Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

July 31, 2017

This is what American fascism looks like: the Lyndon LaRouche story (part one)

Filed under: Fascism,LaRouche — louisproyect @ 7:20 pm

(From Dennis King’s website)

The other day I ran into a tall African-American man in his early 30s in front of the Lexington Avenue subway stop on 86th Street wearing a sandwich board with words to the effect of “Stop the attack on Donald Trump”. He was passing out a one-page broadsheet titled “The Hamiltonian” that reeked of Larouche’s fascist cult. As I stopped to take one from him, I informed him that I had just read a book about his movement. “What was that?”, he asked. I responded, “Dennis King’s”. He frowned and told me that he King is crazy and sells drugs.

The lead article in the broadsheet was titled “Russia-Gate Exposed as Total Fraud” and could have been written by Max Blumenthal who made identical points on Tucker Carlson’s Fox News show. Among Trump’s fiercest defenders against Russia-Gate were ultrarightists like Carlson but also that section of the left that looked to the Kremlin for its talking points: Max Blumenthal, Ben Norton, Robert Parry, Stephen F. Cohen, Ray McGovern, et al. If you search the LarouchePAC website for occurrences of “Sarin gas”, you will find the same sorts of articles that appeared on the left describing the Sarin gas attack on East Ghouta  as a “false flag”, including one dated April 7, 2014 that is headlined “Seymour Hersh Exposes Obama’s Red Line And Rat Line”.

Indeed, the article begins by citing the Veteran Intelligence Professionals for Sanity (VIPS) leader Ray McGovern, an ex-CIA agent who like Hersh and Theodore Postol was an “expert” that could be relied upon to clear Assad’s name. Ray McGovern has also been interviewed by the LaRouchites to prove that Russia did not interfere with the American elections. Maybe McGovern was in on the meetings that the LaRouchites used to have with CIA agents in the 80s and retains fond memories of these Jew-baiting, racist pigs.

In May, I began reading Dennis King’s Lyndon LaRouche and the New American Fascism after slowly coming to the realization that his movement was the most powerful fascist movement ever seen in the USA, including those that existed in the 1930s. Next to what he had “accomplished”, Richard Spencer and Milo Yiannopoulos were inconsequential.

There are obviously theoretical questions about whether the Ku Klux Klan was fascist but it could certainly be said that LaRouche was much closer to “classical” fascism as understood by Leon Trotsky. Of course, the irony is that LaRouche spent 20 years in the Socialist Workers Party, a group that I belonged to as well and one considered by Trotsky to be the flagship of his ill-conceived Fourth International.

My intention originally was to view LaRouchism as a historical movement that was past its prime, especially in light of the time-frame of King’s book that ends nearly 30 years ago. But in the course of posting snippets of King’s book to Facebook and Marxmail, I received an email that put the article referred to above in context:

So I’ve come across the Larouchies several times while covering the Syrian conflict. While the Larouche organization itself is persona non grata in mainstream political circles, there are several Larouchie and ex-Larouchie organizations and individuals who are very active on the “alt right” and the Assadist pro-Putin “alt left.” There is a lot of spillover with Russia Today as well. it’s notable that during the 2011 Tahrir Square protests Russia Today featured Lyndon LaRouche himself as an expert on the events. Many Larouche affiliated organizations seem to enjoy very active relationships with authoritarian regimes, an alliance that has become more useful to these governments after the Arab Spring created the need for a fresh crop of conspiracy theories to justify remaining in power.

Syrian UN ambassador recently spoke at a Schiller Institute event a few months ago and he appeared very familiar with the individuals and the organization. The Virginia State senator Richard Black, who has raised red flags with his repeated contacts with the Assad regime, including a visit during which he posed in the cockpit of a Syrian government fighter Jet, has been a go to commentator on Syria for the LarochePAC YouTube channel. In a shockingly bizarre incident earlier this year, The Schiller Institute Chorus sang the Russian National Anthem after somehow duping local law enforcement into holding a ceremony with Russian diplomats after the crash of a Tu-154 crash that killed the Red Army Choir. It’s very noteworthy that the ceremony treats the incident as a terrorist attack and tries to draw a parallel to the 9-11 attacks even though the official Russian position is that this incident was an accident.

The Larouche organization has been involved in sending solidarity delegations to Damascus as well as El Sisi’s Egypt for some time and they are somehow involved in a project called “the new silk road“. I’m not sure what relationship this has to the Chinese economic initiative that India snubbed a few days ago but as far as I can tell there is a connection. LaRouchie protestors have showed up to events with signs that say things like “please join China and Mr. Xi on the new silk road.” Indeed Larouche delegations have been sent to Egypt and Syria with the explicit purpose of pushing this concept. This YouTube video from LarouchePAC from last week, hypes the Chinese conference. Apparently Larouche has been devoting a ridiculous amount of resources to promoting an obscure Chinese economic initiative for several years now. I think there is really something to this story because the LaRouche organization has been pushing for a “New Silk Road” for at least 3 years. Here is a video from 3 years ago of LaRouche talking about this were he mentions the Chinese leadership.

Trolls and Dupes

Navsteva

Scott Gaulke is a Wisconsin-based LaRouche follower who has developed quite a reputation for trolling and stalking under his online personality “Navsteva.” At one point Gaulke claimed to have visited Damascus but presented images that were taken by Ulf Sandmark, a Swedish LaRouchie who had visited on a solidarity delegation, which incidentally was named “the new silk road.”

Caleb T Maupin

In this image, Caleb T Maupin, the Russia Today journalist who was described by Trump as his “favorite journalist” can be seen with former Larouche candidate Webster Tarpley, who once notoriously claimed that AIDS was an airborne disease and that AIDS patients should be locked up. Tarpley has also been a fixture of Assadist circles for a while, this 2015 video from a bizarre meet up of Assadists features Tarpley and is absolutely hilarious to watch when the crowd turns on the speakers.

I’m sure if you follow the money there is something going on with the “New Silk Road” talk.

I hope this is useful and let’s stay in touch

It is my intention now to post three articles about LaRouchism, with this one leading off the series. It will cover LaRouche’s political evolution up until the point when he abandoned Marxism in the mid-70s, even of the most aberrant variety. Next I will review the heydays of the movement that coincides with Dennis King’s time-line and that will be based to a considerable degree on his exemplary investigative journalism. Finally, I will cover the period from 1990 to the present day with particular attention paid to the affinities between LaRouche’s movement and the Red-Brown movement coalescing around Vladimir Putin, Breitbart News, Infowars, Alexander Dugin, et al.

Lyndon Hermyle LaRouche, Jr., was born in Rochester, New Hampshire on September 8, 1922. His father was a French-Canadian immigrant and Quaker. After developing an interest in philosophy in high school, he grew to question his parents’ beliefs.

He was drafted into the army in 1944 and send to India where he came in contact with Communists. When he urged them to lead an uprising in Bengal, where the British had caused a famine, they rejected his proposal. This led him to say in a 1974 memoir to become a Trotskyist. Nine years later, after he had become a full-fledged fascist and a presidential candidate, he told a different story. He said that the love of Indians for American capitalism left him gratified.

In January, 1949 Lyndon LaRouche joined the Boston branch of the SWP during the height of the Cold War witch-hunt. He went to work on the assembly line in the GE plant in Lynn as part of the party’s “colonization” of industry, a strategy that was relaunched nearly 30 years later and with the same degree of success: none.

In 1954, LaRouche moved to New York and married a party member named Janice Neuberger that I met at a get-together at Cynthia Cochran’s apartment in 2005. Janice and Cynthia were long-time friends, bonded by their affiliation with the Murray and Myra Tanner Weiss grouping in the party that LaRouche gravitated to as well. It was around this time that he became interested in cybernetics and began a career as a management consultant with the George S. May Company, “often making a thousand dollars a week or more helping corporations reduce labor costs” as reported by King.

In 1965 LaRouche hooked up with Tim Wolforth, the leader of the tiny sect that supported Gerry Healy’s version of the Fourth International. Apparently LaRouche was impressed with the authoritarian and cultish environment of Healy’s sect in England that exercised the kind of bullying mind control over his own membership. He also valued the violence Healy resorted to against those outside his movement, including my friend Ernie Tate.

By 1966, he decided to reorient to the New Left and particularly its largest and most influential group, the Students for a Democratic Society. And within SDS, he oriented to the Progressive Labor faction that was Maoist at the time. He found a small band of followers within PLP organized as the Worker-Student Alliance. A number of the faction were students at Columbia University at the time and found his arcane interpretations of Marxist economics irrestible.

In 1968, there was a student rebellion at Columbia led by SDS. In addition to Mark Rudd, another key leader was Tony Papert, a PLP/SDS member who was a follower of LaRouche. That summer LaRouche gave classes in Marxism at a fraternity house that had been turned into a “liberation school”. By this time Papert, who had been expelled from PLP and become totally committed to LaRouche, launched the SDS Labor Committee that essentially marked the beginnings of LaRouchism as a movement. Like some other SDS Labor Committee members from that period, Papert remains in the movement’s leadership.

After the split in SDS precipitated by the clash between Mark Rudd’s Weatherman faction and the PLP-led Worker Student Alliance, the organization began to leak demoralized members, some of whom were willing to join the National Caucus of Labor Committees founded by Tony Papert. By 1973, the NCLC had 600 hard-core members totally devoted to Lyndon LaRouche who would soon exploit a disciplined and politically experienced cadre as a battering ram against the left.

Was there anything in LaRouche’s Marxist economic theories that could explain his evolution into a supporter of the capitalist system based on a fascist state? To understand this, I strongly recommend the pseudonymous Hieronymous’s article titled “Capitalism and productivism in Lyn Marcus’ dialectical economics”, which is an analysis of LaRouche’s “Dialectical economics:  an introduction to Marxist political economy”, a 481 page tome written in 1970 but only published by a vanity press 5 years later. In the lead paragraph, Hieronymous reduces it to a call for capitalism based on planning—a concept that clearly overlaps with the classic definition of fascism as a kind of corporatist state.

While much of “Dialectical Economics” is a fairly conventional presentation of the basic principles of Marxism, including the falling rate of profit, there are signs that LaRouche was veering off into the kind of techno-optimism that runs through his entire ideological edifice. He writes:

[it] is the wildest presumption imaginable to calculate the space and resources available for human existence solely in terms of the earth. Since there is no possibility that human existence will continue beyond this century without the massive conversion of our technology on the basis of thermonuclear fusion, and since that realization means the most ex- plosive scientific advances in the history of mankind, it is the wildest delusion, a literally pathetic delusion in every respect, to doubt that man will soon be populating the moon and Mars. Entering solar space on the rocket of thermonuclear revolutions in technology, man will — as no responsible specialist doubts — instantly begin to bring the massive energy output of the sun under his control. What lies beyond that may be relative speculation for the moment, but it would be the wildest speculation to imagine that anything less than the most explosive and titanic advances in man’s mastery of the universe are not unfolding for our species once we have safely negotiated the difficulties just ahead.

There are also indications that LaRouche’s prior career as a management consultant prompted him to offer suggestions that would make the capitalist system work better. They include forcing capitalist firms to include “externalities” such as water pollution into the costs of production, something that Hieronymus regards as useless under the capitalist system since it is unenforceable as should be obvious from Trump’s naming Scott Pruitt to head the EPA, an agency he has fought for decades.

He also advocates investment in infrastructure, including urban mass transit, railroad systems, and roads. This must explain his website’s breathless endorsement of the Trump presidency: “And now in the United States, a President has emerged who rejects the Imperial divide of the world, who rejects regime change, and who promotes friendship and collaboration with Russia and China, both to defeat terrorism, and to cooperate in the Belt and Road Initiative to meet the common aims of Mankind.” (The Belt and Road Initiative is a reference to China’s Silk Road economic development project that people like Pepe Escobar regard as benign globalization.)

Back in my days in the Trotskyist movement, I used to hear references frequently to one of the main goals of socialism: overcoming the breach between intellectual and physical labor. This was how Marx put it in Critique of the Gotha Program:

In a higher phase of communist society, after the enslaving subordination of the individual to the division of labor, and therewith also the antithesis between mental and physical labor, has vanished; after labor has become not only a means of life but life’s prime want; after the productive forces have also increased with the all-around development of the individual, and all the springs of co-operative wealth flow more abundantly — only then then can the narrow horizon of bourgeois right be crossed in its entirety and society inscribe on its banners: From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs!

And this is how Lyndon LaRouche, a 20 year veteran of the Trotskyist movement who moved on to a career as a management consultant before morphing into a dangerous fascist leader, considered the relationship between intellectuals and those who do physical labor according to Hieronymus:

