Le Rapist is a Socialist? Non!

When the NY Daily News headline writers have to take a break from bashing Muslims to ravage your party’s key political hope as “Le Perv” on its front page, it’s time to reassess. Dominique Strauss-Kahn is accused of, let’s just call it by its proper name, RAPING a Manhattan hotel maid in his $3,000-a-night room, thus traumatizing a woman in the middle of her workday, obliterating his political career and shaking up French politics.

First of all, if I read one more fucking quote about “Anglo-moralism” regarding the Strauss-Kahn  assaults, I’m going to smack the nearest smirking asshole to the portals of hell. He was a serial misogynist who reportedly raped a maid in a hotel, he’s not in jail for an affair. Assuming that every female subordinate he’s ever come in contact with is not a liar, Strauss-Kahn is an arrogant pig with enormous power who has gotten away with the sort of crimes that can get you 25 to life in most states.

The fact that he’s in jail and has been denied bail is most likely because his political opponents, who currently control the French government, have given the go-ahead to do him in.

Tant pis, as the French say; tough shit, is my rough translation.

Second of all, that one of the most powerful figures in international finance and politics has assaulted a journalist trying to interview him for a book, manipulated an IMF economist who was his subordinate into sleeping with him at a conference and now raped a maid trying to clean his room tells us another thing about him—and the people and institutions that have covered for him all these years. Strauss-Kahn, and by extension, the French Non-Socialist Party and IMF, all appear to have a curious hostility to working women.

None of the incidents we’ve read about so far in the press took place in social settings, but at the women’s place of work, where they were earning a living and being full human beings. Not to psycho-babbleize  Strauss-Kahn, but he’s a caveman—no offense to Neanderthals intended.

Third of all, $3,000 a night?! That’s a lot of mints on your pillow. Strauss-Khan calls himself a socialist (exceedingly small “s”) and heads an organization, the International Monetary Fund (IMF), which pretends to help the poor, but, pardon the parallel, rapes them. The exposure that he is a career misogynist tells us a fair amount about the two institutions Strauss-Kahn led until his arrest this past weekend. In brief, they suck.

From its birth, the French Socialist Party (FSP) brought to life the political concept that—again, pardon the parallel—you can’t end prostitution by bringing virgins into brothels. In other words, all attempts at changing the French capitalist system from within the framework of a party that accepts the inevitability of class society, imperialism and competition has been a colossal failure.

From its bloody defense of French power in North Africa, particularly throughout the brutal Algerian war from 1954–62 and its extensive privatization of public services to its racist attacks on immigrants for being insufficiently “French,” the FSP has proven that it is to socialism what Donald Trump is to refined discourse.

As for the IMF, ostensibly an institution made up of 182 member countries, even the New York Times admits that it is “the lapdog of the U.S. Treasury.” The Economist explained that the IMF’s purpose in providing loans was “to open doors for American business.”

Its loans to poor and downwardly mobile countries are tied to “structural adjustment programs” that require privatization, deregulation and labor “flexibility,” neocon-speak for smashing unions that exist or preventing any from organizing. As many leftists have noted, it operates as a global loan shark.

We rarely, if ever, see such a powerful man fall, and never for the rape of a Black immigrant woman. I can only assume that he’s pissed off people much higher up who decided to cut the cord.

In coming weeks we’ll see the institutions he represents and his former hangers-on scurry about to cover their asses, but for now we can take a bit of pleasure in the political, social and personal collapse of such a man. Let’s use his fall to shine a light on the organizations that have protected him all these years.

Au revoir, Monsieur Pig! FSP and IMF, j’accuse!

What do the titles: “‘That’s not art’: An analysis of modern art,” “Out on the street: The housing crisis and the movement against foreclosures” and “Will China rule the world?” have in common? They are all talks at Socialism 2011: Revolution in the Air, July 1–4, Chicago. I’ll be there, don’t even think of missing it.

42 responses to “Le Rapist is a Socialist? Non!

  1. Please do not confuse your personal feelings about Straus-Kahn with the fact that a person is presumed innocent until PROVEN guilty. You, like the media, love to rush to judgement. Straus-Kahn may be a terrible person but he is only ACCUSED. He has many enemies who would have loved to set him up. Your rant would be more appropriate against the IMF, which rapes countries in financial trouble.

  2. I have to agree w/ the above commenter….the man’s not been convicted yet, but your piece takes it for granted that he is/will be found guilty of this. Given his position/power relative to his accuser’s, it’s somewhat naive to think he will be convinced even if he deserves to be, IMHO.

    In terms of politics, he’s done for….that seems sure enough, but that will probably benefit the FN (short term?) more than anyone else on the French political scene.

    I shed no tears for him, but this situation is hardly one to gloat over either…. either for his alleged victim or France itself.

    • Three points in response:
      1) I have zero expectations that DSK will get what he deserves in the end.
      2) While my more sober writing appears in International Socialist Review, the Nation, New Left Review and other such publications, a blog is the perfect venue to engage in more flamboyant prose, which I do at times with abandon because it is free, accessible, builds an audience of those leftists hungry for a bit of entertainment with their politics and keeps me sane as I work my day job in a drab Manhattan cubicle.
      3) I am fully aware of the potential gains the FN stands to make, which is all the more reason that no political party of the left should ever minimize the crimes of a serial sexual predator, as stories in the French and Anglo press are revealing about DSK. It’s a testament to the FSP’s political failings that DSK is considered its best hope.

