Monday, January 11, 2016

A writer I'd not heard of

David Warren's latest column is recollections of the late George Jonas whom he knew for years. He refers one to the National Post for a formal obituary, from which I gather that Jonas was quite a wordsmith:
His columns were memorable in many cases for a single aphorism. Politicians who seek high office, for example, should be disqualified for being stupid enough to think they can do it. Crime is not wrong because it is illegal, it is illegal because it is wrong. Cold War Communists “could cope with bankruptcy; they had never been anything but bankrupt, beginning with Karl Marx himself.” Freedom is too fragile to put into words, so “if you write down your rights and freedoms, you lose them.”

and more about this refugee from Hungary

For all his interest in and experience with war, hatred and the ugliness of global affairs, though, he acknowledged that his most popular column was about a squirrel stealing a bagel from a bag left by a friend on his front porch, and his conversation with the rodent, which was first terrified, then seemed to understand and accept Jonas’s offer to just keep the damn thing, possession being nine-tenths of the law. Plus, as he put it, memorably, “You can’t wash a bagel.”

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