Archive for December, 2006

Part 3

Saturday, December 23rd, 2006

In November of 1974, for reasons that are unclear to me and probably are unexplainable in any event, Lyndon Larouche spoke before the House and Senate committees on whether to confirm Nelson Rockefellar as Gerald Ford’s vice president.

Mr. LaRouche, who also testified before the Senate panel, read a statement calling for the rejection of Mr. Rockefellar because of his “family’s stated program for world reorganization,” which he said was modelled “after the conceptions of Hitler’s finance minister, Hjalmar Schocht.” LaRouche also spoke about “Rockefeller’s supernatural conspiracy” and said that “the criminal stupidity and immorality of Rockefellar’s fascist economic programs leads directly to general ecological holocaust.”

LaRouche’s rhetoric was criticized by several members of the committee, with Representative John Conyers, Jr saying that he felt LaRouche had highly overstated the case. “Some of the terminology creates the suspicion that these may be unprovable statement.”

Perhaps he was invited as a matter of courtesy after Larouchites disrupted some Watergate proceedings earlier in the year.

It occurs to me that Nelson Rockeller had long been a man open to conspiracy theories — rich and firmly wedded to the establishment as he. More mainstream conservative Republicans didn’t much like Rockefeller, and still today the term “Rockefeller Republican” is a slur.

LaRouche is generally said to have moved from the “far Left” to the “far Right” at this point in time. I congratulage everyone who is able to ascribe ideological swings of any type, but the collection of political causes that he collected seems irrelevant. The basics remain in place. First, you start with the Grand Unified Theory of everything. He’s the world’s greatest economist, don’t you know, and that’s because he follows Plato and Classical Music instead of the godfather of Baby-boomers and their rock and roll, Aristotle. And, the world is out to get him. And he needs to gain control of the world lest it suffer from the impending economic collapse.

I don’t know what goes on the man’s head. Perhaps he noticed the shift in the political winds, saw that 60s Radicalism was dying, and tossed his lot in pursuing various disaffected groups of the right and conservative persuasions. When I look at his supposed election coalition for 1976, I do notice the spring-born for how his group did manage to wreck havoc on the Democratic Party in 1986 — filling a vacuum.

So he was now fighting anti-Apartheid groups, and peddling dossiers on them. He was advocating nuclear power. He was fighting the Zionist Drug Cabal — or was it the British Royal Family’s Drug Cabal? And he advocated the Gold Standard. As a whole, the John Birch Society shoved him aside, but he gained a foothold in certain black helicopter segments (such that today he can make appearances on Jeff Rense’s radio show).

I finally have found the concrete steps LaRouche took to get from the far left to the far right. The Liberty Lobby advertised and sold copies of a 129 page report from the Labor Council that exposed the “Carter / Rockefeller/ CIA” plot to “deindustrialize” America and go to war with the Soviet Union by 1978. That Bircher-like organization’s news organ, Spotlight, called NCLS “probably the only honest Marxist group in the US because it is not supported by Rockefeller money.” Politics makes for strange bed fellows, perhaps, by more appropriately, Conspiracy theories do. The other item is LaRouche hiring a former Batista security advisor to help him agains the assasination plots from the Maoist “Bader Mernhof Organization”. If he says so.

In 1976, LaRouche made his first run for president. And the following would be repeated in all subsequent runs:

“In about mid-September an international monetary crisis will threaten the dollar and every other currency, accompanying the complete collapse of United States assets in banks abroad. At that time, national politics will become one of the most prominent features of the new situation. Jimmy Carter will be eliminated as a credible figure. The people will have a choice between two credible candidates: Ford and LaRouche. My qualifications in international economics will become important; I’m probably the world’s leading expert, in all modesty.”

He never did win the election. And while the economy was pretty darned sluggish, it didn’t quite collapse. I imagine at the heart of the perpetual apocalyptic economy is a stringing along of his followers, though he’s likely internalized the bad fever-dream.

Preparing for the 1980 election, he wrote in his autobiography about the political forces that were coming against him, and how “Whatever doesn’t kill you”… well… apparently makes you President:

The most powerful adversary presently available to anyone in the “Western World” has not only expressed his wish for my early demise, but has visibly deployed a coordinated force of slander and physical harassments, and has set into motion specialized capabilities of an assassination of a relevant sort. If I survive the months immediately before me at this moment of writing, it will become reasonable — at a rapid rate — that I might be iaugurated president of the United States in January of 1981.

I note for the record that he never said “elected”, which makes the other routes his mind hatched up to become president intriguing.

Lyndon LaRouche was just about to become a Democrat, starting (drum role please) the Democratic Policy Committee. The media would always have to place a disclaimer on the obvious that the DPC is not afffiliated with the DNC.  This was probably a wise decision, all things considered, the Democratic Party route. People don’t vote for third party candidates. Here, LaRouche ran for president in 1980, and receiving two percent in the New Hampshire primary, challenged for a recount, believing he received 20 percent of the vote.  The recount showed up an additional nine votes for him– and additional thousands for the right-in candidate Ronald Reagan, a sign of the Democratic Party’s troubles come November.

The Larouchites went to work attacking and confusing the Democratic establishment.  Wilcox Brown, New Hampshire’s widely respected Democratic National Committeeman, received a telephone call reently from a campaign worker for Democratic Presidential candidate Lyndon H LaRouche, Jr.  “Mr. Brown,” said the young woman who called, “if you don’t do anything about it when LaRouche is assassinated and you’ve done nothing to prevent it, then his blood’s going to be on your hands.”  (Boston Globe, 2-17-1980 “Freinge Candidate or Threat?”)  Also, by the way, the New Hampshire House Democratic leader, Chistos Spirou, had links to organized crime circles in Quebec, Montreal, and Greece that LaRouche was busy tracing and exposing.  But you already knew that.
The genius of the name LaRouche gave his new parasitic organization, “Democratic Policy Committee” — is shown that when a spokesperson calls up the Mexican government and states that they are from the “Democratic Policy Committee” — the Mexican government obliges the offer.

Part 2

Friday, December 22nd, 2006

Imagine you are a reporter for the New York Times in 1973. Your editor calls you to the desk, and asks you to do a piece on the fringe party candidates for New York City mayor. You research the parties, write up each candidate, maintaining total objectivity. There’s this novel new third party, the “Free Libertarian Party”, which you dutifully mention had its presidential candidate in 1972 receive one electoral vote from a disgruntled Republican. And then you find yourself typing this:

The strident US Labor Party stems from the National Caucus of Labor Committees, which contends it has “wrested left hegemony” from the Coummunist party, in part by an “Operation Mop Up”. Its weekly newspaper “New Solidarity” says, “many CPers have been sent to the hospital after jumping Labor Committee members in the CPs own meetings.”

The tip off is his use of “an” and the use of quotation marks in explaining “Operation Mop Up”. He could just as easily have cited the number 40 as the number of Communists taken down in “Operation Mop Up”, as it apparently was in the literature, which begs the question, considering what fringes of the political spectrum we’re working with here: ALL 40 of them?

Incidentally, the Labor Party’s mayorial candidate clears up some confusion, and I am inclined to believe Mr. Chaitkin here:

The “Caucus” dates from the 1968 student strike at Columbia University. Some sources call it an offshoot of splits in the leftist Progressive Labor Party and the Students for a Democratic Society. Mr. Chaitkin (the mayorial candidate), however, says it was started as a Greenwich Village discussion group by Lyn Marcus (aka Lyndon LaRouche), now national chairman. (Was he ever not?)

A letter that appeared in the New York Times arguring with a book reviewer for the LaRouche expose New American Fascism over the relative danger of the cult (the book reviewer said King pretty well inflates LaRouche’s threat — which I’m inclined to agree, despite an awareness that individually he’s hit some people hard) in 1989 shed a bit of light on some earlier activities, suggesting that the ideology hasn’t shifted much no matter what part of the political spectrum it is obstensibly attracting, nor has the tactics.

The media found itself covering this strange little cult when the case of Alice Weitzman showed up, an investigation and ensuing court trial over this situation:

Early this month in Washington Heights a young woman slipped away from the intense people who had had been crowding her apartment, folded a desperate note into a paper airplane, and sailed it out the living room. The note twisted down through the winter twilight to the feet of a mother and child out for a walk. While the young woman would frantically from the window, the mother picked up the note and read it.

