Editors' Notes

Maria Damon and Michelle Greenblatt
Jim Leftwich and Michelle Greenblatt
Sheila E. Murphy and Michelle Greenblatt

A Visual Conversation on Michelle Greenblatt's ASHES AND SEEDS with Stephen Harrison, Monika Mori | MOO, Jonathan Penton and Michelle Greenblatt

Letters for Michelle: with work by Jukka-Pekka Kervinen, Jeffrey Side, Larry Goodell, mark hartenbach, Charles J. Butler, Alexandria Bryan and Brian Kovich

Visual Poetry by Reed Altemus
Poetry by Glen Armstrong
Poetry by Lana Bella
A Eulogic Poem by John M. Bennett
Elegic Poetry by John M. Bennett
Poetry by Wendy Taylor Carlisle
A Eulogy by Vincent A. Cellucci
Poetry by Vincent A. Cellucci
Poetry by Joel Chace
A Spoken Word Poem and Visual Art by K.R. Copeland
A Eulogy by Alan Fyfe
Poetry by Win Harms
Poetry by Carolyn Hembree
Poetry by Cindy Hochman
A Eulogy by Steffen Horstmann
A Eulogic Poem by Dylan Krieger
An Elegic Poem by Dylan Krieger
Visual Art by Donna Kuhn
Poetry by Louise Landes Levi
Poetry by Jim Lineberger
Poetry by Dennis Mahagin
Poetry by Peter Marra
A Eulogy by Frankie Metro
A Song by Alexis Moon and Jonathan Penton
Poetry by Jay Passer
A Eulogy by Jonathan Penton
Visual Poetry by Anne Elezabeth Pluto and Bryson Dean-Gauthier
Visual Art by Marthe Reed
A Eulogy by Gabriel Ricard
Poetry by Alison Ross
A Short Movie by Bernd Sauermann
Poetry by Christopher Shipman
A Spoken Word Poem by Larissa Shmailo
A Eulogic Poem by Jay Sizemore
Elegic Poetry by Jay Sizemore
Poetry by Felino A. Soriano
Visual Art by Jamie Stoneman
Poetry by Ray Succre
Poetry by Yuriy Tarnawsky
A Song by Marc Vincenz

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Global Autonomy: Coporate Central Versus Local Resilience: Chapter Four of Sinister Dynamic: Global Governance and the Reconstruction of Nature
Part 2


President Obama has launched "an unprecedented war on whistleblowers," deploying the Department of Justice to prosecute six so-called 'whistleblowers' under various repressive laws, including the 1917 Espionage Act, twice as many as all previous administrations combined. Thomas Drake was among the first to provide information to a Department of Defense Inspector General investigation, exposing "fraud, waste, abuse, illegality and a danger to public health and safety" at the National Security Agency. The Department of Justice targeted Drake after he challenged the National Security Agency with "mismanagement, waste and possible constitutional violations." The provenance of the alleged federal violations is easy to describe.

Following the George W. Bush signing of the USA PATRIOT ACT in 2001, the Bush administration launched two secret NSA programs with the complicit cooperation of AT&T. A program dubbed 'Trailblazer' monitored electronic communications. The "super top-secret" Stellar Wind was a "dragnet electronic surveillance program." These programs monitored the telephone and email records of US citizens, effectively reducing them to the status of foreign nationals. The Bush-Cheney regime, in the space of four years, had begun a process that would transform America into a virtual Third World country, a reality that would be manifestly evident before the end of Bush's second term.

The problem is: law required the government to present evidence before a secret FISA (Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act) court, in order to get a warrant permitting the digital surveillance. The administration felt that the 9/11 attack justified their bypassing this prerequisite; or, more accurately, the administration decided to exploit the shock that the nation suffered as a result of the 9/11 attacks in order to vastly extend the range of executive authority and, consequently, the range of authority of the NSA, CIA and FBI.

William Binney is a nearly 40-year veteran of the NSA. After 9/11, Binney told Amy Goodman, "all the wraps came off for NSA, and they decided to—between the White House and NSA and CIA, they decided to eliminate the protections on US citizens and collect on domestically." Binney, a top official at the NSA, realized he would have to resign "because it was a direct violation of the constitutional rights of everybody in the country. Plus it violated the pen register law and Stored Communications Act, the Electronic Privacy Act, the intelligence acts of 1947 and 1978." Under the Obama administration, surveillance has increased exponentially, Binney reported on April 26, 2012, estimating a monumental seizing of electronic records "on the order of 20 trillion transactions about US citizens with other US citizens."

When details of these programs appeared in the press, the government targeted both Drake and Binney for retaliation. Fortunately, the defendants' attorneys discovered evidence of malicious prosecution, forcing the Department of Justice to drop the charges. Drake pled to a misdemeanor.

Computer security researcher Jacob Appelbaum told Amy Goodman that "the government is lying about what they are doing and what they have done, and they have not been held accountable in the last 10 years." In 2012 Michigan Republican Congressman Mike Rogers introduced the "Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act" or CISPA. Appelbaum described CISPA this way: "...what they're trying to do is to legalize what they have already been doing and to suggest that they will be held accountable in a system where they already are not held accountable when they're breaking the law."

