Classic EssaysFiction

Sutter Lang: Defeating the Hypnotists, part 2


by Cholly Bilderberger

(read part 1)

TO PROVE HIS THEORY that only Jews can undo the hypnotic spell which they have laid upon the whites, and that they could be induced to do so only if shown a higher vision for themselves, Sutter Lang had to go into laboratory experimentation.

“I understand what has to be done,” he told me. “I have to produce a Jew who has succumbed to his imagination, who has given up hypnotizing whites for the more tempting game of working on himself and his formidable problems. I have to produce my transformed guinea pig. And I’m counting on your help. As you know, my acquaintance among Jews is nil. You will have to provide a fair specimen for my… work.” He looked at me anxiously. “You do know a lot of them, don’t you?”

“You know I do.”

“I don’t see how you stand it.”

“If you moved in the great world, you’d understand that it’s very difficult not to know them. They are everywhere.”

“Yes,” Sutter said reflectively, “the more they’re pogromized and holocausted, the more numerous they become. Rather like the miracle of the loaves and the fishes. In a frightful way, of course. Well, can you produce one?”

“I think so.”

The one I had in mind was David Lillel, the writer (fiction, non-fiction, movie and television scripts, speeches, newspaper columns, plays), the pop psychologist, the collector of abstract art, the lover of innumerable white women and husband to several, the snob, the name-dropper, the owner of a chalet in Klosters and an apartment just off the Champs Elysees, the gourmet and bon vivant, the tennis player and deep sea fisherman, the hail-fellow-well-met… the list of hats he wore was endless. He was spread so thin, in fact, that I thought he would offer less resistance to Sutter’s persuasions than any other Jew I knew.

Also, David Lillel was rather old-fashioned and hence more susceptible — in that he was still bewitched by white life.

Unlike so many contemporary Jews, who have seen through the fading white facade to the degeneration of the old virtues and strengths, and who therefore treat whites as they evidently wish to be treated — as servants to be dominated, and, on occasion, to be severely disciplined — Lillel still believed that whites knew and felt things he didn’t, that they drew on enchanted racial memories no Jew could share, except vicariously. A scant fifty years ago, the majority of middle- and upper-class Jews aspired to the hidden white world, and did their best to become white in subjective values as well as in manner in order to pierce through to that world as far as possible (see Barney Baruch, for instance; or even Lenny Bernstein). Lillel was a dodo still embedded in that quest long after his fellows had discovered that there was no enchanted white world, only frightened wimps, and had moved on. He still believed that there was something real behind the porticoes of white clubs, or the doors of white Long Island estates, or the coolly appraising glances of graceful, groomed white women on the Upper East Side. In fact, he went so far as to disparage Jews who did not feel as he did. He was concerned, and this may have made him defensive.

“I really don’t see why people put up with Norman Mailer,” he would say; and, “My God, who would pay good money to listen to Don Rickles?”; and “Can you imagine being married to Susan Sontag?” Of course, on the big issues — Israel, the wisdom of Einstein, the saintliness of Golda Meir — he was entirely orthodox. I think he may have been tempted in his youth (he came from a respectable German-Jewish family, and had gone to a good private school and to Williams) to try to pass. Had he been born seventy-five rather than forty-odd years ago, I’m sure he would have tried, and probably would have succeeded. But those twenty-five years made a great deal of difference, and he followed his peers in not denying his Jewishness. After all, that way a Jew like Lillel could have his cake (proclaim his Jewishness and, after the establishment of Israel, do so with pride) and eat it (enjoy all the assumed mysteries of the white world).

He seemed secure in his old-fashioned way, but I felt he was fragile. On the one hand, he was certain that he had everything and knew everything; on the other, he was conscious of a certain emptiness in himself and his world, and aware that there was much he didn’t know. This fragility seemed to mark him, out of all the Jews I knew, as the best for Sutter’s experiment. Lillel was the “fair specimen,” indeed — if anything, a little too fair. If Sutter couldn’t transform him, he would fail with any guinea pig.

