that – “FIREBAGGER!”

    They’re fucking so childish..

  139. 139
    DougJ says:


    I”m saying that by your and John’s reasoning, we can’t speak ill of Kim Jong Il either.

  140. 140
    LT says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: ha.

    Someone made a comment like “I heard he drinks like a bottle of wine a day.” I was like, oh fuck. I can NEVER meet these people in person.

  141. 141
    Odie Hugh Manatee says:

    @John Cole:

    I’ve had people suggest to me that I open my own blog and this is exactly the reason I would never do it; people are stupid dicks who have to whine about anything that offends their sensitive sensibilities. It sounds like you either need to take a break from the bullshit or get someone you trust to handle some of the load for you. I operate several gaming forums and those assholes can be a bunch of children at times, even though many of them are well into adulthood or old as dirt already. I get sick of their stupid mind games and regularly have to slap them around to get them to shut up or go away. I bet what I deal with is nothing compared to the shit you get buried in here.

    Stupid has no age limit and our country is full of stupid, or as some of them like to say: “We surround them”.

    In all of the years of being here I am quite happy to say that I have never contacted John about anything, ever. You whiners wearing out the fainting couches here need to do the same damned thing.

  142. 142
    LT says:

    @DougJ: Okay you win.

    But you need a time machine to fix it.

  143. 143
    LT says:


    Luckily the President got the language changed, because even if he chose to veto it, it would be for naught, as the Senate had 83 votes for it and it takes only 67 to override a Presidential veto.

  144. 144
    LT says:


    Luckily the President got the language changed, because even if he chose to veto it, it would be for naught, as the Senate had 83 votes for it and it takes only 67 to override a Presidential veto.

    That was the info I pointed to. Those scholars seem to have forgotten the House.

  145. 145
    LT says:

    Arg. Please delete #142. Posted accidently.

  146. 146
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @LT: A bottle of scotch a day would be something worth noting, but not unprecedented. A bottle of wine, less noteworthy.

  147. 147
    EconWatcher says:

    I am very glad to have discovered this blog about 5 years ago, and Dougj is in my view the most consistently interesting FPer. Would hate to have you go over one of these fleeting tussles, man. On Hitchens, I’ve been thinking about his legacy a lot (I followed him closely for 25 years). And here’s the bottom line: He was consistently dazzling as a literary critic in the essay form, and if he has a chance at being remembered 20 or 30 or 50 years from now, it will be for that. On politics, he was very good in the early years, and some of his takedowns were classics of the genre, but they won’t stand the test of time (no one will know or care who George Will or Paul Johnson were, so they won’t be interested in their elegant demolition). His book-length efforts (on Orwell, Paine, and Jefferson, for example) were mostly eloquently written fluff, because he did not have the self-discipline, especially in later years, for book-length work. So it’s a mixed bag, even before you get to the ghastly stuff on Iraq and the excessive and unhinged attacks on the Clintons. It’s probably true that what made Hitch rich and famous was the horrible stuff, not the good and great stuff–which is what Dougj was saying on the other thread. Having thought about it more, i have to agree with that comment, although I’ve been a qualified defender of Hitchens. I still regularly pull his collections of essays from my shelf and reread them for the sheer joy of it, and i can’t say that about any other writer.

  148. 148
    Cassidy says:

    @Corner Stone: Bullshit. You were being a shit and spoiling for a fight. At least be an honest shitbag.

  149. 149
    LT says:

    More from BBC on #Kim: Wore platform heels and “is known to have a taste for Hennessy VSOP.”


  150. 150
    LT says:

    @DougJ: I still love you, just, fuck you, you fuck.

  151. 151
    Corner Stone says:

    @Cassidy: Sorry. Did I threaten you or anyone else?
    “Personally, a plane ticket would be a fair price to humiliate you in front of your kids. Nothing says “Daddy, why were you such a douche” than broken orbital bones.”

  152. 152
    WaterGirl says:

    @Corner Stone: I had never seen any exchange like that between you and Cassidy before, so the animosity between the two of you tonight takes me by surprise.

    My dog died and I’ve had some other stuff going on, so I haven’t been here the last few months as much as I had been. Who knows what you’ll miss when you take a break from Balloon Juice…

  153. 153
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @WaterGirl: Sorry about the beastie. That sucks.

  154. 154
    DougJ says:


    Thank you. I am not thinking of leaving, I just wanted convey how much that post/thread annoyed me, partly because some others I spoke with say it bugged them too.

  155. 155

    For the reality based community only – feel free to find factual or interpretive errors:

  156. 156
    Cassidy says:

    @Corner Stone: Didn’t deny saying it. Just saying you’re offering that little piece of conversation without the rest of it. That’s called lying.

  157. 157
    Cassidy says:

    @WaterGirl: Sorry to hear that.

  158. 158
    LT says:

    Admit it: Every one of you remembers exactly what you were doing when Kim Jong Il died.

  159. 159
    Corner Stone says:

    @Cassidy: One of us has threatened physical violence, specifically in front of a child. One of us has never done that, to anyone.
    Which one are you?

  160. 160
    LT says:

    Osama bin Laden – and Kim Jong Il.


  161. 161
    WaterGirl says:

    @Omnes Omnibus: Thanks, Omens. It hit me pretty hard, especially because I lost my kitty soulmate less than 2 years ago, and another beloved dog in June. Nothing like Martin has had to deal with, though. So much loss.

  162. 162
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @LT: Yeah, but I will make up a cool story rather than admit I was here.

  163. 163
    Corner Stone says:

    @Omnes Omnibus:

    Yeah, but I will make up a cool story rather than admit I was here

    Polish Chess Club?

  164. 164
    AxelFoley says:

    Fuckin’ KNEW this thread would deliver!

  165. 165
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Corner Stone: If I can’t think of anything better.

  166. 166
    WaterGirl says:

    @Cassidy: Thanks, Cassidy. See previous reply to Omnes.

    @LT: Now that was funny!

    @Omnes – sorry for the misspelling. FYWP for not letting me edit my own comment, even when there was still time.

  167. 167
  168. 168

    @Omnes Omnibus:
    Sadly wasting time on an ABL foodfight of epic proportions of equivocation and outright stupid.

    Hell, and I had time to make up something good…

  169. 169
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Chuck Butcher: So you will be joining me in making up a story about a bar fight in Sao Paulo?

  170. 170

    @Corner Stone:
    You used to bring a pretty damn good game when you had TZ for a foil… these are pretty small fry.

  171. 171
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Chuck Butcher: It’s the pictures that got small?

  172. 172

    @Omnes Omnibus: so you will be joining me in making up a story about a bar fight in Sao Paulo?

    Shouldn’t that be … a gay nude bar … ?

  173. 173
    Corner Stone says:

    @Chuck Butcher: Don’t talk mess to me. You quit.

  174. 174

    @Omnes Omnibus:
    From the “bar fight” ?

  175. 175
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Chuck Butcher: Our imaginary experiences of Sao Paulo differ.

  176. 176
    Corner Stone says:

    TZ has never been anything but an authoritarian teat suckler. He loves hims some Person In Charge.
    He’s never been any better than low weak sauce.

  177. 177

    @Corner Stone: YOU know I tried to find you in TX…

    But YOU were busy, like I wasn’t thousands of miles from civilized home…

  178. 178

    @Omnes Omnibus:
    OK, … hot girly stripper bar…

  179. 179
    Corner Stone says:

    @Chuck Butcher: It’s not hard to find me.
    Just look for this

  180. 180
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Chuck Butcher: Agreed.

  181. 181

    @Chuck Butcher:

    back to back, surrounded by dozens bleeding on the floor in a dionesian alcohol fueled…

    oh shit that was Pendleton, OR 30 yrs ago…

  182. 182
    Ron Beasley says:

    OK, even atheists can be assholes. I respected him for his mocking of religion but not much else.
    BTW he didn’t attack Mother Teresa he attacked the Catholic Church and the Pope for fast tracking her Saint Hood.

  183. 183
    Omnes Omnibus says:

    @Chuck Butcher: On that note, I shall go and get some sleep.

  184. 184
  185. 185
    Mike in NC says:

    It would be appropriate to send Newt to North Korea for the funeral. They were both short, fat evil bastards with delusions of grandeur.

    We could send Santorum but those poor people have suffered enough.

  186. 186
    MacKenna says:

    @carpeduum: Quit being an asshole. Yes, asshole. Has no one told you are one? It’s your lucky day.

