Tag Archives: Iraq War

Will Stephen King’s 11-22-63 Get It Right? I Have Low Expectations

I’ll watch Hulu’s film adaptation of Stephen King’s time-travel fantasy, 11-22-63, with an open mind, but I have no reason to believe that King has done any serious research into the JFK assassination. And without doing so, one cannot expect to come close to grasping the diabolic, complex, yet flawed, covert operation which took Kennedy’s life…much less the enormous consequences of the murder of the century. I confess I haven’t read King’s book, but I’ve been told that he grapples with the universal question: what would America have been like had JFK survived Dallas? Well, for starters, there would have been no Vietnam War. This is not conjecture on my part. This is fact, despite what establishment liars (and LBJ apologists) like Doris Goodwin and Robert Dallek say. Just days before Kennedy died, he told close associates that he intended to withdraw all American military personnel (mostly advisory staff in 1963) from Vietnam. JFK’s assistant press secretary Malcolm Kilduff told author James Douglass that, “There is no question that he [JFK] was taking us out of Vietnam. I was in his office just before he went to Dallas and he said that Vietnam was not worth another American life. There is no question about it. I know that firsthand.”

Kennedy signed National Security Action Memo 263 just one month before his death. It laid out plans for complete withdrawal of American military presence in southeast Asia by 1965. Just days after JFK was murdered, Lyndon Johnson signed NSAM 273 which, in essence, reversed Kennedy’s NSAM 263. The war lasted a decade and cost America a fortune in lives, money and prestige.

Without Vietnam, there would have been no student protest and campus unrest in the 1960s. It’s possible that an American counterculture would have never arisen. Imagine a decade of peace and progressiveness instead of turbulence and violence. For that matter, imagine peace being the overriding principle around which our society is constructed. Instead of war. If we are honest with ourselves, we must admit that we have been at war or under the threat of war, since 11/22/63. War means profit, and in the half-century since Kennedy’s death war profiteering has been unabated. We have become so inured to it, that it seems unnatural to not be ruled by the oligarchs who have profited from war: Halliburton, alone, has poisoned and corrupted our democracy for more than 50 years. Its own executive, Dick Cheney, was the driving force behind the unsanctioned, illegal and immoral Iraq War. But more than this, the very fabric of American democracy has been shredded by the new oligarchy which has arisen from the obscene and bloody profits of war. It is hard to find an unsullied politician (especially Republicans, for whom greed and self-interest are practically requirements for membership); every ordinary citizen knows that the country is being run for the sake of the rich. The fix is in, and apathy is widespread.

The roots of distrust in our government and in our way of life can be traced back to Dallas and that bloody day. So when King, or anyone, tries to fairly represent that period, the stakes are enormous. It is easy for the unthinking and the dishonest to dismiss Kennedy’s death as an accident of history. Devoid of historical significance. But the truth is, it was the turning point of America. We cannot shrink from its ugly truth and its profound meaning, and this requires artists and historians of courage and knowledge.

For it is not just that American democracy was overthrown on 11-22-63; war and war profiteering became our way of life. But it’s deeper than that. There are two Americas now: both equally despicable and abhorrent. There’s the official government and the secret government, each equally culpable and invested in protecting the other’s closeted skeletons. There’s the official media and the new “home-brewed” social media; suspicious of one another, and each willing to spin a lazy narrative of lies. There’s official history and real history…never the time traveler shall meet. There’s the official version of JFK’s assassination and the real version. The former espoused by the uninformed or the complicit; the latter infiltrated by co-conspirators and disinformationists. The oligarchy which oversees this mess reaps the benefits of dividing and conquering. Much of the damage done at the behest of the oligarchs was accomplished by CIA agents infiltrating every realm of American life.

