Friday, March 16, 2018

Excerpt From My Book "JFK and the End of America"

From chapter one:

After the assassination, the two men warily circled one another. Johnson kept constant tabs on the progress of the Warren Commission, and the shadow of Dulles’s renegade CIA always loomed over Johnson. According to the memos of Paul Rothermel, ex-FBI man and head of security for Dallas oil billionaire H.L. Hunt, “Lyndon Johnson [was] mortally afraid of being assassinated and does not trust the Secret Service…and has ordered the FBI to be present everywhere he goes…”11 This might have been a figment of Johnson’s enormous paranoia, for the guilty plotters knew better than to turn on one another for fear of mutual destruction. Then again, Johnson saw first-hand in Dallas what the CIA and the Secret Service were capable of, and he surely never fully trusted the CIA.

With JFK’s death, Johnson achieved his life-long obsession of becoming president, he stayed out of prison by quashing congressional investigations into his shady business dealings, and, by becoming the most powerful man in the free world, he was able to cover up his involvement in the crime of the century. By killing JFK, he had also neutralized his hated enemy Bobby Kennedy, who was powerless without the backing of his brother.

With JFK out of the way, no longer did Johnson have to worry about the Kennedys, who “…were out to ruin [Johnson] completely by making him look like a crook.”12

Dulles also reaped immense benefits from the death of JFK. His vision of a world dominated by an elite cadre of plutocrats was restored. His beloved CIA was preserved; without meddling from the Kennedys, the agency’s illegal and unconstitutional operations flourished, and its power over American and international policy became more dominant than ever. The Cold War, which JFK wanted to end, became hotter than ever. Dulles’s clients and assets were enriched by war and the expansion of American imperialism. The largest impediment to Dulles’s quasi-Fascist America had been surgically removed. It was sweet revenge for his bitter ouster after the Bay of Pigs. As Dulles once told magazine editor Willie Morris, “That little Kennedy, he thought he was a god.”13

Upon Kennedy’s death, the two titans of American governance were restored to positions of such power that they were beyond any prosecution. One man stacked the investigatory commission with men he could easily control, and the other man became the de facto head of that fraudulent commission. It is hard to bring killers to justice when the killers are the ones conducting the murder investigation.


Thursday, March 8, 2018

Excerpt From My New Book "JFK and the End of America": How Ruby Was Able to Kill Oswald with Such Exquisite Timing

From chapter 5:

Time was of the essence; the longer Oswald lived, the greater the chances he would reveal too much. Having missed several opportunities to kill Oswald in the immediate aftermath of the assassination, the plotters’ choices were limited once Oswald was taken into custody. Few criminals die while in police protection. Killing Oswald in his jail cell deep in the bowels of the Dallas police headquarters would have been too suspicious. The cops would have been blamed, and talk of their complicity would have been rampant. It would have been one thing to kill an armed and dangerous Oswald fleeing from the Tippit murder or hiding in the Texas Theatre. Those incidents could have been explained away as self-defense; the cops would have been hailed as heroes. But it would have been quite another thing to murder a jailed and unarmed Oswald. The cops would have had a lot of explaining to do. No, an outsider, ostensibly unconnected to Oswald, needed to do the job. And it needed to be done in a very public way so that Americans could see for themselves who was responsible. The solution was a sleazy strip-joint owner who acted on his own.
Ruby was able to gain access to the city jail because he was well-known to the cops. For years he had plied them with free food and booze, and he had treated them as VIPs when they visited his strip club. Cops knew if they wanted to get laid, make a bet, or sip a free beer, Ruby was their guy. Many of Ruby’s strippers ended up as wives or girlfriends of Dallas policemen. So Ruby’s face was a familiar one at the city jail, and no one batted an eye when he showed up for Oswald viewings over the long weekend.

Still, Ruby was not the perfect choice; his Mafia connections were conspicuous, and it would take little effort to connect him to Santos Trafficante in Cuba in 1959 and H.L. Hunt in Dallas just the day before the assassination. But who else could they find on short notice? And who would be willing to do it? Perhaps Ruby was the back-up plan all along, and when Oswald made it to the jailhouse alive, Ruby started building his cover story. He told several people he didn’t want poor Jackie Kennedy to have to make the trip to Dallas for a trial.

The slightest peek into Ruby’s past indicates he was beholden to gangsters most of his life. In the year prior to the assassination he made phone calls to at least seven organized crime members who had been prosecuted by Bobby Kennedy and the Justice Department. A Ruby stripper with a stage name of Gail Raven told Jefferson Morley in August 2016 that “Ruby had no choice but to kill Oswald,” implying that he was ordered to do so by his superiors in organized crime. Oh, and that “saving Jackie a trip to Dallas” story? An absolute lie, said Raven.207

Ruby’s phone records also reveal that he made several calls to his friend Breck Wall on November 23. Wall, at the time, was in Galveston, Texas, with David Ferrie, CIA recruiter and puppet master in the Louisiana Civil Air Patrol.208 Ferrie also worked as the private pilot of New Orleans mob king, Carlos Marcello. Dallas was part of Marcello’s territory, and all organized crime activity conducted by Ruby or anyone other hood in Dallas came under Marcello’s control. Ruby’s calls on November 23 might have been an attempt to receive instructions from Marcello, relayed through Ferrie and Wall, on how and where to eliminate Oswald.

