A World in Which Truth is a Dying Species by GAITHER STEWART

29 October 2012 — Counterpunch

Hidden away somewhere within the labyrinth of the Pentagon there must be a top secret euphemism department engaged in the invention of the Orwellian surrogate words that have crept surreptitiously into the American English vocabulary and from there translated into many other languages. In my mind I see a unit of studiously serious executives, coffee mugs in their hands and their neckties awry, devising senseless terms for terrible things and used unthinkingly by people today from New York to California, from Maine to Texas. The goal of my imaginary secret unit is to render ugly terms meaningless or to transform them into their opposite. To quote the perceptive Scottish writer, Candia McWilliam, “plain words are always under threat.” There are words that don’t say what they mean and there are words that say what they don’t mean. Continue reading

The Greek affair: Symbol of the crisis of the European Union or paradigm of Europe’s salvation By Gaither Stewart

23 May 2012

It is an ironic twist of history that Greece, the cradle of Western culture, today, 2500 years after the acme of Hellenic glory, appears on the stage of history in the best of cases as victim, and in the worst, as the symbol of the threat to the collapse of the West European society.
Continue reading

Insurrection and Invisible Powers By Gaither Stewart

20 October 2011 — Greanville Post

Italy, like Spain, is a peninsula, but she might as well be an island given the barriers separating her from the rest of the European mass and the Mediterranean cradle itself. This, and her long history, broken by frequent invasions from diverse cultures, has fostered the coalescing of an extraordinary idiosyncrasy rich in mysteries and contradictions. Now we may be seeing the rise of a political culture that imitates the United States, and a new form of proletarianism, the “Precariat”. Continue reading

When the revolution comes By Gaither Stewart

2 August, 2011 — Greanville Post

The Historical Gastonia Textile Mill Strikes Are Not Forgotten

Olive-Dargan.jpg

Olive Dargan

(Rome) When in the early part of this millennium I was writing a rather surrealistic novel, ASHEVILLE, about the town in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Western North Carolina where I started out my life, I ran into the story of the Asheville-based self-professed Communist writer, Olive Tilford Dargan, of whom I had never heard before. Visiting then her gravesite in the little known Green Hills Cemetery in West Asheville and researching her and her activities I fell into a gossamer review of early 19th century labor struggles in the good old U.S. South.

Here I want to share this bit of labor history—its passion, its shortcomings and failures, to shed some light on what might be the future. But first some words by and about Dargan. Back during one of the fervid witch hunts of native Communists, she wrote this in a novel:

Continue reading

European Spring: The Gradual demise of Capitalism By Gaither Stewart

19 June 2011 — Greanville Times

Rome: It’s an accumulative kind of thing, the demise of capitalism worldwide: at first the waning and the dwindling, now the rapid corkscrew-like downwards spiraling, of greedy, vicious, cannibalistic capitalism busily devouring itself. Today, one can only conclude the imminence of its just demise.

Continue reading

BALKAN ENIGMA AND NATO’S CHAINS OF PROGRESS By Gaither Stewart

3 May 2011 — Greanville Post

(ROME-BELGRADE) NATO seems to find Serbia’s autonomy outrageous, its semi-neutrality unacceptable, its modernity anomalous and above all its path to progress dangerous. For North Atlantic Treaty planners and schemers, Serbia—maverick, outsider, rebel—is an infectious disease to be eradicated. Serbia must be chained, normalized and integrated with the rest of Europe as are most southeastern European lands. Serbia’s neutral existence is an affront, an obstacle to a final solution of the thorny Balkan conundrum.

Continue reading

EUROPEAN AIRS: UNITY OF THE LEFT – CHIMERA OR REALITY? By Gaither Stewart

(Rome-Paris) — Four parties and movements of the quarrelsome and divided Italian Left have allied for the European parliamentary elections next June. That is good news. Communist Refoundation, Party of Italian Communists, Socialism 2000, and United Consumers have agreed to unify their meagre forces in order to surpass the 4% electoral barrier so that Communists, with their red flag with the hammer and sickle emblem, can again sit in the Assembly of the European Union.

For many years now such unity on the Italian Left has been painfully absent, its former voters, bewildered and confused, wandering from center-left to right, in an electoral diaspora. Running separately in national elections in 2006, the two parties using the name Communist garnered a total of 10% of the vote. In comparison to today’s numbers those were the good old days. For during the breakdown of Left unity, proletarians in the Rome periphery even voted for the neo-fascist National Alliance and workers in north Italy cast their votes for the rightwing Northern League. Communists now hope to win back their traditional Left vote that once—though today almost a political relic—counted one-third of the nation’s electorate.

Continue reading

ROME DIARY: MARCH 2009 UPDATE—FASCIST TIMES IN THE LAND WHERE LEMON TREES BLOOM By Gaither Stewart

“TOTTERING STEPS ALONG THE RIM OF FASCISM AND REVOLUTION”

(Rome) ISTAT, Italy’s Statistical Office, has announced that for the first time the nation’s population has passed 60,000,000. The disconcerting reality behind the statistic is that while Italy ages and Italians produce less children, immigration is providing the growth of the nation that until a few decades ago was an emigration country and Italian workers spread over north Europe. Today, as usual, immigrants do what Italians don’t. Over 1,000,000 Romanians are in Italy today, followed closely by Albanians and Moroccans. immigrants make front page news. Usually negative news. Not a day passes that foreigners (until the crisis immigrants were the manpower necessary for Italian industry), are not accused of nefarious crimes.
Continue reading

BEAT THE DEAD HORSE Or PUTIN’S REVENGE By Gaither Stewart

(Rome) The old adage according to which time is the great equalizer holds sway in a special way in contemporary totalitarian America. Unlike the old-horse-beaten-until-it-drops-dead knows it is being beaten, our people are beaten in such a horrendously clinical manner that they do not even realize they are being beaten. Though aware of their mortality, gently beaten human beings however have come to resemble the whipped horse in that they do not seem to realize they are dying from the blows. The problem is there is little or no public opinion. And that collective memory is dead.

A second old horse adage that you can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink no longer applies to Americans. We drink and drink and drink without even looking up at our tormentors. Without an iota of curiosity even as to who they are and what they are doing to us.

Continue reading