Tag Archives: Schopenhauer

DECASSERES PLANS U. S. LIBERTY FIGHT

THE PHILADELPHIA INQUIRER, SUNDAY MORNING. AUGUST 11. 1935


DECASSERES PLANS U. S. LIBERTY FIGHT

Philosopher Turns to New Credo in “War on Collectivism”

NEW YORK, Aug. 10 (A. P.) Benjamin DeCasseres, philosopher and descendant of philosophers, turned today from his abstractions to what he termed “a fighting political realism in the defense of American liberty.”

“I purpose from now on,” he said, to use all my forces in battling for the preservation of the American-British-French ideal of civil liberties against Communism. Fascism, Nazism or any form of collectivism that ties the individual to the Juggernaut of a dictatorial State.

“The difference between Communism and Fascism is a difference in stench.” The descendant of Spinoza, great Dutch philosopher of the 18th century, turned his back on the philosophers of antiquity and modernity.

Rings Liberty Bell

“I have hobnobbed with Buddha and Aeschylus, Plato and Schopenhauer, Spinoza and Nietzsche, Victor Hugo and Baudelaire, Goethe and Heine, Montaigne and Whitman, Hegel and Keats, Thomas Hardy and Dostoievsky,” he said,”-in fact, with the whole earth brain trust.

“I salute them in temporary farewell, walk down Olympus into Independence Hall, roll up my sleeves, carry the Liberty Bell up to the tower—and ring it till it either cracks to dust or until I die.” For his battle cry DeCasseres has taken a new American credo, culled from the men he considers the great type American political leaders—Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Jefferson.

His credo:

“I believe with Benjamin Franklin that any nation that exchanges its liberty for security is not worthy of either.

“I believe with Thomas Jefferson that the least government is the best government.

Activities Divided

“All my life I have divided my spiritual, mental and emotional activities between Olympus and Independence Hall.”

“That is, part of me pursued truth and beauty in the great thinkers and poets, and part of me pursued with passionate militancy the fierce individualism of Thomas Jefferson.

“Today I leave Olympus, except for short visits, and move, bag and baggage, into Independence Hall and Monticello.” DeCasseres said he considered that “there is a mighty war being fought now in every country in the world.”

“It is individualism versus collectivism; freedom versus reactionary totalitarianism.

“I shall advocate individualism against all forms of standardized stagnation, sterile conformity, beehive Socialism. Communism and the efforts of capitalism to monopolize the necessities of life.

“The most brutal form of capitalism is the totalitarian State: Russia, Germany and Italy.”

The philosopher, although he has turned from thoughts to deeds, insists on the rational approach to action.

“Every American worthy of the name,” he said, should know why he is an American.

“And having found out that this greatest deliberate experiment ever made in human liberties, with all its attendant faults and corruptions, is the superior politically of any other Government that has heretofore appeared on earth, he should be prepared to risk everything to save it from the threatened universal catastrophe of the superstitious belief that the State is a miracle machine.”

 

America’s Most Unpublished Author

As published in the San Bernardino Sun, Volume 67, Number 23, 23 September 1930


Intelligentsia Pole Star Gives Bernard Shaw Merciless Flaying In Volume Lauding H.L Mencken

America’s Most Unpublished Author at Last ‘Clicks’ and Works to Be Printed

By H. ALLEN SMITH (United Press Correspondent) NEW YORK, Sept. 22.

Benjamin Decasseres, pole star of the American intelligentsia and sometimes called the most unpublished author in the United States, has written a new book that will be published. It is called “Mencken and Shaw, the Anatomy of America’s Voltaire and England’s Other John Bull.” Between its covers Decasseres sets out, with a pen that drips blue fire, to prove that George Bernard Shaw is a colossal mountebank and that H. L. Mencken is the true modern Voltaire.

