Hitchens on Mamet

Punchy and smart new Christoper Hitchens review of David Mamet’s latest. The opening line:

This is an extraordinarily irritating book, written by one of those people who smugly believe that, having lost their faith, they must ipso facto have found their reason.

via Book Review – The Secret Knowledge – By David Mamet – NYTimes.com.


  1. Extreme ideology is a form of religion, pressing all the same buttons within the brain, and conversions like Mamet's are best understood in light of Eric Hoffer's "True Believer" paradigm.

    All too often, the converted lack the self-awareness to realize they have merely exchanged one brand of zealotry for another. For the zealot there is a thin line between love and hate, as Hoffer points out, and the blind faith urge drives all before it.

  2. RAPPRODS says:

    Hitchens (personal friend and I wish him success in his current struggle) is a professional polemicist whose stock in trade is studied contrariness, grandstanding bizarre opinions and parading his sentimental attachment to Marx who he has never foresworn. He was and is a self-professed Marxist which he will freely admit. It sets him off from the crowd and in this post-Soviet era, gives him a certain distinction. Probably his most shining moment was the rather bizarre defense of Bush's policies in Iraq. His stated motive: zealously promoting Kurdish independence. The more exotic the cause the more sizzle. While covering them in virtue he conveniently overlooked the Kurdish role in the Armenian genocide No doubt middle Eastern politics does get messy. But then again, the champion of exotic causes does have a certain dazzle. Hitch, he will readily admit, is, an entertainer first. His first triumph was to attack Mother Theresa. Now that takes the imagination of a showman. And it sure sold tickets to his show. It's how he makes his living. To unravel the rats nest of his politics would require a Cray Supercomputer. All of his opinions should be taken with boulder sized grains of salt by the intelligent.

  3. Pat Shuff says:

    David Mamet Attack Clock

    "My prediction is that Mamet, if he isn’t disowned by his industry already, will be. The break will be ugly, but clean.
    He will be dismissed as a bitter crank who probably sucked to begin with. All those awesome plays and films once
    praised by critics and celebs will now be reassessed. As crap. Because Mamet abandoned group-think. Overnight,
    he will turn from legendary to lackluster – whose attack on the left must be due to artistic suckiness. Which is why
    Red Eye has started the David Mamet Attack Countdown, which monitors the days until a once glorified artist is
    dismissed as an untalented buffoon.

  4. Dag nabbit good stuff you whippsernapeprs!