The following notes appear in Norman Mailer’s account of the Republican convention in his new book St. George and the Godfather, published this month by New American Library.


If while speaking to Kissinger, he had called Nixon a genius, he meant it. For a genius was a man who could break the fundamental rule of any mighty sport or discipline and not only survive but transcend all competitors, reveal the new possibility in the buried depth of the old injunction. So Nixon had demonstrated that a politician who was fundamentally unpopular even in his own party could nonetheless win the largest free election in the world, and give every promise of doing considerably better the second time! What Aquarius had not realized until this convention began however to disclose its quiet splendors of anticipation and management was that Nixon would reveal himself not only as a genius but an artist. What had concealed the notion of such a possibility for all these years is that it is almost impossible to conceive of a literary artist who has a wholly pedestrian style. It was possible that no politician in the history of America employed so dependably mediocre a language in his speeches as Nixon, nor had a public mind ever chased so resolutely after the wholly uninteresting expression of every idea. But then few literary artists proved masters of the mediocre.

Nixon was the artist who had discovered the laws of vibration in all the frozen congelations of the mediocre. Other politicians obviously made their crude appeal to the lowest instinct of the wad, and once in a while a music man like George C. Wallace could get them to dance, but only Nixon had thought to look for the harmonies of the mediocre, the minuscule dynamic in the overbearing static, the discovery that this inert lump which resided in the bend of the duodenum of the great American political river was more than just an indigestible political mass suspended between stomach and bowel but had indeed its own capacity to quiver and creep and crawl and bestir itself to vote if worked upon with unremitting care and no relaxation of control. He had even measured the emotional capacity of the wad (which was vast) for it could absorb the statistic of 4.5 million civilians and 1.5 million combatants being killed, wounded, or made homeless on all sides in the three and a half years Nixon had continued the war, yes, quietly accept it as a reasonable cost for the Indochinese to pay in order that we not lose our right to depart from Vietnam on a schedule of our own choosing.

Better than that—Nixon had spent more on the war than on welfare, not far from twice more—and so had taken the true emotional measure of the wad which calculated that two dollars expended on burning flesh in a foreign land was better than one dollar given to undeserving flesh at home. But if this was the major work of Nixon’s intellectual life, to chart the undiscovered laws of movement in the unobserved glop of the wad, it had been a work of such complexity that it would yet take the closest study of the design he had put upon this convention, this masterpiece of catering to every last American pride and prejudice going down the broad highway of the political center.

However, there were also smaller perceptions to make each day, and the growth of political excitement in a political student like Aquarius at the size of the bonanza being offered: a course in the applied art of politics by the grandmaster himself. That this convention would be studied for years by every political novice who wished to learn how to operate upon the insensate branches of the electorate was clear to Aquarius by Sunday when Pat Nixon arrived and certainly by convention time on Monday when the lineaments of superb design had emerged, but that was still later….


Next day—what could possibly restrain him from going?—Aquarius attends the Sunday Worship Service of the Republican Convention. It is being held in the Carillon Room of the Carillon Hotel, a supper club room which moves in a crescent of coral curtains and gold fringe around the room, with golden seats arrayed for more than a thousand guests and these seats are filled. American flags cover the wall on either side of the stage. Sitting there, he thinks there is probably no act on earth more natural to Republicans than going to church on Sunday. That bony look which seems to lay flat white collars on ladies’ clavicles, that Wasp look bony with misery (when they are merely tourists eating in some jammed Johnson’s off the boiling reeking superhighway during family summer travel [the windshield shellacked with the corpses of bugs numerous as dead Vietnamese], yes, same gangling bony lonely pointed elbows) comes instead into its inheritance and stands out in all the decorous composure of characterological bone when Republicans get to church. Then their virtues live again—hard work, neat clothes, patriotism, and cleanliness become four pillars of the Lord to hold up the American sky.


This church service, however, is being held in the morning as balance perhaps to the Republican gala of the evening, a veritable panorama of worship with celebrities to pray and Mamie Eisenhower for Honorary Chairman, plus the wives of Cabinet officials to compose the Advisory Committee. Senator Tower, tough little John Tower, right-wing Republican from Texas, gave the welcome as Worship Leader. Once, when he first came to the Senate, Tower had the mean concentrated take-him-out look of a strong short welterweight, but the Chamber laid senatorial courtesies upon him—now this Sunday morning he was mellifluous and full of the order of dignity as he whipped out his reading glasses, intoned “Almighty God,” and delivered the prayer written by President Eisenhower for his first inauguration, “Give us, we pray, the power to discover clearly right from wrong.” There was no hitch in the words for him. Tower was a hawk, and the operative definition of the hawk is that they do not have trouble with moral discernment….

But it was left to Dr. Elton Trueblood of Earlham College, Richmond, Indiana, to give the sermon, and Aquarius later wondered if Richmond, Indiana, was looked upon as a swing vote in a swing state; in that case, local Hoosiers might be loyal to the honor that one of the town clergymen had addressed the assembled Republican mighties, loyal at least for a few hundred more votes—Aquarius had already begun to admire the thoroughness with which Richard Nixon looked for such votes—quite the equal of any first-rate housewife on the hunt for ants during spring-cleaning. (It is the innocuous corners which must never be overlooked.)

So, even on this nonpolitical and nondramatic occasion, this unpolitical and highly Christian convocation, care had been taken to invite the President of the Synagogue Council of America, also serving as rabbi of Temple Emmanuel, Miami Beach, to offer an Old Testament meditation. Then Maryland’s Junior Miss, Miss Cathie Epstein, soon offered the song “Amazing Grace” which was harsh on the ear for its amazingly tortured sounds, he thought, but the crowd gave Miss Epstein such a spontaneous whip-out of the sound, “Amen,” and so much hand-clapping that they had obviously heard something else—score one for Jews-for-Agnew.

No, Nixon did not miss any corner with an opportunity for amazing grace, and the Reverend James A. McDonald who sang next with the deepest pleasure of the ages since Paul Robeson, was also black, blacker than Brooke, and the benediction being given by Father Ramon O’Farrill who was Cuban, his name in the Miami Beach papers would do no irreparable harm with local Cubans, no more than Rabbi Lehman, Epstein and Jeannette Weiss would offend nearby Senior Citizens. Of course, Jeannette Weiss, an alternate delegate from Michigan who read the Pledge of Allegiance, might have been German as easily as Jewish, but all the better—she could gladden both kinds of newspaper readers, and certainly would not hurt the pride of women, alternate delegates (so often ignored) and a few hundred near neighbors in Michigan. But since Jeannette Weiss proved when she stood up to be black, it could be said that Nixon was tickling every straw in the broom.

Now, there was not much chance that the President had literally been able to bother with such detail as this, but of course it was not impossible he had actually put the program together for the sort of relaxation others take in crossword puzzles—it didn’t matter—his hand was laid so finely upon the palpitations of this convention’s breast that from the thought of his presence came all the necessary intimations of intelligence. Even the least of his assistants must acquire a sense of how to place each potential use in its slot. Not every evidence of harmony in the Vatican issues directly after all from the Pope, but who would say he is not the center of all its political spirit!

Along came Dr. Elton Trueblood then to give the sermon, and in fairness to him, he was there for more reasons than to swing a corner of Indiana; the Doctor was a sermonizer of invention—he fulfilled that Sunday function which requests the preacher to give the parish something to think about from Monday to Saturday for he said, “Government ought to be a holy calling, a divine vocation. We ought to speak of the ministry of politics.” And he quoted Romans 13:6, “The authorities are ministers of God,” and so decided that, “Whatever your occupation in politics or government, you are called to be His ministers.”


As he spoke, his features too far away to be discerned, only his white hair and glasses, his balding head, dark-blue suit and starched white shirt visible in the distance, he looked nonetheless like a compressed whole bully of faith—small surprise that Faith was his favorite word. It was as if he was the first to know that this worship service was not part of the convention so much as the convention was going to be a service of worship. Nonetheless, Trueblood touched something of confusion in the Republic heart, which he did not necessarily put to rest. No more than the good decent average Republican would admit that he loved to fuck his wife (those who did) in a voice which might ever be heard aloud—as if blight must immediately descend on the marriage—so must many Republicans have thought in private over the years that they were doing God’s work and being His ministers in the world of corporation and government, His ministers to work for the salvation of this tortured and troubled Republic, as divided as two souls residing in the same heart, this Republic of order and barbarism where the young would, if given their way, yet walk with naked breasts and faces hidden by matted hair and trampled flowers, timeless droning drug-filled young with filthy feet—they would yet walk upon the heart of America.

And now Aquarius knew suddenly why good Republicans would never mind the bombs, for the blood of the North Vietnamese was the smallest price to pay that America might be saved from the barbarisms beating in the young—yes, it was Nixon’s genius to know that every bomb dropped somehow extinguished another dangerous hippie in the mind of the wad, evil was a plague of creeping things and the bombs were DDT to the cess-dumps of the world. It was America which had to be saved—the heart of God resided in the living life of an orderly America, and this passion was so deep, so reverential, and so in terror of the harsh light of the word, that his congregation listened to Elton Trueblood with respect but not comfortably, staying at the edge of that bolt of comprehensions he would loose, for if good Republicans might think of themselves privately as ministers of God protecting the homeland by their acts and their presence from every subtle elucidation of Satan, still they feared the loss of magic, like primitives they feared the loss of magic once the thought was declared aloud. Fierce as the fever of discipline which holds the heart in righteousness is the fear of the fire beneath—what a fire is that compressed American combustible of love and hate which heats the stock of the melting pot.

And Aquarius, carried along by the flux of some of his own thoughts, began perhaps to comprehend the certainty of these Republicans whose minds never seemed to reach beyond the circle of favors, obligation, work, courtesies and good deeds that made up the field of their life and the repose of their death. That was the goodness they knew, their field was America, and they seemed spiritually incapable of hating a war they could not see, yes, sentiment against the war had eased even as infantry had ceased coming back with tales of the horrors on the land—yes, Nixon was a genius to have put that war on the divine national elevator high in the sky where nobody could see the flowering intestines of the dead offering the aphrodisiac of their corruption to the flies.

So, was it then a compact with the Devil to believe one was a minister of God and live one’s life in work and deeds and never lift one’s eyes from the nearest field? Or was that all any human could dare to comprehend, his own part of the patch, and leave Nixodemus to be divided by Satan and Jehovah, no, impossible! the miserable truth was that men and women, willy-nilly, were becoming responsible for all the fields of earth since there was a mania now loose on the earth, a species of human rabies, and the word was just, for rabies was the disease of every virulence which was excessive to the need for self-protection.

One hundred seventy-six thousand tons of bombs had been dropped on Cambodia in the last two years, and that was more than all the bombs dropped on Japan in World War II. Cambodia! our ally! but on Laos it was not 176,000 tons but more than a million. We had in fact dropped more bombs altogether in the three and a half years of Nixon’s reign than we dropped on Europe and Asia in World War II, indeed almost twice as many tons of bombs and there was no industry, military population, railroad yards, navy yards, or other category of respectable target to compare with Germany, Italy and Japan, no, finally not much more than the wet earth, the dirt roads, the villages, the packingcrate cities and the people—so the bombing had become an activity as rational as the act of a man who walks across his own home town to defecate each night on the lawn of a stranger—it is the same stranger each night—such a man would not last long even if he had the most powerful body in town. “Stop,” he would scream as they dragged him away, “I need to shit on that lawn. It’s the only way to keep my body in shape, you fools. A bat has bitten me!”


At the foot of the plane he embraces his wife and kisses his daughters but with appropriate reserve—they are being watched after all. The embrace is suggestive of five million similar such greetings each evening as commuters get off at a suburban stop and go through the revelation, and the guard they throw up against revelation, of their carnal nitty-gritty. A good game for a face-watcher, and Nixon’s is not different from many another man who pecks a kiss in public. But as he walks toward the Young Voters for the President and salutes and smiles and grins, preparing to stop before them and raise both his arms (for they are now no longer just cheering him as the principal, but are off on all the autoerotics of thrusting their own arms in the air four fingers up while screaming “Four more years, four more years”), so Nixon promenading toward them exhibits again that characteristic gait which is his alone and might have provided thought for analysis in even so profound a student of body movements as Wilhelm Reich, for Nixon has character-armor, hordes of it! Several schemes of armor are stacked all on top of one another, but none complete. It is as if he is wearing two breastplates and yet you can still get peeks of his midriff.

He walks like a puppet more curious than most human beings, for all the strings are pulled by a hand within his own head, an inquiring hand which never pulls the same string in quite the same way as the previous time—it is always trying something out—and so the movements of his arms and legs while superficially conventional, even highly restrained, are all impregnated with attempts, still timid—after all these years!—to express attitudes and emotions with his body. But he handles his body like an adolescent suffering excruciations of self-consciousness with every move. After all these years! It is as if his incredible facility of brain which manages to capture every contradiction in every question put to him, and never fails to reply with the maximum of advantage for himself in a language which is resolutely without experiment, is, facile and incredible brain, off on a journey of inquiry into the stubborn refusal of the body to obey it.

