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(DV) Halle: What Are You Going to Do About It, Punk?







What Are You Going to Do About It, Punk?
A Response to Stan Goff

by John Halle
December 6, 2005

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Dear Sgt. Goff,

Your recent letter to me concludes with the claim that "we understand power very well."

I am assuming that this is meant as a joke. Whether it was or not, you should know that it elicited more than a few chuckles around the office.

The "we" which is referred to -- the left -- is about as dead as at any point in the last three centuries, completely incapable of even raising a finger against what is now more than three decades of declining real wages, military adventurism, assaults on the environment, etc. In short the entire left has been so thoroughly trampled by the corporate right of both parties, it might as well not have existed.  If this is what "understanding power" has gotten you, perhaps you should try ignorance.

Given this reality, you can imagine that your various threats to "retaliate" against me next November for my support of the administration's Iraq policy have an equally comical ring to them.

To state the obvious, elections are won by votes -- votes which are acquired through money and organization.

Here is the organization I bring to the table:

* Several hundred union members available for phone banking, canvassing and an election day get out the vote drive.

* A sophisticated polling operation able to target and mobilize likely supporters by identifying hot button issues.

* A professional public relation firm ready and able to smear any candidate you might put up against me as an extremist, potential terrorist, child molester, etc. should that become necessary (as it almost certainly will not!).

* A press who can be counted on to circulate these canards.

* The endorsement of the national party who will support any incumbent with a D by their name, no matter how craven and corrupt.

* All this is made possible through a seven-figure campaign war chest acquired from calling in chips from the corporate execs, lobbying outfits and law firms I have done favors for over the years.

What, may I ask, do you bring to the table?

"The righteous anger of the masses ready to spontaneously rise up in rebellion against their war mongering corporate masters."

Oh, I forgot.

Well go ahead, make my day.  Retaliate to your hearts content.

So far I've been polite.

But now I'll tell you what my friends and i say over our rounds of golf when the subject of "the left" comes up.

As far as we're concerned, you are dogshit.

What are you going to do about it, punk?

On a personal note, allow me to mention that it has been a pleasure serving as your representative to Congress all these years.

Yours Truly,

Member of Congress

John Halle lives in New York City. He is a composer, a music professor at Yale and a former Green Party alderman. He can be reached at: