Saturday, January 25, 2014

Let's Connect the Dots - Part 1

These are my initial thoughts on a Grand Unified Conspiracy Theory.
With everyone's help, maybe we can transform it into a more accurate version of history.
At the end, I have a number of suggestions.
I welcome more suggestions. 
The very word 'secrecy' is repugnant in a free and open society; and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies, to secret oaths, and to secret proceedings.” John F. Kennedy

You can complain about Big Brother and how this is a potential problem run amok, but when you actually look at the details, then I think we've struck the right balance.” Barrack Obama

Two Democratic Presidents. Two significantly different opinions. One President was assassinated while in office. The other President backed off from his similar opinion on secret government organizations as soon as he took office – and is still alive.

Throughout history, there have been signs of the times.

The 50 year anniversary of the assassination of President John F. Kennedy has come and gone and nothing has really changed. Though the Warren Commission (investigation into President John F. Kennedy's assassination) has been shown to be a farce (more on that later), and a 1977 House Select Committee on Assassinations concluded that there was a 95% probability that at least four shots were fired and that JFK was killed as a result of a conspiracy – and the Justice Department recommended a follow up investigation; no Federal investigations have been conducted in the 38 years since then.

Not only was JFK killed, but so was a thorough investigation into his assassination.
This is a sign.
This is a sign that those responsible for his assassination are still in power.

But that's not surprising considering the proto-facsist (corporatist-police) state we now live in.

Even President Obama has admitted in public that he doesn't know what the NSA secret police are up to. He too has been finding out about the NSA by reading newspaper accounts of Edward Snowden leaks. And yes, the NSA are now American secret police; because once they started to spy on Americans, they were no longer just analysts.

History has shown time and again that if one group of people has a combination of anonymity, power over others, and they are somewhat above the law; some among them will become corrupt and ruthlessly take advantage of that power.

I'm not alone in these assertions. Former President Harry Truman spoke out against the CIA. Retiring President Dwight D. Eisenhower made it a point in his last public speech (that would get nationwide coverage) to warn of the dangers of the military/industrial complex. And, as quoted at the beginning of this post; President John F. Kennedy found these secret government organizations' operations “repugnant.”

However, to my knowledge; no president since JFK has spoken out vigorously against America's “intelligence” agencies.
This too, is likely a sign.
The Presidents since JFK have been likely either afraid of the secret government organizations, or one of them.

Concerning President Barrack Obama, I suspect he is either afraid for his and his family's lives and/or he is being blackmailed (along with many members of Congress).
...When once pressed by some of his progressive supporters to do some of the things candidate Obama had promised, President Barrack Obama's reply was; “Don't you remember what happened to Martin Luther King Jr.?”

And what happened to Martin Luther King Jr.? He spoke out against the Vietnam war and the military/industrial complex – he went soft – and wound up assassinated. And like the JFK and RFK assassinations, many serious questions remain. (The jury in the 1999 wrongful death civil trial of Martin Luther King Jr. concluded that there was a conspiracy and that governmental agencies were parties to this conspiracy.)

These are signs.
These are signs that for the past 50 years, we haven't really been living in a democracy.
These are signs that a secret government has sway over our “civilian” government.

But how did we get here? How do we know these signs to be true? And just how bad is it really?

Let's attempt to connect the dots – and watch a pattern emerge – which the for profit mass media has been unwilling to share with us. (The reason I say “let's” is because I will read your comments and modify this story when I see fit and have the time.)

...We can start with Richard Nixon. Back when Richard Nixon was Dwight D. Eisenhower's Vice President; he worked closely with Allen Dulles, head of the CIA, on dealing with the newly communist country Cuba. Their goal was to overthrow Fidel Castro (or assassinate him). And if Richard Nixon had been elected President in 1960, the Bay of Pigs invasion might have had a much different ending.

But John F. Kennedy was elected President. And JFK didn't see the threat of Cuban communism as dangerous as the military/industrial complex did. JFK might have seen Cuba for what it really was; a tiny little island of poor people – no real threat to the United States – the most powerful country on the planet.

JFK had initially trusted American military leaders that the threat of communism was far worse than it really was – and sent 15,000 military “advisers” to Vietnam – another tiny country of poor people. But apparently, eventually JFK felt misled about the communist threat in Vietnam. President Kennedy's Secretary of Defense, Robert McNamara, wrote in his book In Retrospect; that on October 2 of 1963 President Kennedy made a decision to “begin withdrawal of U.S. Forces” from Vietnam.

The military/industrial complex must have concluded Kennedy had gone soft.

Fifty days later, President John F. Kennedy was assassinated; and Lyndon Johnson was left to deal with the “communist” threat.

[This has led to speculations that Johnson was in on the assassination. Even E. Howard Hunt accused him of being a part of the conspiracy. But this is silly. There was obviously no motive for Lyndon Johnson to participate in a conspiracy to assassinate JFK. Vice President Lyndon Johnson was next in line for the Presidency after Kennedy. Johnson was elected President in 1964 (and likely would have been re-elected in 1968 had it not been for the Vietnam war). It's quite possible E. Howard Hunt didn't actually know who the higher ups were in the assassination mission. But E. Howard Hunt was unrepentant, so he may have been trying to distract us. I suspect that there are many intentional distractions from the truth. That is possibly why there are so many conspiracy theories. There are very likely people who want to bury the truth. Wouldn't it make sense that they would try to bury the truth in a pile of distractions?]

President Johnson also initially trusted his military advisers. And they told him to send more troops to Vietnam – and more – and more – and more. (For more information on the Vietnam War watch the documentary Hearts and Minds.) And when it all failed – when the resolve of the Vietnamese people proved stronger than the massive military might of the United States – President Johnson was left with the blame.

Follow the money.”
That was the advice given to Woodward and Bernstein while they were investigating the Watergate break-in. And it has been excellent advice on most conspiracy investigations.

Lyndon Johnson didn't profit from the cold war. But a lot of people did profit – handsomely. These are the people we need to ask questions about. War costs billions. There are bound to be people who would willingly blow threats out of proportion, lie, or even kill for that kind of money.

I won't talk a lot about the Kennedy assassination. There are people who have studied this in much greater detail than I have. I recommend the movie JFK (director's cut) by Oliver Stone.

In my attempt to connect the dots; the question I would like to pose is; since LBJ probably had a good idea that the Kennedy assassination was at least aided by very powerful people, was President Johnson afraid? My guess is that he was often sitting there pinching his seat in fear. His boss had just been executed in public, the crime story sounds like a cover story, and with exception of one patsy, they got away with it. Let's face it, even if the alleged assassins had been on LBJ's side, he still had good reason to be afraid of them. And he would probably be afraid enough to do what they ask – like escalate the war in Vietnam (even if it might cost him the next election). In fact, he might even have been afraid enough to aid the assassins in throwing off the Kennedy assassination investigation (the one thing the conspirators would have wanted the most). How would he do that? By appointing Allen Dulles to the Warren Commission.

