Random Shots: The East Is Read

Against the Current, No. 35, November/December 1991

R.F. Kampfer

THE-SOVIET UNION may wind up with all the centralized authority of the British Commonwealth, with Gorbachev in command of a color guard and a marching band.

The new mass movements in the Soviet Union will probably make as many mistakes as the bureaucracy, but their errors will not be as institutionalized.

Meanwhile, Mick Jagger, who came out in support of Yeltsin before George Bush did, was reportedly invited to Moscow for a victory concert. Remember when we used to crank up the volume on “Street Fighting Man’ to get ourselves up for a demo?

And speaking of Yeltsin: Weren’t those poses he struck speaking from atop an armored car—recalling the image of Lenin at the Finland Station—much too dramatic to be accidental?

The Soviet bureaucracy—party, government and military—might have held power if they had come out either for the coup, or against it Instead they hesitated, and lost.

In Yugoslavia, if the fratricidal slaughter does nothing else, it may at least show the newly independent Soviet republics the dangers of unrestrained nationalism.

It is said that nine flags will fly over Europe by the turn of the century. But eight of them will be over Yugoslavia.

Bush is supporting Gorbachev: He’d rather deal with one leader than fifteen.

Kampfer’s Sports Kolumn

PAINT-BALL COMBAT games aregetting out of hand. Now they’ve added grenades to the arsenal.

In poker, it’s not the worst hands that ruin you, but the second-best ones.

WeIrd Notes

THE “URBAN COWGIRLS” comic strip slipped one by in the Detroit Free Press August 2, when they mentioned the Secular Humanist Institute of Technology. Was that deliberate? Accidental? A Freudian slip?

Bumper Stickers we’d like to see: “Politically Correct—Not bragging, or complaining;” and, “My Child Cot Early Parole For Good Behavior.”

Since one is much more likely to be murdered by a spouse than by a criminal, wouldn’t a seven-day waiting period for marriage licenses save more lives than one for handguns?

Be very polite to women who wear “Louise Needed a Thompson” T-shirts.

Don’t Forget the War

AFTER THE FIGHTING ended, the front-line U.S. showed a lot more compassion for the Iraqis than Washington has—before or since.

The suffering inflicted on the civilian of Baghdad is horrendous, but not more so than that endured by the civilians of Dresden in the World War II firebombing.


IT WAS SYMPTOMATIC of the U.S. labor bureaucracy that it brought 300,000 workers to Washington for Labor Day, and had no idea what to do with them once they got there.

If Pilate had given Jesus twenty years, the world could have avoided a great deal of nonsense.

Dan Quayle tried LSD once, but he couldn’t keep it lit.

November-December 1991, ATC 35