    The firebagger name-calling is pathetic, old, and grossly inaccurate. Quit trolling the thread.

  187. 187

    @Mike in NC:
    Oh hell, send MultipleMitt – he could manage to be on both sides of whether he’s alive or dead and wonder if it’s a good idea to bury/whatever short stuff.

  188. 188
    smintheus says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: I suspect that a large part of Hitchens’ stance on the Iraq War was dictated by his sympathy with the Kurds, who had been screwed badly by the Brits in the aftermath of WWI…and by pretty much everybody else since then, for that matter, including Bush the Greater. To say that is not to defend his idiotic war-mongering of course.

  189. 189

    It’s what he does, nothing substantive and not even something remotely funny. Just… well that was it.

  190. 190
    MacKenna says:

    @DougJ: What facts has Taibbi gotten wrong? Taibbi has been one of the few to accurately report Wall Street/Fed corruption.

    Indeed, it’s much worse than he thought. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/.....ncome.html

  191. 191
    WaterGirl says:

    @Mike in NC: I was browsing the Onion on my iPad last night, and I came across the photo of Donald Trump with the caption:

    Trump Unable To Produce Certificate Proving He’s Not A Festering Pile Of Shit

    I laughed a long time about that. Maybe we can send Trump.

  192. 192
    DougJ says:


    That 26 trillion liability thing he’s always talking about.

  193. 193
    sb says:

    Sorry to be such a dick so close to the holidays.

    To be honest, I read you because you’re such a dick, even close to the holidays. That’s not meant to be an insult, DougJ. You do provoke and you do it honestly. Keep on doing it. And if I, among others, toss a few gratuitous ‘fuck you’ phrases and clauses your way, well… I’ll try to avoid it. All the best.

  194. 194
  195. 195

    […] that goes double for your morally impaired buddies at LGM. Bonus: DougJ at Balloon Juice almost quit the blog after John Cole issued a fatwa against “ugly corpse-kicking bullshit in this thread.” […]

  196. 196

    yeah? well what were you doing when Kim died?

    Me and OO owned up

  197. 197
    kyle says:

    @patrick the pedantic literalist:

    I’m quite sure many people write better than Hitchens did. Hearing about his great prose style is like hearing about how sexy Sarah Palin is.

  198. 198
    kyle says:

    @D. Cloyce Smith: Ha, good one.

  199. 199
    kyle says:

    @Ron Beasley: Yeah, he attacked Mother Teresa. Wrote a book about it. Didn’t you know?

  200. 200
    Joey Maloney says:

    @Mark: Maybe we should start a series of eulogy-before-death threads? You know, “Pretend you just heard that Cheney/Brooks/C-plus Augustus/whoever has passed. Say your piece.” Then when they actually do assume room temp, we can show a modicum of decorum.

  201. 201

    I just thought this thing needed a nice round 200

    But really, a modicum of decorum? How modicummy is that? Like really really small?

  202. 202
    Joey Maloney says:

    “Yummy, yummy, yummy, modicum in my tummy”?

  203. 203
    AA+ Bonds says:

    He was a charming little fascist, wasn’t he

  204. 204

    Alex Pareene got it right:

    I think he would’ve been disgusted to see too much worshipful treacle being written about him upon his untimely death, so let’s remember that in addition to being a zingy writer and masterful debater, he was also a bellicose warmongering misogynist.

    I am glad to see all the clairvoyants have determined what John REALLY meant when he put up the post announcing Hitch’s death.

  205. 205
    Cheryl from Maryland says:

    @PeakVT: Yes, please. A man whose life is a testament to freedom of speech and human dignity.

  206. 206
    Fed Up In Brooklyn says:

    Re: Taibbi

    Some don’t like him here for the same reason they don’t like GG; he actually has the audacity to criticize President Obama. It’s that simple. The guy has written some of the best explanations of the causes of the financial mess on the planet. He should be widely read.

  207. 207
    Fed Up In Brooklyn says:


    Taibbi has become a big critic of Obama’s handling of the wall street crisis, therefore to some, he automatically has a problem with “facts.”