Yes, that Allen Dulles. The former head of the CIA. In fact, the longest serving head of the CIA (kind of like J. Edgar Hoover and the FBI). The man who must have thought he was the most powerful man on the planet, until he was fired by President Kennedy for the Bay of Pigs fiasco.

When Allen Dulles was head of the CIA working “for” President Kennedy, he attempted to force President Kennedy into a war with Cuba. The invasion plans had already been made (back when Nixon was Vice President). The Cuban Nationalist troops were ready. But if America had openly invaded Cuba, a sovereign nation than had never attacked the U.S.; then the Soviet Union would have invaded Berlin – and the Cold War would have inevitably escalated – possibly to nuclear war.

[This sounds horribly frightening to us now, but there were U.S. generals (parodied in the movie Dr. Strangelove) who believed a nuclear war was winnable at the time – and were quite tempted to make the first stike.]

Initially, President Kennedy supported the Cuban Nationalist invasion of Communist Cuba. But he didn't want the world to know the U.S. was supporting them with bombers. The CIA had used obsolete World War II bombers painted to look like Cuban air force planes. But it was a lousy cover, and after the first bombing raid, pictures came out that showed they were American planes. At that point, President Kennedy backed down.

So, Allen Dulles' top man, Richard Bissell, schemed up a way in which President Kennedy had to participate. Bissell OK'd the Cuban Nationalists to invade Cuba. The troop odds were 1,200 to 20,000. Without an air attack, the Cuban Nationalists wouldn't stand a chance. But they invaded anyway believing that Allen Dulles would convince President Kennedy to win the war for them from the air. But Kennedy stood firm. There was no more air support, and the Cuban Nationalists either died or were captured. Consequently, the many in the CIA and the Cuban Nationalists blamed Kennedy – for essentially standing up to them – for telling them no.

Now this too is a sign.
This is a sign that as far back as the Kennedy administration, America's secret government has been very powerful on some issues.
Apparently, Allen Dulles believed he was so powerful, he could politically force the President of the most powerful nation in the world into war... Wow.

...And then Allen Dulles gets fired by President Kennedy.
...And then President Kennedy gets assassinated.
...And then President Johnson appoints him to the Warren Commission?

There isn't a human being I would trust less on the Warren Commission than Allen Dulles. This was the one man on the planet who knew most about conducting coups and assassinations – because he oversaw them back at his old job as head of the CIA. If there was a conspiracy kill Kennedy, it was quite likely Dulles' old buddies were involved. Even retired, Allen Dulles would have done everything he could to protect the CIA. He might have even been willing to derail the investigation.

This too is a sign.
To appoint Allen Dulles to the Warren Commission, President Johnson must have suspected that there was CIA involvement in the Kennedy assassination – and that Allen Dulles would cover it up. And why would Allen Dulles accept the appointment if he knew his participation would permanently taint the conclusions of the Warren Commission? Right from the start, it only makes sense that both President Johnson and Allen Dulles suspected CIA involvement in the Kennedy assassination. Right from the start, they both must have suspected a conspiracy. It simply makes no sense that President Johnson would appoint Allen Dulles to investigate the assassination of the man who fired him if Johnson did not think there was a conspiracy. It was politically a lose/lose situation – unless Johnson appointed Dulles to covertly influence the outcome. Which means either President Johnson was a participant in the conspiracy (which makes no sense also), or he knew they could kill him too. So he gave them what they wanted – a kangaroo court.

But apparently, Allen Dulles didn't have to do the dirty work. Arlen Specter and Gerald Ford were the ones accused of tampering with the evidence. And yes, that was the Arlen Spector who later became a powerful Senator – and the Gerald Ford who later became America's first un-elected Vice President and President.

House Majority Leader Hale Boggs also sat on the Warren Commission. Later, in 1971 and 1972; Hale Boggs claimed that the Warren Commission was false and a cover up. He accused Arlen Specter as the major cover-up artist... Hale Boggs died in 1972 in an airplane crash. (Later, airplane crashes would become commonly suspected as CIA assassinations.)

Even today, 50 years later; the CIA is still resisting the release hundreds of secret documents relating to the Kennedy assassination.

Continue to Part 2

Let's Connect the Dots - Part 2

Richard Nixon was a firm supporter of the conclusions of the Warren Commission.
Robert Kennedy may not have been.

This may have been significant. Robert Kennedy was President John F. Kennedy's right hand man in office. Robert Kennedy shared many of President John Kennedy's political views – and political enemies. In fact, the timing of Robert Kennedy's assassination implied a politically motivated conspiracy. Robert Kennedy was ahead in the 1968 Presidential campaign when he was assassinated. And if Robert Kennedy had become President, he would have been in position to open an unbiased investigation into his brother's assassination. And Robert Kennedy probably would have ended the Vietnam war...

...But before that, President Johnson couldn't win his 1968 re-election because America wasn't winning the Vietnam war. Johnson bowed out of the campaign. However, President Johnson hoped to negotiate a peace before the 1968 election – to help his Vice President, Hubert Humphrey. Negotiations were underway... and then the talks mysteriously collapsed. The South Vietnamese suddenly no longer wanted to negotiate. Later it was revealed that a representative for Nixon made a back room deal with the South Vietnamese. Apparently, he offered to give the South Vietnamese a better deal if they continued the war until after the 1968 election. This ruined Vice President Hubert Humphrey's hopes for winning a close election.

Personally, I don't suspect any involvement from the U.S. Intelligence community on this particular secret act of treason, but this is a good indicator of Nixon's character.

Nixon was willing to plot the assassination of a foreign leader (Fidel Castro), support the overthrow a democratically elected leader (Chile), conduct a “drug” war (to jail dissidents), make a secret deal with the South Vietnamese to continue the war until after the 1968 election, continue the war for over another four years, and even heavily bomb neutral countries (Cambodia and Laos). Richard Nixon was not a nice guy. But he never really got into trouble so long as his actions benefited the military/industrial complex.

And then President Richard Nixon ended the Vietnam war... and then he had to step down from his office – because of the Watergate break in cover up. Of all the low down dirty rotten no good things Richard Nixon is accused of, the Watergate break in cover up is the most benign.

Later, Ronald Reagan would skate through the far more damning Iran/Contra arms-for-hostages investigation unscathed. But President Reagan had the support of the military/industrial complex, and President Nixon no longer did.

