borisbad, 04-05-2008, 10:23 AM:
Having wasted twenty years of my life in the organization, although thankfully still maintaining some of the ideals I originally thought I was supporting when I joined, I can say that it took me a couple of years to really reassess what I had been involved in....When I first left, I still attended a couple of conferences and subscribed to the newspaper (I won't waste the money on the EIR). I still supported what I thought were some of the org's objectives and even rationalized that the FBI operations against Lyn were no different than what had been done to genuinely leftist organizations since Cointelpro and before. Then I started recognizing that the leadership of this org were by and large miserable sadists who enjoyed putting down the members while ingratiating themselves with Lyn. Lyn always talked about inner versus outer directedness, but not one member or so-called leader ever had the audacity to call LaRouche out on any issue until after they left the organization. So how inner-directed are the members?...
eaglebeak, 04-06-2008, 05:47 AM:
Borisbad, in general what you say is true. To confront or denounce or even disagree with Lyn is a social death sentence in the organization--and long after one has left the org, too, because Lyn in those late-night Rheingau-fueled soliloquies rehearses every wrong ever done him...as he sees it. As a result, precious few do it.
However, some did tangle with Lyn while they were still in the org--of course, it meant they were shunned and ridiculed and all that, but:
Carol White had the audacity to leave Lyn; she also argued with him on a number of issues, and memorably, in 1978 or whenever it was that the whole org was supposed to be experiencing waves of joy over Lyn's and Helga's wedding, she said publicly and in my hearing that Lyn's behavior over a previous relationship was reprehensible.
I think it's obvious what Carol (and [her husband] Chris) reaped as a result of Carol's leaving Lyn--if ever any two were targeted for unrelenting psychological warfare in the org, it would be those two.
Ed Spannaus argued with Lyn on a number of things. This got him thrown off the NEC twice, once in the '70s and once in 2006; it got his marriage broken up a few times (Nancy left him twice at Lyn's direction); and it bought him vicious attacks over the years (I may post a memo or two in that line). It even got his work on John Marshall attacked by Lyn in 1990,[FN 1] just a few months after Ed's and Nancy's son died in a car crash--one of Lyn's most outrageous displays of malignant narcissism.
Uwe Henke/von Parpart--whatever--had a few go-rounds with Lyn, but didn't get attacked much, then or later. Maybe Lyn's afraid of him?
In the fall of 1987 Criton confronted Lyn on the fact that Lyn's "Soviet menace" theme was hogwash because the Soviet Union was in a death spiral economically. Lyn's response was to flee, literally, physically. To leave town. Criton was also never really attacked by Lyn--again, maybe Lyn's afraid of him? Without Criton and to a lesser extent Uwe, the whole Platonist turn in the org would never have happened, because you can bet your bottom dollar that Lyn never had the attention span to read Plato. Or Aristotle. Or Euclid, Aristarchus, Eratosthenes, etc....
Fernando and Lyn argued on numerous things while Fernando was in the org. Why do you think Lyn spent so much time, energy, and venom driving him out?
Molly Kronberg and Lyn had a shouting match in New York during the New York trial of 1989--a set-to at the Prosecutor's Office (federal prisoner Lyn was "staying" at Riker's Island in order to be able to testify at the trial, so dedicated was he to the concept of getting on the witness stand) which was occasioned by Molly's challenging Lyn on every point on which he proposed to testify. And of course, in the New York trial Molly made a motion to sever from the other defendants if they called LaRouche to the stand, on the grounds that having LaRouche on the stand was against her interests.
Since Lyn had been yammering away about how vital it was that he testify in the New York case, all of this earned her the label of "traitor," delivered in the National Office at the morning briefing, and frequently thereafter, accompanying her for the next 18 years in the org, with Lyn, in his cups, ranting and raving about how she was a British agent, but that was okay because Nancy would "manage" her.
Paul Goldstein always claimed that he told Lyn off on numerous occasions. Who knows? Maybe it's true. But Paul was part of the golden "security" fantasy Lyn entertained, so that was a shield to him. And he can be quite a fantasist, so it may not be true. I never witnessed such a faceoff.
