Sun. May 19th, 2024

Pen in hand, as if it were a weapon using logic for bullets, he would listen patiently during the debate. When making a point he might wiggle his nose or make his eyebrows dance and, almost always, smile. The pad of paper he rested on his knee was always there for him to mark down comments he wanted to make.

Yes, that might very well be William F. Buckley on Firing Line, but it was also me. By the time Junior High and High School rolled around I had watched enough Firing Line that I willingly copied his quiet voice, his wit, his smile. It drove the hippies crazy when we debated but, like Bill, I had more friends amongst them and the Lefties than I did my fellow Conservatives.

Other than his inability to discuss abortion in a sane manner, and his nasty spat with Gore Vidal, I still feel a kinship with his quiet, rational mannerisms… even though my politics have long since migrated further leftward. How upset he must have been when his fellow Conservatives turned their backs on this and, instead, patterned themselves after the likes of Hannity or Coulter.

I remember a distinct lack of name calling and the absence of playing race cards, sex cards and I also don’t even remember a decent game of pinochle. Oh, well. Pinochle? That… I might have enjoyed. I think he would have made a fascinating opponent or partner in pinochle.

Bill Buckley died this week. I will miss him.

Hillary, Barack, Neo Cons, the Left, the Right sure could learn a lot from Bill.

Too damn bad too many of them are intentionally refusing to learn from such icons.


Inspection is a column that has been written by Ken Carman for over thirty years. Inspection is dedicated to looking at odd angles, under all the rocks and into the unseen cracks and crevasses that constitute the issues and philosophical constructs of our day: places few think, or even dare, to venture.

By Ken Carman

Retired entertainer, provider of educational services, columnist, homebrewer, collie lover, writer of songs, poetry and prose... humorist, mediocre motorcyclist, very bad carpenter, horrid handyman and quirky eccentric deluxe.