Friday, January 10, 2020

Hyper-paranoia! Or: Did you know that Roger Stone and Lyndon LaRouche were friends?

Political cult leader Lyndon LaRouche died less than a year ago, aged 96. It doesn't seem likely that a deceased criminal (he did time for credit card fraud) could still be relevant. And yet he is -- for three reasons:

1. We live in the age of the cult. Trumpism is a cult. Evangelical Christianity is a cult. The worshippers of Ayn Rand and Hans-Hermann Hoppe are very cult-y. On the Democratic side, two religious cult leaders -- Tulsi Gabbard and Marianne Williamson -- continue to seek the nomination. Postmodernism and feminism have become (in my unpopular opinion) dangerous cults.

In short: Our current political moment is LaRouche-ism writ large.

2. The LaRouche movement lives on, and they are all in for Trump. As we saw in a recent post, William Engdahl -- a former LaRouche lieutenant -- spread some Ukraine-gate disinformation which, in all likelihood, originated in Russia. (The Engdahl connection is what sent me down my current research trail.) The more you examine the Alt Right, the more LaRouche connections you'll find.

3. LaRouche exemplifies the right's manipulation of the left. We're only just beginning to comprehend the level of deception involved.

In his public persona, Lyndon LaRouche was all over the place -- pushing Marxism, praising FDR, advocating liberal causes (unions, stronger bank regulation), opposing Ronald Reagan, working with Ronald Reagan, working with the Klan, working with Mitch WerBell, allying himself with Alex Jones, hobnobbing with Nazis, advocating the nuclear annihilation of the USSR and promoting racism. The consummate shape-shifter, LaRouche pretended to be a Democrat even though his money came from the right.

It's important to understand one key fact: LaRouche lied constantly. He took whatever stance he needed to take in order to infiltrate liberal-ish movements and to ratfuck his political opponents. At his core, he was a Germanophile devoted to militarism, elitist rule and the destruction of democracy -- an early Alt Rightist.

LaRouche's schizy attitude toward Trump derives in part from the cult leader's '80s-era war against Roy Cohn, mentor to both Trump and Stone. As LaRouche biographer Dennis King wrote:
It was a classic case of Freudian reaction formation -- LaRouche, the Red-baiter of the 1980s, going after Cohn, the former aide to Joe McCarthy; LaRouche, the propagandist for organized crime, going after Cohn, its attorney and fixer; LaRouche, who lives like a millionaire but last paid income tax in 1973, going after Cohn, who evaded the IRS through similar tactics for most of his adult life. No two antagonists ever deserved each other more.
In 1979, King wrote an article which exposed LaRouche's ties to Nazis. LaRouche sued the magazine, only to discover that the publisher's attorney was Roy Cohn. Since Cohn was both gay and Jewish, it was natural for the homophobic and anti-Semitic LaRouche to conclude that Cohn had instigated the attack as part of a "Zionist" plot. He also accused Cohn of helping to mastermind the JFK assassination, a canard lifted from an infamous piece of samizdat called The Torbitt Document.

LaRouche joined forces with a former Cohn lover named Richard Dupont, who had fallen out with Cohn over a failed business arrangement. Madness ensued: Dupont and LaRocuhe launched an elaborate smear campaign involving faked interviews published in ersatz versions of real periodicals. (Of course, it's easy to denigrate someone like Cohn, who really was vile.) It all ended up with Dupont facing charges and Roger Stone -- who had recently helped Reagan get elected -- making sure that the judge threw the book at him.

Throughout this period, LaRouche publications assailed Cohn's friend Donald Trump. The attacks continued until early 2016. This example appeared on the LaRouche website in 2015:
We begin with the case of Donald Trump. He is, as Lyndon LaRouche points out, a product of J. Edgar Hoover’s New York circles, a coterie which included mobbed-up businessmen like Lewis Rosenstiel, along with Cardinal Spellman of the New York archdiocese, and various Wall Street establishment and media figures...
Hoover? Spellman? The scattershot nature of these accusations would now be considered...well, Trumpian. At the beginning of 2016, the cultists offered this ditty: "Don't be a chump for Trump: He's a festering pustule on Satan's rump!"

Yet before the year was out, LaRouche would declare Trump's win a "victory for the universe." If you go to YouTube and type in the name "LaRouche," you'll confront all sorts of pro-Trump videos. (Example.) As noted above, Engdahl has been laundering Russian disinformation in an effort to smear Trump's foes. 

The Stone factor. Does this switcheroo indicate the elasticity of LaRouchian thought, or was something more sinister afoot? Recall the cognate cases of H.A. Goodman and Cassandra Fairbanks, two alleged "leftists" who did everything they could to elect Trump. I believe that the LaRouche cultists disingenuously mouthed anti-Trump slogans in order to infiltrate the left.

