mid-morning 02.11.17

Kid’s feeling well enough to watch Blue’s Clues while I listen to Bert Jansch and dig through some more news.

It’s cool to see the War Nerd is reading Ismail Kadare. The Siege isn’t a Kadare I’ve read.

Fresh eruption from Mount Sinabung in Sumatra yesterday.

Yemen Withdraws Permission for U.S. Antiterror Ground Missions. “Huge success.”

Steve Bannon Cited Italian Thinker Who Inspired Fascists. Julius Evola. Bill pointed this one out to me yesterday. He was all over René Guénon back in 2004 and I didn’t know what the fuck Bill was on about. Bill’s chortling in amusement that the bizarre turn of events that has brought Evola to such surprising prominence. It’s too bad The Young Pope isn’t more about Pius XIII ranting about Evola instead of his trauma of being an orphan. (I still like it. It’s more fun than Westworld.)

Federal agents conduct immigration enforcement raids in at least six states. There were anecdotes on Twitter last night of ICE agents snatching up mothers from a HEB grocery in Austin, from a women’s shelter in Los Angeles, and following school buses to grab parents picking up their kids. It doesn’t look like ICE is targeting allegedly dangerous felons. I don’t give a damn about the legal status of these people. What seems to be happening is fucking immoral and inhumane. The newspapers are even reporting that the actual legal status of who ICE is grabbing up doesn’t matter. If people cannot produce papers immediately, they are detained.

This incident is chilling. It’s uncorroborated, but I believe her. Check the rest of her time. It’s absolutely illegal.

Explosions, gunfire, low-flying helicopters rattle Bywater residents early Friday. Jade Helm redux. NOPD says it’s the U.S. Army.

?”The training involves the use of training simulations and helicopters. This is done at night to simulate environments our troops may encounter in operations overseas,” said a statement from the NOPD.

Yeah. “Overseas.”

I read of this project, but never heard it! A guy I friended through Louisiana DSA organizing (which I’ve slacked terribly on this week, missing the inaugural meeting) Superior Viaduct is re-issuing this on vinyl.

  1. (Nino []

Kadare on Kadare

From the Guardian:

There is no such thing as a political writer when it comes to literature, according to Albanian author and winner of the Man Booker International prize, Ismail Kadare.

“I am of the opinion that I am not a political writer, and, moreover,  that as far as true literature is concerned, there actually are no political writers,” Kadare said in an interview with Swiss press on Saturday. “I think that my writing is no more political than ancient Greek theatre. I would have become the writer I am in any political regime.”

The novelist and poet Kadare defected from Enver Hoxha’s Maoist regime in Albania in 1990, seeking asylum in France. The author of novels including The General of the Dead Army, The Palace of Dreams and Albanian Spring, Kadare won the inaugural Man Booker International prize in 2005, prompting a storm of criticism from some anti-communist writers, who took issue with his privileged status under Hoxha. Although some of his works were banned, others, particularly The Great Winter, praised the leader and the country’s split from the Soviets in 1961.

His international success as a writer, Kadare told NZZ, was a double-edged sword. “On the one hand it secured protection for me in relation to the regime, on the other hand I was constantly under observation,” he said. “What excited suspicion was ‘why does the western bourgeoisie hold a writer from a Stalinist country in high esteem?'”

This led to him being admitted to the Communist party in order, he said, to show the world, and Albania, that he was not a “bourgeois”, but a communist. “What should I do? Say no? That would have equaled destruction, a senseless victim. They would at some point have found a reason to condemn me as a French agent,” he said.

Kadare’s The Siege: the “not really a dissident” meme still underway

This review of Ismail Kadare’s The Siege is more compelling than the last one that i read, which brought up that bullshit issue of whether Kadare was a dissident writer or not. Because of that, i didn’t even bother to link it. Kadare’s novels are not all favorites of mine (especially the ones set in relatively contemporary times,) but that “dissident” game still raises my hackles. This review brings up something about “cosy patriotism,” which makes me wince. I dunno…. obviously I’ll read it for myself to figure out what’s going on, but that seems doubtful.

In another review from back in May, a reviewer references Bellos’ afterword, which puts the story being told by the book into historical context. The “cozy patriotism” that the Indepdent review doesn’t seem quite so apt of a description.

Another article makes up for this, naming a handful of other Albanian authors.1

  1. Yep. Going to attempt to track down more information on all of these guys, but i’m on my way to a job interview. []