YDS: The Clare Spark Blog

September 25, 2016

“Temperament” laced with “love”

Jungian archetype for Great Mother

Jungian archetype for Great Mother

See this first (https://clarespark.com/2012/05/15/progressive-uplift-vs-new-left-nihilism/. It quotes an anticommunist work from the progressive period devoted to uplifting recent immigrants, to self-control, i.e., “moderation” in all things for both rulers and the ruled.)

“Calm down!”

One of the tenets of this year’s presidential campaign has been that Hillary Rodham Clinton is the sane (centrist) alternative to wild man Donald J. Trump, the man of the crowd. This blog is about the deployment of the word “sanity” as against Madam Secretary’s “crazy,” “unpredictable” and “narcissistic” opponent.

The all-embracing Great Mother is played off against the Bad Father, a phony– even as he has managed to get the votes of the mob (in all its destructiveness and cries of “off with their heads”—the Jacobin Red Queen).  And yet, if there is another cop shooting of an “African-American,” liberals can rejoice that they have yet another opportunity to let their hair down by embracing primitivism in a black mob. (It is almost as satisfying as tap dancing.) Thus, the story out of Charlotte North Carolina elbows out the objectively more menacing terrorists in NYC, New Jersey, and Minnesota.

As I write this, really existing fascism goes unnoticed as ever so diverse progressivism/multiculturalism is rehabilitated by calling it the sane alternative to the madness of industrial society.

Let a thousand flowers bloom! http://meixianqiu.com/selected-works/let-a-thousand-flowers-bloom/.

Maoist slogan

Maoist slogan

September 10, 2016

Is “America” racist?

Filed under: Uncategorized — clarelspark @ 7:07 pm
Tags: , , , ,
Clinton at LGBT event 9-10-16

Clinton at LGBT event 9-10-16

In the tumult of the 2016 campaign, three events stand out:

  1. The Colin Kaepernick scandal, in which K’s refusal to stand during the national anthem, threatens further to rouse the (already) “hot-tempered” black population; and
  2. Ex-President Bill Clinton’s accusation that to claim that America would be “great” again is an obvious Trumpian sop to (poor white) Southerners who value their (dubious) superiority on the racial “totem pole.” (Recall that “the first black president” implicitly hitched onto the black power movement, as did his wife, as did Barack Obama, the real first black president., though Black Lives Matter might dispute this genealogy; see http://www.cnn.com/2016/04/08/opinions/bill-clinton-black-lives-matter-protesters-opinion-garza/ ); and
  3. Mrs. Clinton’s characterization of half of Trump’s base as “a basket of deplorables” after all, she is an (aristocratic) centrist who would never stoop so low.

Sadly, supposedly Republican-leaning media (i.e., Fox News Channel) cannot address the ideologies represented by these widely publicized events, for the moderate men don’t dig deeply enough into dominant discourses, that are always collectivist.

That is, “America” is a single individual, disgraceful or exemplary, depending on “point of view.” (See https://clarespark.com/2014/07/20/national-character-does-it-exist/).  To those devoted to the welfare state, “America” overcame its racist pass by devotion to “those less fortunate than we,” as Eleanor Roosevelt said. Centrists such as the Clintons are social democrats, with a whiff of fascism in their preoccupation with “race” over “class.”

Even Ashley Montagu, that progressive anthropologist, despite his obvious flaws, emphasized the socially constructed notion of “race,” focusing on social conditions over hereditary notions of mental and moral character (“race”); see https://clarespark.com/2016/08/13/there-and-not-there-progressives-make-us-crazy-2/.

There is an obvious choice on how we envision “the American Past, a.k.a., the “American Heritage.” We can focus on the novelty in the 18th C. of The Federalist Papers, the Declaration of Independence, and the Constitution (especially the Amendments), or we can vent our adolescent wrath on westward expansion and its many crimes.

The “New Left” (unlike many of their elders in the Old Left) chose the latter path, and we are muddled in that confusion.

The Clintons and Colin Kaepernick belong in that “basket.”

ABC News photo

ABC News photo

September 5, 2016

Labor Day kvetch 2016

Filed under: Uncategorized — clarelspark @ 5:59 pm
Tags: , , , , , , , ,
Shutterstock.com/allyy

Shutterstock.com/allyy

This is what people are not talking about on Labor Day 2016. (For a related blog, see https://clarespark.com/2015/07/11/jobs-jobs-and-less-jobs/.)

