Wednesday, April 30, 2008

"Star Spangled Poet"

I Wanna Be a Poet
A Rebel
Icon spouting fiery language
the veneer of revolution
without the substance
yelling words mouthing
Che t-shirt wearing
man, I'm bad.

I wanna be a star
in whiskey-sour saloons
wanna-be language-wearing
conscience-breaking all-American
streetcorner rabble-rousing
wave my arms around
look sincere
that's right
beatified halo effect
in the spotlight
drum the rhythmn
impress the women
in the smoky
red-lit barroom
jazz the room
syncopated. . . .

Che was cool, man
dig that cat
don't know why he was in the jungles
when he coulda been a poet
coulda been a contender in a slamfest poetry match
havin' swingin' fun with words
role-playing vibe language sounds,
with no meaning or action behind them.


I've finally more-or-less completed my review of Susan Nagel's Marie Therese, Child of Terror, now up at

That's the last long review, with quotes, etc., I plan to do. With it I still followed too closely to the accepted "rules." From hereon with all my reviews I'm throwing out the rules. (As I did in the 1990's with my review zeen, New Philistine.) Book reviews have to be revamped. They have to be punchy and provocative. They must be quickly exciting. There's no place for outdated rules in a new literary environment.

(I'll be using this new blog for longer pieces of mine; prose and poetry both.)

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

The Brady Thread

Brady Russell's post, on his personal site (This Too Will Pass), calling for a new underground leader, was entirely his own idea. It began highly critical of no one so much as MYSELF. Despite this, I supported the idea. Through my experiences with the ULA, and my readings of history, I've come to believe that for a rebellion to succeed, strong leadership is necessary.

I entered into the discussion without knowing what the outcome would be. The discussion, for the most part, turned out to be a good thing. Diverse members of the underground were able to exchange views honestly, in a neutral setting. Such a discussion depends on the honesty and good will of those who participate. For me it was a way to see which of the younger writers in the movement would display leadership qualities. The movement can progress from here only with new faces.

Some, like both Pats, acquited themselves well. (Both are consensus-builders for their respective teams.) Brady has to be commended for convening the "conclave" in the first place.

Most important was that Brady began the thread. That rare thing: an undergrounder stepping back from the endless petty feuds and micro-level obsessions to examine the larger picture. The underground is a small part of the literary scene as a whole and has to be viewed within that context, for us to understand what steps need to be taken on a strategic (broad) level for our cause to expand its base and raise its profile.

A major part of this for all of us has to be abandoning personality conflicts in the interest of following that larger strategy.

But what is that strategy? Who will implement it? How do we harmonize the various elements of the literary Resistance to follow it, even once it's articulated and agreed to?

There are many steps yet which have to be taken; that can't be done in an atmosphere of chaos (underground chaos-- I'll accept societal upheaval, am well adapted to crisis and conflict). We can't proceed without direction or directors, or directions, amid inertia, ostriches, lone wolves and loose cannons.

Above all we need ambition-- artistic ambition and ambition which dares to want to change this society. I could lock myself in a garret to "just write"-- but shit-disturbing is far more exciting. I spent many years of my life as the happy guy at the end of the bar-- at some point saw that as not enough. For a few years, for someone like me-- an ordinary working guy-- I helped accomplish some amazing things. We shook the lit establishment to its foundations. This was merely a taste of what we can potentially achieve-- if we have the desire to achieve.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Media Aristocrats


Here's a story about New York media's current favorite hangout:

"Cinderella," were you there?

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Establishment Weakness


Once again it's been demonstrated that establishment literature is a house of cards awaiting collapse.

What happened: a preview of my review of Susan Nagel's Marie Therese was posted on this blog more than two weeks ago, followed by the review three days later which demolished the book's credibility as history. (A tepid, half-hearted "pan" followed in the New York Times many days later.) The review here was a direct hit on the protege of one of established print media's most powerful figures, Tina Brown, who even hosted a release party to celebrate Nagel's book, with premature smiles in place before the splatter of embarrassment disturbed the cozy plastic-surgery faces. To this date, Ms. Brown and friends have been unable to put the pieces of the book back together again. The only attempt to counteract my argument, in a discussion on the World of Royalty blog, ended in quick failure; their defense of the book so swiftly blown apart by myself that the blog's managers hurriedly deleted the entire thread. (Traces remain on Google.)

Don't think there's not a battle going on. The establishment has lost every encounter. They're able to respond only in underhand fashion, through hackers, moles, and anonymous posters-- signs of weakness and panic.

If the underground took its view of things higher than one inch above the sidewalk, if it united and organized, it'd put the bankrupt philosophy of the print media monopolists into flight. The insular Overdog mindset should be grabbed by the collar and tossed out. (Tina Brown first of all. She should better exult over privilege from London.)

As I've said many times about New York, nothing is there. Money and superficial smiles, maybe, but no ideas, originality, character, honesty, integrity, belief in what they do or ability to generate lasting literary excitement.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Context #2

I'VE RECEIVED word that the Zinewiki project, intended to preserve and celebrate the history of underground lit on-line, has been destroyed by hackers. "Hackers." Who are these people? What's the motivation?

This is a reminder that the struggle of underground literature, of our art, is still merely to survive, in a tops-down overregulated society hostile to what we're doing.

Context #1

AN INTERESTING article was in the Detroit News yesterday, by Charlie LeDuff:

Powerful stuff.

This city, where I've lived some years of my life, is part of my background, the context within which I write.

About George

Regarding George Balgobin, who like so many of us has a habit of upsetting people. Through the years of the ULA I disagreed with George on many things, but always respected his honesty. I wanted him in the ULA, when I was active in it, because I knew he would never try to bullshit me, and on any topic or person he was guaranteed to give me a bullshit-free take. His entire career as a writer has been committed to truth-telling as he sees it, wrong on occasion though he may be. He's fearlessly expressed his ideas, willing to coherently support and defend his statements. No pandering, no expediency, letting the chips fall where they may has been his history. This is not a bad thing! It's consistent with the ideals of the ULA.

George is also an excellent essayist, as good, when he wants to be, as anyone in the country.

A movement-- any movement-- has to want the best, most talented people in its ranks, on its side, and has to make an effort to obtain and keep those people, whoever they may be. It's true that we never adequately figured out how to use him. The effort was worthwhile. If the Rebellion can't learn how to appeal to disaffected members of the intellectual class it won't succeed.
There's consolidation and then there's withdrawing. I fear the underground is too content to put its head back into the hole in the ground from where it came; to abandon the boldness of new tactics; to embrace tried-and-failed ways of doing things; the incremental, the inch-by-inch day-by-day creep of illusory progress while the rest of this monopolistic society races by. To embrace as well while high-fiving over petty gains the comfort of petty feuds and grievances. To splinter and fragment into ever smaller pieces. The province: the parish: the street. The garrett, finally; back to the starting point, where there's no failure because no risks are taken. You can't be upset by how that article portrays you when there are no articles. Right back at the beginning.

When I was active in the ULA it was my task to think bigger than this. To envision a greater movement which could truly compete. To recruit on the edges of the established machine those with skills and talents who were attracted to our ideals and our noise.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Happy Earth Day!

To celebrate Earth Day I have a special Earth Day chapter up at the "Plutocracy USA" series at

The chapter is entitled, "A Gang Self-Destructs."

A Dead Review?


The New York Times came out Sunday, April 20, with their own review of the Susan Nagel Marie Therese, Child of Terror book:

The review, by Valerie Steiker, is critical of the book in a lukewarm way, like so much of the NYTBR's writing. It mentions the subject's restricted point-of-view, but fails to put the work within context of our society today-- and scarcely mentions its historical inaccuracy.

This may have something to do with the fact that Valerie Steiker is Culture editor at Vogue, a fashion magazine-- with that circumstance, the perusal was guaranteed to be superfical, as if the book were reviewed by a well-trained intelligent Persian cat.

Actually it's a miracle that Valerie Steiker wasn't glowing with praise, given that her magazine is at the heart of the Conde Nast magazine empire-- our own little aristocracy-- stomping grounds for many years of Tina Brown, Nagel's mentor. Can we guess that there will be polite tsks and frowns at a future Manhattan cocktail party? This is a narrow world, folks; a tiny little closed-mided insular and intellectually incestuous little world of superficial people living a "rarefied, peripatetic extistence," who happen to have billions of dollars of media clout behind them.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Danica's Triumph

Danica Patrick's IRL open-wheel racing win over the weekend is a victory for Danica, but moreso a victory for Indy racing in competing against the overwhelming lead NASCAR has built in the sport of auto racing.

I was raised in a region and a time when the Indy 500 was THE biggest sporting event. (Surely the greatest sporting event I've attended.) The two events Indy car has needed in recent years: A.) to unite its two leagues; B.) to create an Elvis-like face; have now taken place.

It's a victory for the underdog and a positive note for all underdogs competing against larger rivals.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Revolutionary Writing

READERS of this blog keep asking where's the new underground writing. It's under their noses. They're reading it. From the start I've offered literary criticism unlike any seen anywhere, in that I place literature within context of A.) current historical trends; B.) the Machine which produces it.

I've also worked to build alternatives, and have presented in-person criticism through various live crashes and confrontations, with the ULA and without them: criticism taken OFF the page and put directly in front of the lit crowd.

Most recently I've been working to create a new-style of book review which can rescue the genre. In coming months on my various blogs I'll be presenting varied examples.

Standard lit people have been trained to think in terms of what's available now-- the safe and known. Which means, stories and novels.

When being questioned about the underground last July by a staffer before going on a Philly radio show, I was asked if we write short stories. (Creative Writing class thinking.) "Short stories?" I said. "We're not from a writing class. We're undergrounders. We produce ZEENS. We're not the same-old same-old."

Monday, April 14, 2008

Aristocracy Lives!

A REVIEW (Abridged Version)

--of the book Marie Therese, Child of Terror, by Susan Nagel.
$39.99, Bloomsbury, 418 pages.

THIS biography of Marie Antoinette's daughter, which is getting a big push by publisher Bloomsbury (they even sent me a copy), has more to say about American aristocratic attitudes today than about what really happened in the late 18th century.

As history the book is ridiculous. As biography it's soap opera. It appeal is to the imaginations of the privileged upper caste of our own civilization.
Nagel's mistake is to rely heavily for sources on discredited memoirs from the day, which are compilations of gossip, urban legends, and hysteria; what David Andress in The Terror calls "--the many rumors and plot-fantasies of the era."

Renowned historian Alfred Cobban, in dismissing such historical sources (in Aspects of the French Revolution), said that the compilers of memoirs of figures like Baron deBesenval and Joseph Weber "often were not those whose names appeared on the title page." The intent of the ghost authors was to provide "picturesque material": collections of "scandalous anecdotes" often disavowed by the presumed authors' families.

To Susan Nagel this is no matter, probably because her goal likewise is to present picturesque material to satisfy her weepy readers, who want not truth, not history, but bad melodrama full of good guys and bad guys. Melodrama, moreover, where the downtrodden have become evil and the despotic royals virtuously pure.

For example: historian Cobban called Madame Campan's memoirs "unreliable." Melodramatist Nagel fills no less than 24 pages of her book with anecdotes from this unreliable source.

The most ridiculous part of Marie Therese is its use of footnotes. Nagel would've been better off not using any. Instead she averages three footnotes per entire chapter-- for a work whose every page bursts with assertions and anecdotes.

Nagel flatly states on pages 146-147 that mementos of the late Queen were found under Robespierre's mattress after his death. Wow! Quite a story. Where's the source? Or, on page 69, the evil Duke of Orleans had "secretly amassed an immense hoard of grain with the intent of causing a shortage--"! Another dramatic revelation, shocking in import. Again, where's the footnote; the source?

The items which should be footnoted, aren't. We have hosts of tabloid rumors buttressed by a flimsy intellectual veneer.
In her text, Nagel mentions Sydney Carton and the Scarlet Pimpernel. I suspect those are her true sources.

Her book is not without its attractions. Many of the early chapters, such as "Two Orphans," are compelling. (Blurb: "King Wenclas calls Marie Therese 'compelling.'")

The novel-- excuse me, "biography"-- reminds me of the movie version of "Gone With the Wind," in that the first half is hyper-dramatic with a strong heroine beset on all sides. In the second half the heroine, Marie Therese, lives among the aftermath of a changed world, involved with suitors, marriage, family scandals and social involvements. After the tremendous activity of the French Revolution, during which the young Marie Therese lived at the very center, it all becomes anti-climactic.

But what drama there is while it lasts! Escapes, dungeons, attempted rescues, mad crowds, beheadings-- here indeed is the stuff for a great novel, which sadly only Charles Dickens among literary masters was ambitious enough to attempt.

