Friday, September 19, 2008

David Foster Wallace and John McCain

David Foster Wallace wrote this article for Rolling Stone about John McCain's 2000 presidential campaign. He laments the inertia and cynicism of those days, even if accepting their inevitability. He wonders, with admiration, about John McCain. Much is the same since his article - the sycophantic, gleefully stupid media and scandalous non-stories remain, so do immoral, power-thirsty politicians and a mostly ignorant electorate. But other things have changed - the country lost some cynicism on September 11, 2001 (though Bush has done an extraordinary job restoring it), some of the indifference has become anxiety (some for America's future, some for its well-marketed culture war). The questions in the piece about John McCain have been heightened, if not answered. Those same questions are there now for Barrack Obama. Sadly, David Foster Wallace won't be asking them, he committed suicide this week. His optimism, whispering in this article, is for now silent. (photo credit: