Note on Postmodern Fascism

FASCISM NEW

NOTE ON POSTMODERN FASCISM
BY
DAVID ARTHUR WALTERS

 

We must not march quietly into the trenches

Let us note well that the notions associated with fascism and its most virulent form, a neo-barbaric socialism called Nazism, were not originally conceived by Mssrs. Mussolini and Hitler. Nor is there anything conceptually unique to the non-profit totalitarianism of Stalin. The Italian Fascists and German Nazis are given far too much credit for conducting big corporate business for its usual end – the end of the very competition it professes to love and the total control of “free” markets – an aggrandizement augmented by modern technological means. More than one economist described the goal of the alleged opposition to fascism – capitalism – as the perfection of fascism. Mssrs. Mussolini and Hitler did not invent totalitarianism led by an arbitrary, so-called charismatic leader. They marched in the footsteps of the Roman emperors whose corporate emblem was the fasces ax.

In Germany Carl Schmitt – doctor of jurisprudence and father to the form of the German New Conservatism embraced by so-called neoconservatives in the United States – sanctioned Hitler’s indefinite suspension of the Weimar Constitution. But Carl Schmitt did not coin the concept of Total upon which he elaborated at length, for men have long dreamed of the instantiation of Totalitaria on Earth in one form or other, ruled by a despot or dictator for the sake of convenience, until the divisive resistance to absolute truth is destroyed and the people are ready to embrace true monarchy or democracy.

A regime is at its best when its leadership is threatened by challengers, and then it is best led by a single supreme leader, an arbiter of good and evil, a sovereign father or fuehrer whose hands are not tied by the law, an imperial presiding officer and commander-in-chief who is willing to tell the necessary lies to unify the factions who would otherwise squander the national energy on productive domestic activities instead of wasting resources on wars.

Such a decisive leader, as a matter of national honor, must admit to ignoring the polls in the interest of obedience to a higher power than his worldly father, and profess to doing whatever it takes to obtain victorious salvation for the people of the world whether they like it or not.

The irrational, “leadership principle” was not invented by the leading thinkers of the three German Reichs. In any case, Carl Schmitt, who begat Leo Strauss, who begat Paul Wolfowitz, and whose doctrine is embraced by Richard Cheney, Donald H. Rumsfeld, Condaleeza Rice, and other Germanophiles who longed for a Holy American Empire or Pax Americana, attached a modern label to the usual arbitrary power, “Decisionism,” – as if it fell within “ideology” in the broad sense of “science of ideas.”

In any case, or so the neo-fascist argument goes, conflict produces higher goods. War is the father of all things including better moral fiber. The purpose of politics is to identify your enemies and destroy them. Wherefore, America’s neoconservatives would in concert restore the supreme power of the elected emperor of the United States of America, and in doing so overthrow the revolution within the revolution that spawned the nation.

So let us not think that fascism is passé, limited to a few hateful skinheads simply because we do not hear the German version of the Roman victory salute (Seig Heil!) emanating from the White House and aircraft carrier decks; or because our concentration camps, wherein we confine Muslim Semites instead of Jewish Semites, are smaller and much more humane; or because our suspects do not have flags and uniforms. No, we must keep history in mind because we are that history, and until we understand that history and thus know ourselves better and fulfill our better selves, we risk the repeated degradation of our kind, albeit by a more subtle process, until the grinder becomes so overbearing that the race would rather destroy itself in a paroxysm of massive suicide-murder than march quietly into the trenches.

Miami Beach 2006

The Secret U.S. Army Definition of Fascism

Mussolini
The Personification of Fascism

 

THE SECRET ARMY DEFINITION OF FASCISM

BY

DAVID ARTHUR WALTERS

An Italian, when asked to define Fascism, answered, “Fascism is Mussolini – he is the only Fascist.”

The Fascists did not repudiate the amoral profit motive or the class distinctions: they incorporated the classes into fasces; they were friendly to big industrialists and unfriendly to communists. Observers declared fascism to be either the perfection or the perversion of capitalism. An open friendship between Italian Fascists, German Nazis, and capitalists eventually became politically incorrect hence capitalists formally disassociated themselves with the label if not with the operating principles, and proceeded to muddy the water by equating fascism with their arch-enemy: communism. That was easy to do when both fascism and communism had taken the totalitarian form convenient to all-out war.

Today fascism is loosely defined as any form of right-wing authoritarianism. It is not Bolshevism or left-wing authoritarianism. Yet fascism is still difficult to define except in contrast to democracy. The United States is a democratic republic, yet its citizens like to think of their country as a political democracy, and it would be one if people cooperated in effecting radical reforms instead of tweaking the status quo. Of course democracy differs very much from the authoritarian public and private corporations many Americans work for. Corporate executives are frequently referred to as “fascists.” Figuratively speaking, of course, for fascism is usually associated with aggressive nationalism during hard times, with pre-emptive wars on other nations, waged to divert attention from economic problems, and, hopefully, to achieve full domestic employment. The fascist war is sometimes justified as a war to liberate inferior people so they can have the benefit of a superior culture. We do not see the economic and political power elite collaborating to that end in the United States today – after all, the United States fought two wars to end all such wars. Its citizens should have a general idea of what fascism means and how to avoid it.

