Moon of Alabama Brecht quote
March 21, 2005

Billmon: The Burning of Florida +++

A plague of locusts


An Answer to an Orwellian Rightist


A Slow Learner in the Pentagon


Names and Faces

Posted by b on March 21, 2005 at 20:07 UTC | Permalink


The Schiavo phenomenon may resemble something like the appearance of Our Lady of Fatima more than Day of the Locusts.

Posted by: jr | Mar 21 2005 20:35 utc | 1

billmon got an answer

Posted by: Cloned Poster | Mar 21 2005 22:11 utc | 2

ha. horowitz still doesn't like it when people call him a communist.

Posted by: b real | Mar 21 2005 22:24 utc | 3

When Horowitz appeared on Booknotes several years ago, he betrayed an oedipal reason for his conservatism. He apparently grew up "in the movement" and despised his Father, cathecting (I think that's the proper word) upon this hatred an associated contempt for leftist politics.

There's probably a lot more to this, but I'll leave the analysis to the Freudian pros.

Posted by: slothrop | Mar 21 2005 22:38 utc | 4

Billmon, pulverize him.

Posted by: slothrop | Mar 21 2005 23:16 utc | 5

anyone read Russian?

Posted by: citizen | Mar 21 2005 23:41 utc | 6

War News for Monday, March 21, 2005

Bring 'em on: Turkish driver shot dead in Bayji.

Bring 'em on: Two Jordanian students found dead in Hillah.

Bring 'em on: Bomb attack kills civilian and injures policeman in Basra.

Bring 'em on: Four Iraqi policemen killed and nineteen injured in truck bomb attack in Baquba.

Bring 'em on: US soldier killed and three injured in bomb attack in Kirkuk.

Bring 'em on: Insurgents blow-up municipal building in Baghdad.

Bring 'em on: Insurgents kill civilian and wound three policemen in coordinated attack in Samarra.

Bring 'em on: Civilian killed and two others injured after mortar attack on the Iraqi army base in Mahmoudiyah.

Bring 'em on: Gunmen open fire at the funeral of top Iraqi anti-corruption policeman (killed earlier in the day) killing two mourners in Mosul.

Bring 'em on: Twenty four insurgents killed and six US troops injured in a major gun battle following the ambush of a convoy in Salman Pak.

Bring 'em on: Reuters still running with the story that the Iraqi Minister for the Provinces, Wael Abdul al-Latif, has been kidnapped by insurgents in Suwayra.

Bring 'em on: US soldier killed Sunday in Al Anbar province.

Posted by: Friendly Fire | Mar 21 2005 23:51 utc | 7

An old Red friend of mine (who lost his faith around the time of Kruschev's famous address openly admitting the Stalinist abuses) says he fears Horowitz is somewhat unstable. Apparently the guy actually wrote a book demonising his own parents (old CP members) -- while they were, I believe, still living. Now that is an all-out mean and imhho somewhat unbalanced thing to do. I mean, we all have issues with our parents (part of being human) but to write a whole book to get back at them? He could at least have waited until they were dead eh? I think the Oedipal crack may have some validity in this case...

Posted by: DeAnander | Mar 22 2005 1:31 utc | 8

Who exactly is Horowitz?

Anyone read Russian?
I used to learn it at school but I am not sure I can help cause it was a long time ago and I never had chance to practice it really...

Posted by: vbo | Mar 22 2005 2:50 utc | 9


If you get no other answer, let me know - I might have a resource for Russian translation...

Posted by: OkieByAccident | Mar 22 2005 3:01 utc | 10

Apparently the guy actually wrote a book demonising his own parents (old CP members) -- while they were, I believe, still living.