Marcello, one of the most powerful gangsters in the country, had a special hatred for the Kennedys. In April 1961 he was apprehended by agents of Robert Kennedy’s Justice Department, flown to Guatemala, and unceremoniously dumped there. He had been deported without warning and without having the chance to pack or notify his family. He was not a man to suffer these indignities meekly. For the next two years he groused angrily about getting revenge. He likened the Kennedys to a “stone in his shoe,” and, referring to JFK’s assassination, he remarked that if you cut off a dog’s head (Jack’s), the tail (Bobby) stops wagging.

Regardless of who gave the order to kill Oswald, Ruby could not have accomplished his task without inside help from the Dallas police. Ruby said as much himself—“…who else could have timed it so perfectly by seconds?...someone in the police department is guilty of giving the information as to when Lee Harvey Oswald was coming down.”209 Testifying to the Warren Commission, Ruby admitted that it was “…a million and one shot, that I should happen to be down there at that particular second when this man comes out of whatever it was—an elevator or whatever it was—all these things—plus the fact…that they saw us [Ruby and Oswald] together at the club...”210

Ruby’s rambling, and sometimes incoherent, statements offered stark contradictions and a hodgepodge of tangential names and dates. Mixed in were conspiracy innuendos, alternating with his insistence that he was not part of any conspiracy. Taken as a whole, Ruby’s words seem a desperate plea to Earl Warren, implying that his family was in danger and that he could only tell the truth in Washington under the protection of the federal government. When he was denied that protection, he reverted to his ludicrous cover story—he acted out of pity for Mrs. Kennedy, and killed Oswald without any forethought or malice. Ruby, perhaps tricked into believing that a plea of extreme emotional distress would get him off, laid the groundwork for his defense by telling many acquaintances of being overly distraught before he shot Oswald. He even went so far as to approach local broadcaster Wes Wise to pre-establish his phony rationale; Ruby lamented that it would be “terrible for that little lady [Jackie]” to have to come to Dallas for a trial. Sure enough, Wise was called as a defense witness at Ruby’s trial to testify about the accused’s extreme emotional state before he gunned down Oswald.211

Still in all, Ruby was doomed as soon as he pulled the trigger in the city jail on Sunday morning. He couldn’t refuse the plotters’ orders, and once he had done it he knew he was in a terrible spot. If he divulged his real reason for killing Oswald, he knew he and his family could be harmed by the plotters. He was trying to save his own neck, but didn’t know quite how to do it. He must have been wondering how high in the government the plot went, and was testing the waters with Warren. “I have been used for a purpose…you have a lost cause, Earl Warren. You don't stand a chance,” he told the head of the commission.212

Ruby’s other lame attempt at proving that his shooting of Oswald was impulsive, emotional and unconnected to a larger plot was the money wire he sent to one of his strippers just minutes before the assassination. Ruby shot Oswald at precisely 11:21 a.m.; just four minutes prior to that, he stopped at the Western Union office about a block from the Dallas jail, to wire $25 to Karen “Little Lynn” Carlin, one of his nightclub performers. Supposedly Carlin called Ruby earlier that morning and said she needed a quick loan for rent and food. This was meant to provide Ruby a reason to be in the area of the Oswald transfer. But according to Dallas reporter Bob Huffaker, Ruby told Carlin that he was headed downtown anyway.213 Why was Ruby headed downtown anyway? The only plausible answer, given his penchant for being everywhere the action was that weekend, is to be in the city jail basement for the Oswald transfer.

By informing Carlin that he was going to be downtown that Sunday morning anyway, Ruby proved that his entrance into the jail at the exact moment Oswald appeared was not simply a weird coincidence. His admission of pre-planning destroys the lone-nutters’ argument that if Ruby had pre-planned the killing of Oswald, he would not have risked stopping at a Western Union office for a transaction that could have held him up for several minutes, thus missing Oswald’s transfer and the opportunity to kill him. In fact, Ruby’s admission compels us to look at the timing of the Ruby-Oswald confrontation in quite a different way, one which is much more in line with the weekend’s other events: namely, there were just too many coincidences to explain away. If the circumstances of Oswald’s transfer from the city jail to the county jail were a set-up, arranged so that Ruby could silence Oswald once and for all, then it didn’t really matter if Ruby arrived at 11:20 a.m. or 11:30 a.m. or midnight. Oswald’s transfer was detained until Ruby was in place to shoot the prisoner in the Dallas police basement. In other words, it is much more logical and likely that the exquisite timing of the Ruby-Oswald confrontation was a product of planning than it was coincidence; because if it wasn’t, then all we are left with are fortuitous happenstances to account for the timing, and that is one more overstuffed coincidence that is just too big to swallow. One Dallas officer, Elmer “Sonny” Boyd, later conceded that Ruby could not possibly have planned the murder by himself. 214