From all this,  one gets the following sense which is difficult to doubt: Resting on this unrelenting development of productive forces, Marcus’ [LaRouche’s “party name”] vision necessarily entails a “leadership,” a regime of specialists (political economists, accounts, actuaries, scientists, architects, administrators “and others” not the least of which would be Marcus himself). In their “mediation” as “’experts’ on each category of human need” and in “using concrete professional skills to mediate its [the working class’] comprehension of technology and other phenomena”, they inhabit an institutionally distinct space, that of “centralized planning.” Their activity is crudely that of counting and calculating and on this basis creating a plan and whatever options it affords. We consider these very much bourgeois “activities” in the narrow sense of engaging economic rationality. Meanwhile the mass of workers would discuss this plan which is simply presented to them fully formed. According to Marcus, this means an “interchange” between leaders and workers occurs “within the class as a whole.” It signifies an “extended debate about economic problems” transpires between two groups. But it is only one which “thinks” and in so doing generates (even if only in the bean counting, numerically manipulative fashion of the bourgeoisie) the fabled plan. The other discusses the options or ready-made alternatives presented to it. Marcus calls this discussion about the economic programs” “a kind of organic celebration.” He appears to believe that human creativity does not of necessity immediately and directly involve generating the alternatives. Instead, it is a matter of having it done on workers’ behalf by “experts,” “professionals” and “leaders” who pursue “socialist accumulation” as the “centralized agencies of the class as a whole.”

In my next post, I will address the question of how this repellent but fairly conventional technocratic/elitist formula helped to lead LaRouche and his followers to become allies with the KKK and neo-Nazis, meet with officials of the Reagan administration, build up a treasury of millions of dollars, and run hundreds of campaigns around the country including Lyndon LaRouche’s periodic run for President.

 

22 Comments »

  1. I’ve always thought LaRouche is truly crazy–clinically paranoid and delusional and just plain nuts. Is he crazier than Trump? I think so. But Louis seems to be suggesting that all the same he could be coming into his own. A scary thought indeed.

    Comment by Farans Kalosar — July 31, 2017 @ 8:09 pm

  2. Oddly enough, Fritz Lang’s Metropolis could considered the cinematic expression of LaRouche’s advocacy of a technologically advanced society centered around elitist central planning, decades before LaRouche came upon the scene, thus revealing the enduring allure of the concept.

    Comment by Richard Estes — July 31, 2017 @ 8:20 pm

  3. Further thought–the fascist “corporatist state,” as I understand it, and as many on the left (I believe) tend to assume today, does not mean a state run by and for limited liability business companies (corporations), an idea that as I understand it actually did not figure in Mussolini’s fascism. For Mussolini, “corporatism” meant a sort of organic theory of the state as a single body composed of various interest groups with inherently differentiated functional relationships. Wikipedia puts it this way:

    Corporatism, also known as corporativism,[1] is the sociopolitical organization of a society by major interest groups, known as corporate groups, such as agricultural, business, ethnic, labour, military, patronage, or scientific affiliations, on the basis of their common interests.[2] It is theoretically based on the interpretation of a community as an organic body.[3] The term corporatism is based on the Latin root word corpus (plural corpora) meaning “body”.[4]

    This (actually half-baked) idea puts the state above everything else, and is the antithesis of the libertarianism hitherto espoused by many American “conservatives”–though one doesn’t know how seriously to take any conservative ideology, however “intellectual” its expression, since all conservative ideologies converge on the violent defense of social inequality, however they get there.

    LaRouch may be a “corporatist” or “corporativist” in the Mussolini sense (I can’t tell), but the U.S. Chamber of Commerce or Rex Tillerson, for example, IMHO, probably aren’t.

    Not sure of the relevance here, but just saying …

    Comment by Farans Kalosar — July 31, 2017 @ 8:23 pm

  4. Let us set the record straight about Lyndon LaRouche and his time at the riverworks GE plant in Lynn Mass. He was never an assembly line worker and was not sent in by the SWP branch to “colonize” GE, the very idea is ludicrous. The job he had at GE was a time motion study man used as a tool by the company to cut the piece work rates in the plant. I remember one of the stewards placed a pale of ammonia under the high stool he was sitting on in the gear department and he had to stop his study for better than an hour to recover his equilibrium. He subsequently told the story to Larry Trainor in the Boston branch with emphasis on how the workers would go to any lengths to protect their inflated rates but it wouldn’t stop him. Trainor then proceeded to literally throw him out of the branch meeting.

    Comment by Michael Tormey — July 31, 2017 @ 9:05 pm

  5. “For Mussolini, “corporatism” meant a sort of organic theory of the state as a single body composed of various interest groups with inherently differentiated functional relationships.”

