How did Cohn-Bendit end up in the Greens?

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Jacques Roux's picture
Jacques Roux
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Jun 26 2005 12:00
How did Cohn-Bendit end up in the Greens?

I never knew this until i saw him on the news a couple of nights ago talking in the EU parliament eek Shit! Has he ever discussed publicly how his politics changed or anything? Just out of curisoty really.

gawkrodger
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Jun 26 2005 13:09

what about those dodgy stories he wrote in the 70s?

revol68's picture
revol68
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Jun 26 2005 13:13

dodgy stories? continue please, do they involve kinky sex antics at the height of May 68.

gawkrodger
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Jun 26 2005 19:32

no, dodgy stories involving young girls eek

there was some internal enquiry (i think) within either the european parliament or the green party over it about 5 years ago

Lazy Riser's picture
Lazy Riser
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Jun 26 2005 20:26

Hi All

He's been in the Greens since at least 1989, I think.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Daniel_Cohn-Bendit

I don't know if he really sees much incompatibility between his current and prior positions. The Green party suck in a lot of ex anarcho-types and come over like a bunch of closet Proudhonists when it suits them.

http://policy.greenparty.org.uk/mfss/grncncil.html

http://policy.greenparty.org.uk/mfss/economy.html

As for him being a rightist, that's a shakey accusation. He's for free markets, but then so are a lot of anarchists, I'd be interested to see what others on these boards think. Any other Castoriadis fans out there?

http://robotron.informatik.hu-berlin.de/koubek/netze/handapparat/anarchy/secI4.html

Tracing a line of thought from Castoriadis to Brinton/Pallis to neurology brings the opportunity to answer the question put by this thread, how did Cohn-Bendit end up in the Greens?

Perhaps as you get older, neurological changes just make you more conservative. Maybe it’s got something to do with the feelings of anxiety or insecurity identified as mid-life crises. Please enjoy this link, and related reports. Hope no-one minds me posting them…

http://www.nyu.edu/gsas/dept/politics/undergrad/research/amass_thesis.pdf

http://opinion.telegraph.co.uk/opinion/main.jhtml?xml=/opinion/2004/01/02/do0202.xml

http://www.berkeley.edu/news/media/releases/2003/07/22_politics.shtml

http://www.guardian.co.uk/international/story/0,3604,1017505,00.html

Peace + love etc

Chris

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revol68
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Jun 26 2005 20:30

or it could be typical carrerism masquarading as "realism".

and im sorry but danny was a rabid communist and so his support for free markets is deeply at odds with his anarcho marxist ideas set forth in Obsolete Communism for example.

Anyway everyone knows that his brother did the theory shit (well mostly cut and pasted socialisme ou barbarism), i'd be interested to know what he's doing now.

kalabine
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Jun 26 2005 21:01

he's just another middle class student radical sellout, there's loads of them no surprise at all and entirely consistant with his back ground and class

Lazy Riser's picture
Lazy Riser
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Jun 26 2005 21:06

Hi revol68

I take serious issue with your position. Castoriadis founded SOB, and developed an agorist philosophy. The Cohn-Bendits drew heavily on SOB's work in "Obsolete Communism", and so it's no great turnaround for Dany to have a similar free market style outlook.

http://www.radicalphilosophy.com/print.asp?editorial_id=10264

What is your evaluation of the work of the UK Solidarity group? Are there any contemporary currents drawing on their legacy?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solidarity,_UK

Cheers

Chris

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revol68
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Jun 26 2005 21:41

hmm im not sure what to make of your post? Are you claiming that Castoriadis embraced the free market? Not something im aware of and certainly nothin that follows logically from the work of socialisme ou barbarism.

confused

lucy82
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Jun 26 2005 21:56
Quote:
Perhaps as you get older, neurological changes just make you more conservative.

Wise words indeed. Since my last birthday I have an overwhelming desire to promote traditional views and values and an overwhelming need to to oppose change, wear blue and act like a twat.

thaw
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Jun 26 2005 22:36

Typical middle-class drop out. Easily returns to his roots after rebelling for a period, like most of you lot I imagine (how to win friends and influence people).

tongue

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oisleep
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Jun 26 2005 22:37
thaw wrote:
Typical middle-class drop out. Easily returns to his roots after rebelling for a period, like most of you lot I imagine (how to win friends and influence people).

tongue

grin

gawkrodger
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Jun 27 2005 08:33

knew i wasn't imagining it

http://www.guardian.co.uk/elsewhere/journalist/story/0,,442114,00.html

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Lazy Riser
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Jun 27 2005 10:35

Hi

I appreciate that it requires an outrageous leap of faith to place Proudhon and Castoriadis in close proximity to each other in an ideological family tree. I would, however, encourage attempts at some kind synthesis to develop proposals for post-capitalist economic organisation.

I am trying to locate an English translation of Chaulieu’s (AKA Castoriadis) “Workers’ Councils and the Economics of a Self-Managed Society”. If you could point me to where I might be able to read a copy then I will be forever in your debt.