“Please help to get me out of here. I am being held a prisonerin my own apartment. They’re going to move me soon to some unknown location. I will try to leave some clues in my room if the police get here too late. The note was signed Alice Weitzman.
To use somebody else’s terminology, she was an “Enemy of the People” — too questioning… she needed to be deprogrammed because there was a conspiracy afloat that had programmed her. Or something like that.

Now the group is convinced it is the target of a vast conspiracy embracing, among many other elements, the CIA, the KGB, British Intelligence, the New York City Police Department, the Rocekfellar family (ie: everyone who shot Kennedy) , and the anthropology department at Columbia University (!!!). This conspiracy, they say, has secretly gotten access to various of their members and has “programmed” them like computers to invent spurious identities and assassinate their leaders.

To post the details of the “deprogramming” seems to me gratuitious — there is a perverse and guilty “WTF” amusement in reading this, nubbed away when I realize the implications and that humanity is at stake here. Then again, Gratuitous is posting a never-ending series of posts chronologizing Mr. Larouche’s career. And, in the end, I’m trying to impart information. Don’t tell me I didn’t warn you, and here is one of a few long passages I’ve chosen to pass by in its entirety.
Last summer, Mr. Marcus did his first “deprogramming” of a member in Germany named Konstantin George, who had left his wife and the movement to live with a psychiatrist in East Germany. When he returned to the West, Mr. Marcus said he discovered elements of a vast assassination plot against him implanted in Mr. George’s mind. Through the fall the talk of conspiracies and brainwashing grew in the movement. Mr. Marcus found his second victim at the annual meeting of the Labor Committees here on the last three days of December. He was a 26 year old English member named Christopher White. Mr. White was married last year to Miss Schnitzer, ten years his senior.

Mr. Marcus has taped the deprogramming, and to a layman it appears obvious that the elements of the conspiracy he claims to extract from Mr. White’s mind are either harmless bits of personal history or ideas suggested by Mr. Marcus himself.

When Mr. White resists the questioning at one point, Mr. Marcus shouts at the obviously disturbed youth: “You don’t have to communicate a goddamn thing. I know what your mind is.”

At another point when Mrs. White is in the room and Mr. White has confirmed one of Mr. Marcus’s suggestions, Mr. Marcus says “Now do you see Carol? Do you believe?”

There are sounds of weeping and vomiting on the tapes, and Mr. White complains of being deprived of sleep, food, and cigarettes. At one point someone says “raise the voltage,” but Mr. Marcus says this was associated with the bright lights used in the questioning rather than an electric shock. There is also what appears to be an attempt to hypnotize Mr. White by someone not Mr. Marcus in the room.

Mr. Marcus denies that Mr. White was mistreated in any way. He says a phsician, Dr. Gene Inch, also a member of the group, was in attendence throughout.

Mr. Marcus uses a combination of computer terminology and sexology to describe the “programming”. He describes Mr. White as “being reduced to a 8-cycle infinite loop with look-up table, with homosexual bestiality.” […] Mr. Marcus also says that a certain type of drug which his research has as yet been unable to specify is used in the “programming”. One of the iron rules of the labor committees is that members who use drugs are instantly expelled.

During the intensive questioning one day, Mr. White complains of a terrible pain in his arm. “That’s not real,” Mr. Marcus screams. “I have to tell you what’s real and stop this crazy fantasy world because it’s not my fantasy.”

It was at this time that the FBI tightened the restrictions of investigations such that they were unable to continue their search into LaRouche’s — strike that, Lyn Marcus’s — bizarre cult. Lyn Marcus proved an agile litigate on this matter — and shortly the FBI was no longer able to even comment on this case.

Part 3. At the Rockefellar vice president hearings. Attempting to gain support from the Right. The Election of 1976 and a platform that will become eerily repetitive.

Part One.

Friday, December 22nd, 2006

Recently I noted that somebody had posted this site to a link on where that then-plagued by LaRouchite commenters can get some information about Lyndon LaRouche. It was a bit galling. I make an unlikely source. I mock it and try to move on. But the problem is that if I’m to be referenced as a source of LaRouche, I may as well have more material on him than what I’d tend to otherwise — a wisecrack smirk followed by a devastating comment from a former member of his cult (taken by a college journalist as my words). If this is linked in that way, I might as well have actual INFORMATION to be used and considered. Thus… welcome to a long series of posts that detail the career of one Lyndon H Larouche, Jr.

Lyndon H LaRouche, Jr. was born to a family of Quakers. They were arch-conservative Quakers who accused their fellow-church-goers of being Bolsehviks. LaRouche, Sr. wrote a rambling tract berating them for a variety of crimes, including failure to react positively to an anti-Jewish speech. Thus, they were kicked out of the congregation. This is according to a review of the book New American Fascism.

LaRouche, Jr. started out a consientous objector during World War II — a biographical bit of information he mentioned when he suited it attracting radical Leftists and would start to leave out when he sought to attract right-wingers (and had his followers hold up signs mocking Jane Fonda). If you know your World War II conscientous objector history, you know they were pretty well rounded up and placed in work camps. It was here that he bunked with a Trotskyite who imparted radical politics onto him. And thus was born “Lyn Marcus”, who after the war joined the Socialist Workers Party.

In the late 1970s, LaRouche would revise the reason that he was a member of a Communist party. The government had wanted him to infiltrate the group, you see. He, being a noble citizen, you see, refused. But he joined to see for himself what was up and what was that all. It is a feeble excuse for someone wanting to distance himself from his past in attempting to appeal to a different segment of the population, and if believed would fall short of explaining all subsequent events in his life, but LaRouche probably believes it.

LaRouche eventually joined the army, and worked as a medical corpsman in India. He attended college, and quit soon thereafter because he believed himself better than his teachers — he was “one of those prodigies”. I can compare this to emails I’ve received telling me LaRouchites are in throe urging college students to quit — he is imparting on them a sense of intellectual superiority onto his would-be recruits.

The most important part of his conventional career path was his employment in computer programming and systems designing in the late 1950s and early 1960s. It is the language of the computer industry, circa 1960, quickly outdated though it may be, that infects his literature and serves as one of a few factors that make them unreadable. If you’ve ever actually read one of his pamphlets, you are made of headier stuff than I. It is also this training that shadows his “programming” — or “counter-programming” that the “conspirators” had committed (heh heh).

LaRouche was kicked out of the Socialist Workers’ Party for trying to organize a radical shism with well known British schimatic Gerald Healy.  Do not ask me what that means, but it doesn’t seem to bode well for a constructive future.  It was then that LaRouche started teaching Marxist economics  at the Free School of New York, which was the genesis of the cult to come.
I have every reason to believe that LaRouche’s group had as much to do with the SDS as he has now with the Democratic Party, despite media reports suggesting a close lineage. Here is a 1970 antecedent that suggests that, contrary to largely held thought in 1970s reporting on LaRouche (or “Lyn Marcus”) that it was not really “noble at first” until things just started to go haywire.

As a graduate student and lecturer at the City College of New York in 1970, I was an advisor to a new undergraduate group, Students for Environmental Salvage. This was at the time of intense awareness of conservation and pollution issues on compuses in New York City and elsewhere, that led to the first Earth Day. Students in the group were deeply and genuinely concerned about endangered species, oil spills, pesticides, solid waste disposal — in short, the whole range of problems that still haunt us today.

Attendance at the first few meetings was veery high (up to 100 or more) and enthusiastic until, at the third or fourth meeting, one student shouted his way into leadership and into narrowing the agenda to one issue: rolling back the subway fare! This student later proved to be the spokesman of a small group of LaRouche disciples, members of the National Caucus of Labor Committees.

Rolling back the recently raised subway fare was a progressive cause and certainly had an environmental aspect, since public mass transit pollutes less than other alternatives. But all other concerns were ridiculed and labeled “neo-Malthusian.” Subsequent meetings were more and more poorly attended, as the LaRouche people forced themselves into a major role in planning the college’s Earth Day activities.

Cirty College’s first “environmental teach-in” (4-16-70) became a strange forum of speeches and workshops dominated by LaRouche himself (under his Lyn Marcus alias) and his supporters, who peddled their moronic anti-environmental views to a few bewildered students. The college’s participation in Earth Day, six days later, was sparse and disorganized.

What Lyndon LaRouche had done, I realized in shock and disgust, was to sabotage very effectively the student environmental movement at City College, the quintessential urban public institution of higher learning in America.

