Tag Archives: Franklin Delano Roosevelt

Comparing Catalonia and the Confederacy—States and Nations (with notes on the Monstrosity of Moderation in Media)

SPAIN TRIED AND FAILED TO SUPPRESS A VOTE FOR SECESSION IN ITS WEALTHY NORTHEASTERN CORNER OF CATALONIA TODAY (Sunday October 1, 2017).  According to the latest tally I have seen on the BBC, 2,020,144 Catalan voters cast their ballots in favor of an Independent Republic, centered on the Mediterranean seaport of Barcelona.  These two million plus voters constituted 90.09% of the 42-43% of the eligible electorate who voted, but Spain itself had urged pro-Spanish “no” voters to stay away from the Polls, and the massive police intervention and use of force must have discouraged some….

Although during the past 42 years that “Francisco Franco is still dead,” Spain has acknowledged the right of the several nationalities (Basque, Galician, Catalan) to assert regional autonomy, Spain has declared this vote illegal and non-binding. The Central Government of Spain in Madrid has been arguing ever since the election of the pro-Independence party in September of 2015,  that Catalonia’s vote was going to be “illegal” and they threatened to, and actually did, try to suppress the vote by Police Action.  

Most of the world (which has spoken) has either come out expressly in favor or seems tacitly on the side of Catalans who want independence.  Only Madrid and the Spanish government seem strongly against it—fearful, undoubtedly, of losing prime Mediterranean beach resorts, Barcelona (the second largest city in Spain, seventh largest and “most successful” in all Europe), plus the Balearic Islands (Majorca, Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera).  In essence, Catalonia includes some of the best real estate IN ALL OF EUROPE AND THE CIRCUM MEDITERRANEAN WORLD.  This is indeed “the Spanish Riviera”.

The comparison to the Secession of the Confederate States of America is obvious, but it isn’t getting much currency in the U.S. or British Media, despite the fact that the Confederate States have made a renewed appearance in the news since April, here in New Orleans and around the USA…. and even in the consciousness of the whole world.

So, since nobody else is making the comparison (that I’ve seen so far, anyhow, I will).   In 1860, the Southern states formed (per capita) the richest part of the United States.   Catalonia had better hope that world opinion remains on its side!    Because Spain has its eyes and tax collectors all focused on this rich province, and history tells us that the rich can be laid low when they try to retain their wealth….

For the record, Catalonia was originally, and has always considered itself, a separate “Nationality” (i.e. ethnolinguistic group). During the Middle Ages, the County of Barcelona became the Capital of the “Principality of Catalonia” which later became incorporated into the Kingdom of Aragon.  Aragon, in turn, was one of the most powerful and richest states in the post-Reconquista/Crusader world of the Mediterranean.  Then Aragon, later, under the 15th century reigns of King Ferdinand of Aragon and Queen Isabella of Castile, merged to form the modern Nation-State of “Spain”, leading to 500 years of almost continuous unity, although Aragon and Catalonia have several times reasserted their identities as monarchies or republics.

As James Ronald & Walter Donald Kennedy have shown in their most recent book “Punished with Poverty: the Suffering South, Prosperity to Poverty and the Continuing Struggle”  Columbia, South Carolina: Shotwell Publishing (2016), and as my dearly beloved grandmother always told me, THE SOUTH WAS THE WEALTHIEST PART OF THE UNITED STATES, “before the War” and the poorest part afterwards.   The combined cash value of the crops in any of the three pairs of Virginia and Georgia or Mississippi and Louisiana or North & South Carolina (each pair taken alone) exceeded the cash value of all the manufactured goods produced north of the Mason & Dixon-Ohio River—as of 1860.  But as of 1870, war had irreversibly altered the situation.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Shsf–rh4PE

While neither historians or any Southerners today doubt that the people of the South overwhelmingly favored secession in 1861, the state legislatures only voted to hold popular votes as referenda/plebiscites/”propositions” in three of the thirteen states and one territory seceding (there were fifteen “slave” states, but a secession vote in the legislature in Maryland was suppressed at gunpoint and the state of Delaware never tried—West Virginia seceded from Virginia but kept its slaves and (ironically) after the war was among the most hostile toward enfranchisement of the newly freed slaves, as evidenced in several of the early major civil rights cases which emerged from that idiosyncratic Appalachian state opposite Ohio that seceded to nullify secession—oh, and Arizona was a territory constituting the southern half of what is now Arizona and New Mexico, but had then all been “New Mexico” until 1861).

In the states that held popular vote referenda, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia, the votes in favor of secession were nowhere nearly as lopsided as the vote held in Catalonia today (Sunday, October 1, 2017), but it should be noted that NO NORTHERN STATE, nor the United States Federal Government, under President James Buchanan, ever questioned or attempted to quash secession in any state.  From South Carolina’s legislature’s first Ordinance of Secession on December 20, 1860, through Louisiana’s secession as the sixth state on January 26, 1861, the popular support for separation from the Union never appeared to waver or be doubtful.

SOUTHERN SECESSION PLEBESCITES

In February of 1861, Texas’ legislature voted to dissolve the state’s barely 16 year old affiliation with the Union on February 1, and a popular referendum was held on February 23, wherein the vote was 3.13:1 in favor of disunion.  

Virginia went through a similar two stage process in April and May of 1861, and the vote there (after Fort Sumter) was 3.53:1 in favor of taking the Old Dominion state into the Confederacy.  Robert E. Lee had opposed secession, but IN THOSE DAYS ONE’S CITIZENSHIP BELONGED TO THE STATE, NOT THE FEDERATION.  It would be comparable to calling us all “Citizens of the United Nations”—maybe some people WANT Global Citizenship, but so far, THANK GOD, no politically viable majority anywhere have ever voted for such a thing.

Finally, in May-June, Tennessee voted to secede, although the popular vote in that state was only 2.21:1 (for reference and comparison, NO PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES HAS EVER WON ANY ELECTION BY A 2.21-1 POPULAR VOTE (although Lyndon B. Johnson came closest in 1964 against Goldwater at 1.58 to 1 comparable to FDR in 1936 against Alf Landon at 1.61 to 1—there being more third party votes in 1936 which reduced Roosevelt’s over all majority win very slightly).

IS FREEDOM TO CHOOSE REALLY TREASON?

How many of you have been divorced?  No, it’s a serious question.  How many of you have been divorced AFTER taking a vow “Til Death do Us Part”?  I was born an “Anglo-Catholic” (i.e. Episcopalian) and my wife was born Greek Orthodox in Greece.  My parents, despite their vows, split up when I was pre-school/kindergarten and it had a major impact on my life, mostly negative.  I especially regret now, looking back on it, how my grandmother taught me to scorn my own father.  That MIGHT have been a bad thing…  Anyhow, my point was this: my wife Elena and I swore personally to each other, quite aside from the marital vows, that we would never be divorced, that we would always stick together.  And we made collateral agreements that made I think this was actually a genuine promise that we would really keep, but we didn’t.  She hired the nastiest team of divorce lawyers (and their wives) in the entire state of Texas.  She turned into a monster.  Now, I blame the system, not her, but we split up, and it wrecked me.

But, in a sense, as one of my law school professors of international law at the University of Chicago said, “the nations of the world are all in a Roman Catholic marriage with one another.”  Or are they?  Are legal unions really indissoluble?  Most people do not believe that law should stand in the way of divorce, although most marital lawyers want divorce to be as much like an expensive world war as humanly possible.  So: is divorce “normal” or is divorce “treason?”

I have to admit, I led a fairly pro-Southern, sheltered life.  Even when I lived up north and attended Harvard GSAS (A.M., Ph.D.) and the University of Chicago law (J.D.) programs, I never ever heard ANYONE ever call the Southern Confederacy TREACHEROUS or the Southern Confederates called “Traitors”—as a matter of fact, everyone I knew at Harvard kind of went out of their way to apologize for Harvard’s apparent iconography of Yankee imperialism and to point out the rather obscure stained glass windows on Memorial Hall and inscriptions dedicated to the graduates of Harvard who fought for the South—(There were 257, significantly more than you might think, including five major generals, eight brigadier generals, and fully 38% of all Harvard Graduates who died in combat 1861-1865 died in the service of the armies the CSA, including three of those brigadier generals).  

So, I confess I was shocked, bowled over in fact, while I was standing in line at the very first public debate held in New Orleans on a steaming day in July in 2015 and an exceedingly unpleasant and unattractive woman in line started talking about how Confederates were all TRAITORS.

