A Chess forum. ChessBanter

If this is your first visit, be sure to check out the FAQ by clicking the link above. You may have to register before you can post: click the register link above to proceed. To start viewing messages, select the forum that you want to visit from the selection below.

Go Back   Home » ChessBanter forum » Chess Newsgroups » rec.games.chess.politics (Chess Politics)
Site Map Home Register Authors List Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read Web Partners

Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave



 
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #2  
Old July 15th 03, 05:37 AM
Nick
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave

ospam (Jerome Bibuld) wrote in message
...(to John Fernandez):
...


"'The best thing for being sad', replied Merlyn, beginning to puff
and blow, 'is to learn something. That is the only thing that never
fails. You may grow old and trembling in your anatomies, you may lie
awake at night listening to the disorder of your veins, you may miss
your only love, you may see the world about you devastated by evil
lunatics, or know your honour trampled in the sewers of baser minds.
There is only one thing for it then--to learn. Learn why the world
wags and what wags it. That is the only thing which the mind can
never exhaust, never alienate, never be tortured by, never fear or
distrust, and never dream of regretting. Learning is the thing for
you.'"
--T.H. White (The Once and Future King; Merlyn advises King Arthur)

Dear Mr. Bibuld,

I hope that you will not mind if I write something here that may
augment your knowledge of history or whet your interests in its study.

How about all the Presidents of the U. S. A. who not only countenanced, but,
often, supported slavery and the mass murders of the indigenous North
Americans. In this area, I am thinking about George Washington: the "father
of his country", who also happened to be, perhaps, the wealthiest man in the
American colonies of Great Britain and one of his time's largest holders of
slaves; I am thinking of Thomas Jefferson: the writer of "all men are created
equal" in the Declaration of Independence was a member of the slavocracy who
sold his own children;


"...He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us..."
--Thomas Jefferson (July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence)

That charge was directed at Lord Dunmore's Proclamation in 1775,
the first government offer of mass emancipation for slaves in North
American history. Lord Dunmore (nee John Murray) was the last Royal
Governor of Virginia. His proclamation offered immediate freedom to
any slave who was ready to fight loyally for 'King and Country'.
Hundreds of blacks fled their 'rebel' masters and hastened to enlist
in "Lord Dunmore's Ethiopian Regiment", which was outfitted with
uniforms bearing the motto, 'Liberty to Slaves'. Probably tens of
thousands more slaves would have joined Lord Dunmore's forces if they
had been able to escape. But smallpox decimated Lord Dunmore's ranks.

For further reading:
"Pox Americana: the Great Smallpox Epidemic of 1775-82"
by Elizabeth Fenn

"How much better to have every 160 acres settled by an able-bodied
militia man, than by purchasers with their hordes of Negroes, to
add weakness instead of strength."
--Thomas Jefferson (24 December 1807, letter to Albert Gallatin)

"Mr. Jefferson's Lost Cause: Land, Farmers, Slavery, and the
Louisiana Purchase" by Roger Kennedy (Director Emeritus of the
National Museum of American History) (2003, Oxford University Press)
strongly criticises Thomas Jefferson for permitting slavery's vast
expansion into some territories obtained by the Louisiana Purchase.

"Choices were made by those controlling the government of the
United States, and the governments of its territories and states,
determining whether or not slavery would be permitted within their
boundaries. In 1803, the Louisiana Purchase doubled the extent of
the territory conceded by the European powers to lie within the
United States; through arrangements made as part of that acquisition,
slavery was given fresh encouragement in Louisiana and permitted to
expand up the Mississippi Valley. A momentum of events began,
eventuating in 1861 in an attempted division of the Union by slave
owners, slave sellers, and those they could convince to follow their
lead. They so detested the prospect of restriction upon the continued
spread of their system of forced labor that they sought to take the
states they controlled out of the United States.

They had been threatening to do so since the 1780s. They had
raised the specter of disunion to have their way when the nation
was placed under constitutional government in 1787...From 1784
through 1804, as each new area was opened to slavery, eloquent
men and women argued that keeping people in bondage was inconsistent
with the nation's founding documents....

In a series of great papers written before 1784, he (Thomas
Jefferson) had expressed in radiant language his aversion to
slavery and his preference for a republic of free and independent
farmers, offering proposals whereby a virtuous republic might
wisely dispose of its public lands and encourage a benign labor
system on those lands. In his later years he was fully informed
of the choices being made but interposed no public objection as
his edifice of dreams was systematically reduced to rubble. He
could not escape full knowledge of the consequences for the land
itself of each decision. During his own presidency (1801-9)
great plantations worked by slaves engrossed more and more of
the choicest portions of a quarter of a continent. He was aware
of that outcome. Therefore this is a tragic story.

