[Marxism] Argo, go fuck yourself

DW dwaltersmia at gmail.com
Mon Feb 25 08:28:57 MST 2013

I think this analysis of the movie/critics interesting, though wrong.
The author of the Counterpunch article is describing the reason the
movie was made and popular is because:

"I’ll tell you why. Because Argo, above all else, is a piece of
conservative liberal propaganda created by Hollywood to support the
Obama administration’s conservative liberal politics as we move toward
the Presidential election. In addition, it also primes the war wheels
for an American-supported Israeli attack on Iran, so that Leftists can
feel okay about the war when they cast their vote for Obama in

I don't actually agree with this. This is a shallow analysis. The
author writes about Affleck's bona-fides as a "leftist" (only defined
by the author) and wonders why this "conservative liberal" films gets
made. Nicoline, the writer, pronounces their voting for Obama in
November *anyway*. Their beef is only with the accuracy of ARgo. OK,
fine. And they are critical of giving the CIA a free pass. All well
and good but so what? I've seen this now a dozen times before in lefty
rags about how Argo sucks. I've seen far better analysis in
non-political journals like Rolling Stone.

The problem here is a misunderstanding of "liberalism". The author's
assumption is that there has to be something consistent about
liberalism. There isn't. Additionally, he takes an a-historical view
of liberalism as if liberalism started with opposition, perhaps, to
the Vietnam War without looking at the fact that liberals got us into
the Vietnam War.

The writer is trying trying break, or create, an artificial divide
between 'conservatives' and 'liberals' as if this unified outlook on
foreign policy is something new when in fact it is quite old and goes
back to the Truman administration. Argo is not some nefarious piece of
celluloid designed to obfuscate the non-existent differences on Iran
by liberals and conservatives but is a *reflection* of the political
reality of both wings of the ruling class. It is not designed to
assuage liberal guilt. It was designed to make it OK for those few who
use the "L" word to define their politics to give the CIA a
liberal-wash of affirmation. That US foreign policy is "OK" and if
only the CIA could reject things like water-boarding and rendition,
things would be OK in the world.

The Nicolini review is, unfortunately, as useless as the film it
reviews and, interestingly, is a bad as the film for exact same
reasons it criticizes it for.

D. Walters

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