Wall Street JOURNAL MODERATE MUGWUMP: Allen C. Guelzo

“A YANKEE VISITS CHARLOTTESVILLE, WHERE GEN. LEE IS UNDER COVER.”

Some writers take poetic license, some take journalistic license.  But let’s face it: some writers DO NOT DESERVE A LICENSE.  Allen C. Guelzo is such a writer, and yet he writes for the Wall Street Journal…. and this is a disaster.  This USED TO BE a conservative, respectable journal***.   But no decent or respectable conservative would ever write that:

“As a Yankee, I find it a little difficult to grasp why monuments to Lee are here in the first place.  He lost, and if there is one sin American culture still prefers to bury from sight, it’s losing. Worse, Lee committed treason against the flag and the Constitution.  And behind that is the ugly truth that the Confederate cause was, when all the rhetorical chaff is swept away, designed to protect Chattel slavery, the singular birth defect of the American republic.” 

This is one of those sad moments when I have to admit I’m glad I’m not Chairman Mao or Uncle Joe Stalin…. because if I were, Guelzo would be TOAST—there wouldn’t be enough left of him to fill a matchbox, I promise.

UNLIKE THE SPANISH GOVERNMENT IN CATALONIA ON SUNDAY OCTOBER 1, 2017—NO POLICE OR TROOPS TRIED TO STOP THE SOUTHERN LEGISLATURES FROM SECEDING OR THE PRO-CONFEDERATE POPULAR VOTES FROM HAPPENING

So, if secession didn’t bother the outgoing President James Buchanan, or if it bothered him he didn’t do anything to stop it.  Buchanan was a Democrat, but he was a PENNSYLVANIA DEMOCRAT—a Yankee….the only Pennsylvanian ever to be elected President and the last President born in the 18th century.  

Buchanan supported his own Vice-President, John C. Breckinridge, in the election of 1860—Breckinridge being the choice of the “Southern Democrats” over Stephen Douglas of Illinois.  Breckinridge became a Confederate general—that’s right folks, the Vice-President of the United States who came in Second in the Electoral Vote and Third in the Popular Vote in 1860 became a Confederate General.  Was he a traitor too?  

I ask you (and Guelzo) somewhat rhetorically: IF the Vice-President of any country decides to take up arms agains that Country—don’t you suppose that there are some MAJOR issues at stake?  If James Buchanan believed that he had no constitutional power to stop secession, where did Abraham Lincoln get the idea that he had that power?

For the moment, I will leave that idea to you, but recommend to all my readers the words of James Ronald Kennedy and Walter Donald Kennedy, but also of Von Mises Institute Economist Thomas James DiLorenzo.

But is it significant that England would surely have allowed Scotland to opt out of the UK if Scotland had voted to do so several years ago?  Is it significant that Spain is trying very hard to look like a bully as it tries to bully Catalonia into submission, but that the world will almost certainly accept Catalonian secession in fairly short order?

***The Wall Street Journal was a feature of life in and around my maternal grandparents’ home in Highland Park in Dallas from the time I went to live there at age 6 years, two months, until my grandmother’s death in May 2001.  I respected it as perhaps the best newspaper in all of North America—I even arranged to have the WSJ delivered to Hacienda Chichén (and later the adjacent Casa Victoria) when I lived there, and made it the headquarters of my Harvard-Peabody-National Geographic-Chichén Itzá Archaeological Project 1983-1988.  Arranging such things by courier delivery from the Aeropuerto Internacional de Cancún in the 1980s was no piece of cake.

 

Ferguson Riots Highlight Inequality in America (again): A Modest Proposal

Race has become a cover for all kinds of perversity in America. Rioters in Ferguson, Missouri, are taking steps to secure the suspension of the Constitution and the abolition of due process of law because the Grand Jury’s decision to render “No Bill” in regard to Officer Darren Wilson shows that “it is OK to shoot black men in America” as more than one incendiary commentator has written.

The problem is that the police shoot EVERY color of man, woman, and child in America (and quite a few animals).  The problem is that American police are all armed to the teeth and many seem to believe they have the right to shoot absolutely everybody, anytime. The problem is that the police are armed and American citizens (typically) are not.  This must end.  The word “Police” has a very different etymological origin and history from the French “Gendarmes”—but the French word (etymologically “gens d’armes” replacing earlier “hommes d’armes” ) encapsulates the concept of “armed people” against “unarmed people.”  The English word “Police” most likely came to England with the Spanish Inquisitorial advisers and counselors brought into the Tudor Realm with Catherine of Aragon, mother of “Bloody Mary.”  “Policia” is the Spanish word, related to German “Politzei” which traces to the reign of Charles V, King of Spain and Hapsburg Emperor or Germany who succeeded King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella.

I am writing to propose to you that the shooting in Ferguson is indeed all about inequality.  But the inequality that I perceive is political and functional, not racial.  Black Americans, Hispanics, and (at least some) Whites are all being deceived into the notion that power is based on race in America.  Power is based on control over weapons, and the legitimate use of the same.

And the solution is really quite simple: we must abolish, now and forever, both the concept and the function of a specialized branch of government called “the Police.”  So this is my modest proposal: ARM THE PEOPLE, ABOLISH ALL POLICE FORCES, or at least disarm them and deprive them of any special authority over life, liberty, and property. “Police” units should be limited

The modern American and (really worldwide) concept of the “Police” embody and reflect the Anthropological and Cultural Evolutionary formulary notion that “The State” comes into existence only when there is a “monopoly of legitimate violence”. [“States” in the Anthropological, Cultural Evolutionary {i.e. “Prehistoric”} Scheme of things replaced tribes, chiefdoms {= Post-Mosaic, Biblical “Judges”}, and all other “pre-state” political forms of less elaborately evolved, less severe socio-functional integration].

The modern English word “Police” does not predate the reign of Henry VIII in England and Wales.  Etymologically, the concept of “the Police” equates with Latin “Polis” (= city) and “Policy” (lower level law, norms with official sanction slightly more formal than mere customs or practices, but not nearly so formalized as statutes).  

To abolish Inequality in America, as I wrote above: we must absolutely, positively, now and forever abolish the police.  People, to be free, must be “self-policing”.  The question here is: can the state exist without Police?  Or will we sink into the anarchy of the Scottish Clans and the Vikings without police forces?  (OK, were Scottish Clans and Viking tribes really “lawless?”  Were the pre-Colombian Indian Tribes of the Americas really “lawless”?  Were the Israelites “Lawless” when ruled by “Judges” before the appointment of Kings under Saul, Samuel, David, and Solomon).

OR, can (popularly administered, i.e. “community based”, egalitarian) LAW and DUE PROCESS OF LAW ALONE determine what violence is legitimate or not?  Are people capable of self-government in a complex society?  I think they are, although certain “old-fashioned” norms should perhaps be restored.

The police are increasingly an unqualified abomination all over America because they are militarized, and show increasing disregard for human (and animal) life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  The structural apex of the modern United States as a “Police Nation” (as the late great South Carolina Senator Strom Thurmond decried, denounced and predicted in his “Dixiecrat” Southern Democratic breakaway platform in 1948) took shape (appropriately enough) formed by the hands and minds of rulers with truly Royal Blood. The seeds of the transformation to a police society planted under Abraham Lincoln and they sprouted over the next decades.  But the apical hierarchy of a “Police Nation” was only set, in 1908, when the Republican “Progressive” President, Theodore Roosevelt’s, Attorney General Charles Joseph Bonaparte created the FBI.  

The creation of the FBI, destined to be ruled by a despotic monarch of sorts, J.Edgar Hoover, for 48 years from 1924-1972, was a truly royal event because Attorney General Charles Joseph was the grandson of Jerome Bonaparte, who in turn was the youngest brother of Napoleon the Great, Emperor of the French.  Jerome Bonaparte’s title was King of Westphalia, 1807-1814, a German “puppet State” under the Bonapartist transformation of Europe following the French Revolution.  “Gens d’Armes” were a key element of the Bonapartist bureaucracy, who far exceeded the number and power of any such royal agents who had ever existed among the “oppressive” Bourbon monarchs of the previous millenium since Charlemagne.  