The tragedy was, of course, larger than the disappointment of a
single man. It was a national one: the nation as a whole had it
within its power, over and over again, to stop its decline into
civil war." (pp. 1-2)

"That contest was fought between 1861 and 1865. Many times
before that, Mr. Jefferson had asserted his principles, yet never
had he done so with sufficient vigor to arrest the descent of his
nation into the valley of the shadow. The failure of the cause
he proclaimed between 1776 and 1784 was a tragedy for him, for
the slaves and their owners, for the Indians who were thrust aside
to make way for plantations, and for the Southern land. The tragic
flaw central to this drama was Jefferson's timidity in risking
affront to those whose approval he craved. The tragedy for them
was that they had insufficient interest in the long-term health
either of society or of the land to accomodate the inconveniences
he espoused in his young manhood. When he approached the end of
his life, he offered the two alternative verdicts upon his career
set forth at the outset of this account, one carved into his
epitaph at Monticello, omitting his national public career and
designating him an author and educator, and the other in a letter
in effect summarizing the public life of his country while he was
its foremost statesman and concluding with the terrible words:

'(I) regret that I am now to die in the belief, that the useless
sacrifice of themselves by the generation of 1776, to acquire
self-government and happiness to their country, is to be thrown
away by the unwise and unworthy passions of their sons, and that
my only consolation is to be, that I live not to weep over it.'"
--Thomas Jefferson (22 April 1820, letter to John Holmes)

--Roger Kennedy (Mr. Jefferson's Lost Cause, p. 241)

Hence, toward the end of his life, Thomas Jefferson seems to have
regarded himself as an ultimate failure as a national leader and
a political architect, and to have feared that the American
experiment in self-government would fail too on account of
"the unwise and unworthy passions" of the American people.

I am thinking of Abraham Lincoln: the author of "government of the people, by
the people and for the people" "freed the slaves" in territories over which
he had NO CONTROL, but refused to support the abolition of slavery in
the "Union".


Abraham Lincoln was not the simple "Honest Abe" of legend; he
was a complex man and a pragmatic politician. Lincoln was
sincerely opposed to slavery, but, as the United States President,
he believed that his foremost priority must be to preserve the
Union. Lincoln declared that in order to preserve the Union, he
would free all, some, or none of the slaves--whichever was
necessary. For pragmatic reasons, Lincoln exempted the
slave-holding "border states" in the Union from his Emancipation
Proclamation, lest enough people in those states might object to
it and then persuade their state governments to defect to the
Confederacy. *If* Lincoln had applied his Emancipation
Proclamation to the "border states" and *if* consequently some
(or all) of them had joined the Confederacy, then it would have
become significantly more difficult, albeit still possible, for
the Union to win the Civil War.

...Truman's murder of hundreds of thousands of Japanese civilians in two
swell foops (Hiroshima and Nagasaki);


Here are some books for further reading:

"The Decision to Use the Atomic Bomb and the Architecture of
an American Myth" by Gar Alperovitz et al

"The Invasion of Japan: Alternative to the Bomb" by John Ray Skates

"Downfall: The End of the Imperial Japanese Empire" by Richard Frank

"War Without Mercy: Race and Power in the Pacific War" by John Dower

"Embracing Defeat: Japan in the Wake of World War II" by John Dower

Johnson's escalations of the invasion of Southeast Asia (Agent Orange and
depleted uranium are killing Vietnamese TODAY...


Here are some related articles from 'The Guardian':

"US used far more Dioxin in Vietnam than it admitted" (17 April 2003):
http://www.guardian.co.uk/internatio...938296,00.html

"Spectre Orange" (29 March 2003):
http://www.guardian.co.uk/weekend/st...923715,00.html

"Nearly thirty years after the Vietnam war, a chemical weapon used
by US troops is still exacting a hideous toll on each new generation.

Hong Hanh is falling to pieces. She has been poisoned by the
most toxic molecule known to science; it was sprayed during a
prolonged military campaign. The contamination persists. No
redress has been offered, no compensation. The superpower that
spread the toxin has done nothing to combat the medical and
environmental catastrophe that is overwhelming her country....

There are an estimated 650000 like Hong Hanh in Vietnam,
suffering from an array of baffling chronic conditions. Another
500000 already have died. The thread that weaves through all
their case histories is defoliants deployed by the US military
during the war....