      • “a blog is the perfect venue to engage in more flamboyant prose, which I do at times with abandon because it is free, accessible, builds an audience of those leftists hungry for a bit of entertainment ”

        this is a rationalization for the lowest form of gutter journalism.

        i don’t know if this guy is guilty or innocent or what – and neither do any of you – but you’re willing to engage in an orgy of lurid speculation just to “entertain” so called “leftists” who might be hungry for something prurient so they can chew the fat over it at the watercooler.

        another poster referred to the

        quote

        attempted RAPE of a young French Journalist (how on earth can this be denied!)

        /quote

        (i guess if the allegations are ALL CAPS (preferably 72 point bf bodoni) it MUST be so! (how on earth can this be denied?) – lol – seriously – the “young french journalist” happened to work for a right-wing newspaper – i am sure the “leftists” here would immediately jump to the defense of a Bill Clinton (who also had sex with a bureaucratic subordinate – something he’s got in common with “DSK”) if he were to have “allegedly” RAPED a reporter @ fox news – one can easily imagine the fervent defense of Bill that would have been raised among certain quarters of putative “leftists” – especially given their semantic efforts with regard to the definitions of certain common english words. lol

        The same “lefts” who quite eagerly subscribe to the notion that the US framed Julian Assange will suddenly come out of the woodwork to support the “high tech lynching” of a guy whose departure from the IMF has already set off a great power struggle between the (nearly bankrupt) USA and the (nearly bankrupt) EU for control of this organization (IMF). funny how that works. And I find it interesting that just as the US prepares to default on its financial obligations (a “world historic” event if ever there were one) that we find this guy suddenly jailed – and the timing of his release is interesting – only *after* his resignation from the IMF is he granted bail – it looks like a cheap strong-arm tactic from out here in the “left field bleachers”.

        Rape is a horrible crime and should be punished, but it is not unreasonable to question this whole story considering the timing and the confluence of certain (economic meltdown, the capitalist struggle for markets and resources (including the resources of the IMF which, if an american is at the helm, is much more likely, perhaps, to give special terms to the USA if it looks like it might default – e.g.)

        especially interesting are articles such as this – which show there might be a possible “motive” for the US to pressure an immigrant asylum seeker to “play ball” in the “honey pot” trap of a inconvenient bureaucrat

        http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/dc1aadea-652e-11e0-b150-00144feab49a.html


        US lacks credibility on debt, says IMF

        By Chris Giles and James Politi in Washington
        Published: April 12 2011 19:15 | Last updated: April 13 2011 09:49

        The US lacks a “credible strategy” to stabilise its mounting public debt, posing a small but significant risk of a new global economic crisis, says the International Monetary Fund.

        In an unusually stern rebuke to its largest shareholder, the IMF said the US was the only advanced economy to be increasing its underlying budget deficit in 2011, at a time when its economy was growing fast enough to reduce borrowing.

        /quote

        now that “DSK” has been removed, look for the USA to impose its guy on the IMF over the objections of the EU

        the US is pushing for the candidacy of a guy named JOHN LIPSKY

        -=-=-=-=-=-=-

        Geithner: US Wants ‘Prompt Succession’ At IMF

        WASHINGTON -(Dow Jones)- U.S. Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner said John Lipsky will provide able and experienced leadership to the International Monetary Fun at a critical time for the global economy.

        In a statement Thursday, Geithner also said, “We want to see an open process that leads to a prompt succession for the fund’s new managing director.”

        -By Jeff Bater, Dow Jones Newswires; 202 862 9249; jeff.bater@dowjones.com -0-

        http://www.nasdaq.com/aspx/stock-market-news-story.aspx?storyid=201105191131dowjonesdjonline000463&title=geithnerus-wants-prompt-successionat-imf
        -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

        if you think “DSK” is bad, wait until you see Lipsky

        http://blogs.wsj.com/economics/2011/05/09/imf-official-u-s-europe-at-turning-points-must-address-debt-problems/

        he basically wants the governments of europe to be ready to pull a Mubarak on their own people if they continue to protest the forced austerity and “shared sacrifices” for the orgy of billionaires’ bailouts.

        I would also suggest a perusal of the following article, which provides a bit of perspective on another possible motive – “DSK” was apparently challenging the US corporatocracy on the most fundamental problem of the US economy – the inherent and increasing inequality and stratification of society

        ==-=-=-=-=-=-
        {snip}There are many capital-account management tools available, and it is best if countries use a portfolio of them. Even if they are not fully effective, they are typically far better than nothing.
        But an even more important change is the link that the IMF has finally drawn between inequality and instability. This crisis was largely a result of America’s effort to bolster an economy weakened by vastly increased inequality, through low interest rates and lax regulation (both of which resulted in many people borrowing far beyond their means). The consequences will take years to undo. But, as another IMF study reminds us, this is not a new pattern.
        The crisis has also put to the test long-standing dogmas that blame labour-market rigidity for unemployment, because countries with more flexible wages, like the US, have fared worse than northern European economies, including Germany.
        Indeed, as wages weaken, workers will find it even more difficult to pay back what they owe, and problems in the housing market will worsen. Consumption will remain restrained, while strong and sustainable recovery cannot be based on another debt-fuelled bubble.
        As unequal as America was before the ”great recession”, the crisis, and the way it has been managed, has led to even greater income inequality, making a recovery all the more difficult. America is setting itself up for its own version of a Japanese-style malaise.
        But there are ways out of this dilemma: strengthening collective bargaining, restructuring mortgages, using carrots and sticks to get banks to resume lending, restructuring tax and spending policies to stimulate the economy through long-term investments, and implementing social policies that ensure opportunity for all. As it is, with almost a quarter of all income and 40 per cent of US wealth going to the top 1 per cent of income earners, America is now less a “land of opportunity” than even “old” Europe.

