Friday, December 07, 2018

right truths to slay the enemy, snippets from a Olavo de Carvalho's interview & THE OTHER SIDE








LHOOQ (potlatch invitation, for more see here);
Slavoj Zizek's interview (Alex Miller/Vice);
Bonna Petit!! &/ou Helena Inez Transcendental;
L'évangile d'après Salò;
Noam Chomsky, History of US Rule in Latin America, Massachusetts Institute of Technology/ Dec 2009 [see transcription below];
Janaina Pascoal & Marcelo Freixo (a lesson in Nietzschean psychology);
Mangabeira Unger's definition of Brazilian Workers Party (PT) governments as a kind of national-consumerism in which only consumption was democratized, with a backsliding on the quality of Brazilian production  (regressing to the exportation of cheap commodities like soy), and no real transformation and upgrading in educational areas (he also criticises the dependence of other Brazilian governments on foreign capital, defending, however, the necessity of fiscal balance);

"I don't care what people think as long as they have thought for themselves. So if you end up a Republican, right wing, it's okay with me, as long you have done it having had a gourmet, a connoisseur's selection of all the options. As long as you haven't done it out of fear or laziness."
Timothy Leary
"La transgression suppose l'ordre existant, le maintien apparent des normes au bénéfice d'une accumulation d'énergie qui rend la transgression nécessaire... La perversion (l'insubordination des fonctions de vivre) par des actes qu'elle inspire (notamment l'acte sodomite) ne tire sa valeur transgressive que de la permanence des normes (telle la différenciation normative des sexes)."
Pierre Klossowski (Le Philosophe Scélérat)
"What's great about this country is that... President drinks Coke, Liz Taylor drinks Coke... A Coke is a Coke and no money can get you a better Coke than the one the bum on the corner is drinking... when Queen Elizabeth came here and President Eisenhower bought her a hot dog I'm sure he felt confident that she couldn't have had delivered to Buckingham Palace a better hot dog than that one he bought her for maybe twenty cents at the ballpark... Sometimes you fantasize that people who are really up-there and rich and living it up have something you don't have, that their things must be better than your things because they have more money than you. But they drink the same Cokes and eat the same hot dogs and wear the same ILGWU clothes and see the same TV shows... All this is really American. The idea of America is so wonderful because the more equal something is, the more American it is... a lot of places give you special treatment when you're famous, but that's not really American."
Andy Warhol
"O Brasil hoje é melhor do que seria se nós — o outro lado — os tivéssemos derrotado. Mas não eram necessários tantos crimes bárbaros, tanta violência, tanta tortura, tanta gente morta... Do nosso lado muitos tiram proveito pessoal ainda hoje, de maneira absurda, se promovendo."
Marcelo Netto (Memórias de uma guerra suja)

