Hentoff in the dock
Re Nat Hentoff's 'Bush in the Dock' [Ocober 1–7]: After reading this column on an investigation of possible Bush administration war crimes in the Iraq War, I can't help wondering whether Hentoff has any regrets about supporting the war in his column prior to the 2003 invasion.
Did he really expect Bush, Cheney, and Co. to prosecute a "clean" illegal, pre-emptive war? Was he "shocked and awed" that there were no WMDs either?
Hentoff replies: I did not believe there were any WMDs there. I did believe in a humanitarian intervention, as in Kosovo, against massive human-rights crimes in Iraq. I was dead wrong about Bush's capacity to do anything right.
Re Maria Luisa Tucker's 'Building, Sweet Building' [Runnin' Scared, October 1–7]: I agree that $402 for a three-bedroom in this market is low enough to get me annoyed; I'm paying almost double that for a room in a lousy loft in the South Bronx.
But the owners have an outrageous disregard for the welfare of their tenants and for the community in which they live. It strikes me as immoral, this new snatch-and-convert of multi-tenant dwellings into urban mansions.
But more than the immorality, it does not, in the long run, make good economic sense. As we've seen on Wall Street, when the wealthy have free rein to exploit the less well-off, the exploitation ends up consuming itself.
Re Ryan Foley's 'John Lennon's Imagine Demands Truth, But Provides Little of Its Own' [October 1]: How original to find an album that most people regard as revolutionary—and hate on it. I have no idea who you are, but I "imagine" (pun intended) that you are an arrogant, failed musician with a typical hipster attitude turned music hater/critic.
As soon as everyone loves something, you find 10 reasons to hate it. Such a cliché for a critic. Don't you think?
Go watch The U.S. vs. John Lennon to see how he was much more than a "bumper-sticker" activist. Get your facts straight.
Anyone who was around then could tell you that John Lennon was such an influence that they tried to set him up and deport him for fear that he could overthrow the government. Listen to members of Nixon's own administration admit such details in that documentary, and then go back to listening to your albums that nobody has heard of or cares about.
Not a pretty picture
Re Scott Foundas's 'Counted Out' [September 24–30]: Are you sure that's Mickey Rourke on your front cover and not Neil Young?
Princeton, New Jersey
Peeling back the layers
Re J. Hoberman's 'Scary Movie 2008' [September 17–23]: Good parallels raised, even though the "Obama/black president in disaster movies" idea was already raised in an Onion editorial.
Re Tim Grierson's review of Nights in Rodanthe [Tracking Shots, September 24–30]: Grierson's review of the film describing it as "unashamed romantic goo" certainly doesn't make it sound appealing, but as a 54-year-old who has read your rag for some 35 years, I have to wonder just how old little Timmy is to have concluded with: "But don't be surprised if your mom likes it."
How amusing. How ageist. How, well . . . bratty. Are we trying to freshen up our demographic?
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