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Profile Information

Name: Tom
Gender: Male
Hometown: yankee country
Current location: Virginia
Member since: Sat Nov 22, 2014, 08:04 AM
Number of posts: 231

About Me

Liberal, humanist, jazz loving gay man living in the heart of Jerry Falwell country. Help. I am surrounded.

Journal Archives

Mixed feelings about Mr. Vidal

I've been a big fan of Vidal's historical novels ("Lincoln" is a classic), but not much else.

Vidal was the kind of liberal that I usually wished was on the other side. His forte in political debate was hyperbole and snide insult.

He never seemed to be able to make a case without overstating his case. (e.g. quoted above - "The failure of the Bush administration to saves lives in hurricane-ravaged New Orleans is further proof that any first-world militarized nation can easily defeat the United States in a modern war".)

I recall a debate with Wm. F. Buckley where Buckley lost his famous cool and called Vidal, "you little queer." Buckley got a lot of deserved criticism for that, but few people seem to remember that his outburst was in response to being called a "crypto-nazi" by Vidal. As a gay man myself, I find Buckley's comment offensive. But I would find being called a Nazi far more offensive.

On the other hand...he was capable of some excellent one liners. When Henry Kissinger was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, Vidal commented dryly, "Never underestimate the Scandinavian sense of humor."

Interesting man, brilliant novelist...but not a guy I'd want to sit down and have a beer with.

Who are you people?

Just reached my 10 posts, hooray for me. A brief intro would be to read my profile. Which leads to my question--I'm curious why so many DU members, even long-timers, seem to have no profile info at all posted? I know the purpose of the site is to discuss issues, but I'm also hoping there's some "social" aspect as well, and it would be nice to get a brief look at the person behind the post.

Anyway, this seems like a great site and I look forward to mixing it up some with y'all.
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