        For progressives, these abysmal facts are part of the standard litany of frustration and justified outrage. What is new is that the IMF has joined the chorus. As Strauss-Kahn concluded in a recent speech: “Ultimately, employment and equity are building blocks of economic stability and prosperity, of political stability and peace. This goes to the heart of the IMF’s mandate. It must be placed at the heart of the policy agenda.”
        Strauss-Kahn is proving a sagacious leader. We can only hope that governments and financial markets heed his words.

        Read more: http://www.smh.com.au/business/strausskahn-puts-a-new-face-on-imf-20110510-1eh4n.html#ixzz1MqwTt1Me

  3. I’ve just read this piece on Counterpunch, and only two words come to my mind: THANK YOU! (and these comes from a french white straight male). Shame on the major french media and their macho sympathies! (the exceptions have been very rare…). Oh, and the fact that DSK is out of french politics, just like the fact that he will hopefully not act like a “rutting chimpazee” any more surely are things to gloat over!

  4. sergei nechaev

    “You, like the media, love to rush to judgement. Straus-Kahn may be a terrible person but he is only ACCUSED. He has many enemies who would have loved to set him up”

    why? – the guy’s already proven himself a world-class asshole on every level: political as well as personal . why should i give him any further benefit of the doubt? Because that’s the anglo-saxon fair-play mentality? Fuck that shit: not much fair play in gitmo. ‘Many enemies’ that “set him up”? – well he seems to have set himself up rather well. And totally oblivious to reality. That when he was busted in the first class compartment he displayed what was reported as genuine surprise and asked “what is this all about?” merely indicates that is normal behaviour for him –no doubt over hundreds and hundreds of times – and presumably others of the french power elite for whom african chambermaids [or khmer children or whatever they get off on] are evidently considered a sexual amenity provided by the sofitel management and taking them in whatever manner you choose is of as little consequence as eating an after-dinner mint. Well the tables are turning aren’t they. The first shall be last….and the rich fatties are gonna get eaten. In Athens. Ukraine. Portugal. and a thousand other locales. Worldwide. Long overdue. And if this timely media circus helps illustrate the relation of the IMF to its subject peoples then it serves our purpose.

  5. richard wilson

    French socialists are no more “socialist” than U.S. Democrats.

    The governments of Western nations consist of a duopoly, a system of two parties that are equally corrupt, but sustain the illusion of choice. In Mexico it’s the PAN and PRI parties. In France it’s the conservatives and socialists. In England it’s conservatives and the Labour Party. In Germany it’s the Christian Democratic Union and social democrats. And so on.

    Thus, replacing Sarkozy with Strauss-Kahn would be like replacing W. Bush with Obama. Both sides are equally globalist, and equally pro-war, pro-corporate, pro-bankster, and pro-elitist.

    All Western governments have one or more additional parties, which only have power via coalitions with the two main parties. When a third party, a populist party, genuinely threatens the two regnant parties (e.g. the PRD in Mexico), the two regnant parties gang up to destroy it.

    Strauss-Kahn himself was a quintessential elitist. He had an arrangement with Air France whereby he could arrive at the airport whenever he wanted and be put on the first plane, booting off any peasant that had previously paid for the seat. Nothing less that a $3,000-per-night suite was good enough for him, preferably in a place like the New York Sofitel, which specifically caters to French politicians. I can just imagine the hotel’s advertising pitch…

    “At the Sofitel, we not only protect your privacy, we offer chambermaids for your raping pleasure. All our girls are shapely but frightened immigrants from China and West Africa, and we give them no warning, thereby ensuring the maximum quality of your rape experience.”

    Workers at the Sofitel say the atmosphere there has always been tense. “They’re scared,” said one. “You never know what’s going on, who’s going to be the next crazy person that comes here.”

    One angle I find amusing is that while French politicians encourage anti-Muslim racism to distract the masses from economic realities, the heir apparent to the French presidency – a Jew — tried to rape a Black Muslim, a “terrorist.” Nice.

    I imagine the Schadenfreude in Senegal and West Africa is tangible. This attack comes on the heels of France sending troops to the Ivory Coast to arrange a coup so French corporations could continue stealing natural resources there. And let’s not forget that French bankers control their eleven former colonies in West Africa by issuing and controlling those eleven nations’ currency: the West African CFA franc. (Kadafy’s challenge to that control is one reason why France is now attacking Libya.)

    On a different note, Ms. Wolf writes, “We rarely, if ever, see such a powerful man fall, and never for the rape of a Black immigrant woman. I can only assume that he’s pissed off people much higher up who decided to cut the cord.”

