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Male-Female Conflict–101…

Originally posted in July or 2015, given the recent upsurge in the struggle by women for social equality–in my view predicated by the pathology of misogyny exhibited by President Trump–I believe that this is a good time for an update.  As a Revolutionary Socialist and a Marxist-Feminist, I tend to look at and for the historical long-view for some answers…

Where does all this gender conflict in society come from? Why are women in general repressed . . . and worse?  Is the political spectrum of sexual dimorphism (the bio-natural differences between men and women) by males to dominate natural?  It’s certainly not a necessary consequence of our biology. Socio-moral development (culture) is learned.  It is not a natural biological development in our social relations.

I start with humanity’s Paleolithic beginnings, some 50,000-yrs-ago.  As an avid historian—including anthropology and archaeology—I’ve followed research that early human habitation sites (home & hearth) document the presence primarily of females, children and old/infirm males. In other words, women ruled the roost. Where were the healthy adult males?


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By Way of Deception–Zionist Protocols…

The science of anthropology teaches that there’s only one human race. There is no ethnic group on Earth that is naturally inferior or superior to any other. We’re all one species, one race … one human family.

Eilat, south-most point of Israel/Palestine...

Eilat, south-most point of Israel/Palestine…

This is the first short-story that I’ve published on this blog site. If I were writing a prophetic near-futuristic poli-sci tale—fiction of course–it might go something like this ….

“By way of deception, thou shalt do war.” The motto of Israel’s secret service: MOSSAD (1949).

President Barack Hussein Obama, First Lady Michelle and the girls, Malia Ann and Natasha, stepped out of  Air Force One into the bright Negev sunshine just north of Eilat, the south-most city of Israel. The President’s retinue included Secretary of State John Kerry and his heiress-wife, Teresa Heinz. It was the Ides of March, 2016. more…

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Malcolm X: Revolutionary Legacy…

In 1965, I was a 22-yr-old prisoner at Nashville’s Davidson County Workhouse, at the time one of the South’s most notorious and brutal rock-quarry, chain-gangs.  In the eyes of the KKK post-Confederacy, as a NY-Yankee w/a “communist” (Slovak) name and being a Civil Rights activist, I had been bestowed with honorary “niggerfication.”

Fairly accurate; but we had full chains...hands, waist & feet...

Fairly accurate; but we had full chains…hands, waist & feet…

I was on my 4th incarceration of an original 4-month sentence for “Hi-Batry.” What some in the South refer to as “Snatching shit from a flying goose’s ass.” (In the North, we simply call it “Made up shit.”)
I had been held for extradition to TN in the Broward County Jail, FL, for 4-months (not counted), in the Nashville City jail for another 4-months (not counted), then the “real” 4-months at hard labor, all on a misdemeanor. (A felony charge would have required a trial w/ a lawyer and evidence of some crimethis was before “Miranda.”)
But then there was the matter of some $600 in “court fees.” In much of the South, after you do your original sentence,that’s worked off at $2/day, also at hard labor. So lord knows if or when I was gonna ever get out…as far as I knew.
(Later at WSU in Detroit, AmerGovt-101, I learned that “debtors prisons” was one of the items eliminated by the American Revolution. Obviously ain’t a damn one of those freshmen or the instructors ever actually lived in the Confederacy.)
Anyways… I recall February 21st very well. I learned that Malcolm X had been murdered in NYC. At the time I figured he had it coming because all I knew was what the state and it’s corp-media told me. I didn’t yet have a revolutionary socialist consciousness…
I identified w/Martin Luther King and non-violent, civil-disobedience. But that was starting to wear real thin. When I finally did get back north, after a whole lot more brutality that I somehow survived–and learned who Malcolm really was, what he really spoke to–well…I’ve tried real hard to never be fooled since.   -Nick Medvecky

Barry Sheppard

Barry Sheppard

The article below was sent to me by Barry Sheppard, a fellow comrade I served with in the Young Socialist Alliance and the Socialist Workers Party. It was published in the Saturday, March 7th, 2015 Green Left Weekly in Australia.

Barry knows a lot more than me about Malcolm than I do… I’m honored to re-publish it here w/edits for space.
February 21 marked the 50th anniversary of the assassination of Malcolm X, one of the greatest leaders of the Black liberation movement of the 1960s.

Lenin once wrote, “During the lifetime of great revolutionaries, the oppressing classes constantly hounded them, received their theories with the most savage malice, the most furious hatred and the most unscrupulous campaigns of lies and slander.
“After their death, attempts are made to convert them into harmless icons, to canonize them, so to say, and to hallow their names to a certain extent for the consolation of the oppressed classes and with the object of duping the latter, while at the same time robbing the revolutionary theory of its substance, blunting its revolutionary edge and vulgarizing it.”

Malcolm X...

Malcolm X…

This can be seen in how the NY Times editorialized Malcolm X the day after the assassination: “He was a case history, as well as an extraordinary and twisted man, turning many true gifts to evil purpose ….” [In effect, they say] He was responsible for his own death.

But in the decades since, the Times and other ruling class voices have sought to “canonize” Malcolm. Roads and schools and other institutions have been named after him. The government even issued a postage stamp in his honor. All the while seeking to blunt and vulgarize his revolutionary message. Liberals, both Black and white, have sought to portray him as a mere pro-capitalist liberal like themselves.

Malcolm first rose to prominence as a leader of the Nation of Islam, popularly known as the Black Muslims. This was originally a relatively small religious cult, which Malcolm helped transform into a powerful organization.

It was [also] a movement that inspired a new generation in the 1950s and ‘60s with its message of militant Black Nationalism, which struck a chord especially in the ghettos of the North, while the civil rights movement was centered in the apartheid (legal segregation) South.

While Malcolm would break with the Nation at the end of 1963 and early ‘64, and chart a new course going way beyond his earlier teachings, key aspects of what he espoused while a leader of the Black Muslims he continued to hold until his death. These can be briefly partially summarized:

Birmingham, AL, May 1963.

Birmingham, AL, May 1963.

*Blacks cannot get their freedom except by fighting for it;
*The U.S. government is a racist government and is not going to grant freedom;
*Gradualism, the program of the liberals, white and Black, is not the road to equality;
*The Black mis-leaders must be exposed and opposed;
*Blacks must rely on themselves and control their own struggle;
*Blacks must determine their own strategy and tactics;
*Blacks must select their own leaders;
*Blacks have the right to armed self-defense against racist violence.

It was this last position that led the Times and liberals to slander Malcolm as an advocate of violence.

DixieJusticeShortly before the historic 1963 March on Washington for Freedom and Jobs, one of the high points of the Southern struggle was a march as big or bigger in Detroit, a center of Black Nationalism.

It was in this context that tensions arose in the Nation of Islam. By their militant stance, the Black Muslims helped push other black organizations to the left. This was their positive contribution. But they were on the sidelines of the struggle, not participants.
Among the younger members of the Nation, there were signs of a desire to get into the battle, to pass from propaganda to action. This is what led to Malcolm’s split with the Black Muslims.
The basic factor behind the split was the growth of militancy and mass action in the Black community, and the different ways in which the two main tendencies in the Black Muslims wanted to respond to the masses knocking on the doors of their mosques.

Malcolm X broke with the Nation’s leader, Elijah Muhammad, and turned his attention to the broad Black struggle. Malcolm would later say, “I feel like a man who has been asleep somewhat and under someone else’s control. I feel that what I am thinking and saying now is for myself. Before it was for and by the guidance of Elijah Muhammad. Now I think with my own mind.”

So began a new stage in Malcolm’s life, his all-too-brief last year that saw him grow [exponentially]. He traveled internationally that last year and met revolutionists from many countries and all races.
He also discovered that true Islam views all races alike. As a consequence, he threw overboard the whole Black Muslim mythology about superior and inferior races and its doctrine about inherent evil and degeneracy in a white skin.
Repudiating racism in all its forms, he resolved to judge people and movements on the basis of their deeds, not skin color. Deeds, not words.

Malcolm meeting Fidel...

Malcolm meeting Fidel…

Malcolm set about to build a new movement of Blacks on an entirely different basis than religion, while he himself remained a Muslim. It would welcome all Blacks [and others] who wanted to struggle, regardless of religion, philosophy or other differences.
This new organization was called the Organization of African American Unity (OAAU). The name was taken from the Organization of African Unity, reflecting his identification with the colonial revolution then in full swing in Africa, Asia and Latin America.

This identification with the struggle of all the oppressed was in his speeches while he was in the Nation, but became sharper in his last year, influenced by his international travels.
The gov’t was alarmed by this campaign to win support internationally in order to bring the US to trial in the UN for its racist oppression.
At the same time, his denunciation of US imperialism, which also began while he was a Black Muslim, became stronger. He was especially eloquent in his denunciation of the US record in the murder of Patrice Lumumba in the Congo, the war in Vietnam, the attacks against Cuba and Chinese revolutions, etc. He sought to position the struggle of US Blacks in the worldwide upsurge of the peoples of color.

One of a million confrontations...

One of a million confrontations…

Finally, there was Malcolm’s development throughout his last year towards anti-capitalism and socialism.
One thread of his thought was a result of his international travels. He began to emphasize that in the countries he visited which were recently freed from colonialism; it seemed they were turning against capitalism and toward socialism.
Another was his deepening relation to the Socialist Workers Party and Young Socialist Alliance.

The SWP, under the influence of the positions taken by the Communist International in Lenin’s time, recognized that Blacks in the US suffered under a form of national oppression.
That was reinforced in discussions with Leon Trotsky [former co-leader w/Lenin] during his final exile in Mexico. The SWP at its founding convention in 1938, adopted a resolution that recognized this national oppression and the progressive nature of Black Nationalism as a reaction to it.

The YSA/SWP embraced the new upsurge of Black nationalism in the early 1960s. In its 1963 convention, the SWP noted that Black Nationalism and socialism “are not only compatible but complimentary forces that should be welded closely in thought and action.”

We took note of the militant speeches by Malcolm X when he was still in the Nation. The SWP newspaper, The Militant, covered these speeches, often reprinting Malcolm’s own words, in a positive manner.
Malcolm took note of this and of the fact that The Militant defended the democratic rights of the Black Muslims when they were under gov’t attack. He would buy the paper when it was sold outside his meetings.

We perceived the importance of Malcolm’s break with the Nation, and his new course. Shortly after, in April 1964, Malcolm agreed to speak at a large meeting organized by the SWP’s Militant Labor Forum on the topic of “The Black Revolution.”
One aspect of this speech was his strong opposition to Blacks supporting the Democratic Party, a theme he developed throughout his last year. He repeatedly cautioned against falling for the ploy of supporting the “fox” – the Democrats – out of revulsion for the “wolf” — the Republicans.

He spoke again at the Forum in May, 1964, at a meeting organized to counter a scare about a “Harlem Hate Gang” – a thinly veiled attack on the OAAU organized by the capitalist press.

Militant Labor Forum, NYC, 1964...

Militant Labor Forum, NYC, 1964…

In this meeting he said of US capitalism, “It’s impossible for a chicken to produce a duck egg…it can only produce according to what it was constructed to produce. The system in this country cannot produce freedom for an Afro-American. It is impossible for this system, this economic system, this political system, this social system, this system period…. If ever a chicken did produce a duck egg, I’m quite sure you would say it was certainly a revolutionary chicken!

In January 1965 Malcolm again spoke at the Militant Labor Forum.  After that meeting, I asked Malcolm if he would agree to be interviewed for the Young Socialist newspaper, of which I was the editor. He agreed and did so shortly before his assassination.

One quote from that interview in answer to his view of the worldwide struggle between capitalism and socialism, was: “It is impossible for capitalism to survive … it is only a matter of time in my opinion before it will collapse completely.”
A Marxist might object that capitalism will not collapse by itself but must be overthrown. But Malcolm’s is certainly not a pro-capitalist statement.

King in Chicago, 1966...

King in Chicago, 1966…

A few years later, Martin Luther King began to come to the same anti-capitalist conclusions. From different starting points, these two giants began to converge. [King in turn was assassinated in April 1968.]

In addition to Barry Sheppard’s own The Party: The Socialist Workers Party 1960-1988, A Political Memoir, Volume 1: The Sixties, for excellent info about Malcolm X’s views, see these books published by Pathfinder Press:
Malcolm X Speaks; By any Means Necessary; Malcolm X Talks to Young People; Malcolm X on Afro-American History; Malcolm X: The Last Speeches; The Last Year Of Malcolm X; The Evolution of a Revolutionary; and The Assassination of Malcolm X.

Dr. Publico: As for the prematurely claimed post-racial society, I’m afraid the demise of Jim Crow has been greatly exaggerated… The Union won the military conflict in 1865; the South won the political victory in 1877.

A century later that battle was still being fought with Malcolm and Martin among a multitude paying the forever-debt. And today in 2015?

Where there used to be eleven Confederate States, today there are effectively 33…

Dr. Publico (Nick Medvecky, PsyD), March 2015…

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The Day Israel Attacked Detroit…

Sometimes Truth must be dressed in a manner that the observer can recognize
A political organization that is founded upon the belief that virtually everyone on the planet is a potential natural enemy out to destroy them, is ultimately capable of anything. Mix some religion into it and they even claim Gott ist mit uns

Gulag Gaza...

Gulag Gaza…

Thus today—after 120-yrs in existence–Zionists seek separation and total independent power as the most weaponized, renegade nuclear state on the planet.

Even Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) has no deterrence to such an insane belief system. In fact…one can assume it.
This reality turns all negotiations for peace and justice on its head. First of all, the express goal of Zionism obviates any “Palestine” on the same land, or even the inclusion of “others” in any democratic sense. “Making facts” is a strategy that replaces any meaningful “negotiations.”
Second, the most logical reason in current talks to prevent Iran from any ability to acquire nuclear weapons is not because of the threat it might pose to Israel, but the threat that Zionism poses to Iran…and the rest of us.

Where to start
When a chain of actions and reactions stretch far back, choosing where to start may seem arbitrary. In this report, the temporal chain is quite clear.

BibiButch-001On May 15th, 2014, two protesting Palestinian youths were murdered by the IDF and Border Police. Three days after the release of the autopsy findings on June 9th establishing their murder, three Israeli teenagers were abducted in apparent retaliation and murdered.
Despite evidence later found that Israeli intel knew the relative location of the youths and that they had been almost surely killed, Israel launched 369 attacks throughout the West Bank of Palestine, destroying homes, killing 11, wounding 51, and arresting between 350-and-600 “suspects.”
On the morning of July 2nd, a 16-year-old Palestinian youth was abducted by settlers walking home in Jerusalem, beaten and burned alive. Hamas, opened up w/a salvo of “rockets.” Out of a total of 4,564 rockets and mortars (according to Israeli stats) randomly fired at areas around them over 7-wks, 224 hit occupied areas resulting in a total of 6 civilian deaths, and 66 attacking IDF soldiers.

IsraeliMascr-001It started for real when the Israeli Army, Navy and Air Force surrounded Detroit, like Gaza, a city of just 140 square miles. The city is a semi-circle that borders on the waterfront and stretches to 8 Mile Road.

From time to time, the inmates get uppity and resist their oppressionThe Israelis laughingly refer to their military incursions as “mowing the lawn.” This “landscaping” is designed as a reprisal on the population that any and all resistance will be met with merciless collective punishment. Roughly, a thousand-fold response in Zionism’s calculus.

The top leadership of Israel cut their canines in the American education and business systems. A significant vanguard of the Israeli apartheid, colonial-settler drive to annex Palestinian territory are dual American-Israeli citizens (most of the rest are Euro-Israeli). Just as racism is endemic to conservative American politics, in Israel this concept openly holds that Palestinians (and Arabs in general) are nothing more than “sand-niggers.”

IsraelDet-001The first Israeli Air Force jets came screaming in out of the eastern sun dropping bombs and firing missiles leveling whole areas up the main drag, destroying buildings, infrastructure and vehicles to make open travel nearly impossible.

