Fordham SDS

Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

In 1983 I saw the documentary “Seeing Red” that mixed interviews of former members of the Communist Party talking about their experiences with exciting film footage and photographs of the class battles they took part in. Among the highlights was Bill Bailey reminiscing about the day in 1935 when he tore the Nazi flag off the Bremen, a luxury liner docked in New York.

Bill was 25 when he carried out this protest and 72 when he was interviewed for “Seeing Red”. Over the past few years, I have toyed with the idea of making a film like “Seeing Red” but based on the experiences of veterans of the Socialist Workers Party, many of whom are about the same age today as Bill Bailey was in 1983—including me.

For us, there was nothing quite like the experience of fighting in the Spanish Civil War as Bill Bailey did, or being…

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Good one from Louis Proyect

COUNTERPUNCH JANUARY 27, 2017 The Politics of a Punch: Richard Spencer and the Black Bloc Unless you do not own a computer or have been in a coma for the past week, you are probably aware of alt-right leader Richard Spencer getting punched in the face by a man dressed in black bloc garb. For […]

via The Politics of a Punch: Richard Spencer and the Black Bloc — Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

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The amulet on David Icke’s sweater

Good stuff from Louis Proyect

Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

Fascism has opened up the depths of society for politics. Today, not only in peasant homes but also in city skyscrapers, there lives alongside of the twentieth century the tenth or the thirteenth. A hundred million people use electricity and still believe in the magic power of signs and exorcisms. The Pope of Rome broadcasts over the radio about the miraculous transformation of water into wine. Movie stars go to mediums. Aviators who pilot miraculous mechanisms created by man’s genius wear amulets on their sweaters. What inexhaustible reserves they possess of darkness, ignorance, and savagery! Despair has raised them to their feet fascism has given them a banner. Everything that should have been eliminated from the national organism in the form of cultural excrement in the course of the normal development of society has now come gushing out from the throat; capitalist society is puking up the undigested barbarism. Such…

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Assadism: Haunted By Its Own Success

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The task of defining Assadism is useful for specific purposes only—such as identifying arguments that legitimate or exonerate Assad’s iron fist rule and crimes. But to even gnaw at what Assadism exactly is, it is necessary to adopt a holistic approach and thus move on to define what conservatism exactly is.

I wish to argue that Assadism is conservatism. It should be clear as day, but this argument should be elucidated. So what is conservatism? If we wish to define it narrowly: conservatism is the ideology of reaction to demands for egalitarianism. Historians of conservatism trace its progeny to the reaction to the events in Revolutionary France that began in 1789—all the way down to opposition to feminism and racial equality. Commonly thought to be conceived by Edmund Burke, conservatism has been embellished and re-produced by thinkers stretching from slaveholder intellectuals such John C. Calhoun to Ayn Rand and Ludwig Von Mises. One would reasonably ask: why would such an impulse—to…

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Russia Today and the post-truth virus

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A video is circulating of a woman revealing “the truth” on Syria that is being withheld from us by “the mainstream media”. The woman is introduced as an “independent Canadian journalist”. She is said to be speaking  “at the UN”. The date is December 9, 2016. The video has become viral.

Eva Bartlett, the woman in the video, writes for various conspiracy sites including SOTT.net, The Duran, MintPress and Globalresearch.ca. But more recently she has emerged as a contributor to Russia Today. And though her wordpress blog is called “In Gaza”, and though she has a past in Palestine solidarity work, unlike the people of Gaza, she is a strong supporter of Assad and she uses language to describe Assad’s opponents that is a virtual echo of the language Israeli propagandists use against Gazans.

Bartlett was recently a guest of the Assad regime, attending a regime sponsored PR conference and going on a tour of regime-controlled areas herded no doubt by the ubiquitous…

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A Farewell to Veterans for Peace

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Re-posted from Andy Berman: Threads of My Time, the blog of longtime antiwar activist and Veterans for Peace member Andy Berman

A Farewell to Arms: Till We Meet Again

By Andy Berman

May 11, 2016

Farewell-to-ArmsTill-We-Meet-AgainPreface:

As a longstanding member of Veterans for Peace, I often contributed to internal online VFP discussion groups over the last few years.  With Syria the bloodiest war on the planet, and thus a topic that nominally should be high on VFP’s agenda, I often wrote about developments in Syria.

My contributions frequently clashed with the self-identified “anti-imperialists” in VFP who blame the Syria conflict entirely on the United States and either defend or ignore the criminal role of Assad, Russia, Iran and Hezbollah in Syria.

While my prose was always exceedingly civil, I was relentlessly attacked by a handful of angry and disturbed VFP members using extremely vile personal diatribe against me.

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The Junius Pamphlet 2016: Attack 1.0

                                                                              “Comparisons are odorous” – Dogberry

It’s been 100 years since the publication of The Junius Pamphlet, Rosa Luxemburg’s attack on the German Social Democratic Party for supporting its own government’s entry into World War I. Rosa was in jail when it was published.

rosa

Luxemburg famously called the Second International a “stinking corpse” and called for re-building the revolutionary movement.

Now Sam Charles Hamad has called out “the left” for its support for the genocidal Bashar Al-Assad in similar terms, correctly placing the Syrian revolution at the center of world politics, making its betrayal therefore inexcusable. I agree with him in general and in detail. Of course he has not said everything. That’s why his is Attack 1.0. Others already exist but you have to start somewhere and Hamad’s piece functions well as a grounding document for me.

We should heed his voice and act accordingly.

Among other things the Syrian Revolution exposes the idiotic fragmentation of the western left and its ancient but surviving (and ruling!) divisions and incantations, once again shown to be of no value whatsoever in discerning reality or changing it.

 

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