TVWHO: R.I.P., Gore Vidal

If you haven’t been paying attention to Gore Vidal—and even if you have…. Here’s Gore, a towering figure who went where others dared not, with a portion of one typically bracing presentation (from the Key West Literary Seminar, 2009)… You will be missed, Gore.

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  • Orangutan.

    Gore Vidal’s best and bravest was his criticism of the official story of 9/11.  A true patriot and one who didn’t mind taking the road less traveled.  Will be missed by me.  RIP.  Hopefully he inspires more to take on the controversies too many people shy away from.

  • jimmmmmy

    I started reading his novels and watching his debates in the 60s . He was one of Americas best critics. I will miss him . There seems to be no heir apparent to him in this generation ,that is truly Americas’ lose.

  • Matt Prather

    A couple quotes from Gore Vidal:

    “That’s the genius of our ruling class. They’re so brilliant that no one knows they even exist. The political-science professors, perfectly sane men, look at me with wonder when I talk about the ruling class in America.

    “They say, ‘You are one of those conspiracy theorists. You think there’s a headquarters and they get together at the Bohemian Grove and run the United States.’

    “Well, they DO get together at the Bohemian Grove and do a lot of picking of Secretaries of State, anyway.

    “But they don’t have to conspire. They all think alike. It goes back to the way we’re raised, the schools we went to — after all, I’m a reluctant member of this group. You don’t have to give orders to the editor of The New York Times. He is in place because he will respond to a crisis the way you want him to, as will the President, as will the head of the Chase Manhattan Bank.”


    * * *

    For the last 40 or 50 years it’s always been the Lee Harvey Oswald, if anybody gets assassinated: “Lone, crazed killer,” “Communist, lone, crazed killer.”

    And always — almost always — these murderers have been plots.

    But then it’s said: “Oh, no, you’re not a conspiracy theorist? Oh my, you must believe in flying saucers!”

    Well, EVERYTHING in the United States is a conspiracy, haven’t we figured it out yet? Like the tobacco companies saying “Smoke Lucky Strikes, because then you’ll be healthy.”

    I mean, everyone conspires to cheat the people, and conspires to seize power. What is a political party but a conspiracy to seize the power of the state? Any child can work that one out.

    -spoken extemporaneously in an interview sampled here:

    • Elizabeth H

      Excellent quotes@Matt_Prather:disqus 
      God, there’s nobody extant with anywhere near that man’s wit and fearlessness mixed with his first-hand knowledge of how the operators operate.  (Don’t mean to down you, Russ Baker, you’re pretty cool too.)  Can you imagine a world where such a man was allowed on network television? 

      If I recall correctly, in one of his last interviews he was asked if he saw anything positive coming down the pike for Amerika.  He said, yes, I will not be here to see it.  Something like that.  I don’t have audio at the moment.  But at any rate, I will not mourn him, just miss the hell out of his presence.  Happy time in Hades, you most wonderful man!

  • antoinepgrew

    Nice recommendation.

  • James Warren

    The government spent a lot of time trying to banish my favorite grandfather to the cryptic room up in the attic.