Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

February 7, 2017

Vanity of the bonfires

Filed under: Academia,anarchism,black bloc idiots — louisproyect @ 7:59 pm

Encounters with David Graeber, George Ciccariello-Maher, and Shon Meckfessel on social media reminded me that the black bloc does have its fans in the academy. As might be expected, the three professors are anarchists. Over the past five years I have developed a deep respect for anarchism’s refusal to line up with the “anti-imperialist” pro-Assad mindset of so many Marxists and especially for the late Omar Aziz, who Leila al-Shami, the co-author of “Burning Country”, commemorated on Tahrir-ICN:

Through his writing and activity he promoted local self-governance, horizontal organization, cooperation, solidarity and mutual aid as the means by which people could emancipate themselves from the tyranny of the state. Together with comrades, Aziz founded the first local committee in Barzeh, Damascus. The example spread across Syria and with it some of the most promising and lasting examples of non-hierarchical self organization to have emerged from the countries of the Arab Spring.

Al-Shami followed these words that ones that relate more directly to the problems I have with the infantile ultraleftism that has cropped up since January 20th and expressed particularly by the viral Youtube clip of Richard Spencer getting punched and the misadventure in front of the Berkeley Student Union.

In her tribute to Omar Aziz, Budour Hassan says, he “did not wear a Vendetta mask, nor did he form black blocs. He was not obsessed with giving interviews to the press …[Yet] at a time when most anti-imperialists were wailing over the collapse of the Syrian state and the “hijacking” of a revolution they never supported in the first place, Aziz and his comrades were tirelessly striving for unconditional freedom from all forms of despotism and state hegemony.”

In a 2002 NLR article, Graeber made the case for what he called “The New Anarchists”:

The effort to destroy existing paradigms is usually quite self-conscious. Where once it seemed that the only alternatives to marching along with signs were either Gandhian non-violent civil disobedience or outright insurrection, groups like the Direct Action Network, Reclaim the Streets, Black Blocs or Tute Bianche have all, in their own ways, been trying to map out a completely new territory in between.

Odd that within Graeber’s definition of the arsenal of tactics that can be used against the state, mass action of the sort that was mobilized to end the war in Vietnam gets reduced to “marching along with signs”. Menu alternatives are limited to three choices: civil disobedience, outright insurrection or anarchist affinity groups. It is the third that Graeber opts for, a “completely new territory” that is actually not very  new since it became pretty old when I was an activist in the late 60s.

David Graeber

On his death at the age of 90 in early January, John Berger’s 1968 article “The Nature of Mass Demonstrations” was circulated by Marxists. Written during the period when millions were “marching along with signs” everywhere against the war, Berger made some essential points about their value:

A mass demonstration distinguishes itself from other mass crowds because it congregates in public to create its function, instead of forming in response to one: in this, it differs from any assembly of workers within their place of work – even when strike action is involved – or from any crowd of spectators. It is an assembly which challenges what is given by the mere fact of its coming together.

In 1968, SDS leaders grew frustrated by the seeming inability of mass actions to end the war in Vietnam so they chose another course of action, one in which the protests were much smaller but far more violent. This culminated in the infamous “Days of Rage” in October 1969 that an anarchist author connects directly to the black bloc tactic:

The Black Bloc can trace its historical roots all the way back to when- and wherever people comprising an oppressed class or group militantly rose up against their oppressors. Elements of the particular tactics of the Bloc were previously utilized by the Weather faction of Students for a Democratic Society (the SDS) in North America during the “Days of Rage” in 1969.

For Graeber, groups like the black bloc (yes, I know, it is only supposed to be a tactic but it is a loosely organized group that carries it out on a consistent basis) are a form of horizontalist direct democracy that are based on consensus rather than majority vote. Yeah, who needs a cumbersome and verticalist procedure such as voting that would only get in the way of a determined horizontalist bunch of people wearing bandannas over their faces intent on raising cain. If a black bloc spokesperson with a bullhorn had asked the 1500 or so Berkeley students in front of the Student Union protesting Milo Yiannopoulos to raise their hands if they favored busting windows and shooting skyrockets into the lobby of the building, they might have had the gumption to reject such tactics. We can’t abide such laggards getting in the way of bold actions, can we?