The U.S. Army made an effort to define fascism towards the end of WW II, but the definition was repudiated by political authoritarians. According to Henry Hoke, author of It’s a Secret (1946), the fight to make the world safe for democracy took a terrible beating in 1945 when a Congressional investigating committee wrecked the Army Orientation Course, a study program designed to counteract disruptive propaganda and to teach men and women in the Army and Navy what the war was all about. In the chapter entitled, ‘Who Investigates the Investigators?’ Hoke discusses the suppression of a certain pamphlet, Piece No. 64.

“I’ve been around to Army camps and I’ve lectured before Orientation classes. I think I know some of the problems of the officers who conducted these classes. I’ve loafed around with them during the evening after work discussing their problems… hearing the tales of how intolerance and planned propaganda had upset some of their best laid program…. The individual officers in the camps became more demanding in their requests for definite information on tolerance and on Fascism. The men and women in the service were mixed up in their thinking too. They wanted to have definite answers to definite questions on the subject of Fascism and on what we were really fighting for…. So finally, during the early part of 1945, the Army Orientation officials… prepared ‘Piece # 64″ on the subject of Fascism. It was prepared by top ranking Army officials.”

Piece # 64 was distributed to military personnel at home and abroad. Hoke provides us with these excerpts from the top of the release:

“Note For This Week’s Discussion:

“Fascism is not the easiest thing to identify and analyze: nor, once in power is it easy to destroy. It is important for our future and that of the world that as many of us as possible understand the causes and practices of Fascism, in order to combat it. Points to stress are: (1) Fascism is more apt to come to power at a time of economic crisis; (2) Fascism inevitably leads to war; (3) it can come to any country; (4) we can best combat it by making our democracy work.

“If we don’t understand Fascism and recognize Fascism when we see it, it might crop up again – under another label – and cause another war.

“Fascism is a way to run a country – it’s the way Italy was run, and the way Germany and Japan are run. Fascism is the precise opposite of democracy. The people run democratic governments, but Fascist governments run the people.

“Fascism is government by the few for the few. The objective is seizure and control of the economic, political, social, and cultural life of the state. Why? The democratic life interferes with their methods and desires for (1) conducting business; (2) living with their fellow-men; (3) having the final say in matter concerning others, as well as themselves.

“The basic principles of democracy stand in the way of their desires; hence – democracy must go! Anyone who is not a member of their inner gang has to do what he’s told. They permit no civil liberties, no equality before the law. They make their own rules and change them when they choose. If you don’t like it, it’s T.S.

“The maintain themselves in power by use of force combined with propaganda based on primitive ideas of ‘blood’ and ‘race’, by skillful manipulation of fear and hate, and for false promises of security. The propaganda glorifies war and insists it is smart and ‘realistic’ to be pitiless and violent.”

Copies of Piece # 64 were sent over to Congress – the members were indignant! Congressional investigators were dispatched to discover who was responsible for the outrageous publication. Hoke reports that Congressman John Rankin of Mississippi – the notorious racist who sat on the Veteran Affairs Committee and accused black soldiers of causing high fatalities in the war – was particularly rankled by the orientation piece. Hoke sat through the hearings of the Veteran Affairs Committee, and reports that, under Rankin’s guidance, it “sounded like a Nazi tribunal.” He also mentions in passing Martin Dies’ special Committee to Investigate Un-American Activities – precursor of the standing House Committee on Un-American Activities -and its witch-hunters who were doggedly determined to pin a communist label on every liberal in private and public life. Hoke declines to go into the sordid details of the Dies Committee, but he provides us with considerable information on one H. Ralph Burton, chief counsel for “the worst committee of the House” – the Military Affairs Committee.

“At some point in his training something must have happened to turn his emotions toward a rather pointed Red-baiting, to venomous anti-Semitism and anti-Negroism… and to thoroughly reactionary and garbled economic, political and social thinking,” reports Hoke. Burton had served as special counsel for William Ludicke, the number-two Nazi in the United States, and had been counsel for the DAR during its blatant Red-baiting days, and he had also been counsel for the Coalition of Patriotic Societies, an umbrella organization for numerous Tory organizations. Burton was intimate with Walter Steele, editor and publisher of the fascist publication – ‘National Republic.’ Furthermore, he was general counsel in Maryland for Father Coughlin’s National Union for Social Justice – the enormously influential Father Coughlin was a pro-Nazi priest who entertained Nazis in his home. H. Ralph Burton’s partner and son, Robert Burton, carried credentials authorizing him to represent the Military Affairs Committee, frequently visited the Japanese Embassy, consorted with and was attorney for certain Nazi sympathizers under investigation by the F.B.I.

Hoke recounts that, in 1939, H. Ralph Burton was an investigator for the WPA Sub-Committee of the House Appropriations Committee. His objective was to discredit and harm the Federal Theatre and the Federal Writers Project. Without any proof whatsoever, he accused people of being communists, ruining their reputations. He was determined to show that the WPA was dominated by Jews, Communists, and persons of foreign origin. A number of politicians in those days believed the New Deal was a communist conspiracy, and that the Army had been infiltrated by Jews, communists and other “undesirables” – Burton’s investigators asked Army executives to supply lists of employees with Jewish names.