    When considered in relation to its Latin root, “corpus”, the lack of any appeal of “corporatism” in a US context becomes rather obvious. It has feudal origins, and, therefore, predates the bourgeois, Enlightenment features of the American revolution. “Give me liberty or give me death!”, the hostility of taxes imposed from England and the sanctity of private property can’t be reconciled with it. Subsequent practical accommodations with federal taxation and regulatory power for the purpose of facilitating capitalist expansion shouldn’t be mistaken as a modern form of corporatism as described by Mussolini.

    Comment by Richard Estes — July 31, 2017 @ 11:25 pm

  6. #1 Larouche did apparently have some sort of mental breakdown during his first marriage and underwent psychoanalysis.
    This led to him to write a book called “Beyond Pyschoanalysis” under his pseudonym Lyn Marcus.

    Around this time his megalomaniac-conspiracist tendencies developed into a full-blown condition, systematised into a self-referential, unproveable “theory”. Typical of paranoid thinking.

    The fake “National Caucus of Labour Committees” that he set up targetted left-wing groups and individuals, attempting to disrupt them.
    They recruited individuals on a cultist basis, wound them up and set them off.

    There was a strong element of damaging psychological coercion involved in this, which in some cases had anti-semitic overtones.
    See for example:-
    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Death_of_Jeremiah_Duggan

    La Rouche certainly tried to sell his wares to the CIA and it’s quite possible they worked with him.

    Quite a few La Rouchites (or former ones) appear on the international Russia Media channels like RT.
    But so do quite a few left-wingers.

    I don’t think there’s any evidence that Caleb Maupin is involved in the La Rouche cult.
    He’s ex-Workers World Party.

    It’s also absolutely clear that the Marcyites who do appear on RT- Sara Flounders WWP, Brian Becker PSL have a totally different line on Trump to both the La Rouchites & the people around the “Duran” like Mercouris, Peter Lavelle etc…
    After Trump got elected, Sara Flounders appeared on “Cross Talk” and when she criticised Trump, Lavelle tried to stamp all over her.
    But she held her ground and didn’t give him an inch.
    The same is true of Becker and the PSL -they don’t give an inch to the Russian Chauvinists over this issue.

    My view is the LaRouchites are a cult, not anything like mass fascist movement.
    They try to sell themselves to various intelligence agencies, with various degrees of success.
    A few suckers get taken in.

    Comment by prianikoff — August 1, 2017 @ 7:45 am

  7. thank you very very much for this report, including information on the late stages of sds, of which i was an early stage initiator.

    i had considered LaRouche a gone by aberration. Sorry to hear it ain’t so

    alan haber >

    Comment by alanhaber — August 1, 2017 @ 12:29 pm

  8. prianikoff:

    I tend to agree with you partly re LaRouche and the masses. A lot of what he does may simply be a cunning paranoid simulation of actual political activity–is he really in contact with the Chinese and Russians, or does he simply know how to magnify his presence plausibly to the wonderment of suckers?

    Still, there is no doubt that he manages to raise a lot of money, and even if his “movement” is a piece of paranoid fakery, history might choose to take it seriously in aid of some deadly repetitive farce. A lot of what Louis has to say here is news to me, and I find it disturbing to say the least.

    RT is a weird mixture of things–ranging from the milquetoast liberalism of Thom Hartmann to the frank insanity of A. Jones and that goofy libertarian Wall Street guy whose name escapes me. They seem to put on whatever a Duginist might think of as weakening America.

    Curious, but predictable, that Russian fascists should be egging on U.S. fascists not out of solidarity but contempt. I wonder how many red-brown Putinolators realize they are being laughed at.

    I’ll bet the Duginists think LaRouche is a hoot.

    Comment by Farans Kalosar — August 1, 2017 @ 12:33 pm

  9. I should mention that LaRouchePAC does not read the way that the LaRouchite press read 30 years ago. There’s nothing about Queen Elizabeth running an international drug cartel or Jew-baiting. Frankly, it reads pretty much like Global Research or Pepe Escobar. That is probably why Ray McGovern did an interview with them, as did former NSA technical director William Binney. One thing I intend to do in my final post is assess their ideology and strength today. I haven’t paid much attention to them in decades.

    Comment by louisproyect — August 1, 2017 @ 12:40 pm

  10. There is a connection between LaRouche and the Marcyites/IAC in that Ramsey Clark has spoken at numerous LaRouche events. (Clark was also LaRouche’s lawyer in the 1980s.)