Essentially, the black bloc is as elitist and verticalist in its own way as the self-declared vanguard groups of the Leninist left that aspire to control mass organizations. Groups like the American SWP that I belonged to for 11 years used to caucus before a meeting to make sure that the membership followed a predetermined line before a critical vote even if in the course of discussion they decided that the SWP was wrong. Meanwhile, the black bloc does not bother with votes at all. This is a Hobson’s Choice, if there ever was one.

I had never paid much attention to George Ciccariello-Maher prior to his being the target of the alt-right over his “White genocide” tweet. All I knew about him was that he wrote about Venezuela and was something of an ultraleft based on his social media posts that were rather intellectually vacuous and often fixated on violent confrontations of one sort or another. Since academics tend to use social media as a form of “slumming”, I never paid much attention to them.

But after he began posting about the Berkeley adventure in a way that suggested his approval of the black bloc, I concluded that these were his politics. After unfriending him (and a bunch of other pro-black bloc types) with a post alluding to his support for the hijacking of the Berkeley protest, he lashed back at me as I expected. If anything, Ciccariello-Maher is nearly as hotheaded as me. What I didn’t get was his claim that it was only his FB friends that supported the black bloc and that my problem was with them.

That does not square with the arguments he made in 2011 against Chris Hedges, who had blasted the black bloc’s role in the Occupy movement and likened it to a cancerous tumor. Joining with Graeber, who had debated Hedges in an article titled “The Violent Peace-Police”, George wrote his own article making essentially the same arguments. Titled “Counterinsurgency and the Occupy Movement”, it goes the extra mile against Hedges:

Many, notably anarchist theorist David Graeber, have rightly attacked not only the misrepresentations in Hedges’ argument, but crucially its implications: by singling out and denouncing a sector of the movement, by dividing ‘good’ protesters from ‘bad,’ this purportedly nonviolent writer was in fact encouraging police violence himself (after all, surgical removal of a tumor is nothing if not violent). Less noted, however, is the degree to which Hedges’ discourse literally does the work of the police by contributing to actual policing strategies as they have developed in recent decades. By grasping the development of these strategies, we will be in a better position to avoid the pitfalls of the hysterical liberalism espoused by Hedges and others, and by understanding our enemies, we will be better prepared to confront them.

Unlike Graeber, Ciccariello-Maher is less concerned about whether black bloc tactics work or not. The brunt of his article is designed to conflate peaceful protesters and the black-clad vanguard. If you denounce them as a cancer, you are siding with the cops: “Much has been said about the violence-versus-nonviolence debate within and prior to Occupy, and it is true that we need to defend the violent as well as the nonviolent and accept not only a diversity of tactics but also a diversity of strategies for building the new world.” This diversity of tactics argument of course is associated with the NGO’s that tolerated the black bloc at each and every protest against the WTO. Like Graeber and Ciccariello-Maher, their emphasis was less on building a mass working-class based movement and more on making a “statement”.

George Ciccariello-Maher

That being said, the professor does appear to have a fetish for violence. In a Salon article titled “Riots Work”, he is ready to condemn mass protests against racial oppression that do not produce results according to some timetable. Like the Weathermen judging the antiwar movement as a milquetoast affair, Ciccariello-Maher seeks something much more dramatic:

Some insist that riots only provide a ready-made image to the media that emphasizes the “negative” over the “positive” (meaning the “violent” over the “peaceful”). But this view has little to say about whether so-called “peaceful” protests are effective in bringing attention to police murder, offering instead a moral imperative: the media should cover peaceful marches, the system should respond. But they don’t, and it doesn’t, and if so-called peaceful tactics don’t bring change, then they lose their status as a “positive” alternative, and even become complicit in continued systemic violence.

Well, I don’t know. It was peaceful protests, those people “marching along with signs”, in New York that were largely responsible for the stop and frisk laws being abolished. I was at one of them in 2012, the Silent March that was among the most impressive I have seen in the past decade.

Would a riot have ended the stop and frisk laws? I tend to doubt it, even if that risks being seen as pro-police in Ciccariello-Maher’s eyes. For him, there’s not much difference between a riot and the national liberation movement in Algeria that involved millions in a protracted war against the French imperialist army:

Frantz Fanon insisted that to break the smooth surface of white supremacy requires something more than peaceful protest. It requires the explosive self-assertion of the oppressed, through which the oppressed themselves can come to understand their own power.

If we were only so fortunate to see the Black liberation struggle in the USA beginning to take on the dimensions of the FLN. There was one attempt made by Malcolm X to build such a movement and he was killed for his efforts. For what it is worth, Malcolm tried to build a powerful organization instead of preaching about the need for disorganized riots.