This is a chain of events bitterly denied by the US government
.....New scientific research, however, confirms what the Vietnamese
have been claiming for years. It also portrays the US government
as one that has illicitly used weapons of mass destruction,
stymied all independent efforts to assess the impact of their
deployment, failed to acknowledge cold, hard evidence of maiming
and slaughter, and pursued a policy of evasion and deception....
Evidence also has emerged that the US government not only knew
that Agent Orange was contaminated, but was fully aware of the
killing power of its contaminant dioxin, and yet still continued
to use the herbicide in Vietnam for 10 years of the war and in
concentrations that exceeded its own guidelines by 25 times....

The evidence is categoric. Last April, a conference at Yale
University attended by the world's leading environmental
scientists, who reviewed the latest research, concluded that in
Vietnam the US had conducted *'the largest chemical warfare
campaign in history'.* And yet no money is forthcoming, no
aid in kind."

--Adrian Levy and Cathy Scott-Clark (29 March 2003, The Guardian)

While many Vietnamese men, women, and children continue to suffer
and die as a consequence of exposure to American chemical warfare
agents, the United States government has spent hundreds of millions
of dollars in its quest to retrieve at least one bone fragment
from every American serviceman still believed to be "missing in
action" from the Vietnam War.

Also, the United States government has a long, obstinate record
(as far as I know) of refusing to cooperate with Vietnam in
clearing American land mines remaining from the war. To their
credit, however, some American NGOs (non-governmental
organizations) have expressed their interest in assisting that
vital work.

"The United States and Biological Warfa Secrets from the
Early Cold War and Korea" by Stephen Endicott and Edward
Hagerman (Canadian scholars) (1998, Indiana University Press)
makes a strong case that the United States did practise
biological warfare during the Korean War.

"I remember the newspaper reports well; and entirely rejected
the thought that we were using germ warfare in Korea and over
China. Joseph Needham was the only person I knew on the
International Commission (which concluded that the United
States was guilty), and believing him to be biased toward
the Communist side...I dismissed his testimony in this
instance as another evidence of what I took to be his
unworldliness and suggestability. I say this now with
embarrassment: Needham is a great and utterly decent person
and a monumental scholar. As for the allegation that the U.S.
used germ warfare in the Korean War, I can only say with dismay
and some shame that what I dismissed as incredible then seems
altogether credible to me now."
--George Wald (15 March 1979, letter to Stephen Endicott)

George Wald was a Nobel Prize winner in biology and the head of
the Biological Laboratories at Harvard University.

Few Americans today, apart from professional historians, know
that President Kennedy did his utmost to persuade Khrushchev
to permit the United States to launch a "preemptive" first
strike (perhaps employing nuclear weapons) on China in 1963.
Its purpose would have been to destroy China's ongoing atomic
bomb programme (China's first atomic bomb would be tested in
October 1964) and, perhaps, more ambitiously, its future
technical potential to develop any nuclear weapons. But
Khrushchev would not give his consent.

"Kennedy must have been sorely disappointed at the failure
to gain Khrushchev's cooperation in stopping China's nuclear
development, and he could not resist taking some public swipes
at the Chinese. In his televised speech announcing the test
ban treaty, he referred to China several times and even used
a quote from one of Khrushchev's own diatribes against Beijing
to the effect that the Chinese Communists would 'envy the dead'
in the event of a nuclear war. In one last deliberate affront
Kennedy concluded his speech with a Chinese proverb: 'A journey
of a thousand miles must begin with a single step', he said
solemnly, referring to the goal of world peace.

William Buckley's 'National Review' condemned the Moscow treaty
as a 'diplomatic Pearl Harbor for America'. But the magazine
had it wrong: the treaty could have been the avenue for a
surprise attack on China." (p. 247)

--Gordon H. Chang (Friends and Enemies: The United States,
China, and the Soviet Union, 1948-1972; 1990, Stanford University
Press)

Gordon H. Chang (*not* to be confused with Gordon G. Chang, the
author of the speculative popular book, "The Coming Collapse of
China") is a professor of American history at Stanford University.
Gordon H. Chang's original article (which was reprinted as a
chapter in his 1990 book cited above), "JFK, China, and the Bomb"
in the "Journal of American History" (March 1988, Vol. 74, No. 4),
the professional journal of the Organization of American
Historians, won the prestigious Louis Pelzer Memorial Award
for 1987. In short, Gordon H. Chang is a highly regarded
professional American historian.

Forgive me for "lecturing" you, John, but terrorism is NOT Freedom Fighters
taking out a few citizens whose lives are based on sucking the blood of the
friends and relatives of the Freedon Fighters. Terrorism is sucking the
blood of the oppressed.


In my opinion, allusions to Dracula are unbecoming in most
serious historical discussions.

