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News & Views of Phillips Since 1976
Saturday May 18th 2024

Gailileo”'s Compromise

By Peter Molenaar

August 2, Powderhorn Art Fair”¦

Before descending the slope from the corner of 35th Street and 15th Avenue, I was enticed to scan the annual Women”'s Prison Book Project yard sale of used books. A hardback copy of Galileo”'s Daughter caught the eye. It was an excellent purchase for the sum of $3.00.

It happened a few centuries ago that our Galileo made the irrefutable but annoying observation that Earth revolves around the sun. In order to please the Pope, he was compelled to present this finding not as fact, but rather as a dialogue between opposing hypotheses. Then despite his earnest effort, he subsequently found himself bowing before the Inquisitors-General while recanting his “heresy.”

However, the point: By making this compromise, Galileo not only extended his own life but was able to preserve his work such that science was elevated forever.


More recently, our V.I. Lenin was to heap scorn upon those “Lefts” who disdain to compromise “on principle.” To the contrary, with regard to our long-term vision of socialist transformations, we are advised to examine the current relationship of political forces. Take a sober-minded look, please. It follows that a range of temporary and conditional “alliances” are called for.

Is it then tactically correct to blame President Obama for all our problems? Really? Is all the noise in any way edifying to those seeking a deeper understanding? What is to be gained from insulting the electorate, the very people who must someday make a revolution?

In a recent example, one of our “Lefts” characterized Obama as a “mass murderer,” (probably) in relation to the Gaza crisis. Excuse me, I saw the president hang his head in remorse for the loss of life. In addition, the administration is pressing the “two-state solution” against Netanyahu”'s one-state genocide. What would John McCain be doing? No difference!?

I suggest that self-promoting displays of “moral purity” be tempered in favor of the revolutionary process. Yes, our tactics must to some extent conform to the present “bourgeois-democracy.” But in the end, a democratic worker”'s state is the only way out.


Given the infinity of time and space, we know with certainty that a “higher consciousness” has always existed (somewhere). We should be thankful for all the Galileos out there for rendering the universe, to some degree, self-aware.

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