I didn’t see Lillel often, and had to bide my time. The moment finally arrived when I was having lunch at Polignac with Nancy Yarborough. From across the room came Lillel, glass in hand, expensive tweeds on his back, dubiously rugged features (as he aged, he was beginning to resemble Irwin Shaw) baked saddle-brown by some Caribbean sun, lips spread wide in smile, remarkably large teeth bared to the world.

“I hope you remember me,” he said. “We were on the Hauser Committee together.”

“Of course I remember you,” I said. “Not only that, but I’ve been wondering how to get in touch with you — there’s something I’d like to discuss.”

“No time like the present,” he said pleasantly, and started to sit down. “We’re deep in a business conversation here,” I said. “Let’s make it later in the week.” So we set up a meeting at my place.

“You have interesting friends,” Nancy said after he left.

“Not really.”

“What on earth can you want with him?”

“If I told you, you wouldn’t believe me.”

“Try me.”


“You’re insufferably secretive.”

“Aren’t we all?”

”I’m not. Besides, I have nothing to be secretive about. I’m not meeting privately with Jews who pretend to be Tommy Hitchcock.”

“I got rid of him, didn’t I? And I didn’t introduce you to him.”

“I noticed that, and I’m grateful.”

“He was dying to meet you.”

“I noticed that, too. He was looking at me like that Jew in The Sun Also Rises — what was his name?”

“Robert Cohn.”

“Like Robert Cohn looked at Brett. What a job poor old Ernest did on Cohn. Why don’t writers write books like that any more?”

“They couldn’t be published.”

“Worse than that,” she said meditatively. “They couldn’t be written.”

“Why not?”

“I don’t know — I suppose all the hope and careless sense of fun and feeling of being alive have gone out of the world. If you felt alive today, you wouldn’t be here — or you’d be mad, like poor old Ernest. You certainly wouldn’t be writing a book like that.”

When Lillel arrived, three days later, he was carefully tailored and barbered, and in his roguish mode.

“That was a very attractive woman you were having lunch with,” he said as soon as George showed him into the library. “Why didn’t you introduce me? Afraid of the competition?”

“She’s misanthropic and a tremendous bore,” I said. “Not your type at all.”

“You should let me be the judge of that,” he said. He meant to sound like Errol Flynn, but he came out like Robert Cohn, an underlying poutiness spoiling the desired man-to-man locker room assurance. He was determined to pursue the subject, though, and I couldn’t get him to desist until I told him she was already spoken for and completely off limits.

“Oh, well,” he said, “you should have said she was yours at the start.”

“I don’t believe I identified her owner.”

“You don’t need to,” he said, “I can put two and two together. What did you want to see me about?”

“I need your help.”

“You need my help?”

“In a very delicate problem.” He swelled visibly.

“I’ll certainly do what I can. You know that.” He spoke as though our acquaintance was actually a friendship.

“When you hear what it is, you may want to reconsider.”

“Listen, when David Lillel makes a commitment, he keeps it. You know that, don’t you?” He now spoke as though we had a relationship beyond friendship; we were blood brothers. We couldn’t have been any closer had we roomed together in school and college, sowed our wild oats in the CIA together and now belonged to the same clubs and sat on the same boards — had we, in fact, been through every upper-class white ritual of passage. Of course, as in all his impersonations, he didn’t strike quite the note he strove for. No matter how carefully he prepared the role, one was always conscious of the reality behind the histrionics.

“All right,” I said, “here it is. I have a friend named Sutter Lang who is very concerned about anti-Semitism in this country. Not the obvious kinds, but the deep, secret varieties. He wants to discuss them with a Jew who is — how shall I put this? — not looking for anti-Semitism everywhere, a man of such confidence that he doesn’t have to notice the petty examples, but also a man sensitive enough to be aware of the racial subtleties — which are the real dangers going on around him. He asked me to help him find such a man, and, out of all the Jews I know, I picked you.”

His face had fallen at the mention of anti-Semitism — except on official occasions he didn’t want to be reminded of it — but he cheered up at being recognized as a man of the world who could afford to ignore “petty examples” of it.

“It seems rather vague,” he said cautiously. “What does your friend propose to do about this ‘secret’ anti-Semitism?”