The Warren Commission would have us believe that Ruby just happened to show up at the Western Union office on Main street, a short distance from the Dallas jail, just minutes before Oswald was moved; that Ruby just happened to be carrying his revolver in his jacket pocket, something he normally did not do; that Ruby, after sending his wire, a transaction which luckily did not last too long, just happened to wander down the street to the Dallas jail and easily find a way into the supposedly heavily guarded basement; that Ruby just happened to walk right into the perfect position to murder Oswald, whose transfer had fortunately been delayed just long enough for Ruby to appear on the scene; and that Oswald’s bodyguards just happened to be inept and distracted. It is a ludicrous narrative, full of flukes and accidents. It makes sense only as the product of scrupulous pre-planning. Ruby’s actions were purposeful, and Oswald was being held until his killer arrived.

This leads to the question, which Dallas officers aided Ruby? Researchers have zeroed in on several suspicious circumstances. Sergeant Patrick Dean was a close acquaintance of Ruby, and he was in charge of security for Oswald’s transfer.215 Dean could have quietly let Ruby in via an alley entrance in order to avoid Officer Roy Vaughn who was stationed at the main ramp. To his dying day, Vaughn swore that Ruby did not pass by him that day. If Vaughn told the truth, it is almost certain that Ruby was ushered into a side entrance by someone in the Dallas police department. Dean vehemently denied doing this; however, no less than Warren Commission counsel Burt Griffin doubted Dean’s story. Griffin accused Dean of lying when Dean testified that Ruby had walked down the Main street ramp past Vaughn.216

If it’s true that the Oswald transfer was delayed until Ruby’s arrival, who was responsible for this and how was it justified? Chief Jesse Curry’s actions may provide some clues. The timeline of the transfer was given flexibility by Curry; he told reporters that it would not happen before 10 a.m., but gave no specifics beyond that. Curry also rejected Sheriff Bill Decker’s suggestion that they “abort the public transfer” and move Oswald early in the morning when no press would be there.217 Ultimately the transfer of the prisoner was delayed when Curry received a phone call from Dallas mayor Earle Cabell.218 If Curry had taken Decker’s suggestions, or refused to linger on the phone with Cabell, the Ruby-Oswald confrontation would not have occurred as it did. A 2017 release of long-suppressed ARRB documents verifies that Earle Cabell, like his brother Charles (fired by JFK in 1962), was a CIA agent. He had a 201 personality file, and he signed his CIA secrecy agreement in October of 1956; for unknown reasons, these documents were considered irrelevant by ARRB overseer John Tunheim. Having now been outed, Cabell’s activities on the weekend of the assassination warrant closer scrutiny. He oversaw some of the motorcade arrangements; he greeted the President at Love Field, and Cabell’s wife presented Jackie with red flowers, not the customary Texas yellow roses which would have been garishly smeared by the bloody massacre Cabell knew was coming; and he distracted Chief Curry just long enough to allow Ruby time to plug the patsy in the basement of the Dallas jail. Were these his duties as a CIA operative on the weekend of 11/22/63? He certainly had motive, means and opportunity to aid and abet the plotters. And he was intricately intertwined with the other suspicious characters in Dallas.

But Ruby needed even more inside help to accomplish his mission. Even the HSCA stated that it was unlikely Ruby entered the basement without police help. In the minutes before Ruby’s arrival, security guards were removed from the area where it is suspected Ruby entered the garage. There were also unlocked doors along that side of the building. The Dallas police withheld this information from the Warren Commission.

Getting Ruby to the kill zone at the exact right moment was only half the challenge. He needed an opening, and he got it from the casual formation arranged around the accused presidential assassin. Dallas police officers did not surround their prisoner as they should have. Officers James Leavelle and L.C. Graves, who escorted the prisoner, made no attempt to stop Ruby. Leavelle, in particular, gazing in another direction and positioning himself away from the crowd of people to Oswald’s left, seemed to be unconcerned with his prisoner’s safety until it was too late. Prior to escorting Oswald, Leavelle joked with his prisoner that he hoped any assassin would be a good shot. Minutes later, Oswald was shot. Was this just a spooky premonition? Leavelle used the copious TV cameras and photographers’ flashes as his excuse; he was temporarily blinded by the light. Fair enough, but why were news reporters and cameramen allowed in the basement in the first place? Dallas police should have restricted the area to law enforcement only; as it was, the people who were permitted in were not required to show identification.