From “JFK and the Unspeakable” page 197: “The consequences in the early 1960s, when Kennedy became president was that the CIA had placed a secret team of its own employees through the entire U.S. government. It was accountable to no one except the CIA, headed by Allen Dulles. After Dulles was fired by Kennedy, the CIA’s Deputy Director Richard Helms became this invisible government’s commander. No one except a tight inner circle of the CIA even knew of the existence of this top-secret intelligence network…[it] constituted a powerful, unseen government within the government.”

The CIA didn’t stop there. We now know that its agents infiltrated the fields of rocket science, the military, the media, drug experimentation and sales, war operations, foreign governments, and publishing. It is part of the secret cabal whose purpose is to keep the truth from us, for the truth is dangerous.

I predict that King’s film will, in the end, become another pillar in the house of lies that prevents us all from seeing who we are and from where we came.

http://www.amazon.com/Presidents-Mortician-Tim-Fleming/dp/098882907X

The Permanent War State And The Debasement Of The American Political System, Or How I Learned To Endure Trump And The Other Imbeciles

Amid the childish squabbling and juvenile name calling of the recent Republican debates, there was little discussion of what ails us as a nation and how to fix it. God’s name was invoked repeatedly, illegal Mexicans were demonized as usual, and all the obligatory Obamacare denunciations were uttered. It was a predictable and boring charade. The same empty platitudes, constructed to draw huge applause from the red-faced, red-voting, white-haired haters, polluted the arena. Meanwhile, huge debt and massive wealth inequality plague us, and the bully Trump and his cowardly subjugates made no mention of possible solutions. Indeed, there was no mention that these things were problems.

These snake-oil peddlers know better than to open the vipers’ nest. While they rage against big government and indolent takers, they refuse to acknowledge that the biggest takers are the richest among us. And the richest among us buy and sell these same gutless politicians like they’re banal commodities (which they are). Fittingly, then, Rand Paul, Marco Rubio, Mike Huckabee and the rest of the jackals propose to lower taxes on the wealthy and further burden the middle class with our national debt. This policy will exacerbate income inequality, and they know it. But they couldn’t care less, because to be a Republican today means to do what benefits oneself and not the greater good. Rapacious sociopaths like Scott Walker will say and do anything to advance their own ends.

The rest of us are schmucks for letting them get away with it, but the American media are culpable too. Now fully owned and operated by multinational corporations, CBS, NBC, and ABC (I don’t even include the trash dump called FOX) are consistently silent on the source of inequality and debt. To wit, they do not tell us who pays taxes in this country and where that tax money goes. In short, since Bush and his cronies stole the White House in 2000, large corporations and super-wealthy individuals have paid less and less tax, while middle class tax rates have remained relatively level. Concomitantly, six of every ten tax dollars paid by all Americans goes to defense spending—to the Pentagon, to defense contractors, to war profiteers of all stripes. This pack of hawks includes the corporations who own major broadcast media. They, in turn, with their bloody profits, buy politicians who fund massive military spending projects like Iraq War II(at last count Halliburton made $39 billion on that one) and the F-35 fighter jet ($1 trillion and counting)…both of which were colossal wastes of treasure.

To justify this corrupt system, our leaders must invent and re-invent enemies. For 45 years it was the Soviet Union and the spread of godless communism around the globe. Before the dust had settled from the collapse of the Berlin Wall, and the USSR was no more, our leaders decided the new boogeymen were oil-rich Mideastern Muslims. George Sr. invaded Iraq in 1991; George Jr. twelve years after.  A decade on, radical Islam, to the great relief of the military-industrial complex, is still terrorizing the region.

We are in what writer Andrew Bacevich calls a permanent war state. In his book, Washington Rules, Bacevich writes of an “American credo” which he says calls upon the United States – and the United States alone – to “lead, save, liberate, and ultimately transform the world…which requires America to: to maintain a global military presence, to configure its forces for global power projection, and to counter existing or anticipated threats by relying on a policy of global interventionism.”

Australian writer Greg Maybury argues that this American war-state monolith unleashed its hell-hounds in the run-up to Vietnam. In 1963 the American military-intelligence-security state (AMISS) came to a crossroads. Faced with a President who dared to propose a permanent peace state, which would turn the economic construct of the country on its head, AMISS decided it was best to remove its commander-in-chief.

