Jan 19, 2006

James Frey and GWB: Two peas in a pod

Tom Scocca compares the fraudulent memoirist's book to Bush's WMD justification of the Iraq war.
Mr. Frey is not the only person pouring this cocktail of lies and denial—of “emotional truth.” More than one critic quickly picked up on the link between Mr. Frey’s literary career and the fact-averse, spin-happy presidency of George W. Bush. The joint biography is easy. Both men are dry drunks with belligerent streaks, angry and cosseted children of money. Both claim to have turned their self-destructive lives around without formal 12-step treatment, through the power of mass-market personal spirituality—pop Taoism for Mr. Frey, evangelical Christianity for Mr. Bush. Both have awkward gaps in their paper trails.

But the real bond between them is conceptual. The argument for A Million Little Pieces is identical in structure to the argument for the Iraq War: Because of my project, countless [addicts/Iraqis] now know unimagined [inspiration/liberty]—what kind of person would want to take that away by niggling about details that don’t even matter anymore?

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