[Marxism] Swans Release - October 9, 2006

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Sun Oct 8 17:31:41 MDT 2006

October 9, 2006 -- In this issue:

Note from the Editor:  The chattering classes have salivated over the
meaning of Islamo-fascism and all the little Hitlers showing up on the
world stage recently, at least until the latest public-devouring "values"
scandal in Washington appeared. A Congressman's alleged sexcapade took
over the news cycle, relegating the coverage of the Military Commissions
Act of 2006 to the dustbins. Yet, this Act, as well as the little-known
Public Expression of Religion Act (reviewed in the Blips), shows the
remarkable similarities that emeritus professor of European history at
Columbia University Fritz Stern illustrated in a November 2005 speech,
"between the path taken by Germany in the years leading up to Hitler and
the path being taken by the United States today," according to Tom Reiss
in his review of Stern's memoirs, Five Germanys I Have Known (October 8,
2006, The New York Times Review of Books, p. 24).

Reiss writes that Stern, "with a frankness that startled some in the
audience . . . . talked about a group of 1920s intellectuals known as the
'conservative revolutionaries,' who 'denounced liberalism as the
greatest, most invidious threat, and attacked it for its tolerance,
rationality and cosmopolitan culture,' and about how Hitler had used
religion to appeal to the German public. In Hitler's first radio address
after becoming chancellor, Stern noted, he declared that the Nazis
regarded 'Christianity as the foundation of our national morality and the
family as the basis of national life.'" Sound familiar? Could it happen
here? The blend of hyper-nationalism, xenophobia, religion, family
values, secrecy, economic dislocations, competition for resources,
militarization of culture, wars...all telltale signs of a creeping
authoritarian corporatism.

Add the intrusive surveillance of the citizenry; the electoral
shenanigans; the growing penal colonies; even, as Jan Baughman discusses,
the monitoring of the global media through "sentiment analysis" software;
all the realities shown by Milo Clark that are far from Mr. Bush's rosy
scenario; the attacks on Habeas Corpus that Gerard Donnelly Smith
highlights in a powerful poem...and one can legitimately ask: Is the U.S.
fast becoming a banana republic?

Then you can see the state of nature in the company of Martin Murie,
which to him has become a state of anger. From all of the above you'll
find Charles Marowitz's review of Noam Chomsky's "Failed States" quite
apropos. For a moment of relaxation, sort of, Michael Doliner muses on
three acolytes' approach to the use of nuclear weapons. When all is said
and done, what we might be in great need of, suggests Peter Byrne, is a
new manifesto that calls for revolution not only in the arts, but also in
morals, religion, and politics, like a handful of Canadian artists did in
1948 with the Refus global.

The Blips cover many issues that our international audience will find
quite astounding. As the saying goes, "be afraid, be very afraid."
Finally your numerous letters with, in particular, that of John
Catalinotto, who emphasizes the anti-war campaign of the Green Party
ticket in Michigan.

As always, please form your OWN opinion, and let your friends (and foes)
know about Swans.


Latest Banana Republic  -  Gilles d'Aymery

The Global War On Negative Sentiment  -  Jan Baughman

Achh, Arghh And What?  -  Milo Clark

On the Suspension of Habeas Corpus - Poem by Gerard Donnelly Smith

State Of Nature, II  -  Martin Murie

Noam Chomsky's :Failed States"  -  Book Review by Charles Marowitz

A Phone Call  -  Short Play by Michael Doliner

Total Refusal  -  Peter Byrne

Blips #42 - From the Martian desk  -  Gilles d'Aymery

Your Letters


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Gilles d'Aymery

"Hungry man, reach for the book: It is a weapon."  B. Brecht

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