He must be obsessed with the powers he could employ if his body could also function intimately as an instrument of his will, as intimate perhaps as his intelligence (which has become so free of the distortions of serious moral motivation), but his body refuses. Like a recalcitrant hound, it refuses. So he is still trying out a half dozen separate gestures with each step, a turn of his neck to say one thing, a folding of his wrist to show another, a sprightly step up with one leg, a hint of a drag with the other, and all the movements are immediately restrained, pulled back to zero revelation as quickly as possible by a brain which is more afraid of what the body will reveal than of what it can discover by just once making an authentic move which gets authentic audience response. Yet he remains divided on the utility of this project. Stubborn as an animal, the body does not give up and keeps making its disjunctive moves while the will almost as quickly snaps them back.

Yet when he begins to talk to the crowd, this muted rebellion of his activities comes to a halt. Like an undertaker’s assistant who fixes you with his stare and thereby gives promise that no matter the provocation, he will not giggle, Nixon has made a compact with his body. When the brain stops experimenting with its limbs, and takes over a cerebral function (like manipulating an audience), then the body becomes obedient to the speaker’s posture installed on it.

Now, hands clasped behind him, Nixon begins. “I was under some illusion that the convention was downtown,” he says.

It takes a while for the kids to get it. YVPers are not the sort of hogs who grab the high IQ’s. But when they realize he is not only complimenting them for the size of their numbers but on their importance, they come back with all the fervor of that arm in the air and the four fingers up in a double V. Nixon has appropriated the old V for Victory sign; better! he has cuckolded all the old sentimental meanings—V for Victory means liberalism united and the people in compact against tyranny. Et cetera. It is his now, and doubled. Up go the double horns of the kids. “Four more years.”

One thing can be said for the presidency—it gives every sign of curing incurable malaise. Nixon is genial! Now, he jokes with the crowd. “I think I’m going to be nominated tonight. I think so,” he says charmingly. It is the first time he has ever spoken with italics in public. “And so is Vice-President Agnew,” he adds. “He’s going to be nominated too.” They cheer. Ever since they arrived on Saturday, the YVPers have been cheering, on the street, at receptions in the gallery, in the lobby of each hotel they visit, and here at the airport they exhibit all the inner confidence of a Fail-Safe. When in doubt, cheer.

Once again Aquarius is depressed at the sight of their faces. It is not only that all those kids seem to exist at the same level of intelligence—which is probably not quite high enough to become Army officers—but they also seem to thrive on the same level of expression. They have the feverish look of children who are up playing beyond the hour of going to sleep; their eyes are determined, disoriented, happy and bewildered. So they shriek. With hysteria. The gleam in their eye speaks of no desire to go beyond the spirit they have already been given. Rather, they want more of what they’ve got. It is unhappy but true. They are young pigs for the President. He thinks of all the half-nude sclerotic pirates of Flamingo Park, over whom America (which is to say Republicans) are so worried. Perhaps America has been worrying about the wrong kids.

“I’ve been watching the convention on television,” Nixon says through the microphone. “I want to thank you for the tribute you paid my wife.” Now for the first time he puffs his chest up, which—given the mating dance he performs whenever addressing a crowd—has to signify that a remark of portent is on its way. “Based on what I’ve seen on television, and based on what I have seen here today,”—Four more years!—“those who predict the other side is going to win the young voters are simply wrong.” Deep breath. Solemn stare. Now comes the low voice which backs the personality with the presidential bond of integrity: “We’re going to win the young voters.” Shrieks. Squeals. Cheers. Four more years! They are the respectable youth and they are going to triumph over fucked-up youth.

Back at the convention, the delegates are watching this arrival on the three huge screens above the podium—it is being televised live both to the convention and to America. Only the galleries are empty this afternoon, but that is because the YVPers are not present to fill their seats—they are here!