Burton was definitely a powerful man – Army big-shots flew soldiers in from the front lines at his behest to be questioned by him. Hoke supposes Burton and his colleagues thought the pamphlet against Fascism was Communist propaganda and did not want controversial issues such as, “What are we fighting for?”, discussed by soldiers. Piece # 64 was pulled and military personnel were transferred or were separated from the service. Thereafter vigorous protests were made by Army personnel concerning a radical change for the worse in the entire Army Reorientation Course. Hoke does not tell us everything about the incident because he was still bound by secrecy at the time – fortunately the restriction on Piece # 64 had been lifted, permitting Hoke to quote it. “I will not mince words,” Hokes writes. “This should be clearly understood. H. Ralph Burton, Chief Counsel of the House Military Affairs Committee, forced the removal of Army Reorientation personnel and forced a change in Orientation courses because he, Burton, didn’t like what the Army had to say about Fascism.”

Hoke mentions another item suppressed by the Military Affairs Committee: Races of Mankind, an impartial analysis of the race question written by anthropologists. Hoke speculates that H. Ralph Burton was behind that too, probably making sure his investigators would find some Communistic slant to it.

Apparently the ruling elite of the United States were reluctant to define American fascism and to identify prominent fascists within the American government according to that definition. George Seldes in Facts and Fascism(1943), writes:

“The Office of War Information published millions of words… intended to inspire the people and raise the morale… but it is also a fact that to the date of this writing the OWI did not publish a single pamphlet, poster, broadside, or paper telling either the civilian population or the men and women in uniform what Fascism really is…. Certainly when it comes to relating foreign Fascism with native American Fascism there is a conspiracy of silence in which the OWI, the American press, and all the forces of reaction in America are united…. The real Fascists of America are never named in the commercial press. It will not even hint at the fact that there are many powerful elements working against a great democracy…. I call these elements Fascists…. You may substitute Tories, or Economic Royalists, or Vested Interests…. Their main object was to end the civil liberties of the nation, destroy the labor unions, end the free press, and make more money at the expense of a slave nation.”

Have they succeeded? Have fascists in disguise taken over our government? Are fascists presently engaged in a vast right-wing authoritarian conspiracy to subvert the democratic principles the United States is founded on? Of course not. The very supposition is ridiculous if not seditious. At least patriotic Americans think so. Still, perhaps everyone should go over the Army definition now that it is no longer classified.

Democracy Must Go!

Pearl Harbor Attack

CLOSETED FASCISTS STILL SECRETLY BELIEVE DEMOCRACY MUST GO!
BY
DAVID ARTHUR WALTERS

The following section of United States Army Orientation Fact Sheet #64 dated March 24, 1945, offended certain congressmen the most because its description of fascist traits reminded them of themselves:

“The basic principles of democracy stand in the way of their desires hence democracy must go! Anyone who is not a member of their inner gang has to do what he’s told. They permit no civil liberties, no equality before the law. They make their own rules and change them when they choose. If you don’t like it, it’s T.S.”

Henry Hoke, author of It’s A Secret, the well known expose of fascism published in 1945, stated that Congressman John Rankin of Mississippi, the notorious racist who sat on the Veteran Affairs Committee and who had accused black soldiers of causing high fatalities in the war, was rankled by the orientation piece. Hoke had sat through the hearings of the Veteran Affairs Committee, and reports that, under Rankin’s guidance, it “sounded like a Nazi tribunal.”

Hoke also mentions in passing Martin Dies’ Committee to Investigate Un-American Activities, precursor of the House Committee on Un-American Activities and its witch-hunters who were doggedly determined to pin a communist label on every liberal in private and public life. He declined to report on the sordid operations of the Dies Committee, but he did write at some length about H. Ralph Burton, the chief counsel for “the worst committee of the House” i.e. the Military Affairs Committee.

“At some point in his training something must have happened to turn his emotions toward a rather point Red-baiting, to venomous anti-Semitism and anti-Negroism… and to thoroughly reactionary and garbled economic, political and social thinking,” reported Hoke.

Burton had served as special counsel for William Ludicke, the number two Nazi in the United States. He had been counsel for the DAR during its blatant Red-baiting days. He had also been counsel for the Coalition of Patriotic Societies, an umbrella organization for numerous Tory organizations. He was also intimate with Walter Steele, editor and publisher of the fascist publication, ‘National Republic.’ Furthermore, he was general counsel in Maryland for Father Coughlin’s National Union for Social Justice, and the influential pro-Nazi priest who entertained Nazis in his home. H. Ralph Burton’s partner and son, Robert Burton, who carried credentials authorizing him to represent the Military Affairs Committee, frequently visited the Japanese Embassy, and had consorted with and was attorney for certain Nazi sympathizers who were under investigation by the F.B.I.

Hoke recounts that in 1939 H. Ralph Burton was an investigator for the WPA Sub-Committee of the House Appropriations Committee. His objective was to discredit and harm the Federal Theatre and the Federal Writers Project; he succeeded in harming individuals by accusing them of being communists without proof. He also was determined to show that the WPA was dominated by Jews, Communists, and persons of foreign origin. A number of politicians in those days believed the New Deal was a communist conspiracy and that the Army had been infiltrated by Jews, communists and other “undesirables.” Burton’s investigators asked Army executives to supply lists of employees with Jewish names.

