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Far from giving up a lot of the basic principles of Black nationalism - the idea that Black people have a destiny that cannot be accommodated by White America as it currently stands, that Black people should separate from White America, a firm belief in Black men as the salvation of the Black race - all of these things accompany Thomas on his migration to the right. It's not as if he gives up those principles. He certainly gives up left principles, but those are quite different and can't just be subsumed under the heading 'Black nationalism.'

Political scientist Corey Robin examines the politics of Supreme Court justice Clarence Thomas - from his early formative experiences with White supremacy, leftist defeatism and Black nationalism, to his formation of a deeply pessimistic, conservative realism that rejects the notion of politics as a path toward liberation.

Corey is author of the book The Enigma of Clarence Thomas from Metropolitan Books.

 


Posted by Alexander Jerri

The Drowned World

Welcome to the Moment of Truth: the thirst that is the drink. Are you ready to live under the sea or die trying?

Did you see any of those pictures of the Interstate 10 Ocean in Texas? Pardon me, the sea. Did you see the sea? There didn't used to be a sea there. I drove that highway all the way from Baton Rouge through Houston and Austin, back in aught 1, arrived in Los Angeles the night before 9-11, and didn't see a single fish. Not even a grouper. I saw a plane fly into a building, through a nightmarishly clear sky, the next morning on TV. But no grouper.

So now the ocean's here. I think it's here to stay. I think the whole southern USA is going back underwater, like nature intended, before the Freeze Miser locked up all the water at the poles. Days were wetter then.

We can do this, America. We can get used to anything. You'll get used to the water. It's cold when you first get in, but then you get used to it. We got used to distrusting the Spectacle, after Nixon had to resign when it came out that he'd ordered Halderman and Erlichman to hypnotize Oswald to kill JFK. We got used to having a regulatory system run by the industries they're supposed to regulate. We got used to not having enough money for food, shelter, medical care, and education. We got used to the owners of massive, mind-blowing, stratospheric wealth telling us there just wasn't enough to pay us a decent wage or support the common weal. We got used to cops gunning down black people or murdering them in jail for any reason or no reason.

We did these things, we made these changes within our very selves, because it was our patriotic duty. We may not have a communal sense of distributing resources, but we do have a collective love of our country. And I don't think learning to breathe underwater is too much for America's Jesus to ask of us. On Venus, they're so patriotic they breathe ammonia, and on Mars they breathe almost nothing at all. We're lucky to be getting oxygen. Is it really too much trouble to extract dissolved oxygen from seawater? Come on, grow some gills, binch. If a goddam fish can do it, so can you.

We've gone soft, having all this readily available oxygen floating in the air, a veritable luxury dessert cart of oxygen, wheeled right to our table. We've become like delicate woodland sprites, prancing and sparkling and tinkling about the forest floor, sipping nectar from daffodils. We've become lazy lotus-eaters,... read more

Episode 968

Direct Faction

Sep 5 2017
Posted by Alexander Jerri
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Listen live from 11AM - 12PM Central on Lumpen Radio 105.5FM Chicago / stream at www.thisishell.com / subscribe to the podcast

 

11:10 - Writer Natasha Lennard promises confrontation, not a platform, for White supremacy.

Natasha wrote the In These Times piece Don't Give Fascism an Inch and Not Rights but Justice: It’s Time to Make Nazis Afraid Again for The Nation.

 

11:50 - In a Moment of Truth, Jeff Dorchen guides us to our underwater destiny.

Does this mean Jeffy finally read Kobo Abe's Inter Ice Age 4 since I been bugging him about reading it? Oh sorry, spoilers BTW.

Episode 967

Fighting Words

Aug 28 2017
Posted by Alexander Jerri

I Didn't Ask To Be Born Famous

Welcome to the Moment of Truth: the thirst, which is also the drink.

Royalty is a hereditary disease. It's the only hereditary disease you can catch through marriage. Well, there's also nobility. You can even buy your way into that disease. But there's nobility and there's nobility. There's the social status of "noble" and there's the virtue. What kind of self-important asshole designated his social class "nobility?" It's pathetic. Arrogating to oneself the label "noble" is the status equivalent of a child's toy advertised as "fun" or the package of a junk food item announcing it's "delicious." You can be certain such a toy is no fun, and the snack is yet another knot of flash-fried Styrofoam coated in salty orange dust chemically designed to mimic flavor.

And yet even supposed intellectuals are willingly knighted and consider it an honor. In Thailand you have to respect the king or they'll put you in prison. But what's everyone else's excuse? The Queen of England is just a glorified chimp we've gussied up in sparkles and given castles and horses.

Oh, speaking of royalty, it's the twentieth anniversary of the death of Princess Diana in a car accident in Paris. Very sad. She was reasonable to deal with, from most accounts, and very generous with her time. She even had a streak of the do-gooder in her. Princess Diana, or as she was called, ironically it turned out, Princess Di, died a very popular person.

To commemorate the anniversary of her death, the BBC revisited the event with her bereaved sons, Princes William and Phillip. I can't remember which is which so I'll just refer to them collectively as Princess Wallop. Why? Because it's easier to say than "Princes Willop."

Princess Wallop, it turns out, was upset by his mother's death. So like us, the royals, aren't they? Emotions and everything. He blamed the paparazzi. Many blamed them.

Even the normally cool-headed George Clooney blamed them. But the paparazzi were only doing their job. "Oh, but maybe Princess soon to Di didn't want her picture taken that day. Why couldn't they just leave her alone?"

Neither Clooney nor Wallop wanted to consider that the paparazzi didn't create the situation by which they could exchange pictures of celebrities for money. They had rent to pay, they didn't have a castle or two to fall back on.

Wallop wasn't in a forgiving mood, though, at the time. He blamed being royal, and all the... read more

Posted by Alexander Jerri
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Listen live from 11AM - 12PM Central on Lumpen Radio 105.5FM / stream at www.thisishell.com / subscribe to the podcast

 

11:10 - Current Affairs editor Nathan J. Robinson examines the strategic implications of non-nonviolent protest.

Nathan wrote the articles We'll Beat the Fascists with Ideas, Not Fists for In These Times and Thinking Strategically About Free Speech and Violence for Current Affairs.

11:50 - In a Moment of Truth, Jeff Dorchen witnesses the crash that killed Princess Di - in his mind!

Jeff is capable of recalling things from his past, that's his secret to doing things like this.

Posted by Alexander Jerri