Hamilton, Madison, and Jay

This blog is devoted to a variety of topics including politics, current events, legal issues, and we even take the time to have some occasional fun. After all, blogging is about having a little fun, right?

Location: Mesa, Arizona, United States

Who are we? We're a married couple who has a passion for politics and current events. That's what this site is about. If you read us, you know what we stand for.

Monday, August 4, 2008

The End Of An Era

On July 28, the Chicago Sun-Times announced that longtime columnist and polemic pundit Robert Novak was diagnosed with a brain tumor. The nutroots, of course, celebrated that news, and the news that he was taking a sabbatical from writing his columns as he undergoes treatment for the tumor. Today, the Sun-Times announces that Mr. Novak has retired:

Robert Novak has announced his immediate retirement following the diagnosis of a brain tumor, a prognosis the Sun-Times' political columnist describes as "dire."

"The details are being worked out with the doctors this week, but the tentative plan is for radiation and chemotherapy," Novak said.

The Evans-Novak column was first distributed by Publishers Newspaper Syndicate on May 15, 1963, with the New York Herald-Tribune, the flagship newspaper. When the Herald-Tribune folded in 1966, the Chicago Sun-Times became their home newspaper.

Mr. Novak has been a mainstay of politics for decades, and his decision to retire reflects the nature of his ailment. Please, we urge readers to keep him and his family in your prayers.

In addition Alexander Solzhenitsyn died yesterday in his Moscow home:

Alexander I. Solzhenitsyn, 89, the Russian writer and winner of the Nobel Prize for Literature whose pitiless and searching chronicles of Soviet tyranny made him a symbol of freedom and the durability of the human spirit, died yesterday in Moscow.

A son told the Associated Press that he died of heart failure. Details were not immediately available.

Driven, principled, frequently arrogant, a bearded figure with the fierce visage of a prophet, Solzhenitsyn was regarded as one of the greatest and most influential writers of the 20th century.

Like Leo Tolstoy and Fyodor Dostoyevsky, the 19th century masters of Russian letters, his subject was considered to be the struggle between good and evil in the Russian soul. The line separating the two, he said, ran through every heart.

His text was the nightmare of Marxism-Leninism, and he exposed its flaws in ways from which it never recovered. The task he set for himself was no less than restoring to the Russian people the history of the Bolshevik Revolution and the subsequent years of communism that had been kept from them by their leaders.

In "One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovitch" and "The Gulag Archipelago," his acknowledged masterpieces, and a vast outpouring of other works, he chronicled the sufferings of his countrymen and bore lasting witness to the fate of millions of otherwise forgotten victims of Soviet misrule. Literature, he declared in his Nobel lecture, "is the living memory of a nation. It sustains within itself and safeguards a nation's bygone history.

"But woe to that nation whose literature is cut short by the intrusion of force."

Here is another man who created an era in and of itself by exposing Stalin's camps, and the pitiful conditions his "slave labor" was forced to endure. Mr. Solzhenitsyn was the opposite of Walter Duranty; he was willing to tell the truth about the Soviet Union, and had the means to do so with his first-hand accounts of life there. Others, like Mr. Duranty, were enamored with Stalin, and chose to whitewash what was really going on over there.

Both men had an impact on political thought. Mr. Solzhenitsyn will be missed. Mr. Novak, while still alive, will be missed from the Sun-Times.



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