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I am 62. I remember the 60s and 70s well. Like teacherken I lived through those times. My memories of those times are slightly different than his and those of Frank Rich. I highly recommend that you read teacherken's diary Krugman:  A Tale of Two Moralities, and my disagreement in part and Frank Rich's op=ed No One Listened to Gabrielle Giffords.

The purpose of diary is to discuss my views of the radical left during those times.

I remember all the sixties quite well. I remember an attack on a foreign country where the US trained the troops who attacked in the US and the troops attacked from US soil. After the Bay of Pigs Invasion came the Cuban missile crisis. Who can blame a nation that wishes to protect itself from an invasion sponsored by a foreign power. And then came the shooting of President Kennedy. I think we all remember where we were when we first heard of the shooting. And then there was the shooting of Lee Harvey Oswald on live television. Despite the FBI, the Dallas police, and the Warren Commission, people questioned for years whether or not Oswald acted alone.

And then there was the campaign for President in 1964. I remember the Daisy Ad which was run due to Goldwater saying "defoliation of the forests by low-yield atomic weapons could well be done." Goldwater was the radical republican saying "sometimes I think this country would be better off if we could just saw off the Eastern Seaboard and let it float out to sea." During the early 60s the right was the radical group.

Was the left radical in the late 60s and early 70s. To this I answer yes. But was the left anti government as Frank Rich wrote that there "was an antigovernment radicalism as rabid on the right now as it was on the left in the late 1960s." I differ. There was an anti Vietnam War rhetoric that was at least as strong and the anti Iraq War rhetoric. But, that was not anti government rhetoric. There was also an anti government brutality rhetoric as I will explain below. That is not the same as anti government rhetoric.

teacherken expresses it this way

I am 64.  I remember the 60s.  I remember those on the left who argued that it might be necessary to resort to violence to prevent greater violence.  Despite the legislative achievements under LBJ we saw the rise of those in the African-American community whose frustration was so great that the imagery of violence -  Black Panthers or Fruits of Islam, for example - began to have a broader appeal.  We saw the Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee go from the leadership of the likes of John Lewis to that of Stokely Carmichael, who warned people that they if they were shocked by his style of leadership they would be even more perturbed by that of his successor, H. Rap Brown.  During that period SNCC kept the letters but changed its title, replacing Nonviolent to National to acknowledge that some of its leaders were willing to turn to violence.

Yes the Weather Underground "issued a "Declaration of a State of War" against the United States government" and was responsible for bombings. However, the anti government position was in response to the government's anti people behavior. Two examples come immediately to mind, the Chicago police at Mayor Daley's direction beating the shit out of protesters at the Chicago democratic convention and the shooting of unarmed students by National Guard troops at Kent State University. The Weather Underground was formed in response to these and other similar incidents.

Now lets consider the Black Panthers. They were formed by Bobby Seale and Huey P. Newton in response to police brutality in African American neighborhoods in Oakland California. Stokely Carmichael and H. Rap Brown both left SNCC to become Black Panthers. The reason was simple, the violence the government perpetuated against African Americans.

In my mind when the government commits violent acts against people then we should not be surprised if the people commit violent acts to prevent the government of committing violent acts against the people. In other words the Weather Underground declared war because the government had declared war. This is not so much anti government as self protection.

Is high unemployment a violent act against the people? Yes it is. However, the violence is being done by the extreme right, the right, and the moderate left; not the far left. Is the Tea Party in large part a reaction to high unemployment? You can bet your ass it is. Unfortunately the Tea Party policies will only greatly aggravate the unemployment problem making it much worse. Sadly very few recognize what needs to be done and even fewer are in a position to do anything.

Bottom line is, expect the rhetoric and the violence to grow.

Originally posted to Lawrence A. Welsch on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 08:26 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  "Radical Left" (17+ / 0-)

    Damn treehugging environmentalists who want to prevent pollution.

    Damn workers who want a livable wage, safe workplaces, and union protection.

    Damn poor who want equal opportunity.

    Damn disenfranchised who want fair trials with competent lawyers representing them or compensation for being wrongfully railroaded into prison.

    Damn women, the disabled, and people of color who want their civil and Constitutional rights respected.

    Damn sissy liberals who want to beat swords into plowshares.

    Damn hungry poor children who want to eat.  

    Damn people who want to tax the rich and redistribute the wealth to the poor.

  •  At age 77 I also recall the 60's and 70's (7+ / 0-)

    70's extremely clearly. I shall come back to this diary later and read the links to see how i feel now.

    People appear to be in a reflective, introspective mood today, which a all good as far as I am concerned.

    certainly beats the aggressive. combative tone of recent months, even two years.

    Maybe the time for change is beginning to be accepted. And like the 60's it appears to be taking some serious traumatic national event to trigger it.

    •  ah, you watched from a different perspective (4+ / 0-)

      than mine and stop that lying about your age!  you CAN'T be 77, you post too young for that!  8^)

      do you, as i do, recall that the hippie movement was by and large peaceful and non-violent?

      i do not remember the vitriol and heated arguments that were so personal as they are today.  i remember arguing positions, but countering the hostility of the opposite view with patience and calm and reason.

      i don't think i am applying a "convenient" filter - so i'd love another opinion from a bit older and wiser view than mine.

      MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

      by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 11:41:00 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  that's probably because i am now, for survival (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LWelsch

        reasons trying to keep up with my 4 grandkids, ranging in age through 9, 12, 14 and 33, two female, two male, am rapidly entering my third childhood, having zipped though my second one several years ago. LOL.

        •  here's to your fourth and my second - (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          soccergrandmom

          rapidly moving to third!  

          MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

          by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 12:33:59 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  when I was young i had a fantasy about living (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            edrie

            life backwards, gradually relinquishing instead of gradually acquiring, and then as i lived my life in reality instead of the imagination I began to realise that in fact, IS how we live it.  It is probably a survival mechanism.

            •  we get wise enough to go back and edit (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              soccergrandmom

              our dreams and select those most important to make come true!

              as we grow, we get smarter and know how to choose the best instead of trying to determine what that "best" is.  guess it could be called "experience".

              ain't life grand! (even when it's not, then it's just plain ol' interesting!)

              here's to many more lifetimes lived during this one!

              MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

              by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 01:22:00 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

  •  I'm also a member of the 60ish And Counting Club (8+ / 0-)

    Those on the Right who choose to equate the Left Wing radicalism of the 60's with the current Right Wing extremism are conveniently forgetting their own history.  

    Barry Goldwater - 1964 Republican Convention

    May the forces of evil become confused on the way to your house. George Carlin

    by msmacgyver on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 08:55:43 AM PST

  •  Extremes. (4+ / 0-)
    The far left and the far right are more alike than either camp would care to admit and both yearn for the same thing: a dictator who will put their policies in place.
    •  Specifics (8+ / 0-)

      Who, on the left, appears inclined to embrace a dictator? And whose agenda, on the left, would necessarily lead to a dictatorship of any kind?

      •  Throughout history... (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        buddabelly, hardleftintx, daysey

        there have been leftist dictators -- Lenin, Castro, etc. Currently, Venezuela has a leftist dictator, Hugo Chavez, who can count among his biggest fans American Sean Penn.

        Now, do I fear that Sean Penn is planning on taking over our government anytime soon? No. But people on the far left and far right are closer to each other than they would ever care to admit. It's akin to the old saying, "The opposite of love isn't hate; it's apathy."

        Love and hate are linked, as are the extremes of our political spectrums.

        •  Hugo Chavez is not a dictator (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Virginia mom

          He won two elections. Both certified by the Organization of American States (OAS) and the Carter Center. Yes he is a socialist, but not a dictator. Fidel Castro was indeed a dictator. One who took power by overthrowing Batista, one of the most corrupt dictators ever. Batista also had close Mafia ties.