Nixon claimed that Watergate was a setup. What if he was telling the truth?

America at the time was in turmoil. Support for the “war” in Vietnam had gradually shifted to resistance. Apparently, President Nixon knew that the South Vietnamese would ultimately lose and he didn't want that to happen before the next U.S. election. So, he drug the war on for four more years. Had President Nixon continued to claim the war was winnable in 1972, he would have lost the election. So instead, President Nixon claimed he had a “secret plan” for getting America out to the war. And American Conservatives, rather than voting for a Liberal, chose to fall for Nixon's line.

I was only a 12 year old kid at the time, and it was obvious even to me what the “secret plan” was. Landslide re-elected President Nixon escalated the war and then later tried to negotiate out. Which means Nixon's “secret plan” for ending the war was to go on the offensive. No wonder it was secret. It was just more of the same. Nonetheless, President Nixon eventually did end the Vietnam war. (With an agreement not much different than what President Johnson had negotiated in 1968.)

But that's not what Kellogg, Brown, and Root (later KBR) really wanted. That's not what the military/industrial complex really wanted. They were raking in billions of taxpayer dollars. America had dropped more bombs on Vietnam than in all of World War II! That's expensive. That's a lot of money for the merchants of death. And they wouldn't have been happy to find out their income stream would drop because America's President had gone soft.

So, how does military/industrial complex stop an American President from keeping his promise of peace to the people? I would suspect threats and/or blackmail. Watergate might have been that threat.

It is well known that five of the seven Watergate burglars were once on the CIA payroll. And at least one of them was still on the CIA payroll when they broke into the Democratic National Committee’s office.

Nonetheless; even if President Nixon knew of, or even ordered the Watergate break-in; the militarily/industrial complex may have used the threat of political controversy against Nixon to keep the Vietnam war going. Or, they may have used Watergate as a political assassination to take him down for shutting off the floodgates of money.

When Nixon stepped down in 1974, Vice President Gerald Ford became President. That's right, the same Gerald Ford who was on the Warren Commission – the same Gerald Ford who admits to changing an autopsy evidence report concerning the site of one of John F. Kennedy's bullet wounds.

Gerald Ford became the first U.S. President to have neither been elected President or Vice President. Nixon just picked him. And since President Gerald Ford had been on the Warren Commission, there was no doubt he would also defend its conclusions. But even President Gerald Ford couldn't keep a lid on everything. The Senate and the House decided to conduct independent investigations.

In 1975, the Senate Select Committee to Study Governmental Operations with respect to Intelligence Operations concluded: Domestic intelligence activity has threatened and undermined the Constitutional rights of Americans to free speech, association and privacy. It has done so primarily because the Constitutional system for checking abuse of power has not been applied.”

In 1976, a Detroit News poll indicated that 87% of the American population did not believe the Lee Harvey Oswald was the lone gunman who killed President Kennedy.

In 1976, The House Select Committee on Assassinations was created to probe into the assassination plots to kill Martin Luther King and John F. Kennedy.

Also in 1976, former Warren Commission member President Gerald Ford appointed George H.W. Bush director of the CIA. This was not likely a coincidence. Bush's predecessor had delivered important files the “civilian” government had ordered. And the files had shown CIA to have essentially gone rogue in many instances. CIA director George H.W. Bush, however, made it very difficult for the House Select Committee on Assassinations to obtain CIA files. Information went on lock down.

It has even been discovered that the CIA liaison during this period, George Joannides (who was brought out of retirement – much like Allen Dulles was on the Warren Commission); was in charge of paying the anti-Castro organization DRE $450,000 a month (in today's dollars) back in 1963. DRE was the organization that linked Lee Harvey Oswald to Fidel Castro. Members of the group even had a scuffle with Lee Harvey Oswald that resulted in his arrest. Needless to say, George Joannides had something to hide – which made him about as uncooperative a liaison as the CIA (George H.W. Bush) could find.

Nonetheless, even with all of the roadblocks; the House Select Committee on Assassinations concluded in early 1977 there was a conspiracy to kill President Kennedy.

By then, Jimmy Carter was President. Carter had promised in his campaign speeches to deal with the “rogue” element of the CIA. He fired George H.W. Bush and 200 CIA operatives close to him. And in 1979, President Jimmy Carter fired another 700 CIA operatives.

...And then Jimmy Carter lost the 1980 Presidential election to Ronald Reagan.
...But what was really important is why and how he lost the election to Ronald Reagan.

President Jimmy Carter not only reduced the size of the CIA, he also persuaded America to use significantly less fossil fuels, and he kept America out of war for his full 4 year term as President (of which he is the only President in living memory to do so). This obviously made President Jimmy Carter unpopular with the military/industrial complex.

In 1979, a protest in Iran escalated into an American hostage situation. The U.S. Embassy in Iran was overtaken by opportunistic protestors – who found themselves in the favor of the Ayatollah Khomeini – and in control politically with America.

The history of Iran is tainted with the 1953 overthrow of its democratically elected leader, Mohammad Mosaddegh, and a subsequent oppressive dictatorship by the Shah of Iran until 1979. It has since been revealed that the CIA was instrumental in the overthrow. Blowback from this cruel dictatorship ultimately led to the Iranian hostage crisis. The CIA created the problem back in 1953. But it was President Carter who's image was tarnished. The Iranian hostage crisis made President Carter look powerless. After a failed rescue mission, the hostages were separated and hidden all over Iran. From that point on, President Carter's only options were to give them what they wanted or wait. Negotiations proceeded, and then suddenly mysteriously failed.

On September 6, 1980, Sadegh Ghotbzadeh, who was still acting foreign minister of Iran, was quoted by Agence France Presse that he had information that presidential candidate Ronald Reagan was “trying to block a solution” to the hostage crisis. But apparently, nobody on the Carter team read the article.

Jimmy Carter lost a very close election in 1980. And immediately after Ronald Reagan was inaugurated, the hostages were released. The signs of a conspiracy to hold the hostages until after the election were screaming at America. (Reminiscent of Nixon's deal with the South Vietnamese.) But the mass media put the subject behind us, and America obediently moved on...

Now let's think about this; even if candidate Ronald Reagan didn't know anything about the Republican October Surprise; President Ronald Reagan must have figured it out. Reagan knew he had no more options with the Iranians than Carter had. Consequently, President Reagan must have figured the conspiracy out (at the very latest) as soon as he was inaugurated.

President Reagan must have known that a little act of treason swayed Americans enough to get him elected. So apparently, he played along and allowed his covert operatives to run amok.

