H.L. MENCKEN'S diaries are still kicking up...


H.L. MENCKEN'S diaries are still kicking up dust. Gore Vidal comes to a spirtied defense of Mencken in the Nation of Aug. 26-Sept.2. Mencken might have been politically correct by today's standards, Vidal writes, but even the use of the word "race" today in the U.S. is "considered a priori proof of the user's racism."

Incidentally, Vidal reminds us that in 1930 Mencken predicted that communism "will probably disappear altogether when the Russian experiment comes to a climax, and Bolshevism either converts itself into a sickly imitation of capitalism or blows up with a bang. The former seems more likely."

Sign in a Greenville, Maine, restauant, the Boom Chain: "Try our clams not like those skinny ones from Maryland."

At least our clams know a run-on sentence. When they see one.

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