Saturday, 6 December 2008
Taking it to the Bridge with Frank's doobie doobie do for Obama.
"I finally got down to the Oakland History Room to check out Billy X. Jennings' exhibit on the Black Panther Party children's schools. You'll never see more adorable pictures of revolutionary education". Bay radical blogspot 29 02 2008".
Dear sports, I'm going to tackle the Frank Davis mountain for a few more posts. The following is my response to a classic Bay area militant boob. Apparently the way to end endemic car stripping is for predominantly black and immigrant areas to wallow in grievance and neo-Marxist fancy dress circa 1972.
Sure, it's er, "cute". Riiight. I love kids in militant uniforms. Panther, Red Brigade, SS, KKK...All absolutely darling and what childhood should all be about...radical Marxist ideology for minority tots! Right on!
It can only work out great cos that's what all successful parents do for THEIR kids...experiment with mass militant conformity. Hey, during morning lunch the kids organised a "right on!" "give it to the man!" action against "The Man", or Larry the school cook.
"Down with Honky Imperialist Wonderbread!" they chanted endlessly in unison.
The kids beat Larry with his own Cheese Whizz and then ran the "Capitalist Fascist!" out of the kindergarten. Then the future X kids, pushed over a peddle car and set it on fire!
I think the revolution can only get cuter, don't you? Er, your site IS a parody of the deluded, backdated, venal and morally vain radical phony right? No? Damn...Hey, I also noticed that all the 1/3 scale Huey Long's and Malcolm X's looked sooooooo HAPPY! Er, rather unsurprisingly no. I shall use your efforts as a post on Frank Marshall Davis. Do you delete criticism eh? I never do.
Now dig. Ok, some of the kids do look happy. Maybe about the coming Chavez birthday firing squad and arrest celebrations ? Maybe they're just eager to get back to reading Huey Long speeches? Kids love radical rhetoric, especially from the 1968 to 1975 period. And the longer, angrier, crazier and more violently frightening to them, the better. Kids love that shit. Er, no.
Now I must admit, that grappling on Marks terms with the wonderful world of Frank Marshall Davis, is like wading through a molasses sea of student activist essays and forensically contorting minutae of who said what and much more, mixed in with some fair enough comment. Things like "Get out of town, cracker!" "Down with the Imperialist Running Dogs of Capitalism!" and "You're standing on my foot!" That's a joke, Joyce..
Actually, I think that was all my wife's...She loves slogans at the breakfast table. It's a family tradition!
And dig, sometimes my responses are not as wonderful and up to scratch as I'd like.
"Every man has to know his limitations". Clint Eastwood.
The fact that AIM might have got their sequence and attributions wrong, is everything for some. Fair enough if AIM is wrong. But it ain't all is it, cos there's a mountain of conspiracy and apologia blather behind it and the absurd claim that AIM is therefore entirely a mountain of lies. Er, no.
Mark says the er motive for AIM and Kinkaid's massive conspiracy, is that Kinkaid apparently "...gets paid to write this trash". Er? So does every journalist in the MSM, the New York Times and at CNN etc...
Hey, he has a point! Nice work if you can get it.
I will eventually get through the endless swingin' posts and the 44 page document he sights, and the mountain of other stuff he has provided, and hopefully before I retire to Sunnyvale. I promise Mark! No, really. But it is not always my idea of fun. But here's an odd thing...the 44 page report he sites is anti-Davis and by a guy called Kinkaid...So that's um?
God, I'm tired already.
Anyhow baby, to keep these posts down to fish wrapping size, some of the rest is Frank Marshall Davis the journalist at work. You may find it interesting in that it's part of the empirical mass of Davis do, that makes any errors of AIM while legitimite, all rather moot.
I read several AIM pieces and the overwhelming tone is of a cleanly cool assessment of Frank Davis and associated, that is well, pretty much true. Hey, maybe I'm wrong. I don't want to think I'm right. I don't care about that. I only want to know and undersatnd the facts. No, really.
Right now I don't buy that AIM lied and especially as Mark Davis dismisses Kinkaid and all of AIM as total liars and conspirators. I think that's balls. Mark himself is not some kind of total liar and conspirator, though he does seem to defend and apologise for a Hell of a lot of them. But damn, he IS good value, and I mean that in a good way. Mark's are some of the most adult, fun and interesting comments by an opponent I've received.
