Louis Proyect: The Unrepentant Marxist

September 4, 2018

Meet the leftwing writers identified as columnists on a neo-Nazi website

Filed under: Red-Brown alliance — louisproyect @ 7:01 pm

Norman Finkelstein: prefers neo-Nazis to the NY Times

Just about a year ago I discussed The Unz Review in the context of a controversy over Valerie Plame tweeting a link to an article that appeared there written by columnist Philip Giraldi titled “America’s Jews Are Driving America’s Wars”. Oh, did I mention that other people identified as columnists include: Patrick Cockburn, Peter Lee, Tom Engelhardt, Norman Finkelstein, and Michael Hudson?

The website is named after its founder Ron Unz, two of whose most recent posts has prompted me to revisit this website that encapsulates the sordid connections between the alt-right and the radical movement. Like Michael Albert of ZNet, Ron Unz aggregates articles that might have appeared originally on leftist websites. Such articles offer solidarity for the Palestinians, Assad’s war on terrorism, the Eastern Ukraine separatists as well as opposition to trade deals like The Trans-Pacific Partnership, warmongers like John McCain, Mueller’s investigation and NATO.

For every one of these leftist articles (leaving aside the merits of Assad and the Donetsk militias) you will find just as many promoting bans on immigration of the sort found in VDARE (Ron Unz has donated 10s of thousands of dollars to VDARE) along with “scholarly” articles making the case that people of color are genetically inferior to Caucasians. One regular there, a deeply racist woman named Ilana Mercer who is listed as a columnist right next to CounterPunch regular Peter Lee, has written a number of pieces arguing that the ANC is promoting “white genocide” against South African farmers just like Tucker Carlson and Donald Trump. Plus, tons of anti-Semitic tripe of the sort Giraldi wrote.

But none of this prepared me for Ron Unz’s recent turn that effectively puts The Unz Review in the same category as the Daily Stormer and DavidDuke.com.

Unz, who happens to be of Jewish origin, wrote an article titled “Oddities of the Jewish Religion” on July 16th that effectively turns anti-Zionist Israel Shahak into an anti-Semite. Using Israel Shahak’s scholarly review of how the state of Israel used backward Talmudic passages to justify all sorts of brutality, Unz essentializes such writings as proof that the Jews have been viciously predatory for their entire history.

Like the fascists of the 1930s, Unz dwells on the Jewish-Bolshevik plot that led to the Czar being overthrown, using none other than Alexander Solzhenitsyn as an expert. Using a thoroughly racialist narrative, Unz saw Putin as delivering the Russians from the oppressive Jewish-Communist legacy: “After the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, reborn Russia soon fell under the overwhelming domination of a small group of Oligarchs, almost entirely of Jewish background, and a decade of total misery and impoverishment for the general Russian population soon followed. But once an actual Russian named Vladimir Putin regained control, these trends reversed and the lives of Russians have enormously improved since that time.”

Given that that the Bolshevik leaders were overwhelmingly Jewish, according to Unz, he concludes that when you also acknowledge the small numbers of Jews worldwide, you end up with the Jews as “the greatest mass-murderers of the twentieth century, holding that unfortunate distinction by an enormous margin and with no other nationality coming even remotely close.” Obviously, this balances out the millions of Jews who died in Nazi death camps. Hitler killed millions of Jews; so did the Bolshevik Jews kill millions of Christians.

Not only did the Jews wreak havoc in Russia, they also got their dirty mitts on the entertainment industry. Even if good Christians were responsible for the invention of film, radio, and television technologies, they all came under the control of “ruthless Jewish businessmen, who sometimes destroyed the lives and careers of those creators.” Furthermore, “By the 1950s, nearly all of America’s leading concentrations of electronic media power—with the sole major exception of Disney Studios—were solidly in Jewish hands.” I guess Unz didn’t realize that Michael Eisner was a yid.

As bad as this was, Unz escalated his neo-Nazi attack on Jews in a August 27th article titled “Holocaust Denial” that begins by defending a 1976 special issue of Reason Magazine from Mark Ames in PandoDaily accusing it of Ernst Zundel type “revisionism”. To get an idea of the contents, you can find something by Austin App, the author of a 1973 book titled “The Six Million Swindle: Blackmailing the German People for Hard Marks and Fabricated Corpses”. Unz found App to be a very convincing debunker of the myth that six million died.

Unz was predisposed to take Reason at its word since Murray Rothbard, a Jew just like him, was not only on the magazine’s masthead but a fellow holocaust denier. That Rothbard is also the patron saint of Antiwar.com’s webmaster Justin Raimondo should give you pause to think about these right-left romances that have emerged since 2011.

