Thursday, September 30, 2010


Before I begin, let me repeat: I do not want to politicize this site and I recommend nothing in regard to voting or supporting this or that candidate or Party.

But in the Senate election between veteran Russ Feingold (D-WIS) and his Republican challenger Ron Johnson, the matter of statutes of limitations in child-sex abuse cases has come up suddenly as a campaign issue and THAT makes it of interest to the SO community, as best I can see.

Let me point out the immediate context: Johnson has suddenly opened up a hefty lead in the race and is – as of this writing, as best I can determine – now neck and neck with Russ Feingold.

Suddenly, a video has been unearthed of testimony that Johnson gave against a Bill (that subsequently failed to gain passage in a Democratic-controlled Legislature) that would remove any Statutes of Limitations (SOL) for a civil action brought by someone claiming to have been the victim of sexual abuse as a child. Additionally, the Bill would have re-opened any such civil lawsuits filed within the past 3 years that were dismissed because of SOL problems.

The Bill was filed in September of 2009 and Johnson’s testimony was given in January, 2010. The pdf of the text (only 2 pages long) is here.

It is interesting to note the short “Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau” that precedes the text of the proposed legislation itself: “Under current law, the time a person has to bring an action (the statute of limitations) for an injury resulting from being sexually assaulted or subject to incest as a child, or from being subject to sexual contact by a member of the clergy as a child, is any time before the injured party reaches the age of 35”.

I couldn’t help but notice that in its review of relevant and current Wisconsin law, this Analysis paragraph opens with a sweeping phrase about being “sexually assaulted or subject to incest as a child” but then goes on to specifically add – unnecessarily from a logical point of view – “or from being subject to sexual contact by a member of the clergy as a child”.

That addition gives a bit of a clue as to what may be going on beneath the surface of the Bill, and under the surface of some relevant chunk of Wisconsin law.

I have not been able to locate the Legislative History of this Bill online, which might give some further insights into the discussions in the Legislature that preceded the vote on the Bill. There is a video clip but I’m not having any luck loading it (I’m not exactly a computer whiz).

If you wish you can use the Google or other search engine to review the extensive outpouring of outrage – by mostly leftish but also some rightish groups and sites – to the effect that Johnson is a reprehensible monster for ignoring the plight of such victims in favor of “an elite few”.

That “elite few” – in the phrase deployed by the Feingold campaign – consists of – in the words of the Bill – “an individual, corporation, business trust, estate, trust, partnership, limited liability company, association, joint venture, or government; governmental subdivision, agency, or instrumentality; public corporation; or any other legal or commercial entity”.

In effect, then, the Bill had sought to open up every single human being and business entity in the State to anybody who wished to try his/her luck at the legal track by claiming to have been sexually abused as a child. It is, I would say, a hopeful sign that the Wisconsin Legislature declined to create such a situation.

Given the condition of “repressed/recovered memory” within current jurisprudence, there is still a large chance that just about any ‘memory’ can serve as ‘evidence’, especially since the burden most often winds up on the accused to prove that he (most often) did NOT do it. And, neatly, of course, ‘proving a negative’ is logically impossible – leaving a nice neat ‘door’ for a judge or jury to say What the hey, let’s assume that if it was not impossible then it probably happened. (Which is also not at all a logical conclusion.)

From an economic point of view, such a Bill – if passed into law – would have opened up every person and business entity in the State to the costs of trying to defend themselves on what has become a field of Mania law and thinking. And in these troubled economic times, there is some logical probability that troubled souls also in need of cash might cross their fingers (in more ways than one) and hope for the best, securing the services of an attorney also game for the gambit.

And with the SOL removed, the alleged action might have taken place years or decades – perhaps even half a century – ago.

And of course, to wonder how psychiatric science could accurately distinguish the wrack of a life caused by the alleged sex-assault from the wreck of a life that for any semi-infinite number of reasons has not ‘worked out well’ … you would not be beyond the parameters of sober reason to wonder.

Here and there in the online articles and comments there is the yawp that “justice” should not be impeded by such fuddy-duddy things as Statutes of Limitation and other legal ‘stuff’. Especially (the Feingold campaign and the progressive commenters are shrewd in this) since the accuser is presumed to be ‘poor’ and the accused ‘wealthy’ and – as aforementioned – the member of “an elite few”.

The SO community will be very familiar with this deployment of the term “justice”.

So let me point out again what many in the SO community already know: when the gods are dispensing justice, they presumably know everything relevant to the case, know what actually happened, and nothing can be hidden from them; they see all, and on that basis make a determination of “justice” and enforce it.

BUT when humans have to do the determining of what the “justice” of a case will be, they have no such superpowers of knowledge (known classically as “omniscience”). Hence over the course of its millennia of existence, the species has evolved assorted methods of determining Just What Happened and Why so as to be able to Determine what the “justice” of the case will be.

For quite some time in the early millennia, ‘magic’ or ‘divination’ was used, and up through the Medieval period in Europe that approach retained some authority. From the time of the Greeks (in the West), up through the Romans there had been an effort to impose a more rational approach to determining guilt and innocene. But with the Fall of Rome and into the Dark Ages, the simple Will of the Sovereign (the local lord or later the Crown) was considered sufficient to make the determination of “justice” in a case. But with the continuing evolution of written laws – by which even the Sovereign must be bound – there then evolved a reason-based process by which provable evidence of action and intent could be matched against the elements of the law that was alleged to have been broken.

And then either a judge or a jury of peers would make the determination.

As I have often mentioned, the English from before Magna Carta and on up into the Enlightenment had made much progress in establishing this objective, rational, evidence-based process. Indeed, what finally stopped the emotional, hysterical lunacy of the Salem Witch Trials in Massachusetts in 1692 was London’s refusal to countenance in its New World colony an outbreak of the same sort of irrational, primitive, ‘spectral evidence’-based jurisprudence that the mother country was already evolving beyond. (And this was less than a century before the U.S. Constitution was put in place.)

For numerous purposes – the political being not least among them – the Victimology Movement of the past three decades was suddenly ‘valorized’ (as progressives like to put it) and the hard-won Western tradition of rational and evidence-based jurisprudence was assaulted in favor of the more primitive and primal emotion-based, vengeance-drenched ‘justice-making’ of an earlier era of Western life and law.

Rules of evidence were weakened to make room for ‘stories’ that were to be given as much weight as actual, factually reviewable evidence; statutes of limitation – imposed for the unavoidable reason that memories fade or are subject to distortion (willful or otherwise) and physical evidence degrades or is lost – were lifted on the fevered assertions that ‘stories’ never fade, ‘memories’ can be repressed and recovered in perfect shape after the passage of decades in a human life.

AND on the subtle derailment of the definition of “justice”: whereas it had been classically defined as the process carefully deployed to most reliably determine facts, it NOW became the simple State act of punishing somebody (who, conveniently, was simply PRESUMED TO ‘deserve it’).

This batch of recent ‘reform’ constitutes the most profound regression of Law in the arduous history of Western civilization. And it was done deliberately.

Although many might be forgiven for thinking that it was all Good because it was Change and Change is always Good. They did not think of context or consequences, but their heart was in the right place: they were moved by the claims of pain, and Pain had become the preeminent Status-giver of the age.

Ron Johnson had opined – rationally enough – that he was concerned for “unintended consequences” that might cause more damage and harm than any good they might accomplish. (And can you say Iraq War?) For which – again you can use the Google search engine to sample the stuff – numerous persons go into the ‘supports child sex abuse’ mode or scream that he is ‘insensitive’ to the ‘outrage’ and ‘the children’. Which are conclusions that cannot be drawn from the evidence of what he said. But then again, you’re back to the ‘evidence thing’ again, no?

And it is claimed that ‘victim rights’ are not his highest priority. Again, I point out the hugely regressive inroads – no matter how ‘sensitively clothed’ – Victimology’s profoundly regressive agenda has wrought in the years since it was adopted by politicians for their own purposes.

Is a ‘victim’ – assuming the status to be genuine – served by the State rushing to commit a further injustice, on the sovereign authority of the Law?

Any aggrieved Citizen’s right to ‘justice’ is – I would think – a right to have the case heard in a well-functioning court of Western and Constitutional justice. Nobody has a ‘right’ to Get What They Want, especially when in order to give it to them the State hastily degrades itself by inflicting sovereign harm on another Citizen.

And any persons or parties or organized interests who attempt to corrupt, corrode, weaken, or otherwise undermine the long-evolved, painstakingly rational and evidence-based processes of Western (and American and Constitutional) justice are surely not ‘reformers’ nor ‘progressives’ but are rather ‘regressives’ in a most lethal sense.

Persons unable to defend themselves on such a skewed – perhaps even rigged – field might be victimized by persons who could bring no proof to the courtroom. (Of course, it is precisely a clarion symptom of the legal regression to primitivism that even to mention anything that might slow down the rush-to-assuage-Pain is presumed to be evil, insensitive, and collusive with the alleged evil itself.)

And – from an economic and ‘business’ point of view – it might make Wisconsin’s atmosphere more unattractive to businesses if they realized that anyone at anytime could come up and file legal claims for large amounts that were, essentially and for all practical purposes, impossible to defend against.

It is not surprising to see such dirty-pool in a close and important political race.

What is of more relevance is how the SO Mania – especially in its tripwire ‘Children’ variant – having been laboriously constructed by the government, is now available for general use as a weapon or tool by which to manipulate and stampede public opinion. *

There is much easily-available conventional ‘outrage’ material for you online, so I will include this article for a more balanced view. (You have to scroll down to the particular entry entitled "WISC SEN RACE TAKES UGLY TURN" dated for 29 September, Monday.)

Again, I take no position on the political race itself and do not presume to urge you or move you in the direction of any particular political candidate or party.

But you can see how the SO Mania has now taken up residence, corrupting and stampeding public deliberation and discourse.

There remains so much to be done.


*I had Posted several times recently about Julian Assange, the Wikileaks founder, who was poised to publish 15,000 or so more leaked documents about the US military in Afghanistan that would be most unwelcome politically just as elections were coming up. He was suddenly accused of some form of sexual-assault and all of the panoply of the SO Mania was deployed against him. As of this writing, Wikileaks is still poised to release the documents and suddenly the sex-offense B-line (as the scriptwriters would say) has disappeared.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010


We continue reviewing the 1986 book entitled “The Politics of Victimization” by Robert Elias, then of Tufts University.*

We come to Elias’s section on ‘Battering’ (begins on  p.49).