Nagel does her best, painting in garish colors, usually with too-heavy a brush. Often we're faced with the comical, as when in Bordeaux, brave Duchess d'Angouleme (Marie Therese) tries to halt Napoleon's return from Elba. (Page 265.) (She fails.)
Nagel makes not the slightest attempt at balance or objectivity, which is a refreshing change from standard liberal phoniness. Here we see what the publishing industry today truly thinks and feels. (In this endeavor Nagel is backed by Tina Brown, ex New Yorker and Vanity Fair Editor; author of The Diana Chronicles.)

There's a blatant worship of wealth, privilege, titles, and possessions. One of Nagel's scarce footnotes is for a list of the trousseau Marie Therese left behind when fleeing into exile: a 220-word catalogue of clothing which the book's fans will find gush-worthy.

One gets the impression that aristocracy past and present is about the superficial: clothes, manners, robes, and poses, exemplified by the piled-on language of "Your Highness" in every phrase, the elaborate curtseying and bowing, the kissing of hands, which when it suddenly ceases comes to the nobility as a shock.

Nagel's bias is shown by her chapter headings: "Child of France"; "Once Upon a Time"; "Storm Clouds over the Palace"; "The End of the Fairy Tale"; "Two Orpahns"; "Every Inch a Princess"; and so on. If this is history, it's an antiquated kind of history; a 418-page press release which could've been issued by Louis XVI himself! Susan Nagel is blindly transfixed. The trappings of power-- "His Most Christian Majesty, dressed in the Order of the Holy Ghost ablaze with diamonds"-- to a product of a society which through magazines like Vanity Fair itself worships such trappings, such extreme wealth, obsessively, have hypnotized our chronicler. All she can do, ultimately, is gush, as in her acknowledgement to "the help and encouragement of His Serene Highness, Prince Charles-Henri de Lobkowicz." Can we surmise that our historian, Ms. Nagel, has been allowed into too many Insider parties?

Long before King Louis XVI and his family were prisoners in a dungeon, they were prisoners of the isolation of their mindset. Historian William Doyle concluded in Origins of the French Revolution that there were many opportunities for the King to halt the revolution, through concessions or force, as he retained immense power. He lacked the imagination to use it.

Nagel is focused on the personal, on family. This matches the King's focus. Happenings occur; the anger of mobs; the currents of change. To the King and Nagel trapped within Versailles it's all very confusing.

Unstated: the man was supreme ruler! Yet he knows nothing about the country he rules, and doesn't want to know. As revolution breaks and cascades over Versailles, the King has willfully escaped from reality, spending long hours hunting! The state is bankrupt, the people starving, and the man in charge does nothing. Like Montezuma, he remains trapped by his own inertia. He makes no real effort even to save his crown, out of "love for his people." He's not a ruler at all, but a prop, as if Versailles were a great glittering movie set.

Nagel buys the myth of the King as helpless victim-- and so absolves him of responsibility even for his own actions. There's a disconnect not just in the mind of the King, and his wife and daughter, but more unforgiveably, in the mind of the biographer, Susan Nagel. War and counter-revolution begin quickly; attempts to rollback the popular changes; the onset of civil war. The King sits innocently in his palace.

Marie Antoinette of course maneuvered to rescue the old regime. She encouraged foreign invasion, and bribed politicians. Yet for Nagel, these actions should have no consequences. The consequences in fact surprise her. She has so swallowed Marie Antoinette's mentality whole she can only ask, with her characters, Why has this occurred?

On the one hand the people love the Bourbons and the "Children of France," right to the bitter end; the last ignominious flight. On the other hand the angry mobs indicate that they really don't like the Bourbons at all. This contradiction is never resolved. Or, it's resolved through cardboard bad guys like the Duke of Orleans.

Marie Therese, Child of Terror may find a large audience around the country among suburbanites with failed mortgages, who-- along with the myth of endless affluence-- bought their own opulent palaces and are now on the verge of being kicked out.

The perpetrators of the book, however, represent a miniscule sliver of this nation residing on an east coast island; many of them transplanted royalist Brits like Vicky Ward and Tina Brown. Miniscule they are in numbers but great in media power.

