Thursday, June 30, 2011

Daily Bleed Radical Literary History for June 30th

Away from this kingdom, from this last undefiled
place, I would keep our governments, our civilization,
& all other spirit-forsaken & corrupt institutions.

Kenneth Patchen, excerpt from
"There Are Not Many Kingdoms Left,"
The Love Poems of Kenneth Patchen




Superb Cameroonian novelist, biting social critic.


Celebrates three "stars" that moved to a spot over the forest in the 12th century & then stopped, marking the village's founding.



1520 -- Noblesse Oblige?: Montezuma & Aztec nobles murdered by Cortes. Aztecs counterattack the Spanish & their Tlaxcalan allies, killing two-thirds of them. See the former Memoria del fuego page, in Spanish,

1685 -- John Gay lives (1685-1732). English poet/dramatist, friend of Pope & Swift, remembered from his play The Beggar's Opera, a story of thieves & highwaymen, which also became the basis for Bertold Brecht's The Threepenny Opera (1928). Gay also wrote the libretto for Händel's work Acis & Galatea.

1709 -- Edward Lhuyd dies. Celtic Scholar who first recorded many Hebridean folk stories.

1741 -- Traffic Jam?: Pope Benedict XIV encyclical forbidding traffic in alms.

1761 -- Scotland: Thomas Sheridan, famed Irish actor/teacher of elocution, commences a series of lectures on 'The English Tongue' in Edinburgh.

1803 -- Thomas Lovell Beddoes lives.

1839 -- High Seas: Cinque leads successful slave revolt on the ship Amistad.

1840 -- France: Pierre-Joseph Proudhon's Qu'est-ce que la propriété? ou Recherche sur le principe du droit et du gouvernement appears.

Proudhon dedicated this book What is Property?, now considered an anarchist classic, to the Academy of Besancon, causing a scandal; the Academy demands the dedication be withdrawn, & summons the upstart to come explain himself before them.

1841 -- US: Rain of fish, Boston, Massachusetts.

There are about 70 recorded rains of fish, but nearly all of the rains of fish are small ones.

There is, however, one account of a fish fall in India in which more than 10 people picked up fish weighing up to eight pounds each.

There are many accounts of rains of ice-coated ducks, grasshoppers, fish & frogs, but there is none of a raining of cats & dogs.

Thus we make our emends & shall only exclaim, in the future, in Seattle "it's raining catfish & dogfish!"

1852 -- US: Duwamish tribe awarded $62,000 for the taking of their aboriginal lands, including the present-day site of the city of Seattle.

1857 -- Charles Dickens gives first public reading from A Christmas Carol at St. Martin's Hall, London.

1859 -- US: Emile Blondin crosses Niagara Falls on a 1100-foot tightrope as 5,000 watch. On his return he uses a tripod camera to photograph the huge crowd who have gathered; many faint.

1864 -- US: Secretary of the Treasury Chase resigns, charging speculators were plotting to prolong the Civil War for monetary gain. Legislator/historian Robert Winthrop noted:

"Professed patriotism may be made the cover for a multitude of sins."

1870 -- US: Ada Kepley becomes first female law college graduate.

Fritz Brupbacher
1874 -- Fritz Brupbacher (1874-1945) dies. A Swiss physician, studied medicine & psychiatry. An antimilitarist, revolutionary syndicalist & libertarian socialist, became in particular the friend of James Guillaume, Pytor Kropotkin, Vera Figner & Monatte. Practiced medicine with his wife Paulette Raygrodski, both active in the néo-Malthusian movement, for the right to abortion & a free sexuality. Fritz wrote the introduction to The Confession of Michael Bakunin (translated by Paulette), wrote Marx et Bakounine, Bakounine ou le démon de la révolte, & the autobiography 60 Years of Heresy, as well as numerous pamphlets.

"Bakounine redeviendra actuel le jour où l'homme commencera à trouver insupportables le despotisme bourgeois et le despotisme prolétarien."

