Dunkirk is the latest WWII film. I have not seen the movie. Doubt if I will as I am philosophically bothered by ‘honouring’ war events.
However, Conrad Black, Lord of Crossharbour, recently wrote a piece relating to the movie. His article is a confusion of cross purposes.
Many years ago as I was doing post graduate studies, I used a Conrad Black opus about Maurice Duplessis as one of my reference sources. The book was a tome, an epic piece of writing, endlessly long, extensively researched but long, long long. Black is notorious for writing long works. His books about the US, Flight of the Eagle, Nixon, and Roosevelt are all weighty tomes, biblical in duration. Black must get paid by the word, for almost any book he writes becomes a lengthy read.
The question at the forefront here may be not why do publishers publish such lengthy works by Black but more as do publishers say anything to Black about his works. Dare they? Surely they do not see his work as easily readable. Each of his books is a test of one’s perseverance, if not endurance. Publishers must be intimidated by the man and back away from editing his work. It is unfortunate if they do not have the backbones to criticize, modify and polish his works or at the very least critique Black about the less than favourable readability of his literary efforts.
Black has axes to grind relating to events in his life. His bitterness about his personal history is evident in almost every one of his works. His work relating to the Dunkirk movie is another example of how bitter Black is about events in his life. The Dunkirk piece is all over the map:, a criticism of the lack of context for the movie, a commentary about the leaders and the ideologies of the era. It sinks lower when he begins to analyze the politics of our world today. What have the leaders and political notables of modern France and Brexit-favouring-England got to do with Dunkirk.
Then, he turns his flame of criticism toward the USA and ‘Turnip’s’ new policy regarding transgender service people. Again, the relevance to the movie Dunkirk is puzzling.
When he dives into writing about Khadr, Trudeau and the newly designated Governor General, Louise Payette, every reader of the article must be in a quagmire of confusion.
I consider myself as being relatively well educated and at least somewhat intelligent. But why Black is all over the map in his writing is beyond me. However, I do have the courage to say, “the emperor has no clothes on” when I criticize Black for how he writes his Dunkirk piece. The man may do incredible research before he writes anything and he may plan his creative pieces to the nth degree. Perhaps he once was a socioeconomic giant in Canadian society, but does it mean his works who should be accepted as being polished and worthy of great praise beyond criticism. Often his writing is too verbose, too pedantic and too erratic in focus. Anyone telling him otherwise is playing to his ego as do many of the Washington sycophants who currently kneel before ‘king Turnip .’ Of course, they fear they may be fired but Conrad Black no longer has that kind of power.