Years later, America found out that President Reagan's covert operatives were secretly selling arms to Iran and using the funds to support vicious right wing military actions in “communist” Nicaragua (approximately a couple hundred thousand people were killed). This solidified America's suspicions that a deal had been made to hold the hostages until the election so that Iran could buy weapons from the U.S. to fight Iraq. (But little did Iran know the U.S. was also sharing intelligence information with Iraq – playing the two countries at war against each other.)

The Iran/Contra controversy however, wasn't the only thing the Reagan administration was essentially trying to cover up. They blocked the regular release of archival records. There are U.S. laws that require the State Department to declassify and release records after a 30 year period. The Reagan administration, for the first time in U.S. history, blocked those releases essentially so they could keep Americans from finding out what happened in Guatemala and Iran back in the 1950s.

Meanwhile, President Ronald Reagan invaded Grenada – another tiny country of poor people. And even though Cuba, the bad guys in this story, immediately offered to negotiate the whole issue; Reagan ordered the attack anyway. He did so at a convenient time for the mass media to be distracted from the arms-for-hostages trails. Personally, I feel that this invasion was a case of the tail waging the dog and not particularly important – except for the fact that this little military victory marked the return, for all to see, of the United States as bully to the world.

Meanwhile, the Iranian arms-for-hostages investigation ended up with a couple of convictions and no one going to jail (Presidential pardons), and no one on the executive team harmed. It's as if the Reagan administration (like the Nixon administration before them) had friends in high places to protect them.

Though conservatives may disagree; I see President Ronald Reagan as the leader of a corporatist counter-revolution. The hippies and the anti-war protestors that hounded President Nixon had disbanded and moved on. The assassinations of the 1960's and the revelations about the CIA were receding in memory. And the debts of the Vietnam war were still crushing the economy. Everyone just wanted to live their lives without being pushed around. And Ronald Reagan told us what we wanted to hear; “Government is the problem.”

After years of being drafted, busted, overtaxed, spied on, lied to, and having our leaders assassinated; Americans already believed that Government was the problem. But that's not actually what Ronald Reagan meant. That's just what he wanted us to think.

The Reagan administration was hell-bent on forcing back the gains Americans had made during the 1960's and 70's. Reagan was the first to gut our environmental protections. Reagan stopped enforcing monopoly laws and set forth a corporate takeover of America. Reagan began the privatization of government functions, which further enriched big business at the expense of a functional government. Reagan introduced “trickle-down economic theory” (which his Vice President Bush labeled “voodoo economics”). Thus began the destruction of the middle class. Reagan crushed the air traffic controllers' union, which initiated a corporatist war against unions. Reagan deregulations ultimately led to the Savings and Loan crisis, which led to a huge bail out by U.S. Taxpayers. And, of course; President Reagan escalated the Cold War, and deficit spent like a drunken sailor on “defense,” buying $600 toilet seats and $3000 coffee pots.

Note on the chart that during the Reagan military buildup there was no actual war.

Ronald Reagan told us that “Government was the problem” so that he could get rid of the good laws – the laws that held back big business from cheating, polluting, and stealing wealth from the little guy and the taxpayers. And many Americans backed him up apparently because they thought they might get a cut of the action.

But the laws that oppressed the little guys stayed in place. Which kept the little guys angry. Which kept pressure on Washington to scale back big government. Which only benefited big business. Thus began the downward spiral of the corporatist counter-revolution and the continued bloating of the military/industrial complex.

This is a National debt graph by President. The red lines are the debt incurred during the Republican Presidents Reagan, Bush Sr., and Bush Jr. The blue lines are the debt incurred during the Democratic Presidents Clinton and Obama. The green line represents what would have happened if the Republican Presidents had balanced their budgets as they had promised, and Democrats did just what they did.

Where did all that debt come from? It came from the Reagan military buildup for the Cold War. And it came from the Gulf Wars. The spike at 2008 represents the repercussions from the banking crisis. But part of the reason for the continued debt rise in Obama's term is that defense spending hasn't gone down (like times before when war winds down). Apparently, the merchants of death are having their way with Democrats now too. (And moreover, it exposes that these military occupations aren't quite over. When American troops left Iraq, they left behind 20,000 American “personnel.”)

President Ronald Reagan railed against “welfare queens,” and borrowed billions to give to the military/industrial complex. Moreover, President Ronald Reagan supported the “intelligence” community, no matter what they did.

Continue to Part 3

Let's Connect the Dots - Part 3

Do you need another sign? Let's re-consider this; Ronald Reagan hand-picked for his Vice President, George H.W. Bush, a man who had once been the head of the CIA – and moreover, Ronald Reagan also hand-picked William Casey as head of the CIA, a man who is suspected of personally arranging the arms-for-hostages deal with Iran... If Ronald Reagan new that William Casey was despicable enough to make secret deal with the enemy, and still be willing to name him head of the CIA; then Ronald Reagan wasn't concerned about the skeletons in Bush's closet either.

Allow me to remind you what George H.W. Bush “once headed the CIA” actually means. It means he probably worked there before he got the job as boss. There are documents that show George H.W. Bush was working within the CIA as far back as 1963, (and was in Dallas along with Nixon when President Kennedy was assassinated.) So, if George H.W. Bush actually was career CIA (which of course the CIA won't tell us), it also means is that everything George H.W. Bush was associated with should also be associated with the CIA – including his time as member of the U.S. House of Representatives, his time as Ambassador to the United Nations, his time as head of the Republican National Committee, his time as Vice President to Ronald Reagan. His time as President of the United States. And even his son W's time as Governor and President and his son Jeb's time as Governor of Florida.

When you think Bush, think CIA.

Example: the invasion of Panama in 1989
Most Americans still believe that the United States invaded Panama to bring Manuel Noriega to justice. The mass media called him a dictator, a drug dealer, and a terrorist. But apparently that was just the cover story, and Manuel Noriega actually only played a minor role compared to the re-taking of the Panama Canal in the invasion of Panama.

Manuel Noriega wasn't always an enemy of the U.S.. Manuel Noriega didn't just suddenly become an evil dictator. He had been who he was for years – and the CIA not only put up with it, they paid him – they may have even helped him become dictator so that he could help the U.S. crush the “communist” Sandinistas in Nicaragua. However, Manuel Noriega may have started to talk a little too uppitymuch like his predecessor, Omar Torrijos.

General Torrijos had signed a treaty with President Jimmy Carter to pass ownership of the Panama Canal to Panama by the year 2000. Personally, I don't really see this as all that big of a deal. Panama wasn't going to close the Canal or charge high rates. And if the U.S. ever felt the need to protect the Panama Canal, we could always send bombers or troops. Besides, even if someone were to nuke the Panama Canal, it would only make it bigger. (Nonetheless, for years, the right wing-nut followers of Rush Limbaugh couldn't stand it. It was as if they wanted to say; “We took it, it's ours, and we're not giving anything back to the Indians.”)

