As Mr. Radical and Mr. Right ardently believe in free speech and the robust exchange of views, we are pleased when we get emails from opponents. We are not outraged by the words and opinions of Marxists (Stalinist, the many factions of Trotskyism, or Maoist), Anarchists, Syndicalists, modern Liberals, Classical Liberals, Fabian Socialists, Neo Cons, Fascists or National Socialists.
Well-written, well-argued ideas are all worthy of respect and consideration and have the effect of requiring us to rigorously examine our own beliefs. Sadly, outrage has become the prerogative and the weapon of the political Left and is used to morally justify the physical silencing of rightwing opponents. This is amply borne out by the attempts of many Leftist organizations in the UK to eradicate the British National Party by the persecution of individual members and by trying to prevent the Party from contesting elections. Leftists, with the connivance of mainstream politicians and the Media, make no secret of their belief that nationalists should be silenced, if necessary, by force. In the US and other Western nations, Leftists do all in their power to prevent conservative and nationalist speakers from visiting universities and addressing students. This is well documented and has been going on for years.
I have before me copies of “Workers Vanguard” for 5th January and 19th January. The bi-weekly paper is the voice of the Spartacist League/US, one of several Trotskyite factions that are very active in the anti-globalization movement and are advocates of ‘Class Struggle”. I think the Spartacist League can properly be described as ‘serious Left’. The papers are full of headlines that call for the ‘Smashing’ of this and that, for ‘Demands’ for this and that (such as the immediate freeing of convicted police killer Mumia Abu-Jamal) and for Socialist Revolution. One cannot read the contents of Workers Vanguard and believe that these socialists believe in free speech or the right of others to hold dissenting views.
There are some on the Left who do claim to support free speech. They are atypical and usually describe themselves as pacifists or anarchists and can be found on the fringe of the fringe. They join Peace demonstrations, always oppose military actions by Western nations and talk a lot about free speech. Nevertheless, they have no problem marching alongside communists and those who support our deadliest Islamic enemies. They also are energetic defenders of regimes that deny free speech and persecute oppositionists – so long as the regimes claim to be socialist and anti USA. We would be wise to question their commitment to free speech.
Despite this, we say free speech is free speech and should be defended in almost every context unless it entails giving information to enemy forces or encouraging violent lawbreaking. A Harpers Ferry visitor to our site recently emailed at length and we thank him for being willing to engage in argument rather than being abusive or calling for us to be shut down. He identifies himself as a member of the “serious Left”.
He begins by denying that Rush Limbaugh’s programs on Talk Radio are a contribution to free speech. “Drivel”, “disinformation and ignorance” are his words for Limbaugh’s stated views. Many, and not just those on the Left, may disagree with Limbaugh. We disagree with Limbaugh’s views on population growth, his views on development of open spaces, parts of his defense of Zionism and Israel, amongst other things, but one can hardly call his well-argued views ‘drivel’. He actually provides a great deal of information that is denied the public by the mainstream media. The Left and the MSM would like to shut Limbaugh down, though he provides ample opportunities for Leftists to raise issues on his programs and is always polite and ready to listen and argue with opponents. We ask, ‘what harm can Limbaugh be doing?’
Our emailer from Harpers Ferry argues that the Media Class is not our ruling class, but an arm of the “global corporate governing class”. He cites Rupert Murdoch as a ‘corporate globalist’ and I assume he would dismiss Fox News as a mouthpiece for that Class.
We see Murdoch as an opportunist member of the Media Class. Here is a Media man who was a late entry into the US Media world and who, realizing that the Mainstream Media was shutting out the conservative audience, found something more than a niche to exploit. We have no illusions about Murdoch who is a Media Class maverick and probably as unprincipled as any other Media mogul, but his Fox News Channel, putting out balanced news and conservative opinion, has been rewarded with a rapidly growing audience. The astounding popularity of Fox News has demonstrated that the MSM’s Leftist propaganda is not meeting the needs of vast numbers of viewers and listeners. Murdoch should not be trusted by those on the Right who crave truth in reporting and entertainment that is not propaganda, for he is driven by commercial consideration and not principle. However, let us enjoy the mostly honest Fox News and the opportunities it offers to conservative commentators (who admit to their bias) whilst it is available. There is precious little else on TV for non-Leftists.
