Monday 1 September 2008

A Moment in the Heraclitean Flux. . .

Barack Obama,   as seen through the eyes of this philosopher. . .   I emailed Tony this morning,  just a bit about what is was like to be in the pressroom when Obama entered.  He has asked me to post it here,  and on the forum,  just for the common interest,  so here goes.  It is excerpted from an email to Karl L Le Marcs:

"Obama Press Conference:  Hectic,  packed and brief.  I had to stand to the side,  with the cameramen.  Thrilling,  eerie,  and uncanny,  when he entered from the other side,  and to see the dark eyes roaming sullenly and arrogantly over the press corps,  yet twinkling now and again as his soft gaze would light on you.  The very air in the room tingled with his electric charismatic presence.  I had to leave Tony's book [ITLAD] with Security,  and one of the guards, looking at my press pass,  which hung round my neck,  snapped at me,  "Why are you giving Senator Obama a book with this title?  It's a jinx,  and bad luck, he'll get shot at . . . "  and as I walked away,  I looked back,  and saw them looking down at the book on the table , then back at me .  Most unnerving.  "

I did tell Tony  also that during the start of the  convention , 4 men were arrested in Denver,  and taken into FBI custody;   police confiscated  rifles and a rifle-telescopic lens attachment.  One of the men stated that  the four were in Denver with the idea of finding a high vantage point from which to shoot Obama at the outdoor speech at Invesco and Mile High,  so there must have been some real worry and a certain paranoia there,  at the least.   


Anonymous said...

Susan Marie: I can see why the guard thought it was an ironic title. We all fear for Obama - he is such a challenge to the right wing and history shows how America treats its radicl thinkers.

Good for you though, trying to publicise ITLAD at the highest level.

SM Kovalinsky said...

Well, believe it or not, I do see a connection between the ascent of Barack Obama, and Tony and Karl with their theories ascending in tandem. This sounds ridiculous unless you understand the historical lens through which I am viewing it all, and the philosophical perspective. Of course Obama is a Christian, but he is a Nietzschean in the sense that he believes in a transvaluation, or revaluation of values. He is a sort of throwback to classical liberalism, which has been lost in the postmodernism of America as of late. There would be something quite fitting to my thinking, about an Obama administration in America, and Tony, and Karl, finding their place within the new American scene. The US has been poised, on the brink, as it were, for some time, within academia, and involving the conflict between science and spirituality. Obama is far more than his political surface would make him appear. I have studied him since 2004, and he is a most unusual man, and not any simple politician. His stance about change is far more than rhetoric. He comes from the generation poised just between the Boomer and the Thirteenth, which Tony and Karl, respectively, are members of ( in the British analogue to our own). The Hegelian theory of the dialectical process of history has made a comeback in the writings of the American scholar team, Howe and Strauss. In short, people sometimes think that my statements are fanatical, until they actually read me, and hear me present my rationale within the framework of philosophical discourse and knowledge of the saeculum of history. Then they begin to admit that I am making a great deal of sense.

Karl Le Marcs said...

Susan Marie: Yes, thank you for sending me your email a few days ago regarding the sensations and atmosphere that surround Barack Obama (I won't use the initials)
*scrunches up nose*

I am sure you will witness something similar to this feeling of 'charismatic presence' when you meet Tony and I next month, although I am far more likely to dilute the electricity by tripping over a pouffe that has escaped previous mention (or suchlike)

As I replied to you, and as I have discussed over many an ale with AP, IF ITLAD is going to make any impact in the US it simply MUST have a title change, ideally to the more evocative "Cheating The Ferryman", for publication in the United States, for "Is There Life After Death?" may be a somewhat misleading title for the book here in the UK, but in the US such would be literature and academic suicide.

Tony: Did Arcturus ever get back to you re our chat after the SOL regarding this, and I recall you mentioning another publisher that was interested in a US paperback publication, has anything come from that?

Robin said...

Susan, thank you for your post. Those must have been amazing and surreal days in Denver!

I echo Di's fear for Barack and our fragile country. There's no doubt the level of anxiety among those whose job it is to protect Obama, must be very high.

My own level of anxiety has driven me to distraction. Living in the center of Oklahoma during these tumultuous times is also surreal. I'm lucky to work with many progressive minded people but outside of the hospital there is constant reminder of the religious right. I feel a daemonic guidance to be an agent of change in the heart of the bible belt!

Once we begin to balance spirituality and science in our country, people will become more open and accepting of ideas from ITLAD and all it has spawned.

"we will begin the next great chapter in the American story"... Barack Obama

Karl Le Marcs said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Karl Le Marcs said...

Robin: "Once we begin to balance spirituality and science in our country, people will become more open and accepting of ideas from ITLAD and all it has spawned."

Beautifully put, and I'm sure that Tony and Susan Marie will agree as much as I do.

Building this bridge between the two is the purpose and AP and I have the tool belts and the shiny hard hats!
(or somesuch bridge builder analogy)

SM Kovalinsky said...

Robin: I love the Obama quote, and I so appreciate that a fellow American can view things as I do. I hope that the fates will be on America's side, and let Barack take his rightful place on the stage of history. I know well the fear of the religious right, and their rampant bigotry: Although I am very close to New York City, I am also bordering Morris and Hunterdon counties in New Jersey, and there is a strong religious right presence here as well, and the GOP rules. I can imagine your stress in Oklahoma, especially after what occurred with Mc Veigh and the various factions which make up your region. I do not think anyone from the UK can begin to understand the forces at work over here, which we as middle class Americans must interact with on a daily basis. Denver was utterly beautiful and thrilling, but now we need a victory in November. Thank you as always for your lovely comments, and your thoughts, which so echo my own.

Karl Le Marcs said...

Susan Marie: "I do not think anyone from the UK can begin to understand the forces at work over here."

I'd like to put myself forward as an example of someone from the UK who can understand.

Remember what I wrote you on this very subject many many months ago at the start of the Primaries?

I see a pattern!
And we all know what Marx said about History.

SM Kovalinsky said...

Yes; you are quite right, and obviously you and Tony and Di and many others do understand. I guess you are just lucky not to BE here with me, and Robin, and Barack at this moment. Poor Robin! Oklahoma is one of the worst, in terms of neo-facist movements. I do know Marx on history; and although many say he has been shown to be in error, I do believe his Early Writings - surely his best - are again relevant. And we must not forget Hegel. Just pray for Barack's safety; I do fear his campaigning next month in the south. Of course if all goes well, and he takes office, this in itself will clear the way for you and Tony, I do believe. As you and Robin well know. America would be honored by you and Tony, perhaps not consciously, yet well honored.

Karl Le Marcs said...

Susan Marie: Thank You indeed; the path to November will be an interesting one no doubt.

I have in mind a Marxian/Hegelian/Feuerbachian post along these lines for your own blogsite which I feel may benefit an American audience, so I may well write and publsh such on your site towards the end of next week.

SM Kovalinsky said...

That would be wonderful, and I am sure with WPU students now reading my blog, and some professors with them, it would be good timing into the bargain. You are one of the best writers I have encountered; so as you have full rights on my blog, go to. Martin has just done a lovely essay on Eminem and growing up with Durkheim's anomie, which will be incorporated into a WPU sociology of violence in American Culture this semester: Your own work, in many areas, may do the same ( still plan to meet with Erik Steinhart)--and of course I want you and T to lecture over here, WHEN AND ONLY WHEN BARACK IS IN.

Karl Le Marcs said...

Susan Marie: I'll see what I can get finished next week when I return. Thank You.