Thursday, July 28, 2011

Martin Jay Spills Some Beans!

In his recent post, Updated: Breivik's Core Thesis is White Christian Nationalism v. Multiculturalism, Chip Berlet cited a recent Salmagundi article by Martin Jay, "Dialectic of Counter-Enlightenment: The Frankfurt School as Scapegoat of the Lunatic Fringe." This is a truly astonishing, important and very timely document, which unfortunately is not yet available online. In fact, there is very little information about the article online. I have sent a request to Salmagundi to make the text available.

Of particular interest is Jay's account of getting sandbagged (Berlet's term) by a film crew for a television network called National Empowerment Television, sponsored by Paul Weyrich's Free Congress Foundation (FCF). William S. Lind, who narrated the video and presumably produced it, was proud of his coup of including interview clips with Jay in the television program, boasting, "The video is especially valuable because we interviewed the principal American expert on the Frankfurt School, Martin Jay, who was then the chairman of the History Department at Berkeley (and obviously no conservative). He spills the beans."

The "beans" Jay spilled were innocuous. "They had," Jay explained, "already been on the plate for a very long time and it would have taken no effort at all to confirm that, yes, they were Marxists, and yes, they thought cultural problems were important, and yes, they -- or at least Marcus -- worried about the effects of 'repressive tolerance.'"

Of course, it wasn't the beans that Lind was interested in but in editing and packaging those beans in such a way as to insinuate that Jay was "confirming" the rest of the video's narrative, which of course he wasn't. Jay regrets having fallen for Lind's ruse and having assumed that his opinions would be presented with some fidelity. But having viewed Lind's video and now having read Martin Jay's account, I have to wonder if maybe Lind didn't step into a trap of his own making. Given the context, it is the film makers, not the Frankfurt School, who come across as the devious schemers with a secret agenda. As Martin Jay explained,
There is a transparent subtext in the original FCF program, which is not hard to discern and has become more explicit with each telling of the narrative. Although there is scarcely any direct reference to the ethnic origins of the School’s members, subtle hints allow the listener to draw his own conclusions about the provenance of foreigners who tried to combine Marx and Freud, those giants of critical Jewish intelligence. At one point, William Lind asserts that “once in America they shifted the focus of their work from destroying German society to attacking the society and culture of its new place of refuge,” as if the very people who had to flee the Nazis had been responsible for what they were fleeing! Airtime is also given to another of Weyrich’s colleagues at the FCF, Lazlo Pasztor, who is innocently identified as a “leader of the Hungarian resistance against Communism,” but had already been discredited a decade earlier as a former member of the pro-Nazi “Arrow Cross,” who had to leave the Bush campaign in l988 when he was outed.

And now, without further ado, Ecological Headstand presents The History of Political Correctness:



A double bill! The British National Party's Nick Griffin recites the script with a twist, greedy Big Business and the Frankfurt School are in cahoots!:

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