How else can we explain the fact that Roger Stone -- king of the dirty tricksters -- considers LaRouche “A friend of mine, a good friend of mine, and a good man.” Even more tellingly, Stone also claimed that LaRouche played an "important backstage role" in Trump's election.

A little more than a year ago, this Mother Jones investigation looked into the Trump/LaRouche connection. The piece reminds us of an aspect of the Steele Dossier which nobody likes to discuss:
Buried in Christopher Steele’s dossier on Trump’s possible links to Russia was an August 2016 report with this allegation: A “Kremlin official involved in US relations” had claimed that Russia facilitated a LaRouche delegation’s trip to Moscow, offering members of LaRouche’s group assistance and enlisting them in an effort to disseminate “compromising information” as part of the Kremlin’s 2016 influence campaign. A lawyer with ties to both Stone and LaRouche’s network has claimed that he introduced Stone to a key LaRouche aide in early 2016, as Trump began to secure the Republican nomination.
When did Stone first link up with LaRouche?
This July, Stone delivered a video address to a LaRouche gathering in Germany, where LaRouche, who is in declining health, and his wife, Helga Zepp-LaRouche, now live. Stone seemed eager to embrace LaRouche and win over the crowd, recounting how he had “evolved” to embrace the “extraordinary and prophetic thinking” of LaRouche. Stone said he first met LaRouche in New Hampshire in 1980 during one of LaRouche’s many failed presidential campaigns, while Stone was working as an aide to Ronald Reagan. Noting he was a more “conventional conservative” at the time, Stone remarked that he then believed that “Dr. LaRouche’s views were somewhat exotic."
Frankly, I don't care what one man thinks of the other man's views. The important question is this: Did the two men form a tactical alliance?

One of Stone's rules is "Always use a cut-out" -- and LaRouche, with his ability to ingratiate himself into both far left and far right circles, would have been spectacularly useful to Stone's clients. LaRouche's well-disciplined political cult could do things to elect Reagan -- and subsequent Republicans -- that no-one else could do, and none of their dirty tricks would trace back to the GOP. In 1988, for example, the LaRouchies spread false reports that Democratic nominee Michael Dukakis had been treated for clinical depression.

Infiltration. LaRouche helped the Republican cause despite his proclaimed disdain for the Bush clan. LaRouchite Webster Tarpley wrote a very hostile biography of "Poppy" Bush -- a book embraced by progressives, who foolishly ignored the poorly-sourced conspiracy theories and worshipful attitude toward Lyndon LaRouche. Yet LaRouche aided the 2000 election of George W. Bush: Evidence indicates that his movement infiltrated and manipulated the Ralph Nader campaign, which siphoned enough votes from Gore in Florida to toss the contest to Dubya.

Tom Weiss -- a quirky New York left-leaning activist and occasional candidate -- gave the below-embedded interview some fourteen years ago, when the political world was a very different place. Many of his points now seem prescient. Naming names and offering many examples, Weiss accuses the LaRouche cult of adopting "more left than thou" tactics in order to split the opposition to Republican candidates. His basic theory: Fascists will always aid Republican candidates -- even the ones they personally despise -- since corrupt politicians are likely to weaken democracy. The worse things get, the better things are for those who want to subvert the system.

Weiss also asserts that Bloomberg owed his rise to a couple of political cultists, Lenora Fulani and Fred Newman, both of whom have LaRouche links. I may have more to say about that, if Bloomberg becomes a major factor in the 2020 election.

Weiss made similar assertions in his Up Front News website, which ceased activity in 2016. Although some of his language seems over-the-top, I must confess that Weiss has observed radical politics on the ground and on the scene, while I rarely venture out of my attic. Thus, it is possible that his views aren't so hyperbolic as they may seem at first. (I wouldn't mind it if a New York activist chimed in to confirm or to dispute Weiss' views.)

