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Guy Debord: Revolutionary

A Few Extra Remarks on GDR

Extraphile

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Persona non grata

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PERSONA NON GRATA: A GENEAOLOGY OF PUBLIC CONTENTION UNWRAPPED

WHILE BRACKEN'S OWN BIO IS SKETCHY AT BEST, the following few rather vulgar attempts at character assassination executed upon and around the personality of Len Bracken are a most excellent example of the freewheeling impersonal nature of the Internet, politics and party favors pretty much the full gamut of scenarios washing in off the bullshit coast. These ridiculous attempts to maim a public image nevertheless has failed to silence the quickening pulse of an ordinarily decent man struggling with a hornet's nest of contradicting ambitions. Emancipated from their captivity on the topical BBS served from just across this crippled city to our own SWORG HQ, one might as Bracken himself did, ask why republish these slanderous assaults on a mere writer who doesn't even have a desire for a modem, much less own one. The answer is simple. Hide nothing. Disqualify the absurd. Make peace with the truth by staring by falsehood. When I first read these remarks, I was first stunned then ashamed at how closely others had echoed my own private thoughts on many an occasion when wrestling with the forces of Len Bracken in the early days of our acquaintance. Within the same context however, I also intuited the true Len Bracken, a very likeable if somewhat misdirected and naive intellect, a decent even conservative intelligence worth nurturing, a human being full of jocularity and zest when not stuck in overbearing proselytizing mode. Sadly, overbearing is often the case when one extends a hand to the man who would lead us ALL straight to a Situationist glory in the name of his fully ripened hero, Guy Debord, never mind the contradictions inherent in the call. But fortunately for me this is not the only Len Bracken persona scooting around the DC scene. After three years of beaucoup telephone chats, periodic visits to the other's clandestine hideaway, meeting each other's supportive women, countless jokes and numerous hot and cold projects behind us, I am certain I can speak without resorting to false humilities or incendiary outrages on this character named Len Bracken. I have literally vaporized both the man and the myth on several occasions as is my own fashion, even while he chafed and resisted with futile pleas my own perogative and nature to vitriolically disagree over some obstinate Bracken maneuver of the moment, but I can state without embellishment that Lenny Bracken can be as warm, as sensitive, and upright a man as has ever coagulated the human race. Don't misunderstand. It's not all peace, love, and understanding between this writer and that writer. I have no pretentious public image to protect. Would that I did but I don't. We fight our wars, and move past the charred remains of our marked differences. Nevertheless, I have a well-earned respect for Bracken's most candid desires and his honest accomplishments. Does he or his rhetoric inspire me to rush out to join the HIS revolution of choice? Absolutely not. Do we share more than a few complaints against the world of spectacular domination, share a few twigs of common language built upon the ruins of a lost innocense? Absolutely sweet Marie! That said, read on. After these assassins have impaled themselves on their own final word on the public and the private Len Bracken, I shall finish.

  • Posted by Bhagwan sometime near February 21, 1996:
    I wish I had listened to Billy Boy. Bracken is a violent, dangerous
    psychopath who tried to rip me off.When I stopped him he slugged
    me. He's a leeching asshole, and his writing smells. He thinks he's
    hot shit, he's really cold diarrhea; he'll stain his underwear and
    wipe it in your face. This website should take his crap off. Any
    friend of Bracken's is no friend of mine.

  • Posted by Gregor Markowitz sometime near February 22, 1996:
    Are you sure that's not a 'skootch' mark? Len won't come on here
    anymore. I think he's scared.

  • Posted by Billy Boy on February 22, 1996 at 01:09:23 PM EST:
    A few other "pro-situs" to approach (as people) with extreme caution,
    precisely because they cannot distinguish intellectually honest and
    rigorous confrontations from truly vicious, pseudo-intellectual
    sadomasochistic tantrums are Bob Black and Keith Sanborn. Like
    mafia hit-men, these guys love to kill their own.

  • Posted by Rajneesh on February 21, 1996 at 02:43:00 AM EST:
    No, it's not a fucking stupid "skootch" mark, dude. It's a MEAN STREAK.
    But then you know what the hell a MEAN STREAK is, don't you? Bracken
    can be interesting, but Billy Boy is quite right - approach with caution. I
    can only take Bracken in small dosages; unfortunately, he comes
    pre-packaged in big dosages.

  • Posted by Estonia on May 15, 1997 at 12:06:16 AM EDT:
    Bracken is a creep, a leech who can't write. Bracken is a vicious evil
    psychopath. His books: unreadable. His essays: lumps of cliches. "Oh the
    oppressed workers" oppressed by the likes of Bracken. He'll rip you off
    in the end, & in the meantime he'll suck what he can out of you. Bracken
    is 80% self-promotion and 20% shopworn slogan. Debord? Boring.
    Situationism? Moldering 'zines in a storm grate, a teapot tempest.

  • Posted by Rajneesh on March 15, 1997 at 06:23:04 PM EST:
    Bracken is a megalomaniacal cretin.

  • Posted by Bhagwan on April 03, 1997 at 09:35:57 AM EST:
    Bracken is a megalomaniacal cretin, a violent dangerous asshole who
    doesn't have a clue.

  • Posted by Phil on May 29, 1997 at 08:05:16 AM EDT:
    Well, I met him once and he seemed like an OK bloke. What's his book
    like, that's the real question.


Good question Phil. Perhaps by now most of you have read a review or a few on Bracken's latest book. His Guy Debord: Revolutionary has been given pretty decent marks so far. Len called me this morning to say that he had just mailed his Errata to the publisher, Feral House with the expectation that the document will be published on that website. If not, he will offer it to us at SWORG, especially significant since I proofed and typeset the original text, and thus most of the typos were obviously as much my own responsibility as anyone else's in the creative process of getting this book onto the shelves of America.

Enough about the book. Len Bracken? I've made my list. I'm checking it twice. It's true, you've got to remain on your toes or he might just roll right over you like a tank battalion with self-serving rhetoric and opportunistic fits of convenience, but isn't that the game of revolution? Yet ironically, I've on several occasions accused Bracken of bloated bourgeois mannerisms and saccharin-coated politeness in situations one would think he might bare all teeth. In an occasional collapse of his usual bold fearless veneer, he'll rush in to steal your heart in a self-deprecating confession even I cannot bring myself to list at this time, even when the leveling of the gods exists as the whole source of whatever public strength I can muster. That is to say, bringing down the walls of the overly pompous, overly erudite, overly-waxed headtrippers sums up my own raison d'etre in this world of folly and famegrabbing where art and politics consistently beat each other's brains out with the same stick it uses on us, the general populations. I've seen, heard, and felt Len Bracken's humanity, his reconciliation to the expressions of feeling, and that is enough for me to call him a friend. Of course I don't give my friends as much slack as I give the hapless parade of twits who stomp around in the sloppy mud of their own self-adoration cursing others in a tongue one can only surmize will continue to grow soft and mushy so as not to offend its owner with anything more substantial than a slurfish luminosity no one will even want to inspect. You be the judge.

Bracken meanwhile offers this lone worker an opportunity for a study in friendship among competing ideals. The writing will prosper on its own terms. After all, Bracken is the purported Marxist scholar. I am not even in the ballpark, opposing Marxism as a conflicted theory. Life generates its own insights. The sadness of Guy Debord and the SI cult was its barren soul, its cold noose for friendship and true collaboration, highlighting the very objection I have to the "officialized" revolutionary spirit. Better to mole around the system an intellectual loner than to gang with a harem of intellectual thugs for a short time only to watch the whole shebang crumble into shards of personality no doctrine can repair.
--GABRIEL THY

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