Apparently, Omar Torrijos was looking into an agreement with Japan to make the Panama Canal bigger. It would have been a huge project. And it would not have benefited American companies. (George Shultz was the U.S. Secretary of State and had been the president of Bechtel Corporation and Casper Weinberger was the U.S. Secretary of Defense and had been the chief counsel for Bechtel.)

The next thing we know, Omar Torrijos gets killed in a suspicious airplane crash. Many have blamed the CIA. (Ecuador's President, Jamie Roldós Aguilera was also killed in an unrelated airplane crash that the CIA is suspected of being involved in.)

And then along came Manuel Noriega, with the U.S.'s blessings, of course. Was he involved with drug trafficking? Probably, but that didn't initially matter to the CIA. (And interestingly, a U.S. GAO study reported that drug trafficking actually doubled after Manuel Noriega was gone.) Was he a dictator. Yes, but that never seemed to bother the CIA anywhere else. Was he a terrorist? Only if one considers terrorism his support of the sabotage of the Sandinista government in Nicaragua – at the insistence of the United States.

Like Saddam Hussein would later would find out; America's secret government could turn on you in a heartbeat if they want something you have – or maybe even if it just helps them politically at home. Remember, (the former head of the CIA) President George H.W. Bush was the man in charge in both invasions. Both countries had leaders who were once the darlings of the U.S. intelligence community. Both countries were invaded under pretenses that their leaders were unfit to rule. (But Panama was first – and a cold, calculating fiend might have considered Panama enough of a success to consider trying it again.)

In what was another attack on a tiny little country of poor people, two to four thousand Panamanians died in “Operation Just Cause.” Likely most of them were civilians. Apparently, “collateral damage” is acceptable if America has a “just cause.” (George Orwell himself couldn't have come up with more Orwellian terms.) And apparently, the primary purpose of the invasion of Panama wasn't to capture Manuel Noriega. It was to destroy the Panamanian army. Because when Panama no longer had a military to protect the Panama Canal, the U.S. had an excuse to stay in Panama – to protect the Panama Canal.

The United Nations condemned the invasion of Panama as “a flagrant violation of international law.” This barely made the press in the United States, however. And as the Bush Sr. administration must have planned; Americans soon forgot about the whole thing. (This condemnation may also explain future U.S. mass media attacks on the U.N. – apparently to discredit the U.N.)

(For more information on the U.S. Invasion of Panama, watch the Academy Award winning The Panama Deception.)

Since the invasion of Panama in 1989, the Torrijos-Carter Treaty was honored (by President Clinton), and the U.S. bases in Panama were closed in 1999. However, since then, construction of five new U.S. bases has begun. There have been more than 700 contracts signed for projects in Panama by the U.S. Department of Defense since 2000.

So, let's try and get this straight:
When Carter was President and Bush was out of power; Panama could have the Canal. When Reagan was President and Bush was Vice President; Panama's leader, Torrijos, who had signed Carter's Treaty, was likely assassinated by the CIA. When Bush Sr. was President; America literally invaded Panama essentially to get the Panama Canal back. When Clinton was President and Bush was out of power; Panama could have the Canal. When Bush Jr. was President; American military returned for the Canal. But now that Obama is President; U.S. militarily presence in Panama is OK, as long as we're there to fight the “drug” war. (Sound confusing? Imagine living in Panama.)

My point of this example is simple; Bush and other Republicans have been the driving force behind some of the worst, most aggressive acts of the CIA and our American military. I can't help but think thousands of Panamanians died over a petty difference of opinion back here in the U.S. over what to do with the Panama Canal... (But this example also points out one more thing; there is no permanent dominant power here in the U.S. – or at least there didn't used to be.)

A significant part of the reason George H.W. Bush lost the 1992 Presidential election to Bill Clinton was that too many Americans just didn't trust George H.W. Bush. Of course, there was that “read my lips, no new taxes” thing. And then there was that pardon of 6 Iran/Contra plotters.

Moreover, many of us had our doubts about the Gulf War. Was it really necessary?

Though the mass media tended to ignore it, the Gulf War had the feel of being set up – contrived – coordinated – even choreographed.

Just a few months before Operation Desert Storm, the Soviet Union had collapsed. The Cold War was over. Americans wanted their peace dividend. And the military/industrial complex was worried. All those taxpayer dollars just might stop flowing.

[Side note: The military/industrial complex, and therefore the CIA, doesn't think like “civilian” America. They have a different set of goals. They want our tax dollars... Just before the collapse of the Soviet Union, I had the privilege of listening to a Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) briefing on the Soviet Union. The DIA knew the Soviet Union was going to fall. The DIA told us that Gorbachev had run out of options. I find it very difficult to believe the CIA didn't know the same thing. But right up until the end, the CIA publicly never made any predictions about the fall of the Soviet Union. It was as if the CIA didn't want the Soviet Union to fall. They were the Cold War “enemy.” And without the big bad 'ol boogie man, there wouldn't be nearly the need for the CIA. Consequently, by claiming that the Soviet Union was still a threat; it appears the CIA essentially propped up the Soviet Union right up until the end.]

Without the Soviet Union to scare us, Americans were insisting that our tax dollars be spent on us. This was the biggest financial threat to the militarily/industrial complex since Presidents Kennedy and Nixon made the decision to withdrawal of U.S. Forces from Vietnam.

...And then, almost immediately after the fall of the Soviet Union; the American ambassador to Iraq tells Saddam Hussein; “We have no opinion on your Arab-Arab conflicts, such as your dispute with Kuwait.”

...and guess what? Within days, Iraqi troops were amassing on the Kuwaiti border.

Note: Iraq had been in a long drawn out war with Iran from 1980 to 1988. Both countries had neglected their oil fields during the war. This meant there was a lot of untapped oil there.

By America telling Saddam Hussein “we have no opinion” on Kuwait, and then going to war with Iraq over it; the Gulf War had the feeling of being contrived. It may have been we just needed to get rid of a dictator before he became too strong. But it may have been the oil. And then again, it may have just been all about our tax money.

Remember that campaign promise George H.W. Bush made about “no new taxes?” Well, he raised taxes to keep from cutting defense spending.

The first Gulf War was the last time America was actually in a real war. It was amazing to watch how powerful American military might was then. Iraq's army and air force didn't stand a chance. And no country has stood up militarily to the U.S. since.

Which only leaves rag-tag groups of angry civilians to fight us... We like to call them “terrorists.” (More on that later.)

