Thursday, July 17, 2014

I call this my never forget essay/speech.

But I have to warn you, there’s a little bit of a trap to it, which goes like this:

You have to know something, first to remember it, before you can either forget it or never forget it.

Please let me give you some examples:

How many of you can never forget that “The Pledge of Allegiance” was concocted in 1892 by Francis Bellamy, a socialist minister from our Fifth Congressional District (Melrose), a school superintendent, AND the circulation slash promotion manager of Youth’s Companion Magazine, published in downtown Boston? (Now an historical site, even!)

    How many of you can never forget that Francis Bellamy came up with this so-called “pledge,” because he was getting kids to sell magazine subscriptions to family, friends and neighbors, and he used the American flag as an incentive.  As the story goes (look it up on the internet), you’d get a little tiny flag if you did OK. Bigger ones for the teachers’ desk if you did better than OK and got the whole class selling subscriptions. And really big schoolyard-sized flags if you got the whole school involved and really sold subscriptions.

   And how many of you can never forget that Bellamy, in his speeches, said that he thought children should be seen and not heard, should be docile and obedient to “their elders” and to their teachers , and that he came up with what he called “the Roman salute” to go along with the “pledge” and a flag-raising ceremonies he promoted all over the states, celebrating the 400th  anniversary of Christopher Columbus’ finding the Winter Paradise called The Caribbean Islands—one in particular, Hispaniola (now poor, benighted and beset Haiti & the Dominican Republic). 

Now here’s a real test of never forgetting for you. Who can demonstrate Bellamy’s “Roman salute” for us right now? Don’t tell me you’ve forgotten!??!

  Anyone?  Well, here are a couple of public school classroom pictures you’ve all never forgotten, right?

There’s a whole batch of stuff on this topic on the Internet, and you should look it up. Suffice it to say, though, that somewhere between Columbus’ Quadricentennial and World War II, Mussolini saw the salute, liked it, and copied it for his troops. Then Hitler saw it, and expropriated it from Francis Bellamy as well.  Then Franklin Delano Roosevelt noticed its use abroad, and thought it might make sense to change the “Bellamy Roman salute” to the “hand over the heart”.

This is one illustration of the intellectual trap that never forget conveniently leaves out. Namely, that if you’ve never learned it, it will be impossible for you to “never forget” it.

As for how you can learn such things as this, look it up on the Internet. If you think it’s enough for me to have told you about it, you’re wrong. Because all you have learned about it is that Someone Named William Wilt from Waltham, who is running for Congress in the 5th Congressional District of Massachusetts TOLD you about this. 

Now, here is something I think you REALLY should never forget. And if you don’t know it, you’d better learn it, and teach it to your kids, their teachers and all your neighbors, friends and associates. Myself and a few others call it The Constitution of the United States. It used to be that when someone took office in the United States, they actually knew the Constitution. They could recite it to you, or quietly, for themselves as, for example, they considered whether a government bill or law or procedure was consistent with the Constitution.

     Now, I can’t recite the whole Constitution. I am familiar with it, and I have a copy I carry, and copies on a “hot key” on all my computers, so it’s never very far away.

I do know the Preamble, the 52-word-long sentence that begins the Constitution. I’d like you to recite it along with me—I’ll be the bouncing ball.
We the People/of the United States
in order to form
a more perfect Union
establish Justice
insure domestic Tranquility,
provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and
secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity,
do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

That’s it. When you learn it, when you Know it, when you never forget these 52 words, you will find, I think, that you have a very powerful place to stand, and you can make it even stronger if you take on learning all of the Constitution. I would start with the Preamble (seems a logical place, right?), and then tackle the Bill of Rights, paying particular attention to the Ninth and Tenth Amendments.

I’ll tell you why in a couple of minutes.

But first, you might want to know why a “complete unknown” from the news, television and computer industries—now retired—would undertake an unconventional, free-from-money, quixotic, long-shot, snowball’s chance in Spring, write-in congressional campaign.