ACLU legislative counsel Michelle Richardson told Democracy Now! in April 2012: "CISPA, the bill that will come up later today and probably be voted on tomorrow, will create an exception to all existing privacy laws so that companies can share very sensitive and personal information directly with the government, including military agencies like the National Security Agency. And then, once the government has it, they can repurpose it and use it for a number of things, including an undefined national security use." As was earlier the case with AT&T, for sharing citizen-consumer privacy data with government, these telecom companies "get complete protection from liability." For a top veteran of the NSA like William Binney to say that CISPA "is a threat to national security," Appelbaum concludes, is something "everyone should be concerned about." In 2013, CISPA failed to become law.

Interestingly, Congressman and former FBI agent Mike Rogers "called for the execution of accused Army whistleblower Bradley Manning for allegedly leaking secret documents to WikiLeaks." The Bush-Cheney and Obama positions on torture, citizen surveillance, assassination, whistleblowers and the global war on terrorism are all deeply interwoven and mutually reinforcing, which serve as open-ended pretexts for justifying any behavior, no matter how criminal.

In January 2013, a federal court ruled that "the government can continue to keep secret its efforts to pursue the private information of Internet users without a warrant as part of its probe into the WikiLeaks. The case involved three people connected to the whistleblowing website whose Twitter records were sought by the government, including computer security researcher Jacob Appelbaum and Icelandic parliamentarian Birgitta Jónsdóttir." The rule allowing the government to issue an administrative subpoena has a much lower bar than a search warrant and can also be subject to a gag order to prevent public disclosure of details. According to Appelbaum, the government wants "not just secret laws and secret interpretations, but no accountability."

As 2012 ended, the Senate reauthorized "the FISA Amendments Act of 2008 for five more years." The "unconstitutional spying bill...violates the Fourth Amendment and gives vast unmonitored authority to the National Security Agency to conduct dragnet surveillance of Americans' international emails and phone calls."

What has energized Obama's "unprecedented war on whistleblowers" is Corporal Bradley Manning's decision to release hundreds of thousands of secret documents to WikiLeaks showing "the horrors of war." By Manning's own account, he wanted to spark a public debate about our foreign policy by show Americans the realities of the war on terror, including evidence of U.S. war crimes. Clearly, Manning did not leak sensitive information for profit or personal gain, like some Cold War traitor selling nuclear secrets to the Soviet Union.

Then, too, just how secret these so-called 'classified' documents actually were is a salient question. Bush-Cheney presided over one of the most secretive regimes since Nixon. Obama has, if anything, outdone the prior administration in this regard, while at the same time claiming great strides in 'transparency' (another illustration of the apotheosis of marketing strategy over rules of political governance, the supremacy of appearance over reality in a visually oriented, advertising-based society like ours).

However, the WikiLeaks material revealed powerful evidence of actual U.S. war crimes, which unquestionably caused the Obama regime overwhelming embarrassment. Hoping to turn Manning into a witness against WikiLeaks so that the government could pursue Julian Assange as a terrorist, the military prosecution is seeking a verdict of life without parole on all charges including "aiding the enemy" (although Manning defense attorney Michael Ratner insists they might still hold out for the death penalty). Some politicians have even called for Assange's outright assassination.

The case is fraught with numerous irregularities following Corporal Manning's initial arrest, starting with his treatment at a Marine facility at Quantico, Virginia, some of which clearly amounted to torture. The Manning case did not even show up on the radar of mainstream corporate media like The New York Times, Washington Post, PBS, NPR and the major TV networks, all of which failed to report on Manning's arrest, treatment and impending trial issues. Manning's court martial began in June 2013. Columnist and author Glenn Greenwald condemned the entire charade as "extraordinary prosecutorial overkill."

Unable to show any substantial harm resulting from Manning's leaked material, the government threatens to redescribe all whistleblowing as treason. Such actions, Greenwald asserts, have had "an extraordinary chilling effect...over the entire news-gathering process," a conclusion with which author and activist, Chris Hedges, concurs.

Hedges explained to Amy Goodman on May 15, 2013 that "all of these measures... essentially shut down the freedom of information, including the persecution of Assange and Manning." We have been reconfigured, Hedges argues, "into a totalitarian security and surveillance state, one where anyone who challenges the official narrative, who digs out cases of torture, war crimes—which is, of course, what Manning and Assange presented to the American public—is going to be ruthlessly silenced."

In a May 15 Democracy Now! interview, Hedges charged mainstream "publications like The New York Times, The Guardian, El Paìs, Der Spiegel" with passivity and hypocrisy, for using the leaked information while "turning their backs on Manning and Assange," a failure Hedges calls "very shortsighted.... If they think it's just about Manning and Assange, then they have no conception of what it is that's happening. And, you know, everyone knows, within the administration, within the National Security Council, the effects of climate change, the instability that that will cause, the economic deterioration, which is irreversible, and they want the mechanisms by which they can criminalize any form of dissent. And that's finally what this is about."

The War on Terror, instituted by Richard Nixon, refurbished by Ronald Reagan, exalted and exploited by Bush and Cheney, is the ultimate rationale and motive for the Obama administration's policies. For the same reason, national security is the one-size-fits-all excuse invoked to justify the Obama regime's worst excesses, including a paranoid ultra-security, a permanent covert war, an official policy of extra-judicial assassinations, and the undermining of citizen privacy and Constitutional rights.