Maybury writes in “Pox Amerikana,” “Although it may not have been widely recognised at the time, in June 1963, just a few months shy of the Big Event [JFK’s assassination], President Kennedy in his American University commencement address delivered what is arguably the most significant oration of his short-lived, ill-fated tenure as commander-in-chief.

“In fact, it may well have been the most pivotal in American foreign policy in that era. Forget the unforgettable ‘[the] torch has been passed to a new generation….ask not what your country can do for you’ schtick; disregard the indelible ‘we choose to go to the moon because it is hard’…spiel!

“In this address, it appeared Kennedy was attempting to re-define the accepted notion of Pax Americana, to articulate a more inclusive, collaborative version, one that would bring folk with them willingly rather than dragging them kicking and screaming to the position. In almost all respects this wasn’t just a redefinition; he was attempting to turn the notion on its head. ‘Peaceful co-existence’ was decidedly the sub-text of his message. It appeared the baptism of fire he experienced in his on-the-job training as president thus far had changed him significantly.

“But as James Douglass has observed, when Kennedy uttered these words, ‘the priests of our national security state saw him as a heretic.’…from the Brass Asses in the Pentagon bunkers to the winkle-pickered wolf-pack down on the Langley Farm to the righteous, pointy-headed foreign policy and national security wonks in the Beltway think-tanks and the hallowed halls of Ivy League academia and even a few within his own administration, [JFK’s peace state] came across as touchy-feely, appeasement-sounding – indeed naïve, unadulterated – nonsense. This was not in the brochure, and quite a few would’ve been spitting hollow points at the wall.

“Whereas Kennedy at least openly contemplated a path to presidential greatness via a Grand Peace, Bush like many presidents before him saw the only path to a glorious presidential legacy [was] through war, one he ‘knew’ the American people would support him in. As impaired as Bush’s vision may have been, one is tempted – at least with hindsight – to suggest that his was the more pragmatic and realistic, and the one most in sync with America’s true ‘manifest destiny’. Jack’s didn’t stand a ‘snowball’s’!”

Like many other American black plagues, the permanent war state can trace its origins to the streets of Dallas, November 22, 1963. Within three days of the brutal murder, LBJ reversed his predecessor’s National Security Action Memo 263 which laid out Kennedy’s bold plan to withdraw America completely from Vietnam in his second term. Even establishment-approved historians (read lying toadies), like Doris Kearns Goodwin, Robert Caro, and Robert Dallek, grudgingly admit that LBJ’s NSAM 273 wiped out JFK’s peace-state dream, opened the door to a decade of war in southeast Asia, and ushered in the permanent war state.

In the three-card monty game run by the American capitalist war state, we are the suckers. Despite what the traveling Republican clown show tells us, it is not social welfare programs that have busted the budget. It is not spending on education that needs to be cut. And it is not Planned Parenthood which is sucking the federal teat dry. It is the trillions we spend on needless, murderous war and its weaponry and its installations and its co-conspirators—the Pentagon and its blood-sucking contractors—that is holding us hostage at gunpoint. As right-wing blowhards try to convince us that welfare cheats and minority takers and do-gooders and public schools and infrastructure rebuilding are keeping us in debt, remember this: if we cut military spending and corporate welfare by just one-half, we could build all the new roads and bridges we need; provide free education to every student; feed the hungry; subsidize the jobless; fund Social Security and Medicare for good; and provide free health care for all citizens.

When someone in the Republican circus speaks to this truth, maybe I’ll sit up and listen.

http://www.amazon.com/Presidents-Mortician-Tim-Fleming/dp/098882907X

New Study Reaffirms Conservatives’ Bias and Ignorance

If you are liberal, as I am, you are probably regularly frustrated and mystified by the ignorance and misinformation of your family, friends and acquaintances of conservative persuasion. There is just no way to talk sense to these people, and, thanks to a new study, there are viable and identifiable causes for conservatives’ inability to consider alternative philosophies or develop open-minded approaches to societal and philosophical matters. In short, their minds are closed, and they don’t want to listen to any other viewpoints. So says Chris Mooney in his new book, “The Republican Brain: The Science of Why They Deny Science and Reality.”