    However, I’m writing to call attention to my two studies on LaRouche and the early Labor Committee: Smiling Man from a Dead Planet: The Mystery of Lyndon LaRouche (available at http://laroucheplanet.info/pmwiki/pmwiki.php?n=Library.UnityNow) and How It All Began: The Origins and History of the National Caucus of Labor Committees in New York and Philadelphia (available at http://laroucheplanet.info/pmwiki/pmwiki.php?n=Library.HIAB).

    These studies appear on a website entitled LaRouche Planet and run by ex-members and aimed at debunking the cult. You can access the home page at http://laroucheplanet.info/pmwiki/pmwiki.php?n=Main.HomePage. LaRouche Planet has just published extremely rare photos of “L. Marcus” on the Columbia campus in 1968 if that interests anyone.

    Comment by Hylozoic Hedgehog — August 1, 2017 @ 4:02 pm

  11. Also per comment four:

    In Smiling Man, I discuss the SWP at some length and LaRouche’s participation in it. As for the GE story, I write in one of my chapters about the SWP at http://laroucheplanet.info/pmwiki/pmwiki.php?n=Library.TheSWPYears:

    ————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————–
    :
    An old Boston SWP’er informed the Phoenix that LaRouche did work in an SWP factory cell in the Lynn GE plant “but he couldn’t get up every morning so he got canned.” An SWP member named Michael Tormey, who once was very close to Larry Trainor, told a different story in a 23 June 2014 e-mail to a Marx group on the Internet:

    Lyndon LaRouche was a member of the Lynn, Mass. branch of the SWP. He worked for GE in the Riverworks local #201 U.E. at the time and he was a time motion study man, his job to cut the rate on piece work for machinists at GE. Fittingly he was sitting on a high stool timing a machinist when some enterprising toiler placed a galvanized pail of ammonia under his stool. A short time later Lyndon took ill and had to leave for the day, later he told this tale to Larry Trainor of the Boston SWP complaining about the union workers’ lack of cooperation at GE. Quite expectantly Larry literally threw him out of the branch. That about sums up the mentality of Lyndon LaRouche and this is 65 years ago.

    [Another source says LaRouche’s job at the plant was as a “quality checker.” I am unaware of any evidence that Trainor expelled LaRouche from the Lynn branch of the SWP and LaRouche writes nostalgically of Trainor in The Power of Reason.]

    ——————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————

    It may be that the real story is a composite of the above. The job that LaRouche was said to have had was something that sounds like his father may have gotten for him as his father was a “management consultant”; something I go into at some length. Trainor may have told “Lindy” that he had to quit the job or leave the SWP branch. If so, he may have gotten himself fired by “over-sleeping” as he was caught between a rock and a hard place, namely his father and his surrogate father, Larry Trainor. In any case, LaRouche writes affectionately about Trainor in his autobiography. He also met with Trainor sometime in the early 1970s but failed to convince him and his more worker-oriented faction to leave the SWP rather than remain in opposition.

    As for Healy (for example), I devote an entire appendix to the WRP and its curious overlap with LaRouche as it’s my core argument that the LaRouche group was actually a political cult and not a real political movement and that its trajectory was not dissimilar to the Healy group in England and certain other organizations led by people with names like Avakian or Barnes.

    On the LaRouche/Healy saga:

    http://laroucheplanet.info/pmwiki/pmwiki.php?n=Library.UnityNow4

    Comment by Hylozoic Hedgehog — August 1, 2017 @ 4:29 pm

  12. #10 re. Ramsey Clark

    Linking Larouche and the Workers World Party could be a case of succumbing to Larouche’s own methodology.

    Clark is a dissident lawyer who represents people he thinks are victims of government persecution.
    He’s also opposed to US foreign policy .
    I assume this is a genuine change of heart since the days when, as Lyndon Johnson’s Attorney General, he prosecuted Benjamin Spock for inciting draft evasion.

    Taking on the Larouche case may not have been one of his better decisions.
    But, to use an analogy, does the fact that the radical UK barrister Michael Mansfield has represented both Mohammed al Fayed and the Guildford 4 imply a political link between al Fayed and the IRA ?

    In 1990, Clark represented Larouche in appeal against his 15 year sentence for mail fraud.
    (Contrary to Larouche’s claim that he would die in prison, he was paroled after 5 years and is still alive.)

    In 1995, Clark wrote a letter to the then Attorney General Janet Reno, outlining his argument that there’d been a 10 year vendetta against the Larouche organisation.
    His arguments for are quite plausible.
    But typically, Larouche went large and attributed his conviction to a simultaneous campaign against him by Oliver North, the FBI and Mikhael Gorbachev.

