>As for the Humphrey business. The anti-war movement didn't have to endorse
>Humphrey or rejoin the Democratic Party; all we had to do was cut him a
>little slack the last weeks of the campaign and then him. Instead, we
>promoted the idea that a victory for Nixon would create a revolutionary
>situation that would benefit us. We were wrong in terms of the analysis
>that went into that position and in what ultimately happened. Sometimes
>it's better to vote for the lesser of two evils when the other guy
>represents true, rather than rhetorical, evil.
Im sure there were some folks out there but there was never a movement,
official line, etc.saying Nixon would be better because he would radicalize
The Dems had been murdering 1000's of Vietnames a day and it would be a tad
hypocritical for the left to come anywhere near them.
And the Dems tried harder to hide their imperialism is liberal slogans.
That had to be exposed.
>Whatever the differences that Jeff, I and others share, we are, I believe,
>in solidarity in opposing the Bush Administration and the coming war.
>Stuttering: A Life Bound Up in Words
>Abbie Hoffman: American Rebel
>The Dark Ages: Life in the US 1945-1960
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>---- Original Message -----
>>Sent: Friday, January 10, 2003 12:59 AM
>>Subject: Re: [sixties-l] response to Cox and Blankfort
>> > Despite our different interpretations of what was wrong and right
>> about the anti-war movement, I do not put Marty Jezer in the same
>> category as I do Tod Gitlin who seems to be edging his way into the
>> current anti-war movement, if for nothing else than to get more material
>> for another book, to become an expert on the current movement, and to
>> smear anyone who suggests this war might also be "for Israel" as an
>> antisemite or a self-hating
>> > Jew. Probably, all three.
>>Regarding the position vis a vis Humphrey and the movement, Marty did not
>>deal with the apparent truth of what I had said, i.e., that, if the
>>movement, which had broken away totally from the Democrats, had
>>demonstrated anything close to a mindset that would have had it, or a
>>major segment of it, endorsing Humphrey, that mindset would have been
>>recognized by the Democrats and LBJ would not have dropped out of the
>>race. That's the point
>>that has been ignored.
>> > Marty Jezer wrote:
>> > I don't know where Carroll Cox is coming from but he certainly turned =
>> > what I wrote -- and what I consistently write and say -- totally around. =
>> > I've always stood for an inclusive movement -
>> > Trotskyists, pacifists, Democrats, socialists, anarchists, even =
>> > Republicans, as long as they are willing to accept the agreed upon =
>> > discipline of any demonstration. (I do agree with Jeff Blankfort however =
>> > that the sectarians in A.N.S.W.E.R. -- who deserve our thanks for =
>> > organizing the first of the anti-Iraqi War demonstrations should not be =
>> > allowed to control the planning of future demonstrations.)What's needed =
>> > is a broader coalition that reflects the diverse politics of all the =
>> > participants -- and that welcomes Jeff, Gitlin, and me.
>> > In the controversy that Cox is writing about, I was initially responding =
>> > to Blankfort's sentiment of excluding Gitlin from the movement for his =
>> > "incorrect" politics. In that vein Blankfort wrote:
>> > "I'm not surprised that Marty Jezer decides that the involvement of =
>> > Gitlin or anyone else in the anti-war movement is not to be questioned. =
>> > A couple of years back he joined Gitlin in criticizing the 60s anti-war =
>> > movement for not having had the sense to endorse Humphrey for president =
>> > in 1968, not being able to understand, apparently, that had the =
>> > movement's consciousness been at that low level, Johnson would not have =
>> > withdrawn his candidacy in the first place...."
>> > I would thus like to (sarcastically) apologize to Blankfort riding an =
>> > all-night bus from Vermont to Washington,D.C. to protest the war. =
>> > Obviously, because I hold positions that aren't those of Blankfort's, I =
>> > have no right to be in his anti-war movement.=
>> > More to the point, Blankfort misrepresents my position on the 1968 =
>> > election that I wrote in 1992, independent of Gitlin's position, in =
>> > Abbie Hoffman: American Rebel, pp. 128,174-176.
>> > By the summer of 68, I wrote, the anti-war movement had "won the battle =
>> > within the Democratic Party." I then go on to describe how we (I was one =
>> > of those who was in the streets of Chicago and who opposed Humphrey's =
>> > candidacy) were so infatuated with our own revolutionary image that we =
>> > got the political analysis of 1968 all wrong. We believed a Nixon =
>> > victory would, as the cliche goes, "heighten the contradictions." In =
>> > repressing the movement he would revolutionize the country. At the time =
>> > it looked like that was possible, but in retrospect it wasn't even =
>> > close. Nixon took power, escalated the war, and we were helpless to stop =
>> > him. I continue: Humphrey as President would have had to end the war =
>> > (whether he wanted to or not) because to continue the war would have =
>> > totally destroyed the Democratic Party (and his chance for re-election. =
>> > The equation, which we didn't fully understand) was that Nixon, to =
>> > appeal to his base, had to move right, which he did. HHH, to secure his =
>> > base, i.e., to survive as President, would have had to move left; the =
>> > political reality of the time was that he had no choice. Further more, =
>> > the cultural aspects of the movement, feminism, gay lib, and many other =
>> > parts of it would have prospered under the greater tolerance of a =
>> > Humphrey presidency. In opposition to Jeff's critique, my analysis was =
>> > based on the strength of the movement, not its weaknesses. We =
>> > misunderstood our strength. We had rallied the country against the war =
>> > and not towards our agenda of cultural and political revolution. At a =
>> > time when we were strongest, we upped the ante and our demands. Instead =
>> > of settling for reforms that would have ended the war, we decided to go =
>> > for revolution, which was a fantasy based on, among other things, taking =
>> > too much LSD and/or reading too much Mao and Fanon.
>> > Agree with that analysis or not, it's an attempt to think critically =
>> > about that time. My take is that we blew it. That doesn't mean I'm =
>> > trashing what I was part of. I just don't want to repeat those mistakes =
>> > again.
>> > In the current situation, there is widespread opposition towards going =
>> > to war in Iraq from the right as well as the left. We need to guard =
>> > against the revolutionary illusions and exclusionary politics that, in =
>> > the past, did us in.
>> > Abbie Hoffman: American Rebel -- which Martin Duberman called "by far =
>> > the best account we have of Abbie Hoffman's remarkable life...deeply =
>> > sympathetic and scrupulously detached -- a triumph of judicious =
>> > empathy," and of which Anita Hoffman wrote "Here's the Abbie I knew and =
>> > loved!" -- can be ordered from books stores or ordered direct from me =
>> > <mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>email@example.com for $15 postpaid.=20
>> > Marty Jezer
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