So here’s why. I have two ex-wives, with whom I produced or adopted four children, ages 37, 23, 14 and 14. My eldest child has two sons, 6 and 8. I have a brother, with three children, and a sister, with four. Together, I call them “My hostages to history.”
    I suspect my hostages are not so different from your hostages, your parents—and I’m sure we all have or had parents, right? We have hard, scientific evidence of it, easy to verify. Here’s a simple test : Ouch. There it is. You’re alive. And we certainly can verify that our spouses, children, grand children and even great-grand-children are alive, using this same test.

So, I don’t want my living family members, all of whom I hope long outlive me—but I don’t wish to meet an unnatural end, don’t get me wrong.  I’m in no hurry to shuffle off this mortal coil [Act III, Scene i — Hamlet], or betimes [too early] within Time’s bending sickle’s compass come. (Sonnet 116). But I’m mindful that there’s a divinity that shapes our ends, rough-hew them how we wilt.

And that’s probably enough to let you know that, while I was only an American PFC, I was an English Major, I guess because the English are more generous with their titles, tied as they are to Royalty, which they’ve been unable to shuck for lo these many, many centuries (1066 and all that, and well before).

Let me go back to that PFC thing for a moment, because there’s a lesson in it for all of us. Many lessons, in fact.

How many of you have actually served in combat?  Not this namby-pamby “in harm’s way” euphemism. This is in Death’s way, not harm. The Grim Reaper. Kill or be killed.  It’s amazing that we let gummint officials pollute our language, concepts, thoughts that way. Harm, indeed. It’s death we’re talkin’ about here, and we all need to be bold enough to call a spade a spade, a war a war, a grave a grave, a headstone a headstone.

I got my draft notice in the spring of 1964. I thought I’d exercise some initiative by choosing a branch of service and an interesting job.  I thought flying planes in the Navy would be a challenge. I’d become a Navy-ator.  Not an Aviator, as my late dad had wanted to be in World War II.

So I filled out the forms, took the physical, and was told the bad news. I had a minor physical defect—broken coccyx. “Sorry, son, we can’t take you.”

Now, this could have occurred to me as a disappointment, but perhaps, if the Army had the same problem…well, let’s find out. So I wended my way to the Army recruiters, filled out the papers, and went for the physical. Well, wouldn’t you know it, the Army doc found the same thing the Navy doc had found.  And they were different guys, by the way.

Well, I figured that was that. I’ll be a civilian and go back to my cub reporter’s job in Watertown (New York, not the Watertown in the 5th Congressional district right here.

One month later, in mid April, I found myself raising my right hand and swearing to support and defend the US Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic. In Buffalo. With a dozen or so other young guys (I was actually somewhat older than many of them, so I got to be their “squad leader,” charged with getting them from Buffalo to New York City by train, and then to Ft. Dix, New Jersey by bus. So let me remind you of what I’ll never forget: I couldn’t enlist in the Navy or the Army because of a coccyx “issue,” but I could be drafted. US Navy. US Army. US Draft.  Obviously three different branches of military service, right?

We had  a three or four hour wait on the train schedule, so, in our first of many encounters with the United Service Organization (USO), we were given a meal chit and a free movie pass.

Guess what we got to see.  1964. Buffalo. Movie Theater. Matinee. You’ll never guess. It was a kind of dark comedy (in black and white, too, to extend the metaphor). Called Dr. Strangelove, or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb.
Starring Peter Sellers, George C. Scoot, Sterling Hayward, and so on. It was on a very big screen. Which made the last scenes all the more impressive, with Slim Pickins riding “The Bomb,” rodeo style, but backwards, waving his cowboy hat to Doom.

And here are we, brand spanking new draftees, waiting to board a train to Ft. Dix, the Pneumonia Capital of the War Department, watching this screen-filling explosion, this smoking gun still used by our “leaders” to terrify the world, 70 years after the event…and 50 years after the movie was released.

