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MARX: A HERO FOR OUR TIME? — Suddenly, everyone from the Wall Street Journal to Rolling Stone seems to be talking about Karl Marx. Louis Proyect delves into this mysterious resurgence, giving a vivid assessment of Marx’s relevance in the era of globalized capitalism. THE MEANING OF MANDELA: Longtime civil rights organizer Kevin Alexander Gray gives in intimate portrait of Nelson Mandela and the global struggle of racial justice. FALLOUT OVER FUKUSHIMA: Peter Lee investigates the scandalous exposure of sailors on board the USS Reagan to radioactive fallout from Fukushima. SOUTHERN DISCOMFORT: Kim Nicolini charts the rise of Matthew McConaughey. PLUS: Mike Whitney on the coming crash of the housing market. JoAnn Wypijewski on slavery, torture and revolt. Chris Floyd on the stupidity of US policy in Ukraine. Kristin Kolb on musicians and health care. And Jeffrey St. Clair on life and death on the mean streets of an America in decline
Help Me, Help Meeee!

Anything Can Happen

by MISSY BEATTIE

Eleven years ago, Christine O’Donnell, now Delaware’s Republican US Senate hopeful, admitted to Bill Maher that she “dabbled into witchcraft.”

Yes, it’s weird. But so what? Here’s Frank Sinatra’s take on the subject.

O’Donnell blames her voodoo excursion on youthful excess. I can identify. With the youthful excess part. Most of us reach maturity having maneuvered through many judgement lapses. Dabbling in something. O’Donnell had a picnic on a satanic altar. Satan wasn’t invited to any of my peccadilloes, although they were devil-may-care events and could be placed in one of two columns: Wow, That Was Fun or I Shouldn’t Have Done That. Thankfully, there were no disasters–not even among those that took place on an altar of love.

I’ve written about my little superstition. You know, making a wish as I toss a penny skyward. World peace. Justice for 9/11 victims. Medicare for all. An end to poverty. It’s not that I actually believe the penny throw will yield anything other than a new location for the coin. I’m just admitting to something that’s kind of craftily witchy in an abracadabra positive thinking sort of way.

With this said, I pronounce Christine O’Donnell a reactionary flake. Not for the sorcery experience, years ago, but for her current ideology and choices, the loony thoughts that form in her mind and emerge from her mouth.

She opposes abortion EVEN for victims of rape and incest.

She believes that masturbation is adultery.

She allegedly used $20,000 in campaign funds to pay personal expenses, like rent.

And O’Donnell said this: “American scientific companies are crossbreeding humans and animals and coming up with mice with fully functioning human brains.”

I’d like to know more about these “scientific companies” and Frankenmice “with fully functioning human brains.” We’re aware of genetically modified salmon. But where are humans and animals being hybridized? Check out this scene from The Fly for a look at crossbreeding of a human and an insect. And ask yourself if Christine O’Donnell has a fully-functioning brain.

We are inflicted with a plethora of Tea Party candidates whose agendas are extreme. They and their opinions are wildly, rock-star popular among a vocal and motivated group. Right now, Christine O’Donnell is trailing in the polls, but anything can happen–especially when e-voting machines are used. Plus, some voters will decide in favor of the pretty politician.

So, let’s sprint to the chase. I’m wondering when the Democrats, who are scared styoooopid by the success of these troglodytes, will assume a similar retro position. O’Donnell and the Tea-ers demand that women have wombs with a view–of and scrutinized by a peeping Tom government. Despite the rhetoric of the Democrats and the tactics of their emails–I received one on September 21 from Gen. Wesley Clark, telling me that “everything you and I care about is on the line”–the truth is in my path, there for me to stumble over. The party of “hope” and “change” has done nothing for progressives. The Democrats dance to neoconservatism with as much vigor as the Republicans do, to preserve their positions of power. For the Huge Corporations they represent, themselves, their jobs, and their cushy retirements. Without principle. Without any consideration for what they’re inflicting on us and on the world.

MISSY BEATTIE lives in Baltimore, Maryland, but she’s considering other locations. Reach her at missybeat@gmail.com.