Ciccariello-Maher has a new book out titled “Decolonizing Dialectics” that is based on the ideas of Fanon, a Latin American philosopher named Enrique Dussel, and Georges Sorel. I know Dussel only by name but wonder if he has overdosed on Georges Sorel. In an article titled “To Lose Oneself in the Absolute: Revolutionary Subjectivity in Sorel and Fanon” that likely formed the basis for the new book, he sees Sorel’s fetishization of violence in pretty much the same way as he sees Fanon—as a kind of mixture of existential revolt evoking Camus and his own peculiar interpretation of Marxism:

When united with proletarian violence, on the other hand, the myth becomes essentially a mechanism for the consolidation of revolutionary identity. In Sorel’s context, this takes the form of a working-class separatism embodied in and established through the proletarian general strike—the unity of liberatory violence with the absolutism of mythical identity—in which a strike against the bosses is transformed into a “Napoleonic” battle and “the practice of strikes engenders the notion of a catastrophic revolution”.

Sorel is problematic to say the least. After becoming dissatisfied with the CGT, France’s major trade union, in the same way that the Weathermen became impatient with peaceful protests, Sorel hooked up with an outfit called Action Française that was led by Charles Maurras. During WWII, AF supported the Vichy government and Maurras spent seven years in prison for his collaboration with the Nazis.

After he became a partisan of the Bolshevik revolution, the Italian fascist movement still revered Sorel no matter his heterodox Marxism. It seems that the feelings were mutual. In a 1921 letter to Benedetto Croce, an admirer of Mussolini who would eventually break with Il Duce, Sorel wrote: “The adventures of fascism are, perhaps, at present, the most original social phenomenon in Italy; they seem to me to surpass by far the combinations of the politicians.” In a letter to Jean Variot, a close ally of Sorel, he wrote:

It is possible, it is even probable that Benito Mussolini has read me. But, attention! Mussolini is a man no less extraordinary than Lenin. He, too, is a political genius, of a greater reach than all the statesmen of the day, with the only exception of Lenin. . .. He is not a Socialist a la sauce bourgeoise; he has never believed in parliamentary socialism; he has an amazing insight into the nature of the Italian masses, and he has invented something not to be found in my books: the union of the national and the social-something I have studied  without ever developing the idea.

Well, that’s for damned sure. Mussolini never did believe in parliamentary socialism.

While I have neither the time nor the inclination to wade through Ciccariello-Maher’s new book, something tells me that his distinctly odd infatuation with Georges Sorel is consistent with his immature posting of violent confrontations on social media. It is rather sad to see a tenured professor acting so foolishly.

Shon Meckfessel

Let me conclude with a look at Shon Meckfessel’s new book titled “Nonviolence Ain’t What It Used To Be” that is based on his doctoral dissertation and that reminds me a bit of Regis Debray’s “Revolution in the Revolution”. Where Debray fetishized rural guerrilla warfare, Meckfessel fetishizes the black bloc. At least Debray can be forgiven for basing his book on a success—the Cuban revolution. Meckfessel inexplicably elevates a movement that has achieved nothing except getting its adventures written up in the bourgeois press.

Although it is highly possible that there are some discrepancies between the new book and dissertation, I am taking the chance that they are relatively small and will refer to the dissertation in the following remarks.

Since chapter three is titled “The Eloquence of Targeted Property Destruction in the Occupy Movement” and chapter four is titled “The Eloquence of Police Clashes in the Occupy Movement”, there is little doubt that what you will be getting is a sophisticated defense of the indefensible.

There’s not much to distinguish Shon from Ciccariello-Maher as this passage from chapter three would indicate.  Although some might think that plagiarism was afoot, I think that both of the professors are simply reflecting the zeitgeist of the widespread ultraleft milieu that would naturally lead them to admire Fanon and Sorel uncritically:

