grapple in the apple

So as I mentioned before, I listened the Hitchens/Galloway debate on the ride up to Iowa this weekend. It was about what I expected – entertaining and occasionally enlightening, but mostly lacking in substance. The main things that strike me are:

  • that I admire Hitchens’ principled and intellectual support for the war, even if I disagree with it
  • that George Galloway and his ilk are the worst possible enemies of the anti-war movement. The man is a braying jack-ass. He had no substantive argument, and resorted to ad hominems and fallacious reasoning at every turn. Pretty sad.

What’s interesting is that after watching this, I watched Hitchens on the Daily Show, essentally recreating a super scaled down short version of the same debate. Hitchens had a much harder time defending his stance against Jon Stewart than he did against Galloway, that’s for sure. I find myself wishing sometimes that Jon Stewart wasn’t on a comedy show, because I think it cripples him. In a debate like this, when Stewart is close to being called on a contradictory or hypocritical stance, he can always fall back to “dude, it’s a COMEDY show!” (i.e. in the Tucker Carlson skirmish). I’d be interested to see him hold his own against Hitchens in a forum that wasn’t of mere sound-bite duration with a comedic overtone.

The Drink-Soaked Trotskyists for War have a link to the realmedia video stream of the Hitchens/Galloway debate. Check it out.