The man from Harpers Ferry also points out that the MSM only promotes the “center-left of Ted Kennedy and John Kerry” and ignores the “serious Left of Noam Chomsky and Howard Zinn”. He is correct in saying that the Hard Left is mostly kept under wraps by the MSM but this is not because the Media Class is unsympathetic. The reasons are rational and several. First, the Media Class treats news as entertainment and Chomsky could not be made entertaining by anyone. Unlike the Rightwing Milton Friedman, whose free market views were based on commonsense and reality, Chomsky and Zinn are virtually incomprehensible and their support of neo pacifism is rooted in the wishful thinking of tenured academic dreamers.
Secondly, the Media Class has only a shallow interest in economics and foreign policy – in fact just enough to satisfy its own guilt complex over its easy-come, newly acquired wealth. It displays a little window dressing on issues such as the minimum wage and more income taxation (though not on themselves), and its anti-Iraq stance has more to do with anti-Bush hatred than moral principles. Thirdly, the Media Class needs to keep its extreme Leftist constituency on board but without publicity, since Marxism, Anarchism, egalitarian-motivated income redistribution and revolution are not popular with the public. The Media Class increases its power by stealth and gains greatly by concealing its unpopular agenda within biased and dishonest news and in cunningly slanted entertainment.
Chomsky, Zinn and all the other “serious Left” thinkers and activists should consider themselves fortunate that the Media Class leaves them alone. They may get little media publicity, but they no longer get media persecution either. Compare this to the constant media persecution meted out to enemies of the Media Class. David Duke and David Irving (neither of whom have our slightest support), Nick Griffin, Jean Le Pen, Rush Limbaugh, Rev Jerry Falwell and George Bush can all expect their personal lives to be under constant scrutiny and their tiniest weakness exposed and magnified all across the media spectrum.
Now I will deal with another item in the email from Harpers Ferry. The writer cites the Clinton scandals as evidence that the Media is neither a Class with an agenda, nor pro-Leftist, for he seems to believe that Clinton was “trashed” by the Media. We would claim that Clinton was hugely protected by the Media Class and still is. His and Hillary’s record of financial sleaze and his many sex scandals were never probed by the Media. The Lewinsky affair, well known to the Media but long hidden from the public, came to light because of his psychopathic boldness that led to a legal entanglement and Court action by a victim. His many female victims were either ignored or rubbished by the MSM. The evidence is out there.
Clinton’s sleaze and his uncontrolled sexual appetite are part of his appeal to the Media Class. He has all the attributes of a Hollywood celebrity and Media people love him for it. He was not only our first Black President but is also our first Celebrity ex-President.
Finally, let us look at the global corporate entities. They are businesses owned by stockholders that exist to make profits and so they trade around the world. They take their business to wherever in the world it is most economical, least regulated and least taxed and in doing so they bring new opportunities to some and unemployment to others. Their CEO’s evade politically motivated controls when they can and buy influence with and concessions from politicians when they can. Global trade is not popular with ultra nationalists, many of who appear to be nostalgic for a return to barter within their national borders. Socialists (and some ultra Nationalists are surely economic socialists too) always regard profit as a dirty word and never see the many societal benefits of private enterprise for profit. Small businesses are easily politically controlled since they cannot escape national borders, but big businesses are a challenge to the emotions and power of Leftist politicians and so we have the myth of their sinister political influence.
Big Oil, Big Pharma etc, are terms constantly used by socialists and populists to attack free enterprise, but we see little evidence that the CEO’s of the global companies are a ruling class. The Media Class has them all on the run. Big Pharma is forced to give away products to Africa and AIDS, WalMart is constantly pilloried by the Media, and Bill Gates (the world’s wealthiest globalist) devotes his time and much of his wealth to AIDS in the hope of gaining celebrity and Media approval. Many of the biggest companies (cash-strapped Ford in the forefront) make their contributions to homosexual causes without any apparent economic benefits, as they seek Media Class approval. At Davos, the place where the globalists gather annually, the rich bankers and money dealers vie with each other to be seen with the visiting Showbiz celebrities. We do not say that the Big Business globalists have no agenda, nor do we think that they are harmless, but we see little evidence that they are a cohesive Class or are the people whose radical social agenda is being forced on the Western world. For that we blame the Media Class.