Black a Mental Dwarf Compared to Vonnegut and Vidal

RECEIVED Tue., May 8, 2007

Dear Editor,
    On April 11, 2007, Kurt Vonnegut died. I have been re-reading him in these past months. More intelligent critics than me will rank him as America’s preeminent writer of the 20th century in the years to come.
    In his last book, A Man Without a Country, Vonnegut wrote, “George W. Bush has gathered around him upper-crust C-students who know no history or geography, not-so-closeted white supremacists, and, most frighteningly, psychopathic personalities, the medical term for smart, personable people who have no consciences.” The title suggests he had mentally expatriated.
    When I made the mistake of writing to Louis Black that due to the extreme angst I felt because of our invasion of Iraq, I would expatriate, he wrote back, “Why wait? Leave now!” He continued sarcastically that he was founding a “scholarship” to allow conspiracy nuts to move permanently to a real fascist country.
    I would love to have seen him say that to Vonnegut and have his balls handed back to him on a platter.
    Black also plagiarized, “Conspiracy theorists don't care about reality, history, economics, the complexities of life and government.” Yet in an interview of Gore Vidal on PBS, he called himself a “conspiracy realist,” citing several reasons. I shouldn’t need to but will mention Vidal’s giant intellect, Ivy League education, and gallant service to country. He asserted that all mainstream media is now merely the tool of an international corporatocracy, another term for fascism (Bill Moyers, another intellectual giant, sounded this alarm several years ago), and that Americans have been spun and infantilized to the point they have no idea what is occurring.
    Louis Black is a mental dwarf compared to these great Americans. In addition, he is the only person of whom I am aware who is proud of his monstrous arrogance.
Kenney Kennedy
   [Louis Black responds: Exactly what did I plagiarize? The scholarship being planned I'm afraid won't be aimed at just any conspiracy theorists but only at those who declare that this country already has a fascist government. I would have loved to have talked to Vonnegut, and I don't disagree with the statement quoted. I don't think he is the preeminent American writer of the 20th century. Vidal is brilliant. But am I supposed to realign my thinking to agree with every statement by every brilliant thinker, constantly changing my positions, or just those with whom you agree? Calling me a mental dwarf is inflating my stature, and though I question not your opinion, I do think of it less as "monstrous arrogance" and more as I dare to disagree with you.]
One click gets you all the newsletters listed below

Breaking news, arts coverage, and daily events

Can't keep up with happenings around town? We can help.

Austin's queerest news and events

Updates for SXSW 2019

All questions answered (satisfaction not guaranteed)

Information is power. Support the free press, so we can support Austin.   Support the Chronicle