Nagel's book to its rich fans expresses an unspoken fear about their own time; a fear which comes with improportionate wealth. Their own land-- this land-- increasingly to them is an unknown place of "oddly dressed, ill-spoken, belligerent" mobs.
(Note: The full version of this review will be posted on my new writing blog later this week.
Watch also for further remarks.)

Thursday, April 10, 2008


My review of Susan Nagel's paean to royalty, Marie Therese, Child of Terror, should be up on one of my blogs by Monday. (I have a new writing blog starting.) For a quick preliminary taste, here's the review's opening.
This biography of Marie Antoinette's daughter, which is getting a big push by publisher Bloomsbury (they even sent me a copy!), has more to say about American aristocratic attitudes today than about what really happened in France in the late 18th century.

As history the book is ridiculous. As biography it's soap opera. Its appeal is to the imaginations of the privileged upper caste of our own civilization.
Will I be able to support these statements? Check back to see.

Meanwhile, partying for the book by today's aristos has begun. For a glimpse, see

Boozhie Eyeglasses


Right now the established literary system presents ONE way of looking at the world, instead of a variety of viewpoints from all segments of America. Standard pod writers see life through boozhie eyeglasses. They don't realize in their candyass existence that others in this land live completely different from they; are entirely another kind of human animal. It's the difference you might see between a beat-up alley cat, scowling with one eye closed behind the dumpster, and the homebound puffy one wearing ribbons inside the mansion; at the window peering prettily and stupidly from within. Their attitudes on this world aren't the same.


Though I've been permitting a free-for-all on my Comments page, I encourage those who drop in to use their own identities. It's a sign of character, and adds credibility to what you say.

To create a new literature, a new culture, a new society-- to start over in this crazy country we've inherited-- we need to do so on a foundation of truth, character, and responsibility.

Are you willing to step into the future, or remain chained to a past world of corruption and lies?

Wednesday, April 09, 2008


A new chapter of "Plutocracy USA" is already up at Literary Mystery,

The chapter is called, "The Wheels of Reaction." You might find it fun.
I'm working furiously to read and review a new 418-page book by Susan Nagel about the French Revolution. I want to review it while the book is "hot." I plan my review to entertain and enlighten. (Also to come: the promised review of Lawrence Richette's latest novel.)

Stay tuned.

Monday, April 07, 2008



For an underground literary rebellion to succeed it has to be better than what it seeks to replace. This means better art, better performers, better ideas. Most of all it has to offer INTEGRITY-- an alternative to the lies and corruption of the established lit-scene.

As I've refused to accept falsehoods and non-accountability from the so-called mainstream, why would I accept them from the underground?

The most important component of the literary rebellion when it began in October 2000 was its search for truth; its commitment to truth. This was embodied in our initial protests against the grants-awarding process, and in many actions since, most notoriously with the Paris Review-CIA story.

Dedication to truth has two components.

This is difficult for anyone, myself not excepted. Established literature fails this test miserably, suffering from the "cognant dissonance" of bureaucracies; the refusal to hear unpleasant things. In the novel 1984, George Orwell used the term "Crimethink" for those truths which were unacceptable to people. "No, don't tell me! I don't want to hear! Stop saying that! Shut that person up, please!" One has to vigilantly fight this tendency. If the underground adopts this mind-closing behavior, then it's lost its fight.

The flip side of hearing it. You can't have one without the other. There has to be a willful struggle to speak honestly, and to be accountable for one's own statements. I never pushed a campaign I didn't ruthlessly believe in. To intentionally lie, to ignore contrary proofs or refuse to correct mistakes, to be unaccountable, has no place in a revolt whose foundation is integrity. Our integrity is our strongest weapon. It can't be compromised. If I've been inflexible on this point it's for a reason. A new movement, representing change, has to be built on a solid foundation.

Friday, April 04, 2008

Who Are the Demi-Puppets?

I've used the term demi-puppets since this blog began to designate servants of the Overdogs and defenders of the status quo-- opponents to the literary rebellion who aren't Overdogs themselves. Demi-puppets have been the most vociferous critics of the rebellion which began more than seven years ago.

Have the demi-puppets acted against their own interest?

