Tag Archives: Ron Paul

Cultural Marxism, Jewish Conspiracies, Spring Break 83, and Penny Stocks

This post is a return to a past investigation, “Andrew Breitbart: Psychosis in a Political Mask Part One”, where I believe I provided substantial evidence that a chapter devoted to the Frankfurt School in Breitbart’s memoir, Righteous Indignation, took its material without credit or citation from “The New Dark Age: The Frankfurt School and Political Correctness” by Michael Minnicino, which originally appeared in Fidelio, a magazine published by Lyndon LaRouche. It would also appear to borrow other related material from a later essay on the same subject, “Cultural Marxism” by William Lind. The plagiarism issue, that Breitbart wanted so badly to be seen as an intellectual that his nest carries other feathers, is incidental to the way a very ugly perspective, a classic and ancient conspiratorial perspective, of an all-powerful group of jews who destroy the christian by manipulating the darker races of the ghetto, is made mainstream1.

It is commonplace now to hear of the two flanks of the American conservative movement, the interventionist neo-conservatives and the isolationists. What is striking, and very instructive, is the way in which this specific conspiracy is shared by both flanks. Breitbart was a staunch supporter of the Iraq war, a man who felt that the failure of the democratic party was that it was not as hawkish as Joe Lieberman, a man who acutely feels an apartness from those around him in Los Angeles when they dare to protest the war with Iraq, a man who gives a public speech where he’s seized with mad enthusiasm about the idea of the American military annihilating the dissenting left2. Yet his Frankfurt School thesis originated with an essay published in a magazine of the isolationist LaRouche. The Frankfurt School thesis also shows up in Death of the West by Patrick Buchanan, isolationist and holocaust denier3.

While going through Breitbart’s book, I wondered at what possible sources he’d come across and used for this section. Minnicino and Lind, are most certainly there, without credit. However, there is a concept not in Minnicino or Lind, the idea that the Frankfurt School have set up something like a Democratic Media Complex. The lunatic idea that this small group of european exiles is able to exert its influence over the United States through mind control originates in Minnicino (the mind control is not figurative, in Minnicino’s essay it is literal); the theme of a “complex” does not. It is, of course, reminiscent of the matrix in which Neo is trapped, and there in one section of Indignation, Breitbart mixes the two up. There is, however, a movie currently available on youtube, “Cultural Marxism: The Corruption of America”, copyright 2010, a year before the publication of Breitbart’s Righteous Indignation. It deals with this same idea of cultural marxism, the Frankfurt School, the very same thesis that appears in Breitbart’s book, and though it makes no mention of a “complex”, it at one moment refers to being trapped like Neo, in a matrix created by the Frankfurt School.

A full transcript of “Cultural Marxism: The Corruption of America” follows the end of this post, after the footnotes; this excerpt and all others from the movie are taken from there:

NARRATOR
This time it seems Marx won. Today, post-Engle4 politically correct baby boomers are so completely immersed in the Frankfurt School’s cultural pessimism, they can’t see the forest for the trees. They’re fish in a bowl of muddy water. They’re Neo in the Matrix. They swim in it. They absorb it through every pore of their beings. Starting in the 1960s, cultural marxism has woven its values into every american’s very existence. Khrushchev was right when he said, “we will bury you.”

From Indignation, where Breitbart mixes up the matrix with the complex – Neo is trapped in the Matrix, figures out that the Matrix is a sham, yet here he figures out the Complex is a sham:

If you’ve got a big story, the Complex will do what it always does: attack you personally using the PC lexicon. You immediately become a racist, sexist, homophobic, jingoistic nativist. Don’t let them do it. The fact is this: if you refuse to buy into their lexicon, if you refuse to back down in the face of those intimidation tactics, they can’t harm you. You’re Neo in the hallway with Agent Smith after he figures out that the Complex is a sham — the spoon isn’t bending, he’s bending. Once it hits him that he’s not bound by the rules of the game, he can literally stop bullets. You can stop their bullets because their bullets aren’t real.

My focus in this post will be on this movie, “Cultural Marxism”, and treat as the center of a wheel with some very interesting spokes. There are two notes that I would like to make explicit and state in very obvious terms before continuing. The first is that the cultural marxism thesis is a very ugly one, an inherently ugly one, where a group of all-powerful jews who enslave and destroy America is very much a part of an ancient and vile conspiracy tradition. The jewishness of the Frankfurt School is an inherent part of Minnicino’s thesis. Minnicino would later leave LaRouche’s organization and disavow his work there5. “The New Dark Age” is very much consistent with the conspiracy thinking of the LaRouche group, which would hold a conference where Minnicino would present another paper on the artificiality of the jewish ethnic identity alongside “America’s ‘Young America’ movement: slaveholders and the B’nai B’rith” by Anton Chaitkin, a paper on how B’Nai B’rith, a jewish social organization, was the hidden hand behind the civil war6. The Frankfurt School thesis would show up, as already said, in Death of the West, a book by holocaust denier Pat Buchanan, and it would show up in the manifesto of Anders Breivik (PDF), the Norwegian mass murderer, though Breivik, unlike Breitbart, was good enough to give credit to Minnicino.

The second, and equally crucial point, is that this ugly racial appeal is able to exist through the larger co-operation of the press. The conservative can make an appeal to race, but it must be discreet, a dog whistle, allowing the press to ignore or downplay the appeal and present this politician or thinker as a great statesman or thinker. Where this has broken down recently, where we speak now of a “lunatic fringe” of the Republican party, is when politicians become so vulgar, so flagrant, so obvious that the press cannot disguise it. At the very beginning of Matt Taibbi’s Griftopia, he writes of his astonishment at the violently loud dog whistles she sounded – yet this was a speech that people declared as a victory, as a signal that she had the potential to be a serious political figure – I point to the most ridiculous example that comes to mind, Charles Lane’s “PostPartisan – Sandra Day O’Palin?” 7. That the press now makes no attempt to apologize for or explain her stupidity or her xenophobia is because she has lost all political usefulness and because her statements, about being a victim of blood libel or shucking and jiving, are so bluntly visible that they can no longer be dressed up. Occasionally, even after the cruel racial appeal is out in the open and very obvious, there is still an attempt to look away from the abattoir or force us to swallow the filth. There were the newsletters published by Ron Paul, which included one that explained how to kill black men and get away with it, that were treated by a few too many as if they were something that should be properly forgotten, a tiresome nuisance brought up by social lessers8. “The Tea Party’s Brain”, a profile of Paul by Joshua Green, only gives mention of the newsletters in parenthesis; Henry James would envy at how much is contained in those parentheses9. After the content of the newsletters broke again in the 2011 primaries, Robert Wright’s first blog post at The Atlantic was “The Greatness of Ron Paul”, giving barely any mention of the newsletters at all. Ross Douthat would write of Paul’s lengthy career of publishing such newsletters as a period of madness, a madness which helped him to become a better statesman. I lack Douthat’s genius, and so I am entirely ignorant on this cause and effect, how publishing instructions on effectively murdering the young men of your society and getting away with the deed makes one a better leader10. There were numerous attempts to shame those who were repulsed by the content of Paul’s newsletters, by among others, Andrew Sullivan, Conor Friedersdorf, and I’m sorry to say, Glenn Greenwald, and I thought then as I do now, that their efforts were a disgusting embarassment.

It would only be through the abetting of the press that Breitbart was able to get away with a campaign of destroying a voter rights service for the needy, ACORN, a campaign of persecution against Shirley Sherrod and Van Jones, an incessant questioning of whether Tea Party protesters had yelled out “nigger!” when John Lewis ascended the capitol steps, all of which was given the heady label of citizen journalism11. Breitbart did, after all, give out content which could fill the space for a few days, with questions on the accuracy and reliability of his work only coming after lives had been wrecked. That the first Anthony Weiner scandal may have been brought about by a rival congressman, or that Breitbart’s Frankfurt School thesis seems to have been a jewish conspiracy piece plagiarized from a far right fringe group were questions that weren’t brought up at all12. Some might see in this larger picture – the way he went after Sherrod, Jones, Lewis, coupled with a jewish conspiracy theory, as an attempt at the old racial appeal, but no, the press was happy to cover up the mess. Breitbart helped do his part, by advertising himself as a new kind of conservative, and where Minnicino stresses the jewishness of the Frankfurt School, Breitbart barely gives it mention, though occasionally hints of the old ugliness show through. He gives one parenthetical mention of the Frankfurt School being almost entirely jews – though perhaps one mention is enough. He also describes their philosophy as an anthrax, a weaponized bacteria, like that which might be carried by shipboard rats, and the jews of Europe were once spoken of as a pestilence that had to be eliminated13.

This all serves as necessary context before moving on to “Cultural Marxism: The Corruption of America”, directed by conservative film-maker James Jaeger. Where Breitbart joins his Frankfurt School with a pro-military neoconservative philosophy, Jaeger’s movie joins it with hardline isolationism and christian fundamentalism. It is because of the cultural marxists that there is an out of control security state, because of the cultural marxists that public schools are falling apart, cultural marxists and their european economic thinking are behind the federal reserve and the economic collapse. It is the cultural marxists who are behind the secularization of american society, the collapse of the american family, the making of men more like women and women more like men, the cultural marxists are behind the promotion of same sex marriage14. The movie is mostly narration over various illustrative images, intermixed with various talking heads. I do not think the arguments made are strong or substantial; my focus is on the varied ways the cultural marxist thesis is employed and the interesting connections of the film-maker, so I leave it to others to refute the film’s claims. The talking heads include: Ron Paul, the already mentioned publisher of vile newsletters; Pat Buchanan, isolationist and holocaust denier15; Ted Baeher, a religious fanatic who recently argued that those who back marriage equality should face trial and just punishment16; and Edwin Vieira, best known for declaring that supreme court justice Anthony Kennedy’s striking down of an anti-sodomy statute was an example of “Marxist, Leninist, satanic principles drawn from foreign law.” Though he was a harsh critic of cultural marxism, Vieira felt the best way of dealing with Kennedy came from Joseph Stalin: the tyrant had a slogan, and it worked very well for him, whenever he ran into difficulty: ‘no man, no problem'” – and Dana Milbank would be good enough to give the full quote to Washington Post readers: “Death solves all problems: no man, no problem.”17

Before I go further, I should note something which recurred again and again in my look into this subject – the eerie occurence of ideas or themes suddenly there in the opposite place you expect it to be, like an elaborate sex toy in a convent or a gleaming supercomputer in an amish farm. I tried to think of a proper metaphor and the only one I could come up with was the original movie of The Manchurian Candidate, where the hardline anti-communists are, in fact, part of a conspiracy with the communist Chinese. There is already the strange fact that the Frankfurt School thesis is employed by factions of the American right that are in supposed opposition, the neoconservatives and isolationists. There is the additional strange fact that the Breitbart news site is now headed by Ben Shapiro and Joel Pollak, two ardent pro-Israeli writers. These two men who are so militant in calling out what they see as anti-semitism, with Shapiro floating the discredited story of Hamas backing Chuck Hagel, write on a site whose founder presented as his guiding worldview a plagiarism of a jewish conspiracy theory18. Jonah Goldberg would assail Matthew Yglesias for statements that he felt were in the tradition of Charles Lindbergh, while at the same time claiming Andrew Breitbart as a close friend, a man whose worldview was a plagiarism of the kind of conspiracy so beloved of Lindbergh, with the cherry on top that Righteous Indignation appeared to borrow without citation from Goldberg’s Liberal Fascism as well19.

Similarly, “Cultural Marxism” is a movie for a far right audience, but it might be the one of the only documentarys I’ve seen – conservative or liberal – which refers to large multinationals, multiple times, as corporate fascists20. This movie is for the worker who sees work and wages being less and less, with companies acting ruthlessly and moving work overseas. This is a movie disgusted at government overreach, but views the lack of the support of national tariffs as an example of the overwhelming influence of cultural marxism21. The movie is designed to appeal to the audience that the Democratic Party abandoned in the 1990s, and who would afterwards vote according to cultural issues now that both parties were equally weak in fighting for worker rights, so eloquently described in Thomas Frank’s What’s the Matter with Kansas? 22 This is the very same audience that Buchanan appealed to with great success, as did Ross Perot, and here we have another overlap with Breitbart – Perot was the last non-Republican voted for by Breitbart, who had great difficulty finding work with his terrible grades and ADD23.

There is the discordant moment of hearing a company described as a “corporate fascist” alongside an indictment of the malevolent influence of marxist thinking in the United States, and there is a strange discordancy between this and one of the men behind this movie. “Cultural Marxism” is a movie produced by the late William L. Van Alen, Jr. (he died in 2011). Van Alen was the founder of the Noah Fund, which invested according to christian principles24. That meant it avoided any involvement with anything that promoted birth control, pornography, alcohol, or gambling. It would also avoid any companies that had any policy permitting or promoting same sex marriage25. Any other worker concerns were of no consequence. The Noah Fund’s biggest investments were in Microsoft and Wal-Mart, a company notorious for the abysmal treatment and wages of their workers. Noah’s portfolio manager would explain their investment in both companies on the basis that they were de facto monopolies, allowing them full freedom in setting their prices. Another investment would be Fannie Mae, a government sponsored entity whose investment was explained on the basis that they would buy housing debt that no one else would26. So, here is this strange contradiction: a man who, guided by ethical christian principles, invested in companies which treated workers abysmally and a government backed entity, then made a movie about corporate fascists and the overreach of the federal government.

“Cultural Marxism” manages to be more discrete about the Frankfurt School than Breitbart, never mentioning that any of its members are jewish. Off-screen, James Jaeger, the director of “Marxism”, as well as “Molon Labe”, “Original Intent”, “Corporate Fascism” and “Fiat Empire”, is far more vocal. On his website, The Jaeger Institute, again and again the problems that a jewish cabal were causing the world were brought up27. You have a striking moment in a piece on the movie Crash, “Paul Haggis, Bigotry & CRASH” – an essay which is devoted almost entirely to the idea that the jews who control Hollywood are determined to make themselves look good and christians look bad – Jaeger makes the astonishing point that the jews incited the germans to the point of genocide. I bold that part:

On another level, Paul’s film exemplifies the same old tactics Hollywood films, and Hollywood apologists, use over and over: display plenty of diversity on-screen in the CAST (and at the Academy Awards), but make no mention of the LACK of diversity behind-the-scenes in the EXECUTIVE SUITES.(2) Why doesn’t Paul write a feature that is set in the executive suites of say Warner Bros. or Paramount where the dominating minority is properly and accurately acknowledged as Jewish? Then let’s see a bunch of Black, White, Latino, Iranian, Asian and Persian filmmakers CRASH into them with their movie projects. Let’s see how tolerant the Jewish studio executives are when a non-Jewish filmmaker wants to tell a story that’s not in alignment with the socio-political agenda of the dominating Jewish Hollywood minority. For instance, a story from a Palestinian filmmaker who wants $50 million to film her perspective on the conflict in Israel. Or a picture where an Asian writer get to tell his view of Pearl Harbor or Hiroshima? Or a German who gets to tell his story about what the Jews did to antagonize the German people to the point of genocidal insanity.

The venom was there as well in a piece on Mel Gibson’s The Passion, where he would argue that Gibson did not get studio backing for his movie for this very reason. From “Hollywood’s True Agenda”:

The specifics of the issue are this: TWENTIETH CENTURY FOX, an MPAA company, declined to finance and distribute THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST.(1) Why? Was it because THE PASSION was a motion picture with an agenda different from the agenda of the control group that dominates Hollywood? If American pop culture is controlled, or significantly influenced, by a dominating minority of politically liberal, secular, Jewish males of European heritage, as extensive research conducted by entertainment-securities attorney, John W. Cones, confirms at the Film Industry Reform Movement (see http://www.homevideo.net/FIRM), could this be one of the reasons, or even THE reason, Mel Gibson got such a raw deal from Hollywood studios? Many industry observers and analysts imply it was.

When Mel Gibson originally went to FOX (a studio he had worked with on several successful projects), the initial “reasons” they gave him for refusing to finance or distribute THE PASSION were a) it wasn’t in English nor subtitled; and b) they felt religious movies, as exemplified by a number of recent flops such as THE GOSPEL ACCORDING TO JOHN, don’t generally do well at the box office.

Later on, mouthpieces for the Jewish Establishment(2), in particular Abraham Foxman of the Anti-Defamation League (the ADL), came out and declared that “recent statements by Mel Gibson paint the portrait of an anti-Semite. . .”(3) and he was troubled that Mel’s movie would incite anti-Semitism — thus they advised the studios (who listen to the ADL’s advice), to decline to finance and distribute THE PASSION. Foxman later advised Mel Gibson to remove a line of dialog (Matthew 27:25) from the picture, which Mel did. Continuing to complain, Foxman then advised Mel to place a post script on the picture, which he opted to not do, because, as Mel stated in his Diane Sawyer interview, ‘it implied there was something wrong with my movie’.

Nevertheless, even though Mel DID add subtitles, taking away “reason a),” neither FOX, nor any of the MPAA studio/distributors — under the direct or indirect, overt or covert, suggestion or orders of the Jewish community, through their advocacy organization, the ADL — offered to finance or distribute THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST. Thus, in effect, the GENERAL JEWISH COMMUNITY (AS REPRESENTED BY THE ADL) AND THE SO-CALLED ‘HOLLYWOOD JEWS’ COMBINED TO EFFECTIVELY SUPPRESS (SOME SAY CENSORED OR BOYCOTTED) THE FINANCING AND DISTRIBUTION OF A CHRISTIAN MOTION PICTURE THROUGH STANDARD HOLLYWOOD CHANNELS, i.e., through publicly-held, New York Stock Exchange-listed, MPAA-member studio/distributors. (4)

In the same piece we have Jaeger bringing up the theme usually implied in most such conspiracy theories, the all-powerful jew manipulating the darker races to the detriment of the white christian:

Hollywood studios also promote endless immigration of people that are believed to NOT be prone to anti-Semitic behavior so that the dominating Christian community in America (77% of Americans are Christians, 1.3% Jews and less than 1% Muslims) can be diluted.(18) This is why your European friends seem to have a more difficult time getting permanent visas than do your Asian, African or Hispanic friends. This is also why the United States is being flooded with more people than we can assimilate right now and why America is no longer a “melting pot.”

Jaeger makes explicit that the culture war is a religious war, saying it loud and clear, without code words or dog whistles:

Thus the main reason Christianity is often bashed by Hollywood movies is because of the obvious: It’s the dominant religious preference in the U.S. (something the control group sees as threatening), AND the founder of Christianity, Jesus Christ, is a JEW that was attempting, through a new testament, to lead Gentiles into a new pact with God. Since the Hollywood control group is dominated by Jews who generally disavowal any recognition that one of their own was the Messiah, it adds to their disdain for Christianity. Thus we are seeing subtle and overt attacks on various aspects of religion, with particular emphasis on Christianity, funneled and amplified by the MPAA studios/distributors and large chunks of the media, which they own. Among the subtle attacks are the constant use of the term “Happy Holidays.” Almost every film, TV show and radio program put out by Hollywood or influenced by the control group, promulgates this term instead of the of the more traditional, Christian term, “Merry Christmas” — the goal being to neuter Christmas from the birthday celebration of Jesus, to a secular, commercial holiday that incorporates the Jewish holiday of Hanukkah. Since Hanukkah is relevant to only 1.3% of the population and Christmas is relevant to 77% of the population, it is disrespectful for the dominating minority in the studios to attempt to dictate terms of religious celebration to the majority. But they are doing just that, using the power of film and media in the same way Adolph Hitler used it against them a half century ago.

In THE PASSION conflict, we are seeing a MICROCOSM of the CULTURE WAR that is being waged by traditionalists (and people like O’Reilly who is at least attempting to inject some balance into an otherwise blatantly liberal media led by the New York Times). The only difference is the fact that we at FIRM have the “gall” to include the J-word, that Hollywood Jews are a significant part of the demographic involved in the Culture War. It’s ironic, if not sad, that Bill O’Reilly constantly mentions the ACLU as a purveyor of the secular agenda he so renounces, yet he stops short at mention of the J-word even though the ACLU is “overwhelmingly Jewish in terms of membership and funding.”(20)

On the other hand, to his credit, William Donahue of the CATHOLIC LEAGUE (http://www.catholicleague.org) has the courage to tell it like it is. He is not afraid to use the J-word when it is the only honest and COMPLETE way to describe what’s going on and exactly who is involved. On MSNBC, Donohue said: “Hollywood is controlled by secular Jews who hate Christianity in general and Catholicism in particular. It’s not a secret, okay? And I’m not afraid to say it. That’s why they hate this movie (THE PASSION). It’s about Jesus Christ, and it’s about truth. It’s about the messiah. Hollywood likes anal sex. They like to see the public square without nativity scenes. I like families. I like children. They like abortions. I believe in traditional values and restraint. They believe in libertinism. We have nothing in common. But you know what? The culture war has been ongoing for a long time. Their side has lost.”

Jaeger would start an organization called FIRM, the Film Industry Reform Movement, to deal with the discrimination which Jaeger faced as a non-jewish white male28. One example of discrimination took place in 2010, when another Jaeger movie, Original Intent, was not admitted into Sundance. Jaeger would get into an angry email exchange with Sundance program directors over this fact, an exchange which made me aware of the patience and fortitude of Sundance program directors, and which ends in a terminus that is very American and one of the funniest thing I’ve read this year: after asking Jaeger to stop bccing them on all his angry emails over not being part of the Sundance program (he blames the ADL), a Sundance representative signs off with “Shalom, Rosie Wong”29. FIRM would look into who has the power to determine which movies are produced and released, who gets to work on those movies in the key positions, who determines the themes and contents of screenplays for those movies, and how did such persons get and gain that power30. Jaeger would co-found FIRM in 1998 alongside lawyer John W. Cones, who had a similar perspective of a jewish cabal controlling the movie industry and imposing their views on the country, outlined in a long text at the FIRM reform website, “What’s Really Going on in Hollywood!” Cones would dedicate the text to all those who had been discriminated by Hollywood, such as native americans, african americans, asians, and arabs – though he added two groups that seemed a little incongruous, german americans and white southerners31. It also included among these victims a strange addition given the larger context – gays and lesbians. This was no doubt a valid indictment, that there was a history of vicious stereotypes, but you soon ended up in that strange mirror world where everything down was up: this accusation the mistreatment by Hollywood of gays and lesbians, was being made by someone who co-founded a group with a director who felt that America was being destroyed by the acceptance of gays and same sex marriage, a film funded by a man who refused to invest in any company that supported same sex marriage32.

Cones’ “What’s Really Going on in Hollywood!” is itself a dizzying document – it’s very long and I’ve only read a fraction of it – that adopts what is often seen as a progressive attitude toward Hollywood, arguing for more diversity in those who create movies and act in them. Though it shares this perspective with many progressive pieces, I’ve never come across any such a piece which gave anywhere near such emphasis, or any emphasis, on the jewish ethnicity of the studio owners. Nor have I ever seen in these pleas for greater diversity the complaint made in “What’s Really Going on in Hollywood!” that really stands out – that a disproportionate number of Hollywood movies feature the Ku Klux Klan and Nazis as villains33.

Cones was heavily involved in alternative film financing, and gave lectures on the subject throughout the country. However, his Businessweek profile includes a credit that leaves me, a simpleminded individual, more than a little confused. Cones is listed as a consultant for Spring Break 83 LLC, a limited liability company which produced the movie Spring Break ’83 – the trailer is on youtube: “Spring Break ’83 (2010) – Trailer” 34. This movie appears to be a nostalgic reprise of the unwatchable teen comedies of the early eighties, the usual uproarious mix of half naked women and college pranks, featuring cameos by Lee Majors and Erik Estrada. Here is what leaves me confused: this man who despises how Hollywood is run by a small cabal of jews and the movies they make which focus on a small strain of life, has helped finance a movie which is entirely an homage to movies made by Hollywood thirty years ago. In “What’s Really Going on in Hollywood!”, Cones bemoans what he sees as the racism and sexism perpetuated by a jewish cabal. Spring Break ’83 appears to have a cast that is almost entirely white, except for Estrada, Robert Davi, “Downtown” Julie Brown, and someone who is supposed to Ludacris – though he looks nothing like Luda. Cones takes to task a jewish cabal for Hollywood’s long use of asian stereotypes, but the only asian character in the Spring Break ’83 trailer is a martial artist named Sum Ting Wong. “What’s Really Going on in Hollywood!” was upset about the portrayal of women, but the only major female character in the Spring Break ’83 trailer was a horny college girl played by Sophie Monk. “You mind if she joins us?” a girl asks her boyfriend, before Monk’s character leaps into bed with them 35. You felt again like you were in the mirror maze of The Lady From Shanghai: Jaeger’s “Cultural Marxism” was upset at the degenerate culture destroying America, FIRM attacked the jewish cabal behind the degenerate culture, and Jaeger’s partner in FIRM, John W. Cones, helped finance this same degenerate culture.

Spring Break ’83 had more than a few problems. It was made in 2007, but it was expected to be released only in 2014 – then again, it took Kubrick the same amount of time to make Full Metal Jacket. It would have to shut down production after not paying its cast and crew36. A site was set up, Spring Break ’83: Unpaid Extras, by extras involved in the production who also went unpaid37. Spring Break 83 LLC would attempt to fund its production by selling unregistered securities in California, for which they received a desist and refrain. They would ignore the order, continue selling unregistered securities, and finally be barred from doing so and ordered to pay restitution to a group of investors38. It was the kind of behavior that might unfortunately further the stereotype of the white christian as a cheap deadbeat.

The soon to be in theaters Spring Break ’83 was the second production of Big Sky Motion Pictures, the other something starring Cuba Gooding, Jr. called What Love Is This movie apparently had a few issues as well. Spring Break ’83 had a few threads on the IMDb board devoted to complaints about non-payment of extras and crew, while What Love Is had a few threads from investors who felt they’d been defrauded39. Big Sky Motion Pictures shared the same phone and fax numbers, as well as a web developer with two other production companies, Vintage American Films and Abundance Entertainment40. Abundance Entertainment was developing a movie called Poker Junkies and this also had a few problems. Poker Junkies Productions and Abundance Entertainment would try to sell unregistered securities in Colorado, and just like in California they would be barred from further doing so. The companies would cold call potential investors in the state and promise the possibility of sitting next to Gene Hackman at a banquet dinner the night of the premiere. Hackman had retired from acting in 2007, and had nothing to do with Poker Junkies 41. On June 17th, 2013, a stipulation for consent order was filed against Vintage American Films for selling unregistered securities in Colorado. The other respondents were Greg Fellows and HTBAM Productions. Greg Fellows was an actor in Spring Break ’83 and had filmed the behind the scenes film which had been uploaded to youtube, “Greg Fellows behind the scenes of the upcoming movie “Spring Break ’83″”. On the notice filed with the SEC of an offering of securities made without registration, Fellows was listed as the company’s manager. HTBAM shared the same phone number, 323-871-4466, as Vintage Productions, Abundance Entertainment, and Big Sky Motion Pictures42. There was an additional connection between these projects: Mars Callahan. Callahan was a former child actor, and he wrote and directed What Love Is, co-directed Spring Break ’83, and was set to direct Poker Junkies. He had acting credits in What Love Is and Spring Break ’83; Poker Junkies was a sequel to Poolhall Junkies, a movie he wrote, directed, and starred in. Callahan was named alongside Spring Break LLC in the initial desist and refrain against selling unregistered securities in California43.

Here is where I must make a slight tangent before returning back to the next chapter of the funding of Poker Junkies and the end of this post. There is a site called The Daily Bell whose perspective was a hard-line libertarianism, one which interviewed James Jaeger several times about his documentaries, among them: “James Jaeger on His Documentaries, the Danger of Hollywood Blockbusters and the Reality of Snowden”, “James Jaeger on Gun Control, Nikola Tesla and the Inevitability of the Internet Reformation”, “James Jaeger on His Latest Film, MOLON LABE, and the Restoration of Militias”. As said, it was a site devoted to a hardline libertarianism, evidenced by some of the other interviews on the site, “Thomas DiLorenzo: More on the Myth of Lincoln, Secession and the ‘Civil War'”, “Brian Doherty on the Trouble With Governments and Benefits of Anarchism”, “George Gilder on His New Book, the Superiority of Ludwig Von Mises and the Necessity for a Regulatory Jubilee”, “Steve Forbes on the Future of the GOP, Obama’s Next Four Years and the Advent of a Gold Standard” and the talking heads of “Cultural Marxism”, “Pat Buchanan on His Latest Book, the Failure of Romney and What the GOP Has to Do Next”, “Edwin Vieira on His New Book, ‘The Sword and Sovereignty,’ and Where the US Went Wrong”, and “G. Edward Griffin on Quick Fixes, the Looming Great War and Loss of Elite Moral Authority” 44.

All the interviews on The Daily Bell were conducted by the site’s owner, Anthony Wile, a man with a lengthy career as an investor who’d received strong praise from Ron Paul45. There is at least one other connection between Jaeger and Wile, beyond the one interviewing the other for The Daily Bell: Wile was an executive producer of another Jaeger production, “Spoiler”, about the viability of a third party presidential candidate, as well as “”Corporate Fascism”46. There appeared to be an overall sensibility of straight talking, a kind of upright morality unknown to Wall Street, all of which demonstrated that businesspeople could be relied on to be upright, decent, and law abiding, without need of burdensome government regulation. So, it was a little surprising when you discovered that Wile was involved in a scam where stock in a company called Sedona Software Solutions would be bid up by various financial newsletters with the stock to be sold by Wile and a few conspirators at its peak price, after which it would crash, with the fish who’d been rigged in left with less than pennies – a classic example of a pump and dump. In the midst of the scheme, the conspirators were caught by the SEC, they were fined, and Wile was barred from any involvement in penny stock issues, small cap issues, for three years, and barred from serving as an officer or director of a public company for five47.

After going off on this tangent, it’s possible to return to the final point in this post, which converges with the funding adventures of Poker Junkies. However, before I go any further, there is something that should no doubt be obvious by now, but which I cannot overstress: I am a creature of a very simple mind. Many are exasperated by my cloddishness and slowmindedness, and I misunderstand simple things very, very easily. We have here something which is no doubt very simple, but that I have a great deal of difficulty comprehending. A company I came across called Media Mechanics LLC, was headquartered in Ontario, Canada, and incorporated in Nevada in 2011 – somewhat similar to the setup for Sedona which was headquartered in British Columbia, Canada, and incorporated in Nevada48. According to their quarterly report, they were a development-stage Company that offered search engine optimization49. It had two owners, Matthew Zipchen, who also worked with an Ontario company that sold solar power bonds, and Violetta Pioro, a yoga instructor who hosted a yoga instruction program on public television. The company would be sold on August 13th, 2013, to Scott Kettle, with Zipchen and Pioro retiring from the board50.

Kettle was an executive with a history that had two moments which stood out. He had been vice-president of operations at Thrifty Tel, a phone company that had been hacked by teenagers in order that they might use the calling services. The lawsuit over the hack would become a major part of computer case law, though there was one detail that stood out: Thrifty-Tel would discover the intrusion, then wait a month as the teenagers racked up illegal charges, before finally suing the hackers’ parents for tens of thousands of dollars over the intrusion and lost revenues51. Kettle had also been the president of Ewan 1 / AccessKey IP, Inc. from 2002 to 2006, a company which violated SEC rules by never filing a quarterly report. The SEC would finally suspend the stock in 2012, and then delist it the same year52. So, Kettle bought Media Mechanics Inc., which renamed itself Gawk Inc., and changed its focus, one that was now to “engage in the business of online distribution of all digital content including but not limited to full length feature films, television series, sports, documentaries, live events via our proprietary content distribution network (CDN).” 53 On November 14th, 2013, Gawk Inc. bought Poker Junkies LLC, the limited legal company that was to produce the movie, Poker Junkies. They took over the script and presumably, the future claims of the 177 investors in the movie listed in the filing. After purchasing the company, John Hermansen would join the board of Gawk54. There were two executives on Gawk: Scott Kettle (Chief Executive Officer, President, Chief Financial Officer, Treasurer and Director) and John Hermansen (Chief Content Officer, Secretary and Director). Hermansen was also an executive at Big Sky, and was named in the cease and desist enjoining Abundance Entertainment from trying to sell unregistered securities in Colorado55.

I think I’m able to follow all these events reasonably well. Here is the part that my simpleminded brain doesn’t understand. This company, whose only notable asset appears to be the script to Poker Junkies that it acquired in the purchase of Poker Junkies LLC, has a net income of negative 20K, total assets of a little over 100K. It has over three hundred million shares outstanding, that are currently valued at $3 a share, and this is the part I must be misunderstanding: this company appears to have a market capitalization of over two billion dollars56. Does that make sense to anyone?

What is taking place here I suppose I have to say I am uncertain, and my simple mind remains puzzled over. It would be one more strange moment in a series of strange moments in this plot. A movie which warned against government overreach and corporate fascists produced by a man who, by following his christian principles, invested in those same corporate fascists as well as a government sponsored entity, Freddie Mac. The movie’s director was partnered with another man in an effort to fight the corrupt degeneracy of Hollywood’s jewish cabal, this other man working hard to produce this same degeneracy, which was an homage to the degeneracy of Hollywood’s past. The ironic capper to everything was that Rand Paul, the libertarian once celebrated for his restrained foreign policy ideas, now published his opinion column on Breitbart, the site founded by the man who once saw such foreign policy restraint as a sign of liberal perfidy. Paul would join the site after it was discovered that many of his speeches and writings, some written with the help of a man who celebrated each year the murder of Abraham Lincoln, had been borrowed from other places57. It was a lunatic bell that sounded, and echoed and echoed and echoed without end.

POSTSCRIPT (added January 14th, 2014): On January 3rd, 2014, Gawk Inc. would, according to the 8-K form issued on that day, accept the resignation of Scott Kettle as CEO and appoint him as Chief Information Officer. Mars Callahan would be appointed CEO of Gawk Inc. It would also appoint Ryan Wyler, a veteran of American Express, as its Chief Technology Officer 58 The site MarketWired would post the following news release on January 10th, announcing the launch of the company’s site, gawk.com:

Gawk Incorporated Launches Successful Beta

Connecting Artists and Consumers Around the World

LOS ANGELES, CA–(Marketwired – Jan 10, 2014) – Gawk Incorporated (OTCQB: GAWK) today announced its successful beta launch of www.gawk.com. Built on a innovative global platform, Gawk is bringing self-service distribution to the world by instantaneously connecting artists and consumers.

The Company launched its beta website with a music video of a rising independent singer/songwriter known as Alex G. Consumers join Gawk for free and can purchase the Alex G video for a flat fee of $0.99. No subscriptions are required; fans can enjoy the video repeatedly and at their convenience.

Beta launch for week one resulted in www.gawk.com being viewed in 156 countries. The top 5 countries included United States, Germany, Canada, United Kingdom and France. With over 60% of the traffic beyond U.S. borders, the social capture demonstrates a recognized global presence.

“The world is ready to Gawk. Global innovation meets entertainment; creativity meets commerce. Consumers have been waiting for something new and inspiring in the entertainment industry. We are excited to deliver www.gawk.com to the world and are thrilled by the global success of our beta launch. Our vision reaches far beyond a traditional digital streaming company to create a global community of inspired and enlightened members. We passionately believe that the power of innovation, creativity and collaboration can change people’s attitudes, lives and ultimately the world,” stated Mars Callahan, CEO of Gawk, Inc.

The site, as of the morning of January 14th, 2014, features one song by Alex G, “It’s You I’ll Miss This Christmas” (teaser clip on youtube).

Alex G. announced her involvement with the site on December 19th:

As of the morning of January 14th, 2014, the share price of Gawk Inc. was $7.75, via Bloomberg.

POSTSCRIPT TWO (added January 23rd, 2014): On January 21st, Gawk would announce that it was a sponsor of the Slamdance Film Festival, the film festival that served as an alternative to the Sundance festival. From Bloomberg:

Gawk Sponsors Slamdance Film Festival

Exclusive Presenter of Slamdance TV 2014

LOS ANGELES, CA — (Marketwired) — 01/21/14 — Gawk Incorporated (OTCQB: GAWK) is pleased to announce that it is sponsoring the 2014 Slamdance Film Festival. The Slamdance Film Festival runs concurrently with the Sundance Film Festival, January 17-23, 2014 in Park City, Utah. In addition to sponsorship, Gawk will be the exclusive presenter of Slamdance TV content for the 2014 Slamdance Film Festival which will be featured on the http://www.gawk.com website.

The festival commenced on Friday, January 17th and the company is pleased to report that it has hosted hundreds of independent filmmakers daily in the Gawk Filmmakers’ Lounge. In addition to this event, Gawk will be the co-presenter of the Closing Night Party on January 23rd. Slamdance TV currently creates and produces all Slamdance’s festival coverage. Episodes run at around five minutes each and cover filmmaker interviews and film profiles. Former participants have included Neil Young, Jonathan Demme, Forest Whitaker, and Stan Lee in addition to new filmmakers. Slamdance has announced that http://www.gawk.com will be the exclusive presenter of Slamdance TV 2014.

“We are honored to be a part of the Slamdance Film Festival. This festival provides an unparalleled platform for independent artists, filmmakers and storytellers to showcase their art. Gawk’s mission is to provide a digital multimedia platform for these same artists to self-distribute their art to the world. We believe our goals and philosophies are aligned and are thankful to Slamdance for their support of our vision,” stated John Hermansen, Chief Content Officer of Gawk, Incorporated.

Gawk would begin carrying content from Slamdance as well. As of this moment, the only content on the site is “It’s You I’ll Miss This Christmas” by Alex G, as well as several Slamdance promotional and interview clips.

The About page of Gawk carried its contact inforrmation. The following is a screenshot from January 22nd:

Gawk Inc About

The listed address, 5300 Melrose Avenue Suite 42, is four doors down from the listed address of Vintage American Pictures, which is 5300 Melrose Avenue Suite 39. It was Vintage American Pictures that tried to sell unregistered securities in Colorado, with the promise of meeting Gene Hackman at the premiere banquet for Poker Junkies. The listed fax number, (323) 871-4467, is the same fax number as Big Sky Motion Pictures, Abundance Entertainment, and Vintage American Pictures.

(On December 5th some small edits and corrections were made for aesthetic purposes and coherence; nothing in the original meaning was changed. Links were fixed and some footnotes were made more substantial – for instance, to make clear that Van Alen of the Noah Fund is also the Van Alen who produced “Cultural Marxism”. The parts devoted to Jaeger’s essay on the movie Crash and the legal action against HTBAM Productions in Colorado was added on that day as well. On December 6th, a few additional aesthetic tweaks were made; for instance, the strange rhythm of “I am someone of a very simple mind, many are exasperated etc.” was slightly corrected by having the cleavage of a comma replaced with a period, and I am now a creature, not a someone. A faux quizzical “Does that make sense to anyone?” was added, redundantly, to one of the last paragraphs. That the Canadian investment advisor Anthony W. Wile of the Sedona scandal is the same Canadian investment advisor Anthony W. Wile of The Daily Bell and High Alert Capital Partners was given further confirmation in footnote #45 on the same date. On December 7th, footnote #15 was added on the contrast between Pat Buchanan’s strong present day adherence to the constitution versus his attitude during the Iran-contra scandal. The material on the William Lind sourcing and Buchanan’s Death of the West in footnote #3 was added on that same day, as was the additional material in footnote 53 featuring a link to and an excerpt from a letter by the SEC dealing with their concerns that Media Mechanics was a shell entity. On December 11th, the details and associated footnote on Mars Callahan and his connection to the movies of Big Sky Motion Pictures and those production companies sharing the same phone and fax numbers were added. In some places, What Love Is was referred to by its old title, What is Love? This was corrected on December 11th. Footnote #44 and the link to the story about Glen Hartford in footnote #41 were added on December 27th, 2013. The sentence mentioning that Anthony Wile executive produced one of Jaeger’s films, as well as the accompanying footnote #46, with the details involving Dan Happel and Elias Alias, was also added on December 27th. The information that Wile and Happel also executive produced Jaeger’s “Corporate Fascism” was added on December 28th.)

FOOTNOTES

1 I take the supporting material for this footnote wholely from “Andrew Breitbart: Psychosis in a Political Mask Part One Footnote #8″. The idea that jews manipulate black men and women to forment insurrection against white christians is an old trope of conspiracy literature, and is given mention in The New Hate by Arthur Goldwag:

Not long afterward, another viral quotation that laid bare a different, albeit not unrelated, facet of the Jewish conspiracy began making the rounds of the hate sheets. It was drawn from A Racial Program for the Twentieth Century, a book ostensibly authored in 1912 by a Marxist Zionist Englishman named Israel Cohen. In 1957, the Mississippi congressman Thomas G. Abernethy read it into the Congressional Record. “We must realize that our party’s most powerful weapon is racial tension,” it began.

By pounding into the consciousness of the dark races that for centuries they have been oppressed by the whites, we can mold them to the program of the Communist Party. In America we will aim for subtle victory. While inflaming the Negro minority against the whites, we will endeavor to instill in the whites a guilt complex for their exploitation of the Negroes. We will aid the Negroes to rise in prominence in every walk of life, in the professions and in the world of sports and entertainment. With this prestige, the Negroes will be able to intermarry with the whites and begin a process which will deliver America to our cause.

Cohen’s words confirmed an old conviction of the racist Right that’s already been referred to in these pages more than once: that the civil rights movement was entirely the creation of Jewish Communists; that without their promptings, American blacks would have had no reason to feel any discontent. As the poet Ezra Pound put it, “It is perfectly well know that the fuss a bout [sic] ‘de-segregation’ in the U.S. has been started by the jews. Plenty of americans have been getting on quite nicely with coloured people for nearly a century.” The only problem was that the Communist Party didn’t exist in 1912, in either England or the United States—it came into being after the Russian Revolution—and no book with the title A Racial Program for the Twentieth Century was ever published. An article that appeared in the Washington Star on February 18, 1958, traced the story back to Eustace Mullins, who claimed to have encountered the quotation in a book he found in the Library of Congress. Around the same time, Mullins was also promoting a rumor that Eisenhower’s mother was black.

2 From Indignation:

At the exact moment in my life when I was recognizing the strength of my antileftism, my anticommunism… at the exact point when I was seeing that my emotions and theories were unintentionally driving me toward an accidental “culture-warrior” status… at the exact juncture when I was realizing that the most brutal, evil force I could imagine wasn’t Al Qaeda or radical Islam (at least you know where they’re coming from, the brutality of their mission and their anti-Western, anticlassical, liberal hatred), but the Complex surrounding me 24/7 in the form of attractive people making millions of dollars whose moral relativism and historical revisionism and collective cultural nihilism were putting them in the same boat as the martyrs of radical Islam rather than red-state Americans…at the exact time when I was undergoing the fundamental recognition that my neighbors in West Los Angeles were acting to undermine national cohesion in a time of war, which put me in a perennial state of psychic dissonance…

I watched with increasing trepidation the ultimate attack on Bush that I had previously predicted to friends and family. I watched the collective effect of the Hollywood class’s reaction to 9/11, which consisted of splitting the country when we were united. And I decided to stop fighting behind coattails and to start fighting in my own name.

That’s why, in 2004, I wrote Hollywood, Interrupted with Mark Ebner, a no-holds-barred underground Hollywood journalist. I wrote it out of the pure outrage welling up in me as I saw the Hollywood left filling the void in the Democratic Party after 9/11, normalizing the most extreme scorched-earth measures against a wartime president. I wrote it because of Sean Penn, and Martin Sheen, and all these radicals who had clean haircuts and wore three-thousand-dollar suits and used the power of their image to legitimize the profoundly damaging metamorphosis the Democratic Party was undergoing—the transition from the party of Joe Lieberman to the party of Nancy Pelosi, Harry Reid, and Howard Dean.

As part of this, they crafted a “dissent is patriotic” meme, an absurd slogan to begin with, that they intentionally misattributed to patriotic Founding Fathers like Benjamin Franklin (they would later be forced to attribute it to pseudoscholar Howard Zinn). Deconstructed, “Dissent is patriotic” is a self-negating slogan because its validity clearly depends on what kind of dissent you’re talking about. If you’re a member of the neo-Nazis in America, you’re dissenting, but nobody would call that dissent patriotic. But if you’re antiwar, dissent is automatically patriotic, according to David Geffen’s guest list (even if you’re a member of Al Qaeda, presumably, since they are antiwar, at least as far as the United States goes). The aphorism is nonsensical. But the left repeated it so many times and so often that it lost all meaning. They slapped it on every bumper sticker on every Prius at every Whole Foods. And it worked.

Hollywood dragged out its oldest lefties and its youngest lefties. Jann Wenner, a Baby Boomer who still force-feeds the relevance of Bruce Springsteen with repetitive front-page power picks, used this movement to promote Green Day and any other pop-cultural vessel that would create antiwar albums. MTV found selective youth, sexy youth, wearing antiwar T-shirts, and put them on TV every night. There was an urge in Hollywood from the old and the young to affirm the Baby Boomer Boss-lovers’ yearnings for the Age of Aquarius to be reborn in the Bush age.

These were the loudest people in the world. And the press was giving them free rein to say and do whatever they wanted, to incite political stunts reminiscent of the Merry Pranksters, to use media trickery to make points, to spawn a youth rebellion against the president of the United States during wartime. They were representing America abroad, and they were representing us as evil hayseeds bent on killing brown people—and the media were abetting this slander.

Between the war in Iraq, the introduction of “victims” of a manufactured “intolerance” toward dissent, the ire and tactics of the gay movement, and the unyielding propaganda of the Hollywood left, all the strands braided together to form a leftist rope of monumental strength—a rope made to hang George W. Bush from the highest turret.

Breitbart explains how he wants the American military to come in and destroy the left, “Breitbart bring it on”.

BRING THEM ON. I must say, in my non-strategic…because I’m under attack all the time, you see it on Twitter, they’re intolerant and call me gay…they’re vicious, there are death threats and everything…and so, there are times where I’m not thinking as clearly as I should…and in those unclear moments I always think to myself: fire the first shot. Bring it on. Because I know who’s on our side. And they know that. They can only win a rhetorical or propaganda war, they cannot win. We outnumber them in this country, and we have the guns. (crowd laughter) I’m not kidding. (crowd laughter) They talk a mean game, but they will not cross that line. Because they know what they’re dealing with. And I have people who come up to me in the military (makes a gesture that the person has officer stripes), major names in the military, who grab me and go “thank you for what you’re doing”, and we’ve got your back. So…(very loud crowd laughter) They understand that. These are the unspoken things. We know. They know. They know who’s on their side. They’ve got Janeane Garofolo. We are freaked out by that. (laughter) When push comes to shove, they know who’s on our side. They are the bullies on the playground. And they’re starting to realize, what if we were to fight back? What if we were to slap back? You know, these union thugs, these SEIU union thugs…I’m just waiting. Bring it on. I’m sick of it. I am sick of this Trumka guy [Richard Trumka, head of the AFL-CIO], I am sick of this John Sweeney [former head of the AFL-CIO], I am sick of the SEIU. I’m sick of them going to people’s homes. Executives’ homes and showing up, and the media not…you don’t think they have a problem with that? KATIE COURIC. What if we went to Katie Couric’s house? What if the Tea Party showed up at Katie Couric’s house? And scared the living crap out of her teenage kids? And that’s what they do, because they know the mainstream media won’t cover it. And so…just a part of me that wants them to walk over that line.