Even if he was mad... truth is hidden in madness, plain sight, and also irony (who's irony? one might ask):
(1) "como disse aquele idiota do Mino Carta, “ano passado o comércio com a China nos deu 20 milhões de superávit”, muito bem. A China só fez isso porque o governo Lula e Dilma e o Temer também estavam distribuindo dinheiro para os amigos deles, os amigos da China: Cuba, Angola, Venezuela, etc: 1 trilhão. Levamos 20 milhões e distribuímos 1 trilhão. Que beleza, né?"
(2) "Essa coisa anti-americana pueril é coisa de estudantezinho comunista de 1950, naquele tempo havia um livrinho que os comunistas distribuíam, a Editora Brasiliense, que é comunista para caramba, chamado “um dia na vida do Brasilino” e tudo o que ele consumia era americano. Só que se você retirasse todos aqueles produtos, o Brasilino retornaria à Idade da Pedra."
(3) "Você conhece um tal de Dicionário Crítico do Pensamento de Direita? Eu escrevi um artigo a respeito. Os caras se propõem a apresentar um pensamento da direita. Quando você vai ler o dicionário, todos os pensadores importantes da direita estão ausentes e no lugar deles colocaram meia dúzia de nazistas absolutamente alucinados. Eles escondem as ideias do adversário e ainda colocam falsificação no lugar delas. É uma obra coletiva feita por 104 professores universitários subsidiados com dinheiro público. Para mim, todos esses são estelionatários."
(4) "O PT dirige, dirigiu durante anos, o Foro de São Paulo, em parceria com as Farc, que são organizações criminosas, que inoculam 200 toneladas de cocaína por ano no Brasil. E estavam os dois lá de mãozinhas dadas dirigindo o Foro de São Paulo, que é a coordenação estratégica da esquerda no continente, e a mídia apoiando e acobertando e escondendo a existência do Foro de São Paulo. Durante 16 anos todos – Estadão, Folha, Globo, Veja – esconderam a existência do Foro de São Paulo."
(5) "... seria preciso levantar todas as teses levantadas na área de filosofia e ciências humanas, em todas as universidades, nos últimos 40 anos, e você vai ver a onipresença de autores marxistas ou influenciados pelo Marx. E só. Não tem mais nada. É só isso que tem. Então você tem o discurso monopolístico sendo repassado tese em cima de tese. Isso dá para provar quantitativamente... Pior ainda, é possível provar que o número de analfabetos funcionais produzindo teses universitárias e sendo aprovados têm aumentado ao longo dos anos. Eu mesmo tenho alguns exemplos, pego de vez em quando uma tese para examinar e mostro “o autor é analfabeto funcional por isso, por isso e por isso, não poderia ter recebido jamais o seu certificado universitário”. E está lá o rapaz fazendo propagandinha comunista e sendo aprovado."
(6) "As opiniões políticas que um filósofo tenha em razão dos acontecimentos do dia devem ser interpretados em função dos princípios mais permanentes de sua filosofia. Isso é uma regra universal. Se você não conhece princípios do existencialismo, você não vai poder entender o que o Jean Paul Sartre está falando sobre aquilo que aconteceu. Agora, todo mundo vem me entrevistar e não quer saber, não leu meus livros, não sabe o que eu penso, inventam um Olavo de Carvalho que é a imagem do que eles chamam da direita e raciocinam a partir daí. Estão conversando com o estereótipo que eles mesmos inventaram. Não se manda uma pessoa sem preparo filosófico para entrevistar um filósofo, um repórter sem cultura literária entrevistar um escritor."
(7) "Eu não sei onde se alinha com o pensamento do governo. Eu realmente não sei. Eu sei o seguinte: parece que o Bolsonaro e os filhos dele leram algo do que eu escrevi e concordaram. Não sei até onde e o quanto eles leram, mas são pessoas de boa vontade para comigo e me tratam muito bem. Isso é tudo o que eu sei. São pessoas pelas quais tenho simpatia pessoal. Não há um acordo ideológico, não houve um diálogo ideológico nenhum. Aliás, se pensar, qual é a minha ideologia? Eu não tenho nenhuma. Eu tenho ciência política."
***see Olavo de Carvalho's full interview here:
- "Já gastei o meu estoque de ministros" (Beatriz Bulla, Estadão);

Also, from a recent book:
"Finalmente, diante de um Eichmann, a própria psicopatologia encontra seu limite: não há doença que explique a rotinização burocrática da monstruosidade" (O futuro do pensamento brasileiro, 4a edição, Vide Editorial, 2016, p. 26).
"O Duque de Caxias anteviu que, se prosseguíssemos a guerra do Paraguai após a tomada de Asunción, acabaríamos nos tornando genocidas e o Império se desmoralizaria completamente. Quando a guerra terminou, 95% da população masculina do Paraguai tinham morrido, e o Império brasileiro começava sua dolorosa jornada para o fundo do poço..." (p. 30).
"Carpeaux, por escandaloso que isto seja, nunca lecionou, nunca teve a cátedra universitária que merecia, embora chegasse a ser diretor de duas bibliotecas universitárias. O melhor emprego que obteve no Brasil foi o de redator do Correio da Manhã..." (p. 167).
"... continua meticulosamente escondido da opinião pública que o general Franco subiu ao poder com o apoio das comunidades judaicas de Tanger e de Valência, que ele jamais fez uma concessão sequer a Hitler em troca dos armamentos recebidos da Alemanha por ocasião da Revolução, e que o governo franquista salvou das garras do nazismo mais de 50 mil judeus..." (190).
"Uma das primeiras providências tomadas pelo marechal Castelo Branco após assumir o poder foi desmontar meticulosamente os movimentos de direita paramilitares — estes, sim, fascistas no sentido rigoroso do termo — contra os quis já advertira em seu discurso como chefe do Estado-Maior do Exército em 1963, e que reuniam, àquela altura, pelo menos vinte mil homens muito bem armados com metralhadoras, bazucas e até helicópteros, e prontos para desencadear uma matança de comunistas" (p. 198, n. 87).