Along w/the Navy and Army, this opening blast has the universal psychological effect of creating a “war-zone” mentality for the aggressors and their corp-media. City Airport was already leveled and gov’t Caterpillars had scoured its runways.

Navy gunboats rocketed the waterfront, destroying all the port facilities and in at least one instance using children playing on the beach areas for “walking precision” rocket practice.

(An NBC reporter covered the event, but when the Israelis complained, the corp-media pulled him out and replaced him with one more pliable to “proper” reporting. Aggressors don’t really mind the knowledge getting to the public…in fact, they prefer it, it’s part of their terror-strategy.  They just don’t want it officially documented.)

Gaza "rocket" batteries...

Gaza “rocket” batteries…

Army tank artillery had their turn. Many of these events were witnessed by crowds of cheering settlers and others with beer, barbeque and lawn-chairs situated on surrounding hilltops.  Snipers and spotters surrounded the City. During the day, children on roof-tops were often a documented target. “Future terrorists.”

Establishing artillery-fire zeroed in on buildings and other stationary targets. Once zeroed-in, they wait for security and medical personnel to show up and hit it again. There were several instances, documented by journalists and UN personnel, where parents gather who came to pick up their children from the UN schools. Boom! A big score!

GazaFence-001The city is known as the largest outdoor prison ghetto-gulag in the world. With 1.7 million citizens, 2/3rds who are refugees housed in UN agency schools and encampments. The city is surrounded by a high concrete wall–far higher than the former Berlin Wall–with gun-towers and a deep free-fire kill-zone all the way around.
There are several crossing points, all controlled by the Israeli military. Any and all travel, food, medicine, construction materials, etc., is prohibited except by occasional gov’t whim. Several unarmed peace flotillas previously tried to travel there, but were turned back by the Israeli Navy…in at least one case attacked w/a number of activists killed.
All funds donated to the city are confiscated by the gov’t and doled out, if at all, as the Israelis see fit.  I could bore the reader be reciting the next seven weeks that the city was attacked and parts of it occupied by the Army. But a brief catalogue of the final stats should suffice…

GazaB+A-001For sure, there was some token resistance from the elected officials of the city. In fact, the gov’t had warned the population to not elect them or there would be consequences. These are the consequences.
No one questions the ability of the gov’t to utterly wipe the city and its population off the map, much as a previous aggressor did to the Warsaw Ghetto. But then that would be a bit too obvious and might invoke more criticism and opposition.

The gov’t specifically targeted this elected org (Hamas) and all of the city’s infrastructure, including the police, militia, engineers, teachers, medical workers and their vehicles.
The Israelis targeted and destroyed hospitals, schools, the water-works, the power facilities, factories, media centers (killing 17 journalists), stadiums, churches, over 7,000 homes (89,000 seriously damaged), apartment buildings, 237 municipal sites and 1,914 so-called Command & Control centers.
The UN cited stats that the Israeli Army fired a total of 16,507 artillery and tank shells (each of far greater yield than any of the “rockets and mortars” fired by city resistance), a total of 5,830 missiles in 4,028 Air Force sorties, and the Navy an additional 3,494 shells for a total of some 10,000 tons of ordinance.

A total of 520,000 citizens were “displaced” with 2,205 citizens killed of which 1,483 were civilians (513 children), over 10,000 wounded with many losing limbs, eyesight and more.

OH, WAIT A MO…MY BAD…Israel DIDN’T attack Detroit…it was only GAZA after all. But, not to worry…all the stats remain the same…

Gaza6Aug'14-001This story and its reality should be a warning to all of the capacity of all racist nationalisms–Zionism in this case–to delude itself and project its own mirror image on others to sanction hate and mass murder as an acceptable, socially responsible ideology.

Israel’s Zionists simply embodied Euro-American colonial lessons, as well as those from their fascist collaborations in World War-II, and gussied them up in different costumes. Come right down to it… Same old, same old…

Dr. Publico (Nick Medvecky, PsyD), February 2015…

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“Truckers” & the Counter-Culture…

Today, Sunday, January 25th, a reunion is being hosted in Detroit (Farmington Hills) marking some 47+yrs of the Truckers. This is the name that has evolved from a large group of counter-culturalists who at one time or another came together as Boone’s Farm, the Keep on Truckin’ Coop (KOTC) and Big Rapids Distribution Company (BRDC).  (HA! I just learned the Reunion was yesterday, the 24th!!)

While many experiences since 1968 have involved such associations, the format of this article cannot represent more than a brief overview. Nevertheless, I thought I’d post a few personal thoughts and remembrances on my blog site for those who may be interested…

Only a few truckers here '74, but the same vibe (click on image...)

Only a few truckers here ’74, but the same vibe (click on image…)

There’s always been a counter-culture in human society. America’s no exception. In fact, it’s axiomatic that those who opposed the mainstream during our colonial period led to the American Revolution.
One-third opposed as conservatives loyal to the British Crown and its licensed profiteers, and the remaining third did their best to stand on the sidelines. Of course, after the Revolution practically everyone was a Patriot all along.

It’s no accident of history that cultural revolutionists also opposed those crimes against humanity that drove colonialism: Indentured servitude, the theft of a “new” land, the genocide of the Native populations and African slavery.
Their opposition also led to the Civil War in order to complete the promise of the Revolution, freedom for all. But the Confederacy retained political power and has today spread their Jim Crow racist perfidy and predatory conservative rule from 11 to 33 states. Clearly, the Revolution is far from finished…

Examples of other Euro-American counter-cultures include Romanticism (1790–1840), Bohemianism (1850–1910), and the Beat Generation (1944–1964).

A few more, 1978.

A few more, 1978.

Even the earlier Salem Witch Trials (1692) can be perceived as a counter-revolt by Christian-male rule against counter-cultural women who were seeking equal status in society as business owners and operators, mid-wives, medical herbalists, and those who refused to “stay in their place.”

The propertied elite and financial manipulators assumed the helm of the Revolution and today continue their goals for total political and social power. At this moment, a mere 85 individuals on the planet own as much wealth as 3.5 billion others–half the planet. Some think that’s progress…
Rather ironic, since the Earth freely provides all natural resources and working class labor is what converts it into wealth. My opinion is much the same as many of the “Founding Fathers”: Who needs the (then-aristocratic) socio-political rule of worthless parasites? Does not the creative genius of producing humankind possess the attributes to rule itself?

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERARaised in Rhode Island, NYC and Long Island, at 17 I joined the Army (1959) and served stateside in the 101st Airborne Division. Married to a Nashville girl, I worked and was active in the Civil Rights Movement throughout the Old South. After a year on a chain-gang (and my wife having moved on), I moved North to Detroit in 1965.
I became a Quality Control specialist in the aerospace industry (Detroit’s UAW Local 212). That’s where my political education became refined by 1940’s union and military veteran activists.
I joined the YSA/SWP, was elected to the chairmanship of the DCEWV and co-founder of the Veterans Against the War. After 1967, when masses of vets started returning from the war in Vietnam, we helped in the creation of the VVAW.
In 1968 I was accepted to Wayne State University, which I attended on the GI Bill. (Over many years and other universities, I’ve completed a BS, a Masters and a Doctorate, all in Psychology [PsyD].  I had the potential opportunity to complete an internship thru WSU and the Detroit VA, but at my age and not seeking a clinical practice, I didn’t take it.)

David DennisSalineTo my knowledge, the beginning of the Truckers was in 1968/’69 when an ad was put in WSU’s student daily, the South End, calling for anyone interested in starting a Boone’s Farm Commune. This First Family moved into a house just east of the campus and later to the near west side.
In addition to an initial communal lifestyle and progressive political activism, it also evolved into a business distributing alternative comics, magazines and newspapers of the “underground press” and more. Buildings and trucks were eventually acquired and the business grew.
One of the central figures from the beginning in the ongoing developments of the Truckers was James Rowland Kennedy. Jim was always my main contact w/the Truckers.
Mass demonstrations in Detroit and across the nation brought together disparate elements and issues under the umbrella we all came together on: opposition to the war in Vietnam. This inter-association further radicalized our essential unity of purpose.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIn addition to attending WSU, 1968 was also the year that I left the YSA/SWP and focused my politics with John Watson, Editor-in-Chief of the South End  and the League of Revolutionary Black Workers. This was a period of great activity on a number of fronts, including the SDS and the formation of the Weathermen.

As Managing Editor of the South End, my January ’69 front-page editorial for secular democracy in Israel-Palestine, created a firestorm of political reaction by both the right and even many liberals. (Israel remains virtually sanctified by the historical usurpation of Judaism by political Zionism.)

That led to my traveling to the Middle East as a guest of the Jewish Agency in Israel and the Palestinian Liberation org, Al Fatah, in Lebanon, Syria and Jordan. I also returned in 1970 and ’71 as a free-lance journalist for a variety of newspapers, including the Fifth Estate and the Detroit and London (Ontario) Free Press.

By then, the Truckers had a commune over on Avery and I lived around the corner on Commonwealth, a few blocks west of Wayne campus.
In May of 1970, after the murders of four students at Kent State during a protest of the US invasion of Cambodia, universities across the nation exploded, including WSU.

My sister Jennifer 16 + Les Camionneurs '84

My sister Jennifer 16 + Les Camionneurs ’84

A small group of us (students and faculty) called for a rally on Wayne campus and some 5,000 students and faculty responded. During the protest, an ultra-left group trashed the Engineering bldg and even stoned several classrooms at State Hall.
We called for a strike of the university and after a meet w/President Keast and campus security (and the very real potential for more violent reactions), we were given a free hand and organized our own security force, successfully keeping the provocation of campus and Detroit police off campus.
All of the local radicals, including Kennedy and the Truckers were active during those 10-days of protest. The campus, instead of being closed on strike, was open for classes (adding Viet Nam to their discussions) as the Indochina Institute. We had a democratic assembly, which met daily in DeRoy Auditorium. We fed some 5,000 activists daily on campus during those 10-days, and helped rally information and support at all of the local factories and high schools.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAAnother commune around the corner from the Truckers, Open City, got the franchise to provide food and health services for the Goose Lake International Music Festival held August 7–9, 1970 in Leoni Township, MI. An estimated 200,000 attended. I worked w/Open City during that event.

In late 1970, after returning from a Middle East trip, I moved into the KOTC commune over on Avery. The only room available was a second-floor closet big enough to fit a single mattress, but it was cozy.

After some months I moved to an apartment over Yono’s Market at 3rd and Hancock on Wayne’s Campus. I was active in co-directing the League’s film division, Black Star Productions, w/my then partner, Linda Novenski, as well as securing, editing and distributing a number of Palestinian films we had secured from Italy and the Middle East.

We also worked w/the NY Newsreel crew that came into town to shoot the League’s “Finally Got the News” documentary. The NY Newsreel crew formed another commune on the campus’s near west side for a couple of years during that period.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAFor a period in the 1971-73 time-frame, I was also active in the development of the campus drug scene. From at least 1966 on, when I experienced reefer thru my contacts at work, the use of reefer, coke, LSD, etc., became part of the campus cultural scene.
Its distribution progressed from several pooling their money in order for one to purchase a lid from a contact, to whomever had the best contacts finding a lucrative enterprise in the business. By ’72 I was handling a hundred pounds or more at a time.
As w/a number of other “underground” enterprises, such fund-raising became a significant aspect of the campus, commune, political scene, but almost always handled discreetly by certain members of the groups. Since drugs were an endemic part of the campus political scene, it made perfect sense to keep the profits w/in that community.
Given the counter-culture/political nature of the groups, as we came into contact w/others from across the country (and internationally, for that matter), such operations were directed to those persons who enjoyed a certain “security” acumen.

This universality of illicit drugs and the resulting profits included right-wingers and gov’t security/intel ops in their own endeavors. Later, during the early ‘80s and Reagan’s Contra-War against Nicaragua, Congressional Iran-Contra Hearings and certain media exposed the CIA’s dealings w/illicit weapons and crack cocaine in order to fund the war that Congress had refused to finance.

CIA contractors imported cocaine into a number of urban black communities, which was then converted to crack for smoking and an instant high. Given this marketing ploy, coke became available to these poor communities as $5, $10 and $20 rocks.Crack was far more devastating to poor communities. Those of us on the left were politically required to cease that business after 1983.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIn 1973, I was busy w/a number of political activities. Coleman Young was elected to political power in Detroit. I worked as a campaign coordinator for Attorney Sheldon Halpern’s run for a judgeship and thereafter worked for him as an investigator for much of the next 17-yrs.

My partner in the drug trade, Paul Gribling and I traveled to East Africa, Colombia and other locales. One of the NY Newsreel guys was busted in Canada for importing hashish from Afghanistan (of which my responsibility was getting it into Detroit), and we had to effect an op to rescue that comrade. (Abbie Hoffman was a help in that one.)

In that period, the KOTC had moved their commune to Big Rapids, MI, and became the BRDC. I never visited there myself. I was also somewhat active w/Jack Forrest and the White Panthers across the Lodge Freeway from my Hancock apt.

For a period in 1977-78 I worked as a Trucker out of the BRDC warehouse on the SW side and the riverfront in Detroit after they moved back to Detroit. By then, the core Trucker membership had evolved from a commune into a coop with each family having their own residence.
In ’77, after flying three of the Truckers to Chicago for meets w/the Levy alternative distribution group there, Kennedy introduced me to a friend of his who was active in the coke trade. He needed a pilot to make discreet runs to the Florida Keys and back. After a few of those runs, Bobby A. was attracted to the ease of flying, became a pilot himself and purchased a Piper Aztec.

I later dabbled again in the coke trade, but by ’83 with the CIA/DEA competition and the devastating impart on the Black and poor communities, I quit the drug trade altogether.

(Kind of ironic, given that by ’85 I was fully back into criminal defense investigation work, the feds indicted me for cocaine conspiracy in ’89 and I was given the choice of “cooperation” or trial. They wanted the names and history of my former activities. I chose the latter and got 25-yrs in prison.)

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAWhile the relative short format of this blog leaves out far more than I’ve put in, I hope the links provide anyone interested w/more info.  I currently live some 4-hrs north of Detroit in Grayling, MI, the Heart of the North Country.
Given this all-too-brief and tangential taste of Trucker lore, perhaps someone w/time, energy and real knowledge  (Michael? Lee Ann?) would like to pursue a far more complete history of the subject?

I would only add that any Truckers who wish to make corrections and/or additions to this article, by all means feel free to do so by contacting me. Updates are quite simple.

So, all-in-all, my time and association with and as a Trucker was quite an adventure.

Dr. Publico (Nick Medvecky, PsyD), January 2015…

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The discovery of J. Edgar Hoover’s Secret FBI by Betty Medsger (2014, Alfred A. Knoph). The following is a guest-review by Raff Ellis:

Journalist/Author Betty Medsger

Journalist/Author Betty Medsger

On March 8, 1971, a small group of amateur burglars broke into the Media, PA, FBI office and emptied their file cabinets. The story of the perpetrators behind the burglary had remained hidden from public view for nearly 40 years.

Quite unexpectedly, two of the participants blurted out their involvement to author Betty Medsger during a routine social encounter. The couple who confessed to the crime hadn’t intended to make this admission for it was a secret they and their six cohorts had vowed to take to their graves. Medsger was shocked, and the revelation sent her on a mission to interview others who were involved, convince them to go public, and to tell their story in an engrossing book she titled, The Burglary.

Author Medsger uses the burglary as a springboard to discuss not only the excesses of the FBI, but also the CIA and NSA. Along the way she examines the lack of intelligence agency oversight by fawning presidents and a permissive Congress.

FBIburglary-001Her conclusion is that the Media heist became the sine qua non for all the ensuing investigations of the FBI—an unbridled, de facto “secret police” force.

The later demythologizing of Hoover and his gang has left a lingering aroma of suspicion surrounding any governmental sanctioned spying on its citizenry.