The section is headed with a quote some might remember from Jackie Gleason’s 1955-1956 TV comedy “The Honeymooners”; Gleason played a New York City bus driver living in a spare flat in a tenement with his wife Alice. A likable and decent guy, but very much a man who substituted bluster for lack of self-confidence, his signature line was ‘Wunna deeze days, Alice, wunna deeze days … Pow! Right tah da moon!” which he would accompany with a fist swinging in the air.

Let it be clear here: He never struck her and nobody in that era would have stood for it if he had. Men who beat their wives were not considered ‘gentlemen’, even as that term transmuted from Victorian England’s middle-classes to the immigrant working classes that populated America’s industrial cities.

Which is not to say that one should ever go around committing common-assault (threatening, but not committing an act of, physical violence).

But Elias includes it here, and I recall it was often used in the early days of feminist advocacy as an example of male business-as-usual bullying (although males would far more often commit common assault – and with the accompanying act, which would make it assault-and-battery – against each other with more frequency; it was a badge of masculinity among certain groups in those days … and I’m not sad that it’s passed into history).

“The most frequent and perhaps most serious family crime is battering.” (p.49) Which statement holds several interesting points within it.

First, Gleason never struck his wife. You were more often wondering if he was going to get hit with the proverbial frying-pan than you actually ever expected – or even imagined – him to go and hit Alice. So the quotation is not actually apt in this context in which Elias deploys it – but it was a well-known pop-culture icon statement, and was useful in its way as a ‘consciousness-raising’ tool.

Second, there is a difference between assault-and-battery in the form of striking someone after threatening to do so, and ‘battering’ – which to a consciousness not yet ‘raised’ would imply a syndromal habit of seriously and regularly beating a woman.

This latter situation – even back then – would have indicated a seriously disturbed man. But again, not ALL men would be imagined to be so significantly disturbed.

Third, we note now the deployment of the term ‘family crime’. Although the violent-crime rates were declining, the ‘family’ was suddenly raised up as a crime ‘site’ or ‘venue’ completely distinct from violent-crime as it occurred in the more ‘public’ venues.

As I have noted in previous Posts, it would not have occurred to a lot of folks to imagine the police as vigorously involved in ‘family’ matters as they would be in ‘public’ matters. One reason for this, not often mentioned, would have been a residual if inchoate (by the 20th century) concern for ‘government’ getting involved in such private matters.

It was from the get-go a major objective of feminist-type efforts to tear down the ‘wall’ in public consciousness that kept the government police-power out of the ‘home’ and the ‘family’. That wall, of course, has now been rather largely demolished. There have been numerous unforeseen – or strategically ignored – consequences for the nation, and the intrusive and indeed invasive police-power of the Sovereign Authority has now burst its bonds not only in matters domestic but matters of foreign policy as well. These two developments are hardly unconnected.

Elias then moves quickly into more dubious territory as he asserts that “we might view this as a sexual crime, since although a sexual act need not be committed, the crime emerges from sexual relations”. (p.49) What I see reflected here is the presumption – widely held by early advocates and constituting even today something of a dogmatic essential of the properly-formed ‘consciousness’ – that all male violence, especially toward females, is somehow ‘sexual’ at its core.

There is more than a hint of Freud here and I don’t think it’s accurate.

While marriage involves a deep element of sexuality since males and females come together in no small part because of sexual attraction, yet the ‘sexual urge’ is not the only dynamic in the relationships of the male and the female in the marriage setting, just as ‘sex’ is not the only urge driving human beings in any other arena of life’s undertakings.

The male – from an evolutionary point of view – is prepared by Nature both to propagate and to defend, which requires a certain assertiveness and even aggressiveness. But these characteristics are not merely or purely sexually-driven: soldiers are sent into battle precisely to exercise a certain violent assertiveness and aggressiveness, and yet you can’t really imagine that all war is ‘sexual’.**

But from the point of view of constructing a useful political strategy against an ‘enemy’, it would be most helpful if one were to paint the ‘male’ as aggressive (and thus ‘assaultive’) merely and purely because of ‘sex’: since all males were possessed of an assertive-aggressive potential, especially in matters of vigorously propagating the species, then you could simplistically link male-sex-violence in such a way that there seemed a clear causal linkage. Which is precisely what was done, with great help from a media that knew a simple and vivid script-dynamic for its ‘stories’ when it saw one.

Men ‘beat’ people – and Elias immediately goes on to note that “along with childbeating and ‘granny’ beating, wife battering has become a crime of enormous dimensions”. (p.49)

A bunch of thoughts occur.

First, ‘men’ are prepared by Nature to have the skills and capabilities to ‘beat’ folks – and it was precisely ‘civilization’ that was evolved by humans to somehow channel those natural capabilities in useful ways. The medieval Catholic Church – often nowadays belittled for creating complicated and irrelevant social and religious customs – specifically instituted a complex system of graded ‘saints-days’ and ‘feast-days’ to address this: there were numerous such ‘days’ in the medieval calendar when organized violence was prohibited.

I point this out since somehow it has become a key element in numerous agendas to ‘Deconstruct’ very old and deep civilizational structures.

Second, I note the distinction between a single act of hitting, and ‘battering’ as a symptom of emotional or psychological disturbance. And now this third term – ‘beating’ – is introduced. This is sloppy conceptual (and ‘scientific’) thinking, although it serves the neat rhetorical purpose of connecting all of these words in the public mind as ‘all the same thing’ – when in actuality they are not.

Third, of course, is the almost utterly-ignored reality that females are the initiators in many instances of domestic violence. This reality throws a wrench in the ‘men=sex=violence” equation. Although later dogma attempted to explain such instances as merely responses to a pre-existing male violence exercised by women at the end of their rope (a classic script-trope of the Lifetime Channel and such).

Further, there is the equally troubling reality of dyadic violence among lesbian and homosexual couples. While you can make the case that lesbian females – especially of the ‘butch’ kind – may have an extra dollop of male chemistry, and homosexual males – especially of the ‘girly’ (sorry) kind may have an extra dollop of female chemistry , or some such, yet it seems obvious that the realities of dyadic violence - sporadic or syndromal – are grounded in far more complex and nuanced realities than the simple ‘male sexual violence’ explanation can conceivably handle.

Also, Elias too easily slides into the thinking that these assorted types of ‘beating’ have somehow just recently become ‘crimes’ (let alone crimes ‘of enormous dimensions’). Rather, they were always considered crimes, and persons convicted of them would suffer social opprobrium in most middle-class venues even in the bad old days before the ‘consciousness raising’.

But it’s true that all of this domestic ‘beating’ was, while criminal, not high on the priority list of police and prosecutors.

There were and are numerous reasons contributing to that.

First is the abiding American concern to keep government-police power from overflowing its bounds.

Second is the hugely-fraught complexity of courts trying to establish actual facts. This is and always has been so in ‘rape’ assertions, but – more unnervingly – is and has been true even when there was clear physical evidence of violence (the woman with obvious injuries, most often). Often the female would not claim that the injuries were caused by the husband, substituting some ‘accident’ explanation. Correct dogma ascribes this to females who have been raised to be submissive, and/or to a lack of options for living life independently if she escaped from her relationship with the accused male.

The result has been two-fold: in the first place, a concerted effort (supported by vote-eager politicians) to weaken rules of evidence and procedure and indeed the entire Constitutionally-derived ethos that seeks to carefully boundary government intrusiveness. And in the second place, a concerted effort to literally Deconstruct the entire civilizational structure of Marriage and Family itself, as being merely enabling sites for domestic violence.

I can see the good intentions – or certainly the cause for concern – but I can’t see that such wholesale fundamental Deconstruction can avoid creating lethally corrosive weakening in the very fabric of American society and American civilization, let alone in the specific structures of a hard-won Law and jurisprudence. (Granted, many of the advocacy dogmatists would claim that such weakening would be a good thing, and perhaps assure everyone that a civilization can get along quite well without Family and Marriage and, in an ominous coincidence, on the economic scene, without a functioning industrial productive base).

In a Note (Note 231 on pp.274-5) Elias supports the “enormous dimensions” by quoting numerous articles … almost all of which are from the Victimology movement’s own magazine/journal or from Victimology-sponsored speaking events, with some of those popular books of the era (see my recent Post on “The Courage to Heal”) that were put together by ‘concerned’ persons who felt that the emergency was too great to take time to do careful research.

Again, there’s so much danger here that an ‘echo-effect’ is created (and, even more ominously, perhaps on purpose): you get a whole bunch of persons, all similarly convinced but seemingly unconnected, and all possessing in some form (no matter how rudimentary) a claim to the status of ‘expert’, ‘scholar’, or ‘author’, coming together. And in this way, to the innocent and unsuspecting public observer, it might seem that a shocking and convincing number of independent, competent persons have suddenly come across a problem so huge that it demands instant emergency response.

Sort of like if lightning and wind suddenly sparked a huge wildfire and the Fire Department started getting numerous calls from persons on all sides of the fire: the dispatchers would figure that if this many folks, from so many points of the compass, are calling in then the fire must be huge.

But you could also spook the Fire Department into a major response simply by getting a pre-arranged set of folks to all call in at the same time claiming to be at distant points and separate from each other. THIS, actually, is uncomfortably close to what Saul Alinsky, the noted ‘organizer’, recommended in 1971 in his book “Rules for Radicals”. Although Alinsky (about whom a Post with SO implications will be going up shortly) would consider it simply ‘shrewd tactics’ in a ‘good cause’ and focus merely on ‘technique’, and not on the justice or integrity of the gambit.

And again with the curious statistics: “One estimate puts the number of wife battering at 3,759,193 in 1980 …”. (p.49) This is an oddly precise estimate. And were these single-hit instances or instances of full-blown syndromal battering? There’s the sticky definition problem that so often is finessed, or bulldozed, by ‘advocacy’.

But, rather stunningly, Elias runs fast and far with this gambit here. He continues with the sentence “… and yet, as with rape, many more occur than women have reported.” We have dealt before in this mini-series with this matter of the ‘proof’ (or lack of it) in these claims of ‘unreported’ incidences of this or that act.