1875 -- Italy: The Florence trial begins (June 30-August 30, 1875) — of which the republicans published a long report (Dibattimenti; Rome, 1875; 529 pp.). This is another in a series of monster trials (like those in Bologna, Perguia, Leghorn, Massa Carrara, etc.).

Errico Malatesta, Italian anarchist

This trial is simultaneous with Malatesta's trial at Trani. The good news from Trani (most acquitted) cheers up everybody at Florence.

See Errico Malatesta: The Biography of an Anarchist by Max Nettlau

1882 -- France: Robert Louzon lives (1882-1976). Engineer, revolutionary syndicalist, anarchiste.

Louzon was involved in the CGT, the CNT, helped found Pierre Monatte's journal, "Révolution prolétarienne," joined the SIA (Solidarité Internationale antifasciste), signed Louis Lecoin's "Paix immédiate." During WWII he was arrested & interned in Algeria.

Front page from Frank Leslie's Illustrated magazine showing strikers in a street scene
1885 -- US: Chicago Streetcar Strike begins, Illinois (-July 7).

Many thousands of people living in the West Division of Chicago who have been accustomed to riding to & from their homes were forced to walk today. The strike of the West Side streetcar conductors began as a result of the discharge of several employees from the company.

1887 -- Italy: Nuovo testo unico delle leggi di pubblica sicurezza che attribuscono alla polizia poteri amplissimi di intervento quando è minacciato il potere dello stato da 'manifestazioni o grida sediziose'.
[Source: Crimini e Misfatti]

1888 -- Léon Metchnikoff (1838-1888) dies. Geographer, anarchist & secretary to Élisée Reclus.

1894 -- US: "Chicago Tribune" headlines from June 31 (????), 1894 described the events of the Pullman Strike with obvious yellow journalism. Headlines like,

"Debs Strikers Begin Work Of Destruction, Guns Awe Them Not, Drunken Stockyard Rioters Defy Uncle Sam's Troops, Mobs Invite Death"

Eugene V. Debs, the leader of the Pullman Strike, was also highly criticized.

Not to be outdone by the yellow sheets, the always venerable New York Times in an 1894 editorial calls Debs "a lawbreaker & an enemy to the human race."

1899 -- Italy: Tafferugli hanno luogo alla Camera. Alcuni deputati vengono alle mani. Sono rovesciate le urne per protestare contro il voto su questioni di procedura che mirano a porre il bavaglio ai deputati dell'opposizione. Un decreto reale chiude il Parlamento fino al 14 novembre.
[Source: Crimini e Misfatti]

Zapata, Tierra y Libertad, illustration by Mendez
1902 -- Leopoldo Méndez (1902-1969) lives.

Méndez was a printmaker, painter &
muralist. Like Posada, he is known
primarily for his politically charged
prints depicting the horrors of war,
struggles of laborers & parodies
of capitalist greed & fascism. He
helped found the long-lived Taller
de Gráfica Popular (TGP) in 1937.

Symphonic Concert of Skeletons/Concierto Sinfonico de Calaveras

1902 -- Italy: Un accordo segreto tra il governo francese e quello italiano prevede la reciproca piena libertà di aggressione nella Tripolitania, nella Cirenaica e in Marocco.
[Source: Crimini e Misfatti]

1906 -- US: Meat Your Maker? Pure Food & Drug Act & Meat Inspection Act adopted.

 Painting of the fireball
1908 -- Giant fireball impacts in Central Siberia (Tunguska Event).

Emma Goldman, Anarchist All Star
1909 -- US: Large meeting organized by the Free Speech Society is held at Cooper Union to protest harassment of speaker Emma Goldman & to win back the right of free speech. Speakers include former congressman Robert Baker, Alden Freeman, Voltairine de Cleyre, James P. Morton, & Harry Kelly. Telegrams from Eugene Debs & others are also read.

1911 -- Czeslaw Milosz lives, Szetejnie, in Lithuania then controlled by Russian czarist government. Polish-American author, translator & critic, 1980 recipient of the Nobel Prize for Literature. Active as a writer in the WWII Resistance movement, & witnessed the Holocaust.

