Vanity Fair profiles The eXile: "Gutsy...visceral...serious journalism...abusive, defamatory...poignant...paranoid...and right!"
MSNBC: Mark Ames and Yasha Levine
Broke the Koch Brothers' Takeover of America
Libertards / September 16, 2011
By Mark Ames

Adam Curtis has just posted a must-read blog that tries to answer the big political dead-end we face today: Why can’t we think up any new ideas besides the failed libertarian free-market ideology that brought us to ruin? Curtis’ answer: We’re all prisoners of the Libertarian Think-Tank Archipelago.

Curtis argues that the reason we can’t think of any ideas is because free-market think-tanks have perverted and strangled ideological thinking–both in Britain, whose free-market think-tanks were essentially set up by one of America’s Founding Fathers of libertarianism, FA Harper–and in America, where the free-market think-tank archipelago has done a fantastic job of transforming the political imagination into something like Amway salesmanship. Above it all stands the Amway Master Salesman, Friedrich von Hayek, author of Glenn Beck’s favorite book, The Road To Serfdom.

Curtis’s piece includes some hilariously grotesque detours, including the story of how one of the founders of free-market Thatcherism, Maj. Oliver Smedley, murdered a pirate radio pop legend in anger because free-market Smedley could not tolerate free-market competition. His pirate radio rival was too authentically anti-government rather than pro-business, and too good; and as such, he was fucking with Smedley’s own fake-pirate-radio project, which was really an Astroturf PR campaign meant to turn Britain’s youth against the state. So Smedley hired a gang of thugs–real free-market pirates–to “raid” and seize the rival pirate radio station, and hold its staff hostage. Later, when Smedley’s popular rival visited him at his cottage to demand answers, Maj. Smedley answered with a shotgun blast, liberating his rival from his bodily vessel.

Pirate rock’n’roll radio as a PR campaign to get kids identifying with libertarian crony-capitalism–that’s definitely something worth murdering for.

Naturally, Maj. Smedley was acquitted of the murder.

Curtis also posts some amazing clips showing Margaret Thatcher looking on horrified as an even harder-core Thatcherite, Linda Whetstone (daughter of Anthony Fisher, founder of the first libertarian think-tank in Britain with none other than Oliver Smedley) delivers a “Let them die!” speech to the Conservative Party back in 1978, when that sort of talk still made right-wingers uneasy in public. Recently, Linda Whetstone resigned in controversy from her now-destroyed climate-denialist libertarian think-tank, the International Policy Institute (IPN). The founding director of the IPN, Julian Morris, quickly found a new job in the U.S.–well, take a wild guess where–as Vice President of the Reason Foundation. You know, the Koch brothers’ Reason Foundation. That’s the nice thing about being a Koch Whore. They’ve always got your backside.

Click here to read and watch Curtis’s blog post.


Add your own

  • 1. John Drinkwater  |  September 16th, 2011 at 11:19 am

    Book recommendation: The Origin of Capitalism by scholar E.M. Wood. Short read that explains why capitalism will only increasingly exploit and impoverish the many while enriching the few, *even with* tons of ‘correcting’ government regulation. Ultimately, the only way to curb capitalism is to abolish it and replace it with socialism.

  • 2. Cum  |  September 16th, 2011 at 11:30 am

    I hope that one day one of us readers gets close enough to spit on David Koch. The horse cum pie is also a great idea but you couldnt get close enough to a Koch with a pie. And you’ll surely be tackled and tazed as soon as the spittle leaves your lips so you would have one shot to get it right. Aim for the mouth.

    Too bad I’m a coward.

  • 3. Edmund Dorkey  |  September 16th, 2011 at 12:16 pm

    Dear eXholes,
    I was thinking the other day while I was riding my motor scooter around these captivating isles that the libertarians have destroyed the English language. If you can think of a word or phrase of any value or use in poking holes in laissez-faire capitalism, the chances are that it has already been colonized by intreprid intellectual explorers at Cato or cretinous capers like Frank Luntz, proleptic of some future defense. Or maybe it is because my imagination is not powerful enough or my mind tenacious enough. Oh, well.


    Edmund Dorkey, Turks and Caicos Islands

  • 4. Rehmat  |  September 16th, 2011 at 12:38 pm

    I’m affraid Libertarianism is another name for Capitalism – just like the failed faile Christian-rights established a new ‘stick’, the Tea Party, to ruin America financially and politically.