Hoke does not say what specific role Burton played in suppressing the Army Reorientation Fact Sheet, but he believes Burton and his colleagues thought the piece against Fascism was Communist propaganda, and they certainly did not want controversial issues such as “What are we fighting for?” discussed by soldiers.

H. Ralph Burton was a powerful man. Hoke said he knew for a fact that Army big-shots would fly soldiers in at the behest of Burton, even from the front lines, just to be questioned by him. However that may be, Piece #64 was eventually pulled and military personnel were transferred or were separated from the service. Thereafter vigorous protests were made by Army personnel concerning a radical change for the worse in the entire Army Reorientation Course.

Of course Hoke’s main concern in It’s A Secret is secrecy. He raised the suppression of Piece #64 in the chapter entitled ‘Who Investigates the Investigators?’ as a particular instance of same; in fact, secrecy prevented him from telling the full story about the incident. The further we delve into the investigations and the persons involved, the more we get the impression that investigators, attorneys, and politicians were involved in a vast right-wing authoritarian conspiracy, one that we might loosely call a ‘fascist’ conspiracy to subvert the democratic principles the United States is allegedly founded on.

Hoke goes on to discuss Burton’s role, in ‘One of the big mysteries behind the House Military Affairs Committee—what happened to the so-called Rohl-Wymann investigations.’ He refers his readers to Fulton Lewis’ sensational story, broadcast on November, 1943. Fulton Lewis shows were broadcast on weekday evenings to over 16 million people.

Lewis was Richard Nixon’s close friend; after one election, Nixon said, “Except for you, Fulton, it never would have happened.” Liberals remember Lewis well for saying, “The honest American of liberal political bent, even a former Communist who has seen the light and is willing to admit it, has nothing to fear in the way of persecution from any Congressional investigating committee, including that of my friend, Joe McCarthy.”

The sensational story appertained to German espionage at Pearl Harbor, and a “missing Chapter Five.’ We have this fragment from a cover letter forwarding the Army Pearl Harbor Board’s report intimating that a fraud in construction at Pearl Harbor contributed to the scope of the disaster there at Japanese hands:

“Preamble: Authority for the Army Pearl Harbor Board and its action taken. This Board was appointed pursuant to the provisions of Public Law 339, 78th Congress, approved 13 June 1944… Subject: Report of House Military Affairs Committee dated 14 June 1944 alleging neglect and misconduct of Colonel Theodore Wyman, Jr., and others concerning Hawaiian and Canadian Defense Projects, and which was signed by Robert P. Patterson, Acting Secretary of War. This supplemental order directed the Board to consider the phase of the report which related to the Pearl Harbor disaster…. We append to this report a section indicating the additional information and documents which have been made available as a result of our extended investigation, and which probably did not come to the attention of the Roberts Commission; or, at least, were not mentioned in either of the testimony, documents or report of the Roberts Commission. We have been greatly aided by the Interim Report, Committee of Military Affairs, House of Representatives, Seventy-eighth Congress, 2nd Session, pursuant to H. Res. 30, A Resolution Authorizing the Committee on Military Affairs and the Committee on Naval Affairs to Study the Progress of the National War Effort, and the committee’s records, counsel, and investigation, with particular reference to the activities of Colonel Theodore Wyman, Jr., Hans Wilhelm Rohl, the Hawaiian Constructors, and others, as such activities had a bearing upon the Pearl Harbor disaster and what led up to it. We have been aided by the testimony of counsel from that committee and the complete record of the investigation of that committee on this subject and its exhibits. We have also heard testimony and investigated reports and reviewed affidavits of additional affiants, whose testimony came to light, or documents were discovered, after the conclusion of the investigation of the Committee on Military Affairs, as indicated in its Interim Report. We have also been aided by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Department of Justice, and the Report of the Tenney Committee in California. We transmit with this report the record of testimony of the witnesses consisting of 41 volumes and 70 exhibits. In the appendix to this report is a tabulation in detail of the …”

Henry Hoke provided his account of the Rohl-Lyman investigation of possible fraud, collusion and espionage at Pearl Harbor to illustrate his contention that independent investigators are needed to investigate Congressional investigators. He refuses to draw any conclusions as to the guilt or innocence of the persons involved, preferring to pose loaded questions about them. The implications are, therefore, clear to those of us who are prone to jumping to conclusions according to our favorite conspiracy theories, some of which are no doubt valid. There are shady characters in the halls of government, aides, lawyers and investigators who do the bidding of their superiors while looking after their own personal fortunes on the side. The majority of red-blooded Americans are well aware of the hypocrisy, and many of them who disbelieve in democracy actually condone or approve of the contradiction of promising words and actually deeds done. The government sworn to uphold the law employs people to violate it at home and abroad, where the law of the jungle ultimately applies.