3 A fragment of the “Four Who Made a Revolution” chapter from Death of the West on Google Books. I give excerpts from its opening chapter to provide some sense that what we are seeing is the same idea of the Frankfurt School as there is in the Jaeger documentary, as there in Breitbart, and in Minnicino, again:

The taproot of the revolution that captured the cultural institutions of the American republic goes beyond the 1960s to August 1914, the beginning of the Great War that historian Jaques Barzun calls the “blow that hurled the modern world on its course of self-destruction.”

Trotsky sought to make the Red Army the spear point of revolution. Invading Poland, he was hurled back at the Vistula by Polish patriots under Marshal Pilsudski. Nothing the Marxists had predicted had come to pass. Their hour had come and gone. The workers of the West, the mythical proletariat, had refused to play the role history had assigned them. How could Marx have been so wrong?

Two of Marx’s disciples now advanced an explanation. Yes, Marx had been wrong. Capitalism was not impoverishing the workers. Indeed, their lot was improving, and they had not risen in revolution because their souls had been saturated in two thousand years of Christianity, which blinded them to their true class interests. Unless and until Christianity and Western culture, the immune system of capitalism, were uprooted from the soul of Western Man, Marxism could not take root, and the revolution would be betrayed by the workers in whose name it was to be fought. In biblical terms, the word of Marx, seed of the revolution, had fallen on rock-hard Christian soil and died. Wagering everything on the working class, the Marxists had bet on the wrong horse.

The first dissenting disciple was the Hungarian George Lukacs, an agent of the Comintern, whose History and Class Consciousness had brought him recognition as a Marxist theorist to rival Marx himself. “I saw the revolutionary destruction of society as the one and only solution,” said Lukacs. “A worldwide overturning of values cannot take place without the annihilation of the old values and the creation of new ones by the revolutionaries.” As deputy commissioner for culture in Bela Kun’s regime, Lukacs put his self-described “demonic” ideas into action in what came to be known as “cultural terrorism.”

As part of this terrorism he instituted a radcial sex education program in Hungarian schools. Children were instructed in free love, sexual intercourse, the archaic nature of middle-class family codes, the outdatedness of monogamy, and the irrelevance of religion, which deprives man of all pleasures. Women, too, were called to rebel against the sexual mores of the time.

Lukacs’s purpose in promoting licentiousness among women and children was to destroy the family, the core institution of Christianity and Western culture. Five decades after Lukacs fled Hungary, his ideas would be enthustiastically embraced by baby boomers in the “sexual revolution.”

The second disciple was Antonio Gramsci, an Italian Communist who has lately begun to receive deserved recognition as the greatest Marxist strategist of the twentieth century.

THE FRANKFURT SCHOOL COMES TO AMERICA

In 1923, Lukacs and members of the German Communist party set up, at Frankfurt Univeristy, an Institute for Marxism modeled on the Marx-Engels Institute in Moscow. After some reflection, they settled on a less provocative name, the Institute for Social Research. It would soon come to be known as the Frankfurt School.

In 1930, a renegade Marxist and admirer of the Marquis de Sade, Max Horkheimer, became its director. Horkheimer, too, had concluded that Marx had got it wrong.

About this same time, music critic Theodor Adorno, psychologist Erich Fromm, and sociologist Wilhelm Reich joined the Frankfurt School. But, in 1933, history rudely intruded. Adolf Hitler ascended to power in Berlin, and as the leading lights of the Frankfurt School were Jewish and Marxist, they were not a good fit for the Third Reich. The Frankfurt School packed its ideology and fled to America.

Death of the West came out in 2002, whereas Minnicino’s “New Dark Age” came out in 1992. I believe, without a doubt, that it carries a strong influence of Minnicino’s work, suggesting that Buchanan was familiar with it. Buchanan gives no citation to Minnicino in the footnotes to “Four who made a revolution”. However, he does give two footnotes to William Lind, one of which is for “Origins of Political Correctness”, a 1998 essay from which Breitbart appears to have taken some material as well.

I give the two Lind footnotes and the associated material from “Four”:

21. William Lind, “Turn Off, Tune Out, Drop Out: A Cultural Conservative’s Strategy for the 21st Century,” Against the Grain, Free Congress Foundation, Washington, D.C., 1998.

But the importance of schools in conditioning the minds of the young was soon surpassed by that of the new media: TV and movies. As William Lind, director of the Center for Cultural Conservatism at the Free Congess Foundation, writes:

The entertainment industry…has wholly absorbed the ideology of cultural Marxism and preaches it endlessly not just in sermons but in parables: strong women beating up weak men, children wiser than their parents, corrupt clergymen thwarted by carping drifters, upper-class blacs confronting the violence of lower-class whites, amnly homosexuals who lead normal lives. It is all fable, an inversion of reality, but the entertainment media make it seem real, more so than the world that lies beyond the front door21.

24. William Lind, “Origins of Political Correctness,” Address to Accuracy in Academia’s Annual Summer Conference, George Washington University, July 10, 1998.

Past societies had been subverted by words and books, but Marcuse believed that sex and drugs were superior weapons. In Eros and Civilization, Marcuse urged a universal embrace of the Pleasure Principle. Reject the cultural order entirely, said MAruse (this was his “Great Refusal”), and we can create a world of “polymorphous perversity.”24

Whether or not Buchanan “dabbled” in Holocaust denial or denied the Holocaust, is to me something like being sortof pregnant, you either do or you don’t, and Buchanan did. “Why MSNBC Dumped Pat Buchanan: His 10 Most Outrageous Statements” by Adam Peck, includes this, “9. Dabbled in Holocaust denial”, in its list. Otheres were: “5. Asserted Anders Breivik, who murdered 77 people including 69 teens in Norway, “may have been right.””, “6. Claimed that all great nations punish the gays.”, and “10. Argued Hitler was an individual of “great courage.””

4 I had no idea what was being said here – post-angle? post-Engels? – until I came across a piece on Jaeger’s site, “Cultural Marxism For Dummies”, with the following paragraph that made me understand. I bold the crucial part:

So, what the Cultural Marxists of the Frankfurt School did was publish endless books throughout the 1960s and 1970s aimed at the impressionable, drugged-out BabyBoom Generation. And “critical theory” was not just used in books, it was used in ALL the cultural institutions: music, painting, photography, literature, TV shows, commercials, magazines, feature films, theater, rock concerts and even the clergy and institutions of higher learning. This is why the colleges are so liberal and why schools were able to be invaded by Engle v. Vitale which removed religious ethics from the school system.

5 From “Author Cited by Anders Behring Breivik Regrets Original Essay” by Chip Berlet:

The author of the LaRouche essay released the folowing statement:

The LaRouche organization is a cult completely dominated by the deeply paranoid and mean-spirited personality of Mr. LaRouche and by his ill-informed conspiracy theories about science, philosophy, and history.

There have been (and conceivably still are) members of that organization who would seek the truth. Unfortunately, actual free inquiry is impossible inside the organization: too many possible conclusions or lines of research must be consciously or unconsciously dismissed because of LaRouche’s prior “thoughts” on the matter.

The same is true with my Frankfurt School work while I was in the organization. I still like to think that some of my research was validly conducted and useful. However, I see very clearly that the whole enterprise – and especially the conclusions — was hopelessly deformed by self-censorship and the desire to in some way support Mr. LaRouche’s crack-brained world-view.

So, in that sense, I do not stand by what I wrote, and I find it unfortunate that it still remembered.

I might also note that over the years my published writings on culture have been cited, as well as shamelessly plagiarized, by a wide and weird group of authors, ranging from Communists dictators (Fidel Castro, himself!) to conspiraphiles from both the left and the right, and on to outright neo-Nazis. Breivik is the latest tragic addition. I get some solace from the fact that I, along with Jefferson and Gandhi, am only one of the hundreds of citations he used to support his monstrous thesis.

6 The crux of the essay where the author puts forth once again the classic idea of such conspiracy theories, a sinister jewish cabal that controls the world:

In the B’nai B’rith’s official, authorized history, it says: “B’nai B’rith’s relationship to the Civil War presents something of a mystery.” They say that the arrest of the B’nai B’rith’s leader in Washington as a Confederate spymaster was unfair. They say that no one can account for why the group was not pro-Union, whereas most Jews were pro-Union, and B’nai B’rith’s lodges were almost all located in the North. Indeed, Jewish soldiers in the Union Army were intensely proud, mostly German-speaking immigrant, anti-slavery Republicans.

To solve the mystery, we go back 20 years before the start of the American Civil War.

British Foreign Minister Palmerston launched Zionism in 1840. He wrote that the Jews desired to return to Palestine (Abba Eban points out that the Jews knew nothing about this); and a month later, the British landed troops in Palestine for the first time.

B’nai B’rith was started officially in 1843 by some obscure Freemasons in New York, as a secret society “like Freemasonry” for Jews. B’nai B’rith was to shape and lead a particular political faction, with a particular agenda, within the Jewish community.

The agenda for this project came out in a famous speech given two years later at South Carolina College. The speaker was Edwin DeLeon, from a Jewish family in South Carolina that was already notorious for its involvement in the slave trade and in Scottish Rite Freemasonry. DeLeon was later a leader of the Confederate Secret Service.

DeLeon said, “There is a ‘Young Germany,’ a ‘Young France,’ and a ‘Young England’—and why not a ‘Young America’?” He told the students: Any great civil convulsion comes from a source that is unexpected and obscure. In the French Revolution, the priests and nobles were only the flax with which the flame was kindled. But those who first applied the spark were the filthy, obscure savants of the Englightenment. DeLeon reminded the students that the actors in that drama were only its creatures, not its creators.

He then proposed revolutionary military action as the idea for his Young America, to spread what he called “freedom”—by force.

To start the Civil War, this pre-organized anti-Union terrorist force would strike for secession in the South. Those who stayed in the North during the War would be known as “Copperheads,” with headquarters in Ohio.

Before the war, Isaac Wise had two B’nai B’rith local leaders in Cleveland: Simon Wolf and Benjamin F. Peixotto. Wolf and Peixotto also worked as political agents for Democratic Party boss August Belmont, the U.S. representative of the Rothschild banks—chief moneybags of the British crown, and British puppets. Banker Belmont paid for the Knights of the Golden Circle and Young America projects, which he helped plan while he was U.S. ambassador to the Netherlands.

A listing of the papers offered at the conference, including Minnicino’s is at the beginning of “America’s ‘Young America’ movement: slaveholders and the B’nai B’rith”:

Solving the Paradox of Current World History – Nancy Spannaus, Panel Chair

Introduction—Webster Tarpley

The Venetian Takeover of England: A 200-Year Project—by Gerald Rose

How The Venetian Virus Infected and Took Over England—H. Graham Lowry

British Intelligence Subversion: Shelburne and Bentham—Jeffrey Steinberg

America’s ‘Young America’ movement: slaveholders and the B’nai B’rith—Anton Chaitkin

Palmerston launches Young Turks to permanently control Middle East—Joseph Brewda

Freud and the Frankfurt School—Michael Minnicino

Jim Crow, a cultural weapon in the hands of the Confederacy—Dennis Speed

Epilogue

7 From Taibbi’s Griftopia:

Just looking at Palin up on the podium doesn’t impress me. She looks like a chief flight attendant on a Piedmont flight from Winston-Salem to Cleveland, with only the bag of almonds and the polyester kerchief missing from the picture. With the Junior Anti-Sex League rimless glasses and a half updo with a Bumpit she comes across like she’s wearing a cheap Halloween getup McCain’s vice-presidential search party bought in a bag at Walgreens after midnight—four-piece costume, Pissed-Off White Suburban Female, $19.99 plus tax.

Just going by the crude sportswriter-think that can get any campaign journalist through a whole presidential race from start to finish if he feels like winging it, my initial conclusion here is that John McCain is desperate and he’s taking one last heave at the end zone by serving up this overmatched electoral gimmick in a ploy for… what? Women? Extra-horny older married men? Frequent Piedmont fliers?

I’m not sure what the endgame is, but just going by the McCain campaign’s hilariously maladroit strategic performance so far, it can’t be very sophisticated. So I figure I’ll catch a little of this cookie-cutter political stump act, snatch a few quotes for my magazine piece, then head to the exits and grab a cheesesteak on the way back to the hotel. But will my car still be there when I get out? That’s where my head is, as Sarah Palin begins her speech. Then I start listening. She starts off reading her credentials. She’s got the kid and nephew in uniform-check. Troop of milk-fed patriotic kiddies with Hallmark Channel names (a Bristol, a Willow, and a Piper, a rare Martin Mull-caliber whiteness trifecta)—check. Mute macho husband on a snow machine—check. This is all standard-issue campaign decoration so far, but then she starts in with this thing about Harry Truman:

My parents are here tonight, and I am so proud to be the daughter of Chuck and Sally Heath. Long ago, a young farmer and haberdasher from Missouri followed an unlikely path to the vice presidency.

A writer observed: “We grow good people in our small towns, with honesty, sincerity, and dignity.” I know just the kind of people that writer had in mind when he praised Harry Truman.

I grew up with those people.

They are the ones who do some of the hardest work in America, who grow our food, run our factories, and fight our wars.

They love their country, in good times and bad, and they’re always proud of America. I had the privilege of living most of my life in a small town.

I’m on the floor for the speech—stuck in the middle of a bunch of delegates from, I believe, Colorado—and at the line “They arethe ones who do some of the hardest work,” the section explodes in cheers.

I look back up at Palin and she has a bit of a confident grin on her face now. Not quite a smirk, that would be unfair to say, but she’s oozing confidence after delivering these loaded lines. From now through the end of her speech there will be a definite edge to her voice.

Before I have any chance of noticing it she’s moved beyond the speaking part of the program and is suddenly, effortlessly, deep into the signaling process, a place most politicians only reach with great effort, and clumsily, if at all. But Palin is the opposite of clumsy: she’s in the dog-whistle portion of the speech and doing triple lutzes and back-flips.

She starts talking about her experience as mayor of Wasilla, Alaska:

I guess a small-town mayor is sort of like a “community organizer,” except that you have actual responsibilities. I might add that in small towns, we don’t quite know what to make of a candidate who lavishes praise on working people when they are listening and then talks about how bitterly they cling to their religion and guns when those people aren’t listening. We tend to prefer candidates who don’t talk about us one way in Scranton and another way in San Francisco.

The TV talking heads here will surely focus on the insult to Barack Obama and will miss the far more important part of this speech—the fact that Palin has moved from talking about small-town folks as They a few seconds ago to We now — We don’t know what to make of this, We prefer this. It doesn’t take a whole lot of thought to figure out who this We is. Certainly, to those listening, if you’re part of this We, you know. If you’re not part of it, as I’m not, you know even more.

Sarah Palin’s We is a very unusual character to make an appearance in a national presidential campaign, where candidates almost to the last tend to scrupulously avoid any hint that they are not talking to all Americans. Inclusiveness, telegenic warmth, and inoffensiveness are the usual currency of national-campaign candidates. Say as little as possible, hope some of the undecideds like your teeth better than the other guy’s—that’s usually the way this business works.

But Palin, boldly, has tossed all that aside: she is making an impassioned bunker speech to a highly self-aware We that defines itself by the enemies surrounding it, enemies Palin is now haughtily rattling off one by one in this increasingly brazen and inspired address.

She’s already gone after the “experts” and “pollsters and pundits” who dismissed McCain, the “community organizer” Obama, even the city of San Francisco {We are more likely to live in Scranton), but the more important bit came with the line about how people in small towns are the ones who “do some of the hardest work.” The cheer at that line was one of recognition, because what Palin is clearly talking about there are the people this crowd thinks don’t do “the hardest work,” don’t fight our wars, don’t love our country.

And We know who They are.

8 This particular newsletter is brought up in “The Ron Paul Newsletter Story That I Found The Most Disturbing: “Blast ‘Em?””.

9 From “The Tea Party’s Brain” by Joshua Green:

He returned to medicine and to his true love, economics. In 1976 he had founded a nonprofit, the Foundation for Rational Economics and Education, that published newsletters under his name, and after his defeat, he turned to them in earnest. The newsletters carried urgent titles like The Ron Paul Survival Report, and were generally devoted to the glories of the market and the menace of the Federal Reserve. They claimed more than 100,000 readers. (During the 2008 presidential campaign, The New Republic highlighted vile racism and homophobia that had appeared in their pages. Paul professed ignorance, but refused to say who had written the material.)

10 From “Pariahs and Prophets” by Ross Douthat:

There are two commonplace interpretations of Paul’s unusual trajectory. To his many sympathizers — libertarians, dissident conservatives and some left-wingers as well — the extremism in his past has nothing to do with the issues that he’s campaigning on today. The case for Paul, as The Atlantic’s Conor Friedersdorf put it, is that “he alone, among viable candidates, favors reforming certain atrocious policies” — scaling back America’s overseas commitments, ending a failed war on drugs, curbing a runaway public sector and reducing the powers of an imperial presidency. The newsletters may reflect badly on his past, but in the current political landscape he’s a voice of reason rather than of madness.

But consider a third possibility. There’s often a fine line between a madman and a prophet. Perhaps Paul has emerged as a teller of some important truths precisely because in many ways he’s still as far out there as ever.

In this climate, it sometimes takes a fearless crank to expose realities that neither Republicans nor Democrats are particularly eager to acknowledge.

11 For example: “Sometimes it takes an outsider like Andrew Breitbart to show the press corps the way” by Jack Shafer and “How Andrew Breitbart Hacks the Media”. The best rebuttals to this, in my opinion, were “Andrew Breitbart: Big Deal, Big Coronary, Big Corpse” by Mobutu Sese Seko and General Rehavam ‘Gandhi’ Ze’evi and “On Making Yourself Right” by Ta-Nehisi Coates.

12 As mentioned already, an in-depth comparison is made between Breitbart’s section in Righteous Indignation on the Frankfurt School, the work of Minnicino, and the work of Lind in “Andrew Breitbart: Psychosis in a Political Mask Part One”, while the first Anthony Weiner scandal is looked at in “Andrew Breitbart: Psychosis in a Political Mask Part Two”.

13 From Indignation:

Again, where am I going with all of this philosophical jabberwocky? Well, all of these boring and bleating philosophers might have faded into oblivion as so many Marxist theorists have, but the rise of Adolf Hitler prevented that. With Hitler’s rise, they had to flee (virtually all of them—Horkheimer, Marcuse, Adorno, Fromm—were of Jewish descent). And they had no place to go.

Except the United States.

The United States’ tradition of freedom and liberty, its openness to outside ideas, and our highest value, freedom of speech, ended up making all America vulnerable to those who would exploit those ideals. We welcomed the Frankfurt School. We accepted them with open arms. They took full advantage. They walked right into our cultural institutions, and as they started to put in place their leadership, their language, and their lexicon, too many chose to ignore them.

And so Marxism came stealthily to our shores, squatted here, planted its roots, and grew like a weed—all before we even noticed it. It happened at the university level and at the governmental level and at the media level. We didn’t notice because we couldn’t read the rhetorical garbage these jokers were spewing, and we didn’t think it was important—“Our Constitution survived a revolution and a Civil War and two World Wars. Why should we worry about a few German eggheads?” Especially since America was economically thriving under such “oppression.”

The foundations of the Complex had been built. But we still couldn’t see the Complex itself—the Complex was hidden under paragraphs of obscure text and in college curricula at places like Tulane University, under the unlikely auspices of “American Studies.” Talk about a wolf in sheep’s clothing. It all seemed so benign, and we figured that if college students went off and had sex and did drugs and engaged in teenage rebellious decadence, oh well, they’d eventually come back to the Constitution, just the way their parents had.

We slept while the other side armed, and while we snoozed they secretly stole away our defensive weaponry—our allegiance to the Constitution and to freedom of speech and opinion.

It was only when they fired the first shots over our bow that we noticed we were unarmed, and that they had weaponized the cloudy bacteria of their philosophy into full-bore ideological anthrax, ready to deploy on a moment’s notice.

14 From the transcript to “Cultural Marxism”:

NARRATOR
The nefarious genius of cultural marxist strategy is to destroy the family unit by promoting what’s known in the field of botany as androgyny. From the american college dictionary, androgyny means quote having staminate and pistilate flowers in the same inflorescence; being both male and female; hermaphroditic. Translated into cultural marxist strategy, this means making the father and mother of a family the same and/or reversing their roles. How is this done? Well, it starts with invalidation. As previously discussed, one of the key technologies of the Frankfurt School is critical theory. Recall the purpose of critical theory is to instill cultural pessimism. Thus, by endlessly portraying fathers as dominant, restrictive, depersonalized, and controlling, the cultural marxist is able to invalidate the male component of the family unit. Concomitant with this, by endlessly portraying mothers as schizophrenic, nagging, anxious, the cultural marxist is able to invalidate the female component of the family unit. This two-punch invalidation endlessly repeated in the general literature, movies, and media, gives rise to a pessimistic attitude towards the traditional family. After time, this pessimism becomes imbued into the culture. That’s why it’s said that the product of critical theory is cultural pessimism. The message of cultural pessimism: 1. Families are boring, stifling, and intrusive. 2. Mothers and fathers suck. 3. Divorce is therefore understandable and justified. With divorce made understandable and justified, even laughingly made easy by calling it “no fault”, one out of two nuclear families now disintegrate into chaos.

BAEHR
Same sex marriage does not give you the balance of having a mother and father so that you can learn different skills from them, you learn different personality types. By abolishing that, children are adrift.

NARRATOR
With the success of cultural marxism, hundreds of millions of nuclear families have been destroyed since 1965. This has contributed to, or caused, the decline of the middle class. Next will be the destruction of American capitalism, unless the effects of cultural marxism are recognized and handled.

15 In “Cultural Marxism”, as in public life now, Buchanan takes a strong position on adherence to the constitution, and critical of conceding too much power to the executive. Excerpts from the transcript of “Cultural Marxism”:

BUCHANAN
One of the great problems the country faces is the cowardice of the congress of the United States as an institution. It has allowed the president to usurp the war-making power.

NARRATOR
Where does congress get authority to delegate the responsibility to declare war to the president? It’s not in the constitution. This delegation sounds more like an evasion of responsibility for political expediency then the original intent of the founders.

BUCHANAN
It has resigned its authority, it is frightened of exercising its authority, it does not want responsibility, it does not want accountability.

This is an interesting contrast to Buchanan’s persepctive during the Iran-contra scandal, which was an venture conducted in violation of the constitution, in violation of congress where weapons were sold to a state, Iran, in order to fund weapons for a paramilitary group in Nicaragua, the contra, in direct violation of a congressional actions blocking such military aid.

Here is Buchanan at the height of the scandal, as reported at the time in “Buchanan claims he has support of President Reagan” by Bernard Weinraub:

On Monday night, Buchanan addressing a mostly Cuban-American audience of more than 3,000, said Reagan had asked him to come to Miami and speak to his “friends.” The rally’s organizers included Jorge Mascanosa, chairman of the Cuban-American National Foundation, and the Republican Party of Dade County.

Buchanan said it was a “disgrace” that some for whom the president had doen so much “are now hiding.” He was particularly critical of news organizations, saying: “All newsmen should remember that they’re Americans first and newsmen second. All who don’t feel that should tell us so. We will know which stations not to watch and which newspapers not to buy.”

Shouts of “Traitors!” were also heard when speaker after speaker attacked journalists who have written or spoken about the Iran crisis.

Buchanan said in Miami that the coverage of the White House crisis had been “frenzied, unbalanced and loaded with innuendoes,” representing a “windfall for the Soviets.”

He strongly defended North and Vice Adm. John M. Poindexter, the former national security adviser, who were involved in the secret operation to divert proceeds from Iran arms sales to the Nicaraguan rebels known as contras.

“Admiral Poindexter and Colonel North put their careers on the lien to protect our country,” Buchanan told the audience. “If Colonel North broke any rules, he will stand up and take it as the Marine he is. But I say, if Colonel North ripped off the ayatollah and took some $30 million to give to the contras, God bless Colonel North.”

16 From “Ted Baehr: Gay Marriage Supporters Creating Tyranny and ‘Are Subject to Indictment, Trial and Just Punishment'” by Brian Tashman:

Adding to the list of off-the-wall reactions to the Supreme Court’s decisions on two same-sex marriage cases, Religious Right activist Ted Baehr of Movieguide released a statement demanding that all officials who back marriage equality be “subject to indictment, trial and just punishment.”

He claimed that same-sex marriage is part of a Marxist plan to “abolish marriage and the family” and may one day allow dictators like Adolf Hitler and Joseph Stalin to rise to power in America.

“The Supreme Court’s decision today is absolutely criminal,” according to Baehr, arguing that neither the government nor voters “have the right to legalize same-sex marriage,” as it violates “God’s law” and the First Amendment’s protection of “the freedom to worship.”

17 From “And the Verdict on Justice Kennedy Is: Guilty” by Dana Milbank:

Not to be outdone, lawyer-author Edwin Vieira told the gathering that Kennedy should be impeached because his philosophy, evidenced in his opinion striking down an anti-sodomy statute, “upholds Marxist, Leninist, satanic principles drawn from foreign law.”

Ominously, Vieira continued by saying his “bottom line” for dealing with the Supreme Court comes from Joseph Stalin. “He had a slogan, and it worked very well for him, whenever he ran into difficulty: ‘no man, no problem,’ ” Vieira said.

The full Stalin quote, for those who don’t recognize it, is “Death solves all problems: no man, no problem.” Presumably, Vieira had in mind something less extreme than Stalin did and was not actually advocating violence. But then, these are scary times for the judiciary. An anti-judge furor may help confirm President Bush’s judicial nominees, but it also has the potential to turn ugly.

18 A discussion of Shapiro’s story on Hamas is “‘Friends Of Hamas’ Origin Story Exposes Fact That Some People Are Dumb Enough To Fall For Anything” by Jason Linkins. An article going into the fanaticism of Shapiro and Pollak is “Inside the Collapsing Media Empire of Deceased GOP Sleaze-Peddler Andrew Breitbartt”.

An excerpt on Pollak:

On campus, Pollak took on the role of ultra-Zionist enforcer, working closely with the pro-Israel super-lawyer and Harvard law professor Alan Dershowitz to stamp out any iterations of Palestine solidarity activity. Pollak’s pro-Israel histrionics were on most vivid display in a class taught by Harvard law professor Duncan Kennedy, one of the most influential and renowned legal theorists of the past few decades.

Pollak and Dershowitz both loathed Duncan Kennedy’s politics, a loathing made clear by Pollak’s own personal blog rants at the time. Despite that hostility (and the waiting list) Prof. Kennedy made sure that Pollak was enrolled in his class, and he hired Pollak his research assistant. On his personal blog “Guide To The Perplexed,” [28] which still stands as a record of his strange college years, Pollak blogged critically, almost obsessively about Kennedy.

Fellow law students recalled how a class debate on whether armed resistance by a theoretical occupied population was permissible set off Pollak into one of his notorious fits of histrionics.

According to one classmate, “He came back to class a week later and slammed a hunk of metal on the table and started shouting, ‘This is what you people are justifying! You are supporters of terrorism! This is piece of a Qassam rocket that’s fallen near [the Israeli city of] Sderot!’ Basically his behavior was embarrassing even to the other Zionists in the course.”

An excerpt on Shapiro:

That’s the black comedy side of Ben Shapiro’s punditry. But there’s a darker side to Shapiro’s writing that reveals him as much worse than a mere silly nutcase. Ben Shapiro is on record advocating genocide against Palestinian Arabs in Greater Israel. Advocating genocide is considered a war crime — Nazi journalists were hung in Nuremberg for advocating genocide, and Hutu media personalities who advocated genocide in Rwanda have also been charged with genocide.

Yet that didn’t stop Harvard Law School’s Ben Shapiro from penning a column, “Transfer Is Not A Dirty Word,” calling for ethnic cleansing — which is legally classified as genocide [31] and a war crime under the Geneva Conventions.

Here is Ben Shapiro, editor-at-large at Breitbart, advocating genocide [32]:

“Here is the bottom line: If you believe that the Jewish state has a right to exist, then you must allow Israel to transfer the Palestinians and the Israeli-Arabs from Judea, Samaria, Gaza and Israel proper. It’s an ugly solution, but it is the only solution. Any time the Jews get wise and threaten mass expulsion of Arabs, the Arabs pull out their big stick, equating Nazism with Zionism… Their spokespeople cry ‘Genocide!’ And the Jews cower in fear that they could be equated with their parents’ murderers. The Jews don’t realize that expelling a hostile population is a commonly used and generally effective way of preventing violent entanglements. It’s time to stop being squeamish. Jews are not Nazis. Transfer is not genocide. And anything else isn’t a solution.”

Actually it is genocide. And it’s the reason why Ben Shapiro came to be known as “Genocide Ben.”

19 Goldberg’s attack on Yglesias where he compares him to Lindbergh can be found in “Progressive Lindberghs”, along with a follow-up “Yglesias & Lindbergh”. A discussion of the material borrowed from Goldberg’s Liberal Fascism in Righteous Indignation can be found in “Andrew Breitbart: Psychosis in a Political Mask Part One Footnote #3″. Goldberg’s closeness to Breitbart is obvious in his appearance on CNN just after hearing of his friend’s death, “Jonah Goldberg Cries During Emotional Interview on Fox – Andrew Breitbart – YouTube”.

20 From the “Cultural Marxism” transcript, I bold their mention:

NARRATOR
It seems the more a congressman is entrenched, the more he is able to build a social network, a network of cronies. Clearly, good relations with fellow congressmen serve many productive purposes. But such a network can also be abused. After all, it’s much easier to minimize the risks of vote swapping, a form of collusion, amongst cronies. It’s much easier to justify corporate campaign contributions, a form of bribery, amongst cronies. And it’s much easier to get away with earmarks, a form of fraud, amongst cronies. Thus, an entrenched congress, especially one cast into only two major parties would seem to be in the perfect position to imperceptibly usurp power from the people. And place it into the hands of the corporate fascists who’ve hijacked congress.

NARRATOR
Sounds to me, given the state of affairs we’re in today, well over ten trillion dollars in debt, immersed in perpetual wars, getting more secular and socialist by the minute, fascist multinationals dominating congress, that we have allowed serious corruption to seep into the american experiment. We may think we won our independence from Europe, defeated communism, and Nazi fascism, but did we?

NARRATOR
Citizens need to get familiar with the original intent of the founders. And realize that the forces of cultural marxism have been raping and pillaging the United States for decades. But to realize the dream, and keep this magnificent republic alive, all americans need to do is take three steps: 1) Disconnect from all sources of cultural Marxist propaganda, media and lifestyles. 2) Don’t patronize the largest Fed member banks and fascist multinational corporations. 3) Connect up with the original intent of the Founders and get active applying the U.S. Constitution. Americans, and history challenged baby boomers, should understand what it means to be a self-governing nation. They need to understand the constitution from a philosophical point of view, not just a mechanical point of view. Why were certain things emphasized and others not. Why is a well-regulated militia necessary to the security of a free state? Why is the term general welfare the only term that appears twice? What principles lay behind the constitution and why? If citizens better understood these things, they would be able to go about their lives with a greater appreciation of the rare opportunity they have been given to live in the american experiment. Instead of pessimism, they would have the realization that America has just begun. That the future will be even more incredible than anyone imagined. Take three steps and it will happen. Yes, the cultural marxists in the media and the universities will scream and dramatize. Yes, there will be a percentage of religious fanatics that attack the United States, or hate us, because we flourish and prosper. And yes, there will always be secular robots and iconoclasts that hate traditional values, and deny that America was populated by christians, or influenced by biblical principles. But the founders somehow knew all this. For they had studied thousands of years of history, and countless failed civilizations. From these lessons, they built the constitution of the United States. And this document has succeeded as no other. The blueprint for the longest standing republic in history is in your hands. Eventually, even the cultural marxists, the corporate fascists, the islamic terrorists, and our current special interest dominated congress, will see the light. And become part of the general welfare. In the meantime, don’t give liberty challenged members of society the power to enslave us all. Just because a relative few have so little faith in the original intent of the founders and the United States constitution.

21 From the “Cultural Marxism” transcript:

NARRATOR
Ever wonder why congressmen were so eager to sacrifice tariffs for NAFTA’s “free” trade? It’s because tariffs don’t amount to much when congress can print up all the fiat money it wants through the federal reserve system. Yes: monetizing endless fiat money was the answer opinion leader economist John Maynard Keynes suggested to Roosevelt in his 1933 open letter.

NARRATOR
So, how come the media seems oblivious to all this? The media that’s looking out for folks, never discusses fiat currency, cultural marxism, media consolidation, Keynesian economics, NAFTA, GATT, WTO, or multinational corporations, in any sort of critical way? How come the mainstream media downplays people who protest against free trade? The World Trade Organization? Or call for protective tariffs?

22 From What’s the Matter with Kansas? by Thomas Frank:

While the Wichita Cons [the Wichita, Kansas conservatives] worked hard to build their movement, they would not have succeeded so extravagantly had it not been for the simultaneous suicide of the rival moveement, the one that traditionally spoke for working-class people. I am referring, of course, to the Clinton administration’s famous policy of triangulation, its grand effort to minimize the differences between Democrats and Republicans on economic issues. Among the nation’s pundit corps “triangulation” has always been considered a stroke of genius, signaling the end of liberalism’s old-fashioned “class warfare” and also of the Democrats’ faith in “big government.” Clinton’s New Democrats, it was thought, had brought the dawn of an era in which all parties agreed on the sanctity of the free market. As political strategy, though, Clinton’s move to accomodate the right was the purst folly. It simply pulled the rug out from under any possible organizing effort on the left. While the Cons were busily polarizing the electorate, the Dems were meekly seeking the center. In Wichita Republicanism appeared dynamic and confident; the Democrats looked dispirited, weak, spent.

However well it was received on Wall Street, Clinton’s strategy played right into the hands of Mark Gietzen [a local Republican candidate] and hundreds of other Christian conservative organizers like him around the country. If basic economic issues are removed from the table, Gietzen has written, only the social issues remain to distinguish the parties. And in such climagte, Democratic appeals to people of ordinary means can be easily neutralized. “Years ago, it was assumed that the Republican Party was ‘the party of the rich,’ and that the Democrats stood for working people,” Gietzen writes.

Plenty of Wichitans clearly came to beleive that it was. In the election fo 1994 they took their frustrations out on Democratic representative Dan Glickman, a staunch Clinton loyalist who supported NAFTA – a free-trade agreement originally drafted by Republicans – even though the labor unions back in Wichita that made up his electoral base adamantly opposed the trade accord. Says Dale Seenson, a union painter at Boeing (and a Republican state legilator): “When [Glickman] voted for NAFTA, I couldn’t any longer vote for him. I know a lot of union members were really mad at Glickman when he voted for NAFTA.” With Democrats and Republicans having merged on free trade, the issues that remained were abortion and guns. And, of course, government itself. Glickman was solidly pro-choice, and he had supported the adminstration’s measures to restrict assault weapons; he had also been involved in the House check-bouncing scandal, which seemed to confirm people’s worst suspicions about career politicians.

23 The way in which Breitbart’s difficulty finding work affected him is discussed in some depth in “Andrew Breitbart: Psychosis in a Political Mask Part Two”. That he voted for Perot is mentioned in Righteous Indignation:

I still had a natural disdain for the religious right, which had been the ultimate 1980s-era bogeyman, so I was looking for some neutral ground while I tried to figure things out. If you met me in 1992, for some odd reason, I would have told you I was a libertarian, and I voted for Ross Perot. The only awkward memory that haunts me more is my roller-disco period.

24 Van Alen’s producing credit is in the movie itself, and is there on the movie’s order page. Van Alen has a producer credit on many of Jaeger’s movies.

That this William Van Alen, Jr. is the same Van Alen who ran the Noah Fund is definitively proven by looking at Van Alen’s profile at Forbes. There, it tells us that Van Alen Jr. is the president of Cornerstone Entertainment:

William L. Van Alen, Jr., joined the Board of Directors of the Company in May 1993. Mr. Van Alen is President of Cornerstone Entertainment, Inc., an organization engaged in the production of feature films of which he was a founder in 1985. Since 1996 and until March 2006, Mr. Van Alen had been President and a Director of The Noah Fund, a publicly traded mutual fund. Prior to 1985, Mr. Van Alen practiced law in Pennsylvania for twenty-two years. Mr. Van Alen received his undergraduate degree in Economics from the University of Pennsylvania and his law degree from Villanova Law School. William L. Van Alen, Jr., resigned as a director of the Company effective February 4, 2010.

Many of the movies made by Jaeger, including “Cultural Marxism” are a joint production of his company, Matrixx Entertainment, and Cornerstone Entertainment.

From Jaeger’s filmography off of his site:

FIAT EMPIRE, Telly Award-winning documentary, Cornerstone/Matrixx Entertainment, Devon, PA – 2006
ORIGINAL INTENT, Ron Paul, Pat Buchanan, Cornerstone/Matrixx Entertainment, Devon, PA – 2007-09
THEY ASSUMED IT WAS DEAD, Bunker Jaeger, Ted Kautz, a James Jaeger Film, Matrixx Productions, Beverly Hills, CA – 2009
CULTURAL MARXISM, Ron Paul, Pat Buchanan, Cornerstone/Matrixx Entertainment, Devon, PA – 2009
RADNOR HISTORICAL SOCIETY, Ted Pollard Matrixx Productions, Devon, PA – 2009
CORPORATE FASCISM, Ron Paul, Pat Buchanan, Cornerstone/Matrixx Entertainment, Devon, PA – 2009-10

William Van Alen Jr.’s obituary is in The Palm Beach Post:

Bill Van Alen, a true original, champion athlete and devout Christian, died Wednesday at his home in Newtown Square, PA after a characteristically brave battle with brain cancer. William L. Van Alen, Jr. was born in Philadelphia, PA March 21, 1933, the son of William L. Van Alen and Elizabeth Kent Van Alen. He attended Haverford School in Haverford, PA and graduated from St. Paul’s School in Concord, NH. After three years at the U.S. Naval Academy, he graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and won a law degree from Villanova University. Bill clerked for Chief Justice Bell of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, practiced law and competed in many sports, winning championships in court tennis, lawn tennis and golf. He was a member of the Seminole, Pine Valley and Gulph Mills Golf Clubs and the State in Schuylkill. He founded and later sold a Christian principled mutual fund, the Noah Fund.

25 From an interview with Robert A. Gualtieri, vice-president of marketing for the Noah Fund, “General Investing Analysis: J. Geewax / R. Gualtieri”:

TWST: Tell us about the NOAH FUND, its philosophy and its investment criteria.

Mr. Gaultieri: The NOAH FUND is a socially responsible mutual fund that invests in accordance with Biblical principles. We are taking US companies and screening them for a number of things. The first thing we screen for is alcohol production, tobacco production and any type of gambling where a company would derive more than 50% of its total profits from gambling. This would include casinos, horse racing, dog racing and lotteries. Then we are screening for abortion, which includes companies that pay for abortions, collect fetal material from abortions, allow payment for abortion to be made through their companies (i.e., insurance) and contributions to Planned Parenthood. We also screen for pornography, which includes hotels that allow viewing of pornographic literature in the rooms, any production of X-rated material or anti- family entertainment material, including any TV stations that show pornography. The NOAH FUND is also now screening for non-traditional marriage lifestyles, those conditions that exist where the Coalition for Gay Rights has gone in and asked these companies to allow their same-sex partners to get health benefits and lifestyle benefits from them. Planned Parenthood and the non-traditional marriage lifestyles are new to us, but we feel that it’s very important and as a result we have started to screen them out.

26 From an interview with Noah’s portfolio manager, John Geewax, “General Investing Analysis: William Van Alen Jr. – Polestar management / John Geewax”. On investing in Microsoft:

But clearly we are in the growth area. So when you think of our firm, think Wal-Mart (WMT) and not Kmart. Kmart is a bankrupt company and Wal-Mart is a growth firm.

The reason you own a growth company and you’re willing to pay up for it is that, for some reason, a growth company, for all intents and purposes, is a monopoly because it has pricing leadership. Microsoft is a monopoly. Dell, because it delivers the lowest cost product, it, by definition, because it has captured a significant amount of market share, has monopolistic pricing, especially relative to its competitors. So if it’s no longer a growth company, I’m going to sell it. If its financial statements come out and its leverage ratios are looking bad or its cash flow coverage ratios are looking bad, I’m going to sell it. I come in about 5:30 and by 5:45 I’m depressed and I’m done with all this by about 7:30 or 8:00. So I have this new list of buys and if I own a company that is not on this list, I sell it.

On investing in Freddie Mac, “General Investing Analysis: J. Geewax / R. Gualtieri”:

TWST: Would problems with management be part of the screening?

Mr. Geewax: If there’s no restatement of earnings, there is no screening out. Once the rules have changed, we’ll pick it up immediately. The issue with Freddie really is the use of capital, the excess capital needed now, and from the point of view of return on usable equity, they’re much slower than Fannie Mae. So I wouldn’t have Freddie in any of my portfolios, but I do have Fannie. I think what Fannie offers is that it is a cheap stock, where the worst is already in the stock. And relative to the mortgage banking area, for lack of a better term, they always handle a downturn better than anybody else. And you’re going to see a lot of people starting to sell their mortgages, and there’s only one company that would buy it: Fannie. So they normally get the pick of the crop and are well positioned in this marketplace.

27 Among various examples, there are “Bernie Madoff And The Mpaa Studios”, “War Could Create Resentment Against Jews”, and “The Terrorist Attacks: Was 9/11 a False Flag Operation?” “Resentment” is the only one not written by Jaeger, but by Henry Makow Ph.D. The last is a 9/11 conspiracy theory. A fragment:

So, in essence, what the central planners of 9/11 HAD to do was create an image that superseded what everyone has endlessly seen in Hollywood movies. This means they had to supersede DIE HARD and even TOWERING INFERNO, a sky scraper that burned for the entire movie and didn’t collapse. So, in order to access the $2 trillion that was eventually available to the military-industrial complex and elements in the U.S. government and elsewhere, the 9/11 show had to be super dramatic AND spread over a wide area.

The way this was pulled off was i) it was planned over a long time; ii) very few people had to know very much and iii) the upside was “profit” potential was in the multi-trillions of dollars. Bear in mind, MANY more people were kept silent during the MANHATTAN PROJECT than the 9/11 FALSE FLAG OP. So just because a project involves deaths of thousands, doesn’t mean it can’t be kept quite secret. History shows that people are MUCH more loyal to MONEY than they are to LIVES and they will obey “authority figures” today even more than they did during the Milgram experiment of the 1950s.

So, as previously mentioned, not only was this a multi-trillion dollar op, it involved saving millions of lives by expending “only” hundreds of thousands of lives, not “just” the people in the buildings and jets, but all the innocent citizens our military adventures have killed in Iraq and Afghanistan as “collateral” damage. Remember, the Mossad was probably involved with the CIA. The Mossad wanted 9/11 to happen because they are desperate to protect their 8 million people in Israel. Israel is surrounded by over a billion hostile Arabs, many of which would love nothing more than to invade Israel, kill all the Jews there, and take back “their homeland” of Palestine. The only thing that’s standing between Israel and these hostile hoards is Israel’s nuclear arsenal and their good Christian buddies, the U.S. presidents goaded on by AIPAC. If the nukes are used however, they could contaminate the entire ME area, including the small tract of land Israel sits on. So nukes are not that good of an option and a last resort. The preferred option is to keep the U.S. military-industrial complex fired up and over in the Middle East fighting the “War of Terror.” And the only way THAT can be done is if the American people look the other way in connection with the 9/11 False Flag Op and keep printing up fiat currency. So you can bet there are millions of Genesis-reading American evangelicals that secretly like 9/11 because it gives them an excuse to trump the interests of Israel.(3)

And this is what was in it for Israel and its Mossad, enhanced American support and an enhanced level of “security” in the Middle East and the greater Israeli area. And this has all happened, as we can all see. In the name of “security” the U.S. received the anti-constitutional PATRIOT Act, legislation that was passed without even being read by Congress. This has now created a police state, not only in the United States, but the entire world, for the Republicans, with the sold exception of Ron Paul, think the US should be the policeman of the world more than ever. Thus every government on earth has benefited from the 9/11 False Flag Operation. When one considers this, it makes the 9/11 project MUCH bigger than just a $2 trillion project.

28 From “Why I Got Involved in FIRM” by James Jaeger:

I have been in the Hollywood-based U.S. motion picture industry since 1977 and 10 years prior to that working around the Philadelphia and Seattle areas. My bio is at http://www.mecfilms.com/jrjbio.htm. I try to evaluate situations from a number of views: 1) my personal experience, as tracked by my bio, 2) the experience of others, 3) by reading books and periodicals, 4) by watching TV media, 5) by debating in public on the NGs and Discussion Fora on the Internet. I have been a reasonable success in the movie business and have associated with many people that were very successful (such as Lee Garmes who was my mentor and who shot, produced and/or directed about 100 classic pictures, including GONE WITH THE WIND. Lee introduced me to a number of members in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences. See his credits at http://www.mecfilms.com/leebio.htm).

Lee, at his dining room table, where we used to work, was probably the first person to say to me, in 1979, that the Hollywood-based U.S. motion picture industry was ‘controlled by a group of people that remained behind a veil.’ Lee never stated anything about their ethnic backgrounds, but he worked for many of the powers that ran the studios for many decades, starting with Thomas Ince. Lee, like others, was a paid employee for the studios and so he never “bit the hand that fed him” while working in the studio system, but by the time I met Lee, he had defected from that system and was an independent producer. Why did he defect?

After Lee died, I worked with Errol Flynn’s manager, Jackson B. Mahon (http://www.mecfilms.com/barry.htm), for about 10 years and got to meet and learn about the Feature AND TV industry from a reasonably high level. Barry was considered by many a genius in movie financing/completion bonding, as well as a pioneer for new methods of financing movies deals such as using Canadian public master limited partnerships to discount negative pickup deals instead of banks. Barry launched Doris Keating, a powerful CBS/Columbia producer, who produced many CBS MOWs (I worked with Barry at the executive level on about 5 of them, including an MOW on Errol’s life called MY WICKED WICKED WAYS). Prior to the movie business, Barry flew over 100 fighter pilot missions in WWII and was the only person to get shot down twice and escape twice from the Germans. The movie, THE GREAT ESCAPE is based upon Barry. I got to know Barry very well, as well as his entire family (Doris was his daughter) and over time I realized that Barry corroborated Lee’s views about control in the industry. But being young and idealistic I argued with Barry incessantly, telling him “You’re full of shit Barry, your problem is you didn’t go to college.” And he would say: “James you’re full of shit, your problem is you over analyze everything because you DID go to college.” We loved each other, but I still took his advice with a “grain of salt” — that is up until the industry passed on the STALIN and NITWITS projects. Why wouldn’t it have not financed these projects, especially when many of the executives knew who I had been working with and knew of my 20 years experience? I thought this was strange.

Then a Christian producer friend, Bill Van Alen, who is partners with Joe Pytka (the highest paid TV Commercial director in the world and director of SPACE JAM and LET IT RIDE) on a project called WHEN THE TRUMPET SOUNDS, recommended that I read a book that a friend had suggested to him. The book was called THE FEATURE FILM DISTRIBUTION DEAL by John W. Cones. The friend who recommended the book to Bill was George Jensen, also a Christian and the executive producer of the $30 million, Proctor & Gamble-financed, MOW called A.D. (which aired around 1985 on network TV as a multi-part special). All of these people had experienced similar problems in the Hollywood-based U.S. motion picture industry. Could it have been because they were Christians, I wondered? Even though I was a Christian-Scientologist for most of my years in Hollywood (1977 -1986), I began to wonder, could the industry be discriminating against people in various religions or with conservative political views?

29 From “ORIGINAL INTENT – Comments”:

To: John Cooper
Director, Sundance Film Festival

John,

I am surprised that your Festival would reject a patriotic film like ORIGINAL INTENT
that’s calling for this nation to get back to Constitutional principles and features
five major opinion leaders, such as RON PAUL and PAT BUCHANAN.

This reflects very poorly on not only the Sundance Institute, but Robert Redford himself, a man supposedly known for his independent thinking and a desire to foster new voices in American film.

Would you please reconsider? Having ORIGINAL INTENT accepted by Sundance would do much to get the important, non-partisan views expressed in the documentary out and into the mainstream where change is desperately needed.

Thanks,

James Jaeger,
Producer/Director
(212) 933-9375

From: Jaeger Research Institute [mailto:contact@mecfilms.com]
Sent: Thursday, December 03, 2009 7:59 PM
To: programming@sundance.org (External Utility Mailbox)
Subject: Re: 2010 SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL NOTIFICATION

Hey Cooper, did any of you assholes at SUNDANCE even WATCH ORIGINAL INTENT before you REJECTED IT?

Ron Paul and Pat Buchanan are in this film. You think THEY have nothing to say?!

http://www.OriginalIntent.

From: Adam Montgomery
To: ‘Jaeger Research Institute’
Sent: Friday, December 04, 2009 2:24 AM
Subject: RE: 2010 SUNDANCE FILM FESTIVAL NOTIFICATION

Yes, we assholes did watch it. All 3+ hours of it. We take the submissions process very seriously, and every film submitted is viewed in the same fashion. Out of 1,700 docs submitted, the vast majority have something to say, and usually it’s something at least relatively important. Unfortunately, we only have room for 35 docs at our Festival, so decisions have to be made. In my opinion, Pat Buchanan and Ron Paul are great Americans, and of course we do not believe that they have “nothing to say”, nor do we believe that your film has nothing to say. I watched your film and for me personally it was educational and informative– you are expressing a lot of ideas that I fully believe in myself on a personal level.

However, if you want this film to find an audience, you might consider cutting it down a bit. Just a suggestion, as films of this nature generally run less than two hours, and I am of the opinion that you could stand to cut an hour or so. I have no desire or authority to tell you what to do with your own movie, but since you felt the need to accuse us of not even viewing it, I feel as if the least I can do is offer some constructive criticism since I did watch it– it wasn’t a film that was simply dismissed. It was viewed by others and discussed. We assholes are nothing if not thorough, I assure you of that.

Best,

Adam Montgomery
Manager, Programming Department
Sundance Institute
8530 Wilshire Blvd., 3rd Floor
Beverly Hills, CA 90211

From: sio
To: ‘Jaeger Research Institute’ ; Adam Montgomery
Cc: John Cones ; JOHN LONGENECKER ; Johnny Davis
Sent: Sunday, December 06, 2009 7:34 PM
Subject: RE: Was ORIGINAL INTENT Nixed by SUNDANCE because of ADL Propaganda?

Hi,

Please stop bcc’ing the Sundance Industry Office on these emails
(sio@sundance.org).

Shalom,

Rosie

Rosie Wong
Senior Manager, Sundance Industry Office
8530 Wilshire Blvd., Third Floor
Beverly Hills, CA 90211
310.360.1981 tel
310.360.1969 fax
http://www.sundance.org

30 From “F.I.R.M. Mission Statement”:

CONDUCT RESEARCH

Work toward encouraging more thoughtful, critical and analytical research regarding aspects of the above general propositions as well as research relating to:

a. The true nature of feature films;
b. The impact of movies on individuals and society;
c. What people (and entities) have the power to determine which movies are produced and released;
d. Who gets to work on those movies in the key positions;
e. Who determines the themes and contents of screenplays for those movies; and
f. How did such persons (and entities) gain that power.

31 From the dedication to “What’s Really Going On In Hollywood!”:

DEDICATION

This book is dedicated to all of the African Americans, Hispanic/Latinos, Native Americans, Asian Americans, German Americans, Italian Americans, women, gays/lesbians, Christians, Muslims, Arabs and Arab-Americans, White Southerners and others who have been victimized by Hollywood employment discrimination and patterns of bias on the screen for some 100 years.

32 From “What’s Really Going On In Hollywood!”:

Gay/Lesbians–Gays and lesbians have also been victimized by consistent negative and stereotypical portrayals in American films. In 1987, Vito Russo points out in his book about homosexuality in American movies (The Celluloid Closet), nothing is “. . . more imbedded in industry culture than a belief that the public would never accept a gay hero. “For most of its history, therefore, the screen entertainment industry pretended homosexuals did not exist; when they did appear, they were portrayed as harmless buffoons or as murderers, murder victims, or suicides.”

It then safe to say that, as a general rule, movies mirror the values, interests, cultural perspectives and prejudices of their makers. The prejudices of the Hollywood filmmakers, as a rule, view gays as bitchy, lonely, jealous, murderous, angry and gloomy. They are also sometimes presented as effeminate and harmless buffoons, but also as child molesters, murder victims, suicides, potentially homicidal and villains. Lesbians have been portrayed in a similar stereotypical manner, except for the substitution of masculine for effeminate, while in still other movies they have been delesbianized altogether.

Until the Hollywood establishment stops systematically excluding gays and lesbians from positions of authority in the Hollywood power structure, and more gays and lesbians are allowed to green-light production financing and determine which films are to be released, we are not likely to see any significant change in the number of films that provide more accurate and positive portrayals of such persons. In addition, until such developments occur, movie audiences are not likely to see more overall balance in the portrayals of gays and lesbians in mainstream cinema. These same observations are also true with respect to the consistent Hollywood bias towards women.

33 From “What’s Really Going On In Hollywood!”:

The Overly Popular Nazi Villain–There is also no question that the all-time champion villain for American movies since the ’30s is the Nazi, and this alone tells us a great deal about who controls Hollywood. American films dealing with the Nazi threat during the years from 1934 through 1941 (prior to the U.S. entry into World War II) are considered in the chapter “Favored Themes and Motion Picture Propaganda”. Some 33 anti-Nazi films are considered there. Another 241 anti-Nazi movies were identified by this study, having been released from 1942 through 1994. On average, Hollywood released nearly 5 anti-Nazi films a year during this latter 52 year period. Although, this study did not go so far as to quantify the results, it would appear that more Hollywood films have featured the Nazis as villains more than all other films focusing on other World War II enemies of the U.S., considered together. The appearances of Nazis as villains in American-made motion pictures seem to far outdistance the appearances of any other consistently negatively portrayed human population. Interestingly, but not surprisingly, Michael Medved made little or no comment regarding this clear Hollywood bias, which has, over the years, risen to the level of movie propaganda.

Even though we might all agree that Nazis are appropriate movie villains, the concern expressed here centers on the fact that if a narrowly defined interest group that happens to control Hollywood is allowed to obsessively portray its most despicable enemies through a disproportionate number of movies showing them as villains, then all other groups that have any interest in portraying someone else as a movie villain are arbitrarily prevented from doing so. Thus, the proliferation of Nazi villains in Hollywood films, not only confirms the priorities and biases of the Hollywood film community, it precludes others from telling their important stories through films that are available to be seen by large segments of the American and world publics.

The Continuing Attack: Neo-Nazi/Fascists, White Supremacists and the Klan–In addition to the long series of anti-Nazi and anti-fascist motion pictures, the Hollywood-based U.S. film industry also routinely churns out films that negatively portray neo-Nazis, neo-fascists, white supremacists and the Ku Klux Klan.

Once again, this reported conclusion based on an analysis of Hollywood films and pointing out that such movies commonly use white supremacists as villains is not included as any form of argument that they should not be cast as villains, only that if they are used as villains, so should extremists of all other religious, cultural, ethnic and racial groups. If the Hollywood-based U.S. movie industry takes the position that only the white race has extremists on its fringe, then that movie industry itself is racist.

Part of the danger of the anti-Nazi, anti-Fascist and anti-White Supremacist movies that is of concern is that the underlying prejudice against such hate mongering can so easily and appears to have in fact, evolved into a broader anti-neo-Nazi, anti-German, anti White Supremacist, anti-Ku Klux Klan, anti-redneck and finally, anti-Southern mentality in the movie industry (see discussion of movies about the South below), all of which tends to stir prejudice based on stereotypes in our contemporary society and lay the groundwork for a form of regional discrimination in the U.S. that is encouraged by the powerful communications medium, the Hollywood motion picture. It would appear, in fact, that the people who are making these movies are more prejudice than most of the people portrayed. Interestingly enough, the Ku Klux Klan has had chapters in states other than in the American South (e.g., Kansas, California, Oregon, Ohio, Indiana, New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania), while the vast majority of Hollywood films portraying the Klan are centered in the Southern states.

34 From “John Cones: Executive Profile & Biography – Businessweek”:

John W. Cones serves as Consultant of Big Sky Motion Pictures – manager at Spring Break ’83 Production, LLC. Mr. Cones is a securities/entertainment attorney licensed to practice in the states of California and Texas. His primary area of expertise is federal and state securities compliance for entertainment oriented business plans, limited partnership, limited liability and corporate stock offerings providing financing for feature films, Internet companies, television pilots, live stage plays, documentaries and infomercials. Mr. Cones worked in that area of the law for 18 years in Houston and Los Angeles and participated in the production of the required disclosure documents for more than 200 securities offerings. Some 35 independently produced feature and documentary films have been produced as a result of those investor offerings. In addition, he has incorporated, licensed and counseled regarding compliance matters, a half dozen securities broker/dealer firms engaged in such offerings. Mr. Cones lectured on film finance topics for the past 18 years throughout the United States. He has authored four books Film Finance and Distribution–A Dictionary of Terms (Silman-James Press, 1992), Film Industry Contracts (1993) and 43 Ways to Finance Your Feature Film (Southern Illinois University Press-Summer of 1994). The fourth book, The Feature Film Distribution Deal–A Critical Analysis of the Single Most Important Film Industry Agreement was released in December of 1996. Mr. Cones is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin with Bachelor of Science in Communications in 1967 and Doctor of Jurisprudence in 1974.

That this John W. Cones is the same John W. Cones who wrote “What’s Really Going On In Hollywood!” can be confirmed by going to the description below “About the Author”, which lists the same bibliography:

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

John W. Cones is a securities and entertainment attorney based in Los Angeles, where he maintains a private solo practice advising independent feature film, video, television and theatrical producer clients.

A frequent lecturer on film finance and distribution, his lectures on “Investor Financing of Entertainment Projects” have been presented in Los Angeles, Las Vegas, Dallas, Houston, Boise, Sacramento, Portland, San Francisco, Nashville, Charleston and Washington, D.C. and have been sponsored by the American Film Institute, IFP/West, state film commissions, independent producer organizations and American University. He has also lectured for the USC Cinema-TV School, the UCLA (graduate level) Producer’s Program, UCLA Extension and the UCLA Anderson Graduate School of Management.

His previous publications include Film Finance and Distribution–A Dictionary of Terms, Film Industry Contracts (a collection of 100 sample film industry agreements, available in hard-copy form or on computer diskettes), 43 Ways to Finance Your Feature Film, The Feature Film Distribution Deal–A Critical Analysis of the Single Most Important Film Industry Agreement, and numerous magazine and journal articles on related topics.

35 From the trailer:

CHARLI
I’m sorry Billy, but I’m just a good time Charli, and I wouldn’t be me if I was here for the good time.

GIRL ON BED
She’s cute…you mind if she joins us?

GUY ON BED
You slut!

GIRL ON BED motions to CHARLI, who jumps onto GUY ON BED.

Let me just take the time here to quote from John W. Cones in his “What’s Really Going On In Hollywood!”:

Women–Women have not fared much better than other minorities in the male dominated U.S. film industry. According to novelist Meg Wolitzer, “[m]ovies that address the complex emotional lives of girls are rare…” In actress Michelle Pfeiffer’s speech at the Women in Film awards ceremony (1993) she “…took aim at Hollywood for movies in which women were ‘sold’ to men, like Pretty Woman (1990), Mad Dog and Glory (1993), and Indecent Proposal (1993)”.

Academic Elisabeth Joyce, in her study of violent women in recent movies concludes that such examples underline a depressing paradox: “…that women of violence may appear in films and may on first look seem to be harbingers of a new social order which accepts women as equals in the power game, or which in fact presents the patriarchy as giving way to female power, but which in reality only reaffirm the patriarchy and put women in their secondary place in the social order, a place which is in further reintrenchment.”

Thus, with all of the progress for women in the rest of U.S. society, Hollywood still seems to be well behind the curve. Hollywood portrayals of women in recent years have included the silent, submissive and untrustworthy females. In addition, women have been portrayed as being on the sidelines, for sale and as the sexual harasser.

Well, thank god we now have John W. Cones and his Spring Break ’83 speaking truth to power.

36 From “Union shuts down movie” by Brennan David:

The Screen Actors Guild and the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees shut down filming of “Spring Break ’83” Friday evening.

Mike McHugh, IATSE business agent, said Big Sky Motion Pictures committed a breach of contract when it discovered the movie barely had a week’s worth of payroll in its account. IATSE requires two weeks’ worth of payroll to be in deposit.

The union learned of the breach of contract after several complaints from crew members and extras not being paid. When SAG shut down filming Friday evening, “we followed suit and did the same,” McHugh said.

“We told the crew we couldn’t guarantee any payment past Thursday,” McHugh said.

Springfield resident Treyson Thedy said he has not been paid for 19 days of work. The young extra said he has worked in several films and television shows before and has always been paid within two weeks. As of Monday, Thedy has been waiting a month for his first week’s payment of work.

“I call all the time and always get a different story,” Thedy said. “They said it’s something to do with their accountant, but it’s always a different story.”

Thedy said his two brothers and several friends have not been paid either.

Archie Trahan, production assistant, said he has not been paid one penny for two weeks of work. He said he should have known something was wrong when the film refused to give him a copy of his time sheet.

He thinks somewhere around 700 people are waiting for payment.

37 A sample from Spring Break ’83: Unpaid Extras.

The post “For Investors”:

SB83 investors,
We do not have any information for you. We are only the extras trying to obtain the money we are owed. Several investors have contacted us through unpaidextras@gmail.com, but we are unable to help you in any way. As it was an investment, we have no idea how or even IF you can recoup any of your money.

For potential investors, all you have to do is go to IMDb to see what miserable failure Big Sky Motion Pictures’ previous film “What Love Is” was. We don’t know much about investing, but we do know that Big Sky has a history of not being honest. Beware. They are not a company you can trust.

From “affidavit, please”:

Because we anticipate that we will not get paid, we are gathering affidavits of detailed accounts of pertinent information for the lawyer who is signing on to the case. PLEASE SEND YOURS IMMEDIATELY to unpaidextras@gmail.com. The lawyer needs them TODAY. Here are two very long examples. Names have been removed.

EXAMPLE ONE:

My name is [name withheld], and I worked as a featured extra on the film “Spring Break ’83” on November 3 and 4, 2007. I was initially contracted to be paid $200.00 per day, which included travel days to and from Houston, Texas on November 2 and 5, 2007. I later agreed to a lower payment of $600.00 for these four days because Tina Kerr, the casting assistant from Texas, informed me via email that “we had to be paid the same rate as the Louisiana extras”.

I have several complaints about the way the production was run and the way the extras were treated on set. Extras were yelled at in close range via megaphones. Crew members were taking cell phone pictures of unsuspecting female extras who were in their bikinis. Production assistants embarrassed and belittled a number of extras in front of the larger group in order to intimidate them.

It all came to a head on the evening of November 4, 2007, when producer Joy Czerwonky met with the Texas extras at our hotel and informed us that we would be needed for an additional day of shooting on November 5. This was simply not acceptable to me as we were told that November 5th would only be used as a shooting day if we were unable to shoot on either November 3 and 4 for rain or other weather problems. In addition to the horrible treatment of the extras on set, to add to my concern, I was told by several people working on set that they had not been paid since October 19. This includes one wardrobe assistant, the manager of the catering company doing craft services, three Louisiana extras, one contracted break dancer, and one principal actor. As a SAGe actress, I became aware that “Spring Break ’83” and Big Sky Motion Pictures were committing serious offenses to their SAG contract. Simply put, I no longer trusted their word, and I wanted to go home immediately.

I personally told Czerwonky that I would concede if we were all paid an additional $150.00 and would be back in Austin, Texas in time for a 7 a.m. shoot on a different production on November 6. At that time, she would not agree to those terms and she proceeded to insult my friends and co-workers by telling us that our reasons for wanting to go home were invalid and that working on this film would be “our only chance to make it big in Hollywood” because we were all “way too old”.

As no agreement could be met, 20 of us refused to go on set on November 5. After threatening to call the police for false imprisonment, the production company begrudgingly hired a limo and a charter van to take us back to Houston. We were told that we would leave by 8 a.m., but we did not leave until 11:00. In the meantime, two people went back to set.

Thirty minutes outside of Houston, our drivers pulled over to a gas station. My friend, [name withheld], called my cell phone and told me to let the others know that our drivers were planning to leave us at the gas station because a certain female passenger was on board who apparently had gotten in to a fight with the owner of the charter bus company the previous day (i.e. she was allegedly banned from riding on any vehicle owned by the company). I quietly spread the word so that the majority of us would not leave the van or limo. Because I wanted us all to get home safe and sound, I further felt forced to lie to the limo driver that that certain passenger was not on board.

When we arrived at the Wal-Mart parking lot where we had left our vehicles, the limo driver and the banned passenger engaged in a physical altercation. The passenger pulled out a tazer, and the limo driver was yelling for me. I had to hide behind a SUV because I was scared for my physical well being. The limo driver started to drive a way, but the extras had not yet unloaded all of their baggage. As the trunk was still open, the other extras had to scramble to get their
bags out.

My friend [name withheld] and I got in to her car, and we left for Austin. To this day, I regret working on this film, and to date, I have not been paid.

I attest the above to be true on this 25th day of February, 2008

From “WARNING: do not sign the new release forms… yet”:

From a shafted SB83 extra via Myspace today:
“I was called about signing a release by BigSky… they said it was the last step before getting paid.

Sign it if you want… but give me a couple days to figure this out… my husband is an attorney and says that it is written as though we have ALREADY been paid… and if you sign it, you may inadvertently be signing away your right to be paid because of how it is worded.

This is what he has to say about it….

“It says good and valuable consideration, receipt of which is hereby acknowledged… Consideration is the quid you receive for the quo you give. You have not yet received any consideration, i.e., payment, so that part of the release is not true. The release they have sent to you is written as if you have already been paid. Looks like they have the cart before the horse.”

Let me check into this.

I do not trust them… and they have not given us any reason TO trust them… so I’ll get back with you.”

————
Please stay tuned for more developments. We MUST stick together on this issue!

ALSO a certified letter will be sent to Big Sky Motion pictures on 2/22 stating our intention of proceeding with legal action. If you sent your info to unpaidextras@gmail.com your name and monies owed will be included in the letter. If you have not sent your information, please do so immediately. Thank you.

We are the unpaid extras from “Spring Break ’83”.
We are tired of the excuses.
We just want to be paid.

38 From the “Desist and Refrain order (For violations of section 25110 of the Corporations Code)”:

Pursuant to Section 25532 of the California Corporations Code, Big Sky Motion Pictures, L.L.C., Spring Break ’83 Production, L.L.C., Spring Break ’83 Distribution, L.L.C., Spring Break ’83, Rand Jay Chortkoff aka Gregory Martin, and Mars Callahan are hereby ordered to desist and refrain from the further offer or sale in the State of California of securities, including, but not limited to limited liability company interests in Spring Break ’83 Production L.L.C, Spring Break ’83 Distribution, L.L.C., or Big Sky Motion Pictures, L.L.C., unless and until qualification has been made under said law or unless exempt.

From “California Department of Corporations-Stipulation to Entry of Final Judgment”:

H. Plaintiff issued a Desist and Refrain Order on March 28, 2008 against DEFENDANT for violations of the CSL, pursuant to California Corporations Code section 25532, mandating DEFENDANT to cease from the offer and sale of unqualified, non-exempt securities to members of the public (“Order”). DEFENDANTS were personally served with the Order on or about April 14, 2008. DEFENDANTS did not request an administrative hearing on the merits of the Order. Therefore, the Order is now final.

I. Notwithstanding the Order, DEFENDANTS continued to offer and sell securities to California residents without disclosing the existence of the Desist and Refrain Order from at least April 2008 to 2010.

9. DEFENDANTS neither admit nor deny the foregoing allegations.

From “California Department of Corporations-Amended Final Judgment”:

3. DEFENDANTS Big Sky Motion Pictures, L.L.C., Spring Break ’83 Production, L.L.C., Spring Break ’83 Distribution, L.L.C., Spring Break ’83, Rand Jay Chortkoff and each of them, and their officers, directors, successors in interest, agents, employees, attorneys in fact, and all persons acting in concert or participating with them, shall be and are hereby ordered to rescind each and all of the unlawful transactions alleged in this Complaint and pay full restitution to each person determined to have been subject to acts, practices, or transactions which constitute violations of the Corporate Securities Law of 1968, in the total amount of $180,000.00 to six (6) California investors within one hundred twenty (120) calendar days after the Court’s entry of Final Judgment.

39 From the IMDb board for What Love Is, the thread “Investing?”:

User natasha cubbage (link):

Does anyone know anything about phone calls asking for investors in this movie?
I just received a phone call asking for a min. investment of $5000. Scam? real? anyone know?

User gypsy7-1 (link):

Yes, I have received these calls, as well. They started even before the picture was in production. Issue was that they didn’t want “big time” investors who would prevent Mars Callahan from having full creative control, so they wanted a lot of smaller investors. Mars supposedly has the next picture in progress and will want to go back to investors for support. He also “wants to develop the next Miramax production company.”

Some things to consider:
1.I couldn’t verify that the company calling supposedly representing “Big Sky Motion Pictures” was even affiliated with that organization. Checks were to go to them, not the third party bank, which was kinda freaky;

2. I actually read the documents they sent and was concerned about distribution of the “profits.” Caller’s response was, “You didn’t actually read it did you?” or something to that effect. Unfortunately, I’ve spent nearly a lifetime reading contracts. Also, the contract has no value if the company doesn’t honor it (or even exist – they may have had no connection with the production company at all);

3. I referred the caller to my financial advisor who asked some pertinent questions and they wouldn’t send him any information;

4. Shortly after that, I got the “closing call” that said they had just been invited to the Sundance festival and I only had two more days to get the check to them;

5. I checked the Sundance festival site and found no reference to the movie.

6. Financial advisor said that the time is very good for “scam artists” who take your money and run. Other examples are Oil/Gas investments, Forex (foreign financial exchange), etc. (Check out the video “Glengarry Glen Ross”) Such scams seem to run in cycles and we are in one now, so…. let the buyer beware. The test is, close your eyes, imagine that you have sent in the amount of money requested to someone you don’t know and imagine losing it all. If that doesn’t bother you, then perhaps you are ready (and financially capable) to “invest” in such things.
Nomad

User seewead57 (link):

I RECEIVED THE SAME CALL,BUT THEY ASKED FOR THIRTY THOUSAND NOT FIVE. I RECIEVED THE (KIT)THEY SENT AT FOUR P.M. THREE HOURS LATER I GOT A CALL TO GO OVER IT AND FILL OUT THE AGREEMENT AND SEND THE CHECK. WAS TOLD I HAD TO DO THIS NOW OR A CHANCE OF A LIFETIME WOULD PASS ME BY. I PUT THEM OFF WITH DIFFERENT EXCUSES FOR TWO WEEKS.I GOT ANOTHER CALL TODAY SAID I COULD LOWER MY (PARTNERSHIP)TO FIFTEEN THOU. ADVICE…….IF SOMETHING SOUNDS TO GOOD TO BE TRUE IT MORE THAN LIKELY IS……….I AM NOT SAYING IT COULD NOT HAPPEN BUT BY THE NUMBERS I WAS TOLD THE MOVIE WOULD MAKE I WOULD MAKE AS MUCH AS NINE MILLION OFF OF THIRTY THOUSAND. WHO WOULD GIVE THAT MUCH MONEY BACK TO INVESTORS.

User mlints (link):

I am in investor in What Love Is, and my experience is pretty much in line with your description, at least regarding the financial arrangements. I invested in November 2005, and some of the details of the movie itself have not turned out as described at the time.

The cast that I was “sold” included Val Kilmer, Ben Affleck, Christian Slater, Anne Heche, and (maybe) Angelina Jolie, and the movie was going to be released on Valentines Day 2006. Obviously, there were some changes along the way. I was nervous about some of the changes, especially the schedule delay, but the company has been reasonably good about keeping me informed about significant changes as they occurred.

The jury is still out as to whether or not this was a good investment. I haven’t seen the movie, but the few comments I’ve read about it are encouraging, and I’m looking forward to its release.

From the IMDb “What Love Is (2007)” board, the “I feel sorry for any investor, WLI drop…” thread:

User bigboy37 (link):

the 1st week of release it made 11,000, 67th out of all movies out, right behind Galapagos, which has been out for 7-8 years i think,
this week I look on the box office gross, I dont even see WLI in the top 97 movies,
MEANING!!! this move probably only made about 12-13,000 theater release!!! and will now be dumped from the theaters and go to DVD
what a shame , you put all those “name” actors together, raise money from investors and put up the hype,
and it comes out in 42, 42!!! theaters and makes 12-13,
why even make a movie if you arent going to promote it, distribute it, and then let it crash,
my guess….. after BIG LIE comes out with their spring break movie,,,
I give them 5 years before they go out of business, no way people will invest in them again
WTF?? anybody care to expand on this…..

User privateinvestigator (link):

Yes you should !! I have never seen a dime from my investment. Yet they keep calling for me to invest in SB ’83. Thats bold but these guys have no shame. There is a sucker born every day but I will not be screwed twice.

User storyteller1957 (link):

Ditto on that. Not one dime. They’ve promised money for six months (well, no they actually have promised release and money for well over a year) always followed with a sales pitch. Then it turns out that one of the “top people in the business” that they have hired for this promotion or that deal somehow has a misunderstanding or mistake that represents a delay. Of course the limited written updates do not sync with what they pitch on the phone.

The movie may or may not be a masterpiece but it is different and stimulating, has a great cast, and a subset of people are going to love it if they get the chance.

In my neck of the woods no one would get the chance to know that since it never came to a theatre and has not been released on DVD. (The tales of DVD release dates and why that has not happened yet are a whole ‘nother story.)

A horribly, horribly mis-managed project that only lends credence to the claim that they are in the business of raising money not distributing movies.

User privateinvestigator (link):

No K-1! No communication! Crooks!

User privateinvestigator (link):

I at least got my K-1s this year. No income. No explanation of why I hear of it playing here and there but none of that money is coming to the bottom line.

User gotmyorangecrush (link):

I hate to rain on everyone’s What Is Love Doomsday predictions but the bottom line is that the Home Theater market has become a monster that takes in literally 3 times as much as theaters do these days. The Home Theater market took in 27 Billion in 2007. Those are just HUGE numbers so the bottom line is you simply cannot say a movie failed until after it has been released on the home market. In all likeliness a film with this kind of budget will gon on to become very profitable on the home market even it it only made a single penny at the theaters.

Even bashing this film in its performance in the theatres is a joke because it was only released in 42 theaters according to Box Office Mojo. Dont get me wrong if you guys want to bash this film the go ahead and do it but to bash this film in regards to its investors or in regards to how successful this film is ultimately going to be in that regard is nothing short of ridiculous. The home theatre is considered the 2nd box office and judging a films success before it hits the home market is simply not a very smart thing to do.

Given the star power this film has this film should easily make its budget plus at least 5- 10 million on the home market and if you guys really consider that to be the overwheming failure that your making it out to be then I would hate to see what you guys would say about the films that actually fail to make money.

10 years ago you could have made a post like this and there would have been nothing wrong with it but you simply cannot do that today. The SD DVD market is a money powerhouse that has the power to turn even the most utter box office failures into bags of money. The ironic thing is that its films like these that have such low budgets that ultimately make the most in terms of percentage of profit. The big powerhouse blockbusters that have 200 million budgets are the films that Need to have huge theatrical performances on top of huge home theater performances to make any serious money in return. Films like these that have small budgets can go on to make loads of cash on the home market thus judging a films ultimate performance in regards to profits before it hits the home market is again a foolish thing to do.

User storyteller1957 (link):

I completely agree on the financial potential. Poorly positioned in the theatres does not speak to how people (not necessarily critics who had mixed reviews) will feel about it. I think it will have a good audience in the DVD world.

It does not change that by the terms of the investors’ agreement we should have seen some check, albeit a small one, last year and I am still waiting for first distributions. As an investor I don’t really have anything good to say about the production company at this point. But I will be happy to see the movie released on DVD and have some fresh input on a movie that most people have not yet had even the option to see.

User smatthew-5 (link):

Hello Storyteller,

I am considering investing in Spring Break 83 and wish to know how much of a return you have received on What Love Is to date. As of your last post, it appeared that you planned to check the mail for a check. Did this or any other checks come in? I need to know if there are any red flags with this investment still, or if the money just took longer than expected. Any input you can give me would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks

User storyteller1957 (link):

It has now been five full quarters since WLI went in to the theatres. We never received a check for the small amount of theatre revenue. I was told (while I was being solicited for SB83) that they had sold foreign rights and that money was imminent. Over a year ago and never happened. Our first check was the one referenced above. It amounted to 3 pennies back on each dollar sent (dollars were NOT returned). The second quarter has come and gone since without a peep.

I can not stress strongly enough, this was a huge rip off. Not just bad luck but either horrible performance or outright lies. Or both.

You would be a gullible fool to give them any money. And I know- I have walked that walk. I know it sounds good but just say ‘No’. It’s mildly fun to think you are part of something. I know it sounds good. Porky’s, Nerds and all the others, how could they not make money.

Look at the cast list for WLI and tell me how you would think you would lose 97% of your money on a movie with those players.

Really, write to me privately if you like. Unlike some people here I do not trash WLI, the movie, but those are the financial facts.

I now have three pennies to show for every dollar that I sent to these guys in 2005.

User Typhoon-ista (link):

Got My Orange Crush,

Nice try but what you are completely missing in that overly optimistic post were the outrageous claims made to investors through sales pitches and disclosure documents.

It is all well and good to now say “Oh yeah, it was never going to do well in the theatre but the target market was DVD revenue” but this is simply not what was delivered in the sales process to investors. With all due respect I have to question your motives in making the above post and whether you have an association with BS.

The facts are movie investments are high risk with the possibility of high returns. Potentially Mars and the guys did a very good job like with Pool Hall Junkies and Zigs. The HUGE problem is with the sales pitch and disclosure docuemtns. They were high pressure sales and were disgraceful which simply did not reflect the risks associated with the investment. Sorry to hear that those investors have lost money but try not to get caught twice.

User moviedude1-1 (link):

No the HUGE problem is all the pathetic lies Big SKy told the investors! I personally know people who lost thousands to these scam artists! Someone need to put these thieves out of business!

User moviedude1-1 (link):

So lets see as you can read in the above posts Big Sky productions LIED to the investors about What love is and the way it was going to be distributed, Then they LIED to the Extras on SB83 and told them “The check is in the mail” Does it ever end? Why anyone would do business with this company after reading all the horror stories is beyond me, Big Sky are scam artists nothing more.

User smatthew-5 (link):

I am considering investing in Big Sky Productions Spring Break 83, but saw your posts. I also saw some that said they did get paid. I am posting this several months after the last post on this, so am wondering if your friends who lost money have received any checks since then and to what extent. Obviously, your posts are concerning, but just wondering what the current status is.

Please let me know.

Thanks.

User TheQuietStorm (link):

I heard about this whole situation. It’s a sad thing, especially for honest and talented producers, writers and directors out there looking for investors on great projects.

From the IMDb “What Love Is (2007)” board, “Investors Only” thread:

User privateinvestigator (link):

I think we should get together and start a class axtion. I know I was lied to many times by the phone promoters.

Here are a few examples:

1) The investors in Pool Hall Junkies made 4 to 1 and soon it would be much more even 10 or 20 to one.

2) The movie would be out on Valentines day (2005)

3) Philip Morris angency would be handling a vast promotional effort.

4) They had a deal with See’s Candy to promote the film.

5) It would be the perfect Valentines movie for me to bring my wife to on the opening night.
6) We should expect a return of 10,20 or even 30 to 1.
7) No chance of faliure with multiple streams of income.

I have not seen a check yet. I was told we would have quartely distributions. There is no doubt in my mind that I am a victim of fraud. I would like to participate in a class action. Are there ant others out there that were lied to.

User carlk-3 (link):

Um, maybe you’d do better with your investments if you knew how to spell your own screen name properly.
And furthermore, if you had just Googled “Poolhall Junkies,” you would have seen it was a miserable failure.

User Ravkill (link):

phillip morris markets movies now?

User privateinvestigator (link):

OK smart ass. Yes I should have checked out poll hall junkies. My screen name is a play on words. Investor=Investo get it? Yes I was Duped. Yes I was screwed. Yes I was stupid. Yes I lost a lot of money. Yes I am pissed. The people should be jailed.

From the IMDb “What Love Is (2007)” board, “Big Sky Productions Ripped of my friend” thread:

User moviedude1-1 (link):

My friend was an extra in SB83 and worked long hard days. He still hasent received a dime from Big Sky productions, This has got to be the worst production company I have ever come across.

User storyteller1957 (link):

Good friends don’t let friends work for rip off companies. You knew about Big Sky long before SB83 started filming and told everyone here about it. Surely you should have told your own friends as well.

User moviedude1-1 (link):

Considering I live in a different state than he does and he doesnt consult with me with his every move then I couldnt help him, I just think its sad that people had to fight this scam company to get paid!

User moviedude1-1 (link):

Looks Like One of their own investors with Big SKy dont even like them! Read the last line of Storytellers post I think that says alot!

by storyteller1957 (Mon Dec 3 2007 21:21:14) Ignore this User | Report Abuse

——————————————————————————–

Ditto on that. Not one dime. They’ve promised money for six months (well, no they actually have promised release and money for well over a year) always followed with a sales pitch. Then it turns out that one of the “top people in the business” that they have hired for this promotion or that deal somehow has a misunderstanding or mistake that represents a delay. Of course the limited written updates do not sync with what they pitch on the phone.

The movie may or may not be a masterpiece but it is different and stimulating, has a great cast, and a subset of people are going to love it if they get the chance.

In my neck of the woods no one would get the chance to know that since it never came to a theatre and has not been released on DVD. (The tales of DVD release dates and why that has not happened yet are a whole ‘nother story.)

A horribly, horribly mis-managed project that only lends credence to the claim that they are in the business of raising money not distributing movies.

From the IMDb “Spring Break ’83 (2014)” board, the “No…all the extras have not been paid …”:

User miss-jackson-if-ur-nasty (link):

I notice that some of the Big Sky employees have been posting here under fake names trying to build back Big Lies reputation…But it wont work EVERYONE on the west coast knows what a bunch of thieves these guys are. By the way,….The tariler for this film sucked big time.

From the IMDb “Spring Break ’83 (2014)” board, the “please just pay your bills” thread:

you stel need to pay johnny martin $47,017.89 how can you sleep at night if i olde grips i would pay them so i would not have to keep looking over my back.

From the IMDb Spring Break ’83 (2014) board, the “When will this be released?” thread:

User fishermansfriend (link):

I don’t care if it sucks, it’s got Aviva in a bikini so I want to see it.

User twin-11 (link):

PLEASE can you give us an updated release date?

maybe no more money, is why!

but the Public is Clamoring!
i mean fishermansfriend wants to see Aviva in a bikini, close enough …

User lor_ (link):

2 Fake Items here:

Ever-rolling release date, 2008, 2009, 2010 now, next??

$18,000,000 budget listed in IMDb. SURE, I believe that! Gotta peddle a lot of Blu-Rays to earn that kind of money, and remember 3 years (and counting) of interest on that borrowed investment is pretty significant too.

User storyteller1957 (link):

There is no interest if you don’t borrow money but get victims to “invest”.

And apparently no interest extends to the interest in finishing a film when the main people get paid up front from investor funds.

At least that is my opinion.

User storyteller1957 (link):

Haha, if they had filmed it live in ’83 they probably wouldn’t have been able to get it out by now.

Gosh, I hope they are not out telling people they have this movie that is already filmed and almost done. And once they raise a little advertising money….. So really very little risk if you invest now. We’ll release it and the money will be rolling in. And then we will start working on this new project we are doing with Tom Hanks (really they did claim that)and we will give preference to our current partners for that one. Well except for when they say they want to broaden the investor base so they aren’t sure if you will be able to get in on the new one, but if you really want to I will see what I can do…..

There are some fund raising advantages to having it on the verge of release and full of potential rather than flopping around like a dying fish with investors posting that their returns were 3 percent of what they invested.

User swampgypsy (link):

I really really wish they would release it. My very best friend in the woorld and I were extras in it. He passed away very shortly after and I would really like to see the footage we are in together…I miss him so :(

User storyteller1957 (link):

I am very sorry for your loss SwampGypsy.

User lightkeeper-1 (link):

Release the movie and let us help pay the bills off.

40 The contact information for Big Sky Motion Pictures can be found on their contact page:

BIG SKY MOTION PICTURES
Raleigh Studios Office
650 N. Bronson Ave. Suite B-128
Los Angeles, CA, 90004
Phone: (323) 871 – 4466
Fax: (323) 871 – 4467

BIG SKY MOTION PCITURES
New Orleans Office
607 St. Charles Avenue Suite 300
New Orleans, LA. 70119

The contact information for Abundance Entertainment can be found on their contact page:

Raleigh Studios Office
650 N. Bronson Ave. Suite B-128
Los Angeles, CA, 90004
Phone: (323) 871 – 4466
Fax: (323) 871 – 4467
Email: info@abundanceentertainment.com

The contact information for Vintage American Films can be found on their contact page:

Raleigh Studios Office
5300 Melrose, Suite 39
Los Angeles, CA 90038
Phone: (323) 871 – 4466
Fax: (323) 871 – 4467

The web developer for all three sites is Joshua Temkin, and he lists the three in the Client/Projects sidebar of the “About” page of his site.

41 From Poker Junkies: Cease and desist order for movie producers/Gene Hackman name-droppers” by Michael Roberts:

Poker Junkies may eventually come to a theater near you — but it could take longer than hoped thanks to action by the Division of Securities at Colorado’s Department of Regulatory Agencies (DORA). Officials there have issued a cease and desist order against producers for failing to register security offerings with the state before cold-calling potential investors with, among other things, promises of a premiere-night dinner with Gene Hackman.

The companies involved include Poker Junkies Productions and Abundance Entertainment. According to DORA, reps of the firms were attempting to raise $15 million to make their dream project a reality, with one potential investor being told by a pitchman that by ponying up, he’d receive “red carpet treatment. You will get to go to the Hollywood premiere. You get to have dinner and sit next to Gene Hackman at the dinner banquet, passing him the salt. When the credits roll, BOOM, you’re PF Enterprises executive producer. You are treated right.”

By the way, the online material touting Poker Junkies makes no mention of Gene Hackman being involved in the film, which makes sense given that he’s retired from acting. The Wikipedia page linked above notes that Hackman made this announcement in 2008, four years after the arrival of what would become his final flick, Welcome to Mooseport — a movie capable of making any Oscar winner consider calling it a career.

Look below to read the DORA release, see the cease and desist order and eyeball the Abundance Entertainment description of the movie.

DORA press release:

The Staff of the Division of Securities (the “Staff”) alleged that Abundance Entertainment cold called Colorado investors to invest in the production of a movie to be called Poker Junkies. According to the Staff, Abundance told investors that they were raising $15 million dollars from investors to fund the production of the movie. Investors were provided glossy advertising materials that promised investors 110% of their initial investment out of the first 80% of proceeds from the production of the film. One investor was told by a salesman that if you buy “10 or 20 units” that you will get the “red carpet treatment. You will get to go to the Hollywood premiere. You get to have dinner and sit next to Gene Hackman at the dinner banquet, passing him the salt. When the credits roll, BOOM, you’re PF Enterprises executive producer. You are treated right.”

The Staff alleged that the Respondents failed to register either security offering and, by offering the investment opportunity to the public at large through the use of cold calling prospective investors, Respondents were unable to take advantage of any private offering exemption under the Act. “Cold calling investors for private offerings of securities is a violation of the law when those securities have not been registered,” said Commissioner Joseph. “Investors should always be wary of stock offerings promoted through the use of cold calling. Contact our office to verify that securities have been properly registered before purchasing any security after a cold call.”

Another example of cold calling to raise money for a film is the excellent piece of reporting, “Glen Hartford’s Hollywood Dream and How It Came to Ruin” by Gene Maddaus, an account of film financing gone awry that resulted in jail time and two suicides. An excerpt:

Academy Award–winning screenwriter William Goldman once wrote about a producer who rattled off exaggerated grosses and casting choices, then put his hand over the phone and asked, “Which lie did I tell?” — all without a trace of shame.

Glen Hartford was like that — a hustler in the fine Hollywood tradition. He told a good story. He hooked investors with predictions of riches, or access to the elite, or the chance to be a power player.

But he took it too far. Instead of wooing them carefully, one by one, over lunch at the Palm, he raised money on a mass scale. He set up boiler rooms. In each one was a row of phones. Each phone was attached to a salesman, who spent all day calling housewives and small businessmen, trying to lure them to invest in a Hollywood fairy tale. The operation, the FBI alleged, was “permeated by fraud.”

A telemarketer offering a movie investment has no incentive to tell the truth, because the truth is that maybe the movie will get made and maybe it won’t. Either way, the producers will get paid and the investors will lose everything.

On one recording, Hartford tried to raise money from an undercover agent. “There’s no risk,” he said. “All of our films are profitable.” With lies like that, he raised $20 million.

Such scams “have always been around, but definitely in the last couple years we saw an increase,” FBI agent Steven Goldman tells L.A. Weekly. “We’ve started to get a lot more complaints from investors.”

So the feds have been cracking down, going after more than a dozen producers. Some are heading to prison. Hartford was not the only one to choose suicide.

Hartford, however, was not merely a con artist, because the dream he was selling was his dream, too. He had a gift for making others share in his delusions. In Hollywood that’s an essential skill, provided you’re slick enough to avoid being caught.

42 From “Case No. XY 13-CD-10 Stipulation for consent order concerning HTBAM Productions LLC, Vintage American Films LLC, and Greg Fellows”:

1. On May 31, 2013, the Staff filed its Verified Petition for Order to Show Cause(“Verified Petition”). The Staff alleged that Respondents offered or sold unregistered securities in and from the State of Colorado. The Staff did not allege that the Respondents had engaged in fraudulent behavior.

43 Mars Callahan’s credits can be found on his IMDb page. From Callahan’s LinkedIn page on Poker Junkies:

Writer, director, and star of the hit film Poolhall Junkies, Mars Callahan is currently in preproduction for the movie’s sequel, Poker Junkies. Inspired by the sweeping popularity of Texas Hold’em tournaments and the ever growing World Series of Poker, held in Las Vegas each year, Mars Callahan tells the story of an unknown card player who wants to take on the biggest names in the poker world. Struggling to raise the WSOP tournament buy-in fee of $10,000, Mars Callahan’s characters are taken on a tour of high stakes games from the top clubs to the back room.

The only profile of Callahan that I found was “‘Love’ is controlling destiny of your own films.” by Martin A. Grove. The desist and refrain is “Desist and Refrain order (For violations of section 25110 of the Corporations Code)”:

Pursuant to Section 25532 of the California Corporations Code, Big Sky Motion Pictures, L.L.C., Spring Break ’83 Production, L.L.C., Spring Break ’83 Distribution, L.L.C., Spring Break ’83, Rand Jay Chortkoff aka Gregory Martin, and Mars Callahan are hereby ordered to desist and refrain from the further offer or sale in the State of California of securities, including, but not limited to limited liability company interests in Spring Break ’83 Production L.L.C, Spring Break ’83 Distribution, L.L.C., or Big Sky Motion Pictures, L.L.C., unless and until qualification has been made under said law or unless exempt.

44 Among those featured briefly in the movie, though not talking heads, there are a number of interest. For instance, a man named Walter Reddy briefly shows up as a speaker at an event:

NARRATOR
Also, never forget the instrument that literally authorized the U.S. constitution and freed all Americans from oppressive European rule was the declaration of independence. This sister document states whenever any form of government becomes destructive of certain ends, such as the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, it is the duty of the people to alter or abolish it. Alter it means to vote out those who aren’t following the constitution. If such politicians over time or unbeknownst to the people, reconfigure their government in such a way to usurp the rights of the people, then the only choice left is to abolish the government.

WALTER REDDY (Founder, commissioner of Public Safety)
So, they were acting within the law when they stood on that green, General Gage was outside the law, he was an outlaw, that regular army. And that’s why they didn’t throw down their arms that day. They opened fire on them.

Reddy gets mentioned in “Police stop pro-gun rally from reaching Lexington Battle Green” by Brock Parker, an account of a pro-gun rally held within days of the Boston bombings:

Dozens of people attempted to attend a pro-gun rally in Lexington Friday morning despite an emergency moratorium the town placed on gatherings on the Battle Green after the Boston Marathon bombings this week.

Lexington Police Chief Mark Corr said several groups, ranging in size from eight to 10, to as many as 80 people, came to the town Friday morning beginning around 9:30 for a Second Amendment rally that had at one time been permitted for the Battle Green.

Several people who came for the rally were still lingering near the Battle Green shortly after noon Friday.

Walter Reddy, 61, of Weston, Conn., wore a tri-corner hat and other Colonial-era attire to attend the rally in support of the Second Amendment right to bear arms, he said. Reddy said he thinks the militias need to be revitalized and restored in several states.

Will Harvey, 40, of Andover, said he came to Lexington to rally support for the Constitution, argue that the country needs to get back to its original values, and to urge people to turn off their televisions and care for the people in their communities.

Speaking together to a reporter, Reddy said there is no excuse for the attack in Boston Monday, but Harvey said that does not mean that the rally in Lexington should be canceled.

“When there is some sort of event, are we supposed to put our lives on hold?” Harvey said.

Reddy also gets a mention in “Revenge of Ron Paul’s Army” by Dana Goldstein, on some of Ron Paul’s who make their fanatical lunacy obvious:

“With the collapsing of the economy and this rush for more government medical care, the people are much more alarmed and concerned and outspoken than I ever dreamed of,” Ron Paul said.

This sounds like reasonable opposition. But the fact is many of Paul’s most ardent supporters aren’t listening carefully to their leader. In Portsmouth, New Hampshire, on August 11, television networks captured William Kostric, a native Arizonan, standing outside a presidential town-hall meeting wearing a 9-mm handgun strapped to his belt. He held a sign referencing the Thomas Jefferson quote, “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of tyrants and patriots.” Kostric’s MySpace profile lists Paul as his “hero” and someone he’d “like to meet.” The page also includes lyrics to a pro-Ron Paul rap song.

Eight days later in Phoenix, about a dozen men showed up with guns at another Obama town-hall meeting.

One of the Phoenix protesters, Chris Broughton, a former Paul campaign volunteer, carried an AR-15 semi-automatic rifle. “This government is the most corrupt Mafioso on the face of the earth,” Broughton later told the Arizona Republic. Broughton attends a church led by Pastor Steven Anderson, who delivered a sermon the day before the event praying for Obama’s death and calling him a “socialist devil.”

What more typical conservatives might not realize is that armed protesters like Broughton and Kostric represent an ideology far more complex and radical than simply opposing “socialized” medicine or increased government spending. Their worldview is pro-life, anti-tax, and hawkish on immigration, which they call an “invasion”—but also passionately anti-war and anti-authoritarian.