James Goodale was general counsel for The New York Times during the Nixon administration attempts to criminalize publication of the "Pentagon Papers." In a May 17, 2013 interview, Goodale reminded Democracy Now! co-host Juan Gonzales that, after the "Pentagon Papers" censorship case ended, Nixon's Attorney General John Mitchell convened a Boston grand jury to indict the reporter and anti-war protesters for conspiracy.

So, now, fast-forward. What is Obama doing? He's convened a grand jury. We haven't heard about it; I think it's still there. I think it may have even indicted Assange in secrecy. But what's the charge? Conspiracy. ...Obama is doing...an end run and trying to get an easy case against Assange, after he's convicted Manning. It's easy to convict Manning, OK? So that easy conviction then becomes the basis for the agreement for Assange.

Pointing out that Obama has classified seven million documents in one year, Goodale remarked sardonically, "it's all a bunch of malarkey. There are no secrets. The case with the Pentagon Papers was a bunch of—bunch of hot air."

Waged continuously since the end of World War II under one guise or another, the War on Terror is nothing new. The United States replaced Nazism with Communism, proceeded to demonize the U.S.S.R., and prosecuted its destruction throughout the Cold War. If one asks why this policy and strategy was preferable to pursuing peaceful trade relations with the Soviets, no good answer recommends itself—at least, none that will withstand more than ten minutes of scrutiny. To assert that communism threatened the very foundations of capitalism is to reduce everything to ersatz Manichean formula, and to imprison events and historical possibility beyond the reach of any reasonable discussion or effective political action.

A war between two adversarial, competing, economic 'religions' obscured the way that capitalism, with its much hoarier provenance, threatened the very existence of socialism and Soviet-style communism. The end of World War II should have occasioned a global discussion of the role capitalism played in imperialist exploitation and the meaning of socialist revolution, how the two economic systems might cooperate to mitigate their most harmful and regressive features and advance the cause of trade and human rights. After all: it's not like capitalism and communism lacked a mutual vision of advancing the human condition. Why could it not provide the basis for serious international discourse and a foundation for genuine human progress?

As economic bankruptcy dissolved the Soviet Union, icy winds of Balkanization began blowing through the void of Eastern Europe. Sensing the seismic shock overtaking the familiar geopolitical landscape, the western democracies—particularly the US and UK—found themselves in a temporary state of nervous confusion that lasted until September 11, 2001, when it was replaced by a permanent state of confused panic. Whereupon the US declared Islamic jihadists the new Enemy, branding Al-Qaeda and its shadowy network of "affiliates" with the label of International Terrorism—even though we knew that they, as offspring of the anti-Soviet Mujahedeen guerillas, were creatures of our own making, something like an armed and radicalized VFW. We systematically demonized this group as subhuman and, along with it, much of the Arab and Muslim world.

Former Latin American reporter and Columbia journalism professor John Dinges has shown that the CIA and Henry Kissinger were complicit in Operation Condor, a conspiracy among seven Latin American dictatorships to abduct, torture and kill people they labeled terrorists in the 1970s and 1980s. Organized by Chilean dictator Augusto Pinochet, Condor involved Argentina, Bolivia, Paraguay, Ecuador, Brazil and Peru (interestingly, all countries specifically cited by Paul Manning in connection with Martin Bormann's flight capital program and subsequent exile to South America).

Nixon and the CIA had played an instrumental part in backing the coup that overthrew Salvador Allende and brought Pinochet to power. In a three-year period from 1975 to 1978, the dead or "disappeared numbered more than 22,000." Their victims included "leftist activists, labor organizers, students, priests, journalists, guerrilla fighters and their families. Increasingly, these fascist regimes branded nonviolent left and center left dissidents as "terrorists." Following Pinochet's arrest in London in 1998, the release of documents resulted in several trials of those responsible. In 2013, Buenos Aires, Argentina is the site where 25 generals directly involved are being tried with 500 witnesses scheduled to testify.

The United States was "a major sponsor of the military dictatorship" and "knew about the mass killing." Dinges accused Kissinger of lying about his role and knowledge, based on contradictions between his public statements and the Latin American documents. Asked whether he considers Kissinger "a human rights criminal," Dinges replied "Yes, absolutely."

New York Times national security correspondent Mark Mazzetti has documented the CIA's history in conducting "lethal operations." Mazzetti identifies both the CIA and special operations troops with these shadow missions. After 9/11, Mazzetti said,

Vice-President Dick Cheney...authorized the CIA to, quote, "create hit teams to kill terror suspects."

Those "special operations troops" refer to JSOC, the Joint Special Operations Command. In his bestseller, Dirty Wars: The World is a Battlefield, and the documentary film based on his book, investigative reporter Jeremy Scahill states that President Obama has proceeded to "double down on some of the greatest excesses of the Bush administration." Scahill specifically cites Obama's "use of the state secrets privilege," how the President has "expanded the drone wars," his deployment of JSOC forces around the world, and "kill lists" of human targets that Obama and his "assassination czar," John Brennan, draw up on "Terror Tuesdays." Where there were originally seven Al-Qaeda targets, today there are thousands, Scahill notes.