          I believe that if the US had not driven Castro into the Soviet sphere of influence through a trade embargo, Castro would have formed a democracy in Cuba.

          Practice tolerance, kindness and charity.

          by LWelsch on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 11:25:27 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  That's too easy (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            BenderRodriguez

            Dictatorship isn't defined by how the dictator got into power.  It's the disrupting of small d democratic behavior, which is about permitted dissent and about changing government priorities when the society's condition and problems change.  Its mark is the destruction of the protections of dissenting minorities and finally the physical destruction of the dissenting minorities.

            Basically, if you have many of the best educated and morally leading people in a society getting silenced, prevented from political activity, persecuted, and ultimately killed: you have a dictatorship.

            Frantic orthodoxy is never rooted in faith but in doubt. It is when we are unsure that we are doubly sure. -Reinhold Niebuhr

            by killjoy on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 11:57:23 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  on this site, enough have called for (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        buddabelly

        the president to "grow a spine" and just "do it" (put policies in place like bush did), even though that is NOT how our government operates.

        those who decry bipartisanship are, de facto, demanding that one side override the other to force a particular point of view into practice.

        whether we like it or not, WE are not the majority of opinion in this nation.  we are part of a diverse whole.

        if we cannot win our positions by argument based on fact, then we must perfect our method of debate.  to  do otherwise is to impose autocratic rule on a majority of the populace.

        no matter how much we believe our goals to be noble and  just, we do not have the right under our constitution and form of government to enforce those beliefs UNLESS our constitution protects them (civil rights, discrimination, etc.). and, even then, it is the government as a whole that sustains the rights defined by the u.s.s.c.

        look at this site and the anger for  the last 18 months because a vocal  few did not get "their" way on legislation.  the anger, the vitriol, the intense negativity and reaction do not support democracy - it supports dictatorship... and that is never correct, no matter which side of the political divide you choose to live.

        MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

        by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 10:56:00 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Grow a spine (0+ / 0-)

          means loudly and vigorously advocate.

          He has the full power and media-dominating power of the presidency - so advocate!

          Use fact, use examples, use publicity stunts, use the full force of that bully pulpit to preach the morality of treating those like we would treat each other, and argue for closing guantanamo. Use the power of declassificaton and anti-trust to advocate loudly and vigorously for the breakup of too-big-to-fail industry, use that spine to stand tall for the benefit of the victims of fraudclosure!

          That's what the spine is for. To stand up and spit "I welcome their hatred" or somesuch right back at those that keep calling health care "job-killing obamacare".

          Grow a spine means standing for something, not falling for everything.

          ~~It Takes A Village To Keep The Peace~~~()~~~(-7.12, -5.54)

          by JayFromPA on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 11:35:02 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

    •  bullshit. I'm calling bullshit. (4+ / 0-)

      I've discussed this particular issue with family and friends, many of which are conservatives.

      who the fuck is the 'extreme left ' that wants a 'dictator'? a few 9/11 truthers still hanging out on a corner?

      meanwhile, on the extreme right, we have:

      AM and FM radio
      internet hate groups
      hate groups that run the spectrum from white supremacist to Family Research council's gay bashing

      racism period, like the Obama-haters

      think tanks that put haters in suits and ties , so they can help move the Overton Window further to the right and enact policies to screw over kids, seniors, and minorities.

      so, I'll ask again:
      who the fuck is this radical left that we should be so scared of? Hugo fucking chavez, thousands of miles away in a third world country?

      we got extremist righties here all year, every year, shooting  abortion doctors, and even cops.

      and if you're concerned about the troublesome hippies, get over yourself. nowadays, they get shot too.

      http://rawstory.com/...

      •  Where did I say, or even infer... (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Samulayo, buddabelly

        that there's a radical left "that we should be so scared of"?

        First of all, calm down. You seem a bit excitable.

        Secondly, you're talking to a yellow-dog lifelong liberal Democrat who doesn't need to be told examples of right-wing hatred in action that have resulted in innocent lives being lost.

        And when you mention "troublesome hippies," frankly, I have no idea what you're talking about.

        My earlier point, however, is simply this: those on the far left and the far right are closer than they realize or would care to admit and would really love to inhabit a world where they are being led by what they see as a "benevolent dictator" who would put into place all their policies.

        I'm discussing this as a matter of theory; I'm not here to give you a laundry list of leftist groups that are fomenting a coup against the U.S. government.

        As far as I know, no such groups exist...

        OR DO THEY?
        MWAH-HA-HA-HA-HA-HA!

        •  "troublesome hippies" appears to be (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          buddabelly, Betty Pinson

          the cloak that those who weren't there love to wrap around their anger.

          i am really sick of reading that little usurping label.  my bet is that those who throw those words around have absolutely NO idea what the 60s were about, were not born then and who are adopting and adapting what they THINK the generation (MY generation, to be exact) really stood for.

          frankly, from that type of comment, it validates for met the lack of knowledge of that particular poster.  even if it IS thrown about by someone who is nearer my age, it tells me that particular poster was never a "hippie" in the first place!  

          MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

          by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 10:59:07 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  yeah I'm in my 20s (0+ / 0-)

            and I wouldn't add 60 years to that number to be as cool as you.

            not today. not ever.

            ha.

            •  i hope you DO add 60 years and more! (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Betty Pinson

              the alternative is to die early - not a good choice!

              i just hope your 60+ years are filled with as much fun as mine have been... and that you can succeed what my generation has started.

              politics are not static - the job is never ending - and you are lucky enough to get to catch and carry the ball down the field now, just as we did in our generation!

              my generation is counting on you!

              MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

              by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 12:13:50 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

          •  Its a myth (0+ / 0-)

            and a very old one at that.

            Proud member of the Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party.

            by Betty Pinson on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 12:25:34 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

        •  sooo......lefties wanting dictators? (1+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Betty Pinson

          since you just now discovered a proclivity for explaining yourself...or maybe you are just excitable? then go ahead and make some sense out of that remark.

      •  The big difference is the behavoir didn't (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Betty Pinson

        become socially acceptable in the 60's and 70's the way it is today. The media accepts it as reasonable now so it becomes acceptable in society at large. In fact those with the most violent rhetoric now get radio or TV shows , that would have been absolutely UNHEARD of back then.

      •  Not just "nowadays." (0+ / 0-)

        Kent State happened in 1970.

        Now, more than ever, we need the Jedi.

        by Joieau on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 11:15:55 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Demonizing the left (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Virginia mom, daysey

        appears to be the organized conservative (not necessarily just GOP) response to the Tucson shootings.  More false equivalence, more marginalizing of the Dem base, yawn.

        Our party leaders in DC are in for a very big surprise from the base if they let this continue.  

        Proud member of the Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party.

        by Betty Pinson on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 12:24:55 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Anti-government? They were anti-Nixon government, (11+ / 0-)

    that's for sure.

    The phrase that was used the most was "anti-establishment." The radicals and even not so radical lefties were against "the establishment" which meant the institutions (including government) and social patterns/practices that blocked opportunity and the pursuit of life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness for many withing our country.

    Personally, I was a leftie then but abhored the bombings and violence as being against the values we were supposed to represent.

    Some people fight fire with fire. Professionals use water.

    by Happy Days on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 09:03:30 AM PST

    •  left and unions (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      kuvasz, FakeNews, LWelsch, DawnN

      We don't have a Labor Party--and that's the problem.  To get things done, you need power--countervailing power--general strikes swung Europe to the left.  Until the left and the unions merge, we--the people- lose.

