> In that context, there is nothing scary about the leader of a uiversalist
> radical movement who happen to be Black. What is scary is a leader who
> first identifies him/herself as a Black, Jew, Russian, etc. and then
> espouses a radical cause - it is pretty good indicator that the 'radical
> cause' is nothing but a coverup for building a political machine.
Wojtek, I do not think that "nationalist" politics in this context has much in common with *either* third world liberation movements *or* what is called "identity politics." There are undoubtedly black liberation activists and theorists who hold to one or another version of these positions, but in fact the literature of "black nationalism" with which I am most familiar (e.g., Amiri Baraka) have endlessly denounced, for many years, these forms of "black nationalism." In fact quite often, *within* the "black nationalist" movement there are denunciations of "nationalism" rather more vitriolic than Rakesh is able to come up with. It is an extraordinarily complex "movement" with many variations.
Also, I believe some other posts on this thread have muddied the waters with references to Farrakhan. This only shows naivete, and probably though unintentionally *racist* naivete about the black liberation movement.
If you read through this whole thread carefully you will see that I and several others are talking about *the route to* a "universalist" (i.e., working-class (multi-racial, multi-national, whatever label) movement. WE are arguing that black organizations which *will look like but NOT be* exclusivist movements are under the historical conditions through which the u.s. working class has evolved the only route to unity across racial divides.
It ought to be obvious that such figures as Manning Marable and Adolph Reed (who have badmouthed each other, quite viciously, in print), let alone such anti-marxist figures as West) are not attempting to create any exclusivist movement.
[And certainly ( this is *not* in reference to you) those who feel in anyway personally abused or affronted by being excluded from black caucuses or black conferences or women's caucuses, etc.: every kind of caucus except all-male caucuses or all-white caucuses) will probably find in the future that there is no room on the left for them. They will have to either join the WSJ or lead very lonely lives.]