A Polish diplomat, he sought political asylum. In The Captive Mind (1953) he revealed the problems of intellectuals living under Stalinism & condemned many Polish intellectuals for accepting Communism. His writings since include essays, poetry, autobiography, literary history, & translations from such authors as Walt Whitman, William Shakespeare, John Milton, T.S. Eliot, & Charles Baudelaire.

Milosz's works were banned in Poland after his break with the regime, but he was given a hero's welcome when he returned shortly before getting his Nobel.

In the view of the Soviet poet Joseph Brodsky, 1987 Nobel Prize winner, Milosz is possibly the greatest poet of our time.

1912 -- anarchist diamond; anarquistaMéxico: A group formed by the Colombian anarchist Juan Francisco Moncaleano, takes the name of "Grupo Luz" (Light) & creates a school based on the Modern School model of the Spaniard, Francisco Ferrer, in México City. // Se funda el Grupo Luz, integrado por Juan Francisco Moncaleano, Luis Méndez, Pioquinto Roldán, Eloy Armenta y Jacinto Huitrón. Moncaleano propone crear la Escuela Racionalista semejante a la fundada en Barcelona, España, por Francisco Ferrer Guardia.

1914 -- South Africa: Gandhi's first arrest, in campaign for Indian equal rights.

1917 -- Lena Horne lives, Brooklyn, NY. Began her career at 16 as a chorus girl at the Cotton Club in Harlem, appeared in the moviesCabin in the Sky & Stormy Weather & has Broadway career culminating in her one woman show.

Horne was a strong civil rights advocate, refusing to perform in clubs where African-Americans were not admitted & marching during the civil rights movement in the 1960s.

Lena Horne, 1943:

"All we ask is that the Negro be portrayed as a normal person. A worker in a union meeting, a voter in the polls...or an elected official. Perhaps I'm being naive. Perhaps these things will never be straightened out on the screen itself, but will have to wait until... [they're] solved in real life."

1917 --

Bern, Switzerland.

June 30

Conferència of the FIS (Federació Sindical Internacional).

[Source: Congressos Obrers]

1918 -- US: Militant Socialist leader Eugene Debs arrested in Cleveland for interfering with army & navy recruiting practices. Debs' anti-war activities are not appreciated by Wilson's government.

Red Hot Pepper! Emma Goldman & Alexander Berkman
1920 -- Russia: Emma Goldman & sidekick Alexander Berkman travel to Moscow to collect permits necessary for their museum expedition through Russia to gather historical material.

1922 -- Molly Hunter lives, Longniddry. Wrote exciting Scottish children's stories.

1922 -- US: One million railway shopmen strike.

Francisco Saverio Merlino, anarchist
1930 -- Francisco Saverio Merlino (1856-1930) dies. Lawyer, theorist, propagandist of Italian anarchism, then a socialist. He continued to defend the anarchists as needed — which was often.
    The End of Anarchism? was Galleani's outraged response to an interview of ex-anarchist Saverio Merlino entitled "The End of Anarchism," in which Merlino pronounced "anarchism an obsolete doctrine, torn by internal disputes, bereft of first-rate theorists, & doomed to early extinction."

    Further details/ context, click here; anarchiste, anarchismo, anarchici, anarchico, anarquista, anarchisten, anarchie, anarkismo, anarchisme, anarho, kalendario, anarchica, Libertaria[Details / context]

1932 -- Mongo Beti lives. Acerbic African novelist/political essayist, depicted the conflict of traditional modes of African society with the system of colonial rule. His political novles include Remember Ruben & Perpetua Et l'Habitude De Malheur.

1934 -- Germany: "Night of the Long Knives," Hitler stages bloody purge of Nazi party.
Young Men, Serve the Fuhrer Germany is Free! Germany Awake!

1934 -- US: America's greatest ruler, Emperor Norton I, reburied in Woodlawn Cemetery (Colma Cemetery?) by citizens of San Francisco.

1935 -- Viagra?: The first ten Penguins (books) are published. All very gay, but they cannot be married in the US of A.

1936 -- Margaret Mitchell's Gone With the Wind published by Macmillan. Fastest-selling novel in US history sets a record in October when 50,000 copies sell in one day.