In Brinton’s “For Workers’ Power”, his preface to the aforementioned work contains the following passage…

“But the text deals with much more: with the essential changes a socialist society would have to introduce in the very structure of work, with how a genuine consumer “market” might function, with problems of agriculture, with political representation of those who do not work in large enterprises, and with the meaning of politics in a society based on Workers’ Councils”

I would appreciate your thoughts on what Brinton meant by a “genuine consumer 'market'”.

revol68, given your worldly genius, especially in comparison to my shallow idiocy, you’re bound to have read Schweickart's “After Capitalism”. I’m sure others here would join me in asking you to lend us your insight as to whether this work’s libertarian market socialism owes anything to Castoriadis, and what implications that might have for the kind of open market economics that are currently flavour of the month on the European Green Left.

Cheers

Chris

butchersapron
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Jun 27 2005 14:36

Gabriel is now part of the 'negationist' (holocaust denying) french ulta left milieu.

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Steven.
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Jun 27 2005 14:55
butchersapron wrote:
Gabriel is now part of the 'negationist' (holocaust denying) french ulta left milieu.

eek eek

Jesus roll eyes

Lazy Rizer - are you seriously arguing that you think neurological changes occur in the brain making you more right wing as you get older??? What evidence do you have for that? (The same evidence openly classist hav for saying the middle class kill working class babies perhaps? wink)

He was just an opportunist careerist...

Vaneigemappreci...
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Jun 27 2005 15:02

i seem to remember reading that he was one of the more centrist elements in the 1968 uprisings in paris, in relation to rene vient, reisel etc al, so whats the surprise with him being in the german greens?

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Lazy Riser
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Jun 27 2005 17:48

Hi John.

John. wrote:
Lazy Rizer - are you seriously arguing that you think neurological changes occur in the brain making you more right wing as you get older??? What evidence do you have for that?

Well I'm prepared to entertain the notion. Some approximate evidence is at the bottom of the original post.

Is it OK to talk about it? I hope I’m not being dodgy, I apologise if I’ve done something offensive.

I know you’re being funny about the Openly Classist thing, you know that I agree with you about the baby killing stuff, right?

Cheers

Chris

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Steven.
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Jun 27 2005 18:20
Lazy Riser wrote:
Hi John.
John. wrote:
Lazy Rizer - are you seriously arguing that you think neurological changes occur in the brain making you more right wing as you get older??? What evidence do you have for that?

Well I'm prepared to entertain the notion. Some approximate evidence is at the bottom of the original post.

I really don't think you can call any of that evidence (although I didn't read the PDF one cos I'm at work) of neurological changes occurring in the brain making you more right wing as you get older. Basically because none of it is evidence of that, especially wrt Cohn-Bendit, who is not old (ref: the telegraph piece).

Quote:
Is it OK to talk about it? I hope I’m not being dodgy, I apologise if I’ve done something offensive.

I know you’re being funny about the Openly Classist thing, you know that I agree with you about the baby killing stuff, right?

Oh right but you have said a few times on here that you think they're really interesting, with a good analysis, etc., even though their intellectual rigour the power of logic extends to them deducing the following

> "middle class" researchers discover poorer kids are more likely to die from cot death

leads to the conclusion

> middle class kill working class babies

They are morons of the first order.

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Lazy Riser
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Jun 27 2005 18:57

Hi John.

I think you're being a bit harsh with me. All I really meant to say was that "The Enemy is Middle Class", the old Andy Anderson pamphlet, was controversial and interesting.

I accept your critiscms of Openly Classist as a group, and in particular the bits of crap that you seem to enjoy rubbing my nose in.

I hope that settles it. I sense hostility John., would you like me to leave the forum or modify the way I post, I'm happy to comply with any request you might wish to make of me.

I think the PDF backs the suggestion I've made. Unlike Brinton, I'm not a neurologist, so you've every right to be suspicious of what is really an investigative proposal rather than a statement of strongly held oppinion.

Not everyone gets more reactionary as they get older, but maybe aging effects different people in different ways. I don't think it's too controversial to suggest that psychological changes are attributed to neurological effects, either in brain chemistry or physical structure.

But if you're asking me to unequivocally stand by the position, then I'm simply not qualified to do that.

Cheers

Chris

Mike Harman
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Jun 27 2005 19:36
Lazy Riser wrote:

I accept your critiscms of Openly Classist as a group, and in particular the bits of crap that you seem to enjoy rubbing my nose in.

I hope that settles it. I sense hostility John., would you like me to leave the forum or modify the way I post, I'm happy to comply with any request you might wish to make of me.

Chris

Chris, I'm pretty sure all John wants you to do is back up your assertions, fair enough on a discussion forum. I personally enjoy your contributions, even though I disagree with a fair bit of just about all of them.

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Jun 27 2005 20:08

Hi

Thanks for those kind words Catch, you really are an excellent person.