Twenty five years later, at the “accession” of the (at that time) most unconstitutional and anti-Democratic American “King” Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1933, the police state already had widespread public acceptance.  The “police” everywhere became a major instrument of governmental “welfare”, with the creation of hundred or more different Federal “Policy Enforcement” (i.e. “Policing”) agencies which coordinated with state and local “Police” in the regulation of the economy and every day life, which most Americans now accept as “normal” and take for granted.

As much as I dislike the “Progressivism” of Theodore Roosevelt or the “New Deal” Socialism of Franklin Delano Roosevelt, it cannot be said that people lack the power to “will themselves into socialism” through democratic process, or that socialism and constitutional government are entirely, wholly, incompatible—although socialist restrictions on the rights to contract freely and own property “in fee simple absolute” inevitably conflict with the American Constitution of 1787, as amended by the Bill of Rights in 1791 and even by the Fourteenth Amendment in 1868.  

I cannot say the same of Police Power.  Putting guns in the hands of a few people against the many is absolutely, positively inimical to the American way of life.  

Let us think for a moment about other privileges which have defined politically and social powerful classes: such as the right to ride horses.  First Latin Equites, then French Chevaliers and Spanish Caballeros all designate and refer to this special technology or mode of transportation which for nearly 4000 years defined the military elite of society (Georges Dumézil’s “Second Function”—physical force, which in the United States Constitution found expression in Article II, the Executive Branch).  

Among the Spanish Colonial Elites in the New World, from California and New Mexico to Southernmost Chile and Patagonia, the rights to ride a horse and carry firearms were limited to the Hidalgos of the Criollos (“Creole”) or Peninsular (Spanish born) aristocracy.  Indians, in the 18th Century, were required to apply for special permission to acquire either “elite” technology (horses or guns).  Such applications for permission were “badges and incidents” of subservient status as conquered people.  

Similarly, in the modern US, armored motor vehicles and automatic weapons are restricted by law to the police.  

“We the people” are now the subservient status and conquered people in our own nation.  

So we should all support the Ferguson Rioters, insofar as their complaints can be construed as an objection to police power, but we must eschew and ignore the racial rhetoric, and focus on the real problem, which is the State’s Monopoly of Legitimate Violence. Our position must be that ALL forms of monopoly are inimical to Constitutional Government.

Imagine America without Banks or Other Government Chartered Monopolies, with real freedom, justice, and security for a lll

This is my Father’s world. I walk a desert lone.
In a bush ablaze to my wondering gaze God makes His glory known.
This is my Father’s world, a wanderer I may roam
Whate’er my lot, it matters not,
My heart is still at home.  (Maltbie D. Babcock, 1901)

Mark 11: 15 Jesus went into the temple, and began to cast out them that sold and bought in the temple, and overthrew the tables of the moneychangers, and the seats of them that sold doves; 16 And would not suffer that any man should carry any vessel through the temple. 17 And he taught, saying unto them, Is it not written, My house shall be called of all nations the house of prayer? but ye have made it a den of thieves. 18 And the scribes and chief priests heard it, and sought how they might destroy him: for they feared him, because all the people was astonished at his doctrine.

What if we were to drive the money changers out of our homeland, our world which is the Temple of North America? At least all the Federally chartered money changers? Would the world end?  

I say that the time has come to redeem our birthrights, to restore integrity and self-reliant freedom to America and the American people.  I call this a program of “National Vindicatio” after the Roman legal action for the restoration of real property and res mancipi (the means of production) to their rightful owners.  

I propose that the best (and probably the only) way to do this is to abolish all government-chartered and federally-funded monopolies, including the national banks, thus restoring some semblance of America as it existed during the apogee of freedom and Democratic-Republican Society, for the 32 years of about 1829-1861 (Andrew Jackson and Martin van Buren through James K. Polk and Millard Fillmore to James Buchanan).  

Thomas Jefferson and John Adams had both died on July 4, 1826, exactly fifty years after the signing of the declaration of Independence, so the new nation had formed and reached a stable maturity.   They died roughly halfway through the one-term presidency of John Quincy Adams, the first son of a President to become a President, but most regrettably: NOT the last….nor the worst, by a long shot….

This was the time before internecine warfare caused half a million brothers and cousins to slaughter each other in the name of freedom, before the Income Tax, gigantic corporations, and unified paper currency became the symbols and arbiters of economic life in this land.  Andrew Jackson, for all his faults, abolished the Third and last Bank of the United States, and his memory is sacred for that achievement.  There were NO national corporations, only state or regional enterprises.  There was nowhere either a corporate or prison culture anywhere in North America.  There was no standing army, except on the frontier.  Imagine America with no national or multi-national Corporations, no greenbacks, and no permanent army.  It was not the Garden of Eden, there were Indians who were forcibly and violently dispossessed of their land and slaves who existed as the chattel property of others.  But, as Alex de Toqueville observed our ancestors, their world in the third of a century prior to Abraham Lincoln’s war was probably closer to an earthly paradise than anywhere in recorded history since Adam and Eve first transgressed God’s commandments….

What would it look like if we tried to recreate that world today by trust-busting (corporate breakups, using the antitrust laws, but in particular breaking up the banks)?  Does it matter that the nation is population roughly 8 or 10 times what it was in those halcyonic three decades 1829-1861?  Does it matter that we have grown accustomed to a world defined by corporations and prisons and government financed and sponsored monopolies, including the Federal Reserve Banking system and the eternally standing army, the largest prison system in the world, and a structured economy carved up between corporate chains whose trademark logos and stores look exactly the same whether you find them in the suburbs of Atlanta, Boston, Charlotte, Chicago, Dallas, Denver, Houston, Jacksonville, Los Angeles, Miami, New York, Philadelphia, Phoenix, Richmond, St. Louis, San Diego, Seattle, Tampa, Tucson, or Washington D.C., itself.  

I submit to you that it could be done based on certain principles of redistribution—not the redistribution of credit-welfare and tax-credits that we have now, but a real redistribution of the material wealth of nation?  Could we effectively restore North America’s land and resources directly to the people, instead of insisting that these be held in the Corporate “Industrial Armies” which Marx and Engels first envisioned in February of 1848?

I submit to you that we could have a SUBSTANTIVE, rather than merely formal redistribution of the wealth out of communal “corporate” hands under government sponsorship and back to the people, starting with a guarantee of a homestead (including productive farmland) to every American resident citizen or family who petitioned for such a thing.  (Obviously we cannot invite the whole world to our redistributive feast, but there’s no reason why 1% of the population is hogging all the food, drink, and party favors for themselves with the express protection and consent of the government).    

This is “Huey Long” style substantive redistribution of property, not Franklin D. Roosevelt-style formal redistribution based on credit.  We need to drive the money changers from our midst so that they can no longer control what we do with our property.  We must guarantee to every family a home, to each individual healthcare, and we must endow these trusts with the Wealth of the Nation, not with credit-based entitlements which may be withdrawn or canceled at any time.  

Strange to say, by putting all property in the hands of private individuals and families, we will not be perfecting communism through this substantive redistribution of wealth.  Rather, we will be restoring the means of production to the people, and taking it entirely away from the collective communistic institutions created by the government and “national sponsorship” through tax policy and a banking system which holds all our wealth and only gives us “credit” in return.  

Once property is back in the hands of the people, there will always be the risk that greedy individuals will try to create new monopolies and new systems of fraudulent money through the expansion of private banks.  But once destroyed, the people will possess the information concerning the truth about banking as a function best carried out in private rather than by government stooges, and it will be incumbent upon the government constantly to remind and reeducate the people regarding the fact that their liberty is only secure if their property remains securely in their hands.  

Monopolistic Patents on things like money (the banking system), the expression and transmission of ideas (the educational and legal system), the use of force in self-defense (the army and police systems), and even on the chemical resources, minerals, crops and animals on which we depend to live (i.e. Pharmaceuetical combinations and “GMOs” = Genetically Modified Organisms) are unnatural and incompatible with human freedom.   We can exist without such monopolies and we can still guarantee that every person within our boundaries can have a fair share of the wealth of Our Father’s World…. and never gain allow our Father’s World to be turned into a Den of Thieves….

For further information on the Nation Vindicatio of America’s property rights herein proposed, please call Michael Lenaburg at 626-639-7037 or Gonzalo Diaz at 424-239-4627.

Huey Long, Gerald L.K. Smith, Anti-Socialists against the Banks and New Deal.