The crux of Unz’s willingness to believe people like David Irving was the widespread holocaust denialism that could be found in the USA after WWII. How could so many good Christians be wrong? Gosh, you might as well believe that there was a Communist conspiracy to take over the government based on widespread public opinion in the late 40s until the early 60s. Who are you going to believe? Joe McCarthy or a crank like I.F. Stone, after all? As a matter of fact, Unz kills two birds with one stone, the Jew scare and the Red scare:

Some years ago, I came across a totally obscure 1951 book entitled Iron Curtain Over America by John Beaty, a well-regarded university professor. Beaty had spent his wartime years in Military Intelligence, being tasked with preparing the daily briefing reports distributed to all top American officials summarizing available intelligence information acquired during the previous 24 hours, which was obviously a position of considerable responsibility.

As a zealous anti-Communist, he regarded much of America’s Jewish population as deeply implicated in subversive activity, therefore constituting a serious threat to traditional American freedoms. In particular, the growing Jewish stranglehold over publishing and the media was making it increasingly difficult for discordant views to reach the American people, with this regime of censorship constituting the “Iron Curtain” described in his title. He blamed Jewish interests for the totally unnecessary war with Hitler’s Germany, which had long sought good relations with America, but instead had suffered total destruction for its strong opposition to Europe’s Jewish-backed Communist menace.

Unz was impressed with the fact that Beaty’s book was the second most popular conservative text of the 1950s, ranking only behind Russell Kirk’s “The Conservative Mind”. Most people outside of Unz’s fascist cocoon would regard this as a strike against Kirk as well, of course.

Another source recommended by Unz is Joseph Bendersky’s 2000 book “The Jewish Threat.” We are told that “His work chronicles the extremely widespread anti-Semitism found within the U.S. Army and Military Intelligence throughout the first half of the twentieth century, with Jews being widely regarded as posing a serious security risk.” So Bendersky wrote the book as a leftist investigative report and Unz ends up siding with the vermin the author was exposing. Quelle surprise.

Using impeccable logic, Unz cites neo-Nazi Robert Faurisson who observed that in their memoirs, Eisenhower, Churchill, and De Gaulle never mention the death camps. This means that they too were holocaust deniers like David Irving. Perfect.

Getting both feet planted in David Irving/Ernst Zundel territory, Unz cites a Chicago Tribune article from 1992 making the case that only a million Jews were killed in Auschwitz but fails to mention that the article also states that the downward revision actually strengthens the case that 5.5 million to six million Jews died in the Holocaust.

A major part of Unz’s article consists of a defense of some of the major holocaust deniers such as Arthur Butz and Willis Carto who launched a publishing house dedicated to their literature named the Institute for Historical Review (IHR). He recommends an IHR book titled “The Dissolution of Eastern Europe Jewry” by the pseudonymous Walter N. Sanning that raises the possibility that a million Jews or more simply moved to the USSR rather than died in concentration camps. You can read a six-part dismantling of Sanning’s book here but that’s hardly worth it considering the implausibility of Sanning’s case. It is equivalent to reading a book refuting flat-earth advocacy.

There are more than 1,600 comments on Unz’s article, most of them reading like this:

Once again a well written and researched essay. Ron it will be hard to ever get the truth out because the Jewish Gangbanging of Society is in full force. They invented the Social Mob Government that now runs the opinions of the Main Stream Media which as you said is in total control of the Jews. What we are seeing is Tribalistic Control of Society. As soon as anyone disagrees with anything the Social Mob of Facebook, Twitter and the rest of the clowns kick into gear. This is especially appealing to Blacks and other minorities who wish to riot, take down statues, and burn things. This isn’t much different to the way things work in Africa where for instance there are over 100 different Tribes fighting for control in places like Uganda. There is no time for reason or discussion. The Jews just kick these people into action. In Ferguson Michael Brown never had his hands up and tried to take the gun of the police officer. It doesn’t matter. These actors aren’t interested in truth or facts they demand some Cosmic Justice. The MSM during these riots just kept pouring more gasoline on the fire with lies and fake reports. When the Justice Dept. investigation by Obama’s Eric Holder was released no one cared about the truth the MSM went on to their next plan of attack. You cannot have a civilization with this type of mentality and that’s why we are doomed.

