For the purposes of this quick post, it is helpful that there is an African fable about a Shark and a Monkey; who are both liars and the moral of the story is you should trust neither one. (I have no problem with Debbie Wasserman Schultz, but the fable also relates to a ‘Washerman’s Donkey’ who is analogized as a fool which is a helpful analogy for a process seeking a nominee for the Democratic Party, and Tulsi Gabbard’s role within it.) Perhaps Michael Avenatti (our proverbial Monkey) has passed the torch of incendiary pro-Russian political strategy candidate to Tulsi Gabbard (our proverbial Hawaiian Shark). I hope so, she looks like a pretty easy target to destroy.
I’m trying stay on top of the story that Gabbard has announced her likely foray into the 2020 field for the US Democratic Party presidential nominee. As such, I will also just quickly list the things which give me pause to date (that I am aware of) about her.
The traumatizing 2016 campaign flashbacks have already started. I’ve noticed that John Kasich’s name has come up somewhat frequently in discussions about a Trump 2020 primary challenge. (At least we can start this off with the victory of Michael Avenatti not being a candidate.)
While you will now find me ‘defending’ Trump on the basis that ‘he is now driving the car and I don’t want him to crash it’, I don’t care for Kasich because (while I voted for Hillary Clinton in 2016) I was supporting Ted Cruz for the 2016 Republican nominee (and donated to him like I had Clinton). I supported Cruz, not because I like his platform so much as because I was deeply concerned about Trump’s rhetoric and connections to Russia. I saw Cruz as the most likely person to beat Trump in the 2016 Republican primary. Think what you will of Ted Cruz, there is no doubt he is a brilliant human being and surprisingly self-deprecating despite being somewhat sanctimonious.
Despite Kasich coming across like any Republican soccer mom’s ideal candidate, you shouldn’t trust him. As the above passage shows, despite being an ‘anti-Trump’ candidate, his apparently moralistically narcissistic campaign behavior all but ensured Donald Trump became the nominee and aided a simultaneously all-out-political hit job on Ted Cruz . Was it more, and was Kasich’s campaign in cahoots with Paul Manafort or Roger Stone?
I was delighted to hear Secretary of State Mike Pompeo declare loud and clear that the US is building a “New Liberal World Order“. This is an important diplomatic step that America should take in order to reinforce the post-WW2 peace and in order to counter authoritarian interests. However, as previously blogged here, our domestic American culture is increasingly polarized by conspiratorial elements (e.g. “Pussies” (pseudo-Communists) and “Assholes” (pseudo-Fascists)) who are traceable to the influence operations of Russia and other authoritarian cultures. As a result, post-Soviet US politics has become increasingly divided along extremist lines, and American bipartisanship and ‘liberalism’ (in a “John Locke” sense) has all but disappeared.
Until we address our political mess at home and forthrightly take on some tough questions about how to curtail such influence without damaging constitutional protections for free speech, I don’t see how this theoretically noble and necessary effort to re-entrench liberal power abroad can be credible or successful. Politically and mathematically, it seems to me that one of the best ways to ‘hack back’ against Russian political influence and force rational bipartisanship (without resorting to some kind of centrist authoritarianism in a three party system) would be to abandon the two party system in favor of a four party system which leads to the forced ‘gerrymandering of centrism’. (Maybe this is why the UK has gone this route.)
(This represents a really rough draft which attempts to get at some of the ideals which underlie socialist radicalism through an examination of the parallels of historical literary figures: Prometheus, Spartacus, and various conceptions of the devil – especially those developed in Milton’s ‘Paradise Lost’ and Goethe’s ‘Faust I’ and ‘Faust II’. It might come across as a bit of a sequel to my prior paper on Marxist ideas in Dracula and their effect on modern conspiracism.)
‘Prometheus is the foremost saint and martyr in the philosopher’s calendar.’ – Karl Marx, Berlin March 1841
‘Spartacus is revealed as the most splendid fellow in the whole of ancient history. Great general (no Garibaldi), noble character, real representative of the ancient proletariat.’ – Karl Marx, Letter to Friedrich Engels 27 February 1861
It has been said that “Prometheus plus Spartacus equals the starting point of Marxism” (Draper, 1971). Such a view however ignores the importance of what might be considered ‘Hegelian Satanism’. Despite sometimes being equated with Jesus, the idea of Prometheus as a hero to revolutionaries was deeply informed by prior ideas about Satan as the ‘hero’ of John Milton’s ‘Paradise Lost’ — and indeed also it has been said that “the merging of Prometheus and Satan was one of the crucial symbolic transformations” as it related to revolutionary thinking (Boss, 1991, p. 157).
Karl Marx (1818-1883) is also seen to have a deep attachment to Johann Wolfgang von Goethe’s (1749-1832) ‘Faust’ plays/poems. The Goethe story – though distinct in its portrayal of the devil Mephistopheles — was likely influenced by a Miltonian view of Satan, and Goethe praised Milton’s conception even before he wrote his Faust part I.
Marx’ fixation on both the ‘benevolent’ Lucifer-Prometheus (that is, the lightbringer and fire-giver) archetype and the darker/sinister Faustian Mephistopheles (‘deciever-enslaver’) archetype who exchanges short term worldly power for eternal damnation in hell — may be the origins of a ‘Hegelian dialectic’ in Satanism. However, Marx may have been an innovator in simultaneously praising ‘both sides’ of Satan, he was far from the first ‘literary radical’ to idolize these figures in a revolutionary sense.