    Comment by prianikoff — August 2, 2017 @ 11:07 am

  13. Clark has long appeared at LaRouche/Schiller Institute events with LaRouche. I think the latest was about a year ago in NYC. I want to say at Riverside Church but I would have to check. Nothing to do with any flawed methodology unless by flawed methodology is meant watching Clark speak at LaRouche events on U-Tube. At the same time, I don’t wish to imply that Clark is a secret LaRouche follower. His poison of choice is the WWP’s IAC.

    As for his argument that LaRouche had a “10 year vendetta” against him, the charges against LaRouche and Company had to do with ripping off old people for money. What is astonishing is that Clark had earlier defended the Green Party’s Petra Kelly against LaRouche attack (they were really into harassing her and making her fear that she would be attacked). He then did a 180 and made LaRouche his client. Read King’s book on all this. (As a footnote, Robert Mueller ran the prosecution against the LaRouchies in Virginia.)

    I think one can fairly say that some of the sentences against the LaRouchies were absurd and their way of ripping off people was not so unique to them when one considers all the cons run out of Wall Street. Some of the sentences may well have been extreme (one hapless fellow got 70 years) because the LaRouchies chose to run a “political” defense that alienated many. The big prosecution of LaRouche in Boston also collapsed because the prosecution so screwed up the case. One does not have to accept the notion that there were not legal arguments that might have moderated some of the sentences. What is not in doubt is that they ripped off people and did so, ironically enough, because LaRouche was convinced he was being “protected” by the CIA and other magical figures and all this made him above the law. When that collapsed, in his mind it could only be the result of a vast counter-conspiracy against him.

    Again, the King book is really good on all this even if I don’t accept some of his larger arguments. But King is a good investigative journalist and his book was written at the time of the trials which he followed closely.

    As for Clark, he worked with the IAC, one of the most loathsome groups in existence and devoted in particular to the defense of that wonderful paradise on earth North Korea, a place they frequently visited and perhaps still do to this day. One might keep this in mind when claims are made about Clark being a great humanitarian “dissident” and fighter for the poor, especially if by poor you mean Saddam Hussein, Lyndon LaRouche, and a Nazi war criminal fighting extradition to pay for his crimes.

    Again, maybe one could give a pass for Clark defending LaRouche on civil liberties grounds although I’m not so inclined. What can’t be denied, however, is his ongoing role showing up at LaRouche/Schiller Institute events and lending his name and what’s left of his credibility to the cult. The truly interesting “methodological” question is why he does this.

    My not very sophisticated answer is that he’s nuts.

    Comment by Hylozoic Hedgehog — August 2, 2017 @ 2:24 pm

  14. A point that has so far escapted mention is that LaRouche is 94 years old. In the nature of things, his future tenure at the head of his movement is limited. But while he may have added a big basket of deplorable crap to the armory of contemporary fascism, it’s hard to see how LaRouchism as a movement can survive LaRouche himself.

    What the hell, you may say–Brigham Young pulled it off.

    Point taken.

    Comment by Farans Kalosar — August 2, 2017 @ 5:37 pm

  15. On comment 15: Not only is LaRouche 94, he’s also pretty much gaga and has been so for some time. This is why he’s now tucked away in Germany and never appears publicly. His organization has been in free fall for years.

    On comment 2 regarding Fritz Land and Metropolis:

    There are similarities to LaRouche. I include a long appendix on Howard Scott and Technocracy, Inc., a 1930s political organization now lost to history that very much drew on the same ideas of technological futurism that Lang portrayed as dystopian in Metropolis. I argue that LaRouche in some ways independently took up the mantel from Scott. On Scott and Technocracy, Inc., see http://laroucheplanet.info/pmwiki/pmwiki.php?n=Library.MONADMAN.

    The difference is that LaRouche was really inspired by Norbert Wiener and the Macy Conferences in the 1950s, again a subject I go into in some length in Smiling Man from a Dead Planet.

    I future argue that LaRouche’s worldview has some as well as to Soviet cybernetic Utopians in the 1960s. See http://laroucheplanet.info/pmwiki/pmwiki.php?n=Library.MachinesOfCommunism. The Soviet cybernetic Utopians also embraced Wiener’s ideas, much like LaRouche.

    Comment by Hylozoic Hedgehog — August 3, 2017 @ 5:39 pm

  16. “Pathologically prolix”–this kind of phrase-mongering is typical of stupid people who think alliteration makes you sound smart. You know–like “nattering nabobs of negativity.”