Much of the Social Mob Movement in the US is funded by Soros and friends. Of course he is never criticized in the MSM because he is Jewish and that would be antisemitic. On the other side the so called Repubs have been bought out by Sheldon Anderson, the Zionist Jew who is a big supporter of the Holocaust Hoax and Israel’s wars with the US funding most of them. It seems hopeless because they have control of everything world wide and the view of everything is first filtered through a Jewish Lens before anyone sees it.

So the question is why someone like Norman Finkelstein or Michael Hudson would allow themselves to be listed as a columnist to a website that is for all practical purposes the Daily Stormer, plus some leftist articles to make it palatable to the kind of leftist who has Consortium News or Max Blumenthal’s GrayZone bookmarked. It is clear that Unz has a sizable readership. According to Alexa, Unz.com is ranked 9,783 in the USA and 27,006 globally as compared to CounterPunch’s numbers—18,225 and 40,052 respectively.

Of the leftwing columnists at Unz I emailed, asking why they would lend their good names to a white supremacist website, only two responded: Michael Hudson and Norman Finkelstein. Hudson hasn’t spend much time investigating the contents of Unz.com but assured me that in light of what I told him, he would now consider severing his ties.

Finkelstein, on the other hand, told me that “So long as my name is attached to only to my work, it’s fine. I would even write for the … New York Times.” Obviously, this demonstrates the kind of affinity that I alluded to early on in this article. The bourgeois press is the main enemy because it demonizes the Palestinians, so close to Finkelstein’s heart. This justifies being a columnist at Unz.com since it is “pro-Palestinian”?. The neo-Nazi stuff? The VDARE type articles? Denouncing the ANC as responsible for White Genocide? Yeah, regrettable, but they are still “for the Palestinians” and against no-fly zones, etc.

In a follow up note, Finkelstein wrote: “I know Ron. He’s very smart, but it appears that Jews with an IQ over 200 end up in strange places, especially if they live in California. First Bobby Fischer, now Ron Unz. Truth be told, even in his pigheaded silliness, and often appalling judgment, Ron always has insightful things to say, which is more than I can for NY Times columnists.” This fixation on the NY Times is remarkable. You might object to Judith Miller, et al, but you can rely on it for factual reporting such as, for example, today’s edition that includes an article about the travails of the Yurok Indians in northern California who are dealing with an opioid epidemic attributable to the genocidal destruction of their traditional life on the Klamath River. Compare that to Unz.com that has run dozens of articles making the case that non-whites are genetically inferior to Caucasians. Where is the insightfulness in an article authored by Ron Unz that states:

Or consider the fascinating historical case of Emmett Till, mentioned earlier, whose murder in 1955 became the archetypal case of an innocent black youngster lynched by murderous Southern whites, perhaps even lending some inspiration to Harper Lee’s public school classic To Kill a Mockingbird. There was enormous national media coverage of the Till murder, which uniformly reported that the black fourteen-year-old child had merely made rude and provocative remarks to the young wife of a white shopkeeper—a “Wolf whistle”—leading to his abduction and brutal killing. Yet oddly enough, only long afterward did it emerge out that his father, a violent criminal, had been executed for multiple rapes and murder, and that Till himself, weighing 150 pounds and quite large and muscular for his age, also had a violent history. Indeed, these facts had remained totally unknown to me until quite recently.

I have no idea how much of Unz.com Norman Finkelstein reads but 15 minutes spent looking at it critically would persuade me to avoid being listed as a columnist. We are living in a period unfortunately that is reprising much of what took place in Weimar Germany when Communists began adapting to the same kind of degenerate nationalism we are plagued by today.

On June 20, 1922, Karl Radek made a speech proposing a de facto alliance between the Communists and the Fascists. This, needless to say, was in his capacity as official Comintern representative to the German party. It was at a time when Trotsky was still in good graces in the Soviet Union. Nobody seemed to raise an eyebrow when Radek urged that the Communists commemorate the death of Albert Schlageter, a Freikorps fighter who died fighting against the French, who had seized territory in the Ruhr. Schlageter was regarded as a martyr of the right-wing, a German Timothy McVeigh so to speak. Radek stated that “…we believe that the great majority of nationalist minded masses belong not to the camp of the capitalists but to the camp of the Workers.”

Radek’s lunacy struck a chord with the German Communist ultraleftists who went even further in their enthusiasm for the right-wing fighters. Ruth Fischer gave a speech at a gathering of right-wing students where she echoed fascist themes:

Whoever cries out against Jewish capital…is already a fighter for his class, even though he may not know it. You are against the stock market jobbers. Fine. Trample the Jewish capitalists down, hang them from the lampposts…But…how do you feel about the big capitalists, the Stinnes, Klockner?…Only in alliance with Russia, Gentlemen of the “folkish” side, can the German people expel French capitalism from the Ruhr region.