Indeed, Broughton and Kostric are both “team members” in an effort organized by the We the People Foundation to host a “continental congress” from November 9-22 at a lush spa and resort in St. Charles, Illinois. Their movement is motivated by a deep-seated belief that the current federal government is as illegitimate as 18th-century British rule over colonial America, and ought to be subject to “economic sanctions.” According to We the People founder and chairman Bob Schulz, a birther, the purpose of the event is “petitioning Congress for redress of grievances regarding the Second Amendment, privacy, property, money policy, and war powers.” Delegates will be elected in each state on October 10.

Schulz has ties to the legitimate Paul political apparatus. In December, he spoke at a libertarian “Boston Tea Party” alongside Rand Paul, the congressman’s son and a competitive candidate for a Kentucky Senate seat. The event was organized by Walter Reddy, the Connecticut precinct leader for Ron Paul’s Campaign for Liberty.

Most interestingly, Reddy shows up in the Clinton library files documenting the militia movements at the time of his presidency. From “NLWJC – Kagan Counsel – Box 032 – Folder 009″, which is “Beyond the Bombing: The Militia Menace Grows” by the Anti-Defamation League, specific page 31:

Militias have also organized in nearby Tioga, Steuben, Schuyler, Chenango, Cortland and Broome Counties. In Chenango County, militiaman Francis Catlin, who uses the code name “Moonshiner,” has said that outrage over the Waco conflagration fueled the militia movement in upstate New York. “We figure this country is in real bad shape,” he has commented, adding that “Jewish people” are responsible for the financial difficulties faced by grain farmers.

Near New York City, militias were formed in November 1994 in Dutchess and Orange Counties. The Orange County Militia, which has more recently been known as the Committee of Correspondence, has distributed literature incorporating conspiracy theories from political extremist Lyndon LaRouche. Founder Walter Reddy, while reportedly distancing himself from the group, has also expressed the suspicion that the federal government was involved in the Oklahoma City bombing. Reddy stated, “It was CIA-orchestrated, from the information I have.”

45 From the profile of Wile at his firm, High Alert Capital Partners:

Anthony Wile is an active investor, business strategist and consultant, financial markets commentator, publisher and author. Having lived and worked in several leading financial centers around the world, Wile has established an international network of asset managers, banks, family offices, financial analysts, institutional investors and securities firms. Wile is Chairman and CEO of Toronto-based High Alert Capital Partners Inc., which provides direct financing and strategic consulting services to early-stage, privately-held growth companies.

Anthony is a pioneer of the alternative media, having founded two major websites that have presented many of the top free-market thinkers working today. Many serious commentators have adopted his insights regarding society’s Dominant Social Themes and the Internet Reformation; his personal writing and editorials have been reprinted at numerous sites and read by millions. His insights and perspectives have helped shape the conversation on the Internet when it comes to analysis of the world today and how its sociopolitical and economic trends are evolving.

Wile’s contributions continue to expand. Now chief editor of The High Alert Trends & Sector Report as well as TheDailyBell.com, Wile has recently written two new books, Freedom Investing (2013) that brings together his sociopolitical insights with economic analysis and The Best of Anthony Wile: Select Editorials and Interviews (2013), a compilation of material first published at TheDailyBell.com from 2010 – 2013. In 2003, Wile published his first book, The Liberation of Flockhead, under the pseudonym Yang. The fourth edition of Wile’s well-received book, High Alert, originally released in the summer of 2007, was published in early 2013 to a favorable reception.

Congressman Ron Paul said, “High Alert should be read by everyone who wishes to educate themselves about the dangers fiat money poses to American liberty and prosperity. I wish I could get every member of Congress to read this book.” Wile has assisted with the completion of over a dozen additional free-market oriented books, working as a collaborative editor to several leading free-market thinkers.

46 The Anthony Wile credit from “Spoiler”:

The names of the associate producers of this movie are of interest as well.

Dan Happel is a Madison County Commissioner who is given mention in a local paper for bringing up Agenda 21 at a council meeting, “Planning Board hears about Agenda 21″ by Michael Howell:

Madison County Commissioner Dan Happel said he was involved in the liberty movement most of his life and was well informed about Agenda 21.

“A lot of people have never heard of Agenda 21,” said Happel, “but it drives 90 percent of federal legislation.” He said it is an agenda, a blueprint for the 21st Century, that involves creating a one-world government, socialist in structure and communist at heart, that will destroy our constitution and destroy the middle class, transferring America’s wealth to the Third World.

He traces the beginning of the agenda to a meeting of 35 to 40 international bankers and world leaders called the Club of Rome which met in 1968. It was here that the decision was made to use “environmentalism” as the tool to unite people worldwide and subsequently bring them under one government.

“They decided to use environmentalism as a tool to promote political ideas and agendas which otherwise would be so wildly unpopular that they would have no chance of being implemented,” said Happel.

The agenda began to be implemented through ideas of Smart Growth, zoning regulations, wilderness bills, wildlands and endangered species initiatives.

“In this way private property can be increasingly controlled and ultimately eliminated,” said Happel. He said that government agencies, especially federal government agencies, have been co-opted by the oligarchic elite that designed the agenda and are implementing it with the use of facilitators in the “public process,” a method he said was invented in Stalin’s Russia to control the people with a semblance of participation.

The agenda calls for the establishment of wilderness zones with corridors that would involve relocating most Montanans to some large city, like Seattle, where they would be housed like sardines in compact housing developments, deprived of automobiles, and basically held hostage to some job in the city. Meanwhile vast areas of land would be reclaimed for wilderness to be used by the rich oligarchy.

Happel claims the bulk of environmental legislation is a result of this agenda, including the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, Natural Grasslands Act and the Endangered Species Act. He said they are part of a plot to create wilderness corridors from the Yucatan to the Yukon, “and it all involves taking property and taking the rights away from anybody left with any property.”

Happel said it came down to whether you believe in the United Nations Charter or the Declaration of Independence. “Which side are you on?” he asked.

Happel then launched into politics, stating that RINOs (Republicans In Name Only) and turncoats had taken over the Republican Party.

“At the national level we don’t have a prayer,” he said. “At the local level we can do it. I did it.”

He is also described in a media briefing paper by the Montana Human Rights Network:

Materials by the Bozeman Tea Party describe Commissioner Dan Happel as being “deeply concerned about Sound Money.” He is scheduled to present on how “metal based currency” will help Tea Partiers make it through “tough times that they may soon face.” The term “sound money” is generally used to indicate that a “patriot” believes in the conspiracy theory regarding currency which was described above.

Happel has promoted the Oath Keepers and has been featured at the groupes events. During his 2010 campaign, he distributed business cards for Oath Keepers at table displays. Happel was also listed as a featured speaker for the December 2010 event convened by the Montana Oath Keepers in Helena. This was the same event attended by the Bozeman Tea Partyes Henry Kriegel.

Like Paul Stramer, Happel has been a vocal supporter of US Rep. Ron Paul (R-TX). On Ron Paul’s “Campaign for Liberty” website, he posted a comment regarding an upcoming meeting in January 2009. He said he looked forward to meeting the other local members of the group. He mentioned how proud he was that Madison County had voted heavily for Ron Paul in 2008, and that he was from an area of the state that could be described as “Constitutional Republican conservative.”

Also like Stramer, he promotes “patriot” beliefs that gold and silver are the only legitimate currency. He has testified for bills promoting these ideas at the Montana Legislature. While testifying on a bill that would have required the State of Montana to back transactions with gold and silver coin, he told legislators that the proposal was the “most important bill” of the session. Identifying himself as a Madison County Commissioner, Happel said he predicted 3.5 years ago the current state of “financial Armageddon.”

Happel has also testified in support of legislation euphemistically supporting “states’ rights” that declared the federal government was acting unconstitutionally. These bills included language about secession and declared the income tax unconstitutional. These bills also implied that Montana would not have to follow federal court decisions that it deemed unconstitutional. Happel has stated that he believes America is ”a constitutional republic and not a liberal democracy.” This refers to the ”patriot” belief that Americaes current democratic form of government is illegitimate. Instead, “patriots” believe that the individual state is supreme and exists outside the federal government’s jurisdiction.

Happel hopes to keep extreme right-wing values in the Montana Republican Party’s platform. In a report on the 2010 platform convention, he commended participants for putting together a “very conservative Republican platform” As proof, he referenced planks to repeal the 16th Amendment; to remove the US from the United Nations and kick the organization out of the country; and in support of “Birther” concerns regarding President Obamaes citizenship. From ”sound money” to ”Birther” beliefs, Happel is another “Keeping the Flame Alive” speaker bringing ”patriot” perspectives to the event.

Elias Alias is a member of the Oath Keepers, a group of active military members and veterans who believe they do not have to follow presidential orders if they consider them unconstitutional. Alias shows up in this piece, “Militia-forming police chief lashes out at critics” by Alex Seitz-Wald:

Hemorrhaging allies and local goodwill, Gilberton, Pennsylvania police chief Mark Kessler says he expects to lose his job over a profanity-laced YouTube video in which he discusses shooting “libtards.” “I’ll probably be out of a job by the time I get home,” Kessler told NBC News while on vacation in Texas. Since we first wrote about Kessler last week, dubbing him “America’s scariest police chief,” the lawman has received national attention for his antics, which include forming a right-wing paramilitary organization called the Constitution Security Force.

Meanwhile, a group of pro-gun law enforcement and military officials with whom Kessler has aligned himself say they want nothing to do with the chief. “Chief Kessler is not working with Oath Keepers, nor is Oath Keepers working with him,” Elias Alias, who sits on the Oath Keeper’s board of directors, said in an email to Salon.

The Oath Keeper movement is described in-depth in “Oath Keepers and the Age of Treason” by Justine Sharrock.

Diana Zoppa, the third name, is Director of Business Development for High Alert Capital Partners, Anthony Wile’s company.

Here is Wile, credited along with Dan Happel, as an executive producer on “Corporate Fascism”:

47 From “SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION v. BRIAN N LINES; SCOTT G. LINES; LOM (HOLDINGS) LTD.; LINES OVERSEAS MANAGEMENT LTD.; LOM CAPITAL LTD.; LOM SECURITIES (BERMUDA) LTD.; LOM SECURITIES (CAYMAN) LTD.; LOM SECURITIES (BAHAMAS) LTD.; ANTHONY W. WILE; WAYNE E. WILE; ROBERT J. CHAPMAN; WILLIAM TODD PEEVER; PHILLIP JAMES CURTIS; AND RYAN G. LEEDS”:

SUMMARY OF ALLEGATIONS

1. This action concerns two separate, but similar, fraudulent schemes to manipulate the stock prices of two microcap companies, Sedona Software Solutions, Inc. (“Sedona”) and SHEP Technologies, Inc. (“SHEP”). During the relevant periods, Sedona and SHEP shares were quoted and traded on the Over-the Counter Bulletin Board (“OTCBB”). The schemes took place in 2002 and 2003, and involved the substantial participation of a Bermuda-based securities firm, defendant LOM (Holdings) Ltd. (“LOM Holdings”), two of its managing principals, defendants Brian N. Lines and Scott G. Lines, and several of its subsidiaries: Lines Overseas Management Ltd. (“LOM Ltd.”), LOM Capital Ltd. (“LOM Capital”), LOM Securities (Bermuda) Ltd. (“LOM Bermuda”), LOM Securities (Bahamas) Ltd. (“LOM Bahamas”), and LOM Securities (Cayman) Ltd. (“LOM Cayman”) (collectively referenced herein as “LOM” or the “LOM Entities”).

2. Both the Sedona and SHEP fraudulent schemes involved the undisclosed acquisition of publicly-traded shell companies, the use of LOM-controlled nominees to conceal beneficial ownership and control over Sedona and SHEP, the use of paid touters to promote Sedona and SHEP stock, and significant trading through the U.S. market in those stocks by defendants Brian Lines and Scott Lines, who are brothers. In the Sedona scheme, the Lines brothers’ trading yielded approximately $1.5 million in illegal proceeds. In the SHEP scheme, trading by the Lines brothers and two of their customers, defendants W. Todd Peever and P. James Curtis, yielded approximately $4.3 million in illegal proceeds.

3. In the Sedona fraudulent scheme, defendant Anthony W. Wile (“Wile” or “Tony “Wile”), a Canadian stock promoter, issued deceptive press releases and other promotional materials in early 2003 to create the misleading impression that his newly-formed private company, Renaissance Mining Corporation, Inc. (“Renaissance”), had acquired certain Central American gold mines and was a leading gold producer. At the same time, as part of the scheme, defendants Brian and Scott Lines had secretly acquired over ninety-nine percent of Sedona’s outstanding shares through offshore nominees in order to merge the publicly-traded Sedona shell with Renaisance. Defendants Brian and Scott Lines also agreed to raise $6 million for Renaissance through a private placement of Renaissance stock through LOM’s investment banking arm to enable Renaissance to acquire the mines that it publicly claimed it already owned.

4. Defendant Wile then primed the market for Renaissance and Sedona shares by disseminating materially false and misleading information and orchestrating touting by defendant Robert J. Chapman, a newsletter writer who also secretly owned Renaissance shares. Between January 17 and January 21, 2003, at Wile’s direction, Renaissance issued press releases announcing a merger of the two companies, when no such merger had taken place. During the same period, defendant Wile coordinated the issueance of reports by various newsletter wrtiers touting the merger and telling the public that shares of Sedona would open $10 per share on January 21. The purpose of this materially false and misleading information was to convince potential investors that Renaissance had already acquired the Central American mines, that the mines were fully operational, and that a lucrative investment in Renaissance could be made by purchasing Sedona‘s shares on the OTCBB – even though Renaissance was not an operating mining company, owned no mines, and no merger with Sedona had taken place.

5. On the morning of January 21, defendants Brian Lines, Scott Lines, Tony Wile, and defendant Wayne E. Wile (“Wayne Wile,” Tony Wile’s uncle) orchestrated a manipulative stock transaction over the OTCBB in which defendants Brian and Scott Lines sold, and defendant Wayne Wile purchased, 5,000 Sedona shares at $8.25 per share. At the time these orders were placed, Sedona stock had last traded at $0.03 per share seven months earlier, in May 2002.

6. Between January 21 and January 27, 2003, defendants Brian and Scott Lines sold or caused the sale of 159,300 shares of Sedona on the open market at between approximately $9 and $10 per share, yielding $1.5 million in illegal proceeds. These sales were made without a registration statement in effect, and with no valid exemptions from registration.

7. Defendant Ryan Leeds was the broker on the LOM Ltd. account at the U.S. broker-dealer through which defendants Brian Lines, Scott Lines, and LOM sold Sedona stock unlawfully into the U.S. market. Despite the existence of several red flags, Leeds failed to conduct a reasonable inquiry to determine whether LOM and the Lines brothers were engaged in an illegal distribution of Sedona stock.

8. The Sedona scheme collapsed on January 29, 2003 when the Commission suspended trading in Sedona securities.

The judgement against Wile, from “Litigation Release No. 21696 / October 15, 2010″:

(vi) Anthony Wile is permanently enjoined from violating the antifraud and securities offering registration provisions, Section 10(b) of the Exchange Act and Rule 10b-5 thereunder, and Sections 5 and 17(a) of the Securities Act; (2) ordered to pay a civil penalty in the amount of $35,000; (3) barred from serving as an officer or director of a public company for a period of five years; and (4) barred from participating in an offering of penny stock for a period of three years;

That the Anthony Wile named in the complaint and judgement are the same Wile who runs The Daily Bell can be found in “Bill Black: Best Satire of Faux Austrian Economics Ever”. I bold the key section:

Someone has created a fabulous, richly detailed parody of Austrian economics. They call it The Daily Bell and claim that its perspective reflects Austrian economics. In reality, it satirizes faux Austrian economics’ sycophancy toward elite white-collar criminals.

I was delighted to learn that they used my recent column: The Virgin Crisis: Systematically Ignoring Fraud as a Systemic Risk as the vehicle for their send-up.

The send-up captures precisely faux Austrian economists’ disdainful response to adverse data – they ignore it.

The article hits its peak in capturing the servile apologies that Austrian economists offer in defense of the elite white-collar criminals who make a mockery of Austrian claims of “free markets.” The satirist emphasizes the Austrians’ hypocrisy (they love police enforcing a “rule of law” and “property rights” against blue-collar folks), by calling the FBI the “Stasi” (the East German’s secret police) when they enforce the rule of law and property rights against elite white-collar criminals. The satirist then mocks the Austrians by picturing them as eager to prevent the imprisonment of elite white-collar felons. Faux Austrian economists’ heroes have always been elite felons. The author of the satire ridicules the Justice Department’s (DOJ) abject failure to investigate, much less prosecute, the elite felons of finance that drove our ongoing crisis. He skewers DOJ for going AWOL during this crisis by employing over-the-top mockery. The author states that DOJ is so effective in prosecuting the elite white-collar criminals that drove this crisis and sanctions them so viciously that they have created an “ever-expanding gulag of slave-laborers.” One man’s “Club Fed” is a faux Austrian’s “gulag.” The reality, of course, is that no Wall Street bankster inhabits this non-existent white-collar gulag. That gap between reality and the hysterical claims of tortured banksters is what makes the passage hilarious.

The author of the satire of Austrian economics uses the nom de plume of Anthony Wile, which is a fabulous insider joke. The real Anthony Wile was the infamous subject of an SEC action for securities fraud. What a brilliant conceit – assuming the name of a man identified by the SEC as one of the perpetrators of a crude white-collar fraud to advance the proposition that only fascists would prosecute elite white-collar frauds. Here are the lowlights of what the SEC investigation of the real Anthony Wile and his colleagues found:

(what follows is a portion of the judgement quoted above)

The faux Austrian satirical web site uses this pathetic episode as another opportunity for humor when it presents a faux bio of the not-as-wily-as-he-thought Wile:

He has put this knowledge to good use, working with top mining executives and venture entrepreneurs to generate some of the most successful business efforts of the 2000s.

There is a similar gem prominently featured on the web site: the admonition that the key to a successful society is “personal accountability.” What a perfect accompaniment to an article demanding that the elites who grew wealthy through fraud not be prosecuted. The satirist has a great gift for irony.

Prior variants of Wile’s website contained this defense of Wile.

http://thedailybell.com/2012/Anthony-Wile

(accessed 11/13/2011)

In 2000, Wile experienced a brief role as the CEO of a start-up junior mining company that became the subject of a civil attack by the SEC. Wile and others fought for more than seven years at great personal and financial expense before eventually settling the case without admitting any wrongdoing. The assets of the company in question were subsequently purchased by a New York Stock Exchange listed company and the properties have now produced more gold than was initially suggested. Hundreds of investors lost literally tens of millions in deserved future profits because the SEC accused the company of over-promising a merger that was actually taking place. Perhaps this experience adds to Wile’s fervor to expose the power elite and their societal manipulations.

[Perhaps? This is supposed to be Wile’s web site. Why is Wile guessing at the source of Wile’s “fervor?” For that matter, why is Wile referring to himself as “Wile” rather than “I?” Why aren’t Wile’s actions (as found by the SEC staff’s investigation) nasty “societal manipulations?” Why isn’t Wile part of the “power elite?” Note that the SEC’s characteristic failure to actually litigate its cases or get admissions of the facts means that Wile gets to pose as the victim of some kind of evil conspiracy. The Department of Justice, equally characteristically, failed to prosecute despite SEC staff investigation findings that should have led to felony charges. Some gulag!]

Information similiar to this now deleted paragraph is still part of Wile’s bio at Zoom Info, “Anthony Wile High Alert Capital Partners” (retrieved December 6th, 2013):

Personal Notes

Anthony Wile was born in Bridgewater, Nova Scotia, Canada, in 1968. Wile graduated from Saint Mary’s University (SMU) with a degree in business in 1991 and worked in the Canadian investment industry with Scotia McLeod (Bank of Nova Scotia) and Nesbitt Burns (Bank of Montreal). In 1994 Anthony Wile was made a Fellow of the Canadian Securities Institute, which is a designation awarded to financial services professionals who attain advanced education and experience in the Canadian securities industry.

Anthony has visited every state in the US and every province and territory in Canada. Additionally, he has lived in a number of countries on several continents over the past three decades and has visited or done business in more than 60 countries. He currently resides in Toronto, Canada with his wife, Hillary, and their three children, Gabrielle, Jesse and Julian.

In 2000, Wile experienced a brief role as the CEO of a start-up junior mining company that became the subject of a civil attack by the SEC. Wile and others fought the charges for more than seven years at great personal and financial expense before eventually settling the case without admitting any wrongdoing.

The assets of the company in question were subsequently purchased by a New York Stock Exchange listed company and the properties have now produced more gold than was initially suggested. Hundreds of investors lost tens of millions in future profits because the SEC accused the company of over-promising a merger that was in fact taking place. To read more about this case, click here.

The personal details from Wile’s profile at The Daily Bell:

Anthony was born in Bridgewater, Nova Scotia, Canada, in 1968. Wile graduated from Saint Mary’s University (SMU) with a degree in business in 1991 and worked in the Canadian investment industry with Scotia McLeod (Bank of Nova Scotia) and Nesbitt Burns (Bank of Montreal). In 1994 Anthony Wile was made a Fellow of the Canadian Securities Institute, which is a designation awarded to financial services professionals who attain advanced education and experience in the Canadian securities industry.

Anthony has visited every state in the US and every province and territory in Canada. Additionally, he has lived in a number of countries on several continents over the past three decades and has visited or done business in more than 60 countries. He currently resides in Toronto, Canada with his wife, Hillary, and their three children, Gabrielle, Jesse and Julian.

48 From the “FORM 10-Q for the quarterly period ended July 31, 2012″:

Media Mechanics, Inc.
(Exact name of registrant as specified in its charter)

Nevada
(State or other jurisdiction of incorporation or organization)

100 Western Battery Rd., Suite 160
Toronto, ON, Canada

(Address of principal executive offices)

49 From the “FORM 10-Q for the quarterly period ended July 31, 2012″:

Overview

We were incorporated in the State of Nevada as a for-profit Company on January 6, 2011 and established a fiscal year end of January 31. We are a development-stage Company that offers search engine optimization (“SEO”) services for Internet websites. Our URL is theseomechanic.com. We offer consulting services in the area of SEO as part of a comprehensive strategy designed to maximize a website’s ranking in Internet search engines.

As part of our SEO services, we offer customized packages tailored to the specific needs of individual clients, which include auditing a client’s website and developing a plan to maximize the website’s ranking in Internet search engines and some combination of: changes to the way the website is structured; modification of the website’s content; search engine registration strategies; development of additional content and increasing the number of back links to the website. We also provide content building services include: consulting on how to modify any existing content on a website, which may include modifications to the website architecture, product descriptions, category pages (in the case of online retailers), site policies, the method by which customer service e-mails are handled, shopping guides, landing pages, promotions and other supporting content on the website. Finally, we assist in the production of content regarding clients’ websites to be posted on other sites.

The Company competes with other optimization services on the Internet today, but aims to develop software which will allow it to become more user-friendly and comprehensive. We aim to provide our services on a web-based interface for a monthly fee, which we believe will provide both the client and our company several advantages including a closer, ongoing relationship with the client, the immediate availability of updates to our software and services to the clients, the ability to upsell clients on other services we plan to offer, as well as various other advantages of a more direct and continued relationship between the client and SEO service provider.

50 I take this information from the company’s 10-Q filing, “GAWK, INC. Form 10-Q Filed 09/20/13 for the Period Ending 07/31/13″:

3. Common Stock

a) On June 13, 2011, the Company issued 6,000,000 common shares at $0.01 per share for proceeds of $60,000.
b) On December 15, 2011, the Company issued 1,500,000 shares of common stock at $0.01 per share for proceeds of $15,000.
c) On January 19, 2013, the Company issued 2,500,000 shares of common stock at $0.02 per share for proceeds of $50,000.

4. Subsequent Event

On August 22, 2013, the Company affected a forward split of 30 shares for each one share outstanding as of August 22, 2013, where each
stockholder will receive 30 additional shares for each share owned as of the record date. All share amounts in this report have been adjusted to reflect this forward split.

On August 13, 2013, Media Mechanics, Inc. (the “Company”), Scott Kettle (the “Purchaser”), Matthew Zipchen and Violetta Pioro (together with Matthew Zipchen, the “Sellers”) closed on a stock purchase agreement, dated July 31, 2013 (the “Stock Purchase Agreement”), whereby the Purchaser purchased from the Sellers, 7,500,000 shares of common stock, par value $0.001 per share, of the Company (the “Shares”), representing approximately 75% of the issued and outstanding shares of the Company, for an aggregate purchase price of $250,000 (the “Purchase Price”) (the “Stock Purchase”). Prior to the closing of the Stock Purchase Agreement, the Sellers were our majority shareholders, Matthew Zipchen was our President, Chief Executive Officer, Secretary, Treasurer, Chief Financial Officer, and member of the board of directors of the Company (the “Board”), and Violetta Pioro was our Vice President and member of the Board.

In connection with the Stock Purchase, the company has changed its focus to engage in the business of online distribution of all digital content including but not limited to full length feature films, television series, sports, documentaries, live events via our proprietary content distribution network (CDN).

In connection with the Stock Purchase Agreement, on July 31, 2012, Matthew Zipchen submitted to the Company a resignation letter pursuant to which he resigned from her positions as President, Chief Executive Officer, Secretary, Treasurer, Chief Financial Officer, and member of the Board upon closing of the Stock Purchase. Mr. Zipchen’s resignation was not a result of any disagreements relating to the Company’s operations, policies or practices.

On the same day, Violetta Pioro submitted to the Company a resignation letter pursuant to which she resigned from her position as Vice President and member of the Board upon closing of the Stock Purchase. Ms. Pioro’s resignation was not a result of any disagreements relating to the Company’s operations, policies or practices.

The information on Pioro is taken from her Businessweek profile, “Violetta Pioro: Executive Profile & Biography”:

Ms. Violetta Pioro served as a Vice President of Media Mechanics, Inc. until August 13, 2013. From May 2009 to November 2010, Ms. Pioro worked for the YYOGA studios in Vancouver as a yoga instructor and at Shaw TV Channel 4 as a community television host. As a yoga instructor her responsibilities included guiding members through invigorating and encouraging yoga practices, handling and resolving guest issues and complaints, providing fitness and nutritional counselling, managing guests package purchases and keeping accurate records for studio’s budget purposes. At Shaw TV, Ms. Pioro’s duties included writing web content, press releases and promotional scripts. She was also developing, writing and implementing on-air community events stories and weather reports as well as interviewing local experts and representing Shaw TV as a spokesperson. Finally, after moving to Toronto in 2010, Ms. Pioro started working for PUSHmodels Canada as the National Booking Manager and Representative. Her duties include overseeing and organizing staff for Trade Shows/Corporate Events all over Canada, human resource hiring staff/Brand Ambassadors, interviewing, managing of banking functions and payrolls. Since January 2010 Ms. Pioro hosts a weekend show for Rogers TV in Durham Region and runs her private yoga instruction business called Flowing Vitality. Ms. Pioro’s duties at Rogers TV include story writing, editing, community reports, and in studio floor directing. As for Flowing Vitality she teaches classes, is in charge of scheduling, promotions, inventory and cash management. She served as a Director of Media Mechanics, Inc. until August 13, 2013. Ms. Pioro obtained a BA in Communications and Journalism in 2006. She studied at both Carleton University and University of Ottawa. She later obtained a Broadcast Radio Diploma from British Columbia Institute of Technology in Vancouver by 2009. Same year she has also completed her RYT Yoga Instructor and Nutritional Consultant Certification.

The information on Matthew Zipchen, including his involvement with the TREC Renewable Energy Co-operative can be found at his LinkedIn profile.

51 Scott Kettle’s career can be found in his LinkedIn profile.

From “THRIFTY-TEL, INC. v. BEZENEK”:

A friend of the Bezeneks’ children knew a confidential Thrifty-Tel access code. During a three-day period in November 1991, Ryan, Gerry and some friends, using the Bezeneks’ home computer and modem, gained entry into Thrifty-Tel’s system with the code and conducted manual random searches for a six-digit authorization code. They made approximately 90 calls, consuming roughly 24 minutes of telephone time during the first 2 days. On the following day, Ryan and Gerry continued the search alone, making 72 manual attempts to identify an authorization code over an almost 16-minute period.

Through its internal security system, Thrifty-Tel learned of the computer hacking almost immediately. And by late November, the carrier identified the Bezeneks’ home as the source. Although Thrifty-Tel had the Bezeneks’ address and telephone numbers, it failed to contact them concerning the matter.

After a three-month hiatus, the Bezenek children resumed manual searches for an authorization code. After several days and apparently some frustration with the slow pace, Ryan acquired computer software to expedite the quest. On February 18, 1992, he used the program to access Thrifty-Tel’s system and conducted rapid-fire random number searches. He ran the program between six and seven hours, generating over one thousand three-hundred calls. Because Thrifty-Tel is a small carrier with relatively few telephone lines, Ryan’s automated calling overburdened the system, denying some subscribers access to phones lines.

Still, Thrifty-Tel did not contact or complain to the Bezeneks. Instead, it filed this action on April 1, 1992, seeking damages for conversion, fraud, and reasonable value of services. The April Fools’ Day lawsuit provided the Bezeneks’ first notice of their sons’ computer hijinks. In a trial to the court, defendants unsuccessfully sought judgment on the conversion and fraud causes of action, arguing those remedies were not available on these facts. (Code Civ. Proc., § 631.8.)

Thrifty-Tel offered no explanation for its failure to complain to the Bezeneks after the November 1991 hacking episode. It presented no evidence of any actual losses, either. Rather, plaintiff simply relied on the “unauthorized usage” tariff in its PUC-approved rate schedule to establish damages. That tariff, in effect, liquidates Thrifty-Tel’s damages for computer hacking by imposing a $2,880 per day surcharge, a $3,000 “set up fee,” and a $200 per hour labor fee. It also provides for attorney fees and costs incurred to collect the tariff.3 Based upon this tariff, the trial court awarded plaintiff $33,720 in damages and nearly $14,000 in attorney fees and costs.

The larger legal importance of Thrifty-Tel, Inc. V. Bezenek could be found in The Sex.com Chronicles: How a White Hat Lawyer Traveled to the Dark Side of the Internet by Charles Carreon. The relevant excerpt is at google books, page 21:

I hit the books hard for days on end, digging through case law for rulings that would help us out. I found a few. In addition to Yuba River establishing a property interest in being the first to register a water right, there was Kalitta Flying Services, that determined engineering drawings were property subject to conversion. And there was Thrify-Tel v. Bezenek, a case the judges grappled with the interface of technology and law in a case that could only come out of California.

Thrify-Tel was a phone company that sued two kids who had tried to gain free long-distance access by staging a brute force attack – firing huge numbers of random passwords – at Thrifty-Tel’s computer. The clumsy hack slowed the long distance system down considerably, which Thrifty-Tel alleged as damages in a suit for trespass. On appeal, a verdict for Thrifty-Tell [sic] on conversion was upheld, and the court explained that the cyverattack was a “trespass to chattels,” for which damages could be awarded. The kids had trespassed because each random number was a physical thing, an electron packet, trespassing on Thrifty-Tel’s computer. Since the computer was an item of personal property, not a parcel of real estate, what had happened was actually a “trespass to chattels.” The last time I heard about chattels was in the Taming of the Shrew by Shakespeare, when the husband tells his unruly wife that she is but a chattel. A more concrete example of trespass to chattels would be someone borrowing and returning a delivery-man’s bicycle. But here was the California appellate court, exhuming this ancient cause of action out of dusty books that no one had opened in a long time.

The court had gone back to the future to find a cybertort to fit the need of the day. Further research showed that trespass to chattels had turned out to be a handy cybertort. Intel deployed it successfully to prevent a disgruntled former employee from spamming Intel workers with negative information about the company. Judge Whyte in the San Jose courthouse had ruled in Intel’s favor in that case.

52 The suspension of Ewan 1 is described in “Release No. 69412 / April 19, 2013″:

SEC SUSPENDS TRADING IN SECURITIES OF EWAN 1, INC. n/k/a ACCESSKEY IP, INC.

The Securities and Exchange Commission (“Commission”) announced the temporary suspension, pursuant to Section 12(k) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the “Exchange Act”), of trading in the securities of Ewan 1, Inc. n/k/a AccessKey IP, Inc. (“AccessKey”), of Santa Ana, CA commencing at 9:30 a.m. EST on April 19, 2013, and terminating at 11:59 p.m. EDT on May 2, 2013.

The Commission temporarily suspended trading in the securities of AccessKey because of questions that have been raised about the accuracy and adequacy of publicly available information about AccessKey because it has not filed a periodic report since filing its Exchange Act registration on August 21, 2002.

Its delisting is described in “Release No. 69567/May 14, 2013 ADMINISTRATIVE PROCEEDING File No. 3-15291 In the Matter of EWAN 1, INC., n/k/a ACCESSKEY IP, INC.”:

This Order revokes the registration of the registered securities of Ewan 1, Inc., n/k/a AccessKey IP, Inc. (Respondent). The revocation is based on Respondent’s repeated failure to file required periodic reports with the Securities and Exchange Commission (Commission).

53 I take this information from the company’s 10-Q filing, “GAWK, INC. Form 10-Q Filed 09/20/13 for the Period Ending 07/31/13″:

In connection with the Stock Purchase, the Company has changed its focus to engage in the business of online distribution of all digital content including but not limited to full length feature films, television series, sports, documentaries, live events via our proprietary content distribution network (CDN).

To reflect the change in business strategy of the company, on August 22, 2013, the Board of Directors unanimously approved a change in the Company’s name from Media Mechanics, Inc. to Gawk Incorporated.

Also on August 22, 2013, the Company affected a 30-for-1 forward split of our Common Stock, where each stockholder will receive 30
additional shares for each share owned as of the record date. All share amounts in this report have been adjusted to reflect this forward split.

54 This is all taken from the asset purchase agreement, “Gawk Inc. – FORM 8-K – EX-10.1 – ASSET PURCHASE AGREEMENT, DATED NOVEMBER 14, 2013, BETWEEN GAWK INCORPORATED AND POKER JUNKIES – November 20, 2013″:

ASSET PURCHASE AGREEMENT

THIS ASSET PURCHASE AGREEMENT (“Agreement”), dated as of November 14, 2013 (the “Effective Date”), is made by and between GAWK INCORPORATED, a corporation organized under the laws of Nevada (the “Purchaser”), and POKER JUNKIES PRODUCTION, LLC, a Louisiana Limited Liability Company (the “Seller”, and together with Purchaser, each a collectively, the “Parties”, and each a “Party”)

RECITALS:

A.

The Seller desires to transfer to the Purchaser, and the Purchaser desires to acquire from Seller, the properties, rights and assets owned by Seller, directly or indirectly, in whole or in part, of every type and description, real, personal or mixed, tangible and intangible, wherever located and whether or not reflected on the books of Seller (the “Acquired Assets”), including, without limitation, all rights, title and interest in and to the motion picture currently entitled “Poker Junkies” (by whatever title such motion picture may now or may hereafter become known, the “Film”), based on the screenplay written by Mars Callahan entitled “[Poker Junkies]” (the “Screenplay”), together with all other literary material and other intellectual property relating to the foregoing, all rights to exploit, distribute, and derive revenue from the foregoing and any materials or media relating to the foregoing as further described on Schedule I (the “Essential Elements”), in exchange for the Purchaser’s issuance to the Seller of 20 Series C Preferred Shares representing $20,000,000 worth of the Company’s Common Stock upon conversion in accordance with the Company’s Amended and Restated Articles of Incorporation and its Certificate of Designation of Rights, Privileges, Preferences and Restrictions of Series C Convertible Preferred Stock (the “Issued Shares”) (as defined in Section 1.1), and a Warrant to purchase 8,000,000 of the Company’s Series B Preferred Shares (the “Warrant Shares”) in accordance with the terms and conditions of this Agreement and with the attached Warrant of the same date;

B.

Each of the Persons identified on Schedule II, constituting the entirety of the members of, and owners of 100% of the interests in, the Seller (the “Seller Members”, and each a “Seller Member”), have acknowledged their receipt and review of this Agreement and its Exhibits.

The appointment of Hermansen is from the “Gawk Inc. – FORM 8-K – November 20, 2013″:

Item 5.02 Departure of Directors or Certain Directors; Election of Directors; Appointment of Certain Officers

Election of Director and Secretary

On November 19, 2013, the Board of Gawk Incorporated (the “Company”), appointed Mr. John Hermansen as a member of the Board of Directors, Chief Content Officer, and the Company’s Secretary.

John Hermansen, age 43, has produced over 250 episodes of television and five feature length motion pictures. He began working in production and as an assistant director on such notable studio films as Con Air, The Crucible, Almost Heroes, Waiting for Guffman, Home for the Holidays, as well as working with directors Tim Burton, Jodi Foster, Peter Yates, Barry Levinson, Christopher Guest, and James Cameron, leading to him becoming one of the youngest members to be accepted into the Director’s Guild of America.

In 1999, Mr. Hermansen went on to Executive Produce, among others, MTV’s #1 hit show Taildaters (over 130 episodes), MTV’s Burned, GSN’s Vegas Weddings Unveiled, The Style Networks’ Ultimatum, and VH1’s Love Songs.

He then went on to produce such notable feature films such as Poolhall Junkies, starring Christopher Walken, Chazz Palminteri and Rod Steiger, Kickin’ It Old Skool, starring Jamie Kennedy, Gray Matters starring Heather Graham, Bridget Moynahan, Tom Cavanaugh, and Sissy Spacek and What Love Is starring Cuba Gooding, Jr., Matthew Lillard, Gina Gershon, Anne Heche and Sean Astin. In 2008, Mr. Hermansen produced the feature film Revenge of the Zeroes starring John Goodman and Jamie Kennedy.

Mr. Hermansen currently resides in Los Angeles, Ca. with his wife and two children.

Because Mr. Hermansen was the Managing Member of Poker Junkies Production, LLC at the time of the Asset Purchase Agreement, and because he presently remains in that position, the Company’s Asset Purchase Agreement with Poker Junkies Production, LLC on November 14, 2013 is regarded as related party transaction.

Mr. Hermansen is not a director of any other publicly registered company.

55 The executive listing can be found in the GAWK profile at Yahoo! Finance.

Hermansen is named on the cease and desist order, “Case No. XY 11-CD-008″, along with Poker Junkies, LLC, and Abundance Entertainment, LLC.

56 This information is all taken from a 9W Search of GAWK. I give the full results from the entry. I make the additional point that these results were obtained on December 4th, 2013:

Company Name: GAWK INC.

Symbol: GAWK
Exchange: OTCBB

Address: 100 WESTERN BATTERY ROADSUITE 160
City: TORONTO

State:
Zip: M6K3S2

Country: CANADA
Phone: 732-509-1212

Website Address:
State of Incorporation: Nevada

Tax ID: 331220317
SIC: 7370

CIK: 1546392
Industry:

Sector:

Total Shares Outstanding: 300,000,000

Total Shares Outstanding Date: 2013-09-19
Last Annual EPS: $0

Last Annual Net Income: $-28,454
Last Annual Revenue: $22,684

Last Annual Total Assets: $109,268
Number of Employees: 0

Fiscal Year: 01-31
Market Capitalization: $2,250,000,000

The share price of GAWK on December 4th was taken from the Edgar/Yahoo! page, “EDGAR ONLINE – GAWK INC. – 8-K – 8/19/2013″, which carries a graph of the share performance and the share price of the last trade.

I am not the only one to be a little puzzled by the Media Mechanics/Gawk Inc. entity. On June 20, 2012, the SEC would send Matthew Zipchen a letter containing several questions they had about the registration statement filed for Media Mechanics. One that stood out for me was their concern that Media Mechanics was a shell corporation. From “Re: Media Mechanics, Inc. Amendment No. 1 to Registration Statement on Form S-1 SEC Accession No. 0000000000-12-032331″:

We note your response to prior comment 11, in which you advise that you do not believe you are a shell company as defined in Securities Act Rule 405. Please provide us with a detailed analysis in support of this belief. In particular, please explain to us how you apparently concluded that you have greater than \nominal operations. within the meaning of paragraph (1) of the Rule 405 definition. Your response should address your financial results as reported in your statement of operations for fiscal 2012 and the fact that your two part-time employees have other full-time jobs and as such, are able to dedicate only a portion of their time to your company.

57 The details on Paul aide the “Southern Avenger” Jack Hunter can be found in “Rebel Yell” by Alana Goodman and “Rand Paul Stands By His ‘Southern Avenger'” by Howard Fineman. The move to Breitbart was reported in many places, among them, “Post-Plagiarism Restructuring, Rand Paul’s Opinion Column Moves To Breitbart” by Catherine Thompson.

58 The relevant information from Gawk Incoporated 8-K form for January 3rd, 2014:

Item 5.02 Departure of Directors or Certain Directors; Election of Directors; Appointment of Certain Officers

Departure of Officer and Director; Election of New Officer and Director

On December 31, 2013, the Board of Gawk Incorporated (the “Company”), accepted the resignation of Scott Kettle as the Company’s Chief Executive Officer (“CEO”), President, and Director, and appointed Mr. Kettle to serve the Company as Chief Information Officer (“CIO”). On the same date the Board appointed Mr. Mars Callahan as the Company’s new CEO, President and Director. On the same date, the Board appointed Mr. Ryan Wyler as the Company’s Chief Technology Officer. John Hermansen, the Company’s Chief Content Officer, continues to serve in that capacity, and he remains a member of the Board.

The foregoing description of the terms of the Action By Written Consent of the Board of Directors of Gawk Incorporated dated December 31, 2013 (“Board Consent”) is qualified in its entirety by reference to the provisions of the Board Consent filed as Exhibit 10.3 to this report, which is incorporated by reference herein.

The profile of Ryan Wyler, again from the 8-K:

Ryan Wyler – Chief Technology Officer (CTO)

Ryan Wyler, age 38, was born in Long Beach, California. Exposed early to the world of entertainment & business his parents were directors for the Miss USA Pageant, several touring youth performing groups, and owners of video stores across the Western United States.

In 1987 (at age 12) Ryan was already programming in C and a Sys-Op (system operator) of several BBS (Bulletin Board Systems) in the Phoenix Metropolitan area. By age 17, Ryan had developed and integrated several network focused on business solutions for regional establishments. In 1997, Ryan joined Arizona based GoodNet, the leading Internet & backbone provider that was later acquired by WinStar Communications. With the Y2K digital pandemic, Ryan lead several solutions and deployments to insure the readiness to Motorola’s SATCOM division which was created and maintains the global wireless Iridium satellite cluster.

In 2001, Ryan created several automated deployment strategies for American Express. Ryan’s strategies enabled a 3000% growth to the core web enabled service infrastructure at American Express by supporting the booming demand for Internet enabled services. In 2004, American Express outsourced their technologies department to IBM Global Services. Impressed with Ryan’s work at Amex, IBM then commissioned Wyler to further develop technologies called “VSA” (Virtual Systems Admin) to manage and automate the key infrastructure of many of its customers including Nissan, Honeywell, Johnson & Johnson, American Express, and many more.

Advancements and recognition within IBM allowed for Ryan’s mobility and access within senior leadership at the company. This recognition led to a very special project involving IBM’s CEO, Sam Palmisano and Apple’s CEO Steve Jobs. The project improved and brought Apple systems into the IBM infrastructure. As a result of his work within the two companies, Ryan earned a direct iTunes Distribution agreement, making him one of the very first independent distributors on the iTunes platform. The distribution agreement, led to Ryan launching his own company, which he called, BridgeTone. Established in 2004, BridgeTone immediately became a destination for independent artists to thrive. In addition to utilizing its direct iTunes distribution agreement the company became a production company for music videos, festivals and worldwide tours. Several of the artists have reached gold record status on the iTunes platform and on labels all over the world. In addition to the iTunes success with music artists Ryan has led several viral campaigns that have resulted in over 500 million views on YouTube.

Returning to American Express in 2011 as a lead technical architect, Wyler created the development and deployment of the massive Big Data cluster, comprised of over 2,000 nodes consisting of over 32 Petabytes of raw storage, migration of the data warehouse from Sybase IQ to Teradata Systems, and deployment of High Availability storage appliances, saving American Express tens of millions of dollars per year.

With the continued progression of technology, Ryan’s experiences over the last 20 years have been the ultimate training ground for him to become the Chief Technology Officer of Gawk. Art, commerce, technology, and his ability to create sophisticated, elegant and scalable solutions for the on-line distribution of content is why Ryan Wyler’s career thus-far, has been the perfect precursor to his assignment at Gawk.

CULTURAL MARXISM TRANSCRIPT

NARRATOR
Upon what criterion could citizens agree that it was necessary to go to war? Surely a nation full of citizens with no common values would be confused. They may be totally free, but their confusion will make them short-lived, if not barbaric, and maybe civilizations prior to the United States were barbaric. That’s why the American experiment is so important. That’s why the rudiments that made America happen must be preserved. Thus, applying and defending the values implied in the Constitution are, in essence, a matter of survival. For if these factors are dropped out, you get a cruel, chaotic, revengeful society. Such a society will eventually occupy its time with pleasure seeking hedonism, material acquisition, and violence oriented pastimes. Hey, welcome to today’s United States. No surprise the baby boomers are in charge now.

POLITICAL CORRECTNESS also known as CULTURAL MARXISM

PAT BUCHANAN
The United States has undergone a cultural, moral, and religious revolution. And a militant secularism has arisen in this country, it has always had a hold on the intellectual and academic elites. But in the 1960s, it captured the young in the universities and the colleges, and we had this great battle, cultural war begin then, nationally. And since then, if you will, secularism has really achieved dominance in the academic community and the intellectual community, and the entertainment community, and Hollywood. Among a part of the political community, but not the nation as a whole. However, it is much stronger than it was, and this is the basis for the great cultural war we’re undergoing, right now. And this militant, it is an anti-christian, anti-god, anti-traditionalist revolution, the sexual revolution has a lot to do with it, and how people live. And so, we are two countries now. We are two countries morally, and socially, and culturally, and theologically. And culture wars do not lend themselves to peaceful co-existence. One side prevails, or the other side prevails, and the truth is, while the conservatives in my judgement, we won the cold war with political and economic communism, we’ve lost the cultural war with cultural marxism, which I think has prevailed pretty much in the United States or is now the dominant culture whereas those of us who are traditionalists are, if you will, the counterculture.

NARRATOR
What exactly is cultural marxism, the dominant culture of today? How did the founders of communism figure out a way to take over our country, not with guns and weapons, but with values and ideas? Let’s take a closer look at this, and see exactly how it happened. There was a man named Karl Marx. Marx got an idea. His idea was, that the workers of the world should unite and rise up to counter an evil foe. That foe being capitalism. Capitalism, the idea that people and private companies should be able to own the means of production and be free to earn and have as much as they wished, was anathema to Marx. Marx felt the state should own the means of production, as well as products produced. And then the state should distribute a fair share of all such products to each and every worker. Thus, in his book, The Communist Manifesto, Karl Marx thundered, “Workers of the world, unite!” Sure that he had a principle to unify all workers in every country, Marx looked forward to eventually taking over the world.

TED BAEHR
Karl Marx believed that you would have a rebellion by the workers, against the capitalist system, which would then create a Marxist/Communist society, where you would have dictatorship of the proletariat.

NARRATOR
Unfortunately, when World War I broke out, the workers of the world did not unite. In fact, the workers united with their respective countries and fought each other.

PAT BUCHANAN
What happened is that the Marxists had an enormous disillusionment when the French and the Germans and the British workers all rose up for the fatherland and went to war happily fighting one another.

