The great P.J. O’Rourke died yesterday of lung cancer. He was 74. I’m 73. Imagine how I feel.
You can read his biography in any of the MSM obituaries. Here is the NYT’s.
I suggest reading a few selections from his inimitable prose.
For example, from the introduction to Give War a Chance:
The principal feature of contemporary American liberalism is sanctimoniousness. By loudly denouncing all bad things — war and hunger and date rape — liberals testify to their own terrific goodness. More important, they promote themselves to membership in a self-selecting elite of those who care deeply about such things. People who care a lot are naturally superior to we who don’t care any more than we have to. By virtue of this superiority, the caring have a moral right to lead the nation. It’s a kind of natural aristocracy, and the wonderful thing about this aristocracy is that you don’t have to be brave, smart, strong or even lucky to join it, you just have to be liberal.
Liberals actually hate wealth because they hate all success. They hate success especially, of course, when it’s achieved by other people, but sometimes they hate the success they achieve themselves. What’s the use of belonging to a self-selecting elite if there’s a real elite around? Liberals don’t like any form of individual achievement. . . . Also wealth is, for most people, the only honest and likely path to liberty. With money comes power over the world. Men are freed from drudgery, women from exploitation. Businesses can be started, homes built, communities formed, religious practiced, educations pursued. But liberals aren’t very interested in such real and material freedoms. Liberals want the freedom to put anything into their mouths, to say bad words, and to expose their private parts in art museums.
And his famous how-to piece from Republican Party Reptile: