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Saturday, February 16, 2008


Fosfax #214

Tim Lane, c/o FOSFA, P.O. Box 37281, Louisville KY 40233-7281 / $4 / Tim's strengths are obvious: a deep intelligence and curiosity, and in person, he is a friendly and often funny companion. Alas, his writings in Fosfax often betray his weaknesses: he's a projector and a name-caller. He uses every hateful device at his command to smear the good faith of those he feels oppose his point of view. So unfortunate. I never tire of reading his reviews, which often border on brilliance. His review of a book on the disputed authorship of Shakespeare's plays is the best analysis of the issue I've heard since Greg Benford's. His notice of The Secret Trial of Robert E, Lee makes me drool for the book. I can even stand to be challenged by Lane's political arguments. For instance, his excellent article on the very real difference between "intelligent design" and creationism reminds us not to mock the need of ID believers for faith in a benevolent God. But such is Timmy's loathing of that amorphous enemy known as "liberals" that his invective about them is – at least -- over the top. I imagine he's only joking when he refers to Benedict Arnold as a "premature liberal" (I'm sure his mother carried him full term), but sometimes he crosses a very serious line. For instance, in discussing the election of Louisiana's new governor, Bobby Jindal, a Republican of Indian descent, he states "liberal Democrats had no hesitation using racial and religious bigotry against Jindal, such bigotry being acceptable to liberals in a good cause." What is he talking about? I was in Louisiana during Jindal's campaign, and while I admit to not trusting the man, and to a belief that he'll slight the desperate city of New Orleans, I never saw or heard or smelled the slightest slur against Jindal for racial reasons, and the only reference to his vaunted Christianity I heard was his own. Where does Tim get his information? Most personally, there's his response to a former issue of TZD, where he accuses me – without a trace of jokery – of simply hating conservatives. That's a slander I do not have to abide. Lane and I share a friendship with conservative Joe Major. I number many conservatives in my family – I mentioned my uncle in The Antipodal Route – and a bunch among my bro's in Southern fandom. You can read at the head of this issue about one such man, right-wing all the way, whom I loved and admired as much as any fan I have ever known. I'd hate to forgo what I've said about wanting to see every fanzine published in English and tell Timmy to save himself postage, but really, enough is too much.

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