Are there any organisations that you know of currently building on the theoretical legacy left by the UK Solidarity group?

Best regards

Chris

Mike Harman
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Jun 27 2005 20:15

I know the AF includes people who were in Solidarity/Subversion at one point or another (cf. the AF-North site), not sure how much the AF as an organisation identifies with Solidarity - other people could answer that much better than me.

I've only discovered the Solidarity Group quite recently - within the last 6 months-year, so can't help much tbh.

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Lazy Riser
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Jun 27 2005 21:03

Hi Catch

I've quoted this from the IWCA gig thread, hope that's OK...

Catch wrote:
I think the presence of "market" in inverted commas, suggests that the best way to meet consumer demand/need/desire is through a non-market economy - one where decisions about production are made by consumers as well as producers. It may be an anticipation of the argument that "workers control" excludes consumers from the decision making process by denying them the atomised decision making mechanism of the market.

A characteristically reasonable response. The only way I could possibly contend with that interpretation would be to piss about with semantics for the sake of it. I think I know what you mean, and I agree.

My point, and it’s an experimental position that I’d appreciate your input on, is that the kind of consumer/producer democracy you describe constitutes a libertarian socialist market, similar to the one described in, say, Schweickart's “After Capitalism”, and, at face value, not a million miles away from the Green Left. Although, I suspect that in practice most Greens don’t really have a rigorous economic analysis along the lines we’re discussing here.

The reason for making this point is not to promote the Greens, or apologise for Cohn-Bendit or whatever, but to explore libertarian socialist style positions in relation to their reformist counterparts. It may expose problems with the theories, or serve to validate their utility.

How do you see banks and money transforming across the revolution?, assuming we don’t immediately move to a Cornucopian Socialist Society within days of self management starting. Don’t feel you have to answer if you don’t really care, but I’d be interested to know what you think.

Cheers

Chris

Mike Harman
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Jun 27 2005 22:12

I've just put up this assessment of the Green Party which was done a couple of months ago, but still needs a bit of work, may as well make it available now since this discussion is going on:

http://www.libcom.org/thought/ideas/greenparty/

I haven't read "after capitalism" - I think any revolutionary movement should aim to eliminate exchange and commodity production from society as soon as possible, and I think currency, rather than money/exchange per se would likely become worthless during a revolutionary situation due to hyper-inflation and other measures which make it worthless compared to actual goods. Obviously you'd see barter and other forms of trade coming up, but the aim would be to prevent these more informal networks becoming re-formalised and allowing new powerful individuals and groups to arise.

I think most people in Green parties are well intentioned, and in the UK the Green Party is more democratic than any of the Trotskyist parties I'm aware of, I was a member when I was 15/16. However, it's a party that's located firmly within capitalism, and the contradictions are there for all to see - that it's impossible to have a sustainable, ecological society under capitalism.

If you haven't checked it out, I'd highly recommend taking a look at Bookchin's writing on social ecology and libertarian municipalism - he was one of the first people to argue for an ecology movement, and I think he may have set up the US green party iirc, his municipalisation of the economy you might like.

redyred
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Jun 27 2005 22:42

I heard he was a bit like Beckham.

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Lazy Riser
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Jun 28 2005 13:18

Hi Catch

That’s a perfectly sensible left anarchist position you’ve got there, and I wouldn’t dream if contending with it. There are alternative views that I’d be able to encourage alongside yours, such as democratic banks providing investment funds for self managed enterprises and, dare I say it, a universal citizens’ income.

In the event of a quarrel between camps on the matter, I would support your economic autonomy overall other considerations. I think we’re on very friendly ground here, and I wish you all success and offer you my support in developing your ideas.

Lots of love

Chris

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Jacques Roux
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Jun 28 2005 16:02
Vaneigemappreciationclub wrote:
i seem to remember reading that he was one of the more centrist elements in the 1968 uprisings in paris, in relation to rene vient, reisel etc al, so whats the surprise with him being in the german greens?

I know that the situ's hated him, but from reading Obselete Communism I just wondered how those ideas fitted in with green party etc. But as someone said if his bro did the theory in that book i guess it makes sense. Shame DBC got the credit.

John. wrote:

Lazy Rizer - are you seriously arguing that you think neurological changes occur in the brain making you more right wing as you get older???

I mean i can believe that to an extent, but obviously its over simplified here. I dont think it can be argued that one by default becomes more conservative as one gets older, but depending on your life experiences, your ideas affect how your body etc. develops over time and they could affect each other.

thaw
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Jun 28 2005 20:24

Well, he was never my hero (although before my time, I could still see what he was). Neither were Solidarnosc (sorry to bring that old chestnut up again). I think that demonstrates my superior political analysis, so you may as well give up now revol.

x

Although there are the board alpha males and then there is revol..

kalabine
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Jun 28 2005 20:59

thaw, are you mad?

thaw
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Jun 28 2005 21:01

Not entirely, only on Tuesdays.