Huey Long, Anti-Railroad, Anti-Corporate, Anti-Big Oil Attorney, Louisiana Railroad Commissioner, Governor of Louisiana, and Senator, was the only man who might have unseated Franklin Delano Roosevelt in 1936, so he was shot dead in the Louisiana Capitol Building built under his administration in Baton Rouge on September 10, 1935, before the campaign for President could even begin…. At age 25, campaigning against Standard Oil and John D. Rockefeller, Huey Long was elected Railroad Commissioner of Louisiana (a department which he renamed “the Louisiana Public Service Commission. Roosevelt’s New Deal was totally the creature of the Big Banks and Big Corporations (controlled by Rockefeller, Ford, Carnegie, etc.) that Long saw (correctly) as the eternally sworn enemies of the American people, their freedom and Constitution of 1787, even though Long never for one moment embraced any precept of Marxist-Leninist socialism as Roosevelt did.  Huey Long stood for restitution of property and wealth stolen from the people back to the people, but in so advocating he always, always stood for the concept and reality individual freedom—the guarantee of private property and private autonomy to every family with “Every Man a King.”   Ken Burns’ 1985 documentary was a reasonably good portrayal of the man and his work, but I think that the best presentation of Long’s real place in American history was the cameo in Josh Tickell’s “The Big Fix” by Joshua and Rebecca Harrell TIckell summarizes the “geopolitics” of Long’s war against Big Oil in the South better than anyone else has ever done, especially by relating it both to Yankee Imperialism (before and during) Long’s time in the Southern United States, especially Louisiana, and to the latest manifestation of that imperialism, namely the BP Oil spill in April 2010.  Even less known, however, is the social justice movement by which Huey Long was close allied with both Gerald L.K. Smith and Father Charles Coughlin against Roosevelt and the Banks.   Both during Roosevelt’s 12 year Dictatorship and afterwards, after Alf Landon’s disastrous defeat in 1936, Republicans and Conservatives generally stopped defending individual rights against both government and the corporations.  Strom Thurmond’s 1948 Dixiecrat campaign warned of the coming Police State….but through the 1950s, 60s, and 70s, the people of the United States essentially embraced the Police State, so that by Reagan’s terms, it was fixed in stone…..  Huey Long was the determined enemy of Wall Street, bankers and big business and he was also a determined enemy of the Roosevelt administration because he saw it as too beholden to these powerful forces.  He was in this sense totally unique among the major forces in U.S. Politics in the 1930s—his only successors in that position were Strom Thurmond and, to a much more limited degree, George Corley Wallace of Alabama.  As Josh Tickell said, the Southern United States have always been the first and primary target of U.S. Internationalism, Imperialism, and  pro-Corporate Manipulation and twisting of the political economy.  My great grandfather, a Louisiana Lawyer and Judge himself, was one of Long’s private tutors in the Law who helped him qualify for the bar at Tulane in just one year of study, and they worked together on many railroad cases.

HUEY P. LONG

SUMMARY OF GREATNESS
POLITICAL GENIUS
AMERICAN MARTYR

by Gerald L. K. Smith

 
Elna M. Smith Foundation, Eureka Springs, AR 72632 – FIRST PRINTING 1975 – Copyright 1975 By Gerald L. K. Smith
 

The author was with Mr. Long when he was shot. He was at his bedside when he died. He delivered the funeral oration over his grave. Every line contained in this Handbook, except a few historical records, is based on the personal experiences and the personal observations of the author. William Howard Taft, while Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, said: “Huey P. Long is the most brilliant attorney to appear before me during my term as Chief Justice.” James A. Farley who, in the lifetime of Mr. Long was considered the most powerful and knowledgeable politician in America, said in his Memoirs: “If Huey Long had not been assassinated, he would have been elected President of the United States.”

This Handbook has been prepared for the benefit of people who want the real truth concerning Huey P. Long, which truth has been kept from the public by authors, journalists and historians. No book on the life of Huey Long has been accurate. All books that have been published concerning this great man have either been published by his enemies, his cynical observers or ignorant historians who have built their books out of the newspaper morgues. When young Long came to the political front, he challenged the tyranny, the robbery, the greed and the graft of the ‘feudal lords.’ In fact, he said: “Louisiana is the last stand of the ‘feudal lords’.” Almost without exception, these same ‘feudal lords’ controlled the press – local, national and international and practically every story that was written concerning this political genius was unfavorable. In fact, Long’s figure of speech for the newspapers was “the lying press.” They lied about him when he started. They lied about him at the apex of his power, and they have lied about him ever since his death. This Handbook is written by one knowledgeable concerning his greatness who loved him and respected him and dares, in this little volume, to tell things that have never been told before. The writer is fully aware of the fact that Huey Long was surrounded by loyal friends and men and women who, at great sacrifice to them­selves, helped him to rise to a position of power and influence. I wish time and space would permit me to discuss these individuals in detail, but the purpose of this book is to give the busy reader an honest glimpse into the life of Huey Long so that when some inquirer says, “Tell me about Huey Long,” this Handbook will serve the purpose.

This Handbook is dedicated to my wife, Elna, whose understanding loyalty and dedicated courage has made it possible for me to carry on in the defense of truth regardless of the hazards, the lethal dangers involving character assassination, smear and ridicule. There has never been a moment in my life when I doubted the believing loyalty of my sweet wife, who has been my companion, at this writing, for 53 years.

NOTE: This Handbook is divided into 6 sections for easier web viewing. Each section lists the book chapters that it contains. Click on a section to read its contents. You can read this in a complete book format (pdf). Click Book Format.

  • SECTION 1 – Family Background, Vital Family Statistics, Rev. Gerald L. K. Smith Embraces Huey P. Long, Huey P. Long the Lawyer.
 
  • SECTION 2 – Accomplishments That Made Huey Long Great.
 
  • SECTION 3 – The Magic Name, Huey Long Impeached, The Plot To Assassinate, The Inquest, Funeral Oration As Delivered By The Author, Campaign Funds Disappear, Will Roger And Huey Long.
 
  • SECTION 4 – A Successor In Washington, A Family Heartbreak, Blackmail Resisted, Personal Handicaps, A Bloody Fourth Of July, Gun Play And The Supreme Court.
 
  • SECTION 5 – The Second Louisiana Purchase, Frank Murphy – Seymour Weiss And Company, Bronze Statue To Huey P. Long, Let Memories Be Refreshed, Explanation.
 
  • SECTION 6 – My Life After Huey Long, Sample of Huey’s Phenomenal Influence, A Promise Kept, A Providential Discovery.
 
 

Learn what Gerald L.K. Smith knew – More Information

 

33 Years (and one week) was a Long Ice Age Lifetime—May 11, 1980 to May 18, 2013—has been 33 Years and One Week

According to my old professor of Biological Anthropology, Erik Trinkaus, from whom I took several of the most amazing courses I ever had during my graduate career, Ice Age Humans (Neanderthals or Cro-Magnons) in France, Europe, and the Near East did not typically live as long as I have to date (53 years).  In fact, life expectancies were probably less than 30 years for both males and females, and if we have more burial data from older individuals, it is because anyone who lived beyond 40 was practically a godlike object of ancestor worship (OK, that’s my embellishment, not anything Erik ever actually said.  But for what Erik Trinkaus’ “thumbnail” summary opinion was, see an article which cited him in the New York Times, just for a casual and basically random example: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/01/11/science/11obneanderthal.html?_r=0).

So it is with shock, awe, and dismay that I realize now that I graduated from the College of Arts & Sciences at Tulane University 33 years and one week ago as of May 18, 2013.  That day is also illuminated by the following historical trivia:

Saturday, May 18, 2013

On this date:

Montreal, Quebec, was founded in 1642

The Siege of Vicksburg, Mississippi, began in 1863

Plessy v. Fergusson was decided in 1896

Haley’s Comet Passed by the Earth in 1910

Franklin D. Roosevelt created the Tennessee Valley Authority in 1933

Apollo 10 blasted off in 1969

Mount St. Helens’ Volcano in Washington Exploded in 1980

I graduated from Tulane University on May 11, 1980, 33 years and 1 week ago today—Oh yeah, I guess I already mentioned that….