Please allow me to repeat one of Mark Twain's most important political (and
philosophical) statements: The real Reign of Terror was not the 14 months of
the Thermidor, but the 14 centuries that preceded it.


"Although the origins of that (French) revolution are complex,
once it had begun, it was rapidly linked to the lofty humanitarian
ideals of the Enlightenment, including religious tolerance, equal
justice before the law, freedom of speech, freedom of the press,
and control of the government by the governed. Most
revolutionaries were also committed to political change
through nonviolent means, 'through no other force than the
force of reason, justice, and public opinion', as one early
leader put it....

Yet despite its idealistic beginnings, the Revolution of 1789
was transformed in a period of only a few years into a veritable
'Reign of Terror'. By the summer of 1793 a totalitarian and
eminently intolerant regime had emerged that regularly employed
fear and violence as instruments of power. Searches without
warrants, arrests without indictment, the repression of free
speech: all were pursued more systematically and more efficiently
than in any previous period of French history. Justice before
the law and 'due process' were often abandoned in favor of guilt
by association. A 'law of suspects' attacked individuals on the
basis of unverified denunciation. By the summer of 1794
thousands of people had been sent to the guillotine--some of them
through travesties of the judicial system--or had been executed
summarily without trial.

Any explanation of how the liberal, humanitarian revolution
of 1789 was transformed into the Terror of 1793-94 would have
to take into account a variety of factors: the state of war
existing between France and much of Europe; the organized
efforts of dissident opponents to launch a counterrevolution;
the terrible factionalism that beset the revolutionary
leaders themselves; and the emergence of an obsessive fear of
conspiracy--real or imagined--that helped fuel the factionalism
and justify popular violence..."

--Timothy Tackett (When the King Took Flight, pp. 1-2)

"Le crime fait la honte et non pas l'echafaud."
--Pierre Corneille (Essex)

That line was quoted by Charlotte Corday in writing to her
father, shortly before she was executed (17 July 1793) for
assasinating Jean-Paul Marat.

'None are wise but they who determine to be wiser.'
--Samuel Richardson (Sir Charles Grandison)

--Nick
  #4  
Old July 15th 03, 06:33 PM
Larry Tapper
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave

"Tim Hanke" wrote in message ...
For example, I assume (without actually knowing) that "Nick" does not know
George Wald--one of "Nick's" sources quoted above--personally.

I corresponded with George Wald in the mid-1970s, and I was personally
acquainted with him by 1979, the date of "Nick's" Wald quote. By 1979, Wald
was regarded on the Harvard campus


(well, in Tim Hanke's office, at least)

--though it was then, and remains now, a
largely left-wing environment--as a quaint, even bizarre relic of the 1960s,
a hippy type with scraggly hair who wore beads and counter-culture-style
clothing and espoused extreme-left opinions. None of this invalidates Wald's
statements on biological, political, or other topics, but it does suggest a
context for his remarks.

Another noted Harvard biology professor contemporary with Wald, named
Everett Mendelson, actually went to Vietnam after the war to study the
chemical weapons issue, and concluded in his report that a substance
asserted by many to be chemical weapons residue was actually bee pollen. (I
just did a Google search for an online reference, and can't find one, so
this is from my own memory.)


Tim,

You must be referring to the controversy about "Yellow Rain" and the
Hmong tribe, still not completely resolved:

http://cns.miis.edu/pubs/week/020805.htm

The Harvard investigator was actually Matthew Meselson. The original
charge of using mycotoxins was leveled not against the U.S. but
against the Soviet Union, by Alexander Haig no less.

Larry
  #5  
Old July 15th 03, 06:54 PM
Tim Hanke
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave

"Larry Tapper" wrote ...
"Tim Hanke" wrote in message

...
For example, I assume (without actually knowing) that "Nick" does not

know
George Wald--one of "Nick's" sources quoted above--personally.

I corresponded with George Wald in the mid-1970s, and I was personally
acquainted with him by 1979, the date of "Nick's" Wald quote. By 1979,

Wald
was regarded on the Harvard campus


(well, in Tim Hanke's office, at least)


Larry,

It was not necessary to add your comment above; I assure you it was not just
my opinion that I shared in my post.

--though it was then, and remains now, a
largely left-wing environment--as a quaint, even bizarre relic of the

1960s,
a hippy type with scraggly hair who wore beads and counter-culture-style
clothing and espoused extreme-left opinions. None of this invalidates

Wald's
statements on biological, political, or other topics, but it does

suggest a
context for his remarks.

Another noted Harvard biology professor contemporary with Wald, named
Everett Mendelson, actually went to Vietnam after the war to study the
chemical weapons issue, and concluded in his report that a substance
asserted by many to be chemical weapons residue was actually bee pollen.

