Saturday, May 02, 2015

Quote of the Day: Charles Krauthammer

Today our quote comes from Charles Krauthammer writing about the literary merits and historical liberties to be found side-by-side in the excellent "Wolf Hall".  Attend, children, and see what a Conservative with a permanent national media sinecure and zero self awareness sounds like (emphasis added because I can!):
However, “Wolf Hall” poses questions not just political but literary. When such a distortion of history produces such a wonderfully successful piece of fiction, we are forced to ask: What license are we to grant to the historical novel?

For all the learned answers, in reality it comes down to temporal proximity. If the event is in the recent past, you’d better be accurate. Oliver Stone’s paranoid and libelous “JFK” will be harmless in 50 years, but it will take that long for the stench to dissipate. On the other hand, does anyone care that Shakespeare diverges from the record (such as it is) in his Caesar or Macbeth or his Henrys?
What is the Modern Conservative movement but a successful and very lucrative piece of fiction?

And what is there to add but...Benghaaaaazi!


dinthebeast said...

Every time I see his name, I think of the marching hammers in the movie Pink Floyd The Wall.

-Doug in Oakland

Ivory Bill Woodpecker said...

I mentally turn his name into a pseudo-Native-American-style monicker:

"He Who Pummels Fermented Cabbage".

Buttermilk Sky said...

Conservatives are just bad readers who have no idea what novelists and playwrights actually do. Last year a Tory named Lord Bell wanted Hilary Mantel (author of "Wolf Hall") arrested for publishing a story called "The Assassination of Margaret Thatcher," when the former PM was already dead of natural causes. It helps to explain the right's struggle with the concept of reality in general.

Anonymous said...

"If the event is in the recent past, you’d better be accurate."

Can't. Stop. Laughing. I think he really means it!!!

Isaac Segal said...

Krauthammer appears (far too often) in the Philly Inquirer. When I saw this morning's paper, I couldn't resist sending this letter to the editor:

As a fan of “Wolf Hall,” I couldn’t help checking out Charles Krauthammer’s column today to see what he had to say about the series. What I found amazed me. This may have been the first time he was able to get through an entire piece without blaming President Obama for anything. Of course, he had to reach back to the sixteenth century to do so. But old habits die hard: in adding that, "But we do well to remember that the centralized state Cromwell helped midwife did prepare the ground…for the rise of the rational, willful, thought-controlling, indeed all-controlling, state,” Krauthammer actually found a way to blame Cromwell for what he typically associates with Obama.