Maybe I had a dream one time that he had died, so I assumed he had been dead for years. It was kind of like Clifton Fadiman. I used to see him all the time on these educational videos when I was in high school, especially trying to explain the godawful boring Great Expectations to us poor slobs in high school whose attention span was almost non-existent. I was totally horrified when I found out that not only he had not died many years before he did, but that he had almost outlived my mother. He died the same year as she did, in 1999. He was 95.
So, too, the notion I thought McLaughlin had died. But then again I had not paid attention to his talking head show for years. If I had, I would have known he wasn't dead at all.
McLaughlin started out as a priest, but he didn't like it:
An ordained priest and holder of a PhD (in philosophy), McLaughlin taught high school at a Jesuit prep school before becoming a writer for a Jesuit current affairs publication. Some time after that, the Vietnam War opponent sought (but lost out on) a seat in the United States Senate. In 1974, he served as a speechwriter for President Richard Nixon, and in the 1980s wrote for National Review.
McLaughlin had moderated The McLaughlin Group, weekly round-table discussion of political issues, since Day 1, but had actively participated in the conversation less frequently in recent months, sometimes merely introducing the next issue.
See, he was active almost until he died, but I had completely ignored him since the 1980s.
At least I didn't wait until months later to acknowledge his death, unlike jockey great Johnny Longden and a few other luminaries.
Well, if Utah and Indiana are possibly in play, why not Texas?