“Expose it,” I said firmly.

“Oh, I don’t want my name used,” he said hurriedly.

“No fear of that. He just wants to talk to you.”

It wasn’t what Lillel wanted — it was certainly not what he expected — but he agreed.

A week later we were again in that library, and Sutter was with us. I had not told him any of what I had told Lillel. Not to keep him in the dark deliberately (or maliciously), but because I didn’t feel it mattered. The guinea pig had been produced — how made no difference. (If I had told Lillel what Sutter really wanted, he obviously wouldn’t have agreed to meet him. I had had to invent a reason; and one was as good as another.) If I had told Sutter what I had told Lillel, he would have been self-conscious. Actually, he would have been so no matter what the story had been, had I told him. It was clearly better that he have no restraints. He had said the problem was “not rational, not ‘scientific’ [but] religious and magical … a fairy tale with a wicked witch and a victim.” He had insisted that “we few” who were still awake were figures in an epic and “must slay the dragon in an entirely new way — by inducing him to slay himself”; and that “the courage and ingenuity [of epic heroes] is assumed. If one inducement doesn’t work, the heroes go on to another. They finally find the key.” The author of such confident sentiments should have, I felt, no trouble in finding the key to David Lillel, no matter how misinformed the latter might be initially about his intentions: If Sutter was going to be successful in inducing Jews to look at themselves, he was going to have to overcome greater problems than my methods of delivering them.

When we were seated, Sutter said nothing immediately, but stared carefully and steadily at Lillel, who finally broke the silence by saying, “I understand you’re interested in anti-Semitism.”

Sutter didn’t seem at all surprised at the remark. “I suppose everyone is,” he said tranquilly, “but I am really more interested in Jews.”

“You are?” Lillel was puzzled.

“Yes, I think they have great problems.”

“I suppose that’s true.”

“Sometimes that which seems very strong is actually extremely vulnerable,” Sutter said sententiously. “We may say that about the United States itself, for instance. We may even say it about Russia. We can certainly say it about Jews.”

“Oh, yes,” Lillel agreed. He naturally thought Sutter was referring to Jewish vulnerability in the cliché sense in the Sinai, or in the possibility of fresh holocausts — and was dutifully giving lip service to accepted truth.

“I think that Jews are vulnerable because they are lacking in imagination,” Sutter went on. “They don’t see themselves as they really are. They think they’re ‘chosen,’ when they are really ‘unchosen.’ They are in the unfortunate position of living a lie, and lies are always an unimaginative refuge from reality. The imaginative, honest alternative for the collective Jew would be to step forward and say, ‘I am not blessed but cursed. The entire human family is crippled, but I am the most crippled of all. In the past, the rest of humanity understood this and hated me for it and reacted accordingly — degrading me whenever possible. Today, the rest of humanity has inversed its understanding (as it has in regard to everything) and loves me for being the most crippled, and has reacted accordingly — exalting me whenever possible. But I wasn’t a fit object for hatred, and I am certainly not a fit object for love. Like any other cripple, my only hope is to face my problem in private and make my own adjustment, however painful, to the cruel jest which creation has played on me. Instead of accepting this diseased love and adulation, I shall reject it. It builds me ever higher on a false foundation, which must crash in time, leaving me open to the inevitable counterreaction of hate and degradation. I shall break this terrible cycle by assuming the responsibility for myself instead of always taking the evaluation of the rest of the world and using it to my own advantage.’ If Jews did this, if they were so honest and brave, they would find that they could forge a binding and noble relationship with the rest of humanity. They would do more. By their honesty, they would force the rest of humanity to be as honest about itself. Instead of the false, sick and sordid position of leadership Jews now have in an inverted world, they would assume genuine leadership in a world returned to sanity. They would become in fact what they now pretend to be, but know they are not.”

Sutter had delivered this speech in the most matter-of-fact way, looking all the time directly at Lillel, who stared back in increasing stupefaction. When Sutter finished, he could do no more than continue to stare at him. Finally, he turned to me and said, “What is he talking about?”

“He sounded quite specific to me,” I said.