But then he immediately ratchets things up even further: “Another estimate shows wife-battering occurring ten times more than rape”. (p.49) But since the ‘rape’ figures are themselves hugely questionable – especially if you take as real the ‘unreported’ incidences – then can you imagine how many wife-batterings he is claiming?

He gives only one reference for this assertion, in Note 232 on p.275. The source is one “Del Martin”, who is actually Dorothy Louise Taliaferro, who married a fellow named Martin but then divorced him, keeping his name, and married her wife Phyllis Lyon (according to the Wiki text). Her key insight of relevance here was that domestic-violence was the result of “institutionalized misogyny” about which she wrote a book in 1979. She had a “Doctorate of Arts” from something called “The Institute for Advanced Study of Human Sexuality” and lived in San Francisco, where she spent most of her life as an activist and organizer for women’s and lesbian issues.

‘Del Martin’ as an individual had every right to voice his/her opinions and to write about them. I give these biographical points for no reason other than to point out that even with so seemingly reliable a professional academic as Elias, you can find yourself stampeded by ‘facts’ from sources that are neither professionally reliable nor objectively derived. (And yet which, from Alinsky’s point of view, are quite justified and ‘successful’ if they merely achieve the stampede they were designed to achieve.)

Which indicates that although Elias’s book is very impressively written in an academic and professional format, replete with literally thousands of ‘works cited’ in hundreds of Notes, yet many of those ‘works cited’ are of a quality that can hardly be characterized as ‘professional’ and genuinely ‘scholarly’.

But you can imagine that to wave this book around, or even to carefully read it, would provide legislators and their staffs with either the honestly-held illusion that they were truly in possession of carefully-achieved ‘knowledge’ OR with the ‘cover’ that they were constructing and passing legislation and an entire regime of laws only on the basis of the most serious and careful ‘professional’ and ‘scientific’ ‘knowledge’.

And all of this applies as well to the SO Mania regime and so very much of its supporting ‘statistics’ and ‘science’. Which also seems to explain a great deal of the otherwise incomprehensibly obtuse stance of legislators as more and more actual knowledge about sex-offending (to the extent that the term is of any use in addressing the phenomenon) indicates the profoundly questionable integrity of their asserted Findings and consequently the profoundly misguided nature of the laws that they have passed.

I think, also, that at this point then, another dynamic must be operative among legislators: much like the country’s involvement – grossly misconceived and now failing – in its present military misadventures, legislators and political authorities now can’t figure how to back off or get out without admitting that they have made a monstrous – and hardly unpreventable – series of mistakes.

And just as those mistakes in the foreign-policy and military settings have cost so much in blood and treasure and national integrity, to say nothing of the ‘victimization’ that has been and continues to be inflicted upon so many people in the foreign lands and nations that have been invaded, so too in the SO Mania regime so many ill-consequences have been inflicted on the integrity of the legislative and judicial and law-enforcement authority, as well as on so many of those caught in the toils of the regime’s laws and regulations.

It reminds me so much of the Vietnam War and that era, when so much further damage was done simply because the authorities could not figure how to extract the country from the initial errors without admitting so huge a collection of mistakes. And as a result the whole awful situation went on and on.

“The home and the family have become the most violent places in society”, declares Elias. (p.49) That assertion, again, is footnoted (Note 236, p.275), but that Note merely references more Victimology sources. The Echo Effect is well-established here. And again, you can see where what is developing here is precisely what some concerned political commentators have nowadays accurately noted as the ‘echo chamber’ that Our national politics in general have become.

He continues immediately: “One in ten married women has probably been beaten.” (p.49) Again, note the “probably” and the vaguely-defined but vividly-suggestive “beaten”. The Note supporting the statement (Note 237, p.275) is – again – a Victimology source.

He then says that “about 282,00 men get beaten by their wives annually” – which is interesting indeed, although it is a point that received little enough attention over the ensuing years and decades. His references supporting the assertion (Note 238, p.275) are again Victimology sources.

And then he follows that assertion up immediately with the assertion that “violence of all forms probably occurs in at least 60% of all households”(p.49), supporting that with a Note (Note 239, p.275) that references a 1978 publication of the National District Attorneys Association, which even at that early date could not be considered an objective and scholarly source.

And again, in that “violence of all forms” there is no distinction between the occasional physical blow and full-blown syndromal ‘battering’ or whether the aggressor was the male or the female.

But he then immediately goes on to assert that “When women get battered, it dramatically increases their tendency to beat their children” (p.49), citing (Note 240, p.275) Victimology sources as his authority.

AND THEN immediately concludes “Yet for all this violence we treat the family and the home as sacrosanct” (p.49), again citing (Note 241, p.275) only a Victimology source.

This is a huge and hugely fraught conclusion. He is opening the door to a profound Constitutional change (‘reform’ is grossly inaccurate, insufficient, and misleading a descriptor) and – indeed – this idea constitutes nothing less than a huge and profound challenge to the American Constitutional ethos itself.

And while I am not saying that his idea here is wrong simply because it is so hugely portentous a challenge to the established bedrock Constitutional ethos, I most surely am saying that so huge a matter should have been – for reasons of political integrity as well as scholarly integrity – given far more accurate and widely publicized a treatment.

Rather than simply being tossed in as an indicator of the direction in which the stampede created by his ‘innocent’ and ‘scientific’ book must immediately go.

But in this Elias gives – knowingly or not – a clarion and clear example of the type of dynamics which would purposely drive the regimes of mania-law and the Mania itself: the monstrously profound consequences and implications of his ‘findings’ are simply blanketed in the emotional ‘dust’ raised by the stampede. And then, all too quickly, legislators – knowingly or not (neither alternative is appetizing) – cashed in on the trust of The People by casting and trumpeting their legislation as mere ‘changes’ or ‘reforms’, selling Us in effect a grossly defective and dangerous car, in a Deal effected in the Politically Correct equivalents of the old ‘smoke-filled rooms’ of the Beltway and State capitols.

Deployed in this way, the ‘art of the deal’ has not served the nation nor its politics nor its People well.

In seeking to bulldoze down that fuddy-duddy ‘sacrosanctness’, I would say that these dynamics operated basically – and lethally – as the horribly wrong-headed policy of cutting through the watertight bulkheads to make the ship more ‘accessible’ to various agendas, or of burning away vital chunks of the hull of a wooden sailing ship to rid the vessel of rats. There are worse problems than rats on a wooden vessel at sea, and burning up the hull or cutting away chunks of it are most certainly guaranteed to bring those problems into lethal reality. Which is precisely what has happened.

This Post has covered only one-half a page worth of text in Elias’s book (the bottom half of page 49). But you can see, compressed in such a small amount of text, many of the dynamics that are operative in the book, in Elias’s fraught approach of trying to combine ‘advocacy’ and ‘objectivity’, and in the formation of Mania regimes themselves.

And Saul Alinsky’s “Rules for Radicals” – which rocketed to popularity when it was published in 1971 – were already the adoptive Modus Operandi of all too many ‘advocacies’ long before Elias published this inflammatory stuff in the seemingly ‘innocent’ form of a scholarly compendium in 1986.

For Alinsky – coming from a Marxist-Leninist background, but whose recommendations eerily parallel the Modus Operandi of the stereotypical used-car salesman – the Technique is justified merely if it succeeds in getting itself enshrined as law or policy. Which explains how so many advocates and legislators and their staffs – and now so many jurists and legal personnel as well – can consider themselves ‘successful’ and having faithfully discharged their duties if they merely ‘succeed’ in passing laws and enforcing them. There is for them, as for Alinsky, no larger (let alone Larger) consideration upon which they need waste their time: the Outcome, so narrowly defined, is all.

Alinsky, dying in 1972, never had to face the awesomely awful problem that now faces Us 30 years later: What happens when the Outcome – or a whole mess of Outcomes – turn out to be wrong and to have created a lethal complex of profoundly bad consequences?

And, having read his book and little else, his disciples and those shaped by his ideas – whether they know it or not – are now unable or unwilling to consider what to do next.

The SO community, as I will continue to say, is remarkably positioned to help them – and the country – deal with the dilemma that they have created for all of Us. And not simply in the specific SO Mania regime but in the wider realms of national policy and the very integrity of the nation’s politics.


*My copy is the paperback version put out by Oxford UP in 1986. It bears the ISBN 0-19-503980-7. It will be unwieldy to include both Chapter Titles and sub-headings as well as page numbers, in case you have a different edition. I will stick to only using page references when I make quotations, but for especially important points I will do so.

**It is a sign of great conceptual confusion – you could call it conceptual incoherence – that in matters military the feminist agenda is simultaneously to” demasculinize” the military while claiming as well that the female is as reliably capable of conducting combat activity as the male. Thus, while male aggressiveness is decried as an outrage in the family setting, yet it is claimed that in the military setting the female is equally as competent as the male to sustain its exercise. What is claimed to be an outrageous and purely male oppression in one venue is claimed to be equally the competence of the female in another venue.

Nor does it help clarity to simply claim that ‘there are many feminisms’, as if that claim – itself unhelpfully vague – can resolve the questions at a stroke.

What does offer some plausible explanatory value in this highly conflicted matter is the possibility – quite acceptable in the Alinsky Method – of deploying whatever justification appears most likely to ‘work’ toward achieving a particular goal in a particular venue. Thus in the ‘family’ venue the agenda is served by characterizing the male as uncontrollably and almost naturally violent (the female thus being implicitly presumed to be ‘nonviolent’), while in the ‘military’ venue the agenda is served by claiming that the female is equally as capable as violence as the male (the female here being implicitly presumed to be as capable of sustained violence as the male).

It is a sign of just how torturously rickety this whole conceptual construction is if you try to apply the presumptions active in the military venue to the family venue: that both the male and female are equally capable of exercising violence. But this possibility is precluded – neatly enough – by quickly and simply asserting that such conceptual examination would ‘re-victimize the victim’ and simply cannot be done.

Thus you can see how the ‘politics of domestic violence’ are skewed by the conceptual incoherences that are active in the fundamental casting of the ‘problem’.

