Archive for May, 2019

historical perspectives reshuffle

Monday, May 20th, 2019

The cover story of Strange Adventures #60… circa 1955

begins with a splash page where Napoleon Bonaparte looks on at a street parade in Christopher Columbus’s honor and thinks…

“So Columbus thinks he’s more popular here in the twentieth century than I — Napoleon Bonaparte!  Well, I’m going to prove he’s wrong!”

Indeed.  Columbus was more popular in the twentieth century than Napoleon.  Now in the twenty-first century — it’s maybe a coin toss.

random sighting of marxist infighting

Friday, May 17th, 2019

I noted at some cafe or other a pin pricked notice for a lecture from a bunch of… Maoists apparently…  against “Post-Modernism” and Identity politics at the university.

And they’re on against the Frankfurt School… (Take that Herbert Marcuse!)… cultural marxism, getting into the way of the non cultural marxism.

The lecture tour was had, and reported on by the house organ of wsws.  They try for class solidarity, but I imagine they’ll have to — like everyone else– figure out how to split apart as you thread the needles on identity politics and “victim-ology”… like, when identifies are indeed victimized.  (Joey Bishop is of the working class, ain’t he?)

They do take their stand with the beleagured professors who exposed the problems of cultural studies.  (Surprised by the tone of “bastards who are in it for the lols” response I’d see about them.  Probably shouldn’t be surprised, though… agendas are set full stance and all.)  Maybe there’s hope on the far left yet.

in technical defense of john edwards and the swirling Biden acceptance gap

Wednesday, May 15th, 2019

I mostly quit reading the Portland Mercury once “One Day at a Time” passed on.  And though there’s nothing much different in the replacement, the latest edition has a political point worth commenting on.

The pool of democratic presidential candidates may need just a little more chlorine now that former vice president Joe Biden formally announced his candidacy after months of speculation, including several weeks where his history of handsiness and hair-sniffing seemed like a big deal, and people were like, “Women are recklessly accusing Biden of stuff that isn’t even bad, according to me, somebody who wasn’t there, and it will damage his reputation FOREVER!” Yet straight out the gate, Biden is leading in the primary polls against several candidates who have never been accused of inappropriately touching anyone. That’s weird!
To be clear, I’d vote for an un-housetrained basset hound over Trump in 2020, so whatever. The first caucus isn’t for 10 months. A lot can change. John Edwardswas a frontrunner once, too. (BTW, did you know that John Edwards, who fathered a child with his mistress as his wife died of cancer, is now back to being a successful lawyer? Another life ruined by allegations of sexual misconduct… NOT. *snaps*)

We’re in a land where the politics of the liberal cohorts of twittersphere and various points of a liberal communisphere don’t match the general Democratic electorate.  With Biden we have women photographed in the Biden compromised pose horrified that it’s being used against him, and Biden offering a mea culpa of passing standards.  (I wonder how Angela Merkel woulda done with Joseph Biden.)

As we were the problem with the Democratic primaries — sure.  There’s thirty or so people running.  All goddamned politically flawed — whether by my standards or by the general electorate.   At the moment I’m a shrug with a “Biden’s as good as any”.  At least in his weather vane role he hasn’t made the mistake Kamala Harris has as she maneuvers from her role of super-prosecutor in the age of attempted prison reform to land on the “Prisoner Voting Rights”.  (Skipping from the right to the left to meet Bernie Sanders, before seeing she has to retreat.)

John Edwards was never a frontrunner.  If he ever lead in the polls in 2008, it was for, like, a day.  Overall, he was always a distant third behind Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.  In 2004, he emerged after Dean’s slide as a Nation magazine approved second placer — The Nation now able to look past his fervant support of the Iraq War as he steered over to stumping about poverty.