Montreal being founded was a good thing.  Montreal is a really nice city (lots of cute little French-Canadian girls up there, and the food is great too).   I hear Vicksburg was OK before the siege, but it got kind of boring afterwards.   As for the TVA—well, I have heard the TVA was such a success that they never dared to repeat it, which is just as well, because it was essentially just another Communist-Marxist-Stalinist 5 year plan that has now lasted 80 years…. Now that’s a REALLY long time for a 5 year plan to go on….. Aside from the Federal Reserve Banking System, the TVA is the United States Government’s largest “privately” owned corporation.  That is confusing, isn’t it: how can the U.S. Government own anything privately?  Well, the TVA is set up as a private corporation, it’s employees are not US Government employees, but it is wholly owned by the Government.  In other words, the TVA operates as even even more of a “private, closely held” corporation than (a) the Virginia Company, (b) the Massachusetts Bay Company, (c) the Hudson’s Bay Company, or (d) the British East India Company ever was until after the Sepoy Mutiny let to the annexation of India to the Crown as an “Empire.”  But the sole owner of the TVA is the U.S. Government, so it’s a private corporation owned by the largest and most powerful public entity (the U.S. Government) in the world.

Anyhow, I deeply resent the passage of time.   As “the Preacher, the son of David, King in Jerusalem” wrote in the Book of Ecclesiastes:

Vanity of vanities, saith the Preacher, vanity of vanities; all is vanity.

What profit hath a man of all his labour which he taketh under the sun?

One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth for ever.

The sun also ariseth, and the sun goeth down, and hasteth to his place where he arose.

The wind goeth toward the south, and turneth about unto the north; it whirleth about continually, and the wind returneth again according to his circuits.

All the rivers run into the sea; yet the sea is not full; unto the place from whence the rivers come, thither they return again.

All things are full of labour; man cannot utter it: the eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing.

The thing that hath been, it is that which shall be; and that which is done is that which shall be done: and there is no new thing under the sun.

10 Is there any thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been already of old time, which was before us.

11 There is no remembrance of former things; neither shall there be any remembrance of things that are to come with those that shall come after.

At least verse five gave Hemingway a good idea for a memorable title for one of his novels….some obscure travelogue about Spanish Bullfights in Pamplona.  I think there was a precociously slutty British socialite, a Rich American Jew, a War Veteran, a couple of drunken Scots, an underage Spanish Bullfighter who ends up with the aristocratic slut……

There’s also a holographic mirror at Antoine’s Restaurant in one of the private side rooms (in the New Orleans French Quarter on St. Louis) called “All is Vanity“—it’s a picture of an exquisitely beautiful young lady, probably a close relation of those French-Canadian girls from Montreal mentioned above, whose face when seen from a different angle turns into a rather frightening death’s head skeletal neck-on-shoulder with skull still in place.  And like unto that image, the inscription over so many rural Mexican cemeteries: “Aquí se Acaba el Orgullo Mundial” (Here Endeth Earthly Pride—compare also “Under the Volcano“—both the book and the movie).

As of the 33 years that have passed since my graduation Phi Beta Kappa, Magna cum Laude, from Tulane.  Well, “what profit” indeed have I to show for my labour?   I suppose I have learned a lot.  But have I put it to good use?  Continuing from the first Chapter of Ecclesiastes:

13 And I gave my heart to seek and search out by wisdom concerning all things that are done under heaven: this sore travail hath God given to the sons of man to be exercised therewith.

14 I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and, behold, all is vanity and vexation of spirit.

15 That which is crooked cannot be made straight: and that which is wanting cannot be numbered.

16 I communed with mine own heart, saying, Lo, I am come to great estate, and have gotten more wisdom than all they that have been before me in Jerusalem: yea, my heart had great experience of wisdom and knowledge.

17 And I gave my heart to know wisdom, and to know madness and folly: I perceived that this also is vexation of spirit.

18 For in much wisdom is much grief: and he that increaseth knowledge increaseth sorrow

Have I accumulated a large estate?  No and No.  I suppose, in all honesty, thanks in large part to my failed marriage and related matters: I have BLOWN a large estate sky high.   That’s an accomplishment of sorts I guess, which certainly not everyone has had the opportunity to do.

I finished a doctoral dissertation at Harvard which was immediately accepted for publication but I didn’t get around to publishing it in a timely manner and now the Peabody Museum isn’t willing to publish it under the original terms as Peabody Memoir 20 unless I completely rewrite it and resubmit it and get it approved for publication.  In other words, essentially, if I do my doctoral research (why not my doctorate?) all over again.

At the end of my 52nd I got a chipped tooth and developed dental problems which remind me of the human osteology class I had with Erik Trinkaus, using Gray’s Anatomy  (the Classic Medical School Anatomy text and reference book, not the TV soft-porn prime-time soap opera series).   I developed this broken molar problem in New Orleans.  That’s the only saving grace.  I’m finally living back in my favorite city in the USA, albeit as something of a perpetual tourist rather than a real resident (at least I go to Church more regularly than most tourists who come here, I dare say).

And in that connexion, talking of Church, today was the Feast of the Pentecost, and I have to say I think that Christ Church Cathedral on St. Charles did a better job of making Pentecost memorable than I have ever seen anywhere.  They had red-ribbon banners and parasols (and/or Chinese lanterns) representing the tongues of fire through which the Holy Ghost entered the Apostles, giving them the ability to speak in tongues.  The Church was generally draped in Red, and since I was a very small child, Red has basically been my favorite colour (my exceedingly conservative grandmother Helen worried that I might turn out a communist—but I didn’t).

And the Psalm today I noticed on Thursday when I went to the mid-day mass on my first day back from Florida.  It was Psalm 104 and it was not appointed for Thursday, but for some reason I opened the Book of Common Prayer and fixated on that Psalm, and it was the Psalm for this beautiful Sunday Service after the reading from the Book of Acts concerning the first Pentacost and the first spontaneous translations of the Gospel by the Apostles….: 

104 Bless the Lord, O my soul. O Lord my God, thou art very great; thou art clothed with honour and majesty.

Who coverest thyself with light as with a garment: who stretchest out the heavens like a curtain:

Who layeth the beams of his chambers in the waters: who maketh the clouds his chariot: who walketh upon the wings of the wind:

Who maketh his angels spirits; his ministers a flaming fire:

Who laid the foundations of the earth, that it should not be removed for ever.

Thou coveredst it with the deep as with a garment: the waters stood above the mountains.

At thy rebuke they fled; at the voice of thy thunder they hasted away.

They go up by the mountains; they go down by the valleys unto the place which thou hast founded for them.

Thou hast set a bound that they may not pass over; that they turn not again to cover the earth.

10 He sendeth the springs into the valleys, which run among the hills.

11 They give drink to every beast of the field: the wild asses quench their thirst.

12 By them shall the fowls of the heaven have their habitation, which sing among the branches.

13 He watereth the hills from his chambers: the earth is satisfied with the fruit of thy works.

14 He causeth the grass to grow for the cattle, and herb for the service of man: that he may bring forth food out of the earth;

15 And wine that maketh glad the heart of man, and oil to make his face to shine, and bread which strengtheneth man’s heart.

16 The trees of the Lord are full of sap; the cedars of Lebanon, which he hath planted;

17 Where the birds make their nests: as for the stork, the fir trees are her house.

18 The high hills are a refuge for the wild goats; and the rocks for the conies.

19 He appointed the moon for seasons: the sun knoweth his going down.

20 Thou makest darkness, and it is night: wherein all the beasts of the forest do creep forth.

21 The young lions roar after their prey, and seek their meat from God.

22 The sun ariseth, they gather themselves together, and lay them down in their dens.

23 Man goeth forth unto his work and to his labour until the evening.

24 O Lord, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches.

25 So is this great and wide sea, wherein are things creeping innumerable, both small and great beasts.

26 There go the ships: there is that leviathan, whom thou hast made to play therein.

27 These wait all upon thee; that thou mayest give them their meat in due season.

28 That thou givest them they gather: thou openest thine hand, they are filled with good.

29 Thou hidest thy face, they are troubled: thou takest away their breath, they die, and return to their dust.

30 Thou sendest forth thy spirit, they are created: and thou renewest the face of the earth.

31 The glory of the Lord shall endure for ever: the Lord shall rejoice in his works.

32 He looketh on the earth, and it trembleth: he toucheth the hills, and they smoke.

33 I will sing unto the Lord as long as I live: I will sing praise to my God while I have my being.

34 My meditation of him shall be sweet: I will be glad in the Lord.

35 Let the sinners be consumed out of the earth, and let the wicked be no more. Bless thou the Lord, O my soul. Praise ye the Lord.