And such conceptual incoherence, once accepted in the ‘politics’ of domestic violence, is then so very usefully presumed as ‘normal’ as the ‘politics of sex offenses’ began to develop: incoherence is considered ‘normal’ and not-worthy of notice, as policy and law are formed free of any of the braking and limiting influences of ‘coherence’ and accuracy.

And then – of course – the verrrry bad habit of forming policy without any concern for accurate and coherent conceptual groundwork spreads – and has spread – to other areas of national activity such as foreign policy and the formulation of military campaigns and war.

Sunday, September 26, 2010


There is what would best be described as a political puff-piece in the October issue of ‘The Atlantic’ magazine.

I don’t want to interject politics on this site so I am only mentioning that element of the article that I think has some direct relevance to SO matters.

The article is entitled ‘The Salesman’ and covers pages 93-105 of the print edition. It is about the political career of the current Vice-President.

On page 97 the author, Mark Bowden, reveals about Biden that “as a senator, his proudest legislative accomplishment was the Violence Against Women Act of 1994, which broadened law enforcement’s tools to protect women from abusive partners”.

I won’t get into what this says about Biden himself but I want to comment a bit on the entire trajectory of the politics that led to that Act and to the almost simultaneous Domestic Violence and SO Mania regimes.

First, certain elements of the Act were initially found partially unconstitutional by the Supreme Court – which might have served as an extra layer of warning as to just what was being contemplated. But in the eagerness to pander to a ‘demographic’ the politically-desperate Beltway was in no mood to entertain ‘too much thinking’ on the subject.*

Second, what survived judicial review was frakkulent enough: the queasy distinction-without-a-difference between ‘civil’ and ‘criminal; the deployment of police power within the theretofore Constitutionally sacrosanct realm of the Family and the Citizen’s Home&Hearth; the deployment of that police power on the single-party, ex-parte say-so of a complaining individual; the removal of any police discretion as to whether they could or should deploy that police power; the technically shrewd but substantively repugnant gamesmanship of loosening evidentiary rules by claiming that the Domestic Violence(DoVi) procedure was ‘merely civil’ while simultaneously enshrining any court’s Order stemming from an eventual Hearing as ‘criminal’; equally slyly, by declaring the initial DoVi procedures 'civil', the burden of proof (so utterly vital in this type of situation) can be shifted to the accused-defendant and away from the accuser-plantiff - which skews an already fraught matter and creates the possibility for much mischief; and in many States the maintenance – antedating the SO Registries – of a DoVi registry, EVEN IF the male (almost always) was found innocent by the Court at Hearing.

And so the accurate descriptor that the Act “broadened law enforcement’s tools to protect women from abusive partners” is grossly insufficient, and probably not accidentally so: as with a city broadening a downtown avenue, the space to do such broadening comes from demolishing buildings along the street. Protocols governing the entrance of the government police- power into the domestic area were regressed back to a more primitive era when the Sovereign authority could enter the home of the subject; rules of evidence designed to protect the Citizen against the arbitrary deployments of the Sovereign authority and to narrow and refine the scope of any such authority – all were regressed in order to make room for this ‘broadening’.

Thus, in order to create the required ‘space’ within the American political, social and Constitutional ethos, much of the existing ethos had to be demolished – which is precisely what the philosophical policy of Deconstruction is designed to do.

And at this point many Beltway interests and allies would like Us merely to focus on their own ‘spin’ of what they have done – rather than have voters and Citizens soberly and carefully examine the laws and policies for their success, for their costs and consequences, and for whatever indications of sober or reckless legislation and policy-making might be discovered.

Worse, in the name of ‘emergency’, the ancient demon of ‘delation’ was resurrected: the word of one person would be enough, unsupported, to trigger the police-power, as happened in both the Soviet and Nazi regimes. (It is inconceivable to me how so many of these truly frightening policies can be accepted by so many as ‘progressive’ when, in historical truth, they are actually profoundly ‘regressive’.)

There were, thus, profound and – I would say – lethal costs to the nation.

In defense of the Act against substantive objections, Biden himself made the stunningly revealing comment that “It may be a bad law, but it sends a great message” – which is and shall ever remain a glaring indicator of how the American legal system AND American legislative integrity were profoundly derailed in the early 1990s by the ‘governance feminism’ initiatives that flooded in during the Billary administration (but with high levels of ‘bipartisan’ support).

Clearly, despite the fact that the proposed legislation was considered “bad” by some legislators, and apparently was accepted as bad by the Act’s sponsor himself (Biden), YET STILL the Act’s sponsor continued to support the Act because of its symbolic value, that it would send a “great message”.

This is a landmark example of the awful confluence of ‘symbolic politics’ with ‘emergency politics’ and the ‘politics of stampede’ and the ‘politics of imposition’ (i.e. it’s not a good law but the government is going to make people go along with it anyway because the government can and must change people's behavior by using the civil and criminal law - 'people', by the way, who haven't learned how to conduct themselves as adults in society because the government, in a fit of pandering, has been Deconstructing not only Parental Authority - what do parents know? - but the utterly vital Family itself).

And thus – far more than the Rightist National Security State which since the beginning of the century had been considered the prime danger to democracy in the West – it was instead from the Left and by the so-called ‘liberals’ and ‘progressives’ that the great Constitutional protections were regressively rolled back in America in the 1990s for purposes of political gain. And if anybody wants to defend this lethal National Nanny State by claiming that the Constitutional ethos and protections had to be destroyed in order to extend them in ‘liberation’ to ‘everybody’ … well, feel free to make that nonsensical statement in public; the Vietnam-era Pentagon has already paved the way.

It is also impossible to then assert in the article’s next paragraphs that Biden is “a strong civil libertarian” – the profound regressions introduced in Constitutional law and the Constitutional vision and ethos by this Act and all of the assorted sub-regimes that it enabled have hugely weakened the foundations of civil liberties in the country.

Worse, it is repellently disingenuous to burble that Biden “clearly sees an active role for government in American life”.

In the first place, the foregoing comments should make clear just what such ‘activity’ actually means for the health and safety of the Constitutional ethos. The National Nanny State – for all its good intentions and ‘sensitivity’ – poses as profound a danger to the Constitutional ethos of a democratic republic as any National Security State.

In the second place, this Act also marks another step toward the habit of Emergency-Law governance that fatally weakened the Weimar Republic: if the President decided that the nation faced an ‘emergency’ then the usual requirements of a constitutional and democratic republic were suspended.

Rather than carefully consider the nature of the problem and the overall usefulness of the proposed solution – soberly judging the costs of consequences – Emergency-Law thinking and Emergency-Law politics ignore any ‘thinking’ at all and simply force you to focus on ‘the Emergency’ – at which point the government will do whatever it planned to do all along. And what it planned to do all along was most likely to cave in to whatever demands and whatever agendas were being pushed by whatever advocacy wanted some ‘action’ against this or that ‘emergency’.

The awful danger of ignoring Consequences should be clear in both foreign and domestic policy and legislation.

But it is also a hugely corrosive habit to induce in Citizens – who are losing the skills to deliberate and to consider the possible or probable costs and consequences of this or that Beltway policy. We cannot have both a Constitutionally-competent Citizenry that will function as The People AND a herd shuffling about in the background waiting to stampede on cue on behalf of this or that Good Thing.

And it is clear to me over the course of decades that the Beltway has more use for the herd than for The People.

And it can be no surprise – but perhaps a shock – to read that Biden describes his time (I’m not sure you can say ‘studies’ at Syracuse University School of Law as “boring”. THIS is the quality of legal ‘thinking’ and this is the level of esteem for Law that went into the VAWA. It was a ‘victory’ only in the sense that it was a successful ‘deal’ – a lemon that was nonetheless moved off the lot to the satisfaction of certain parties to the Deal, but not in the best interests of any larger (or Larger) ‘abstractions’. And do you think that this was the ONLY example of such an approach to legislation and national policy? Here, I would say, is another sub-surface but hugely influential element in the dynamics that drove and continue to drive these regime laws.

In his 2007 book “Diary of a Bad Year” (p.171 of the Penguin pb edition), the Australian writer J.M. Coetzee discusses how the security police in the 1970s in South Africa were widely empowered to come into any site and take whatever action they wanted to since the apartheid laws were somehow essential to the nation’s ‘security’.

WORSE, he notes that the police were indemnified in advance: through the enabling legislation they were legally immunized against civil suit or criminal prosecution for whatever actions they might in the future take in the service of apartheid. Members of the SO community may quickly recognize that toward the end of almost all of the main SO Mania enabling legislation from the 1990s there is a Section that specifically does this for police in the service of going after alleged SOs.

What has happened in this country over the past 20 years alone provides more than ample evidence that the greatest challenge for Americans today is that on their ‘watch’ the essentials of a genuine functioning Constitutional democracy as envisioned by the Framers – and as traditionally described by the term “the Great American Experiment” – may very well become merely a shell, bereft of any genuine democratic dynamic.

Whether this generation – broadly conceived – of Americans can realize this and take some sort of effective correction action is THE great political question of Our time.

The SO community – that has watched so much go so wrong in those 20 years – is far closer to the historic questions of the age than almost any other group in the country today.


*It is no coincidence that in the Friday, 24 September issue, ‘The Wall Street Journal’ discusses the latest Democratic Party ‘strategy’, which is to appeal to ‘youth and minorities’. As I have always said, it was the Democrats (and I am no fan of the Republicans) who – terrified in the mid-1960s by their fracturing of the old New Deal Labor-Old South electoral coalition – decided that rather than try to woo the old electoral elements into some new combination, they would be better off trying to create entirely new elements and ‘demographics’; thus, Minorities were raised up in their many sub-sets until finally almost the entire populations were favored Minorities. And as another demographic element, the Dems raised up ‘Youth’ – impatient, un-ballasted by any extensive experience, and tending to the simplistic in their appreciation of life’s complexities.

In the face of the highly dubious Content of much of what was ‘demanded’ by their new demographics (each of which, under the new rubric of Identity Politics, had to name an ‘enemy-oppressor’ AMONG THE NATIONAL CITIZENRY) and the queasy ‘revolutionary’ Method by which all these agendas were to be politically processed, Our deliberative and consensus-oriented democratic polity was radically derailed in the service of those ‘emergency politics’ discussed above. Aand the Beltway became to this country what Berlin became to the dying Weimar Republic.