Lastly, before the European Exec Committee dropped out, or was forced out, or whatever it was that they did, a number of EEC and EC members told Lyn to shove it, starting at least as early as an EEC meeting in spring 2006 and continuing till that fall when they left. That included Uwe Friesecke, Renate Mueller, and Michael Liebig. LaRouche Planet (click here) has or had posted the audio of the May 28, 2006 meeting , which is pretty funny, with various members of the European leadership telling Lyn he has his head wedged.
eaglebeak, 04-07-2008, 08:37 PM:
The animosity between Lyndon LaRouche and Ed Spannaus goes back to the early 1970s. Ed is stubborn, pigheaded, and has numerous other related, and not entirely admirable, qualities.
But the good side of [these qualities], is that they drove Lyn wild. Plus Ed had the temerity, or perhaps the foolhardiness, to argue with Lyn from time to time.
Ed was a hatchetman for Lyn on many occasions--there was something very Stalinist about the org in the old days--and it got worse from there.
In any case, at various points, to punish Ed for being unimaginative, uncreative, and insufficiently wildly enthusiastic ("steady Ed," as Lyn derisively called him, when he--Lyn--wasn't making stupid Ed-related jokes about Lake Placid or flatulence), Lyn forced Ed and Nancy to split up. Or rather, Lyn induced Nancy, who is easily induced, believe me, to leave Ed on two occasions.
In 1975, Lyn threw Ed off the NEC for some reason or other (LaRouche Youth Movement members should ask ask Nancy and watch her turn beet-red). And Nancy left him--can't remember if that was the first or second time. Of course, Nancy remained on the NEC. She was Lyn's biggest fan--and to this very day she remains, no matter how vile he is to her.
Anyhow, in the 1970s, Ed and another founding-member-turned-basketcase-who-had-been-thrown-off-the-NEC (I refer, of course, to Tony Papert) were deployed to Computron, a sort of exile from the National Center and the Exec Committee and the nerve center of the international movement and all that fantastical stuff.
Ed managed to claw his way back on the NEC in about 1980, as I recall--after Gus [LaRouche's former top aide Gus Kalimtgis] and half of Legal had left. Ed thereupon became the NEC member in charge of Legal, much to Barbara Boyd's disgust.
In 1984, Lyn flew into a series of rages about the NBC case--that it was being sabotaged, deliberately mismanaged, etc. First, his attorney, Mike Morganroth, refused to sue NBC and was replaced as Lyn's attorney by the ineffable Odin Anderson. Next, the lawyer Barbara Boyd had hired, one Mike Dennis, was ascertained to be a KGB agent or a British agent or an FBI agent or something.
And the case was being "sabotaged." So, in a memorable meeting in July 1984, at his Virginia "residence" (Woodburn), Lyn (1) threw Zeke Boyd off the NC as punishment for his wife Barbara's behavior in Legal; (2) threw Barbara out of Legal and sent her to Chicago to stand on a street corner and hawk newspapers (we had newspapers, back then); and (3) spent the rest of the evening raging at Ed Spannaus for allowing Legal to be such a bunch of saboteurs.
Immediate consequences: the psychological end of Zeke Boyd. The terrorization of Barbara. (This contributes to the way she is nowadays.) The origin of Lyn's long-running meme about Legal-as-saboteurs, and about Ed's blameworthiness.
It's 1988. Barbara's back in Legal (but Zeke's not back on the NC); Lyn
has managed spectacularly to lose the NBC case (in 1984); Ed is running
a Legal office whose position on loan repayments is recorded in one of
his notebooks as "Lyn: loans. Forgive or forget." (That is, the lenders
forgive the loans, and/or we forget the loans.)
Wham! In October 1988, the Alexandria Federal indictment
comes down, bringing in Lyn, Ed, Will Wertz, Dennis Small, and some
In a matter of moments (it is, after all, the rocket
docket), the trial is over, the trial is lost, and all the defendants
are headed off to Federal prison.
Lyn thereupon conceived his deepest hatred for Ed, I'd
say. He concluded that it was all Ed's fault--never mind that Ed and the
others were just following the idiotic loan policies and indefensible
tax postures that Lyn had insisted on adopting.
Wham! In October 1988, the Alexandria Federal indictment comes down, bringing in Lyn, Ed, Will Wertz, Dennis Small, and some others.