Sad to think of Norman Finkelstein (Mike Whitney, Diana Johnstone, James Petras et al) as the Ruth Fischers of today.

44 Comments »

  1. I went over to see the Unz website after reading this out of curiosity. Of the 4 articles I saw by “left” authors I often read at other websites (Cockburn, Hudson, Flowers, Engelhart), all appeared to be reprints from other sources as opposed to material specifically written by the authors for Unz Review. I don’t know how these things work, but my guess is that an author is contacted once for permission to republish their work, as opposed to being asked each time they publish. I do see a problem in being republished on a website supporting such racist and fascist views, especially if readers who follow an author there are unaware of what else they may read there (although, regular Unz readers will likewise be exposed to leftist viewpoints). On the other hand, the media environment has become so restrictive and censored (and propagandized) that it is difficult for left-leaning discourse to have access to an audience both in print and broadcasting. Although I certainly support publications like the Unz Review, I have some degree of sympathy for authors who have been blacklisted from media that even recently published their work (The Guardian, for example) now feeling that more access is better. Not supporting Unz Review, again, but not sure we need to demonize them to this extent.

    Comment by Kris — September 4, 2018 @ 8:34 pm

  2. Unz tends to aggregate leftist articles but it is not Znet. What you need to do is read the stuff written by columnists who *do* write specifically for Unz:

    http://www.unz.com/author/ron-unz/
    https://www.unz.com/isteve/
    http://www.unz.com/author/ilana-mercer/
    https://www.unz.com/author/israel-shamir/

    They are the problem.

    Comment by louisproyect — September 4, 2018 @ 10:37 pm

  3. I remember the days when Israel Shamir regularly appeared in Counterpunch.

    Comment by Jim Farmelant — September 5, 2018 @ 1:10 am

  4. CounterPunch cleaned house after their name got dragged into the Washington Post in connection with that Russian troll.

    Comment by louisproyect — September 5, 2018 @ 1:22 am

  5. I sense a certain weakening of the red-brown/Third Way fug recently.

    The growth of “socialist” sentiment in recent years–combined with the miserable failure, after Charlottesville, of overt fascists to draw a mass following in the U.S., at least for now–has perhaps made it less necessary for the radically inclined to find some excuse untainted by any hint of historical leftism.

    Comment by Farans Kalosar — September 5, 2018 @ 10:45 am

  6. Let us hope that Unz is a lingering symptom, not a full-on disease.

    Comment by Farans Kalosar — September 5, 2018 @ 10:46 am

  7. Thanks for the article Louis, much appreciated. Its a contribution to understanding the Left/Right emerging Populist constellation floating around the world today. Wondering if somehow this passed you by:

    http://www.unz.com/book/henry_ford__the-international-jew/

    Comment by Elliott Eisenberg — September 5, 2018 @ 11:34 am

  8. Want to second Elliot Eisenberg’s remarks. This is a well done and informative and important report. Curious about P. Cockburn and T. Engelhardt, especially the former. Hard to believe he approves of his material on this site? He can’t be going national bolshevik, can he?

    Comment by John — September 5, 2018 @ 3:13 pm

  9. I don’t have an email address for Patrick Cockburn. For all I know, he does not even have a computer given his total absence from all electronic communications. Engelhardt has not responded to my query so who knows?

    Comment by louisproyect — September 5, 2018 @ 3:34 pm

  10. I am confused. Is my understanding correct that your undestanding, Louis (and others), is that it is bad for leftwing articles to be printed on racist right wing sites? And by extention that this makes the authors of these left wing articles guilty of associating with racist activists or perhaps being guilty of racism because their article appeared with permission on a racist site?

    Comment by Curt Kastens — September 5, 2018 @ 4:13 pm

  11. If Ron Unz cross-posts articles from leftist websites like CounterPunch or Znet without the knowledge of the authors, that is Unz’s misdeed, not the authors. But if I had written one that showed up there, I’d insist on it being taken down. In fact, I already did this with a film review of mine that ended up on Russia Insider, a website I detest but is not quite so bad as Unz.com. However, the real purpose of my article is to somehow put pressure on people like Finkelstein, Hudson and others listed as columnists to sever their ties. If some of the columnists ended up being listed there without their knowledge, that’s Unz’s misdeed once again. However, if they are so listed with their approval–as is the case with Finkelstein–the misdeed is theirs.