  208. 208
    4jkb4ia says:

    I didn’t post in that thread because it was Friday and because I didn’t have anything awful to say–but I didn’t have anything nice to say. I was simply shocked that he died far too young, but I hadn’t been paying attention to any of his political posts for years. But then yesterday I read every one of Sully’s posts, and I am convinced you had to be there, as in know him personally. Sully showed a lot of class posting the email from the reader about how you couldn’t say that Hitchens was a good man but that Hitchens made him feel safe not believing in God.

    That Politico link says “progressive blogger John Cole”. That has to be the stylesheet. But it’s also obvious to make some head motion and say, “Dude, you have come a long, long way”.

  209. 209
    eemom says:

    Haven’t had time to read the comments, but permit me to observe that you BOTH suck for saving all the interesting FP flame wars for 6 days before fucking Christmas when people who have actual fucking LIVES (i.e. kids) have to spend all their fucking time decorating fucking Christmas trees and doing other fucking Christmas shit. Fuck you, fuck Hitchens, fuck Politico, fuck Taibbi, fuck Sully, and fuck everything else. And if I’ve forgotten anything, fuck that.

  210. 210
    eemom says:

    Frankly, it made me reconsider blogging here at all

    Anyway. What a piece of self-important crap.

  211. 211
    Quaker in a Basement says:

    Jeezlouise, what’s with all the fighting? I think the front pagers all need to go get drunk together.

  212. 212
    gil mann says:

    I love that a perceived surfeit of courtesy’s what almost led DougJ to resign in protest.

    This lack of aggression will not stand, man!

  213. 213
    MBunge says:

    @Fed Up In Brooklyn: “Some don’t like him here for the same reason they don’t like GG”

    Whoa, whoa, whoa! The main complaint against GG is his childish refusal to acknowledge that his view of things might not be the only possible way to understand the world. I don’t think that characterizes Taibbi at all.


  214. 214
    El Cid says:

    Hitchens grew to abandon the human and humanitarian core of decency which centered Orwell, and believed he carried on Orwell’s legacy by the rote practice of condemnation of those he thought fools.

    If that had been Orwell’s legacy, few would ever have given a shit about him in the first place.

    It was a shame, because up until about the time of his derangement in hatred of Clinton and Clinton’s defenders — not just that he had certain oppositions and arguments but that it began to lead to all sorts of ridiculous conclusions and spinoffs — he was an intellectual hero of mine.

    It’s that Hitchens I value, and I made a decisions not to pay too much attention to him after the bitter turn.

  215. 215
    NobodySpecial says:

    This is the open thread for coddling dead warmongers, right?

  216. 216
    eemom says:

    @El Cid:

    Hitchens grew to abandon the human and humanitarian core of decency which centered Orwell, and believed he carried on Orwell’s legacy by the rote practice of condemnation of those he thought fools.

    Wow. I do believe that is the most thoughtful and intelligent comment that has been made on this blog in weeks.

    I’m sort of playing catch up with Hitchens — never paid much attention to him while he was alive but I’ve been intrigued by all the post mortems.

    Also, I recall the weird coincidence of his autobio being published just before his cancer diagnosis — I remember reading a review of the book and thinking what a total insufferable asshole he was…..and then just a short time later reading his very moving account of the diagnosis and being really impressed.

    So is it just the Clinton derangement and Iraq war cheerleading that you would characterize as “the bitter turn” or were there other aspects as well?

  217. 217
    El Cid says:


    So is it just the Clinton derangement and Iraq war cheerleading that you would characterize as “the bitter turn” or were there other aspects as well?

    It’s kind of hard to recall at this point, since I mainly just chose to avoid Hitchens so as to preserve my earlier affections. Yes, I can be awfully sentimental. But I don’t think I lost anything by doing so, since I’m not presuming to be doing a complete review of his life’s work.

    I would suggest a look into a complete work in which Hitchens invests himself, in which there are powerful humanitarian and democratic and anti-bastards motivation, and lots of covering propaganda to break through, but yet which is a bit removed from the most common debates.

    His book on Cyprus was simply amazing, at least to someone who prior had quite little interest in the island.

    Blood, Class and Nostalgia: Anglo American Ironies (not Googling, I recall the title as that) explored how Britain went from becoming a great imperial enemy from which the US freed itself to being our favorite Disneyland sub-imperial pet was as I recall an uneven work in terms of every section interesting me, but it was a subject I hadn’t considered and Hitchens first and foremost brought to mind how stunning should be the things we’ve grown to see as background and common.

