[QODLink]
Archive
Author Hunter Thompson found dead

Hunter Thompson, the leading American journalist and author, has died at his Colorado home, in what police say could have been a suicide. He was 67.

Last Modified: 21 Feb 2005 08:35 GMT
Hunter Thompson said Bush made up the Iraqi threat

Hunter Thompson, the leading American journalist and author, has died at his Colorado home, in what police say could have been a suicide. He was 67.

Thompson was found shot dead at his home outside the ski resort of Aspen on Sunday night, police said.

 

"We do have confirmation that Hunter Thompson was found dead this evening of an apparent self-inflicted wound," said Tricia Louthis, spokeswoman for the Pitkin County Sheriff's Office.

 

Thompson's son, Juan, released a family statement to the Aspen Daily News saying: "Hunter prized his privacy and we ask that his friends and admirers respect that privacy as well as that of his family."

His 1971 book Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, adapted from an article written for Rolling Stone magazine, chronicled Thompson's drug-hazed misadventures in Las Vegas while covering a motorcycle race.

The book established Hunter as a cult celebrity and became the basis for a 1998 Hollywood adaptation, starring Johnny Depp as Thompson's alter-ego, Raoul Duke.

Gonzo journalism

Thompson made his drug and alcohol-fuelled antics and clashes with the authorities the central theme of his work, challenging the conventions of traditional journalism and creating a larger-than-life outlaw persona for himself along the way. 

 

"The oligarchy doesn't need an educated public. And maybe the [American] nation does prefer tyranny"

Hunter Thompson

He dubbed his style of writing "gonzo" journalism and was commonly known as the godfather of that brand of journalism.

 

He was famous for distrusting power all his life and he believed George Bush's administration had "manufactured" the Iraqi threat for its own political gain as well as the economic gain of what he called the "oligarchy", website salon.com said.

He also criticised the American people for not exercising their right to vote, the website said.

"The oligarchy doesn't need an educated public. And maybe the nation does prefer tyranny," he was quoted as saying. "I think that's what worries me."

Nationwide nervous breakdown

He was quoted as saying 9/11 had caused a "nationwide nervous breakdown" and "let the Bush crowd loot the country and savage American democracy", according to an interview published by salon.com in February 2003.

Thompson, who regarded himself as a patriot, said civil liberties had been compromised for what he called "the illusion of security".

That, he said was "a disaster of unthinkable proportions" and "part of the downward spiral of dumbness" he believed was plaguing the country.

Source:
Agencies
Topics in this article
People
Featured on Al Jazeera
The author argues that in the new economy, it's people, not skills or majors, that have lost value.
Colleagues of detained Al Jazeera journalists press demands for their release, 100 days after their arrest in Egypt.
Mehdi Hasan discusses online freedoms and the potential of the web with Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales.
A tight race seems likely as 814 million voters elect leaders in world's largest democracy next week.
Featured
Iran's government has shifted its take on 'brain drain' but is the change enough to reverse the flow?
Deadly attacks on anti-mining activists in the Philippines part of a global trend, according to new report.
Activists say 'Honor Diaries' documentary exploits gender-based violence to further an anti-Islamic agenda.
As Syria's civil war escalates along the Turkish border, many in Turkey are questioning the country's involvement.
Treatment for autism in the region has progressed, but lack of awareness and support services remains a challenge.
join our mailing list