    Comment by louisproyect — September 5, 2018 @ 4:30 pm

  12. Ok I did not misunderstand. But isn’t it a good thing that people who want to visit a racist website get exposed to left wing point of views? After all how can racists be cured if the racist lives inside of a bubble of only right wing thoughts? As long as the author of left wing articles does not themselves express racist views why should it be assumed that because they knowingly allowed their article to be posted on a racist website that they are in agreement with the racist views of that website? Look I spent years trying to get my views posted on official and unofficial military websites to get people in the military to change. If by chance my views passed moderation and were posted does that mean that I agreed with the positions of those websites?
    Then even if this websites publish an aritcle that a reporter has written what is the problem with that? Does the reporter stand behind what was written? If what the reporter wrote was true everyone should have the opportunity to read it. If what was written was true its truth does not change based on what kind of a website or magazine that it was printed in.
    Is the heartburn over this idea that permission should recieved from an author have something to do with intefectjual Propery rights?

    Comment by Curt Kastens — September 5, 2018 @ 8:56 pm

  13. But isn’t it a good thing that people who want to visit a racist website get exposed to left wing point of views?

    That has to be weighed against the spectacle of a guy like Norman Finkelstein, whose parents were survivors of a Nazi concentration camp, being listed as a columnist for a website claiming that the holocaust was a hoax.

    Comment by louisproyect — September 5, 2018 @ 9:16 pm

  14. Ok I see the problem is not really that they reprint his articles with or with out permission but that they list him as a columnist which is I see as an implicit, but not explicit, collaborator in the website. The situation makes for an interesting cost risk benifit problem. It is one that works both ways to. For the website,using these names could add to the credibility of this site in the short term. Yet new readers might also follow links to the left wing writers that are listed as contributros. This would expose these writers to an audiance that they might not have otherwise reached. That could provide the new readres with information that undercuts the messages of the Unz website. So, the practice that he (Unz) is engaging in is a two edged sword for both sides.

    Comment by Curt Kastens — September 5, 2018 @ 11:45 pm

  15. You still don’t get if, you fucking moron. People who have a good reputation on the left like Finkelstein drag us through the mud by lending their names to a neo-Nazi website. The next time you write anything this stupid, I will ban you. I don’t want this kind of bullshit comment appearing on this blog.

    Comment by louisproyect — September 5, 2018 @ 11:48 pm

  16. That’s a really vicious and hubristic response to a commenter who appeared neither hostile nor argumentative. Ignore the comment, or engage with the point raised, but at least don’t publicly bully people who have taken the time to read your work.

    Comment by Kris — September 6, 2018 @ 12:48 am

  17. Kris, this is my blog and I will say whatever the fuck I want if you don’t mind. Kastens has been posting here for over 5 years and he is always writing tangential crap that I never took issue with. But we are talking about dead-serious matters involving the left adapting to neo-Nazism and I can’t put up with him sowing squid-ink-like confusion.

    Comment by louisproyect — September 6, 2018 @ 12:53 am

  18. Hi there, first time reader. Have you continued correspondence with Finkelstein? I know Finkelstein has done generally good work and his convictions are quite solid which probably borders on the kind of stubbornness that he exhibited in the email between you two, so perhaps a clearer picture of what the situation’s actual impact would be valuable to tell him? To clarify what i mean, consider this- with some better wording:

    “Regardless of what you think of Ron Unz, what is happening here is your work (which is good) is allowing people to keep reading a website that blames the plight of the Palestinians, not on the Zionists- but on the jews as a whole. And while your name is on there, the many impressionable teenagers and politically interested but not obsessive minds that find this site in their search for a non-mainstream opinion of the Israel/Palestine conflict or any other Zionist conflict- will see this site, your article, and will not click on your name to find more of your writing- but on the website itself to read more of their content. And the tie-in between your valid, well researched, thorough work and their unfounded anti-semitic messages might lead them to believe that the Jews as a whole are a problem in a time where rising Neo-Nazi movements exist. I understand your intent, but consider the actual impact.”

    There’s a ton of smart or skilled people who just simply grow to think their intention carries more weight than the reality and i kind of wonder if Norman can be convinced to take another look with some light prodding?

    Comment by egorelik11 — September 6, 2018 @ 5:23 pm

  19. I appreciate your advice, comrade, but I am afraid that Finkelstein is too set in his ways. This is a much smaller bone of contention than the one he has with BDS activists, whose goals he disparages no matter the amount of well-reasoned articles that come his way. My tactic is to use shock and awe instead.