    Not necessarily. Rapists tend to be serial offenders, and Strauss-Khan has a life history of attacks. He got away with this in France, but in New York he perpetrated a “seduction” too far. This is a very sick individual, a closet sociopath who everyone said (over and over for years) was clearly headed for a fall. Strauss-Khan himself predicted it, more than once.

    The European press talks about his “libido,” but Strauss-Khan is a 62-year-old Viagra junkie. Besides, everyone knows that rape is not about sex. It’s about power. And in France, “seduction” is code for rape. “Seduction” is taken from cheap fiction movies, in which a man attacks a woman, who fights him off for a minute or two, and then willingly submits. The rougher the better. It’s all perverse and pathetic. “Libido”? No. Sadism.

    It is not uncommon for ambitious sexual deviants to suddenly self-sabotage when real power is within reach. A review of Strauss-Kahn’s life would probably reveal that he committed a rape attempt or some other deviant act whenever he was on the threshold of the next step in power. He’s just been lucky until now. And if the JFK airport police had arrived ten minutes later, Strauss-Kahn would have escaped to France, like Roman Polanski, where he would have been untouchable.

    I say that Strauss-Kahn was “on the verge of real power” because at the IMF he was little more than a figurehead, despite sitting on the IMF’s executive board. The IMF has a European “boss” for symbolic purposes, but it and World Bank are both American institutions headquartered in Washington DC. The real power is Timothy Geithner, who is US Treasury Secretary, plus master of the New York Fed, plus a core insider of Goldman Sachs, plus a US rep to the IMF (his lieutenant at the IMF is executive director Meg Lundsager, a W. Bush appointee). The IMF does what Geithner says, not what Strauss-Kahn says. When Ireland asked the IMF for debt relief, some parties in the IMF said okay, but Geithner said no way. He torpedoed the deal.

    John Lipsky is the acting head of the IMF, but he is an American, and already said he plans to leave the IMF this coming August. Today Geithner ordered the IMF to look for a formal replacement for Strauss-Khan.

    Despite all the positions that Strauss-Khan has held, including French finance minister, he has never had any REAL power, but WOULD have had power if he had become president.

    I could go onto minute detail about why I doubt that Strauss-Kahn was set up, but this comment would become too long. I’ll just say that from my perspective, he did himself in, and he only stumbled because this happened in the USA. If his rape attempt had happened in France, everyone would have applauded another “seduction.” (Just as the IMF itself brutally “seduces” nations into poverty and ruin.)

    People who claim he was “set up” amuse me. On Friday they condemned Strauss-Kahn as a quintessential bankster, but started making excuses for him immediately after his downfall. They imagined that he sought a “kinder, gentler” IMF. Even if that were true (which I doubt) he had no power to bring about such a change. Such bloggers are so busy congratulating themselves for their “brilliance” that they don’t realize how silly they look.

    Strauss-Kahn just got caught, that’s all. May he rot in prison.

  6. Amusing article, and mostly correct, if a tad sideways on a couple of issues. Most importantly, he did not represent the tendency of the IMF to insist on restructuring, but instead was known prior to this incident as the one who led the effort against that. Also, mentioning that he “manipulated” an economist to sleep with him compromises her rant against him. I wish I could hear similar characterizations of Gavin Newsom’s manipulation of his secretary, but here in San Francisco, where politically correct feminists abound, a deafening silence resulted from that. While my gut tells me DSK raped that maid, my gut has been wrong before and we should not jump to conclusions just because he is an asshole. OJ and Kobe are assholes, but that does not mean they did what was claimed, just like college jocks in Louisiana who hire strippers are not necessarily rapists, as we found out.

    I suspect that Ms. Wolf represents one pole of thought on this subject, as I have encountered many like her on the left. But there are also many who will dismiss this as a setup by DSK’s enemies just because it looks like it could easily be that. The left is not immune to sexism, as many have discovered; its uniqueness is that female sexism also exists there and many are afraid to confront it because its adherents resort to polemical bullying. Ms. Wolf seems prone to warning of “smacking to the portals of hell” those who have the wrong views. War isn’t as newsworthy or personally disgusting as this hotel incident, unless you are a child on the receiving end of a bomb that blows your body in half. I make politically uncompromising criticisms of “socialists” who support war, but I know that chest thumping threats that sound like a jarhead in heat would not add to my credibility, just as someone who is most likely not of a physical stature to make good on her threat does not dignify her position by sounding like the misogynist she decries.

  7. VladimirDulud

    The ancient question Cui Prodest?—Who profits?—must arise in the investigation of an allegation whose immediate consequence, regardless of the final outcome of the case, will in all likelihood be the removal of the head of the International Monetary Fund and the destruction of the political career of a possible future president of France. Who would stand to gain from Mr. Strauss-Kahn’s transfer to an American prison? This column appeals to readers’ ignorance of due process and to the basest instincts. During the course of this entry Wolf has provided innumerable examples of prurient obsessions, which are made all the more distasteful by her uncontrolled subjective nastiness. Rape is an execrable crime and anyone who is found guilty of this offense must be held accountable. However, it is a fact, shameful and undeniable, that allegations of sexual misconduct have been used relentlessly, and not only in the United States, to destroy targeted individuals. The case of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange comes most immediately to mind.