More to the point, I don’t really know why he shouldn’t be back to successful private lawyering.  His sexual misconduct is not of the sort that afflicts (go down the long list that includes Bill Freaking Clinton).  He had a private affair, and not here with a subordinate (Clinton again).  A dickish private affair, sure — which I suppose precludes him from being popular enough to win any elected office or serve in a function in an elected official, but nothing criminal.  I don’t even know that “sexual misconduct” is the proper word for it, unless everything becomes bad in the same way.

anyone not running for president?

Thursday, May 9th, 2019

Joseph Biden — rusty old weather vane

Mayor Bernie Sanders expresses his angst in memos.

Call me crazy, I don’t want a “Spiritual-guru” as President.

Kamala Harris “re-sets” her campaign.  Well, you do it now, don’t you, otherwise if you did it 2 weeks before Iowa it’d reek of desperation.  (What’s new?  After her signature windup of “let’s speak truth,” she replaced her usual recitation of Democratic policies with an attack on President Trump.  Something everyone will agree with.)
I see her children’s book “Superheroes are Everywhere”.  No they’re not.  Quit inflating superheroes from our primordial imaginations of stupid epic slug-fests on to “people doing good works”.

Cory Booker versus John Delaney!  Oh, it’s on.

A rightwing mill is working out allegations against Pete Buttigieg.  Finding someone to falsely charge him and all that.

Beto O’Rourke thinks 8th graders want partisan “red meat”Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke visited an 8th grade civics class Monday and found students ready with tough questions about school shootings and climate change — and not willing to laugh at the usual campaign trail jokes he uses to make adults chuckle.

Eric Idle throws his support to Jay Inslee.  Well, if we must do celebrity endorsements, may as well be someone outside Hollywood.

Tulsi Gabbard — The Russian propaganda machine that tried to influence the 2016 U.S. election is now promoting the presidential aspirations of Well, that will take some doing.  Not because “We’re onto you”, but because…

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Tuesday, May 7th, 2019

Looking over the “Medal of Freedom” recipients

Yeah.  It’s a pretty lame medal.

 

Ron Paul favors Tulsi Gabbord

Monday, May 6th, 2019

Ron Paul weighs in, and is throwing his support for the Democratic Primary to…

Tulsi Gabbord.  I think Paul may have once egged on Dennis Kucinich, so we’re around the same basic location with Gabbord.

Foreign policy — the non intervention — trumps economics.  I suppose age trumps some things, as Gravel’s program — well he did make a bid for the Libertarian nomination once, right? — though maybe Gravel’s Ron Paul’s second choice.

It does appear Gabbord pulled a bit of switching about on the score, though.  Wasn’t always “non interventionalist”.  Well, none of the candidates are purely consistent — and some are worse than others.  A funny article in the NYT tracks Kirsten Gilibrand — on “electability” — as she points to winning rural districts in the past.  Sure.  She came in as an ex-Republican turned centrist “blue dog” Democrat — and once making the leap to being selected as a state-wide Democrat made the natural changes to become a mainline Democrat who’s now…

Anyway… Ron Paul had a slight pull with some liberals during the Iraq War fights — we’ll see how many of the “some liberals” are about with various levels of commitment and hypocrisy.

Trump supports QE?

Sunday, May 5th, 2019

I.  So.  Ramsey Clark chimed in with a comment, condolences.  I guess that makes him the highest profile for this — but again, we can place Clarke roughly analogous on his position visa vie Larouche at the end of the 1980s with where Roger Stone had stood 2017-2018.  Roger Stone hasn’t said anything.

“I feel very saddened about the loss of Lyndon LaRouche. These things come in their time. Everyone’s death diminishes us all and Mr. LaRouche will certainly find his place in history. He was treated unfairly in his life, for his vision and his work. His courage is especially notable in the face of pervasive and vicious propaganda. Time will correct this, in his memory. The truth will out.”

