Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Greens and communists

So Frogblog is cheering like a groupie at the visit by Angela Davis, which appears to be funded by the New Zealand taxpayer. Maia is one of the biggest cheerleaders for her as well.
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What is she about? Well Frogblog linked to Wikipedia about this woman, who has her place in history because she was charged as an accomplice to conspiracy, kidnapping and homicide. This was because a gun registered in her name was used by the brother of a man in prison to enter a courtroom and take a judge hostage in order to get his brother freed. The judge was murdered by his captors, two of the captors were killed in a police shootout. She was acquitted of all charges and pursued a life of political activism, which until recently included the US Communist Party. She stood as Vice Presidential candidate for the Communist Party in 1980 and 1984.
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Understandably, growing up in Alabama she experienced the rampant racism of the 1960s and 1970s, but she turned to communism for intellectual solace. As a student she found appeal in communism, gained her Masters in San Diego before crossing the Iron Curtain to get her Ph.D at Humboldt University of Berlin, East Berlin that is. Humboldt was a true communist university till the end. It was run by the Socialist Unity Party (east German communists "by rigorously selecting students according to their conformity to the party line, made sure that no democratic opposition could grow on its university campuses. Its Communist-selected students and scholars did not participate in the East German democratic civil rights movements of 1989 to a considerable degree"). A training ground for the bureaurats who liked the world in the Orwellian oppressive superstate of the GDR.
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In fact, her view of dissidents to these suffocating police states is noted in Wikipedia:
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"Russian dissident and Nobel Laureate Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn criticized Davis' sympathy for the Soviet Union in a speech he delivered to the AFL-CIO on July 9, 1975 in New York City, claiming hypocrisy in her attitude toward prisoners under Communist governments. According to Solzhenitsyn, a group of Czech dissidents “addressed an appeal to her: `Comrade Davis, you were in prison. You know how unpleasant it is to sit in prison, especially when you consider yourself innocent. You have such great authority now. Could you help our Czech prisoners? Could you stand up for those people in Czechoslovakia who are being persecuted by the state?' Angela Davis answered: 'They deserve what they get. Let them remain in prison.'
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Bitch!
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How despicable to be so callous towards those wanting the freedoms she took for granted in the USA. Indeed, the fact she campaigned for the Communist Party indicates clearly she didn't believe in political or individual freedom, she believed in communist revolution that would entrench a single party, with one truth, one source for media and imprisoning anyone who disagreed.
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The main reason the Greens are excited about her is because she supports the abolition of prisons. All those rapists really should have their freedom shouldn't they?
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Now to be fair Davis left the Communist Party USA because it supported the failed August putsch against Gorbachev and also supported the Warsaw Pact (funny, because she did too for so long), and founded the Committees_of_Correspondence_for_Democracy_and_Socialism. Nevertheless, she still holds up Cuba as a great example of democracy and socialism working together (no doubt forgetting those Cubans in prisons for their political activities and the complete lack of freedom for Cubans to set up private organisations without state approval).
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However, if Davis has repudiated her sympathy towards the USSR and its former satellites, then good. However, she should be held to account for her past sycophancy and lack of compassion to the victims of the communist nightmare. What sickens me is FrogBlog's complete evasion of the truth. It said:
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-"A woman who faced capital charges in the USA three times for her work for justice" Or being an accessory to kidnapping and murder, how about that? Or is it ok to demand the freedom of some men by kidnapping and shooting a judge at point blank range?
- "but also her warm humanity that really shone through". Maybe she has it now, but she shows little towards Cuban political dissidents or indeed showed none at all to Czech dissidents. Maybe she'd like to visit Prague and apologise, given that the Czechs have freedom no thanks to her.
- "She spoke of the enormous international solidarity of progressive people that has been demonstrated at times". Progressive meaning - people who want to replace one form of statism with another. It's a code word for socialist.
- "She also pointed out that women are the fastest growing section of the prison population". Couldn't be because they are committing more crimes could it? No! It's the capitalist industrial complex oppressing them.
- "Prisons, she said, are a dumping ground for people, as a means of control and maintenance of economic domination and conceptually, as a way of disposing of the unacceptable face of capitalist society" Or a place to put a lot of dangerous people who kill, rape, assault and defraud others. Not saying there is room for removing those who commit victimless crimes, but to say that violent offenders are the "unacceptable face of capitalist society" is actually true. They are unacceptable, and why not?
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Now I am not saying that she is wrong about many points, such as the role of prisons in not rehabilitating, and the uselessness of a single minded approach to law and order, but there is a point for prisons as preventive detention. To keep bad people from committing more offences. Angela Davis has some useful points to make, but she is no angel - her past support for murderous totalitarian regimes is despicable, and I am disappointed nobody seems to have asked her what her views are of that time now. I am certain Keith Locke regrets his cheering on of the Khmer Rouge in 1975 and the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, you think the Greens might have learnt, or is it ok to have friends who believed in dictatorships?
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UPDATE: This website has a fuller quote from Solzhenitsyn's book. He noted "Although she didn't have too difficult a time in this country's jails, she came to recuperate in Soviet resorts."
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You're either stupid or immoral to think the Soviet Union was a more moral system than the USA.

4 comments:

Heine said...

yes I read a rather disturbing press release on Scoop early this month gushing about her credentials, but am absolutely shocked about her treatment of the Czechs.

She is one hell of a shady figure, look at those in NZ who are looking forward to her visiting and ask yourself if you'd want to be associated with her?

Good post!

Anonymous said...

Can we call the Green communists now?



EXOCET

libertyscott said...

The left will sabre-rattle against Bush and Blair for being murderers etc etc, but then invites a woman who actively campaigned for the murderous totalitarian USSR, and defended the incarceration of political prisoners. They wont even engage on it, it speaks utter volumes of the true contempt for human rights, individual freedom and freedom of speech.

Anonymous said...

bit of an back slapping echo chamber in here isn't it?