    Comment by louisproyect — September 6, 2018 @ 7:42 pm

  20. @Kris, Imagine Proyect being “vicious and hubristic”? His blog is a monument to those twin vices. The time Proyect spent among the agent provocateurs and finks in PISPAW was not all wasted; it seems to have instilled in him (in addition to a love of completely gratuitous insults) a desire to police leftist discourse and disparage those he believes have crossed a line. The picture he uses of Norman Finkelstein, is indicative of his unrelenting mauvaise foi. It is a screengrab from a video in which NF made a heart rendering statement to the effect that Margaret Hodge had cheapened the suffering of the Holocaust by invoking it to criticize a letter Labor sent to her.

    For Proyect, however, it is just grist for his smear. I can’t read NF’s mind but I wouldn’t be surprised if his reaction to this post was similar to the time he was smeared by Oliver Kamm on Al Jazeera. “Your criticism of me means about as much to me as that speck of dirt on the carpet.”

    Comment by Jake — September 7, 2018 @ 6:19 pm

  21. For those wondering what PISPAW is, that’s the name Tariq Ali gave the SWP in his novel “Redemption”. It stood for Proletarian International Socialist Party of American Workers. In terms of “agents provocateurs” and “fink”. I have no idea what this troll is talking about. The SWP was pretty fucked up but not along those lines.

    Mauvaise foi? Sure. Why not.

    In terms of Finkelstein’s mind, he lost it long ago. Anybody who willingly lends his name to a neo-Nazi website needs a psychiatrist.

    Comment by louisproyect — September 7, 2018 @ 6:24 pm

  22. Please correct me if I’m wrong but I thought I read awhile back that both Chomsky and Finkelstein withdrew from supporting the BDS movement. If they both did was it for the same reason? If so what were those reasons in a nutshell?

    Comment by Karl Friedrich — September 7, 2018 @ 6:34 pm

  23. Finkelstein, “Why Israel’s supporters love BDS”: http://normanfinkelstein.com/2018/05/18/why-israels-supporters-love-bds/

    Chomsky, “On Israel-Palestine and BDS”: https://www.thenation.com/article/israel-palestine-and-bds/

    Comment by louisproyect — September 7, 2018 @ 6:41 pm

  24. @Louis
    Again you evince your love of gratuitous insults, picked up from Barnes. To clarify: I am not calling you an agent provacateur or an informant but surely you do know what I’m talking about. Joseph Hansen, for instance?
    For anyone who takes Proyect’s characterization of me as a “troll” at face value, just Google “An Exemplary Comrade” or WSWS Sylvia Callen. If the character of the late SWP is not evident after reading you might want to read about the work of the ICFI or order a small book called “The Carleton 12,” which lays out in great detail that the cadre which took over the SWP, including Jack Barnes and Mary Alice Waters, Larry Seigke were not socialists but state agents “plugged into” the leadership of the SWP by the dean of Carleton College, then a highly conservative Ford Foundation funded institution. Indeed how likely is it that all of the high ranking SWP’ers post Farrel Dobbs regime were from one conservative college in the Midwest?

    Louis, could you really be unaware of any of this? And before you call me a Northite or some such (David North, ex Healyite and current “chairmen” of the SEP, and his cothinkers are the source of the work implicating Barnes and Hansen) I am not associated with the group at all, but facts are sticky things.

    Comment by Jake — September 7, 2018 @ 7:11 pm

  25. @Louis
    Or what of the more prosaic information released by
    the FBI itself that out of the SWP and YSA’s 1,300 dues paying members in 1973, 300 were FBI informants. You alluded to this very finding a couple of weeks ago. So I again call mauvaise foi when you write that you have “no idea what I’m talking about.”

    Comment by Jake — September 7, 2018 @ 7:21 pm

  26. Joseph Hansen, for instance?

    You are nuttier than Finkelstein.

    Comment by louisproyect — September 7, 2018 @ 7:36 pm

  27. @Louis
    You flatter me by associating me with Finkelstein in anyway. You really are shameless though aren’t you?

    As for Hansen, I encourage anyone approaching this material for the first time and with an open mind to read “Sylvia Callen: An Exemplary Comrade.” It makes plain for even the most unrepentant SWPer that Hansen was a Stalinist plant in the SWP.

    In any case to call anyone who takes the well documented material seriously as “nuts” shows just how intemperate you are, Proyect. Or have you just not read it?

    Comment by Jake — September 7, 2018 @ 7:54 pm

  28. It makes plain for even the most unrepentant SWPer that Hansen was a Stalinist plant in the SWP.

    Right. He held Trotsky’s arms while Ramon Mercader hit him with the ice ax. Everybody knows that and, also, that I am a Mossad agent.