The five Black categories were actually seven if one included the bourgeoisie and capitalist-roaders. Youths of Black origin were not admitted by the Red Guard, unless they proved that they had renounced their class and denounced their parents.
Chihua Wen
Red Mirror

Posted by: billmon | Mar 22 2005 3:07 utc | 11

Nathanael West is one hell of an author. He was one of those artists I wish has managed, or had the luck, to produce more work than he did. A contemporary of Fitzgerald, I think he was more in tune with the direction America was turning than ol' Fitz was. As such, he deserves a great deal more attention in the moldy halls of Lit departments than he currently appreciates.

Posted by: anthonytcooper | Mar 22 2005 3:26 utc | 12

And I apologize for the errors in my writing. Far too much whiskey already.

Posted by: | Mar 22 2005 3:28 utc | 13

Why read Russian?

Because the Horowitz picture/flag in Billmon's post has some Russian looking words on it, and I was curious what they mean. Anyone know?

Posted by: citizen | Mar 22 2005 6:58 utc | 14

The text on the picture is one of the most famous slogans of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union; you could see it on slogans on buildings and everywhere in the country.

It means:

The Party is the soul, the honor and the conscience of our times.

Posted by: Jérôme | Mar 22 2005 9:17 utc | 15

(Yes, I do speak Russian)

Posted by: Jérôme | Mar 22 2005 9:18 utc | 16

Jerome I believe that word "um" is not soul as you translated… not because I remember it from school but because we in Serbian have same word and Russian and Serbian are Slavic languages and very similar. We can easily understand each other…Like Swedish and Norwegians for example…
"Um" in Serbian means intellect, brain , mind, mental power etc...

Posted by: vbo | Mar 22 2005 13:43 utc | 17

vbo - you're right - make this the "spirit"

The Party is the spirit, the honor and the conscience of our times.

I do think that I have seen the first translation into French ("l'âme" rather than "l'esprit") but maybe my memory is failing me.

Posted by: Jérôme | Mar 22 2005 14:09 utc | 18

I'd think "um" is best translated as "wisdom"

Um caruje, snaga klade valja — Wisdom rules; power rolls the logs
But it could be different in Russian. Sometimes another language uses a word for a slightly different meaning. I recall when learning French in school that "librairie" was bookstore, but "bibliotheque" was library (is that right Jerome?). You'd assume that the two words that sounded the same had the same meaning, but it means something related, but not exactly the same.

Posted by: kat | Mar 22 2005 15:44 utc | 19

This is the best information I read sofar on the Shiavo case: Margie Burns: 'The Schiavo campaign'

Posted by: Fran | Mar 22 2005 16:16 utc | 20

"Partiya, um, shest' y soviest' nachei epochi"
Roughly what it would be like. Though one year of Russian eons ago only allow me to translate the obvious first words and the endign (of our time).
As with the Maoist posters, this one is a classic Soviet propaganda poster, with Horowitz' face pasted onto Lenin's - just like Mao's face was replaced with Bush's in some previous photoshop agit-prop by our reactionary maoist leftist Billmon ;)
BTW, I hope things go well with you, barkeep (except for the wide issue of surviving under Bush administration), and that you have a bit more freetime nowadays (and no, I don't mean that in the hope you'll blog even more, but because maintaining sites, blogs or others, can eat up a *lot* of time and leave you quite exhausted with close to no more free time for other activities including social and family life)

Posted by: Clueless Joe | Mar 22 2005 16:55 utc | 21

Before blogs, the internet, people went out into the streets and yelled or banged on pots as they still do in Argentina. Or managed, with limited comm. possibilities, some pointed actions. They went to meetings in their local place, became riled up, and moved, were willing through personal contacts and the expressed solidarity to take some risks at least.

Mass demonstrations are frightening to authorities. They are. Yes.

Are subtle nay-sayers like Billmon and most of the posters here a determined minority who will get something done?

For ex., feminists in the low last century, who went and got jailed, refused all kinds of things, and also profited from economic conditions and broader social movements -- is that a model?

If not, what other, what is new, different?

Or are we just blowin’ off steam with the clickety clack of the key-board?