Leavelle’s post-assassination activities raise alarms about his integrity. He intimidated witnesses and made up strange stories for his own purposes. He showed up one night at the home of assassination witness Victoria Adams and frightened her with his presence. Adams, recall, descended the stairs of the TSBD right after the shots were fired and insisted to the Warren Commission that she heard and saw no one on the steps of the TSBD at the very time Oswald, if he had fired shots from the sixth floor and then run down to the second floor, should have passed her on those steps. Leavelle told Adams that she needed to be re-interviewed because all the original witness statements had been lost in a fire. No report of any such fire exists.219

Later in life, Leavelle, exploiting his dubious role as the man who failed to protect the most important prisoner of the 20th century, became a mini-celebrity and toured the country spreading lies about the assassination. Even in his 90s Leavelle was earning speaker’s fees and signing autographs for the gullible who attended his lectures. Capitalizing on the 50th anniversary of the assassination, Leavelle spoke to an uncritical crowd at Washburn University in 2013 and made these outrageous, unsubstantiated claims that were swallowed whole by the audience: 1) JFK’s body showed no evidence of shots from the front; 2) Only three shots were fired and all three were fired by Oswald from behind; 3) No shots missed their mark.

My first thoughts were: 1) Does anyone teach history at the universities where Leavelle makes his speeches? 2) Who would pay 92-year-old Jim Leavelle, who failed at the most important task he ever had in his life, to spread his preposterous falsehoods? 3) What sort of real college students/journalists would let him get away with it? Leavelle said, "...the first shot struck Kennedy, the second shot struck Texas Governor John Connally, sitting in front of Kennedy, and the third hit Kennedy."220 In other words, no shots missed their targets. This would certainly be news to bystander James Tague who was struck in the face by a piece of pavement dislodged by a shot that completely missed the limousine. And his fellow Dallas detective Roger Craig would have certainly refuted Leavelle’s bullet count. Craig saw fresh metal marks on the Elm Street curb, indicative of a second missed shot. And Leavelle must have overlooked the widespread reports of bullets found by his fellow officers in the grass in Dealey Plaza. Apparently Jim considered himself an expert in medical evidence too. His assertion that there was no entrance wound is refuted by Parkland doctors. Leavelle also claimed that three tramps arrested a few blocks from the Kennedy shooting were just tramps travelling through Dallas. No mention of the fact that two of the tramps were identified as CIA killers Charles Rogers and Charles V. Harrelson. And he ignored the fact that the "policemen" who made the "arrest" let an interloper come between them and their "prisoners." The interloper was positively identified as Edward Lansdale, Air Force general and CIA officer who many believe was the operational manager on the ground in Dealey Plaza.

The bitter irony is that if Leavelle had done his job on November 24, 1963, we might have gotten much closer to the truth much sooner, possibly soon enough to actually round up the culprits. Through his own bungling, Leavelle ensured a long, secure life for himself, albeit one based on lies. When he let Ruby just walk right up and murder Oswald, he furthered the cause of the plotters, and rather than being chastised or punished for his incompetence, he went on to profit from it at the expense of the dead President.

Jack Ruby, the murderer Leavelle failed to see right in front of him, eventually came to understand that, like other dupes in the plot, he was doomed. His sponsors couldn’t prevent his conviction, and Ruby, probably feeling abandoned by them, bitterly spurted the real truth before he died: “Everything pertaining to what’s happening has never come to the surface. The world will never know the true facts, of what occurred, my motives. The people that had so much to gain and had such an ulterior motive for putting me in the position I’m in, will never let the true facts come above board to the world.”221

Asked if these men were in very high positions, Ruby replied, “Yes.”

Ruby appeared to be in good health until late 1966 when he suddenly came down with what was, at first, diagnosed as a common cold and then pneumonia. It turned out to be cancer, and within weeks Ruby was dead. Before he died, Ruby told others that he had been injected with cancer cells.222 JFK researchers have focused their suspicions on Dr. Louis Jolyon West, a CIA psychiatrist who “examined” Ruby while Ruby was incarcerated. West studied the effects of sleep deprivation on brainwashing.223 His work in MK-ULTRA, the super-secret CIA program that dealt with mind control on human subjects, is now a known fact. MK-ULTRA was responsible for the deaths of many innocent subjects. West’s mere presence in Ruby’s cell suggests that the CIA was invested in either brainwashing Ruby or silencing him permanently. Ruby died on January 3, 1967, but not before telling the world that a whole new kind of government was going to take over America. He was referring to a kind of fascist state where our leaders, having learned the lesson of Dallas, would be controlled by the military-intelligence state and a small group of the wealthiest businessmen in oil, finance and the war industry.


Tuesday, February 6, 2018

My new non-fiction book on JFK assassination just released

"JFK and the End of America: Inside the Allen Dulles/LBJ Plot that Killed Kennedy," is the title of my new book. It has just been released and is available for sale online at the usual retail outlets. The Amazon link is:

This book comes closer to the full truth about the events of 11/22/63 than any other book on the market. It references up-to-date information from the latest documents recently declassified by the U.S. government.

