Andrew Breitbart: American [Updated Below]
Our Sam Adams passed away early this morning of, it seems, a heart attack. Mr. Breitbart was just forty-three years of age. He leaves behind his wife, four children, and his beloved father-in-law, Orson Bean.
I gave him the nickname of one of our Founding Fathers because, like Sam Adams, Mr. Breitbart was relentless in his quest to restore our rights as freemen, because he was willing, as Greg Gutfield wrote, to ‘work without a safety net’, and because he understood that the Right had to go on the offensive wherever possible and never give up, never give in, and never despair.
But he was more than a reincarnation of Mr. Adams: Andrew Breitbart was also a George Patton in that he loved the sting of battle and enjoyed the clash of arms. He was, as many have stated, a ‘Happy Warrior’.
Few people are indispensible to a cause, but Andrew Breitbart was. There is no one else like him around. A good number of commentators have been saying that we should honor him by carrying on his fight using the methods he developed, and they are correct: we must not let his life’s work be in vain because his life’s work was to defeat the malignant forces of the Left and see America restored to the ways of The Founders. However, we have some mighty big shoes to fill, so it will not be easy.
At this crucial juncture in our history, we have been deprived of one of best generals. The long slog just got tougher.
I have no doubt that we will try to live up to the example Andrew Breitbart set and I have no doubt that, when he approached the Gates Of Heaven but a few hours ago, he was greeted with the words we all desire to hear:
Well done, good and faithful servant, well done.
NOTE: I will be updating this post with an aggregation of what others have been saying and writing about him later in the evening. While you’re waiting, please do check out Stacy McCain’s post here.
UPDATE at 2009…
-In the Comments section of the post by Stacy, Jeff Weimer recalls:
[I] first met him at the 2010 tax day tea party in DC. 2 minutes before he was to go on stage for a speech, he said (and I quote, word for word) “I don’t know what I’m going to talk about”.
Gave an absolute stemwinder, off the top of his head.
-Regarding AB’s health, Jeff also reports this:
He had heart trouble, has been in treatment for about a year or so.
A commenter at hotair was speculating about an issue with iron accumulation in the heart and liver that’s common amongst those of Irish descent, which Breitbart was….
Dr. Helen reports:
…I was in LA a few months ago and went to a party that Andrew attended. I remembered that, like me, he had heart problems and something told me to go up to him and see how he was doing. He was surrounded by fans and friends and I didn’t want to bother him. I wish I had….
-Stacy has only been able to update his post a few times today as he has a family emergency going on, but he was able to republish an interview he did with Mr. Breitbart when he was a reporter for The Washington Times. It’s a wonderful portrait of a force of nature on the rise.
Mr. Breitbart, who is married and a father of four, acknowledges skepticism about whether ADHD is a disease.
“I don’t think every boy was meant to sit at a desk. I think that men were supposed to go out there and hunt and gather. … I feel like, in an electronic sense, I am hunting and gathering I’m out there on my own free range, doing whatI want to do, how I want to do it.
“The idea that I could do for a living that which I would do in my free time, for free, is the single greatest thing on the planet,” he says.
“I realize that my entire brain was meant to be connected to the Internet — it is my Ritalin….
-Whether you occupied the heights of fame in the conservative world or you were a blogger just starting out, AB made time for you, as Pete, DaTechGuy, attests:
Andrew was not pretentious, when I was a much smaller blogger Andrew gave me both time and his cell number, that was not uncommon, Andrew always had time for the people in the trenches.
My most vivid memory of him was an interview I did with him at CPAC 2011. He promptly leaped onto a table lay down across it and then conducted the interview lying on the table in the lobby until the hotel made him get off of it.
That quote was taken from a very good post by Pete that is well-worth your time and contains many links and some video [including an interview Pete did with AB].
From Pete’s article today over at Examiner.com:
Andrew always took the path of waving the red cloth in front of the bull of the MSM and the left and they always charged. He covered the stories that they would not and baited them to respond because he understood better than almost anyone else that it was the stories the media refused to cover, more than what they actually said, that really was the lifesblood and power of the MSM leftist bias.
-William Jacobson recalls:
I only spoke once with Andrew Breitbart. He reached out to me, and we spoke by phone. The topic is not important, but I was shocked that he even knew who I was; but as I’ve come to learn, Andrew seemed to know who everyone was in the conservative blogosphere. He was just that way.
Since my wife called this morning to let me know of Andrew’s death, it has been hard to focus on anything else. In her words, we don’t have that many bright media lights, and to lose him hurts.
I know how The Prof feels: When I got the word this morning, I was surprised at how hard I took the news. I felt like I had been gut-punched. I never met the man. Interesting.