  8. You may well be right, however, I think that even the press and media were careful to state that it was attempted rape. The other thing that does makes me wonder is the “the maid was cleaning his room, while he was naked in the bathroom”. Why was the maid in the room while the guest was still in it?!? Could be me just being picky but still……..

    As other’s have pointed out here a person is innocent until proven guilty, n’est pas? Yes, he has been doing quite a lot of this but we must look at each case separately before we condemn.

    My last point would be “who has most to gain by this?”
    Sarkozy, definitely. He is highly unpopular and knows that DSK was a favorite who was going to lead the Socialists out of the wilderness. Cutting off the head, in his view, gives him a better chance. Fortunately, the French people are much more canny that your average bear. Over 65% think that this was a put up job, that he was framed. Makes one pause for thought……….

  9. I guess raping Third World countries for Western bankers wasn’t enough. Check out how the French media and intellectuals are covering this:
    http://news.yahoo.com/s/yblog_theenvoy/20110517/ts_yblog_theenvoy/some-french-media-elite-portray-imfs-strauss-kahn-as-victim-of-rough-u-s-justice

    The folks who brought France the racist niqab ban are now saying Strauss-Kahn is the victim and his lawyers are “surprised” that the maid wasn’t quote-unquote attractive. Sounds like France could use a “slutwalk” or two…

  10. Arthur Gilroy

    YES!!!

    I just ran into this article on Counterpunch. Never read you before. A quick skim of the site tells me that you are right on the money. Keep doing it, please.

    Thank you…

    AG

  11. This is one of the more silly articles I have read on the issue. Full of hate, with no new points, and confusing the IMF with one man. Where was American outrage when Tony Hayward the chief of British petroleum spilled tons and tons of crude oil into the Gulf? Or when Goldman Sachs blithely admitted it was fleecing its customers?
    DSK’s problems are his personal problems, not that of the IMF.

    Americans are so obssesed with sex that it is the preferred way to accuse and destroy someone, and it is a gender specific weapon. What if a man accused a woman of having raped him, or made a complaint (a la Assange) that a woman had seduced him or had unprotected sex with him days after the event?

  12. sergei nechaev

    ps – just a little tidbit in today’s Telegraph reporting that in a French book published in 2008 or 09 DSK was ‘alleged’ to have sexually attacked a chambermaid in Mexico. Oddly enough the matter was never brought to the police or courts. Tip of the iceberg. This heroic Guinean woman has risked everything to stop this monster from abusing more defenceless proletarian women.

  13. nothing like the presumption of guilt. is that the new American way?

    from the WSWS.org website:

    “Neither we nor anyone else—outside the accused and the accuser (and, perhaps, other interested and unnamed parties)—know exactly what went on in Strauss-Kahn’s suite at the Sofitel Hotel in Manhattan on Sunday. Whatever information the public possesses has emerged courtesy of the New York City Police Department, the alleged victim’s lawyer, and the mass media. None of these can be considered reliable sources.
    As of yet, no one has heard Mr. Strauss-Kahn’s side of the story. Rather, he has been subjected to a calculated process of humiliation and dehumanization—such as the disgusting “perp walk”—whose obvious purpose is to convict the accused in the public’s mind even before an indictment has been handed down.
    Rape is an execrable crime and anyone who is found guilty of this offense must be held accountable. However, it is a fact, shameful and undeniable, that allegations of sexual misconduct have been used relentlessly, and not only in the United States, to destroy targeted individuals. The case of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange comes most immediately to mind.
    The fact that allegations of rape and other lesser forms of sexual misconduct have been used for political ends does not mean that Strauss-Kahn is a victim of a conspiracy. However, it would require a staggering level of credulousness to dismiss out of hand, prior to the most careful investigation, the possibility that Strauss-Kahn—a man whose decisions have far-reaching political and financial consequences—has fallen into a well-laid trap.
    The ancient question Cui Prodest?—Who profits?—must arise in the investigation of an allegation whose immediate consequence, regardless of the final outcome of the case, will in all likelihood be the removal of the head of the International Monetary Fund and the destruction of the political career of a possible future president of France. Who would stand to gain from Mr. Strauss-Kahn’s transfer to an American prison? Certainly, this is the sort of question that the great French novelist Alexander Dumas, the author of The Count of Monte Cristo, would have asked.”

    The serious questions raised by the Dominique Strauss-Kahn affair
    19 May 2011

  14. DSK is obviously an asshole. On a possibly pedantic point though, it would be more accurate to say that he is Socialist with a very big S, rather than a very small one as you said. A big S is used in proper nouns like Socialist Party, where the word can have whatever meaning the party gives it, whereas the small s is used in the word socialist where it has the meanings that ordinary discourse gives it. A socialist who belongs to a Socialist party is a socialist with both a big S and a small s, whereas a non-socialist who belongs to a nominally Socialist party is a Socialist with a big S only, and finally, a socialist who doesn’t belong to a party with the word Socialist in its name is a socialist with a small s only.

    On the history, yours is a bit too broadbrush and neglects the progressive phases in the party’s history pre-1947/8 and between 1971/2 and 1982 or so. The party came to be ashamed of aspects of its pro-colonialist policy and was completely refounded and renamed in 1969. After that it also sought an accommodation with the Communist Party, whereas previously it had followed a Cold War line. Even in its later and most neoliberal phase, the party has introduced at least one worthwhile reform, the 35-hour week – though, as I think may have been mentioned, DSK was a vociferous opponent of that measure.