Although this concern waxes and wanes with a largely apathetic public, it was given a significant boost in attention by the recent Snowden disclosures.
The strength of the book lies in its compilation of a series of historical events in one volume so readers can see the linkages between them and how a complete lack of control left an unscrupulous J. Edgar Hoover free to become the unchallenged dictator of American law enforcement.

Hoover is shown not only to be a racist and a devious lawbreaking rationalizer, but also one dedicated to self-indulgent prejudices. His personal views mandated who would be investigated, continually spied upon, and/or have their homes broken into and personal possessions seized.

His predilection for seeing Communist inspiration in every protest movement–be it anti-war, civil rights, or freedom of speech–guided his activities long after such a “menace” had disappeared. At the end there were more FBI agents and informers posing as Commies than there were actual members of the party.
FBIemperor-002To most Americans the revelation of illegal secret activities would seem incredulous given the public’s innate trust of the government and its vaunted FBI. Faith in that institution had been cultivated and taken for granted for many years, aided and abetted by Hoover’s masterful PR campaign.

Surely the FBI, the premier arm of the American justice system, wouldn’t disregard or break the law, would they? Surely Hoover, the director of this feared and revered agency, wouldn’t disregard orders and twist interpretations of laws to allow him to continue illegal activities, would he?

Once the Media files began leaking to the public, first by the Washington Post—where author Medsger was then employed, Hoover went into full court press mode. He tried to intimidate newspaper publishers to not reveal any of the purloined FBI files by implying they would be violating the law and would therefore be prosecuted. He also employed his secret army of spies, many of whom actually worked at newspapers, to help plug the leaks.

The panicked director even went so far as suggesting to Congressional friends that a law be passed that would make it illegal to possess or make public these stolen documents. Washington Post Publisher, Katherine Graham, made the heroic decision to break the story despite the rest of the Fourth Estate’s initial timidity about taking on the FBI.

Prior to the break-in, whenever questions arose about his agency’s activities, Hoover would slyly let his superiors—and anyone else who had notions about investigating him or his fiefdom—know that other damning information in his possession would also have to be revealed. Hoover’s death a year after the Media break-in rendered this ploy ineffective. It is assumed that his blackmail files were destroyed by his secretary to protect her revered boss’ reputation.

But the real story is about the group of amateur burglars themselves who, regardless of the specter of serious prison time, chose to go ahead with their audacious mission in the hope they could prove that the FBI was illegally spying on their anti-war activities. Not only were they genuinely surprised at the contents of the burgled treasure trove but also in retrospect that the mighty FBI was never able to find out who they were.

Hoover with life-partner, Clyde Tolson.

Hoover with life-partner, Clyde Tolson.

For all its flaunted “always get their man” mantra, the agency was revealed most often to be an inefficient, bungling group of Inspector Clouseaus. Despite Hoover regularly dedicating 40% of his budget to domestic spying, the Bureau never was credited with uncovering any terrorism plots.

The most disheartening conclusions that one draws from this book is how, even after all the revelations, the FBI remains imbued with a culture that resists oversight and obfuscates investigations into their activities. Their actions seem aimed at not only protecting the legacy of its long-deceased director, but also to preserve its freedom to restrict the freedom of others.

The book also points out how the Obama administration has not only refused to dismantle or repeal any of the post 9-11 directives that permit First and Fourth Amendment violations of its citizenry, it has sought to increase them.

In fact the government has outright lied about the nature and depth of domestic spying and stepped up the prosecution of whistleblowers. It is doubly discouraging when one considers that Obama is the first president with a Constitutional Law background.

Criticisms of this book pertain to the organization and amount of repetition that one has to endure. The author seems to believe that if something is worth saying once, it is worth saying two or three times. Nonetheless, the material contained in this work is well worth the time needed to consume the nearly 600 pages it occupies.

Excerpts should definitely be used in civics classes at all levels of our educational system. It is sobering, and well worth remembering, that the revelations made two generations ago required a criminal act to bring a secretive, law-violating judicial arm of the government to heel.

Raff Ellis & Antar...

Raff Ellis & Antar…

It is important to continually reaffirm that unconstitutional governmental excesses and lawlessness remain a threat to our guarantees of freedom of speech and freedom from illegal search and seizure. These principles are more at risk in the current atmosphere of fear, which is accepted by much of the passive or frightened public.

The clear message of this book is, “Please wake up and don’t let this happen again.

The reviewer, Raff Ellis, can be found at Raff is an acquaintance of several years and is himself the author of Kisses from a Distance (2007), Dam Foolishness (2011) and The Bishop’s Curse (2014).  He’s a former computer industry business executive and lives w/his family in Orlando, FL.

Dr. Publico (Nick Medvecky, PsyD) January 2015…

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Prison Cellmates & Jobs…

If and when I write a formal memoir—an autobiography—it would have to include the third of my life that I’ve spent in jails and prisons … some 25-yrs.  A significant aspect of those experiences would be cellmates and jobs… (But I’m kinda like Meyer Lansky; a full memoir? Not likely.)

Co-defendant Larry Genoa & Author, FCI McKean, PA, 1995

Co-defendant Larry Genoa & Author, FCI McKean, PA, 1995

Within a certain context, there is a freedom in prison of association. The First Law is that wardens, counselors, case managers and corrections officers—all being part of an institutional bureaucracy—spend most of their time making things easy for themselves. This includes writing and interpreting the rules to best suit their own situation.
The Second Law is that prisoners themselves are relatively free to associate (live, work, etc.) … within the context of the First Law, of course.

(The American Gulag is essentially a vast system of over 2.3 million prisoners housed in over 4,575 prisons; second-place Russia has 1,029.)

The only other preamble I would draw here is that there are a variety of  trial, sentence, age, security level, ethnic group and politics, in addition to crime factors, that enter into how prisoners associate w/each other.

(The American prison system tends to treat all prisoners the same w/out special privileges, dressing them in nondescript uniforms even as they proclaim that they seek to rehabilitate them for the “free world.” One might wonder how they really view that “free world.” A mass blend of twilight bland ruled by an elite few? They decry “communism,” yet create an institution that projects their pathological image of it.)

Wayne County Jail, Detroit, 1989

Wayne County Jail, Detroit, 1989

Prisoner association of generally equal group and “rank” is common. Either we’re assigned that way, or we seek each other out and are so assigned.

After 9-months in Detroit’s Wayne County Jail, my first prison cellmate at FCI Milan, MI, 1990, was a Colombian engineer who had worked for the US gov’t. He lived in Washington, DC, and had a wife and two young girls. He had an American “friend” who pestered him for a coke contact. (He either knew none or didn’t want to be involved.)
One afternoon while he was at work, this “friend” dropped off a package at his house, giving it to his wife. She left it on the dining room table for her husband. After he arrived home, the feds hit the house and busted them both (it was a kilo of sugar w/a smattering of coke. Under US law, that counts the full weight as coke).
Long story short: Unwilling or unable to produce a source for coke, the prosecutor offered him a plea-deal to 14-yrs or they would prosecute his wife. He took it. After his conviction they also pressed his Colombian wife for coke contacts. Not “cooperating,” they prosecuted her for the possession of a kilo of cocaine. She got 10-yrs. They had their two little girls sent to Spain to live w/relatives.

FCI Ray Brook, NY

FCI Ray Brook, NY

In 1991, I was transferred to FCI Ray Brook, Lake Placid, NY. It was originally the Athlete’s Village for the 1980 Winter Olympics. My first cellmate was a general contractor from Virginia. He scammed the banks out of several $million and got 10-yrs.
One day he showed me a state indictment from VA for scamming the sub-contractors as well and asked for my advice. I advised him to file for a speedy trial assuming there was a good chance that VA wouldn’t comply w/in the required time limit (70-days), and would otherwise tend to accept a plea for a consecutive sentence while serving his federal time. (He could always cop a plea down the line…)
He rebuked me as he had come to “accept Jesus as his savior” and would plead guilty and throw himself on the mercy of the court. I gave him Jesus’s advice: “Render onto Caesar…  To the Criminal Justice System, you’re just a coonskin on the wall.” When I saw him next, he had an additional 14-yrs to serve in Virginia after he completed his federal sentence.