1936 -- Ethiopian Emperor Haile Selassie pleads before League of Nations for help against Italian fascist invasion of his country.

Poet Langston Hughes, observing the invasion of Ethiopia by Mussolini, wrote simply:

The little fox is still.
The dogs of war have made their kill.

1936 -- Red Hot Pepper! Red Emma Goldman, anarchist feministFrance: Alexander Berkman is buried in Nice. Lifelong pal Emma Goldman is in attendance.

Dave Van Ronk, anarchist, songster
1936 -- Dave Van Ronk lives. American songster. Unfortunately better known for nurturing & helping Bob Dylan get his music career off the ground than for his own music.

Far more than one of the founding figures of the 1960s, Dave Van Ronk (1936-2002) was also ’among other things’ a pioneer of modern acoustic blues, a fine songwriter & arranger, a powerful singer, & one of the most influential guitarists of the 60s, as well as a peerless musical historian & storyteller. "The Man" (Tom Paxton) was in the mix with Bob Dylan (who slept on Van Ronk's couch for his first year in NY), Tom Paxton, Phil Ochs, Joan Baez, & Joni Mitchell, as well as older luminaries Woody Guthrie & Odetta.

"In the engine room of the NY Folk Scene shoveling coal into the furnace, one Big Man rules. Dog-faced roustabout songster. Bluesman, Dave Van Ronk.

Long may he howl."

— Tom Waits

"Of course I was aware of the folk music thing in Washington Square. I had been hanging around the village for a few years by this time, & the sight & sound of happily howling Stalinists offended my assiduously nurtured self-image as a hipster, not to mention my political sensibilities, which were at the time vehemently I.W.W.-.anarchist."

In 1959, Dick Ellington & Dave Van Ronk wrote & self-published THE BOSS'S SONGBOOK, the subtitle of which was Songs To Stifle the Flames of Discontent. It was supposed to be a humorous collection, consciously modeled on the IWW Little Red Songbook.

Dick had a Multilith 1250 & did some movement printing in New York City during the 1950s, including VIEWS & COMMENTS, which was published by the Libertarian League. It was either a weekly or biweekly paper edited by Sam Dolgoff & Russell Blackwell.

— Robby Barnes, Charlatan Stew

1936 -- Italy: L'imperatore d'Etiopia Hailè Selassiè chiede, di fronte all'assemblea della Società delle Nazioni, che la comunità internazionale non riconosca l'occupazione italiana del suo paese.
Contro la richiesta i giornalisti italiani inscenano una gazzarra indecente. La mozione dell'imperatore viene respinta. E' la fine della Societá delle Nazioni.

[Source: Crimini e Misfatti]

1939 -- José Emilio Pacheco lives. Mexican critic, novelist, short story writer, translator & poet.

1944 -- US: Jerome becomes the first concentration camp for Japanese Americans to close as the last inmates are transferred to Rohwer.

1947 -- US: District Judge Louis E. Goodman orders that the petitioners in Wayne Collins' suit of December 13, 1945 be released; native-born American citizens could not be converted to enemy aliens & could not be imprisoned or sent to Japan on the basis of renunciation.
Three hundred & two persons are finally released from Crystal City, Texas & Seabrook Farms, New Jersey on September 6, 1947.

1951 -- Germany: First & founding convention to reconstitute the Socialist International, Frankfurt.

1952 -- Let Freedom Ring?: Congress passes McCarran-Walter Immigration Act, to screen out "subversive" aliens & deport them, even if they have become US citizens. Follows up on the McCarran Act (Internal Security Act of 1950) — one of the more bucolic provisions being its authorization of concentration camps "for emergency situations."

EmergencyThis immigration act strengthened provisions allowing exclusion of immigrants on grounds of insanity, disease, pauperism, crime record or political activity, & made exclusion of anarchists & communists easier. It attacked people merely on account of speech or association, even if there is no evidence they might act violently or illegally.

Harry Truman noted "The idea behind this discriminatory policy is, to put it baldly, that Americans with English or Irish names were better citizens than Americans with Italian, Greek, or Polish names..." — while in fact it was motivated more toward excluding non-whites in this aspect.

