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07 December 2017

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jonst

Did you read the first line of my reply? "Let us leave aside, *for the moment*, the question of Leftist or not?" It was most emphatically not my point to 'slander Leftists'. Who, by the way, are doing a good enough job themselves, at that. The question posed was, I believe, anyway; what might a group of people/media entities, superficially diverse, have in common? You pivot off that question and go on to an dialogue that exists in your head alone. Granted, an interesting and informative dialogue...but one of your own making.

aleksandar

Not just about the Frankfurt School but about whole degeneration of the West: 1986 Allan Bloom," The closing of american mind ".
This phenomenon is not present only in the US.
And not leftist or rightist but as Sylvia1 shows brillantly, it's capitalism.

Croesus

Several years ago Palantir, a Silicon Valley start-up whose major client was CIA, opened an office in Northern Virginia, next door to the National Counterterrorism Center (NCTC). https://www.dni.gov/index.php/nctc-who-we-are/history Barack Obama visited NCTC in 2015, shortly after the San Bernardino event, to assure the American people that the US had the very best technology to keep America secure. Around that same time, business chatter about taking Palantir public increased, and Palantir was mentioned by name by several congresspersons in congressional committee hearings.

Palantir was founded by Peter Thiel and Alex Karp.

"Karp has a bachelor's degree from Haverford College, a doctor of jurisprudence degree from Stanford University, and a doctorate in neoclassical social theory from Frankfurt University. Karp's advisor at Frankfurt University was the well-known German critical theorist, sociologist and philosopher, Jürgen Habermas, a student of Theodor Adorno, a leading thinker of the Frankfurt School.Aggression in der Lebenswelt: Die Erweiterung des Parsonsschen Konzepts der Aggression durch die Beschreibung des Zusammenhangs von Jargon, Aggression und Kultur. [machine trans.: Aggression in the lifeworld: The extension of Parsons' concept of aggression by describing the connection between jargon, aggression and culture] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alex_Karp

Forbes published this insightful close-up bio of Karp: https://www.forbes.com/sites/andygreenberg/2013/08/14/agent-of-intelligence-how-a-deviant-philosopher-built-palantir-a-cia-funded-data-mining-juggernaut/#4e4f8b037785

The "Frankfurt School" was organized to create an environment and systems to combat antisemitism; The Authoritarian Personality was published by the American Jewish Committee.

Palantir has produced a series of videos from its annual gov.con colloquium. This one applies the Palantir process to Iran's "threat to the US and the world." https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9ooAUeTlzdU

I'm closer to signal-to-noise's view; I have no idea what "left" and "right" mean; it's like the current jargon over "white" vs "BLM." In my opinion, both sets of categories are deliberately crafted to divide on the way to conquest. I used to think Liberal meant a person conversant in the pillars of western culture in literature, music, philosophy, etc., but that, too, has been jargonized by Frankfurt school processes.

The fact that Palantir is undergirded by Frankfurt School ideology; that is has privileged and unique access to almost every bit of information about me and everybody; that it works extensively with federal government agencies to aggregate and interpret that information to form domestic and global policy -- that scares me to death.

Croesus

This is the same mantra Hitler espoused.
Nonsense.
At least 50 years past time we get serious about Hitler.

It's astonishing that a single person, who put his pants on one leg at a time, had only one head; who occupied the world stage for ~ 2 decades, never went to college, died at age 56, is responsible for so many of the world's ills that occurred only since his death.

Why is it that the only approved discussions or writings about "Hitler" are produced by those who hated him, and who began their hate Hitler campaign nearly 10 years before Hitler had committed a single deleterious act against those antagonists; further, that any contrary narrative about Hitler is criminalized, sanctioned, punished, verboten; and finally, that any attempt to open an objective discussion about Hitler and the reality-based vs. propaganda-based goals of National Socialism are shut down and firmly censored.
Dr. Stanley Fish, former dean of Liberal Arts at (a college in Illinois) told a panel on Free Speech held at the National Constitution Center that "free speech does not extend to academia; there, systems of tenure and peer review hold sway, and anyone who claims a position about, i.e. The Holocaust, that is contrary to the ordained narrative, will not be published, not funded, not granted tenure, and if tenured will still be made to regret his errant views.