“But he called me a cripple. He insulted all Jews by calling them cripples.”

“He said the rest of us are cripples, too. You’re only different in degree.”

“Do you think I’m more crippled than you?”

“I don’t know about myself,” I said. “I’m a pretty poor specimen. It’s difficult to compare on an individual basis, anyhow. I think Sutter meant that the collective Jew is more crippled than the collective non-Jew.”

“But I’m not a ‘collective’ Jew.”

“Of course not,” Sutter said. “That was only for purposes of illustration. The degree to which you, as an individual Jew, are crippled is your personal problem. Just as it is with us non-Jews. I am not curious about individual soul-searching in either category. What I would like to know, though, is whether you could interest yourself in facing your crippleness, no matter its degree.”

“I think you’re damned impertinent,” Lillel said, his face darkening.

“I don’t mean to be,” Sutter said mildly. “I have asked the question as politely as possible.”

“I even think you’re anti-Semitic,” Lillel said, with the air of a man laying down a royal flush.

“No more than you yourself,” Sutter said. “Probably less.”

“I am anti-Semitic? Did I hear you correctly? Did you say that I, a Jew, am anti-Semitic?”

“Of course you are. All Jews are.”

Lillel was choking now, but he made an attempt at sarcasm. “Isn’t that rather a contradiction in terms?”

“Not at all,” Sutter said cheerfully. “It can be seen in all varieties of the species. Self-hatred is the inevitable corollary of unadmitted crippleness, no matter how hidden it may be. No one can be as anti-Nordic as a Nordic, as anti-black as a black, and so on. And, naturally, no one can be as anti-Jewish — more specific and more to the point as an adjective than anti-Semitic — than a Jew. I would venture to say that in your secret heart you are far more anti-Jewish than any overt, non-Jewish racist could possibly be.”

“What do you think you are?” Lillel shouted, jumping to his feet. “Some kind of Hitler?”

“Oh, dear,” Sutter said. “Now we’re going down the wrong road.”

Lillel stood glaring at him, all the careful veneers shed. “You’re nuts!” he said coarsely. “You’re a regular Nazi!”

“You’re quite wrong,” Sutter said quietly. “I am only trying to help you.” He turned to me. “Perhaps this is only the inevitable and necessary first reaction. Unreasoning rage has to be the initial defense against fact. We can only hope that it will pass and be replaced by constructive introspection.”

“You need psychiatric help!” Lillel bellowed at him.

“That’s the last sort of help anyone needs,” Sutter said. “Actually, it isn’t help at all, but an attempt to prolong the agony. Our only real help must come from ourselves. In uncharted ground. Come now, accept the challenge of self-exploration. Put away this childish excitement and ….”

He never finished that sentence. David Lillel, maddened beyond control, suddenly collapsed on the floor, unconscious and twitching.

Sutter bent over him, sought his pulse, loosened his tie. “I’m afraid he’s had a heart attack.”

“I’ll have George call a rescue squad,” I said.

When I came back after talking to George, Sutter was pacing the room. “Damn!” he said. “I so hoped this would end differently.”

“You did your best.”

“But it’s just like any other encounter of mine. All I’ve done is put another Jew in the hospital. You gave me my guinea pig and I’ve failed with it.”

“No one else could have done otherwise.”

“If that’s true, my theory is disproved. Jews can’t be brought to see themselves.”

“It looks that way.”

“That means you cynics are right.”

“We don’t like being so — at least I don’t.”

“Perhaps this is only temporary,” Sutter said, grasping at straws. “Perhaps when he comes to, he will be a changed man and see that I have his best interests at heart, and will take a look at himself.”


“You’re only being polite,” Sutter said sadly. “There’s no hope and we both know it.”

There was nothing more to say and we sat silent, the body of the unconscious Jew sprawled between us. His mouth was open and his teeth were even more prominent than usual. His thick, coiffured hair was in disarray. One leg of his expensive trousers was hiked up and a brown, hairy calf lay exposed and pathetically vulnerable.

(Based on an article in Instauration)

(read part 1)

Read more at Jamie Kelso’s online Instauration archive

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