Sunday, June 24, 2007

God may not be great but Chris Hitchens is doing pretty well

so says the Wall Street Journal.
I've always been of two minds on Christopher Hitchens. I think he's a fine essayist and can construct arguments with the best political thinkers. Love, Poverty & War is a great book.
But he stirs the pot to the point of leaving his erudition at the side of the road when his inner polemicist takes over. Granted, he's no fool and in a visual culture, he's great television.
It just muddies up his books from time to time.
Anyway, he's a hit.
Massive sales to atheists, sure but it looks like both cash registers are ringing.
"Part of what is driving the sales of "God is Not Great" falls under the concept of know thine enemy. Conservative-minded customers have been snapping up the book because they want to be familiar with its message, says Vivien Jennings, owner of Rainy Day Books in Fairway, Kan. "There is a very strong presence of the religious right, and they want to know what's being said and figure out how to move against it."
I'm not so sure about that. I very rarely see any Michael Moore lookalikes snapping up anything by Ann Coulter. Sorry, I just wanted to see how that sentence looked.
Still, booksellers do love an author who can do some of the lifting.
"Booksellers say Mr. Hitchens has helped his own cause by staging colorful confrontations with religious figures and by making incendiary statements about the late Jerry Falwell. On "Anderson Cooper 360," Mr. Hitchens was asked if he thought Mr. Falwell would go to heaven. His response: "No. And I think it's a pity there isn't a hell for him to go to."
Actually, I'm better with his thoughts on reading literature to get a sense of morality.
Never mind, Hitchens is a hell of a guy.

Posted by Dave

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