Monday, November 3, 2008

"Greenspan's an idiot."

How is it possible that Pulitzer Prize winner Studs Terkel passed away Friday (NY Times obituary) and I don't remember hearing any news about it? He was 96 years old. The last couple of decades he concentrated on finding and recording oral histories. He had a radio talk show for many years; almost everyone would recognize his distinctive voice and direct, unflinching interviewing style.

“What have I got to lose? I'm 90 years old." Studs declared, in taking off after Bush. "We have a mindless boy right now with the most powerful job in the world. And that is perilous. We have an attorney general [Ashcroft] who is like the guy Arthur Miller described in The Crucible in Salem, Massachusetts, 300 years ago, who urges people to spy on other people, witchcraft and all.”

As for the Democratic leadership in Congress, it “will be renowned for its gutlessness and its lack of principle and its cravenness.”
-- Studs Terkel, 2002
Sharp to the end
Just a week ago, Terkel was interviewed by Edward Lifson. He was excited to share the questions he'd like to ask Barack Obama. He also called Sarah Palin "Joe McCarthy in drag" and proclaimed Alan Greenspan "an idiot."
Edward Lifson: Studs for Obama

Another author remembers the irrepressible journalist who inspired others:
Studs Terkel: He'll Never Be Silenced

One of the home-bound people I used to deliver library books to was a BIG Studs Terkel fan. She worked her way through almost all his books, one at a time, and we'd often discuss the subjects. I'm interpreting this as sort of a positive omen. I think if Studs believed there was even a chance that Obama could lose the election, he'd have hung on another week, just to set us straight and make sure we did the right thing.

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