(I
just did a Google search for an online reference, and can't find one, so
this is from my own memory.)


Tim,

You must be referring to the controversy about "Yellow Rain" and the
Hmong tribe, still not completely resolved:

http://cns.miis.edu/pubs/week/020805.htm

The Harvard investigator was actually Matthew Meselson. The original
charge of using mycotoxins was leveled not against the U.S. but
against the Soviet Union, by Alexander Haig no less.

Larry


Good; thanks for figuring this out. It has been a long time since this topic
was current, and I confused the two Harvard professors Mendelson and
Meselson. No wonder my search on Mendelson didn't produce anything relevant.

Next you will be telling me it wasn't George Wald who wandered around the
Harvard campus looking like a senile hippie, it was Bill Weld who was later
elected Massachusetts governor on the Republican ticket.

Tim Hanke


  #6  
Old July 15th 03, 10:56 PM
Bill Brock
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave

Mike Murray wrote in message . .

---snip---


My theory: it was the carbuncles on his ass and genitalia. Imagine
Marx's agony in the days before the chess clock, in the days of
"todsitzen" and no time limits, sitting on boils and pustules in
unwashed woolen trousers. No wonder he preferred political
theorizing.


Ahem...it took Sitzfleisch to write _The German Ideology_.
  #7  
Old July 16th 03, 03:13 AM
Nick
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave

Mike Murray wrote in message
. ..(to Jerome Bibuld):
...
I am thinking of Karl Marx, who knocked up his unpaid servant woman
(while living in a two-room shack with his wife and several children),
and then refused to support the offspring. And wouldn't all our idols
look better without those clay feet?...


That may depend to the extent that one's public works can be segregated from
one's private life. Evidently, Mohandas Gandhi was deeply estranged from his
eldest son, but that unfortunate fact has not diminished Gandhi's standing in
history.

'Isaac Newton said he had seen farther by standing on the shoulders of giants,
but he did not believe it. He was born into a world of darkness, obscurity,
and magic; led a strangely pure and obsessive life, lacking parents, lovers,
and friends; quarreled bitterly with great men who crossed his path; veered
at least once to the brink of madness; cloaked his work in secrecy; and yet
discovered more of the essential core of human knowledge than anyone before
or after....He made knowledge a thing of substance: quantitative and exact.
He established principles, and they are called his laws.'
--James Gleick (Isaac Newton, p. 3)

Would Richard Wagner's music sound any better if he had not been anti-Semitic?

"The public performance of Richard Wagner's music has always been banned
informally in Israel, although his music is sometimes played on the radio
and recordings are available in Israeli shops. To many Israeli Jews, Wagner's
music--rich, extraordinarily complex, extraordinarily influential in the
musical world--has come to symbolize the horrors of German anti-Semitism.
Nevertheless, he was a unquestionably great genius when it came to the theater
and to music. He revolutionized our whole conception of opera; he totally
transformed the tonal musical system; and he contributed ten great masterpieces,
ten operas that remain among the very great summits of Western music. The
challenge he presents, not just to Israeli Jews but to everyone else, is how
to admire and perform his music on the one hand and, on the other hand, to
separate that from his odious writings and the use made of them by the Nazis.
As Daniel Barenboim has frequently pointed out, none of Wagner's operas have
any immediately anti-Semitic material in them; more bluntly, the Jews he hated
and wrote about in his pamphlets are simply not at all to be found *as Jews*
or Jewish characters in his musical works. Many critics have imputed an
anti-Semitic presence in some characters that Wagner treats with contempt and
derision in his operas: but such accusations can only be imputations of
anti-Semitism, not instances of it, although the resemblance between caricatures
of Jews that were common at the time and Beckmesser, a derisory character in
Wagner's only comic opera 'Die Meistersinger von Nurnberg' are actually quite
close. Still, Beckmesser himself is a German Christian character in the opera,
most certainly not Jewish. Clearly, Wagner made the distinctio in his own mind
between Jews in reality and Jews in his music, since he was voluble about the
former in his writing, and silent on them in the latter...." (pp. 175-6)

"In the Israeli case about Wagner and Barenboim, how many writers, musicians,
poets, painters would remain before the public if their art was judged by their
moral behavior? And who is to decide what level of ugliness and turpitude
can be tolerated in the artistic production of any given artist? For a mature
mind it should be possible to hold together in one's mind two contradictory
facts: that Wagner was a great artist, and second, that Wagner was a disgusting
human being. Unfortunately, one cannot have one fact without the other. This
is not to say that artists shouldn't be morally judged for their immorality
or evil practices; it is to say that an artist's work cannot be judged solely
on those grounds and banned accordingly." (p. 182)

--Edward Said ('Barenboim and the Wagner Taboo' from "Parallels and Paradoxes:
Explorations in Music and Society" by Daniel Barenboim and Edward Said)

Consider all the commonality between Bobby Fischer and Karl Marx....
Both were given to intemperate diatribes....