This is not meant to be an anti-Democratic Party assessment since in the 1970s the Republicans also saw their way clear to try to embrace a politics of Identity-Pandering, erecting their own Fundamentalist and Business bases.

The politics of pandering bear directly upon SO concerns because when it became the demand of certain Identity advocacies that traditional Constitutional boundaries and procedural limitations and safeguards be dismantled, then in the matters of Sex and Violence (which were asserted to be the principal nature of the Male) the government responded to the ‘emergency’ of ‘oppression’ with forceful and direct action, dismissing all the boundaries as ‘quaint’ and as ‘supportive of oppression’.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


Just released is a book by a woman who, more than 20 years ago, falsely accused her father of molesting her as a child.

The article-interview is here. It is not too long and very well worth the read.

I’d like to make several comments on what she says in the interview.

The interviewer, Michael Humphrey, says about the authoress, Meredith Maran, “that she came to believe such a thing was possible reveals what can happen when a personal turmoil meets a powerful social movement”. As so often in these Manias (my term for the things) greatly ‘turmoiled’ persons – if I may – are drawn to this new adventure that offers the possibility of redeeming their troubles without too much heavy lifting – if that lifting requires serious, careful, deliberate wielding of whatever power they can bring to bear on their lives and the lives of others.

And, of course, the government eagerly put a great deal of power into the hands of a lot of people who weren’t ready to use it well. The government got the power rather cheaply: by simply twisting back into pretzels the rules of evidence and jurisprudential discipline provided by the long arduous climb of Western Law out of the muck and mire of emotion-driven, whim-driven ‘justice’ into the careful and prudent realm of reality and fact-based evidence that could be assessed soberly by an independent jury of disinterested, un-stampeded peers. Having bent back the bars that kept out the old primitive demons of vengeance, vendetta, and personal revenge, the government allowed the monsters to roam in free-range predation, preying upon whatever citizens became – by whatever means and causes – targets.

And this wasn’t simply a “powerful social movement”; it was a powerful political movement, complete with an agenda and a lethal desire for political power.

Maran acknowledges – with refreshing candor – that “during the 1980s and 1990s, tens of thousands of Americans – most of them middle-class, 30-something women in big cities, like me – became convinced that they’d repressed memories of childhood sexual abuse, and then, decades later, recovered those memories in therapy”. It sounds a bit jarring, to hear it put so clearly, and by one whose credentials put her beyond the reach of Correctness.

While working as a “feminist journalist” she tried for years, she says, to try to convince Americans that incest was “more than a one-in-a-million occurrence”. Which, I gather, it was, all along – all along these past frakkulent decades, when lives have been wrecked, the legal system corroded and its practitioners and officials corrupted, and legal precedents set and laws passed that will indelibly scar the history of these times.

But Maran is a bit shrewd, I think. Having confessed to something awful enough, she slyly mentions that that’s all over now (so it’s not like a clear and present danger any longer): “Then in the early 1990s the culture flipped, and so did I.” Fathers were suing therapists, molesters who had been falsely accused were being released from prison (she uses the less ominous word “jail”), and “I realized that my accusation was false”.

Well, I don’t think the early 1990s were all THAT good: the Domestic Violence regime and the SO Mania regime were set up, under the auspices of what is now pointed to proudly in certain circles as “governance feminism” (meaning: feminists get to have their favorite agendas enshrined in laws and regulations and national policy). And at the bottom of all that Maniacal activity, providing the nutrient loam in which these poisonous trees were planted, were the whackulent assumptions of such groups and movements as the one Maran joined up with. All of those assumptions live on in the laws, regulations, and Findings that structure and sustain the Mania regimes.

Once all the crazy ideas are officially adopted by the national legislature as Findings, then I guess it doesn’t matter what all the sane people think; as the ‘legal positivists’ say, a law passed by a legitimate government cannot be questioned and must be obeyed; there is no such thing as a ‘Higher Law’ nor any sort of ‘principle’ nor ‘Principle’ that can stand in judgment of it.

She claims that she “was one of the lucky ones” – her father was still alive to forgive her. The key point apparently being that she could get forgiveness when she finally wanted it; the wrecked and deceased fathers, many of whom descended into a hell on this earth or have gone to their graves in obloquy … well, maybe some eggs were indeed broken, but it was all in a good cause and everybody meant well.

She had divorced her husband and taken another woman – also a “survivor of incest”- as her lover. It didn’t work out – and that, I think, will be the epitaph of the times: “it didn’t work out”. Oh well.

Clarifying the dynamic that Maran has placed as a framing device in the book, the interviewer parrots the parallelism: as reports of molestations began to increase, Maran began to believe that she was molested by her father; and when reports about ‘repressed and recovered memory’ began to filter into the media a bit, she realized she had made a mistake. She thus now sees “how much influence the external can have on the internal” – yes, for certain types of people it is a great, dangerously great, influence indeed.

We humans are like tuning forks, and there is always a possibility of setting each other off; one tuning fork in a room full of them can set all the others vibrating.

This is why the Framers were really really concerned that folks elect legislators who are serious and deliberate and careful; just like on a ranch full of cattle (humans are social animals, although possessed of the potential for individuality) you have to be careful not to make the type of sudden loud noises that spook the herd; there is a remarkable scene in the 1948 Western movie “Red River” where John Wayne’s entire trail crew is whispering and tip-toeing around at night for fear of spooking the herd – and then somebody drops a cooking pot at the chuck wagon and they’ve got a stampede on their hands, in the middle of the night.

But the entire approach of ‘advocacy’ and Identity Politics – following Saul Alinsky’s “Rule for Radicals” – is to make much noise indeed, and to keep it up. This is what Alinsky called ‘organizing’, but which is for all practical purposes the cocky belief (one of Alinsky’s core illusions) that you can make a ‘controlled stampede’ and keep making it, while other ‘organizers’ can make their own stampedes for their purposes, and keep making them.

The result is a country-full of human beings whose politics are reduced to one continuous circus of stampedes. And you can see where that has taken the country.

Nor can you ever really ‘organize’ a stampede, let alone an ongoing multitude of them. And before long you lose control of the thing, and the stampedes take on a life of their own, and the entire country becomes one big mess.

And THAT is simply the case if you have all the stampedes incited and sustained by the assorted ‘organizers’ and ‘advocacies’ themselves; AND once the government actually encourages stampedes as a matter of national policy, upheld in far too many cases by the courts, and the media jumps on the bandwagon to amplify the ‘noise’ of each stampede … well, here We are today.

And on top of all that Maran observes that “the most intimate emotions and relationships can be so affected by the dominant paradigm”. Ya think? Alinsky, writing in the 1960s, never imagined that the country would simultaneously become infatuated with Youth (all that impatience and cocky self-assurance, un-ballasted by any experiences of complexity and incompleteness) and Feelings rather than Reason (which became a mainstay goal of advocacy-work: Go with your gut and if you ‘feel’ it then that’s as real as if you ‘think’ … which removes any of the control mechanisms that guide the activity of individual humans and of humans in country-sized groups; it’s like stepping on the gas while disconnecting the steering wheel and brakes).

“And of course, the statement of accusation is all it takes to put the wheels in motion. Either legally or in your family”. Yes, very much so. The SO community is very familiar with this frightening fact. And unlike simple tuning forks, humans can ACT ON their ‘vibrations’ and move around creating all sorts of ruckus. Especially when their government finds it useful to allow – even foster – all this mess, and keep the dust cloud going.

Maran’s particular case created no legal charges. So many cases – not only of ‘incest’ but of sex-offenses generally - not only created legal charges but were lured in that direction by a government that cobbled together a comprehensive SO Mania regime – laws, attitudes, registries, and ‘Findings’ and ‘science’ – to make sure that the smallest suspicion would quickly ignite matters in terms of legality, and criminal law.

Weirdly Maran THEN says: “It was very much a social phenomenon. Metaphorically everything we were saying was true. But there was a confusion between a metaphor and a fact. And it was a highly relevant difference”.

Yes, it was a social phenomenon – and still very much is. And also a ‘sociability’ phenomenon: people – so many of them women and all of them ‘victims’ – could find instant status and a sense of belonging and (especially with the help of the media and the rise of the internet) a whole new occupation for their time and energies.

BUT THEN this bit about metaphor and fact. “Metaphorically everything we were saying was true” … meaning, I think, that it was TRUE that fathers ‘rape’ their daughters, only not really: in emotional and psychological ways fathers (‘men’, of course) are rapists anyway – even when they are doing what civilization considers one of their most important chores, raising children. And THIS bit of utterly whackulous belief has been and remains a fundamental mainstay of so much of the whole wrack and wreck.

But Maran then goes on to observe, accurately enough, that “there was a confusion between a metaphor and a fact … [a]nd it was a highly relevant difference”. Oh yes, very much so. BUT that confusion between metaphor and fact, even more than the original choice of the ‘rape’ metaphor itself, has been a mainstay in keeping up the numbers in all of this Mania stampede: how many folks were molested; how many ‘feel’ they were molested; how many think they were ‘molested’ but in non-sexual ways but it’s all the same thing anyway; how many fell for the repressed-memory ‘science’ or used it to their own advantage with the connivance of the legal system … ? All of these questions have gone unasked and the ‘numbers’ kept growing until it seemed like the original insight – that all men are nothing more than rapists by nature – must surely be true. It was a Correct insight, but not at all true.

Notice too how the inability (or purposeful refusal) to distinguish between metaphor and fact spread quickly to other areas of national life: real wealth versus Bubble wealth, real military outcomes rather than fantasied ‘liberation’ scenarios (when Cheney’s dwarfs said “we will be greeted as liberators” you saw the replacement of Thought by Fantasy at the highest levels of national government and policy).

And how many families have been wrecked now even though, as in all good American ‘stories’,  Maran’s story has a happy-ending?

“I felt a little stupid when I started interviewing the neuroscientists about how I could be dreaming something if it never happened. One of the doctors basically said, duh, a dream is a dream. It's not reality. It's not like something had to happen in actuality for you to dream about it, as those of us who like to dream about flying during dry sexual periods have experienced. But when I dreamed over and over about my father's hands, and all around me people were losing their heads and blaming it on incest, I said, oh, see, I'm dreaming about my father's hands. Obviously he molested me. It was just a few links that were a little extreme.”

