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Charlottesville: Beware of Politicians, Billionaires and Dishonest Press, Obviously
by Richard Kostelanetz
Piecing together bits drawn from various sources, I gather that some white supremacist group got a permit to stage a demonstration. Once this was granted, the remnant of Black Lives Matter decided, along with allied gangs, to mobilize a counter demonstration. This setup prompted the local mayor and a local judge, perhaps with coaching from the Virginia governor, all Democrats, to recognize a theatrical opportunity that would best be exploited if, first, a request to use a larger venue was rejected and then the police were told "to stand down." From afar these moves look like a Set Up conducive to violence. In the ensuing fight, one person got killed, though I suspect that the scheming politicians in particular expected more carnage. Someone surely calculated that since news in August is “slow,” such a staged event would get more attention now than, say, in December.
Nonetheless, Trump correctly judged that no element was more at fault that the others–the government officials no less than the protestors. Though this was obviously true, anti-Trumpsters, having expired the myth of some Russian collusion, exploited this new “outrage” to bully the president into echoing their sentiments. Full well they should surely know by now that bullying Donald Trump won’t succeed, though it might enhance the celebrity of the bullies. Grandstanding we used to call this, because its purposes are theatrical rather than political.
Once an anti-Trumpster could successfully wave the specters of “racists” or “neo-Nazis,” everybody else in the story becomes ipso facto innocent, certain dark truths about the alleged anti-fascists notwithstanding. What I find simple-minded is the ability of some people to feast upon a single negative attribute in order to dismiss entirely an analysis or a person. It’s a mentality that we in NYC associate with the Upper West Side, also known as the People’s Republic of the Upper West Side, where residents with degrees so often seem uneducated. Living in a Latino ‘hood in Brooklyn, I sometimes suspect the ulterior UWS motives are, first, discrediting their universities and, second, smugly generating counter-productive publicity designed to get Republicans elected in 2018.
About Trump the news media again flagrantly misrepresent. On WINS (24 hr. news, NYC), the announcer said, probably repeating a feed from a news agency, that the dead woman’s mother “refused to talk to Trump,” but then played a tape when the mother declared only a refusal to talk to “politicians,” her word. Note the plural, which Trump ain’t (yet). Having edited audio interviews myself, I wondered if her following words might have, instead, named the local officials. Too much anti-Trump displays a disrespect for truth, verifiable truth, that discomforts me.
Who are these “white nationalists”? Where did they come from? What have they done before? What are their histories? I’m old enough to remember during the 1960s the sudden appearance of radical groups, purportedly of the Left, that briefly commanded headlines until they disappeared, because they couldn’t develop traction or, more likely, because they were in reality paid provocateurs whose backers’ budgets had expired.
Much of Black Lives Matter was reportedly funded by George Soros, a billionaire speculator who learned how to make billions from financial chaos. Respecting his ingenuity, I wouldn’t be surprised to discover that, via a dummy front, he is bankrolling these white nationalists as well. After all, for a billionaire a few million are peanuts. For a 1998 revelatory 60 Minutes interview with George Soros himself about the nihilism of making money, see https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rd39zUvreOU. Listening to the man himself, apart from a second-hand report, will prompt you to question his motives every time you hear his name mentioned. (Also on line are people questioning visual evidence from Charlottesville, much as the great Robert Groden doubting the JFK assassination fifty years ago. Start with https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kqn4dVfcifo, in spite of the announcer’s repeating “left” and “right.”)
Behind the government officials stand, of course, the Democratic machines whose motives are familiar. May I hope that some investigative reporter documents (not guesses) why these white nationalists weren’t so visible before? Curious we should be. If they are fakes who will soon disappear, then whatever furor they generated will die down. You can bet on that.
Given the success of Charlottesville, may I venture that a similar confrontation will happen elsewhere. At that point will emerge some other reason for the anti-Trump publicists to deflate a president who, don’t forget, was duly elected. Some fifty years ago, non-Communist lefties called themselves democratic socialists, while the letters SDS stood for Students for a Democratic Society.
I’m again reminded of McCarthyism from decades ago, which depended upon Joe’s identifying a new fake threat that, once deflated, would be replaced by another “story” until his string ran out. Even so, may I doubt if these white nationalists are now more threatening to America than homegrown ever Communists were. They are inflated specters of their antagonists’ imagination.
* * *
One new development has been purportedly “anti-fascist” efforts to tear down plaques and statues of historic Americans involved not just with the Confederacy but with slavery, even if their complicity went hardly noticed for decades. Once this destructive machine gets humming, it won’t stop. The comic commentator known only as Lionel suggested boycotting the Broadway musical Hamilton, even if it features African-American performers, because the historic Alex wasn’t sufficiently anti-slavery. Sympathetic though such sentiments might be, actual destruction accomplishes nothing more than making some people feel better, perhaps on the assumption that they imagine some other people, their antagonists will then feel worse. Wow. Is that “social change”?
Consider further that if France refuses to go along with the next American military invasion there will be calls to toss the Statue of Liberty into the sea. Hoorah? No mas, please.
Need I add how odd it is that the funeral for the dead purported policemen did NOT include police from around the US, as is customary when a cop dies in the line of duty.
Again may I wonder why the mainstream press doesn't investigate?