– George Dale, Armank NY, 7-16-89

Nonetheless, it appears his “Labor Committee” gained some measure of respectibility during a Columbia University Strike, and he either worked in tandem with SDS or parasitically to take credit and lead followers into its corridor, attracted to the strike first, then the World Revolution that it shared in common with SDS, and on to… to… to…

Okay. Cue 1974 New York Times article:

In mid 1972 Miss Schnitzer and Mr. Marcus parted. Early members say that she had served as a target of his wrath at meetings, providing a semblence of debate about theories. After she left, they said, Mr. Marcus increasingly insisted on one man rule, calling dissenters CIA agents or accusing them of having “mother problems”.

Now. First of all, if you go back into my Larouche archives, you will find that “mother problem” idea is still imrinted on LaRouchites as a means of psychological warfare with would-be recruits. Second of all, looking from the outside in it has to be different from how it looks from the inside, visa vie level of controls and the nature of the ideas being sprouted.
Next time: How to wreck a college’s Environmental Movement, Operation Mop-Up, the media discovers something funky, and whatever else I get to.


Tuesday, December 19th, 2006

An interesting little article from April 11, 1986 in the New York Times concering LaRouche’s then new hometown. Of course it’s not online, but if you have access to the New York Times archives, try it and learn such things as:

Mr. LaRouche’s guns have raised eyebrows even here in the hunt country of Loudoun County.  “I have a major personal security problem,” Mr. LaRouche said in one leaflet, written while he was seeking permits for his bodyguards to carry concealed weapons.  Without the permits, he said, “the assassination teams of professional mercenaries now being trained in Canada and along the Mexico bordermay be expected to start arriving on the streets of Leeburg.  If they come, there will be many people dead or mutilated within as short an interval as sixty seconds of fire.”


Local merchants say [The Loudoun News — local publication from Larouche]has run advertisements for their businesses without permission, apparently to give the impression of community support for Mr. LaRouche. Danaura Smith, who with her husband runs R and D Furniture, said she was approached by a salesman for The News but said no. Then the paper reprinted an advertisement she had run in The Washington Post. When she complained to the salesman, she said, “He told me I was harassing him.” Mr. Spannaus, the LaRouche spokesman denied that advertisements had been run without merchants’ permission.


Few Loudoun County residents say they have seen Mr. LaRouche, but when he made a rare visit to town about a year ago — associates of his were opening a bookstore — security guards with walkie – talkies staked out each corner, said a shopkeeper, Molly Mosher.  They were not uniformed, but easy to spot, she said, explaining that all wore sunglasses but were “sort of nerdy looking for Secret Service.”

Miss Mosher, who sells children’s clothing and toys, asked “How can you run a children’s store with armed guards outside?”


Last fall, organizations dominated by LaRouche applied for a zoning variance to open a children’s summer camp at Sweetwater Farm, a 65-acre tract near Neersville in Loudoun County.  At the zoning hearing, a photographer who said he was with Campaigner Publications took pictures of those who spoke against the variance.  The picture-taking was legal, but the sheriff and others said the intent was intimidation.  Mr. Spannaus said the photographer also took pictures of those who spoke for the variance.

Mrs. Harrison spoke against it, as did Pauline Giruin, the lwayer who is now in hiding.  She had collected signatures from neighbors on a petition to stop the camp, fearing that it might become a weapons training ground.

While Miss Giruin was being interviewed on a Leesburg Street by WRC-TV, an NBC affiliate in Washington, someone walked behind her and, according to Miss Giruin, said, “Polly, you’re going to die.” The television reporter said on the air that the comment sounded like a threat. Law enforcement officials said it could not be the basis for an arrest.

Miss Giruin, in a telephone interview from what she said was “a safe house” said she left town after receiving telephone threats and after a car repeatedly pulled into and out of her driveway.

The article also features dead animals in yards — and LaRouche’s libel lawsuit regarding accusations of responsibility, a shop-lifting spree by a group of LaRouchites attending a conference on running for office, and general paranoia aroused by the populace.