The Bush doctrine of preemption—officially disavowed and unofficially retained—is the Pandora's Box of all these violent militaristic developments in U.S. foreign policy. Covert wars have antecedents stretching back into World War II and the OSS. Preemption undoubtedly served as a model for subsequent violent crackdowns in Iran, Russia and Israel. Developing countries as well as client states, allies and foes alike, tend to mirror both the good and evil tendencies of a superpower.

On Thursday, May 23, 2013, Barack Obama acknowledged that the U.S. had killed four Americans with drone and missile strikes. But the U.S. has never acknowledged the strike on the village of al-Majalah in south Yemen, killing 46 innocent civilians, "including three dozen women and children." President Obama directly authorized this strike, and used Tomahawk cruise missiles and cluster bombs. Nor has the U.S. admitted the "horrible massacre" in Gardez, Afghanistan, where U.S. Special Forces, following intelligence about a suicide bomber, accidentally slaughtered five innocent people who were celebrating the birth of a child, including two pregnant women. When the American soldiers realized their horrific mistake, "they actually covered up the killings," Schahill reported.

Scahill and filmmaker Rick Rowley interviewed survivors of this raid, "including a man who watched...American soldiers digging bullets out of his wife's dead body." Desperate for information they could use to tie the Taliban to the killing, the American soldiers arrested the men in the house and took them to another province for "interrogation." One of the victims was "a senior Afghan police commander who had been trained by the U.S." and a private security company, MPRI. It "shows you how horrid the intelligence is," Scahill told Amy Goodman.

Afterwards, NATO issued a press release stating that the U.S.forces had "stumbled on...a Taliban honor killing...that the women were killed by their own murderous families." Scahill laments that the same year SEALS killed Osama Bin Laden, a raid lionized in the Hollywood propaganda movie Zero Dark Thirty, "there were 30,000 other night raids in Afghanistan"—raids about which American citizens know next to nothing.

Most egregious of all are the so-called "signature strikes," which Scahill excoriates as "the most horrific form of pre-crime." Have these decision-makers accepted—as virtual reality—the premise of the science fiction movie, Minority Report?

if people are in a certain region and they're of military age—they could be anywhere from 15 to 70 years old—and they fit some kind of a pattern of other people we believe to be terrorists, then they become legitimate targets.

Scahill believes that the killing of US citizens Anwar al-Awlaki and Samir Khan raise dangerous political issues about the rights of U.S. citizens. Khan, for example, was not even a target. On September 30, 2011, Obama announced: "The death of Awlaki is a major blow to Al-Qaeda's most active operational affiliate. Anwar al-Awlaki was the leader of external operations for Al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula. In that role he took the lead in planning and directing efforts to murder innocent Americans." Obama claimed that Awlaki directed "the failed attempt to blow up a plane on Christmas Day 2009, failed attempts to blow up U.S. cargo planes in 2010..."

Jeremy Scahill told Democracy Now!: "No evidence was ever presented that he played an operational role in any of these attacks. I'm not saying that I know that he didn't; maybe he did. But, under our legal system, American citizens should have a right to respond to the evidence presented against them. And Awlaki was never afforded that." Obama was judge, jury and executioner of Awlaki. And prosecutor: Obama litigated this case with leaks to the media. Scahill effectively rebuts Obama's claims about the role Awlaki played. "Nobody ever heard of [the title Obama bestowed on Awlaki] "leader of external operations for Al-Qaeda." In those circles, among the Arabic speaking jihadist community, "he was a nobody," the journalist insists. Scahill doubts that Anwar Awlaki was even a member of the Al-Qaeda organization.

Two weeks later, a U.S. drone strike killed Awlaki's 16-year old son, Abdulrahman al-Awlaki, while he dined at an outdoor restaurant with his cousins. Both father and son were U.S. citizens.

A former senior U.S. official gave Scahill the reason that the government never apologized to the family about killing the teen: "Look, we had just killed three U.S. citizens in a two-week period, two of whom weren't even targets—Samir Khan and Abdulrahman al-Awlaki. It doesn't look good. It's embarrassing."

When Anwar Awlaki's father tried to file a lawsuit before his son was killed,... challenging the government's right to assassinate him, CIA Director Leon Panetta, Defense Secretary Gates, DNI—Director of National Intelligence James Clapper all submitted briefs to the court saying that if the evidence was to be made public, it would threaten the security of the United States.

There is one interpretation under which making the evidence public would indeed "threaten the security of the United States": that is, if, because of the policies and the practices they have adopted, the Obama administration is, like the Bush-Cheney regime before him, guilty of war crimes and crimes against humanity. What is threatened, in that case, is an illegitimate—because criminal—regime.

The message is "the U.S. will operate with impunity and Americans can be killed with no explanation." How in the world did we ever arrive at this juncture?

One month after JFK's assassination in 1963, President Harry Truman published a warning about the CIA in the Washington Post:

"I think it has become necessary to take another look at the purpose and operations of our Central Intelligence Agency—CIA . . .
"For some time I have been disturbed by the way the CIA has been diverted from its original assignment. It has become an operational and at times a policy-making arm of the Government. This has led to trouble and may have compounded our difficulties in several explosive areas.
"We have grown up as a nation, respected for our free institutions and for our ability to maintain a free and open society. There is something about the way the CIA has been functioning that is casting a shadow over our historic position and I feel that we need to correct it."

