http://www.one.org
~ iNViTaTioN

Pfaff/American Fascism

Via my good friend Richard…




American Fascism


Sinclair Lewis
Paris, April 21, 2009 – In 1935, Sinclair Lewis, author of “Babbit” and the first American writer to be awarded the Nobel Prize, published a novel entitled “It Can’t Happen Here.”

It was written to influence the 1936 presidential election. The enormously popular ex-governor of Louisiana, Senator Huey Long, “the Kingfish,” who campaigned to “Share the Wealth” with the people, was widely thought a threat to the reelection to a second term of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

The Lewis novel foresaw someone like Huey Long winning the presidency and installing an American counterpart to the fascist dictatorships already in power in Italy and Germany. Lewis was much influenced by his second wife, Dorothy Thompson, who was one of the most important syndicated political columnists of the 1930s, greatly concerned about the possibility of populist dictatorship crossing the Atlantic.

Long was not a fascist, although he could have become a dictator. His support was from the poor. Rightist and white-supremicist forces actually formed an armed militia to oppose him, but he was killed by an assassin, presumably with a family grievance against him, in 1935.

The man who actually opposed Roosevelt in 1936 was the Republican Alf Landon of Kansas, a moderate politician, who was defeated by Roosevelt in the greatest presidential landslide in American history. F.D.R. in 1936 carried all but eight electoral votes. Sinclair Lewis’s fears had been misplaced; “it” didn’t happen here.

In 2004, Philip Roth wrote another novel, this one about the supposed arrival of an anti-semitic and fascist president in the United States. This would have been in 1940, in the supposed person of the aviator, American anti-war nationalist and isolationist, Charles A. Lindbergh. Roosevelt’s actual opponent in 1940 was the businessman Wendell Wilkie, whom he comfortably defeated with 54.7% of the popular vote.

Lindbergh never retracted his opposition to U.S. entry into the European war, and following Pearl Harbor Roosevelt refused ex-Colonel Lindbergh’s effort to rejoin the military. Lindbergh therefore found experimental and consultant work in the aviation industry, helped develop the Vought Corsair, the only American fighter in the Pacific war superior to the Japanese Zero, and despite remaining a civilian, flew 36 combat missions in the Pacific. Once again, “It” had not happened in the United States.

Poster for the stage adaptation of It Can't Happen Here, Oct. 27, 1936 at the Lafayette Theater as part of the Detroit Federal Theater
When “It” did happen was in 2001-2008, in the Bush administration.

There was a takeover of the government by a self-willed executive power, unprecedented in American history. The president and vice president acted on a novel and legally unsupported claim to unlimited “wartime” presidential and executive-branch power. The justification was an illegal, undeclared war.

International law and American treaty obligations were defied, as were established American law on the conduct of war and the treatment of prisoners, constitutional protections, and the surveillance of citizens.

All of this occurred without meeting serious, or at least successful, Congressional or judicial challenge, with little or no objection from the national press, and all but unanimous support from the national audiovisual media. One needn’t go through all that again.

There were unsuccessful efforts by individuals inside and outside the government to overturn this state of affairs, but in two congressional elections, and in the presidential election of 2004, the electorate endorsed all that had been done. “It,” which Sinclair Lewis and Philip Roth had both warned against, proved in fact to be very popular. At least this was so until 2008, when the practical and political consequences of this abandonment of law and history finally alienated the electorate.

That is all familiar. What concerns me in this article is something else. It is the fact that the mass of agents and officials of the government, and the vast majority of the population, passively accepted what was done, and even today disputes whether anyone should be held accountable.

President Obama’s unwillingness to see his first term dominated by the crimes of the Bush administration is comprehensible.

Yet there is a limit. The latest case of the human moral vacuum created and encouraged during the Bush years is so outrageous, perverse, sadistic and nihilistic that it demands attention, for all that it tells us about the rest that has happened. I speak of the ordered, authorized, and conscientiously supervised water-boarding of two prisoners 266 times.

The men who authorized, ordered, and performed such acts should be hanged. It is as simple as that.

It then would be possible to face the future with a response to Can It Happen Here.

Nuisible !