But come on, does Mark really believe AIM is a site of conspiracy and fraud? All those "sneaking in", "one meeting", "Berman and Tidwell said" things can make one's head spin. Frank Davis was a Commie and radical beatnik BEFORE the Internet even existed. But damn, I will read it all. Have to, see. I promised! It'll take some time to get through everything. If AIM is in error it's still a part error regards the facts of Frank, and these exist even without AIM.
And man, I do find most every pal and fan of Frank's are a little er, favourable, conveniently deleting and unreliable for some mysterious reason...
Mark Davis deserves kudos for his often thoughtful and hard working efforts. And so does AIM and much of the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy. Quite frankly, I get the impression that Mark Davis reflects more than a few of the better parts of his Father.
I just see some of his angles and opinions are bogus and obsessive diversions of irrelevant crap. To put it mildly, I've made errors myself, a lot of bloody errors, and not just personally! Thus I'm always returning to my shabby blog to update. Sadly, I can't do this to my own life. It was ever thus.
Like music, history, medicine or damn well anything, the Frank Davis, Obama and radical story of America and the West etc, is so vast and unfolding, that when does one arrive at an end point of knowing and understanding all?
I'd say never. But one does try.
So here's some thangs, yo all, that may give a bit more background and a small taste of the wonderland of American radicalism. I've only put I the major links, so go there for the many sub-links. These choice cuts are from a book I imagine barely a station wagon full of MSM journos have ever read, or ever will. It’s a book of collected essays and writings by Frank Marshall Davis, the husky middle-aged beatnik man friend to the hunky teen Barry Obama. Now dig this and look hard to find Frank ever repudiating or regretting the following. Maybe he did somewhere. I'll wait for it.
“Ben and the Reds by Frank Marshall Davis. Page 94.
The writings of Frank Marshall Davis, September 17, 1943.
“Benjamin J. Davis, Jr., attorney and associate editor of the Daily Worker, also county chairman of the Communist Party in New York, is running for the city council in the hope of replacing the Reverend A. Clayton Powell, Jr., who has his eye on Congress. Ben may not win, but I don’t believe Harlemites can elect a more honest and fearless fighter...
...I first knew Ben some years ago in Atlanta. Complications which developed then dogged us both for several years. People had a habit of confusing us, though how they do will always remain a mystery...
...But the young attorney was too intellectually honest. Believing firmly in the Communist doctrine, he renounced easy gold for manhood. He became an avowed Red in open defiance of the witch hunters and went all the way with young Herndon, fighting to eventually win home freedom in the United States Supreme Court...
...Maybe we ought to get more savvy about the Communists anyway. A system that can mould Russia from a huge weakling in twenty-five years to what is the strongest and most united nation in Europe, a people who has borne the brunt of the terrible Nazi war machine and has flung it back, must have something, fundamentally sound...
...You may have noticed that practically everybody who yells “Communist” is himself anti-negro or anti-labour, that whenever a white person makes a bold and determined effort for full racial equality and justice, he is painted as a dangerous radical taking orders from Moscow...
...When you look at the kind of people who have hoodwinked the public into believing that Communism is something despicable and its followers are unshaven anarchists who want to seize the government and murder everybody who has a dollar left over the following payday-men...
...it makes you think that one of the major needs of this nation is a Hell of a lot more Communists...
...Out of curiosity, I have read the Constitution of the Communist Party of America, adopted in 19398 and amended in 1940, certain sections ought to set to rest the minds of those who believe the reds are anarchists, whether you believe or disagree with their general theories..."
Colonel Neville: Fun eh? Yes, everyone loves to live in an abstract and thus unprovable inhuman theory. Hey, read Hitlers Nazi Party policies and they seem entirely reasonable. Free health care, education for all, health and fitness, total control by the state...Sadly, it didn’t work out at all.
The next Davis piece in the book was called “Churchill or Wallace [Vice President Henry J. Wallace] World?” Frank believed that after WWll, the US would go broke trying to become a super power over the obviously superior Soviet economy and methods… Ah, Frank was right about so much er, nothing.
A great not so ancient gallery of vids on Frank and Obama etc.
“He took a face from the ancient gallery and he plucked on down the hall...” The End. The Doors.
Man, I found this interesting stuff on the often sometimes patchy and dry and sometimes great Wikipedia. I had to share it with you. Had to. And also a piece from American Thinker. It’s certainly a strange, complicated and often entirely sad world, the Frank Davis in Hawaii and Harry Bridges, Davis and Obama thang. And it bodes In my soul it is...