Here we are, about to begin Basic Training, in the Pine Barrens of Ft. Dix, and we’re listening to the sound track: “We’ll meet again, don’t know where, don’t know when,” sung by Vera Lynn, and watching a nice video montage of atomic bomb blasts, with an odd thought or two about Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

Song, sung by Vera Lynn, We’ll Meet Again.

We'll meet again,
Don't know where, don't know when,
But I know we'll meet again, some sunny day.
Keep smiling through,
Just like you always do,
Till the blue skies drive the dark clouds, far away.
So will you please say hello,
To the folks that I know,
Tell them I won't be long, (I won’t be long)
They'll be happy to know that as you saw me go
I was singing this song.
We'll meet again,
Don't know where, don't know when,
But I know we'll meet again, some sunny day.

We'll meet again,
Don't know where, don't know when,
But I know we'll meet again, some sunny day.
Keep smiling through,
Just like you always do,
Till the blue skies drive the dark clouds, far away.
So will you please say hello
To the folks that I know,
Tell them I won't be long, (I won’t be long)
They'll be happy to know that as you saw me go
I was singing this song.
We'll meet again,
Don't know where, don't know when.
But I know well meet again, some sunny day.
We'll meet again,
Don't know where, don't know when.
But I know well meet again some sunny day.
Keep smiling through,
Just like You always do,
Till the blue skies drive the dark Clouds far away.
So will you please say hello to the folks that I know,
Tell them I won't be long. (I won’t be long)
They'll be happy to know as you saw me go,
I was singing this song.
We'll meet again,
Don't know where, don't know when.
But I know we'll meet again some sunny day.
Keep smiling through just like you all ways do.

Just so you know, this was a USO free movie pass that I will, what, people? It’s a USO pass I will never forget.

But to further this tale, whenever there were any forms to fill out (and there always were forms to fill out back then—probably still are, even with iPads and laptops and iPhones) and they had a box for “Branch Of Service,” I always put in You Ess Dee, USD, for USDraft. I was invariably called out on it, and I always recited my tale of being rejected by the Navy, then the Army, but not the Draft, so obviously, if the Navy and the Army had different admissions standards from the Draft, it was obviously its own branch of service. And I would point out that the death tags he was wearing begin with the letters RA, whereas mine began with the letters US—followed by 51529326—these are numbers, of course, that I will never forget. Then the sergeant would loudly tell me to “Siddown, Private!”

Long story shorter, I was trained in ordnance, did get to spend about 18 days in Qui Nhon Province—II Corps or Two Corps— got out 89 days early, and flew home to finish my last semester of school. I worked as a reporter and photographer and then copy editor for about a year, then, because of a couple of eye-opening stories I’d covered, decided to go to law school to be a better journalist. Got a NYS GI scholarship, something like $200 a semester, and got GI education benefits. I made it through my first year of law school, then a summer of copy-editing by night and kayaking by day. When it rolled around to September again, we students bought our casebooks and notepads and started in. However, in the 2nd or 3rd week of school, there was a big rally in D.C. at the Pentagon, Washington monument, Lincoln Monument, all of that—a large bunch of people showed up, “peaceably to assemble and petition the government for redress of grievances.”

     It was a simple petition—end the Vietnam War and bring the rest of the troops home.


I was standing in the crowd alongside the Reflecting Pool, and a young guy in Army fatigues was making his way through it, asking if anyone happened to be a veteran who’d served in Vietnam. When I said yes, he held out a clipboard and asked me if I’d sign the petition to end the war. Of course I would. I’d come back in January of 1966.

     This was 1968, and the war continued) and would continue for another ten years, just in time for the US Sesquicentennial in 1976. This is pretty much prosaic stuff, except for the fact that the young man was from a start-up group called the Vietnam Veterans Against the War, and the following Sunday, the VVAW ran this petition as a full-page ad in the NY Times News of the Week in Review, or §4, as news hounds called it.

