Yes, these are dire political times. Many who optimistically hoped for real change have spent nearly five years under the cold downpour of political reality. Here at CounterPunch we’ve always aimed to tell it like it is, without illusions or despair. That’s why so many of you have found a refuge at CounterPunch and made us your homepage. You tell us that you love CounterPunch because the quality of the writing you find here in the original articles we offer every day and because we never flinch under fire. We appreciate the support and are prepared for the fierce battles to come.
Unlike other outfits, we don’t hit you up for money every month … or even every quarter. We ask only once a year. But when we ask, we mean it.
CounterPunch’s website is supported almost entirely by subscribers to the print edition of our magazine. We aren’t on the receiving end of six-figure grants from big foundations. George Soros doesn’t have us on retainer. We don’t sell tickets on cruise liners. We don’t clog our site with deceptive corporate ads.
The continued existence of CounterPunch depends solely on the support and dedication of our readers. We know there are a lot of you. We get thousands of emails from you every day. Our website receives millions of hits and nearly 100,000 readers each day. And we don’t charge you a dime.
Please, use our brand new secure shopping cart to make a tax-deductible donation to CounterPunch today or purchase a subscription our monthly magazine and a gift sub for someone or one of our explosive books, including the ground-breaking Killing Trayvons. Show a little affection for subversion: consider an automated monthly donation. (We accept checks, credit cards, PayPal and cold-hard cash….)
To contribute by phone you can call Becky or Deva toll free at: 1-800-840-3683
Thank you for your support,
Jeffrey, Joshua, Becky, Deva, and Nathaniel
CounterPunch PO Box 228, Petrolia, CA 95558
Dr. Alterman, I Presume
There he goes again. Chomsky, Cockburn and Vidal. They’re the axis of evil of the Left, so says The Nation columnist and Stanford University PhD candidate in history Eric Alterman.
Writing in the current issue of The Nation (Dec. 9, 2002), Alterman says, “If Alexander Cockburn, Noam Chomsky or Gore Vidal has ever had anything balanced or nuanced to say about America’s role in the world, I’ve missed it. … Perhaps their reflexive anti-Western views represent majority opinion among the 2.7 percent of voters who pulled the lever for Ralph Nader. I don’t know. But they enjoy no discernible resonance in policy debates or electoral contests.”
How does Alterman define balanced? Is it the oh-so courageous columnist who gives the U.S. government a free pass on running roughshod around the world but shows his liberal bona fides by going out on the proverbial political limb and pooh-poohing the Republicans’ plot to stack the Supreme Court with anti-choice justices?
Despite the absurdity of his prose, I do get some pleasure from reading Alterman’s Nation columns. It’s the same kind of pleasure I get from watching that moment in one of those teenybopper coming-of-age flicks when the female antagonist stomps in bratty disgust when her friends go turncoat by allying with the underdog ugly duckling who the assembled 16-year-olds finally recognize for the beauty of her mind and wit. I hear Alterman’s feet stomping in almost all of his columns and it’s typically in a rage against someone of the Left who’s left the reservation.
Alterman’s copy often reads like someone with an inferiority complex. He just can’t stomach his lack of star standing on the Left after all his years of ascending the liberal establishment’s ladder. That’s why he’s pursuing a PhD in history at Stanford. When he finally is handed that diploma, no one will be allowed to disrespect the newly minted doctor because he will be capable of waving his quackish wand to banish them “so deep into the anonymous masses” for crossing the line of acceptable Leftist discourse.
Despite his comment to the contrary, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Alterman jump on the reformed liberal Gore’s bandwagon for the 2004 presidential race. Indeed, just try to feel Alterman’s unrequited love for Vidal’s cousin when you read this passage from his Oct. 21, 2002 column in The Nation:
“Personally, I never really liked Gore, and he’s not my choice for 2004. But he sure galvanized Tom Daschle and other Democrats to face up to a frightening juggernaut for war they would have preferred to duck for the sake of re-election. Naderites take note. It was not “smart” in the Washington sense. It was not strategic. But damn it, it was brave. The victim of a stolen presidency demonstrated why democracy matters. The more media chicken hawks sink their tiny beaks into his ass, the more–just this once–I admire his courage.”