As James Douglass shows, Allen Dulles met privately with Truman in an attempt to subvert Truman's words, alleging "that Truman had disowned the article published over his name..." "Dulles was lying for the record." Douglass showed that "Truman's published words were faithful to the preliminary notes (preserved in the Truman Library) that he had written by hand on December 1, 1963, three weeks before his article appeared."

"[The CIA] was not intended as a 'Cloak & Dagger Outfit'! ...
"It was intended merely as a center for keeping the President informed on what was going on in the world at large and the United States and its dependencies in particular.
"It should not be an agency to initiate policy or to act as a spy organization. That was never the intention when it was organized."

Six months later, Truman "restated his radical critique of the CIA" in a letter to the managing editor of Look magazine.

"Thank you for the copy of Look with the article on the Central Intelligence Agency. It is, I regret to say, not true to the facts in many respects.
"The CIA was set up by me for the sole purpose of getting all the available information to the president. It was not intended to operate as an international agency engaged in strange activities."

We can assess the extent of the CIA's true divergence from this vision from another episode Douglass recounts. In 1995, elite Special Forces officer, Green Beret Daniel Marvin, recounted to Bruce Pitzer's widow how in August 1965 the CIA had tried to hire Marvin to kill her husband. At the Special Warfare School at Fort Bragg, North Carolina, Marvin received "training not only in guerrilla warfare, but also in assassination and terrorism. I believed that extreme measures were sometimes necessary 'in the interests of national security.'" For their top-secret training in assassinations, Dan Marvin and his Green Beret classmates were taken, he said, "to a different building that had a double barbed-wire fence, surrounded by guard dogs."

"On the John F. Kennedy situation, that was brought to our attention as a classic example of the way to organize a complete program to eliminate a nation's leader, while pointing the finger at a lone assassin. It involved also the cover-up of the assassination itself. We had considerable detail. They had a mock lay-out of the plaza and that area, and showed where the shooters were, and where the routes were to the hospital . . .
"They had quite a bit of movie, film coverage—it seemed like, thinking back to that time—and some still photos of the Grassy Knoll and places like that. They told us that Oswald was not involved in the shooting at all. He was the patsy. He was the one who was set up.
"We did, myself and a friend of mine, form a very distinct impression that the CIA was involved in Kennedy's assassination. During the coffee break, we overheard one of the CIA instructors say to the other, 'Things really did go well in Dealey Plaza, didn't they?' Or something to that effect.
"And that just reinforced, or really added to our suspicions. And we really felt, before the end of the training was over, that one of those instructors may have been involved himself in the assassination of John F. Kennedy."

Douglass provides a detailed account in Marvin's own words, worth presenting in detail:

In the first week of August 1965, Colonel Clarence W. Patten, commanding officer of the 6th Special Forces Group, summoned then-captain Dan Marvin to an office in Fort Bragg headquarters. Marvin says Colonel Patten told him to "meet a 'Company' man in an area adjacent to headquarters."
Marvin has described this meeting, "in the shade of some nearby pine trees," with "a slender man of about 5'10":
"Dressed casually in short sleeves, light slacks and sunglasses appropriate for the August heat, he flashed his ID and took me aside. Would I terminate a man who was preparing to give state's secrets to the enemy—a traitor in the making?"
Marvin, already trained as an assassin, said he would. He assumed his target would be in Southeast Asia, where he was on orders to go in December 1965.
Marvin asked the CIA man who the traitor was.
"I was told," Marvin said, "he was a Navy officer—a Lieutenant Commander William Bruce Pitzer. The agent told me that Pitzer worked at Bethesda Naval Hospital. He said nothing of a link with the JFK autopsy and I just assumed that Pitzer was one of those sorry types that went wrong and was going to sell secrets to our enemy. The job had to be done at Bethesda before the man retired from the Navy."
It was only at this point that Dan Marvin refused the trigger role in the plot against Pitzer. He had no objection, he confessed later, to killing Lt. Cdr. Pitzer, so long as the deed were to be done abroad, not in the United States.
According to Marvin, "It was common knowledge in Mafia and CIA circles that Green Berets were tapped by the Company to terminate selected 'targets' in foreign countries, whereas the Mafia provided the CIA's pool of able assassins for hits in the U.S.."
Marvin's assassination skills, he had been taught, "would be used overseas—not on our home turf. So—I refused the mission after he'd already told me the guy's name which is not a good thing."
Marvin and the CIA agent parted with the understanding "that the name would be as good as forgotten by me . . ."

Thirty years after JFK's assassination, things changed abruptly for Daniel Marvin.

While watching a documentary on the Kennedy assassination in November 1993, Marvin "suddenly felt extremely ill" when he saw the name of William Bruce Pitzer flash across his screen.

This prompted Retired Army Special Forces lieutenant colonel Daniel Marvin to contact Pitzer's widow.

Could the "same top-secret training in assassinations" and film footage of JFK's assassination that Green Berets received at Fort Bragg also be used to "instruct" a President in the political realities of covert warfare? Is it possible that CIA-Pentagon-and-JSOC hardliners gave President Obama a graphic lesson in Realpolitik by showing him just how easy it is to assassinate a democratically elected head of state?