    • the socialists proved they were just tools of “their” capitalists when, after all their internationalist bluster, they each voted for “their” respective national capitalists, starting with the most “advanced” of the lot – the german socialists, who had led the world and were considered the most “advanced” (“progressive” would be the common term today) of the lot.

      that’s why the “zimmerwald international” was formed and why eventually the *real* socialists broke with the “yellow” socialists of the 2nd international (whose final degeneration into the STate dept socialists of the 70s etc was forseen years ago by lenin and trotsky) – because the “socialists with the capital s” were nothing but the handmaidens of “their” various national capitalist conglomerates.

      • oops

        i was referring to the events of 1914 – when the “second international” proved its worth(lessness)

  15. stuart jackson

    Well done Sherry.Finally some sense!Excellent piece. I am dismayed by the support (or mass self denial?) for Strauss Kahn in France-. In the UK media we have been told that there is 70% support for this man (!) and that roughy 50% believe that this is all a conspiracy(!!). Get your heads out of the sand and listen to Sherry Pleeeeeeeeeeease!
    Yes we know that one is innocent until proven guilty, but by the same token you cannot say that it certainly could not have happened until we see the trial. In terms of J’accuse sentiments, lets check the facts shall we, not only does this man have a long history of being sexually aggressive to women eg, 1) his attempted RAPE of a young French Journalist (how on earth can this be denied!).2) His sexual agression being open knowledge in the political world, so much so that politico women were advised not to be alone in the same room 3)Politicians telling him to ‘control himself’ and blogs describing him of being a sexual predator censored months before this incident 4) A Madam from whom he procured prostitutes, stating that one of the prostitutes who ‘serviced’ him had refused to see him again, because he was too ‘violent’ 5)One of the defences for him said that maids there clean in brigades- NOT TRUE, check the hotel for verification. 6) The presumption that a poor working class refugee is supposed to be part of a conspiracy!! C’mon-grow up!How on earth can those claiming to blindly support this man believe in innocent before guilty & not see the contradiction when what they are saying is an inverse “the maid is guilty- for being part of a cover up”- when we haven’t even heard her side of the story!! This woman lives in an HIV charity sheltered housing with a 15 yr old daughter, and has been working as a MAID in that hotel for 3 years..Is this the profile of a ‘honeytrapper’?does she not get the benefit of the doubt too, the doubt that she is possibly NOT telling lies!..7) why did he flee the scene? and leave his phone, AND prior to boarding a plane, have lunch with his daughter(!!!) and not say anything-if he thought he had been set up?., Honestly the French people who support him are coming across as very naive and pretty ridiculous. What will you do when he is found guilty?.. Deny it as a conspiracy still? Are you still gonna be whinging about prep walks. The great privacy laws you hold so dear. let me tell you aren’t the envy of the world. Your culture, yes, your food, yes..but not a system that allows for sexual harrassment to be tolerated in the 21st century. A piece of advice to the 70 % of polled French people, do yourselves a favour, support justice for rape victims and believe that the maid also has the right to be innocent before being proved guilty and stop sitting on your high horse of HYPOCRISY – something that I thought the French despised(!). Respect yourselves and your women and drop this NON socialist fascist rapist pig as some stupid martyr. He does not deserve your sympathy. You should re-assess your conscience and think of the REAL victim here!

    • 6) The presumption that a poor working class refugee is supposed to be part of a conspiracy!!

      -=-=-=-=-

      it would hardly be difficult for the State with all of its coercive force, to intimidate a young and worried refugee with the demand to “play ball” in a honey-pot sting in order to “insure” that her status is not revoked.

      i won’t tell you to “grow up”, but i will ask you if you’re naive enough to imagine that the same government that tried to kill fidel castro over 600 times would balk at pressurizing a desperate refugee who might face death or worse if she were to suddenly find her asylum revoked.

  16. evil kneevers

    anyone who thinks that a person should be removed from their job and hung up from the nearest media frenzy is a tool. Whether he’s guilty or not. The media can destroy a person, court or not. So, who owns the media? These are the accomplices, perhaps to the set up? This could never happen, right . Except that it does. over and over. And everyone who needs a soapbox/scapegoat joins in?

    What a peculiarly vulgar and pedestrian form our fascism has taken.

  17. Ivar Rooth (2 November 1888 – 27 February 1972) was the International Monetary Fund (IMF)’s second Managing Director and Chairman of the Executive Board, serving from 1951–1956.

    In his early career he was: Solicitor for the Handelsbank (Commercial Bank) of Stockholm (1914); head of Bank’s Commercial Credit Department (1915); Assistant Manager and Solicitor of Stockholm Mortgage Bank for several years; Governor of the Central Bank of Sweden (Sveriges Riksbank, 1929–1948); Director of Bank of International Settlements (1931–1933 and 1937–1949).

