Brilliant! I’m so happy to have the opportunity to read this. It has clarified issues I have been brooding about for 70 years.
10 July 2013
“If a citizen is ordered by a public official to participate in illegal conduct, then the ‘rule of law’ does not mean that citizen should obey the order without question. On the contrary, the ‘rule of law’ means that going along with the illegal conduct of one’s superiors, even when ordered to do so, may itself be illegal.” Right on, Tom Carter. A great response to Mr. Stone. I am a retired member of the US Air Force. While my situation was not even close to being a critical situation such as Snowden’s, I have in several situations refused to obey orders of those officers appointed over me, as these orders were illegal and potentially damaging to multimillionaire dollar equipment and potentially needlessly life-threatening. From the day I first heard Ollie North say “I was just following orders,” I have been enraged by those words, as if one is following orders those orders must come from a higher consciousness that needs to be awakened in the people and workers of the world.
8 July 2013
Just minor but important correction to your exceptional, well-written defense of the pillars of the American Revolution and the American Civil War now being “hacked” for the ruling class by specialists under the protective guard, even guidance, of formerly “progressive” intelligentsia. How quickly and shamelessly they have reshaped their thinking along a wide arc from Marxists-for-Jihad to Liberals against the Constitution. It is indeed a remarkable “unconcealment”, to use a term beloved by post-modernists.
However, it was not “fascist logic” that “the dictator is elected, therefore he represents the ‘will of the nation’” as you write. The dictator represents the will of the nation with or without elections. The fascists can use the trappings of liberal democracy as in Italy without elections. Furthermore, “The Führer is always right!” is by no means “one infamous speech”. In fact, the Organization Book of the Nazi party states categorically: “The Will of the Führer is the Law of the Party” followed by the commandment “The Führer is always right, responsible only to his conscience and the German Volk (community)…. The authority of the Führer is not limited by checks and controls, by special autonomous bodies or individual rights, but it is free and independent, all-inclusive and unlimited.”
The fact is that Hitler always claimed to personally channel the people’s unshaped and unfocused “feeling” and transmute it into that all-encompassing “will” which has reason for craftiness, but none for reasonable thought. It’s everywhere about us. We have a now-famous mayor of Toronto channeling the people’s raw feelings, which become willful behavior fascinating to rednecks and crack addicts whipped to fury by a gutter press. Elected?
Hitler had a hard time refocusing his followers to elections where they had very bad results, especially in 1928. Hitler alone was ecstatic and just barely held off the putsch attempt of his followers throughout his parliamentary maneuvering designed precisely to hold off a democratic vote at a time when their support was collapsing in 1933. What made Hitler so happy? There was a massive swing to the Communist party in 1928, while his own vote fell to almost nothing.
He just knew how “progressives” will behave when he faced the Reichstag in 1933 to announce his principle of government: “When our opponents said, ‘It is easy for you: you are a dictator,’ we answer them, ‘No, gentlemen, you are wrong; there is no single dictator, but ten thousand, each in his own place.’ And even the highest authority in the hierarchy has itself only one wish, never to transgress against the supreme authority to which it, too, is responsible.” The response of the Stalinists: like the Moslem Brothers, defiant in speech, ready to grovel.
For goodness sakes, like today’s unionists and lefties, the German CP offered to run Hitler’s labour front before he packed them off to concentration camps where today’s “progressives” may end up tomorrow when the ruling class has no further use for them.
8 July 2013
It has evidently come as a shock to the European population and in particular its youth to discover that Europe is regarded by the US elites as a colony. It has also come as a shock to the European bourgeoisie to discover that European states are incapable of protecting “their” investments in R and D or any other commercial secrets from US competitors. As a result the proposed “Free Trade” agreement between the USA and EU has taken on quite a sinister character…
10 July 2013
Somehow, I was expecting WSWS to have a good July 4th issue, and I was not disappointed. Coverage of the third day of the Gettysburg Anniversary, historically relevant photos of white and African Americans together, and very insightful comments by ordinary people who knew what was happening to them today resounded more than anything celebrity historians could have said. The interview with Dr. Guetzo was so lucid and informative. Today, the USA appears to stand at another crossroads, one where the historical significance of 1776, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights are threatened. It is good to hear the genuine support for Snowden as opposed to selective remarks by comedians on the Jay Leno Show. If it is now politically incorrect to refer to The Great Pretender as an “Uncle Tom”, today it seems more politically correct to regard him as a “Peeping Tom”—a very dangerous one for us all.
4 July 2013
Again, a strike is called off without a contract and the workers hadn’t even gotten strike pay—it reminds me of the NYC Transit strike of 2005.
Not only did the union sell out the workers again, but they did it on the workers’ own dime. Heaven forefend they should actually deplete the strike account—that would eat into capital. It’s interesting how these things get called off before they union is required to tap into funds provided by the workers themselves.
6 July 2013
A superbly written article. Well done. I’m listening to “Giorgio By Moroder” for the first time right now. I love it.
9 July 2013
I’m a Star Trek fan, and I greatly enjoyed the last two films, but I also completely agree with your perception that the idealism of the original series—one of its best features—has been long removed.
New Hampshire, USA
9 July 2013