Ég var að horfa á langt debat milli William F. Buckley, Jr. og Noams Chomsky, frá 1969, um bandaríska heimsveldisstefnu. Buckley var þekktur hægrisinnaður "talking head" þess tíma, eins konar effete, pseudo-siðmenntuð útgáfa af Bill O'Reilly. Hann er algjörlega tekinn í gegn.
Mikið svakalega er hann Chomsky annars lipur og snar í hugsun þarna. Virðist hafa kynnt sér allar staðreyndir allra mála sem upp koma, og með svar reiðubúið við hverri einustu spurningu. Mjög impónerandi. Minna impónerandi, hins vegar, er vörn hans á Norður-Víetnömsku lýðræði undir Ho Chi Minh.
Ég gúglaði mig til um þetta debat og fann eftirfarandi orð Chomskys í tilefni af andláti Buckleys.
What we were talking about then can be transferred to today very easily. By coincidence, just today an op-ed of mine was distributed by the NY Times syndicate with some comparisons about debate over Vietnam and over Iraq. Many of the other questions, about the general nature of U.S. foreign policy, are persistent.
My main recollection was surprise at how little he seemed to know about particular issues, and how quickly he wanted to drop them when we began to go beyond general slogans.
Although this was not on the tape, it's hard to forget the final moments as he walked off stage, in a fury, shouting that he'd have me back on again soon and teach me a thing or too. When I answered politely that I'd be glad to arrange it, he got even more furious. Of course I never heard from him again, or expected to.
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