Marx’ hero Spartacus is symbolically similar figure as the ‘human Prometheus or Lucifer’ who, unlike the fallen angel or Titan instead rises up from his chains against authority for the proletariat but is eventually destroyed by his master (rather than resultantly shackled for his transgression). In addition, a classical interpretation of Spartacus by Plutarch claimed that prophetic signs declared that Spartacus “would have a great and terrible power which would end in misfortune“. In this sense, the idealized historical character of Spartacus – who leads his uprising against the Roman authority despite its foretold catastrophe – may be seen as a ‘synthesis’ of Lucifer-Prometheus (thesis) and Faustian Mephistopheles (antithesis) ‘Satanic hero’ archetypes which were popular among radical writers of the Romantic era.
Stormy Daniels and Michael Avenatti are now feuding, and it seems this might very well be the end of their relationship. This seems related to Daniels’ complaint to the Daily Beast that Avenatti filed the Donald Trump defamation lawsuit without her consent (which she lost and was obligated to pay hefty legal fees on).
While all of this is leaving the question up in the air of whether Daniels and Avenatti have turned on one another, and if his advocacy of her is done for good, it also has me asking if Michael Avenatti’s use of the Twitter platform to preempt a series of incendiary cultural/political debates about sex and race — not to mention his use of it for potential financial malfeasance – might be sufficient grounds for him to be banned there.
I had recently done a quick year-to-date Google Trends analysis of Michael Avenatti, which was unrelated to the Twitter question. Surprisingly however, it shows just how correlated public interest is in him with Twitter. I think this objectively demonstrates how essential the platform is to the enablement of his campaign of apparent lies, hate, and division.
The Argentine submarine, ARA San Juan, which disappeared on November 15, 2017 was announced found on November 18, 2018 by the US oceanic survey company Ocean Infinity. It was located several hundred miles from its last expected position, scattered in pieces and with a partially imploded tail, half a mile deep. The last official communications with the vessel indicated that the Captain reported a malfunction with its snorkel which caused the boat to take on water and may have resulted in an onboard fire in the battery compartment. Currently, Argentina is unsure if they will be able to recover the vessel as their navy does not possess the technological capability. Until the submarine is recovered it will probably be hard to determine what happened to it.
It seems that similar mischief is afoot in the case of the ‘poorly disappeared’ Saudi expat journalist Jamal Khashoggi. The apparent murder and cover up is not something we should be proud of or advocate, but we should stand by Saudi Arabia as our ally and the Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman since this controversy’s amplified status may bear the fingerprints of Russian information operations and have implications for our mutual security. Continue reading “All you useful idiots should stop wringing your hands about Jamal Khashoggi”
It was interesting to glean the identity of the woman Michael Avenatti allegedly attacked. It was Mareli Miniutti, a 24 year old apparent prostitute bit part actress and native of Estonia (legally married to a New Yorker named Michael Miniutti). She has been dating Avenatti since October 2017 and cohabiting in Century City California with him since January 2018. Their disagreement seems to have stemmed from Avenatti’s repeated inability to provide the financial security he had promised [Mareli] Miniutti as an apparent condition for their relationship. Documents filed by Miniutti substantiating the basis for the restraining order state that Avenatti “has made promises to “take care of” her financially and sometimes fails to follow through“, in addition to being “financially controlling” . Documents also seem to state that when Avenatti was unable to provide Miniutti with sugar daddy levels of security, he became “vehemently” opposed to her making money on her own.
Maybe we shouldn’t be so surprised that given Michael Avenatti’s tendency to stiff his landlords, business partners, and the IRS for small fortunes, he seems to have done the same to his lovely, young, unabashedly gold-digging, social climbing, Hollywood girlfriend?
The result of the financial argument appears to be that Avenatti was verbally aggressive (calling Miniutti an “ungrateful f****** b****“), hit her forcefully with pillows, and allegedly dragged her from bed which resulted in superficial scratches and bruising on Miniutti’s leg and side. The court documents around the restraining order allege this was not the first major fight between the two.
Despite the split; I wonder how much she’s been influencing Michael Avenatti in his recent media efforts, if at all? Could she possibly be an ‘agent of influence’ herself? It looks kinda like the cases of Richard Spencer and George Papadapoulos to me, in which similar questions have been asked.
I am not sure what to say about the Michael Avenatti domestic violence arrest. It is the kind of surreal schadenfreude normally reserved for happy dreams that you long for when you wake up; yet, it is all real (in the press anyway). However, I am fairly certain that regardless of whether it ends up being an increasingly common right wing political hoax — which would seem strategically intended to disprove Avenatti’s ‘believe all survivors‘ narrative — or if in fact he did commit felony domestic violence as the LAPD alleges — it is guaranteed to be ironic and damaging for Michael’s brand (and totally in line with the many ‘plagues’ which have befallen him of late for his apparent hubris). In the end, the Michael Avenatti case will prove either 1.) that all accusers cannot be believed and/or 2.) that Michael Avenatti is a dangerous advocate for women and a hypocrite.
Update: We can confirm that Michael Avenatti (DOB: 02-16-71) was booked this afternoon on a felony domestic violence charge (273.5 PC). His bail is set at $50,000.