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Blind Boy Apollo
and the All-White Astronauts

New Age "Asiatic" thought ... is establishing itself as the
hegemonic ideology of global capitalism. (Zizek)

Saturday, March 4

salon praises eugenics with faint damning

David Weinberger alerted me this morning to an article on Salon titled Progressive genocide. Here's the lede...
Less than 100 years ago, America's finest minds were convinced the nation was threatened by sexually insatiable female morons. A new history of the eugenics movement sheds light on a bizarre chapter in U.S. history.
This oddly exculpatory article by Farhad Manjoo poses as a review of Better for all the World: The Secret History of Forced Sterilization and America's Quest for Racial Purity published by Knopf this week, though it seems to convey Manjoo's reactions more than (I'm guessing) it describes the book. While there's no real newsflash in that, I was sufficiently put off by the tone of the Salon piece to write a letter (online here), which I reproduce below. If you're a regular reader of these pages, the following will add nothing you haven't seen here before.

America created the model

As Edwin Black (War Against the Weak) and many others have shown, American eugenics created the model the Third Reich implemented as "the Final Solution." For instance, Hitler personally thanked Madison Grant for his 1916 book of Aryan apologetics, The Passing of the Great Race, calling it "his bible." Henry Ford's campaign of poisonous antisemitism is well known, or should be. In light of these and numerous other examples, it seems disingenuous at best to suggest -- as this article does -- that the United States somehow dodged any serious moral culpability. "One can take solace..." the piece ends. In what? That it was their Jews, Afro-Germans, Gypsies, homosexuals, mental patients, congenitally sick children who paid the price for America's bold experiments in social Darwinism? I've been blogging on this theme for over a year now. Click my signature below (or google "Mystic Bourgeoisie") for what amounts to a deeply annotated bibliography, the annotations being notes for my next book.

~ Chris Locke, co-author of The Cluetrain Manifesto and author of Gonzo Marketing.

-- Christopher Locke

The Secret History of Forced Sterilization and America's Quest for Racial Purity