NARRATOR
Marx’s idea was a total failure. Workers were more loyal to their respective countries, churches, and cultural values than they were to their counterparts in other countries.

BAEHR
They did not want to give up their houses, their cars, their stoves, their products. They did not want to have a classless society. They did not vote and they did not even have an overthrow.

NARRATOR
Some years after Marx failed, several of his disciples got a new idea, on how to take over the world. One of his disciples, Antonio Gramsci, while – where else, but in prison – wrote up a series of plans now known as The Prison Notebooks. In this plan, Gramsci announced the workers of the world will unite only after the long march is over. The long march?

BUCHANAN
In other words, they had to get into the culture, and change the way of people’s thinking. And if people were thinking about patriotism and nation and god and country, that was a mechanism that was too resistant to Marxism, it could never take hold. You had to erode and destroy that. In the individuals. That began what’s called the long march through the institutions. Through the seminaries, through the churches. Through the media, through Hollywood. And all the rest of it, to create an anti-Christian culture which would destroy the Christian beliefs and convictions and the vast majority of the people, so they would embrace the ideas of Marxism and they would embrace the ideas that they had rejected, and be open to a takeover, basically, by marxists. Not political marxists, but cultural marxists.

NARRATOR
Rather than workers uniting, and marching into battle, thus seizing power through force, they would make a long march through the institutions. Institutions like the arts, cinema, theater, literature, schools, college, seminaries, newspapers, magazines, and what is now known as radio, TV, and the mass media. Once this march is over, all the barriers to the acceptance of marxism will have been quietly and systematically removed.

BAEHR
To get to that point, they said we have to destroy the culture, and what they were talking about was the Christian culture. What we used to call Christendom, or western civilization.

G. EDWARD GRIFFIN
If you can break people away from religious affinities, for example, where they would turn to their religious community, for support and help, or they would turn to scripture for answers to certain perplexing questions. If they have an affinity to their religion, they might say “we’re not going to go along with government because it’s contrary to my religion.” So, cultural marxism would attack religion of all kinds. Doesn’t make any difference. There was another place where people would go, other than the government, for support and for answers.

NARRATOR
We the people will thus have been indoctrinated. Or brainwashed into seeing the wisdom of Marxism and the folly of capitalism. Thus, the door to socialism and communism will be opened. And the door to a constitutional republic, closed. Because the success of cultural marxism means the demise of the U.S. constitution.

EDWIN VIEIRA
Constitution’s a set of principles. It’s based ultimately on a moral code, because if you go back to the Declaration of Independence, what was the basis for the declaration of independence? Law of nature and nature’s god, the ultimate moral code. But if you don’t follow those principles, if you try to shave a point off here and there, to make a buck, or be re-elected, or to get your special interest group some kind of government subsidy, then the consequences are going to be deleterious to society as a whole. And there’s the difficulty, there are too many people who are thinking in the short term and not applying these principles, which are designed to give us a long term stability to the system.

THE FRANKFURT SCHOOL

NARRATOR
Let’s back up a minute. How did cultural marxism get into the United States? Some brief history. In 1923, members of the Marxist Communist party set up an institute at Frankfurt University in Germany. This institute was named The Institute for Social Research. Later, it would become known simply as The Frankfurt School. These new Marxists under the direction of Marx Horkheimer had seen the old Lenin Marxists fail. The workers of the world did not unite in World War I. Further, they realized why. Antonio Gramsci, the disciple who wrote The Prison Notebooks had it right. Marxism could only flourish after a long march through the cultural institutions. Now, the mantra would be change Western culture, and then the workers will unite.

GRIFFIN
After Marx, there were a group of Marxists who wisely decided that you could bring this collectivist society to a nation through culture as well. By introducing certain values and concepts that would break down the family, for example. If you could somehow break down the family unit, so that it was no longer self-sustaining, and no longer valued in a society, then that would lead the individual members who formerly could turn to the family in times of need, would now be cut loose. They would be without a place to go in times of need, so now they had to turn to the government.

NARRATOR
But just as the march through the institutions was about to begin, an anti-marxist, anti-semitic Adolf Hitler ascended to power, and World War II began. Since the leading lights of the Frankfurt Schools were marxist, the School packed up its ideology and fled to America, settling down in New York City with the support of Columbia University. But what exactly is the march? And who, was marching? What values has the long march through the institutions rolled over? Let’s hear it through some of the Frankfurt School graduates themselves. Like George Lukas, Antonio Gramsci, Charles Reich, Herbert Marcuse, Theodor Adorno, Erich Fromm, Wilhelm Reich, and Max Horkheimer.

HORKHEIMER (unbelievably bad accent #1)
Marx got it all wrong. The workers are not up to being the vanguard of the communist revolution. Let’s translate marxism into cultural terms.

NARRATOR
And Herbert Marcuse.

MARCUSE (unbelievably bad accent #2)
The west is guilty of genocidal crimes against every civilization and culture it has encountered. America and western civilization are the world’s greatest repositories of racism, sexism, nativism, xenophobia, anti-semitism, fascism, and nazism. American society is oppressive, evil, and undeserving of loyalty.

INTERVIEWER
Have you ever heard of cultural marxism, if so, what is it?

INTERVIEWEE #1
I’m not familiar completely with…marxism.

INTERVIEWEE #2
I have not heard of cultural marxism.

INTERVIEWEE #3
Cultural marxism, um, no I don’t think I even- that kind of talk is gibberish to me.

INTERVIEWEE #4
It’s used in some terms I think as sortof the thing that is…almost politically correct from a marxist standpoint. In other words, from a socialist or communist standpoint.

NARRATOR
George Lukas.

LUKAS (unbelievably bad accent #3)
I see the revolutionary destruction of society as the one and only solution. A worldwide overturning of values cannot take place without the annihilation of the old values, the creation of the new ones, by the revolution.

NARRATOR
Lukas’s gift to America later became known as cultural terrorism. Gifts, such as radical sex education in public schools covering such subjects as free love, outdatedness of monogamy, irrelevance of religion, and the archaic nature of the middle class family. Women were called upon to rebel against the sexual morays of the day. Such being the core values of christianity and western culture. His ideas later became the basis for the sexual revolution. Embraced by a generation of drug-challenged baby boomers.

BUCHANAN
When you hear people say, as I did on the campaign, “Pat, what happened to the country we grew up in?”, physically it’s the same country. But they’re right, we’re in another country now. And this is why I think the cultural marxists have prevailed and are prevailing. They have captured the young. What was the saying of Abbie Hoffman? We’re gonna capture your children. In a lot of ways they did.

NARRATOR
Although Gramsci died in 1937, his prison notebooks lived on as the blueprint to de-christianize the west.

GRAMSCI (unbelievably bad accent #4)
The civilized world has been thoroughly saturated with christianity for two thousand years. Any country grounded in judeo-christian values cannot, therefore, be overthrown until those roots are cut. But to cut the roots, to change culture, a long march through the institutions is necessary. Only then will power fall into our laps, like ripened fruit.

NARRATOR
And the new generation of freedom loving, authority challenged baby boomers were quite willing to accept the bait, and take a toke.

TIMOTHY LEARY
Turn on, tune in, drop out.

NARRATOR
Yes, our prison planner Antonio Gramsci had quite a dream. The only way the marxist revolution could be successful was if the heat shield of capitalism, christianity, were first destroyed. Charles Reich.

REICH (unbelievably bad accent #5)
There is a revolution coming. It will not be like revolutions of the past. It will originate with the individual culture, and it will change the political structure only as its final act.

NARRATOR
Reich, thus helped shape the minds of the american sixties youth with his runaway best-selling book, The Greening of America. Gramsci and Marx were now reaching their target audience, and the long march was in progress.

BAEHR
In the 1960s, the church pulled back from the culture. You had the first sex and satanism film, you had the first X-Rated film, where the pastor takes the boy up through his room in Broadway, to get on his knees, but not to pray. You had all the perversion, you went from 100% broad audience films that anyone can see, to 82% R rated movies, restricted. You had a tremendous loss of viewership at the movie theaters, even though television had been around twenty years, you had 24 million weekly attendance to 7 million weekly attendance. So, basically what happened, the church gave up mid-sixties. It gave up on prayer in schools, it gave up being a force in society, Johnson shackled the church when he said, when he used the 501c3 to say churches couldn’t talk about politics, and the church just buckled under. Prayer was taken out of school, the church just buckled under. The church collapsed from Hollywood, buckled under. So, it was the church’s internal collapse, and that has happened before in history, and unless people get revival, reformation, renewal, we will never reclaim the culture.

GRIFFIN
So, cultural marxism would be that type of activity in any society breaks down the culture in such a way that people instinctively turn to government as an alternative for the support that they would otherwise have. This is done through art, through music, through literature, through motion pictures, and that kind of thing. The implanting of certain ideas and concepts which make them very ripe, for the philosophy of collectivism. And makes them very ripe for turning to government as the big daddy, the big solver, of all problems.

NARRATOR
As Hudson Institute scholar John Fonte wrote, “Max Horkheimer and Gramsci believe there are no absolute moral standards that are universally true for all human beings outside a particular historical context.” In other words, to the Frankfurt School, values come from society. Or the state collective.

CHARLES MANSON
Insane? It’s relative.

GRIFFIN
Collectivism implies that something is important enough, then the state should step in, and make sure that everyone conforms, whether they want to or not. The essence of collectivism in a political sense is that it employs the use of coercion to require people to work together. And once coercion enters, then you are actually participating in a negative social conduct, in many cases worse, then the social condition that you’re trying to overcome by the collective action. People are not given free will. They’re required to do this and that because the majority has decided this is for the greater good of the greater number and so forth. Whereas individualism works towards the same goals, but they do so in the environment of freedom. So, it’s the difference between freedom and coercion.

NARRATOR
Not to be outdone by Karl Marx, a brilliant mind or two at the Frankfurt School soon came up with several of their own ideas. The foremost known as critical theory. The idea behind critical theory is to challenge all previously accepted standards in every aspect of life from a Marxist perspective. Standards such as Abe Lincoln was honest. Home is where the heart is. Democracy and capitalism are good. The founders believed in freedom. In doing this, every negative thing one could possibly say about America was dredged up. Circulated in books, movies, TV, schools, colleges, and even the clergy. So that the youth would be endlessly indoctrinated. Things like white men killed the indians. Fathers were repressive. God is dead. The founders had slaves.

VIEIRA
They did have a problem, in that although slavery was technically legal throughout all the colonies, only some of the colonies really had slave based economies. Southern states, Maryland, south, essentially. And therefore, they had to deal with the practical problem of how could you integrate these states with the Northern and middle colonies? Middle states, and northern states in a way that would, as much as possible, unify them. So they had to make some kind of initial political compromise with the social institutions that existed in the southern states. But there was a mindset at the time that slavery would essentially wither away because it was not a practical economic concern in the long run. But it certainly wasn’t a matter that could be criticized of the point of view of principle. You know the first principle in the preamble is to create a more perfect union. That was their first goal.

NARRATOR
But when the consciousness challenged baby boomers repeatedly heard that the establishment, as they came to refer to it, was a bunch of racist, overly religious, sexually deprived sexists who were xenophobic indian killers and anti-semite [sic], they internalized the criticisms. Soon their movies and songs began to reflect these “values”, spreading them throughout the nation’s youth culture. Critical theory was doing its job. Especially on people like Charles Manson. And John Lennon. Even though the reality challenged baby boomers of the 1960s were the most free, the most affluent and most privileged of any youth in any age, they were bored with their lives. And swallowed the Frankfurt School’s propaganda like a hit of…California sunshine. Books like: The Death of the Family; Escape from Freedom; The Mass Psychology of Fascism; Sexual Revolution; The Joy of Sex; and The Authoritarian Personality flew off the shelves. Counterculture drug movies like The Trip, Easy Rider, The Wild Angels, The Wild Bunch, and Born Losers played in theaters endlessly. Books like The Authoritarian Personality were particular hits because they attacked the patriarchal family unit. A deeply christian institution. So along came movies depicting the family unit as sexually repressed and dysfunctional. Movies like Battle of the Sexes, How to Handle Your Wife [How to Murder Your Wife], Harold and Maude, The Graduate, Bonnie and Clyde, Carnal Knowledge, Bob & Carol & Ted & Alice, Boys in the Band, The Godfather, and Kramer vs Kramer instilled cultural pessimism about families.

BAEHR
Basic unit of the family is where male, as a sex, joins with a female, as a sex, and they’re able to work together to help each other, and by being able to work together to help each other they perfect each other, they love each other, they care for each other, and in the process they learn to love and perfect others within the society, to become good citizens because they’re good citizens within their own home, and that produces a society that loves each other. It’s a…marriage is a particularly judeo-christian institution. It was Jesus who instituted one man and one wife there should forever become one flesh.

NARRATOR
By targeting the family unit, the cultural marxists knew they could eventually destroy the middle class of the United States. Why? Because the family unit is the basic building block of the middle class. Destroy the middle class and you eventually destroy the economic engine of the United States. Destroy the economic engine of the U.S. and its political structure built on capitalism and the constitution crumbles.

INTERVIEWEE
I just recently had some shares stolen from me on the stock market. By our government. Who seized eighty percent of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac shares. Like, how could this happen? That they seized private property.

BAEHR
The whole point of socialistic society is to do four things. Marx talks about destroying the family. Two, destroying property. Three, destroying religion. Four, destroying the nation. And what you end up with is the gulag. Where the whole country becomes the Soviet Union.

NARRATOR
Yes, critical theory is diabolical genius. The cultural marxist could accomplish what Marx, Lenin, Trotsky, and Stalin only dreamed of accomplishing. Whereas Lenin, Trotsky, and Stalin took Marx’s ideas and delivered the brutal Soviet Union to the world, Gramsci, Lukas, and Marcuse took Marx’s ideas and delivered user friendly cultural Marxism to America.

BUCHANAN
The Supreme Court has been converted into a fighting ally of secularism in the wars against traditionalism in the United States. The Supreme Court has perverted the constitution. It has usurped power that belongs to the states and imposed secular views and values on the states, on the communities, making decisions that used to be made democratically at the local level.

NARRATOR
This time it seems Marx won. Today, post-Engle politically correct baby boomers are so completely immersed in the Frankfurt School’s cultural pessimism, they can’t see the forest for the trees. They’re fish in a bowl of muddy water. They’re Neo in the Matrix. They swim in it. They absorb it through every pore of their beings. Starting in the 1960s, cultural marxism has woven its values into every american’s very existence. Khrushchev was right when he said, “we will bury you.”

SOCIALISM

NARRATOR
To understand what socialism is, one must first understand what communism is. Communism is an economic system whereby the state owns the means of production. Means of production meaning capitalism. Capital meaning money, machinery, labor, land, and resources. Socialism is an economic system whereby the state owns the fruits of production. Fruits of production meaning revenues generated by the means. “Revenues generated by the means” is another way of saying taxes.

RON PAUL
Extreme of socialism was the Soviet system, communism. So there was no pricing structure and it’s a failed system, it can’t work. Because prices are so important.

NARRATOR
So, communism owns and confiscates the means and fruits of productions. Whereas socialism confiscates just the fruits of production in the form of excessive taxes. Socialist states in Europe, for instance, confiscate as much as fifty percent of money citizens pay for retail products and services. This is the outrageous sales tax a socialist state demands.

PAUL
We interfere a lot, but we allow prices to adjust for the most part, but when it comes to interest rates, federal reserve is always deciding the central plan through the control of money, and interest rates, how much money we should have in circulation, should we shrink the money supply, expand the money supply, that’s a form of socialism but it’s only half of socialism, controlling only half of the transaction, and that’s money. But it’s very dangerous and leads to an authoritarian approach because it eventually breaks down and I think that is what we are witnessing today.

NARRATOR
Thus, the socialist state rapes the people, mainly through excessive taxes. A fascist state rapes the people mainly through excessive debt. Both ultimately rape the people through taxes, because debt causes inflation, a hidden tax. Debt causes inflation because the federal reserve system facilitates the conversion of government bonds, government IOUs, into federal reserve notes. What we use as a currency.

BAEHR
Well, the federal reserve, in its very nature is contrary to a free market. The federal reserve is not only regulating, but it’s manipulating the marketplace, against the will of the people who are conducting the marketplace.

NARRATOR
When this is done, the money supply is inflated. When the money supply is inflated, it becomes watered down, or diluted. Just like stock when a corporation authorizes and issues more stock, existing shareholders are diluted. When money is diluted, it has less purchasing power. When it has less purchasing power, prices rises. Because it takes more federal reserve notes to purchase a given product. When prices rise, it has the effect of a tax. Inflation is therefore a hidden tax.

VIEIRA
If the government can create new money then it doesn’t have to tax for it. Especially if it can put off the ultimate payment of this into the future through the use of long term bonds, backing for the fiat currency, then we have a government that is essentially out of control to some degree. It can make decisions that are not immediately going to subject the people to pressure.

NARRATOR
Unfortunately, the constitutional republic envisioned by the founders is being undermined by cultural marxism, and destroying the republic envisioned by the founders.

GENERAL WELFARE

NARRATOR
As we have seen, the constitution gives congress the power and the responsibility to provide for the general welfare of the nation. So important is the idea of general welfare, this is the only term that is stated twice in the constitution. Once in the preamble, and again in Article I. Unfortunately, a lot of people interpret this term to be a green light for massive social security. The so-called nanny state which pays for everything. And then demands the right to regulate everything.

PAUL
Well, the constitution was written to limit the size and scope of government. It was to recognize that government was there to protect our liberties. It does not endorse the welfare system at all. If we would just follow the constitution, the government would be very much smaller, maybe eighty percent smaller.

NARRATOR
This may be the cultural marxists’ dream of a socialist state, but as a result we now have minimum wage laws, child labor laws, federal disability laws, medicaid laws, public housing laws, rent laws, entitlement laws, food stamp laws, and even extensive pet laws. Over twenty five thousand laws are enacted every year. Many by congressmen who have been bought and paid for by multinational corporations, all non-people entities.

INTERVIEWEE
What comes to mind is big corporations that put their view of the world out there for everyone, take over small businesses, take over choices people might have, different kinds of products, where everything becomes much more generic, just based on cost as opposed to quality and workmanship.

NARRATOR
Because term limits have not been established for the congress, most congressmen have been able to stay in office for decades.

BUCHANAN
Again, this is the supreme court. States were enacting and imposing term limits on their members of congress in something like half the american states, and the supreme court overthrew it. And took the right away from the states to impose term limits on their own members of congress. And what did congress do? They said, that’s fine with us. Because we’ll stay in power.

NARRATOR
It seems the more a congressman is entrenched, the more he is able to build a social network, a network of cronies. Clearly, good relations with fellow congressmen serve many productive purposes. But such a network can also be abused. After all, it’s much easier to minimize the risks of vote swapping, a form of collusion, amongst cronies. It’s much easier to justify corporate campaign contributions, a form of bribery, amongst cronies. And it’s much easier to get away with earmarks, a form of fraud, amongst cronies. Thus, an entrenched congress, especially one cast into only two major parties would seem to be in the perfect position to imperceptibly usurp power from the people. And place it into the hands of the corporate fascists who’ve hijacked congress.

GRIFFIN
The right place to look for the solution to the problem of corrupt politicians is at the voter: their perception of who they’re voting for, and what the political principles of their candidates are.

NARRATOR
You can bet collusion, bribery, and fraud are not practices the founders envisioned for a more perfect union.

So, unless I have this view that I need to participate in this system as a self-governing citizen to maintain the integrity of the system, the system will eventually be dominated from the top down by the people who can actually make something from “gaming it” is the expression. So, this is the founding fathers point, it depends upon having a virtuous citizenry that is willing to shoulder the burdens of maintaining a self-governmental structure.

NARRATOR
Again, general welfare includes everyone. Especially the vast majority of average citizens who fall within the middle of the social spectrum. In statistical terms, the average or mean, is represented at the top, or crest of what’s known as a bell shaped curve. It’s the middle of the bell shaped curve. So, it’s fair to say that the original intent of the constitution is to define a government that serves the general population. The middle of the bell shaped curve. Now known as the middle class.

INTERVIEWER
Do you sense a dwindling middle class, or a wealth disparity?

INTERVIEWEE
Well, I think things are changing right now. I think the last eight years have been increasing in wealth disparity, but I think some of the excesses of those days may be over.

NARRATOR
The terms “spreading the wealth”, “redistribution”, and “wealth disparity” are meaningless in an America that truly responds [sic] to the original intent of the constitution.

GRIFFIN
The proper function of government is not to provide, but to protect. Because if you’re gonna provide for some, you must have the authority and power to take from others. And once you’re in that business of taking from some and giving to others, now you’re in the business of redividing the wealth. And that gives you tremendous power over the citizenry. And it always leads to abuse of power and eventually to totalitarian regimes.

NARRATOR
Many have commented that we now have a monstrous tax system. The system that taxes its citizens far more than citizens of the Boston tea party era.

LARKEN ROSE
If two to three percent taxation justified a resolution, in 1776, why doesn’t fifty percent and growing justify a revolution? If a few little excise taxes on pieces of paper and tea justify open lawlessness from these rebels that we’re all celebrating, why don’t the myriad of incomprehensible, unavoidable, crushing taxes – state, local, and federal – why don’t they justify a revolution today?

NARRATOR
Our government not only taxes us at every transaction, it’s in our faces at every turn. Endlessly regulating what we can and cannot do. All these regulating laws and their expensive enforcement programs are turning us into a police state.

PAUL
We’re the policeman of the world, so instead of a government now that occupies so many other countries and we have seven hundred bases overseas, that wouldn’t happen if we had a proper sized government.

NARRATOR
Over fifty percent of U.S. citizens now work the government at either the federal, state, or local level.

ANDROGYNY

NARRATOR
The nefarious genius of cultural marxist strategy is to destroy the family unit by promoting what’s known in the field of botany as androgyny. From the american college dictionary, androgyny means quote having staminate and pistilate flowers in the same inflorescence; being both male and female; hermaphroditic. Translated into cultural marxist strategy, this means making the father and mother of a family the same and/or reversing their roles. How is this done? Well, it starts with invalidation. As previously discussed, one of the key technologies of the Frankfurt School is critical theory. Recall the purpose of critical theory is to instill cultural pessimism. Thus, by endlessly portraying fathers as dominant, restrictive, depersonalized, and controlling, the cultural marxist is able to invalidate the male component of the family unit. Concomitant with this, by endlessly portraying mothers as schizophrenic, nagging, anxious, the cultural marxist is able to invalidate the female component of the family unit. This two-punch invalidation endlessly repeated in the general literature, movies, and media, gives rise to a pessimistic attitude towards the traditional family. After time, this pessimism becomes imbued into the culture. That’s why it’s said that the product of critical theory is cultural pessimism. The message of cultural pessimism: 1. Families are boring, stifling, and intrusive. 2. Mothers and fathers suck. 3. Divorce is therefore understandable and justified. With divorce made understandable and justified, even laughingly made easy by calling it “no fault”, one out of two nuclear families now disintegrate into chaos.

BAEHR
Most contracts, the court system tries to sustain the contract. If you and I are doing business together, and they’re trying to protect that contract because the contract was entered into in good faith for good principles. However, although the marriage might have been entered into in good faith by breaking that they can put a lot of people to work, not only the marital courts can go to work, also the social workers can go to work, also a whole team of people including the IRS who prey off of them. And one court in Massachusetts said we’re gonna bring this father to his knees and take all his money from him. So, there’s a whole movement in the courts to make money off the dissolution of marriage.

NARRATOR
After the mother and the father are finally done arguing or negotiating over custody of the children and possession of the assets, two new family homes are usually established. He lives here and she lives there. Each new household economy now has to have a redundant otherwise superfluous set of rent or mortgage payments, energy and utility demands, and household furnishings and accoutrements. Extensive and complex scheduling of child visitation then must be established. If the divorce was acrimonious and/or the children were traumatized by it, and most are, both parents vie for the children’s attention and visitation. As they do this, knowingly or unknowingly, they spoil the children with unending material gifts. Junk food. Sugar. Unearned validation and parental supervision so lenient it borders on gross negligence.

BAEHR
Divorce is dreadful for children. Now you have some families, the poorest and the weakest, mostly black families, are now over fifty and even sixty percent divorce, which is critical for children.

NARRATOR
But worst of all, children are usually shipped off to daycare centers and/or public schools where they are then “handled” like animals in captivity.

GRIFFIN
Now we’re talking about a school system that’s teaching values determined not by the parents, not even by the teachers, but by the political, uh, groups that provide the funding, the politicians, the bureaucrats, the think tanks, all these invisible structures above. Those are the people who are determining the values that are being taught in our schools.

NARRATOR
The profligate cultural marxist society that causes and tolerates this then imposes pharmaceutical drugs on these children.

BAEHR
Certainly the arts have always had a tendency to promote license instead of liberty. The difference, license means I can do anything even if it’s destructive of other people, and myself, I can take drugs till I OD and hurt other people, and hurt their children and families. License is something that is selfishness rules. With liberty, what rules is the freedom to be responsible, the freedom to live a decent life, the freedom to love others, the freedom to give, it’s like the difference between love and lust. And unfortunately, often the principle of love is replaced in the media with the principle of lust. And the lust principle produces media that’s constantly pushing the envelope.

NARRATOR
Almost every movie that Hollywood puts out today must depict characters with at least one of the following attributes: 1. The protagonist and/or the antagonist are divorced.

2. The female is portrayed as dominant, controlling, violent, and/or one up on men.

3. The male is portrayed as aloof, feminine, overly sensitive and/or cheating.

4. Somewhere in the family at least one of its immediate members must be a lesbian, gay, bisexual or a women’s libber.

Often attributes are mixed in various proportions and even mixed with a touch of schizophrenia, as males and females swap roles in fluorescence.

BAEHR
Same sex marriage does not give you the balance of having a mother and father so that you can learn different skills from them, you learn different personality types. By abolishing that, children are adrift.

NARRATOR
Through endless repetition and media dissemination, androgynous elements are institutionalized as legitimate. And eventually, normal. Cultural pessimism has been taken to a whole new level. Complete tolerance for dysfunctional social structures and inefficient economic units. Proof that christian values do not work.

GRIFFIN
Schools should be completely operated by parents. They should be in control and therefore the parents can determine what values are taught to the students. If the school doesn’t teach the values that that parent wants taught to their children, then they can take that child out of that school and put them in another school which does teach those values.

BUCHANAN
The supreme court has been converted into a fighting ally of secularism in the wars against traditionalism in the United States.

NARRATOR
With the success of cultural marxism, hundreds of millions of nuclear families have been destroyed since 1965. This has contributed to, or caused, the decline of the middle class. Next will be the destruction of American capitalism, unless the effects of cultural marxism are recognized and handled.

HORKHEIMER (return to unbelievably bad accent #1)
The revolution is coming. It will not be like revolutions of the past. It will originate with the individual and culture. And it will change the political structure only as its final act.

PANEM AND CIRCENSES

NARRATOR
Before the Romans crashed and burned, they had gone down the same road. Only they called their social security bread and circuses. Bread and circuses will eventually crash the U.S. empire as well, if we interpret the term “general welfare” in the constitution as an invitation for social security.

VIEIRA
General is the problem.

GRIFFIN
What did the founding fathers intend when they wrote those words?

BAEHR
General welfare has been debated since the constitution itself. Many of the founders were concerned general welfare would be taken in the wrong sense, would be used to apply for, as we apply it today, as Hamilton wanted us to do it, to give the government license to do whatever it wanted, and just grab power.

NARRATOR
The founders knew that Rome, and every society since the beginning of time, had poor, sick, and unfortunates. And many of these societies tried to help. For instance, in 1597, England had the Elizabethan poor laws enacted, to provide what were known as the seven corporeal works of mercy. These works were to feed the hungry, give drink to the thirsty, welcome the stranger, clothe the naked, attend the sick, visit the prisoner, and bury the dead. But is this how you really promote the general welfare, the founders asked?

STEFAN MOLYNEUX
You’re talking to someone about a free society. And they say to you, as they always do, “what about the poor?” “Oh, the poor, what are we going to do with the poor when there’s no welfare state.” The poor dying in the streets and that. A perfectly valid objection and we all, generally, have this tendency, what do we do? We run out and we research, and we go, and we become the human wikipedia talking point planet of infinite facts and we try and give everybody statistics and we give everybody historical examples, well, there were these friendly societies in the 1920s, the fact that I find useful is the number of poor people after the second world war was declining one percent a year, because of the free market, when the welfare state came in, it stopped declining and stayed steady, which is exactly what you’d expect. If you subsidize something, you increase its prevalence, and you subsidize poverty, you get more.

NARRATOR
Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach him how to fish, and you feed him for life. The founders were teachers. Their original intent was to set up a system that created fishermen.

GRIFFIN
The constitution means what the founders intended it to mean. Otherwise it means nothing. If you want to have the constitution mean what modern politicians think it should mean, then you don’t need a constitution. In fact, you’re better off without one. And just say: what do the modern politicians want us to do today?

NARRATOR
What would happen if you created a society that could actually rise above problems? A society where the government gently facilitated a free and prosperous citizenry? A citizenry so successful there were no hungry. There were no sick or poor. There were no criminals.

BUCHANAN
You could take the Department of Education, the Department of Housing, and any number of these national departments and defund them to zero, and send out the funds to the states in block grants which would eventually go down to zero, and get rid of most of the federal government. The federal government still has responsibility of national defense, the justice department is needed, the state department is needed, the treasury department are needed, but many of those other departments should be defunded rather than have the politics of the federal government imposed on the nation.

NARRATOR
The founders wanted to set people free from the system, or the matrix. That’s what liberty is all about. They wanted general welfare to be the result of a self-governing productive society. They wanted general welfare. Not welfare in general.

OUT OF THIN AIR

NARRATOR
Today, the U.S. currency is backed by nothing but debt in the form of U.S. bonds. This is known as monetizing debt. The act of converting debt into money. Debt causes inflation because the federal reserve system facilitates the conversion of government bonds, government IOUs, into federal reserve notes. What we use as a currency. When this is done, the money supply is inflated. When the money supply is inflated, it becomes watered down. Or diluted. Just like stock when a corporation authorizes issues of more stock, existing shareholders are diluted. When money is diluted, it has less purchasing power. When it has less purchasing power, prices rise. Because it takes more federal reserve notes to purchase a given product. When prices rise, it has the effect of a tax. Inflation is therefore a hidden tax.

PAUL
If you can delay the payment and hide the payment, that is, borrow money or print money, those who pay the price are hard to find, are usually the poor people and the middle class. So, it’s a very specific plan to have a central bank to destroy money, it’s been done for thousands of years, they used to dilute the metals, clip the coins, or even in the old days they tried printing money. Today we do it with a computer.

NARRATOR
Thus, cultural marxism uses debt which generates the hidden tax of inflation and endless taxes to fund its socialist operations and expansion.

VIEIRA
As far as fractional reserve banking is concerned, that’s a problem of fraud. That is, fractional reserve banking is where the bank generates more paper currency than it has the gold and silver reserves of, a specie standard. And it can really generate as much paper currency as the market is willing to bear, as long as the market has some credence that the bank will pay. And what tends to happen is the bank will overexpand. They play too many of those cards, and at a certain stage, the market says no, there’s too much money out here in terms of real resources. And you get what’s called a bank run. People come back to the bank and say, make good on these promises, and the banks can’t do it, you have recession, depression, what have you, the whole credit structure drops. Now, if that kind of system were fully disclosed and everyone knew how it was working, my anticipation is that there were very few fractional reserve banks.

NARRATOR
The framers of the constitution were quite aware of the liabilities of bills of credit and fractional reserve banking. And this is why Article I states no state shall make any thing but gold and silver a tender in the payment of debts. And, quote: “No state shall emit bills of credit.”

PAUL
The federal reserve system should be abolished. It was not authorized in the constitution, and therefore, we shouldn’t have it. But I’ve taken a sort of a moderate approach to doing it, because there’s a lot of people who depend on the system today and close it down in one day, but I would legalize competition and allow gold and silver to circulate as money, take taxes off gold and silver, so you didn’t have to pay sales tax or capital gains taxes, went to people to transition over to gold and silver. In 1976, we weren’t even allowed to own gold and then later on, we got the American eagle. So, we’re moving in that direction, but we need to go a little bit further to legalize contracts in gold. The real culprit is the ability of the fed to monetize debt. Members of congress spend money for war and welfare, they can’t borrow enough, and they can’t tax enough, so they literally create treasury bills out of thin air and the federal reserve creates money out of thin air and buys the treasury bills. And that has to eventually destroy the value of the dollar.

GRIFFIN
If we were to abolish the federal reserve system, tomorrow, and get the banks out of it, completely, turn the entire function as it now operates over to the treasury, nothing would change. The same people would still dominate the system from behind the scenes. To this question of ownership, receives too much attention, because where that idea goes is, well, if we could just find out who owns these banks, and if we don’t like who they are, then we can support a move to abolish the federal reserve and turn that system over to the treasury, exactly as it’s now operating. So, the focus should not be on who owns the banks, but what the banks are doing.

NARRATOR
If the public better understood how fiat money can be abused by Congress, it would impeach almost every member. And abolish the central federal reserve bank, as it has done twice in the nation’s history.

THE APPLICATION OF FORCE

NARRATOR
Like the federal reserve system, the congress has been further distorting the letter of its constitutional responsibilities by delegating its power to declare war to another entity, in this case, the president.

BUCHANAN
One of the great problems the country faces is the cowardice of the congress of the United States as an institution. It has allowed the president to usurp the war-making power.

NARRATOR
Where does congress get authority to delegate the responsibility to declare war to the president? It’s not in the constitution. This delegation sounds more like an evasion of responsibility for political expediency then the original intent of the founders.

BUCHANAN
It has resigned its authority, it is frightened of exercising its authority, it does not want responsibility, it does not want accountability.

NARRATOR
Article I, Section 8, clearly states that Congress shall have the power to declare war, to raise and support armies, to provide and maintain a navy, to provide for calling forth the militia.

VIEIRA
People such as George Washington, or Samuel Greene, leaders of the army, didn’t think much of the militia. The militia came in 1690 for 180 days, and when the enlistment time ran out, they went home. They never stayed. They came with a sort of an oddment of firearms, typically they were firearms that didn’t entirely fit the army pattern, they had different calibres and logistics, problems arose. The men were clearly not as well trained as the regular soldiers, they had a tendency to break, the British charged them with bayonets, for instance. So, people like Washington, who was obviously very influential at the time, didn’t have a particularly good word to say about the militia. One would have thought, when the constitution was drafted, the founding fathers would have left the militia out. We don’t need this. Hadn’t proven to be that effective, or they might have said: congress or the states can set up a militia if they want to, but it’s discretionary. Depends on circumstances. They did the exact opposite. They recognized the existence of what they call the militia of the several states, at the time; constitutionally recognized. And the second amendment comes along and says it’s necessary for the security of a free state. So, I would say the constitution makes it absolutely clear that those entities because it’s not one entity, it should be one in every one of the states, is a key structural element in the constitution. And why? Well, because ultimately who is the militia? It’s the people.

NARRATOR
With every shooting on a college campus, the cultural marxist indoctrinating mainstream media never mentions the true source of the problem: the disintegration of the family unit. Instead, the media pushes the socialistic agenda of removing citizen’s second amendment rights.

VIEIRA
Let’s go to the second amendment. Which says a well regulated militia will be necessary to the security of a free state. The right of the people to bear arms shall not be infringed. Take the first clause. A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state – stop right there. That’s the only place in the constitution where the constitution says that anything is necessary for any reason. Constitution doesn’t say congress is necessary, or the president is necessary, doesn’t even say the state is necessary, it says a well regulated militia is necessary to what? To the security. Not just any kind of security, but the security of a free state. And that’s the sole purpose of the constitution in toto.

GRIFFIN
The way that the United States was set up originally was that the defense of the nation was to be primarily the responsibility of the states. They were to create militia and draw upon able bodied American citizens within the state, and they were to provide their weapons and their training and their leaders; they were to form into a national fighting force and they would defend the borders of the United States against foreign enemies. But the primary foundation, the element of that was the militia.

NARRATOR
Never stated in movies like Bowling for Columbine, movies funded by cultural marxist infiltrated Hollywood studios is the original intent of the founders that all citizens retain the keep and bear arms. More accurately, the obligation to keep and bear arms as part of the militia.

VIEIRA
As the constitution tells us, a well regulated militia is necessary to the security of a free state. Now, some people may disagree with that; and my response is well, that’s a personal opinion, the law is otherwise. The law tells us this is the principal by which we are supposed to be operating. You don’t like that, amend it. If it’s there, enforce it. If you don’t enforce it, there will be some consequences. Because the constitution is, how shall I put this, it’s an integrated document in that all of the parts were designed to function with all of the others simultaneously. And if you look at it, there are several pillars to it, of course, the federal government, the congress, supreme court, the states. There are the people; as electors. And then there is this group of entities called the militia. And read the constitution through and you’ll see they’re all on an equal plane. They all fit into this structure. Well, if an architect designs a building, with five support columns, it’s probably because he believes every one of those is necessary. You knock one of those out, or you allow it to decay, and you can pretty much expect that building is not going to be stable over the long term. Certain kinds of shocks affect it, it’s going to come down. Same with a governmental structure. Governmental structure was designed in such a way that the people were supposed to play an important role in maintaining political power over military force.

NARRATOR
Instead, the Frankfurt School’s agenda of injecting cultural pessimism into society continues. Robberies, murder, fires, and now escalating school shootings, all contribute to the cultural pessimism. And the misguided justification of disarming the citizens. But if citizens ever allow cultural marxists such as the Michael Moores of the world to ban ownership of guns, they will make a grave mistake.

GRIFFIN
These guys who created the American constitution, the American republic, were looking into the future, and they were concerned about our own government becoming despotic. They could see that, they talked about the possibility of that. How do we prevent that from happening was a major issue of discussion. And they said one of the ways is to make sure we don’t give them a standing army and the other way is to make sure the local population was armed. (laughs) Because if you got every man, able-bodied man in the country, women too, armed and knowing how to use a weapon and under training with their local squad leaders and so forth, their own commanders. There’s no government in the United States that’s going to turn against them. So, they were very wise. Today, people laugh at that concept, but now that they’re losing their liberties, I think the laughter is dying down, pretty rapidly.

NARRATOR
Observing thousands of years of earlier governments, the founders knew that the only thing that ultimately stands between a tyrannical government and the people, are weapons.

VIEIRA
According to Mao Tse Tung, who in this case agrees with the second amendment, political power grows out of the barrel of a gun. Where the source of political power is to be, is where the gun is. Ultimately, that’s the bottom line, the force of government. That’s what government is, the application of force. If the application of force is given to some elite group, they’re in control. If the act of force is given to the people, they’re in control. If you want a free state, a self-governing state, where we the people are ordaining and establishing, who has to control the ultimate body of force? It’s we the people themselves. And that’s not a professional army. That’s not a standing army. The founding fathers were very much concerned about that. They didn’t want a standing army.

GRIFFIN
They thought that a standing army was perhaps one of the most dangerous things you can imagine. Because if Washington, D.C., they thought had a standing army, you know what they’re gonna do with it? They’re gonna use it for something. Get a bunch of soldiers sitting around training, they’re gonna use them for something. And they didn’t want that. Except in the defensive mode.

SPEAKER (unidentified)
If people read the constitution, that if not in a time of war, to have a standing army, when there’s no war, you have to abolish the standing army within eighteen months, so you have a navy, but no standing army.

NARRATOR
Also, never forget the instrument that literally authorized the U.S. constitution and freed all Americans from oppressive European rule was the declaration of independence. This sister document states whenever any form of government becomes destructive of certain ends, such as the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, it is the duty of the people to alter or abolish it. Alter it means to vote out those who aren’t following the constitution. If such politicians over time or unbeknownst to the people, reconfigure their government in such a way to usurp the rights of the people, then the only choice left is to abolish the government.

WALTER REDDY (Founder, commissioner of Public Safety)
So, they were acting within the law when they stood on that green, General Gage was outside the law, he was an outlaw, that regular army. And that’s why they didn’t throw down their arms that day. They opened fire on them.

VIEIRA
Now, one doesn’t like to think of that as something you want to face in this country. But there are many problems prior to that, that the militia would deal with, and a large militia structure would have a terrific deterrent effect. On any people in political life or aspirations to become usurpers or tyrants. It’s pretty hard to overcome a country when sixty or seventy percent of the people are organized army trained.

NARRATOR
The second amendment states the people, as and through their militia, have the right to keep and bear arms, and this right shall not be infringed.

MICHAEL BADNARIK
As individuals, we have rights. And we grant the government privileges, those privileges are listed in Article I, Section 1, of the constitution. And any time we have a justifiable reason in the current tradition, we can revoke those rights or take those privileges away from the government.

NARRATOR
This means that a well regulated militia consisting of the people, not some distant bunch of federal professionals has the right to keep and bear, and own, and keep on their person, guns and arms. Short for armaments. These armaments are for their use, should the people, through their constitutional militia, find it necessary to abolish a tyrannical and suppressive government. And replace it with a serving government that promotes the general welfare. And secures the blessings of liberty.

NEGATIVE INFLUENCES

NARRATOR
Unfortunately, negative influences have crept in. Not only has the cultural pessimism, and the parade through the institutions attacked America’s culture, but our banking system has been hit as well. The federal reserve, set up by banking architect Paul Warburg, is a European-style central bank. Complete with all the inherent problems of the old world. Banking principles diametrically opposed by the founders. Alien concepts such as backing money by debt, instead of gold. Lending out more money than you have in the vault. Printing up money so banks can stimulate their economy they just crashed. All this so bankers can charge more for interest and snap up assets with straw buyers in recession markets. Thanks to the fed, congress can bypass the public’s representatives and wage war with money that has been literally created out of thin air. Are any of these american ways? Did the founders set up the constitution so Antonio Gramsci, a cultural marxist from the Frankfurt School of Critical Theory, and John Maynard Keynes, an economist indoctrinated in the environment of our former enemy, should stamp their war-torn European philosophies into the very soul of our nation? Something isn’t right here.

PAUL
In Keynesian economics, they endorse the federal reserve system. And, to print money out of thin air is really fraud, because they’re stealing from people, stealing the value from some people, so they’re completely different. But Keynesianism is not socialism, but it leads to socialism. Socialism is where the government controls supply and demand and prices and the whole works. But Keynesianism allows the market to function to a degree with a lot of intervention. A lot of regulations, a lot of taxes, planning, a lot of inflation.

NARRATOR
How can the original intent of the founders shine through, when our entire economic system and cultural institutions have been perverted by ideologies of a world we worked so desperately to get away from.

GRIFFIN
The new deal, like the great society and like the universal peace proposals advanced by president Wilson, all of these presidential programs that have expanded the power of the government have been the implementation of collectivism in America. Starting about the time of Woodrow Wilson, the country at that point was pretty much an individualistic country, based on the principle of the individual being supreme and government being servant of the people. Starting with World War I, starting with Woodrow Wilson, on down through World War II, on down through Viet Nam war, on down through the war on terrorism, all these wars are always used to frighten Americans into accepting the expansion of government, supposedly to protect us from a terrible enemy.

VIEIRA
The actual expansion came about through the supreme court adding some words to the commerce clause. Congress has the power to regulate commerce or whatever affects commerce, and that’s a rather radical departure from the constitution, because imagine if you added those words to every other page in the constitution, why shouldn’t you, you added to one, you add them to others. You have essentially unlimited government. But that has done is it has given congress the power to control not only all true commercial activities but also things that are entirely local, that are related to commercial activities. So, for instance, you have the gun free schools law. Based on what theory? A gun goes through commerce and eventually ends up in somebody’s hands, and therefore he’s within a thousand feet of school or whatever. And so congress can regulate his possession at that point in time. Well, his possession at that point in time is not a commercial transaction, by any stretch of the imagination. How can congress regulate it? Well, this implement that he’s holding in his hand at one time moved through commerce. Well, if they follow that theory out, they can control every aspect of your life. How much cornflakes do you eat in the morning? Well, you eat one bowl, maybe you should eat half a bowl of cornflakes. Can there be a statute telling you how many cornflakes to eat in the morning, sure. Because where did those cornflakes come from? Well, they came from Battle Creek, Michigan.

BUCHANAN
The supreme court has perverted the constitution, making decisions that used to be made democratically at the local level. The congress has the power in the constitution, Article III, Section 2, to circumscribe the jurisdiction of the supreme court, and say, stay out of that area. That is our area, that is the state’s area, you are not to get into that, judges don’t decide these issues, people do.

NARRATOR
After the formation of the fed, and selling the public on the New Deal, it wasn’t long before Congress realized it had both the ability and the philosophical justification to print up endless amounts of elastic currency. What we call fiat money. Congress realized it needed more and more money in order to service the growing addiction of socialist benefits under Roosevelt’s New Deal.

BAEHR
The federal reserve, when it came in, aggravated all the worst problems of the economy. I mean, it’s aggravated and caused the great depression, it’s aggravated and caused the last depression, and it will continue to cause more depressions. Before the federal reserve, every economic system has ups and downs, but they corrected themselves much more quickly and they corrected themselves because the people had freedom to shift their attention to be able to create solutions for the problem and exercise their god-given wisdom and intelligence to be able to do business with each other.

NARRATOR
Ever wonder why congressmen were so eager to sacrifice tariffs for NAFTA’s “free” trade? It’s because tariffs don’t amount to much when congress can print up all the fiat money it wants through the federal reserve system. Yes: monetizing endless fiat money was the answer opinion leader economist John Maynard Keynes suggested to Roosevelt in his 1933 open letter. John Maynard Keynes:

JOHN MAYNARD KEYNES (return to Terrible Accent Theater)
I lay overwhelming emphasis on the increase of national purchasing power resulting in governmental expenditure which is financed by loans and is not merely a transfer through taxation from existing incomes. Nothing else counts in comparison to this.

NARRATOR
By these words, Keynes, the most prominent economist of the time, laid out the philosophical rationale for endless government borrowing, and endless government spending, of fiat money. Roosevelt bit.

PAUL
By now, we’re addicted. We’re addicted to the programs and even the banking system is addicted to ever increasing money supply and artificially making interest rates low. And, in the short run, it does seem to help. Just recently, the fed pumped in two hundred billion dollars and the stock market loved it. But, in time, when everybody knows you created two hundred billion dollars in new money, the value of the dollar goes down. Which is what’s happened since then.

NARRATOR
Keynes knew exactly what he was doing. No two men did more to destroy the original intent of the founders and set the groundwork for the cultural marxism and corporate fascism that was to later flourish as competing totalitarian ideologies, hellbent on destroying a self-governing republic that sought to practice true, free market capitalism.

BUCHANAN
You can go back to a gold standard in say, a thousand an ounce. But what do you do if they keep spending and spending, and borrowing and borrowing, people suddenly realize that these dollars aren’t really worth that much gold, and they will demand the gold.

NARRATOR
Sounds to me, given the state of affairs we’re in today, well over ten trillion dollars in debt, immersed in perpetual wars, getting more secular and socialist by the minute, fascist multinationals dominating congress, that we have allowed serious corruption to seep into the american experiment. We may think we won our independence from Europe, defeated communism, and Nazi fascism, but did we?

GRIFFIN
We have traveled the road to totalitarianism. Almost almost to the very end.

PAUL
Austrian free market economics is really the answer and that’s the system that we should be following and, more or less, even though it was not known at the time our country was founded, more or less, classical economics and classical liberalism that was very close to what the Austrians teach today.