Here Maran reveals the utterly whackulent ‘science’, practiced by anybody who felt like s/he wanted to ‘help’ (or make a few bucks) and read the one master book “The Courage to Heal”. Maran goes to one of these, says she has been dreaming of her father’s hand, is immediately assured by the ‘therapist’ that this proves ‘scientifically’ that she has been molested as a child by her father. (My own favorite formulation of this is: ‘If you don’t like coffee then you were probably molested by your father because Daddies drink coffee – See? It’s science!’)

Then Maran, a reporter by trade, interviews actual mainline neuroscientists (mainstream science has never accepted the ‘recovered-repressed memory’ baloney) who pull the ‘science’ rug out from under the whole scam.

Ditto when she mentioned to a ‘therapist’ that she dreamed of being on the ceiling looking down at her father, and was instantly assured that this is exactly the dream that all molested little girls dream about. About all of this, Maran says “it was a symptom of mass hysteria” – and how many times has the historical model of the Salem Witchcraft Trials come up? (See my Post on those Trials here.)

Again, I would say that the SO community is one of the most thoroughly well-acquainted and well-organized national communities that has experienced first-hand not only the SO Mania regime but also ‘mania politics’ and – frankly – a lethal national ‘politics of mass hysteria’.

She then goes on to say about her now-ex female lover that “Over time, I had been less and less able to believe her stories, which progressed from incest with a slightly older relative to satanic ritual abuse, to the extent where I thought she was becoming defined as an incest survivor. I knew I couldn't say I don't believe her without examining my own beliefs just because her story is crazier. To my family, my story is pretty crazy too. When she left me, that was the break I needed to realize it was not true.”.

Please note the ‘progression’ dynamic in these stories. It’s built into the whole dynamic of hysteria and hysterical-politics: once cut loose from the tethers, boundaries, and limitations of ‘reality’ and what actually did happen, then these stories of victimization start to effloresce – to grow like Topsy – because as the individual becomes more emotionally aroused, the imagination becomes more active; and without the boundary-ing effect of ‘reality-basing’ the ‘story’ simply takes on a life of its own, feeding off the emotions of the teller, amplified by the sensationalist media, and enabled/empowered by the government’s own ‘Findings’ and the precedents set in court cases by ‘friendly’ jurists and duped juries.

Maran will go on a bit further in the piece to reveal nicely that “It was such an intense experience coming over my body”. This is how the thing grows beyond any rational grounding and control at all.*

Maran’s specific mention of the Satanic Ritual Abuse element is, of course, very apt – recalling those ominous and queasy days of the early 1980s when the Child-Day-Care-Abuse mania stampede got rolling.

She has the ‘feeling’ nowadays that “I don't know if I'll ever be completely sure of anything again". This is a worthy example of a certain humility in the face of complex reality – in the world and family around her but also within her own self, tossed as it was by waves of emotion and fantasy-masquerading-as-memory. BUT taken too far, this humility can become a passive fatalism that nobody can ever be sure of anything, so why try to think, deliberate, or understand? It’s an awful assumption to form the basis for legislators and jurists to do their necessary work.

It’s even worse for a Citizenry to become so nihilistic and fatalistic. Because there will then be no solid basis for any useful and constructive political activity at all, EXCEPT for a shallow and short-sighted ‘politics of quick advantage’, whereby ‘advocates’ merely construct their desired ‘emergencies’, stampede legislators to go along with them in exchange for political support and votes, and The People are left as nothing more than a stampedable herd to run around aimlessly on cue from sensationalist media. Which – alas – is pretty much what American politics has become after decades worth of this sort of thing.

About that book “The Courage To Heal” and its two female authors who helped amplify this whole thing with their ‘handy’ quick-lists of ‘symptoms’ that ‘prove’ you were abused … about them and their book Maran now says “The two women who put the book out are people I know. I have great respect for each of them as human beings and I think their intentions were nothing but the best. I happen to know them well enough to know that no publisher called them up and said, "If you will just make these really deceptive lists of symptoms and if you will write phrases like, 'If you think it happened, it happened,' you will become rich and famous. It's very hard now to understand the context in which that book was published. So if you take it now and say, how did they ever sell 10 copies of this book, it's such nonsense, it's easy to do. The movement that created that book doesn't exist anymore.” [italics mine]

I want to say here and now that while that ‘movement’ is no longer given much elite credit, yet THE LAWS THAT THE MOVEMENT SPAWNED – including much of the Domestic Violence and SO Mania regimes – are still very much in place. Worse, generations of law students, jurists, and legislators are now walking around still thinking that they ‘know’ what they’re talking about because of what that book and those two authors asserted decades ago.

Worse, so are a lot of Citizens.

Worse, so are a lot of individuals who weren’t sent the Memo of Retraction (once these stampedes start, you can’t stop them with a simple Memo, even if you blast-fax it to all the media). And, after all, how many of the many many types of persons and officials who went along with thing this now want to stand up in front of cameras and say ‘I was really really wrong about this’? Maybe they’re hoping it will all just ‘go away’ or hope that ‘it will all work out’ and that meanwhile ‘let’s just declare victory and go home’?

But all of this wrack and ruin was precisely inflicted on the American ‘home’: the home polity, the home politics, and the homes of countless American families themselves.

Maran has now made the acquaintance of Elizabeth Loftus, one of the serious and competent researchers who has been opposing and debunking ‘recovered-repressed memory’ ‘science’ from the beginning. Good for her. She admits that once she began to do some serious looking-into the work Loftus and the False Memory Syndrome Foundation has been doing, “it was so startling to me”.

Even more interesting is her conclusion that she can “never look on crazy-right wingers the same way”. I believe that Maran is NOT making a commercial in support of “crazy right-wingers”, and she is too careful to also then say ‘crazy left-wingers’ – let alone ‘progressives’, but that’s also implied here. And I certainly don’t go for ‘wingers’ of either Left or Right.

BUT BUT BUT the piece concludes with an honest, yet still frightening belief that Maran still holds: if she has to face the possibility that in the efforts to stop child-abuse innocent people have been put in jail and will continue to be put behind bars, and asked if she is willing to allow that to continue to happen, she says, after some hemming and hawing: “I think so”. Yes, it’s still acceptable that innocent people will go to jail because (I infer) the ‘emergency’ and the ‘outrage’ are so great.

And once again the pert, folksy, and clearly 'minimizing' (as the therapists like to say) use of "jail" rather than the more ominous, lethal and accurate "prison".

So I will conclude here with an example I’ve used before. In the last scene of 1961’s film “Judgment at Nuremberg”, having sentenced an otherwise outstanding Nazi-era judge to life imprisonment for sentencing persons he knew in his heart to be innocent, Spencer Tracy’s American judge is called to the cell of the German judge (played by Burt Lancaster). Lancaster’s Nazi judge says (I’m working from memory here): I just what you to know that it was never supposed to turn out like this.

To which Tracy’s American judge says quietly but with grave and sober certainty: But it was guaranteed to turn out like it did, the very first time you sentenced a man you knew to be innocent.

And I can recommend that film for your weekend viewing on DVD.

And urge everybody to keep up the work that so gravely remains to be done.


*I’m going to mention here a dynamic that I think has yet to be fully explored: I use as the example the scene in the new HBO series “Boardwalk Empire”, close to the beginning of the first episode of this miniseries (still playing on HBO all this week until the second episode airs on Sunday next).

It is the period just before Prohibition is voted in; the Temperance societies are excitedly meeting to express their urgent desire that alcohol be outlawed. AND that they are absolutely sure that this new Prohibition legislation will usher in a fine new era in American history.

Alas, as the show’s tag-line says, “When alcohol was outlawed, the outlaw became king” – corrupting politicians and police as quickly as it empowered and enabled organized crime to take over the bootleg liquor operations and raise them to stunningly remunerative heights. This was a consequence not so much unforeseen as simply IGNORED by the advocates of Temperance and Prohibition.

I also see a dot to be somehow connected in the fact that just about all the members of the Temperance organizations were either female or ‘progressive’ males. In noting this, I am not making a subtle support-statement about current politics, but rather I am indicating just what can happen when eager and well-intentioned folks decide that immediate and sweeping legislation can usher in a New Era of Marvelousness and that ‘deliberation’ will only serve to ‘continue the outrage’; this brand of Paradise and Emergency Politics is lethal in a democratic polity as well as so often dangerously wrong-headed.



My post:

Sunday, September 19, 2010


Just a very brief Post here to pass along this assessment of the Assange case from the Counterpunch website.

The piece notes, among many other interesting things, that with the passage of the assorted 'rape laws' men are now much more vulnerable to a certain type of extortion, which in the Assange case may well be placed in the dual service of the interests of the world-feministical revolution and the need of the US government (AND the Swedish government - also a participant in Afghanistan and also facing an upcoming election).

As I have said before, it's stunning how the workings of these already flawed laws can mutate.

The good news is that by being mutated so publicly, and through such grossly unbelievable alleged scenarios of perpetration, the laws are exposing their noxious, toxic, and repellent dynamics for all to see.

Only the most fervent true-believer in the Mania Regime can now continue to trumpet the integrity and efficacy of these laws.

Sunday, September 12, 2010


We continue reviewing the 1986 book entitled “The Politics of Victimization” by Robert Elias, then of Tufts University.*

Elias considers the kinds of victimization that exist.

He notes the U.S. has the highest crime rate in the world. Nicely, in his list of types of victimization he includes not only violent crime but “personal, property, organized, professional, white-collar, corporate, juvenile, sexual and family crimes”. (p.47)

I wonder if – in addition to the radical-feminist interest in sex and family crime – it served the interests of that “white-collar” and “corporate” element to have the country’s attention fixed on ‘sex offenders’ , as it already had been on the 'awful' family? If so, the price for such distraction has been awesome, lethal, and perhaps fatal to the nation’s core economic and perhaps even political health.

From a conceptual point of view, he is on his solid – and not inaccurate – Victimology ground when he points out that some “offenses, like ‘victimless crimes’ produce no direct victims” at all. The wisdom of this can easily and clearly be seen in the white-collar and corporate categories, especially after the financial meltdown of 2008. It is now widely recognized that there have been many ‘victims’ indeed: persons whose livelihood and retirement savings have been wiped out.