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivar_Rooth

    -=-=-=-===

    “Banking with Hitler”

    =-=-=-=-

    The BIS was formed in 1930. The main actors in its establishment were the then-Governor of The Bank of England, Montagu Norman, and his German counterpart Hjalmar Schacht, later Adolf Hitler’s finance minister. The Bank was originally intended to facilitate reparation payments imposed on Germany by the Treaty of Versailles after the First World War.[4] The need for the bank was suggested in 1929 by the Young Committee, and was agreed to in August of that year at a conference at the Hague. And a charter for the bank was drafted at the International Bankers Conference at Baden Baden in November. The charter was adopted at a second Hague Conference on January 20, 1930.
    During the period 1933–45, the board of directors of the BIS included Walter Funk, a prominent Nazi official, and Emil Puhl, who were both convicted at the Nuremberg trials after World War II, as well as Herman Schmitz the director of IG Farben and Baron von Schroeder, the owner of the J.H.Stein Bank, the bank that held the deposits of the Gestapo. There were allegations that the BIS had helped the Germans loot assets from occupied countries during World War II.
    As a result of these allegations, at the Bretton Woods Conference in July 1944, Norway proposed the “liquidation of the Bank for International Settlements at the earliest possible moment”. This resulted in the BIS being the subject of a disagreement between the American and British delegations. The liquidation of the bank was supported by other European delegates, as well as the United States (including Harry Dexter White, Secretary of the Treasury and Henry Morgenthau),[5] but opposed by John Maynard Keynes, head of the British delegation. The disagreement led to Chase Bank representative Dean Atchison interrupting Keynes at one of the conference sessions. Fearing that the BIS would be dissolved by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt, Keynes went to Morgenthau hoping to prevent the dissolution, or have it postponed, but the next day the dissolution of the BIS was approved. However, the liquidation of the bank was never undertaken.[6] The British delegation did not give up and the dissolution of the bank was still not accomplished when Roosevelt died. In April 1945, the new president Harry S. Truman and the British suspended the dissolution and the decision to liquidate the BIS was officially reversed in 1948.[7]
    The BIS was originally owned by both governments and private individuals, since the United States and France had decided to sell some of their shares to private investors. BIS shares traded on stock markets, which made the bank a unique organization: an international organization (in the technical sense of public international law), yet with private shareholders. Many central banks had similarly started as such private institutions; for example, the Bank of England was privately owned until 1946. In more recent years[when?] the BIS has forcibly bought back all shares held by private investors, and is now wholly owned by its member central banks.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bank_for_International_Settlements

    -=-=-=-=-

    “DSK” is hardly the worst of the lot, when it comes to directors of the IMF

  18. Earth to the World Socialist Website and others interested in weaving a conspiracy theory in defense of DMK: your man is not Julian Assange, comrades. He is a class enemy, the ex-head of the IMF. Moreover, there is not a single mention in the WSWS article of DMK’s well-known record of sexually predatory behavior, including his attempted rape of journalist Tristane Banon. Why? This is by well known information. Nor is there any mention of the fact that the French gutter press has released the name of DMK’s latest victim and is harassing and smearing her all over the internet. Why not? Well that would interfere with the conspiracy theory of DMK-as-victim you want to weave, wouldn’t it? Well, what shred of evidence exists that DMK is the victim of a political conspiracy? There is none. The WSWS appears to have enormous sympathy for DMK (“he is a human being”– er, yes, comrades, so are all of our other class enemies) but none for a very brave immigrant woman who has put her life on the line to make sure this pig is brought to justice. In fact according to the WSWS the victim’s voice is considered “not a reliable source.” Pathetic.

    • even “class enemies” deserve due process, right?

      or is that only for liberal presidents who have trouble defining “is”?

    • I don’t think you really understood what was being said in that WSWS article. The idea that we should all jump aboard the latest bout of media frenzy because the target happens to be the ‘class enemy’ is ridiculously unprincipled and shortsighted.

      What happens when the right-wing and anti-democratic attitudes the media is spreading with their demonization of Strauss-Kahn, which Wolf is giving a “left” face here, are next used to target a socialist or critic of US policy? When someone like Assange gets ‘taken out’ (no need for presumption of innocence, a trial, due process) by the American military? Will you then say ‘whoops – maybe I should have defended democratic rights and values without exception,’ as the socialist movement (see WSWS) always has?

      • If one enjoys sectarianism, lies and “intrigue,” such as it is, about the left, WSWS is the site for you.

      • lol@sherry wolf the yellow “socialist”

        looks like the WSWS was spot on and you were just a shill for the corporate states of amnesia

        http://www.guardian.co.uk/business/2011/jun/16/imf-forced-germany-to-guarantee-greek-bailout

        Hardline IMF forced Germany to guarantee Greek bailout
        Acting IMF chief threatened to trigger sovereign default if Berlin failed to come to rescue of Greece

        Germany was forced to agree to bail out Greece for the second time in a year under strong pressure from the International Monetary Fund following the resignation last month of its head, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, the Guardian has learned.

        Under its acting chief, the American John Lipsky, the IMF has taken a more hardline stance. The fund warned the Germans in recent weeks that it would withhold urgently needed funds and trigger a Greek sovereign default unless Berlin stopped delaying and pledged firmly that it would come to Greece’s rescue.

        etc etc

  19. Ms. Wolf, someone emailed me this post and I was saddened to see that your response to the DSK accusation is part of the problem. You, like so many, have already found him guilty. Though nothing has been proven, you call him “a serial misogynist who raped a maid in a hotel,” and later in the article say that he “now raped a maid trying to clean his room.” Are you serious?

    I find it incredibly sad that an accusation is so quickly embraced as truth. It only reveals that you choose to believe what you want to, and you serve to prove the claims that that DSK cannot get a fair trial.