The Rohl-Lyman investigation took place in 1943-44. It’s shady characters remind us of the ones Richard Nixon was enamored of when he formed his life-long friendship with Ronald Reagan while Reagan, whose acting career was in the dumps, was tattling on his fellow actors. When we examine those crucial years, we get the definite impression that business and politics were conspiring to subvert democracy, that influential individuals who were charged with protecting Americans from both Communism and Fascism were in fact advancing the interests of the American brand of fascism, using their investigations of the ‘Reds’ as cover: the enemies happened to be anyone who was interested in a more liberal distribution of social justice. Of course the American fascists would from time to time wrongly accuse others of being fascists in order to divert attention from themselves and perpetuate their ends.

Hoke got the impression that the Rohl-Lyman investigation was conducted by men who were deliberately hunting for material that would embarrass the Government. Radio-show host Fulton Lewis, Jr. found witness, Robert Hoffman, in Mexico City, and brought him to H. Ralph Burton, the power chief counsel and investigator for the House Military Affairs Committee. Hoffman supposedly had information about espionage at military installations in the Pacific. The Truman Committee and the F.B.I. wanted to talk to Hoffman in Washington, but Burton had him along with a team of investigators flown out to California on an Army plane, where they went to work for the Tenney Committee, the Fact-Finding Committee on Un-American Activities in California, chaired by Jack B. Tenney, predecessor to McCarthy.

Hoffman, Burton’s ‘witness’ from Mexico, and his team proceeded to investigate a contractor by the name “Hans Wilhelm Rohl”, known prior to the investigation as Bill Rohl, for allegedly using illegal contracting methods at Pearl Harbor. Exaggerated testimony and affidavits were submitted to the Committee to the effect that Rohl was a German agent. Later on, a confused witness, a maid, contradicted her sworn statement, saying she was “pushed” into making it, and did not even remember the name given to her, namely, Rohl.

On 8 march 1944 Rohl, the target of the investigation, provided an affidavit swearing that Burton’s witness-investigator Hoffman met with him at the Mayfair Hotel and demanded a bribe: $25,000 was to immediately be paid into Hoffman’s account; then Rohl would received a confirmation from Burton saying the investigation had been dropped, whereupon another $75,000 would have to be paid into Hoffman’s account. Hoffman then threatened Rohl’s son, telling him that if his father did not cooperate, he would be a bad trouble.

Rohl, according to his affidavit, had his secretary call Hoffman and give “No” for his answer. Rohl’s testimony together with other information was submitted. A second team found evidence exonerating Rohl. Burton dropped the investigation against Rohl and issued a report without mention of the material incriminating Burton and his investigators. He fired the lead investigator of the second investigation without explanation, which prompted another man to resign, a reputable business man who was serving the House committee without pay: his letter of resignation included a scathing attack on the shady tactics used by the Military Affairs Committee.

The Rohl-Wyman investigation was the subject of the then famously missing Chapter Five of the Army’s Report on Pearl Harbor to President Truman. When the original draft of the chapter was released on 6 October 1945, it thanked H. Ralph Burton for his “reliable information.” Secretary of War Patterson said an investigation subsequent to the report disproved the charges made and that there was no connection with the content of Chapter Five in respect to Colonel Wyman and others and the Pearl Harbor disaster.”

“In other words,” writes Hoke, “the original Army Board of Inquiry was fooled by the Tenney and Burton ‘evidence’… the wording of the Patterson statement reveals that someone in the Army found the new evidence which Burton so carefully concealed from the members of the House Military Affairs Committee,”

In retrospect we wonder if certain members of the Committee did in fact know what was going on. This is the very committee that had suppressed the Army Orientation pamphlet defining Fascism so that soldiers would know what they were fighting for and against. An impartial analysis of the “race question,” ‘Races of Mankind’, written by anthropologists, was also suppressed, and Hoke wonders if H. Ralph Burton was behind that too, suggesting that Burton made sure his investigators would find some Communistic slant to it.

Hoke said of Burton, in respect to the suppression of Fact Sheet #64, that “I will not mince words. This should be clearly understood. H. Ralph Burton, Chief Counsel of the House Military Affairs Committee, FORCED the removal of Army Reorientation personnel and forced a change in Orientation courses because he, Burton, didn’t like what the Army had to say about Fascism.”

The government and the media were reluctant to define American fascism and reveal the identity of American Fascists. George Seldes, in ‘Fascism on the Home Front,’ first chapter of Facts and Fascism (1943), put it this way:

“The Office of War Information published millions of words… intended to inspire the people and raise the morale… but it is also a fact that to the date of this writing the OWI did not publish a single pamphlet, poster, broadside, or paper telling either the civilian population or the men and women in uniform what Fascism really is…. Certainly when it comes to relating foreign Fascism with Native American Fascism there is a conspiracy of silence in which the OWI, the American press, and all the forces of reaction in America are united…. The real Fascists of America are never named in the commercial press. It will not even hint at the fact that there are many powerful elements working against a great democracy…. I call these elements Fascists…. You may substitute Tories, or Economic Royalists, or Vested Interests…. Their main object was to end the civil liberties of the nation, destroy the labor unions, end the free press, and make more money at the expense of a slave nation.”

Have they succeeded? Have fascists in disguise taken over our government? Have Americans been duped by “friendly” i.e. smiling fascists? Are fascists presently engaged in a vast right-wing authoritarian conspiracy to subvert the democratic principles the United States is founded on? Patriotic Americans think the very supposition is ridiculous if not seditious. They should read Henry Hoke’s book and go over the Army definition of fascism now that it is no longer classified. Alas that Hoke simply exposed a few fascists of his day without rendering a cogent theory of fascism so that it could be understood and the fascist activities of its proponents suppressed as un-American!