II.  Mike Gravel gets tarred with the Larouche bar in three ways — one: compared and listed as “also run”s in history (don’t think he ran in 2004), tasked with making an appearance before the Larouche gaggle

Worth pointing out… a tweet response that was deleted from Mike Gravel’s tweet feed:

PeoPLes HisToRiAN @lunadyana Mar 20   Explain LaRouche ties please

He (or his campaign) explains it thusly:

So, for example, the Jewish Worker piece about his associations, when we brought them up to him, he had forgotten about some of these people. And we really dug into it, he didn’t know about their associations. [For him it was] always about, “Well, I got a speaking invitation, this is an issue that matters to me, and nobody is willing to let me talk about this, and because they are, and I want to be on their stage, and I want to say something,” and he was so quick to articulate why he did that and what it was always about for him. There was no part of him that associated with the ideas of these people. It was really the fact that he was in the political wilderness. And David, I think, has spent a lot of time talking to the Senator. I’m digging into these because, really, we felt we couldn’t get behind him unless we felt we had a satisfactory answer to these questions, because they matter to us.

From EIR, we see Gravel drawn to the org  on behalf of maglev trains.  (To each their own), and this:  At the Oct. 27 EIR Forum in Washington, D.C., Gravel concluded his presentation: “So, let me rest on that, and just say that I’m delighted to be associated with the LaRouche organization and the wisdom they’ve brought forward in their leadership role. And here, I’m taking a page out of their book, suggesting that the leadership of China should take the initiative and bring the Silk Road to the commons of the South China Sea.
Then again, the same article begins by making the assertion that Helga Zepp Larouche is well known in America (the premise being that Gravel may not be as well known, so we’ll explain his biography), so… we can maybe take a grain or two of salt.  (Gravel has other beefs to settle.)

III.  From factnet:  Buckle up, folks.
I think I found a Nazi in LPAC’s ranks.
https://twitter.com/EgSophie/status/1124082789597548556?s=20.
https://www.facebook.com/LaRouchePAC/photos/a.271622059596228/1697034393721647/?type=3&theater
.

See too.

So.  Will the Larouchies renounce and remove the neo-nazis in the organization?  Or is this part of the crowd anyways?

IV.  Hey.  You know who’s big on “quantative easing”?  Why, President Donald Trump.

In a series of tweets published Tuesday, Trump said the lower rates along with “quantitative easing” would bolster the economy.
“We have the potential to go up like a rocket if we did some lowering of rates, like one point, and some quantitative easing,” Trump wrote.

See too The Fed is designed to be independent of politics, but Trump has broken with the precedent set by recent presidents by forcefully urging the Fed to cut rates and bring back “quantitative easing,” a policy of bond purchases used to stimulate economic growth that was adopted in the aftermath of the financial crisis.

Funny, of course, because… you know who considers “Quantatitive Easing” heroin to British Banking interests?  Sure… it’s at odds with… how quantatative easing is like heroin to the bankers… and how when the policy is pursued we bring on the New Dark Ages paradigm.

So… Will the Larouchies take a stand and fight Trump on his fed push?  We’ll wait and see if the Trump Hitler posters make the round.

