Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Los Angeles Times Obituary Claims Gore Vidal 'Demolished Intellectual Rivals' Like William F. Buckley, Jr

From Elaine Woo's obituary, "Gore Vidal, iconoclastic author, dies at 86" (via Memeorandum):
In other spare moments, [Vidal] demolished intellectual rivals like Norman Mailer and William F. Buckley Jr. with acidic one-liners, establishing himself as a peerless master of talk-show punditry.
Actually, attacking your opponents with ad hominem invective isn't exactly "demolishing" your rivals, as this famous video from 1968 shows:

During a discussion of the Vietnam War, Buckley -- in his aristocratic drawl -- compares opponents of the war (including Vidal) to Nazi appeasers. Vidal, in his own aristocratic drawl, fires back.
Vidal: The only pro- or crypto-Nazi I can think of is yourself...
Buckley: Now listen you queer, quit calling me a crypto-Nazi or I'll sock you in the goddamn face and you'll stay plastered.
Yeah, a queer alright.

Lots of folks are talking about Vidal's flaming homosexuality. See IBT, "Gore Vidal: Gay Icon Who Put Homosexuality On the Page."