ON LONG WEEKENDS, the Houston Chronicle apparently takes off early and leaves the editorial page in charge of a college intern.
"Feed the goldfish. Water the plants. And, for goodness sakes, don't . . .
. . . sing another song of praise for Occupy Wall Street."
Today's Labor Day editorial commemorates "industrial strikes and workers' protests that helped raise the common man," but with a Texian angle. There was, it seems, a Great Cowboy Strike here in 1883. Who knew?
Well, who knew -- and this is my point -- is something called Jacobin Magazine. The Chronicle cites it for the article about the cowboys who woke up one day as proletarians, workers of the world uniting, a reminder "that the Lone Star State was no stranger to fights between capital and labor."
What is Jacobin, you ask, besides the self-assigned name of the idiots and reprobates, fundamental transformers of another age, who dreamed up the French Revolution?
It is a six-year-old quarterly print magazine (a whopping 14,999 subscribers, plus the Houston Chronicle, it seems) with a heavy Internet presence (another 700,000, says the mag), describing itself as "a leading voice of the American left, offering socialist perspectives on politics, economics, and culture."
Jacobin is "a bright light in a dark times," says Noam Chomsky---a "really impressive contribution to sanity and hope." An "improbable hit, buoyed by the radical stirrings of the Occupy movement," says New York Times culture writer Jennifer Schuessler. "[V]ery explicitly on the radical left, and sort of hostile to liberal accommodationism," adds Chris Hayes, MSNBC. "[I]t's great to see youth embracing radical politics and serious thinking," observes Doug Henwood, proprietor of his very own newsletter, Left Business Observer.
From a Wikipedia entry: "variously described as democratic, socialist, and Marxist"; "a journal of 'democratic socialist thought'"; "unexpected success and engagement with mainstream liberalism"; demonstrates "a revival of interest in Marxism among young intellectuals"; "data-driven analysis and Marxist commentary"; "an irreverent and accessible style."
So this is a Marxist magazine (a) that Houston Chronicle editors read and (b) that that Houston Chronicle editors don't mind admitting to having read. They are sorta proud, actually. Even if you buy nothing else in this post, take note (c) that editorialists citing a far-left magazine have an obligation to readers, not satisfied here, to say it is a far-left magazine.
Next time you hear me say the Houston Chronicle editorial board is out of touch with both Texas and reality, remember that I'm talking about self-identified Jacobeans (or Jacobean sympathizers), marching proudly under one of the bloodiest flags in human history, Marxism, and espousing the latest economic, political, and cultural ideas of the nineteenth century.
Or maybe it's just that darned college intern.
Meanwhile the goldfish and ficuses are dead . . . along with the integrity and reputation of the Houston Chronicle editorial page.