Tuesday, 3 November 2009

You'll stay plastered!

William Buckley vs Gore Vidal

In America this is very famous footage from the 1968 Democratic convention in Chicago, which was the scene of mass violence and is recognised as a watershed moment in US history (and inspired work from authors such as the late Norman Mailer - more from him later.)

Willian Buckley is kind of like David Frost, Jeremy Paxman, Andrew Marr and David Dimbleby rolled into one and forged in a bright blue conservative furnace. As you can see from the footage above he does not mind telling it straight and does not hold back regardless of who he is talking to.

Vs Chomsky

Fair enough, Chomsky is not the most charasmatic bloke in the world. Any man who has theorised for as long as he has is bound to be a little bit wooden but Buckley comes across like a funny Nicky Campbell in this clip and single handedly makes me think perhaps all conservatives aren't completely boring.

Vs Mailer

The full interview is here, check it out if you've got a spare hour to chuck about. It's captivating and sustaining stuff which I highly recommend and lays out the merits of conservatism in simple and surprisingly attractive terms.

Vs Rev Jesse Jackson

I loooooovvvveeeee Jesse Jackson. When he cried when Obama was elected I blubbed along as well. But talk about getting destroyed by someone. Buckley's delivery is so drawn out with his well-spoken drawl that when his insults do come you almost miss them.

For more on the late William Buckley, there is a great obit on the Times' website and a weird interview with Huey Newton, who looks and sounds as if he has been awake for a fortnight and then hit with a cattle prod about five seconds before being sent out on set.

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