On Monday, June 3, 2013, on the radio program, Law & Disorder, Ray McGovern confirmed my speculation that Obama was threatened by the CIA, and that the CIA, under orders from Dulles, with the cooperation of the Pentagon (Joint Chiefs, FBI, NSA, etcetera), assassinated Kennedy. McGovern, a 27-year veteran CIA analyst who has served seven presidents, states unequivocally that President Obama is afraid of the CIA. Specifically mentioning James Douglass' JFK and the Unspeakable, McGovern describes

a small dinner with progressive supporters—after these progressive supporters were banging on Obama before the election..."Why don't you do the things we thought you stood for?" Obama turned sharply and said, "Don't you remember what happened to Martin Luther King Jr.?" That's a quote and a very revealing quote.

Says McGovern, "I'm convinced the President of the United States is afraid of the CIA." McGovern's integrity as a CIA insider turned political activist is unimpeachable. Given the evidence in Douglass' meticulously researched book, JFK and the Unspeakable: Why He Died and Why It Matters, and McGovern's corroborative testimony, President Obama has every reason to fear the CIA and the rest of the "Unspeakable" shadow army, a virtual Fifth Column of thugs and traitors that has penetrated the highest levels of our government.

In January 2005, Cory Panshin described our predicament:

it is becoming impossible to avoid the suspicion that our nation is in the hands of people who have no real use for democracy: large corporations, religious fundamentalists, government officials with an attachment to secrecy for its own sake, and ideologues who see the two-party system not as a partnership but as a war, in which any sort of trick or deception is justified and the only goal is to destroy the enemy.
The sort of people who believe in an implacable enemy that can never be reasoned with or won over are also likely to put their faith in a particular set of responses to that enemy: An unwavering dedication to absolute military superiority. The promotion of a warrior culture, based on hard work and self-denial and suspicious of all forms of pleasure that might weaken the will to fight and die. The rooting out of subversive elements at home, including those who deliberately ally with the enemy, those who are merely prone to craven compromise, and those who threaten to weaken the national resolve by endorsing self-indulgence or the pampering of the unfit.
That, in a nutshell, has been the agenda of the right for the last fifty years, encompassing everything from missile defense and gun ownership, to attacks on abortion and homosexuality, to the branding of liberals as traitors. The right is determined to turn the United States into a single-minded warrior state, and heaven help anyone who stands in their way.
Over those fifty years, various other issues have come and gone as part of the national debate, but finally everything has come down to this one stark alternative. We stand at a moment of decision, and the burning issue before us is whether we will seek to create a peaceful future of equality and tolerance, or whether we will go deeper and deeper into a world of endless war against increasingly invisible enemies, a world in which the poor, the elderly, and even disabled veterans are sacrificed in the name of military readiness and battlefield values.

When, with a dispassionate eye, you think of our actual accomplishments—utter destruction of infrastructure (water, electricity, jobs, food, family, stability), slaughter and forced migration of millions of innocent civilians, exploiting sectarian tensions and expediting civil war—in Iraq and Afghanistan, Libya, Pakistan, Yemen and Syria, all the narratives about how we're winning, how we're improving life and bringing democracy to these lands ring pretty damned hollow. Somalia, Rwanda and Bosnia increasingly look like rehearsals for military-industrial empire building in the 21st Century—with the U.S. playing its role as booster, backer and geopolitical pimp. The "Arab Spring" movement triggered by the self-immolation of a humiliated Tunisian street vendor—an event that spread like wildfire throughout the Middle East—must have seemed the perfect opportunity for a U.S. ploy.

Surveying the entire field of global action since 9/11, the deliberate purpose of covert and overt action by the U.S. Corporate National Security State has obviously been to destabilize and demolish Middle Eastern and African states, as it were, to bulldoze over these countries, thus making it easier to rebuild them in our own corporate image. That the National Security State under the U.S. flag plans to consolidate its program throughout the rest of the Mediterranean and to carry a similar stratagem to Asia, the Pacific Rim states, and ultimately the rest of the world, there can be little doubt.

The chief defense and justification of the corporatist ideology of the modern monetary-market system is precisely the myth of entrepreneurship. Chanting and channeling their mantras of "growth" and "innovation," the proponents of entrepreneurship imagine they can "create the future" of capitalism; but this too is built on sand. Despite what the Kauffman Foundation ("The Foundation of Entrepreneurship" whose ambitious motto is "Growing economies, expanding human welfare") and omnibus "executive" MBA programs like to suggest, there is no science of entrepreneurship. You can no more educate people to be entrepreneurs than you can teach them to be creative or, as Socrates learned the hard way long ago, to be morally good persons.

Although you cannot educate people to become entrepreneurs, it may be possible to indoctrinate them by endlessly bombarding them with certain simple-minded slogans and formulas defining entrepreneurship so that they will in fact come to believe in their efficacy. All the while, the authorities will insist in true Orwellian fashion that your conditioned behavior actually comprises your "freedom." This propaganda or magical thinking is what advertisers and entrepreneurial prophets, corporations and national security state alike are counting on. Along these same lines, mathematical computing legend Alan Turing once answered the question "Can machines think?" by saying that language might change so much by the end of the twentieth century that people would no longer find it surprising or unusual to talk about machines thinking. Given Isaac Asimov's Foundation Trilogy and Blade Runner, I would say we have long since arrived at the social reality of Turing's prediction.

