Patrick Jake O’Rourke was a political satire and journalist from the United States.
O’Rourke was a regular contributor to The Atlantic Monthly and the H. L. Mencken Research Fellow at the libertarian Cato Institute.
P.J.O’Rourke was 74 years old. He was born on November 14, 1947i n Toledo, Ohio, U.S.
O’Rourke was born in Toledo, Ohio, to housewife Delphine (née Loy) and car salesman Clifford Bronson O’Rourke.
P.J. O’Rourke, 1947-2022
I was very lucky to have lively and witty colleagues at The Weekly Standard. But P.J. was special. When he came by the office, the fun and wit went up a notch, sparks were in the air, and we all felt a certain joie de vivre. I cherish the memories. pic.twitter.com/cGZtmWQW2d
— Bill Kristol (@BillKristol) February 15, 2022
He graduated from DeVilbiss High School in Toledo in 1965, Miami University in 1969 with a bachelor’s degree, and Johns Hopkins University with a master’s degree in English.
The dedication of P.J. O’Rourke’s GIVE WAR A CHANCE: pic.twitter.com/5ugxU78Zkr
— Jack Butler (@jackbutler4815) February 15, 2022
Many of O’Rourke’s pieces relate how, as a student, he was a leftist anti-war hippie, but that his political views changed dramatically in the 1970s.
A hero and an inspiration. A brilliantly funny, sneaky smart writer and the ideal drinking companion. He did the impossible: he made you laugh at the bad news. Except for today. P. J. O’Rourke. Irreplaceable. pic.twitter.com/KiqKFkwJoH
— Rob Long (@rcbl) February 15, 2022
He rose to prominence as a libertarian conservative political observer and humorist.
O’Rourke was born in Toledo, Ohio, and attended college in Miami in the 1960s.
“No drug, not even alcohol, causes the fundamental ills of society. If we’re looking for the sources of our troubles, we shouldn’t test people for drugs, we should test them for stupidity, ignorance, greed, and love of power.”
—P. J. O’Rourke
Rest in peace, sir. pic.twitter.com/pdwkLKA59e
— Anthony “Advocatus Peregrini” Citrano (@acitrano) February 15, 2022
Before suffering a political awakening and becoming a famous proponent of libertarianism, the writer characterized himself as “a lefty anti-war hippie.”
O’Rourke, like his contemporary Hunter S. Thompson, was a proponent of “gonzo journalism,” a form of reporting that makes no pretenses of objectivity and frequently involves the journalist as a character in the story.
He wrote 19 books, the most recent of which was “Cry from the Far Middle: Dispatches from a Divided Land,” which was published in 2020.
O’Rourke reported in September 2008 that he had been diagnosed with curable anal cancer, with a “95 percent probability of life.”
On February 15, 2022, O’Rourke died of lung cancer at his home in Sharon, New Hampshire.
In a heartbreaking Twitter thread Tuesday, the show’s host, Peter Sagal, acknowledged his friend’s death.
A few words about PJ.
It is very rare in life to be a fan of someone and then become their friend, but it happened to me with PJ, and I discovered something remarkable: https://t.co/escDvQh9gZ
— Peter Sagal (@petersagal) February 15, 2022
“I’m afraid it’s true. Our panelist and my dear friend P.J. O’Rourke has passed away,” Sagal sent out Tweet.
He went on to say more, “It is very rare in life to be a fan of someone and then become their friend, but it happened to me with PJ, and I discovered something remarkable.”
“He told the best stories. He had the most remarkable friends. And he devoted himself to them and his family in a way that would have totally ruined his shtick had anyone ever found out.”
Sagal concluded with a profound remark, “Like some other people, it took him two tries to get marriage right, so he leaves behind a wife, Tina, and three children who are far too young to lose their husband and father. His work was wonderful. His heart was even better. I will miss him terribly.”
A slew of other public personalities, including CNN’s Jake Tapper, paid tribute to O’Rourke, writing, “What a loss; great guy. My deepest condolences to his family and friends.”