If American society and American scholars were free to investigate, with the full scope of their academic and intellectual skills, the events of that era, from all perspectives, then we would not be suffering the spectacle of young men carrying Tiki torches attempting to call attention to a history that has been censored out of knowledge.

Degringolade

Ishmael Zechariah:

Thank you so much for the links. The "Tolerance" PDF is quite enlightening. Bit of a slog, but he writes reasonably well for a philosopher.

I am having a bit of trouble connecting the dots between the words written by Marcuse and some of the comments here. I will continue reading and thinking about it, but it appears that he isn't the pseudo-fascist that he is characterized in some of these comments.

To Harper and the Colonel:

This is one of the best examples of why I keep coming back to the discussion.

HawkOfMay

Closing the rampant bold tag.

This is an interesting juxtaposition to a NY Times opinion article from yesterday. Liberals Need to Take Their Fingers Out of Their Ears

The political, economic, and cultural triumph nationwide of a set of principles and realities essentially alien to large numbers of Americans is viewed as (a) being imposed upon them, and (b) overturning much of what they take for granted in their lives — and I don’t think they’re wrong about that. I think they’ve risen in angry revolt, and now intend to give back to the “elite” in the same terms that they’ve been given to. I don’t think this is good — in fact, I think it’s a very dangerous situation — but I think we need to understand it in order to responsibly address it.
Are the liberals who are willing to say that liberal democracy has worked? That environmental regulations have slashed air pollutants while allowing Americans to drive more miles and burn more fuel? That social transfers have reduced poverty rates fivefold? That globalization has allowed Americans to afford more food, clothing, TVs, cars, and air-conditioners? That international organizations have prevented nuclear war, and reduced the rate of death in warfare by 90 percent? That environmental treaties are healing the hole in the ozone layer?
Eric Newhill

PA,
You and some others are trying to deflate the argument by confusing the old school liberals with neo-liberalism. The article and links make it clear that the movement morphed since the 60s. Neo-liberals are not your father's liberals.

To your specific comment, black lives matter can be invited to the white house, whereas it would be political suicide to invite a white nationalist group. Black lives matter can march and even riot in the streets, calling for dead cops, but white nationalists protesting the removal of statues draws ire and criticism from all media sources and politicians. Trump got called out for not renouncing them hard enough. No one has been asked to renounce BLM when they call for dead cops. In fact, there would be fierce backlash with cries of "Racism" if one were to renounce BLM.

We have to give the movement a name and "leftist" is as good as any because the movement started from old school leftism/Marxism. What has happened is that the neo-liberalism movement - apparently successfully in cases of people such as yourself - went into stealth mode; promoting not blatant Marxism, but by leading people to that conclusion, gradually, with notions of "social justice", PC culture, by breaking down traditional capitalist values and the values of Western civ itself. It also involves some fairly sinister brainwashing techniques - for example, racism is a mortal sin, but damn those white people sure are a scourge on the planet. When they get you to hold two opposing beliefs in your head simultaneously, they own your mind. Messing with your reality includes forced acceptance (via social pressure) of things like a man in a dress is actually a woman. There are many more examples and the non-brainwashed know what they are.

People like Cheney, et al that would normally be thought of as "conservative" - indeed they label themselves as such - are part of the overall movement when they push for uncontrolled immigration. They seek to break down traditional American culture in that way by diluting it. It may be assistance of the left through mere lack of concern, or it may be planned. result is the same.

I agree with jonst (doing that a lot lately). Whether self proclaimed conservative or liberal what these people all have in common is a globalist perspective, the dilution of traditional US culture and elitism. IMO, they want to rule the majority by causing the majority to be non-thinking brainwashed zombies in a Huxley-esque Brave New World type environment. The masses get to enjoy mindless hedonism and do what they are told. They won't fight because they are all equal in material comfort and outcomes, dismal as the average may be. This is about control, not justice or freedom or anything else they sell it as. And that is what the article and links are saying was the conscious plan all along.

Fred

Croesus,

The bold needs to be turned off at the end of your comment.

jonst

I have no idea what you are referring to.