    Almost every ISM (Capitalism, Communism, Socialism, Nazism, Zionism, Fascism, etc.) – has been created and maintained to serve the interests of a small rich minority and their not-so-rich collaborators. All these ISMs have been worshipped and protected like some divine religions. The high priests (mostly Jews), who conceived these ISMs, made sure that their doctrine is accepted blindly by the great majority of world’s middle-class and poor people.

    The rich and parasites, who have been the main beneficiary of capitalist system – also created wage-disparity, bankruptcy, loan, paper-money, credit cards, and world monetary organizations like World Bank, IMF, Frderal Reseve, etc. – to keep their grip over world monetary system, so much so, that during every recession – it’s the poor majority which suffers, while the rich become richer on the expense of their victims – the taxpayers……….

  • 5. NATIONAL BOLSHEVIK  |  September 16th, 2011 at 1:02 pm



  • 6. Josephus P. Franks  |  September 16th, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    Brilliant, as usual for Adam Curtis. I hope he does a full-fledged documentary on this question. It’s like a writer for Real Time put it once: you can’t call yourself a think tank when all of your ideas are stupid.

  • 7. Jose  |  September 16th, 2011 at 2:30 pm

    There is nothing wrong with social democracy or the ‘third way’ however to get all ‘The Wire’ on you there is something wrong with the way institutions are run both in the public and private spheres by concentrating power at the top. The closest ‘solution’ I have found is a form of industrial or institutional democracy along the lines of Ricardo Semler in Brazil.

  • 8. gyges  |  September 16th, 2011 at 3:06 pm

    The Conspiraloon Alliance draws attention to some of the shortcomings of Curtis, here.

  • 9. NoPast  |  September 16th, 2011 at 4:20 pm

    Adam Curtis is the goat!

    his documentary “The Century of Self” should be a required vision

  • 10. NATIONAL BOLSHEVIK  |  September 16th, 2011 at 5:54 pm


  • 11. Mudhead  |  September 16th, 2011 at 7:57 pm

    @6 and 9

    Yes, Curtis’ blog is outstanding. I’ve spent hours there, lost in the all the good stuff.

  • 12. Cum  |  September 16th, 2011 at 9:56 pm

    That conspiraloon stuff was a substance-less accusation of Adam Curtis making substance-less documentaries.

    And what’s with the conspiracy people always freaking out about Jews. I mean yeah we’re pretty smart and all, but we’re not behind every goddamn historical event that happens on this planet. It’s flattering, but we just don’t have that kind of organization, even if the boogeymen Mossad and Hasbara are pretty effective at what they do.

    Ha, Jews are responsible for every ISM, right. We poisoned the well of political discourse.

  • 13. mad props  |  September 17th, 2011 at 12:55 am

    you know a real gross thing about libertarians


    “Hi I’m from the fucking Reason Commission for Intelligence in a Rational Reality-Based Society, let me show you just how much esteem I hold myself in”

    hello bull, meet shit.

  • 14. Sith Master Sean  |  September 17th, 2011 at 12:55 am

    People of Exiled:

    Libertarianism is irrelevant. The Empire combines the best elements of fascism, socialism, capitalism, imperialism, technocracy, democracy and theocracy – all other models of civilization are now obsolete.

    All we must do now is await the arrival of the God-Emperor – the superman-savior who will found the Empire and lead our planet to unimaginable glories. Soon this super-being – who some will call the Antichrist – will make his appearance, and year one of the Galactic Imperium will declared. Hurry, o celestial one! In this dark hour, the Empire is mankind’s only hope!

  • 15. gyges  |  September 17th, 2011 at 3:04 am

    @Cum 11. Your study of the Conspiraloon Alliance doesn’t reach novice level – try harder.

  • 16. Martin Finnucane  |  September 17th, 2011 at 4:51 am

    The interview with Hayek (or is it von Hayek) is pretty creepy. He advocates, unambiguously and apologetically, destroying the economy, and the working class with it, to reach his free market libertard nirvana: undifferentiated atomic robot-people, responding to “abstract signals,” with no forms of collective self-organization allowed. And then he calls it liberty. Victorville CA as paradise, with one-driver-per-car on the interstate, baking in the sun, forever.

  • 17. Zog  |  September 17th, 2011 at 5:57 am

    Dear Cum

    Don’t you think the idea that the Jews are behind everything is fueled by Jews themselves? Jews invented AOL Messenger as they frequently point out, so surely manipulating every historical event for the last several thousand years would be easy for them.

  • 18. tz  |  September 17th, 2011 at 7:29 am

    Except that “libertarianism” today means the corporate socialism and crony capitalism. In free markets, failures go bankrupt, and fraudsters go to jail. But it is being sold as “capitalism”, or a “free market”. Government bailed out, subsidized, protected cartels are neither.