In a matter of moments (it is, after all, the rocket docket), the trial is over, the trial is lost, and all the defendants are headed off to Federal prison.
Lyn thereupon conceived his deepest hatred for Ed, I'd say. He concluded that it was all Ed's fault--never mind that Ed and the others were just following the idiotic loan policies and indefensible tax postures that Lyn had insisted on adopting.
That's pretty much the deal. Lyn hated Ed ever after, and to be quite frank, Ed wasn't too crazy about Lyn, either. But Ed was married to Nancy, and Nancy was and is nuts about Lyn, so....
Anyhow, here is Lyn's memorable memo of July 6, 2006 throwing Ed off the NEC for a second time. This time, Ed was being blamed for changing some stupid headline on a pamphlet that he hadn't changed. But when people told Lyn that Ed wasn't the "culprit," Lyn brushed that aside. Ed had to go.
Note also that in this brief memo Lyn lets fly at a few other hate-objects: Ken and Molly Kronberg (as in "Ken's mollyfication") and Nancy Spannaus (whom Lyn delights in beating up, for some reason). All these people could also be included under the rubric of the hated "Editorial" [staff] about which he writes to this day...all in an endless Legal-Editorial conspiracy against him. Monstrously unfair, of course, to Nancy, who would lie down and die for Lyn--and sooner than that, would kill--but hey! whaddya gonna do?
P.S. Just about every "fact" in Lyn's memo is flatly false, in general and in detail.
NOTE: The following memo is for the information of members only:
From: PGM::HSE 6-JUL-2006 09:41:41.63
Subj: ON ED SPANNUS' STATUS
Subj: ON ED SPANNUS' STATUS
FROM:LAR " Lyndon H. LaRouche, Jr. "
SUBJ:ON ED SPANNUS' STATUS
2:48 PM 7/6/2006 EDT
To make things clear, as they stand at this moment. Ed Spannaus' clear-cut violation of trust, was to use the occasion when Jeff Steinberg and I were out of the country, to insert an utterly absurd,and malicioius lie, the myth of an "Al Qaeda" factor, rather than Synarchism, behind Rohatyn, into an edition of the morning briefing. This offense by him led into a pattern of sabotage of our work over more than two crucial weeks, which led to my suspension of him from the NEC on clear- cut, necessary grounds.
His persisting malfeasance on that specific point, then served as a thematic feature of a series of actions, in the course of which Nancy Spannaus resisted one attempted [sic] to sabotage our coverage of the current looting of the U.S. economy by Rohatyn, et al., but capitulated into Ken Kronberg's mollyfication of Nancy, that by unlawul [sic]changes in the material presented for printing: an action for which printers are customarily denied payment on the product thus changed, as is the result in this present instance. [Lyn means he is not paying PMR for the pamphlet, because the headline was changed. Not by Ken, of course, but what does that have to do with anything?--EB]
Many questions remained unsettled. 1.) Why did Ed lie in the first place, in inserting and then continuing to promote his "Al Qaeda" hoax? 2.) What is the background and motivation for other attempted sabotage of the publishing of the material assigned for publication? [To this day, no one knows what Lyn is talking about here.--EB] 3.) In what degree did this intentional sabotage of the most crucial current factors of our work affect the relevant operations in Europe?
The fact remains, that in light of the ricocheting consequences of Ed's intial, fraudulent action in the AM Bfg, and his persistence in asserting his innocence in the affair as a whole, it is clear that Ed should have no voice in the deliberations of the NEC at this time. He is, so to speak, "reduced to the rank of buck private" until such time as a different status might be generously bestowed upon him. [He can lick the floor in the National Office.--EB]
The following additional remarks are needed to situate the discussion of the foregoing matter.
The complicity of various persons in various ways, either aiding the violations, or abetting their perpetuation by inappropraite [sic] silence, is to be recognized as a reflection of the continuation of period 1990-1999 that avowed pro-fascist Fernando Quijano used my impaired legal status to wreck our association, and to perpetrate immoral acts. During that period, many among our associates became accustomed to tolerating many disgusting actions by the circles, either explicitly upholding known fascist ("integrist") Quijano, or avoiding an overt expression of resistance to his financial and other irregularities in the management of our affairs.