In the coming weeks I will be posting excerpts from the book on this site.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Republican Koch Whores Rob From The Poor and Give To The Rich

Like the unprincipled, gutless Koch whores they are, Republicans are trying to pass a tax bill whereby they would rob from the poor to give to the rich. That’s right, the sleazy, corrupt bastards are going all the way with this one. Why? Because when their obscenely wealthy donors say service my needs, Republicans get down on their knees and start sucking. That’s the state of American governance today. Money rules. Corruption reigns. Avarice is all that matters. An article by Jen Hayden in today’s Daily Kos says it all:

“By the year 2027, every single American making less than $75,000 per year would see a tax increase, while high-income earners and millionaires would continue seeing tax cuts. The Congressional Budget Office also notes this bill would bump 4 million people from their health insurance by 2019, and 13 million people would lose their health insurance by 2027. Those at risk of losing their health insurance are the very same people hit hardest by the Republican proposal to increase taxes on middle-class and low-income Americans.

As Republicans try to ram through this Koch brothers-driven agenda of tax cuts for the wealthy, they did manage to schedule a necessary Senate budget hearing to discuss the impact. So, how did the Republicans line up to defend this tax increase on 87 million Americans? They no-showed, apparently afraid of sound bites and real questions. From Bernie Sanders on Twitter:
Like thieves in the night, reminiscent of their attempts to pass a repeal of the Affordable Care Act without hearings and input from all senators, they are again ducking their responsibility to have open debate.

It is once again worth mentioning that the order to cut taxes for the wealthy came directly from the Koch alliance, when representatives of the Koch brothers told Republican leadership at a July retreat in Aspen, Colorado, that if they did not cut taxes for the wealthy and repeal the Affordable Care Act, the Dallas piggy bank that funds their gerrymandered campaigns would be closed for business. From The Guardian:

At a weekend donor retreat attended by at least 18 elected officials, the Koch brothers warned that time is running out to push their agenda, most notably healthcare and tax reform, through Congress.
One Texas-based donor warned Republican lawmakers that his Dallas piggy bank was now closed, until he saw legislative progress.
‘Get Obamacare repealed and replaced, get tax reform passed,’ said Doug Deason. ‘Get it done and we’ll open it back up.’”

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Congressman Kennedy Sticks It To Paul Ryan

Republican Paul Ryan has always struck me as an imperious, callous bastard, out of touch with the suffering of others, but always claiming to be a pious Catholic. In his white-bred , privileged world, a measure of one’s worthiness to lead has always been how much water he can carry for wealthy corporate donors, never how much assistance he can provide for the elderly, the poor, and the downtrodden. His jimmied-up health care bill, Obamacare with the guts extracted, will provide undeserved tax cuts to his base—gazillionaires who are already provided for. It would raise premiums and deductibles for the peons he sneers at, eradicate Medicaid, and kill off thousands of the elderly before their time. The Obamacare death panels he carped about endlessly have become a self-prophecy.

Yet Ryan smugly stood before cameras the other day and called Trumpcare an “act of mercy.” I’ve never heard such a condescending pronouncement from on high by any politician. The only mercy his disastrous plan will provide is the mercy of the grave for those who will no longer be able to afford health care. I wanted to pick up a sock and stuff it down Ryan’s throat; obligingly, Congressman Joseph Kennedy III, grandson of Bobby Kennedy, did it for me:

"I was struck last night by a comment that I heard made by Speaker Ryan, where he called this repeal bill 'an act of mercy.' With all due respect to our speaker, he and I must have read different Scripture…The one I read calls on us to feed the hungry, to clothe the naked, to shelter the homeless, and to comfort the sick. It reminds us that we are judged not by how we treat the powerful, but by how we care for the least among us. There is no mercy in a system that makes health care a luxury. There is no mercy in a country that turns their back on those most in need of protection: the elderly, the poor, the sick, and the suffering. There is no mercy in a cold shoulder to the mentally ill. This is not an act of mercy. It is an act of malice."

Sunday, March 5, 2017

The World’s Most Powerful Man is Sick; He Has NPD—What That Means To You and Me

Donald Trump is ill; his behavior and words make that undeniable. He lashes out against enemies perceived and real. He lies constantly. He craves attention and approval. He displays no genuine empathy. He has no shame. He never takes the blame for anything. In his own mind, he has no faults. He exaggerates his accomplishments, and he always uses superlatives when describing his policies and actions—i.e. “I won the election by a landslide; “Biggest electoral win ever”; “Largest crowds ever at my inaugural”; “I will build the greatest wall ever”; “I will replace Obamacare with the best health care in the world”; “My cabinet is the greatest cabinet in the history of America.” He shows no humility or dignity; he must always describe himself in the most grandiose terms. If you’ve been wondering, like I have, what the hell kind of personality/psychological disorder afflicts our president, I am happy to provide the answer. I am reprinting the explanation from an article published by Karen Wehrstein of the Daily Kos:

“[Trump] is a textbook case of Narcissistic Personality Disorder (NPD), and [I will] spell out what that means in terms of what to expect from him and how to deal with it. Certainly the term 'narcissist' is being applied to him a lot, but most people don’t know the entirety of what that means, psychologically.