Via mon informateur de haut niveau irlando-palois…

Parmi ces quatre rapaces se cache un nuisible - reconnaissez-le ! [Grand Duc / Moyen Duc / Petit Duc / TrouDuc (sarkozy)]

Shrub is gifted (new but not very interesting)…

This, from my friend Richard. Very late, but still worth reading and, well, laughing, since the alternative is crying.



Shrub’s brilliant plan:

1) I create a structure of malfeasance and place all my buddies’ rotten assets in it.

2) It’s the U.S. taxpayers (not my buddies) who will pay the approx. trillion dollars in the years to come.

3) If Obama squeaks by*, he’ll inherit the problem and the Republikans will win the next election.


No indictments, no jail, no impeachment.

* Not a sure thing, by any stretch...

Expulsion de la famille Abrahamian

La famille Abrahamian, en France depuis 2005 et dont un des enfants est scolarisé à l'école Gaston Phœbus à Pau a été arrêtée lundi 26 janvier 2009 dans l’après-midi.

Amenée au Centre de Rétention de Cornebarieu (Toulouse) dans la nuit.

Et expulsée vers l'Arménie au petit matin aujourd'hui (mercredi 28 janvier 2009), sans même passer devant le Juge des Libertés et de la Détention et encore une fois dans des conditions déplorables.

Vous le saviez, ça ?

Au fait savais-tu qu'en Breton, Sarkozy peut s'écrire " Sac'h koz zi ", ce qui veut dire " vieille couille de chien " ?

Étonnant, non?

Plus pour plus ?

Encore un billet de haute tenue de polecat hunter.




On peut aussi travailler plus pour gagner moins… Notre génération est, je pense, moins bien lotie que les précédentes. Et les retraités sont la matrice de la révolution néo-conservatrice qui est à l’œuvre.

En fait, je trouve que ce début de siècle a vu naître une nouvelle figure : celle du rentier sarkozyste. À l'inverse de son aîné le banquier anarchiste, ce capitaliste dépeint par Fernando Pessoa, qui rêvait de révolution sociale, notre personnage doit tout à l'École Républicaine et à l'État Providence;

Militant communiste à 20 ans, socialiste à 35, il est au centre à 50 avant de passer l'arme à droite à 60. Fonctionnaire à la retraite, il milite pour la libre entreprise, la mondialisation et la concurrence en fréquentant Le Figaro. Il évoque le manque de prise de risque et la tendance des français à trop compter sur l'État, lui qui est assis sur une pension confortable.

Nourri désormais aux textes de Tocqueville et à la revue Commentaire, lui qui lisait Marx et L'Humanité, il ne voit rien à redire à ce qu'une rente rapporte plus que du travail, vu qu'il a cotisé dit-t-il. Sarkozy est son champion et s'il imposait le travail gratuit et obligatoire tout en augmentant les pensions, il trouverait bien dans son patois économique quelque argument keynesien pour le justifier…

Au fond, vive le réchauffement climatique, le Docteur Pelloux a été viré et une bonne canicule pourrait faire le ménage.

Un pélican laminé par un blaireau…

Eh non, malgré le titre, ne croyez pas que j’exhume une fable perdue de La Fontaine, il s’agit d’un billet d’humeur d’un contributeur.

Je ne publie malheureusement qu’avec retard cette correspondance reçue de polecat hunter, car par manque de temps, il n’a pas pu me donner son accord de publication avant. Du coup, le billet perd de son à propos chronologique, mais n’en reste pas moins pertinent sur le fond.

(…)

Je vais te répondre plus amplement plus tard. Je voulais simplement te faire part de mon désarroi devant l'échec de mon mentor à la présidence du Sénat, le phoenix du Haut Poitou en personne, dit Le Blaireau, laminé par Gérard Larcher dit Le Pélican en raison d'un goitre qui pourrait tenir au chaud un bon kilo de sardines et autres bêtes à nageoires.

J'espère que cet échec ne s'explique par le simple fait qu'il a été probablement le premier ministre le plus minable de la Vème république. Car celui qui a tenté de recentrer les exportations françaises sur les produits qui ont fait notre gloire, je parle évidemment de la baguette, sera peut-être vu un jour comme un visionnaire incompris.

(…)