Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Sad news ...

... Conservative Writer, Commentator William F. Buckley Jr. Dies at 82.

I first met Bill Buckley back in 1964. What impressed me most about him was what a perfect gentleman he was.

More here.

Here's the NYT obit (hat tip, Dave Lull) and a piece by Sam Tanenhaus: The Buckley Effect (hat tip, Paul Davis).


  1. 82 is a good age, though -- my Dad was 81 and Malcolm's was 82 when they died. Maybe the body has just about had enough by 80.

  2. Anonymous2:16 PM

    He was an intellectual giant. I could only hope to have a fraction of the scope of WFB's intelligence. I'm 39 years old and I'm sure by the time he was 25 he had already forgotten all that I will ever know.

  3. Yes, Maxine, 82 seems about right to me as well - but then I'm a deathist.
    Regarding Buckley's famed erudition, he abandoned his stage manner when not on stage in favor of a quite natural modesty.

  4. Frank, a giant by anyone's standards and a wordsmith nearly without peer. While Buckley and I were near-polar opposites on so many issues, he had my near-total admiration for the way he elevated rhetoric to an art, and for his integrity. He was something of a Renaissance man who brought the same passion to scholarship, journalism, music, fiction and travel that he did to politics ..... and he was someone who truly practiced what he preached. Regardless of your philosophical stance, your world is lessened, to one degree or another, by his passing.

  5. I disagreed with Buckley about 95 percent of the time, but he was indeed a very smart man. I always felt like you could talk to him, and be civil, and it would be fun, even when you disagreed on most things. He was someone I greatly admired and respected.

    His fiction was pretty bad, but his opinion essays and reviews were always very good.

    It was very strange for me, who had spent my whole life respecting yet disagreeing with him, to find us both in agreement about much of politics lately, and about how neo-conservatism was not true conservatism.

    He will be missed. His was a much needed voice, especially in these latter days.

    Rest well.