March 28, 2005

The Intellectual Lumpenproletariat

The Intellectual Lumpenproletariat

Another day, another horrid freebee publication to castigate. Or so it has seemed these past few days.

Avid readers of “The Hatemonger’s Quarterly” will undoubtedly recall that our last two posts have been devoted to the dissection of a couple of rebarbative rags: The Village Idiot and The Richmond Offender. As far as we’re concerned, they both ought to be called The Village Idiot.

This weekend, dear reader, we, the crack young staff of “The Hatemogner’s Quarterly,” received yet another putrid magazine in the staff mailbox. A correspondent from our Chicago (IL) office recently sent us a copy of a low-budget journal entitled Lumpen.

The cover of the most recent issue of Lumpen sports a picture of John Kerry’s head on a plaque. A small caption in the top right-hand corner of the magazine reads: “Look who’s hanging out at Dick Cheney’s Hunting Lodge. It shouldn’t be a surprise.”

This immediately made us think that Lumpen was either a horrendously titled hunting magazine or a horrendously titled far-left rag. And a quick perusal of Lumpen made it crystal clear that the journal isn’t devoted to venery.

Flipping through Lumpen, for instance, one of our junior editors—let’s just call him “Chip”—saw a sentence that caught his eye. In an interview with Lumpen, one Charlie Cray, who is described as a “veteran corporate crime activist,” exclaimed: “You want to talk about security, let’s talk about real security. Give people a living wage, give people health care.”

Ah, yes: Government entitlement programs are real security. Never mind that whole “saving your life” kind of security. That’s so transient.

Anyway, “Chip” was particularly interested in an article in the latest number of Lumpen penned by Meredith Kolodner. Ms. Kolodner, a contributor to that cheery publication International Socialist Review, offers her reader(s) “Rebuilding the Anti-War Movement.”

Naturally, given her serious commitment to revitalizing the Democratic Party, Ms. Kolodner proves capable of a dispassionate examination of its current situation. She writes:

Two camps of explanation have emerged from the debris: one says that Kerry’s loss shows just how conservative the church-going American heartland is, while the other argues that, even though they advocated a vote for him, Kerry’s pro-war, pro-corporate, pro-NAFTA, pro-Patriot Act record alienated the “base” of the Demoratic Party. The result, the second camp says, is that this Democratic Leadership Council controlled campaign resulted in mediocre turnout among young voters and people of color, as opposed to the enthusiastic rush to the polls of bigoted evangelical Christians.

We know what you are thinking: Gee, we wonder which camp Ms. Kolodner belongs to. It’s tough to say, isn’t it? After all, her analysis is so fair-minded.

“Chip” particularly savored the “bigoted evangelical Christians” bit. Ms. Kolodner is clearly a woman who cares deeply about The People. Even those disgraceful racists who disagree with her and don’t deserve to live.

But that’s not our favorite sentence. In fact, the following easily tops it: “The occupation [of Iraq] itself—that is making the country unsafe, unjust, and undemocratic.”

Now let’s get this straight. The occupation of Iraq is making Iraq “undemocratic”?

Hmmm. We suppose that Ms. Kolodner believes that Saddam Hussein’s Iraq was a beacon of democratic governance. After all, he did receive one hundred percent of the popular vote.

Not even Al Gore fared that well in America.

Posted at March 28, 2005 12:01 AM | TrackBack