To identify entrepreneurs by finding "the number of people who start new businesses or manage firms less than four years old" is to reduce entrepreneurs to a straightjacket of metrics, equivocating demographics and casuistries of management theory. By this standard, the University of Michigan and Florida International University reported in 2005 "that 23 million people fit this category" (that is, they qualify as entrepreneurs). This yields a figure of 13.6% of all businesses—not particularly impressive if we are to accept the dictum that "Entrepreneurs are America's job creators."

The number of entrepreneurs is much smaller, probably nearer 1.3% of the population, and this is unlikely to change. Entrepreneurship is based not on the truism that anyone may become a millionaire but on the lie that everyone can do so. There is no algorithm or secret recipe for teaching or guaranteeing success in business. One part hucksterism, one part America's Gospel of Success through Wealth, entrepreneurship is now the mainstay of global multinational capitalism; but it remains a doctrine of Social Darwinism.

Of course, if you repeat the lie often enough and long enough, with the appropriate degree of sincerity, charm and evasiveness (or obfuscating mumbo-jumbo), you can probably convince the gullible and the stupid not only that entrepreneurship is teachable but also that they themselves are budding entrepreneurs. It is an act of faith in the oblique sense of unquestioning acceptance, like believing in Tinkerbell so she won't die. What is despicable is that the corporatists flaunting this malarkey take advantage of our young people, who are rendered even more vulnerable by their desperate desire to belong and contribute, to find meaningful work, to enjoy a life and livelihood (or at least a job) that will support them. Fifty-five years ago, political philosopher Hannah Arendt astutely understood that America had been reduced to "a society of jobholders."

Indeed. Ask the OCCUPY protesters what they want and they will tell you: JOBS. They want work that pays a living wage. The corporate media establishment, NPR and FOX alike, univocally prophesied that this single issue of employment would determine the outcome of the November 2012 election. Republicans still smart from the 1992 Carville-Clinton legacy, "THE ECONOMY, STUPID!"

The whole purpose of the myth of entrepreneurship, from the viewpoint of multinational corporatism, is to distract everyone in every country with an alluring vision of self-sufficient, entrepreneurial success so they will not notice what the multinationals are doing. And what, you may ask, are they doing?

There is no more transparent proof of the national security state's fusion of blind militarization with entrepreneurial capitalism than the Kauffman Foundation's program of "Expeditionary Economics." As set forth in the Kauffman Thoughtbook 2011, this is a "program" for injecting economic growth into "Post-Conflict" areas like Iraq and Afghanistan.

In 2009, Kauffman CEO Carl Schramm met with representatives of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the military at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas to determine "the impact the Great Recession would have on geopolitics—on how the world might look on the back end of the recession." They found, not surprisingly, that the quickest way to "establish a trajectory toward economic growth in areas in conflict is to focus on helping local citizens form companies that can experience rapid growth in revenue and employment."

After we have destroyed the infrastructure and slaughtered hundreds of thousands if not millions of innocent civilians as we have done for more than a decade now in Iraq and Afghanistan, we are going to send in Kauffman Foundation-style "educators" to show the survivors how they too can train to become successful, self-sufficient entrepreneurs by starting their own businesses. This serves a dual purpose for the multinationals: it creates more consumers, which corporatism requires to keep the money and profits flowing; and, in those rare cases where an entrepreneur launches a successful and innovative business (think of Ben & Jerry's or Grameen), the big corporate predators are poised for a leveraged buy-out or a hostile takeover. The entrepreneur sells, joins the 1% and retires to the Cayman Islands or whatever.

What of the majority who fail to secure a berth on the Good Ship Lollipop? They can go to work for narco-traffickers, sell themselves into slavery or prostitution, become a guard or an inmate in the booming prison-industrial complex. As Hannah Arendt observed in 1945: "Each time society, through unemployment, frustrates the small man in his normal functioning and normal self-respect, it trains him for that last stage in which he will willingly undertake any function, even that of hangman."

To truly appreciate this last quote from Arendt, reflect upon what our troops have been doing in Afghanistan and Iraq for eleven years and what has been done to them, Abu Graib, the record of torture under Bush, Obama's escalating "drone" strikes and his whitewashing of death squads. Consider the suicide rate among our returning vets from these high-tech atrocities. Weigh impartially the four combat tours of Staff Sgt. Robert Bales and his massacre of 16 Iraqi civilians as they slept. Weigh with equal objectivity the kangaroo court-martial of Corporal Bradley Manning.

"The Foundation of Entrepreneurship" has yet to create a single, successful, entrepreneurial enterprise; which is why they have gotten so energetically into the "entrepreneurial education" business. It is a whole lot easier to teach people the buzzwords, theory and jargon of entrepreneurship—especially if you keep repeating the mantras about "creativity," "growth," "persistence," "hard work" and "progress"—than it is to launch a successful business.

Schramm thinks that "Expeditionary Economics" is a new branch of economic inquiry. Actually, it is very old: the same economic imperialist exploitation practiced by the Dutch VOC and the British East Indies Company for four centuries. No matter how you dress up the whole despicable enterprise with new names and glitzy slogans, those original multinational corporations were also empowered by royal charters to raise armies and wage wars, to build fortresses and enslave indigenous peoples the world over. These original prototypes of the modern multinational corporation did exactly what Union Carbide and ExxonMobil, Chevron and Pfizer, Massey, Citigroup, JP Morgan Chase and Bank of America, GE and Bechtel, among many others, continue to do with impunity today.

