28 Sept 2020
I hear in the news absurdly false claims: that it is not “legitimate” for Trump to nominate someone now to the Supreme Court.
Note: win or lose in the November election, and presuming he remains alive for a few more months, D J Trump remains our President at least until 20 January 2021—win or lose the election, he holds the office and all of its powers, prerogatives, and duties under law at least until 20 January 2021, and longer if he wins the election.
That no few members of the Supreme Court were nominated and place on the Court right at the end of a President’s term seems to escape folks in the media and other partisans.
Consider just one case. In November 1800, V-P Thomas Jefferson defeated then President John Adams for President. Adams was a Federalist; Jefferson the founder of the “Republican Party” (which became the “Democratic-Republican party,” and then the “Democratic Party,” as it is known today.
Adams was defeated, but his coup promoted Federalist interests for about 35 years. Just before leaving office, Adams appointed his Secretary of State, John Marshall, to be Chief Justice of the Supreme Court. That appointment was made on 20 Jan 1801, and Marshall was confirmed and began serving as Chief Justice a week later, 27 Jan 1801. He remained Secretary of State as well, until Adams’ term as President ended, and Jefferson was inaugurated as our 3rd President on March 4, 1801.
So Marshall was nominated for Chief Justice and confirmed under a defeated President, at the end of his term. Never read that Jefferson claimed it was “illegitimate,” because Adams remained President until the day Jefferson was inaugurated.
The consequences were enormous for our history. Chief Justice Marshall wrote the opinion for Marbury v Madison in Feb 1803. In that decision, Marshall did what was NOT explicit in the Constitution: he used the Supreme Court to declare an act of Congress illegal under the Constitution. There is no such power given to the Supreme Court in the Constitution; this was a major political coup in our history: the Supreme Court made itself supreme over acts of Congress.
Such is the legacy of Adams post-defeat appointment of John Marshall as Chief Justice. I think that he served about 35 years—the longest serving Chief Justice in our history, and probably the most consequential. He was succeeded in that office by Roger Tawney of Maryland, who wrote the dreadful Dred Scott decision of 1857—the case that drew Lincoln back into politics: blacks can be property, but they are not and cannot be “persons” under the law. Quoting Lincoln’s great Second Inaugural of 1865, “And the war came.”
14 Sept 2020
Ours has been described as “an age of anxiety” (first used just after WWII, I believe). Many feel it, many express it in various ways: A sense of upheaval, unsettling change, loss, unhappiness, anxiety, depression, despair, rage, forebodings of doom, “future shock,” and so on.
One finds similar states in the Hellenistic age in the west, c 300 BC to about 400 AD. Literature such as the “Book of Revelation” included with misgivings at the end of the New Testament is a classic text of emotional-spiritual mess, and yet also has tales of hope and fulfillment. In the middle ages, these overwhelming social anxieties settled down, but increased in about the 1400’s into the present. If one reads Luther, for example (1483-1546), one clearly sees the emotional-spiritual-intellectual upheaval of an age; one sees it in the Puritan revolution of the 1600’s, in the French Enlightenment thinkers and then the eruption of the French Revolution at the end of the 1700’s. We all know that our society is rife with anxious tensions, unhappiness, etc, affecting individuals and groups to varying degrees.
One thing that abides in my mind as I reflect on Homer (8th century BC): although there is violence and evils operate in his world (mainly unregulated human passions), the actors are generally more peaceful, settled, with feet on the ground. An exception is Akhilleus, filled with wrath—the issue that is central to the Iliad. He upsets the balance in the human condition—acts outside the bounds, as embodied most in his treatment of his opponent, Hektor. Odysseus, on the other hand, is not wrathful, restless, or irrational, but “resourceful,” clever, up to any challenge fate throws at him; he lives within the ordered boundaries. Homer’s world was orderly and settled, but not dead or static. Hence, I would say that reading Homer is like entering a realm of youthful spirit, buoyancy, modest hopes for better things to come—not fatalistic pessimism, nor naive utopian dreaming. The cosmos is stable, a friendly home—a good home to those who obey its laws and limits.
