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Ron Capshaw - page 3

Ron Capshaw has 238 articles published.

Ron Capshaw is a Senior Contributor to The Liberty Conservative from Midlothian, Va. His work has appeared in National Review, The Weekly Standard, and the American Spectator.
Posted on in History

David Irving: Back On The Lecture Tour

Holocaust-Denying historian David Irving has been activated into a lecture tour by the new film, Denial, which depicts his 1996 lawsuit against U.S. historian Deborah E. Lipstadt for charging him with denying the Holocaust. Even though Irving lost the case when the judge agreed with Lipstadt and deemed him a “Holocaust denier,” the far-right historian is nevertheless embarking on a month-long lecture tour to once again combat this accusation. In the past, he has stated that the number of Jews murdered by the Nazis was greatly exaggerated, that Hitler was not involved in the Holocaust, and that Auschwitz did not… Keep Reading

Posted on in History

Patriotism Versus Science: George Orwell on H.G. Wells

One of the reasons conservatives feel a kinship with British socialist writer George Orwell is that he was not afraid to embrace concepts of patriotism over cold empiricism or dialectical thinking. A good case in point was his taking to the woodshed Fabian Socialist writer H.G.Welles in a remarkable essay written while the Nazi bombs were blitzing England. Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture/History

Lester Cole: Hater

When I was a graduate student, my mentor of sorts, John Patrick Diggins, told me of an incident he had with blacklisted screenwriter Lester Cole, who along with nine others, testified before Congress 70 years ago, in 1947. Both were watching the Watergate hearings, when Cole exploded to Diggins, “See, it has to be done like Castro—democracy doesn’t work!” Whether true or not, this moment certainly fit Cole’s character. For, as the only member of the Hollywood Ten who remained a Stalinist, Cole hated till his dying day. Keep Reading

Posted on in History/Politics

Mailer and MacDonald: Rescuing The Warren Commission

For 50 years, critics of the Warren Commission have usually been associated with the Left. From Khrushchev to Oliver Stone (hardly a leap) have obviously sought a more politically satisfying sniper than the grubby deadbeat Oswald. With regard to the Warren Commission, it is merely a cover job designed to misdirect attention from the true conspirators onto Oswald. But not all leftists attacked the conclusions of the Warren Commission. Two writers, a former Trotskyite, the other a former Communist supporter, came (sometimes reluctantly) to the conclusion that Oswald indeed acted alone. Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture

Ed Asner: Professional Hater

When it was rumored that leftist actor Ed Asner was slated to play Stalin it was only natural, for although deprived of Stalin’s lethal tools, Asner has emulated all the left-wing hate and paranoia of the Soviet dictator. Serving two terms as president of the Screen Actor’s Guild in the 1980s, Asner sought to use the Guild to oppose then-President Ronald Reagan’s policies against the totalitarian Sandinistas in Nicaragua, who ruled the country with an iron fist, shutting down opposition newspapers, jailing critics, and beating up those who tried to vote. Keep Reading

Posted on in History

Big Government Turf War: Stone vs Schlesinger

Dwight MacDonald, defending the Warren Commission, once made the valid point that if rightists did kill Kennedy, the liberal Lyndon Johnson would have been delighted to expose them for political gain. Such an argument was ignored by Oliver Stone in his ultra-paranoid JFK, in which he accused “fanatical Cold Warriors” of killing JFK because he was seeking to end the Cold War; and of particular importance to the Vietnam-obsessed Stone, ending the U.S. commitment to South Vietnam. Keep Reading

Posted on in History

Alvah Bessie: Fighting On Most Fronts

Psychiatrists who deal with returning military veterans note that those who have seen almost constant combat have trouble switching off, and search for an outlet to satisfy their martial needs. This was never more true for Spanish Civil War veteran and Communist Party member Alvah Bessie. Whenever his Party needed a rigid enforcer of the Party line toward revisionist members, and a fighter against the “fascists,” represented by HUAC, Bessie was front and center. Keep Reading