Multinational corporatism flexed its muscle in 2010 via Citizens United by destroying American jobs and the middle class, assaulting collective bargaining rights, refusing to lend money to small businesses, draining society's wealth and capital upward to the 1% while transferring all risk downstream to the 99%, hoping this would undermine Obama's bid for a second term. For all their money spent, they failed. They might not next time.

The boosters for corporate entrepreneurialism exalt training in science, technology, engineering and mathematics at the expense of the arts and humanities (in the idle hope that these alone will stimulate innovation and "grow" consumption). Yet these same forces paradoxically attack global warming by undermining sound science, by slipping creationism into public school science programs, and by funding the Pentagon's cockamamie schemes to put nuclear weapons into space and manipulate weather as a military weapon. As Peter Joseph observes, "The World Bank and the International Monetary Fund, which mostly serve as proxies for transnational corporate interests, give gigantic loans to troubled countries at very high interest rates. And then, once the countries are deeply in the hole and can't pay, austerity measures are applied, the corporations swoop in, set up sweatshops and take their natural resources. Now that's market efficiency."

Under the economic system of the United States, which is rapidly imposing itself as the dominant global model, the only permissible definition of freedom is "self-maximizing choice (or preference)," which boils down to nothing more than the "freedom to shop." This so-called "freedom" and profit-maximizing are the fundamental notions of modern monetary-market economics, which John McMurtry condemns:

There are no life coordinates in this whole theory, this whole doctrine. What are they doing? What they are doing is tracking the money sequences. That's all it is, is tracking money sequences presupposing everything that matters. One: There is...no life coordinates! Two: That all the agents are self-maximizing preferences seekers. That is, they think of nothing other than themselves and what they can get most for themselves. That's the ruling notion of rationality: self-maximizing choice. And the only thing that they are interested in self-maximizing is money or commodities. Well, where does social relation come in? It doesn't, except in the exchange to self-maximize. Where do our natural resources come in? They don't, except to exploit. Where does the family come in as being able to survive? It doesn't. They have to have money in order to purchase any good. Well, shouldn't an economy deal somewhere with human need? Isn't that what the fundamental issue is: to satisfy human needs? Oh, "need" isn't even in your lexicon. You dissolve it into "wants". And what is a want? That means money demand that wants to buy. Well, if it's money demand that wants to buy it has nothing to do with need because maybe the person has no money demand and desperately needs, say, water supply. Or, it may be money demand wants a gold toilet seat. Well, where does it all go? To the gold toilet seat. And you call this economics? Really, when one thinks of it, it's got to be the most bizarre delusion in the history of human thought!

Affirming McMurtry's appraisal, Dr. James Gilligan offers an equally withering synopsis: "Famines—throughout at least the last century of our history have not been caused by a lack of food. They have been caused by relative poverty. The economic resources were so inequitably distributed that the poor simply didn't have enough money with which to buy the food that would've been available if they could have afforded to pay for it." This is what Gilligan calls "Structural Violence"; it is deeply embedded in the institutions, culture, ethos, habits, thinking and practices of our society, just as inequality is bolstered and "justified" by our inherited beliefs about work, productivity, money, free will and determinism. Gilligan gives another example, referring to Africa where

tens of millions of people are dying of AIDS. Why are they dying? It's not because we don't know how to treat AIDS. We have millions of people in the wealthy countries getting along remarkably well because they have the medicines that will treat it. The people in Africa who are dying of AIDS are not dying because of the HIV virus, they are dying because they don't have the money with which to pay for the drugs that would keep them alive. Gandhi saw this. He said: "The deadliest form of violence is poverty." And that's absolutely right. Poverty kills far more people than all the wars in history; more people than all the murderers in history; more than all the suicides in history, not only does Structural Violence kill more people than all the Behavioral Violence put together, Structural Violence is also the main cause of Behavioral Violence.

If multinational corporations were truly persons, then Pfizer and other pharmaceutical firms could easily produce and make HIV drugs available to poor nations gratis; their raw material suppliers would gladly cooperate in such a good will venture (or would but for the sway of the profit motive). But, in addition, for that to happen, corporations would have to have moral qualities like compassion and empathy. The fact that this cannot and never will happen is the surest proof that corporations are not persons. Because only profits and growth motivate them, big corporations are amoral, immoral, and quite possibly sociopathic. The sad corollary to this is that human persons in America and throughout much of the industrial west are themselves starting to resemble corporations in callous indifference and hardhearted cynicism.

"It is time to think of resistance," says author Chris Hedges, "as an end in itself."

Dennis Weiser is a poet, novelist and philosopher, whose articles, poems and stories have appeared in Chouteau Review, New Letters, Abramelin: The Journal of Poetry and Magick, p.r.n., Thorny Locust, Literary Juice and several anthologies from Outrider Press. A crowd-funding campaign at Unglue released his sci-fi novella, The Third Awakening, worldwide as a free eBook licensed through Creative Commons. His profile is included at Poets & Writers, Who's Who in America (2007) and Who's Who in the World (2008). A member of the Academy of American Poets, Dennis is currently writing a crime novel set in present day Kansas City, Missouri.

Sinister Dynamic: Global Governance and the Reconstruction of Nature is forthcoming.

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