Today in History:
1900: Fourth International Anarchist Congress held in Paris. Previous ones held in Paris(1889), Zurich(1892) and London(1896). Renegade socialist Minister of the Interior bans the anarchist meeting but allows the parliamentary socialist congress held at the same time to proceed. The anarchists hold their congress anyways in secrecy. Final international congress will be held in Amsterdam in 1907 where the rejection of "propaganda by the deed" is finalized.
1918: IWW declared illegal in Canada. Relegalized next year.
1968: Mexican soldiers murder 17 students in battles at the National University in Mexico City.
1969: Chicago 8 Conspiracy Trial Begins. Judge Julius Hoffman to try David Dillinger, Rennie Davis, Thomas Hayden, Abbie Hoffman, Jerry Rubin, John Froines, Lee Weiner and Bobby Seale. The defendants have little to do with each other but were picked to represent a wide cross section of the opposition to the war in Vietnam. The trial degenerates into a farce.
1991: American children's author Dr. Seuss (Theodor Seuss Geisel 1904-1991) dies. Often miscast as an anarchist by comrades too used to taking their desires for reality. Too bad it's not true. He was a lifelong supporter of the Democratic Party. From his early anti-fascism and opposition to the American right wing he went on to numerous children's' books that showed a libertarian spirit even though he never held the label. These include:
a)Thidwick the Big Hearted Moose (1948). Seen as anti-hunting
b)Horton Hears a Who ! (1954). Said to be a statement on atomic weapons.
c)How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1957). A polemic on materialism.
d)Yertle the Turtle (1958). An allegory on tyranny and a statement that one single act of resistance by one individual can topple a regime.
e)The Lorax(1971). Something of an environmentalist tract. Interesting that lumber companies in Laytonville CA tried to have the book banned on the grounds that it was unfair to the lumbar industry.
f)The Sneeches (1961). A satire on racism.
g)The Butter Battle Book(1984). A parody of the Cold War arms race suggesting that the two sides differ only "on which side they butter their bread".
A few random quotes from the good doctor:
1)"Sometimes the questions are complicated and the answers are simple".
2)"Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind".
3)"Adults are just obsolete children and the hell with them".
4)"You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your shoes.
You can steer yourself
any direction you choose.
You're on your own.
And you know what you know.
And YOU are the one who'll decide where to go."
From: Oh, the Places You'll Go (1990)
5)"Don't give up ! I believe in you all.
A person's a person no matter how small !
And you very small persons will not have to die
If you make yourselves heard ! So come on, now, and TRY !"
From: Horton Hears a Who ! (1954)
6)"And today the great Yertle, that Marvelous he,
Is King of the Mud. That is all he can see.
And the turtles, of course...all the turtles are free
As turtles and, maybe, all creatures should be. "
From: Yertle the Turtle (1958)
7)"Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot,
nothing is going to get better. It's not.
From: The Lorax (1971)
That's it for tonight kiddies. Sleep tight and don't let the ruling class bite. More from Molly tomorrow. Too bad Seuss wasn't an anarchist.
"Mollymew, she was a cat.
And Molly said that that was that.
If anyone wants to gripe and linger,
Mollymew she gives 'em the finger"