Blue, blue, deep purple, pale black.

Posted by: Blackie | Mar 22 2005 19:10 utc | 22

@Blackie........ I can say what I feel here.

Blogs are the News.

Billmon is the Editorial that took all of us here.

Posted by: Friendly Fire | Mar 22 2005 22:59 utc | 23

I have no wisdom to impart re the Schiavo case. I don't know how accurate this is - but it is disturbing.

Posted by: DM | Mar 23 2005 4:07 utc | 24

rense has made itself a totally worthless site imo after that bit of garbage.

I would recommend that you go, instead, to a site from a lawyer who has followed the case over the years but has no part in the case.

here's the url.

I have taken the time to read up on this case recently. Schiavo, according to I believe it is five doctors, has no cerebral cortex left. Instead, she has spinal fluid.

If someone has a spinal cord, they can do all sorts of things that would give an impression of conscious actions, but they are not.

Schiavo's parents have selectively edited tapes to make it look as though they are getting a response, when repeated attempts show these responses are not indicative of anything other than a brain stem that is still allowing reflextive and clonic/tonic actions.

Schiavo, btw, collapsed because she was bulimic. She has a severe electrolyte disturbance. I do not want to play junior psychiatrist or doctor, but as I've read more about this, it's interesting that her parents continue to be so controlling, even as she is in a presistent vegetative state and is now force fed. Nevertheless, I feel sorry for them, but I now understand more than before why her husband is determined to allow her to finally die a natural death...because the feeding tube is the only reason, apparently, that she is alive.

According to the five doctors that have examined her and her tests and cat scans, she has no cerebral cortex.

according to Wikipedia,

The cerebral cortex, made up of four lobes, is involved in many complex brain functions includingmemory, perceptual awareness, "thinking", language and consciousness.

The cerebral cortex receives sensory information from many different sensory organs eg: eyes, ears etc and processes the information. Areas that receive that particular information are called sensory areas.

The two hemispheres receive the information from the opposite sides of the body. Parts of the cortex that receives this information are called primary sensory areas. Other areas receive impulses from the primary sensory areas and integrate the information coming in from different types of receptors. These are known as association areas and make up a great deal of the cortex in all primates including us.

The nurse who made the claims above apparently is unaware of the way in which Schiavo's husband went to court and asked the court to examine the case to make a determination.

The testimony from others makes this nurse's claims sound like lies and if they are libel, I hope she is sued by Mr. Schiavo for every penny she owns.

This whole event is a circus for the holy rolling portion of this country who also believes that god appears on taco shells and that the earth is 5000 years old.

The assholes in Congress should are using this poor woman to fire up their political base. It's not enough for them to pervert churches and turn them into little fascist camps for the middle they have taken a white woman to serve as a martyr for the cause of Republican ambition.

Tom DeLay is a piece of shit who is trying to cover his ass for all his ethical convenient for him to suddenly give a damn about a case that's been going on for years (and this is, what, the third time a ruling has been made?)

Hopefully this is all I'll say about this topic anymore.

The republicans are starting to remind me of vampires...they only care about the unborn and the undead. Humans, however, are not worthy enough to be protected from torture of innocents, the elderly can eat dog food so the rich can make a little more money from social security, and veterans, with horrific head wounds from the current war get their benefits cut, while Halliburton continues to rake in the dough for dick and no doubt Bush is stuffing his pockets, too, as he sends people off to die, every day, because he wanted to win a mid-term election and was willing to lie and put us into a war to do it.

So, republicans can shut the fuck up about any moral autoroity or any care for human life. know them by their deeds.

Posted by: fauxreal | Mar 23 2005 5:23 utc | 25

Pat Roberts and spies in the classroom who'll pose as academics abroad

That should ensure that real academics become targets all over the world, but at least a covert eye can be kept on those enemies within fsr more effectively than via the efforts of Horowitz.