He’s the only person I know who operated without a safety net. He always knew things would turn out the way they were supposed to – so he didn’t worry about money or, i guess, his health, too much.
He was the spiritual leader of the modern conservative, libertarian cause. He was immersed in pop culture and wished to drag the right into the modern world – knowing this is how America speaks to the world. He was the heart of the matter. The fighter. Losing him is like a fiery planet going dark.
-Expect more updating.
UPDATE at 2133…
-Here’s a picture of the incident that Pete mentions above:
-GatorDoug was kind enough to link and quote some of my remarks above. He’s put together an aggregation that contains Ace’s brilliant smackdown of that little shit David Frum and his totally inappropriate post on Mr. Breitbart.
-Chris Muir’s latest Day By Day is a damn fine tribute:
-Speaking of Ace: his whole post is a must read. A highlight:
What was truly charismatic about Breitbart was his never-ending enthusiasm and energy. He spoke fast because he thought fast. He changed topics quickly because he had six or seven plans in mind at any one time.
He actually did things. He was instinctual. Athletes cannot afford the deliberation of thought. They move by instinct and training and muscle memory. They act.
Ace fittingly quote TR’s famous statement about being ‘In The Arena’ — that was Andrew Breitbart.
-Paco issues a call-to-arms:
As the editors of National Review wrote, back in the early 70s, against the background of the seismic moral and cultural shifts of the preceding decade, we are now two nations. That is so today. Whether the civil war be cold or hot, and whether our prospects for victory be good or ill, I don’t intend to stand by and idly watch as my side loses. That is the lesson of Andrew Breitbart.
I saw Andrew a few weeks ago in Michigan at an Americans for Prosperity event and spent time catching up with him on a plane ride back West. We talked about the renewed vigor with which the conservative movement was fighting back against Alinskyite tactics — especially the race card. He battled hard and enjoyed every minute of it — as his always frenetic Twitter account showed until his final hours.
If he were here, he’d be retweeting all the insane tweets from the Left rejoicing over his death. Even in death, he succeeds in exposing the hate-filled intolerance of the tolerance poseurs.
She then provides us with a choice sample of the effluvia emanating from the Left.
-Mike G. reports on the black bile being spewed by that favored ‘reporter’ of the Elites, Matt Taibbi.
-Amidst all the hate, Jeff finds something positive:
…judging by the early reactions to his death from many of the self-styled paragons of moral and civic virtue — those who consistently carp about “fairness” while agitating for the government’s thumb on every scale; those who clamor for “tolerance” even as they isolate dissent from leftist cant into “free speech zones,” when they tolerate it at all; those who speak of rights and freedoms while moving to compel others to do precisely as they dictate; and those who talk about compassion and “social justice” while they reduce their ideological challengers to the status of vermin — his death may be, when all is said and done, one of the greatest performatives of his life’s late thesis.
Let us hope that this will wake up some of the ostriches in The Culture.
-Jimmie Bise has some examples of the vileness, but offers some links to several wonderful tributes as well, and comments:
I didn’t know Andrew Breitbart. I wish I did. I had a couple chances to meet him at CPAC last month, but he always had a throng around him and I’m no good at pushing though crowds, so I didn’t take the opportunity to introduce myself. I doubt that he knew who I was, though we had several friends in common. Despite that, I considered him a friend because, though he probably didn’t know me, he would have had my back if I needed him to because that’s the sort of man he was.
I have no doubt. There were countless examples of Mr. Breitbart doing just that.
-Do take the time to check out Vicki’s excellent aggregation and commentary over at the Frugal Cafe.
In another post, she reports on Sarah Palin’s statement on AB’s passing, embeds a Fox News report, and provides the transcript of Rush Limbaugh’s remarks. A highlight from the last:
…the country desperately needs another thousand more Andrew Breitbarts, if you ask me. He was something. Constantly on the go. Constantly revved up. He was at Tea Party events. He went to CPAC. He would even occasionally go to breakfast meetings of various Republican members of Congress, sit with them and discuss strategy, the way to effectively advance ideas and be victorious. You know, all of us are unique. It’s true to say that there will never be another Andrew Breitbart.
There will never be another anybody because we’re all unique. I hope that the people who worked with him can maintain the tradition, the energy, and the effectiveness that his websites all were after his passing.
I know they’re going to try, and I know they’ll do it with a sense of honor, duty, and devotion to Breitbart as well as the fact they love it, too. It’s just really a sad thing. Everybody is totally taken by surprise, as I say. He was on the phone with people two hours before he died. Nobody knew that anything was wrong.
And, finally, from Sarah Palin:
God bless you, Andrew. Rest in peace, friend. We will continue the fight.