... is scheduled
as the guest speaker for the 197th meeting of the Karl Hess Club, to convene
on November 15, 2010.
Ray Acosta on "The Mexican Revolution."
Ray Acosta will discuss his new book about the Mexican Revolution of 1910: how he became interested in the topic, the publishing process, and a discussion of the Mexican Revolution itself.
"I’ve struggled to find some linkage between libertarian ideas and the events of the Revolution," says Acosta, "but I can’t find a strong link. All combatants claimed to be fighting for basic human rights, but under that thin veneer there is always a lust for power.
"There are some admirable characters, like Felipe Angeles and Manuel Peláez. But I don’t think Angeles can be considered libertarian. Peláez can at best only be called a proto-libertarian.
"Emiliano Zapata fought for property rights in his state of Morelos -- but he was not fighting for individual property rights, but for communal property rights. In his mind, property had always belonged to the local community and was not to be sold any more than you can sell your portion of sunlight.
"Many socialist and anarchist Mexicans flocked to Zapata’s headquarters and set themselves up as his intellectual advisors, but he never took them seriously and had many arguments with them on how far this ‘communal’ thing could be taken.
"The lesson I come away with is that we (intellectuals) need to be careful when we advocate armed revolution. The history of the Mexican Revolution, and most other revolutions, shows that intellectual revolutions are co-opted by violent men who have no problem in disposing of intellectuals that annoy them."
Ray Acosta was a scheduler for Art Olivier’s 2000 vice presidential campaign on the Libertarian Party. Acosta has served as Chair of LPC Region 65 and as the LPC's Secretary. He attributes his introduction to libertarianism to Karl Hess’s article, "The Death of Politics."
Acosta has addressed private groups and historical societies about the Mexican Revolution.
He is a native Californian of Mexican heritage. All four of his grandparents were forced to leave Mexico during the Revolution.
He graduated from Cerritos Junior College, and received his bachelor’s degree in Mathematics from the California State College in Los Angeles in 1970. He is now retired from a 30-year career in telecommunications engineering, planning, and finance for Pacific Bell and GTE.
Revolutionary Days: A Chronology of the Mexican Revolution is his first book.