Letters from our readers

18 February 2012

On “Obama, Democrats hail deal to slash unemployment benefits


“There is also the very real possibility that the employment statistics were manipulated to obtain a result that could be presented as positive in advance of a deal to slash extended unemployment benefits.”

Thank you—as I was reading the article, and noting how certain elements of the unemployment insurance duration would be dependent on official unemployment rates, I had to think of the recent reports that new jobless claims are “down” and the contortions the newscasters have to go through to sell the contradictory numbers from the most recent labor reports as being signs of a recovery.

There has been little mention of the discouraged workers, and no mention of people who have plain run out of time despite no jobs having magically materialized to support them. Rather, the lower claims are touted as good news without question.

Christie S
Washington, USA
16 February 2012

 

On “Tens of thousands in Germany protest against ACTA’s attack on the Internet

Even without knowing the content of ACTA, PIPA and SOPA, the mere fact that these measures have been negotiated in secret, let alone discussed with the population, condemns them as untrustworthy and suspicious. For example, the ACTA protocol was signed last year with the New Zealand and Australian governments, without the wider population being aware of it; no coverage on TV, papers or the radio. We can therefore assume, with great amount of certainty, that they are designed to harm the common people, whilst privileging the elite interests. But the most dangerous is the opening of Pandora’s box of repression and censorship internationally. In other words, there is nothing stopping any government simply amending the existing legislation to “modernize” it!

A case in point is the admission by the Polish premier, Donald Tusk, that instructions were given to the Ambassador to sign it, sight unseen, simply because other countries have done so. Now the Government is in full retreat under pressure from persistent protests. Can we ever trust a government? It’s a rhetorical question: ha ha ha!

Mirek
Australia
16 February 2012

On “US, Israel invoke terror to ratchet up war threats against Iran

It would not surprise me if the bombing incidents in Georgia and Thailand did turn out in some way to be the work of Mossad. Both the US and Mossad have a history of so-called false flag operations in which bombings or assassinations are staged in a way that victimizes the US or Israel but are actually carried out by US or Israeli agents. The 1993 plot to blow up the World Trade Centers involved the FBI, who actually supplied some bomb parts to the FBI informant who had been entrusted by plotters to build the bomb. There have been rumours that the 1994 bombing of a synagogue in Buenos Aires may have been the work of Israeli agents. Similarly the bombing of the USS Liberty in the eastern Mediterranean by Israeli airforce jets in 1967 was intended to put the blame on Egypt in order to draw the US into a war against the Arab country.

The apparently incompetent nature of the bombing plot in Thailand that includes the use of apparent Iranian passports does suggest that the planners intend to implicate Iran in the plot. The fact that for years Mossad has been known to steal passports for the purpose of making fake passports based on them suggests there may have been Mossad involvement.

I know circumstantial evidence is not proof, but no other spy agency seems to rely so much on the use of fake passports as Mossad does and one wonders why Mossad continues to use fake passports when this knowledge is not at all secret.

Jennifer H
17 February 2012

On “Letters on A Dangerous Method

Unlike Freud’s psychology, which had a physical and sexual basis, Jung’s was based on myth and irrationality. Though not, I believe, an anti-Semite or Nazi, Jung was led by his approach to colluding with the Nazis and being impressed by them in the few years immediately after Hitler’s accession to power. The racialist volkisch philosophy of the Nazis fit nicely with the Jungian notion of the collective unconscious. Further information can be found in The Jung Cult: Origins of a Charismatic Movement by Richard Noll (Princeton University Press: 1994) and in a short essay by Mark Medweth, “Jung and the Nazis.”

Marty J
Cambridge, Massachusetts
15 February 2012

* * *

I am more than a little bugged by the presumption of some of your readers that you would change your opinion if you found time for reading Dr. Jung. I had read a lot of Jung from his first “discovery” announcing in the name of the Zurich Group of levels of consciousness deeper than Freud’s repressed memory/desire, a “collective unconscious” in which Freud’s “complexes” became “the return of the gods” as archetypes, and “oceanic feelings” of the kind Dr. Freud abhorred, abound. By the way, Jung was not shy about the racial origin of those spirits scientifically elevated to almost independent entities in our minds driving us hither and thither till some benevolent spirit, say Christ, “the hero of the unconscious”, pulls a magic mandala about us and we thrive.

It’s tripping, man, very sixties. You will find it in all of Hesse before and after his affiliation to Jung, but “Demian” written at the time of his analysis with Dr. Jung is a good example of Jung’s attraction. Hesse came out against German patriotism in 1916 and was roundly abused, threatened and driven from Germany with a wife driven insane by the hysteria. No wonder he needed to chill and fill his last hours with the spirits of his romantic imagination.

Of course, it persists to our day. Hesse and exactly the Jung books some readers recommended, were on every hippie’s shelf, literally, in my own youth. I am compelled to teach a man I loathed while he was alive, Robertson Davis and his damned “Fifth Business” with its lesson of the richness of the inner world and its eccentric obsessions over a socially engaged life. Yuk.

By contrast, Dr. Freud inspired the Surrealists who rallied to Trotsky and had the poet H.D. (Hilda Doolittle) as one of his last patients. Her account of her analysis is worth a read, but even more so her wondrous use of mythology as Dr. Freud understood it in her long poem “Trilogy” written during and about the Second World War.

AL

Toronto, Canada
16 February 2012

On “Albert Nobbs: A model of repression

I have been waiting to read comments like those in David Walsh’s review of this film. Bourgeois feminism has actually hidden the ways in which women have really been repressed throughout history, and the now overused neutral term “gender” has done damage to a real understanding of equality between the sexes, not to mention our ability to relate humanely to one another. Equality is not about everyone being the same, it’s about men and women having an equal right to fulfill their human potential, while recognizing that they are different.

Kamilla V
British Columbia, Canada
15 February 2012

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