He also resents the way people now expect a constant flow of jokes and paradoxes from him. “The way some people celebrate me is really a disguised form of an attack. ‘He’s a funny provocateur,’ they say. ‘He just likes to provoke.’ I don’t provoke. I’m very naive; I mean what I say.”
How, then, does he see himself? “As an American preacher. I read somewhere that these evangelical preachers in the wild west had a strategy to convert the cowboys. They were very good magicians – these classical tricks, rabbits, hats, blah blah. The idea is, first, through magical tricks, attract the attention, then the message. Maybe I’m going to do the same.” But what is the message? “Pessimistic leftism.” Capitalism is doomed; classical leftist solutions are naive; we’re screwed, basically, and he doesn’t have an easy answer. Which, he says, is why he is a philosopher rather than a political theorist.
more from The Guardian here.