Re: [sixties-l] The Age of Acquiescence (fwd)

From: William Mandel (
Date: Thu Jun 27 2002 - 17:15:25 EDT

  • Next message: Ron Jacobs: "[sixties-l] Political Prisoner Richard Williams needs your assistance"

    I disagree. In the '60s, virtually every thought I had and disseminated,
    via Pacifica and writings, was new to youth, although my thinking and
    actions were a consequence of the movements of the '30s and later that I
    had been part of or had observed. Even the one thing my name brings to
    mind, my HUAC testimony of 1960, was an outgrowth of my testimony before
    Joe McCarthy in 1953, vastly more difficult in a truly scary time.
       For the past few years, particularly since Seattle, I have come to
    realize that the '60s were not lost. Among other things, a generation of
    academics, particularly but not only in the social sciences, had come
    into being that taught what was learned in the '60s as truth (I agree).
    I recall my amazement to find an attendance of 1,000 at a Marxist
    Scholars Conference at U. Mass. Amherst in 2,000, and the
    extraordinarily progressive stance, particularly but not only with
    respect to racism, of the American Studies Conference in Detroit that
    same year.
       In the past it would be weeks, more likely months, sometimes even
    years before an idea of mine spread widely, for example my published
    notion in 1953 that McCarthyism could be defeated, or earlier still that
    Gen. MacArthur had to be fired, as he was, for his behavior in the
    Korean War that threatened nuclear conflict. Today, by contrast, I am
    delighted to find that when I am ahead of the curve it is literally by
    no more than hours. That was true, for example, with a post just before
    Seattle in which I concluded that it would be a seminal event. Others
    came to the same conclusion before it occurred. On the afternoon of
    Sept. 11, I posted blaming U.S. policy for the attacks on the World
    Trade Center and Pentagon. I documented that with the list of mass
    murders of civilians from the air perpetrated by the U.S., starting with
    Hiroshima and continuing through Korea, Vietnam, and smaller subsequent
    outrages that, in one place or another, killed as many as died on Sept.
    11. Starting the very next day, I read posts from the widest variety of
    sources placing the blame on U.S. policy. It was clear that they were
    not based on mine, although in the week that followed mine was widely
    forwarded and put in print.
       So today there is a mass of thinking, informed people who do not
    acquiesce. I think that what is new is that, certainly not in the
    three-quarters of a century that I have been politically aware, there
    has never been so breathtaking and crass a pattern of government
    behavior in the interests of the "economic royalists," the "malefactors
    of great wealth," as FD Roosevelt called them. Nor has there ever
    previously been a candid admission on the part of mass media figures
    that the U.S. is an empire (my use of the word "imperialism" in a debate
    at UC Berkeley with the author of The Ugly American in 1959 destroyed
    the wide public acceptability I had carefully rebuilt after McCarthy was
       The jury findings for Bari and Cherney against the FBI and cops and
    in another very recent major case indicate that the general public does
    not acquiesce (the folks actually accepted by the lawyers for both sides
    as jurors usually represent the lowest possible common denominator of
    political dissidence).
       The job before us now is find the way or ways to unify this mass
    dissatisfaction with government and with big business into forms that
    will at least mark the kind of leap forward that occurred in the New
    Deal years. No, I don't have a solution to offer, but am impressed by
    Ralph Nader's latest article and many suggestions from others.
                                                                            Bill Mandel wrote:
    > ---------- Forwarded message ----------
    > Date: Wed, 26 Jun 2002 13:04:02 -0700
    > From: radtimes <>
    > Subject: The Age of Acquiescence
    > The Age of Acquiescence
    > <>
    > June 26, 2002
    My autobiography, SAYING NO TO POWER (Creative Arts, Berkeley, 1999),
    was written for the general reader. However, if you teach in the social
    sciences consider it for student reading. It is a history of how the
    people fought to defend and expand its rights in my lifetime, employing
    the form of the life story of one who was involved in most serious
    movements: labor, student, peace with the USSR, civil rights South and
    North, civil
    liberties (I seriously damaged the Senate Internal Security Committee,
    the McCarthy Committee, and the House Un-American Activities Committee
    with spectacular testimonies that may be heard/seen on my website, ), the RADIO OF DISSENT (37 YEARS ON
    with very extensive information on its history) and the feminist
    although I am male. The book contains some fifty pages on my late wife,
    Tanya, appearing appropriately throughout the book. They may be found in
    the index under Mandel, Tanya. My activities began in 1927. I am 85. The
    is available through all normal sources. If you want an autographed
    send me $23 at 4466 View Pl., Apt. 106, Oakland, CA. 94611

    This archive was generated by hypermail 2b30 : Tue Jul 09 2002 - 18:38:48 EDT