  1. The notion that there was once an international Labor Day, celebrated on May 1, not the first Monday in September.
  2. The coalescence of the words “hard” and “work” (hardwork), also known as “the dignity of labor.”
  3. The disappearance of “the labor movement.”
  4. The Democrat Party as the party of Big Government and tamed unionized Big Labor.
  5. Worker health and safety.
  6. Anything having to do with “class” as an objective category to be looked at as either an expression of repressive class domination or as a more fluid category allowing penetration by the upwardly mobile ex-worker.
  7. Women’s work in the home as hard, skilled, often exhausting labor. (Gender differences are objective, not socially constructed).
  8. “Race” as a socially constructed category; i.e., apart from obvious physical differences between groups, the (racist) notion that mental and moral characteristics are inherited and predictable. This all-encompassing notion of “race” wipes away attention to different material (social) conditions that shape opportunities for advancement.
  9. Psychological warfare on behalf of social relationships over the dissenting individual.
  10. The idea that togetherness (or my neologism, “groupiness”) is the natural condition of humanity, which is ostensibly “unity;” (i.e., only bad politicians are divisive).

But they are talking about

ABC News photo

ABC News photo

  1. The presidential campaign of 2016, especially recent poll numbers and debate prep, and the fecklessness of Trump.
  2. (Waning?) NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick’s refusal to stand up during the (now sacred?) national anthem as an expression of free speech, hence constitutionally protected.
  3. Colin K’s pig-police socks.
  4. The black “community.”
  5. Apple’s upcoming release of the latest I-phone, watch, and play stations.

August 27, 2016

“Trump can’t win”

Viking gods tattoos

Viking gods tattoos

There are people who understand the ins and outs of “politics.” Don’t expect me to match the expertise of those glued to the ever changing map of party politics. On the other hand, since I started to focus on the big picture (such as the uneven transition from pre-capitalist societies to more developed ones, or the rise of fascism and/or progressivism in the interwar period and even before that), certain patterns became evident. This blog is about the issues in the 2016 political campaign that may be too obvious for the more attentive and practiced in “political” analysis.

In no particular order:

Race and racism. While in graduate school, I occasionally confronted liberal/red faculty with the (insulting?) question: Where is structural racism in current institutions? By the time I got up the nerve to ask, the faculty apparently knew to ignore me with silence and changing the subject. (The pro-union faculty should have mentioned at least the inner city treatment of minority children, but sectarianism precluded such an obvious answer, apparent to me now but not then, despite the UCLA History Department’s public emphasis on unequal treatment: they were all in for criticizing “white supremacy,” but mostly silent about any unsavory aspect of “the labor movement.”)

So it is hardly surprising that attacking the Democrat stranglehold on “the minority vote” should meet with resistance on the part of liberals. This last week was topped off by “trading insults” by cable news (including an indignant Fox), as if the Democrat Party was not threatened by the move of Republicans to court black and brown votes in the working class. Forget the ideology of progressivism that has sought to uplift individuals and discourses  in order to pacify and co-opt ex-slaves and immigrant masses, hence the shock that Trump would correctly label the Democrat candidate in impolite lingo.

Multiculturalism. Which brings me to the all too obvious fact that both political parties indulge in collectivist discourses built on an imaginary national unity in diversity: e pluribus unum. What has happened to the dissenting individual in this mish-mash of ideologies, indulged in by “moderates” of all stripes?

patriotic tattoo/pinterest

patriotic tattoo/pinterest

The moderate men. My proudest achievement in the study of modern history was the subject of quiet repression by the ever so “fair and balanced” moderates (who would never undermine what passes for “democracy.”) Enter Fox News Channel, the “moderate” answer to media monopoly by progressives. For Fox, “fair and balanced” seems to mean gaining the maximum number of eyeballs, while seemingly not taking sides. Since the guiding men of Fox cannot be too explicit in their bogus theory of balance (what has happened to the Enlightenment project of investigating and possibly clarifying disputed facts? Oh, I remember now, the French Revolution/science inevitably lead to communism (https://clarespark.com/2010/11/06/moderate-men-falling-down/).

Though more conservatives inhabit Fox than in the competition (network television, CNN, MSNBC) Fox must not be too obviously one-sided. I have been watching their election coverage with the eyes of a skeptical historian,  and wonder if their “moderate” alternative is to allege that Trump has only the slimmest chance of winning the Presidency.

I expect this trend (at alt-Fox) to intensify between now and November 8, 2016 unless Trump should take the lead decisively.

deathtattoo

 

August 19, 2016

What _____ “Community”?

