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We Interrupt This Regularly Scheduled Programming
February 9, 2012 Flotsam and Jetsam

Our student organization, the AHI at Rochester, is sponsoring Professor David R. Henderson this evening for a discussion of US foreign policy, including asking whether we need to go to war for oil, and providing some very original thoughts on just how much of a threat the Iranians might be to “us.”  His presentation will begin at 7:30pm and will run to approximately 9pm. We’ll have plenty of time for questions and discussion. The event will be held in Goergen 101 on the River Campus.

In other news I just wanted to come clean to all of my readers. Not only do I get funded by the Koch brothers to do some of what I do, but I get paid extremely handsomely, and that they communicate with me regularly in order to help me figure out how best to influence young impressionable men and women to come around to their views. For what it’s worth, about 1/3 of our programming budget comes from Koch related charities, the rest from other sources. If anyone is interested in learning how all of this works, by all means please shoot me an e-mail and I would be happy to let you know.

In other news, I want to ask my readers for a favor as I embark upon book #4 of my odyssey to read “other” stuff. Please talk to your progressive minded friends (mine have all abandoned me) or friends that would consider themselves enlightened leftists. And please do me a favor. Ask them this: if you had one chance to ask someone to read a book that is deep, nuanced, carefully written, honest and does not do injustice to ideas you disagree with but that best makes the case for your own world view (the progressive one), what book would it be? I cannot tell you how difficult it has been to come up with a “20 greatest hits” of progressive/leftism to make my way through. Tell them that they have a chance to get someone’s attention, who is trying hard to more deeply respect their positions (at least some of them) and attack his own. I am brutally tired of uninformed attacks on the freedom philosophy and have decided that I want to attack it myself and in ways that do not seem to be jumping off the OpEd page of Mother Jones. Your submissions will be kindly appreciated.

"6" Comments
  1. Darn, probably won’t make it tonight, woke up with a cold.

  2. >> ” … or friends that would consider themselves enlightened leftists.”

    I must say almost every leftist I encounter is quite convinced that he/she is particularly enlightened, and certainly always the most enlightened person in the room. 😉

    >> ” … in ways that do not seem to be jumping off the OpEd page of Mother Jones.”

    Here is a headline from Mother Jones two days ago, this is not a joke:
    “What Would It Take to Trust Komen Again?”

  3. Have you tried looking to novels, instead of progressive nonfic? They’re digestible and it’s easy to finding yourself sympathizing with struggling characters. Of course, you’ll have no trouble distinguishing someone’s intentions and the outcomes he’s advocating for.

    I had a good time with Zola’s Germinal, which describes the misery of coal miners as well as their savagery (and don’t do injustice to mine owners either.) Germinal got flak from BOTH the socialists and conservatives in France. Dickens and Sinclair come to mind. Les Miserables is supposed to be good.

  4. Have you considered Open Veins of Latin America by Eduardo Galeano or anything by David Graeber? Keep in mind that leftist authors are almost by definition angry and vitrolic since they are writing as anti-capitalists in a capitalist world. Graeber seems to be the exception.

    If you are interested in radical political economy a good place to end up would be anything written by Jonathan Nitzan and Shimshon Bichler, particularly “The Global Political Economy of Israel,” which lays out their theory of differential accumulation, expanded on in “Capital as Power: A Study of Order and Creorder.” Both are available as PDFs for free online. Also, most papers by MoshĂ© Machover are good. Timothy Mitchell’s new book “Carbon Democracy” is also a must read (I have yet to get around to starting it, but his essay that I attached is considered seminal in leftist circles). I attached some additional files that may interest you. (wintercow: this was a private email that the reader has allowed me to post)

  5. I asked a friend for recommendations concerning books to read, and this was his response, verbatim:

    “I’ll just post this: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Harvey_(geographer) and recommend his bibliography on behalf “enlightened” liberals
    (because I am so very very enlightened). ”

    I will make an attempt to get that clarified and whittled down, if you would like. Otherwise, have fun on this endeavor, and keep up the good work. I’ll look forward to the end result.

  6. You run a great program at AHIW, WC. I went to your link on your next speaker, then went to his links, and, well, the Koch brothers spend their money wisely, directed toward bright students ready to light up the world. No wonder WC wakes early to be the Energizer Bunny every day. This is a hell of a lot more fun than having to spend $250,000 for a bachelor’s degree in economics at Princeton.

    Regarding your question in the second half, I will ask them. It turns the tables, doesn’t it? The tough part will be to ask the question politely, without eliciting a hostile response from, say, a country club Republican: “Who would you suggest I read that might support your theory of the Multiplier?” I can visualize a glass of Montrachet being thrown in my face, a canapĂ© of duck pate smeared on my shirt.

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