Lew Rockwell & Friends: The Descent into Hell Continues

By John "Birdman" Bryant

 

This file consists of two not-exactly-laudatory essays on Lew Rockwell, founder of the eponymous lewrockwell.com, plus an exchange of correspondence over these essays between the Birdman and Gary North (who, besides Joe Sobran and Michael Levin, is Lew's only Big Name Writer), with additional letters of commentary on Rockwell from two of the Birdman's friends. Turns out that not only does Little Lew-Lew have a rully big snot-wad of problems, but Sidekick Gary -- a Lover of Jeezez who believes that adulterers should be stoned to death and that The End Is Near And Only The Remnant Will Survive -- is pretty much like all religious nuts: unsurprisingly stupid, seething with hate, and the kind of guy that would just loooove the Inquisition if it were still going on. The essays on Rockwell were first published in Birdman's Weekly Letter #135, and were additionally sent to all of Rockwell's writers. Besides the North letters, there were only two immediate responses from this latter group -- both 'removal' requests -- one from a person whose name I do not remember, and the other from 'Clean Gene' Callahan, who himself had received a drubbing from the Birdman in an earlier issue of BWL. A delayed response was obtained from Karen de Coster and Jeff Elkins, which will be posted in a separate file. As is customary, none of the correspondents found it necessary to be mannerly or rational, or to deal with the arguments raised.

J'Accuse!: Lew Rockwell Is Dishonest Where It Counts Most

Lew Rockwell is a man whom I admire in many ways. He has a webpage which -- according to him -- is getting 3 million hits per month, and one which I look at daily; he is a good organizer (he created the Mises Institute at Auburn); he founded (with Murray Rothbard) the (now-defunct) Rothbard-Rockwell Report which was an excellent magazine in many ways; he is a generally excellent writer in his areas of expertise; and in the main I agree with many if not most of his opinions. So what's the matter here?

The matter is partly personal and partly moral, but they are intertwined. The personal part is that altho I have written to Lew on several occasions, he has never responded. Yes, of course he has no obligation to respond to my letters, and yes, you could say that, if somebody doesn't return my letters, then maybe I should stop writing. And maybe if I was severely criticizing his God Murray (which I was), then maybe he had even less than no obligation. (I brought to light a number of serious Rothbardian deficiencies in my book Libertarian Dirt, tho this is by no means to say the man was all bad. I even sent Lew a copy, but -- guess what? -- no response.)

But that's not the whole story. The whole story involves two important elements: honesty and race. To explain, let me begin by stating that it is possible to be dishonest in two ways: by commission and by omission. The former is what we usually think of as dishonesty, which includes such things as stealing or telling lies. But the really important acts of dishonesty in the present day are acts of omission. For example, we know that the major media lie, but their lies are not usually in telling overt falsehoods, but rather in omitting to state important facts which would be likely to completely change the slant which they want to give to what they write. In fact, the very importance of the Net is that it has opened up the possibility of circumventing the major media by putting these omitted facts in front of the public.

J'Accuse! I accuse Lew of dishonesty -- the dishonesty of omission. Altho Lew's page is politically incorrect after a fashion, it does not by and large deal with the vital issues of race and ethnicity, and especially what is commonly called the Jewish Question. These omissions constitute the great Black Hole of lewrockwell.com -- a sort of Mad Hatter's tea party in which everything is discussed except the real subject.

J'Accuse! But I accuse Lew not merely of the failure to discuss the most important subject of the day, but of another kind of dishonesty of omission, and one for which there is no excuse, to wit, how he deals with critics. Let me explain by noting that at my website, www.thebirdman.org, which is replete with controversial essays and articles, I have had since the very beginning a policy of putting a link to any criticism of anything on my page. This is the gold standard of honesty: If anyone thinks I am wrong about anything, they will get upon request a link directly from what they are criticizing to their criticism, period. And after almost 20,000 unique visitors to my page, do you want to know how many have asked for a link? ZERO. And that's not just the gold standard of honesty, but also of correctness. If I am wrong in any of my allegations, no one has dared to say so in a serious public confrontation.

So what does this have to do with Lew? To explain, let me say that I have had some significant criticisms of Lew. One of them is an essay posted on my site in the Net Losses section, entitled "Lew Rockwell: A Man With Environ-Mental Problems". Lew won't publish it, and he won't link it. So as far as he is concerned, I'm not even so much as persona non grata -- I am a nonperson. Now I ask you -- is that honest? And I'll tell you frankly -- NO IT IS NOT.

Now maybe there is a reason why Lew is so coy about race and Jews. Maybe he's afraid that if he is honest, he will lose a chunk of those three million hits, and thus a bunch of income. Or maybe he is afraid he will get shit on like other people who have dared to criticize the Self-Chosen, such as Yours Truly. Or maybe he feels his page is -- to use the unforgettable phrase of the Watergate conspirators -- a sort of partial hangout, because people are just not ready to accept that the Self-Chosen and the other minorities are quite as far from being perfect as they in fact are. While I could understand any of these rationales, I find it hard to believe that someone who is motivated by ideals, as Lew supposedly is, would buy them. On the contrary, I think that Lew, by having a substantial number of readers, has a social responsibility to air these controversies, and that a failure to do so is an act of dishonesty by omission.

Below is another essay about Lew which I am going to put on my site. And you can be pretty sure that Lew will not link it, or even acknowledge it, much less answer it. And yet -- like the Environ-Mental essay, and like the matter of race and the Jewish Question -- it deals with a vital subject, as well as one which constitutes a criticism of Lew's opinions. Here, then, we have another act of dishonesty in the making. And yet Lew is a man who is oh-so-Christian, and who makes a big deal about morality. Which is to say that Lew has feet of clay -- feet which, in the light of present revelations, stink to high heaven.

What do you think? And while you're at it, why not tell him?

 

Lew Rockwell Is a Split-Brain Preparation

<text> Those who love freedom know -- or at least ought to know -- that the key to freedom is independence, whether at the individual level or on a global scale. Libertarians, however, who are supposedly the great freedom lovers of our age, seem often to miss this important connection. There are apparently two reasons for this. The first is that libertarians hate the State, and thus wish to see it dissolved or reduced to near impotence; and 'open borders' -- ie, the elimination of a country's independence by merging it into what is, in effect, a global superstate -- is an important step in this direction. As I have pointed out elsewhere, however, 'open borders' is an open invitation for the dissolution of the unique customs and culture of a people, to say nothing of that all-important repository of biological wisdom, their genome -- a matter which should be of some concern to libertarians, since one of the unique cultural features of the West, and especially America, is the notion of that libertarian desideratum, individual freedom.

The second reason for libertarians' overlooking of the link between independence and freedom is that, in their love affair with the free market, they have come to believe that 'commerce, commerce everywhere' is the Santa Clause of Peace in spite of the fact that 'open borders' undercuts independence by fostering commercial dependence, thereby making countries vulnerable to economic boycott. An important illustration of this point is Japan's attack on Pearl Harbor in WWII, an act which came about precisely because Roosevelt cut off Japan's access to certain important markets -- something which Roosevelt wanted as an excuse to bring America into the war. And while this might be thought of as supporting the libertarian notion, expressed by Frederic Bastiat, that 'When goods don't cross borders, armies do', the ultimate cause of war in this case was lack of Japan's commercial independence, combined with Roosevelt's war- mongering.

But the libertarian Mania for Open-Borders and Free-Trade -- libertarian MOB-FiT as it might be called -- is objectionable for yet another reason -- in this case a libertarian one, to wit, an increase in centralization. In particular, when there is a limited source for some vital product, as free trade has brought us in the present day with electronic products which are mostly made by the Great Asian Ant Colony, this means that there is a concentration of knowledge in one place, rather than a wide dispersal of such knowledge. Such centralization is dangerous not only because it subjects those dependent on it to potential economic pressure, but because the entire planet becomes more vulnerable to wipeout by Space Aliens or other interested parties -- not something to be taken lightly in view of the statistical certainty of highly developed interstellar civilizations and the very real evidence for ETs on earth.