***and here, for an insightful analysis of Olavo de Carvalho's place in Brazilian cultural wars:
"Evidentemente, a questão da alternância de poder é legítima, e acho saudável que o Olavão coloque a discussão nesses termos. Verdade seja dita, o Olavão não vai se alinhar com discursos antidemocráticos ou totalitários, não obstante o número de viúvas e viúvos de regimes autoritários que admiram o Olavão. Acho injusto condenar o Olavo por associação com esse ou aquele filhote, ou exigir dele mais coerência do que exigimos de nossos pares vinculados à esquerda histórica e que várias vezes falam barbaridades sobre figuras do calibre do Fidel Castro ou do Maduro, apenas para ficar em dois exemplos" Fabrício Pontin, IHU;
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The other side (of the mule):


"... l'insécurité du territoire est portée à son comble et la souveraineté territoriale de l'État de droit des nations risque de s'effacer à jamais devant la menace hypercolonialiste de fonds souverains accaparant le sol, tous les sols et leurs ressources... cet espace virtuel des marchés financiers interconnectés, le flash trading des traders de haute fréquence jouant ici, tous les jours, le sort du monde à la roulette d'une guerre éclair dont l'armement est celui de systèmes cybernétiques de très haute volée..."
"... une économie politique tyrannique... l'administration de la peur publique se déplaçant du champ de bataille du passé en direction du marché, autrement dit d'une vie quotidienne bientôt rendue impossible..."
Paul Virilio (Le Grand Accélérateur)

***on the other hand, it is true that Brazilian rightwing intellectuals (and I don't believe there is much difference in relation to North America) are not only reactive & regressive, but sometimes aggressive &/or outrightly destructive; they are frequently dishonest, and behind their "liberal" facade lurks unabashedly the most vicious abusive kind of authoritarianism:
'Unqualified, dangerous': the oddball officials running Bolsonaro's Brazil (The Guardian);
- Jovem Pan e Record Protegem Apresentador 'Sem Mimimi' (The Intercept);
- PM e ex-PM são presos pelo assassinato de Marielle Franco (O Globo);
- Crise de candidatos laranja se agrava, fecha cerco a PSL e complica Bolsonaro (El Pais);
- Milícia no Rio de Janeiro: como é a vida em Rio das Pedras (BBC);
- Flávio Bolsonaro: entenda as suspeitas e o que o senador eleito diz sobre elas (BBC);
- Como Flávio Bolsonaro ocupou um cargo na Câmara dos Deputados (BBC);
- The Corruption Cabinet: Jair Bolsoaro Promised to end corruption in Brazil (The Intercept);
- "Brazil classrooms become a battleground in a culture war" (The Economist);


***below you find an interesting and critical dissertation about the Mises Institute in Brazil; it is written from a more traditional and academic "marxist" perspective; one should be very careful here, because, INDEED, generally speaking, these academics frequently also flirt with outright antidemocratic tendencies; they rarely show any explicit awareness of the very serious dangers of the totalitarian tendencies of the left; and perhaps because of Brazil's huge real shameful problems of inequality, they tend to display an inconsequential contempt for notions such as private property (whose unequivocal importance was demonstrated, one should note, by people like Hannah Arendt, who distinguished it from the mere accumulation of wealth, The Human Condition, 2nd Ed., The Univ. of Chicago Press, 1998, p. 66-67); the dissertation fairly exposes, on the other hand, the sometimes totally demential mix of naivety and amateurish frivolousness of the material that goes publicized as "scientific" by "think & stink tanks" in Brazil (they madly reproduce the many oversimplifications one can already find in the rather flawed works of professional academic pamphleteers such as Hans-Hermann Hoppe and Lew Rockwell):
Instituto Ludwig von Mises Brasil: Os arautos do anarcocapitalismo, Raphael Almeida Dal Pai (Unioeste, PPG História, Marechal Cândido Rondon, 2017);