There’s that wonderfully melancholy but self-absorbed song in Jesus Christ Superstar about the spiritual transformation of the 12.  It’s called “Always Dreamed that I’d be an Opossum” or something like that (they’re all drunk while Jesus is waiting to be arrested).  A totally appropriate thought for Pentecost, I suppose….

Equally blasphemous is my question about Psalm 104: WHY would God have created “the Leviathan….to play therein?”  (or in a more modern translation “the Leviathan, who thou created just for sport”).  Some passages in the Bible are so hard to deal with…. But on the whole Psalm 104 is so beautiful, and so evocative of the natural balance of the world.   All those lions eating other creatures at night and stuff—“It’s the CIRCLE, the Circle of Life….”

Patriot’s Day 2013—April 15 Ennui in Boston—why I feel numb and no longer care (I hadn’t even notice four and a half months had already gone by again….)

Of course it’s a sad thing when anyone dies….. except, exactly why is it sad? Death is, after all, absolutely the only, the one single thing that all of we sons of Adam and daughters of Eve know for sure that we have in common.  Why should we be sad about that which is certain and inevitable?  Are we sad when the sunrises or sets?  

Nihil nisi bonum de Mortuis, wrote Marcus Tullius Cicero (without explaining how he felt about death after they posted his head on a spike in the Forum Romanun after Julius Caesar’s Assassination—it makes no sense to me why Mark Anthony and his allies wanted to killed Cicero—the great orator was basically critical of everybody….equal opportunity negative rhetoric was quite his specialty “Cicero was a real pompous ass” as top Newcomb Classics scholar Sarah Willard used to say back in my undergraduate days… To which my aunt Mildred replied, “what a marvelously astute young lady.”)  Cicero clearly was a pompous ass, but I wish we had just a few like him around these days….

To say that death comes too early to some—well, the miseries of old age don’t come to them at all.  Perhaps they are saved from betrayals by those they love, who instead of turning against them from greed or boredom will remember them fondly if they died young.  John F. Kennedy was simply not destined to become a grumpy old man.  Marilyn Monroe never had to worry about wrinkles or men not asking her out anymore…. Princess Diana never lost her saintly regal aura as she almost certainly would have had she actually settled down to live (in sin or otherwise) with Dodi Fayed.  An early death surely saves some people from fates much worse than death and thereby grants them imperishable fame.

But “terror” in the United States has become mind-numbingly tiresome and dull.  Thirty years ago, “domestic terror” basically didn’t exist—the occasional postal worker would “go postal” (= go berserk), riots would happen from time to time.

But every four months now, or so it seems, it’s time for another “tragedy” and we are expected dutifully either to ululate in public or at least go about wailing and gnashing our teeth in private.  July 2012—Batman in Aurora, December 2012—Newton School Children—April 2013—I can’t believe I hadn’t gotten the rhythm of it—every four and a half months we need a terroristic event, don’t we?  

I guess it keeps the blood circulating for some people, but not for me anymore.  It’s just a crashing bore: another chance for police to “boost security worldwide”, engage in “clamp down” in every city, and be extra-vigilant in their surveillance of the ignorant masses.  And talking of ignorant masses: did you hear that George W. Bush is now taking painting lessons in Dallas?

The newspapers from Paris-to-Portland talk of the tragedy, tragedy, tragedy, the pain and the tears—but who can cry for Argentina or America anymore?  I cannot.  I absolutely know that all these events are staged theatre and the use of real blood instead of ketchup or some other red tint on the sidewalks doesn’t make it any less theatrical—just a bit more primitive and sacrificial, perhaps, “Blood of the Lamb” and all that.  

I read with almost dull non-challance that the Boston Police had tweeted an announcement in the Boston Globe that there was going to be a “Bomb Explosion Exercise”, just as there was a North Atlantic Air Exercise on 9-11-01, just as there were tunnel exercises in London 0n 07-07-05.  Who cares?  

We who are awake and alert know that the government makes up the news as it goes along to suit its own purposes and those who have not realized or accepted this by now are free to cry for the runners of the Boston Marathon if they want to. 

In 1992, I thought that Ruby Ridge was a terrible tragedy—my wife was pregnant and my son was born so I was somewhat distracted that month, but I thought it was a terrible thing that the government had done.  And the conversations of just a couple of years ago with friends in Washington about how domestic terrorism was the next big threat now that the Cold War was over never entered my mind at that point.

I was likewise mesmerized in front of the TV at Judge Kenneth L. Ryskamp’s West Palm Beach chambers in April 1993 during the Mount Carmel/Branch Davidian Crisis as we all watched Waco waft up in smoke fanned by ATF flame-throwers.  Judge Ryskamp had been involved in the Miami legal scene for several decades and he had absolutely nothing good to say about then Attorney General Janet Reno…. but she was not prosecuted.  Only the “little people” who survived the government onslaught were ever accused of any wrongdoing, naturally.  Little people always get in the way, you know… of big projects.  Although what the big project was in Waco in April 1993, I’m still not sure.  Perhaps it was sowing the seeds of that much needed campaign of domestic terrorism which would reshape and sustain the government after the cold war….

Two years later, the explosion and collapse of the Federal Building in Oklahoma City was shocking.  I was attending a Rotary Meeting luncheon at the time and it was so utterly boring the news from straight up north on I-35 was almost a relief….much as I hate to say so.  Maybe that goes back to the whole “we need terrorist attacks to keep our blood circulating” concept noted above.

My mother, I guess, was perhaps wiser than I was, or at least more jaded.  Her question was: if they’re going to be anti-government terrorists, why couldn’t they do something useful, you know, like blow up the IRS?  It doesn’t help anything to blow up a Federal Building.  What happens in a Federal building anyhow?  (I hate to say it but I have only the vaguest notion myself…they apparently have child care facilities there is all that came to like after OKC).  I guess the answer to my mother’s question became fully apparent only after 9-11-01: real terrorists would take out real targets, but phony fake false-flag government terrorists only take out buildings that no one really cares about anyhow….

With a hey, ho, the wind and the rain for the rain it raineth every day…

In the summer of 1998, my son and I were on Holiday in Chicago.  We had a fantastic suite at the old Chicago Hilton on Michigan Avenue overlooking Grant Park and the Lake.  It was really one of the best suites I’ve ever had anywhere—tons of space for a five year old to run around and play in, and a three way view of Michigan Avenue North, East, and South.  So when the news of the bombings in Nairobi and Dar Es Salaam detained us in the room, and we had to explain to Charlie why we were glued to the tube….it was hard to explain to a little boy what it was all about.  It’s hard to explain to anyone what it’s all about, isn’t it?

September 11, 2001, was an epic day for me in many ways.  It started out with…well, some evidence of paranormal phenomena in my home and family life, progressed to a long drive listening to Lohengrin, and I only became aware of what was going on when I arrived at my destination at the Southwesternmost “Pinnacle” Campus of Austin Community College…. (The ACC Pinnacle Campus, 7748 Highway 290 West, Austin, Texas 78736, is one of eight campuses in the ACC District service area).  I was supposed to teach something about Political Anthropology and Cultural Evolution, but the television screens taught us all much more about those subjects.

I didn’t exactly know why but from the very moment it all started I could not think of anything except that Osama bin Laden was going to be the new Guy Fawkes…. this was all well over four years before V-for-Vendetta came out—it was originally scheduled to be released on Guy Fawkes’ Day in 2005, but it was delayed until the Spring of 2006 I think.  

By noon of 9-11-2001, I suppose my destiny as a “9-11 truther” was already fixed in stone—although I didn’t become aware of the movement or actively involved until 2003-2004.  But by noon of 9-11-2001, I knew I could see no aeroplane wreckage at the Pentagon.  NOT A SCRAP, and I knew it was quite simply physically impossible that an aeroplane actually hit the Pentagon, so what happened?  By that afternoon, when Building 7 came down—I was deeply puzzled but I didn’t know anything about controlled demolition…..so I couldn’t form the scenario in my head completely.  

By that evening I could tell that George W. Bush’s reelection campaign had already started.  I later found out my mother had come to exactly the same conclusion.  To paraphrase both Winston Churchill and Franklin Delano Roosevelt simultaneousely, the 43rd U.S. President George W. Bush had nothing to offer except Fear Itself, and nothing to fear except blood, toil, sweat, and tears….  And I suppose that’s why a couple of months later GWB went on television to tell everyone to go have a Merry Christmas and be “patriotic” by going out and doing lots of Christmas shopping.  I think my grandfather would have dropped dead, had he not died 21 years before that… he was always scandalized by America’s “crass materialism in time of war”, having been for a couple of years in charge of regional gas rationing and similar forms of organized, Patriotic, sacrifice during World War II, in which he heartily participated although he had not initially believed War was necessary—and his elder sister Marguerite was  an “active pacifist” associate of the anti-war Bund.

