Never meet your heroes they say. Is this why?

Jeffrey St. Clair (YouTube screengrab)

Jeffrey St. Clair (YouTube screengrab)

*edit, March 28, 2018:

=== =
I came across this brouhaha the other day as I was surfing the net and doing other things. I might have noticed it before but had not looked at it closely. I had just finished reading too much about Newsbud’s, and Barbara McKenzie’s, attack on Vanessa Beeley and Eva Bartlett. I’m reading way too much these days about the progressive community’s self-destruction as leftie attacks leftie. On a positive note, I feel a little less singled out when people like Jeffrey St. Clair or Off Guardian’s Vaska (“Off Guardian’s Vaska attacks me for pointing out that Saker’s rules for posting include anti-homosexual ranting!”) attack me. I read Patrick Walker’s two-part report on CounterPunch’s (Jeffrey St. Clair) smear job on Caitlin Johnstone and then read Jeffrey St. Clair’s response to Patrick Walker, and by the time I had finished I had a much clear[er] idea what Jeffrey St. Clair, who insulted me once, out of the blue, is all about.

Simply, The guy has lost it. What really brings home, in Patrick’s articles, the fact that Jeffrey has lost it is this: Patrick, in correspondence with Jeffrey, explicitly stated that his report would be a two-parter, with the second part dealing with the issue which Jeffrey preferred that we all focus on. (Which should be the author’s call.) After CP’s presentation of Patrick’s part one, Jeffrey attacked it stating that Patrick failed to deal with the subject of Caitlin’s desire to marry the alt-right with the progressive community. I’m not clear whether St. Clair was thinking of not even presenting Walker’s part two. But it began to look bad, rightly, on Jeffrey and he posted Walker’s part two.

This phrase in Walker’s report jumped out at me: “St. Clair – like his avatar CounterPunch – has developed ultra-sophisticated snobbish mastery at warding off the barbarians at the gate. Without, however, having perfected the infinitely more difficult art of discerning who the barbarians are.” Jeffrey St. Clair strikes me as someone, unlike Caitlin Johnstone, who is unwilling to do the heavy lifting of anti-establishment push-back, but surrounds himself, mostly, with others who are willing. (Yes, that contradicts what I said in my blog post, below. But there, I was assuming Jeffrey was the great researcher that he makes a point of saying that I’m not. I had learned so much from CounterPunch by now that that was a good assumption.) Jeffrey St. Clair, it’s becoming clear, wants glory by association. And I completely agree with Walker that he’s snobbish and good at snearing. When he insulted me, I simply stopped reading him. I don’t need him, even less so than others who he attacks need him, because I have faith.

Patrick criticizes St. Clair for his failure to get on board with the serious job of working with others, credentialed and uncredentialed, to bring on the needed revolution. I see his point, but I do not share his cosmology. The entire body of self-identified progressives could disappear from cyberspace in the next second and it would not in the least impede the project of removing this evil system of things, simply because that project is shared by those progressives ‘and’ God, whom most of those progressives have no use for (in a positive sense). And God doesn’t need Jeffrey’s, or anyone’s, stamp of approval in order to continue with his work. And what progressives really need to worry about is whether they have made themselves an enemy of God.
= ===

I thought I was doing my part in pushing back against an internet that is getting dirtier by the minute when I emailed Jeffrey St. Clair to point out that a link on the CounterPunch website looks like it’s been hijacked. The email I wrote follows. I will not correct the one typo (‘read’ should have been ‘reading’):

“Hello. I’m reading around on the best alt media sites, and will be for a while, collecting articles and info on a few characters who I think progressives should take a second look at. Those individuals would be Robert Reich, Juan Cole and George Monbiot.

“I just did a search on your site and, after read the first return in the short list of returns, which happens to be an article about the origins of neoliberalism (an intensely interesting subject that I don’t think anyone has done a comprehensive examination of, for whatever reasons) and found, at the bottom of the article, a couple links to what I presume are good books. But I’m pretty sure the one link (I haven’t even got around to the second) has been hijacked. That’s the link to “A Dime’s Worth Of Difference.” –

“Thought you might like to know. Later…”

I couldn’t believe his response, which follows:

“Why would it be “hijacked,” Mister Deep Researcher, since it’s a book that we published and wrote?”

I responded with:

“The snark accompanying your nonsequiter is noted. I assume that you checked the link before you spit at me. So I have to assume that I am really, really dumb and can’t see, as in understand, what I’m looking at (which you can see here:, or my own computer has been polluted., I grant you, looks like it could be a payment handling company, but I don’t see any sign of your book on the page that your link leads me to.

“You know, Your comment was very hurtful. What did I ever do to you, besides buy your book, “Hopeless – Barack Obama And The Politics Of Illusion,” co-edited with Joshua Frank, and tell everyone about it, as well as recommend CounterPunch to everyone who I talked to about politics?”’s website tab, and a line at the bottom of the page I landed on when I clicked the CounterPunch link, says “Easy and secure casino slot bonuses | Get your free casino bonuses here.”

I meant to check on the spelling of non sequitur before I hit send, but forgot to. And I did get it wrong. Presumably Mr Nice will still know what the word means. It means something that doesn’t logically follow from something else. When St. Clair pointed out to me what I alreay knew, which was that he was the author of a book I was interested in looking at, he went on to call me Mr Deep Researcher. I’ve never bragged to him, or anyone, about how great a researcher I am and I don’t see what that has to do with anything. Pointing out that you’ve got a link on your site that doesn’t lead to the intended content has nothing to do with research. In fact, I’m highly conscious of the fact that I am a permanent amateur in the area of research.

My job – and we all have something to contribute – is to amplify the fantastic work that dedicated, skilled researchers like Jeffrey St Clair do. Or does he want me to quit my reading and blogging and watch CNN in my spare time and when I’m not working at my full time job which doesn’t pay me enough to rent a proper bachelor apartment here in Toronto. And if I can’t do that and Jeffrey did know me, Might he conclude that I have other disadvantages too? If I had the funds, I’d go crazy buying books, building a super study and paying people to teach me (research, internet, computer) skills I don’t have at present. I am very envious of people like St. Clair. Maybe I should solicit donations. St. Clair doesn’t know me and it sounds to me like he couldn’t care less if I got hit by a bus tomorrow and died. What a people’s champion!

Real people’s champions need our moral support, at a minimum. I can’t donate to everyone who has their hand out, as much as I’d like to. (I have donated to CounterPunch and other progressive organizations. The most I’ve given, though, isn’t to a progressive organization, but to help out Hassan Diab, the Canadian professor who has been a victim of abuse by both our Canadian government and the French government.) And I have endeavored to do that, not unconditionally or with the intention of never being critical where I thought it was necessary. Still…

Does this page look like it has anything to do with Mr Nice’s book, titled “A Dime’s Worth Of Difference”?:



This entry was posted in General and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Feel free to comment!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.