This is astounding to me: within about 250-300 years of Homer, the Greek-speaking world undergoes a major outbreak in the discovery of reason—first philosophy, then science (and the tragedians and historians). The human being is capable of using intellect and making sound choices, achieving much good; or having “twisted reasoning” (Cicero’s term) and making bad choices, and doing great harm to himself and others. Human being emerges as the locus of rational discourse, reason, good—not on Olympos, but within the human psyche. In reading Plato and Aristotle, one sees how much the human mind, governed by reason, is capable of achieving. It truly is an astounding development and a cultural high point in human history—to which we remain beneficiaries. Looking back, I see the potential as present in Homer and his world—perhaps especially in the importance of right action within the bounds set by the gods, or what we might call “nature” (Greek: physis). In reading the earliest recorded philosophers—such as Parmenides (born c 515 BC), one sees reason emerging from myth, story, and becoming a tool for discovering the nature of reality (Parmenides’ main discovery: being, Is!, the grounding insight of philosophy; he also discovered and named “nous,” intellect, as the divine power operative in human being to know what is).
Ah, the youthful, life-affirming, life-giving world of the ancient Greeks. Such a flourishing of what Hegel calls “Spirit” (Geist) in humankind—making possible what we call “history,” the realm of human being (Hegel, “the realm of the Geist’s unfolding”). Homer may be called a “mytho-poet,” but looking back from the philosophy that soon emerges among Greek speakers, I see the potential for such a magnificent life of the mind as philosophy and science essentially are. Homer embodies the fertile soil from which the plant of rational thought will grow; Homer’s world is rich with possibilities, as is youth; and some of these possibilities grow within several centuries of astounding breakthroughs.
If there is a practical lesson here, it would seem to be this: Avoid yielding to anxieties, fears, restless passions, and develop and maintain a youthful spirit, open to possibilities.
Just a few reflections as I keep reading Homer.
About the target for our truly revolutionary act, I have learned nothing yet. I know only that our Leaders—those further up the Ladder of Equality—are planning the spectacle of spectacles to bring down this country as we have pulled down its idol-statues. One of their cities will be obliterated. And you are right—how easily the whole old regime is crumbling. It was as empty as their false consciousness.
But that is a little further off. We have something now to accomplish. You are typically prescient in your note about pulling down the wicked Christian symbols. I have reason to believe that our Leaders are preparing to take over one of the very sizable churches in, I believe, New York, DC, or LA. And from what I’ve heard, its very soon. Our actions will shock and shake those addicted to their god. We will give them some more “martyrs.”
You are right, Comrade. These idiots offer nearly no resistance. The Revolution was won years ago through our re-education of their young people. We’ve prepared the soil for the Revolution, and prepared it well. We stripped them from their roots, their rotten roots, and virtually not a cry went up. Such easy targets, these Americans were.
We are preparing to make the 2020 election so chaotic that some of their factions will break out in violence. They are again playing right into our hands. There will be no “winner.” We are bringing this regime to a speedy end. Out of the superficial political squabbles, more violence will result to give us opportunities. The more these old party boys and girls fight, the stronger we become. They are clutching to the illusions of power. They themselves have helped the Revolution immensely, without knowing it. So short-sighted these “politicians” are. They are models of false consciousness, as you know. False indeed, and so useful for us.
Yes, know your enemies. “Keep your friends close, and your enemies closer.” But I worry about your fascination with God-stuff, with “religion.” This country they call “America” has been poisoned by God-talk for too long. It is being liberated, and our friends in Hollywood and the media have helped considerably. It is the provincials in the fly-over zones who still talk about “God” or “church” or other nonsense. When my father came to this country from Germany in the early 1930’s, he brought with him two great books: Marx’s “Philosophic and Economic Manuscript of 1844” and of course Nietzsche’s “Zarathustra.” My father dumped Christianity as a boy, and never looked back, so I was not exposed to Christian propaganda as a child. I was free from such ideology, the claptrap of little minds. My father believed in Science, not in some “God” or “Church.”