Filed under: Uncategorized — clarelspark @ 7:20 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,

communityThis blog is about 1. What the establishment means by “community”; and 2. How the New Left generation erased “class” in favor of “race” (a deviation from early 1930s’ Communist ideology and practice).

All the trendy movements since the late 1960s have collaborated in the New Left project: feminism (i.e.,“the woman’s movement” privileges gender above all, hence the tears rolling down the cheeks of many Democrats as Hillary Clinton clinched the nomination); Greens; rock ‘n roll (primitivism); and all the cultural nationalisms approved by “ethnic” minorities.

For instance, here I mentioned that the black masses/underclass have been left behind by their upwardly mobile families and friends (https://clarespark.com/2016/07/09/understanding-black-lives-matter/), but I didn’t mention the erasure of class consciousness in the so-called “black community”  (https://clarespark.com/2014/11/27/what-black-community/). Such a dramatic change from “class” to “race” didn’t happen overnight; rather it happened as multiculturalism’s took hold in the late 1960s under the tutelage of such as Malcolm X and Louis Farrakhan and the white liberal establishment (and all social democrats), aided and abetted by the aging [Stalinist] generation suffering from a failure of nerve, supporting such nonsense as “white supremacy.”

Such a move blended well with New Left anti-war movements and student strikes. But their predecessors in the radical movement of the 1930s, would have condemned organicism (the blessed union of Man and Nature) and “race” as bogus terms, rejected by liberal and radical anthropologists alike as excrescences of far right nationalism (i.e., fascism). Above all, the few true red radicals among them focused on the lack of “community” in any sense, for there was a structural class conflict, impeding any community of interests.

Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal class collaborationist programs were termed “social fascism” until the Popular Front against fascism was instituted after 1935. The Reds partook of the post-Enlightenment innovation of “dialectical materialism” by which they meant that the enlightened working class would take the vanguard of social change; history was inexorably moving toward working class rule. The “mechanical materialism” of the big bad bourgeoisie was a ruse, but their technology would provide for all in the new dispensation.

Neither political party in the US will talk about this history. The “far Left” is now occupied almost solely by social democrats, arguably the most proto-fascist movement in world history.

“Welcome to the future” as the television commercial promises. “Race” and “ethnicity” have been rehabilitated.

Differ two.com. image

Differ two.com. image

August 13, 2016

There and not there: progressives make us crazy (2)

As seen in review of play "Double Bind."

As seen in review of play “Double Bind.”

(For the first one in this series, see https://clarespark.com/2014/09/08/why-progressive-social-psychologists-make-us-crazy/.)

I have been rereading old books of mine to see if I could still recommend them; the horror show today is by Ashley Montagu (born Israel Ehrenberg, 1901-1999), a very long book republished in paperback by Oxford University Press in 1974: Man’s Most Dangerous Myth: The Fallacy of Race, and dedicated to the three Mississippi martyrs on behalf of civil rights for Negroes (“James Chaney, Andy Schwerner, and Mickey Goodman”—in that order, and with nicknames reserved for the two white guys).

This is how this particular progressive, super-prolix author puts us in double binds.

  1. (In no particular order) The hip reader of physical anthropology praises both competition and cooperation (“altruism”—an inborn trait, over the taught horrors of Social Darwinism—a capitalist deviation from the ideal).
  2. We are both shaped by particular [unique/incomparable] societies and individuals free to choose a better path, i.e., the collectivist progressive way.
  3. “Race” is out, while “ethnicity” is in no way a racist term. (This is a wild distortion of Huxley and Haddon’s We Europeans (1935) where they discard both race and ethnicity, preferring the ancient reference to “ethnos” as any particular population.)
  4. Hybrid vigor improves what has been mistakenly called “pure” races. (This may be an indirect way of being a racist, while posing as an anti-racist: some 19th C. crypto-racists played this game.)

Along the way, the lordly Montagu describes the unenlightened lower orders as “wild” and “coarse.”

For a detailed account of how the pseudo-science of social relations (sometimes known as cultural anthropology) prevailed over the wild and coarse pursuit of truth, see https://clarespark.com/2011/03/27/progressive-mind-managers-ca-1941-42/, and most of this website.

The only way to resolve the double bind is to retreat into mysticism over anything so banal as materialism.