Nixon takes them into his confidence. He knows they are interested in politics, or they would not be in Miami, he says. And maybe one of them someday will be President, “Maybe one of your faces that I now am looking at will be President. It is possible. One thing I want you to know. That is that we want to work with the trust and faith and idealism of young people. You want to participate in government and you’re going to.” Cheers. He smiles genially. “However, let me give you a bit of advice. To succeed in politics, the first thing you want to do, is to marry above yourself.”

They do not begin to comprehend the seismographic profundity of this advice. They only yell, “We want Pat. We want Pat.”

“Well, you can’t have her,” Nixon says. “I want to keep her.”

Yes, he had wanted her and he had wanted to keep her. Back in Whittier, before they were married, he would drive her to Los Angeles when she had a date with another man. Then he would pick her up and drive her back to Whittier when the date was done. That is not an ordinary masochism. It is the near to bottomless bowl in which the fortitude of a future political genius is being compounded. It had made him the loser who did not lose.

But how many years and decades it must have taken before he recognized that in a face-off with another man, he would be the second most attractive. Once he had made the mistake of fighting Kennedy man to man, and wife to wife. Jack had beaten Dick, and Jackie had certainly taken Pat—Nixon cried out with no ordinary bitterness over what America could not stand. But now he had learned that the movies were wrong and the second most attractive man was the one to pick up the marbles, since losers (by the laws of existential economy) had to be more numerous than winners.

“Some public men,” he had said in an interview, “are destined to be loved, and other public men are destined to be disliked, but the most important thing about a public man is not whether he’s loved or disliked, but whether he’s respected. So I hope to restore respect to the presidency at all levels of my conduct.

“My strong point, if I have a strong point, is performance. I always do more than I say. I always produce more than I promise.”

It was as true for Vietnam as for China. And now here was this nice man talking to children. Aquarius stood in that stricken zone of oscillating dots which comes upon the mind when one tries to comprehend the dichotomies of the century. Here is this nice man who has the reputation of being considerate about small things to the people who work for him, this family man married so many years to the same wife, possessor of two daughters who are almost beautiful and very obedient. He is a genius. Who would know?

Yes, the loser stands talking to all of his gang of adolescent losers who are so proud to have chosen stupidity as a way of life, and they are going to win. The smog of the wad lies over the heart. Freud is obsolete. To explain Nixon, nothing less than a new theory of personality can now suffice.


From Nixon’s Maxims: Franklin Delano Roosevelt spoke of the four freedoms. There is only one freedom looked for by the American voter who votes for Nixon—it is freedom from dread.

* * *

Compared to the demonstrations of Berkeley and Oakland, the March on the Pentagon, or May Day, the week in Flamingo Park has been a failure. The number of protesters has never increased to more than a few thousand, and they are divided by every idea but one: that Richard Nixon is a war criminal. It is not enough. Other divisions are too numerous. They quarrel about sexism and revolution, about the merits of violent demonstration as opposed to peaceful sit-ins; before they are done, every old argument about revolutionary tactics from the paving stones of the Paris Commune to the grass of Flamingo Park has been recapitulated, and brother is hung up with brother, and sister hoots them out both because they are too doctrinaire or too ego trip, too heavy, too sexist, too liberated, too irresponsible or too fucking chicken to get their shit together. They even argue whether there should be a single loudspeaker system or many. Their common enemy, the pigs, are no longer common, for the pigs are not acting like pigs. So still another ideological dispute is laid on the babel—they divide whether to trash or cooperate.

Since the police are not vicious, the threat of brutal arrests no longer draws them together nor gives the dignity of combating large fear. Since the danger is less than they have anticipated, they cannot even know after a time if they are serious or have become videoswingers who do the dance of the seven veils for Media men—it is possible they have become no more than actors—just so much as the politicians they despise. Television pollutes identity, and television cameras are about them all the time. So the most serious cannot even finally know if they protest the war or contribute to the entertainment of Nixon’s Epic—across the screens of the nation they flurry, cawing like gulls in adenoidal complaints, a medieval people’s band of lepers and jesters who put a whiff of demonology on the screen, or lay an entertaining shiver along the incantation of their witches. Did that hint of a gay demented air now serve only to dignify the battlements of the white knights of Christendom up on Nixon Heights?

Even their true show of revolutionary strength for the Media—Vietnamese Veterans Against the War—is a strength now sliced, for the Viet Veterans have six of their members on trial in Gainesville for conspiracy to cause disorder and rioting in Miami Beach during the Republican Convention—what jurisprudential coincidence!—and so must keep their deportment proper while in Miami: trashing by the Vets would hurt the men on trial. Yet they have to wonder if real fear of the war might be inspired more by the Vets of Vietnam getting violent in the streets—that might dig deeper into the nature of national distress than the wilder fringes of suburbia screaming up the tube.