Barney issues a statement

Monday, December 18th, 2006
You want a frined in Washington? Get a dog.” — Harry S. Truman.
“I Will Not Withdraw Even If Laura And Barney Are The Only Ones Supporting Me.” — George W Bush
I guess this is appropriate enough, seeing as Bush has taken to compare himself to Truman as of late, which is that Bush has taken to fancy himself an Unpopular President who History Will Vindicate. It’s sort of neat that we have a new multi-faceted use for Truman in politics — Truman has traditionally been the province of dead-end presidential bids assuring the people that they’re going to pull off another Truman 1948 upset.
My sense of Barney is that he’s a safe figure for Bush to cite, because he doesn’t have any platform to voice an opinion with. Except the annual Christmas-time web feature “Barney Cam”.
Wait a miniute, though. Did you see this year’s Barney Cam? It’s like it was produced by Michael Moore! Such vitrol! I’m particularly stricken by the scene where he pees on Donald Rumsfeld’s foot. This is a sure sign that Bush is indeed taking Barney’s opinions into consideration, Rumsfeld having been fired.

Another Presidential Candidate drops out of the race.

Sunday, December 17th, 2006


So.  Um.


Do you mean to tell me that Lyndon Larouche is not running for the president?  He’s been running literally my entire life… and then some.

It is here that I feel I must provide a disclaimer.  I have never been in any Larouchite group.  I do not know anyone who has been in any Larouchite group.  I have no particular reason to be interested in the activities of Lyndon Larouche.

Lyndon Larouche, I suppose, is moving into an exciting New Direction.  What is he to do to pull his cadre of supporters along now that he has no presidential bid in the wane?  He can pull his efforts into Initiatives, such as the AIDs Patient Registry Initiatve he had in California in the 1980s.  He can tend to a “political pac” and entrench himself into electing that strange assortment of elected Democrats he is the party boss for.

But I wonder if this item from his news organ suggests where he is going.

The story is completely insane.  It does not really matter, though.  What matters for a cult is to create and form the storylines that your followers are to carry on their lives forward with.  Larouche is here creating a fictional battle with Howard Dean — with Bill Clinton on his side.  But it occurs to me that there was Larouchite who ran for the Texas Democratic chair — didn’t get past the first round, of course, but I think went on to take credit in the Larouche-universe for the role of “king maker” in the second round of voting.  Perhaps Larouche can stoke his followers into having him run for Democratic National Committee chair.  Understand, the Bush years — which have been boon years for him — are two years from being done with, and he must move on to his next great crusade.

In 2004 I saw a Larouche supporter cover himself with John Kerry stickers.  I shrugged and went ahead and asked him, “Why is Larouche supporting Kerry?”  He answered, “We need to take over the Democratic Party.”  This is the Popular Front attitude, and it remains largely non-sensical even with real candidates.  I guess there’s nothing new under the sun, and political rhetoric can end up matching itself voiced by any insurgent element– credible or fringe-lunatic.

Honestly, I am now just waiting for this man to die.  The only thing I want to know about Larouche at this point in time is what becomes of his cult after death.  I don’t believe he can be literally diefied.  Will Larouchites now peddle his past work on street corners and college campuses?  Can it splinter in groups depending on who an individual believes is the rightful Larouche scholar?

Evan Bayh confronts the power of the Skull / Bones blog

Saturday, December 16th, 2006

Apparently Evan Bayh set up his exploratory committee to explore whether to run for President or not, explored around a bit, and decided to not run.

I have it on record a post saying that Evan Bayh was Never Going to be President.  Which means two things: my power of prognostication did not fail me.  And perhaps, perhaps, Evan Bayh came to the conclusion that he should not run because of that list.

I demand monetary compensation for saving Evan Bayh the money he would have wasted in continuing on his exploratory path that would have lead him, with more time and money, to this same conclusion.

Tin Foil Hat not working

Friday, December 15th, 2006

Make sure you test him for poison. You never know.

Hm. A not terribly notable Democratic Senator, so far as I know not in charge of any committee that may lead to Bush’s downfall. I assume he tends well to his South Dakota consituency — being nationally “not notable” isn’t a bad thing, so long as you don’t have presidential ambitions.

In 2002, Tim Johnson won re-election and staved off the national tide with about 500 votes off of, as absurd as this may seem, Tom Daschle’s coat-tails. The National Review had a cover story that gave the spurious claim that that election was stolen — some Native American precints were the final precints to report, and the rule of how one steals an election is to report your voting strong-holds where your people are in charge last so you know the number of votes you need to report to win. That, so far as I could tell from the article, was about the extent of their suspicions that Johnson’s election was invalid. I don’t think that this has permeated the mind of the general Republican partisan, though I do believe that Robert Novak believes this.