Continue to Part 4

Let's Connect the Dots - Part 4

During President Clinton's first term, military spending dropped significantly. America did get some of its peace dividend. But the spending cuts bottomed out around 1998, when President Clinton was caught up in the Monica Lewinsky “investigation” and impeachment, and needed all the friends he could get. (For more information see the documentary The Hunting of the President.)

It appears that President Clinton started out a liberal Democrat and ended up a conservative Democrat. Clinton initially tried to get universal health care. But after a punishing defeat of universal health care and the loss of Congress to the Republicans in 1994, President Clinton became more like a Republican. And it appears that by the Monica Lewinsky scandal, President Clinton had completely given up on his liberal ideals.

In 1999, President Clinton led the NATO bombardment of Yugoslavia to halt the “ethnic cleansing” of Kosovo Albanians. The intervention was not approved by the U.N., but it did lead to Yugoslav forces withdrawing from Kosovo. It could be argued that this was a just war. It could also be argued that no one was attacking America – so, it was not a war of American defense. When it came to being warlike, President Clinton was no President Bush. Kosovo was no Panama or Iraq, but President Clinton was not above war. And the military/industrial complex must have appreciated that.

Something also worth noting President Bill Clinton did; was to continue on the Ronald Reagan path of privatization of military and intelligence functions. A massive private expansion into intelligence and other areas of government occurred under the Presidency of Bill Clinton (and was accelerated during the Bush Jr. Presidency). By the end of his Presidency, Bill Clinton had cut 360,000 jobs from the Federal payroll, and was spending 44% more on private contractors than at the beginning of his Presidency.

What's worse; this hasn't saved us money, the private contractors get paid more – in 2008 contractors made up 29% of the intelligence agency workforce but 49% of personnel budgets.

So, why do it? Why privatize the one thing that no rational country would want to privatize; our military intelligence? The only reason I can think of is to give favors to your political supporters. The for-profit participants in the military/industrial complex want to make more money. And they they must have seen government careers in military intelligence as profitable growth potential.

But what did America lose in that deal? Most importantly, we lost career professional intelligence officers. We lost the integrity of Federal employees, who's primary focus was on what was best for America – not profits. Sure, there were rogue agents (some who may have smuggled drugs and maybe even some who participated in the Kennedy assassination). But a privatized intelligence community can be expected to be far worse.

The intelligence community is slowly being transformed from an agency in to an industry. This is a critical change in the actual function of the intelligence community. The consequence of privatization is that paid contracts end up more important than good intelligence – good decisions. This may not seem significant until one realizes that presently we're paying people to give us the names of “terrorists” – and we'll stop paying them if they run out of names. The temptation to pull names out of a hat carries the risk of a contrived war on terror, just so our spies can stay employed. On top of that, private contractors can engage in illegal activities with impunity – because oversight is more difficult of private organizations.

Worth mentioning are a couple critical mistakes President Clinton made during his Presidency – the signing of the NAFTA and GATT trade agreements and the signing of the Financial Modernization Act (which repealed parts of the Glass-Steagall Act).

America's international trade treaties (mainly NAFTA and GATT) eliminated tariff protections, which made it profitable to export jobs to countries that permitted sweat shop pay. Consequently, in the first decade of the 21st century, America lost five million manufacturing jobs, a contraction of approximately a third.

And by 2008, it became obvious why financial institutions had been compartmentalized by lawmakers back during the Great Depression. Without Glass-Seagall protections, gambling mega-banks brought on the worldwide financial crisis.

I'm sure Republicans have used these Clinton decisions as reasons to blame the Democrats for our economic woes, but Republicans wanted NAFTA, GATT, and the Financial Modernization Act even more than the Democrats. Apparently, big business wanted to take advantage of Americans, and they paid both parties to do their bidding. Which brings up a very important point; by the time President Clinton was in office, not even the Democrats could say no to the super-greedy who pull the strings – even if it meant the collapse of manufacturing in America – even if it meant the never ending bailouts of gambling mega-banks – even if it meant unnecessary wars.

What these traumas to our economy have led to is an even greater reliance of Americans on military/industrial complex related jobs. Those were the only jobs that couldn't be exported. Consequently, the only thing Americans make anymore are weapons. I am exaggerating, of course. But increasingly, the American economy has become even more reliant on worldwide weapons sales. This is not good for a stable and safe planet. But, of course; a stable planet doesn't buy weapons.

Continue to Part 5

Let's Connect the Dots - Part 5

In 2000, Al Gore won the Presidential election by over 500,000 votes nationwide. But that didn't matter. Why? Because the American electoral system was set up to be not quite a democracy. Moreover, State officials cheated and got away with it. And before a full recount of Florida's election results, the “Supreme” Court decided George W. Bush (Jr.) should be President. This was all the more suspicious because the “Supreme” Court was stacked with five Republicans, who had been chosen by previous Republican Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush, who had essentially stolen the 1980 election. It sure looked like payback time for Justices Rehnquist, Scalia, Thomas, O'Connor, and Kennedy to me.

(For more information on the thefts of the 2000 and 2004 Presidential elections see the Greg Palast documentary The Election Files.)

I'm not claiming that the military/industrial complex was behind the stealing of the 2000 election. They have plausible deniability. The Republicans did it. But Republicans are well known for supporting the military/industrial complex practically unwaveringly. And by the way; events since the 2000 election have shown that the military/industrial complex has benefited immensely.

Al Gore was and is an environmentalist. Like President Carter before him, Al Gore would have been far more inclined to have resorted to renewable energy than to go to war over oil.

And most likely, Al Gore would have reacted to the 9/11 attacks as President Bill Clinton did in 1993 – by treating them as crimes, not acts of war. Al Gore would not likely have created Homeland Security. And it isn't very likely Al Gore would have ordered the invasion of Iraq – when none of the 9/11 terrorists are claimed to have been Iraqi.

America and the world would have been a different place if George W. Bush had not been prematurely declared President by the “Supreme” Court.

But, since the differences between Democrat leaders and Republican leaders isn't perceived as vast; Americans didn't bother to stand up for Al Gore. There were protests, but most Americans never got off the couch.

We all now know that although there may not be a vast difference between Republicans and Democrats, there is a significant difference.

The first important issue on the agenda of the Bush Jr. administration was to cut taxes. And the second was to deficit spend on the war on terror.

The tax issue kept everyone's attention for the first few months of the President George W. Bush term. The biggest chunk of the tax break was for the rich. There are two issues I have with this. First; this transferred the burden of paying for the military/industrial complex to the poor and the middle class. We all know that the rich have more influence on our government. And if they are not stuck with the bill for wasted tax dollars, they won't be as inclined to reduce that waste. Second; some among those rich are owners, investors, or executives for military/industrial complex companies. A tax break for them tends to maximize their profits – at the expense of the rest of us.

