I am ready now to move on from JFK, both blogging and personally. I realize that most readers were not alive when he was murdered, and even those with an interest in solving the crime do not realize its importance today. That crime was a seminal event in U.S. history, in my view:
- It was coup d’état, a military takeover. It could be that the original coup was the death of FDR and importation of surviving remnants of the Third Reich by the Dulles brothers immediately post-war. Thus begat our CIA. But killing JFK insulated those in power.
- It spawned a near-revolution. The “sixties” (1964-1975) are a mixed up era, but immediately post-JFK there was a squeaky clean anti-war movement on the larger campuses, and it was growing in strength. Later it would be infiltrated and hijacked, and covert operators brought hippies and drugs and Tex Watson (aka “Manson”) into the forefront to successfully derail the movement. (This is where Dave McGowan’s Laurel Canyon scene picks up, and I wonder if he has figured out the bigger picture. I suspect he has.) Jane Fonda, daughter of a military intelligence officer, did not just happen on the seat of a gun turret in Hanoi one day. She was, knowingly or not, part of a PSYOP. She alone set the anti-war movement back ten years.
- Out of his death came a flourishing of movements, from anti-poverty to civil rights, environmentalism, anti-war and feminism. Medicare passed at this time. He did not create or foster them, but the angst of his murder unleashed a torrent of pent-up emotions. Pandora had to be put back in her box.
- The murders of Robert Kennedy and Martin Luther King effectively killed hope. There were hundreds of other murders during that time, Black Panther leaders and important witnesses, but those two public executions sent a message: “Give it up, folks. You cannot defeat us.” The origins of totalitarianism are always highlighted with a trail of murders. A dark cloud fell over the nation in 1968, and has never lifted. Indeed, it seems the good they die young. And not by accident.
I will try to write less about this event in the future, but urge readers to explore on their own for this reason: It is a portal. As inexperienced military doctors performed a sloppy autopsy of JFK’s body that night, they were being supervised by military brass in the balcony above.
That scene is a nice metaphor for our country, with that nameless power structure looking down at the corpse of a republic.
But it is time to move on. I realize that. My “obsession” is not with JFK or the string of murders that followed, including his son, but with what has become a totalitarian system. Such systems have come and gone throughout history, Germany and the U.S.S.R recent examples. This particular system seems much more oppressive because most people are not aware of it.
I interact quite a bit on the blogs and know, as do those who follow this blog, that it is an intellectual desert out there. Alexis de Tocqueville noted in the early 1800’s that this place was mostly drunk every evening. The American public in general has never been exceptional. Our intellectual class, our academics, our journalists and teachers these days are a smug and deeply ignorant group.
I feel the oppression, but it appears most people have internalized it, and so don’t know about it. There was a turning point. I think it started with a very important murder, and the elevation of an extremely corrupt and stupid man to the presidency. His name: Truman.