[Marxism] Winding down the business about my exercising my right as a moderator

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Sun Jul 19 10:55:44 MDT 2015


(After today, I expect this thread to cease. We have more important 
things to discuss.)

Maybe it’s because I’m the moderator and read just about every message 
coming to the list that I have a better handle on Creegan than most of you.

He showed up in April 2012 to defame Gerry Foley, a member of the 
Trotskyist movement for 40 years who had distinguished himself as 
tireless activist and intellectual even if you didn’t agree with 
everything he wrote. After Foley died, people paid tribute to him as you 
would expect on a list where many people, including me, knew him 
personally. Creegan’s premier post stated that Gerry “carried a torch 
for such movements as Croatian nationalists who traced their roots to 
the WWII fascists of the Craotian [sic] Ustashi, and, most egegiously 
[sic] of all, for an Estonian outfit called the Forest Brothers, which 
served with the Waffen SS.” That’s some way for someone to introduce 
himself to the list. I was shocked but let it pass.

A year later he writes his next post, this time about Max Shachtman’s 
followers: “Most of these new recruits were ‘City College boys’-- 
students at City College of NY. They were overwhelmingly Jewish, and 
many were not exactly working class, but the children of small business 
people in New York.” You tell me what being Jewish has to do with 
anything. Are Jews infected with petty-bourgeois germs more than other 
ethnic groups? Or because their father owned a fruit store like mine? 
What a burden I had to bear, a Jew and the son of a petty bourgeois. 
(Before my father opened his store, he was a truck-driver. How does your 
class analysis cope with that contradiction?)

Later that year he writes a post attacking a Counterpunch article I 
wrote. Frankly, I should have removed him from the list then and there. 
He said, “There are many people, Louis clearly among them, who don't 
think we need a revolutionary party today.” I always love how people 
attribute views to you without quoting you. I am opposed to building 
revolutionary parties and Gerry Foley was for fascism. But where is the 
citation? He concludes this attack with this characterization of my take 
on Bolshevik history: “A new, reformist-social democratic revisionist 
school of Soviet history is the last thing we need!” So really, why 
would you be subbed to a mailing list that was moderated by someone 
pushing social democratic reformism? Unless you thought that Marxmail 
was a place to expose traitors and renegades?

I can understand why some people would like to see Creegan continue to 
intervene here since he might echo your own hatred for Syriza. Yesterday 
I advised him to join the Green Left mailing list whose newspaper has 
influenced my own take on Greece. That list is a lot more open to that 
sort of intervention than Marxmail. I truly hope that Creegan does take 
my advice and go there if he really wants to kill the viper in its nest. 
The archives are open 
(https://groups.yahoo.com/neo/groups/GreenLeft_discussion) and you can 
watch the sparks fly. Bring your own beer.

Finally, I have been through this kind of angst display at least a dozen 
times in the past, when people feel the need to accuse me of Stalinism 
and the like. But like Mark said, this is a mailing list and not a 
party. Mark knows what it means to be expelled from a party, I should 
add. Also, I know what it is like to be expelled or suspended from a 
mailing list. I was thrown off Socialist Register for being a pain in 
the ass, blocked from posting on Crooked Timber, made persona non grata 
on MRZine, and suspended from PEN-L at least 5 times. I survived in one 
piece like all the people who were removed from Marxmail over the years, 
including one rather obsessed individual who unsubbed himself maybe 10 
years ago but continues to read the archives as if his life depended on 
it. How else would he get the fuel needed to write hate mail to me on 
just such occasions?



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