Re: [OPE-L] It takes two to tango

From: Gerald_A_Levy@MSN.COM
Date: Wed May 18 2005 - 08:25:41 EDT

> [Quick response to your second e-mail: I *did* send your original
> comments on the Marxism List, below my replies to them.


I have forwarded your message to OPE-L as you requested -- even
though it was in reply to and included a _private_ message that I sent
you.  I will cc this message as well to OPE-L. You raise many issues in
your message and I only have the time now to selectively reply to some
points.  Already I can hear the refrain:  you are playing 'hide and seek'.
Believe what you want to believe.

[A response to what you write above:  You sent your 2 replies to my
post (which included my post) but not my two brief replies to your 2
posts (both of which, as I told you previously,  were posted on
aut-op-sy first and then OPE-L and Globolist).

> Indeed, it is a
> far more valid assumption, since it has about 20 times more members than
> OPE-L, and  unlike OPE-L, anyone can subscribe there to respond.]

It wasn't a valid assumption for someone who wants to follow the debate
with John because OPE-L is where it has been happening lately.

> "As for responding to the argument in your post, that seemed to me to be
> in order since you identified there what your "main beef" with John was.">
> The answer to that one is simple -  I was not writing a piece titled,
> "My main beef with Holloway", which would have been random and out of
> nowhere. I wrote in *response* to his piece, which did not broach the
> subject of the USSR or social democracy in any specific way.

Sorry, this won't fly as an excuse.  When you stated what your "main beef"
with Holloway was that superceded anything else that you wrote on that
same topic.  Your "main beef" was not about John personally (an unrelated
topic) but _directly_ related to your understanding of his perspective.

Of course, you could have said that it was a mistake when you wrote
what your "main beef" was (or there could be other legitimate excuses: e.g.
that you were stoned), but you didn't.

> There was
> no space to simply tack on what I happened to dislike about Holloway in
> my piece, since I'd already dedicated ten pages to responding to what he
> actually said in the Z piece.

If something is your "main beef"  then you _find_ space and adjust course

>Worse than this, however, is the simple fact
> that by grasping onto this one list-serv sentence, you carve out an
> excuse for yourself to ignore my *actual* critique.

As you made clear in this very message to me, that was part of your
*actual* critique.  What you did in your essay was *hide* part of
your actual critique from readers.

> You have almost nothing to say on Venezuela here,

Read it again.  I have also written quite a lot about Venezuela (some
might say, too much!) on OPE-L.

> Therefore your dismissal of the New Deal, for instance, appears very
> silly, as if one becomes more revolutionary by holding one's nose and
> declaring it "liberal". It certainly represented a concrete advance
> compared to the past.

You must not remember that I wrote the following:
"didn't some liberals like FDR make some 'concrete improvements
in people's lives'?"

> Frankly I think that one would have to be totally blind to take the
> Holloway position very seriously at this point.

We would have to be totally blind to believe that you are seriously
attempting to engage John in debate.   How else are we to interpret your
insulting claims about how John (and I) have played "hide and seek"?
When John said that he would respond to your article, did you think
that it meant that day ... that week ... that month?   Do you think that
if you snap your fingers he should dance to your tune? Do you think you
have a right to be answered by him any earlier than any of the others
who have published comments and critiques on his book?  You
certainly _act_ like he owes you something more than he owes his
other critics.

In solidarity, Jerry

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