***that the international far-right is either totally DEMENTIAL or blatantly OPPORTUNISTIC can be inferred from Steve Bannon's recent statement that Bolsonaro is "an incredibly charismatic man, embodying very strong intellectual and practical capabilities" ("Steve Bannon: governo Bolsonaro precisa de 'uma só voz' e Mourão se tornou 'dissonante'"/BBC);
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Light at the end of the tunnel &/or a more equitable perspective:


"I would side with Foucault and argue that to understand the neoliberal project, including its epistemology, its economic and political rationalities, its thresholds, and potential points of instability and disturbance, it is necessary to do so historically, and to do so by understanding the conditions of its emergence and then the lines of descent that developed subsequently. This type of approach will not appeal to everyone, particularly to those who want (or wanted) to think about the recent crisis as a point of rupture that contained the promise of a decisive break from the past. Instead, for me, history is a resource for thinking critically about the present, rather than a distraction from the politics of the ‘now’. The challenge is to think about the new or neo– in terms of its continuities as well as the discontinuities that signal the emergence of a qualitatively different situation. History is a reminder that the epistemological and political basis of neoliberalism, as well as its organization through think-tanks that connected figures such as Hayek to front-bench politics, was forged out of a long struggle against classical liberal ideas, on the one hand, and leftist ideas (including those of Saint-Simon, Marx and Mill) on the other," Nicolas Gane's "Thinking Historically About Neoliberalism: Nick Gane's response to Will Davies" (Theory, Culture & Society, May 28, 2014);

*****Rupert Sheldrake on holism, religion and politics:
"Hegel's “dialectic” had it that a thesis would be opposed by an antithesis, which would then result in a new, higher-level synthesis, which included both of the previous steps within a larger whole. Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels applied these principles to matter, and argued in terms of the appearance of new higher-level wholes through a process that would now be called “emergence.” There was therefore a holistic aspect to Marxist materialism that Western reductive materialism lacked, and I think this played a part in the thinking of Richard Lewontin and Stephen Jay Gould, both of whom were influenced by Marxism. In the present context, mapping holism onto politics is not a straightforward matter. The political categories in Europe and the U.S. are completely different. The religious right does not really exist as a phenomenon in Europe. Partly, this is because religion is much weaker in most parts of Europe than in the United States, and also because, at least in Britain, socialist movements have had a strong religious influence," Rupert Sheldrake's interview (TBS);