Jonathan House

As a PS, I add the 2nd and 3rd paragraphs of Varoufakis' article

"The range of analysis is staggering. The rise of militant parochialism on both sides of the Atlantic is being investigated from every angle imaginable: psychoanalytically, culturally, anthropologically, aesthetically, and of course in terms of identity politics. The only angle that is left largely unexplored is the one that holds the key to understanding what is going on: the unceasing class war unleashed upon the poor since the late 1970s.

"In 2016, the year of both Brexit and Trump, two pieces of data, dutifully neglected by the shrewdest of establishment analysts, told the story. In the United States, more than half of American families did not qualify, according to Federal Reserve data, to take out a loan that would allow them to buy the cheapest car for sale (the Nissan Versa sedan, priced at $12,825). Meanwhile, in the United Kingdom, over 40% of families relied on either credit or food banks to feed themselves and cover basic needs.
JH

Fred

in the future please turn off the highlights.

Dabbler

Meant to say “signal-to-noise and Ked have different pieces of the truth”. Sorry; need to check before postng.

Jack

Sylvia

You are spot on with your quotes from Adam Smith. It is inherent that unfettered capitalism leads to monopolies. However it has been our experience that our regulated businesses also tends to monopolies. Robinson-Pactman was enacted into law some decades ago but with regulatory capture we have seen increasing formation of cartels as consolidation of market power is enabled by government. We have all the laws necessary to enforce a competitive marketplace. But the revolving door the fox is in charge of the henhouse.

I believe there is far too much complexity in our regulatory framework. Simplicity typically leads to transparency. Our tax code is a good example. Full of complexity and laden with exceptions and loopholes that only those with large resources can fully exploit.

My own experience in banking is that small and mid-sized banks are at a significant disadvantage relative to the big money center banks as there is implicit government backing for them with the idea of "Too Big to Fail". There was a fantastic opportunity to bring market discipline to finance after the GFC but what we saw was increased market intervention that has exacerbated wealth inequality.

steve

"Nowhere is this more evident than in the mainstream media's unending barrage of attacks on President Donald Trump, whose very election as President has been declared to be illegitimate"

Nothing new here. They went after Obama claiming he was not born in the US. They tried to impeach Clinton. The main difference I see is that Trump supporters whine more about it.

Steve

Eric Newhill

Here is an interview with Marcuse. He sounds like the typical social justice warrior lefty that we encounter everywhere today. Worth the listen. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vm3euZS5nLo

Keith Harbaugh

From the Google Books description of Cry Havoc:
https://books.google.com/books/about/Cry_Havoc.html?id=r5XVAAAACAAJ

In Cry Havoc!, legendary journalist Ralph de Toledano documents in chilling detail how
a cabal of intellectuals, educrats, and politicians,
manipulated by a well-financed, world-wide conspiracy,
organized a strategy to undermine the American system
--
and how this has been accomplished.

"Cry Havoc is must-reading." -- William F. Buckley, Jr.
"Cry Havoc is not only well written, but absolutely right." -- Prof. Herbert London
Sure sounds like reality to me,
but Google Books classifies this as "Conspiracy Theory".

An example of the web of personal relations
(which some might call a cabal)
that have shaped the world we live in
was given by Robert Kagan in the "Acknowledgments" section of his book Dangerous Nation:

Throughout these years, I have also been luck to enjoy the comradeship and wise counsel of
dear friends Fred Hiatt, Bill Kristol, Leon Wieseltier, Reuel Gerecht, Ed Lazarus, and Joe Rose ...
The connection between Kagan and Lazarus might have been through Robert Kagan's father, Donald, who was a mentor to Ed Lazarus at Yale.
As to who Joe Rose is, I have no idea.

I mention this because it may be useful to understand how the people who attempt, often successfully, to manipulate opinion collaborate,
and the commonality of their background.
Hardly representative of the U.S.
And not very Christian.

VietnamVet

mikee,

The US Army I was drafted into almost half a century ago was very much working middle class males. The uneducated, overweight and ill were washed out. The draft army in Korea got better but fell apart in Vietnam. First, when the war with China in Korea stalemated, President Eisenhower got an armistice signed. Second, as fought in Vietnam, there was no chance for victory. Due to the threat of nuclear weapons and another Chinese intervention; an invasion of the North was off the table. Officers served six months in the field and left. The war was fought one year at a time. Hard learned lessons were lost. Drugs plus the racial, geographical and economic rifts in America exploded.