      Apres Bush, le deluge.

      by melvynny on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 09:25:08 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  the problem with having no "labor" party (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Betty Pinson, sboucher

        (which is/was the democratic party), there have to be jobs for unions to organize!

        this has just struck me at writing this now.  another main reason for offshoring is to undercut and undermine the effectiveness of unions on the political scene.

        unions cannot form if there are no jobs around which to organize.

        the "tech" revolution and the "service" industry so touted by reagan do not lend themselves to union organizing.  under reagan, starting with the air traffic controllers, then moving to the manufacturing base, decided to turn america into a "service based" economy. when the manufacturing jobs were dismantled and sent to china, the mariannas, mexico and elsewhere, the very nature of unionization and union power and influence changed.

        i remember the vibrant dry goods industry, the mills and fabric makers that dried up and disappeared, cannon mills and the entire town of kannapolis being the classic example of that policy.  i followed that bankruptcy closely and was appalled to find that all of the mill equipment was loaded up and packed off to china.

        On October 7, 2003, Pillowtex won approval from a bankruptcy court judge to sell company assets, including machinery and brands, to GGST LLC for $128 million. The brands "Cannon", "Royal Velvet", "Charisma", and "Fieldcrest" are now listed as intellectual property of SB Capital, or its principals. The "Cannon" and "Royal Velvet" brands have been licensed by Li & Fung, headquartered in Hong Kong. "Fieldcrest" branded products have reappeared as "exclusively at Target".

        off-shoring was NOT just about profits - it was about crippling unions long term. read this sickening timeline about kannapolis (the home of cannon mills) and the destruction of the unions and ultimate move to china.

        who makes up the unions now?  construction (think housing bubble manipulated by banks), supermarkets (think box stores including groceries and NON-union employees) and every other industry (trucking had now become indie drivers instead of the large firms).

        someone somewhere should do some serious research on unions and who they now represent in america - and, more importantly, which industries have been de-unionized or destroyed to kill off unions.

        MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

        by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 12:04:15 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Right you are. (6+ / 0-)

      I was about to post on the anti-establishment sentiment, myself.  As I recall, I wasn't against the government.  I was against the War and I was against government brutality against the people.  Just because I abhorred the policies of the government didn't mean I hated the government.  I just wanted it run by people who actually care about the citizenry.

      Have you ever stopped to think and then forgot to start again?

      by figbash on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 10:04:44 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  i was also more politically active in actual (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        figbash, LWelsch

        governmental issues (campaigns, etc.) then - and i believed in GOOD government.

        this anti-government sentiment is one now entrenched by those who have been trying to undo the policies of fdr since they were first enacted.  too bad so many on the left have bought into that rhetoric.

        government is not the problem.  abuse of government and bad governing is the problem.  

        and, yes, "virginia", there really IS a difference between the two parties!

        MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

        by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 11:43:37 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  They were also anti-Johnson government (3+ / 0-)

      Remember the 1968 Chicago Democratic convention?  The Chicago 7, protesters with blood on thier faces from police clubs.  That wasn't about Richard Nixon.

  •  I read all the indignation hereabouts re false (0+ / 0-)

    equivalence applied to the left, then see this:

    In my mind when the government commits violent acts against people then we should not be surprised if the people commit violent acts to prevent the government of committing violent acts against the people. In other words the Weather Underground declared war because the government had declared war. This is not so much anti government as self protection.

  •  65 here (6+ / 0-)

    The left was never radical enough.  In Chicago, we didn't close down the convention--and that begot Nixon--and 5 more years of war.  The Black Panters were relegated to the fringe--but their arguments were never refuted--remember the line that upset whites-- (paraphrased--too old to remember the quote)The US was founded on violence and racism.

    Today municipal unions are targeted--is the left advocating a general strike?  The weathermen and SNCC were too violent--but not too angry--and that anger had truth for its foundation.  Before it's to late--time to act--non violently--unless you want to be a wussy and think striking is violent.  Trumka--where are you?

    Apres Bush, le deluge.

    by melvynny on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 09:22:09 AM PST

    •  The way I saw it... (5+ / 0-)

      we started off with a nonviolent opposition platform much like MLK used and were met with police in riot gear that took a violent approach in their suppression of dissent.  Many people were jailed, maced and beat, and after Kent State I felt like we all sort of feared for our lives, at least on some level.  As the protests grew so did the government response to it.  I believe this is why most dissension takes place now in chat rooms.  When you hit the streets you must be willing to be arrested.

      I am the fellow citizen of every being that thinks; my country is Truth. ~Alphonse de Lamartine, "Marseillaise of Peace," 1841

      by notdarkyet on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 10:04:17 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  close down the convention? (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      buddabelly

      How would closing the Democratic convention, presumably so that there was no official Democratic candidate, have prevented the election of Richard Nixon?  And, actually, if you look at ground troup numbers Richard Nixon started dropping the levels as fast as Johnson had built them up.

      •  easy (0+ / 0-)

        First off--the unions could have shut down the convention hall (cow palace?).  Next, pressure would have made Humphrey drop from consideration.  Then--Teddy would have gotten the nod--and won re-election.  Nixon used bullshit numbers for his Vietnamazation figures--and only left because we were getting whupped badly.

        Apres Bush, le deluge.

        by melvynny on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 11:17:12 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  violence is logical conclusion of conservatism (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Joieau

    Deep down it's an ideology of demographic supremacy.  They must have all the power and they must not refrain from using it in whatever manner demonstrates their power most viscerally to those who do not have it.

    Iceland knew what to do with broke banks.

    by rf80412 on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 09:23:47 AM PST

  •  Yes, I remember, too: the fear of (6+ / 0-)

    being in physical danger from my own government.

    Thank you for posting.

    We are to hold fast to what we believe is right, fight for it, and find allies....We become a nucleus ..... - David Brower

    by DawnN on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 09:32:16 AM PST

    •  Reasons to fear... (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LWelsch, DawnN, Joieau

      http://en.wikipedia.org/...

      The Kent State shootings – also known as the May 4 massacre or Kent State massacre – [2][3][4] occurred at Kent State University in the city of Kent, Ohio, and involved the shooting of unarmed college students by members of the Ohio National Guard on Monday, May 4, 1970. The guardsmen fired 67 rounds over a period of 13 seconds, killing four students and wounding nine others, one of whom suffered permanent paralysis.[5]

      Some of the students who were shot had been protesting against the American invasion of Cambodia, which President Richard Nixon announced in a television address on April 30. Other students who were shot had been walking nearby or observing the protest from a distance.[6][7]

      There was a significant national response to the shootings: hundreds of universities, colleges, and high schools closed throughout the United States due to a student strike of four million[8] students, and the event further affected the public opinion – at an already socially contentious time – over the role of the United States in the Vietnam War.[9]

      May the forces of evil become confused on the way to your house. George Carlin

      by msmacgyver on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 10:02:50 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Another reason from 1969 (3+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LWelsch, DawnN, Joieau

        The murders of Black Panthers Fred Hampton and Mark Clark by the forces of the Chicago Police Department, the FBI, and the Cook County State's Attorney office of Ed Hanrahan.  Hampton and Clark were murdered in their beds in the middle of the night.  Sure didn't make me feel warm and fuzzy.

        wiki on Fred Hampton

        Have you ever stopped to think and then forgot to start again?

        by figbash on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 10:19:30 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Student strikes (0+ / 0-)

        were one way young and liberal across the country could connect and (mostly) peacefully speak en masse. They weren't radicals, and the strikes weren't radical acts, but were successful enough that the "establishment" felt the need to quell them. Something like 40% of the population was "youth," and when they took a mass action, it had to be noticed.