I remember that years ago you gave me your copy of Bergman’s film, “Winter Light” (and several other films in that set). Perhaps you need to view it again. The Lutheran Pastor in the film has the courage to reject God and the “ridiculous image” of the crucified. He is not yet a Marxist, but he’s on the way, having liberated himself from the spiritual void and neurosis of Christianity. “God is dead. He remains dead.” That must become the chant of our people as we liberate this ignorant country they call “America” (a name which we will change as we gain more power). Amerigo Vespucci, from whom “America” takes its name, sailed with Spanish and Portuguese colonialist-conquerors, and so the name “America” must be expunged from History. He also was foolish enough to call this hemisphere the “new world.” The true New World will rise victorious with our forces as we destroy the old world of ignorance, religion, capitalism, and slavery. We are the bringers of the New Age, the New World of Science, New Humanity, Equality, Justice. There is no other. We are History come to its complete meaning and fulfillment. That is our destiny, and of that we have absolute certainty.
I wrote the above several days ago, but was too busy in the streets “demonstrating” to finish the note. Now I received your new one about how swiftly this country has fallen. Yes, as I said, Amerika has folded “like a cheap suit.” What a wasteland. It is now past history. Amerika is dead; we have killed it, liberated Amerika from itself.
To further the Revolution, we must make a singular spectacle. Tearing down some statues is far too small a task for us, the men and women of the Future. We need to take out one of the enemies’ largest cities as a harbinger of our will to destroy the old world of “Amerika” to its foundations. I’ve been communicating with two of our comrades further up the Ladder of Equality than we are. They are clear-eyed leaders who are planning an enormous spectacle, which they will not mention. They’ve been discussing the best target, and when to act. The reign of terror will freeze the enemy in a death-grip. Only by murder and destruction can truth and justice triumph, here and all over the world.
We are the future; there is no other.
My Dear Comrade,
I must confess to you that I am somewhat surprised at how quickly this country has fallen. Although I have known the surety of our triumph, I did expect some resistance to our iconoclastic spree. I thought some politicians, police officers, or even a few old codgers who had fought for this decadent country's false values would show up and try to stop us. Nothing like this has happened. We have chosen the opportune time when "the greatest generation" has all died or has locked themselves up in fear of the virus. Soon, that generation will be forgotten and our generation, the harbingers of the revolution, will become the greatest that this country has seen. It will be us who will finally set this country free of the tyranny of the white man and all he stood for.
Everywhere you look, our victory is being made manifest. Statues of this country's founders are being pulled down and defiled. Any man who dared to think himself better than his peers is being humbled by us. What we have begun with statues, we will continue with mountains. Those sneering presidents in South Dakota won't look so smug once we acquire an adequate amount of dynamite. After the presidents and generals, our task is to take out the Christian images. Windows, paintings, and statues that show their Jesus and his companions as peaceful white folks must be dealt with. Any artwork made by the white people of privilege will find its place as fuel for our fires. What was once beautiful must disappear if we wish to complete our transformation of man. History will be re-written according to our image. What remains of the white man's culture will be crushed. Soon, all they will know about who they were as a people is what we tell them to know. There will be nothing human that remains in this race. There will be no trace of greatness left among them. Any deviant from our creed, any person who dares to think themselves above us, will be brought down. It is our destiny to reduce all to rubble and leave nothing but the void in place. Once they experience this void, they will come to us for we will consume their souls and fill it with the fire of our lust.
The age of the old man has ended. We are here to usher in the dawn of the new man. We will not stop until our goal has been achieved. Let those who cannot be transformed be destroyed.
A brief note on Ingmar Bergman’s film, “Winter Light” (1962, in Swedish).
I have come across several claims online and in a video commentary on DVD that Ingmar Bergman considered the film titled “Winter Light” in English to be his best film. Quite a claim for one of the foremost directors of film. "I think I have made just one picture that I really like, and that is `Winter Light.' Everything is exactly as I wanted to have it, in every second of this picture." Ingmar Bergman. (Note again: the film has the double entendre title in Swedish, “The Communicants,” which gets more at the inner meaning than the external, visual title in English, “Winter Light,” although both are suitable.) In the film, there is no communion with God, or with nature, and minimal communion between human beings. That is why the Swedish title is paradoxically fitting: “Communicants.”
I’ve been re-watching scenes from the film last night and again this morning, and I did some reading online. The movie is often ranked among the best ever made. Watching it, I do not feel a need to watch other Bergman films right now, not even three that I saw years ago, and which burned into my memory: “The Seventh Seal,” “Autumn Sonata” (perhaps actress Ingrid Bergman’s last film), and “Fanny and Alexander.” Others of his movies did not speak to me as much.