At its core, Mooney’s book postulates then proves this immutable fact: Conservatives are largely born into authoritarian households, grow up to be rigid in beliefs and ideology themselves, and then seek out affirmation for those beliefs without considering other viewpoints. Enter FOX News, the perfect outlet for the conservative. Reinforcing old, illusory and non-factual beliefs is what FOX does best.

Mooney’s hard data are the results of public opinion surveys which ask respondents about their beliefs and “information media” preferences. The surveys’ subject matters were climate change, health care, the Iraq War, the Ground Zero mosque, the 2010 elections, and other currently debated topics. The results show that those who watch FOX News are more likely to be misinformed about factually uncontestable matters (for instance, were there really no WMDs found in Iraq). But this begs the question: Which comes first the conservative or FOX News? Mooney’s research provides an interesting answer.

While watching FOX News certainly makes one more misinformed and ignorant, naturally predisposed ignorant and misinformed people seek out FOX News to reinforce their stupidity. In other words, if you’re born stupid you cannot get smarter by watching FOX News; however, ironically, the dumber you are the more likely you are to do the one thing that will keep you dumb: seek out outlets like FOX News to reinforce your stupidity. It’s a Catch-22, but don’t tell conservatives that. They will not understand the reference, and they will deny the scientific results of any survey which claims they are stupid anyway.

According to Mooney, political conservatives tend to have a higher need for closure. They are uncomfortable with loose ends that are a natural residue of life’s complexities. For instance, it is comfortable and simplistic for conservatives to decry the welfare state, while at the same time being oblivious to the fact that investment banks and military defense contractors are the biggest welfare vacuums in America. Corporatists suck billions of tax dollars down their greedy holes, compared to the drop-in-the-bucket consumed by the genuinely needy.

Conservatives are, by and large, authoritarian/absolute in their beliefs, and they limit challenges against their belief systems by surrounding themselves with sources of information that will tell them they are right…and by defiantly, even violently, challenging those who tell them they are wrong.

The author then goes on to note that they’re also disinclined to watch anything else. FOX keeps constantly in their minds the idea that the rest of the media are “biased” against them, and conservatives duly respond by saying other media aren’t worth watching—it’s just a pack of lies. According to Public Policy Polling’s annual TV News Trust Poll (the 2011 run), 72 percent of conservatives say they trust FOX News, but they also say they strongly distrust NBC, ABC, CBS and CNN. Liberals and moderates, in contrast, trust all of these outlets more than they distrust them (though they distrust FOX). This, too, suggests selective exposure of conservatives.

What does this all mean? As long as there is a FOX News there will be right-wingers, and as long as there are right-wingers there will be a FOX News. Our only hope is to grab them when they’re young before intransigence and ignorance settle like concrete in their brains.

http://neverlandpublishing.com/tpm.html

JFK Haters (Killers?) Buy Access To JFK Library

In a stunning development that was glossed over and/or largely ignored by the mainstream media, the Carlyle Group, an evil multinational corporation that has profited immensely from human suffering across the globe, is financing a facelift of the JFK Presidential Library in Boston. This raises the question, what is the Carlyle Group and what interest could it possibly have in JFK’s historical artifacts.

The Carlye Group is an investment firm with holdings in defense, technology, hedge funds, real estate, telecommunications, transportation, and the aerospace industry. It is estimated that their assets approach $200 billion. Their board members and advisors were and are political, corporate and military titans who have profited handsomely from their associations with Carlyle. It is one of the largest defense contractors in America, and it made hundreds of millions of dollars off the Iraq War.

