Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Eating Their Own Young
Christopher Buckley, son of William F., an author in his own right of satirical political novels, and a contributor and editor to his father's magazine, National Review, has been fired by the magazine for apostasy. It seems that Christopher had the temerity to ... gasp ... endorse Barack Obama. The reaction has been, shall we say, predictable:
As for the mail flooding into National Review Online—that's been running about, oh, 700-to-1 against. In fact, the only thing the Right can't quite decide is whether I should be boiled in oil or just put up against the wall and shot. Lethal injection would be too painless.
... One thoughtful correspondent, who feels that I have "betrayed"—the b-word has been much used in all this—my father and the conservative movement generally, said he plans to devote the rest of his life to getting people to cancel their subscriptions to National Review. But there was one bright spot: To those who wrote me to demand, "Cancel my subscription," I was able to quote the title of my father's last book, a delicious compendium of his NR "Notes and Asides": Cancel Your Own Goddam Subscription.
Christopher notes that his father had endorsed a number of liberal Democrats for high office, including Allard K. Lowenstein and Joe Lieberman. That latter name raises interesting questions about the mail that followed Lieberman's endorsement of McCain. I somehow suspect that the reaction was no less vituperative. And the Senate Democrats' failure to take action, unlike National Review, no doubt has more to do with the precarious balance of power in that august body than in a lack of inclination.
Still, if conservatives are going to do in anyone in their ranks who dares to think ... and act on that thinking ... I for one will be glad to welcome them to the side of the angels.