Wednesday, August 04, 2004

Age Does Not Become Him

From a Guardian Unlimited profile of neo-octogenarian Paul Fussell:
He thinks Bill Clinton is "wonderful", and argues that anti-semitism was one reason why Americans were so eager to punish his affair with Monica Lewinsky.
That's a new one. If you can't defend Clinton on his own merits, make up an absolutely silly reason to discredit his opponents.
"Conservatives know that I cannot be trusted... I hate them in general, I grew up in that atmosphere, my father was a corporate lawyer and always voted Republican -- that's one reason I decided not to. It's a standard boy's reaction. If your father's a dentist you either become a dentist or you ridicule dentists for the rest of your life."
At least he admits that his liberalism arose from adolescent rebelliousness, which I have contended is a primary source of liberalism.
Fussell was vigorously opposed to last year's invasion of Iraq: "If you don't get angry about this war you don't deserve to be alive."
If he's serious, he's certainly an examplar of today's hateful version of liberalism. If he's merely trying for hyperbole, he's not doing a very good job of it.

Fussell, having fought in World War II, rightly attacks those who romanticize war. But the fact that war isn't a romantic adventure doesn't make it any the less necessary, from time to time.