The occasion for the above remarks is an essay by Lew Rockwell entitled "Bastiat Was Right" (lewrockwell.com, 13 April 2001). The title reference is to the beliefs of 19th century MOB-FiTer Frederic Bastiat, whom Rockwell amply quotes in his superficially-plausible paean for free trade. In particular, Rockwell cites Bastiat's observation that mutual economic dependence makes countries less likely to engage in warfare because free trade, which supposedly enriches everyone, gives the free-traders an important stake in preserving peace. But this theory ignores the fact that rich or large countries, which are likely to have a great deal of economic independence, are a threat to smaller countries who are not; and thus the argument of Bastiat may be reversed to say that free trade is actually an  engine of war by fostering greater dependence of the smaller countries, a tiny fact which Bastiat -- and Rockwell -- fail to consider.

Another point which Rockwell makes in his essay is that war encourages the growth of government -- surely a bad thing, and a point in which Rockwell is right. But this then means that the important thing is to limit the growth of government, not to institute free trade, whose effect on government size is at best not to encourage it. And there are, indeed, ways to prevent the growth of government -- matters which I have discussed at length in my book Handbook of the Coming American Revolution, but which are too complicated to discuss here. But the major point to be made is that Rockwell forgets that the major preventative of war is strength: Weakness invites attack, while strength makes others think twice. Accordingly, we may surmise that Rockwell is just succumbing to the State- hate of the loony libertarians who think that disabling the government will bring peace, to say nothing of the loony leftists who love government, but who think that pulling down one's pants and turning the other cheeks is the formula for not getting screwed.

But it would be wrong to suggest that Rockwell does not understand the basic idea which we have put forward here, to wit, that independence fosters freedom. Rockwell perfectly well understands this in the case of the South, for which he constantly beats the drum of independence on his website. But unfortunately, Rockwell is unable to see that the logic of independence applies globally, and that what is good for the South is also good for every other place on the globe. Because of this logical lacuna we can only conclude that Rockwell's illogic has made him of two minds: a Southern partisan on the one hand, and a MOB-FiTer on the other. For this reason we can only conclude that Rockwell's thinking process is like that of a man who has had the connections cut between the right and left lobes of his brain, thereby producing what brain physiologists recognize as two independent minds. The formal name for this is split-brain preparation, tho in Rockwell's case perhaps a better term is just schizophrenic.

Which should be something that anyone with half a brain can see.

 

FROM GARY NORTH #1

Dear Bird:

Most people you to whom you sent your SPAM will not respond. They will read what you have to say and conclude, "Birdman, indeed. Crazy as a loon." Nobody wants to be the newspaper in a bird's cage. They don't want to be targeted in your next screed.

Nutcases send out unrequited personal screeds in order to provoke a response because nobody listens to them otherwise. They want to be sure they count for something, even if it's only annoyance value.

Note: Any serious writer would not name his Web site thebirdman.org. It calls up images of Burt Lancaster in Alcatraz. And that birdman was a fraud, too.

The reason why Lew ignores you is that your are eminently worth ignoring. I'm responding only because I like to provoke knew-jerk reactions in jerks. You will respond. Guys like you cannot help but respond. You may play the strong, silent type for a while, like a man who has had a box of ExLax for lunch, but then you will respond.

I'll wait. I'm patient. You will respond.

 

[Birdman resonds:]

Of course I respond, Gary. I believe it is a moral duty to respond to critics, and also a moral duty to call attention to immorality, such as Lew has perpetrated. You. on the other hand, seem to think you have a moral duty to give the finger to people who make legitimate criticism, which I would take as seguing perfectly with the ideas of your Christian fellowship, which include stoning adulterers and worshiping a cloud of celestial gas.

I have made a few comments on your screed, interspersed with your text and set off by asterisks *******

> Dear Bird: > > Most people you to whom you sent your SPAM will not respond.

***** Gee, Gary, you sound so much like a feminist. They have sex, then yell rape if they don't like it. You invite email by publishing your address, then yell 'spam' if you don't like it. Surprising how much authoritarian minds have in common.