        I was born in 57, and after watching all the assassinations and shootings and war every night, you bet I was scared.

        It's not just a zip code, it's an attitude.

        by sboucher on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 04:46:04 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

    •  Biggest Element Was Threat of Nuclear War (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LWelsch

      That was a grim and constant backdrop to everything the US did relative to the Communist world. You weren't in danger of police action unless you engaged in a protest. But something like the Cuban Missile Crisis, we risked millions being wiped out, and that risk persisted palpably till the fall of the USSR.

      We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

      by Gooserock on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 10:06:53 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Huh? (5+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        figbash, LWelsch, Virginia mom, DawnN, Joieau

        You weren't in danger of police action unless you engaged in a protest.

        Tell that to the Mayor's wife who was shopping in Berkeley when she was thrown in Santa Rita prison for the weekend.

        Tell that to the kid who worked with me who got his leg broken by the police when he was going to class.

        I can tell you about the cop who laid the butt end of his shotgun into my chest as I was walking to class and then he dared me to say something.

        You lived somewhere different than where I did in the 1960's

        •  In Front of the Oh National Guard's Loaded Rifles (0+ / 0-)

          the weekend before May 4th, for one. My cousin was at Kent State.

          Yes badly phrased on my part, I'm well aware that you didn't need to be actually engaged in protests or civil disobedience. Minorities and lefty-seeming people had a constant background rate of being targeted in various situations.

          But as for the government threatening masses of mainstream people, the only way that was happening was by nuclear war.

          We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

          by Gooserock on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 12:34:16 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  I'm 59. I was certainly a leftist (6+ / 0-)

    back in the 60's and 70's. I'm arguably a leftist today. Was I "radical" back then? I suppose it's a matter of perspective. I did take part in demonstrations; when I was a freshman in college I participated in the non-violent takeover of a building on my campus.

    However, I can say that with some assurance that not only were those who advocated violence as a policy very few, their views were generally rejected even by most of those on the supposed "radical left."

    •  at 65, i agree with you entirely. (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LWelsch, Betty Pinson, sboucher, DawnN

      we were appalled that anyone on EITHER side would advocate violence.

      as one who was part of the beginning of the hippie movement and generation that advocated love above all else, violence was abhorrent.  period.

      there was no "gray" area to be discussed.

      peace, love and rock-n-roll!

      still a good motto!

      especially when you listen to the music of my generation.  it must have connected because i still hear it played today by many young people.  we were talking of universal ideals and dreams - and those ideals and dreams are still valid.

      that is probably why i still sit on this site and challenge the cynics and angry voices that are not listening to what we were saying then.  and it is most definitely why i object to those who are the antithesis of what we believed trying to usurp our movement and turn it into something ugly and distorted.

      MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

      by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 11:20:40 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Hubby and I were (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      edrie, LWelsch, Betty Pinson

      in charge of organizing the campus events for Moratorium Day. The Poli-Sci prof let in some 'consultants' from off-campus (and far away from mostly rural Western Oklahoma) who kept trying to change our plans toward things a lot more confrontational with the campus, town and state cops who would be present, thankfully NOT in riot gear.

      Hubby listened to this crap for all of two days before informing the prof, his outside agitators and the rest of the students on the planning committee that if those 'consultants' didn't leave immediately, we'd call the whole thing off. And he knew we could.

      Moratorium Day observances and festivities went off without a hitch, most of the faculty and many of the townsfolk came to hear the speeches and music, a good time was had by all. Don't know if any minds were really changed, but there was some exchanged respect and those students, many of whom would be forced to fight that war, probably learned things they needed to know.

      P.S. My elder sister went to college up north, fell in love with an SDS bigwig so got sucked in. Brought lots of propaganda home for Christmas my last year in high school, tried to talk me into starting an SDS chapter. At Muskogee Central. I laughed really hard. At least the NAACP Youth Council (I was Treas.) had adult supervision/protection. When I asked her what they've got in mind for after the system got torn down, she didn't have an answer. I told her that if she didn't know, she might want to ask someone who did know. She quit SDS the next month.

      Now, more than ever, we need the Jedi.

      by Joieau on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 11:36:25 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  a thousand recs for your wisdom! (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Joieau

        now, let's keep trying to get that point across to our homegrown anarchists/third partiers/naderites/tea partiers/rightwing friends!

        it worked then, it will work again now - if we just DO it!

        MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

        by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 01:34:00 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Oh, edrie. (0+ / 0-)

          The producer of the film Inside Job was asked what he thought might pull us out, given his ample documentation of corruption throughout the financial and political system - both sides of the aisle. He responded that historically, it would be the appearance and quick rise of a new party. And I suspect he may be right.

          Question is what that party will represent. It can go both ways, historically speaking...

          Now, more than ever, we need the Jedi.

          by Joieau on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 07:14:19 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  the sad reality is there is insufficient (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Joieau

            support for a third party. any third party that aligns closely with one or the other two major ones will only pull votes away from the party with which it is most closely aligned.  that will allow the views of those in direct opposition to the minority group to lose to that same minority control.

            bush/gore/nader is a perfect example.

            more americans supported left and progressive idealogy, but the interference of nader caused those left and progressives to lose to the right wing bush/cheney group.

            third parties do not work as intended.

            perot pulled enough republicans to give bill clinton the presidency.

            3 parts divided mean two are closely aligned and split the voters... leaving the poorest choice to win the election.

            is this what you want?  it is the reality.

            MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

            by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 09:56:18 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  The question isn't what (0+ / 0-)

              I personally want, because I have precisely zero power in DC and nobody's ever going to give me any because I am not a billionaire. The question, as put to Charles Ferguson, is what might possibly pull us out of our quickening spiral into historical oblivion. Given the more than ample evidence that everyone in DC is working for billionaires, bankers/IMF and warlords instead of for 'we the people'.

              It's just as likely we'll be completely impoverished, our childrens' and grandchildrens' futures demolished before they're even born, and millions will die of systematic neglect and imposed deprivation. Which is writ large as we speak on the policies coming down from DC, almost as if it were designed precisely that way...

              I'd never vote for a Republican, but it hasn't been exactly chest-swelling to vote for Democrats recently either. There's still a significant difference in rhetoric, but not much in deed. Both sides are shuffling and obfuscating, distracting the people with sleight of mind pettiness while the nation is destroyed. And not even the best of Presidents can do anything with a stable full of howler monkeys. If 'winning' returns nothing of value to the player (me), there's no reason to play. I've lived much of my life under the erstwhile leadership of fops and fools, so I'm not frightened of fops and fools. If Labor were to defend what's left of its power on behalf of the 95% of us who do the working, living, loving, suffering and dying in this country, I very well might lend my allegiance long enough to see what that might bring. If that were to take awhile (4-6 years) to put a real dent in the status quo, I can be patient.

              We desperately need a 'loyal opposition' and strong, effective leadership in this nation's political apparatus, but that's not what we've got. We've got milquetoast and traitors being paid under the table to play tiny violins while Rome burns. What difference does it make who's holding the scepter when it's all ashes?

              Now, more than ever, we need the Jedi.

              by Joieau on Mon Jan 17, 2011 at 07:42:34 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  joieau (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                Joieau

                this statement really shows that you don't understand how democracy works!

                We desperately need a 'loyal opposition' and strong, effective leadership in this nation's political apparatus, but that's not what we've got. We've got milquetoast and traitors being paid under the table to play tiny violins while Rome burns. What difference does it make who's holding the scepter when it's all ashes?

                our system has always been about balancing the entire needs of a nation between all citizens - the very structure of a presidential election every four years is to ensure that one group can not force forever it's will on the people.  8 years max to do the best/worst it can without a change at the top.

                you throw words like "milquetoast" and "traitors" around with such cavalier disregard for the fact that this is NOT a nation made totally of "progressives".  we are a divergent nation and those with differing political views also have a right to have those views represented.