NARRATOR
Tragic that wine drinking, pot smoking, Engle challenged baby boomers would so recklessly thwart the wisdom of the founding fathers by allowing their banking system and economy to be so influenced by european financial philosophies. Philosophies that over the past century have created a living hell of endless wars and empires, as we have seen. The intent of the founders was to establish a nation that was different from the ways of Europe. And they did. The United States is different. Not only that, contrary to the propaganda originated by critical theory, it’s the greatest nation that has ever existed. America is not a universal nation. Or a multi-cultural nation. As CFR globalists writing in Foreign Affairs would have reality challenged baby boomers believe. It’s a distinct nation. Distinct with its own language, laws, history, and cultural background. We are different from the rest of the world. Yes, we even drive on the right side of the road because europeans drive on the left.

POLITICALLY CORRECT SPEECH

NARRATOR
So, how come the media seems oblivious to all this? The media that’s looking out for folks, never discusses fiat currency, cultural marxism, media consolidation, Keynesian economics, NAFTA, GATT, WTO, or multinational corporations, in any sort of critical way? How come the mainstream media downplays people who protest against free trade? The World Trade Organization? Or call for protective tariffs?

BAEHR
We do detailed economic studies of the box office, called Our Report to the Entertainment Industry, where we get the studio heads to come, and the studio heads have been moving towards more movies with faith and values. Every one of the six major studios has started a division to do movies with faith and values. Where the most erosion of values, and the greatest attack on values occurring, is the independent film market. Independent films, you tend to have a lot of anti-american films, a lot of anti faith and values, anti-christian films, and they do not do well at the box office. Within the television industry, we find more of an attack on faith and values, mainly because the television industry is not focused on the vote. You see, in movies, each person votes for their movie. They know they have to appeal to who’s going to vote for them at the box office. You have to separate out the movie industry, which seems to be moving counter to much of the other media.

NARRATOR
How come the mainstream media acts as an apologist for multi-national corporations? And fails to take a deep look at the endless expansion of government or its secret partnerships with members of the military industrial banking complex? Instead, all we see is endless programs threatening the world with U.S. military might. Blonde, aggressive women with plastic breasts. And endless TV spots offering insomniacs pills to cure their cheese and dairy product challenged stomachs. Seems to me, to get away with all this cultural marxist propaganda, the media must be in on the deal. Systematically avoiding certain issues. Narrowing the spectrum of speech. Redefining words. Spinning events. And ignoring, invalidating, and or blackballing any author, filmmaker, or candidate that speaks the truth.

RESTORING THE REPUBLIC

NARRATOR
Americans and reality challenged baby boomers need to wake up and smell the constitution.

PAUL
The famous quote from Franklin was that after you left the constitutional convention, “we’ve given you a republic, if you can keep it.” And obviously we haven’t done a very good job.

SPEAKER
I think if people want to live in a democracy or a republic such as ours, then they’re more than free to do so, and we should lead by example, not by force.

NARRATOR
Citizens need to get familiar with the original intent of the founders. And realize that the forces of cultural marxism have been raping and pillaging the United States for decades. But to realize the dream, and keep this magnificent republic alive, all americans need to do is take three steps: 1) Disconnect from all sources of cultural Marxist propaganda, media and lifestyles. 2) Don’t patronize the largest Fed member banks and fascist multinational corporations. 3) Connect up with the original intent of the Founders and get active applying the U.S. Constitution. Americans, and history challenged baby boomers, should understand what it means to be a self-governing nation. They need to understand the constitution from a philosophical point of view, not just a mechanical point of view. Why were certain things emphasized and others not. Why is a well-regulated militia necessary to the security of a free state? Why is the term general welfare the only term that appears twice? What principles lay behind the constitution and why? If citizens better understood these things, they would be able to go about their lives with a greater appreciation of the rare opportunity they have been given to live in the american experiment. Instead of pessimism, they would have the realization that America has just begun. That the future will be even more incredible than anyone imagined. Take three steps and it will happen. Yes, the cultural marxists in the media and the universities will scream and dramatize. Yes, there will be a percentage of religious fanatics that attack the United States, or hate us, because we flourish and prosper. And yes, there will always be secular robots and iconoclasts that hate traditional values, and deny that America was populated by christians, or influenced by biblical principles. But the founders somehow knew all this. For they had studied thousands of years of history, and countless failed civilizations. From these lessons, they built the constitution of the United States. And this document has succeeded as no other. The blueprint for the longest standing republic in history is in your hands. Eventually, even the cultural marxists, the corporate fascists, the islamic terrorists, and our current special interest dominated congress, will see the light. And become part of the general welfare. In the meantime, don’t give liberty challenged members of society the power to enslave us all. Just because a relative few have so little faith in the original intent of the founders and the United States constitution.

BUCHANAN
The constitution of the United States represents no threat whatsoever to our form of government.

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Conor Friedersdorf: An Almost Irrelevant Man

(I offer this introductory note on December 1st, 2013: I wrote this in a rush of great anger, and have avoided revisiting it because I have no desire to re-experience that anger. I apologize for any issues of spelling or grammar that are extant due to lack of revision. I offer that apology, and no other.)

(Almost all supporting text and links, are done through footnotes, so a reader might quickly see the title of the article, as well as immediate supporting information, without having to hover or click on a link.)

A post prompted for a simple practical reason: over the next few months there will be a number of significant fights, the most important over gun regulation, and it will be valuable to perhaps give context to some intellectual partisans. I settle on Conor Friedersdorf first, because he is often perceived as someone outside of the traditional partisanship of left and right, a man devoted entirely to reason and honest discourse, and his opinions are often presented and re-circulated in this context, perhaps the most notable, “Why I Refuse To Vote For Barack Obama”, where his argument that his objection to the president’s abuse of executive power prevented him from further supporting the president, and why he was voting for Gary Johnson. He was perhaps the most high profile dissenter, that I know of, of voting for either major party this past election. No doubt, if he makes any pronouncements on any legislation on guns, or actions taken against the NRA, he’ll have equally lofty pronouncements, and they may well carry equivalent weight. For this post, I did my best to read everything written by him in The Atlantic from the past year and a half, with the purpose to both honestly inform, to provide a solid background of his work, as well as bluntly tactical: I do think providing such past context will demonstrate that Mr. Friedersdorf is clearly an ideological writer, cleaving first and foremost to libertarian priorities then the facts of any problem, and this will destroy some of the moral weight of his pronouncements. Further: I think the prominence of Friedersdorf as perhaps the only ideological radical in any centrist, mainstream publication, by which I mean a man who looks at every problem almost solely through the perspective of ideology, demonstrates something of the larger media context now, of what views are allowed to be radical, and what radical views a magazine might point to as a demonstration that it has a diversity of views.

I hesitated with writing this piece, as I am too often consumed with animus, and I do not think the world needs any more of it. The position of reader and a professional writer such as Mr. Friedersdorf, at this present time is one almost designed to generate this mutual feeling. The writer must produce endless content to satisfy the demand of perpetual, unending appetites. He is assailed in comments for reasons of ideology and technical flaws, which further distances the writer from the reader – rather than being able to imagine an ideal reader, they very clearly meet the unideal reader. The best, most convenient format for mass content is the authoritative think piece, an analysis or opinion on some current subject, and the attitude of such pieces, as opposed to journalism or fiction, ends up being a variation of “I will tell you what is the proper attitude according to my expert analysis”, and this itself creates an alienation between reader and writer, a teacher lecturing pupils. The reader expresses anger at the writer in the comments, and this further distances writer from reader, intensifies the feeling of isolation between the two, and reinforces the lecture posture, a well-behaved instructor telling the huddled masses what’s what. That one is lectured to on political issues only intensifies one sense of powerlessness – political institutions will not respond, and now you will be told how you are to blame, how your dissent is wrong, how you should all do with less by a writer who has a great deal more. I have been guilty of this as much as many, never issuing violent threats, but often replying angrily to the writer, out of the indignity of being lectured to, of being treated as a moral inferior, a less knowing creature – all these things. My most recent angry replies were to Mr. Friedersdorf’s blog post where he eulogized Ron Paul’s departure from Congress, and to one of his posts on the Newtown massacre. If I had greater strength of character, I would make some attempt at apology, but I lack it. I am to some degree a broken man: were I a landscape, I would be a frozen lake on which a broken rainbow casts its light, this prismatic line almost entirely an intense, bloody red, the other colors almost entirely greyed out. I wish simply to win certain fights, most notably on gun control – not for the purpose of humiliating anyone on the other side, including Mr. Friedersdorf, but for the material and social benefits of such fights. My post title is partly malign and partly not: I believe Mr. Friedersdorf to have relevance, but on a much more restricted, more partisan spectrum than assumed.

I will be very critical of Mr. Friedersdorf, so I will first praise him: as a journalist, he often conveys the attitude of a respectful and diligent listener. He did not observe #OWS from afar and cast judgement, but actively engaged with them1. When the legislative council handed down its points, he quoted them in full, gave each individual dissent, and did not just summarize them dismissively2. He spoke with equal respect to RNC delegates, treating them not as primal creatures who might be the source for quick caricatures, but simple folk, and by simple, I do not mean uncomplicated, but not as political ideas clothed in human skin3. He gave a thorough, diligent description of police brutality incidents that took place at #OWS, possibly the only thing of its kind in a centrist publication4. He gave equal attention to such incidents that took place at UC Davis5. His description of torture practices during the Bush administration and the effects of drone warfare are uncompromising and consistent, again one of the more radical, on-going critiques to appear in such a publication6 – Jane Mayer of The New Yorker, of course, writes on this subject as well, but less frequently, and more focused on journalism centered on specific instances, with Friedersdorf’s only equivalent in this regard Glenn Greenwald, formerly of Salon, now of The Guardian.

He describes as a libertarian, with his writing not devoted to any specific ideology7, but his concerns almost entirely map onto libertarian ones with regard to the coercive power and size of the state: an end to the drug war, gay marriage, the intrusive power of the NSA, the war on whistleblowers, the president not consulting congress for the libyan war, an end to federal subsidies for agriculture, greater sovereignty for individual states, the unconstitutionality of health care reform, entitlement reform and the debt burdens of greedy public sector unions.

At no point is an issue brought up that might not involve the libertarian concern for a smaller, less intrusive state. For instance, I would argue the most pressing issue of the last four years has been the level of unemployment and the amount of people who have dropped out of the workforce out of despair, and the poverty accompanying this lack of work. I think it is possible to write about this, raising the issues of why there is work lacking in that area, easily, in a manner that the impetus for writing on the problem is not a state or free market solution, but the urgency of the problem itself. One focuses on the issue not because there is a solution that your partisans could provide, there may be neither, but because the problem demands to be looked at. What is striking in Mr. Friedersdorf’s work, is that despite this long-term crisis, there is barely any mention of such poverty or unemployment, unless as it relates to size of the state issues. There are two pieces on how mandatory licensing keeps the unemployed from selling goods and services8, there is a post on how the drug war most directly affects the poor9, and a post on the possibility of financial compensation for organ donors10. There’s also a piece calling for an austerity budget, despite Paul Krugman calling such a move a disaster, and despite the horrific effects it would have on unemployment and the poor, for the simple reason that such budget cutting should not be put off11.

Were you to ask me in this past year the most pressing issues an american family would encounter over the next fifty years that overlap with state involvement (though this does not preclude private market involvement), I would put down energy projects and carbon taxes to deal with global warming; gun control; campaign finance regulation and reform; banking regulation and reform; runaway state legislatures passing xenophobic bills on self-deportation, gays, and muslims; runaway state legislatures passing bills restricting abortion and contraception; infrastructure repair and high speed rail; increased or more effectively targeted federal education subsidies; student debt relief; a rise in my state’s pollution and cutback in its services because of industry deregulation, a refusal to raise income taxes, along with low taxes and giveaways for any company that moved to the state. When Mr. Friederdorf gives an imaginary anecdotal list, they include your father being killed by a drone strike, getting beaten down by a cop, being deported after the NSA listens in on a phonecall, poor language skills due to low quality public sector teachers, and OSHA over-regulation of halal meat12.

There is, in fact, a hostile attitude towards relief of any kind in these difficult times, other than calling for an end to the war on drugs. Mr. Friedersdorf, a man who describes growing up in an upper-middle class Orange County neighbourhood, travelling to Europe and around the world, attending undergrad and grad school, does not quite speak from having known a life of need. He appears to mistake his life and those close to him for everyone else’s, writing of the possibility in “large parts of america” of being able, on a pure whim, to quit one’s job, borrow $100,000, and spend a year studying journalism13. His description of a typical grad student is someone who supports themselves at the Kennedy school of government by being a summertime yoga instructor14. The possibility of student debt relief is dismissed in his only post on the subject, “Pandering to a Privileged Class”: with the example of the Obamas cited as the only example. Here were two people at the top of their class, from excellent schools, who ended up at choice law firms. Yes, they had some difficulty paying their student bills starting out, but why should such people in such choice circumstances get relief? Aren’t most students with outstanding student loans like them? Money available for possible student relief should instead be spent on full scholarships15. To hand out money for student debt relief, according to Mr. Friedersdorf, in “a country with impoverished immigrants and struggling high school dropouts and hard-pressed single mothers” is perverse. This group, those in such need, are never addressed again by Mr. Friedersdorf. One can only assume they will be helped by the end of the drug war and being able to sell food on the streets.

The constitutionality of the Affordable Care Act is brought up, and Mr. Friedersdorf explains why it’s reasonable for some to view it as unconstitutional16. He never otherwise brings up the issue of medical bills or what should be done about health costs. He states why he thinks women’s contraception should not be covered under the government plan: doing so would be unfair to those who don’t use such contraception, such as lesbians, or those who don’t use it as much as the sluttier sluts (yes, dear reader, those are my words, not his)17. He gives no mention of why women should be singled out for this exceptional treatment, nor of any of the wide variety of people who, through various lifestyle choices, may incur higher health care costs than others18. He is deeply critical of catholic institutions being coerced to purchase contraception against their values – though he writes of an obvious distinction between a catholic affiliated institution and others, he gives no basis for why such an institution should have a right not to distribute such contraception (even though its employees may want it), while a business run by a fervent catholic does not have such a right (“Federal Court Rules That Hobby Lobby Is Not Exempt From Obamacare’s Contraception Mandate”, by Amanda Peterson Beadle), or whether catholic hospitals with or without government funding, should be able to refuse to provide contraception to rape victims, as Linda McMahon advocated in her 2012 governor’s bid (“Linda McMahon: Catholic Hospitals Should Be Allowed To Deny Emergency Contraception To Rape Victims” by Aviva Shen)19. These points, that lesbians should have to pay for contraception, and that catholic institutions should have to buy it, are cited as examples of liberal intolerance for values different from their own, comparable to those who refuse to let gay couples get married20. That these might be examples of something else, an intolerance of women exerting certain rights is not considered. There was no war on women, he re-assures us. There are simply some politicians who are pro-life, and some who had sound economic reasons for not subsidizing women’s contraception, and the democratic party exploited women’s fears over this21.

The growing income gap, the other major story of the past two years, gets only incidental mention. That there are different classes is conceded, but it is not, despite what Charles Murray says, defined by the beer they drink – “sometimes [it's] Charles Murrayesque elites who ought to step outside their self-imposed confines, other times it is the white working class that ought to do so”22. We are lectured on the folly that successful commerce builds on, or can be said to be dependent in any way with public projects, that, yes, an entrepreneur can claim to build something entirely apart from society, as the same public resources are available to everyone, the successful entrepreneur and everyone else23. When Mitt Romney says that he doesn’t care about poor people, Friedersdorf assures us that very rarely do politicians care about poor people. This is bad, and it would be good if it were different, but meanwhile, we should give Romney credit for speaking so honestly – “shouldn’t we prefer a political discourse where forthrightness of that kind isn’t treated as a fault?”24 The irrationality of the statements of the “47% tape” are addressed, but never how such callousness might influence Romney’s policies towards the poor and dependent25. We are also assured, without evidence, that Obama says equally contemptible things about his supporters behind closed doors – in a rather sloppy and dishonest misreading, this tape is described as equal to Obama’s “clinging to guns and religion” speech26. This rather astonishing moment when the class divide waas laid bare, does not bring about any discussion of the divide or any remedies. In his piece, “Why I Refuse To Vote For Mitt Romney, his lack of fiscal conservatism is brought up, but the man’s policies towards the middle class and the less well off go entirely unmentioned27.

The only mention those in the working class and the service industry get is through pieces lamenting the expense and power of unions28. They are blamed entirely for the bankruptcy of California – that effects of Proposition 13 are never brought up, nor the loss of tax revenue through the loss of federal defense work29. I do not suggest that Proposition 13 would necessarily be the sole culprit, only that it is given no mention whatsoever. The difficulties of the middle class are never made the specific focus of a post either, though attempts to claw back revnues from the very wealthy, such as Eduardo Saverin, who give up their american citizenship to avoid paying taxes, are given two posts30. A related middle class issue, such as debt collection practices against those who got credit cards and now make onerous payments at post-teaser rates, is never given notice.

I make this lengthy overview to make clear that Mr. Friedersdorf’s perspective is not entirely our own. He is like a man who sees certain spectra of light very well, and is entirely blind to others. He notes immediately, and is outraged, by drone killings and illegal wiretapping; the hunger, the poverty, the desperation in his own country do not appear to exist. That his reader might have had a very different life, with student debt, hospital bills, great difficulty finding work, seems to go unnoticed as well – the assumption is that you are of the same social class as he. Discussing one of Charle Murray’s ideas, he says “the conceit is that America’s ruling class, including journalists like me and cosmopolitan readers like you, exist in a cultural bubble.” As if having a curiousity to read, for ideas, for argument, that would cause you to read The Atlantic could necessarily be linked to one social and economic class.

This affects his approach to his work on drone warfare and executive overreach, which is good, though also limited, I think, by viewing it in the context only in ideological terms. It is extraordinarily repetitive, and I think unnecessarily so. The key points – that the libyan war was unauthourized by congress, the secret kill list, the war on whistleblowers, wiretapping – are reiterated over and over again, an example of the hubris of Obama in his seizure of such great executive power31. Despite his stating that he is a jaded man, Mr. Friedersdorf presents this as a manichean issue. Obama was good when he ran for president, then he acted badly when he took over the executive, the implication that executive power itself corrupts. Mr. Friedersdorf never gives us any hint or insight as to what may have happened – executive powers simply corrupt32. That Obama may have attempted the surge in Afghanistan because of the possibility of providing some secure protection for Afghans from the taliban after american forces leave is never brought up. That Obama may have wanted to stay in Iraq longer so that there would be time for certain native institutions to develop allowing for the Sunni and Kurd minorities to have some possibility of safety is never said. I am not saying those reasons are necessarily valid, or that they couldn’t be countered – I am saying that they go entirely unmentioned. Mr. Friedersdorf says that he is against absolutist thinking, but his thinking here is absolutist – Obama said he would begin the pull-out from Afghanistan at a certain date and he didn’t – this is a broken promise. He makes this same approach in another area which I find troublesome – he condemns Obama for not closing Guantanamo, though it is well-known that the president did make such an effort, and that the congress, especially the republicans, immediately reacted to this, often in the most reactionary and hysteric terms. There is nothing wrong with Mr. Friedersdorf arguing for closure despite this factor, but, as far as I can tell, he does not ever mention congress’s part in this, ever33.

It is when Mr. Friedersdorf argues in favor of two political candidates, first Ron Paul, then Gary Johnson, in reaction to these policies that my ire rises. He considers Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan, and the entire republican primary field except for Jon Huntsman and Johnson to be unacceptable, for reasons of fiscal policy and the war state. He considers the policies of Barack Obama utterly amoral, quite likely illegal, and questions the moral calibre of any person who accepts Obama given his policies in this area34. Leaving aside the racism of Ron Paul for the moment, an obvious, major obstacle that would keep many from supporting Ron Paul would be his utter destruction of the social safety net35. Mr. Friedersdorf never brings up issues of unemployment relief or medical bills in any part of his blog, and he doesn’t bring them up here – they simply do not exist. Where for many of his readers this would be a difficult balance – however much they want the drone program to end, can they afford to have the floor for their wages threatened? what if things suddenly go very wrong for their chronicly ill sister? would there be any medical relief whatsoever under a Paul administration? – these are of no concern to Mr. Friedersdorf, and he does not appear to expect such issues to be raised. After all, we are all cosmopolitans, members of America’s ruling class. Those anxious voters have nothing to fear, argues Mr. Friedersdorf – Paul will successfully end the drug war and overseas commitments, while his more extreme ideas related to gold and the fed will be stopped by congress36. Those who have seen how easily republicans eviscerate the social safety net, while affirming a strong defense and family values at home, may well believe that Mr. Friedersdorf has things very much the wrong way around. This one of the only times he touches on the extraordinary negative economic impact a Paul presidency might bring about – he usually prefers to repeat over and over the morality of Paul’s small state vision and the amorality of Obama’s security state. He has better things to think about than the evisceration of the safety net, and he does not expect his readers to think about it either.

A brief aside: this utter indifference to the social welfare of the most vulnerable of society is not exclusive to his enthusiasm for Ron Paul, but continues with his son, Rand Paul, as well. Rand is often celebrated in Mr. Friederdorf’s posts for his brave stands against the TSA, the surveillance state, and the war state37. Though Friederdorf extols “reason” and “civilized discourse”, he does not seem to make mention of when Rand compared the U.S. government to Nazi germany, when he compared the upholding of Obamacare to Dred Scot, or when he repeated claims about the National Weather Bureau stockpiling ammunition38. When Rand talks about how the Kentucky mining industry should be able to regulate itself, after he receives contributions from coal companies such as Murray Energy, which coerces its workers into donating to the company’s chosen candidates, and those same mines collapse and kill miners after numerous safety violations, don’t expect it to be mentioned39. When Rand blocks disaster relief, blocks relief for disabled and elderly refugees, or, most egregiously, Rand stops passage of a jobs for veterans bill because he didn’t get something he wanted, it will not be noted by Mr. Friederdorf40. A photo of a maimed veteran is useful as a show of anti-war piety, but when it comes to getting work for them, that has nothing to do with libertarianism, or the smaller state: they’re not cosmopolitans, they’re not part of america’s ruling class, and they can go fuck themselves.

We can now transition to the period where Paul’s racist newsletters were re-discovered, the public made well aware of their contents. Even if Paul was in some way responsible for the vile content of these newsletters, Mr. Friedersdorf argued, his desire to end the war on drugs, drone warfare, and other executive excesses made him the morally superior choice to Barack Obama. There was a small intellectual game being played here – any person who took over the executive while the drug war was on-going, while the war in Afghanistan was going, etc. became less moral than any man outside who sought the presidency and claimed they wished to end those policies, as the executive’s hands immediately became stained with the blood of the dead41. This rather cheap intellectual game might be played by anyone – a member of the KKK, a rapist, a pedophile, Charles Manson – might all claim moral superiority to the president, according to this calculus, because they had not killed as many people with their bare hands as had died from drones or the Afghan war. It is a cheap game, and a simple-minded one. That such newsletters might indicate the pathology of a disturbed man, and such a figure should not be anywhere near the power of the presidency went unmentined – the machinery of government itself, its ability to inflict war and coerce, was seen as an unconscionable evil separate from those who might take charge. As before, the effect of Ron Paul’s policies on the safety net was never brought into the calculus.

After this debacle, Mr. Friedersdorf’s attention now shifted to the libertarian candidate in the general election, Gary Johnson. Again, the music was the same as before: those who supported Barack Obama were morally compromised because of his war state policies, as opposed to those who voted for Johnson, who, as Mr. Friedersdorf reiterated again and again, would end drone warfare, would close Guantanamo Bay, would finally stop the process of endless wars.

This is where we might look more in-depth at Gary Johnson, who is far less known to the general public than Ron Paul. Mr. Friedersdorf wrote an early profile of the man, “The Zen of Gary Johnson”, and I excerpt its essence here:

Gary Johnson, 58, served as governor of New Mexico from 1995 to 2003, ousting an incumbent by a 10 point margin, and handily winning reelection four years later. In his first months in office, he vetoed outright almost half of all bills brought to his desk in order to cut spending. He announced his support for legalizing marijuana in his second term, becoming the highest ranking politician in the US government to take that controversial position.

We’ve got differences, but he’s a successful two-term governor, a fiscal hawk, and almost alone in advocating an end to America’s unaffordable wars (drugs, Iraq, Afghanistan, and now Libya). He seemed like a younger Ron Paul with executive experience and without the gold obsession or racist newsletter baggage.

“You’ll never go wrong by telling the truth. Never. I told my cabinet, it’s going to be the truth. If any of you get yourselves in a situation, that we’ve made a mistake or whatever, I don’t want us to ever make the statement that we can’t comment because of legal restraint. We all need to comment. We all need to tell the truth all the time. And we’ll let the lawyers catch up with the truth.”

“Letting the lawyers catch up with the truth” may be the most radical anti-establishment position in contemporary American politics. Would a president who actually always told the truth be a fantastic success? A dangerous failure? Personally, it’s a gamble I’d like to take.

I don’t think this deviates from the overall tone of the full piece. No further details of his governorship of New Mexico are given. I should note here that several times Mr. Friedersdorf chastises others for the sycophantic or sentimental attitudes towards the current president42.

This, however, is not the only profile of Johnson that was written. A far fuller, more complex, more disturbing, and far, far better one was put together just before election day by Marc Ames, for the Not Safe For Work Corporation: “The Gary Johnson Swindle and the Degradation of Third Party Politics”. Mr. Ames, along with his erstwhile associate Matt Taibbi, and the bete noir of The Atlantic, Moe Tkacik43, are to my mind, far truer radicals than Mr. Friedersdorf, critical of the president’s security state policies, as well as the disgusting abandonment of the worst off in society. They are of a very different sensibility than my own, but I greatly appreciate them for the same reason Lincoln praised Grant: they fight.

“Swindle” gives Johnson’s background fuller detail*: he cut taxes, cut social program spending, took a very hardline attitude towards crime, including drug related crimes, and promised to veto any bills that involved new spending for drug treatment centers. The major achievements cited by Johnson during his presidential run (none of the following are mentioned in the Friedersdorf profile) include cutting welfare spending by 30%, privatizing half the state prisons, and allowing non-union labor to be used in public construction. A notable public project was the widening of a New Mexico highway which ended up costing the state over $350 million dollars, requiring the governor to borrow the money through a federal bond. This project, again, goes entirely unmentioned in both “The Zen of Gary Johnson” or any subsequent writing by Mr. Friedersdorf on the man. The only specific legislative point mentioned is that, yes, in his second term, Johnson decided to legalize marijuana, though, again, unmentioned in Mr. Friedersdorf’s profile – he refused to give blanket pardons to anyone serving drug convictions in New Mexico jails.

More interesting than Johnson himself are the campaign associates this profile brings up. They include Maureen Otis, the woman heading “Our American Initiative”, the nonprofit backing Johnson, a figure with close ties to the hard-right anti-immigrant Minutemen movement, and who ran a company, “American Caging”, involved in minority vote suppression. Another associate, Jim Lacy, was involved in dirty tricks in California elections, sending mailers featuring pictures of liberal icons such as Robert Kennedy mixed in with conservative names so as to confuse democrats into voting republican. Lacy also backed minutemen groups, produced birther propaganda, and was involved in lawsuits to get Obama to release his birth certificate. There’s also Joe Hunter, a spokesman for anti-immigrant group “Utahns For Official English”, which managed to make english the only official language of the state. Rouding out the group behind Johnson was Roger Stone, a dirty trickster who started out with Nixon, and has helped various republican presidential candidates in the murkier, dirtier parts of a campaign. One achievement was his organization in 2000, of the Brooks brother riot, which disrupted the presidential vote count in Miami44.

More significantly, in 1980, he was involved in getting Roger Anderson, that year’s third party candidate on the ballot in New York, thereby splitting the democrat vote between Anderson and Carter, handing the state’s electoral votes to Carter. A similar strategy may have been planned in 2012 as well, with the democratic vote split between Obama and the pot-friendly Johnson, handing vital state votes to Romney. Though this story is well-sourced, none of this is mentioned, even simply to refute it, in Mr. Friedersdorf’s writing on Johnson.

This leads to other relevant details that I found through this excellent piece by Mr. Ames, none of which get mention by Mr. Friedersdorf in his writing on Johnson. Remember: he stresses again and again that the reason he can vote for a clean conscience for the libertarian candidate Gary Johnson is for his record on drones, closing Guantanamo, and an end to belligerence overseas. He cites the use of drones in Pakistan as his top dealbreaker in “Why I Refuse to Vote for Barack Obama”.

I quote his endorsement of Johnson from that piece:

There is a candidate on the ballot in at least 47 states, and probably in all 50, who regularly speaks out against that post-9/11 trend, and all the individual policies that compose it. His name is Gary Johnson, and he won’t win. [the link goes to a short profile of Johnson by The Atlantic's Molly Ball - it also contains none of the details of the Ames piece] I am supporting him because he ought to. Liberals and progressives care so little about having critiques of the aforementioned policies aired that vanishingly few will even urge that he be included in the upcoming presidential debates.

The following clips that I use here were all available, on the web, easily available for everyone to examine and make mention of.

Here is Johnson in an interview on Fox News with Andrew Napolitano. It deals with Guantanamo Bay.

NAPOLITANO: Governor, should we close Guantanamo Bay? Should they be either tried in federal district courts, or returned to their countries, or should we keep it open, and leave them uncharged for the rest of their lives?

JOHNSON: Well, when president Obama didn’t close Guantanamo Bay, and that was one of his promises, I really looked into the issue, and I had a lot of prominent libertarians tell me, if it weren’t for Guantanamo that we would have to create that situation somewhere else. So, I’ve kinda been sold on the notion that this is something we have to have whether it’s…if it’s not Guantanamo, it’s going to be somewhere else…that these are enemy combatants, and not U.S. citizens, I’ve been wooed over to the side that there’s a reason for keeping it open.

Now, Johnson in an interview with Jamie Weinstein of the Daily Caller,“Gary Johnson’s strange foreign policy”, on Afghanistan policy, drone strikes, and some very confused thinking on Iran:

Libertarian Party presidential contender Gary Johnson has been portrayed as an anti-war candidate, but that isn’t quite so clear.

Johnson sat down with reporters and editors from The Daily Caller last week, generously providing his time to answer any and all questions, no matter how difficult or ludicrous.

But when pressed on foreign policy topics throughout the interview, Johnson gave answers that didn’t always seem to add up and were often, at best, unorthodox positions for a man who has been painted as a non-interventionist.

Johnson said that while he wants to end the war in Afghanistan, that doesn’t mean he would necessarily stop drone attacks against terrorists in Pakistan or Yemen, even though he believes they create more enemies than they kill.

“I would want leave all options on the table,” Johnson said.

But if Johnson plans on leaving Afghanistan, how does he plan to leave the option of a drone campaign against al-Qaida elements in Pakistan on the table?

“So now you have the U.S. bases that exist in those areas, do we shut down those military bases? Perhaps not,” he suggested, taking an odd position for a supposed anti-war candidate.

“I would completely withdraw our military presence,” he further expounded. “Does withdrawing our military presence from Afghanistan mean that we would still have a base open in Afghanistan if they allowed us to keep a base open? Perhaps.”

On Iran, Johnson said that if “Iran launches a nuclear warhead they can be assured that they will no longer exist.”

“None of their country will be left to stand and that will be from Israel,” he said, confident that the threat of nuclear retaliation would prevent the Islamic Republic from using any nuclear weapon it obtained.

Johnson went on to say that he doesn’t think Iran has seriously been engaged diplomatically. So what would Johnson say that hasn’t been said to get Iran to reconsider developing a nuclear weapon?

“Look, ‘Don’t develop a nuclear weapon,’” he proffered.

You don’t think that’s been said, TheDC asked?

“’So if we open up trade with you all, we’d like to be a trading partner,’” he added.

Seriously, you don’t think that has been put on the table in negotiations, TheDC asked?

Johnson then pivoted and suggested that there wasn’t any evidence that Iran was developing, or ever wanted, a nuclear weapon.

“Am I not correct in saying that Iran has never voiced that they are developing a nuclear weapon, nor do they have any intention of using a nuclear weapon against the United States?” he asked.

“That’s never actually been voiced. I don’t know where that has come from, but it hasn’t been from Iran.”

So if he doesn’t believe Iran is developing a nuclear weapon or has any intention of developing a nuclear weapon, why is he even suggesting negotiations? Shouldn’t we just open up trade with Iran without asking for anything in return in that case?

“I would be in that camp,” he conceded.

Finally, with regard to ending wars overseas, here is Johnson on a Fox News panel shows, outflanking Obama on the right, arguing for a strike team to go into Uganda to kill Joseph Kony and the Lord’s Resistance Army. He argues this is different from Libya, because Kony is committing genocide. Like Charles Krauthammer, a guest on the panel, I am unable to understand the distinction between the Libyan rebels being wiped out and what’s taking place in Uganda. I should emphasize that these are simple interviews, and that Mr. Friedersdorf felt that Paul Ryan made clear that he was not qualified to be president based on his performance at a VP debate: “The VP Debate Cinches It: Paul Ryan Is Unqualified to Step In as POTUS”. Ask yourself while reading this, in terms of coherence and focus, how different this is from anything Herman Cain has ever said:

FOX NEWS GAL: So the president’s said that he’s sending a hundred troops to Central Africa, to combat the LRA, Joseph Kony. Would you support this if you were president? Is this something you would do?

JOHNSON: You know, in thinking about this, he signed legislation…Congress authorized that this is what needed to take place…he signed that legislation as president. If I were president, and I signed that legislation, I would have had an action plan ready to go immediately. From all appearances, this really does seem to be genocide. I mean, this really seems to be…these are really bad actors, a finite number of fighters…whatever that number is, I don’t know if I’d be sending advisers there, as immediately as after signing the legislation, sent a strike force to wipe them out.

KRAUTHAMMER: That’s very non-libertarian of you.

JOHNSON: Well, I’ve always said that genocide is something that none of us want to stand by and watch happen. From everything I can ascertain from this situaiton, this does qualify for genocide.

KRAUTHAMMER: What about the Qaddafi threat, when he was winning the war against the rebels at the beginning…to wipe out the people, his opponents in Benghazi. Would you have sent the army to go and prevent that?

JOHNSON: No, I would not have. I did not see a military threat from Libya. That’s another issue here with the Lord’s Resistance Army, is that this is their nation. We’re talking about a foreign dictator here. I don’t think there’s anything in the constitution that says because we don’t like a foreign leader we should go in and topple that foreign leader.

KRAUTHAMMER: But I’m not sure if I understand. Clearly the Liberation Army in Uganda is not a threat, to the United States. Yet you would say you would send a strike force. You can argue equally, whether Qaddafi is the leader of a country or not, he was a threat to the people of Benghazi, and you would not. I’m not sure I understand the logic.

JOHNSON: Well, uh, these are the questions that I…another thing I would do as president of the United States, I would be really transparent. Look, I’m signing this legislation authourizing wiping out the Lord’s Resistance Army, authourizing that legislation, on the other hand, going into Libya, I heard the transparency…I just didn’t see the military threat. And I did not see a military threat from the Lord’s Resistance Army. I do not see that as a threat to national security at all.

FOX NEWS GUY: There’s a lot of nuance.

JOHNSON: There’s a lot of nuance as president of the United States.

So, whereas those of us who vote for Obama vote for a man who was unable to close Guantanamo, engages in drone warfare, and has waged war overseas, Mr. Friedersdorf has cleaner hands, because he votes for Gary Johnson, the candidate who wants to keep Guantanamo open, has no problem with drone warfare, has no problem with Iran being wiped off the map if they develop a nuclear weapon, though he’s uncertain if they’ve even started working on one (hint: yes), and is willing to commit a Tom Clancy type strike team to Africa, where they’ll destroy an army of children, in a conflict that does not threaten in any way the United States. There are times when I would read Mr. Friedersdorf’s work and I would ask myself the question, and I ask it openly now: is there a hidden genius to this, is this writer plain ignorant, or is he a hypocritical opportunist? Here is a man has been steadily arguing that people should not vote for Obama because of his amoral, criminal policies, and who encourages them to instead vote for a candidate backed by noxious racists and con-men, whose policies violate the same principles which Mr. Friedersdorf ostentatiously waves like a proud flag.

I mentioned before that Mr. Friedersdorf’s perspective on politics is very manichean, with a bad Bush, a bad Obama, a good Johnson. His perspective on the country’s recent history is prelapsarian. He makes no criticism of any foreign policy after the Viet Nam war other than drug policy, after which the government was plunged into darkness by the two wars, indefinite detention, and the unwarranted surveillance of the Bush years, with the worst of such executive privileges continuing on under Obama.

He makes no criticsm of Reagan, who he cites as one of the only moments, other than Goldwater, that a movement conservative achieved success45. Reagan, of course, worked as an undercover agent while in Hollywood, reporting on communist activity to the FBI; then while president, placed troops in harm’s way in the Lebanese civil war; fought a war in Grenada; ran bombing raids without congressional authorization over Libya, killing one of Qadaffi’s infant children; mined the harbors of Nicaragua without congressional authorization or even notification; trained militias in Honduras and backed a government in El Salvador which certainly committed war crimes as well as mass murder46; and traded arms for hostages with Iran, violating congressional statutes, and which could well have led to his impeachment were it not for the grievous hurt such an action would inflict on the country fifteen years after Nixon’s dismissal. His successor, George H.W. Bush, who won via one of the most disgusting race-baiting ads in the age of TV election advertising, who Friedersdorf would have voted for if this man from 1988 had run in 201247, knew of the arms for hostages deal, and launched a war without congressional authorization in Panama.

So, let’s again re-iterate this case: Mr. Friedersdorf finds it unconscionable to vote for a man who wages drone warface and failed to close Guantanamo, instead voting for a candidate who has no problem with drone warfare, keeping Guantanamo open, and waging war in whatever random part of the earth he feels evil is done; furthermore, though he has deep, moral issues with Obama waging war without congressional authorization, he has no problem with Reagan engaging in several such wars without authorization, backing militias that engaged in war crimes, or selling weapons to enemies of the United States without congressional approval, nor does he have an issue with George H.W. Bush participating in such actions, or waging war without authorization himself – he, in fact, really really wishes such a man was running this year so he could vote for him. Again: genius, ignoramus, or opportunist?

As I’ve said before, I think Mr. Friedersdorf is of small relevance, rather than of no relevance, to a small spectrum of ideology. He has no appeal to republians right now, as they are entirely animated by tribal feeling, with a strong military remaining a sacred relic, a mark of america’s greatness. He has no appeal to the left, for they can find more in-depth investigations into the war state’s excesses in Jane Mayer, Seymour Hersh, countless marquee and fringe writers. His moral calls are utterly empty of appeal to any liberal who sees that his candidates are either a callous white supremacist or some right-wing loon who has no idea if Iran is building a bomb and wants to continue, or go further on many of the same policies that he calls “dealbreakers” – no progressive of some knowledge will concede to this pathetic bullying. There is only one group that might find some appeal in Friederdorf’s writing, and in this, he is the ideal radical of our time. In an era of a massive growing income gap, where the bonds of society are disappearing, Mr. Friedersdorf’s writing serves as useful affirmation to those libertarians at the top that not only is their credo more intellectual than those animals on the right, but they are more moral than those on the left, because they are for candidates who are against the surveillance and war state. That the candidates which Mr. Friedersdorf supports, Ron Paul, Rand Paul, Gary Johnson, are men who would do such damage to the safety net that only the wealthy could safely vote for such men with impunity, is not a liability but a virtue; Mr. Friedersdorf makes those in the top tier the most moral of men and women: because they are rich they can vote for those who tear apart the system for everyone but the rich, but because they are against the security state, they are the only moral ones who opt for the most virtuous choice. In this, Mr. Friedersdorf is the perfect radical of our dystopian culture, now, and his writing a helpful compass for an anthropologist of the future.

I near the end of this piece in the place where, a few days ago, something Mr. Friedersdorf wrote incited my anger. When he writes of the dead killed by a drone strike, they are an issue of moral outrage. When they are the dead of a mass shooting, and we are outraged, we are lectured that those angry over this constitute an elite, disconnected from the ordinary unrepresented gun owner (though I’ve heard of a gun lobby that does have some media connections), and those who are upset are the persecutors48:

There isn’t anything wrong with gun-control advocates lamenting what, by their lights, is a public that’s reaching wrongheaded conclusions on the subject and is trending in the wrong direction.

But too many pieces I’ve read make a mockery of robust debate in a pluralistic society by ignoring the fact that current policy is largely (though not entirely) a reflection of the U.S. public disagreeing with gun reformers. The average American is far more likely than the average journalist or academic to identify with gun culture, to insist that the Second Amendment confers an individual right to bear arms, to exercise that right, and to support various state concealed-carry laws. Perhaps persuasion can move the citizenry to favor a different status quo. That’s always a hurdle to clear in a democracy. Yet the ability to engage and persuade fellow citizens is undermined when public discourse obscures rather than confronts the relevant disagreements.

Opponents of gun control have been widely vilified in the past week. Very few attempts have been made to understand what motivates them — and given that they’re a subset of Americans with little representation in the national media, attempts at understanding would likely do a lot to inform the rest of the American public. For the most part, these people aren’t in fact motivated by selfishness, as so many critics have stated or implied in the last few days, and almost without exception, gun-control opponents are as horrified by the events in Newtown as anyone calling for a new assault-weapons ban or better background checks or a ban on ammunition.

The point isn’t whether they’re being treated fairly or not. It’s that a gun debate can only be productive in a country as pro-gun as this one when the folks on either side at least understand the deeply held disagreements at issue. So far, too many newly vocal reformers are operating under the conceit that if only America “finally” had a conversation about gun violence, everyone would immediately see the wisdom of the position reformers have advocated all along. One need only to reflect on the state of public opinion after decades of debating the issue to conclude that the conversational outcome many reformers presume isn’t at all certain.

If death and suffering is caused through state actions, it is an issue of public urgency. If it is the result of state neglect, there is sudden caution that we not do anything too drastic. A veteran in miserable condition is noteworthy as a reminder of the war state, and his condition should be given loud voice. That same veteran in utter misery because Rand Paul killed a veterans jobs bill is an inconvenience. We must be very careful, said Mr. Friedersdorf, that we do not infringe on the rights of gun-owners. Yes, just as the freedom of lesbians is curbed when heterosexual women are able to get contraception as part of their health plan, the freedom of people shooting an AK-47 everywhere they want is curbed when public space is set aside in which children shouldn’t be killed. I do not doubt that gun-owners have some rights to some weapons and their use; I do note that this is one of the only times that those affected by a political policy are brought up, whereas the needs of the poor, vulnerable, and elderly are never mentioned when discussing austerity or a candidate junking the social safety net.

Though Mr. Friedersdorf never brings up the context of a terrorist threat when discussing drone strikes, he brings up a bogeyman when there is a massacre: yes, there may well be the possibility that some legislation should pass, but he’s not sure he can trust gun legislation in the hands of Obama, a man who had such a penchant for uncontrolled executive power49:

Interpreted narrowly, I have no problem with Obama marshaling his power “to engage” his fellow citizens. I’d only add that this is a president whose general notion of presidential power extends beyond engagement to indefinite detention and secretly assassinating American citizens without due process. So if Obama ever tweaks his formulation slightly and promises to use “whatever power” his office has “to stop gun violence,” you’ll understand why I’ll shudder. I’ve seen what it means for American presidents to do “everything” in their power to stop U.S. children from dying in terrorist attacks: It has meant torture, dead innocents abroad, and attacks on due process. I’ve also seen presidents do “everything” in their power to keep drugs away from our children. What I wouldn’t give for a politician who promised to do “only the prudent things, and no more.”

Yes, it’s too bad Gary Johnson, a man who has no problem with drone strikes and who gets his foreign policy from a rejected Expendables screenplay isn’t in charge. So there is the inconvenience that these deaths were caused by state neglect, rather than state weapons, and there was an inconvenience that several members of the dreaded public services union had died valiantly trying to save children. This last also made me think of a post by an Atlantic colleague of Mr. Friedersdorf, Jordan Weismann, a man of our time as much as Mr. Friedersdorf, who wrote a recent post about “A Very Mean (but Maybe Brilliant) Way to Pay Teachers: A Freakonomics author and a ‘Genius Grant’ winner suggest that giving teachers bonuses, then threatening to yank them away, might be the key to classroom success.” Mr. Weissman, I can only those teachers of last Friday performed up to your standards. It’s too damn bad you weren’t able to make them do any better with any dirty tricks to play on them.

This piece ends here: a while back, Mr. Friedersdorf shifted his focus to the gunwalking scandal of “Fast and Furious”. He pointed to this issue as evidence of another of Obama’s duplicities, another example of his managerial incompetence50. He egged on the committee headed by Darryl Issa that was to go after Eric Holder, despite the partisan opportunism is always there, shrugged Mr. Friedersdorf51. Of course, Fortune magazine pointed out that there was no gunwalking scandal, that it had all been set off by some disgruntled employees52. Mr. Friedersdorf later compared the attention focused on the “Furious” scandal to the casualties of the mexican drug war, bemoaning the lack of leadership that would end this folly, and put an end to the violence53. In the Fortune piece, it is made clear the incredible ease with which you could buy a gun, and that drug gangs were buying them in Arizona, then transporting them easily over to Mexico, with the death rate in Mexico fueled just as much by the easy access to guns north of the border as it is by the demand for drugs54. It seems rather simple that all Mr. Friedersdorf needs to do to care as much about whether a pile of death is to be indifferent to whether it is the result of the drug war or gun sale deregulation. He often mentions how disappointed he is that president Obama didn’t take on the big lobbies that control Washington. Well, the president will soon be taking on a very big lobby in a few months over some dead children in a school. Perhaps, somehow, Mr. Friedersdorf can find some way to support, if not the president, that cause in the fight. This man likes to damn progressives in all sorts of ways, and so I return the favor in kind: if he cannot do even this because his ideology restrains him, then I think it’s quite clear he’s an utterly callous partisan hack. That is an incivility, but what does it matter? Those words cannot have been written, this piece cannot have been written, because it was written by someone from outside the cosmopolitans, outside the american ruling class, part of a group of people that do not exist to Mr. Friedersdorf, and therefore, they do not exist, and so this piece was never written, it was never written by a nothing man, by no one.

* I first heard of this story from a reddit link, “More evidence Gary Johnson was a scam” which focused on whether his ad spending indicated there was something ersatz about his candidacy; I did not focus on this and was uncertain of whether this claim was substantial enough. Many in the thread dismiss it, and they also argue about the “sketchiness” of the source publication in which the “Swindle” story originally appeared. However, all the claims made in the story appear to be solidly backed by linked material from other publications: an analysis of Johnson’s filing document, and the document themselves, listing Maureen Otis as the filer can be found at “Gary Johnson’s documents reveal puzzling trail” by Peter St. Cyr; his hardline stance on crime, and refusal to grant amnesty to those arrested on drug charges was first published in the Albequerque Journal; that Johnson brought private prison firms to New Mexico and received campaign funds from them is written about in the Santa Fe New Mexican, “Prison firms donate thousands to Richardson” by Steve Terrell; the expensive widening of U.S. 550, which had none of the intended impact on reducing accidents, is described in the Claims Journal, “Widening of U.S. 550 in New Mexico Didn’t Improve Safety, Economy”; some of James Lacy’s unsavory work is described in “Slate Nailer: Conservative James Lacy plays turncoat to sway elections” by Nick Schou, in the Orange County Weekly; the process of vote caging is described in “Vote Caging: What is Vote Caging and Why Should We Care?” by Dahlia Lithwick in Slate; Roger Stone’s account of getting Anderson on the ballot in New York state is given by Stone himself in “Roger Stone, Political Animal” by Matt Labash; the history of nasty tricks Stone has been involved in are described in the profile, “The Dirty Trickster”, by Jeffry Toobin, Rick Perlstein’s essential Nixonland and the definitive Roger Stone chronicler, Wayne Barrett, in such articles as “Sleeping With the GOP”, “Carl Paladino: The Dirty Details in His Campaign Filings”, and “The (Roger) Stone Around Carl Paladino’s Neck”;Johnson’s achievements, including the movement of state medicare cases to managed care, were on his old, now expired site, Johnson for America 2012 – they can still be found in his listing at the State Policy Network, a consortium of free market / libertarian think tanks. A supplemental note, Maureen Otis’s Twitter account (motislaw) lists her as treasurer of Restore America’s Voice PAC, listed at the Sunlight Foundation as having spent over a million and a half in expenditures opposing Barack Obama in the 2012 election. This PAC spent its money exclusively in opposition to Obama, and shows no expenditures in favor of Johnson.

