Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Sinning, Conservative Style

It seems conservative Christopher Buckley, son of William F., has committed the penultimate sin: not only is he not endorsing McCain, he is planning to vote for Obama.

I am—drum roll, please, cue trumpets—making this announcement in the cyberpages of The Daily Beast (what joy to be writing for a publication so named!) rather than in the pages of National Review, where I write the back-page column. For a reason: My colleague, the superb and very dishy Kathleen Parker, recently wrote in National Review Online a column stating what John Cleese as Basil Fawlty would call “the bleeding obvious”: namely, that Sarah Palin is an embarrassment, and a dangerous one at that. She’s not exactly alone. New York Times columnist David Brooks, who began his career at NR, just called Governor Palin “a cancer on the Republican Party.”

As for Kathleen, she has to date received 12,000 (quite literally) foam-at-the-mouth hate-emails. One correspondent, if that’s quite the right word, suggested that Kathleen’s mother should have aborted her and tossed the fetus into a Dumpster. There’s Socratic dialogue for you. Dear Pup once said to me sighfully after a right-winger who fancied himself a WFB protégé had said something transcendently and provocatively cretinous, “You know, I’ve spent my entire life time separating the Right from the kooks.” Well, the dear man did his best. At any rate, I don’t have the kidney at the moment for 12,000 emails saying how good it is he’s no longer alive to see his Judas of a son endorse for the presidency a covert Muslim who pals around with the Weather Underground. So, you’re reading it here first.

As to the particulars, assuming anyone gives a fig, here goes:

Read the whole thing here.

We know Christopher Buckley must be punished for this act of crazed intellectualism, and so, now, he has:

Christopher Buckley, author and son of late conservative icon William F. Buckley, last week surprised readers of the magazine his father founded, the National Review: “Sorry, Dad, I’m voting for Obama” was the headline on The Daily Beast blog.

Tuesday in a phone interview with the Austin American-Statesman he revealed another surprise: After NR readers raised holy heck over his perceived betrayal of the right, he offered to resign his column - and it was accepted.

“It upset a great number of people - a huge number of canceled subscriptions, apostasy, the whole thing,” he said from Washington.

When he offered his resignation to the magazine’s editors, “I was sort of hoping for, ‘Well, let’s think about it,’ ” Buckley said. “But to paraphrase Ronald Reagan, I didn’t leave the Republican Party, the Republican Party left me.”

Buckley, the author of numerous humorous political novels, most recently “Supreme Courtship,” is booked to appear at the Texas Book Festival in Austin Nov. 1. “It’s too bad,” Buckley said. “I’m not looking to crap all over NR, but it’s too bad.”

Too bad, indeed.

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