                IF we want to further our own goals, our nation was set up to give us time to make our best case as to why our views and policies would be better for the entire nation. this country was NOT set up to allow the minority to bully and force the remainder of the nation into compliance.

                i don't like the "fact" that many americans are voting against their own self-interest.  do i consider those votes "traitorous" or "milquetoast"?

                no, i consider those votes to be based on a lack of factual knowledge.

                the problem with your assessment and so many on the far left (anarchists/naderites/third partyites/etc.) is that they want THEIR change right NOW without explaining why their change is better, why it offers a solution to this nation's problems.  

                we are a nation based on persuasion - we are NOT supposed to be a nation of bullies, forcing our opinions down the collective throats of our fellow citizens.

                the real issue that is becoming very clear to me is that we are losing the votes because we are losing the dialogue.  we have lost the ability to persuade, inform, educate.  instead we have adopted the dialogue of attack, evicerate, demean, label, insult, inflame, annoy, aggravate, polarize, alienate and attack.

                we are never going to "bring around" voters who might agree with our points of view if we continually draw lines in the sand and scream in their faces.

                bipartisanship isn't about "caving" - it is about "persuading".  

                maybe another explanation for "persuading" is "growing up.  as children, we scream and throw tantrums until exasperated parents will do ANYTHING to stop the noise and appease the ill-tempered/mannered child.  

                in the adult world, we seek compromise.  we seek to find a common ground where both parties can find a mutual area of agreement.  that compromise is based on sound and reasoned persuasion.  

                that is what is lacking in politics today - and it is most definitely lacking on this site in many instances.

                we do NOT need a "loyal opposition" as much as we need informed and educated and reasoned people who can make a solid case for supporting our points of view.  otherwise, we are nothing more than the ill-tempered tantrum throwing child that gets ignored or only gets a token to get the child to shut up while the adults in the room continue to work.

                btw, that "informed, educated, reasoned" group is often called a "lobby" - and we need to start thinking about how we can "lobby" our congress members instead of attacking them like a group of angry wasps.  we'll have more success by being reasoned, imho.

                MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

                by edrie on Mon Jan 17, 2011 at 08:04:49 AM PST

                [ Parent ]

                •  That's all very nice. (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Pete Rock

                  But we're out of time for bad kabuki. This is the biggest generational cash-out ever, and there will be nothing left when they're done. There's nothing unreasonable about noticing that the DC dance is bad kabuki, or that we're being systematically looted while the show goes on as usual.

                  Historically speaking, Ferguson is correct about the dim chance that the inevitable could be stalled and turned around. But I'm sure not holding my breath. I just offered his evaluation.

                  Now, more than ever, we need the Jedi.

                  by Joieau on Mon Jan 17, 2011 at 08:45:23 AM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  okay - you have a whole lot of (0+ / 0-)

                    hyperbole there - if you want to discuss specifics, please provide with links.

                    otherwise, that response is nothing more than opinion and, please forgive my saying this, it borders on unreasoned hysteria.

                    you state "biggest generational cash-out" without defining what you mean.  please clarify.  please define how you mean "systematically looted".  and, there is no "show" - it is called "governing" by elected officials.  

                    and, furthermore, what makes "ferguson" the authority and who counters his arguments?  on what basis is he an "authority".  it is too easy to latch onto one source to back up already decided opinions.  to truly advance an argument, you need to read more than one opinion.  that is the way to further debate and change outcome.

                    facts to back up your "fears", not colorful language, are the best way to change opinion gain supporters.

                    kabuki doesn't apply here, btw.  not an apt analogy, imho.  it shows that you also are not that familiar with kabuki theatre.

                    MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

                    by edrie on Mon Jan 17, 2011 at 09:40:01 AM PST

                    [ Parent ]

                    •  Wow. (1+ / 0-)
                      Recommended by:
                      Pete Rock

                      Way to tone down the rhetoric. I am not a child, I am not afraid of fops or fools, and I'm twenty years past 'hyster' anything. But I am in show biz, and I know bad kabuki when I see it.

                      You flatter yourself to think I'm trying to 'argue' anything with you. Just told you what I see, and what someone who produced a revealing documentary about what's going on in DC/Wall Street said about what he sees. In the context of what I saw happening in the "radical left" back in the '60s - when hopeful political leaders were regularly assassinated and hippies were routinely beaten and/or shot for exercising their first amendment rights. Under color of law. Those of us who came of political age back then have never had any rosey illusions about the deadly seriousness of the power elite in protecting themselves against the will of the people.

                      Talk of revolution is cheap, exciting only to those who actually do live in fear. The willing embrace of violent rhetoric and actual violence by the misguided right reminds me a lot of the kind of in-your-face bravado of the SDSers back in the day (only this time it's even more stage-managed). Who willingly enlisted without ever bothering to ask what it was, exactly, they were fighting for. None of the Teabaggers know what they're fighting for either, and they're definitely old enough to know better. None of their inciters/enablers in the press or in DC support their stupid little issues, never had any intention of turning this nation into the theocratic dictatorship or wild west anarchy these dunces think they're going to get when the smoke clears.

                      Take it or leave it, no skin off anybody's teeth. What you can't do no matter how condescending you try to be, is make me not see what I see. Guess you'll just have to file that under one of your 'bipartisan' headers and accept that I see things differently. Shouldn't be a problem at all.

                      Now, more than ever, we need the Jedi.

                      by Joieau on Mon Jan 17, 2011 at 10:58:00 AM PST

                      [ Parent ]

                      •  my professional career was in theatre... (0+ / 0-)

                        in new york. so, i, too, know kabuki - and i disagree with your analogy even more now that i know that you, too, are in theatre.

                        tired of this - i, too, will file this under "agree to disagree".

                        have a good afternoon.

                        MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

                        by edrie on Mon Jan 17, 2011 at 12:35:59 PM PST

                        [ Parent ]

                •  Here is the ideal view turned to self deception (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Joieau

                  IF we want to further our own goals, our nation was set up to give us time to make our best case as to why our views and policies would be better for the entire nation. this country was NOT set up to allow the minority to bully and force the remainder of the nation into compliance.

                   

                  Wish it were so but a minority of our nation that exercizes immense power thru ownership of industry, banks, the influence and renting of politicians basically calls the shots regardless of who is elected.

                  our system has always been about balancing the entire needs of a nation between all citizens - the very structure of a presidential election every four years is to ensure that one group can not force forever its will on the people.

                   Since when has that been true? has it ever been true? On occasion we have had huge upsurges from the non propertied and the poor and those without the vote or influence, but always the system comes back to reestablishing the elites in control.  This country started with slavery and large estates and their managers and owners had power ordinary citizens didn't have the vote. Power was granted to slaveowners but only at a discount, the 3/5ths rule. The slaves were not allowed to vote, or even get educated.

                         Women only got the vote in 1918 because of massive struggles for many years and the western countries allowed women to vote and it seemed prudent to follow that example . ERA never passed because "women had the vote already and that should be enough, never mind other social injustices".  No, it was always about the wealthy landowners and propertied defining what the problems are and rearranging the ruling setup and the offices among their various underlings.