If targeted property destruction works to assert comparisons within and across categories of violence in the hopes of destabilizing ideological chains of equivalence and triggering a revaluation, its affective reconfigurations in the discursive field of subjectivity are equally eloquent in its rhetorical strategy. In his classic “Reflections on Violence,” Georges Sorel put forward his notion of the General Strike as a myth which condensed all of the desired political values of proletarian struggle; violence, in his formation, “is assigned the important function of ‘constituting’ an actor.” (Seferiades & Johnston 6). Similarly, Fanon put forth the celebrated formulation in The Wretched of the Earth (1968) that decolonization requires a violence to be done to the colonizer’s body in order to disarticulate its sacred inviolability, and thus constitute the post-colonial subject through the act of violation. Contemporary practices of public noninjurious violence, such as targeted property destruction, can be seen to enact analogous discursive actions of subjectification while avoiding the dehumanizing effects of bodily harm, as can be heard in the words of Cindy, one observer of the Seattle May Day 2012 riots:

I think that property destruction has a good effect on those who carry it out… I think most people need to unlearn submission and show themselves that they have the 165 capacity to act for their own liberation. I think that when people burn cop cars, break bank windows, or blockade a road (thwarting the transfer of goods and or law enforcement) they are also demonstrating to themselves some of the magnitude of their ability to resist. (Cindy interview)

In the next chapter, Shon refers to the “eloquence” of fighting the cops with a reference to Judith Butler:

As with the uneasy boundary between the materiality and discursivity of bodies examined in Judith Butler’s Bodies that Matter (1993), the materiality of individuals enacting oppressive behavior is not simple to divorce from the discursivity of their role.

I can’t exactly say that I understand this jargon but I do know this. Butler found nothing “eloquent” about the Berkeley Student Union misadventure. In an email cited in the Chronicle of Higher Education, she stated: “I deplore the violent tactics of yesterday and so do the overwhelming majority of students and faculty at UC Berkeley.”

I find something vaguely dispiriting about college professors in their 40s and 50s being drawn to such juvenile antics. In a strange way, they remind me of the neglected minor masterpiece “Little Children” that starred Patrick Wilson as a law student who is not sure that he is cut out for the profession. In what might be called a case of “arrested development”, he spends hours on end watching teens skateboarding at a nearby rink. They remind him of the youth he once enjoyed doing the same sort of thing. At the end of the film, they talk him into having a try on one of their skateboards that results in a nasty spill and a hospital stay. Let’s hope that the three professors’ infatuation with the “eloquence” of fighting the cops is only of a Walter Mitty sort. Cops are capable of extremely brutal behavior and the three professors all have good jobs and families and/or students who rely on them. My only other recommendation is that they read Leon Trotsky’s “History of the Russian Revolution” that is a much better guide to revolutionary change than Georges Sorel.

13 Comments »

  1. Are you sure you didn’t mean “Little Children” based on the novel by Tom Perrota?

    Comment by A. Alexander Misnk — February 7, 2017 @ 10:02 pm

  2. Yes, thanks for the correction.

    Comment by louisproyect — February 7, 2017 @ 10:03 pm

  3. Revolutionary violence as an independent issue in and of itself is not a complete distraction and red herring, as the example of Sorel should remind us. But transcendentalist liberals and (some) self-denominated democratic socialists insist that everyone interested in radical change must first of all and before anything else repudiate this monolith of “violence” that they see everywhere opposed to the hyper-moral non-violent saintliness (according to them) of the Gandhis and Luther Kings of the world. Such people saturate the comments pages of blogs like Henry Giroux’s Truthout and constitute a sort of “white bloc” of the mentally paralyzed, forever engaged in pointless contests of personal moral superiority with the Donald Trump reactionaries who also infest those blogs and help render void the ritualistic pseudo-discussions that take place there.

    It’s impossible to reason with such people, or indeed–even when their command of syntax extends to complex sentences and actual paragraphs–to engage with them on any meaningful level. Their Sunday-school moralism and their radical individualism repel every challenge.

    The Black Bloc tendency, it seems to me–at least in its U.S. manifestation–is a sort of knee-jerk reaction against this that, lacking the support of a genuinely scientific and historical (i.e. a Marxist) outlook simply fails to go any meaningful distance in thinking through the problems that it poses and instead mechanically inverts the ideology (as opposed to the tactics and strategy) of nonviolence, with a result that would be comical if it weren’t so dangerous in the present climate.

    (Academic theorists, of course, with the scent of tenure in their ever-quivering nostrils, are out to make a buck wherever they can.)

    I’m reminded of an episode of The Sopranos in which two young would-be wise guys try unsuccessfully to murder Tony’s nephew. Having failed, one of them seeks refuge with a gangster who has been plotting Tony’s overthrow. As I recall, he chases the doomed boy down the street with a baseball bat yelling angrily, “Did I ast you to do dat?”