But I would also point out that the practitioners of the whackulous financial partying were corroded as well. In her recent book “Bright-sided”** Barbara Ehrenreich recounts the “Woo!” culture that existed in such mortgage companies as Angelo Mozillo’s Countrywide Mortgage: as an employee, you were expected to be excited and ‘upbeat’ and always ‘positive’, and this remained true even as the first ominous warning signs of catastrophe made themselves clear within the financial sector as early as 2004. If you didn’t conform, if you sought to call attention to the danger signs and counseled (a very mature and prudent) caution, then you were labeled as ‘negative’ and ‘not a team-player’.

I can only wonder, as the Sex Offense Mania regime spawned its own unholy matrix of ‘experts’ and cottage industries presenting themselves as either ‘therapeutic’ or as adjuncts to law-enforcement, and also –worse – its own ‘wave’ among law enforcement and prosecutors and even the judiciary, and the legislators and their all-important staffers, what effects this Woo!-culture created.

And you can’t avoid noticing that even as ‘regulation’ intensified exponentially against SOs, the nation’s too-vital (all the real productive industry having been out-sourced, down-sized, or simply wiped away) financial industries were increasingly DE-regulated.

High-fives all around!

I can’t see how you can avoid the conclusion that the entire nation – and most profoundly and permanently – has been truly Victimized by its elites in business, finance, and – inescapably – political and governmental oversight. And yet the ‘regulation’ and ‘oversight’ of the government-created SOs went on and on, amplified by selective, sensationalist and lurid media coverage.

Whence Elias then goes on immediately to reflect that the U.S. itself – since its inception – has been a “violent society” (p.47) I think of Ehrenreich and consider that the U.S. has also always been an emotionally volatile society. Perhaps, even beyond their historical and deep philosophical concerns about the nature of humans and the historical experiences and examples of ancient Greece and Rome (and perhaps the remarkably nuanced chief-doms and governing structures of the Indian tribes) , the Framers also noted the volatility of Americans.

And thus both their hesitation in creating a wide and genuine ‘democracy’ and also their extreme care in constructing the machinery of Constitutional governance (which, in core, is self-governance).

Surely the Woo!-culture is a vivid and alarming example of a lack of individual self-governance, as a professional, as a mature adult, as well as a Citizen. And the group-think dynamic was allowed to break the bounds of good praxis, unhindered by such controlling principles as Maturity and Prudence and – surely – professional integrity.

But also included in that emotional volatility is Fear. In a Note at the back of the book Elias will acknowledge that “The fear of crime may have become a ‘social enterprise that provides entrepreneurs with political and pecuniary profit’” (p.271, Note 189). I think that in addition to the obvious elements of this observation – made in 1986 – there is also the unhappy possibility that certain ‘advocacies’ have themselves somehow been corroded by such dynamics.

Indeed, in a follow-on Note (he makes some meaty revelations at the back of the text, in all those Notes that an unsuspecting reader might overlook) he observes that “selectively using words to create alarm may provide an important tool of social control”. (p.271, Note 191) I would say that the relationship of the SO Mania regime to this vital matter of ‘social control’ is one that the entire SO community must keep in mind.

Who is doing the ‘controlling’? A government that has long been slipping away from the control of its Constitutional governors, The People. And not by outright rejection of the Constitutional vision, but rather by the subtle processes of manipulating and ‘dumbing-down’ and stampeding of the Citizenry, as if The People were merely a herd of cattle, to be spooked at will for the ‘convenience’ and in the ‘interests’ of the government and those to whom it has chosen to pander.

Harsh thoughts, and dark, perhaps. But nobody familiar with the effects of the SO Mania regime can deny the harsh and dark effects of this regime on everything and everyone it has touched, including – in an irony worthy of Tolkien – even its creators and abettors and servants.

And again in a follow-on Note he admits that “The media may promote a false ideology that criminal justice functions primarily to control and eliminate crime instead of promoting interests, protecting property, largely for the few, and controlling the population”. (p.271, Note 193) This comment of his reveals – I think refreshingly – an older ‘liberalism’ that was concerned first and foremost with the eternal predations of that ancient predator – Wealth, especially as it is concentrated to exercise power.

It was this ‘old liberalism’ – known in the 1960s as ‘the Old Left’ – that was wiped away by ‘the New Left’ of the 1960s: Identity Politics and the Identities and advocates supporting that Politics … which was really a revolutionary (in the French-Leninist-Maoist sense) movement profoundly antithetical to the American ethos.*** And that ‘control’ would be hugely influenced by the monstrous corpus of theory and experience created and amassed by such dark minds as Lenin and Goebbels as well as by the advertising-turned-nationalistic-propagandist Edward Bernays, a Swiss who in the early 1900s started advising U.S. corporations how to ‘create the desire’ for their products and then turned his craft to World War 1.****

And he even acknowledges – again, buried in the Notes – that “Offenders may become ‘sacrificial victims’ in society’s attempt to obstruct disintegrative forces”. (p.272, Note 195) This opens the possibility that in some deep and dark workings of the psychology of society the SO Mania regime was erected – perhaps like some sort of neurosis or psychosis or defense-mechanism in individual therapy terminology – to allay deep feelings about much larger and other societal matters.

In this emotional volatility, I think it becomes clear how the SO Mania regime is in deep ways to some extent an efflorescence of much that has been going wrong with American society in the past decades.

In one section he considers ‘Sexual Assault’ directly (p.48) – and recall that he was writing as a very knowledgable professional insider in 1986.

“Although rape was long considered a sexual crime, the women’s movement has helped us recognize it actually as a violent crime”. (p.48) This may sound a bit odd: rape has always been considered a felonious crime, and ‘violence’ – you might think – would be included in such a categorizational assessment.

But in immediate support of his statement, Elias quotes at length a feminist who herself was quoted in the 1979 book “Person/Planet: The Disintegration of Industrial Society”, by a guru of such ‘creative destruction’, Theodore Roszak (you can see, back then, how radical-feminism was supporting the Deconstruction not simply of ‘concepts’ but of the actual reality of American industrial society; from the vantage point of 30 years later, you can make your own judgments about the wisdom of that bit of ‘cutting edge progress’).

Anyhoo, the quotation reads: “The male society has made rape the prototypical expression of its patterns. Domination of the other by force of nature and land and resources, of ‘inferior’ nations and groups of women, of money and markets and material goods …‘Victim’ is the most descriptive noun we have to designate the role women … must play … [I]n male institutions you are either the victim or the oppressor”. (p.48)

You can see here, by the late 1970s, how radical-feminism was seeking to include itself in the paradigmatic concerns of the Boomer generation and of the 1960s: American ‘superpower’ violence against native peoples, colonialism, imperialism … and with all respect to those thoughts, though supported by the Soviet rival as a way to keep its powerful U.S. competitor off-balance. (This dynamic is in addition to the effort to cast the radical-feminist agenda as merely a follow-on of the Black Civil Rights movement – ‘patriarchy’ as Jim Crow, ‘men’ as violent, lumpish Southrons … that sort of thing.)

While this was all ’30 years ago’, that period was the cusp of the era when ‘sex offenses’ started to rear their head, soon to follow with the early 1980s Child Day-Care Satanic Ritual Abuse Trials (now largely, maybe utterly, discredited) which themselves served to fuel the deep and dark fires in which the SO Mania regime was forged.

Again, while it may seem irrelevant to look at statements made decades ago (and surely the now-established Advocacies would prefer to ignore them), yet these statements were the Cutting-Edge Wisdom in the era when all of the present frakkulence was forged.

Men and rape and sexual ‘violence’ were equated with a macho and imperialist and neo-colonialist America. The neatness – cuteness, perhaps – of the equation does not establish its accuracy and legitimacy as a conceptual frame and as ‘knowledge’.

But I wonder if the acquiescence of the government in radical-feminist demands even in the Reagan Eighties was somehow an effort to buy-off the advocacies, and dampen the internationally-embarrassing possibility of a large American domestic ‘advocacy’ continually trumpeting what was in effect the Soviet-line: that the USA was indeed an imperialist and neo-colonialist nation and that – conversely – the USSR was a friend of all underdogs. (Although, in an equally delicious symmetry, the Democrats trumped themselves as champions of the ‘underdog’, a claim made as recently as last week by the Chairman of the DNC on Jon Stewart’s ‘Daily Show’.)

Which then leads to the thought that the radical-feminist advocacies (upon whom I focus here because they were key initiators and players in what became the development of the SO Mania regime) played their own political game by intimidating the Beltway to satisfy their demands or they would continue to embarrass the USA as Reagan started to work on his international efforts to deal with the USSR in the glare of the world’s attention.

Immediately thereafter, Elias starts with the ‘statistics’: more than 60,000 rapes reported in the U.S. each year, 5 to 10 times as many as Europe, and – of course – this number “underestimates the actual amount by at least 4 times”. This last estimate is provided by quoting a 1984 article in ‘Victimology’ magazine in an article on ‘date rape’, that amorphous and legally tortuous concept that began to stretch the definition of ‘rape’ into the most difficult territory of he-said/she-said, the complexity which for centuries all sane Western jurists had realized was a lethal swamp for organized sovereign justice.

Oh, and then on second thought about the amount of ‘rapes’, Elias adds immediately: “perhaps by as much as twenty-five times”. (p.48) It stuns to read these ‘old’ documents and realize how easily advocates threw huge numbers around like play-dough (and, come to think of it, the way defense contractors and Beltway pols threw around figures of money and nuclear throw-weights and numbers of awesome Soviet forces in the hugely powerful and well-established Soviet military machine (as they said back then before the whole Soviet illusion collapsed like a house of cards … where Hitler had failed in his1940 bid to ‘simply kick in the door and the whole structure will come crashing down’, the door and structure imploded on its own without an explosion less than a decade later.)

And – in a careful turn – Elias quickly adds that “Male rapes, often in prisons or among homosexuals, apparently constitute only a fraction of the total” (p.48). It is – given the nature of Identity Politics Correctness these days – impossible to know whether the question of homosexual rape is Correctly to be played-up or down-played, and what the Correct opinion is that one should have (now and also back in 1986). But here it serves in any event to make sure that the focus remains where the radical-feminist advocacy wanted it to remain: on females as the ‘rape victims’ of males.