The Wonderful Honor System for Parolees

David Arthur Walters

PAROLE OFFICE IMAGE
Kansas City Parole office where parole officer fired gun
and threatened to commit suicide 2012

THE HONOR SYSTEM FOR PAROLEES BY DAVID ARTHUR WALTERS

I have lately encountered many parolees chatting in the back of the city bus that goes up and down Kansas City’s Main Street. I was listening in on a lively discussion just yesterday, and heard a convict say that he did not like the “honor system” very much, that serving ones time out in prison was better than living in the half-way house.

Another con said that was nonsense, because if a man serves his whole time and has no place to go when he gets out, he is dumped on the street in the cold with nothing but a few bucks, and when that is gone, he has no choice but to steal, maybe mug some old man or woman walking out of the convenience…

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The Preacher Preached

CHARLOTTE

 

The Preacher Preached
by Bruce Campbell Walters

The preacher preached.
I made no sense
Of anything he said.
My eyes as though not eyes of mine
Witnessed things unreal
As Charlotte, paler than before,
Was lowered toward the ground.
All night long the cold rain fell,
Invading Charlotte’s grave.
And in an hour most dark,
Charlotte as a Spirit came
Translucent to our home,
But came not for a view of me
But came to see her child,
Little David.

 

Malicious Dissent Is Caused by Liberal Books

NOTHING Sebastian Ferreira
Art by Sebastian Ferreira

 

MALICIOUS DISSENT

BY

DAVID ARTHUR WALTERS

 

Rebellion is caused by liberal books

Thomas Hobbes rendered his opinion on malicious dissent shortly after the English civil wars of the 1640’s, considering it to be a high crime: “It belongeth to the Office of the Soveraign, to make a right application of Punishments and Rewards. And seeing the end of punishment is not revenge, and discharging of choler; but correction, either of the offender, or of others by his example; the severest Punishments are to be inflicted for those Crimes, that are of the most Danger to the Publique; such as those which proceed from malice to the Government established; those that spring from contempt of Justice; those that provoke Indignation in the Multitude…”

Hobbes believed rebellion was frequently caused by the reading of political and liberal books. According to him, young men are misled by the classic accounts of popular uprisings and wars successfully waged by ancient democracies, wrongly attributing the more successful exploits to the form of government rather than to the imitation of particular strong men.

“From the reading, I say, of such books, men have undertaken to kill their Kings, because the Greek and Latine writers, in their books, make it lawfull, and laudable, for any man so to do; provided before he do it, he call him Tyrant.”

No doubt Hobbes would have approved of William Pitt’s crackdown on dissidence in the 1790s, and he might have recommended even severer measures, for, after all, as he wrote elsewhere, in Leviathan:

“For the Lawes of Nature (as Justice, Equity, Modesty, Mercy, and in summe) doing to other, as wee would be done to,) of themselves, without the terrour of some Power, to cause them to be observed, are contrary to our naturall Passions, that carry us to Partiality, Pride, Revenge, and the like. And Covenants, without the Sword, are but Words, and of no strength to secure a man at all.”

The American colonists begged to disagree, not so much with the form of the tyranny but with its exercise from afar. The American Revolution is viewed by some British scholars not as a revolution but rather as changing of the guard that resulted in local autonomy under an elected king, aristocratic senate, and house of commons. However that may be, the liberty of United States citizens so valiantly wrested from the clutches of British tyranny inspired European radicals to follow suit; their movement was driven underground to emerge forcefully again in 1830, in France, mother of a genuinely democratic revolution and one reactionary “terrour” after another to enharness liberty unleashed.

The English radicals so much admired in the new United States of America were put down by Pitt’s government as England embarked on its long war against Revolutionary France. The war against France so vehemently denounced by Francophilic English radicals seems just in retrospect: not only had France moved on Holland, but she had also declared war on England. As for the sordid gain of scoundrels who take refuge in patriotism; there was plenty of hard-won booty to be had, but only after the nobler principles of patriotism were laid down by loyal lords to secure their share of the loot. In the United States of America, the “revolution within the revolution” is likely to re-emerge from the disasters of neoconservative policy.

XYX

A Successful Loser’s Fear of Success

DOUBLE ME

 

A SUCCESSFUL LOSER’S FEAR OF SUCCESS
BY
DAVID ARTHUR WALTERS


I have been intimately acquainted with my doppelganger for many years, so I know quite a lot about him. Walter is a loser, suffering from a compulsion to repeatedly fail time and time again while not even knowing that he is suffering. 

Walter and I never became good friends, and the fault is mine. Although I converse with him at length when I inadvertently bump into him, I dislike him for some reason unbeknown to me. I go out of my way to avoid him, but there he is again. He is aware of my antipathy, but he does not mind. In fact, he is the one who maintains our relationship, and considers me as his best friend! 

“You are like the cheeseburgers at Tony’s,” he explained. “I was starving when I walked in there the first time, so I ordered a cheeseburger and ate it. I have been eating that cheeseburger for years now, and that’s all I order. You are like that cheeseburger. I met you and I liked you. I know you don’t like me that much but you are good enough for me, so you are stuck with my friendship.” 