They will > read what you have to say and conclude, "Birdman, indeed. Crazy as a loon."

****** That's not the reaction I get from my website (except from notoriously liberal Mensans, and even then the majority seem to at least be interested in hearing my say) -- I have published all my hate mail on my site, and there is very little, tho I have had MANY positive letters.

> Nobody wants to be the newspaper in a bird's cage. They don't want to be > targeted in your next screed.

****** Like I tell the liberals, Gary: There is nothing the matter with hate, provided it is directed against hateful things. And hey, anyone can criticize me, and I will even link it. That's the gold standard of honesty, remember? But then I guess that doesn't appeal to you, does it? As for being a 'newspaper', anyone can criticize me just like I do them. It's open forum -- free speech on the Net. The only difference between me and others is, when I criticize someone, it's for a good reason. If somebody wants to criticize ME for a good reason, they will have a hell of a time finding one. You, for example.

>

> Nutcases send out unrequited personal screeds in order to provoke a > response because nobody listens to them otherwise.

***** Gee, Gary, you sure do sound like a liberal -- always insulting. (Insult is the last refuge of the out-argued, Gary.) Well, my page is not as big as Lew's, but I have a decent chunk of loyal readers. And if I may be so bold as to say so, in my humble opinion my own page is a LOT BETTER than lewrockwell.com. If it is not as popular, it may be because I direct my page to a more sophisticated audience. I do link articles on your page, but mine is more interesting because (among other things) I am willing to tackle subjects that Lew won't touch -- Jews and sex, for example.

They want to be sure > they count for something, even if it's only annoyance value.

***** Hey, Gary, if I have made Who's Who in the World, and earned the praise of Nobel laureates, I don't need to prove anything. You, on the other hand, are perfectly free to prove your stupidity by making such remarks, just like you proved The End Is Near for Y2K -- YUK, YUK, YUK! Tell me, Gary, have you come in from the boonies, yet? You sure haven't gotten out of the rain!

>

> Note: Any serious writer would not name his Web site thebirdman.org. It > calls up images of Burt Lancaster in Alcatraz. And that birdman was a > fraud, too.

***** O, what a Brilliant Remark! >

> The reason why Lew ignores you is that your are eminently worth > ignoring. I'm responding only because I like to provoke knew-jerk reactions > in jerks.

***** Ah, the venom of a Sincere And Loving Christian! Or is it just a Remnant of Detritus?

You will respond. Guys like you cannot help but respond. You > may play the strong, silent type for a while, like a man who has had a box > of ExLax for lunch, but then you will respond. > > I'll wait. I'm patient. You will respond.

****** The question, Gary my boy, is, Will YOU respond to ME? Because this letter and my response will go to all your friends at Little Lew-Lew's site.

Have a REAL NICE DAY, Gary. > > > > >

 

FROM GARY #2

Your ExLax sure did work fast! And in the name of morality, too!

What visitors to your Web site think of you is surely their problem. It is not mine, nor is it that of visitors to Lew's site.

Be content with your eddy in the libertarian pond. Let others do their work in peace.

 

[Birdman responds:]

Dear Gary:

I see you chose not to try to counter any of my remarks. Smart move -- at least you know when you've had yer ass whupped.

My comments on your most recent are set off by asterisks. *****

> Your ExLax sure did work fast! And in the name of morality, too! >

****** If you prefer crude analogies, that's your problem. But look who got shit all over himself -- YOU!

> What visitors to your Web site think of you is surely their problem.

***** It's no problem at all for them. But it IS a problem for you, because it shows that there are at least a few people in this world with truly open minds and hightened intellectual sensitivities, unlike the faux- libertarians who idolize your site.

It is > not mine, nor is it that of visitors to Lew's site. > > Be content with your eddy in the libertarian pond. Let others do their work > in peace.

****** To quote Patrick Henry: "Gentlemen may cry, 'Peace! Peace!' but there is no peace! The war has actually begun!" Not that you or Little Lew-Lew would ever know it. > > > > >

 

FROM GARY #3

Wannabe's don't like successful.

