Powell Memo: Start of the Counterrevolution

It was good seeing CounterPunch publish an article on what is known as the “Powell Memo” by Brad Wolf. He rightfully notes, “Powell expressed his grave concern that American business and free enterprise were under full-scale attack from “leftists” and might altogether collapse unless drastic steps were taken.” However, far more was at stake.

Lewis Powell was a Virginia attorney, tobacco-industry lobbyist and future Supreme Court Judge. He can be credited with helping launch the conservative social wars of the last half-century. In 1971 he delivered a secret study for the Chamber of Commerce entitled, “Attack on the American Free Enterprise System.” His advice to the business community was simple:

Business must learn the lesson . . . that political power is necessary; that such power must be assiduously cultivated; and that when necessary, it must be used aggressively and with determination—without embarrassment and without the reluctance which has been so characteristic of American business.

He took special care to note:

There should be no hesitation to attack the [Ralph] Naders, the [Herbert] Marcuses and others who openly seek destruction of the system. There should not be the slightest

— source counterpunch.org | David Rosen | Jan 20, 2023

Nullius in verba


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