Likud’s Fascist Roots

Published at 08:59 on 29 August 2014

I’ve long known about things like the King David Hotel bombing, which proves that the Zionist side in the Israel/Palestine conflict is itself no stranger to the use of terrorist tactics.

But until recently, I never realized how creepy the roots of the Israeli Right — which has held power in that country for basically the past quarter century — really are. It’s far worse than your garden-variety greed-based conservative movement.

The Stern Gang actually saw a natural affinity between its values and those of the German Nazis and the Italian Fascists (at least initially, before the full magnitude of the Final Solution became known), and tried to ally itself with the Axis powers circa 1940.

And Menachem Begin, the founder of the modern Likud Bloc, was the leader of a right-wing party called Herut or Tnuat Haherut, whose methods were so fascistic that in 1948 Albert Einstein, Hannah Arendt, and about two dozen other prominent Jewish intellectuals wrote a letter to the New York Times denouncing Begin and encouraging him and his movement to be shunned.

It’s pretty shocking stuff that’s detailed in the letter, and well worth a read. And it probably all helps explain why the present-day right-wing Israeli government acts like it does.

Capitalism and Climate Change

Published at 22:14 on 23 August 2014

First, capitalism unleashed the industrial era which set the stage for the unfolding catastrophe.

Second, as a system capitalism is uniquely ill-suited to addressing a problem like climate change. Reason is, its worst effects won’t happen until everyone presently alive is dead, so there is very little self interest for anyone to address the problem today. And capitalism is all about the pursuit of self-interest.

To the contrary, what self interest there is lies in denying the existence of the problem and opposing any action intended to address it, as is illustrated by the actions of the Koch Brothers and others.