My name, as PFC William F. Wilt, was the last name on the third column of about 80 names. The type was large—more than 18-point, perhaps 24 points. I should have kept a copy of the ad.


The rest of the month was pretty much the same-old same-old for a law school student, uneventful, nondescript. Except for one non-event that was worthy of description. That was the non-appearance of my September GI Education Bill check.

I called up the VA office, and they told me that my records were in transit to another VA office, “because you moved.” That’s another thing I’ll never forget. It was, of course, not true. In fact, it was a lie.

  Cuz guess what.  I had NOT moved. My then wife and I were still living in the same upstairs apartment in one half of a two-family home in Delmar, outside of Albany. Lived there all first year, 2nd year and 3rd year of law school, summers too, in fact. So, where are my records, and where, more to the point, is my GI benefits check?

I wrote to my congressmen (one from my home district, the other from my law school district. Didn’t get so much as a postcard back from them. Ditto my two senators. Nary a word.

Now, having taken a sabbatical from the copy desk, I had some familiarity with newspapers, and noted that the Albany newspaper had an Action Line column, and the Rochester paper had one, too, called HELP! Getting action, and HELP! was just what I needed, so I wrote up my little tale and asked for assistance.

The local Action Line was useless, in my case, but the Rochester HELP! column put pedal to the metal and got my records “found” and back checks and new checks started again. It had taken the editor, James Blakely, the better part of four months, ’til January of 1969, to accomplish the task. I met him years later and got to thank him in person for his HELP! It was a favor I would never forget.

Some of you may have heard about the Vietnam Veterans Against the War. And now Iraq Veterans Against the War, and Afghanistan Veterans Against the War. Perhaps just part of the Military-Industrial Complex Eisenhower warned us about (just as he left office, the coward. He did have eight years to do something about it, but did not, or could not. More on that in another essay).

I learned about the VVAW’s activities over the years—I had never done more than sign my name that once, never contributed a dime to the organization, did not “put my money where my signature was.” The VVAW was mentioned in a biography of J. Edgar Hoover. It recounted a scene wherein Hoover was summoned to the White House and told by then President Nixon , concerning the VVAW, that he should “get them.”

The VVAW was mentioned in testimony in the 1999 wrongful death lawsuit brought by Coretta Scott King and her family, vs. Lloyd Jowers “and other unidentified co-conspirators” in Memphis, Tennessee. The King family won the case, by the way. And that’s something you should never forget. (remember that conspiracy is “two or more people planning to do something,” and a criminal conspiracy is “two or more people planning to do something against the law.”  In fact, this is another something you should Right, something you should never forget. In the King v. Jowers case, a conspiracy was alleged, and a conspiracy was proven in a court of law, tried before one of those standard features of “due process,” called a jury.

In the King vs. Jowers case, testimony was adduced under oath that the US government, Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA), had created seven field offices, staffed by Vietnam hands from Operation Phoenix, six in parts of the country, the 7th in DC. There job was to “neutralize” the VVAW.

The VVAW was also featured in the Frank Church investigation into the domestic spying activities of the CIA and the FBI. These organizations had “infiltrated” the VVAW, to further their efforts in “neutralizing” first, the VVAW, then prominent entertainers (Joan Baez, Woodie Guthrie Pete Seeger, Bob Dylan, Jane Fonda, etc. The 1950s, you’ll never forget, featured McCarthy and “Commies,” while the 1960s featured “hippies” and “peaceniks,”—someone could do a glossary of all the names of “people the government doesn’t like and doesn’t want any of us to like (or be), either. Right?

But don’t let me digress. The FBI and CIA conducted break-ins on the VVAW. They planted spies or “moles” in the VVAW. And they did the same thing with church groups. Imagine targeting for surveillance church groups who take the First Commandment as seriously as our government officials do NOT take the First Amendment seriously. never forget that this is a problem, as it always has been, when a government breaks the law against its own bosses, We the People.