I guess the last time I was sad about any of these events was after the Madrid train bombing mostly because I had taken the exact same route and knew how beautiful the train route was and how completely unwarlike the Spanish people were, whatever their ancestors in the 1930s or 1450s-1590s might have been like.

So 7-7 in London was just “predictable” as were the bombings in Djakarta and I didn’t even bother to keep up, honestly.  2011 rolled around and I just commented to my friends, including William Rodriguez, a former janitor/custodians at the World Trade Center whom I had gotten to know through the Truther movement and from working with Philip J. Berg, “Well, Norway can expect to have it’s own Patriot Act within about 60-90 days, want to make a bet how long it will take?”  

Quite simply, it has become absolutely impossible to believe ANYTHING the government or mainstream media says.  “You got the CBS, and the ABC, you got Time and Newsweek, they’re the same to me—-PUZZLING EVIDENCE, PUZZLING EVIDENCE” to quote from the wild-eyed Texas Pastor in “True Stories” (David Byrne & the Talking Heads’ 1986 masterpiece, the clarity and depth of whose brilliance has only grown with time, even as the Texas Sesquicentennial of Special-Ness has receded into dim memory).

So, sorry folks: here are my great hopes about the possible results of the 15th of April in ’13:  (1) I hope that the commemorations of Paul Revere’s Ride on the 18th, and of the Battles of Lexington & Concord on April 19, will go ahead as normally scheduled, because THOSE were all very important events, (2) I hope that as a real result of the “tragedy” of the Boston Police Department’s Bomb Explosion Exercises which took place yesterday (whoever they decide to try to pin the blame on eventually—I wonder how much they have to pay to Patsies or their families these days???? I hope it’s a lot—I hope they pay in Gold and Silver in fact…), I do hope that as a real security measure, they will now forever BAN Urban Marathons.

Urban Marathons really have no purpose except to create traffic congestion and major driving problems for ordinary folks, whether it’s Boston or LA or you name it.  Healthy, safe MARATHONS could and should be run WAY OUT IN THE COUNTRY.  In rural agricultural areas or forests or on seaside roads snipers will have to hide behind trees or in cornfields or rocks and will be easily visible. Any potential attackers will be all the more visible and apparent because  very small (if any) crowds will ever assemble to watch, so that if bombs are set off, they may disturb the vegetation, but little else.  Now THIS (the abolition of Urban Marathons) would be a REAL security improvement AND a real advance in Urban life in America generally.

Here endeth my most severely curmudgenous meditations on this most solemn day.  To the victims of the Patriot’s Day Marathon “terrorist attack” in Boston, and their families, I’d say: “You got a lucky break—yesterday you were absolute nobodies, today you’re either the ‘honored dead’ or the ‘worthily wounded’ and you can count on a lifetime of government honors, support, and assistance—just like the victims of 9-11” (oh, uh, er, um, well, uh—maybe you’ll do better than they did, actually, I’ll give you a thumbs up on that one—the victims of 9-11 (see, e.g. the “Jersey Girls/Jersey Widows”) for the most part got screwed).

Yes, the true story of Pearl Harbor and our entry into World War II is a disgraceful story of governmental manipulation and treachery.  Why would Franklin Delano Roosevelt have wanted to expand two separate wars in Europe and Asia into a World War?  Was it for the purpose of hiding the abysmal failure of the New Deal?  Or was it for the purpose of instigating a New World Order based on World Government and abolition of national sovereignty and the autonomous integrity of the people of Europe, North America, and other “caucasian isolates” around the world?  Why would the American President have done such a thing?  Was World War II a just war or a monstrosity of lies?  Did we really have a quarrel with the Japanese over the ownership of Hawaii?  If so, why do the Japanese and Filipino peoples now pretty much “rule” Hawaii with Anglo-Americans living here as a weak minority? (I’m writing this at the end of a two week stay on Maui, so I’m really thinking about Hawaii a lot…and what a better day to be in Hawaii that Pearl Harbor Day 2012, 71 years after the infamous day when—what, our government arranged to have us attacked?

My dad, born June 6, 1923, was exactly 18 and a half years old and had been in Hawaii just over a week on the original Pearl Harbor day, having completed six months training in Long Beach, California….).  He stayed in the Navy through the war then went to college and graduate school on the G.I. Bill, as did so many.

But was War just a prelude to the expansion of the welfare state?  My grandparents taught me that World War II had five major effects: (1) it finally ended the depression where the New Deal had not, (2) it finally ended black slavery and white serfdom and sharecropping in the Old South, (3) it ended the British Empire, (4) it launched the United States and Soviet Empires into the Cold War, (5) the terrible destruction of Europe and in particular of Germany and the advent of the atom bomb caused the greatest confusion as to ethics, morality, and political values that had ever taken place in the worldwide history of mankind.

http://mises.org/daily/6312/How-US-Economic-Warfare-Provoked-Japans-Attack-on-Pearl-Harbor

How U.S. Economic Warfare Provoked Japan’s Attack on Pearl Harbor

Mises Daily: Friday, December 07, 2012 by 

The attack on Pearl Harbor

[This talk was the Arthur M. Krolman Lecture at the 30th Anniversary Supporters Summit of the Ludwig von Mises Institute, Callaway Gardens, Georgia, on October 26, 2012. Click here to watch the video of this talk.]

Many people are misled by formalities. They assume, for example, that the United States went to war against Germany and Japan only after its declarations of war against these nations in December 1941. In truth, the United States had been at war for a long time before making these declarations. Its war making took a variety of forms. For example, the U.S. navy conducted “shoot [Germans] on sight” convoys – convoys that might include British ships — in the North Atlantic along the greater part the shipping route from the United States to Great Britain, even though German U-boats had orders to refrain (and did refrain) from initiating attacks on U.S. shipping. The United States and Great Britain entered into arrangements to pool intelligence, combine weapons development, test military equipment jointly, and undertake other forms of war-related cooperation. The U.S. military actively cooperated with the British military in combat operations against the Germans, for example, by alerting the British navy of aerial or marine sightings of German submarines, which the British then attacked. The U.S. government undertook in countless ways to provide military and other supplies and assistance to the British, the French, and the Soviets, who were fighting the Germans. The U.S. government also provided military and other supplies and assistance, including warplanes and pilots, to the Chinese, who were at war with Japan.[1] The U.S. military actively engaged in planning with the British, the British Commonwealth countries, and the Dutch East Indies for future combined combat operations against Japan. Most important, the U.S. government engaged in a series of increasingly stringent economic warfare measures that pushed the Japanese into a predicament that U.S. authorities well understood would probably provoke them to attack U.S. territories and forces in the Pacific region in a quest to secure essential raw materials that the Americans, British, and Dutch (government in exile) had embargoed. [2]

Consider these summary statements by George Victor, by no means a Roosevelt basher, in his well documented book The Pearl Harbor Myth.