1953 -- Russia: Vsevelod Pudovkin (1893-1953) dies.

Daily Bleed Saint June 26, 2003-2006
Pioneering Soviet experimental filmmaker, writer.

1955 -- James Thurber writes in the New York Post of the ravages of age:

"With sixty staring me in the face, I have developed inflammation of the sentence structure & a definite hardening of the paragraphs."

1957 -- Brazil: José Oiticica (1882-1957) dies. Lawyer, student of medicine, teacher, & an influential figure in the Brazilian anarchist & labor movement.

Grandfather of the Brazilian artist & anarchist, Hélio Oiticica (1937-1980).

1959 -- US: During a baseball game at Wrigley Field, two balls were in play at same time.

1964 -- United Nations intervention ends civil war in the Congo, Africa.

1965 -- Vietnam: First US military ground actions begin in South Vietnam.

1966 -- Scotland: Lochness Monster Sighted?: US Polaris submarine base opens, Faslane.

Stop War, Bring the Boys Home button
1967 -- Vietnam: 448,800 American troops in the country.

1968 -- Petition for recognition of conscientious objection as a basic human right is presented to United Nations Human Rights Commission.

1968 --

30 juin 68 Raz-de-marée gaulliste aux élections législatives.

Los gaullistas obtienen mayoría absoluta en Francia.

Life is elsewhere.

1969 -- US: Seattle City Council approves a plan to purchase Kiker Island, off Deception Pass (Whidbey Island), as a site for a future nuclear power plant.

1969 -- Vigilantes cut down trees in Kew Gardens in Queens, NY. The park is a gathering place for area gays.

About a month ago, a group of men from nearby apartment buildings started going into the park & ordering gay folks to leave. Vigilante organizer Myles Tashman said, (quote) "Admittedly it was against the law but we had police consent."

Finally tonight the vigilantes just raze the park. A local resident twice calls the police after seeing them at work with a power saw. Arriving almost an hour later, the officers chat with the treecutters & then leave.

The Mattachine Society & other gay clubs start a fund, "Trees for Queens," to replace the foliage.

1970 -- US: 35,000 protest nuclear power at Diablo Canyon.

1970 -- Dylanologist?: Bob Dylan accepts an Honorary Doctorate of Music at Princeton University. June through July, Dylan records his next LP, New Morning at Columbia Studios in NY.

1970 -- England: Army depot, Kimber Road, London, firebombed.

1970 -- England: Ian Purdie is released from Albany prison (Isle of Wight).

1971 -- Three cosmonauts die on re-entry over the U.S.S.R. from depressurization of their space craft. After completing a 23 day mission on the Salyut space station, all three Soyuz 11 cosmonauts suffocate when an air valve in their capsule opens prematurely during re-entry. see See Volkov, Patsayev & Dobrovolsky at

1971 -- US: I Am Not a Crook Dick m Nixon orders felony burglary of the Brookings Institute, where Daniel Ellsberg, Leslie Gelb & Morton Halperin work. This comes during a meeting with National Security adviser Henry Kissinger, Defense Secretary Melvin Laird, Attorney General John Mitchell & Haldeman. Colson later proposed a firebombing. When this meeting was later exposed, future Nobel Peace Prize winner Henry Kissinger claimed he couldn't recall the meeting:
"I have no such recollection."

1972 -- First leap second day; also 1981, 1982, 1983, 1985.

1973 -- Nancy Mitford dies in Versailles, France. Novelist/essayist. Wrote The Pursuit of Love; Love in a Cold Climate; The Blessing.

1973 -- Observers aboard Concorde jet observe 72-min solar eclipse, eclipsing the old record.

1974 -- US: Martin Luther King's 69-year-old mother is shot & killed as she plays the organ in Atlanta's Ebenezer Baptist Church.

Kenneth Patchen, anarchist poet
1974 -- US: Selective Service law authorizing the draft expires, marking the official end of conscription in the US. Part of the Nixon strategy to undercut the strength of the Vietnam anti-war movement.

