Indians training with computers

Craven, Jim jcraven at
Tue Dec 28 11:47:56 MST 1999

-----Original Message-----
From: Carrol Cox [mailto:cbcox at]
Sent: Monday, December 27, 1999 5:09 PM
To: marxism at
Subject: Re: Indians training with computers

"Craven, Jim" wrote:

>  What have
> you corrupt "insider" scum, "Indians" and BIA, with big salaries and big
> offices, been doing?; and, what exactly are you really capable of building
> or indeed doing other than running your mouths and going to expensive
> conferences all over the world?
> [SNIP]  I was approached by a Phoenix firm who wanted to donate computers
> for Indian children, but they were very correctly suspicious of the
> "powers-that-be" in the Tribal Council [SNIP].
> [SNIP]  known non-corrupt and honest activists (those who are honest and
> uncorruptible are known with a little checking)in the local area in which
> you are interested.

Jim, what would you have said if someone posted to the list beginning
with the statement that she was all for Indian liberation, BUT, and then
proceeded to repeat (but in a tone suggesting they were representative
of Indians and the Indian liberation movement) the descriptions you
have given here of corrupt Indians?

She might have concluded by repeating that she was all for the Indian
liberation movement, but  one really ought to compare the situation of
those corrupt tribal councils to the condition of black women in
prison or of the women working in chicken factories in the south.

You would, rightly, have been very angry. But that is exactly what
you did last week in your post on women.


P.S. In the military they used to call the kind of post you wrote
comparing the miseries of different groups, Pissing Contests.


I don't understand your point at all. Nothing in this suggests that I am
suggesting that I am somewhow representative of Indians or Indian movement;
it only suggests the FACT that in Indian Country there is massive
corruption, aided and abetted by BIA and the U.S. Government, and to suggest
that fact is not to suggest myself as somekind of representative of all
Indians or Indian Movements (this is elementary logic).

Secondly, it is a fact that in Indian country there are honest servants who
have shown themselves to be so in practice--not just in words--and those
people are well known for those who care to look--and should look so as not
to put well-intentioned money down a rathole of corruption. Again, this
sugggestion, does not suggest or imply myself as a representative but only
an opinion as to the sources in Indian country where such referrals might be
made. Again you have a problem with elementary logic.

Now on the issue of women's issues, if you don't like my opinions then take
them on rather than trying to create another non sequitur by linking a
caricature of my position on certain women's issues with another caricature
of my position on certain Indian issues.

And as far as comparing degrees and forms of oppression, it is done all the
For example, one point that I made in a previous post is that men, who
benefit from some sick macho notion of "maleness" and use that to oppress
women, also participate in their own marginalization and oppression (i.e.
The "Man" uses many forms of divide and rule and false consciousness or
illusions of "power" to keep oppressed oppressed. From this however I would
never compare--in quality or quantity--the oppression or self-oppression of
the male with the oppression of the woman by that same self-oppressing male.
Similarly it is just common sense and a reality that the forms of oppression
faced by the average Indian or African American or Hispanic migrant farm
worker male are typically more severe (in terms of being life threatening
and leading to lower life expectancies etc) than that faced by the typical
white or "favorable"-non-white middle-class academic female. But the
comparison, as you put it, went beyond that: the comparison was made only to
illustrate that if gender were the fundamental basis of oppression under
capitalism rather than class, you would expect that the typical female was
more oppressed than the typical male regardless of class or any other
variable; and that simply isn't the case if your notion of degree or quality
of oppression has anything to do with threat to life and limb as well as
psychological damages which are harder to quantify.

As to my credentials to speak on some realities in Indian Country, ask
around in Indian Country.

Jim Craven

More information about the Marxism mailing list