    You will fail if you call on Geithner (or someone like his predecessor) to do anything about these industries – you are calling for the government cronies to regulate their friends instead of calling for equal justice and the freedom to fail.

    When you call for government to protect you, it ends up screwing you and protecting them. They can afford more and better lobbyists. Goldman Sachs was the largest contributor to Obama. And the congress. And you wonder why they don’t do anything other than ignore when they don’t actually attack the little guys trying to keep GS from foreclosing?

    If there was a free market, GS, AIG, Citi, BoA, Chase and the rest would have gone through bankruptcy or receivership, and most of their top guys would be in jail.

  • 19. Rehmat  |  September 17th, 2011 at 8:43 am

    AHA – that reminds me 2010 study by Professor Daniel Bar-Tal (Tel Aviv University) in which he concluded that most Jews prefer to live in self-denial…..

  • 20. One-eyed Jesus muffin  |  September 17th, 2011 at 9:16 am

    This is Radio Clash!

  • 21. Andy  |  September 17th, 2011 at 10:00 am

    Anti-semitism is a byproduct, like a kind of social toxic waste. They had it in the 1880s, the 1930s, and today. It helps keep the system going as it simultaneously appears radical and questioning, while helping to discredit authentic radicalism and discourages real questioning of the status quo. It’s a fake answer.

    Of course, if one of those fuckheads does ever end up in power, well, hey… IBM can build them the database and the ID cards, Bayer can make the gas and GM can provide the cattle trucks, just like last time. That’s Freedom™, folks!

    And Edmund Dorkey – that’s just what happens when you live in a tyrrany – language is turned against ittself. Orwell really knew what he was talking about on that score.

  • 22. King Mob  |  September 17th, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    Keep the socialist dream alive, Ames. You should have sold out and become a Neocon slut like Hitchens, but now this is where you find yourself, writing attacks on a mostly irrelevant US political ideology for pennies. Meanwhile, there’s a Democrat in the White House, haven’t you noticed?

  • 23. Dammerung  |  September 17th, 2011 at 2:25 pm

    A free market is one in which bankers print money and hand it to themselves. Thanks to the exiled, I learn something stupid every day.

  • 24. ☭ mouse ☭  |  September 17th, 2011 at 5:22 pm

    Yeah seriously… the 9/11 troofer stuff is mindnumbingly boring and stupid only 10 years later….

    “THE JOOS DID IT !!” bullshit is centuries if not millenia old already.

    Give it the fuck up

  • 25. Flatulissimo  |  September 18th, 2011 at 8:42 am

    Cum was being charitable. That website is virtually unreadable. The post about Curtis was just as described, so I looked at the first page. The five most recent posts are just youtube videos, without comment or explanation. Then when you get to some text it doesn’t make any sense and I get the vague idea they were trying to be funny but failing. That’s 30 seconds of my time wasted skimming through bullshit, and enough for me to wash my hands of it. But maybe your time is less valuable than mine.

  • 26. Jose  |  September 18th, 2011 at 8:47 pm

    I like this part of an interview with Adam Curtis. Though AC seems to be, ‘There has to be a man with an idea. Out there. Somewhere. Please!’.

  • 27. animedad  |  September 20th, 2011 at 4:49 pm

    there are ideas but the culture system has made everyone too dumb to understand them

  • 28. Jose  |  September 21st, 2011 at 4:18 pm

    I blame TED talks.

  • 29. Rehmat  |  September 23rd, 2011 at 8:46 am

    Capitalism at Best

    It is estimated that there are 450 billionaires and 3,000,000 millionaires in United States as per 2008. The net worth of all households in US (population aound 300 million) as per June 30, 2008 – was US$56 trillion. The 450 billionaires are worth US$1 trillion, while 3,000,000 millionairs are worth US$11 trillion – which comes to one percent of US population owning more than 21 per cent of countries resorces….

  • 30. Evgeny  |  October 17th, 2011 at 1:53 am

    Mark, thank you much for the tips!

    We discussed the article by Curtis at Inoforum:

  • 31. David  |  October 20th, 2016 at 7:02 pm

    Talk about withholding information and dropping context! Calvert was killed at Medley’s house and he was cleared of all charges based on self-defense. In short, there are the facts, and then there are the wild accusations and suppositions portrayed as fact in this article.

Leave a Comment

(Open to all. Comments can and will be censored at whim and without warning.)


Required, hidden

Subscribe to the comments via RSS Feed