Friday, August 28, 2009

Know your adversary; learn from your adversary

E-book from Project Gutenberg:
The History of the Fabian Society by Edward R. Pease

From google books:
The Frankfurt School: Its History, Theories, and Political Significance by Rolf Wiggershaus

The Dialectical Imagination: A History of the Frankfurt School and the Institute of Social Research by Martin Jay


Purpleslog said...

Both the Fabian and the the Frankfort Cultural Marxists, strike me as very 5GWish. I have notes going back two years for some posts. I should make them some time.

phil said...


"Both the Fabian and the the Frankfort Cultural Marxists, strike me as very 5GWish."

I agree. In fact that was exactly what I was thinking when Mark posted the first 5GW post 4 years ago. This was my comment:

Perhaps the Left is already 5GW. In 4GW the enemy attempts to influence the media and culture to undermine a country's war effort, but maybe in 5GW the enemy seeks to become the country's media, university and grade school teachers, writers, artists, etc.

At that time I had heard about the Frankfurt School and the Fabians but didn't really know about their strategy. But I knew about Gramsci and the Long March through the Institutions and wrote in a comment on tdaxp's first 5gw post:

First thought: The Long March Through the Institutions. 
The success of the left in promoting their ideas where the people who adopt them actually and honestly deny that they are socialists.

So that was the direction I was going in at the very beginning (although crude) but other people weren't really interested in it and I wanted to explore it outside the context of "war" and in the context of politics and culture so I moved on. Plus I was so busy in the real world trying to get my business going that I didn't pursue it to the extent that I would have liked to. Most of my reading over the past several years has been focused on studying political history in order to have a better understanding of how these movements have worked and how ideologies have spread and succeeded or failed. I really think that political history needs to be looked at the way we look at military history and political movements examined as we have examined armies on a battlefield. And that this should be studied by citizens the way that military officers study military history and theory with the intention of using it to inform their actions and decisions.

In the end, I agree with The Strategist: Sorry, but this is not war. It's politics.

I think there is more opportunity for creative thinking in politics and culture than military topics. War and war theory and military history are much more limited areas that have received a great deal of attention. I think it is highly unlikely for someone to come up with something truly original. But in politics and culture there are greater opportunities to create movements and styles and develop ideas to solve problems as the arise. Combine that with entrepreneurship and their are all kinds of interesting things to explore. And that's what I want to do.