                  We can't even fix a drastically damaged economy in 2011 without the ultra rich extracting even more from the economy and applying it to their accumulation.  there is no "share' or sacrifice for them. There is no thought except for a worried few among them like Buffet and Gates that to collapse the system might prove fatal for future of the rich in this country as well as the starvation and other horrors to all our citizens a collapse would bring.

                  we are a nation based on persuasion - we are NOT supposed to be a nation of bullies, forcing our opinions down the collective throats of our fellow citizens.

                  what about the smaller countries that are caught up in the great games of foreign policy, what about
                  their futures, their lives?  The persuasion is behind closed doors, the real decisions are made off the stage, and our politicians simply read from the lobbyists and the connected and then present bills that serve those interests. When was the last time an ordinary citizen had a bill concern economic distribution, health care, foreign policy submitted and debated and read and passed?   Name one!

                  We are a nation based on the rule of force, mostly wrapped in a velvet black glove so it is not seen, but it is a fist in the glove none the less.

                  We have the contradiction between the supposed inherently democratic ethical standards and the actual practices and lack of true democracy for all citizens which leads to bewilderment and handwringing. If you can't see the core of the problem the kernel inside the shell and facade of governance we have, the utter selfishness and ruthlessness you cannot develop a politics and a strategy to change it.

                        Both the tactics and the way you build an effective antidote are determined by a clear accurate picture of what the problem is, not an idealistic wishing for a perfect sort of way if only if only. It doesn't work that way.

                  that compromise is based on sound and reasoned persuasion.  

                  that is what is lacking in politics today - and it is most definitely lacking on this site in many instances.

                  we do NOT need a "loyal opposition" as much as we need informed and educated and reasoned people who can make a solid case for supporting our points of view.

                  Here I agree with you. I don't want a "loyal opposition either", that smacks of a Democratic minority complaining all the time about Bush or the Repubs dragging their feet trying to stop every single bill last Congress they could.

                  I want informed and educated and reasoned people who have a political point of view and tactics that can move the governing process to a better place not by compromising but by the sweep and flow of a new politics that become irresistible and stuff the endless talking and doubledealing into a hall closet while things get done.  Compromises are not wonderful things worshipped for their own merits, they are necessary evils when a political faction is not strong enough to fully deliver what it wants but it manages to get a partial victory rather than a stalemate.

                        We are, after 35 years of politically conservative dismantling of the American culture, infrastructure and economy where America cannot simply tweak a few details and have another economic bubble that helps a few while stirs up and batters the many. The next crash will be a disaster as the now overstrained safety net collapses and injures horrifically millions and millions of people.

                       The political leaders  in charge don't comprehend how dangerous it is. They want to fight or displace their rivals while the country rots away underneath them for lack of critical efforts to fix and strengthen  it.  The traditional parties are incapable of governing, tangled in a web of a thousand strings pulling them from the rich, from the bribers, the blackmailers, the patrons and other sources of corruption and the lack of everything except a self preservation and career instinct that's fatal in practice to governing ethically as well as effectively.  That applies to just about all Republicans and nearly the same number of Democrats.

                      Neither dares to make a change, to come clean to sincerely and honestly face their demons, and acknowledge the true grievances and correct them. They can't and won't do it.  A new Party based on a style of working and acting diametrically opposed to naked self interest is required.

                     Without it, we fail, we go nowhere. Spontaneous uprisings will peak, crest and collapse as they always do. We need a process that has some continuity and stability and persistence and that isn't built on the careerism of one or a few.

                  cast away illusions, prepare for struggle

                  by Pete Rock on Mon Jan 17, 2011 at 12:14:43 PM PST

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  Very insightful, Pete. (1+ / 0-)
                    Recommended by:
                    Pete Rock

                    Thanks for offering your view. All I'd add is my definition of 'loyal opposition', because it doesn't mean obstructionism. A loyal opposition is there to represent the interests of the people that the other party doesn't represent. We know who Republicans represent, and we have a well-known diverse constituency Democrats are supposed to be representing. The poor, the workers, the middle class (an artificial divide of the working class into blue and white collars), minorities, women, etc. It is the job of professional politicians to advocate for and advance their constituencies, especially in the lawmaking and policy arenas. To stop bad laws and policy if possible, ensure their constituents are not harmed by bad laws and policy (by challenge or amendment), and to propose/help promote laws and policies that serve their constituents' concerns. And they'd do all this without threatening - in overt or veiled terms - to stage a revolution if they don't get their way.

                    Nor would they use the rhetoric and imagery of violent revolution/civil war to stir up anger in society to the point where people get murdered for political opinions or party affiliation. Of course, in an ideal world people would be able to define their own interests accurately and see clearly when politicians are working against them. These nutty Teabaggers prove it's not an ideal world.

                    Now, more than ever, we need the Jedi.

                    by Joieau on Mon Jan 17, 2011 at 02:08:04 PM PST

                    [ Parent ]

  •  Don't forget the 80's. eom (0+ / 0-)
  •  Weather Underground Was How Many People? (5+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    dsb, LWelsch, J M F, Betty Pinson, sboucher

    A dozen maybe? Black Panthers, a few hundred or thousands.

    There was definitely violent left radicalism in the 60's-70's but most that I remember was extremely tiny.

    There was occasional scattered labor violence during strikes, and of course there were the several incidents of inner city rioting & burning.

    The mainstream left wanted less government war but more government rights and anti-poverty policy. Labor wasn't anti-government.

    The mid 60's is when the radical rightwing formally organized to begin taking over the Republican Party. Soon they began mobilizing fundamentalist Christians who were fairly apolitical --I heard many evangelists on radio and later tv through the 60's and there was no politics to almost any of it.

    You're right, the anti-government rightwing today corresponds to the anti-government rightwing of yesterday.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 10:03:00 AM PST

    •  They made sure.. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Gooserock, J M F, Betty Pinson

      to exaggerate the extremes in the public eye to turn opinion away from the left.  It was all part of the demonization of ideas that carries on today.

      I am the fellow citizen of every being that thinks; my country is Truth. ~Alphonse de Lamartine, "Marseillaise of Peace," 1841

      by notdarkyet on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 10:06:37 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  Like the "New Black Panthers" Who Elected Obama (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LWelsch, Betty Pinson

        about 2, maybe 3 guys outside one polling place.

        Or somebody in Ohio voting twice for Michael Mouse.

        We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy.... --ML King "Beyond Vietnam"

        by Gooserock on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 10:08:21 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  I was in Berkeley during People's Park (8+ / 0-)

    I remember the shootings

    I remember having our front door broken down by cops

    I remember our housemate having his Cushman shot up by joy riding cops

    I remember our hippie neighbors saying the "revolution had begun"

    I remember Ronald Reagan saying "If they want a bloodbath, let it be now"

    I also remember leaving for Canada as we'd had enough.  I've got the same feelings now.

    •  I've begun to believe that the extreme (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      blueoregon, LWelsch, Betty Pinson

      Right is purposefully trying to provoke intervention by the government.  They push free speech to the limits and use the second amendment as intimidation, blurring the line between rights and threats.

      May the forces of evil become confused on the way to your house. George Carlin

      by msmacgyver on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 10:27:58 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Radical left was successfully coopted in '60s (5+ / 0-)

    The CIA bragged it had over 400 informants partners in various  groups directly reporting to them among journalists and student groups.  

      Probably understated a little, but the truth is when you look at how ineffective the Left was and how often every organizing meeting simply would go down the road of more splits ego and ambition playing out one can accept the enemies of a politically independent movement were still winning.  They learned tactics (the Federal political police) they still use on young Muslim men today.

     The NSA  (National Student Association) SDS, the old left remnants like the Communist Party had as many paid informants in it as card carrying members. It had descended to a shill for the Soviet Union and lost its way many years before.   Academics even got grants to study Marxism, and many of the foundations offering them were encouraged or reviewed to prioritize which scholar's work to support by the CIA.

       The Panthers had a brief fling and took some attacks on their people in New Haven, Oakland, Chicago and Boston.
         