1976 -- An Ounce of Prevention?: Responding to a supposed burglary at Neil Diamond's house, police enter with a search warrant. A 3-hour inspection turns up a less than one ounce of marijuana.

1977 -- US: Jimmy Carter cans B-1A bomber, later "B-1's the B-52."

Sex Pistols logo
1978 -- The Sex Pistols' "My Way" is released.

1980 -- US: Supreme Court upholds $122 million judgment to the Lakota (Sioux) Nation for illegal taking of Black Hills, South Dakota.

1984 -- Lillian Hellman playwright & screenwriter, dies of cardiac arrest at 79. Her dramas bitterly & forcefully attacked injustice, exploitation, & selfishness. Long-time paramour of Dashiell Hammett.

1986 -- US: SodBusters? Georgia sodomy law upheld by Supreme Court (5-4): Sodomy, 1 to 20 years. Upheld as to homosexuals on the grounds that there is no fundamental federal constitutional right to "engage in sodomy."
Sodomy laws are given many names: buggery, crimes against nature, sexual misconduct, unnatural sex, etc. Most laws are applied against homosexuals in order to further anti-gay discrimination. Sodomy laws result in imprisonment, parents losing custody of children, loss of jobs & homes, beatings & killings, & other atrocities.

Sodomy laws are often used to deny basic rights to homosexuals. State-by-state laws have created a patchwork of penalties which range from a $50 fine in Arizona to life in prison in Idaho.

1987 -- US: ACT UP demonstration at Federal Plaza in New York city. Silence = Death.

1989 -- England: Court seizes about $7,000 withheld war taxes from Peace Pledge Union's bank account.

1998 -- anarchist diamond; anarquistaFrance: In Paris a group of 100 people manages to enter the buildings of the Constitutional Council. One of them seizes an original specimen of the constitution, tears it, declaring: "The dictatorship of capitalism is abolished. The workers declare anarchist-communism."

1998 -- France: "Sans-papiers," undocumented immigrants seeking asylum, begin a hunger strike. Thirty begin fasting because their request for "regularisation" & legal residence papers has been refused.

1998 -- US: In NYC some 20,000 construction workers rally to protest the city's use of a nonunion contractor.


The FBI still holds over 6,000 pages on the Leonard Peltier case that they refuse to release for "National Security reasons." Peltier was framed & sent to prison after a deadly firefight on June 26, 1975, between Native Americans, FBI agents & US Marshals following a period of terrorizing the Lakota Indian Reservation. The FBI has actively opposed & used it power to undercut every attempt to free Peltier.

2006 -- US: Hells Angels? County law enforcement crack some heads—or at least a bike helmet, in Seattle, Washington.

Detectives wheel two bruised bikers into custody, after a confusing tussle between Critical Mass bicyclists blocking a Belltown intersection & two plainclothes undercover King County cops who were startled when one of the bikers tried prevent their van from driving through 200 bicyclists whizzing through an intersection.

Jumping out to whup on a few bikers, the cops found themselves outnumbered & smartly bespoke themselves:

"Stop! You're under fucking arrest! I'm a fucking cop!"

Critical Mass is a ragtag group of bike messengers, students, anarchists, & families riding to remind drivers, via peaceful civil disobedience, to respect bike riders' rights on the road.

2006 -- US: Mid-Atlantic Radical Bookfair & Infoshop gathering ( - July 2), Baltimore, Maryland.Keynote speaker Ward Churchill. Fair Kickoff Concerts last night featured Jello Biafra, & a night of Radical Hip-Hop, featuring Baltimore's Son of Nun, DJ Malatesta & Drowning Dog of Entartete Kunst (Bay area anarchists making their East Coast debut), & DC's Head-Roc. Organized by volunteers from Red Emma's Books & Coffeehouse, Wooden Shoe Books, Alternative Press Center, & others.

3000 --

Daily Bleed Saint 2003:

Iconoclastic, sardonic theorist of profit, status & class, he understood the irrational forces of capitalist culture.

Punk is not dead!
3001 --
"It takes a village to raise the dead."

— Firesign Theatre

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