I've got some obvious points of affinity with the Hitch -- Auden, Orwell, wordplay, politics, contrarianism, and slovenliness come to mind -- and used to be a fan, esp. of the Mother Teresa book, but I'm afraid I've soured on him since then. It doesn't have much to do with politics; the Iraq war was not an important issue for me, and to his credit Hitchens has not been racist about "Islamofascism" unlike e.g. Martin Amis. I think his real problem has been that he let himself go soft, and has never properly faced up to this. I would attribute it to the fact that both his heroes, Orwell and Auden, were bad influences on him, having been soft on themselves in orthogonal ways; they both provided precedent for aspects of his fundamental laziness, and his using them in this way was ultimately, I think, a mark of bad character.
As far as I know the Hitch-Auden connection hasn't been dealt with anywhere, so I suspect I'll come off as riding a hobby-horse here. (The Orwell connection, otoh, one can just assume as Hitch wrote a book about Orwell.) I assure you it's true though. Hitch's Atlantic book reviews are studded with Auden quotes, and he often brings Auden up for no good reason (e.g. while spanking Somerset Maugham for being seedily gay). Hitch is/was also close friends with James Fenton, who was once going to be the next Auden. The NY'er piece about Hitch sounds remarkably like, e.g., Robert Lowell on Auden in Manhattan -- the squalor, the martinis, the tendency to grow prematurely old and repetitive -- and I don't think the imitation was entirely unconscious.
What Hitchens never developed was the intellectual restlessness, the compulsion to introspect and revise, and the fidgety playfulness with ideas, that kept Auden's table-talk and essays interesting. Auden was essentially both creative and donnish, and his worst moments are partially redeemed by the sense that he was trying to do something with the ideas he was playing with. His posturing was tentative and experimental: one cannot imagine him getting all pissy at a dinner party and saying, e.g.,
I was telling you why I knew that Howard Dean was a psycho and a fraud, and you say, ‘That’s O.K.’ Fuck off. No, I mean it: fuck off. I’m telling you what I think are standards, and you say, ‘What standards? It’s fine, he’s against the Iraq war.’ Fuck. Off. You’re MoveOn.org. ‘Any liar will do. He’s anti-Bush, he can say what he likes.’ Fuck off.