Posted by: Spycatcher | Mar 23 2005 5:52 utc | 26

the undead, exactly... fit protagonists for vampires. not lizards, vampires.

But maybe "John in DC" at americablog is smarter.

the GOP just guaranteed every American universal health coverage. And if that's not what they're guaranteeing, ask them why not? Is the Terri Schiavo case about the "culture of life" - or is it simply about Tom DeLay and the radical right grandstanding when they don't really give a damn about anybody's life?

Some enterprising Democrat should write up the Culture of Life Act (Terri's bill) immediately and introduce it, guaranteeing universal health coverage to ensure that every American is guaranteed their "culture of life."

Holy shit. What would happen if the Democrats actually got problem oriented?

Posted by: citizen | Mar 23 2005 5:53 utc | 27

The "slow learner" arrives in Brazil today for a friendly visit, God help us. I really thought they had forgotten about us here playing in the backyard, but that damn Chaves keeps throwing pebbles and just can't stop yelling.

I hope Lula doesn't try to fingerprint him.

Posted by: pedro | Mar 23 2005 6:08 utc | 28

@pedro, the US reptiles>have not forgotten what is going on in the back yard. personally I am worried -- but what else is new. unfortunately the US can 'invade' Venezuala w/o tying up more of its own land forces, as it has the Colombian army at its command.

Posted by: DeAnander | Mar 23 2005 7:08 utc | 29

The Schiavo case has really exposed the incoherence of the GOP, with party-members like Sen. John Warner of Virginia admitting as much on the Senate floor. I've always regarded the GOP as a loose network of good burghers and bad fascists: it's not a party at all, just a collection of divorcees corralled into a country-club cocktail party. And corralled by whom? Obviously, by the folks who pay the bills. Donors to the Republican Party--people paying for its immensely expensive campaigns--have held the party together, or forced the party together, for the sole purpose of protecting their investment. Money's the only thing holding this thing together. And when the money folks find themselves as riven in their thoughts as the office-holders, then the party will inevitably collapse. I really wonder whether it will exist at all twenty years down the

Posted by: alabama | Mar 23 2005 7:17 utc | 30

down the road....

Posted by: alabama | Mar 23 2005 7:18 utc | 31

I wondered that twenty years ago 'Bama.

Our brain-dead two-party system remains technically alive, feeding tube still attached, but somehow no one has checked lately to see that the dripping fluid has gone sour.

Posted by: rapt | Mar 23 2005 15:44 utc | 32

Funny old world

Posted by: Manichean split | Mar 23 2005 18:18 utc | 33

@Manichaean -- it's funnier than that. Bush iirc was the guy who signed the Texas state bill permitting health care providers to pull the plug on life-support patients if they deemed the case "hopeless" (i.e. not cost-effective, i.e. the patient is not a wealthy cash cow).

Posted by: DeAnander | Mar 23 2005 18:21 utc | 34

I have Billmon's famous post printed out and on the bulletin board outside my office at the university where I teach. Students have read it and thus far have not understood why Horowitz acts the way he does. I don't think my school is exceptional in tolerence towards students of right wing or left wing political views. Horowitz himself seems to have semi-documented two hundred or so cases of which he showcases a dozen or so. The numbers are trivial. When I went to Miami of Ohio, this second tier school has 10,400 students alone. There are more there today. Statistically his numbers, at best, are insignificant on a national or even a state scale. Factor in the number of these complaints that are motivated by right wing political activists, and the number drops significantly. I watch one of these wonder students in action in February. He complained on C-Span that he was "forced" to read a book about Islam that didn't call them all terrorists. He got an "F" for not doing his reading assignment and complained on national television that is was due to his professor's "pro-muslim bias". His great revelation? He could learn every thing he needed to know about Islam from a biased right wing Christian fundamentalist web page! A mind is a terrible thing to waste!

Posted by: Diogenes | Mar 23 2005 22:12 utc | 35

The comments to this entry are closed.