see also:
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Just as Important


I would usually dismiss much of the narrative of Chomsky's video [see Youtube video above] as unreliable conspiracy theory; but since totally incredible things such as Trump, Brexit & Bolsonaro indeed turned up as totally REAL, what would be fair to believe in?! at least Chomsky gives a clear narrative from the opposite side of what has now "succeeded"; what he says about the so-called War on Drugs reminds me of Burroughs and seems particularly important: 
"... you have to really ask yourself whether controlling coca production has anything to do with the purpose of all of this... for decades the United States has been fighting what is called the drug war, to try to get rid of the opium production... it has essentially no effect on opium production, but it has had other effects, perfectly predictable effects... in the United States it is a technique for reintroducing slavery.... black life was criminalised and you had a new slave class... for a couple of decades after the Second World War, there was a substantial economic growth, industrial growth, so black men could get job as other workers and start moving into a relatively decent life... well, but by the 70s that essentially was over... the economy moves towards financialization, towards the elimination of industrial production, the neoliberal policies were introduced, you got this huge superficial population again... what do you do with them? throw up them into jail... and in fact that is exactly what happened; so the consequences of the drug war here was primarily, domestically to reincarcerate a large part of the black population, and also Hispanic population... and in fact they are again factory labour, they are cheap and easy exploitable labour... it is called voluntary, but when you are in jail voluntary has a special meaning... and you know when people complain about say... Guantanamo, it is all kind of a little ironic, because American prisons aren't that much different, they are torture chambers, it is a horrible system... and there were other consequences: it is a way of frightening the rest of the population here, imposing what is called law & order; so if you want to frighten and control the population, they have to be afraid of something; and they can be afraid of, you know, Hispanic narcotraffickers that are trying to destroy us and that sort of thing... the fact that it consistently fails in its alleged purpose, namely, reducing drug use, or even availability of drugs, doesn't matter, because it is succeeding in its actual purpose... in fact three, quite conservative, Latin American ex-presidents, Zedillo, Cardoso and Gaviria... put out a study which calls for just the elimination of the drug war, they said it's got nothing to do with controlling drugs..." (Noam Chomsky, History of US Rule in Latin America, Massachusetts Institute of Technology/ Dec 2009);
Chomsky also talks about the importance of North-American Christian protection groups not only in Central America but around the world: 
"... a very substantial mass movement developed, of solidarity, which was something totally new in the history of imperialism... I mean thousands, probably ten of thousands of people, many from church groups, many from evangelical groups went down to Central America to live with people in very dangerous situations to help them and just to give them some protection by the presence of a white face... that never happened in the whole history of imperialism... like nobody from France ever went to live in an Algerian village to protect people, in Vietnam, no one ever thought of it... it turned into a major mass movement... I remember going to Kansas, to rural Kansas, where people know more about Central America than everybody around here... certainly more than the CIA (but that is not much of a compliment)... a lot of them stayed... specially the evangelicals... and out of there grew other movements like Witness for Peace and Christian protection groups which are all over the world, and they do very important things... they are in the Middle East, they are in Asia..." (Noam Chomsky, History of US Rule in Latin America, Massachusetts Institute of Technology/ Dec 2009);

*****Pseudoerasmus on Chilean economy under Allende:
"... the Allende government cranked up the printing press. Almost the entire budget deficit was financed by money creation.
The largest single factor in the deterioration of public finances as of 1971 was clearly the higher spending on wages and benefits. This was a deliberate part of the populist programme of the Allende government to achieve income redistribution by raising nominal wages while freezing or even reducing menu prices."
"... By 1973, the single biggest factor behind public sector deficits was the subsidy to state-owned enterprises other than copper. The Chilean government had, de jure or de facto, nationalised large portions of the private economy..." Pseudoerasmus, "Did the 'Invisible Blockade' against Allende's Chille worked?";

*****Philip Goff on taxation:
"Outside of academia, almost everyone assumes that the money I get in my pay-packet before the deduction of taxes is, in some morally significant sense, ‘mine’. This assumption, although almost universal, is demonstrably confused. There is no serious political theory according to which my pre-tax income is ‘mine’ in any morally significant sense. Moreover, this matters: this confused assumption is a major stumbling block to economic reform, causes low and middle earners to vote against their economic interests, and renders it practically impossible to correct the economic injustices that pervade the modern world..."
"... Left libertarianism will certainly rule out some forms of taxation as immoral. If I have acquired land or natural resources in a way that is consistent with the equal moral claim of others, and by my own labour increase the value of those resources, it is wrong for the state to tax that wealth away from me. But Left-libertarian theories leave considerable latitude for the state to alter the distribution of wealth, perhaps through taxation, if some take more than their fair share of natural resources. Crucially, the claims of future generations must also be taken into account, leading naturally to an inheritance tax (or at least restrictions on the right to bequeath) to ensure that each future individual has a fair share of natural resources..."
"... On the Right-wing libertarian view, it is perfectly morally acceptable for one person to claim a vastly unequal proportion of land and resources for himself, resulting in his propertyless neighbours being forced to work for him to avoid starvation. By what right can the natural world be appropriated in this way? It is one thing to say that one has exclusive natural rights over oneself, but how can we justify exclusive natural rights over the natural world?" Philip Goff, "Is taxation theft?" (Aeon);