(Following its initial posting, two major edits were made: a change was made to address catholic institutions as employers, rather than catholic hospitals accepting federal funds, regarding contraception and the universal mandate; the source links for the NSFW Corporation’s story on Johnson were added. These changes were made christmas day 2012.)

FOOTNOTES

1 “How Occupy Wall Street Is Like the Internet”

2 “8 Well-Intentioned Ideas That Occupy Wall Street Should Reject”

3 “Republican Delegates: Good People, Failed by Their Party”

4 “14 Specific Allegations of NYPD Brutality During Occupy Wall Street”

5 “What George Orwell Can Teach Us About OWS and Police Brutality”, “Reports Reveal Two New Scandals in the Pepper-Spraying at UC Davis”, and “The Pepper-Spraying Cop’s Long, Lucrative Goodbye”.

6 There are too many to mention all here. They include “The U.S. Constitution Is Worthless When John Yoo Interprets It”, “My Debate With John Yoo, Who Misunderstands the Constitution”, “The Terrifying Background of the Man Who Ran a CIA Assassination Unit”, “How Team Obama Justifies the Killing of a 16-Year-Old American”, and “Expanding CIA Drone Strikes Will Likely Mean More Dead Innocents”, “We’re Killing Alleged Militants Too Quickly to Reliably Determine Guilt”, “CNN’s Bogus Drone-Deaths Graphic”, “The Pentagon’s Vision: Drones Everywhere”, etc.

7 “Pragmatically Toward Libertarianism”:

In concurrence with the creed of The Atlantic, I consider myself to be “of no party or clique,” and the best insight I can offer into my work is its premise: that a writer’s job is to strive for the truth, and to remember that he’ll sometimes be wrong. As a result, I am reticent to characterize myself politically on occasions when I’m really being asked, “Whose side are you on?” The answer to that question should never be “the liberal side” or “the conservative side,” unless the person being questioned is naive enough to think that one ideology or the other has a monopoly on truth.

8 “Americans Should Be Able to Sell Stuff Without a Permit” and “The Triumph of Reality-Based Politics”.

9 “Marijuana Laws Enforced, Poor Hit Hardest”

10 “Apathy Causes Kidney Patients to Die Needlessly”

11 “The Case for Deficit Reduction, Even in a Recession”

12 “Forget Julia, It’s The Life of Ahmed That Demands Attention”

13 “Why Breitbart Started Hating The Left”

In some ways, this childhood sounds a lot like my own. My parents are decent, hardworking people who tend to vote Republican. Raised in an upper-middle-class neighborhood – far less ritzy than Brentwood, but no less safe or comfortable – I always had everything that I needed.

“Pointless Shame: The English-Speaking World’s Issue With Women’s Breasts”

When I was twenty I spent a summer studying in Paris. I’d somehow persuaded Florida State University to let me tag along on their summer abroad program. I ate little but baguettes and pasta so that I could afford a weekend trip down to Nice and Monte Carlo with some classmates.

“Is There an Education Bubble?”

Think of it this way. In large parts of America, a college graduate can inform his parents or peers or a woman he meets via Ok Cupid that he is about to quit his job in public relations, borrow $100,000, and spend it on a year studying journalism at Columbia University before returning home. Few people are likely to tell him that this is irresponsible.

14 “Is There an Education Bubble?”

For guilty young people intent on pleasing a certain kind of parent, grad school is one of the only socially permissible vehicles for work-life balance or opting out of the high status economy. Parents who’d be horrified by a child who was a yoga instructor think its romantic so long as it’s done during a summer between years at the Kennedy School of Government.

15 Pandering to a Privileged Class

“If we think it more important to spend this dough on education,” says Will Wilkinson, “then we should hand out the $6 billion in the form of scholarships to deserving prospective collegians of modest means, to help them earn their degrees without having to take out any loans at all.”

Obama earned degrees from Columbia University and Harvard Law, where he was editor of the Harvard Law Review. His wife, Michelle, graduated from Princeton and Harvard Law School. Once you’ve done that it doesn’t matter how much you’ve borrowed. You’re in the one percent. The Obamas ought to have been writing those checks every month, because to subsidize couples with four graduate degrees from Ivy League schools between them — in a country with impoverished immigrants and struggling high school dropouts and hard-pressed single mothers — is perverse. That Obama offered up his own story in that way is a testament to our collective loss of perspective on this.

Of course, most people with student loan debt don’t have Ivy League degrees. They’re still generally better off than people without diplomas. And while decreasing the cost of college for those who’ve yet to attend ought to be a public policy goal, especially since educational subsidies have been structured in a way that helped to drive up costs to begin with, there is no good reason to subsidize not just hard up folks with student debt, but folks with student debt generally.

16 “Is Voting to Strike Down Obamacare Illegitimate?” and “Movement Liberals Cannot Credibly Demand Judicial Restraint”. It’s very likely both pieces can be refuted, but I’ll leave that to another time.

17 “The Sex-Friendly Case Against Free Birth Control”

Including birth control (as distinct from contraceptives used for other purposes) in universally mandated health-care coverage has its own unique redistributive effect, one that seems more problematic in a pluralistic society than funneling resources from the healthy to the sick or malfunctioning. Mandating participation in an insurance risk pool that covers birth control redistributes resources based partly on lifestyle choices, values, and conceptions of what is fulfilling. For example, gays and lesbians have no use for birth control, but are being made to participate in risk pools that cover it, effectively leaving them with fewer resources as a result of their status as a cultural minority group, rather than a part of the majority that desires birth control.

Once birth control for the poor is covered, I wonder why so many on the left either don’t recognize or don’t object to the redistributive consequences of pooling contraceptive costs among everyone else, even people who could afford them on their own. Compared to a system that just took care of the poor (or even to a system that included only the cheapest kind of birth control), here is a more detailed but by no means complete look at the winners and losers:

- Those who are sexually active, especially over long periods, benefit at the expense of those who aren’t, whether by choice or for lack of opportunity. This sure seems non-materially regressive.

– Straight people, who benefit at the expense of gays and lesbians, who have no use for birth control.

18 “The Sex-Friendly Case Against Free Birth Control”

But this series of legislative, judicial, and bureaucratic decisions, many of them defensible or even desirable on narrow grounds, add up to a health-care system that is unjust, for it needlessly privileges cultural majorities at the expense of cultural minorities, and obscures redistributive consequences that are sometimes regressive, especially compared to the alternative I suggest: subsidizing contraception only for the poor who can’t afford it. Individuals ought to decide what they find fun or meaningful enough to spend their money on. As progressives argue with social conservatives, whose positions on sex and contraception I too find wrongheaded, the progressives are unwittingly saying that subsidized birth control is desirable even when it involves forcing into the same insurance risk pools people who want little or no contraception with people who want a lot of it. Some claim that’s the only way our health-care system can avoid discriminating against women.

19 “A Real Commitment to Minority Rights Needs a Real Commitment to Freedom”

Originally, the footnoted sentence dealt exclusively with catholic hospitals distributing contraception – “while never mentioning the possiiblity that such institutions might do what they want by refusing federal funds”, and that such hospitals without federal funds would have greater leeway. The edited sentence deals with the broader issue of an institution refusing contraception for its employees.

There is no bright-line test for what is “reasonable,” or how burdensome an accommodation must be before government should no longer be bound to make it. But this contraception example seems easy. There are very few institutions in America with longstanding, obviously credible moral objections to contraception. Permitting these institutions to purchase health insurance for employees that doesn’t include contraception isn’t going to meaningfully interfere with the government’s ability to shape a functional health-care system. There are, additionally, the consequences for actual employees of institutions like the Catholic Church. Many share the position of their faith: they’re morally uncomfortable paying into a health-insurance system that doles out contraception.

20 “A Real Commitment to Minority Rights Needs a Real Commitment to Freedom”

This is but one example of my general discomfort with the attitude that both conservatives and progressives take toward minority groups and diversity. Both groups sometimes seek to impose their notions of what society ought to be like on everyone, and cite majority norms or expediency when doing so.

What I’d encourage is constant awareness that people have different values, morals, priorities, preferences, and approaches to pursuing happiness — an attitude that leads folks to happily accommodate diversity when possible, and to be regretful and limit the magnitude of coercion when it is necessary.

“The Contraception Controversy Was Never a Civil Rights Issue”

A straightforward bill to subsidize birth control for the poor might not pass Congress (even though I would support it). In order to avoid taking their chances on legislation of that kind, the Obama Administration pursued the path of least resistance: order employers to add this to their plans, even if doing so violates their conscience. This approach permitted them to hide the cost of providing birth control by bundling it into insurance premiums, mask the nature of who is being subsidized by whom, and build political support by offering a universal subsidy rather than one targeted at the poor.

What today’s compromise showed is that it there was never a need to choose between religious and contraceptive freedom. What was actually at odds was religious freedom and the ability of progressives to advance contraceptive freedom through the means they found most expedient. There were always lots of different approaches that would achieve the same ends. If the Obama Administration and its progressive allies were less casual about coercing people, they’d have discovered the current compromise — which they deserve credit for adopting — a lot sooner.

21 “The Bipartisan Interest in Making Women Feel Bad”

It’s perfectly legitimate to criticize the Blunt-Rubio bill and to set forth reasons why its passage would be bad for women. What’s objectionable is 1) the implication that the Republicans who voted for this bill are motivated by antagonism toward women and engaged in an aggressive campaign to war on them (the truthful motivation is some mix of concern for protecting religious liberty and pandering to religious conservatives and opponents of sweeping health-care mandates). 2) The sly invocation of the phrase “access to contraception,” as if what’s at issue here is the ability to buy condoms or birth control as opposed to a debate about who covers their cost.

As stated, the politically savvy see through the hyperbole and subtly inaccurate language. The true victims aren’t GOP political operatives, who engage in distortions of their own, but the class of women who don’t pay close attention to politics, hear these talking points, and erroneously conclude that if the GOP candidate wins the election birth control may disappear from commerce.

“In Defense of Stay-at-Home Moms”

The so-called “war on women,” which largely concerns abortion policy, isn’t an area of politics that is particularly driven by political donations. It is a wedge issue that appeals to Republicans because a large part of its socially conservative base feels very strongly that abortion is murder.

22 “What Charles Murray Gets Wrong: Bud Drinkers Live in a Bubble”

23 “Focus on the Ill-Gotten Gains of the Rich Instead of Their Tax Rates”

Do rich entrepreneurs owe their success to their own efforts or the commonweal? James Joyner has a good answer. “Of course nobody got rich totally on their own,” he writes. “Of course the fabled ‘job creators’ rely on the infrastructure we built collectively, whether it be roads and bridges, an educated workforce, relative safety from crime, a reasonably functional judicial system and what have you. But those building blocks were in place for those who didn’t get rich, too, so of course those who did deserve the lion’s share of the credit for the fruits of their labor.”

That sounds more sensible to me than what President Obama said, and I’m presuming the charitable interpretation of his remarks. Consider an enterprise like this one.

24 “Mitt Romney Isn’t Alone: Politicians Rarely Prioritize the Very Poor”

It should perhaps make us uncomfortable that our government is mostly focused on relatively privileged citizens, and that we think little about the very poor aside from providing a safety net. But it’s true of every viable presidential candidate from both major political parties, and the vast majority of pundits too. All Romney can be faulted for in this instance is saying he’ll behave as everyone else does without acknowledging it openly.

Shouldn’t we prefer a political discourse where forthrightness of that kind isn’t treated as a fault? Romney’s statement may hurt him with voters. But it shouldn’t.

25 “The Conservative Wonk Who Tried to Avert the ‘47%’ Disaster”

26 “Mitt Romney’s ‘Clinging to Guns or Religion’ Moment”

It is truly amazing what a different view of politics the donor class gets. Obama plays to rooms like this too. This cycle, he’s managed to keep his words from leaking (or perhaps, after his experience in the last cycle, he’s more careful about what he says). As such, expect the Obama campaign to start using footage from the hidden video to start attacking Romney any day now. And know that if you could hear what Team Obama says when they think no one is listening, it would likely be every bit as off-putting (if substantively different).

Josh Barro predicts that this will cost Mitt Romney the election. It certainly plays into the criticism that he doesn’t care about poor people and will govern on behalf of wealthier Americans.

But it also reminds me of Barack Obama’s infamous statement during the 2008 election that rural voters “get bitter, they cling to their guns or religion.” Those words were also said to donors at a private event, and broadcast only when a secret recording was made public. Rural voters aren’t 47 percent of the electorate, but folks who like guns or religion are a rather large demographic.

These sorts of remarks do double damage.

They needlessly insult some people whose votes the candidate would like to win. And beyond the particulars of what is said, they remind voters that candidate’s public persona is phony and affected.

Four years ago a lot of people felt they got a glimpse of “the real Obama.” They certainly saw a side of him that he hid when speaking to general audiences, as opposed to urban liberal supporters.

William Saletan, who I often disagree with, gives a precise explanation for why this analysis is wrong in “Half-Hearted Mitt: Romney says he’s ignoring 47 percent of America. Obama said rural voters cling to guns and religion. Which is worse?”.

In April 2008, Obama spoke at a fundraiser in San Francisco. Here’s what he said, according to an audio recording published by the Huffington Post:

“Here’s what it is: In a lot of these communities in big industrial states like Ohio and Pennsylvania, people have been beaten down so long, they feel so betrayed by government, that when they hear a pitch that is premised on not being cynical about government, there’s a part of them that just doesn’t buy it. And when it’s delivered by—it is true that when it’s delivered by a 46-year-old black man named Barack Obama, then that adds another layer of skepticism. (Audience laughs.)

“But—so the questions you’re most likely to get are going to be: ‘Well, you know, what’s this guy going to do for me? What’s the concrete thing?’ And what they want to hear is—you know, so we’ll give you talking points about what we’re proposing: to close tax loopholes and roll back, you know, the top—the tax cuts for the top 1 percent. Obama’s going to give tax breaks to middle-class folks, and we’re going to provide health care for every American. You know, we’ll have a series of talking points.

“But the truth is that our challenge is to get people persuaded that we can make progress when there’s no evidence of that in their daily lives. You go into some of these small towns in Pennsylvania, Ohio—like a lot of small towns in the Midwest, the jobs have been gone now for 25 years, and nothing’s replaced them. And they fell through the Clinton administration and the Bush administration. And each successive administration has said that somehow these communities are going to regenerate. And they have not. So it’s not surprising then that they get bitter, and they cling to guns or religion, or antipathy toward people who aren’t like them, or anti-immigrant sentiment, or, you know, anti-trade sentiment [as] a way to explain their frustrations.

“Now, these are in some communities. You know, I think what you’ll find is that people of every background—there are going to be a mix of people. You can go in the toughest neighborhood, you know, working-class lunch-pail folks, and you’ll find Obama enthusiasts. And you can go into places where you’d think that I’d be very strong, and people will just be skeptical. The important thing is that you show up and you’re doing what you’re doing.”

Conservatives find Obama’s line about guns, religion, and immigration patronizing. They’re right. The recording exposes Obama’s assumption that blue-collar conservatism on these issues should be taken not at face value but as a psychological symptom or rationalization.

But notice what else the recording shows. Obama tells his audience not to write off any group. He recommends humility and openness. Even in the most unlikely neighborhoods, among “people of every background,” he tells his volunteers they’ll find supporters.

He also advises the volunteers not to write off every voter who seems unreceptive. The tough reception, he suggests, might be just a “layer of skepticism,” a “part of them that just doesn’t buy it.” Beneath that layer, the whole voter is more complicated.

In particular, Obama rejects the caricature of hostile white voters as racists. Instead of assuming that they just ”don’t want to vote for the black guy,” he asks his volunteers to focus on these voters’ economic concerns. He counsels empathy. “They feel so betrayed,” he says.

The whole thrust of Obama’s answer is persuasion. He calls guns-and-religion precincts “the places where we are going to have to do the most work.” He says “our challenge is to get people persuaded” in those neighborhoods. “The important thing,” he concludes, “is that you show up” and make the case, based on tax and health care policy.

27 “Why I Refuse to Vote for Mitt Romney”

The centerpiece of Romney’s campaign?

A domestic agenda that he obviously cannot enact. As Romney tells it, he’ll cut tax rates 20 percent, repeal the estate tax, refrain from raising taxes on the middle class, refrain from cuts to Medicare, spend more on the military, possibly wage a war against Iran, and reduce the deficit. Doing all he’s promised is mathematically impossible. And the conservative wonks who say otherwise could be forgiven for their flawed analysis if it weren’t for the fact that every last one knows damned well that Romney is never in a million years going to keep all of those promises. If elected, he’ll most likely succeed in cutting taxes and fail at addressing the federal deficit. But it’s impossible to know for sure which promises he’ll break, only that it’ll be some of them.

28 “$204,000 Per Year: Is This Retired Cop’s Pension Too High?”, “The Problem With Public Sector Unions—and How to Fix It”, and “The Biggest Reason Why California Is Bankrupt”.

29 The original story by Michael Lewis on Vallejo is “California and Bust”; a critical response is “Our Town: A Literary History” by James Thomas Snyder.

30 “Why The Ex-Patriot Act is a Creepy Law and “Letter to the Editor: A Defense of the Ultra-Rich Who Give Up Their Citizenship for Tax Reasons”.

31 There are many, many examples, for the moment, “The Hubris of Barack W. Obama”, is good enough.

32 “How Barack Obama Vindicated ‘The Cult of the Presidency'”

33 Perhaps the best single article on congressional opposition to the closure of Guantanamo Bay is “Guantanamo Bay: Why Obama hasn’t fulfilled his promise to close the facility” by Peter Finn and Anne E. Kornblut.

34 Again, there are many examples, including “The Hubris of Barack W. Obama”, “Okay, Progressives, What’s Your Alternative to Ron Paul?”, “Obama vs. Romney: Choose Your Own Disaster”, “Liberals Need to Start Holding Obama Responsible for His Policies”, “What the Obamaphile Press Omitted From Its Endorsements”, Why I Refuse To Vote For Barack Obama”, and “The Responses to ‘Why I Refuse to Vote for Barack Obama'”.

35 From the Washington Post Wonkblog, “Ron Paul’s economic plan”:

Ever wonder what Ron Paul’s America would look like? Then read the budget outline that Paul released as part of his 2012 presidential bid. It promises to cut $1 trillion during his first year in office, balance the budget by 2015, withdraw us from all foreign wars and eliminate five Cabinet-level agencies in the process. Economists across the political spectrum say the impact of such drastic government spending cuts would be majorly disruptive and harmful to the economy in the short term.

By reducing the deficit from more than $1 trillion to $300 billion in just a year, Paul’s plan would upend the economy at a time when it’s already fragile, says Gus Faucher, director of macroeconomics for Moody’s Analytics. “That much deficit reduction in one year is going to be a huge drag on the economy . . . the reduction in spending is much greater than cuts in taxes,” says Faucher. “We’re seeing that impact in Europe right now, where severe fiscal austerity has caused big problems for the European economy.” While long-term deficit reduction is important, legislators need to make sure that the economy is strong before major cuts take effect, he adds, calling Paul’s plan “much more ambitious” than other Republican proposals to date. By comparison, the Congressional supercommittee is required to cut $1.5 trillion over a ten-year period—a feat Paul wants to accomplish in a little more than one year.

Liberal economists were even more dire in their assessments of the Paul budget. “This is almost having the economy fall off a cliff,” says Dean Baker, co-director of the Center for Economic and Policy Research, estimating that cutting $1 trillion in 2013 would prompt the unemployment rate to jump by 3 percentage points. Even if the $1 trillion in cuts were done over two or three years’ time, there would still be double-digit employment, Baker concludes. “This will make it extremely hard to balance the budget, since if the unemployment rate goes to 11 or 12 percent, then the budget picture will look much worse. If his response is still more cuts, then who knows how high he can get the unemployment rate.”

Michael Ettlinger, vice president for economic policy at the Center for American Progress, said Paul’s cuts would destroy the social safety net, as the plan would turn Medicaid and other low-income entitlement programs into block-granted programs that would depend on discretionary appropriations. “Your kids would be out of school, working or begging,” he concludes.

The program would also turn Social Security, veterans’ benefits and Medicare into voluntary programs that would allow younger workers to opt out of the entitlements, while fulfilling promises to present-day seniors and veterans. Both liberals and conservatives such as Baker say such changes could destabilize Social Security. “We will likely see a substantial number of young people take that option, especially if he scares them enough that it won’t be there,” says Baker. What’s more, “you will have high-income earners who opt out, and the people you have left are going to be low-income, which could cause problems” in terms of financing, explains Faucher, of Moody’s. All this could complicate Social Security’s long-term fiscal health, as it could end up losing a lot of revenue.

An opt-out option for Medicare would present similar problems, AEI’s Hassett says. He agrees that Medicare reform is critical to achieving long-term deficit reduction but thinks that an opt-out would destabilize the program. “The system taxes young people to pay for benefits for old people. If young people opt out, who will pay for the benefits?” Hassett says.

36 “Why Does Ron Paul Scare You?”

What’s the worst that Ron Paul could do? Try to get America back on the gold standard, only to find that he doesn’t have the votes in Congress to do it? I am not just being funny. Though Paul has some radical domestic policy ideas, I just don’t see any of them getting passed into law. And in foreign policy and national security matters, the areas where he would exercise the most unchecked discretion, he is the candidate you’d least expect to unwisely provoke or launch a war.

The piece “The Progressive Critique of Ron Paul: He Isn’t Libertarian Enough” makes no mention of the impact of Paul’s policies on the social safety net.

37 Again, there are many, but some are: “America’s Most Important Anti-War Politician Is a Senate Republican”, “Rand Paul Launches a Preemptive Strike Against Domestic Drone Use”, and “Rand Paul Plays It Safe in His RNC Speech”.

38 “Rand Paul Compares U.S. Government To ‘Nazi Germany’” by Ian Millhiser:

In an interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity this week, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) compared the federal government’s decision to reclaim some of its own property to Nazi Germany’s confiscations of Jewish-owned art.

A Rand Paul editorial, quoted in “Sen. Rand Paul Compares SCOTUS Decision Upholding Obamacare To Pro-Slavery Dred Scott Decision” by Ian Millhiser:

In the wake of the recent Supreme Court decision, can you still argue that the Constitution does not support ObamaCare? The liberal blogosphere apparently thinks the constitutional debate is over. I wonder whether they would have had that opinion the day after the Dred Scott decision.

Think of how our country would look now had the Supreme Court not changed its view of what is constitutional. Think of 1857, when the court handed down the outrageous Dred Scott decision, which said African Americans were not citizens. Think of the “separate but equal” doctrine in Plessy v. Ferguson, which the court later repudiated in Brown v. Board of Education.

“Senator Rand Paul Touts False Claim From ’9/11 Truth’ Conspiracy Site” by Zack Beauchamp, reports that Rand Paul relayed that the National Weather Service was stockpiling ammunition.

39 The definitve story on Murrary Energy is “Coal Miner’s Donor” by Alec MacGillis. “Coal Workers Say Murray Energy ‘Coerces’ Them To Make GOP Donations: ‘If You Don’t Contribute, Your Job’s At Stake’” lists Rand Paul as a recipient of the co-erced funds. “Latest Disaster In A Dangerous Mine Kills Two Kentucky Miners After 15 Safety Violations Since 2010″ reports on the collapse of an Armstrong coal mine which killed two people, and gives a quote of Rand Paul’s speech:

“The bottom line is: I’m not an expert, so don’t give me the power in Washington to be making rules,” Paul said at a recent campaign stop in response to questions about April’s deadly mining explosion in West Virginia…“You live here, and you have to work in the mines. You’d try to make good rules to protect your people here. If you don’t, I’m thinking that no one will apply for those jobs.”

40 From Senate Resoundingly Defeats Rand Paul Plan, Passes Disaster Relief Package on ThinkProgress:

In a surprising show of bipartisanship, 78 Senators voted against Sen. Rand Paul’s (R-KY) plan to offset disaster aid relief and FEMA funding with cuts to foreign aid. Only 20 senators voted for it. The stand-alone funding bill will provide $6.9 billion in emergency relief funds for fiscal year 2012. Paul demanded that the Senate use funds “from the coffers of our numerous nation-building programs overseas” rather than by “borrowing on the backs of our children and grandchildren.” The Senate proceeded to pass the relief package 62 to 37.

From “Sen. Rand Paul Blocks $36 Million For Disabled And Elderly Refugees, Including Those Who Aided American Troops” by Marie Diamond:

Politico is reporting that Paul is single-handedly holding up $36 million in benefits for elderly and disabled refugees.

Funding for the refugees ran out on Friday, but Paul refuses to lift his hold out of a professed concern that the money could be used to aid terrorists:

In a statement to POLITICO on Tuesday, Paul confirmed he was blocking the bill over concerns the money could be used to aid domestic terrorists. Two alleged terrorists, who came to the U.S. through a refugee program and were receiving welfare benefits, were arrested this year in Paul’s hometown of Bowling Green, Ky.

“This incident alone raises serious questions about the system through which they came to the United States, and I am insisting on a full investigation on our practice of providing welfare to refugees,” Paul said. [...]

The bill would extend funding for one year for about 5,600 elderly and disabled refugees from war-torn regions of the world, including Sierra Leone, Iraq and Afghanistan. Some are victims of human-trafficking or torture.

From “Senate Republicans Kill Veterans’ Jobs Bill” by Ben Armbruster:

Senate Republicans prevented a veterans’ jobs bill from coming to a vote today by forcing a budget point of order vote. Democrats came up 2 votes short of the 60 needed to defeat the GOP’s budget measure.

The Veterans Jobs Corps bill — which is part of President Obama’s push to secure jobs for veterans — would have provided $1 billion over five years to hire 20,000 young veterans for public lands jobs and prioritize vets for first responder jobs such as police, firefighter, or EMT. The measure would have also provided young vets access to the infrastructure with which to assist in job searches, such as access to computers, internet and career services advisers.

The Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, a vets group that supported the legislation, called the GOP move “a huge disappointment,” adding, “Today, politics won over helping vets.”

Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA) said on the Senate floor today that “this bill is fully paid for and does not violate pay-go rules.” (The New York Times said Murray’s aides say “say the program will be paid for by recovering more money from tax-delinquent Medicare providers and forcing big tax deadbeats to pay up before receiving passports.”)

Murray even tried to include most of the provisions of a competing Republican bill but Democrats still ran into opposition. Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) said he would block the measure until the Pakistani doctor that aided the CIA in looking for Osama bin Laden was freed.

41 “Grappling With Ron Paul’s Racist Newsletters”

42 Among others, “Dear Andrew Sullivan: Why Focus on Obama’s Dumbest Critics?” and “What the Obamaphile Press Omitted From its Endorsements

43 Omniscient Gentlemen of The Atlantic by Tkacik.

44 The Wikipedia entry on the riot.

45 “5 Reasons Why the GOP Can’t Nominate a Reliable Conservative”

46 Perhaps the best starting point for those curious about this bloody part of history would be Stephen Kinzer’s profile of U.S. ambassador to Honduras, John Negroponte. An indicator of the continuum running from Reagan foreign policy to George W. Bush policy is the appointment by Bush of Negroponte, after a long period of diplomatic exile, as U.S. ambassador to the U.N. A piece connecting the death squads of El Salvador with early investors in Bain Capital is “Mitt Romney Started Bain Capital With Money From Families Tied To Death Squads “.

47 From “Why I Refuse to Vote for Mitt Romney”:

On the eve of the Republican primary, before the field of candidates was established, I found myself hoping that the eventual nominee would be someone whose bid for higher office I could support. President Obama’s transgressions against civil liberties and expansion of executive power were dealbreakers. I wouldn’t back him as I had in 2008. Nor would I vote for a Fox News Republican like Sarah Palin, Herman Cain, or Michele Bachmann. But a deficit hawk with a steady hand on foreign policy, like George H.W. Bush?

48 “The U.S. Already Had a Conversation About Guns—and the Pro Side Won”

49 “Why ‘If We Can Just Save One Child …’ Is a Bad Argument”

50 “The Coming Attack on President Obama’s Management Skills”

The Obama Administration’s efforts to create “green jobs” have fallen far short of what was promised, as Reuters reports in a detailed analysis that casts Solyndra as just one instance of failure. The Fast and the Furious scandal is surely going to come up in the course of the general election.

51 “Of Course ‘Fast and Furious’ Investigators Are Opportunists”

My thirst for answers is even more powerful than my aversion to partisan politics. I’d suggest anyone who feels otherwise is not in fact “a believer in sunshine and disclosure,” because there has never been a Congressional investigation in which the participants weren’t angling to score political points in one way or another. That’s just how the system works.

52 “The truth about the Fast and Furious scandal” by Katherine Eban. A select quote:

Quite simply, there’s a fundamental misconception at the heart of the Fast and Furious scandal. Nobody disputes that suspected straw purchasers under surveillance by the ATF repeatedly bought guns that eventually fell into criminal hands. [Darryl "Arson"] Issa and others charge that the ATF intentionally allowed guns to walk as an operational tactic. But five law-enforcement agents directly involved in Fast and Furious tell Fortune that the ATF had no such tactic. They insist they never purposefully allowed guns to be illegally trafficked. Just the opposite: They say they seized weapons whenever they could but were hamstrung by prosecutors and weak laws, which stymied them at every turn.

Indeed, a six-month Fortune investigation reveals that the public case alleging that [Dave] Voth [head of an ATF group charged with stopping the smuggling of guns] and his colleagues walked guns is replete with distortions, errors, partial truths, and even some outright lies. Fortune reviewed more than 2,000 pages of confidential ATF documents and interviewed 39 people, including seven law-enforcement agents with direct knowledge of the case. Several, including Voth, are speaking out for the first time.

How Fast and Furious reached the headlines is a strange and unsettling saga, one that reveals a lot about politics and media today.

53 “The Policy That Killed 100 Times as Many Mexicans as Fast and Furious”:

Said Texas Governor Rick Perry, “We’ve had over 300 Mexican nationals killed directly attributable to this Fast and Furious operation, where they brought those guns into Mexico. A former Marine and a Border Patrol agent by the name of Brian Terry lost his life. With Watergate you had a second-rate burglary.”

There has been enough commentary of that kind that political satirists are starting to notice. Said Bill Maher on his HBO show, “First of all, let me just say, Republicans don’t care about dead Mexicans.” His comments spurred outraged posts in the conservative blogosphere. But the problem isn’t that he was wrong, so much as that his biting remark ought to have been broader. Democrats don’t care about dead Mexicans either assuming a reasonable definition of “care.”

Abstractly, do they regret it when foreigners die?

Sure. So do Republicans.

Does either party put forth any effort to change the American policy that results in more dead Mexicans than any other?

Nope.

They talk about how tragic it is that 300 Mexican nationals were killed by Fast and Furious. But they keep right on supporting the war on drugs.

54 “The truth about the Fast and Furious scandal” by Katherine Eban.

Some call it the “parade of ants”; others the “river of iron.” The Mexican government has estimated that 2,000 weapons are smuggled daily from the U.S. into Mexico. The ATF is hobbled in its effort to stop this flow. No federal statute outlaws firearms trafficking within the U.S., so agents must build cases using a patchwork of often toothless laws. For six years, due to Beltway politics, the bureau has gone without permanent leadership, neutered in its fight for funding and authority. The National Rifle Association has so successfully opposed a comprehensive electronic database of gun sales that the ATF’s congressional appropriation explicitly prohibits establishing one.

[Dave] Voth’s [head of an ATF unit set up to stop gun smuggling in the southwest] mandate was to stop gun traffickers in Arizona, the state ranked by the gun-control advocacy group Legal Community Against Violence as having the nation’s “weakest gun violence prevention laws.” Just 200 miles from Mexico, which prohibits gun sales, the Phoenix area is home to 853 federally licensed firearms dealers. Billboards advertise volume discounts for multiple purchases.

Customers can legally buy as many weapons as they want in Arizona as long as they’re 18 or older and pass a criminal background check. There are no waiting periods and no need for permits, and buyers are allowed to resell the guns. “In Arizona,” says Voth, “someone buying three guns is like someone buying a sandwich.”

By 2009 the Sinaloa drug cartel had made Phoenix its gun supermarket and recruited young Americans as its designated shoppers or straw purchasers. Voth and his agents began investigating a group of buyers, some not even old enough to buy beer, whose members were plunking down as much as $20,000 in cash to purchase up to 20 semiautomatics at a time, and then delivering the weapons to others.

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Julian Sanchez, Mike Daisey, Trayvon Martin, Ron Paul

“The Anatomy of Media Bias” by Julian Sanchez is an attempt at analysis of two separate tragedies, that of the deplorable conditions of workers at Foxconn, and that of the senseless death of Trayvon Martin. I believe there is a link, though not the one that Mr. Sanchez has found. For Mr. Sanchez, the lying of Mike Daisey in his story on a Foxconn plant and the lack of coverage Fox News gave to the killing of Martin represent an example of disproportionality. The Daisey story ultimately involved a smaller number of affected workers than Daisey misled listeners to believe. Fox News did not give proper coverage to the Martin killing because of their sense that it was an isolated event. I believe Mr. Sanchez misidentifies in both cases the proper crux of both stories, a simple question of what sells and what does not, as well as who is invisible, and who is not, in the United States, and the world.

Let us consider first the story Mike Daisey told of conditions at a Foxconn plant in Shenzhen. Mr. Daisey’s account has been properly exposed as so many layers of deception (PDF transcript). Beyond simple lies of what he saw and did not see, Mr. Daisey took factual incidents reported by various sources and placed them all in a narrative about this one factory. That Mr. Daisey has been shown to be a liar is not enough for Mr. Sanchez: the incidents inserted into his story have somehow been demolished as well. “While most commentary on the story has rightly rejected Daisey’s invocation of “‘artistic license'” writes Mr. Sanchez, a misrepresentation is perpetuated, with the idea that Daisey’s version “of labor practices at Chinese suppliers like Foxconn, is true”. Sanchez buttresses this argument with two pieces, “Attacking the Press” by Erica Greider, and “Mike Daisey Was Wrong About Apple in China” by Daniel Engber.

The piece by Ms. Greider, unless I have misunderstood it, does not quite support the point Mr. Sanchez makes for it. Ms. Greider points to the miserable conditions of chinese factories, in a sentence that Mr. Sanchez appears to have missed: “We know that most of the things [Mike Daisey] describes happening at the Foxconn factory actually have happened, if not at the factory in question” (my bolded emphasis). Ms. Greider’s thesis, is that when Mr. Daisey places all these incidents in one factory, for himself to heroically discover, he may make points about chinese labor and media blindness, he does so not for the principle of story-telling economy, but for Mr. Daisey’s own self-aggrandizement. The horrors of these factories could be found, if only the media had been as willing to look as Mr. Daisey. An amateur in a hawaiian shirt discovered the truth, because he had a curiosity and righteousness the mainstream press lacked. This same mainstream media, of course, had already done substantial in-depth reporting on factories manufacturing products for Apple and other companies, in such articles as “In China, Human Costs Are Built Into an iPad”, “Workers Sickened at Apple Supplier in China”, and “Explosion at Apple Supplier Caused by Dust, China Says”. Let us be clear, however, once again: Ms. Greider does not question that the details of horrific labor conditions are very much the case.

“Mike Daisey Was Wrong About Apple in China” by Mr. Engber serves as the main buttress for Mr. Sanchez’s point, then, and it is more problematic. “I’m told again and again,” writes Engber, “that it’s a tragedy Daisey misrepresented the little stuff because his main argument is so important and true.” It is wrong, according to Mr. Engber, for “This American Life” host to claim that basic story was true, on the details reported on such details that “Foxconn employees are overworked and underaged; Chinese workers are in fact poisoned by something called n-hexane; living conditions are crowded; attempts to unionize are busted; et cetera.” Any claims Mr. Daisey’s story makes about these, according to Mr. Engber, are “substantially false.” Mr. Engber then focuses entirely on the number of underage workers at Foxconn; Mr. Daisey gives us a rate of five percent underage workers when the actual number is 0.05. Were Mr. Daisey’s report a scientific paper, according to Mr. Engber, it would be considered fraudulent, for this very manipulation of data, whatever the soundness of the conclusion. Mr. Engber does not provide a source for his counter figures, as one would in a scientific paper, but I’ll take his word for it. The gap in underage workers in verified reports and Mr. Daisey’s monologue is employed as the sole point of refutation of any other claims.

Mr. Engber’s focus on the figure of underage workers to the exclusion of all other details of factory working conditions is a little strange, since the difficulties of chinese factories involved in ipad production have been thoroughly and reliably documented. The most chilling detail of Mr. Daisey’s piece, the nets outside of Foxconn factories to deal with the problem of suicides, is very much the case, and can be found in the story “1 Million Workers. 90 Million iPhones. 17 Suicides. Who’s to Blame?” by Joel Johnson in Wired. That many workers suffered long-term damage at the Suzhou Wintek factory which designs the ipad screens is well documented in “Workers Sickened at Apple Supplier in China” by David Barboza. An example is given of Jia Jingchuan, whose nerve damage was so severe he now must wear down-insulated clothes indoors. This came from handling what Mr. Engber calls “something called n-hexane”. After they suffered this damage, many were pressured to leave without compensation, their pleas to Apple for relief ignored. Improper ventilation in the Pegatron factory in Shanghai and the Foxconn factory in Chengdu resulted in explosions, causing severe burns and death in both locations. Accounts of both fires are ably documented respectively in “iPad Workers: Plant Inspected Hours Before Blast” and “Explosion at Apple Supplier Caused by Dust, China Says”. The overcrowding and strain of Foxconn factories, with employees forced to work overtime and workers’ legs swelling from standing ten hours a day, with barely edible food, and marginal living facilities, are all documented in “In China, Human Costs Are Built Into an iPad”, by Charles Duhigg and David Barboza, as well as the report “Foxconn and Apple Fail to Fulfill Promises: Predicaments of Workers after the Suicides” by the heroic Students & Scholars Against Corporate Misbehaviour (SACOM).

Mr. Engber argues for the falseness of the claims of Mr. Glass that the details of the labour conditions has been corroborated by other sources. I have just linked to those accounts which I believe give such substantial backing to Mr. Glass. By stating that the details of factory work, including the toxic effects of n-hexane and overcrowding are “substantially false”, he indicts not Mr. Daisey, but the appropriated research of Johnson, Duhigg, Barboza, and SACOM. So, I make a similar challenge to Mr. Engber and his counterclaims. Demonstrate that the points on Foxconn overcrowding and improper ventilation, on the poisoning by “something called n-hexane” are substantially false, as he claims. If he cannot, then either he or Slate should retract their assertions. If they do not, then they abide by standards lower than that of most scientific journals, but “This American Life” as well.

That Mr. Daisey’s examination of chinese labour conditions was so extraordinarily popular, the most downloaded program in the history of “This American Life”, lies not just, I believe, with Mr. Daisey’s ability at storytelling but the very quality that Ms. Greider identifies, the placing of Mr. Daisey at the heroic center of these wretched factories, against the monoliths of corporate indifference. Where the superb accounts of Mr. Duhigg and Mr. Barboza place the reader in a passive role, a guilty party who consumes these products whose construction others investigate, Mr. Daisey gives the listener a heroic proxy, someone like himself, an ordinary schmoe who wants to do good, an enthusiastic well-meaning amateur much like the listener, or how the listener sees himself, surrounded by the treacherous and callous, including, I suppose, the employer of Messrs. Duhigg and Barboza.

So, Mr. Daisey’s program has given the audience what they wanted. In their own way, Apple has given their audience what they’ve wanted as well, a magical gadget at a very low price. Perhaps Messrs. Engber and Sanchez have given this same audience something as well, brushing aside all thought of labor conditions because of one man’s lies. This dovetails with Mr. Sanchez’s other point about the lack of coverage Fox News gave to the death of Trayvon Martin. The starting point is the now infamous graph detailing the miserly amount of coverage that Fox News gave to the shooting, as featured in this Think Progress post “All Major News Outlets Cover Trayvon Martin Tragedy, Except Fox News”:

graph of Martin shooting coverage

Though the amount of coverage, according to Mr. Sanchez, may be inherently defensible, the contrast in coverage with other media may also lie with “whether one thinks institutional racism remains a serious problem in the United States”, whether this killing is a lone occurrence or part of a larger context of prejudice, with Fox News taking, obviously, the former position. I will offer a simple alternative, without righteousness, which is that, given its audience, this was the financially smart position for Fox News to take. That the positions of the network are not the result of the brainstorming of various solons, as Mr. Sanchez appears to think, but a simple, crude calculation of the appetites of its viewers. Ultimately, I think this means heavy coverage of the alien, the foreign, invading the abode of the decent, domestic american, and I think it is easily understood that american is euphemism for a certain skin color and religion. This is why the network gives uncritical emphasis to the possibility that Barack Obama’s birth certificate is a fake. This is why so much stamping and gnashing is given to the prospect of a Ground Zero mosque. Ultimately, a story about a man killing an unarmed black teenager goes entirely against this narrative, puts it entirely on its head, makes the alien a decent, law abiding innocent, and the gun wielding authority into something else.

The objection might be raised that there is nothing in the heart of the Fox viewer that is anything as rancid as this. That the choice made is similar to the rational calculation which Mr. Sanchez describes. I offer as possible refutation, two sets of statements, both collected courtesy of Little Green Footballs, which I learned via the invaluable Eric Boehlert.

I note that these statements appear to have been made with the comfort that the writer is among brethren, like minded men and women, so they may say these things without shame, compunction, or expectation of censure.

The first set of statements are comments made at the Fox News site, posted to the story reporting Whitney Houston’s death. The language is offensive. This is a partial listing, with the full set to be found at Little Green Footballs.

A tragedy is when someones passes away from a terminal disease or something else that no one saw coming.Whitney is just an inferior lo w life ni gg er that needed to go,no tragedy,no loss.

Any death is a tragedy you heartless bástard.

not nignogs their death is a plus

SHe couldn’t even sell issues of “the national enquirer” anymore. Everyone was tired of the TNB. Niqqer flaps her lips and screeches, niqqer becomes rich. Niqqer ends up nearly broke after spending all of her money. Niqqer in constant fights and drug binges. Niqqer ODs when she learns she’s nearly broke and she is so wasted physically she can’t make another album. Niqqer hit the end of the road, niqqer thinking and niqqer behavior led her to where she had nothing. She couldn’t face life without the “bling bling”, she knew she would never have any more “kaching kaching”

I am now patiently waiting for the grand messiah Obama to have a blk fundraiser in honor of Whitley with Kevin Costner as guest of honor with all the Hollywood elites invited along with Alan Colmes, Al Sharpton, Jeremia Wright, Charles Rangel, etc. with a menu featuring blk eyed peas, grits, Imported Kobe steak, Dom Perignon, sweet potato pie and a mus lll im scarf as a momento of this great occasion.

Of course the door prize will be an all expense paid trip to Kenya to visit the Obama tribe and birthplace of his ancestors while the American people still look for this imposter’s birth certificate in Hawaii !!!

This is typical of the blk gene pool; it happens all the time. They cannot handle fame and fortune whether it’s derived from music, acting, sports or just plain entertainment. Too much fame and too much money at one time will ki ll ll you.

How many blk people have died from drugs including alcohol that have been in the sports and the entertainment industry or screwed up their married lives like Tiger Woods or worse, OJ Simpson !!!

This is the same disease that got Obama voted into the White House.

i don’t even consider them to be included in the human race let alone on a pedistal. the people that do are a bunch of loosers.

Story goes Obama sh0ved to much cr@ck up the wh0res @zz when he was going to sniiff it…

Obvious the use of to much hair strengthener did her in.That s__t will peel paint!

unfortunately like most nignog crack hoes she was able to apply her trade on “da streets”

Another nignog off the public social rolls

BIack females are the fattest segment of the population. BIack males are the most murderousss segment of the population. Africans have the lowest IQ of all people.

Like most of her species, she suffered from chronic stupidity.

tough break niqqer.

Nothing wrong with Coors, what is good about it most_n i g g e r s_ don’t like it

oh niqqa please,nigga please.

one of the only b l a c k chics i would have ever banged…..once you go c r ack er…..you dont do cr a c k

Woo Hoo One less obama voter

Whitney who?!? some /\/iggress music artist that had a couple of hits in the early 90’s. She’s since been forgotten and now she’s dead.. Who cares..

Africans love their drugs.

Here is a second set of comments, again posted to the Fox News site, in reaction to the story of the Trayvon Martin shooting. Again, the language is offensive. Again, this is a partial listing, with the full set to be found at Little Green Footballs.

What a shame—a tragedy, really— because the dead lil’ gangsta could’ve used “‘A-FIRM-TIV AK-SHUN” to go to kollige an play footballz and make lotsa cash munny!”

Fast and Furious didn’t work to pass new gun control so now Eric Holder will try the race card.

No matter how crime figures are massaged by those who want to acknowledge or dispute the existence of a Dirty War, there is nothing ambiguous about what the official statistics portray: for the past 45 years a large segment of bIack America has waged a war of v i o l e n t retribution against white America.

Zimmerman was attacked by the man and defended himself with a gun. Zimmerman’s wounds were verified by police.

17 = child. LOL!!!!!!

Let the LIB word games begin.

Yet the “justice department” refuses to prosecute any voter intimidation that involves a blac k as the intimidator.

Why should anyone care about this kid? Because he is of color? People don’t value kids period. They are property. BTW, I am a conservative that cares a great deal about kids. We follow hundreds of cases each year, many white babies and children, none of them get attention. But he does??

Zimmerman felt threatened by Martin’s gang’s actions…this could have possibly lead to these terrible circumstances. Gang violence MUST BE STOPPED OBAMA!

Blacks can do no wrong, period! That is the DOJ’s excuse for becoming involved. 50+ years of being told they are special and entitled and the gov’t’s only focus is to make it so!!

In any event, it appears to be a case of one sc u m bag Cuban-type (Zimmerman) offing some scummy b l a ck kid (Trayyy-Vonnnn)…in some trash neighborhood….

but now, because the dead kid’s a kneegrow, we have:

the BIG BAD FBI on this “important” case…and

the usual BLACK-RADICAL-PROTESTERS who can’t mind their own business!

Gated communities exist because people are afraid….& negros thrive on crime…Look at our prisons.

Need that too….But Negr0s only have their welfare checks….and in any event can’t follow rules

What time do the riots start? Gotta get my popcorn and munchies ready for the “hood” burning!

Funny you never see them rally against the drug dealing murderers that control their neighborhoods. LOL!!!

How does anyone know what this 17 yr old said, Most likely he threw the race card out ” you stop me because I*M B L ACK” and then became threatning. The media alway plants the seed of doubt when when a B l ac k is sh ot by a caucasian

maybe his gang brothers incited violence too?