This tendency was reenforced by the effects of a population, our own, which was afflicted by the combined effect of being ageing Baby Boomers and a tendency toward the sophistry which became typical of much of the ageing ranks of our association during the 1990-1999 interval. The often hysterical reaction against the development of the youth movement, as seen on both sides of the Atlantic, was a correlated symptom of this tendency toward intellectual and emotional decadence.
We have now entered a time, when the fate of civilization depends significantly on commitment to defend civilization where even the majority of the member of the U.S. Congress lack the wont, or simply lack the guts to act patriotically. It is crucial, that the stink of Sophist cowardice expressed by complicity with the intention of Ed's lies, be extirpated, and that we mobilize in a spirit of a combat situation in defense of civilization. We are now closing ranks, and demanding a higher sense of moral responsibility for one's opinions among ourselves.
Well, there you have it. To me the wonder is not that there are no more Ed Spannaus bylines now, but that even after this absurd memo and several more like it, Ed continued to try to lick the hand that whipped him.
Maybe Ed finally said the hell with it. Or maybe (more like it), he can't be "politically trusted" to get the line "right."
xlcr4life, 04-08-2008, 06:49 AM:
Ed Spannaus has a few other problems with Lyn. I can't believe that he and Nancy having two kids was not bothering Lyn as he was giving his "we are too busy saving humanity to have kids" routine. I always wondered if that is why Nancy was so hell bent on...taking pregnant LC woman to the abortion clinics....
Ed also made a major error when he placed a slug in the briefing which identified a San Diego newspaper story as the origin of rumors of CIA involvement in crack cocaine. Lyn ripped him yet another **** because he violated a basic rule in that you never allow anyone to get credit for something except Lyn in the briefing.
There is, I believe, a whole other story about the trials involving Ed and Lyn. I have heard a few versions, but the basic story revolves around how Lyn was going to protect his booty by letting the LC members take the rap for everything as he pleaded ignorance.
Ever notice that the only time Lyn says he does not know something is when it involves taxes and looting?
In one version of this legal tale it seems that Lyn wanted to make a deal with the prosecutors to be a witness against the LCers on trial to avoid a jail sentence. Lyn would say that he was completely out of the loop and knew nothing, nothing about what was going on. Poor Ed, a self-proclaimed legal expert (as his wife's editing of [The New Federalist] always seemed to declare) was caught in the middle of explaining this to lawyers and the defendants. I really do not know the full story, only that Ed eventually was blamed by Lyn for everything going wrong.
You really can see how beaten down Ed is by his taking this for decades and decades. He should be in his 60s now with not a dime to his name and Lyn's longevity genes making sure that he will be beaten some more when he cashes his first social security check, if he makes it that long.
Just think, yutes [LaRouche Youth Movement members]: a leader of the LC who joined at around the age you did, and who devoted every day of his adult life to pleasing Lyn, ends up mentally beaten like an abused wife in a marriage with Lyn that he could never break away from because of so many fears and of how Lyn whipped him in the first Beyond Psych [ego-stripping] session.
In quite a few talks I have had with friends who are former members, the prediction that one would end up old and broke while clinging to this lunacy scared many people to leave the LC as they wised up.
 LaRouche often encourages his followers to undertake historical research to find data that will bolster his theory of the "inner elites" and of the importance of certain past thinkers or political leaders whom LaRouche fancies were forerunners of his own presumed greatness. To engage in such research is often a means to escape temporarily from organizational drudge work (or, for high-level members, simply to get out of the office and spend time in a quiet library). If the NCLC leadership decides to publish the resulting article or book, this is a high honor--one is participating in and validating LaRouche's greatness by showing how he has inspired one to reflect an image of him (in other words, one has become like unto a lower-level angel in Christian neo-Platonism). For a person caught up in this make-believe chain of intellectual being it can be devastating to have LaRouche suddenly announce that the person's research product is without value. (Ex-members say that LaRouche does this routinely, and believe it's a result of his jealousy--he has always lacked the discipline to do research on his own and to work out a set of ideas grounded in solid fact.) LaRouche's tirade against Spannaus's study of early Supreme Court chief justice John Marshall was especially cruel since (a) Spannaus's son had just died and (b) Spannaus was locked up in prison at the time for participating in loan frauds to enrich LaRouche.