Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.
Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

William F. Buckley Jr. smugly staring down from heaven

National Review founder, former Firing Line host, novelist, former CIA agent, failed mayoral candidate, Gore Vidal sparring partner, political pundit, erudite essayist, accomplished harpsichordist, favorite Tonight Show guest, and voice of a breed of Libertarian conservatism that became increasingly obsolete in the face of neocon hawkishness—William F. Buckley, Jr. was all of these things and more, and today he died at the age of 82. While Buckley's early positions on segregation (he once wrote that "the white community…for the time being, it is the advanced race"), his belief in nuclear war as a deterrent, and his general air of blue-blazered, Received Pronunciation priggishness often made him difficult to like, Buckley's open-minded ideology (a "true conservative," he famously favored the legalization of drugs) and educated, engaging approach made him a truly respectable liberal foe—particularly considering the dumbed-down Coulter/Hannity/Limbaugh spawn swimming in his wake. In honor of our mixed feelings about Buckley's passing, please enjoy one of Buckley's most famous Firing Line interviews with Allen Ginsberg, as recreated by sock puppets.

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