***Ultimate piece on Snowden and his ring (written by a woman):
"[In five years since Edward Snowden’s revelations about NSA surveillance], we’ve learned much more about how Big Tech was not only sharing data with the NSA but collecting vast troves of information about us for its own purposes. And we’ve started to see the strategic ends to which Big Data can be put. In that sense, we’re only beginning to comprehend the full significance of Snowden’s disclosures... This is not to say that we know more today about Snowden’s motivations or aims than we did in 2013. The question of whether or not Snowden was a Russian asset all along has been raised and debated... [NSA's PRISM, whose documents were leaked by Snowden and disclosed by Glenn Greenwald and Barton Gellman] secured cooperation between the Internet companies and the NSA at the point when an individual suspected of involvement in terrorism had been targeted and the NSA wished to retrieve that suspect’s messages from the companies’ servers. Many Americans will still feel that this program constituted an unwarranted breach of privacy, but what PRISM does not do is vindicate the idea of a “deep state” operating entirely independently of the rule of law. Although this might seem like a fine distinction to some, it is an extremely significant one. But the narrative of deep-state lawlessness was too appealing... Assange’s allies, Milne included, have made clear that their allegiance doesn’t lie with liberal democracies and their values. They have taken sides with authoritarianism in their fight against the hypocrisy of liberal democracies... Assange, a former libertarian, has called Russia under Putin “a bulwark against Western imperialism”... For his part, Greenwald has repeatedly, in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary, decried as Russophobia the findings that Putin ordered interference in the 2016 US presidential election—even appearing on Fox News to do so. The very term “Russophobia” obfuscates the distinction between Vladimir Putin’s regime and Russia; the two clearly can’t be identified with one another... The distinction between left and right, he argues, will increasingly be replaced by the opposition between people who are pro-establishment and anti-establishment. But being anti-establishment is not a politics. It defends no clear set of values or principles. And it permits prevarication about the essential choice between criticizing and helping to reform liberal democracy from within or assisting in its demise. It encourages its partisans to take sides with a smaller, authoritarian state in order to check the power of the one whose establishment it opposes... In their book Red Web: The Kremlin’s War on the Internet, the Russian investigative journalists Andrei Soldatov and Irina Borogan recounted the experiences of human rights activists who were summoned via an email purportedly from Snowden himself, to a meeting with him at Moscow airport when he surfaced there with Sarah Harrison, to find they were joining the heads of various pro-Kremlin “human rights” groups, Vladimir Lukin, the Putin-appointed Human Rights Commissioner of Russia, and the lawyers Anatoly Kucherena and Henri Reznik. It was clear to the independent activists that Kucherena had organized the meeting... So whether we trust [Snowden] matters. It matters whether we view him as a bad actor, or as a well-intentioned whistleblower who has shown bad judgment, or as someone who has allowed himself to become an unwitting pawn of the Russians... In a 2016 lecture by video-link at Fusion’s Real Future Fair, Snowden discouraged his audience from pursuing the legal and political remedies that liberal democracies offer... If there’s one thing Greenwald, Assange, and their followers got right, it’s that the United States became a tremendous economic and military power over the last seven decades. When it blunders in its foreign or domestic policy, the US has the capacity to do swift and unparalleled damage. The question then is whether this awesome power is better wielded by a liberal-democratic state in an arguably hypocritical way but with some restraint, or by an authoritarian one in a nakedly avowed way and with no restraint. In the five years since Snowden’s revelations, we have seen changes, particularly the election of Donald Trump with his undisguised admiration for strongmen, that compel us to imagine a possible authoritarian future for the United States," "Edward Snowden Reconsidered" (Tamsin Shaw, The New York Review of Books, 09/13/2018);