    I could mention that people condemn Orwell for a cynical turn at the end of his life, in debated circumstances over what information he may or may not have given to UK authorities about the possible Communist ties of his friends, but he had been also sick for a while, and it wasn’t something which embittered and hollowed his writing.

    Anyone wishing to know what Orwell was like and what he meant to people — and in general, to simply be blown away at the breadth and depth of what you learn from the man, typically by accident or tossed-out reference — shouldn’t focus on his fiction or a few essays in isolation, but a casual read through his collected letters, essays, and journalism, a 4 volume set, chronologically ordered, edited by Sonia Orwell. It makes his fiction seem a small contribution by comparison, and yet gives his novels a context that was entirely obliterated by them being turned merely into anti-Soviet propaganda.

  218. 218
    harlana says:

    so, according to John, that was supposed to be a hassle-free “grieving only” thread and predictably glowing eulogies ensued

    Then, DougJ opens the floodgates for some truth about the man and now, this

    John, you have a heck of a lot more influence on your readers than you realize =)

  219. 219
    El Cid says:

    @eemom: I should add this: Hitchens viewed the lack of sufficient opposition to Clinton by liberals and the opposition / insufficient support of the US intervention in the former Yugoslavia wars as a betrayal of what he thought his internationalist leftist values had meant. And that’s not entirely a wrong viewpoint. Though the question follows as to what you do with that.

    It’s a transition that’s clearly risky and nearly fatal.

    Did David Horowitz have to walk away from his ego- and adventure-seeking role in 1960s Marxist / New Left / Black Panther activities shocked at what was wrong? Maybe. Did he necessarily have to become a bitter ultra-right paranoid who feared that any modern intellectualism and faintest whiff of pro-leftism would tempt the young into repeating what he saw as his own horrendous mistakes? I don’t think so.

    It’s similar in nature, though not degree, in my view, to people shocked and disgusted by the views or lack of views of their allies in finding out how horrible the Soviet Union was, and Communist totalitarian leftism in general.

    The funny part was, Hitchens already knew about all those things — if he had put the evidence together, he could easily have pre-bittered himself decades ago if he had wished. But instead, he knew that these disagreements, naivetes, ignorances, ‘betrayals’, and vacuities arise, and still embraced what he thought were strong soshullist internationalist values including the nobility of the human spirit against all sorts of damage and lies.

  220. 220

    My opinions on ABL and my opinion on Hitchens, are remarkably similar, good and bad, sometimes in layers, but seldom indifferent.

  221. 221
    DB says:

    This is how I will always remember Hitchens: http://talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/006973.php

  222. 222
    HyperIon says:

    @John Cole:

    I just wanted a fucking break from whining emails.

    This thread is probably dead now (or maybe someone has already said this) but …..

    If you can take (or find a way to avoid) the whining emails, get the fuck out of blogging.


    You created this situation, recruited all these frontpagers, spent tons of time building up the site to attract the idiots who email you and now YOU are whining about the consequences.

  223. 223
    HyperIon says:

    DougJ wrote:

    Frankly, it made me reconsider blogging here at all

    Feature, not bug.

  224. 224
    mclaren says:

    Hey…guess what? This is John Cole’s blog and nobody has a right to come in and shit on his sofa. If Cole wants to ban people for being dicks, more power to him.

    Nobody has a “right” to post here. If you want to piss in the punchbowl, go start your own blog. Nothing’s stopping you.

    Truth is, though, Cole almost never bans anybody. At least, as far as I can tell. So all this snarking and bitching and whining about Cole’s statement is pretty much hot air. I mean…c’mon, folks, compare this blog to Red State, where failing to goose step at the proper rhythm gets you banned.

  225. 225
    eemom says:

    @El Cid:

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts. Very interesting. I would certainly like to check out his book on Cyprus and see what he had to say about “my” people.

    You might enjoy Katha Pollit’s obit of him over at The Nation (which I can’t link to on this POS work computer). That may well be the most gracious, elegant euphemism for “drunken sexist asshole” I have ever read.

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  1. […] that goes double for your morally impaired buddies at LGM. Bonus: DougJ at Balloon Juice almost quit the blog after John Cole issued a fatwa against “ugly corpse-kicking bullshit in this thread.” […]

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