Posted on in History/Politics

Taft: Principles Over Emotional Satisfaction

John F. Kennedy’s 1957 book crediting a bi-partisan group of politicians who, as the title stated, exhibited “Profiles in Courage,” would later be revealed not to have been penned by the then-senator, but by his chief speechwriter (and later, Camelot spear-carrier Ted Sorenson). But that makes the inclusion of uber-conservative Republican Senator Robert Taft all the more remarkable. For Kennedy (actually more conservative than has been portrayed) was already strategizing how to garner support from the much-needed liberal groups in order to run for president. Taft was a hard swallow for liberals, who remembered the Senator’s initial support for Joseph… Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture/History

American Cold War Culture: Liberal’s Favorite Boogeyman

Liberals today smirk at American Cold War culture of the late 40s to early 60s with their typical moral vanity. Unable to avoid the failures and horrors of communism, they nevertheless try to salvage 1960s’ era views of American culture as hysterically misinformed about a superpower that had missiles pointing at the U.S. But upon examination, it is apparent that the Left has done considerable editing by halting history around 1970, thus skipping whole decades of Venona revelations, the Berlin Wall falling and workers in Red Square toppling Lenin’s statue, resuming it. Hence archaic terms like military industrial complex can… Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture/History

X-Rating The Holocaust: Dalton Trumbo’s Night Of The Aurochs

“I fear I am writing pornography.” So said former Communist and blacklisted screenwriter Dalton Trumbo about his on-again off-again attempt to address the Holocaust through the first-person narration of a concentration camp officer. When Auschwitz was liberated (ironically by the Red Army, which would soon institute a pogrom against Jews), a variety of writers tried to grapple with the Holocaust. Various interpretations of the Holocaust have been offered though out the years: Marxist (the Final Solution was the logical culmination of heartless capitalism and the fascism inherent in it); the banality of evil, the we-are-all-responsible school, etc.ect. ad nausaem. Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture/History

John Wayne: Stalin’s Target

Asked once toward the end of his life about what he was proudest of, liberal activist and actor Paul Newman cited his appearance on Nixon’s “enemies list.” The flip side to this occurred with conservative actor John Wayne making it onto Stalin’s enemies list, with much more lethal consequences than anything Nixon had at his disposal. According to those close to Wayne, Stalin ordered Wayne liquidated after learning of the outspoken conservative actor’s popularity and anticommunist beliefs from a Russian film-maker who visited New York in 1949. Keep Reading

Posted on in History

David Ferrie: Fulfilling The Seedy Side of the JFK “Assassins”

Whenever the Grassy Knoll crowd needs a figure to represent the repellent seediness of JFK’s “actual” killers, they trot out David Ferrie. Dead for fifty years, the wigged, eyebrow glued macho homosexual has lived on in Kennedy conspiracy lore, memorably portrayed by a hyper-manic Joe Pesci in Oliver Stone’s laughable JFK, and is the pivotal figure that finally convinces Oswald to fire from the Texas School Book Depository at a president Oswald cannot muster up any feelings of hate toward in Don Delillo’s more sober Libra. Called in typically bombastic style by the headline grabbing, paranoid Jim Garrison, the District… Keep Reading

Posted on in News

Seth Rogen Feels The Anger

Actor Seth Rogen, who turned the usually well-trained Green Hornet character into a prat-falling clown, wants to turn the often violent, and masked, anti-Trump protesters into a “normal” part of daily life. Although not wanting to “insult people who voted for Donald Trump,” he wants to mainstream “the idea that a lot of people do not think that he is a good president, and do not think that he is bringing the country in a good direction, and not making it seem like some fringe, out-there thing that only really aggressive people who have whipped themselves into some sort of… Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture

William Peter Blatty: Social Conservatism Beneath the Gore

When William Peter Blatty, author of The Exorcist (and whose screenplay for its adaptation won him the Academy Award), died in January, tributes poured in praising the former Jesuit student for creating the ultimate horror masterpiece. But now as then, people didn’t realize that despite the bull-bellowing blasphemies and head-spinning, Blatty had an ideological purpose in writing the book–a purpose that was socially conservative in nature. Keep Reading

Posted on in News

Paglia To Feminists: Admire Men

For decades men, particularly of the white variety, have been blamed by feminists for everything wrong in society. But a lesbian/feminist writer is championing men. and is demanding that feminists do the same thing. In an interview with Broadly, Camille Paglia blasts those feminists who’ve taken over the women’s movement by “male-bashing” as “fanatics” and “borderline personalities.” Regarding the latter, Paglia cites the example of such “damaged” women as feminist Kate Millet for ruining feminist discourse (“her life has been an endless series of mental breakdowns”). Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture

Joan Didion: Tough Girl

For those writers who began as conservatives on his magazine and graduated into liberalism, William F. Buckley of National Review called them the “apostates.” Probably the most notorious of these figures was Joan Didion, who, in the words of Buckley’s sister Priscilla, started as “a conservative” staffer and ended up a “flaming liberal.” At first glance, Joan Didion’s trajectory seemed to bear this out. She went from writing for National Review and voting for arch-conservative Barry Goldwater to defending Bill Clinton at the height of his impeachment proceedings, to lambasting George W. Bush, to voting for Barack Obama in 2008.… Keep Reading

Posted on in News

The ACLU: Once A Protector of Free Speech, Now A Militant Organizer

The American Civil Liberties Union was founded in 1920, in response to the Woodrow Wilson administration’s jailing/and or deporting those who dared to speak out against World War I. Its focus was protecting freedom of speech, and in periods not amenable to such focus have defended striking workers, blacks, American Indians, Jehovah Witnesses, and even Nazis. But that was then. Now the ACLU has violated its history and gone partisan; in place of defending everyone’s right to protest, they have cherry-picked who should be afforded the most effort, and are selecting the issues that should be protested. Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture/Philosophy

Hitchens and Hiss

Despite the exposure of the Cambridge Spies, a group of Soviet moles operating out of British Intelligence, and their subsequent defection to the other side, the British have always boasted of not succumbing to a panic attack of McCarthyism. It was true that investigations into Soviet espionage were done quietly and almost exclusively directed at the employers of Philby, Burgess, McLean, and Blunt rather than any publicity-grabbing interrogations of the entertainment industry. To rescue some national pride for America, it should be noted, however, that unlike the Spies who settled any debate about their guilt by escaping to the other… Keep Reading

Posted on in News

Not So Far-Fetched: Kucinich Supports Trump’s Wiretapping Claim Based On His Own Experiences

Say what you will about former Democratic congressman and uber-leftist Dennis Kucinich he is at least consistent about his views on wiretapping, so much so that he is actually supporting Republican President Donald Trump. In contrast to Nancy Pelosi, who once said of wiretapping under Obama that “people don’t mind giving up some rights in exchange for safety,” Kucinich, in a–ye gods–column for Fox News refuses to split hairs. Addressing the “contempt” that has greeted the President’s “assertion that his phones at Trump tower were tapped last year,” Kucinich has defended the claim based on his own experiences: … “I… Keep Reading

Posted on in History

Walter Krivitisky: Outing Stalin

Of all the events that triggered mass defections by communists from their party, the military partnership between Hitler and Stalin in 1939 may have been that caused the most. Hitler and Stalin’s joint invasion of democratic Poland registered shock waves among the communist faithful who joined the Party out of the perception that the Soviet Union was against Nazism. Arthur Koestler, Jr. spoke for many when he documented his disgust with the agreement: “I remained in that state of suspended animation until the day when the swastika was hoisted on Moscow airport in honor of Ribbentrop’s arrival and the Red… Keep Reading

Posted on in History/Politics

Truman’s Spine

One of Ronald Reagan’s more obvious fallacies was his location of the date “the Democratic Party left me” as 1948. For this was during the reign of Harry Truman, a liberal anticommunist par excellence; indeed, Reagan’s strategy for causing a Soviet implosion in 1989 was partly traceable to Truman’s containment policy begun in 1947 (Reagan did contribute to this policy the crucial strategy of forcing the Soviets to compete in a costly arms race that assured the implosion courtesy of their flawed economic system). One could trace the Cold War, at least on the American side, to Truman’s meeting with… Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture/History/Politics

Morrie Ryskind: Communism Not Funny

Groucho Marx, a reluctant petitioner for the Hollywood Ten, once lamented that the 1947 HUAC hearings into Communist influence in Hollywood, had not been used as source material for a Marx Brothers’ film. The brothers’ unique brand of surrealist comedy would, he believed, found an ideal setting in the question-answer format and the perfect set of foils with the career politicians of HUAC. In a sense, one of the brothers did participate, and there was comedy, but not from him, nor of the intentional kind. Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture/History