From Wikipedia: “At one point during a particularly difficult time in their marriage, Davis wrote a poem, entitled "To Helen", in which he attempted to re-earn her love. The poem reads in part:
I shall make you part of me,
Fundamental as heart
Primary as mind
And to you I shall become
As the blood in your veins.
American Thinker: Frank Marshall Davis was "...an African American from the Midwest who had worked as a columnist for the Chicago Star, the communist newspaper of Chicago, a city that had one of the largest CPUSA affiliates, and, in fact, hosted the September 1919 convention that launched the American Communist Party.
Though Davis always tried to conceal any communist associations -- ironically, Obama supporters have picked up that torch -- there's no question that Davis was a communist, as is immediately evident upon reading his columns, examining his background, or consulting with people in the party (to this day) who confirm he was a communist. The fact that he was at least a lower case "c" "communist" is obvious.
It takes a little more digging to find evidence of his membership in CPUSA -- but not much. Among the sources that reveal his membership are Davis himself, notably in a letter he wrote to a friend, published posthumously by his biographer, Professor John Edgar Tidwell.
"I have recently joined the Communist party," wrote Davis.
In 1948, Davis just happened to arrive in Hawaii the same time that leaders of the Communist Party in Hawaii -- realizing the limits of national party organs like the Daily Worker and People's Daily World -- established their own weekly newspaper, the Honolulu Record. In 1949, Davis began writing a regular column for the Record, titled, "Frankly Speaking." This was a key form of agitation work that Davis would do for the party in Hawaii for decades...
...The first [column] was Davis's January 26, 1950 piece, "Free Enterprise or Socialism?" Davis hoped that America and its economy were at a turning point, as if a kind of perfect storm was brewing that could at last allow him and his comrades to realize their dreams of a socialist America. They would need to trash the current free-enterprise system and argue for a change to something else.
Of course, they could not fully disclose themselves, their beliefs, and their intentions, although any thinking observer could easily read between the lines. The key was to gain the support of the people who didn't know any difference...
A young Barack Obama knew Davis in the latter 1970s, introduced by his maternal grandfather, Stanley Dunham, who, in many ways, saw eye-to-eye with Davis, and saw in Davis a potential role model and father-figure to his grandson. Dunham and Davis were close friends.
Though proud of Davis, and very affectionate toward him, Obama sought to obfuscate the identity of Davis in his book, Dreams from My Father, where he strangely referred to him only as "Frank," conspicuously avoiding his full name. Politically, Obama needed to make Davis anonymous, whereas, personally, he could not avoid acknowledging in his memoirs a man who meant so much to him".
Excerpts from Wikipedia:
"Legacy of political activism.
One writer has made this evaluation of Davis's political legacy.
"No significant African American community existed in Hawaii`i to provide Davis with emotional and moral support, and an expanded audience and market for his writing. Also, because he was still concerned with the issues of freedom, racism, and equality, he lacked widespread multi cultural support.
One can only imagine Davis's frustrations at his inability to become a successful writer in Hawaii`i after his promising beginnings in Atlanta and Chicago. He rarely complained, but he must have felt incomplete if not bitter when he found dignity but not freedom to develop his potential and lead the distinguished life to which he was accustomed. Considering the controversial subject matter of Davis' writing, it is little wonder that some whites looked askance at his presence in the islands.
He worked quietly, he wrote even when he no longer published his writings, and he talked with those who came to visit him--always seeking to present the truth of his vision, confident that social justice and human dignity would finally prevail. Indeed, despite his radical rhetoric, Davis was optimistic that good relations between ethnic groups could and would lead to a better world.
It can be argued that Davis escaped defeat like a trickster, playing dead only to arise later and win the race, although the politics of defeat were all around him. If society seemed to defeat him by denying him financial rewards, publication, and status, he continued to write prolifically. He stood by his principle that the only way to achieve social equality was to acknowledge and discuss publicly the racial and ethnic dynamics in all their complexity situated in an unjust society. He provided a bold, defiant model for writers to hold onto their convictions and articulate them."
House Un-American Activities Committee investigation.
In 1950, the congressional House Un-American Activities Committee accused Davis of involvement in several communist-front organizations. The committee concluded that the Honolulu Record was “a front for the Communist Party, despite the fact that the paper does not make this admission.”