Nevertheless, the Republican Party probably believes that rightfully this seat is theirs. A razor thin margin in a Republican state, it looked like an aberration during a general Republican night, and Thune went on to defeat Daschle two years later. And mind you, the 2008 Senate picture presents slim pickings for the Republican Party — beyond Mary Landrieu in Louisiana, and beyond a possible retirement by Jay Rockefellar in West Virginia… well, one termers are often obvious targets, but the one first term Democratic Senator — Mark Pryor of Arkansas — is a Democrat in a state with a lot of Democrats just like Mark Pryor.

I wonder about the Anthrax scare in October of 2001, a moment that invited and incubated conspiracy theory. That case is cold, even as the recent 2006 Anthrax Revival scare was traced to this Free Republic poster (and science fiction fan), whose venom toward Nancy Pelosi, Keith Olberman, Air America Radio and such apparently was all too real violent. I always assumed that the 2001 Anthrax threat was a similar type of culprit — Tom Daschle, “American Media” of the National Enquirer and Tom Brokaw at NBC News — the liberal media — and, Patrick Leahy chosen perhaps because of the issue of judicial appointments.

The conspiracy theory holds that Daschle and Leahy were at the time of the receiving the Anthrax threats deliberating on the Patriot Act. The Anthrax settled the matter for them… yes… Patriot Act… in its entirety. I suspect that they would have been no diffferent in their fealty toward the executive branch, since post 9/11 the United States had something of a “Unity Government”. But to consider that is to over-think the matter; it always makes sense to get the opposition party in line and frighten everyone generally for the purpose of gaining and maintaining power.

I don’t believe Mel Carnahan’s death created much conspiratorial speculation in 2000– though I may be wrong, and at any rate it was in the shadow of what would turn out to be a very controversial election. It resurfaced, though, as the back-drop to Paul Wellstone. I’ve looked at that bit of tin-foil hattery here, and here, and here, and here. 2002 was a good year, when because the conventional wisdom took Bush and the government so at face value, any deviations had it brandished one as “conspiracy theorist” or “lunatic leftist fringe”, so if that is going to happen one may go ahead and go all the way.

Tim Johnson gives me no grist for the mill, though. I noted a “prepare for the conspiracy theories” from a prominent blog of sorts. That is an overstatement. A quick glance and I don’t even notice anything on Alex Jones’s site. I suppose I may go ahead and look at more partisan picks for this mill — anyone post anything interesting at Democratic Underground? Mike Malloy? How does such a conspiracy work to select Tim Johnson? Is there a series of matrices that move through the state laws and elected state officials and state political climates to arrive at the optimum Democrat — or if you decide that this isn’t partisan simply general elected Senator — to off — to dissolve one part of the ‘checks and balances’ in overseeing the Bush Adminstration / Regime / Juanta?

the blind sheik

Friday, December 15th, 2006

I am left dumb-founded by the news that comes out about the perpetrator of the first WTC attack and what his death has in store for America.

The health of terrorist cleric Omar Abdel-Rahman, known as the Blind Sheik, is deteriorating – renewing fears that his death in prison could trigger an attack on the United States, officials said Thursday.

My one word question is “Why?”

Officials said the bulletin served merely as a reminder that Abdel-Rahman had called for retaliation by terror sympathizers if he died in prison. It cited a May 1998 news conference in which al-Qaida members distributed his last will and testament, in which Abdel-Rahman pleaded for followers to “extract the most violent revenge” should he die in U.S. custody.

Fair enough, I suppose, even as the government gives us this:

However, there is no credible indication that an attack on the United States is imminent, the Associated Press reported, citing unnamed law enforcement officials.

Which makes sense, because what does not make sense is that there is this huge group of Muslim Extremists not currently planning on doing harm to America or American interests who will do so should Abdel-Rahman die in US custody.  This is one of those mixed up messages we are sent from time to time — Be Afraid of something Vague, but don’t worry.
I wonder, though, Can the US ship him off to Canada and have him die there, and if they do so would this group of Muslim Extremists — who won’t be enraged until he dies in American custody — call the whole thing off?

But U.S. Bureau of Prisons spokeswoman Tracy Billingsley said Abdel-Rahman’s condition had stabilized, and he has since been moved back to prison.

“His condition has improved,” Billingsley said.

Him and Tim Johnson, both, I suppose.