MontaguAshley

August 6, 2016

Krauthammer diagnoses Trump, long distance

Filed under: Uncategorized — clarelspark @ 7:01 pm
Tags: , , , , , ,
New Theater Hitler as narcissist, 1936

New Theater Hitler as narcissist, 1936

Read these short entries first. http://www.mediaite.com/online/krauthammer-diagnoses-trump-beyond-narcissism-has-infantile-hunger-for-approval/

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/donald-trump-and-the-fitness-threshold/2016/08/04/b06bae34-5a69-11e6-831d-0324760ca856_story.html

I used to revere Charles Krauhammer as Fox’s resident genius, until I saw the homage documentary designed (?) to debut CK’s collected essays (Things That Matter); that “documentary” produced a blog that focused on CK’s search for unity https://clarespark.com/2013/10/26/krauthammer-fox-news-channel-and-the-search-for-unity/. This search for coherence in a polarized polity would suggest that he is an organic conservative, despite his claims to be a moderate, which would align him with other “moderates” on Fox News Channel. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Krauthammer), In other words, CK is a mystic, not a scientific materialist, as his medical training would suggest.

I learned from the Wiki entry that CK had indeed never been in independent clinical practice as a psychiatrist (he is board-certified), but had gone on from being chief resident in psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital (three whole years as a resident!), directly into politics, working for the Carter administration in “psychiatric planning.” (Wiki also states that CK contributed to DSM III, though they are not detailed.)

In other words, CK had little experience in clinical practice, yet he is a respected diagnostician of persons he seems not to have ever closely examined. (I have written extensively about another Harvard graduate, a Jungian: Dr. Henry A. Murray, who, like CK, made long-distances inferences about major figures; for instance, Murray testified at the trial of Whittaker Chambers, opining that Chambers had a “psychopathic personality” (based on reading! and linking him to CK’s highly respected opinions. (On Murray’s methods see https://clarespark.com/2012/03/26/henry-a-murray-and-the-tat/.)

Just as CK has labeled Barack Obama a “narcissist,” Dr. Krauthammer judges Donald J. Trump to be unstable, and more than a bit mad. Oddly, Adolf Hitler was judged to be a nutty criminal/psychopath by Dr. Henry A. Murray and assorted Stalinists, though none of these had any professional (psychiatric) relationship with the object of their scorn. Dr. Murray went so far as to infer that Hitler must have had Jewish blood, setting the stage for later Harvard social psychologists (https://clarespark.com/2009/12/13/klara-hitlers-son-and-jewish-blood/).

Dr. Krauthammer famously switched political allegiances mid-career. But his haughty opinions on the Republican nominee’s mental states, bear comparison with those of other “moderate men” seeking to be “fair and balanced.”

July 29, 2016

Hillary the driven

Filed under: Uncategorized — clarelspark @ 6:52 pm
Tags: , , , , , , ,
Telegraph.co  UK image

Telegraph.co UK image

This blog is a guess at what makes Hillary run. And why she wore a (mannish?) white pants suit during her acceptance speech at the DNC.

So much is obvious, but this blog attempts a peek into her psyche, extrapolated from mine as another good girl with anger issues.

There is something uncanny about HiIlary’s do-gooding, while at the same time undermining her credibility with easily discoverable errors. Like many high achievers, she seems determined to recreate the perfectly happy family writ large. Bill Clinton drove home this theme, by emphasizing his wife’s early prowess as the Great Mother of us all, thus vindicating Hillary’s welfare state (achieved by soaking the rich with their ill-gotten gains).

Remember the part about Hillary lining the drawers in their first tiny home? Chelsea Clinton mentioned drawers too, recalling the day by day notes that her mother left for her, to make sure that Chelsea had a perfect, detail-oriented mom while she was on the road, changing the world by aiding those less fortunate.

Who said that women can’t have it all?

But beneath the smiling surface she shows anger that powerful pundits will publicly admit, like Brit Hume, complaining about her stridency and hectoring tone. I will compare her rage (?) to the feelings experienced by other women driven by the imperative to hold the family together; at the same time, achieving upward mobility as an “independent” woman, and a slightly different political stance from her lower-middle class family (her parents were Republicans, and she began life in their steps). It is one hell of a balancing act.

For a full-appearing biography see https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hillary_Clinton.

The testimony of her husband and daughter attempted to vindicate Hillary as the steady presence that inspired them. If their appreciation rang hollow (except to the Democrat faithful, the television camera straying to women weeping), the remarks of Bill and Chelsea suggested compulsive perfectionism in Hillary.

Many women who strive to be as good as a man suffer from the same syndrome. By obsessive attention to detail combined with a smiling façade, we attempt the impossible (to be all things to all people).

