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{Tuesday}

 
IT'S ALL ABOUT THE BENJAMINS!

Today THE PILL BOX asks you to join in and celebrate the birth of one of our founding fathers {our "culture & barbarity" tag is his} and FOR ALL TIME pawboy pin-up+inspiration+conscience+po'boy ...

WALTER BENJAMIN

Born July 15, 1892 in Berlin.

" ... no one else pursues the correspondances with such leisurely care, fastidiously yet nonchalantly - in a woman's scent, for instance, in the fragrance of her hair or her breasts - correspondances which then inspire him with lines like 'the azure of the vast, vaulted sky' or 'a harbor full of flames and masts.'"

Hypocrite reader, - my other, - my sister!

Hypocrite reader, - my double, - my buddy!

Hypocrite viewer, - my angel, - my comrade!

... and Dr Benjamin, who has overseen us and seen us through, from Erlebnis to Erfahrung ... :

Anti hypocrite, - my role model, - my brooder!

" ... [certain] prognostic requirements ... call for theses defining the tendencies of the development of art under the present conditions of production. The dialectic of these conditions of production is evident in the superstructure, no less than in the economy. Theses defining the developmental tendencies of art can therefore contribute to the political struggle in ways that it would be a mistake to underestimate."

RSVP 2 IANBOXSTRASSE, paaaarty people!

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A lot more to say on W.B. - there always is! - but specifically, certain thoughts arising from my voracious ingestion of the just published Volume 4 of his Selected Writings [Harvard University Press].

BUT, if you only buy one other book this year, my current money is on:

THE BEST DEMOCRACY MONEY CAN BUY
{An Investigative Reporter Exposes the Truth about Globalization, Corporate Cons and High-Finance Fraudsters
by Greg Palast
[Robinson Books]

Much, much, MUCH more on this anon., but let's just hyperbolically say: he makes Michael Moore seem like a 3 a.m. Girl rewriting an S-CLUB sleb-snog Press release.

Staggering, just staggering.
If you found our little quote about the Bush Family electoral theft even slightly interesting or dismaying, then you MUST - please please please please PLEASE - purchase this book {for the full gory - and anti-Gorey - details, amongst a great many other things}. And then buy another copy, and send it to someone you care about who lives in America. Before the next election.

I mean - I thought I was pretty un-shockable when it came to the corporate-bought Bush Family Bizness, Enron style shadiness, electoral diddling and so on {it's as American as golden boy JFK's own Dad-bought Presidency, after all}, but I read this with my jaw permanently on the floor. Just the one chapter alone which deals with how the Bush administration STOPPED all CIA/FBI investigations into the bin Ladens and ALL Arab funded terrorism {until September 13 2001}, well ...

"
After Bush took office [according to a top-level CIA operative], he said, "there was a major policy shift" at the National Security Agency. Investigators were ordered to "back off" from any inquiries into Saudi Arabian financing of terror networks, especially if they touched on Saudi royals and their retainers. That put the bin Ladens, a family worth an estimated $12 billion and a virtual arm of the Saudi royal household, off limits for investigation. Osama was the exception; he remained a wanted man, but agents could not look too closely at how he filled his piggy bank. The key rule of any investigation, "follow the money," was now violated, and investigations - at least before September 11 - began to die."

You will not BELIEVE what Palast turns up; and be aware, this is old style hard tacks investigative journalism, checked and double checked, based on official documents, based on OFFICIAL facts just waiting to be picked up and lnked, All The President's Men type stuff ... and most decidedly NOT the humor-free conspiracy ravings of some weirdo grudge-bearing marooned-lefty loony neurasthenic.

In the end, it's hard to know what is scarier and more shocking - what Palast turns up, or the fact that 99% of it is known but has been declared 'off limits' by the American media, which is (suddenly) too scared/lazy/bought-off - for which read "patriotic" - to do the job itself and unmask the STUPENDOUS irregularities and corruption and deal making and cover-up at the heart of democracy, BUSH style. {Not that Dubya's new shrug buddy, Mr Tony, is spared, here, either. OH no.}

Oh gawd: ... better stop, or I'll be ranting on (sadder, wiser, staggered, shocked, upset, truly upset) all night.

More soon: that's a promise.
But DO buy the book; it's actually very difficult to quote from because you end up wanting or needing to QUOTE IT ALL.

Sleep tight, catizens.

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posted by Ian 7/15/2003 04:40:00 AM

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