The Airs and Errs of Ayers
UPDATE: Slate's Timothy Noah was onto Ayers back in 2001.
Chatterbox (Noah's blog) isn't sure he's ever read a memoir quite so self-indulgent and morally clueless as Fugitive Days. (He's certainly never before read one festooned with glowing blurbs from respectable folk like Scott Turow--"a gripping personal account.") "Memory is a m*****f******," begins Ayers, establishing the book's literary tone and unreliability in one compact sentence.
Throughout Fugitive Days, Ayers reminds his readers that he's had to omit or change many facts throughout his narrative because they describe actions on his part that are, well, illegal. In the turbulent early 1970s, Ayers helped set off bombs in two dozen places, including the Pentagon and the U.S. Capitol. Supposedly nobody was hurt--the Weatherpeople always issued agitprop-laden bomb threats in advance--though Chatterbox has never seen a scrupulous accounting. (Ayers never did jail time for the bombings because of prosecutorial misbehavior.) Ayers was also a leader of the Days of Rage, a vandalism spree in Chicago in which bystanders were assaulted, though Ayers neglects to mention that.
To acquire false IDs needed to survive underground, Ayers does confess, "[w]e stole wallets and purses ... without much concern for our victims." Characteristically, though, Ayers dwells not on this latter point but on his foolishness for risking exposure.
Read the whole thing.