Edward Dmytryk: Paying His Dues

One of the charges lodged at Hollywood communists who voluntarily revealed their politics to Congress during the blacklist period was that said volunteers did it to avoid jail or get back on the studio payroll, or both. Director Edward Dymytrk has always been hard for them to spin. Originally one of the Hollywood Ten, the first set of communists in 1947 to testify, or in their case, not to testify by refusing to answer direct questions from Congress, Dmytryk, although having left the Communist Party two years before, nevertheless went to jail with the other 9 in order to prove… Keep Reading

Posted on in Politics

Bernstein and Clinton: Losing Clarity

Before Watergate, Carl Bernstein was known among journalists as being a leftist son of blacklisted parents and a protege of the fellow-traveling journalist I.F Stone. When Watergate arrived, however, Bernstein became known as the epitome of the journalist speaking truth to power. But when he is confronted by the specter of Hillary Clinton, his post-Watergate persona is abandoned, and the protege of the biased Stone takes over. Rather than dilate on the recollections even of friends from the 1960s who regarded Clinton as power-hungry, more interested in the nuts and bolts of getting into office rather than any New Left… Keep Reading

Posted on in History

The Conflicted Nature of Robert Oppenheimer

In many ways, the father of the Atomic Bomb, J. Robert Oppenheimer, has long been portrayed by liberals as a figure horrified about what he unleashed on the world, particularly with regard to Hiroshima and Nagasaki. However, in one film, Fat Man and Little Boy, he was portrayed as conscience-striken from the get-go. But the reality was different. Initially Oppenheimer approached the project as a purely technical problem. It was only after the experiment worked that he allowed the moral dimension in. His background in literature—the choice of “Trinity” was his, after a John Donne poem that he liked—made Oppenheimer recall… Keep Reading

Posted on in History/Philosophy

H.L Mecken: Pro-German Rather Than Libertarian

H.L Mencken’s reputation as an independent-minded journalist rests on his lampooning of American politicians, his championship of, but not political sympathies with dissidents prosecuted and deported by the American government during World War I, and his public role as a defender of Scopes during the Evolution vs Bible Monkey Trial in 1925. Conservatives today claim him for his libertarian opposition to the New Deal, his fierce commitment to civil liberties, and his denouncement of collectivism in all forms. Liberals adopt him for his attacks on Christian fundamentalism, his faith in science, and his opposition to World War I. But what… Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture/Politics

Censoring Comic Books: The Left and Political Correctness

When the Left requires a distraction for their own bad behavior, they always cite the 1950s, a decade ingrained in even the most uneducated mind as owned by a censorious, hysterical Right. In their estimation, spearheaded by an anti-anti-communist Victor Navasky, the Right burned books, shredded the Constitution, and caused suicides with their fascist behavior. But even within this decade, there were challenges to this view that it was only the Right who acted undemocratically. Against the very real threat to free speech fostered by Senator Joseph McCarthy, in which books by communist authors were removed from overseas Army libraries… Keep Reading

Posted on in History/Politics

Islamic Ties To Hitler

In his last great battle in a lifetime of dust-ups, the late Christopher Hitchens in the aftermath of Sept. 11th, coined the term “Islamofascists” to describe and denounce the Muslim world. Linking it to 20th-century fascist movements, Hitchens elaborated: “The most obvious points of comparison would be these: Both movements are based on a cult of murderous violence that exalts death and destruction and despises the life of the mind. (“Death to the intellect! Long live death!” as Gen. Francisco Franco’s sidekick Gonzalo Queipo de Llano so pithily phrased it.) Both are hostile to modernity (except when it comes to… Keep Reading

Posted on in History

I.F. Stone: More Dupe Than Journalist

In our era of mainstream media journalists, masquerading under the easily penetrable guise of objective reporting, it is refreshing to find a journalist upfront about their politics. Such a figure was I.F. Stone who made no bones about his Soviet sympathies. Despite this, or more likely, because of it, mainstream media journalists laud Stone as the investigative journalist par excellence. Stone became a radical early, joining the Socialist Party before the age of 18, and after that, doing public relations for Socialist Party presidential candidate Norman Thomas. Even earlier, Stone became a journalist, joining a liberal monthly at the age… Keep Reading