...If it were just about this tax break, we could deal with it. But there has been a devastatingly disturbing trend for the past 50 years of taking more and more from everything else in the Federal budget to pay for “defense.” This hurts every non-defense related government function. In other words, this hurts everyone. And at its worst; we are allowing poor people in America to die so that we can kill poor people on the other side of the world.

What is especially interesting about this particular tax cut is its timing. Looking back, this was the only time the Bush Jr. administration could have pulled this off. After the 9/11 military response, it wouldn't have been practical to give tax breaks. It's as if the Bush Jr. administration had scheduled the invasion of Iraq after the tax breaks were passed. And according to the Bush Transportation Secretary Paul O'Neill, that's essentially what they did.

Paul O'Neill was present at the very first George W. Bush administration National Security Council meetings. He claims that; “From the very beginning, there was a conviction, that Saddam Hussein was a bad person and that he had to go.”... “It was all about finding a way to do it.” Paul O'Neill even remembers President George W. Bush saying; “Go find me a way to do this.”

During the first nine months of President Bush's first term, there was practically no public mention of terrorism by anyone from the administration. Richard A. Clark, Bush Jr.'s (and previously Bush Sr.'s and Clinton's) Counter-terrorism Czar, claims that terrorism was on the back burner for months (though it had been of extraordinary importance to the Clinton administration). When Richard A. Clark was finally granted a briefing with President Bush, only about a week before the 9/11 attacks – he warned Bush of an imminent attack. But since Clark didn't have specifics, Bush essentially ignored his warning.

This could have been an oversight. But it also could have been planned. Maybe the Bush administration didn't want to know about any potential terrorist attacks. (The cynical might even suspect that the Bush administration was checking to see if Richard A. Clark was onto them.)

When one also considers the fact that many members of President George W. Bush's administration (Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld, Paul Wolfowitz, Richard Perle, Elliot Abrams, Lewis (Scooter) Libby, and John Bolton) had planned to militarily dominate the world it would make sense they wanted some attack to happen to initiate a Pearl Harbor-like American response. These high level members of Bush Jr.'s administration had also been members of the Project for a New American Century, a neo-conservative think tank that had planned out the policy document Rebuilding America's Defenses that stated; “Further, the process of transformation, even if it brings revolutionary change, is likely to be a long one, absent some catastrophic and catalyzing event – like a new Pearl Harbor.” (italics mine) 
Now let's think back about when the neo-cons wrote this document; Rebuilding America's Defenses. It was the late 1990's. The Soviet Union had collapsed a decade earlier. The only nation to challenge America militarily since then was Iraq, and it had lost spectacularly – and consequently; President Clinton had significantly reduced military spending. Almost every civilian in the country thought that made sense. But that meant the merchants of death were having to do without. And, of course, the military/industrial complex has a huge influence on politics. Rebuilding America's Defenses made total sense to them – financially. So, apparently, the military/industrial complex will support any politicians who want to increase “defense” spending – for whatever reason. Think about that. What this means is that there is a constant financial pressure to militarize America – essentially to push us towards despotism – and it's been this way for decades. (This is what President Eisenhower warned us about.) 

The future members of President George W. Bush's administration showed their hand in this document. They wanted to dominate the world militarily. They wanted to “secure American geopolitical leadership” and “preserve an international security environment conducive to American interests” and “preserve American preeminence through the coming transformation of war.”

They were hoping for a new Pearl Harbor – to usher revolutionary change – so that they could dominate the world.
...And then there was what looked like another coup d'état during the 2000 election.
...And then there was another Pearl Harbor in the 9/11 attacks and the anthrax attacks.
...And then there were multiple invasions and plans for invasions of nations on Bush's (essentially the Project for a New American Century's) “Axis of Evil” list.
Is it any wonder people are suspicious?...
...And then the mass media, the neo-cons, and the like try to convince us that these suspicious people are all just a bunch of crazy conspiracy theory nuts?
This fits right in with what one would expect from a disinformation campaign.
Which makes us even more suspicious.

I won't talk a lot about the 9/11 conspiracy theories. There are people who have studied this in much greater detail than I have. I recommend the documentary 9/11: Explosive Evidence – Experts Speak Out

(Even if there was not a 9/11 false flag conspiracy; we now live in much more of a police state and our tax dollars are still flowing by the billions to the military/industrial complex.)

...And then one week after the 9/11 attacks, numerous anthrax letters were mailed to members of the news media and two Democratic Senators. The letters appeared to be from Islamic terrorists, but samples of the anthrax were soon analyzed and found to be weapons grade American anthrax. The FBI tried to blame another “lone-nut,” but it didn't make sense. Bruce Ivins was an anthrax scientist. He would have known other scientists would find out it was American anthrax. And recent evidence continues to point away from the FBI's lone nut. Bruce Ivins' lab wasn't capable of making the type of anthrax used.

So, someone or some group stole weapons grade American anthrax from a highly secure military installation – didn't quite know what they were doing – mailed it to a few enemies – and tried to blame it on Muslim terrorists – and when that didn't work, they blamed a patsy. This strongly suggests a false flag operation. Or maybe worse. Maybe whomever did this wanted to kill everyone in Congress – maybe even everyone in Washington DC... But don't worry, White House staff had been taking a powerful antibiotic to keep them from getting anthrax for almost a month before anyone know about the anthrax attack. Hmm...

...And then 13 days after the 9/11 attacks, The “Patriot” Act is introduced. Now think about this; within 13 days this bill gets introduced to Congress. I find it very difficult to believe a bill like this could have been written in such a short time. Bills usually take months to write. Meaning it likely had already been written by the time the 9/11 attacks took place.

Which means the Neo-Conservatives (at the very least):
Wanted to dominate the world.
Had hoped for a “new Pearl Harbor.”
Looked the other way until a terrorist attack happened in America.
Had likely prepared for it – by writing the “Patriot” Act – beforehand.
Had likely prepared for it – by preemptively taking a powerful antibiotic to prevent them from catching anthrax.
And then invaded a country that had nothing to do with the terrorist attacks.

And what about the worst-case possible scenario – that there is a powerful warmongering proto-facsist group of elitists in America who have manipulated our government for decades? And this loose knit group of profiteers has cheated, lied, and maybe even killed a President or even planned a terrorist attack or two to gain a hold of temporary dictatorial power? Moreover, this group may hold sway over our intelligence community? And worst of all, this group is collectively so irresponsible that America is doomed to collapse under their “leadership”?