One could dismiss these films as “neurotic,” or “atheistic,” or “existentialist,” but I think that they capture much of the spirit of 20th century western world. There’s no pretense in “Winter Light,” no place to hide behind “faith” or “love.” It is starkly painful. Björnstrand’s performance, aided outwardly by his suffering at the time from bronchitis, is superb. He is an utter spiritual and emotional wasteland. I noticed that some reviewer complained that he could not relate to the character played by Björnstrand at all; I suspect the writer was a little superficial, and did not want to see the void within himself, or other, or in our “modern world” generally. Yes, it is painful, but realistic. No doubt the film portrays Ingmar Bergman himself, and it is his portrait of his father, too—a Lutheran pastor. Bergman’s existential void is common in the generation after Nietzsche (Bergman was born in 1918, died in 2007—so born just 17 years after Nietzsche’s death). But this spiritual void was alive and active in Europe already by the 15th century. It is “modernity” displayed for the viewer in utterly stark, black-and-white, no-thrill images, photographed (as I wrote recently) by the unsurpassed Sven Nyqvist ("new twig"). My father would have been awed by the photography if he had seen the film. It is not “spectacular scenery” at all, but piercingly stark black and white that leave the viewer no place to hide from what is displayed. This is typified or heightened in a 6-minute vignette in which nothing but the leading lady’s face is shown as she recites the letter she wrote to her pastor-lover. There is nothing to see but her face as she reveals his utter self-absorption and lovelessness. I think that many Americans would not want to see such a mirror on screen. It is a mirror of our own inner void.
The last scene / final visual shot of the film could not have been more perfect. In a virtually empty church, one sees nothing but the pastor who opens the Lutheran service with the Swedish for: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD God. Heaven and earth are full of his glory.” No moving shots, the pastor is viewed from a low angle, pinned against an image of the crucified. His tone is flat and dead, like his soul. Then immediately the film ends.
I think that the movie is more than most viewers want to bear. A lady I spoke to after our home Mass last evening said that she finds Bergman too “heavy,” and wants lighter films. Forgive my comment, but I would say, “And that is typically American, the desire to hide from stark reality.” Not many here stomach Nietzsche or Kafka. Far more appealing to Americans would be “The Sound of Music” (which I also enjoyed). We do not like seeing the wasteland that we as a people in history have become.
As I write I hear nothing but the ticking of my grand-father clock near me. And that is all one hears in a scene from “Winter Light:” The loud ticking of an old clock, and Pastor Eriksson’s starkly empty expression.
—21 June 2020
I see you have picked up on my religious inclination. Yes, it is true, I have studied the religious impulse of man as a youth. Sun Tzu says, know your enemies. Their collective belief in their god has been a powerful force throughout history. I like powerful forces. My studies have been very useful in our cause. The religious impulse of man is something that he cannot escape. Man needs a cause higher than himself to believe in, to worship, and to follow. Man needs the camaraderie of other human beings participating in that same end. Man needs public worship. We have taken these lessons and applied them to our cause. We have given man something more to believe in than himself. We have established a practice of worship including the act of public sacrifice. We have even established an Inquisition against false believers (a nice touch, if I say so myself). Yes, our cause is the new religion of the masses. One of the enemy sages has said that once man ceases to believe in God, it is not that he won't believe in anything. Instead, he will believe in everything. How easy it has been for us to make man believe once we've stripped him of his false religion.
The second point I wanted to address to you is to wonder why you spend so much of your focus on the fool Trump. Yes, he may have been a formidable foe in the beginning but through our constant efforts over the last four years, we have bound him by his sins. Instead of allowing him to unite the enemy against us, we, through the help of the media, have used him to further divide this wretched country into the chaos that has ensued. Our people have failed to cooperate with any of the visions he held for a greater America and we have emphasized every little blunder he has made to the point where he is rendered incompetent by his enemies and many of those who formerly supported him. Should he return after the next election (assuming there is an election), we can use his position to our advantage and further wreck havoc through the popular hatred of the man. Should the other guy get in, he will be as good a pawn for us as we could hope for. Our people are already working on selecting a VP for him who will be a true mastermind for our cause as Comrade Obama was. The revolution will advance regardless of who holds that office.
In the meantime, we have more cause to celebrate. Their hero on the Supreme Court has sided with us in redefining sex to our purpose. Just watch and see what we are able to do with this court decision. It should be quite fun. Soon, there will be no place left for the enemies to hide.
