Thursday, June 11, 2009

Nick Kristof is an idiot

Op-Ed Columnist - Cum Laude in Evading Bandits - NYTimes.com
When a friend of mine put on his Facebook page recently that he was a fan of Nick Kristof, I knew for sure that he had been marinating in the Upper West Side for too long. Then I decided that perhaps I was being too harsh, since I don't really read that many of his articles.

Several days ago, while traveling in Europe I saw a copy of the International Herald Tribune that had the linked article in it. At first I thought maybe my distaste for Kristof was misplaced, since he was advocating something I strongly believe in, which is travel to other countries and interaction with other cultures. I haven't made it to Bolivia yet, but I have been to Bombay, and stayed with friends there, and even walked through slums, as he recommends.

His advice on how to avoid being robbed is also practical and sensible.

So what was the problem? His last line:
And even if everything goes wrong and you are robbed and catch malaria, shrug it off — those are precisely the kinds of authentic interactions with local cultures that, in retrospect, enrich a journey and life itself.

Remember the old line "A Conservative is a Liberal who has been mugged"? Apparently Nick Kristof is Liberal who stays a Liberal after being mugged. How? By telling himself that being mugged, like catching malaria, is a life-enriching experience. What an idiot.


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