Posted on in Politics/World

Elian Gonzales: The Left’s Dirty Little Secret

Today, as the Left decries the lawful deportation of illegal immigrants and a ban temporarily halting their entry into the US it is telling that less than twenty years ago they backed the use of federal troops to extract an illegal from a private home and send him back to a totalitarian country his mother tried to escape with him from. Historians argue that events should be studied only after fifty years has passed. Only from that vantage point can all the complexities of the event be taken in. Not so with the Elian Gonzales case; its features were evident… Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture

Clive James: Always Relevant

Christopher Hitchens once wrote of George Orwell that “it is possible to reprint every single letter, book review, and essay composed by Orwell without exposing him to any embarrassment.” The same could be said of Clive James–essayist and poet–when examining his output. At first glance, knowing James’ politics (to this day he calls himself part of the “proletarian left,” despises the free market, and favors a state-run media—he should emigrate here), one would expect dreary repetition. Certainly, that is what we got from James’ contemporary Gore Vidal. No matter the topic, Vidal always steered it toward his military-industrial complex conspiracy.… Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture/Politics

Stalin’s Death: Stockholm Syndrome

Stockholm syndrome is a term used by psychiatrists specializing in the study of terrorism to describe how a hostage falls in love with their captor. One could not find a better example of a group version of this syndrome than in Russia today. March 5th marked the 64th anniversary of Josef Stalin’s death, and scores of elderly Russians are already laying wreaths on the grave of the ruler who murdered 20 million of their countrymen. But this admiration goes beyond the aged; a recent survey commissioned by the Carnegie Endowment reveals that Stalin remains widely admired in Russia. Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture/History

Robert Taylor: Accurately Naming Names

Toward the end of his life, liberal actor Orson Welles reported being told by Nikita Khrushchev on a Hollywood visit by the Soviet premiere that Stalin had once targeted conservative actor John Wayne for liquidation. Although not reaching this height and honor on Stalin’s “enemies’ list,” conservative matinee idol Robert Taylor was able to have the distinction of having his films banned in Communist Hungary and in Czechoslovakia. And, depending upon your point of view, Taylor had the distinction of organizing Hollywood anticommunists into a political group (The Motion Picture Alliance for the Preservation of American Ideals), and being the… Keep Reading

Posted on in History/Politics

Was George Orwell A Neocon?

Every decade or so pundits return to the question of whether George Orwell was a conservative. The answer is dependent on the questioner’s ideology. Norman Podhoretz claimed him as a neoconservative. Christopher Hitchens, still in thrall to socialism, stated that Orwell “was conservative about many things, but not politics.” By and large, this bodysnatching relied on the same facts, and thus spin was required. However, the recent publication of Orwell’s letters and diaries bolsters the conservative interpretation while also showing how hard it was for the writer to let go of socialism. For example, Orwell, still promoting socialism, albeit a… Keep Reading

Posted on in History/Politics

Another Wall

Fifty-six years ago, the Berlin Wall was erected and gave the West the ultimate propaganda victory in the Cold War. JFK certainly viewed it as such. While he enraged some of his military advisers by refusing to green-light an invasion (supply lines would have been impossible to maintain), he nevertheless pronounced the images of people fleeing with literally their clothes on their backs. (By August 1961, an average of 2,000 East Germans were escaping into the West every day.) While guerilla-faced East German guards batted and drug the slower back to the East as “a failure of communism.” He told… Keep Reading

Posted on in Politics

Big Brother Burnham

Since his death in 1949, conservatives have annexed George Orwell for their cause. From Henry Luce to Norman Podhoretz, pundits have located in Orwell’s energetic denunciation of Stalinism, his anti-abortion and anti-gun control stances–and thanks to the publication of his diaries–his hatred of taxation either a right-winger or a leftist drifting toward that spectrum. Whether valid or not, what has been overlooked in this body-snatching is that Orwell himself may have annexed conservatives, and not for his cause, but rather for literary purposes. Keep Reading