Waiting in ecstacy,
June 15. Late at night.
Even we who know the course of history, who know what is coming—we, the highest of all humanity, we new human beings, can overlook the obvious sometimes. As Napoleon said, “The crown of Europe was lying in the gutter; I just bent down and picked it up.”
We have already obtained the victory. We picked up the crown! The United States of America, as it was founded by those white racist slave-holders, by those patriarchal “Founding Fathers,” is already dead. We know it, because we shared in the killing. The victory has in principle been achieved. Some of us call it “globalism,” some “Socialism,” some “Communism,” some say “Progressivism.” Same difference. Our terms all mean the end of the particular nation-state, the USA, which claimed to be “the new order of the ages.” We are the fulfillment of that “new order,” the new Age realized on earth. No more countries, no more racial hatreds, no more injustice, no more wars. After our final victory (which may have to get bloody—just one last final war to end all war—then we will all be one, equals, without division or separation, in perfect and complete harmony. We are what they thought their god was.
The United States is finished; it is just that some of these fools in our midst do not know it. It is so obvious, so simple, but these smelly stupid Walmart shoppers don’t get it. They are perishing, rest assured. Dreaming of improving America, they do not see the corpse that their country has become. We successfully liberated the world from the capitalist-imperialist powers. Our victory was inevitable, determined by the dialectics of history. We not only know history and its fulfillment, but we are the true embodiment of that fulfillment: all humanity in a classless society. Any form of political power will whither away, because it will not be necessary once we’ve destroyed the damned “powers that be.” As I said, the victory has already been achieved. America is a corpse, and we have only to bury it. It died, it stinks already, and soon, the grave-diggers will remove the American corpse from the face of the earth, and this country will be completely erased from the New History. America never existed. It was an empty dream of white slave-owners who were enslaved to their illusions.
It is good for us to keep this in mind when we see these drunken, drugged up, pleasure-loving fools partying as if there is no tomorrow. For them, there is no tomorrow. American greed, laziness, pleasure-seeking, and drug stupors killed America. We just helped it along a little, but they did the work: their hyper-individualism made it easy to pick them off, to promise them goodies, and take their minds and mold them to our will. They are ours.
Imagine if we had not read Marx closely (as Comrade Obama did), had not declared ourselves for the Revolution to liberate all humanity, had not come to know with certainty the future as the world of equals living in perfect peace and good will, without “mine and yours,” without capitalist greed and selfishness, without slavery or imperialism. We are the vanguard of history, the realization of the New Age here and now. We are the world, the one world. We are the future come of age at last.
June 15, 2020
You are able to see through Christian BS very well. (Maybe you imbibed before you got woke!) And you are right how we have infiltrated their superstitious and meaningless Christian movement and churches and emasculated many of them. We stripped them of their God, their church, their bible, and most of them do not even know it. Work imaginatively and creatively done by others in our movement over the years. Of course we agree with our friend Marx: “In a word, I hate all the gods.” I remind myself of these words Marx included at the front of his doctoral dissertation nearly every day. The critique of politics and society must begin with the critique of religion. And that critique can be summarized as Nietzsche wrote: “God is dead. He remains dead. And we have killed him.” No one has made their god as pathetically meaningless as Christians. What an insipid, bloodless god they have. Doesn’t strike back because he’s powerless! Indeed, a non-entity.
You are right, too, that the more courageous followers of their Jesus-god are in the rural areas of their country. And as you said, they are politically powerless—although they can be gutsy. We can handle them as we gain all power. They will be squashed as insects. They will not endure what is in store for them. Too bad, but it’s for the greater cause of justice and Socialism for all!
