PostPartisan - Irving Kristol's Intellectual Universe
Irving Kristol's Intellectual Universe
The passing of Irving Kristol is a very sad occasion. He was a truly great man, a great intellectual, and a great, patriotic servant to his country. He was also a unique inspiration, to me personally, and to untold thousands of other young people for whom he provided a model of the intellectual life well-lived. He was a deep and fierce thinker, who nevertheless delivered his thoughts in the most amiable fashion, without animus or bile. He was curious and invited others to be curious, to engage in serious dialogue on the important issues of the day.
He was also a creator of communities and institutions. He occupied a unique space between the world of the mind and the world of action. Networks of thinkers, policy-makers, and politicians revolved around him -- and not because he thrust himself into their midst but because his mind and character attracted them to him. To go to work for him, as I did fresh out of college almost 30 years ago, was to enter a rich and exciting intellectual universe, filled with learning and integrity and a commitment to the well-being of society. I fear such a universe may no longer exist. But the memory of what Irving Kristol created is enough to warm the soul for a lifetime.
By Robert Kagan | September 18, 2009; 4:22 PM ET
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Let us be clear. Irving Kristol was one of those who supported and pushed for the invasion of Iraq. THE INVASION OF IRAQ WAS AND STILL IS A MISTAKE. I use capital letters here because there are still some people out there that, despite all facts to the contrary, believe to the contrary and virtually none of the neoconservatives have apologized to the American people for the invasion. Therefore, Mr. Kristol was NOT a great man, and, if one reads some of his writings, even just a few, one finds that Mr. Kristol was wrong about virtually everything he ever wrote about. I do not wish to speak ill of the dead but the most patriotic thing that Mr. Kristol ever did was to pass away, because by passing he no longer speaks or writes and no longer influences politicians into making costly mistakes like the invasion of Iraq, THE WORST FOREIGN POLICY DEBACLE THIS COUNTRY HAS EVER PERPETRATED.
When the hell are you people going to learn this? Personally, I am fed up with you guys.
Posted by: nyrunner101 | September 18, 2009 4:49 PM | Report abuse
HS this is the only thing i could think of in response to your article.
Posted by: krj1944cableonenet | September 18, 2009 4:55 PM | Report abuse
Irving Kristol did two things for which he can never be forgiven:
1. He founded the American Enterprise Institute, from whence everything that is putrid about Washington emanates. Its influence on America has been malign.(That it was/is Dick Cheney's favorite place to give his speeches says enough.)
2. He fathered Bill Kristol, who -- along with Robert Kagan -- co-founded PNAC, the cabal of neo-con crazies and Zionists who polluted the Pentagon and the Bush White House with their plans, drawn up in the late 1990s, for the invasion of Iraq (and Iran).
The depth of Irving Kristol's much-ballyhooed intellect can be garnered from the following (courtesy of blog commenter Harry Hopkins):
"I remember back in the late 1990s, when Ira Katznelson, an eminent political scientist at Columbia, came to deliver a guest lecture. Prof. Katznelson described a lunch he had with Irving Kristol during the first Bush administration.
"The talk turned to William Kristol, then Dan Quayle's chief of staff, and how he got his start in politics. Irving recalled how he talked to his friend Harvey Mansfield at Harvard, who secured William a place there as both an undergrad and graduate student; how he talked to Pat Moynihan, then Nixon's domestic policy adviser, and got William an internship at the White House; how he talked to friends at the RNC [Republican National Committee] and secured a job for William after he got his Harvard Ph.D.; and how he arranged with still more friends for William to teach at Penn and the Kennedy School of Government.
"With that, Prof. Katznelson recalled, he then asked Irving what he thought of affirmative action. 'I oppose it,' Irving replied. 'It subverts meritocracy.' "
Posted by: WhatHeSaid | September 18, 2009 5:02 PM | Report abuse
My thoughts go out to his family and friends. He was the architect of neoconservatism. All the warm tributes will give hope to the poor guy that came up with New Coke. I am sure his standing and endeavours will survive whatever his son and Sarah Palin do to them. Peace.
Posted by: steveboyington | September 18, 2009 5:03 PM | Report abuse
"The passing of Irving Kristol is a very sad occasion. He was a truly great man, a great intellectual, and a great, patriotic servant to his country." ~ Kagan.
Unfortunately for America, the country Irving Kristol served was Israel.
Posted by: WhatHeSaid | September 18, 2009 5:05 PM | Report abuse
He was a goddamned traitor to the U. S. so the country you refer to (but curiously don't name) to which he was so patriotic must be Israel.
It's time for zionists like you Kagan to be measured for a rope.
But by all means let us know where he will be buried, once in a while I have the runs and would love to squat in reflection over this fine man.
Posted by: mot2win | September 18, 2009 5:09 PM | Report abuse
For deacades Mr. Kristol and his son have done more to stratify, fragmant and damage this country than anyone except "Old Nick" himself, Milton Friedman. These were/are people who want to reinstitute a system of elitism that borders on royalism. That's one reason why the Kennedy's angered you so much: they were revered by their followers.
If, as Dr. Krauthammer is saying, the "public interest" has died, then why are no comments allowed to be posted in response to his valorization of Mr. Kristol? Or did you just draw the short stick, Mr. Kagan?
Liberal ideology may be inherintly meek, but ultra conservatives are cowards. Rather than let your ideology speak for itself by achiewving positive results for all Americans, you continually have to rig the game either rhetorically or by materially breaking or altering the law to make it look like you're right.
Long live the king.
Posted by: rogied25 | September 18, 2009 5:10 PM | Report abuse