Walter felt abandoned at an early age. His mother died before he was a year old. He was left with his grandmother for awhile. His memories of that period are fragmentary. He recalls battles with his older brother in the kitchen; his brother fell asleep on the couch and died a few years later. He remembers riding in the back of a Greyhound bus; watching people blow smoke rings; eating a pack of cigarettes, getting sick on the tobacco, jumping up and down and falling through the bottom of his crib. 

His father remarried and took him into his new home. He remembers nothing of this second, short-lived marriage. His stepmother was the mayor’s daughter. The mayor was a leading Mason. Walter’s dad hated Masons because he felt they were involved in sinister conspiracies. As the marriage fell apart, the mayor had Walter’s father arrested and sent from jail to jail for several weeks. In the interim, Walter’s stepmother filed motions for custody. But his father was released, and then he “kidnapped” Walter and left him at a foster home at age six. He remembers being dropped off. It was a shocking experience. He grew to love his foster home, however, although he looked forward to his father’s visits every few months. 

Walter’s foster parents were kind to him. He had several curious sexual experiences. His foster brother repeatedly tried to teach him to have intercourse with the girl next door when he was nine. He was a good boy, even when they innocently used her mother’s cosmetics to decorate the walls. 

He does not know why, but when people asked him what he was going to do when he grew up, he would answer, “I’m going to be a bum.” In fact his greatest fear is of becoming a homeless derelict. 

His father eventually remarried, picked him up and took him to a new home in another state—he cried all the way. When he arrived there, he heard his new stepmother screaming, “Get rid of him or I’ll leave you.” 

Walter’s life was relatively miserable thereafter. He was a bright boy, but he turned to juvenile delinquency, which amounted to little more than breaking a few garage windows, and using a cigarette to burn a hole in a curtain that caught afire when he left, almost burning down the church. He was only bad because he thought he would prove his stepmother right: “He is a bad boy!” she frequently said. His father told him he was “born of a bad seed,” from “insane” people, explaining that “mental illness is inherited from fathers. Little did Walter know at the time that his father, who enjoyed reading psychology books, would soon be diagnosed as a “paranoid schizophrenic.” 

He ran away from home at age thirteen and lived on the streets of several cities. He eventually managed to lie his way into good jobs and to hold them. He felt rage from time to time, expressing it by drinking heavily, breaking things around the house, but he would stop short of injuring anyone; he said he could not bring himself to murder or maim anyone, and that kept him out of the mob. 

He wanted to create the family he had not had, so he married. He was immature and inept, but he was learning. Just as he was really improving his relations with his wife because he genuinely loved her, she left him. He was crushed: he fell into a deep depression for two years thereafter during which he attempted suicide three times. After the last attempt, which almost succeeded, the doctor at the hospital told him his wife had called to wish him dead, at which point the depression lifted. 

He tried marriage again a few years later with the same result—divorce—except this time he left his wife, and was glad he did. His second marriage reminded him of his miserable life with his second stepmother, so he felt no remorse so when he left his second wife and went directly into the arms of another woman he had just met. Since that time he was quick to break off any relationship even if it was going well. 

He travelled around the country from one job to another. Just when he would be up for a promotion or raise, he said he felt compelled to quit and move on to realize a childhood dream of becoming a great American author. He might have done that without having to hold down jobs if only he had played his cards right when he knew he had a winning hand. He recounted to me six separate occasions where he had an opportunity to secure a small fortune for himself, but he passed up certain success, saying he was afraid to sign, for instance, the real estate contract, or engage in some other business deal. 

He returned to our hometown for a few years, but then he quit a good job, and ran away again, to Southern California, to a place he had previously loved, where he had of course previously failed when just on the verge of success. He was offered an offshore position that would have allowed him to avoid taxes and to become a multi-millionaire and retire to writing books, but he was frightened by the prospect of success, and made such an ass of himself that the job offer was withdrawn. 

All this because he felt compelled to take up writing immediately. Since then he confined his writing to material for which there is little or no demand, and has made no effort to market it. He was almost broke, and planned to jump to his death when he ran out of money. I advised him to get help, but he laughed me off; he seemed to be delighted with his life as it is. 

He was surprised when I looked in the mirror and said I was researching the phenomenon known as fear of success, and had a book in mind: 

“What a coincidence!” he exclaimed, “You ought to write about me, for crying out loud!” 

He permitted me to describe his predicament and to publish the following little confession:

“I invariably work my own ruin. I know exactly what I am doing, but I cannot stop myself from spiting the respectable self I built up, usually by writing useless, pessimistic tracts. I must throw away everything: my job, my residence, my savings, my favorite hobbies, and the savior or two who mystically shows up with an even better opportunity than the one I just had in hand and threw away. Then I devote myself to making notes and developing them into articles nobody wants to read. There goes all the hard work and everything I had to show for it. I have three things left besides worn-out clothes: a flute, a camera, and a pair of binoculars. People do not want me around without money and property, thank God! This time I have almost succeeded with my return to poverty, at which point I would normally ruin that successful decline by climbing heroically back out of it. But this time there is no time for that; hence my effort will soon result in my self-assisted death. But do not worry! I have it coming and I will enjoy the light at the end of the tunnel. You see, despite the mental anguish this destruction of my social or reputable self causes, despite the anxieties which I can avoid by thinking about irrelevant subjects, I am usually incredibly happy! 