'Panslavism is now, from a creed, turned into a political programme,
with 800000 bayonets to support it.'
--Karl Marx (21 April 1855, 'Neue Oder-Zeitung', reprinted in
"The Russian Menace to Europe: a Collection of Articles etc.")

"Marx's obsessions with the dangers of Pan-Slavism filled many of his articles
at this time. Read today, they seem indistinguishable from Hitler's comparable
fears in 'Mein Kampf'--written seventy years later, but reflecting the same
dread that the 15 million Slavs subject to the Austrian emperor--or in Hitler's
day, living in the scattered remnants of the Austro-Hungarian empire--would
unite against the rest of Europe....

One aspect of Marx's thinking on the Eastern Question which has puzzled
students of his writings was his paranoid conviction that Lord Palmerston,
outwardly the most jingoistic of government ministers, and replacing Lord
Aberdeen as (British) prime minister at the darkest hour of the (Crimean) war,
was in fact a Russian spy....Marxists are coy about this fact--particularly
Russian Marxists--since for reasons which do not need to be explained it
embarrasses them that the philosopher who inspired the Russian Revolution
should have been personally violently anti-Russian."

--A.N. Wilson (The Victorians, pp. 187-8)

But here's the question. Why, with all these advantages, did not Karl
Marx become a world class Chess player? Why not Marx instead of Steinitz?


"Karl Marx Plays Chess" by GM Andrew Soltis is a collection of anecdotes
compiled from his column in "Chess Life" (the USCF magazine).

Think of the concentration camps and purges avoided, the Kulaks left alive,
the Poles left unslaughtered, the Cambodian genocide sidestepped, had Marx
been able to channel his intellect into productive tournament and match chess
instead of political gibberish.


As a general principle, most historians prefer not to address counterfactual
propositions in detail.

"(Fritz) Haber and (Albert) Einstein agreed that the economy could not be
left solely to market forces. Einstein went beyond private warnings and
public statements about militarism. Where Haber sought an authoritarian
answer, Einstein favored an antifascist coalition of Communists and Socialists.
In June 1932, in anticipation of the July election (at which the Nazis scored
their greatest victory before the assumption of power), Einstein joined
Heinrich Mann and Kaethe Kollwitz in urging a common electoral front and a
single list of candidates for Communists, Socialists, and trade unionists.
A few days before the election, a mass meeting, also supported by Einstein,
reiterated the call for what later came to be called a popular front but at
the time was a fantasy without a shred of practicality. The Communists, in
their Stalinist phase, villified all other parties, branding the Socialists as
'social fascists', as the worst betrayers of the working class; the socialists,
in turn, hated the Communists. (The conflict between the two was sealed in
the Revolution of 1918-19. The Communists blamed the murder of Rosa Luxemburg
and Karl Liebknecht in 1919 on the Socialists; posthumously they were invoked
to divide what they had meant to unite--the German working class.) In the
best of worlds, German workers and social-democratic voters from all classes
would have practiced the unity Einstein preached; in the worst of worlds, the
one in which Einstein lived, National Socialists and Communists collaborated,
as for example, in the transportation strike in Berlin in November 1932. In
one of the momentous dramatic dialectics of our century, National Socialists
and Communists killed and helped each other by turns; for decades Communists
won left-wing sympathy by default, given the brutal horror and crude
irrationalism of their opponents."
--Fritz Stern (Einstein's German World, pp. 151-2)

Karl Marx's writings do warrant critical scrutiny, and sometimes, in my view,
they may justify critical repudiation. Ad hominem attacks on Marx's private
life, however, have no bearing on the merits of his public works. Another
approach is required if one intends, as Mike Murray did, to discredit all of
Karl Marx's works as 'political gibberish'.

"Men in masses, when goaded by disappointment, are never just."
--James Fenimore Cooper (Satanstoe)

--Nick
  #8  
Old July 16th 03, 04:43 AM
Nick
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave

(Nick) wrote in message . com...
ospam (Jerome Bibuld) wrote in message
...(to John Fernandez):
...
How about all the Presidents of the U. S. A. who not only countenanced,
but, often, supported slavery and the mass murders of the indigenous North
Americans. In this area, I am thinking about George Washington: the "father
of his country", who also happened to be, perhaps, the wealthiest man in the
American colonies of Great Britain and one of his time's largest holders of
slaves; I am thinking of Thomas Jefferson: the writer of "all men are
created equal" in the Declaration of Independence was a member of the
slavocracy who sold his own children;


"...He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us..."
--Thomas Jefferson (July 4, 1776, the Declaration of Independence)

That charge was directed at Lord Dunmore's Proclamation in 1775,
the first government offer of mass emancipation for slaves in North
American history. Lord Dunmore (nee John Murray) was the last Royal
Governor of Virginia. His proclamation offered immediate freedom to
any slave who was ready to fight loyally for 'King and Country'.
Hundreds of blacks fled their 'rebel' masters and hastened to enlist
in "Lord Dunmore's Ethiopian Regiment", which was outfitted with
uniforms bearing the motto, 'Liberty to Slaves'. Probably tens of
thousands more slaves would have joined Lord Dunmore's forces if they
had been able to escape. But smallpox decimated Lord Dunmore's ranks.


"In 1775, as Royal Governor, Dunmore was commanding the Virginia militia
invading the territories of the Shawnee in the Ohio Valley when the American
Revolution was launched by the First Continental Congress. Dunmore rushed
back to Williamsburg to defend his capital against the rebels....In April 1775,
Dunmore had the colony's supply of powder removed from the Williamsburg Arsenal,
where the rebels might seize it, and put aboard a warship. Mr. Jefferson's
friends cried that without adequate powder they could *not* resist a rising of
their slaves. Dunmore responded that if their rebellion continued, 'by the
living God he would declare freedom to the slaves and reduce the city of
Williamsburg to ashes.' Many blacks rose to the implicit invitation, presenting
themselves at the governor's palace to offer their aid to Dunmore as chief of
that set of whites acting in their interest. Then Dunmore provided one of the
grievances listed in Jefferson's draft of the Declaration of Independence by
offering 'liberty to all slaves who would rise against, or escape from their
Rebel masters.'

For this emancipation proclamation, Thomas Jefferson and his colleagues blamed
not only Dunmore but also the Scots traders who rallied to his side. This set
of Scots merchants had absorbed 'the greater part of the increase in the
British tobacco trade after 1745' and had much to lose from any revolutionary
change. Along the Chesapeake as along the Gulf, it was a rare trading post
whose proprietor spoke English without a burr, and when that sound was heard
it might be assumed that the speaker shared the views of the laird of Dunmore.
Accordingly, it became a Whig habit to lump all Loyalists into 'the Scotch
Party'. Only a last-minute action by John Witherspoon persuaded the Continental
Congress to remove from Jefferson's draft of the Declaration an attack upon
the Tory merchants *specifically as Scots*."

--Roger Kennedy (Mr. Jefferson's Lost Cause, p. 130)

That shows that the Declaration of Independence should be read not only as
a testament of universal principles (in patriotic American textbooks, it tends
to be presented as an eternal civics lesson inscribed on stone tablets) but
also as a contemporary political document, which was informed and governed
by the passions of the day.

(A prominent Scots Loyalist in North Carolina was Flora MacDonald (1722-1790),
the famous Jacobite heroine who had assisted the fugitive Bonnie Prince Charlie
in his escaping the Hanoverian pursuit (which had offered a fabulous bounty of
30000 pounds for his capture) in 1746. After the war, she and her family
returned to Scotland.)

"Dunmore's successful recruitment (of blacks) became the greatest challenge
to the Southern plantation system before the American Civil War. In London,
Edmund Burke noted a movement in Parliament to promulgate 'a general
enfranchisement of slaves' while the commanders of British forces in North
America succeeded in rousing as many as a hundred thousand slaves against
the rebellious colonists. Eight hundred former slaves served in Dunmore's
British Ethiopian Regiment...Cherokees and Shawnees also joined Dunmore's
aggregate of Tories, Scots, and Negroes. They came to arms too slowly to
tip the scales against the Revolution, but the memory of their doing so at
all explains the consternation among the planters when (William Augustus)
Bowles roused a similar coalition in the later 1780s under Dunmore's
sponsorship. The Virginians had observed how the Indians 'caressing the
Negroes' in the time of Pontiac's coalition twenty years earlier had been
'productive of an insurrection'. Similar fears stirred the Carolinas when
the Cherokees and Creeks welcomed black recruits to their contest against
the Americans..."
--Roger Kennedy (Mr. Jefferson's Lost Cause, p. 131)

"The United States and Biological Warfa Secrets from the Early Cold War
and Korea" by Stephen Endicott and Edward Hagerman (Canadian scholars)
(1998, Indiana University Press) makes a strong case that the United States
did practise biological warfare during the Korean War.

"I remember the newspaper reports well; and entirely rejected
the thought that we were using germ warfare in Korea and over
China. Joseph Needham was the only person I knew on the
International Commission (which concluded that the United
States was guilty), and believing him to be biased toward
the Communist side...I dismissed his testimony in this
instance as another evidence of what I took to be his
unworldliness and suggestability. I say this now with
embarrassment: Needham is a great and utterly decent person
and a monumental scholar. As for the allegation that the U.S.
used germ warfare in the Korean War, I can only say with dismay
and some shame that what I dismissed as incredible then seems
altogether credible to me now."
--George Wald (15 March 1979, letter to Stephen Endicott)

George Wald was a Nobel Prize winner in biology and the head of
the Biological Laboratories at Harvard University.


Actually, George Wald (1906-1997) shared the 1967 Nobel Prize in
Physiology and Medicine.

--Nick
  #9  
Old July 16th 03, 07:47 AM
Mike Murray
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave

On 15 Jul 2003 19:13:40 -0700, (Nick) wrote:

I am thinking of Karl Marx, who knocked up his unpaid servant woman
(while living in a two-room shack with his wife and several children),
and then refused to support the offspring. And wouldn't all our idols
look better without those clay feet?...


That may depend to the extent that one's public works can be segregated from
one's private life.


Which itself depends on how devoutly one lives by the maxim, "do as I
say, not as I do".

Evidently, Mohandas Gandhi was deeply estranged from his
eldest son, but that unfortunate fact has not diminished Gandhi's standing in
history.


Nor have his sometimes predatory and somewhat hypocritical sexual
practices. Likewise with Jefferson's personal failings that might
blight his memory.

Would Richard Wagner's music sound any better if he had not been anti-Semitic?


It probably wouldn't have helped. But would Socrates have been
equally credible had he accepted exile?

"For a mature
mind it should be possible to hold together in one's mind two contradictory
facts: that Wagner was a great artist, and second, that Wagner was a disgusting
human being. Unfortunately, one cannot have one fact without the other. This
is not to say that artists shouldn't be morally judged for their immorality
or evil practices; it is to say that an artist's work cannot be judged solely
on those grounds and banned accordingly." (p. 182)


To segregate the art from the artist's morals is one thing. To
segregate a philosopher's ethics from his life is quite another.
Compare Fischer to Heidegger.

Think of the concentration camps and purges avoided, the Kulaks left alive,
the Poles left unslaughtered, the Cambodian genocide sidestepped, had Marx
been able to channel his intellect into productive tournament and match chess
instead of political gibberish.


As a general principle, most historians prefer not to address counterfactual
propositions in detail.


The subjective outsells the subjunctive.

Karl Marx's writings do warrant critical scrutiny, and sometimes, in my view,
they may justify critical repudiation. Ad hominem attacks on Marx's private
life, however, have no bearing on the merits of his public works. Another
approach is required if one intends, as Mike Murray did, to discredit all of
Karl Marx's works as 'political gibberish'.


When determining intent, context is everything. Marx served this
post only analogically.


  #10  
Old July 16th 03, 06:00 PM
Larry Tapper
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave

"Tim Hanke" wrote in message ...
"Larry Tapper" wrote ...
"Tim Hanke" wrote in message

...
For example, I assume (without actually knowing) that "Nick" does not

know
George Wald--one of "Nick's" sources quoted above--personally.

I corresponded with George Wald in the mid-1970s, and I was personally
acquainted with him by 1979, the date of "Nick's" Wald quote. By 1979,

Wald
was regarded on the Harvard campus


(well, in Tim Hanke's office, at least)


Larry,

It was not necessary to add your comment above;


Right: it was not necessary, but it was fun. You of all people should
appreciate this point.

I assure you it was not just
my opinion that I shared in my post.


Yes I know that --- I was there too. I think of Wald as roughly
comparable to other eccentric Nobelists who viewed themselves as
crusaders for peace and justice, e.g. Linus Pauling. In my view, the
world could do with more of them, not less.

Cheers, Larry


--though it was then, and remains now, a
largely left-wing environment--as a quaint, even bizarre relic of the

1960s,
a hippy type with scraggly hair who wore beads and counter-culture-style
clothing and espoused extreme-left opinions. None of this invalidates

Wald's
statements on biological, political, or other topics, but it does

suggest a
context for his remarks.

 




Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT +1. The time now is 10:00 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 2.4.0
Copyright 2004-2017 ChessBanter.
The comments are property of their posters.