I have some good news to share, if you have not already read it. Some high-ranking military officers have called for a coup against that slob President Trump. Comrade, this is very good news! Revolution, man! Just what we want. Then candidate Biden joined in, and openly declared that “Trump will try to steal the election.” If he “wins,” or claims to win, Biden (such an easy tool for us) has already said that he will call on the military to take Trump out of the White House! This is good news for the Cause, because it virtually guarantees a civil war. And we know who stands to gain as these petty politicos go at each other. “We cannot let a good crisis go to waste.” And we won’t. We will “capitalize” on turmoil—the best kind of capitalism! As the bourgeois parties fight each other, we will take power. We already have plenty of sympathizers on the hard left of the so-called “Democratic Party.” (Democracy, hell! They are used to ruling cities with iron fists, just as we would do!) We need to foment as much turmoil and hatred in this country as possible. It is necessary for the triumph of State Socialism—or what these idiots like to call “Communism.” We will triumph the more as they seek to destroy each other,
I know that some of our leaders have regular communication with the Party in China. They are proud of our work, and will continue to fund us. But they urge us to keep the pressure on, because they can see this country coming apart at the seams. As Chairman Mao wrote, “America is a paper tiger.” The paper tiger is ripping apart—with our help. Or maybe we are setting it on fire! It is good to know that any genuine assistance we need will be provided by our fellow travelers elsewhere. And we have some Big Boys on Wall Street who fund us willingly (they even put loot into “Occupy Wall Street!” A clever ruse!) I know that first hand, because I worked with one of them some years ago. He’s about as wicked as I am, but more fiendishly clever. He’s great. We can count on him, but the old man is heading for the grave. Too bad, but such is life—a one-way ticket to nothingness. Nothing matters but the Party and the Cause for which we give all.
You may have heard that we are planning a major assault in one of the enemies’ big cities. This one will be especially bloody, because when some of our comrades shed their blood for our Cause, then more become committed and willing to die to bring in the New Age under a Socialist State. “We will overcome.” But there must be more bloodshed to stir up fervor in us, and fear in their disgusting bourgeois hearts. We will cower them by playing on their fear of death—these gutless wonders.
Keep up your good work, and let me know if you are successful in infiltrating some of the enemies’ strongholds. You can be very slippery, Comrade! We like that!
Victory will be ours.
In your former correspondence, you mentioned that we as a united force are God. We are the absolute power in the universe. As I agree with you, there are some in the resistance who will oppose us. There are those who still cling to their guns and their religion and believe that there is a god out there who will save them. These are the members of the resistance that we must watch out for. We cannot forget the lesson of Poland nearly a half century ago when a no-name bishop united the people and brought about the fall of communism there. We cannot forget the power of authentic brotherhood and solidarity. You know the kind, a brotherhood where one person has the back of another and is willing to sacrifice himself for the good of his neighbor. This is the type of solidarity that gives people the strength to see through our lies. We cannot let them develop these types of friendships. We must continue to isolate them and make them fear one another. We must keep driving wedges between them. We are doing well so far.
Most of these dangerous relationships will develop out of their Christian faith. They believe themselves to be a "body of Christ" in which all members of this body are important and serve a function in their world. What a joke, we know that a body constantly has dead cells that are sloughed off for the new ones to replace them. When one member falls, another rises up, that is the way of the world. Fortunately, the number of Christians who believe this is small. We spent a large portion of our energy the past century making their faith system more "relevant" and easier to swallow. We have turned their god into a vigilante superhero whose only function is to save them when they are in trouble. We have eradicated the notion that if there is a god, this god makes a continuous demand for their hearts and souls. We have bastardized their morality and reduced it to the notion that anything was acceptable as long as it feels good. We transformed their maxim of "love one another" to "always be nice and never disagree with anyone". In short, this process has made them soft and unable to bear the pressure that we are about to lay upon them. Many of the Christian churches have already fallen to our ranks.
But not all. There are those who still believe and follow the words of their god and are still willing to stand up for a cause besides ours. Most of their rank will come from the ignorant farmers and ranchers in the middle of the country. This area doesn't particularly matter as it has no political power. However, these people have always been the hardest to sway for our cause. They will probably seek to form small communities with the intention of opposing us. Ha! That goal is laughable for we will sweep down and crush them. Through the internet, our message can reach to the most remote corners of the world. They cannot shut themselves off to us. And when we do gain political power, their sects are the ones we will gun for first. You've heard of our plan to eliminate livestock due to climate change? Soon, the consumption of meat will be illegal!
Yes, we have learned our lesson in the past and we will not let these hicktown Christians stop us again. We are the flies and will not cease to bite them. Eventually, they will get tired of scratching themselves and beg us for relief. The ones who don't? Well, their God calls them to be martyrs. Let's give them their wish.
No mercy shall be given until all falls. Stay true to the course, my brother.
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