I am not a psychiatrist or psychologist, but for personal reasons I have educated myself about NPD. It generally conceals itself and is little understood—but has a devastating effect on the lives of others close to the narcissist or to organizations he is involved with. Knowing NPD creates a coherent picture that explains Trump’s behaviors. That will help you not only understand Trump, but enable you to spot people with NPD who want to enter your life, organization, etc., so that you can act accordingly. This is an educational moment in history. It is very rare that the symptoms of NPD are on such massive public display.

If you find yourself completely baffled by Trump’s behavior, that’s because mentally-healthy people generally find NPD-rooted behaviors incomprehensible. The narcissist violates social norms that healthy people hold instinctively and therefore assume (usually correctly) that others hold—while at the same time he creates a semblance of normalcy, because being able to do so is part of the disorder. Because the rest of us cannot relate to, often cannot even imagine how a narcissist thinks and feels, it seems outside the realm of plausibility, and so his semblance of normalcy will fool us. Not only Trump voters but fellow Republicans and even Putin have shown signs of buyer’s remorse with Trump. That’s because he fooled them all. Narcissists can do that.

So, since he’s a textbook case, let’s hit the textbook. The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) – the American Psychiatric Association’s guidebook for mental health diagnosis – gives diagnostic criteria for all mental illnesses. Between the fourth and fifth editions, the criteria for NPD changed, so I am going to use both to paint a fuller picture. If you’ve been following the presidential news for the last few months, you’ll likely be able to think of at least one and probably several examples of Trump demonstrating every single diagnostic criterion below.
From DSM-IV:
A pervasive pattern of grandiosity (in fantasy or behavior), need for admiration, and lack of empathy.
1. An exaggerated sense of self-importance (e.g., exaggerates achievements and talents, expects to be recognized as superior without commensurate achievements)
2. Preoccupation with fantasies of unlimited success, power, brilliance, beauty, or ideal love
3. Believes he is "special" and can only be understood by, or should associate with, other special or high-status people (or institutions)
4. Requires excessive admiration
5. Has a sense of entitlement
6. Selfishly takes advantage of others to achieve his own ends
7. Lacks empathy
8. Is often envious of others or believes that others are envious of him
9. Shows arrogant, haughty, patronizing, or contemptuous behaviors or attitudes
From DSM-5
A. Significant impairments in personality functioning manifest by:
1. Impairments in self functioning (a or b):
1. Impairments in self functioning (a or b):
a. Identity: Excessive reference to others for self-definition and self-esteem regulation; exaggerated self-appraisal may be inflated or deflated, or vacillate between extremes; emotional regulation mirrors fluctuations in self-esteem.
b. Self-direction: Goal-setting is based on gaining approval from others; personal standards are unreasonably high in order to see oneself as exceptional, or too low based on a sense of entitlement; often unaware of own motivations.
2. Impairments in interpersonal functioning (a or b):
a. Empathy: Impaired ability to recognize or identify with the feelings and needs of others; excessively attuned to reactions of others, but only if perceived as relevant to self; over- or underestimate of own effect on others.
b. Intimacy: Relationships largely superficial and exist to serve self-esteem regulation; mutuality constrained by little genuine interest in others’ experiences, and predominance of a need for personal gain
B. Pathological personality traits in the following domain:
1. Antagonism, characterized by:
a. Grandiosity: Feelings of entitlement, either overt or covert; self-centeredness; firmly holding to the belief that one is better than others; condescending toward others.
b. Attention seeking: Excessive attempts to attract and be the focus of the attention of others; admiration seeking.

President Obama and others who have observed that Trump’s behaviors arise from an underlying insecurity are right, as per DSM-5 criterion A.1.a. above. Kossacks and others have figured out that the way to get under his skin is to is to point out how unpopular he is, because that works on narcissists. In fact any criticism does, because narcissists can’t handle criticism at all, cannot help but take it personally, as per DSM-5 criteria A.1. a & b both.

How else does this translate into behaviors?
Let’s start with the persona narcissists create. Because they lack empathy, they have to learn how to appear normal, which they do by rote-learning expressions and mannerisms from normal people around them. In fact, they are good at being charming; they learn what people want to hear and say it without regard to whether it is true. Because they are without moral qualms, they can come across as decisive, which normal people interpret as confident, and spontaneous, which normal people interpret as authentic. This is how Trump played the crowds at his rallies. None of it, however, is sincere; it is only for personal gain. There is no such thing as loyalty from narcissists; loyalty arises from the social norm of reciprocity, which is based on empathy, which they don’t have.