    These people may be idiots, but, more importantly, nothing they do will ever lead to any kind of victory. If enough of them get into the act, they will screw things up royally for everyone.

    Comment by Farans Kalosar — February 7, 2017 @ 11:13 pm

  4. “If targeted property destruction works to assert comparisons within and across categories of violence in the hopes of destabilizing ideological chains of equivalence and triggering a revaluation, its affective reconfigurations in the discursive field of subjectivity are equally eloquent in its rhetorical strategy.”

    I am pretty well educated; have two bachelor degrees, one in general sciences, and one in political science, and I also have a graduate degree in applied linguistics. I also have read extensively in sociology, economics and political economy, government, international relations, philosophy of science, literary analysis, history … And still, I would have a very difficult time explaining this sentence to anybody.

    To paraphrase Einstein, who said it best (I think it was him saying it anyway): True sign of understanding is when you can put it in simple enough language for others to understand. In one of his letters to Dr. Kugelmann, Marx explained how he took extra care and effort to make sure that his Das Capital was accessible reading for workers.

    Just like the black blocs who engage in political actions only to satisfy themselves, seems like this academic in defense of black blocs writes only to satisfy himself, too.

    Comment by Reza — February 8, 2017 @ 12:20 am

  5. I agree the black bloc can and has been turned into groups that function in non-anarchist or vanguardist fashion: that is to say, acting in ways that are disconnected from and against the wishes of the majority of protesters. But black bloc can also be a force for good in these contexts and have done many things that are backed by the majority. So really it depends on what particular incidents we are talking about, rather than just “are you pro or anti black bloc?”

    Comment by Voline (@pyotr_kropotkin) — February 8, 2017 @ 4:20 am

  6. Reza, einstein did not say that

    Comment by jp — February 8, 2017 @ 9:37 pm

  7. To, perhaps, in simple terms clarify dialectical rationality: property destruction may force people to in language re-evaluate the ideology that cannot understand worse forms of violence. For all that, I may have been censored online, as in some kind of Maoist joke, for saying the guy in the Black Bloc was an idiot and maybe out of Sorelian sympathies was abandoned by members of the Blac Bloc for not saying f— Nazis. The real question may be one of pacification in Fanon`s sense and getting on with understanding on how to resist the Mad Dog who the Trots helped put in power.

    Comment by Lawrence Donegan — February 8, 2017 @ 9:54 pm

  8. JP, Thank you for the correction. Do you know who did say that?

    Comment by Reza — February 8, 2017 @ 11:43 pm

  9. Great post, love the title.

    I found this line of Ciccariello-Maher’s especially unconvincing:

    “Hedges’ discourse literally does the work of the police by contributing to actual policing strategies as they have developed in recent decades.”

    The way I understand Hedges’ criticism of black block is that their tactics risk encouraging “police violence” and de-legitimizing a broader movement.

    Comment by MB — February 9, 2017 @ 3:42 pm

  10. Lawrence Donegan: Are you indulging in parody or are we supposed to take your comment seriously? It’s so hard to tell these days, especially with the likes of Hyphen-Hyphen and Fuckmussel spewing away in the background.

    Comment by Farans Kalosar — February 9, 2017 @ 10:02 pm

  11. I am opposed to Black Blocs. It’s only a tactic, as its adherents repeat nauseam and it is now and always has been a self-defeating one.

    I witnessed a few hundred anarchist protesters, as far as one could tell (BTW) all white, marching down 13th Street in DC before the mini-riots about which such a convenient and exaggerated fuss was made in the media.

    They contingent I saw were followed by a massive police convoy comprising at least nine brand-new Ford Transit vans packed to the roof with police as well as a substantial contingent of police cars containing two or more policepersons. There were anywhere from eighty to a hundred armed and well-organized police just following the demonstration. The long procession of police vehicles took longer to pass than the demonstration itself.

    What did the demonstrators do? They marched into a police “kettle” in which a few more of their comrades were already contained, and then proceeded to break windows and set fires while completely surrounded. (It should be noted, by the way, that Black Bloc tactic has now fully legitimized the police “kettle” tactic which was formerly banned.)

    More than half of the protesters were arrested and subjected to felony charges, as were any journalists unlucky enough to find themselves swept up in the totally predictable police response.