The committee’s report on the Honolulu Record states the following about Davis:
Mr. Davis' column defends Communists and attacks capitalism with the same vigor as columns appearing regularly in the Daily Worker and other frankly Communist publications.
Typical of Mr. Davis' remarks are the following:
“Democracy today lies weak and slowly dying from the poison administered by the diffident doctors in Washington and Wall Street who have fooled a trusting public into believing that they are the specialists who would save us from the dread diseases of socialism and communism. . . . They hope to hand us fascism disguised as the healed democracy.” (Honolulu Record, July 28, 1949, p. 8).
Mr. Davis constantly defended the 11 top United States Communist officials recently convicted in New York on charges of conspiracy to advocate the overthrow of the Government by force and violence. One of Mr. Davis' comments on the case was as follows :
“I feel strong sympathy for the Communist minority who are being oppressed for their political beliefs.” (Honolulu Record, October 20, 1949, p. 6).
When Mr. Davis' column first appeared in the Record in May 1949, the Record boasted that the author was a member of the national executive board of the Civil Rights Congress. The organization is cited as Communist by Attorney General Tom Clark as well as by the Committee on Un-American Activities.
Mr. Davis has signed a number of statements in behalf of Communists under the sponsorship of the Civil Rights Congress; one of these defended was Gerhart Eisler, notorious Communist international agent who escaped jailing for passport fraud by fleeing to the Soviet sector of Germany.
Other front organizations of the Communist Party with which Mr. Davis has associated include : American Youth for Democracy, Abraham Lincoln School, National Federation for Constitutional Liberties, League of American Writers, the National Negro Congress, and the Hawaii Civil Liberties Committee.
His work challenged the usefulness of race as a social construct, and he eventually disavowed the idea of race altogether.
“...In the pages of the paper, Davis articulated an agenda of social realism, which included appeals for racial justice in politics and economics, as well as legal justice. He championed black activism, especially to compensate for social ills not remedied by the larger white society. He warned against blacks accepting the Depression-era remedies being pushed by communists.”
For the Honolulu Record:
“...wrote a weekly column, styled “Frank-ly Speaking,” for the Honolulu Record, a labor paper published by the International Longshore and Warehouse Union (ILWU), headed by Harry Bridges. The paper had been founded in 1948 by Koji Ariyoshi. As editor, Arioyshi lambasted labor conditions for the working class, advocated the overthrow of the Hawaiian monarchy and targeted other social inequalities in the islands. In 1958, Ariyoshi was forced to close his newspaper due to lack of funds”.
Colonel Neville: And here is the peculiar, complicated and strange old world of Harry Bridges.
Harry Bridges “was convicted by a federal jury of having lied about his Communist Party membership, a conviction which was set aside”. “..his early experiences in the IWW and in Australian unions would influence his beliefs on militant unionism, based on rank and file power and involvement”.
“At the time Bridges was a member of a circle of longshoremen that came to be known as the "Albion Hall Group", after their meeting place.
The group attracted members from a variety of backgrounds: members of the Communist Party, which was then trying to organize all longshoremen, sailors and other maritime workers into the Maritime Workers Industrial Union (MWIU), as a revolutionary, industry-wide alternative to the ILA and other American Federation of Labor (AFL) unions; former IWW members, and others with no clearly defined politics.
The federal government later spent an unsuccessful effort for nearly two decades to deport or convict Bridges on the ground that he was a secret member of the Communist Party. He was convicted of perjury for lying about his Communist Party membership when making his application for naturalization, but the Supreme Court overturned the conviction in 1953 on the ground that the prosecution was untimely. (In 1994, Harvey Klehr published evidence from Soviet archives, suggesting Bridges was a member at one point of the Communist Party USA and served on the party's Central Committee for a time in the 1930s; there is no evidence he was a Soviet agent.”
Colonel Neville: So Harry becomes a radical Unionist and Communist party member, organizes strikes and so on. The trouble with Harry. Now the following is funny and tragic, however you look at it. It's interesting how naive and often out of their depth are the mostly decent squares of our government agencies...
"In the fall of 1934, two immigration officials from Seattle and Portland wrote Frances Perkins, the Secretary of Labor, asking for a warrant for Bridge's arrest and deportation and backed their request with affidavits by four men who said they'd seen Bridges participating in Communist Party activity. Also included was a photostatic copy of a CP membership card issued to one "Harry Dorgan." The claim being that as Harry's mother's maiden name was Dorgan, that this was his name in the Party and this was a copy of his membership card.