    Comment by Farans Kalosar — August 3, 2017 @ 7:33 pm

  17. After his membership of the Workers League, LaRouche had a brief pass through the Spartacist League. He even wrote one major article for its publication, and afficionadoes of Trotskyism with access to the Spartacist journal for 1966 can probably spot which one it is just by its distinct style.

    Comment by doug1943 — August 14, 2017 @ 9:42 pm

  18. Here it is:

    http://laroucheplanet.info/pmwiki/pmwiki.php?n=Library.LaRoucheAndTheSpartacistSeague

    Comment by Hylozoic Hedgehog — August 14, 2017 @ 9:48 pm

  19. Lets set the record straight HYLOZOIC @ #10.

    No, there was no connection between Marcy & LaRouche, no more more than there was a connection between Chomsky, who wrote a blurb defending the right to publish, and some nutty French author who wrote a book denying the Holocaust.

    Chomsky’s blurb wound up on the guy’s back cover jacket and the Zionists went nuts on Chomsky claiming he was a “self-hating Jew”!

    Just because famous lawyer R. Clark (who was friendly to Marcy) defended LaRouche in some 1st Amendment case — that doesn’t mean Jack Shit.

    As Clark was quoted by a reporter in that case: “I agree with about 10% of what my client has to say” yet Clark went on to argue that he “agrees with 100% of his client’s right to say it.” Big fucking deal.

    Fact is during “Desert Shield”, the narrow window before “Desert Storm” (the 1st Gulf War in the early 90’s) the WWP was organizing the largest anti-war protests in the world. There was a date set for a march on Washington on or around Martin Luther King’s birthday. Suddenly the other organized left who were caught unawares by the immediate turpitude of imperialist war, the DNC left liberals, the New School social democrats, aka, those who viewed Lenin as anathema, the CPUSA, the CofC (aka the committees of Correspondence) — that date was decided by the RIGHT WING OF THE LEFT to be split into another date thereby cutting in half the biggest anti-imperialist movement of the era, purely out of spite.

    That cowardly leftist crowd that split the march date (and the biggest anti-imperialist movement of it’s day) just so they could spite Sam Marcy from getting the organizing credit he deserved — went as far as to bellow from the top of their lungs that SANCTIONS SHOULD BE GIVEN A CHANCE instead of war!

    That was literally their political line before the war started, that “we should give sanctions a chance!”

    Marcy retorted in an article that sanctions were an “Act of War” designed to kill the most vulnerable of a society, namely, women, children and old people.

    Yet Chomsky famously, like every virtually every other mainstream leftist turd of that era, vociferated: “Give Sanctions A Chance!”

    When I met Chomsky in ’92 at “Grounds for Thought” bookstore in Bowling Green, OH he reiterated the pro Sanctions line.

    Turns out the “Pro Sanctions” crowd, meaning about half the World’s leftists, got their wish but weren’t careful what they wished for because Clinton jammed home one decade’s worth of sanctions that the World Health Org estimates killed a million Iraqi souls, half of which were kids and elderly.

    Here’s one lesson from all of that. You will never ever hear a Leftist again bellow the ridiculous chant: “GIVE SANCTIONS A CHANCE” again.

    Fucking imbeciles. Lots of famous names fell into that category.

    Back then as a 30 year old I served as muscle for the WWP organizing crew, protecting women speakers out in the field at spontaneous demos and sometimes we’d be harassed by a LaRouchite and I’d volunteer to stomp his guts out but I literally couldn’t because of being some Cracker Klansman Thug that I longed to cripple with something up under my jacket that I knew how to use instead it would be some loud mouthed book worm with glasses.

    Comment by Karl Friedrich — August 15, 2017 @ 3:09 am

  20. Here’s Ramsey Clark being interviewed by a LaRouchie after speaking at a Schiller Institute event in 2016.

    I’m sure there is a lot more on U-Tube as the LaRouchies have put up a number of events with Clark speaking with LaRouche. Maybe the simple explanation is that if Clark was crazy enough to associate with the Marcyites, he was crazy enough to associate with LaRouche.

    Comment by Hylozoic Hedgehog — August 15, 2017 @ 4:25 am

  21. […] I mentioned in my first post on LaRouche, his cult has such a thing about Alexander Hamilton that they are now passing out […]

    Pingback by The ex-member of LaRouche’s fascist cult who writes for Robert Parry’s Consortium News | Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist — August 18, 2017 @ 6:29 pm


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