The Greatest Hunter S. Thompson Quote NEVER Made!


Hang out on a music-industry message board (like the late, lamented Velvet Rope or the Steve Hoffman forum), or Facebook long enough and you're bound to see the above quote mentioned by someone.  What invariably follows are a number of responses that rave about said quote and hail Hunter S. Thompson as a supreme bad-ass, which he was, but the fact of the matter is that the above quote never happened.

Hunter S. Thompson did, however, make a similar quote about the television industry:

The TV business is uglier than most things. It is normally perceived as some kind of cruel and shallow money trench through the heart of the journalism industry, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free and good men die like dogs, for no good reason

The above comprises the opening paragraph to Thompson's Nov. 4, 1985 San Francisco Examiner column,"Full-Time Scrambling", which later appeared in Generation of Swine: Gonzo Papers Vol. 2.   

The entirety of the column goes a little something like this:
“The TV business is uglier than most things. It is normally perceived as some kind of cruel and shallow money trench through the heart of the journalism industry, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free and good men die like dogs, for no reason.
Which is more or less true. For the most part, they are dirty little animals with huge brains and no pulse. Every once in a while, they will toss up a token human like Ed Bradley or Hughes Rudd… and there are others, no doubt, like Studs Terkel in Chicago and the twisted Rev. Gene Scott, who works like a sleepless ferret in the maniac bowels of Southern California….
But these are only the exceptions that prove the hideous rule. Mainly we are dealing with a profoundly degenerate world, a living web of foulness, greed and treachery… which is also the biggest real business around and impossible to ignore. You can’t get away from TV. It is everywhere. The hog is in the tunnel.”

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