Michael van der Galien

Author Chuck Klosterman Praises Unabomber

Posted on November 24 2009 4:00 pm
Michael van der Galien was born in the Dutch city of Leeuwarden in 1984. For as long as he can remember, he has been obsessed with the United States. When he was 17 years old, he started blogging - of course about America. His articles have been published at Big Hollywood, Pajamas Media, Hot Air (the GreenRoom) and Right Across The Atlantic. He's also an editor for the Dutch conservative blog, De Dagelijkse Standaard.
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Just when you thought you had seen it all, author and journalist Chuck Klosterman appears on MSNBC‘s “Morning Joe” and starts praising Ted Kaczynski, the man also known as the Unabomber.

Kaczynski is a radical leftist and domestic terrorist. From 1978 to 1995, he sent 16 letter bombs to targets such as universities and newspapers, killing three people and injuring 23. After he was arrested, he said that his bombings were extreme but necessary to attract attention to ‘the erosion of human freedom necessitated by modern technologies requiring large-scale organization.’

In short, he is not exactly a man deserving of any sort of praise whatsoever.

Although most readers possessing some degree of common sense would undoubtedly agree with the above, much respected author and member of the intellectual elite Chuck Klosterman doesn’t. When asked by “Morning Joe” host Joe Scarborough about whether or not he wrote in his latest book “Eat the Dinosaur” that “the Unabomber was right,” the best selling author answers in the affirmative. “About some things,” he was indeed right, Klosterman said.

“I think that what happened with Ted Kaczynski, is because he did these terrible things,” Klosterman said, “and, I mean, no one is trying to excuse any of the acts he did, or somehow come out as if I’m a fan of the Unabomber – but because he did these extreme things, it was actually contend within his manifesto that he was, I think, that he had pretty prescient ideas about technology that there are certain elements about the Internet that he seems to intuitively understand…

“But because he did these insane things – and is essentially a murderer -  people have totally erased sort of the values…” at which moment Scarborough interrupts his guest, because he sees where this is going and he doesn’t want one of his favorite authors to commit PR-suicide on his show. The subject is changed, but not before Klosterman says he was fascinated by Kaczynsk and that he studied the terrorist’s manifesto hoping to find “something valuable” in it.

Notice how he called him “essentially a murderer:” essentially used in this context implies that the speaker isn’t really comfortable using this word to describe someone. You have to ask yourself why not? Kaczynski is a murderer. There’s nothing “sort of” or “essentially” about it. And basically telling people they should study the Unabomber’s “manifesto” because he expresses some pretty “prescient ideas” in them, is an insult to all of his victims. You know, the ones who had their hands and/or heads blown off because of his letter bombs.

I know, I shouldn’t be surprised by the lack of common sense and sheer decency among our intellectual betters anymore. For some reason, however, I can’t quite get used to it. There’s this little voice in my head that says “they will learn from their mistakes once, right?” Perhaps the voice of understanding is wrong; perhaps they’ll never learn.

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