Posted on in History

Ernest Roehm: Nazi Dissident

In an example of him desperately trying to retain even a molecule of his collegiate Marxism, the late Christopher Hitchens refused to accept that Soviet communism was equivalent to Nazi Germany. One of his broadsides against this comparison was that, unlike the Soviet Union, whose government figures accused Stalin of betraying the Russian Revolution, Nazi Germany had “no dissidents…risking their lives on the proposition the Fuhrer had betrayed the true essence of National Socialism.” But in his rush to make this point, Hitchens had not done his homework, for there were dissidents in the Nazi Party who accused Hitler of… Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture/History

The Optimism of George Orwell

Upon receiving the manuscript of what would be George Orwell’s Nineteen Eighty-Four, publisher Frederic Warburg considered the novel the most “depressing” and “pessimistic” thing he ever read. Many Orwell scholars, sharing this view, attributed the novel’s bleakness to Orwell dying by inches during the composition of the novel. But despite the novel’s depiction of a broken Winston Smith, Orwell’s hopes never wavered, which must have been considerable when viewing the world of 1948-49. The Soviets had Eastern Europe and an atomic bomb. China would soon go Communist. Time was running out, but Orwell didn’t rule out that the English could… Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture/History

Raymond Chandler: Hardly A Proletarian Writer

When Hollywood Communists Adrian Scott, a producer, and Edward Dmytryk sought material that was both entertaining and capable of making their anti-capitalist points, they searched no further than noir writer Raymond Chandler. Chandler’s hyper-cynical portrayal of a murdering, drug-taking upper class, corrupt brutal cops and all of the above’s business relationship with LA’s criminal element must have seemed perfect for communist agitprop. The result of Scott and Dymtryk’s labors was Murder My Sweet (1944), an adaptation of Chandler’s second novel, Farewell My Lovely. In it, an unshaven and punch-drunk Dick Powell weaves through a maze of quacks capitalizing on neurotic… Keep Reading

Posted on in History/Politics

Close Call: 1948 Presidential Election

Historians locate a decisive moment in the Republican Presidential campaign of 1940: The nomination the internationalist Wendell Wilkie, and in essence forever said goodbye to its isolationist wing. For the Democrats, their decisive moment was 1948. That year, Democrats engaged in an inner-party debate, a battle for its soul, between the accommodationist policies of FDR toward the Soviet Union and the containment faction. Truman was truly besieged on every possible side of the political spectrum. Across the aisle, Republicans were seeking to capitalize on the President’s low poll numbers and the public’s exhaustion with 16 years of Democratic rule. Within… Keep Reading

Posted on in Culture/Politics

Ronald Reagan: Use Democracy To Fight Hollywood Communism

In the recent film Trumbo, about the blacklisted screenwriter–and Stalinist–who helped end the barring of communists from working in Hollywood, a sinister, bespectacled figure threatens a poverty-row filmmaker who is employing Trumbo. “Fire him,” the sinister figure says, or “we”–who he identifies as the Motion Picture Alliance For The Preservation of American Ideals–“will shut you down.” In point of fact, such an incident could have and probably did happen, for that organization did try to enforce the blacklisting of suspected or actual communists from studios. But the makers of this eulogy to Trumbo overshot their mark by having said sinister… Keep Reading

Posted on in History

Himmler: Soldier Wannabe

When war was declared in 1914, a failed painter and bum named Adolf Hitler fell to his knees with joyful tears running down his cheeks and promptly signed up. While others were miserable in the trenches, Hitler enjoyed his role as trench runner. Equally ecstatic about World War I, Heinrich Himmler never got his chance to bear arms, and this disappointment explains, perhaps even more than any anti-Semitism, his feverish service for Hitler as head of the secret police: Himmler was overcompensating. Keep Reading

Posted on in Politics/World

Pat Buchanan and Putin: Finding Each Other

Whether Donald Trump is indeed a Putin sympathizer as charged by Democrats and even some Republicans, one of his speakers is definitely supportive of the former KGB spook. Pat Buchanan, who was decidedly anti-Soviet when serving in the Reagan administration, has expressed admiration for Putin and attacked Obama’s sanctions on Russia over Putin invading neighboring Ukraine. More than Buchanan’s infamous isolationism was at play here; the social conservative Buchanan has found commonality with the Stalin-praising Putin for cracking down on Russian homosexuals. Not only were Russian security interests at stake in the Ukraine, according to Buchanan, but also at stake was… Keep Reading