    Comment by louisproyect — September 7, 2018 @ 8:28 pm

  29. @Louis,
    No I don’t think he did that, just passed along information to the covert Stalinist apparatus and then covered up for Sylvia Callen for decades.
    You went off the rails when I mentioned Hansen, but you ignored my comments about Callen/Franklin and the fact that Barnes and his inner circle all came from Carleton college. Is that all crazy talk too?
    I have said repeatedly that I am not accusing you of being an agent, just extremely bad mannered and fact-averse.

    Comment by Jake — September 7, 2018 @ 8:45 pm

  30. the fact that Barnes and his inner circle all came from Carleton college.

    —-

    You really are a political lightweight, aren’t you? These Carleton College people were part of a broader leadership that took a group of about 200 people and helped built it into one with 2000 members. The same cadre then turned around and helped reduce it to less than 200 members. The FBI did not conspire with Barnes to turn it into a workerist cult. It was Farrell Dobbs who persuaded Barnes to carry out the turn. Your problem is that you have been reading the WSWS horse manure rather than the Marxist classics. You are a conspiracist theorist, not a Marxist. Anyhow, you can write one more comment and then I am showing you to the exit because you are obviously out of your mind.

    Comment by louisproyect — September 7, 2018 @ 8:55 pm

  31. @Louis,
    Your ad hominem attacks are irrelevant. I do not know if the workerist turn of the SWP was part of an FBI strategy to render obscure the party, but hats off for a decent guess.
    As for your label of me as a conspiracy theorist, are you at all familiar with the history of the SR’s during the Civil War? They’re leadership were paid agent provocateurs.
    Did I ever say I was a Marxist or a WSWS adherent?
    But again as for the CT smear, Marxism applied correctly encourages us to analyze historical conditions dialectically, not be blinded by structuralism. Does anyone think that the capitalist state does not infiltrate groups they perceive as a threat to their power? Indeed the very existence of COINTELPRO and similar programs makes mincemeat of your cheap smears.
    Just to be clear, an intentionalist critique does not negate the more important structural one. To wit, if the SWP was a true working class (or even vanguard) party I don’t think it could have been hijacked so easily by Barnes and his clique.

    Comment by Jake — September 7, 2018 @ 10:06 pm

  32. Israel Shahak is misunderstood on the Left. He had early on made a willing alliance with the anti-Semitic right. In fact, google “Israel Shahak” Klan and see what comes up. It is my considered opinion that he at some point came to the conclusion that the way to destroy Zionism was to spark an anti-Semitic Christian backlash against Judaism. What makes this a willful act of collaboration, in simple terms, is that Zionism was a rebellion against Jewish tradition, but Shahak drags in a medieval polemic against Jewish tradition’s negative view of the Gentile world at large as the source of Israeli racism.

    Comment by Evan Siegel — September 9, 2018 @ 3:28 am

  33. He had early on made a willing alliance with the anti-Semitic right.

    Oh, right. He and David Duke got together and planned the whole thing. (What a fucking joke.)

    Comment by louisproyect — September 9, 2018 @ 11:31 am

  34. Ah, you’ve learned well from the Barnes school of polemics. This little trick is called setting up a straw man.
    Alliances aren’t always made by people sitting around a table. Many are made with a wink and a nod. In Shahak’s case, his medieval anti-Jewish polemics were recognized for what the were by the anti-Semitic right and they embraced him. He never repudiated this embrace, and so the relationship went.

    Comment by Evan Siegel — September 9, 2018 @ 4:42 pm

  35. Evan, you are full of shit. If you can’t substantiate your charge, then shut the fuck up.

    Comment by louisproyect — September 9, 2018 @ 7:24 pm

  36. Seems I’m able to express myself without resorting to obscenities and you aren’t.
    I already presented Exhibit A. Don’t be afraid. Look at it. Then maybe we can have a rational discussion.
    Without the obscenities.

    Comment by Evan Siegel — September 10, 2018 @ 9:57 pm

  37. EXHIBIT A? WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT? UNLESS YOU CAN SUBSTANTIATE YOUR SLANDER OF CONCENTRATION CAMP SURVIVOR ISRAEL SHAHAK AS MAKING A WILLING ALLIANCE WITH THE ANTI-SEMITIC RIGHT, YOU SHOULD SHUT YOUR TRAP.

    Comment by louisproyect — September 10, 2018 @ 10:37 pm

  38. Thanks Louis. Lots of the comments here are telling. Either these folks don’t get it…or they do. I am not sure which is worse.