Other cellmates at Ray Brook included a Lufthansa airline pilot w/a kilo of heroin under his flight seat; a Vietnamese ship’s captain, caught w/a load of Thai-stick off the coast of Hawaii; and a Cuban Brigade 2506 commander from the Bay of Pigs invasion, who was a chiropractor who defrauded Medicare.
My work assignment at Ray Brook was as an Account’s Payable clerk disbursing about a $250,000/month to vendor’s of the prison facility and UNICOR (Federal Prison Industries. Inc.). I determined the payments according to Treasury Dept guidelines, processed the computer billing, and passed it on to my supervisor. When I disqualified a $300,000 payment to local contractors for prison work, the fit hit the shan. (Of their $900,000 billing, I only approved $600,000).

(All UNICOR moneys, to and fro, are disbursed thru accounts w/the US Treasury Dept. I was merely following their own guidelines [granted, as a former criminal investigator, I could smell the contractor rip a mile away, but I didn’t take into account the “cozy” deal between certain prison personnel and the locals]. Taken from my cell early one morning soon thereafter, I was given a round of “diesel therapy” to another prison.)

Seamus Moley & Author, FCI Schuylkill, PA, 1993

Seamus Moley & Author, FCI Schuylkill, PA, 1993

FCI Schuylkill, PA, was new in 1992 and w/out a seasoned comptroller or experienced business staff, UNICOR hired me as Payroll Clerk. Among several cellmates over the next 3-yrs, my most memorable was Seamus Moley (shamus mooley), an IRA officer from Northern Ireland who had been busted for buying a Stinger Missile.

(We hit it off right away when he found out that my mother’s side was all-Irish, and that I could describe precisely the training camp he had attended in Syria … where I had been a journalist attached to the same PFLP-GC commandos.)

It was an entrapment scheme so blatant that the Miami federal court judge dismissed most of the indictments and only sentenced Seamus to 5-yrs for the one guilty verdict.
Unfortunately, the gov’t, being pissed off at the Miami judge, waited ‘til Seamus almost completed his sentence, then re-indicted him in another jurisdiction on the dismissed charges, which that judge allowed and gave him an additional 10-yrs.

Other cellmates at Schuylkill included a young dead-head (follower of the Grateful Dead) who was sentenced to 40-yrs for a 3rd-strike felony (#1 a lid of reefer; #2 a lid of reefer; #3 a sheet of LSD thru the mail); a smuggler pilot who’s airfield and aircraft were confiscated by the feds, which has since become Air America for the DEA/CIA; and a Replug PA state legislator busted for taking a 10-yr-old boy across the state line for a little diddly-time.

In 1994, w/the help of Congressman Sander Levin’s office, I was transferred to FCI McKean, PA (a lot closer to Detroit and family visits).  Well-known to federal prisoners as “Dream McKean.”

Peter MacDonald

Peter MacDonald

My most significant cellmate at FCI McKean was Peter MacDonald, former Chief of the Navajo Nation for 5-terms (20-yrs). Pete was given 14-yrs for “conspiring to overthrow the gov’t…” There was an election dispute on the res, it got violent, two Sheriff’s officers were “kidnapped” and two of Pete’s supporters were killed. Pete wasn’t even there at the time.

I learned a lot about Native American history from Pete. From the age of 7, he was raised in a gov’t-Christian missionary school (as was law for all Native Americans), forbidden to speak his language, wear Native garb or hair, and forbidden to practice their religion.
At 15 he joined the Marines (1944) and became a Navajo Code-Talker serving in the Pacific and China. After the war he got an electrical engineering degree from Oklahoma State on the GI Bill, and joined Hughes Aircraft as a Project Manager for the Polaris Submarine Missile Program. When he retired back to the res, he was elected to the Chairmanship (Chief).

(On Clinton’s last act as President, he commuted Pete’s sentence, after he had already served almost 10-yrs.)

While not a cellmate, I spent some time w/Gene Gotti (John’s brother) out on the track. I knew a number of the Detroit Family (working as an investigator to both criminal and civil plaintiff attorneys) and we spent time swapping stories.
At one point, Gene suggested that I distance myself from Novi Tocco, nephew to the Detroit Don (whom I knew from Detroit and often visited my cell). That was just before Novi went back to Detroit to strike a deal w/the feds in return for testifying against his own family (father and uncle). What a slimeball.

In 2001, I was transferred to FCI Jesup, GA. Around 11am on September 11th, I was unceremoniously thrown into the hole (Segregated Housing Unit) incommunicado. I learned the story of 9/11 over 50 days later when I was released and sent back to work and my housing unit. Just a little reminder of the essential political character of my conviction.

Scott Robin Roston

Scott Robin Roston

After that period they put me in a cell w/one of the weirdest characters I’ve ever met. Pretty much a doppelgänger for Governor Scott Walker (R-WI) or vice versa.  Scott Robin Roston is a stone OCD psychopath. Nine days into his honeymoon back in ’88 aboard a cruise ship he beat his bride unconscious and threw her off the ship to her death.

Witnesses said they argued at dinner over her eating sweets and using the wrong fork for her salad. Several days into my celling w/this freak I awoke in the night to his standing in front of the commode, whipping his willie w/one hand while he held his thumb up his ass w/the other.

I went ballistic. He apologized saying he didn’t think I’d mind, and it took me several months to get the f*ck outta there. My Case Manager said they’d move me asap “but it’s difficult to find any inmates who will bunk w/him.” They had to wait ’til some newbies were transferred in.  No shit!?! (P.S.: This sex predator is scheduled to get out July 8th, 2017. Be aware.)

In 2006, after one of one of my 6-month Program Review interviews, the Unit Manager took me aside and asked me if I knew that my file contained a Secret Service, FOIA-Exempt security section.
I told her that I did know (I already knew what was in it because an SIS lieutenant had privately allowed me to read it). She asked me that since I had at least 6-yrs remaining on my sentence (of 25-yrs, minus 15% Good Time), would I prefer to be in a prison camp (no fence, community privileges)? Yes, of course.
She advised me that she would get notice to the Secret Service that the BOP was misusing their information to bar me from a proper lower security status. (I knew that the file included a notice by the Secret Service to the BOP that I had been cleared of all threat allegations.)

Author w/Kaley at Auburn University Vet School Show, 2006

Author w/Kaley at Auburn University Vet School Show, 2006

She notified me a couple of months later that my status was changed and I would be sent to the first available camp. (My non-snitch and political quasi-status, often earned me the respect of both inmates and staff. Part of the prisoner hierarchy.)

I was soon sent to the camp at Maxwell Air Force Base, AL, and was assigned as a dog-handler w/the freedom of the base and downtown Montgomery (in order to socialize the dog to the public for later advanced training). Quite a change after 16-yrs behind the walls, eh?

Before I got my dog Kaley (who lived w/me and went everywhere I did), one of my cellmates at Maxwell AFB was former Congressman Ed Mezvinski (D-IA). Before he was a Congressman, he was an investigator during the Watergate Hearings, of which we had many interesting discussions.

Marc Mezvinsky & Chelsea Clinton.

Marc Mezvinsky & Chelsea Clinton.

He was convicted of fraud and got 5-yrs. The camp PA-system confused our names all the time … we had to both respond to their calls. His son, Marc, married Chelsea Clinton. Small world, eh?

Two years later, I was transferred to the camp at the Pensacola Naval Air Station where I was sent to a Navy school for training as a haz-mat officer. When I completed training, I was assigned a 4-man crew, three haz-mat vehicles, and the security codes of all areas of the base (including the Blue Angels’ compound). What more could a federal prisoner ask for?

(What I found especially ironic was that two of my assigned crew were former pilots at Pensacola. One a Navy F-16 Falcon chief instructor, and the other an F-4 Phantom Marine fighter pilot w/73 combat missions over Viet Nam. They were convicted of tax evasion…)

Former Congressman, Ed Mezvinski (D-IA).

Former Congressman, Ed Mezvinski (D-IA).

After two more years, for a total of 20, I was selected for a 2-yr early out (to home arrest in Detroit). It was a Congressional Program for Elderly Offenders. Although clearly qualified, many were routinely refused (the BOP doesn’t like being told what to do). I was fortunate to have Congressman Charlie Rangel as a sponsor.