Posted on in History/Politics

Jay Lovestone: Americanizing Marxism

During the early years of the Great Depression, where a considerable number of American intellectuals threw in with the communist candidate for president in 1932, William Z. Foster, literary critic Edmund Wilson urged American Communists to take Marxism away from the Russians and “Americanize it.” But this advice went unheeded and from 1932 onward, American Communists took their cues from Russia, a country with no democratic traditions. What may have been a lost opportunity, depending upon your point of view as to whether communism could be applied at all to American democracy, was briefly provided by Jay Lovestone, who helped… Keep Reading

Posted on in History/Politics

FDR’s Death And The Cold War

During the Cold War, the Right attacked FDR for his appeasement of Stalin, which assured the Soviet empire. In the words of moderate Republican Senator Ralph Flanders, the Soviet aggression America was faced with during the early Cold War period came about because Roosevelt “was soft as taffy on the subject of communism.” The flip side to this came from the communist Left, who asserted that FDR was a progressive for peace and a better world along with Stalin, and with his death, the opportunity for peaceful co-existence was lost because of the “fascist” president Harry S. Truman. Faced with… Keep Reading

Posted on in Politics

Howard Koch: A Non-Member Communist Party Supporter

To mock Congressional attempts during the Cold War to investigate communism in Hollywood, anti-anti-communists smugly cite blacklisted screenwriter Howard Koch to show how ridiculous the lawmakers were. For, in the words of Victor Navasky, the elder statesman of the anti-anti-communist school, “all {HUAC} could come up with was Mission To Moscow, which was written a non-communist,” Koch, “at the request of President Franklin Roosevelt.” By highlighting Koch’s non-membership, leftist pundits can assert that the pro-Purge Trial film was not an expression of fervent Stalinism, but a patriotic attempt to help the war effort by lauding America’s ally in World War… Keep Reading

Posted on in History/Politics

Children of Stalin

Today, under former KGB spook Vladimir Putin, the older generation pines for Josef Stalin (and may have found him in the form of Vladimir). The proclaimed reason for wishing Uncle Joe was back is that Koba gave the populace a supposed sense of security. But what kind of security? For the older generation, it probably means a time when Russians were not besieged by the burdens and consequences of personal freedom and the free market; where today the older generation scowl at entrepreneurs and the Russian mafia and a youth more interested in their iPods than social justice. Keep Reading

Posted on in History/Politics

Charlton Heston: The Democratic Party Left Him

When that rare celebrity moves from liberalism to conservatism, pundits like to cite Ronald Reagan’s move from New Deal Democrat to Goldwater as pioneering such movement. Reagan claimed in his famous phrase that “I didn’t leave the Democratic Party; it left me.” But the year he cited for this parting of ways, 1948, doesn’t hold up. In 1948, the Democratic Party had shifted from Grand Alliance partnership to Communist containment. Reagan’s chronology of a Democratic Party becoming too leftist only works if their presidential candidate that year had been Henry Wallace, not Harry Truman. Keep Reading

Posted on in History/Politics

Masochism: The Left After Camelot

On November 22, 1963, Left and Right came together briefly in an awful contemplation. A hostile mob surrounded the headquarters of Barry Goldwater, the prospective Republican nominee against John F. Kennedy in 1963, chanting “Murderers!” On the other side, the Eastern Republican establishment also got into the act. Immediately after Kennedy’s assassination, Richard Nixon phoned FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover and asked, “Was it one of the right-wing nuts?” Even in the Goldwater camp, there was suspicion that Kennedy had fallen victim to a right-wing assassin. Denison Kitchel, the manager of Goldwater’s senatorial campaign, muttered, “My God, one of the… Keep Reading

Posted on in History/Politics

Joseph Davis: “This Book Will Last”

When George Orwell first heard about Josef Stalin’s Purge Trials, he immediately believed them to be rigged. It wasn’t so much the inconsistencies and fantasies of the prosecution (one of the charges lodged at these supposed Russian conspirators with Hitler to overthrow the Stalin regime had the traitors meeting with Nazis at a hotel that didn’t exist anymore) but the heavy-handed propaganda voiced by the regime. Even though the accused “admitted” their complicity with the Trotsky/Hitler cabal–it was later discovered that they were drugged and tortured into confessing–Orwell astutely saw them as a monstrous frame-up because he “felt” it in… Keep Reading

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