Many haven't-- if it's in their interest to work long hours in a hyper-expensive city in order to be part of the established publishing game. A great many demji-puppets are the foot soldiers and worker bees of the literary System as it exists today. This includes not just editors, agents, readers,, but all the many English and Creative Writing lecturers and professors in universities around the country. Not all are chaired tenured profs like our disingenuous friend Phillip Lopate, who portrayed himself, with some exaggeration, as living in a dirt-floor hovel with countless mouths to feed. Many in the academy ARE barely getting by financially.

Another layer are those of literary bent who reside in the nation's newspapers; arts journalists and book reviewers; a vanishing breed.

The remainder of the demi-puppets could be called the lumpen literati: unpublished and underpublished writers, unemployed academics, and the like. Many lit-bloggers are in this category.

As the authentic underground which began rebellion may not be able to overturn the ancien regime on its own, the question is to what extent the rebellion can draw from demi-puppet ranks.

When it has, results haven't been promising. Boozhie writers who weren't true undergrounders were the quickest to betray the rebellion at every apparent stall or setback. But any gain they obtained from the betrayal has been illusory.

Many demi-puppets are getting little or no benefit from the current system, so their loyalty to it is perplexing. In many cases they're better writers and more intelligent readers than the well-connected aristocratic fops who inhabit the approved literary stage. It would serve their interest not to approve the System, or meekly comply with it, but oppose it. That would require from them artistic daring and imagination.

A rebellious demi-puppet is an oxymoron. The person will have to become no longer a demi-puppet. This will entail a new state of mind; a mind not of subservience and conformity, but independence, boldness, and freedom. It will require a passion for trailblazing, a love of the unpredictable, and an eagerness to make literary history.

Thursday, April 03, 2008

More on Leadership

The question of leadership is a philosophical concept.

Those who believe a movement can be created without a creator-- a leader-- are those whose knowledge of the world is at a kindergarten level, and hardly worthy of conversation.

I ponder the masterpieces of art; a Michaelangelo sculpture, a Beethoven symphony, a play by Shakespeare, a novel by Tolstoy. Did they occur spontaneously? Did the Pieta cause itself? Did a slab of marble fall over and break off a few pieces, accidentally? Did words arrange themselves on the Tolstoyean page? Or was not an active intelligence present someplace behind the scenes?

I think of the string of American business success stories, from Ford to Apple-- each one the result of an active, involved intelligence.

The raw material has to be there, is always there, as the zeen movement of the 1990's was the raw material for the creation of the ULA. But to progress, at some point some individual has to take that material and focus and shape it. The ULA was created as an act of intent, of energy and will. All its early progress, if not all its progress, came about through leadership: intentional design.

Now that the original leader has in stages been metaphorically assassinated and cast aside, those left clutching the remaining pieces of the project are proclaiming, "No leaders!" Which is comical, in a way.

For the movement as a whole to progress to the next stage, someone else will have to emerge to pick up the pieces, rearrange them, refocus them, reshape the strategy and recreate the dynamic energy that was invested into the original campaign. Otherwise it will stay running in place.

Today's Question

What's your favorite flavor of ice cream?
This question signifies that I've reopened comments on this blog, if anyone be interested.
GROUNDRULES. Just know that this is a personal blog. I'm no longer active in any literary organization, owe no obligations to anyone-- except myself and my integrity-- am beholden to nobody. On this space I submit to no veto, bullying, dishonesty, or bad behavior. By posting here you've entered my territory and will be treated accordingly.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

New Stuff

New posts are up TODAY at both Literary Mystery--

with a new chapter of "Plutocracy USA," and Philly Literary,

Both tales take place at about the same time period, interesting enough.

I intend from hereon to put up a new chapter at Literary Mystery every week. The fun is only beginning.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008


Undergrounders' biggest enemy is themselves.

The problem with the Rebellion from the beginning has been the non-stop internal disputes and betrayals.

I've always stressed distinguishing our actual enemies. Personality-based conflicts are counter-productive.

One can see what a miracle it was to keep the ULA on course and together as long as I did. I sought a broad-tent approach; wanted the movement open to ALL writers, as long as they acknowledged that literature needed to change; i.e., that rebellion was necessary. This is still the only way the movement will succeed.

A leader is absolutely necessary with a team of attack dogs, to keep their energies focused in the right way, on the right target. To keep them pulling in the same direction. Even then, keeping a lid on resentments, jealousies, and disagreements isn't easy. Without a leader, the attack dogs come off their leashes and fight themselves, as we're seeing. I can't think of a bigger waste of time.