You hate Rockwell for a reason. Envy.

 

[Birdman responds:]

My comments follow your letter and are market with *****.

> Wannabe's don't like successful. > > You hate Rockwell for a reason. Envy. > >

***** I assume that you mean 'Wannabes don't like THE successful'. (Does this mean you are so angry it has affected your coherence?) As for whether I am a 'wannabe', that is a matter of judgment. But if you read my original essay about Lew, I made plain the several ways in which I admired him. If admiration is 'envy' in your vocabulary, I'd say you were perverting the language. As to 'hating Lew', there are things about him that I hate and things (specified in my letter) which I like. I try always to be careful to specify the good things about a person before I criticize them, so that no one thinks I am trying to demonize them, and that's what I did with Lew. (In fact, in the Weekly Letter in which I criticized YOU, I did exactly the same thing.) But you are entirely different -- you try to demonize me, and not only that, but do it in the ugliest and most hateful terms, which I suppose are pretty much standard operating procedure for Those Who Love Jeezez.

In conclusion, just let me say that I never expected to receive a letter from you like the one you sent. I thought you had some maturity, common sense and a commitment to morality. But you have really ended up fouling yourself in this correspondence. I will be posting it on my website, as well as mailing it to the writers at lewrockwell.com, and I think they will be quite as surprised as I. So if you want to rub some more of that good old ExLax product on yourself by sending me more letters, then you just go right ahead.

[There was no response. However, Gary did write an article shortly afterward which has some familiar phrasing, but reflects a surprising (or perhaps not-so-surprising) reversal of what his first letter to me expressed.]

 

The following are two letters which I received in response to the BWL about Lew:

[From michael humphrey:]

J'ai le mÍme regard de M. Rockwell.

3 years ago, at the time when I had finally woken up to the Holocaust fraud, I sent Rockwell a letter protesting articles in RRR which were repeating this nonsense. I was respectful and not offensive - it had taken me a good long time to understand this issue, and although I was not a full-time writer like Rockwell, whom one would have the right to expect to be well-informed of the facts of this issue, I was going to give him the benefit of the doubt. I noted the importance of the issue and that as a writer he could not in good conscience propagate bad information (that is, lies). I gave him some references, asked him to make a study of the issue, and requested that he reply after he had done so.

There has been no response.

For what it's worth, when I wrote Rockwell 3 years ago, I also wrote Michael Levin, for his was one of the articles that I was objecting to. Dr. Levin had the grace to write back.

Of course, while he thought it was terrible that Germany was imprisoning Holocaust researchers, he could not agree that the Holocaust story was untrue, for we have a free press, and why had not the contrary facts come out in the newspapers?

A quite amazing response, considering the treatment his book on race has gotten from the press.

I fully understand that Rockwell must be very busy and that he has no obligation to respond to mail. But he certainly does have an obligation to tell the truth, and this he is not doing. On the Holocaust, on the Jew question, and on race issues he will not make any comment or indicate any recognition that there is a problem. If somebody as mild as Joe Sobran writes something that may make a few Jews squirm, you will not see at it lewrockwell.com.

And he publishes authors who are pushing the standard politically correct lies on these subjects. For example, 2 or 3 months ago there was an article by Ralph Raico repeating the Holocaust lie.

Recently, there have been some comments at lewrockwell.com on the U.S.S Liberty massacre. Well, at least he mentioned it, but, as usual, he makes no connection to any larger issue.

If Rockwell is hiding the truth on this issue, it means that you can not trust anything that he writes.

I used to hold Rockwell in high esteem, but no longer.

As one grows older, one's circle of heroes grows smaller and smaller.

- mh

 

[The next letter is from Alex Linder of Vanguard News Network (www.VanguardNewsNetwork.com)]

Good points. I have gone back and forth with some of these writers at LRC and WND, but nothing comes of it. They mouth the words, but the spirit of freedom is not in them. We at VNN link to them all; none of them will link to us. Their palpable fear of criticizing Jews renders them ludicrous. A.

 

 

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