V.  From A Time to Stir, Columbia ’68, Paul LaPorte’s contribution, pgs 200-201:
The problem with my seeking to be instructed by younger radicals was that, at twenty-five, I knew more history than they did at eighteen, and had to keep the greater sophistication on hold.  The radicals, looking far and wide for exemplary militant models, were not only worshipful of Lenin but also half-willing to rehabilitate Stalin and to swallow the most far-fetched claims of Maoists.  (For instance, that no one was ever executed in Communist China; enemies of the state were only “re-educated.”)
The student radicals were drawn to whatever felt severe or uncompromising, like guerilla warfare strategy manuals.  The Liberation School invited all the left splinter groups — the Spartacist League, the Socialist Workers Party — to duke it out for the correct political line.  Thus, I heard Lyndon Larouche, then calling himself Lyn Marcus, a thin man with a Lenin goatee, put forward the National Caucus of Labor Committee’s position, harsh but not having yet diverged into paranoid claims that Queen Elizabeth was a Zionist agent trying to assassinate him.  I listened to Paul Rockwell, of Progressive Labor, advocate that we go downtown and try to raise the consciousness of the token-selling clerks by standing beside their booths and engaging them in political discussion.  I heard proposals for students to make alliances with street gangs.  Criminals were seen as proto-revolutionaries, acting out against the system.
If there was anything nonnegotiable in my political beliefs, it was freedom of artistic expression.  Any pressure to dilute difficult art or make it more responsive to the masses, agitprop, or social realist should be resisted, I thought.  I knew full well the fate of Babel, Mayakovsky, and Mandelstam, writers ground up in the Soviet machine.  Hences, I was especially interested in Liberation School sessions on literature.  There I heard that we need to jettison Dostoyovsky, the writer who had meant the most to me in my teenage years, because he was reactionary; Celine, being a Nazi sympathizer, would of course have to go, although I loved his novels; and Yeats — my beloved Yeats — wasn’t he also right wing?  Over the side of the boat with him.  Freud was discredited because he emphasized individual neurosis and not social pathology.  With the literary ranks denuded, who was left?  Victor Sarge, mabye.  Eventually they even banished the seemingly inoffensive psychologist Erich Fromm as a liberal reformer.  “Reform” had become such a dirty word.  I remember a headline in the Progressive Labor newspaper: “The Struggle Against Reformism is the Struggle to the Death”.  I dared not let on that many reformers were still heroes in my eyes.

VI.  Rex W Willard chimes into the “letter to the editor” campaign.  I have been a reader of many political leaders over the last 40-plus years
Ron Wieczorek and the same.
Bruce Todd.
And this… propagating the “Mueller did Lyn in” myth.
How long will the letter writing campaign continue, and how long it will take for it to succeed in “vindicating” Larouche, only time will tell.

VII.  So, we see salon refers to larouche as a “left wing cult“, oddly in an article sorting out the history of the promulgation of “cultural marxism” as a concept of the “far right”.

Do these semantics mean anything?   Curiously, in the comments at louis proyect’s blog HH places them on the right… a bit counter to an argument he’d had with Dennis King that the post Marxist Larouchies fit in a more idiosyncratic mode than “left” / “right”.

And I see Technocracy rolls in again, here HH has Larouche in a lineage from Technocracy, (or maybe springing from the same ideological fronts) — as I remember the appendix on Technocracy was just a comparison of similarities.  (“Me for Dictators“.)  Make of it what you will, the “Technocratics” claim to have dropped Larouche all their literature in the 1960s.

Now that Larouche is dead, I suppose I could fall asleep, wake up in 50 years and make a comparison on where the Larouche org sits and where Technocracy, Inc sits.  Someone plays the game of a youtube video for “What if Technocracy had succeeded“, and I guess someone will get around to it with Larouche.  (Tecnocracy’s youtube selection is dried up a tad.)

Beyond all that in comments section, the video of the friendly meeting with the Larouche is interesting.  In consideration of why he goes to the cultural concerns, I can suggest there’s a play for the audience — a former Columbia University grad student coming out of the left wing protests is unlikely to be taking in Trump — as well it is one constant element in Larouche as they play games of opportunism within American politics.

VIII.  Jacques Cheminade makes an (American) late night show gag…

Oliver draws short profiles of several of the contenders — even giving short, hilarious breakdowns of the total noncompetitors like Jacque Cheminade and Jean Lassalle. Cheminade once “accused the queen [of England] of being involved in international drug trafficking” and has seriously discussed “colonizing Mars.” And Lassalle, seemingly forever clad in an actual black beret, is a character whose “entire life seems like an episode of So You Think You Can France,” Oliver jokes.

In Russian media, Cheminade is claiming a variation of those “mass strike conditions“.  Sure he’ll jump in.
In other international bits, the Citizens electoral council explainedAnd here.
We see a CEC candidate putting in a good word for an embattled opponent.

IX.  In case you want to hear some singing at 256.  Hers’s the Schiller Institute on May 5 singing for Italy.
Or, if you’d rather see Marsha Freeman dish about Fusion, a New Jersey state senator has her in.