Ivory soap ad, 1940s

Ivory soap ad, 1940s

Were the media not so undereducated regarding the woman problem, by turns tearing her down or building her up as a Superwoman, they might note that HRC makes errors that are easily discoverable. It as if, oddly, parts of her want to be discovered as a fraud and punished, even as she projects these qualities on her rival for the presidency, while she retains her Eleanor Roosevelt-style image of Ivory soap purity.

July 25, 2016

Jews vs. atheists: the Wiki-leaks hubbub

image by Eleanor Davis

image by Eleanor Davis

Yesterday (July 24, 2016) Fox News Channel was excited about the email wondering about Bernie Sanders possible “atheism” (a stance that would have sunk Dems in Southern Baptist country).

Being a connoisseur of anti-Jewish subtexts, I pricked up my ears. This blog will comment on what was said, and what was not.

First, the possibility that Bernie Sanders, an alleged “socialist,” might have a lingering “Jewish heritage” is by itself a racist assumption. “Heritage” would only make sense if all Jews, no matter how red, retain the mental and moral characteristics that much of the non-Jewish world attributes to all Jews.

While I can’t see into the Sanders psyche, as a “democratic socialist” he would surely hold to the view that “religion is the opiate of the masses.” But this would not be the case if Jews are a race (transmitting ancient beliefs through heredity). Second, some “Christians” believe that Jews and [Hebraic] Protestants are similarly heretics, notwithstanding the celebrated “Judeo-Chistian heritage” that supposedly rules the land. Third, it has been claimed by one influential social psychologist (Dr. Henry A. Murray) that religious pluralism weakens the hold of religion on the mass mind.

But most striking to this writer is the fact that Debbie Wasserman Schultz’s resignation from the DNC was not met with cries that she too is a Jew and the first Jewish female congressperson from Florida (her Wikipedia biography shows no signs of her being an observant Jew.) That would make her a typical American assimilated “Jewish” liberal, the perfect scapegoat for the miscreant DNC: (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Debbie_Wasserman_Schultz).

debbie-w-s

July 18, 2016

Materialists v. organic conservatives

Filed under: Uncategorized — clarelspark @ 7:20 pm
Tags: , , , , ,
Thinkstock digital image

Thinkstock digital image

The most common question I get from readers is “what do you mean by ‘organic conservative’ versus ‘materialism’? I tried to explain here and elsewhere (https://clarespark.com/2015/01/23/what-is-an-organic-conservative/ and https://clarespark.com/2012/09/08/what-is-a-materialist/.

These antitheses may be associated with some as “science” versus “religion” or Democrat versus Republican, but these terms are not necessarily opposites (e.g., “moderates” may be New Dealers/Big Government advocates).

For instance, a materialist may be someone who focuses on the reliability of our senses with implications for eventually finding objective truth.

Put simply, a materialist is not necessarily a revolutionary socialist, for “dialectical materialism” is a mystical conception, not to be confused with the empiricism of John Locke. And materialists may be religious, in the sense that they do not await for realistic contact with the world only as a heavenly reward for good behavior in this life.

Whereas organic conservatives may found in the Red-Green movement, or, perhaps surprisingly, among ‘traditionalist’ Burkeans: they do similarly rely on mystical bonds in order to achieve social cohesion. In many cases, mystics are on the lam from the machine, finding solace in idealized Nature.

mysticism

Materialists like this writer find social cohesion/social peace, if at all, among individuals who share the same interests. A historian must look at all irreconcilable conflicts within the individuals, groups and/or institutions under study, whether these exist among sibling rivals, parents and children, men and women, economic groups, or nationalities. Few of us live long enough to master a ‘holistic’ view of the past, while part of that quandary is owing to the secrecy of those who wield power over others.

Unresolved is the existence of “race” as an objective division. Frantz Fanon and Ashley Montagu continue to confront one other, with “diversity” intended to validate [socially constructed] “race.” Cultural nationalists are convinced that all histories, including warfare, can be explained in terms of race and exploitation, while other [organic conservatives], like supporters of the United Nations, embrace unity in diversity, once known as e pluribus unum. I prefer the physical anthropologist Montagu who agrees with my dissertation adviser, Alex Saxton, that while physical variations are obvious, mental characteristics vary from individual to individual. This does not sit well with the propaganda disseminated by both political parties.

Racism is real, but “race” is a social construction; if you are a proud materialist, put those commas back!

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