07.25.2012
  • UK

Is Your Hate Pure?

My favorite Cockburn passage and something we do at Jacobin, as well.

I asked the future leader what I asked all interns as a matter of form, “Eddie, is your hate pure?”

The man who first asked me that question was the late Jim Goode, editor of Penthouse.

Like Playboy, Penthouse would pay good money for long articles about the corruption of America, thus giving the pointyheads an excuse to thumb through the pinups. Goode, tall and cadaverous, was gay, clad in black leather as he crouched on the floor of his office, gazing morosely at hundreds of photos of bare-breasted women.

As I entered with some screed about corporate and political evil, he’d snarl, “Alex, is your hate pure?” “Yes, Jim, my hate is pure.”

It was a good way of assaying interns. The feisty ones would respond excitedly, “Yes, my hate is pure.” I put the question to Eddie Miliband. He gaped at me in shock like Gussie Fink-Nottle watching one of his newts vanish down the plug hole in his bath. “I . . . I . . . don’t hate anyone, Alex,” he stammered.

It’s all you need to know.