***What should have been the ultimate piece on Glenn Greenwald (& still much more on Assange): 
"What’s astonishing about their ascent to heroism is the breadth of their support. The embrace of the antiwar left and the libertarian right was to be expected. But effusions of praise for the leakers can also be found throughout the liberal establishment... Contrary to [Snowden's] claims, he seems to have become an anti-secrecy activist only after the White House was won by a liberal Democrat who, in most ways, represented everything that a right-wing Ron Paul admirer would have detested... In several cases over a five-year span, Greenwald represented Matthew Hale, the head of the Illinois-based white-supremacist World Church of the Creator, which attracted a small core of violently inclined adherents... Greenwald’s other clients included the neo-Nazi National Alliance, who were implicated in an especially horrible crime. Two white supremacists on Long Island had picked up a pair of unsuspecting Mexican day laborers, lured them into an abandoned warehouse, and then clubbed them with a crowbar and stabbed them repeatedly. The day laborers managed to escape, and when they recovered from their injuries, they sued the National Alliance and other hate groups, alleging that they had inspired the attackers. Greenwald described the suit as a dangerous attempt to suppress free speech by making holders of “unconventional” views liable for the actions of others... most of [Greenwald's] writings, his critique of America abroad was congenial both to the isolationist paleo-Right and to post–New Left anti-imperialists... Along those lines, Greenwald found common ground with the upper echelons of right-wing free-market libertarianism... When bloggers confronted Greenwald about his associations with libertarians, the darling of the netroots and MSNBC left angrily batted the claims away as distortions. He need not have reacted so forcefully. Accused of working for Cato, for example, he might simply have said that he believed in addressing any organization that wanted to hear from him and left it at that. Instead, Greenwald attacked his critics as “McCarthyite” purveyors of “falsehoods, fabrications, and lies”... In 2010, Greenwald began attacking the Obama administration from the left on a variety of domestic issues, attacking Wall Street corruption, opposing cuts to Social Security and Medicare, and decrying inequality. Yet even as he insisted on his left liberalism, he remained a steadfast promoter of Ron Paul—“far and away the most anti-war, anti-Surveillance-State, anti-crony-capitalism, and anti-drug-war presidential candidate in either party.” (After Paul’s son, then senatorial candidate Rand Paul, questioned the Civil Rights Act, Greenwald agreed with criticism that the remark was “wacky,” but insisted that the real “crazies” in American politics were mainstream Democrats and Republicans.)... During his political pilgrimage, Greenwald became consumed: For him, the national security apparatus is not just an important issue; it is the great burning issue of our time... In the wake of the WikiLeaks frenzy, Assange often tried to clarify where he stood politically. His simultaneous embrace of leftist icons such as Noam Chomsky and right-wing libertarians seemed to indicate that he was open to ideas from either end of the political spectrum, so long as they were directed against authoritarianism. Finally, in 2013, Assange proclaimed, “The only hope as far as electoral politics presently ... is the libertarian section of the Republican Party”... Yet even that declaration was misleading. In practice, Assange has a history of working closely with forces far more radical than the Republican Liberty Caucus. Late in 2012, Assange announced the formation of the WikiLeaks Party in Australia. It had been expected that WikiLeaks would ultimately throw its support to the Green Party—especially after the party’s National Council voted in favor of such a move. Instead, WikiLeaks aligned with a collection of far-right parties. One was the nativist Australia First, whose most prominent figure was a former neo-Nazi previously convicted of coordinating a shotgun attack on the home of an Australian representative of Nelson Mandela’s African National Congress. Members of the WikiLeaks Party blamed the flap on an “administrative error”; mass resignations from the party’s leadership followed. Those who quit cited a lack of transparency in the party’s operations, and some pointed to remarks Assange had made blasting a Green Party proposal to reform Australia’s harsh treatment of asylum seekers... Snowden, Greenwald, and Assange have largely set the terms in the debate over transparency and privacy in America. But the value of some of their revelations does not mean that they deserve the prestige and influence that has been accorded to them," "Would You Feel Differently About Snowden, Greenwald, and Assange If You Knew What They Really Thought" (Sean Wilentz, The New Republic, 19/01/2014);

"The Seven Commandments of Fake News" (Adam B. Ellick, Adam Westbrook and Jonah M. Kessel, The New York Times):

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