Of course, it is possible that nothing would have worked. It was even likely. For the greater their numbers, and the more complete their disruption, greater was the likelihood that they would merely contribute to Nixon’s consensus. So the troops of the Miami Convention Coalition and the People’s Coalition for Peace and Justice, the Miami Women’s Coalition, and the Vietnam Veterans Against the War, the People’s Pot Party, the Coalition of Gay Organizations and the SDS, the Yippies and the Zippies, have all possibly headed into the worst trap of them all which is to attack the Godfather in a Media war. Benefactor of the American corporation, spiritual leader of the military industrial complex, and only don capo ever to have survived the tortures of the Media, he is learned in the wisdom of wise leaders, and knows how to put a foot in front of your ankle as you go forward and a knee in your seat as you back up, a ring in your nostrils to lead you and a hook in your ear for sit down!

The art of Media war is to benefit whether your adversary does well or fails. In a strategy session at the Doral, it has already been decided that if the demonstrators ever succeed on Wednesday night in getting things out of control, then the Republicans will issue a call to McGovern and ask him to call off the kids.

So the protesters cannot win. They are doomed to be the most ineffectual of all the major demonstrations against the war in Vietnam. Yet, they are probably the most interesting, for their ideas are pioneer, and they have led a private demonstration beneath the public exhibition to show that they can live in the field like an army, house every private war, police themselves, feed themselves, drug themselves, and even with a variety of vigilante justice (which stops well short of anybody hanging—merely confiscates weapons and ejects Nazis) they govern themselves. They keep the park in some relation to order, and the tourists and sightseers who come through are sometimes welcome and never molested. They entertain themselves and share their goods and sleep on the ground. They are an area of liberty free to some great extent of civic law—they function as a community of consent—separate from the city about them. There will be others to follow.

For the atmosphere is different in the park, different from the air of other communities, just as there are regions of the skin where the flesh is not like other flesh. In Flamingo Park the mood does not speak precisely of a bruise which has begun to heal nor of the pleasure beneath a piece of one’s sexual skin; it is more, he supposes, like something of the air of a rain forest. He has never been in such a forest but has been told that deep in the jungle, the shade is cool and has the tenderness of any atmosphere which is never free of danger. Senses come alive. One steps out of the pressure of habit, lays down one’s habits like a back pack—there is a limit to how long some live without their load. The tourists enjoy Flamingo Park but leave before too long. So does he. It is too separate from everything in the Republican Convention, too sweet, contentious, hassled, frayed, tawdry, boring, comic, comfortable, menacing, and the faces are always in opposition, so direct and so spaced out, so handsome, so full of acne, so innocent, so open, so depraved, so freaky, so violent, so gentle that first one’s senses are alive as one is alive before the sight of a painting and then are fatigued, as in a museum where there is too much great painting and too much stale air.

The air is also stale in Flamingo Park, stale with the butt end of dead souls all over the grass, washed out, leached out, processed-out, souls dead with the consumptions of their own drug-fired awareness, and the vision is always at hand of the American Left disappearing in the vortex of the great cosmic hole of the drug while Nixon speaks from the Heights of the White Knights and says, “I will destroy 200,000,000 Asians before I let American youth go over to drugs.” Audiences will cheer because nothing is worse than American Youth on drugs (and they are right!) (even if the South Vietnamese with the sanction of the CIA are sending their smack on that Bob Hope road which leads from Saigon to Miami). What a world and what knots! The devil has tied them with fingers of steel.

So Aquarius never remains in Flamingo Park too long at a time, or he might be tempted to stay and do a book about communities of consent. He is not ready for that. He is in Miami of his own desire to study Republicans—such opportunities do not come much more often than every four years. He does his duty, therefore, and breathes that other air of listening to Republican concepts which have never been illumined by any drug, or indeed any breeze which does not pass through the vaults of a bank. He does not care to state which is worse. Left meets Right at the end of ideology, and the smell of dead drugs is like the smell of old green bills. Fungus in the cellar is growth in the damp.

Copyright © 1972 by Norman Mailer.

This Issue

November 2, 1972