Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Censorship and Class at Babalú on September 11, 2005

Only at Babalú would they commemorate American freedom by practicing censorship on September 11. In 2005, Val Prieto and George Moneo deleted the original post and thread honoring the victims of the terrorist attack on the World Trade Center and substituted it with an innocuous poem because they disapproved of how the discussion was evolving in the first post. Val, apparently, wanted Babalú to reflect his own opinions not just in the posts he and others wrote but also in the corresponding threads; that is, to control output and imput. Readers could opine on his blog only when they followed his lead. If they deviated to a more relevant discussion, Val and his inhouse thugs would fall on them and try to wrest the discussion from them. If they could not steer it in the direction they wanted it to go, they would them resort to banning or if there were just too many voices to ban they would delete the entire thread.

This is exactly what the Babalunians did on September 11, 2005 when I brought up the question of compensation to the survivors of the attack, noting that the stockbrokers' families had received millions from the government and the children of the cleaning women just thousands. The government didn't have to give the stockbroker's or janitor's children anything. But in a bail-out of the insurance companies (now that's patriotic), it agreed to assume the financial responsibility of indemnifying the survivors. Having made that commitment, the government should have treated all survivors alike by holding the lives of all victims equally valuable. But it did not. As I noted then, "one of the ideals on which this country was founded was that all human life is sacred and that one human being is not intrinsically more valuable than another. A human is a human is a human. A death is a death is a death. In the World Trade Center there were no 'dollar deaths' and no 'penny deaths.' Everyone died the same. But everyone was not treated the same. There is no better day to remember this than today."

Egalitarianism is anathema to the Babalunians, though most of them are closer in class to the cleaning ladies than to the stockbrokers.

I, of course, remonstrated with Val, who first threatened to delete the post, and George Moneo, who actually did. It was not a pleasant exchange. They considered my remarks "disrespectful to the dead" as if the dead would consider compensating their survivors fairly to be "disrespectful" or a tangential issue on this day.

But I understood that I was dealing with proles who fancied themselves honorary stockbrokers, and who would, of course, protect the interests of their adoptive class more even than the privileged classes would. It is "right-thinking" tools like Val and George who are the backbone (or, rather, tailbone) of American capitalism. They accept without question the position that the rich are not just richer than the poor but more valuable to society, and having accepted that dubious notion, they can accept also the notion that a stockbroker's son is worthier of government largesse than is the son of a cleaning lady.

In response to their insufferable elitism and willingness to resort to censorship to protect interests that didn't even touch them, I stopped commenting on Babalú for the next 1½ years. I should have stopped for good.

Not imagining then that the Val would actually delete a post for political reasons, I had not bothered to save it. Thus I cannot offer a complete transcript of it. Fortunately, I am in the habit of saving all my comments before posting them. So I at least have a one-sided record from which I can partially reconstruct the deleted post. I will be publishing it throughout the day in honor of the victims of 9/11. If they died to protect the freedoms that we all enjoy today, then there is no better way to honor their memory than by practicing those freedoms without fear or censure. And certainly without censorship.


I continue to exert my powerful influence on Babalú. Val has just restored the 9/11 post that he deleted 2 years ago. This is a very simple procedure. All you have to do is re-publish it: the original post is always preserved in "Drafts" even after unpublished ("deleted").


1 comment:

Vana said...

If I read anymore money talk, I will fucking delete all! WTF was that, and he screamed it, it makes one want to laugh at the inmaturity of it all, are you not allowed a voice to state the truth? every thing you said at that post was the truth, why indeed if they all died the same tragic death, is a life worth more than another? only in America

They live in their own close minded country at Babalunia, a bunch of little tyrants all