Next: falsehood. Honesty is also a social norm based on empathy, so narcissists feel no need to hold themselves to it. Falsehood serves two functions: 1) manipulating people into furthering the narcissist’s aims (e.g. making promises he never intends to keep); 2) maintaining his own delusion of superiority, e.g. insisting he is liked more than he is, or rebutting good arguments with false ones. The media is debating whether Trump’s tales of a record-breaking inauguration audience and 3-5 million illegal votes are lying or delusion. Knowing what I do of NPD, I would say it’s delusion. Trump will cling to it and keep it in the news even at the risk of damaging his own credibility, because it engages his central, very strong motivation, and he lacks the empathy to see how it will damage his credibility.
Because narcissists are so insecure at heart they can be control freaks, and the male of the species in particular can be authoritarian. Hence, executive orders that are likely unconstitutional as well as absurd. In a “love” relationship (because narcissists lack empathy, which is central to love), he can seek to dictate every aspect of his partner’s life, including that she conform to his standard of beauty. Thus he feels free to wander into the dressing room of a teen beauty pageant to “inspect the goods,” and you’ll see a certain uniformity among the Trump women in style of dress and even length of hair. I think he is likely giving them strict orders.

At the same time, there will be impulsiveness, moodiness and disorganized thinking. A narcissist is really a six-year-old in a grown-up body, lacking reason and ruled by emotion; recall Melania Trump’s comment that she had to look after two boys, one being Barron, the other, Donald. People have suspected Trump’s reversals and word-salads could indicate ADHD, but these are indicators of NPD, too.

In his exploitiveness, the narcissist violates social norms concerning appropriate boundaries, whether those boundaries are codified in conflict-of-interest prohibitions, investment loan contracts, business contracts, sexual assault laws or what-have-you. The narcissist basically feels that rules are for him to set, not obey. This includes even the rules of logic, such as “base your decisions on facts.”

Projection characterizes how narcissists describe people who oppose them. They will “project their own negative introject,” in Freudian terms, i.e. ascribe their own wrongdoing and faults to other people, whether it be criminality (“crooked Hillary”), lying or a rigged election. I have come to assume that whatever Trump accuses someone else of doing, he is doing or has done himself.

Competitiveness and envy result from others apparently outdoing the narcissist, e.g. President Obama drawing large inauguration crowds. He, and everything he’s touting, has to be the biggest, the best, the huuuugest.

Rage and vindictiveness result from the narcissist’s wishes being thwarted which, of course, life does fairly often, quite naturally. It is a primal rage, like a child’s; hence Trump’s angry style of speaking and noted obsession with getting even. One reason the golden shower story went so viral; Americans have come to know Trump well enough to see it is plausible. Rage translates into hate, which can manifest as racism, sexism, and homophobia.
So how to deal with a narcissist? To put it very bluntly: don’t. There really is nothing to do with these people but to disassociate with them. They bring nothing but harm and suffering. However, if you are stuck with one, there are ways to handle it:
1) Avoid being disillusioned: have very low expectations. Here are things never to expect from a narcissist: honesty, loyalty, reciprocity, change due to the gravity of a position, reasonableness in negotiation, learning through experience, maturation, adaptability, courage, ability to handle adversity, aspiration to genuine excellence, genuine altruism, humility, guilt or shame for wrongdoing, equanimity, sincere gratitude, sincere appreciation, sincere praise, admission that he is wrong, returned favours or improvement of the condition. In Trump’s case, you can’t even expect normal laughter or a smile that goes up to his eyes. Prognosis is poor because narcissists think all problems are caused by other people and so generally don’t seek treatment. Many people, even ones as smart as President Obama, expected Trump to settle down some once he was president. I knew he wouldn’t. He actually is not capable of doing so.
2) Do not normalize. Healthy people have a tendency to give the benefit of the doubt, in part because they simply can’t believe a narcissist is the way he is. It is standard operating procedure for him to use that to gaslight you; normalizing is gaslighting yourself. Recognize and accept that he is the way he is, that it’s due to mental illness and that he will not change. This is what the mainstream media most needs to learn about Trump.
3) If you are trying to figure out why he would do something, ask yourself, “How might it be motivated by a need to feel significant or important?” Discount all other motivations. Your questions will be answered.
4) Keep interactions distant. Don’t depend on a narcissist for anything; never make yourself vulnerable to a narcissist. Don’t loan him money or do work for him without 100% payment upfront.
5) Expect those around him to be damaged. They are either brain-washed into being extensions of him, parroting his thoughts, or faking same for personal gain, or bewildered by the madness. Expect chaos in any organization he leads: good people will resign in disgust or be fired, while marginal people ascend to powerful positions.
6) Do not attempt to reason with or educate him. It doesn’t happen.
7) Manipulate him by using his disorder. Flattery will get you everywhere; convince him that your idea was his brilliant one and he’ll run with it. Trump’s campaign staff learned to do this. But if you’re too honest for that:
8) Get rid of him as fast as possible. How?
a. Stop giving him what he so desperately needs. Once a narcissist realizes someone is no longer a source of approval, admiration and adoration, he’ll be off like a shot looking for the next sucker.
b. Expose him. Narcissists also tend to flee when they realize people are onto them. I am actually expecting Trump to flame out fairly soon, perhaps within weeks, because he is revealing that his condition makes him unable to deal with losing the popular vote, drawing a small inaugural audience, being mocked by SNL or greeted with protests wherever he goes. The media are beginning to talk openly about his mental illness; how will he handle that?