    Perhaps he is guilty Perhaps he is not. But you, somehow, seem to know. Do you not understand the concept of “innocent until proven guilty?” Instead of stoking an illogical, irrational fire, I suggest you keep your confirmation bias to yourself. I haven’t read anything else you’ve written other than this post, but this post is quite enough for me. Not only have you added nothing constructive to this story, but you have nurtured the kind of reactionary, irrational thinking that should be avoided by anyone who respects reason.

    • August 23, 2011. A judge formally ordered the dismissal of all criminal charges against Dominique Strauss-Kahn. Ms. Wolf, how does that crow taste?

      • I suppose if you believe that running the disaster-inducing IMF and attempting to rape multiple female subordinates wins Strauss-Kahn the “credibility contest” then you are perfectly welcome to believe the state’s case. I do not and see this as yet more proof, as if more were needed, of a wealthy, white and powerful man standing above the law.

  20. Was Dominique Strauss-Kahn Trying to Torpedo the Dollar?

    by Mike Whitney

    Global Research, May 19, 2011

    http://www.globalresearch.ca/index.php?context=va&aid=24867

  21. Maya Ramaswamy

    Bravo Madam..

    Wish the ‘guillotine’ was still in ‘vogue’.

  22. Juan Cole?

    LOLOLOL

    is that the guy who is now telling us that human rights imperialism (at least the libyan iteration) is a “good thing” and real “change” and all that?

    lol

    with “socialists’ like ms. wolf, who needs the Uniparty?

    lol

  23. mmm

    how about a nice fat plate of CROW, served up “a la lynch-mob” mode

    -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=–=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

    According to the Times, ( http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/01/nyregion/strauss-kahn-case-seen-as-in-jeopardy.html?pagewanted=1&_r=1&hp ) there is “unambiguous” evidence of a sexual incident involving Strauss-Kahn and a maid who entered his suite at the Sofitel hotel. However the maid, a Guinean woman, who has been depicted in media reports as quiet and reliable, has “repeatedly lied” to police about her status and personal life.

    After the alleged Strauss-Kahn incident she phoned a friend incarcerated in jail for possession of 400 pounds of marijuana, to seek advice on treating with the French senior politician. The conversation was taped. Also reportedly discovered were stashes of unattributed money deposited in the bank accounts held by the maid in several states

    Prosecutors met yesterday with Strauss-Kahn’s lawyers to share their findings. The revelations are likely raise credibility problems of an accuser who, while relying on forensic evidence for her accusation of sexual assault, faces a “he said-she said” debate on the rape charge. Strauss-Kahn, often called “DSK” in France, pleaded not guilty in his arraignment.

    By Robert Marquand, Staff writer / July 1, 2011

    Paris

    http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Europe/2011/0701/Stunning-shift-in-Dominique-Strauss-Kahn-case

    Stunning shift in Dominique Strauss-Kahn case
    New revelations that Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s accuser may not be credible could rehabilitate the political career of one of France’s most powerful figures ahead of 2012 elections.

    • I was waiting to see who would be the first asshole to claim that. Congrats!

      So the logic is that because the poor, African immigrant housekeeper—according to the police investigators paid for by a powerful, rich white man—may have had dealings with convicted pot dealers, she therefore wasn’t raped?

      Money and power can easily buy you an anal probe into the life of a woman without power. It doesn’t prove she wasn’t raped, just that DSK is capable of raping her even with his clothes on.

  24. lol@sherry wolf

    so the presumption of innocence is to be set at naught when the accuser is a woman?

    lol

    what a joke

    i think i’ll stick with the WSWS – at least their instinct is usually spot on and they don’t engage in destroying the foundations of our democratic rights all for the sake of “entertaining” supposed “lefts”

    as for the comments about “assholes” – you should take your head out of your own and maybe next time you won’t be exposed for being such a total tool, “comrade”

    la victoria hasta siempre

  25. le “hack” is a sociallist?

    non!

    The day after the chambermaid accused Strauss-Kahn of criminal sexual assault and attempted rape, she called a man incarcerated in Arizona, according to law-enforcement sources, and in a conversation that was recorded, the man discussed with her the possibility she could make money off the case against Strauss-Kahn.

    -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-

    ive been a union member for over 20 years, have marched to free mumia as well as other class-war prisoners, and will lend my support to any worthy cause – i will stand for a woman’s right to chose, a woman’s right to be treated as an equal in the work place (equal pay for equal work which has never been an issue in the union i belong to), but i will not stand for a woman’s right to have the assumption of innocence cast aside when she accuses a man of a crime, just on the principle that a “woman wouldn’t lie” or some such nonsense.

    it seems that you, ms. wolf, have let your emotions override whatever intellect you may (or may not) possess, so that even in the case of an obviously flawed prosecution, (one in which the “victim” ran first to her drug dealing pal and discussed the pecuniary possibilities of filing rape charges against “dsk”), you manage to cling to your prejudices and preconceived opinions.

  26. I think that phoning, the same day, to discuss the money that can be made from pursuing rape allegations, counts as a sign that the allegations might not be true. Not everyone who disagrees with you is an asshole, Sherry!

  27. A number of revolutionary newspapers chose not to publish articles about the DSK case because there was practically no hard information at the time (and there still isn’t much).

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