Studies indicate that Americas born in 1942 have the highest wages. Wages of those born since have steadily decline. Vietnam veterans missed out in the increase in wages that non-veterans had for the years that the veterans served. When the draft ended, Deplorables were no longer needed to man the army. They were tossed aside. In fact the United States today reminds me very much of the US Army stationed at Fort Lewis that I left in September 1971; war weary and divided.

BillWade

Steve, what do make of this, more Trump supporters whining?

https://thepoliticalinsider.com/congressman-jim-jordan-christopher-wray-fbi/?utm_medium=email&utm_source=criticalimpact&utm_campaign=TPI_Afternoon_Newsletter_12_8_2017&utm_content=1d09840caddec138a6473c7b9fa19141&source=CI

turcopolier

VV

You were a kid in VN. I was not. Officers in command of infantry battalions and brigades held their commands for six months and then went to staff jobs because there was an incredible competition among officers army wide for these positions. This was a terrible plan devised by Max Thurman. It deprived units of proven leadership that the men knew and enabled malcontents like you to imply some evil intent. pl

Huckleberry

Attempting to make sense of the Frankfurt School, or the NeoConservatives, without noticing the ethnic roots of both ideologies is like trying to understand the American Constitution without considering its roots in Anglo-Saxon culture.

It's ok to notice things like the Jewish roots of much that has corroded the American republic. nyone who says otherwise is either a coward, the victim of gaslighting, or not acting in good faith.

Again, see Culture of Critique by Kevin MacDonald.

Valissa

jpb, thanks for the book rec!

I recently bought British political philosopher John Gray's book, Two Faces of Liberalism https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1565846788/

Like me, Gray is a former liberal/lefty. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/John_Gray_(philosopher)

For me, his book 'Black Mass: Apocalyptic Religion and the Death of Utopia' provided me with more polished thoughts and reasoning to my own intuitions and observations about some of the problems with liberalism.

NOTE: Of course there are many criticisms that can be made of various forms of modern conservatism as well. However that is not the topic of this post.

PA, we have discussed Strauss on this blog several times in the past. No fans here, and plenty of folks here are aware of his influence on Borg policies. But the idea of the noble lie is older than Strauss. It at least goes back to Plato and his concept of The Republic.


steve

Lots of vague allegations. Higher level whining than is the norm. What do you make of the fact that Starr's investigation was leaking like a sieve at this point, while some of the Mueller charges were a surprise to many people? (Mueller is a life long Republican. Do you think he is trying to keep a lid on leaks so as to not harm Trump?)

Steve

fanto

Sylvia 1,
your comment sounds very much like thoughts of Bruce R.Scott in his "Concept of Capitalism". Agree with that analysis; I experienced the power of monopoly on my own skin so to speak, when working with a hospital (in the USA) which gave one physician the advantage to effectively channel referrals - to my chagrin, despite the fact that the physician was very much inexperienced - with disastrous results for the patients. This system of monopolization in the US health care system is not well publicized btw., it is wide spread and corrupted.

catherine

'' IMO, they want to rule the majority by causing the majority to be non-thinking brainwashed zombies in a Huxley-esque Brave New World type environment. The masses get to enjoy mindless hedonism and do what they are told. They won't fight because they are all equal in material comfort and outcomes, dismal as the average may be. This is about control, not justice or freedom or anything else they sell it as. And that is what the article and links are saying was the conscious plan all along.''

Exactly. Lurk around the liberal blogs and you will see the support for this mixture of Marxism/socialism, particularly among the lower middle class and academics. You will also find this Marxist strain among leaders of the illegal immigration movement. And among liberal writers like Chris Hedges and liberal publications like The Atlantic, The Nation etc. pushing the cultural Marxism ideology,however slyly.
Whether this movement,and it does appear to be a movement, has emerged from a single entity and just spread among the liberals or not I do not know.
But it is here and it is being taken up by followers of left.


catherine


In 1983 there were 50 media companies in the US broadcasting to the public.
Today there are 6 who control 90% of media.

The first and core problem of the US is political corruption.
The second problem is the media.
All other problems we discuss are just symptoms of those two problems.

If all the heat generated in discussions and criticism of various and sundry issues became instead a unitified bipartisan attack on the core political corruption then we would see a change.

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