While he acknowledges without obvious concern the phenomenon of “many women” not reporting “this crime”, he has no doubt as to its “prevalence”. (p.48) Rape is, he asserts, “the leading crime against women and the fastest growing index crime”. (p.49) Although to what extent this growth is attributable to the elasticity of the definition, the growing awareness that charges could be filed with increasingly less danger of being sanctioned for false-charges, the increasing social – or at least media – status of being a ‘victim’, or an intensifying reorientation of a law-enforcement apparatus responding to political pressures … there are numerous variables here rarely examined.

But this doesn’t stop Elias from quickly lamenting that “we have made little headway in reducing it or in promoting the victim’s role in prosecuting the offender (not ‘defendant’, I note) and that “prosecutions have not increased”. (p.49) Whether THIS is a result of a still-robust professional doubt as to the veracity or prosecutability of such allegations, or merely a macho stubbornness on the part of law enforcement in submitting to the demanded agenda … more variables not often examined.

The ‘sexual’ and ‘family crimes’ often “overlap” (p.49) – and here is the connection between the Domestic Violence regime and the SO Mania regime.

His next section is on ‘Battering’, but I will leave it for the next Post.


*My copy is the paperback version put out by Oxford UP in 1986. It bears the ISBN 0-19-503980-7. It will be unwieldy to include both Chapter Titles and sub-headings as well as page numbers, in case you have a different edition. I will stick to only using page references when I make quotations, but for especially important points I will do so.

**Ehrenreich, Barbara. “Bright-Sided: How Positive Thinking Is Undermining America”. New York: Picador, 2010. ISBN: 978-0-8050-8749-9. This is the paperback edition at $15 US. Well worth the read, and it’s not difficult – although stunning and alarming in what it reveals about the country’s approach to life in all its major aspects.

***You are welcome to look at this Post about the effects of the social philosopher Herbert Marcuse, refugee from the Nazi regime in 1933, who in 1965 as an American university professor wrote an article urging that for real ‘liberation’ a society must repress and deny public discussion of ‘established’ ideas in order to create ‘space’ for whatever opposes that ‘establishment’. To be truly ‘tolerant’ a society must be ‘intolerant’ – a thought uttered in 1965, before the Vietnam-era military excuse that ‘we had to destroy the village in order to save it’.

****For the historically-minded, note the ominous progression (or, more aptly, regression) in Communism: where ‘propaganda’ as social control was initially employed, it then mutated into government-managed Terror, against its own population, to the point where in Soviet Russia Stalin gave little thought to ‘propaganda’; violations of the established Political Correctness (a Soviet term itself) were met with simply outright and forthright police Terror. Any government engaged in ‘revolution’ must by the very nature and dynamics of its undertaking somehow ‘war’ upon its own people. And the SO Mania regime is a fruit of that poisonous tree.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


I am keeping up with this Assange matter since it seems clear to me that we are seeing a clear example of the widely-emplaced SO Mania Regime now being deployed as a cover to ‘go after’ people whom a government (and the US government in this case) finds somehow ‘inconvenient’.

It should not be surprising.

In my view of the Regime, it was always about ‘convenience/convenience’: a powerful political demographic element on the Left found ‘men’ inconvenient, mixing themselves with another large swath of folks found it psychologically convenient to demonstrate that they really were pro-family and pro-children, while on the opposite side of the spectrum a whole bunch of folks just feel better when standing up for law-‘n-order any time the opportunity is presented, and a bunch of other folks just don’t like weirdos, different people, and – in classic sociological terms – ‘Others’.

Needless to say, all of the above find the Constitution, for all practical purposes, to be inconvenient.

(None of the foregoing is to be construed as my desire to ‘approve’ the infliction of unwanted sexual experience on any human being by any other human being. And I write with the clear awareness that the vast number of SOs are not slavering incorrigible monsters.)

Now the accused (although he hasn’t been charged with anything, which at this point is ominously interesting all on its own), Julian Assange, founder of Wikileaks (which still has those 15,000 documents about military frakkey in AfPak that it’s preparing to release), is being urged by to step down as the operational head of Wikileaks.

The suggestion is being made by an “organizer” of Wikileaks, a woman who is a former resident of Sweden but is now “an Icelandic parliamentarian”.

Once again, her headline-grabbing public comment actually turns out to say much less than the quick reader would be led to believe.

He should just “give up his management” (which would include managing the release of the next 15,000 documents), but only while “he fights the charges filed by two Swedish women”.

But as we know, those two didn’t actually file charges (shrewdly, for the sake of their future legal vulnerability if this thing doesn’t work).

But this is one of those ‘suggestions’ and ‘invitations’ that is delivered with an alluring and – given the dynamics of these things – seductive sadness. The sad one says that “I am not angry with Julian, but this is a situation that has clearly gotten out of hand”. Nothing about the fact that the situation was made to get out of hand by the too-shrewd activities of the original allegators and a couple of Swedish prosecutors who are keeping the thing going – yet without bringing any charges.

And, of course, there’s absolutely no reason for Assange to step down in order to ‘deal with’ these charges. It’s not like he’s writing a major piece of work and needs all his concentration to keep focus on his writing. All that remains is to press the Send button on that cache of 15,000 documents that reveals a lot or a little that is new about American military badness in AfPak. He could do it from his PalmPilot while sitting in a courtroom … although there is no court in sight at this point, despite all the brouhaha.

Listen to her justification: “These personal matters have nothing to do with Wikileaks. I have strongly urged him to focus on the legalities that he’s dealing with and let some other people carry the torch”.

But if – as she rightly says – these matters have nothing to do with Wikileaks, and if all he has to do is press a Send button, then why does she think he needs to quit his job? The documents will speak for themselves, so it’s not even as if it’s bad for company business if its Founder is embroiled in a made-for-media sex-offense dust-up.

And I can easily imagine that if some Wikileaks subordinates are getting nervous about whether they’ll be next on some hit-list, then Assange’s stepping-down may well result in the 15,000 documents not being published.

But Birgitta Jonsdottir, the Icelandic parliamentarian and somehow connected to Wikileaks, also goes to great lengths to cover all of her bases, shrewdly enough. She’s not mad at him, but she “doesn’t support his claim that the allegations were part of a plot designed to damage Wikileaks”. If that’s true, then she shouldn’t be allowed to operate heavy machinery – which would include a microphone. While I am not going to make any bloggery sensational claims, I am going to say here and now that there is more than enough possibility that – regardless of the sex-offense ‘reports’ (which at this point is all they are and have been since Day One) – the heavy thumb of politics and ‘reasons of state’, especially with the US lurking in the background with a whole lotta motive, is impossible to discount on its face.

Ms. Jonsdottir, by the by, is now serving in the Parliament of a nation that is publicly pretty close to sovereign bankruptcy, and therefore in no position to annoy international monetary organizations – rather largely influenced, as it happens, by the US government.

Nor can I say with any seriousness that ‘feminism’ – even ‘international feminism ‘ – has the chops to roam this far afield for ‘support’ while simultaneously holding the theoretically well-grounded charges from being filed.

With even more careful – painfully careful – wording, Jonsdottir then undercuts herself by suggesting that maybe this is all just a “cultural misunderstanding” between himself and the two women.

But then, immediately, “And he’s a classic Aussie in the sense that he’s a bit of a male chauvinist”. Aha. So the old feministical stuff is trotted out; and when did we ever hear of a ‘man’ being just “a bit of a male chauvinist”?

She covers all the bases, balancing her ‘support’ with a shopping-list of all the classic male-hostile tropes of the feministical panoply. It’s a remarkable performance, but – as they would have said in the pre-electrical age of the world – ‘smells much of the lamp’. Meaning that somebody stayed up really really late last night putting this thing together verrrry verrrrry carefully.

And frankly, it reminds me of the dying Vito Corleone’s advice to his son and successor, Michael: whoever comes to you and offers to set up a meeting … he is the one who will assassinate you. And sure enough, loyal old sub-boss Tessio soon shows up, smiling and gentle, and purrs a proposal to set up a meeting between Michael and the drug-mob that wants to use the Corleone connections to bring in drugs. Old Vito had been saying No; but he’s behind the times and it’s a new era and there are new possibilities and … you saw the movie.

And I think we’re seeing a script here, and for all its weaknesses the US government is still capable of putting out a 'movie'.

Assange has said that he is “losing confidence in the Swedish justice system”. Nobody in the American SO community can be too surprised at such an observation.

That justice system, by the by, has now gone a week and hasn’t filed its charges. Which doesn’t prove that there are no charges that might be justifiably filed (especially given the frakkeries of SO Mania Regime jurisprudence), but it does suggest strongly to me that this is all about intimidating him to not-publish the documents. If he caves, then the Senior senior prosecutor might simply say that it was all a “cultural misunderstanding” and Nevvvvvvvvvvverrrrrrrrrrrrr Minnnnnnnnnnnnnd (as the late great Roseanne Rosannadanna character would have said on Saturday Night Live).

And the Swedish and Icelandic governments will get the Great Thumb off their necks.

Assange – in the article linked-to in the link in this Post – says that he doesn’t know if this is just a couple of people pursuing the matter for personal or ideological reasons, or whether this whole thing is driven by “geopolitical reasons”. I would suggest that it is both, given that the SO Mania Regime and its demographic support groups are both deeply enmeshed with the US government and have been for quite some time.

And let’s not forget that there’s an election coming up in these parts very soon; those 15,000 documents, possibly even more than the previous 72,000 or so, might not make certain parties to the election look very good.

Nor can I credit either the wits or the integrity or both of Ms. Jonsdottir when she says in that same linked-article that she reviewed all the documents in the case (you can do that in Swedish law?) and “quickly determined that this was not part of any western conspiracy against Wikileaks”. Which only makes me wonder that if the Icelandic folk had elected more insightful legislators their government might not have gone bust. In fact, since no actual 'case' has been formally brought, then what court 'documents' can she have seen? Or has she simply reviewed the written-up allegations of the two females?

But I think you can see just how the insidious SO Mania Regime can now be deployed for purposes far beyond – or beneath – its original and publicly-stated justifications.

But of course, the SO Mania Regime has always been vigorously and lethally alive, crawling beneath its surfaces with all manner of ulterior and far more lethal motivations and purposes than were originally stated.

And that will come as no surprise to the SO community at all.