The central thing to understand about narcissists is that their need for “narcissistic supply” – feelings of being significant, important and adored – overrides all other considerations, including empathy and all the human norms that arise from it, because their delusion is to equate narcissistic supply with survival—same as a drowning victim might drown their rescuer. Some narcissists, having flashes of realism as some of them sometimes do, have described narcissistic supply as a far stronger addiction than heroin.

It’s a throwback to the helplessness of early childhood, where not being considered important and lovable by parents is a genuine threat to survival. Thus a narcissist is always trying to soothe an all-encompassing internal terror, and no amount of narcissistic supply can ever soothe it entirely. This is the inner hell in which Donald Trump lives, and which he now has the ability to externalize onto the United States of America and the world.”

Friday, February 3, 2017

Wall Street Jackals Are Back And This Time They Want It All

The most diabolically shrewd maneuvers—in crime, politics and American history (which are pretty much the same things)—involve deception and diversion. Usurpers like Trump and his fascist gang, once in power, create crises and chaos so that the masses will be distracted while their pockets are picked. It’s always about the money, in the end. Two weeks of loud and very public incompetence by President Bannon has us looking away while Wall Street jackals move in for the kill.

Yes, Muslims have been banned; the moderate AG was fired; the DeVos vote is tied; meanwhile, financial regulations (you know the ones in place to prevent another economic crash like 2008) are being slashed by the same predators who stabbed us in the back then. The media, like ADD children, can’t focus on what’s important, just what makes the most noise. They missed the fact that Goldman Sachs is now in charge again.

The few who did catch it, cranky old white codgers like Tom Brokaw, are too muddled to understand or still living in 1955. This might be frightening news to the Trump voter—huddled in their isolated Pennsylvania farms or their polluting West Virginia factories—if they ever heard it, because the robber-bankers are coming after their life savings. Soon advisors, brokers and investors will no longer have to adhere to sensible rules; Social Security will be privatized; Medicare gone. The very racists who put Bannon in the White House will have their lives destroyed. Oblivious to this, Brokaw thinks we should confirm Trump’s rapacious and unqualified nominees as quickly as possible, because it’s what the old white people of Michigan, Ohio and Kansas would want.

In an article which appeared in Esquire magazine online today, Charles Pierce agrees:
“I just heard Tom Brokaw, the man who invented World War II, drone on sonorously about how the Democratic minority in the Congress is making a mistake by slowing down the confirmation process because that's the Republican playbook and that they'd be better advised to go out and seek the wisdom of middle America (Say white people, Tom. Go for the gold.) as regards the issues of the day. This is good advice, provided there's one angry shut-in anywhere in western Pennsylvania or rural Michigan who hasn't yet been interviewed by a major newspaper or television correspondent.

“But, if they do take Brokaw's advice, they might point out to these forgotten people that there are some people who remember them very well and have not forgotten what marks they are. In fact, on Friday morning, The Los Angeles Times had something for them to chew on while they can still afford breakfast.

“And, in The Wall Street Journal, Gary Cohn, the administration's senior economic adviser, was more than happy to explain his plan to lift the terrible burden of being honest off the nation's financial sector. Cohn, as it happens, is one of the phalanx of former Goldman Sachs employees with whom the president* plans to drain the swamp. He seems quite comfortable living there, but what do I know.

“But it's not about his old company, and his old pals, and the fairly thorough job they did blowing up the world economy eight years ago which, of course, is a century in Banker Time. They have labored under the burden of being marginally honest for far too long.

“This is about consumer choice about the same way a carny midway gives you the choice of being swindled in a shooting gallery, in a fortune-telling booth, or at a stand where you throw plastic hoops onto plastic ducks—where, of course, the hoops do not fit over the plastic ducks because that's the whole point, suckers.

“For the past two years, we heard endless thumbsucking from the Brokaws of the world that Donald Trump was a different kind of Republican, that he was running a "populist" campaign, that he would "upend Republican orthodoxy." Because he couched it in barely veiled racism and xenophobia, enough of the suckers bought it to tip the election in his favor. Now, however, the rubber is meeting the road.

“Those nice white "forgotten people" will now be free to have their pensions swindled out from underneath them by sharpies whose bonuses depend on how much money they can steal. They will find themselves paying usurious interest rates on their credit cards because of a clause written in Swedish, in .00009 point type, on the back of their monthly statement. And then, when it all comes crashing down again, they'll have to look for somebody to blame, and it won't be them, and it won't be the charlatan they elevated to the White House. And someone else will run for president, and give them the proper scapegoat, and Tom Brokaw will ask all the wrong questions of all the wrong people again.

“It's morning in America.”