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July 27, 2007

Considering a Coup


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Honestly when a person witnesses the blatant takeover of a democracy, the arrogance of the suzerain and his henchhogs, and the helplessness of a majority boondoggled by sociopaths, one's thoughts turn to coup d'etat.

It's not the American way, you say. Well folks, consider the saga of American Liberty League who gave it the old college try back in 1934. You can hear all about it on the BBC.

Smedley Butler, an unsung American hero, exposed the plot by big business and it was diffused, or maybe it just went underground. Ah, those were the days of courtliness, and Butler in spite of the fact that " the plan was for him to have held near-absolute power in the newly created position of "Secretary of General Affairs," while Roosevelt would have assumed a figurehead role" demured.

Why haven't you ever heard of this? Wikipedia tells an all too familiar story:

Several scenarios have been proposed in explaining why the affair did not become a cause celebre, among which are:

* The story was an embarrassment to people of influence, and it was best to sweep it under the rug as quickly possible.
* In 1934, newspapers were controlled by a relatively small elite — according to then-Interior Secretary Harold L. Ickes, 82% of all dailies had monopolies in their communities. Proponents of the theory thus suggest that the media downplayed Butler's testimony based on the interests of their advertisers and owners.
* Some of Roosevelt's advisors were in on the plot, and downplayed it when it was exposed to prevent their dirty laundry from being aired in public.

Smedley, you might know, went on to write the first expose of the Military-Industrial Complex, a classic entitled War is a Racket, which is still worth perusal should you choose to challenge yourself in the heat of summer.

Smedley, you "Old Gimlet Eye" you, where are you now that we need you?

Photo note: The American flag, snagged by the Bushes

Posted by Dakota at July 27, 2007 01:36 PM