: I am proud to be the first to announce that my favorite critic and social commentator, Vanity Fair’s James Wolcott, is now blogging.
Here’s a sample of his first post on Zell Miller’s speech.
The blue eyes of wrath. The gnarled hands gripping the air as if clutching a liberal in a lethal chokehold.
Zell Miller did not disappoint millions of disenfranchised Americans with Confederate flags decorating their basements when he delivered his rousing speech to the Republican National Convention last night.
His inner Bunsen burner was still ablaze when he hit the cable news shows afterwards to unlease additional Zellfire. There he met resistance. On CNN, Wolf Blitzer, in an apparent research mixup, asked actual reportorial questions regarding Miller’s contradictory statements over the years regarding Kerry etc, and the old boy began babbling like Lionel Barrymore….
Inviting Zell Miller to the Republican convention to give voice to lynch mobs who feel neglected by the Democratic Party will prove to be a prehistoric bonehead mistake and an early Christmas present of Schadenfreude to his former colleagues. I picture certain Democratic bigwigs reacting the way Brian Dennehy did in that wonderful made-for-TV docudrama about Three’s Company as ABC chief Fred Silverman. Hearing the news of Suzanne Somers’ latest contract tantrum, Dennehy’s Freddie takes a rich puff on his cigar, smiles, and croons with satisfaction, “Not my problem anymore.”
Zell Miller: Not our problem anymore.
Just now on MSNBC, Joe Scarborough described Miller’s speech as a “barnburner,” presumably intending a compliment. But any reader of Faulkner knows that there’s few souls rottener than that of a barnburner, who leaves nothing in his wake than rage and destruction. In Faulkner Country, a barnburner is driven out of the county. In Bush Country, he’s given a privileged timeslot.
Whether you love or hate what he says — and I know you will — you have to love the way Wolcott says it. And now you can link to it and admire or argue with it, as you please. Wolcott is joining the conversation.
Wolcott will do much more than write about politics. He’s a critic, so he’ll criticize. He recommends books, movies, and blogs.
: There’s a bit of back story to this:
Wolcott has been reading and writing about blogs for sometime (see this post quoting his April column on the political blogs). He was on my list of people who should be blogging (who’s on yours?). But Vanity Fair wasn’t online (some tried to blame me for that, since I am a corporate cousin but it’s not my fault… well, not completely) and so Wolcott was not online.
Now VF is coming online (very soon) and so when I saw the man in charge of the venture, editor David Friend (one of the nicest guys in the Conde Nast building — and I don’t mean to damn him with faint praise saying that) I quietly cajoled: You have to include blogs. Oh, he said, we want to, but you know how it works in the world of corporate technology: Major studies of blogging software will ensue; months will drag on; posts will go unposted.
Who would blog? I asked.
Wolcott wants to, he said.
This became a holy cause. I’m a great admirer of Wolcott’s. He is the critic’s critic. I wanted to help. I said that since I was once a critic myself, this would be like a lowly Vegas lounge crooner finding Frank Sinatra stranded on the side of the road with a flat and stopping to give him a lift.
So we conspired. Getting a blog up is easy, I said. Jim can just do it on his own (in time to promote his new book). I showed Jim how to blog on Movable Type and he was amazed: No editors, no layouts, no copy editors, no production hassles, no delays: Push and publish. Stacey Sekimori designed the blog and set it up on Hosting Matters and, voila, Wolcott is blogging. That’s the precisely the beauty of this new publishing world: It is that easy. Even the pros can do it.
So enjoy. Give Wolcott link love.
: Update: Jim gets an authentic bloggy welcome: sniping and snarks. See the comments.
: Gawker’s Jessica Coen says:
While VF has largely ignored the internet, Wolcott’s new venture perhaps signifies the invasion of editor Graydon Carter’s foot soldiers into our precious haven.
Blogging is officially over.
: Vox says…