        When they opened bookstores and a breakfast program for kids the counterattack got really intense them.  Again they were successfully defanged with undercover agents.  The attacks raised their profiles as "fighters", but there really was no where to go in the inner cities.

          +The Democratic Convention of 1968 had yippies, counterculture types trying to rally in Grant Park to protest the Democrats, the War, life in general. Mayor Daley was determined to sweep it all away.

         The smash up and chase thru the streets of the city even got a hotel where Democratic delegates were staying involved with people pushed thru a plate glass window.  The FBI under Johnson was quite aware of resistance and even Dems were on the "watch " lists as enemies of the existing order.

       Violence was planted, suggested, coopted to make it a boomerang or a fiasco which it generally was at the time.  The peaceful symbolic protests had a much bigger effect, morally like the pouring of blood on draft office files or the suicide by self immolation of Buddhists and some American Catholics.  That reached people even if wasn't discussed or acknowledged as much. The military base to face off with Russia and  China  in  Vietnam was lost strategically and morally after the French were defeated as overlords in 1954.

     
       What do we learn from the failures of the last fifty or sixty years?  Or even longer?

    Decent politicians  as single heros are an oxymoron and are radioactive: they burn hot for a while, but fizzle under the realities of electoral politics in America.  We on the left still need an authentic independent political party that will have a view a program and a set of goals that can be embraced by many people tired of the failed promises and cowardice of the sold out class of grifters and scamsters. The two major parties are "seatwarmer parties" they keep the steps top success, the chairs and desks occupied so no decent transforming politics is possible.  

       Perhaps there will be a chance to call for a revitalized New Democratic party, an electoral part that will appeal to millions of Americans, over half now that have nothing to do with politics and keep the decent Repubs and Democrats in the fold of aorganized movement with integrity, purpose and true accountability.  We don't have such a creature right now and haven't for many, many years.

    cast away illusions, prepare for struggle

    by Pete Rock on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 10:42:08 AM PST

    •  Great comment. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LWelsch, Betty Pinson, sboucher

      "In the race between secrecy and truth, it seems inevitable that truth will always win" - Rupert Freaking Murdoch circa 1958

      by blueoregon on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 11:28:25 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  the first self-immolation in the u.s. (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Pete Rock, LWelsch, sboucher

      was a man by the name of norman morrison.  

      my philosophy professor in college was his close friend (and actually married and assumed responsibility for his friend's family afterward. they divorced five years later).

      this occurred during my junior year at Queens - and i remember it well.  

      we were about peace.  we were not "angry progressives" - we believed in living what we espoused - we tried by persuasion, not anger, to change the minds of those with whom we disagreed.

      look at the life of the man honored tomorrow.  martin luther king, jr., advocated communication and non-violence (in my opinion, non violence extends to rhetoric, as well, for words have power and can cut as deeply as a knife).

      when i had the great privilege and honor of meeting coretta scott king many years later, the room filled with peace and love - her energy was that of love and it filled the room.  people were quiet and stood to hear her quietness of message.  she didn't rant or rage or claim to be there to "give some spine" to anyone - she came there to share a message that resonated to fill the entire room.

      we need to change our dialogue.  we need to remember how the message is heard: not through shouting, but through quiet persuasion!

      MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

      by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 11:36:37 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  oh dear, i skipped over (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Pete Rock

        alice herz - i didn't mean to.

        Why did he do this? Maybe he was inspired by a Mahayana Buddhist monk named Thích Quâng Ðú′c who in 1960 had taken his own life in protest to the persecution of Buddhist monks from the South Vietnam's Ngô Ðinh Diêm administration. His immolation was captured by a photographer and the pictures brought worldwide attention to the actions of the regime. Or maybe his inspiration came from 82 year old Alice Herz, whose immolation that occurred in Detroit in protest to the Vietnam war was his deciding factor.

        MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

        by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 01:41:12 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Roger LaPorte was (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        edrie, LWelsch

        22, did his a week  after Morrison.

        From upstate NY. There was another I believe from LeMoyne college in Syracuse in 1965.

        November 3, 2006 was David Richstler inn Chicago over the Iraq war.

        The tragedy is someone who feels that strongly about influencing a terrible situation and acts to avoid harming another thru their act is lost to us forever.

        cast away illusions, prepare for struggle

        by Pete Rock on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 02:35:01 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  this is such a tragic statement - one that (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Pete Rock, LWelsch

          has long term and long reaching affects.

          there is yet one more, i believe his name is david winne?  there is little known about him.

          even as recently as now, the downfall of the president of tunisia was brought about by a young graduate who did the same thing out of desperation for not finding work or a future.

          MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

          by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 03:10:33 PM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  you left out the neighbors of dustin hoffman (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LWelsch, Joieau

    who blew up their building trying to make bombs.  

    the weathermen were making their nail bombs in a townhouse in greenwich village when they blew themselves and the townhouse into rubble.

    i remember it well - was living in the village at the time and remember watching the bulldozers taking the rubble out looking for what was left of the three who were killed.

    kathy boudin and cathlyn wilkerson were the two survivors.

    Neighbors positively identified Wilkerson as one of the two women who had been led out from the wreckage. Boudin was not positively identified as the second survivor until some weeks later.[9] Both women were charged with illegal possession of dynamite in the townhouse blast. They forfeited their bail on the above mentioned Chicago assault charges by failing to appear in Chicago for trial ten days later.[8] The United States Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) placed them on its Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list, but they succeeded in avoiding capture for a decade. Wilkerson surrendered in 1980. Boudin was apprehended in 1981 for her role in the Brink's armored car robbery.

    i remember the "bombing" and burning of the people of "move" where 11 people died as a result of the police dropping c-4 on men, women and children (5 of whom died).

    america was at war with herself - we do not need to EVER go there again!

    the dialogue MUST change before history repeats itself!  it is up to us who have "been there" in history to keep challenging those who are so cavalier with words that those words DO have consequences - on both sides of the fence.

    the way to "combat" anger is through peace and calm and reason.  ratcheting up the dialogue through "wit" or "clever retort" only serves to further polarize.

    in this particular community - it is again time to become fact-based instead of rhetoric based.  it is time to present arguments based on knowledge instead of emotion.

    it is up to each of us to do our part in keeping the "peace" - and it begins with placing fingers on a keyboard or opening one's lips to speak.

    MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

    by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 10:50:54 AM PST

    •  Why "combat" anger? (0+ / 0-)

      Anger will burn itself out, dissipate always does.
      It never leads in and of itself to organizing to change. it may call attention to itself or a source for the anger but that's it.
      Lashing out, retaliation is a temporary feel good manoevre, not a solution or a fix. Here is a fail
      example taken from electoral polics today:

      Increasing the application of the death penalty as the be all and end all of retributive justice is so futile.

      Are suicide bombers deterred by the threat of death?  Of course not. Neither are political activists. Perhaps we are intimidated here more than elsewhere but it isn't cowardice, rather it is awareness of limits of effectiveness, self sacrifice or not.

      Are fighters in a war where there is little hope except to suffer and die anyway not going to fight and make what seems reckless and hopeless attacks?  Many times they do in spite of overwhelming odds against their own survival.

            Contrast that behavior with middle class Americans and their bubbles, having their enclaves, their myths of peace and all will be right if only nobody mentions the obvious.  Even on this blog, at the reality based community there's preaching of resignation and acceptance and decrying real examples of heroes as fools and dangerous when the chips are down.

      The thing to combat is fatalism, despair, the idea that simply being nice and surrendering your just analysis and truth telling to your friends and enemies alike will satisfy the ones pushing for extreme results and somehow spare us all thereby from terrible things.