Over the years, my cellmates also included an Air Force general, police officers, CEOs, Mafia figures, Israelis, Palestinians, rock musicians and numerous pilots (being one myself) who flew choppers in ‘Nam, CIA-Contra traffickers, 3-different Colombian drug cartel pilots and more. Never a dull moment.

I had the opportunity to complete a 2-yr psych internship thru WSU and the VA (I have a fully accredited PsyD), but I figured going into clinical practice at the age of 70 would be a bit much.

My current (and last?) roommate up here in the Heart of the North Country (Grayling, MI) is Boo. Best pussy I’ve ever had. I got him at the shelter and he pretty much totally ignores me… Just the way I like it.

Dr. Publico (Nick Medvecky, PsyD), January 2015…


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A Few Thoughts for the New Year…

In 1963 I turned 21. I was living in Nashville and active in civil rights. Occasionally it was quite brutal, but never w/out a sense of our righteousness and eventual victory. I’m not sure I have that same sense today…

TrickleDown-001 (2)The average yearly income was $5,700. (That’s $44,000 in today’s money.) You could buy a new car for $3,000, and a new home for an average of $12,500. You could gas your car for $5 (27¢/gallon), and $20 would buy a family a week’s groceries.
The minimum wage was $1.25 ($9.65 today), and first-class postage or a Hershey bar for a nickel. One need not strain to see that when you factor the wage, price and inflationary elements, we have quite literally gone backwards in real wages and buying power.
The equity between the relative wealth of the ruling class and the rest of us was far more equal then than it is today. Whatever has been “lost” by the working class has been more than accumulated by the wealthy 1% … quite literally. And this is no accident of history.

The average ratio of income of CEO vs. worker in 1963 was about 20-to-1. Today it’s 354-to-1. In other words, CEO’s literally earn more today while standing at the urinal than workers make in a year. And they believe that’s still not enough…

Born in the summer of ’42, I grew up in the post-World War-II era. Millions returned home after the war to an economy converted to consumerism.
While the war years were a period of great sacrifice, the GI Bill and a variety of liberal (FDR/LBJ; Social Security, the War on Poverty, Medicare…) legislation aimed at a bottom-up approach helped guarantee jobs and significant assistance in a college education and the purchase of homes (including myself, after my military service). Today, that’s all being dismantled.

UnionMem...-001Union membership back in ‘63 was about 30% of the workforce, today it’s 11%. Scholars correctly assert that the rising income equality in the US is significantly attributable to the decline of the labor movement and union membership.

After the War and coming out of the Great Depression, a Jim Crow South (and North, for that matter), and a period of record growth for unionism, voter enfranchisement, more equality for women and greater equity between the classes, the nation entered the ‘60s w/the promise of a cultural and social revolution on the agenda.

But that’s the funny thing about democracy. The masses are free to organize themselves as they see fit and elect people they believe will represent them.
But the corporate and wealthy profiteers are free to buy those reps, have legislation enacted that serves precisely their interests, and abolish and deregulate controls, which are in direct contradiction to the interests of the masses.
Further, they are free to buy the media—today of which over 90% is owned and operated by six corporations.

DixieJusticeIf you’re a racist, a nativist, seeking the faux-lotto day-dream of ultra-wealth classism, a misogynist, an NRA militia type, a fundo-Christian, and/or a basic conservative bigot, you are probably a Republican … or worse.

While the majority of the masses are Democratic, the leadership of that Party is pro-capital; there is no major progressive alternative in America.

Since the post-Civil War period, the wealthy corporatist elite made a concerted drive to own and operate the Republican Party in toto. After Roosevelt (Teddy), they succeeded.
Even so, their numbers are not enough to win elections for them. But their political powers assert a vast variety of inter-connecting acts and controls that limit universal voter freedom, abetted by the sad fact that a significant number of the “masses” utterly fail to participate in their own electoral freedoms.

Many people have the peculiar belief that once they vote or enact a favorable piece of legislation, their role is accomplished. The parasitic predators know better, they never give up.
Since the early 1960s, conservative cadre have been extremely active. While many in the public pay attention to their top-end politics, these cadre have perfected a sleight-of-hand, bottom-up strategy to capture political power in America. Neo-liberal “opposition” is merely a weak-sister quasi-collaborator.
They now effectively control the governorships and/or legislatures of 33 states, the entire US Congress, and most judiciaries, including the US Supreme Court. In other words, factoring their “Southern Strategy” from the post LBJ period when the number of Confederate states was 11, today it’s a super-majority.

The military is a volunteer, proto-mercenary force primarily staffed by a low-wage, surplus-worker population w/corporatist contractors free to profiteer at will. The nation’s police have effectively been para-militarized and turned loose upon any and all resisting populations.
Those surplus workers who fail to survive tracking into a felony record reside in the largest prison gulag in the history of the planet … and are otherwise under the supervision of the criminal justice system. Those who do survive that process are welcome to advance into the police-state apparatus.

After the American “Reichstag Fire” opportunity (9/11) allowed/abetted by the Bush-Cheney Administration, the Patriot Act was enacted to secure a lawful apparatus to begin the process of creating a full-blown security-state.
Bush-Cheney created Homeland Security in order to establish centralized power over 187 federal agencies, both existing and new.

NoConst.-001The TSA was created to control public travel in the US w/a force of more than 47,000 agents. ICE was created for internal border controls w/15,000 agents, and the Border Patrol itself has since been beefed up to 21,000 agents.This includes a virtual Constitution-free zone around all US borders, which includes all of Michigan and 2/3rds of the US population.

One can witness today a carte blanche free-fire, kill-zone effectively created in the US. Those lumpen workers who are otherwise conservative (not yet liberalized by social maturity), of psycho-sociopathic low intelligence (high-intelligence testers are not welcome), and being felony-free, are encouraged to apply for these positions.
But all is not lost (to the ruling interests) even if one does have a felony record. There are a growing variety of “SA/Brown-Shirt” opportunities in the corp/NRA-sponsored Tea Party, KKK, Replug thuggery and militias ready to perform the front-line, dirty work of stand-by auxiliary terrorists.

(Their “anti-gov’t” naiveté will be forgiven when they’ve completed their national Kristallnacht expectations and they’ll eventually be folded into the state security apparatus … or executed if they fail to comply.)

If you think this is all a bit extreme in commentary–that America is essentially a democracy and will prevail thru these fascist-corporatist nightmares—well, it’s all been done before.

I recall when I was the Managing Editor of the South End newspaper at WSU, Detroit (1968-69), and we published the authority/obedience experiments by Stanley Milgram, a Yale psychologist.
He was initially studying why subject populations, such as the Germans, would accept the rule of fascism. He found that the American population was even more susceptible to such controls. And here we are…

My own researches as a forensic psych doctoral student (PsyD) into socio-moral development, led me to conclude that a central ideological feature of the national American culture is individualism. This is an advantage in terms of seeking personal goals and wealth, but a disadvantage in developing social consciousness and responsibility. Good for the 1%, growing impoverishment for the rest of us.
More and more we are seeing the gross pathology of this national-cultural trait. While the idea of total individual freedom is quite intoxicating, beyond a certain point it’s also quite idiopathic (existing w/out redeeming social connection).
A brief read into the Piaget-Kohlberg theorem/analyses of socio-moral maturation, will demonstrate how people normally progress thru life from infantilism, focused on individual needs, wants and desires, into progressively more mature phases … or not.
Some, because of early gross authority, trauma and other causes, become arrested in their development and cease to progress into higher levels of socio-moral maturity.

TSA 20% Scan...

TSA 20% Scan…

Conservatives (by definition, those on the low-end scale of undevelopment) naturally seek “positive” answers for their condition. Ayn Rand’s “rational selfishness” is one such rationale. It gives these individuals the faux-belief in an Übermensch ideology; that they are, in fact, at the highest state, not the lowest, that one can achieve.