Here's a sample of what he has to say about LaRouche and Nader:
As far as I am aware, only UP FRONT News reported the fact that the Ralph Nader campaign was essentially controlled by a number of ultra-"left" political extremists, mostly in New York City, known as "Newmanites", some connected to the quite notorious ultra-left/ultra-right/ultra-left megalomaniac racist and convicted felon "intellectual" dictator-wannabe Lyndon LaRouche. The strategy of "social therapy" cult leaders LaRouche-"educated" "Dr." Fred Newman and his anti-Semitic protégé Lenora Fulani was to bash the Democrats and the Republicans as "the same", while weaning votes away from the Democrats (to Nader), thereby helping the Republicans.
From a 2008 Weiss post:
In recent years LaRouche has been actively fifth columning his way into the left via embedding his people in the peace movement and the Green Party. Key operatives, all loyal to Lenora Fulani (who won't talk about LaRouche), include outwardly articulate and recurrently rational frauds such as Paul ("Zool") Zulkowitz, who got himself deeply embedded in the peace movement, the Ralph Nader for president campaigns, and with the extraordinarily politically gullible peace mom Cindy Sheehan.
The LaRouche split-the-left-strategy was played out to politically lethal effect in 2000 when the Nader candidacy helped to elect Cheney/Bush. Nader is apparently a slow learner as he ran again in 2004 and 2008, each time drawing fewer votes. UP FRONT News, noting that the excremental Kann served as Nader's voice in New York, vigorously opposed Nader's candidacies.
Weiss himself was, and probably still is, "extraordinarily politically gullible" on the topic of Bernie Sanders. As readers know, I came to despise Sanders, whom I consider the ultimate exemplar of the "split the Dems" methodology. Throughout 2016, Bernie Sanders and his obnoxious zombie followers (backed by Russia) tirelessly spread anti-Hillary smears. Was anyone truly surprised when Bernie spokeswoman Cassandra Fairbanks was photographed with Roger Stone, or when Bernie's campaign manager turned out to have strong links to Manafort's party in Ukraine?

Stone has never made any secret of his fondness for fracturing the Democratic opposition. As I wrote in an earlier post:
Y'see, I learned from my mistake back in 1980. That was the year of the John Anderson "third party" campaign which crippled Jimmy Carter. At the time, the progs all adored John Anderson because he was endorsed by Doonesbury and Saturday Night Live. If you didn't support Anderson, you couldn't join Club Hipster.

Guess what? The Anderson campaign was just another Roger Stone scheme. Bet you didn't know that. At the time, nobody would have believed that assertion.

Every election season, the purists join the latest cult of personality -- Anderson, Nader, Obama, Bernie -- and the progs get pluperfectly pissed off whenever I refuse to swig the same Kool-Aid to which they've become addicted.
The Third Position. LaRouche's mad dance between opposite sides of the political ballroom should be seen as part of a larger strategy (or philosophy) called the Fascist Third Position. Most Americans have never heard this term. They should acquaint themselves with it: In the future, we're likely to hear much more from the Third Positionists, who defy conventional right/left categorizations.

(As they say in Europe, anyone who claims to be beyond right and left is usually on the right -- the far right.)

In short and in sum: If you are politically active, you have to be very careful in your associations, because you never know when your progressive pal may actually be a deeply closeted fascist.

Most would be astonished to learn how many Randroids and "Pepe people" have put out feelers to the quasi-socialist left. Steve Bannon has made no secret of his plans to work with left-wing parties in Europe. There is a strong area of overlap between the racist right and those "postmodern" progressives who espouse Identity politics, mostly because many "intersectional" po-mo thinkers harbor fantasies of racial and gender separation.

Never forget: Hitler was a pioneer in the politics of Identity. Never forget: Guy Lincoln Rockwell and Elijah Muhammed got along famously.

If you're brave enough to explore the wilder terrain of political paranoia, start here: "An Investigation into Red-Brown Alliances: Third Positionism, Russia, Ukraine, Syria, and the Western Left." I don't know who wrote this anonymous monograph which, at 70,000 words (!) cannot be called an "article" or a "post." Obviously, I don't share the writer's anarchist stance; moreover, I'm wary of the latter half of this essay, which devolves into damnation-by-association. Nevertheless, the first half offers a gripping history of the ways in which the far right has infiltrated and manipulated the left -- a strategy which traces back to the 19th century.

Don't be surprised to see lefties and and righties kiss and make out like teens at a drive-in. They have something in common. They both consider democracy an impediment to the realization of their utopian fantasies.

Your argument breaks down at Bernie. He is going to be the nominee and he is going to kick Trump's ass. Live with it. Neera Tanden and Third Way is the obvious split the left candidate.

I've been predicting for a while that he could win the nomination. I've also predicted that he will lose all 50 states, including Vermont, for reasons I've given in an earlier post. There are tapes of him appearing at anti-American rallies. You'll see those tapes when the time is right.
Reading along, I thought, “time for Lenora Fulani to appear in this narrative.” And, lo, there she was. Her message in 1988 to lefties was: Don’t Vote! Pure poison.

Your allusion to Tad Devine does not do the man justice. Since Carter’s re-election, he worked for every losing Dem candidate. He took time off to work in Ukraine, for Yanukovich. Then Bernie in 2016. Now for Yang.

I’d be interested in your thoughts on Tad, Joseph.


wow, brilliant, Joseph, just brilliant! your post clarifies exactly what I've observed over the years. thank you!
In case you missed Rachel Maddow on Friday, she offered up a brief recap of How the NY Times did so much to damage Hilary and to protect Trump.

A link to coverage of this at kos:

@Joseph— Thanks for the abundant links in this post. A lot of interesting and useful to know history. Keep up the good work.
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