hunterbadbear at earthlink.net
Mon Jan 13 08:13:44 MST 2003
Note by Hunterbear:
As far as I can tell, I'm the only person on ASDnet [DSA] who has commented
on the extraordinary and staggeringly significant positive action by
Governor George Ryan of Illinois in clearing his state's death row -- and
sparing over 170 human beings from state murder. The implications of this
are enormous and global and enduring. In a discussion of this on another
list, Marxism Discussion, I made two posts. The initial one responded to
another member of Marxism, Lou Paulsen. I posted both of those on ASDnet.
[I'm attaching my posts here once again.]
And this, from Michael Pugliese, was the one and only response. It -- the
epitome of pure shabbiness and venal shallowness -- and the general ASDnet
silence on issues of racism and ethnocentrism and the death penalty [there
are the few great souls who always do speak] voice volumes about ASDnet's
sterility and, given the many collaterally negative dimensions, about the
increasingly irrelevant nature of much of DSA.
"Ah yes, Lou Paulsen of the Chicago branch of the
Workers World Party.
That Lou was on Doug Henwood's lbo-talk list for a
while last yr. Under a multi-tendency polemical
from my friend, Thomas Seay, an ex-maoist from the CWP
now a libertarian socialist who translates texts by
Toni Negri, anarchist Chuck Munson of the Black Bloc,
Dennis Perrin who used to work for the media watchdogs
FAIR, me and many others, Paulsen was unable to defend
such historical/ideological positions of the WWP as
their support for the suppression of the Tienanmen
Square students, the crushing of the Hungarian Revolt
in '56, support for Milosevic..."
My post and the matter at hand had nothing to do with Tienamen Square,
Hungary, Milosevic. But, like the old song from my high schools days, "Put
another nickel in . . ."
Lou Paulsen, BTW, is a very nice person -- thoughtful, committed -- who,
some time back, wrote one of the most sensitive and human pieces I've ever
read anywhere on the pathos involved in the death of an elderly, close
Note by Hunterbear:
Fascinating speculation, Lou [Paulsen]. My take on Ryan is that, assuming
he's Catholic, the increasingly vigorous and rapidly broadening anti-death
penalty position taken by the Vatican and the Bishops could be a very big
piece in his personal motivational process. On another point, North Dakota
Gov John Hoeven [also a Republican] and a state business delegation
visited Cuba late last year as well. They had a great time.
It's also,of course, a warm place.
Note by Hunterbear:
To Jim Farmelant -
It's possible that you know much more than I about the Governor Altgeld
1893 pardons of the surviving Haymarket victims of hideous judicial
frame-up. However, I do know very well indeed that a major figure active
for years on behalf of the victims and their families was William Mackintire
Salter [of Cambridge, MA and Silver Lake, NH], a founder [with Felix Adler]
of the Ethical Culture Society. Salter, a close colleague of Jane Addams
and leader of the Chicago Ethical movement, was the man who adopted my
full-blooded Native father in what became a problematic adoption [to put it
mildly.] Salter was a leader in the almost all-White Indian Rights
Association and, in 1909, was a signer of the call to organization of NAACP.
In any event, I do know from his papers and other materials, that he fought
long and hard and courageously to build the kind of pressure that led to the
Haymarket pardons. He did so at considerable risk to himself.
I've always been personally interested in this and am now especially, since
later on this year, in the spring, I'll be speaking on William M. Salter,
his life and meaning, and especially that for our family at a gathering
organized by the Ethical Humanist Society of Greater Chicago.
As Ever - H
Hunter Gray [Hunterbear]
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