Those of us of a certain age who have experienced an America, a world, that all too briefly lived somewhat more than just the illusion of Camelot, look upon the world today as a very dangerous place.
If somehow masses of people don’t come to actively participate in constitutional democracy and successful resistance to corporate power, things are going to get a lot more brutal and savage.

In 1865, the Union defeated the armies of the slavers. The South was occupied and the Freedman’s Bureau guaranteed equal rights. Then, carpetbaggers moved in and plundered what survived the war. Within a dozen years, by 1877, the Republican Party sold it all out and the South won the political war. The Black Codes and Jim Crow descended to bring about a condition Worse Than Slavery; a condition we still fight today.

In the 1940s the Allies prevented fascist rule of the planet. The planet has now entered a stage where there are no “Allied Powers” to come to the rescue of a world gone mad. It’s literally up to We, the People

Dr. Publico (Nick Medvecky, PsyD), January 2015…

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RELIGION: The Second Oldest Scam…

Maybe I’m wrong and 84% of the world that identifies as religious is correct… ¿Quien sabe?  It seems to me that the more advanced (or at least older) that the world gets, the crazier are its religions.  One would think that things would get more rational…

Religions-001Take the current World Axis of Evil for instance, the Judeo-Christian-Islamic mega-cult: If we believe their own writings, the originator some 4000-yrs-ago was Abram, the son of an Oracle Priest (or an idol-peddler) named Terah from the City of Ur in the ancient Sumerian Empire.
Terah, Abram, his half-sister/wife Sarai, and the rest of the extended family relocated to the Land of the Canaanites, Phoenicians and others. They changed their names to Abraham and Sarah, elected one of the Sumerian pantheon—the mountain storm god—as their personal tribal god, and made claim to all the lands of Canaan. Still do, in fact.
Lest anyone try to impose another god, Abraham claimed his god as the one and only supreme god of the entire universe. Further, he took the core of the ancient Sumerian Epics as his own story of Genesis after editing them considerably.

(After all, w/the rapid decline of Sumer who would ever know? Never realizing that some 3800-yrs later, the ancient sands would offer up cuneiform tablets from the Sumer archives.)

Abraham claimed that his god offered him and his chosen progeny exclusive rights to the land he intended to usurp.  “A land w/out a people, a people w/out a land,” indeed.
In furtherance of his own call and claims, he fathered a son by his Egyptian servant-girl, Hagar. But following the pharaonic practice of sister-love, he also had a son with his half-sister, Sarah, and his god then rejected the first kid, commanding the young man and his mother to wander the desert for eternity.

In his dotage, Abraham decided to slit the throat of his sister’s kid, Isaac, but got lucid at the last moment (Isaac later claimed all inheritance to himself) and that was the auspicious beginnings of Judaism. Oh yeah, after Sarah died, Abraham had six more sons with another women, Keturah, probably one of his concubines. He shipped all them off as well.

SumerCrescent-001Two millenia later, the self-messianic step-son of a $millionaire contractor, Yeshua (Jesus), took on the Romans and the Jewish establishment.

(His 12-yr-old mother, a Temple Virgin auctioned off to the contractor-widower, had got preggers when her betrothed was off w/his sons on a Roman job in Lebanon; all of them, that is, except the youngest, James, 17.)

Failing to establish a revolutionary vanguard cadre and winning over the masses, he was betrayed, arrested, convicted, tortured and executed.
However, there already actually existed a “Christian”/cross-based insurrectionist slave movement throughout Rome and the colonies; they simply lacked an appropriate figure-head martyr. Saul (Paul), a Jewish-Roman leader, failed to be accepted by the original cadre, so he extending his executed “messiah” (along w/a revolutionary-resurrection story) to the Gentiles and ran w/it. Modern Christianity was thus born.

Another 600-yrs-later, an Arabist leader, Mohammad, a merchantman, got the same idea, chose one of the jinni as his one and only true god—modeled after the Judaic-Christian one—and Islam was born. Lord, I can’t wait for the next one…

(Personally, as a secular humanist and a Forensic Psychologist (PsyD), I’m convinced that in terms of the actual behavior and actions of these individuals and groups, religion per se is merely a convenient excuse and faux-rationale for their inclination to do what they otherwise intend in any event.)

Various religious phases have apparently prevailed on Earth in regards to our relatively short tenure as a species (200,000±yrs) … much less our far shorter “civilized” development.

EarthMotherThe first one I deduce is the phase of female-inspiration fixed to fertility and animist spirituality—later vilified as paganism—eventually creating the general ancestral concept of a Mother Goddess and the planet as a living organism, Gaia (circa 30,000±yrs ago).
This occurred along w/the male hunter/free range ancestral concept of sky-based, daddy-gods ruling all below.
The most recent phenom—as I opened with above, circa 4,000-yrs-ago–was the creation of a monotheistic god creating and ruling the entire cosmos, but who curiously (?) retains its family/tribal preference of a “chosen” few (namely, those who invented it).
This conceptual god, as are all others, is clearly a direct reflection of its creators: Extremely jealous, vengeful, punitive, retributional, misogynistic and infantile.

(All in all, in fact, an accurate representation of the lack of socio-moral development as are 3-yr-olds and those older w/arrested developmental issues, in other words, conservatives.)

I start w/the first “religion” on Earth as the original spirituality expressed by female heads of families. Archaeo-anthropological sites have established rather definitively that females essentially ruled the home, hearth and family units.
This has been established by the stones and bones of ancient sites confirming the abiding presence of women, children and old and infirm males. One could presume that healthy males gathered outside of the home for the hunt, circle-jerks and ritualistic behaviors (not to mention getting out of mundane but critical family work).

Inanna, Sumerian Goddess of love, fertility, and warfare, ca. 4,000 BCE.

Inanna, Sumerian Goddess of love, fertility, and warfare, ca. 4,000 BCE.

Females may well have created more than their share of the arts as well. In addition to making home utensils, clothes, providing some 90+% of the diet of herbs and small snared and netted animals, they also largely created cave-art ascertained by the fact that most of the hand-flutings are apparently female. Also, the oldest family/tribal totems are universally female fertility objects.

I can imagine that males out on the range under the stars (females more generally focused on the Earth and what it can provide), telling each other tall tales and ancestral stories, thus creating a more detached embodiment of a supreme deity much along the lines of their fathers and their fathers ad infinitum.

At that earlier period, there would hardly be any cause for resentment or competition between these gender-based beliefs as they existed in quite disparate worlds.

However, there was apparently a second major development … a transition phase at some point from this free-range lifestyle and developing realities imposed by greater populations, lesser large game available nearby (always comprising a very small percentage of the home-family diet in any event) and a gathering of far larger, extended tribal groupings.

These conditions led to greater monogamous family relations (male ruled, the only way they know), albeit still communal in assemblage, and the development of socio-economic relations, specialization in production and the division of labor. Leaders of these relational developments further led to trade specialties and to those assuming leadership (and a cut) as their role in infrastructure management.
Along this latter track to “civilization,” the relative power between males and females came to the fore and remains so to this day. Religion is merely a reflection of that relationship, much the same as religion is a partner-reflection of all socio-political-economic relations in society.

PreyVultures-001Thru humanity’s brief and bloody social history—at least the past 10,000±yrs—we’ve witnessed a succession of brutalities that continue to this day. Religion shares the lead in that competition.

It’s always amused me—in an ironic sort of way—that religion can both serve and suppress. Both the slaver and the enslaved can find scripture to suit their situation. He who wishes to punish and oppress can find support in its writings, as well as those seeking salvation from the imbedded alternative belief-systems.

One of the default arguments I often run into is when the believer asks, “Where do you think all this came from?” (As if anyone could answer that.) His own answer of course is that it was all created by a God.

When I ask, Where did your god come from? The answer is invariably, “He always existed.”

Fine, I reply, there’s your answer: The universe itself always existed…by your own logic! Why keep inventing more turtles?

Oh yeah … the world’s Oldest Scam? The male-based “ideology” of predatory “economics.” Been runnin’ now for .. how long? Some 10,000±yrs?

Quant à moi? Je suis Charlie…

Dr. Publico (nick Medvecky, PsyD), January 2015…

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