Lives in Apartment Off Gramercy Park

This being an interesting thesis, Decasseres submitted to an interview. He lives in an apartment off Gramercy park surrounded by books, green pencils, unpublished manuscripts and an ice box well stocked with tannic acid. The “Lone Eagle” of American literature wore brown striped pajamas, of a silken texture, during the interview. First off he brought out his 16 unpublished books. These range in topic from a volume of poetry to the love letters of Bio and Benjamin Decasseres. “The publishers,” Decasseres said, “won’t touch my stuff because I won’t go to literary teas.” His new volume on Mencken and Shaw will be published by Silas Newton, a Texas oil man. Newton may publish all of Decasseres works. The 57-year-old author believes that Mencken’s books should be placed in the schools, “to teach Americans how to write English.” He holds that Mencken is the greatest writer as well as the greatest social satirist this country has ever produced. “I have taken Mencken and Shaw,” he said, “as the world’s two outstanding sane rebels. But my idea is that Mencken’s sanity is sincere, while Shaw’s is not. Shaw delights in making people believe he is insane, which he probably is. He is a cheap publicity-seeker, a publicity-shark of the lowest type. He is like a trick bear, always clowning. “The big difference lies in the fact that Mencken has character, Shaw has none. I don’t agree with Mencken on many of his literary and esthetic judgments. But I believe that his grandeur comes from his narrowness, his height comes from his lack of breadth. “Mencken glories in the use of words. He takes the same pleasure in studying the use of words that a Beethoven would take in the study of notes, or a Rembrandt in the study of colors.” The frequent charge of insincerity, brought against Mencken, irritates Decasseres.

Has Been Pursuing One Line of Thought

“For 20 years.” he said, “the man has been following one solid line of thought a battering ram against sham and humbug and popular idols. My objection to him is that he is monotonously sincere. I wish he would change his record occasionally.” Decasseres said that Shaw has never created a character that will live, that he is the “father of all the sophisticated drool that exists on the stage today. He is the greatest disaster to the English stage of the century. He cannot create human beings, only epigrani-spouters, and he creates his characters to fit his epigrams instead of letting the epigrams flow naturally from the characters. I might add that he gats all his epigrams from jazzing up Schopenhauer, Neitzsche, Tolstoy, La Rochefocauld, Oscar Wilde and Samuel Butler. Shaw is related to the world of great artist? as jazz composers are related to Beethoven and Mozart.” Decasseres sent the proofs of his book to Mencken, who in- turn wrote a letter to the author. The last line of this letter reads: “You forgot to put in that I was baptized at the age of two months and had the hives for five weeks thereafter.”

Inscription | 1929 | Al Satterwhaite | The Superman in America

Welcome to a new category of post called “Signatures and Inscriptions.” If you click on the category, you will find all post we have made so far. If you would like to contribute an interesting signature, inscription, or letter (starting soon), please contact me. There is a form on the front page: http://www.benjamindecasseres.com/

Many thanks to Robert Carmonius for this contribution and some of the further research.

This inscription found in a copy of The Superman in America, and is dated the same year of publication, 1929.

Of interest is his “Anno Volstead 9”, I hadn’t seen him do that before (or I don’t recall it either way). Year nine of prohibition.



To Al Satterthwaite
in memory of those
nights so long ago when we
used to wander under the
morning stars talking Schopen-
hauer and Saltus, rending
life and the Universe to tatters–
since which time I–they–
have never been quite well,
for did not God say to me
over the other day, “Say, Ben, you
give me a pain in my
DeCasseres!” Venerably,
Benjamin DeCasseres
1929
Anno Volstead
9.


It seems both Benjamin DeCasseres and an Albert Satterthwaite contributed to Pendant la mêlée: acrate, individualiste, éclectique (title translates as During the melee), a French individualist anarchist publication from 1915-1916. The journal was one in a series associated with Emile Armand.


Heading of the journal of the first issue (CIRA de Lausanne)

November 15, 1915 , in full World War, exit the fortnightly Paris “during the melee ,” the newspaper proclaimed acrate, individualistic and eclectic. The manager is Charles Michel. From January 1916, the newspaper published in Orléans, change its name to ” beyond the fray .” The executive of a department of the newspaper then E.Armand but after the arrest of the latter in October 1917 (for desertion complicity) is Pierre Chardon who will succeed him until February 1918. The following month, the newspaper will change as for ” The Melee “.  – translated by Goole from http://www.ephemanar.net/novembre15.html


This postcard with text from “Alba Satterthwaite” was found at:
http://cartoliste.ficedl.info/article2385.html?lang=fr

Ignorance in the brain, hatred in the heart, cowardice in the will, these are the crimes I impute to the idea of ​​God and his fatal corollary: religion. — SÉBASTIEN FAURE.

The most terrible fact to the charge of Christianity is neither its intolerance, nor its tortures, nor its excommunications, nor its internal wars, nor its fatuity or falsehood, but this: it teaches man To resign himself to life, not to enjoy it, thereby depriving him of the most precious possession he has acquired by right of birth. He teaches him to be satisfied with social injustice. He taught her to tighten the other cheek and not to resist the evil. He treacherously induces him to barter the present, now, for a mythical beyond. And this is why men who are intellectually intellectually reject with sincere repugnance his theology, his dogma and his profession of faith. — ALBA SATTERTHWAITE