    The DC police, while they love to cultivate a kind and gentle persona for public consumption, are notoriously absolutely ruthless in attacking not only spontaneous protest of all kinds but also for their violent suppression of anyone recording what they are up to inside their “kettles.” I have witnessed this on more than one occasion. In fact, while I was attempting to record the events I witnessed, a policemen in one of the following cars motioned to me to stop. I have no doubt that if he could have done so without breaking formation, he would have arrested me and another chap with a better camera who was also recording the procession–I hope with better results than I got.

    The actually illegal tactics used by the police in response to this provocation are now standard because of it, and represent only the beginning of the tactics that will soon be deployed against all protests and mass meetings, peaceful or otherwise.

    Now, you can talk all you want about the legitimacy and value of riots, but you have to understand that even if one could deliberately start a truly massive riot (I happen to think the real ones are always spontaneous), it is physically impossible and profoundly stupid to do attempt this when one is completely surrounded by an enemy possessing more than enough force to neutralize every single effectif involved in the action. Such a course has only symbolic value, and very little of that. A few adventurists may be recruited, but the mass of the people will not respond.

    If the massive and highly popular Women’s March had not followed this idiotic debacle, largely erasing the sinister impression that it made, the result would have been a calamity for the forces of resistance in this country.

    I confess that I hate Milo Whatsopoulos like the plague. He is an insect who, in the best of worlds, would be squashed in some place where his filthy joices would not contaminate the human environment. And I will concede that at least the Berkeley protests as a whole were massive enough to qualify as spontaneous.

    But the left has to wise up about the use of force and coercion. Working people, especially people of color, have none of the traditional means of exerting force that were available during the long-vanished days when we had a fighting union movement and–yes, for all the errors of Stalinism–a fighting Communist Party (and IWW).

    This means that all of us are naked before the enemy. Never at any time have the masses of the people been as weak as they are today. Why else would we be running to the thoroughly discredited Democratic Party as though there were no alternative?

    The answer is that, at present, there is no alternative. The task is to build one.

    In this scenario, in order to win support, the only practical tactic is an essentially nonviolent one. The Left should be organizing among immigrants, among working people facing job loss, among the least well-educated and least prestigious of our comrades as well as among the educated who find the promise that has enslaved them so irrevocably to crushing debt is a broken one

    We should be a disciplined and helpful presence in the lives of those who suffer most from the declining capitalism that, in its decadence, wields more power over the live of ordinary people than it has at any time in the previous history of this country. We should engender trust, not seek to inspire fear.

    We are not in a revolutionary situation in this country, but we are deep in counter-revolution, and can only neutralize this through highly disciplined and personally perhaps not very gratifying organization.

    This has nothing immediately to do with the Sunday-school moralism so often asserted in support of non-violence. It is a question of tactics, which should in turn reflect a strategy.

    The fetishization of a self-defeating tactic like Black Bloc merely signals the absence of an effective strategy and a powerful organization

    I can’t imagine the unemployed coal miners who voted for Donald Trump coalescing in full support of this epicene and contemptible subhuman piece of shit. But the sort of Black Bloc idiocy on display in demonstrations across this country–while it will never yield the kind of truly massive support the left needs to build a new movement–will certainly make this evil-smelling little bug look like a prince to at least some people who hadn’t previously heard of him. This will not help the cause.

    Nor will it enable effective resistance to the waves of violent repression that are certainly coming and cannot be stopped by a few trashcan fires and a little pile of black bandages.

    This comment was banned on a well-known pseudo-radical blog.

    Comment by Farans Kalosar — February 10, 2017 @ 4:19 pm

  12. Mindless violence like punching Richard Spencer or the recent event in Berkeley is destructive to our goal of a better world.

    Mindless violence is any violence which does not have the primary intent of making a major dent in removing from power the insane oligarchs who dominate our world and are pushing humanity to extinction via the climate crisis.

    Comment by Tyler — February 10, 2017 @ 4:56 pm

  13. That’s succinct. But criminal negligence is not the same thing as mindlessness. Schmuckfutzel and Hyphen-hyphen–like a great many tenured faculty in U.S. and Canadian universities–are just bursting with intellect of an affected, self-promoting, unintentionally self-parodic, and counter-revolutionary variety. It isn’t that they are mindless, but that they are perverse and wrong and opportunistic and careerist and completely dedicated to promoting their particular foppish intellectual “brands” against the best interests of the people.

    No more from me in this thread.

    Comment by Farans Kalosar — February 10, 2017 @ 7:44 pm


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