Perhaps the first notorious mention of Carlyle occurred in Michael Moore’s incendiary Fahrenheit 9/11, wherein the director alleged that that the bin Laden and Bush families were both connected to the Group. Following the attacks on September 11, the bin Laden family’s investments in the Carlyle Group became an embarrassment, and the family was forced to liquidate its assets with the firm. Moore exposed Carlyle’s connections with George H. W. Bush and his Secretary of State James A. Baker III, both of whom served as advisers to the firm. You’ll recall that after 9/11 the bin Ladens were spirited out of America with the help of the George W. Bush administration. Subsequently none of the Bushies were made to publicly account for this by anyone in the mainstream media. The movie quotes author Dan Briody who claimed that the Carlyle Group profited from September 11 because it owned United Defense, a military contractor.

Moreover, the attacks occurred at the very moment when Carlyle was holding its annual investor conference, attended by none other than Osama bin Laden’s brother.

What does this all mean and what does it have to do with JFK? For the answer to that you’ll have to do a lot of independent reading on your own. There is not enough room here to delineate all the nefarious connections to November 22, 1963. When I told a friend about Carlyle’s funding of the JFK Library he snarked, “The murderers want access to the incriminating evidence. Maybe they want to start another fire.” The fire he refers to is the mysterious blaze that occurred in the JFK Library on the same day of the Boston Marathon bombing. There are some who see a connection between the two, but there is no proof of this. And while it seems highly suspicious to those of us who understand the genesis and far-flung implications of JFK’s murder, further investigation is needed.

Back to Carlyle. The only public excoriation of the company happened a few years back when ABC News reported this: “The Carlyle Group, a giant Wall Street firm best known for its ties to former President George H.W. Bush and other prominent public officials, made more than $13 million in payments to an indicted political fixer who arranged for the firm to receive business from a New York pension fund, New York attorney general Andrew Cuomo said today. Carlyle is a politically connected powerhouse whose board of advisors has been graced by the names of numerous political luminaries from both the Democratic and Republican Parties including former President Bush, his Secretary of State James Baker III, former Secretary of State Colin Powell, former SEC Chairman Arthur Levitt, Britain’s former Prime Minister John Major, ex-Time magazine media glitterati Norman Pearlstein and former Clinton White House Chief of Staff, Mack McLarty. The firm is currently headed by the highly regarded ex-IBM CEO Lou Gerstner.”

And recently Russ Baker, a genuine investigative reporter (probably the last of a dying breed in America), wrote this on his website, WhoWhatWhy.com, under the headline “Carlyle Group’s latest acquisition: The JFK Library”:

“Some things you truly cannot make up. Like this: the museum and archives celebrating and exploring the life (if not really wanting to investigate the death) of John F. Kennedy is getting a facelift—courtesy of….the Carlyle Group. This development was noted, without much fanfare, in a variety of major media. If there was a smidgen of irony, I missed it. Yet, consider this: The ultimate globe-girdling corporation is playing a major role in preserving the memory of a president who at the time of his death was engaged in what may be described as mortal combat with outfits not unlike Carlyle—if smaller and less global. (I write about this in my book Family of Secrets but you can learn a lot more about JFK versus the corporations in Donald Gibson’s Battling Wall Street: The Kennedy Presidency.) Kennedy was locked in grim battle with oil and steel and banking interests, hated by mining giants and soda pop companies, resisting pressures from the burgeoning defense industry, and on and on. The list of the offending and the aggrieved was endless. Executives were taking out ads to excoriate him, and even showing up at the White House to practically spit in his face. ‘Those robbing bastards,’ JFK told Walter Heller, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisors, when Heller mentioned the oil and gas industry. ‘I’m going to murder them.’”—as cited in Family of Secrets, from audiotape held by John F. Kennedy Library and Museum – See more at: http://whowhatwhy.com/2014/06/29/carlyle-groups-latest-acquisition-the-jfk-library/#sthash.mN9khqOV.dpuf

http://neverlandpublishing.com/tpm.html