          There are people who have lost the logical and ethical arguments and are resorting to threats of violence to get their way.

          Who will stop them? We speak nice, and it goes away?  Speaking nice might impress a few who are late to the conversation but much more than that is needed.

      Get a grip. We are political actors, not a religious suicide cult.

      Anarchism, bomb making, assassinating politicians was a popular outlet  100, 150 years ago. It wasn't until  coherent Socialist political parties in Europe  and elsewhere arose  with a program and methods to empower and launch political efforts that anarchists were defeated.

           Building a politics that left 19th century methods and fashions of organizing behind succeeded.    It was based on what people left out of society and their  needs  wanted and not an imitation of existing parties for the elites. A new style and new kind of politics had to be spread before any success was achieved.

           In our time we will be helpless to change anything substantial until we force the elites to have transparent, open financing of electoral politics and limits to campaigning and widespead debates not commercial saturation and naked bribery.

            Anarchism as a viable political trend was defeated, except for its role as a diversion and a caricature of what people dissatisfied with conventional politics could do.  Only the weakness of the Left these days in America keeps anarchism in its scattered splinters and bits of nonesense alive.

          Any fool can pull a trigger or leave a bomb somewhere. What those actions do is isolate people due to fear of retaliation or becoming targets themselves. Which is why the genuine Left, unlike the Right, disavows and eschews those tactics in nearly every situation.

           The one situation it plays  is trapped  in the absolute dictatorship and terror that doesn't permit any legal opposition and it turns into a fight to the death.  Mercifully and thankfully we don't have that quite yet in the USA. but there are places in this world where that has been reached.

         So what do we do to get better at our politics to defend our people, to communicate better, more artfully and with more reach than we do now?  That is what we combat, not anger.

      cast away illusions, prepare for struggle

      by Pete Rock on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 12:24:16 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  you stated the following... (1+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Pete Rock

        Why "combat" anger? (0+ / 0-)
        Anger will burn itself out, dissipate always does.
        It never leads in and of itself to organizing to change. it may call attention to itself or a source for the anger but that's it.

        here we disagree.

        anger does not always burn itself out - sometimes it feeds into another's "anger" and then burns even more intensely.  before it "dissapates", that anger can do a helluva lot of damage!

        anger does lead to change - it motivates people to change that which makes them upset.  how people are motivatd depends on that dialogue and direction it takes.

        anger itself is not bad - it is the catalyst for great change (for good or bad, depending on the direction taken by the individual).

        the world never changes through complacency - it needs motivation - and most of the time, that motivation comes through anger.

        MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

        by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 01:53:50 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  What some don't understand (9+ / 0-)

    is that there is a difference between being anti-government and being against your government's actions.
    People like Loughner, many tea partiers, Libertarians and most Republicans HATE government. They dislike government and feel it an intrusion. they want to dismantle programs and cut government down to the size where it can be "drowned in a bathtub."
    Then there are those of us who see what good government can do - social programs that allow people to survive and thrive. We want government to give us good schools, good infrastructure, health care, limit war, etc., and cut wasteful spending and pork.
    I have been against my own government when I feel they have done wrong. I think good government is a great thing. But you have to have people running it who believe in the same things.

    •  People such as Bush and Cheney... (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      LWelsch, Betty Pinson
      "proved" that government didn't work by weakening it every chance they could. Their crowning achievement? The destruction from Hurricane Katrina. "See," you know they were dying to say, "government doesn't work!"

      It's funny, though, how it "worked" for Clinton and how it's working for Obama, who believe that effective government can be a force of good.

      •  they didn't prove any such thing! all that bush (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        LWelsch, BenderRodriguez

        and cheney proved was that when government is mismanaged, it doesn't work.

        government works and works well.  

        ah, just reread your comment and see that we are in agreement.  

        oops.

        MOVE'EM UP! ROLL'EM OUT... MOVE'EM UP RAWHIDE!!! meeeoooow! mrraaarrr!! meeeOOOOOW!

        by edrie on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 11:38:00 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  The BIG difference (6+ / 0-)

    between the radical left of the 60's and 70's was that it occurred outside the political establishment.  Further, I do not recall anyone in the political establishment condoning that violence.  

    What is happening now is the The Republican party is condoning violence either directly through the Tea Party wing or through high profile political figures such as Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, Sharron Angle, or condoning violence by the fact that not one Republican has spoken out against violence and violent rhetoric.

    The Republican Party and its spokepersons have legitimized violence as a part of their strategy.  IMHO, they have been treading on a very fine line between violent political rhetoric and promoting outright anarchy.

    The United States is not just losing its capacity to do great things. It's losing its soul.--Bob Herbert

    by gulfgal98 on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 11:03:13 AM PST

    •  They already have state sanctioned (0+ / 0-)

      violence in the way the President has started several wars without Congress, basically a rubber stamp at this point. What the Repubs are doing is threatening to unleash violence against their opponents and indeed any American that questions their legitimacy and ideas.

      The worship of the  increasingly surveillance state-Americans want to destroy the government and the country?  Shred the Bill of Rights to enshrine the present status quo  police state permanently?

      Not true, what Americans want is a responsive government to their needs, not the needs of the elites.  To be truly responsive will require a paradigm shift  and the elites don't want that, thus the campaign for Teapartiers and outrageous threats and unlimited war and war funding as permanent policy.

      Repubs in an open and fair forum can't defend those things. The more cynical and cunning among them welcome the violence and threats like that in Arizona because it will scare Americans from participating even at the most basic level.

      cast away illusions, prepare for struggle

      by Pete Rock on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 12:34:16 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  Now having read both Krugman and Rich (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LWelsch, Joieau

    I guess it depends on your definition of 'radical'.

    I doubt very much if the temporary focus will result in any lasting change although it might calm troubled waters of a while.  And comparing last weeks shooting with the ongoing and national battles of the 60's is comparing a pebble with an avalanche.

    This basic split and polarisation in America has always existed from the bitter internecine  fights for Independence,  though the Civil War, through every upheaval as women, Native Americans and other groups became militant in their struggle for equal rights.

    It will continue, power never  concedes easily and the empowered and the powerless are constantly shifting.

    Si, while this episodes might result in a temporary respite you basically only need to read any day, any half way controversial diary at DK to see the deep divides that still separate us on a profound level.

    The basis for this divide changes all the time and are no longer male/female, black/white but very specialized and fragmented.

    So if anyone is looking for love from everyone they are looking in vain.  There are no instant solutions to America's social and cultural divisons.

    •  Its not about radicals, its about issues, morals (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      daysey

      Focusing on a few radicals is a convenient means to dodge the real issues.  Krugman made that point. There's a vast difference between conservatives and liberals based on the moral foundations of issues and governance.

      Its not likely to be resolved any time soon, and for good reason. Our nation is being destroyed by the domination of conservative "values".  We're not going to save our country, our economy and its institutions by adopting immoral conservative beliefs.

      Proud member of the Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party.

      by Betty Pinson on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 12:36:52 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  No, but we have every opportunity to help (0+ / 0-)

        others view the morality, the social commitment to each other and the foundation of many of the institutions to reflect more the contract humanity has with each other.

        If we choose to label them in political context of the American interpretation of liberal and conservative i prefer to view them as universal truths to be aspired to applicable to ALL humanity, the planet itself and all sentient beings.

  •  I'm old enough to have memories of 60s and 70s. (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    LWelsch

    I don't remember ANY politician, R or D, associating himself in any way with radical left. They kept their distance, even ones who opposed the war. That is a difference worth keeping in mind.

    Let tyrants fear.-Queen Elizabeth I

    by Virginia mom on Sun Jan 16, 2011 at 02:01:01 PM PST

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