I'm sure the neo-cons didn't see themselves as the worst thing that could happen to America. But the neo-cons are not all of the problem. There are the greedy military profiteers. There are the polluting oil and fossil fuel energy companies. There are the gambling banksters. And there are a number of other monopolistic and tax evading groups taking advantage of every dirty trick they can think of. When you combine all of the awful things they are doing together, it doesn't make for a pleasant world. But apparently; the takers in America accept all this ultimately-self-destructive behavior... as long as they get to be the king of refuse hill.

But that's not what most Americans are like. Most of us would rather share than steal. We want to help each other. We don't want to harm the world. Most of us want to make the world a better place.

Back in 2002, Senator Paul Wellstone was the most outspoken liberal member of the Senate. He had opposed Bush/Cheney on the tax cuts, the SEC, and on the invasion of Iraq. Obviously, Senator Paul Wellstone had become an obstacle to neo-con power. Vice President Dick Cheney had even threatened him. Senator Paul Wellstone probably would have filibustered the Homeland Security Act. And he wanted to further investigate 9/11. But Senator Paul Wellstone died in a mysterious airplane crash – along with his family. It had all the signs of a third world CIA (or some other intelligence group, possibly even private) assassination.

Now think about this. Not long after two Democratic Senators were mailed American weapons grade anthrax, another Democratic Senator gets killed in a plane crash without any plausible cause. This wasn't 50 years ago. But just like the Kennedy's assassinations, the investigation looked like a cover-up. And the military/industrial complex benefited. Imagine the chilling effect the likely assassination of a dissenting Senator must have had on Congress...

Looking back, there might even be a pattern of airplane crashes of outspoken American public officials. The liberal Republican Senator from Pennsylvania, John Heinz, was an outspoken critic of the Vietnam war. His plane crash was as mysterious as Senator Paul Wellstone's. Former Senator of Texas, John Tower, who had been chair of the commission that had investigated the Iran/Contra scandal, also died in a plane crash. And as I had mentioned earlier, House Majority leader Hale Boggs died in a plane crash after revealing that the Warren Commission was a farce.

Maybe our chickens have come home to roost.

Decades ago, the nations south of the U.S. had warned us; that if we treated them like banana republics, eventually the dysfunction would spread – eventually the economic hit men, jackals, and greedy corporations would turn their eye on America. They warned us that eventually our nation's tactics of greed would be used against us. Those warnings seem so prophetic now.

We Americans live in a nation who's leaders are forced to take bribes (campaign contributions), afraid of being run out of Washington by manipulations of the mass media, are likely blackmailed by the NSA, and possibly even fearful of being assassinated like President John F. Kennedy or Senator Paul Wellstone.

...And the people who actually pull the strings of these “elected” puppets want us to think that if only we wait until the next election, maybe things will be different.

Well, maybe things can be different. But not if we continue to play by plutocracy rules.

And what are plutocracy rules?

  1. The mass media is not allowed to tell the whole truth. Before the 2004 election, Dan Rather (at the time the most powerful reporter in America) reported on the news program 60 minutes that President George W. Bush had been both a draft dodger and a likely a deserter. Evidently his father, George H.W. Bush, who at the time was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives; put the fix in for Bush Jr. to evade the Vietnam War – and protect America from the Viet Cong in the Air National Guard in Houston. Moreover, Bush Jr. got to train to become a pilot, even though others were better qualified. And then, towards the end of his military service; no one remembers him around... I saw this 60 minutes report. It was well documented and quite plausible. But the owners of 60 minutes and CBS, Viacom, couldn't take the heat and essentially fired Dan Rather for revealing the truth. It was amazing to watch the mass media reporting about this. Every mass media “news” report focused on only one document and ignored everything else about the 60 minutes report. (The 60 minutes segment lasted over 15 minutes and included many documents.) It was like watching a pack of hungry dogs turn on one of their own. The truth never had a chance.
  2. The plutocrats get to pick our candidates. (In case you don't remember; this is very similar to what used to happen in Soviet Union politics. Our electoral system works differently, but the results are the essentially same.) Money is so important in our elections that every candidate has to go begging to the plutocrats. Consequently, long before we ever get to vote; those with money get to decide who will even run. And who are they willing to risk money on? Well, let's think about it; they want someone they can control. That means they must generally pick candidates who expect payback after their term or someone they can blackmail. In other words, the plutocrats don't want the cream of the crop.
  3. The plutocracy can manipulate election results. Exit polls from Ohio and Florida had shown Democratic candidate John Kerry had won by a significant margin. However, suspect paperless voting machines gave George W. Bush the win. But that was just the tip of the iceberg. Nearly half of the 6 million American voters living abroad (you know, like in the military) never received their ballots – or received them too late – after the Pentagon unaccountably shut down a state-of-the-art website used to file overseas registrations. A consulting firm, Sproul & Associates, which had been hired by the Republican National Committee to register voters in six battleground states, was discovered shredding Democratic registrations. In New Mexico, which was decided by 5,988 votes, malfunctioning voting machines mysteriously failed to properly register a presidential vote on more than 20,000 ballots (many of those cast by Native Americans). Nationwide, according to the Federal commission charged with implementing election reforms, as many as 1 million ballots were spoiled by faulty voting equipment – roughly 1 for every 100 cast. (And what's worse, after over 10 years, those paperless voting machines are still in use.)
  4. Once the new leader is “elected,” no investigations will be held for past improprieties. Had John Kerry taken his rightful place as President, there might have been some investigations into 9/11, the lies that were told to Americans to get us to support the invasion of Iraq, and maybe even into the torture orders. But President Obama didn't do it. So I doubt that would have happened under John Kerry either. And why? The new leaders know two things; there would be repercussions and maybe even violent reprisals, and moreover, previous investigations (such as the 1977 investigation into JFK's assassination) didn't make any difference anyway.
  5. A corrupt two party system rules America. American voters have two choices; proto-fascists or corporatists. Our politicians don't represent us. Every other developed nation on the planet has multiple parties. However, most Americans have no idea what proportional representation is, much less realize how bad we need it.
  6. There is essentially a closed process of writing bills and treaties. For years, only industry lobbyists have been a significant part of the writing of bills relating to that industry. In many cases, the lobbyists actually wrote the bills! In the case of the Trans Pacific Partnership treaty, we citizens aren't even allowed to know what is going on in the treaty talks. Talk about the fox writing laws for the hen house! In America, the (powerful) criminals don't break the laws, they change them. And if they can't change our laws, they try to agree them away in trade agreements.
  7. At the Federal level, no direct democracy exists. We don't get to vote on issues. There are no credible reasons Americans should be forced to only vote for a temporary king every four years. The obvious reason Americans don't vote on policy issues is the plutocracy doesn't care to know what we want.
  8. And as the treatment of Occupy Wall Street shows; those who want to fix America are treated as criminals.

Continue to Part 6