Under intense pressure from Congressional conservatives, Perkins reluctantly agreed to allow the charges to proceed.
But when the case finally came to hearing in 1939 the government's case fell apart: its witnesses included an admitted perjurer, a lawyer who had been disbarred by New York and Illinois for jury tampering and racketeering, a former party employee facing prosecution for fraudulent receipt of relief checks, the manager of a restaurant who thought that Bridges was a party member because one of the people who frequently had lunch with Bridges and his wife may have been a communist, and a former official with another union who testified that Bridges was a communist because he introduced a resolution at a meeting of the Maritime Federation that urged all the member unions to join the CIO.
The administrative judge ruled that the government had failed to prove its case...
...Bridges hewed to the Communist Party line throughout the late 1930s and 1940s. After the Molotov-Ribbentrop pact was signed in 1939, the party attacked Roosevelt and Churchill as warmongers and adopted the slogan "The Yanks Ain't Coming", Bridges denounced Roosevelt for betraying labor and preparing for war. John L. Lewis, the head of the CIO, responded by abolishing the position of West Coast director of the CIO, limiting Bridges' authority to California, in October 1939...
...Bridges soon took the union in a wholly different direction after Hitler attacked the Soviet Union in June 1941. Having opposed the United States' entry into the war, Bridges now urged employers to increase productivity in order to prepare for war.
When the CIO later adopted a wartime no-strike pledge, Bridges not only supported the pledge, but even proposed at the highpoint of the Communist Party's enthusiasm for unity—immediately after the Teheran Conference in 1943—that the pledge continue after the end of the war.
The ILWU not only condemned the Retail, Wholesale Department Store Employees union for striking Montgomery Ward in 1943—after management refused to sign a new contract, cut wages and fired union activists)—but also assisted it in breaking the strike, by ordering members in St. Paul, Minnesota to work overtime, to handle overflow from the struck Chicago plant...
...Bridges' attitude changed sharply after the end of World War II. While Bridges still advocated the post-war plan for industrial peace that the Communist Party, along with the leaders of the CIO, the AFL and the Chamber of Commerce, were advocating, he differed sharply with CIO leadership on Cold War politics, from the Marshall Plan and the Truman Doctrine's application in Greece and Turkey to participation in the World Federation of Trade Unions.
Bridges met Noriko Sawada during a fund-raiser for Mine, Mill, and Smelter workers and the two became a couple thereafter. In 1958, the couple decided to marry. Although they could have married in California, they decided to travel to Reno, Nevada for their marriage license. However, Nevada had a law banning marriage between any white person and "any person of the Ethiopian or black race, Malay or brown race, Mongolian or yellow race, or American Indian, or red race." At the county courthouse, the clerk refused to give the couple a marriage license on account of Ms. Sawada's race being "yellow."
Colonel Neville: Dreadful no? Horrible irony upon bigotry upon treachery.I couldn't have married my current Japanese wife in Nevada. Did I even try? Nope, cos I wasn't born until a few years later...See what I did? I had ya goin' there...
"Bridges and Sawada then sought a court order from District Judge Taylor Wines for issuance of the marriage license. Judge Wines granted the order, in direct contradiction to the law, and the couple married December 10, 1958. This order prompted the Nevada legislature to repeal all anti-miscegenation laws in the State on March 17, 1959. In 1967, the U.S. Supreme Court declared all such anti-miscegenation laws to be unconstitutional in the decision Loving v. Virginia".
Colonel Neville: And here we see that Bridges and Frank were to put it mildly, two complicated and largely egotistical men of their time, yes? I should be so lucky. Ah, the struggles of the literary artiste and the militant union man of da peeple...
Two men who thought that the junk of Communism was somehow an answer to anything, which it ain't, and for them, if only it was repackaged, represented and used "properly", we could all reach a Paradise that mostly no one asked them for. They were apparently not racial bores and liked black, asian and white or anybody as people...especially the girls! Frank was hip to music and art and many things, and had a poetic talent too.
As in a mythic and misty tragedy, both men had profoundly flawed and damaging ideas from a monstrous ideology based entirely on mass murder, conformity, spite, lies, envy and madness, that they believed could service what they felt, were their merely good intentions, of which they may have actually had few to none.
Ah, life is messy, complex, limited and seemingly impossible, yet death is simple and infinite, no?