Roosevelt had already led the United States into war with Germany in the spring of 1941—into a shooting war on a small scale. From then on, he gradually increased U.S. military participation. Japan’s attack on December 7 enabled him to increase it further and to obtain a war declaration. Pearl Harbor is more fully accounted for as the end of a long chain of events, with the U.S. contribution reflecting a strategy formulated after France fell. . . . In the eyes of Roosevelt and his advisers, the measures taken early in 1941 justified a German declaration of war on the United States—a declaration that did not come, to their disappointment. . . . Roosevelt told his ambassador to France, William Bullitt, that U.S. entry into war against Germany was certain but must wait for an “incident,” which he was “confident that the Germans would give us.” . . . Establishing a record in which the enemy fired the first shot was a theme that ran through Roosevelt’s tactics. . . . He seems [eventually] to have concluded—correctly as it turned out—that Japan would be easier to provoke into a major attack on the Unites States than Germany would be. [3]

The claim that Japan attacked the United States without provocation was . . . typical rhetoric. It worked because the public did not know that the administration had expected Japan to respond with war to anti-Japanese measures it had taken in July 1941. . . . Expecting to lose a war with the United States—and lose it disastrously—Japan’s leaders had tried with growing desperation to negotiate. On this point, most historians have long agreed. Meanwhile, evidence has come out that Roosevelt and Hull persistently refused to negotiate. . . . Japan . . . offered compromises and concessions, which the United States countered with increasing demands. . . . It was after learning of Japan’s decision to go to war with the United States if the talks “break down” that Roosevelt decided to break them off. . . . According to Attorney General Francis Biddle, Roosevelt said he hoped for an “incident” in the Pacific to bring the United States into the European war.[4]

These facts and numerous others that point in the same direction are for the most part anything but new; many of them have been available to the public since the 1940s. As early as 1953, anyone might have read a collection of heavily documented essays on various aspects of U.S. foreign policy in the late 1930s and early 1940s, edited by Harry Elmer Barnes, that showed the numerous ways in which the U.S. government bore responsibility for the country’s eventual engagement in World War II—showed, in short, that the Roosevelt administration wanted to get the country into the war and worked craftily along various avenues to ensure that, sooner or later, it would get in, preferably in a way that would unite public opinion behind the war by making the United States appear to have been the victim of an aggressor’s unprovoked attack.[5] As Secretary of War Henry Stimson testified after the war, “we needed the Japanese to commit the first overt act.” [6]

At present, however, seventy years after these events, probably not one American in 1,000—nay, not one in 10,000—has an inkling of any of this history. So effective has been the pro-Roosevelt, pro-American, pro-World War II faction that in this country it has utterly dominated teaching and popular writing about U.S. engagement in the “Good War.”

In the late nineteenth century, Japan’s economy began to grow and to industrialize rapidly. Because Japan has few natural resources, many of its burgeoning industries had to rely on imported raw materials, such as coal, iron ore or steel scrap, tin, copper, bauxite, rubber, and petroleum. Without access to such imports, many of which came from the United States or from European colonies in Southeast Asia, Japan’s industrial economy would have ground to a halt. By engaging in international trade, however, the Japanese had built a moderately advanced industrial economy by 1941.

At the same time, they also built a military-industrial complex to support an increasingly powerful army and navy. These armed forces allowed Japan to project its power into various places in the Pacific and East Asia, including Korea and northern China, much as the United States used its growing industrial might to equip armed forces that projected U.S. power into the Caribbean, Latin America, and even as far away as the Philippine Islands.

When Franklin D. Roosevelt became president in 1933, the U.S. government fell under the control of a man who disliked the Japanese and harbored a romantic affection for the Chinese because, some writers have speculated, Roosevelt’s ancestors had made money in the China trade.[7] Roosevelt also disliked the Germans in general and Adolf Hitler in particular, and he tended to favor the British in his personal relations and in world affairs. He did not pay much attention to foreign policy, however, until his New Deal began to peter out in 1937. Thereafter he relied heavily on foreign policy to fulfill his political ambitions, including his desire for reelection to an unprecedented third term.

When Germany began to rearm and to seek Lebensraumaggressively in the late 1930s, the Roosevelt administration cooperated closely with the British and the French in measures to oppose German expansion. After World War II commenced in 1939, this U.S. assistance grew ever greater and included such measures as the so-called destroyer deal and the deceptively named Lend-Lease program. In anticipation of U.S. entry into the war, British and U.S. military staffs secretly formulated plans for joint operations. U.S. forces sought to create a war-justifying incident by cooperating with the British navy in attacks on German U-boats in the northern Atlantic, but Hitler refused to take the bait, thus denying Roosevelt the pretext he craved for making the United States a full-fledged, declared belligerent—a belligerence that the great majority of Americans opposed.

In June 1940, Henry L. Stimson, who had been secretary of war under William Howard Taft and secretary of state under Herbert Hoover, became secretary of war again. Stimson was a lion of the Anglophile, northeastern upper crust and no friend of the Japanese. In support of the so-called Open Door Policy for China, Stimson favored the use of economic sanctions to obstruct Japan’s advance in Asia. Treasury Secretary Henry Morgenthau and Interior Secretary Harold Ickes vigorously endorsed this policy. Roosevelt hoped that such sanctions would goad the Japanese into making a rash mistake by launching a war against the United States, which would bring in Germany because Japan and Germany were allied.

The Roosevelt administration, while curtly dismissing Japanese diplomatic overtures to harmonize relations, accordingly imposed a series of increasingly stringent economic sanctions on Japan. In 1939, the United States terminated the 1911 commercial treaty with Japan. “On July 2, 1940, Roosevelt signed the Export Control Act, authorizing the President to license or prohibit the export of essential defense materials.” Under this authority, “[o]n July 31, exports of aviation motor fuels and lubricants and No. 1 heavy melting iron and steel scrap were restricted.” Next, in a move aimed at Japan, Roosevelt slapped an embargo, effective October 16, “on all exports of scrap iron and steel to destinations other than Britain and the nations of the Western Hemisphere.” Finally, on July 26, 1941, Roosevelt “froze Japanese assets in the United States, thus bringing commercial relations between the nations to an effective end. One week later Roosevelt embargoed the export of such grades of oil as still were in commercial flow to Japan.” [8] The British and the Dutch followed suit, embargoing exports to Japan from their colonies in Southeast Asia.

Roosevelt and his subordinates knew they were putting Japan in an untenable position and that the Japanese government might well try to escape the stranglehold by going to war. Having broken the Japanese diplomatic code, the American leaders knew, among many other things, what Foreign Minister Teijiro Toyoda had communicated to Ambassador Kichisaburo Nomura on July 31: “Commercial and economic relations between Japan and third countries, led by England and the United States, are gradually becoming so horribly strained that we cannot endure it much longer. Consequently, our Empire, to save its very life, must take measures to secure the raw materials of the South Seas.”[9]

Because American cryptographers had also broken the Japanese naval code, the leaders in Washington also knew that Japan’s “measures” would include an attack on Pearl Harbor.[10] Yet they withheld this critical information from the commanders in Hawaii, who might have headed off the attack or prepared themselves to defend against it. That Roosevelt and his chieftains did not ring the tocsin makes perfect sense: after all, the impending attack constituted precisely what they had been seeking for a long time. As Stimson confided to his diary after a meeting of the War Cabinet on November 25, “The question was how we should maneuver them [the Japanese] into firing the first shot without allowing too much danger to ourselves.” After the attack, Stimson confessed that “my first feeling was of relief . . . that a crisis had come in a way which would unite all our people.”[11]

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Robert Higgs is senior fellow in political economy for the Independent Institute and editor of The Independent Review. He is the 2007 recipient of the Gary G. Schlarbaum Prize for Lifetime Achievement in the Cause of Liberty. Send him mail. See Robert Higgs’s article archives.

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Copyright © 2012 by the Ludwig von Mises Institute. Permission to reprint in whole or in part is hereby granted, provided full credit is given.

Notes

[1] See “Flying Tigers,” Wikipedia. Available at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flying_Tigers.

[2] Robert Higgs, “How U.S. Economic Warfare Provoked Japan’s Attack on Pearl Harbor,” The Freeman 56 (May 2006): 36-37.

[3] George Victor, The Pearl Harbor Myth: Rethinking the Unthinkable (Dulles, Va.: Potomac Books, 2007), pp. 179-80, 184, 185, emphasis added.

[4] Ibid ., pp. 15, 202, 240.

[5] See Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace: A Critical Examination of the Foreign Policy of Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Its Aftermath, edited by Harry Elmer Barnes (Caldwell, Id.: Caxton Printers, 1953).

[6] Stimson as quoted in Victor, Pearl Harbor Myth, p. 105.

[7] Harry Elmer Barnes, “Summary and Conclusions,” in Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace: A Critical Examination of the Foreign Policy of Franklin Delano Roosevelt and Its Aftermath, edited by Harry Elmer Barnes (Caldwell, Idaho: Caxton Printers, 1953), 682-83.

[8] All quotations in this paragraph are from George Morgenstern, “The Actual Road to Pearl Harbor,” in Barnes, ed., Perpetual War for Perpetual Peace, 322-23, 327-28.

[9] Quoted in Morgenstern, “The Actual Road to Pearl Harbor,” 329.

[10] Robert B. Stinnett, Day of Deceit: The Truth About FDR and Pearl Harbor (New York: Free Press, 2000).

[11] Quoted in Morgenstern, “The Actual Road to Pearl Harbor,” 343, 384.