Stratfor plus sources on paleo-cons and the Frankfurt School

Michael Pugliese debsian at
Wed Nov 3 04:45:24 MST 1999

   Not that I didn't profit from STRATFOR's work during the Kosovo NATO
campaign (it's like the work of Kevin Phillips, materialist but not Marxist,
an acquantance talked to Phillips about 5 years ago, was asked about John
Judis in particular, Phillips said he was good friends with Judis, Kevin
later in the conversation volunteered that he thought of himself as
a,"Neo-Marxist of the right," Maybe like the ex-Marxist, now Catholic,
historian Eugene Genovese?Cf. his piece in Dissent in the early 90's on the
left's complicity in the deaths of millions, wait till he plows through the
new translation of the French bestseller," The Black Book of Communism,"
just out from Harvard, about $40.00, 1000 pages. The editor ups Solzhenitsyn
by claiming 100 million victims of Stalinism and Maoism. Save us from French
intellectuals who take off their blinders and jump into a mirror image of
their previous illusions!) that had strong rejoinders from Eric Foner and 3
or 4 other left historians.
    Now for some background on the right wing politics of George Friedmann ,
the STRATFOR analyst (yeeks, Thomas Friedman , George Friedmann, throw in
Milton and you've got a reactionary trinity!), goto the Booknotes section of
web site where there is an interview with Friedmann and his wife. I first
saw his name in the mid-80's in a review of his book, The Political
Philosophy of the Frankfurt School," by Russell Jacoby in Telos, the
"Critical Theory" quarterly. Jacoby threw the book into the literary recycle
bin where it belongs, methinks the Christian rightist kook Paul Weyrich, who
blames Theodor Adorno for Littleton and other symptoms of moral decay, must
have read this book.Similar to Lyndon Larouche, LaRouche throws in Gregory
Bateson too, in addition to Adorno, as being intellectual authors of the
counterculture. As the late 60's correspondence between Marcuse and Adorno,
excerpted  in a recent New Left Review show, Adorno, who called the police
to deal with German S.D.S.ers who disrupted his lectures, called the
students who were taking to heart his earlier theories about a totally
administered, totality under the grip of a Culture Industry" selling KItsch
and enveloping the masses in a fog of reification, "left fascists". Marcuse
wasn't uncritical of student radicalism but took a much less condemnatory
stance, Habermas too, took the line that the students were playing with
fire, given the weak foundations of German constitutional norms and laws and
the potential for backlash. (Guess the "ideal speech situation" and
confronting the hypocrisy of liberal and left professors are different
practices!)   In the 90's Telos has gotten crankier, with the editor
becoming an enthusiast of paleo-conservatism (Old Right, suspicious of
urbanism, cosmopolitan elites, globalization, against the recent NATO
intervention [with no scare quotes they condemn American imperialism]
hankers for  the restoration of an organic, ordered society, has some
romantic anti-capitalist tendencies cf. the monthly Chronicles magazine, the site or the more academic Modern Age quarterly, for
more on this check out the very comprehensive website put out by Jim Kalb,
the Traditionalist Conservatism Page.)
     (Back to Telos) Suppose the signs like the bitter debates on the
Euromissiles and publishing pieces by French "New Rightist"(helluva lot more
intellectual than the U.S. variety and hostile to globalization, but then so
is Buchanan..) Alain deBenoist and special issues on Nazi legal theorist,
Carl Schmitt (the subject of a new book by post-Marxist Chantal Mouffe),
show eclecticism or something else . Maybe the motto being instead of
"epater le bourgeoisie" "epater le PC academia." Still for those needing a
introduction to the Frankfurters, going to a university library and reading
Telos from the 70's and 80's will give one a strong foundation, and at least
these folks were never taken in by post-modernism, deconstruction or
Althusserian structuralism like New Left Review, was for a time back then.
                                                       MIchael Pugliese

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