X.  After nine years, a person who’d commented on Kesha Rogers that I’d linked to (somewhat perfunctorily) spots the link and returns to my blog to lay this claim.

 Rogers wasn’t LaRouche and isn’t LaRouche, and didn’t agree with the full conspiracy-theorising he’d gone into; although she’d attached herself to the LaRouche fanclub.

I ask him:
So. Question. When did Kesha Rogers distance herself from anything Larouchian, conspiracy theorizing or otherwise?

And get back the answer:
But to answer your actual question : private conversation. Rogers’ team hosted some roundtable talks where LaRouche’s cultists taught us LaRouchism. Rogers herself – in 2010 – allowed the LaRouche team to run the meetings but didn’t much pipe in herself. And, talking to me one on one after one such meeting, she distanced herself from the weird stuff about the British Royal Family.
But the cultists were the people who were running her campaign, and running campaigns is hard. So she let them run the meetings too.

Frankly, none of this is valid.  I suspect the case is just Kesha Rogers politicking for votes, perhaps compartmentalizing away aspects of Larouchian ideology in favor of “Glass Steagall or Die” and at least some version of “We support NASA”, but the idea that she’s above or beyond the Larouche org in her campaign is certainly a weird one. Or is it not?

Noted on Kesha Rogers, wikipedia has not chimed in on the 2018 campaign.  And ont he wikipedia font, Oh, they’d hate this correction to “Marxism to Keynesian“.

The Left’s pointing on the Mueller Investigation gets compared to larouche from counterpunch, sometime between the release of the summary statement and the redacted report.

XI.  William Jones is the Washington Bureau Chief for Executive Intelligence Review and a non-resident fellow of the Chongyang Institute for Financial Studies, Renmin University of China. The article reflects the author’s opinion, and not necessarily the views of CGTNMore from William Jones here.

Webster Tarpley on China, for comparison’s sake.

XII.  Proud legacy he’s got there.  Given the scope of the killings and their chilling efficiency with the machete, we now know that the genocide was not a mere tribal reaction to Habyarimana’s death. It had been organized for months in advance. Predictably, this has given rise to a great deal of speculation. The recently deceased Lyndon Larouche, perennially obsessed with conspiracy theories, incessantly proposed an alternative version of the events. In his account, Britain’s Prince Philip was the mastermind of this horrid event, given that he was president of the World Wildlife Fund at the time. Larouche claims that, in fact, this particular institution has a more sinister goal: population control, perhaps out of Malthusian motivations (an old conspiracy theory that has many versions). In the years preceding the genocide, the World Wildlife Fund was very active in Rwanda, organizing programs for the protection of gorillas. According to Larouche, under the guidance of Prince Philip, the World Wildlife Fund was actually preparing the Hutu militias for the genocide.

Over the years, Larouche became a laughing stock because of his outlandish claims, and this is yet another of his outrageous allegations. There is no evidence whatsoever in support of his conspiracy theory regarding the genocide in Rwanda. But, as it usually happens, one of the great dangers of absurd conspiracy theories is that they divert attention from real conspiracies. And, as it turns out, there may have been a real conspiracy in the Rwandan genocide. […]

Thus, the first lesson we can learn from these tragic events is that absurd conspiracy theories (such as Larouche’s) actually hinder our efforts to arrive at historical truths and consider real conspiracy theories (such as France’s possible participation in the genocide).

XIII.  I do find it funny that the “climate change skeptic” conspiratorial minded [ex-]larouchie who made a recent appearance at factnet (or what it is now)… refers to Alex Jones as…  “controlled opposition such as Alex Jones“.  [He doesn’t do much with climate change, but to the extent he does — is it controlled by environmentalists so that they can ignore the work by the Competitive Enterprise Institute?] At some point Alex Jones will be right back atcha, though… not without that odd interval where he interviewed him a few times.

In other notes thereabouts… Dennis Speed is comparing Larouche to Jesus.