Here is one of life's poetic ironies. Hitchens, who gloated over Mother Theresa's death, smeared the late John Paul II as an "elderly and querulous celibate", and in a lapse of self-awareness managed to label Edward Said as thin-skinned and self-pitying in a recent obituary, is now in the same position as the other posthumous personalities whose memories he has defiled: six feet under. Like Theresa, John Paul II, and Said, his corpse is at the mercy of journalists armed with caustic ink. How will he be remembered? If Alexander Cockburn, James Kirkpatrick, Kevin Drum or Steve Sailer -- among others -- are any indication, not terribly fondly. Karma might be real after all. Unfortunately, these reasonable voices are currently drowned out by the chorus of eulogies swelling over the opinion pages of every mainstream publication from Slate to WSJ and everything in between. You see, Hitchens had a strong preservation instinct which allowed him to anticipate political trends and cuddle up to them like a nursing babe; while never straying from his Trotskyite roots, he was always able to stake out a position on the spectrum which would maximize his respectability with the media while letting him strike his favorite pose, that of the rakish iconoclast. He hated Reagan back when it was still trendy; in the 90s he covered his bases by bashing Clinton for his personal proclivities while enthusiastically supporting his wars in Somalia and Bosnia; and then, sensing the climate changing post-911, he pulled a Dennis Miller and became a cheerleader for the neocons. Nothing he did or said was considered truly 'contrarian' in the eyes of the fawning elite, which is now returning the favor by extending to him exactly that courtesy -- honor and praise of the dead -- which Hitchens denied his late opponents. Those who have commented on Hitchen's passing, even his critics, have conceded the superiority of his prose, calling him 'acerbic', 'incisive', 'witty', and the like. I won't do the same. His columns are tediously predictable, often following this format: Hitchens tosses a few barbs at a well-known figure, peppers his invective with pretentious allusions, loses the plot after an anecdote or two, and ends on an anti-climatic banality. And his heralded style? I hope it doesn't give away my distaste for the man if I say that the overall tenor of his writing resembles Maureen Dowd with an Oxford degree. It has that same prissy, gossipy quality, that same mix of the captious and facile, all topped off with an unbearable literary arrogance. In other words, it has a female quality, perhaps because of his early identification with his mother. When he attempts introspection, as he has with the columns leading up to his (richly deserved) death, the results are nothing short of cringe-worthy. Hitchens has lived with such a high estimation of his own talents and personality, and for so long, that every effort at self-reflection seems forced and artificial. Even the specter of death has not managed to cure his outrageous egotism. While most people faced with the prospect of oblivion would think of settling accounts, either with God or other people, Hitchens can only toss out smug nips of garlic like "...I can’t see myself smiting my brow with shock or hear myself whining about how it’s all so unfair: I have been taunting the Reaper into taking a free scythe in my direction and have now succumbed to something so predictable and banal that it bores even me." See? This cunt thinks he's too good for death. Well, death is too good for him. I would rather see him live into his 80s, dwindling into senile obscurity, than be ennobled in the public eye through his trial with cancer. But oh well. At least I won't have to read his columns anymore.