“You may write me up as the excellent textbook case in order to help society get over itself. Please say I have never submitted to psychoanalysis, or psycho-therapeutic drugs except self-administered weed, horse tranquilizer, and alcohol. I simply love myself too much to commit myself to socialization therapy or get hopped up on coke, speed, heroin and such. 

“Now I am completely alone without a wife or girlfriend, without a job, a church, a club. a real home. I am a recluse. That leads me to wonder, How can anyone not be happy being all alone by himself to love himself all the more? 

“It’s not that I hate others. Not at all. I love everybody but can only love them in the abstract. My past has always been a mistake. That’s why I withdrew from it, to figure it out and save myself, and as the great author of my dreams and schemes, to save mankind from being drowned. 

“I became obsessed with the chances lost in the past in contrast to my great last chance of being a hero and saving the world. But to do be an artist I had to have my solitude. After awhile, I realized I was in a trap, that I had entombed myself. But then I began to really enjoy being alone with my reflections, and I began to think, with happiness like this, who needs other people?”

Walter, despite his repetition compulsion, does not really seem to be experiencing any anxiety; quite to the contrary. He evidently takes delight in the withdrawal of his love from things in order to love his favorite thing better; in fine, his beloved self, whatever that is, for he refuses to define it. He claims he is his own “best friend” in the sense that “friend” means “free.” I could not help but think he would be his own worst enemy in the absolute freedom he obviously desires, for that sort of freedom is a dud, a bomb which cannot explode because it has no resistance. Absolute freedom from objects is really nothing but nothing, or “death.” Objects kill the Subject, but it’s best to stay in between two hard rocks in my opinion. 

Yet there does seems to be a trace of falsity to Walter’s happy face in the mirror, as if it were a cover for pain, or even a product of pain. Is he some sort of a masochist? Does his love keep his death instinct at bay? I know I would be severely depressed if I were him. I imagine he wakes up sometimes and is terrified for a moment before he puts on his cosmetic. He said not when I asked. 

He was bubbling over with enthusiasm, like some sort of a god-possessed maniac, the last time I spoke with him. I mentioned God; he laughed, insisting an objective god is absurd. When I asked him if he believed he was a subjective god, he said, yes, he was, but I got the impression he was kidding. I suggested he seek professional help instead of leaping off his balcony with his manuscript, which he said he was doomed to do. He said anyone in their right mind would kill themselves right away, and hung up on me. I thought of calling Social Services, but decided not to; better to leave well enough alone. 

Walter’s disposition does not necessarily prove Freud true on the death instinct. He demonstrates a propensity to repeat behavior that causes them to fail, as well as tendencies which appear to be self-destructive. Appearances, however, are deceiving, and our nature hopelessly complex. He certainly takes pleasure in surviving, and he succeeds, in a way, by failing. In fact, he identifies himself as a “successful loser.” 

Swedenborg said, “Love is your life.” Walter’s instinctive love of life masks the death instinct Freud would abstract from it by boiling off the love. Freud recognized that people compulsively repeat both pleasurable and painful “material,” but he wanted to reduce the repetition down to only those “rare instances” where the death instinct is distinct. In Beyond the Pleasure Principle, Freud mentions cases where the “perpetual recurrence of the same thing” is obvious in active behavior associated with a person’s character trait: the man who is always betrayed by his friends; the benefactor whose protégés are always ungrateful; the lovers whose various affairs have the same conclusion. 

“We are much more impressed,” Freud wrote, “by cases where the subject appears to have a passive experience, over which he has no influence, but in which he meets with a repetition of the same fatality. There is the case, for instance, of the woman who married three successive husbands each of whom fell ill soon afterwards and had to be nursed by her on their death-bed.” 

Well, that certainly rings a bell today: we know of several cases over the past few years where mothers lost their children and wives lost their husbands; evidence was dug up sometime later, even years later, and they were charged with serial-murders. That, however, proves or disproves nothing in respect to the death instinct. Freud, after mentioning his examples, went on to say, “If we take into account observations such as these… we shall find courage to assume that there really does exist in the mind a compulsion to repeat which overrides the pleasure principle.” Furthermore, “Enough is left unexplained to justify the hypothesis of a compulsion to repeat – something that seems more primitive, more elementary, more instinctual than the pleasure principle which it overrides. But if a compulsion to repeat does operate in the mind, we should be glad to know something about it…” 

Indeed. Therefore, with Walter’s assistance lately, I persist with my research for what may be my seminal work on the fear of success, noting that many psychiatrists insist there is no such thing as a compulsive death drive. That issue is, in any event a nonevent, metaphysical and irrelevant to scientific practice even as a working hypothesis. It is best in this business to follow in Newton’s footsteps; they abhor “hypotheses” and prefer to “stick to the business at hand.” On the other hand, I believe that if the shoe fits and is worn well with good effect, what does it matter whether it exists or not? 

Doppelganger Related:

ALICE PACKER’S SHADOW