Thursday, March 01, 2012

Andrew Breitbart: 1969-2012

This was a shocking and surprising death. I heard he was a hard drinker, but this is still again shocking.

TBogg compared Breitbart to Joe McCarthy. I don't agree for the simple reason that Breitbart was a journalist, not a senator with subpoena power and the power to issue contempt citations.

I would compare Breitbart to Benjamin Franklin Bache and James Callender, two editors of ribald, partisan and reckless newspapers during the 1790s who each died well before each man reached an older age. Bache died of yellow fever at age 39 in the year 1798 (he was born two hundred years to the year before Breitbart, in 1769). Callender died of drowning in 1803 at the age of 45.

Both Callender and Bache were embroiled with either libel or sedition trials at the time of their untimely deaths.

With Breitbart, he's not really a rest in peace person, is he? It's more like, "Breitbart, rattle your chains!" Still, others, mostly on the left, may say to him, "Don't bother wearing warm clothes for your journey..."

But for me, from a distance, I must say I tip my hat to him the way we American history buffs tip our hats to Callender and Bache--with a sense of wariness and fascination.

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