I close with this observation: there are things that are very profitable whose profitability makes us very uncomfortable. Such things include pornography and drugs. They also include hatred of our fellow man. Many years ago, a presidential candidate oversaw the publication of directions on how to deal with black men in your neighborhood, and I find it very prescient in foreshadowing details of the Martin killing.

If you live in a major city, you’ve probably already heard about the newest threat to your life and limb, and your family: carjacking.

It is the hip-hop thing to do among the urban youth who play unsuspecting whites like pianos. The youth simply walk up to a car they like, pull a gun, tell the family to get out, steal their jewelry and wallets, and take the car to wreck. Such actions have ballooned in the recent months.

In the old days, average people could avoid such youth by staying out of bad neighborhoods. Empowered by media, police, and political complicity, however, the youth now roam everywhere looking for cars to steal and people to rob.

What can you do? More and more Americans are carrying a gun in the car. An ex-cop I know advises that if you have to use a gun on a youth, you should leave the scene immediately, disposing of the wiped off gun as soon as possible. Such a gun cannot, of course, be registered to you, but one bought privately (through the classifieds, for example).

I frankly don’t know what to make of such advice, but even in my little town of Lake Jackson, Texas, I’ve urged everyone in my family to know how to use a gun in self defense. For the animals are coming.

This story, of course, was published in a newsletter by Ron Paul, a newsletter whose active oversight by Paul was confirmed in “Paul pursued strategy of publishing controversial newsletters”, by Jerry Markon and Alice Crites, of the Washington Post. It was, not incidentally, first investigated by Mr. Sanchez himself, along with Dave Weigel in very good work, “Who Wrote Ron Paul’s Newsletters?”. I consider Paul to be a man of mediocre intellect, who, however, now holds one distinction few writers can claim: what he wrote two decades ago is still very much relevant today. This newsletter was a very successful commercial venture, making Paul a multi-millionaire, successful not despite its targeting of black men and women, but because of it. This shrewd business calculation is, I believe, the same one Fox News makes now. The only question is whether we are willing to see it clearly as such, state it clearly as such, and ask for a world where our fellows are something more than paving stones to misanthropic wealth and worker ants for the building of our toys.

(This piece was edited for style with corrections made for grammar and spelling subsequent to its initial posting. I also negligently did not give a proper link for the Think Progress story featuring their graph on Fox News coverage of the Martin killing, nor did I give proper mention to Mr. Sanchez for his past work on the Paul newsletters.)

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The Non-Vindication of Ron Paul on MLK’s Birthday

This is a short follow-up to posts by Messrs. Ta-Nehisi Coates and Andrew Sullivan on Paul’s votes for a federal holiday.

Mr. Coates excellent detective work is here, MLK Day Fact Check, making clear that Paul’s votes for both the 1979 and 1983 bill were nays.

I think Mr. Coates work here is thorough and without need of addendum; there is only one loose thread left dangling which I wish to sew up.

From the linked post:

Paul’s supporters link to his Yea vote on this 1979 bill as evidence that he supported an MLK Holiday:

TO AMEND H.R. 5461, MARTIN LUTHER KING HOLIDAY, BY DESIGNATING THE THIRD MONDAY IN JANUARY RATHER THAN JANUARY 15 AS THE LEGAL HOLIDAY.

But this actually isn’t the bill for the holiday. The text doesn’t even claim that. More importantly, the date is wrong. This vote was taken on December 5, 1979. The vote for the King holiday was actually taken on November 13, 1979:

The bill was called up in the House on Tuesday, November 13, 1979…When the final vote was taken, 252 Members voted for the bill and 133 against–five votes short of the two-thirds needed for passage.

Andrew Sullivan follows up this post with Ron Paul, Chuck Todd, And Fact Checking, bringing up the HR 5461 amendment:

There’s this piece of evidence that seems to vindicate Paul. But it’s merely about when to recognize the holiday, not whether to, so far as I can tell.

I cannot emphasize this more strongly: Ron Paul’s vote does not indicate his support for the holiday, or ambivalence about the holiday but his passionate opposition to it.

The amendment was not simply to change the date of the holiday, but to make sure that the national holiday was always, NO MATTER WHAT THE DATE, held on Sunday. It’s this amendment that defeats the MLK birthday measure.

Here are two newspapers on the event at the time. From The Pitsburgh Post-Gazette December 6 1979:

House Rejects King Holiday
New York Times News Service

WASHINGTON – As Martin Luther King’s widow watched glumly from the galleries, the House of Representatives yesterday gutted a bill to make King’s birthday a national holiday.

The bill, which only two weeks ago had come close to receiving a two-thirds vote in the House, was then withdrawn from further consideration, at the behest of the congressional black caucus.

Republicans and Southerners joined forces to support a key amendment that provided that the slain civil rights leader’s birthday be celebrated on a Sunday.

The amendment was approved 207-191. With few exceptions, the 3-hour debate focused on the economics of creating an additional holiday.

The article at the Connecticut Morning Record and Journal, “Blacks Blame Carter For King Holiday Failure”, repeats the same news. An appropriate excerpt:

Instead of a national holiday honoring King, the House passed an amendment to make the holiday always fall on Sunday.

Sponsors considered that unacceptable and withdrew the bill.

I think this should end Paul’s supposed vindication over this.

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Matt Stoller Writes Wrongly Of Many Things

(since initially posting this, I have made a few style edits and added some text addressing the Federal Reserve, sourced from William Greider’s Secrets of the Temple

An analysis of Matt Stoller’s “Why Ron Paul Challenges Liberals”. I will point out that Mr. Stoller’s core thesis, “that the anger [Paul] inspires comes not from his positions, but from the tensions that modern American liberals bear within their own worldview” is very obviously flawed. The anger that Paul inspires in progressives can be directly linked to works – the newsletters which deeply violate progressive norms and the ideas espoused in Freedom Under Siege.

Of the newsletter articles, which include those that engage in racial slurs about the laziness of black people, talk about killing a black man and getting away with it, encourage paranoia over a race war, encourage nativism about the descent of the white race, encourage nativism over immigrants with AIDS, advocate the segregation of those with AIDS, Paul, either, at best, simply profited from but did not write them, or, at worst, was directly involved in writing (a paragraph of authorial marks linking Paul to the newsletters is here, a mention of an obscure word used both by Paul in Freedom Under Siege and his newsletter is here). This, in addition to what is stated in Freedom Under Siege, a book written by him, advocating the end of sexual harassment protection, the end of legal protection of those with HIV, AIDS, or other disease from being terminated on the basis of their illness, the end of civil rights legislation in general. All this is in opposition with essential progressive ideals, not a convenient re-interpretation or over-generalization of progressive ideals, but the very core of progressive ideals regarding the dignity and rights of a fellow citizen. It can be taken for granted, then, that the anger felt towards someone who is in such opposition to their ideals may well be over the ideals themselves, whatever the other traits of the opponent.

If individual A is indicted and convicted of deliberate murder, we might state that wealth, poverty, or political inconvenience play a part in the conviction if the evidence is non-existent or spare; on the other hand, if the evidence is strong, untampered, with eyewitnesses, then it can be stated that the conviction is sound, lies with the crime at hand, and whatever the other traits of the individual, the conviction lies with the crime itself, with the individual’s traits irrelevant. Mr. Stoller, showing either arrogance or an absence of intellectual rigor, concedes the crime, but somehow insists that the indictment and conviction takes place because of individual A’s traits.

I will go through Mr. Stoller’s piece in some depth, use well-known, mainstream, and reputable sources for my points. I will leave any commentary to the end, as I do not wish the analysis to be tainted with a pejorative tone.

The essay is structured around an examination of three presidents, Lincoln, Wilson, and FDR, their intertwined use of centralization of financial power, enlarged state power, and war-making.

Mr. Stoller:

What connects all three of these Presidents is one thing – big ass wars, and specifically, war financing.

American empire precedes the federal reserve, and war financing took place outside these presidents. The Revolutionary War involved huge debts and the payment of soldiers in scrip, due to the lack of hard currency. A list of those principally culpable for the formation of American empire would not contain these three.

The major elements of the foundation of american empire would include the overthrow and seizure of the Hawaii kingdom by William McKinley for the convenience of the island’s wealthy planter class and white minority; the Spanish-American War, again under McKinley, which gave the US virtual rule over Cuba through the Platt amendment, to the great benefit of sugar and coffee plantation owners, to the great adversity of their laborers; the acquisition of the Phillipines for strategic and commercial advantage. The case for seizure of the Phillipines was opposed on the basis that it was an imperialist power-grab; it was argued for on the grounds that Filipinos were too racially inferior to handle their own sovereignty. These ideas of the inherent inferiority of certain racial groups show up, of course, in Ron Paul’s publications.

Under another republican, Theodore Roosevelt, the Panama independence movement was backed through funding and gunboats. After, Roosevelt formulates his doctrine that gives the United States the right to intercede in any part of the hemisphere it sees fit. Nations in the hemisphere must show “reasonable efficiency and decency in social and political matters, if it keeps order and pays its obligations”, or they may face intervention. This happens under Taft, another republican, in Nicaragua, where the reformist president Jose Santos Zelaya was overthrown for the benefit of american mining interests. A similar coup took place under Honduras, again under Taft, again under the basis of the Roosevelt doctrine, this time for wealthy american landowners. I do not see Taft and Roosevelt in Stoller’s list of miscreants; Paul, in his newsletter, was disgusted at the return of the Panama Canal to its territory, blaming, as usual, the Trilateral Commission and David Rockefeller.

I make these points without citation because they are well-known; I consulted Stephen Kinzer’s Overthrow when writing this for the part on the foundation of american empire, and Ron Chernow’s Alexander Hamilton for the few sentences on the Revolutionary War.

Moving on,

If you think today’s deficits are bad, well, Abraham Lincoln financed the Civil War pretty much entirely by money printing and debt creation, taking America off the gold standard.

He did not take America off the gold standard; paper money was issued, but gold coins remained in circulation, and gold was still used to pay interest on bonds and tariffs. You cannot take a nation off the gold standard, if gold and gold currency is still being used for payment. A table showing the various currencies in circulation – gold coin, gold certificate, paper currency – can be found in A Monetary History of the United States by Milton Friedman and Anna Jacobson Schwartz, page 43.

The argument made at the time was that paper currency was already in existence alongside metallic currency. From Battle Cry Of Freedom by James McPherson:

“Every intelligent man knows that coined money is not the currency of the country,” said Republican Representative Samuel Hooper of Massachusetts. State banknotes—many of them depreciated and irredeemable — were the principal medium of exchange. The issue before Congress was whether the notes of a sovereign government had “as much virtue…as the notes of banks which have suspended specie payments.”

Lincoln did not take such action, unilaterally, but with the support of business, banks, and a majority vote from Congress.

Continuing with Mr. Stoller:

The dollar then became the national currency, and Lincoln didn’t even back those dollars by gold (and gold is written into the Constitution).

Gold is not written into the constitution. The coinage of money is written into the constitution. The argument that currency must be metallic derives from a literal reading of this federal power:

To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures;

The counterargument is that paper money, as stated by representative Hooper, in the previous quote, was already in use. Paper scrip had been used in payment during the revolutionary war. The insistence that “coin” must imply gold or silver is necessary to make the argument against paper currency, since any metallic currency, without rarer metals such as gold and silver, might be as plentiful as one of paper.

This financing of the Civil War was upheld in a series of cases over the Legal Tender Act of 1862.

I’m not sure what is meant by “upheld”, since the first of the cases over the Legal Tender Act, Hepburn v. Griswold, was heard in 1870, years after the war was over.

Prior to Lincoln, it was these United States. Afterwards, it was the United States.

No, prior to Lincoln it was the United States. After, it was the United States. The constitutional preamble:

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

What changes is that prior to the Civil War, there is the implication that the United States are. From Christopher Hitchens’ Thomas Jefferson: Author of America, following the Louisiana Purchase:

When the treaty was signed, [diplomat and Jefferson friend] Robert Livingston probably spoke for a majority in saying, “From this day, the United States take their place among the powers of first rank.” (Pause to note the locution: it was not until after Gettysburg that Americans began to say “the United States is” rather than “the United States are.”)

The essay then moves on to Woodrow Wilson. I would like to take the time to point out a sentence in this section, not for its factual falsehood, but strange, sloppy thinking:

Like Lincoln, [Wilson] set up a tremendous war financing vehicle to centralize capital flows and therefore, political authority.

The sentence implies, perhaps inadvertently, a Confederate reading of Lincoln. War financing was set up in order to centralize capital flows and political authority. War financing is not set up for war itself, in this case, Confederate insurrection (or “insurrection”, in quotation marks, as Ron Paul writes in Freedom Under Siege), but for the purpose of centralizing capital flows and political authority. War is waged, not out of necessity, but for the selfish purpose that the president be able to make himself tyrant. That’s an extraordinary claim, and I hope that sentence is not making it.

There is also this sentence:

In many ways, Wilson set up the rudiments of America’s police state, and did so arguably to help a transatlantic Anglo-American banking elite.

It makes a claim that is extraordinarily large and dangerous, yet is entirely vague and contains no facts. It may or may not be refutable, since it only makes a claim without factual citation. It reminds me of nothing so much as the sentence, “The Trilateral Commission is no longer known only by those who are knowledgeable about international conspiracies, but is routinely mentioned in the daily news. Evidence of its influence on the Republican and Democratic administrations is all about us”, from the Ron Paul Freedom Report 1978.

Back to Mr. Stoller, who begins his critique of Wilson with the president’s establishment of the Federal Reserve:

On to Woodrow Wilson. Wilson signed the highly controversial Federal Reserve Act in 1913; originally, the Federal Reserve system was supposed to discount commercial and agricultural paper. Government bonds were not really considered part of the system’s mandate. But what happened the next year? Yes, World War I.

This link between the purchase of government bonds being driven by a war funding decision is, again, wrong. The initial decision to buy bonds came not from the Reserve, but from the Reserve Banks, and was taken not for the purpose of funding or regulation, but because government paper was a sound place for keeping funds. From the sane, skeptical, but non-conspiratorial (despite the title) look at the Federal Reserve, William Greider’s Secrets Of The Temple: How The Federal Reserve Runs The Country:

The twelve Reserve Banks formed their alliance against Washington around an issue that, at the time, seemed a peripheral question – the buying and selling of government securities. The original operations of the Federal Reserve did not use the open-market purchases of U.S. securities as the means to create new money or extinguish it. Money was created entirely through the Discount windows at the twelve Reserve Banks. Instead of buying or selling government notes and bonds, the Fed took in “real bills” of trade – the short-term debt notes that banks took when they lent to business and agriculture. When these notes were eventually paid off at the Fed, the money would automatically cease to exist. Creating money for real commercial transactions, it was assumed, would make the money supply self-regulating, growing and contracting always in step with the ebb and flow of private commerce and credit.

When individual Reserve Banks began buying government securities for their separate portfolios, it was not to regulate the money supply but to increase their own earnings. Treasury paper was a safe place to park idle funds and provided a modest return that would help pay for the banks’ operations. Most economists, inside and outside the Fed, did not grasp the larger implications – these random transactions were themselves expanding or shrinking the money in circulation. If Atlanta or Philadelphia bought $1 million in bonds, it was pumping high-powered money into the banking system – $1 million that would be multiplied by bank lending. If it sold bonds, the reverse occurred.

The wiser heads, including Benjamin Strong in New York, rather quickly recognized the connection. When Reserve Banks made open-market transactions, interest rates rose or fell, accordingly, in financial markets. On some occasions, there was plain confusion when one Reserve Bank would be buying bonds while another Reserve Bank was selling.

Strong persuaded the other Reserve Bank officials that the twelve Reserve Banks, at the very least, must coordinate their actions, a proposal that became the means for organizing the regional banks as a rival power center, independent of the Federal Reserve Board in Washington. The New York Fed, it was agreed, would handle all sales and purchases for the others managed in a way that did not disrupt markets. The twelve Reserve Banks formed their own Open Market Investment Committee to decide things. The Federal Reserve Board approved, apparently unaware that it was ceding control of a powerful monetary lever.

It should be emphasized that Strong’s action was not part of some conspiratorial attempt to go off the currency. Strong does not want to go off the gold standard, and fears this possibility.

Greider:

In 1913, Strong wrote to his friend Paul Warburg warning that if Federal Reserve Notes were made an obligation of the U.S government, they would inevitably constitute “greenbacks,” the fiat money that the Populists had sought. “If the United States government embarks once more upon the expedient or experiment of issuing fiat paper, although in this case supported by bank assets and percentage in gold reserve. the day will come when we will deeply regret it…”

Mr. Stoller writes of government bonds not being part of the original mandate; I am uncertain of where he gets this idea. The original mandate was extraordinarily vague, and certainly allowed for the purchase of government paper. Again, Greider:

The original instructions that Congress gave to the temple were vague (and not much improved over the years). The 1913 act said merely that the Reserve Banks should set Discount loan rates “with a view of accomodating commerce and business.” Credit should be provided to member banks with due regard to “the maintenance of sound credit conditions, and the accommodation of commerce, industry, and agriculture.”

From A Monetary History of the United States (my bolds):

Receipt of gold, rediscounting of “eligible” paper, discounting of foreign trade acceptances, and open market purchases of government securities, bankers’ acceptances, and bills of exchange were the means initially provided for creating Federal Reserve money, and the converse for retiring it.

Back to Mr. Stoller, and his discussion of the internal security measures of the Wilson administration.

Wilson also implemented a wide variety of highly repressive authoritarian measures, including the Palmer Raids, the Espionage Act of 1917, and the use of modern PR techniques by government agencies.

Here, one can argue that libertarians are wary of centralized financing and political authority for liberal reasons – the ACLU was founded after the Palmer raids.

The Palmer raids, initiated under Attorney General Mitchell Palmer, along with the Espionage Act and the Sedition Act, were almost entirely an attempt to destroy american organized labor, for the ostensible reason that they were part of a larger communist insurgency. The Palmer raids had nothing to do with centralized financing or authority; labor had been persecuted before and after the creation of the Federal Reserve.

The major target of the Espionage Act was the International Workers of the World group; it was government harassment done in concert with the vigilante group the American Protective League (APL), a private business supported organization, which placed operatives in bank and industry, who would root out any subversives, in this case, members of organized labor; nor would he have issue with the practices of private detectives and thugs in the pay of such business. It is a simple and obvious note that Paul would have no difficulty with the private persecution of employees, or the more loathsome business practices of the era which led to the formation of unions, that this is entirely consistent with his admitted writings on private property and contracts.

On to the Palmer raids: Mr. Stoller appears to give Wilson sole responsibility for the authority and supervision of these raids, which I find somewhat strange. The first Palmer raid takes place on November 7, 1919, not co-incidentally, an anniversary of the Russian revolution. On September 25, a month prior, Wilson has already suffered the stroke that destroys him entirely, making him president in name only. The Palmer raids were conducted entirely by Palmer himself, without any presidential oversight whatsoever.

Opposition to the Palmer raids came from within the Wilson government itself, with the Secretary of Labor, William Wilson, former coal miner, who now witnessed his fellow workingmen persecuted. Palmer made these raids in the fervent hope that they would help elect him president. His support at the democratic convention was derived from his strikebreaking and abandonment of anti-trust prosecutions, actions, again, which Ron Paul would heartily support. The opposition to Palmer lay not with any libertarian business owners, but entirely, again, with organized labor, who helped defeat him at this same convention.

Mr. Stoller takes what was fundamentally an anti-labour political action, of public and private powers acting in unison to deprive workers of their rights, not unkin to the anti-labour movement now, and somehow transforms it into something to do with the Federal Reserve.

The previous is sourced from the chapters “The Missing Years”, “‘Palmer – Do Not Let This Country See Red!'”, “The Soviet Ark”, “The Facts Are a Matter of Record” from J. Edgar Hoover: The Man and The Secrets, by Curt Gentry.

Now, FDR:

And finally, we come to Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Roosevelt’s Fed is a bit more complex, because he did centralize monetary authority using wartime emergency powers, but he did so in peacetime. FDR abrogated gold clause contracts, seized the domestic supply of gold, and devalued the currency.

FDR did not use “wartime” emergency powers for this. The initial executive action immediately following his election, without congressional approval, was to make a de facto bank holiday official, a bank holiday that many banks, national and state had already taken. From Traitor to his Class by H.W. Brands:

As various governors watched banks in their states succumb to “runs”—uncontrolled withdrawal demands by depositors, which frequently ended with the failure of the banks—several pondered the drastic step of declaring “bank holidays,” that is, simply closing the banks to business. The idea, or hope, was that the panic would pass: that if depositors were temporarily prevented from withdrawing their funds, they would calm down and decide they really didn’t need the money. In fact most neither needed nor really wanted the money. Bank deposits earned interest; cash in a can in the garden or in a shoe box under the bed did not. If the depositors could have been sure their money was safe in the banks, nearly all of them would have been happy to leave it there. With this in mind, the governor of Louisiana declared a state bank holiday in early February. Michigan did the same at midmonth, followed by Maryland, Indiana, Arkansas, and Ohio. At the beginning of March twenty other states closed the doors of their banks. By inauguration day, the American banking system was nearly at a standstill.

Congress would give retroactive approval to this holiday, along with the power to open and close banks, embargo gold, and issue notes that would circulate as currency. Brands, again:

The law retroactively granted Roosevelt authority to close the banks and embargo gold, thereby removing any taint of unconstitutionality from Roosevelt’s executive action. Looking forward, the bank bill authorized him to reopen the banks when he saw fit, under the supervision of the comptroller of the currency, and to direct the Federal Reserve to issue notes that would circulate as money, regardless of the strictures of the gold standard, which remained technically in effect.

The second major executive action that Roosevelt asked for, and Congress granted, was unilateral ability to cut the budget. This was done to the detriment of the poor, as it was chiefly used to cut pensions and veterans’ benefits, which Congress very much wanted to cut, but were unable to do given the power of the constituency.

I have a very specific sense in mind of “wartime powers”. They are powers exercised by the executive, without approval of other branches, on the basis of military threat, whether used for military or non-military purposes. It does not include executive powers voted and approved by congress on the basis of a national emergency.

The abandonment of the gold standard is a combination of the powers granted by congress, and later congressional action.

Brands:

Deflation was an economywide problem, but because of their chronic indebtedness it hit farmers the hardest. Roosevelt had long commiserated with farmers, and even before the success of the bank rescue was assured, he turned to the farm question. There were two ways of dealing with low prices. One was to expand the money supply. This strategy was what the Populists and silver Democrats led by William Jennings Bryan had advocated in the 1890s with their call for remonetizing silver. They lost their fight in the election of 1896, and the country had officially embraced the gold standard—after decades of observing a de facto version—in 1900. Some silver-state Westerners still agitated for silver, but the first step in any systematic expansion of the money supply would be the abandonment of the gold standard.

Curtailing production would tend to raise farm prices, but not as fast or surely as increasing the money supply. Diehard populists like Oklahoma Democrat Elmer Thomas contended that every other effort would be wasted unless the president did something about money. Roosevelt’s farm bill passed the House in mere days and by an overwhelming margin—315 to 98. But Thomas stalled its progress in the Senate by proposing an amendment authorizing the president to expand the money supply by remonetizing silver, redefining the relationship between the dollar and gold, or reissuing the kind of fiat currency—“greenbacks”—that had circulated during and after the Civil War.

Roosevelt had known that the money question would come up, but he had hoped to keep it separate from the farm issue. The Thomas amendment made this impossible—as Thomas knew it would. The Oklahoma senator felt an obligation not merely to farmers but to the people of America generally. “No permanent relief is possible until the masses have buying power,” he declared. The way to give them buying power was to put money in their hands.

Elmer Thomas’s maneuver compelled Roosevelt to take a position on money sooner than he had intended. Roosevelt accepted the Thomas amendment, noting, however, that it only authorized the president to devalue the dollar. It did not require him to do so. “Purely discretionary” was how Roosevelt, speaking at a press conference, characterized his prospective power to expand the money supply. The Thomas amendment provided various methods of achieving inflation. “I do not have to use any of them,” Roosevelt said.

He wasn’t opposed in principle to inflation. On April 5, before the Thomas amendment came to a vote in the Senate, Roosevelt employed his new authority under the banking act to order private possessors of gold to surrender their yellow metal for currency. “The chief purpose of the order,” he explained, “is to restore to the country’s reserves gold held for hoarding and the withholding of which under existing conditions does not promote the public interest.”

The administration’s “monetary goal and objective” proved to be a managed currency, one freed of the constraints of gold. The gold order of April 5 was the first step; Roosevelt’s acceptance of the Thomas amendment two weeks later was a second. “Congratulate me. We are off the gold standard,” he told his economic advisers. Some of them sighed with relief; others spluttered with indignation.

Roosevelt explained that his acceptance of the Thomas amendment was tactical. “He said that the reason for the amendment was that unless something of this sort was done immediately, Congress would take the matter in its own hands and legislate mandatory law instead of permissive,” James Warburg, an adviser to [Secretary of the Treasury Will] Woodin, recalled.

Roosevelt may have overstated the hazard of a congressional diktat, but the result of the Thomas amendment, which passed the Senate in slightly revised form, and the House shortly thereafter, was to augment the president’s power over the money supply. As an indication of what he would do with the added power, he issued an executive order on April 20 forbidding the export of gold without license from the Treasury. More permanently than anything till now, Roosevelt’s embargo cut the dollar adrift from gold.

I have no doubt that Roosevelt’s actions, then and now, are controversial. To have a thesis, however, which argues about the intertwining of finance and military under democratic presidents, then to label temporary powers voted by congress to the executive in a financial emergency without any mention of war as “war-time” in order to make one’s case, strikes me as a little dishonest.

Back to Mr. Stoller:

[FDR] constrained banks with aggressive regulation and seizures of insolvent banks, saving depositors with the Reconstruction Finance Corporation. He also used the RFC to set up much of what we know today as the Federal government, including early versions of disaster relief, small business lending, massive bridge and railroad building, the FHA, Fannie Mae, and state and local aid.

The Reconstruction Finance Corporation was set up under Republican Herbert Hoover, with this very mandate, to provide funds for reconstruction and relief.

After this overview of the three presidents is the main part of Mr. Stoller’s thesis.

Modern liberalism is a mixture of two elements. One is a support of Federal power – what came out of the late 1930s, World War II, and the civil rights era where a social safety net and warfare were financed by Wall Street, the Federal Reserve and the RFC, and human rights were enforced by a Federal government, unions, and a cadre of corporate, journalistic and technocratic experts (and cheap oil made the whole system run.)

And two, it originates from the anti-war sentiment of the Vietnam era, with its distrust of centralized authority mobilizing national resources for what were perceived to be immoral priorities.

I wish to focus on one point: “a social safety net and warfare were financed by Wall Street, the Federal Reserve and the RFC”. It would seem that both a social safety net and warfare would be financed by a labourer’s taxes, that this is the nature, say, of social security, with a portion of one’s wages saved for later needs. It also formed a part of the opposition to war, including Viet Nam, beyond the awful objectives and wretched nature of war itself: that the wages from my labour could best be served in schools, medicine, and food for fellow citizens rather than killing those in a distant place. By making the labourer beholden for his benefits to Wall Street, Federal Reserve, and the RFC, Mr. Stoller removes all agency for the worker, making him entirely a dependent on these powers.

When you throw in the recent financial crisis, the corruption of big finance, the increasing militarization of society, Iraq and Afghanistan, and the collapse of the moral authority of the technocrats, you have a big problem. Liberalism doesn’t really exist much within the Democratic Party so much anymore, but it also has a profound challenge insofar as the rudiments of liberalism going back to the 1930s don’t work.

It would seem that if the social safety net, warfare, as well as (though Mr. Stoller strangely doesn’t mention this), tax breaks and subsidies for large corporations were all funded by the contributions of worker’s wages, then the worker is not beholden to finance, not beholden to the military, not beholden to any technocrat. But no: Mr. Stoller has removed this possibility. And because the labourer, according to Mr. Stoller, is beholden to these, he is unable to make his own critique of the existing morass. He must rely on a degenerate conspiracy minded racist who stands apart from all of them:

This is why Ron Paul can critique the Federal Reserve and American empire, and why liberals have essentially no answer to his ideas, arguing instead over Paul having character defects.

Again, as stated before, Mr. Stoller leaves out the simple fact of a worker’s wages freely earned, with his own sweat, a portion of which goes to taxes funding all these things, in order to remove an agency and participation that the worker has, not as supplicant, but as an engine of all this.

I will make no statements derived from this analysis, as I believe they would be a little too passionate, and a little too defamatory. That can be left for another time, until others, preferably with a stronger background than I in economics and history, can examine Mr. Stoller’s essay as fully, or more fully and in-depth, than I have, providing either confirmation or dissent of what is written here.

For the time being, I will only say this. Mr. Stoller’s essay been praised as “genuinely brilliant” by Mr. Glenn Greenwald, of Salon, in his piece, “Progressives and the Ron Paul Fallacies”. Given the flaws in Mr. Stoller’s work, Mr. Greenwald has either barely read this essay, his knowledge of the economic and political history of the United States is very limited, or his knowledge of the history of the United States is very different from mine. I am told by many that my blog is barely readable; should Mr. Greenwald ever decide to barely read it, and declare me an authentic genius, I would be grateful.

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Messengers

I add this as a brief footnote to an excellent essay, “The Messenger” by Ta-Nehisi Coates. I often lack the calm to write clearly and eloquently on Ron Paul, but in his writing, Mr. Coates appears never in want.

The title, but as well as much of the piece, made me recall a moment from The Losers by Michael Lewis.

Chapter Five is entitled “The Messenger”, focuses on christian activist Alan Keyes, with its title derived from the idea of Keyes as christian messenger, and Keyes as instrument of christian message. This quote from Alan Keyes serves as a concise embodiment:

[A campaign worker named John] didn’t come here because Alan Keyes asked him to. I just present the message. If they care about it they come forward. I don’t thank anybody. I don’t care what their name is, what their background is, who they think they are for helping this campaign. Because I think this campaign has to rely on the strength of the message and the power of God, and we will get where we’re supposed to get. If people feel that’s right they’ll come forward.

However, Mr. Coates’ piece reminded me of this moment most of all, from Chapter 10, “Blue Collar Blues”:

Within about thirty seconds of arriving at a gathering of Detroit autoworkers who support Pat Buchanan—Citizens for Better Government, they call themselves—I find myself at a restaurant table with the two men who run the show. They are the only two autoworkers who have turned up, at least for the moment. The first one, named Gordon, hands me a flyer headlined “UAW Rank and File behind Buchanan” that lists the names of the thirteen autoworkers who have “endorsed” Buchanan. The second one, Henry, turns out to be the real leader of this cryptic force. He’s a huge, pale man, maybe fifty-five years old, who sits across from me and glares as if I’m the enemy, which I slowly become.

“How many people are involved in this movement?” I ask him.

“We don’t discuss that,” he says.

“It’s national.”

“Well,” I say, “who is the head of it, nationally?”

“We don’t discuss that,” he says.“What trades do the members belong to?”

“We don’t discuss that.”

At that point I drop my grilled lamb hoagie onto the plate and say, “Well, look, what’s the point of organizing into a political movement if you won’t discuss it?” He blinks for a moment and then says, “We don’t discuss that either.”

The force of Henry’s view of the world as a conspiracy against him and his fellows is such that I have to close my eyes and remind myself that I’m not interviewing a militiaman.

“Does any of your movement favor Ross Perot?” I ask, on a hunch. “The true grassroots people abandoned Ross Perot,” says Henry, angrily emerging from his shell. “It’s the opportunists and the gullibles that stayed with him.”

An hour into the ceremony Buchanan arrives and shakes hands with his blue-collar following. He doesn’t give them much of a speech, maybe because there aren’t a whole lot of them to talk to; but he does offer up a version of the passage that he has worked into his routine to appeal to the politically self-conscious workingman. It is a curious thing to hear, coming as it does from the lips of a Republican:

Someone has got to stand up for the workingmen and-women of America who don’t have no representatives at these trade negotiations where they decide what industries are going to live and what are gonna die. It is wrong to negotiate trade deals for the benefit of transnational corporations that encourage them to shut down their plants in Toledo and Youngstown and to open up a plant in Singapore or China because that takes away jobs from American workers and hollows out our manufacturing base. Look, we won World War Two. You know why? We had great generals like MacArthur and Patton. And admirals like Nimitz. We had great soldiers, great American soldiers. But we also had this great industrial heartland of America. The productive capacity of this nation. And it is being gutted and hollowed out. We went up to Youngstown, Ohio. We went up along that river, the Mahoning Valley. Steel mills. Factories. Gone. Dead. Shut down for fifteen years. Take a look. Take a look at what we were and what we are. Those are the dying husks of what almost appears to be a dying civilization.

The bolds are my own, I make them given current events.

There is a quote apropros, most of all, which prefaces neither chapter, but applies to both, and what takes place now. There is the myth that any piece of information can be found instantly on the internet, but I am unable to find where this was originally written, since I very much would like to read the rest of it.

It is by Stanley Crouch: “In a democracy you never know who the messenger will be.”.

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AIDS and GRID, A Non-Ron Paul Explanation

At various points in Ron Paul’s newsletters, there are references to “GRIDS”, and it being the original name for the syndrome that would eventually labeled AIDS. This post is an attempt to clarify the subject.

From the Ron Paul Political Report June 1990:

Note: AIDS was originally named GRIDS–the Gay Related Immune Deficiency Syndrome. Political pressure forced a name change to try to hide the origin of this plague.

From “Congressional Courage”:

AIDS was “originally known as GRIDS–gay related immune deficiency syndrome.” For political reasons it was changed to AIDS. “A whole political movement has been created and sustained on a single notion: homosexual sodomy.”

A few selected passages from And The Band Played On that cover the transition from GRID (not GRIDS) to AIDS, misstated in the newsletters.

It was at this dinner that [San Francisco gay activist, organizer of the Kaposi's Sarcoma Research and Education Program] first heard the technical jargon that would become the stuff of his nightmares in the years ahead – terms like geometric progression and exponential increases. Some scientist had come up with a new name for the syndrome: Gay-Related Immune Deficiency, or GRID. [Dermatolagist with the University of San Francisco Marcus Conant], however, wasn’t sure how gay-related this immune deficiency would stay. Viruses tended not to respect such artificial divisions among humans. Lymphocytes were lymphocytes, and clearly they were major taste treats for the new virus, whether they happened to live in gay bodies or straight.

By now, a dizzying array of acronyms was being bandied about as possible monikers for an epidemic that, though ten months old, remained unnamed. Besides GRID, some doctors liked ACIDS, for Acquired Community Immune Deficiency Syndrome, and then others favored CAIDS, for Community Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome. The CDC hated GRID and preferred calling it “the epidemic of immune deficiency.” The “community” in other versions, of course, was a polite way of saying gay; the doctors couldn’t let go of the notion that one identified this disease by whom it hit rather than what it did.

If you don’t abide by scientific principles, chaos will ensue.

It was a fundamental tenet of [conductor of early studies of AIDS in hemophiliacs, Dr. Dale Lawrence] world. It was an idea that also recurred to him after he had flown up from Atlanta to join his boss, Dr. Bruce Evatt and [retrovirologist] Don Francis and a gathering of leaders of the blood industry, hemophiliac groups, gay community organizations, and assorted luminaries from the National Institutes of Health and the Food and Drug Administration. The Centers for Disease Control had hoped the new evidence of blood transmission would incite the blood industry’s two major components, the voluntary blood banks and the for-profit manufacturers of blood products, to move quickly to stem the tide of blood contamination.

It is at this meeting that a name is decided upon. Note that no elected officials are present.

In the end, everybody agreed that they should do one thing: Wait and see what happens…The meeting, however, did accomplish one memorable achievement. It was more than one year since Michael Gottleib and Alvin Friedman-Klein had reported their cases of pneumonia and skin cancer, and the epidemic still did not have commonly agreed-upon name. Different scientists were using different acronyms in an alphabet soup that further confused the already befuddled story of a strange new disease of unknown origin. The staffers at the CDC despised the GRID acronym and refused to use it. With the advent of hemophiliac cases, Jim Curran argued that any references to “gay” or “community” should be dropped and something more neutral be adopted. Besides, Curran thought ACIDS was a little grotesque.

Somebody finally suggested the name that stuck: Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome. That gave the epidemic a snappy acronym, AIDS, and was sexually neutral. The word “acquired” separated the immune deficiency syndrome from congenital defects or chemically induced immune problems, indicating the syndrome was acquired from somewhere even though nobody knew from where.

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The Ron Paul Newsletters / Ron Paul Paper Trail – Ron Paul Political Report June 1992

(The following contains language that may well be considered offensive. This post is an attempt to make clear what was written in past Ron Paul newsletters. More information can be found here)

Ron Paul
Political Report

June 15, 1992
Volume VI, Number 6

A Special Issue on Racial Terrorism

The Los Angeles and related riots mark a new era in American cultural, poltical, and economic life. We now know if we did not before, that we are under assault from thugs and revolutionaries who hate Euro-American civilization and everything it stands for: private property, material success for those who earn it, and Christian morality.

This is America, 1992

Ten thousand stores and other buildings looted and burned, thousands beaten and otherwise seriously injured, 52 people dead. That was the toll of the Los Angeles riots in which we saw white men pulled from their cars and trucks and shot or brutally beaten. (In every case, the mob was not too enraged to pick the victim’s pocket.)

We saw Korean and white stores targeted by the mob because they “exploited the community,” i.e., sold products people wanted at prices they were willing to pay.

Worst of all, we saw the total breakdown of law enforcement, as black and white liberal public officials had the cops and troops disarmed in the face of criminal anarchy.

In San Francisco and perhaps other cities, says my coin expert Burt Blumert, the rioting was led by red-flag carrying members of the Revolutionary Communist Party and the Workers World Party, both Trotskyite-Maoist. The police were allowed to intervene only when the rioters assaulted the famous Fairmont and Mark Hopkins hotels atop Nob Hill. A friend of Burt’s, a jewelry store owner, had his store on Union Square looted by blacks, and when the police arrived in response to his frantic calls, their orders were to protect his life, but not to interfere with the rioting.

Even though the riots were aimed at whites (and in L.A. at Koreans who had committed the crime of working hard and being successful, and at Cambodians in Long Beach), even though anti-white and anti-Asian epithets filled the air, this is not considered a series of hate crimes, nor a violation of the civil rights of whites or Asians.

(pages missing)

Many people tried to buy guns. But, whoops, California has a 14-day waiting period. And just to make sure honest Californians could not get ammunition for the firearms they already owned (poor rage filled youth might be shot), Mayor Tom Bradley ordered all gun and ammo shops closed, a great help to criminals who had stocked up earlier, or who could simply break in and loot.

Another group that had stocked up were Korean merchants, many of whom defended their places with guns, and later were arrested for illegal use of firearms. As one told the L.A. Times, “Two looters entered my store; one left.” These Korean immigrants were the only people to act like real Americans, mainly because they have not yet been assimilated into our rotten liberal culture, which admonishes whites faced by raging blacks to lie back and think of England.

White reporters and photographers who entered the riot zone were dragged from their cars and beaten. A freelance reporter for the Boston Globe was shot five times. The anti-white hate crimes accumulated.

In the midst of the rioting, Jesse Jackson and Congresswoman Maxine Waters (D-CA) spouted the pro-terrorist line that it was all justified because blacks “can’t get no justice.” The newsmen of the major networks interviewed them and lovingly bemoaned the “plight of the inner-city youth.” Liberal statist Jack Kemp weighed in with a victimological line similar to Jackson’s, saying we need more federal programs for the cities.

As the Establishment promised to spread more white taxpayers’ money around the inner city, the killers and looters spread their violence to Hollywood, Beverly Hills, Fairfax, and Westwood. A mall in Compton burned. But the violence wasn’t limited to the L.A. area. It extended to Long Beach, Cal. (where more than 500 Cambodian-owned businesses were torched); Seattle, Wash.; Eugene, Ore.; San Francisco, Cal.; San Jose, Cal.; Las Vegas, Nev. (where it still lingers as I write); Madison, Wis.; Birmingham, Ala.; and Atlanta, Ga. Terrorism swept America.

In Las Vegas, for example, a white man was pulled out of his car and severely beaten by blacks breaking up from an anti-white rally at 10:30 pm. The blacks shouted racial insults as the police carted him away to the hospital. The crowd then pelted SWAT teams in armored vehicles with rocks and bottles. Someone in the crowd of blacks shot a gun and the police responded with tear gas.

I’ve got a feeling that there were many more incidents of looting, fires, and violence that we haven’t heard about for the simple fact that the media doesn’t want us to know about them. Newsmen and editors are protecting us from the truth.

Order was only restored in L.A. when it came time for the blacks to pick up their welfare checks three days after rioting began. The “poor” lined up at the post office to get their handouts (since there were no deliveries) — and then complained about slow service.

What if the checks had never arrived? No doubt the blacks would have fully privatized the welfare state through continued looting. But they were paid off and the violence subsided.

Several days after the violence ended, we learned that there would have been blacks on the King jury–if the NAACP hadn’t engaged in jury tampering by telling potential black jurors that it was their racial duty to convict the cops. The blacks admitted this to defense lawyers, and were rightly excluded from jury. This is a serious crime, but the NAACP will not be prosecuted.

Imagine the irony. Blacks have whined endlessly that letting the cops off was “all white” (even though the jury included an Hispanic and an Asian). But it was the leading “civil rights” organization that is at fault for this.

What did Bush say about the riots? First he promised to have the Justice Department see if it could retry the cops for violating Rodney King’s “civil rights.” But what about the constitutional prohibition of double jeopardy? No one cares.

Then Bush promised an immediate payoff of $600 million to L.A. gangsters. When the liberals called this a “token”, he raised the amount to $1.2 billion. He has vacillated between pretending to be a tough guy and condemning the rioters, and taking up the Jack Kemp line that inner-city “despair” can be fixed through more federal programs.

But this is capitulation to terrorist demands. The advice some libertarians give–“don’t vote, it only encourages them”–applies here. We must not kowtow to the street hoodums and their santimonious leaders.

At a Washington, D.C., rally two weeks after the L.A. attempt at revolution, many poured out to lobby for more money to be given to the cities. The most commonly held sign was: “Justice for Rodney King. Free all the L.A. prisoners.”

Now, consider for a moment what this slogan implies. Were they upset by the murders, the burned buildings, and the $1 billion in property damage? Not at all, except to use it as an excuse to get more cash. They wanted the cops jailed and the murderers, arsonists, and thieves set free. This came not from the underclass, but middle-class blacks and black political activists, who hold opinions not markedly different from the Crips and the Bloods.

But the Crips and the Bloods, it turns out, have been misunderstood, according to Ted Koppel who interviewed two of these animals. After spending several hours with them, he decided he liked them. Unfortunately, they didn’t pull him out of his stretch limousine.

Regardless of what the media tells us, most white Americans are not going to believe that they are at fault for what blacks have done to citiies across America. The professional blacks may have cowed the elites, but good sense survives at the grass roots.

Many more are going to have difficultly [sic] avoiding the belief that our country is being destroyed by a group of actual

The original pdfs of this: (p.1) (p.6) (p. 7) of this newsletter can be found at The New Republic.

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The Ron Paul Newsletters / Ron Paul Paper Trail – Ron Paul Political Report October 1990

(The following contains language that may well be considered offensive. This post is an attempt to make clear what was written in past Ron Paul newsletters. More information can be found here)

world…first by establishing socialist governments in the various nations and then consolidating them all through a ‘Great Merger,’ into an all-powerful world socialist super-state probably under the auspices of the United Nations.”

In 1986, in his last book before an early death, Gary urged us to Say No to the New World Order. He was a great man, and the prophet of our age. Gary, we miss you.

King City?

A mob of black demonstrators, led by the “Rev.” Al Sharpton, occupied and closed the Statue of Liberty recently, demanding that New York be renamed Martin Luther King City “to reclaim it for our people.”

Hmmm, I hate to agree with the Rev. Al, but maybe a name change is in order. Welfaria? Zooville? Rapetown? Dirtburg? Lazyopolis?

But Al, the Statue of Liberty? Next time, hold that demonstration at a food stamp bureau or a crack house.

Hate Crime?

Friends of big government, like HUD secretary Jack Kemp, can get away with things that would destroy an anti-establishment figure. Jim Watt described an affirmative-action committee as having “a Jew, two blacks, and a cripple.” and he wa–zoom–gone. But Kemp, pulling his car into a handicapped parking space in front of a Southern California newspaper, can say to an editor, “I’m handicapped–I work for the government” without being arrested by the Sensitivity Police.

Family Values on Pennsylvania Avenue

Doug Weed, assistant to the president for conservative liaison, was fired when he protested the White House invitation to gay leaders–the first in history–to watch the signing of the infamous Hate Crimes bill. Rumor has it that Weed also got in trouble for protesting, according to the Washington Times, an all-powerful “homosexual troika at the White House.”

Caring for the AIDS Patient

The government tells us that AIDS cannot be transmitted “casually.” The government also tells us that it should raise our taxes, and risk our sons for Saudi Arabia.

Recently, a non-government physician writing in Gene Antonio’s Healthwatch Report P.O. Box 90140-264, Arlington, TX

The original pdf of this newsletter can be found at The New Republic.

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The Ron Paul Newsletters / Ron Paul Paper Trail – Ron Paul Political Report June 1990

(The following contains language that may well be considered offensive. This post is an attempt to make clear what was written in past Ron Paul newsletters. More information can be found here)

terrible act–President Bush invited the heads of homosexual lobbying groups to the White House for the ceremony. A Congressman Bill Dannemeyer (R-CA) noted, “It’s a tragic message that is being sent,” that normality and deviance are equal.

I miss the closet. Homosexuals, not to speak of the rest of society, were far better off when social pressure forced them to hide their activities. They could also not be as promiscuous. Is it any coincidence that the AIDS epidemic developed after they came “out of the closet,” and started hyper-promiscuous sodomy? I don’t believe so, medically or morally.

Note: AIDS was originally named GRIDS–the Gay Related Immune Deficiency Syndrome. Political pressure forced a name change to try to hide the origin of this plague.

Further note: the largest blood bank in San Francisco succumbed to political pressure and holds blood drives in the gay Castro district; where the people give at three times the usual level. Either they are public spirited, or they are trying to poision the blood supply. There is a period of time after infection–perhaps as long as three years–when people can transmit AIDS, but their blood does not show the antibodies. And it is the antibodies that the blood screening tests use to detect AIDS.

As I have said before, DO NOT–unless your life literally depends on it–get a transfusion unless you have donated the blood in advance, or it comes from friends and family members you can trust.

Private Justice in New York

The criminal justice system in New York City is a joke. There are a zillion well-paid police, but they are of virtually no use. Not only are the streets terror zones, but home burglaries are not even investigated unless someone is hurt or more than $10,000 worth of property is taken! But the police and the prosecutors do tak eone form of crime seriously–competing with them. Defending yourself or others can get you in a lot of trouble, as young Kenny Mendoza found out.

Kenny, a 19 year old, heard screams from a woman in a neighboring slum apartment. Grabbing a gun and rushing up the fire escape, he found a 30-year-old pregnant woman held by a criminal with a knife against her throat. Kenny shot the man, who had a long criminal record, and as a result–instead of getting the medal he deserves–he is being indicted for murder and criminal possession of a weapon.

Several months agao, a gray-haired man was accosted on the subway by a gang of young pot-smoking, brandy-drinking animals. They started beating and kicking him after stealing his wallet and watch. When they pulled out a knife, he pulled out a gun, shot and killed one of the criminals, and calmly left the train.

The original pdf of this newsletter can be found at The New Republic.

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