    Comment by Reg — September 10, 2018 @ 11:13 pm

  39. […] Leftists who focus on the propagandistic nature of the corporate media, while shilling for the far right and failing to condemn right-wing fascism, provide comfort to the reactionary right’s efforts to suppress journalistic freedom. Yes, corporate media practice propaganda. But the media propaganda problem is a discussion for another time, as it should go without saying that Trump and the far-right have no interest in promoting greater transparency, integrity, or accuracy in journalism. Trump comes to bury the press, not to save it. This point is recognized by scholars of fascism like Henry Giroux, who presciently warned that Trump’s efforts to depict reporters as treasonous are not only “ominous and alarming,” but “echo previous totalitarian regimes that waged war on both the press and democracy itself.” […]

    Pingback by Full-On Fascism: Trump Makes the Transition in his War on the Press - open mind news — September 11, 2018 @ 9:22 am

  40. […] Leftists who focus on the propagandistic nature of the corporate media, while shilling for the far right and failing to condemn right-wing fascism, provide comfort to the reactionary right’s efforts to suppress journalistic freedom. Yes, corporate media practice propaganda. But the media propaganda problem is a discussion for another time, as it should go without saying that Trump and the far-right have no interest in promoting greater transparency, integrity, or accuracy in journalism. Trump comes to bury the press, not to save it. This point is recognized by scholars of fascism like Henry Giroux, who presciently warned that Trump’s efforts to depict reporters as treasonous are not only “ominous and alarming,” but “echo previous totalitarian regimes that waged war on both the press and democracy itself.” […]

    Pingback by Full-On Fascism: Trump Makes the Transition in his War on the Press | Radio Free — September 11, 2018 @ 10:24 am

  41. […] Les gauchistes qui se concentrent sur la nature propagandiste des médias d’entreprise, tout en se plaçant pour l’extrême droite et en ne condamnant pas le fascisme de droite, confortent les efforts de la droite réactionnaire pour réprimer la liberté des journalistes. Oui, les médias d’entreprise pratiquent la propagande. Mais le problème de la propagande médiatique est une discussion pour une autre fois, car il va sans dire que Trump et l’extrême droite n’ont aucun intérêt à promouvoir une plus grande transparence, intégrité ou précision dans le journalisme. Trump vient enterrer la presse, pas pour la sauver. Ce point est reconnu par les érudits du fascisme comme Henry Giroux, qui a prévenu avec prudence Les efforts de Trump pour dépeindre les journalistes comme des traîtres ne sont pas seulement «inquiétants et alarmants», mais «font écho aux régimes totalitaires antérieurs qui ont fait la guerre à la fois à la presse et à la démocratie». […]

    Pingback by Fascisme intégral: Trump fait la transition dans sa guerre contre la presse – DE LA GRANDE VADROUILLE A LA LONGUE MARGE — September 12, 2018 @ 12:57 pm

  42. ‘“By the 1950s, nearly all of America’s leading concentrations of electronic media power—with the sole major exception of Disney Studios—were solidly in Jewish hands.” I guess Unz didn’t realize that Michael Eisner was a yid.’

    Walt Disney himself was still running Disney in the 50s. Eisner didn’t take over until 1984.

    ‘Gosh, you might as well believe that there was a Communist conspiracy to take over the government based on widespread public opinion in the late 40s until the early 60s.’

    In case you missed it, Unz covered that one, too:

    http://www.unz.com/runz/american-pravda-our-deadly-world-of-post-war-politics/

    Comment by Seamus Padraig — September 16, 2018 @ 11:37 am

  43. Unz has also underwritten Finkelstein financially; $4,000 to be an “Unz Research Fellow” in 2014 according to the Unz Foundation’s tax forms
    http://990s.foundationcenter.org/990pf_pdf_archive/207/207181582/207181582_201412_990PF.pdf

    $32,000 in 2013
    http://990s.foundationcenter.org/990pf_pdf_archive/207/207181582/207181582_201312_990PF.pdf

    $3,000 in 2009
    http://990s.foundationcenter.org/990pf_pdf_archive/207/207181582/207181582_200912_990PF.pdf

    No wonder Finkelstein is so tolerant of Unz’s “silliness.”

    Comment by Pablo — September 19, 2018 @ 12:40 am

  44. […] Comment by Kris — September 4, 2018 @ 8:34 pm […]

    Pingback by Making a List – Leftwing Writers Whose Work Appears on the Unz Review Website – Louis Proyect – 4 Sept 2018 | xenagoguevicene — September 20, 2018 @ 8:53 pm


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