So let me recapitulate this exegesis, this essay:
Second-year law student, a Vietnam Veteran, signs a petition, requesting that the gummint stop a war it started, the petition is published in a “newspaper of record,” and then VA stops paying the student his educational benefits. And lies to the student about it. This would be one concrete example of “neutralizing” anyone who signs a petition against war.

Fast forward to, say 2013, and the Edward Snowden Report on the illegal domestic spying by the National Surveillance Agency (NSA—it’s officially called the national “security” agency, but I call it “surveillance” because that is what it’s doing to pretty much everyone who tries to communicate with anyone else in the world—keeping all of us “under surveillance,” 24/7 by 365—all spying, all the time. This is another something you should never forget.
By the way, in 1968 when folks were peaceably assembling to petition the gummint for redress of grievances, it had not become generally known that the Tonkin Gulf Incident was a fraud. It never happened. The President and his government lied about it, and used as an excuse to reverse JFK’s course of withdrawing US “advisors” and turn 180° about, and rapidly ramp up the war, to kill 55,000 or so US soldiers, and five or six million Asian men, women and, most notably, children.

The short hand for this official lying to start a war of choice is the Latin phrase casus belli, the cause, or rationale, or “excuse” for war. Pretty much all of our wars are started, have been started, because of some “excuse” for war—some staged or manipulated event, or just plain lies repeated by every government spokesman and echoed by every key on The Mighty Wurlitzer—which used to be called The Press, or The Fourth Estate. This repetition, incessant drumbeat for war was called, in the Third Reich, “The Big Lie.” In the U.S. we could just call it The Propaganda Machine, or just “That’s the Way It Is,” as Walter used to put it.

This is a topic for yet another essay in the series.

But here’s the short list:

Remember the Maine. USS Maine blows up in Havanah harbor—it was really just coal dust in an improperly ventilated engine room.

They Sank The Lusitania!  Riiiight.

     The US shipping owners loaded the ship with tons of ammunition bound for Britain. Let Americans and others book passage, despite German warnings that they’d attack ships bearing war materiel. Then Navy Admiral Winston Churchill withdrew a two-destroyer escort. Then the U-boat had uninterrupted access to the Lusitania. One torpedo amidships hit the explosives, and the ship, cut in two, sank in about 18 minutes.  That’s not quite as fast, though as WTC #7, #1 & #2 were blown into smithereens and then collapsed into dust—7, 10 and 11 seconds (not minutes, SECONDS) respectively, approximately

     Both the Lusitania and WTC have in common that they’re False Flag casus belli––excuses for war or causes of war. Hitler’s men put the torch to the German parliament—The Reichstag Fire—to justify pogroms and then war. We had Pearl Harbor (“KAIALIH—Knew About It And Let It Happen”). Congressman Lincoln’s “Spot Amendments” (Mr. President, show me the SPOT where Mexicans spilled American blood.” (US Army deliberately crossed the Mexican border, their little invasion was repulsed (at some cost in American lives). This was the casus belli for the Mexican/American War. Remember the Maine was Spanish/American War. (We water-boarded the Philippine revolutionaries—called it “the water cure” then—another nice euphemism for torture and death.)

I digress.  Off to bed., at 5:11 ayem, 23 June 2014.

"Up betimes" (as Craig Beeny's dad started most of his "coffee cup reader" columns in the Rochester Democrat & Chronicle when I was growing up. I didn't drink coffee, but did read the column, particularly given that it was written by a classmate's dad. And they lived in a little beach cottage on the shore of Lake Ontario. I am up to telling you, in a coherent thread, beginning, middle and end, why it is that I’m running for office.

I’m running because of things I’ll never forget.

I’ll never forget my children, my family, I’ll never forget that I’ve been lucky over my lifetime—knock wood—to have been born in a country that has a Constitution. Back there in Buffalo, I actually swore an oath to support and defend that Constitution, against all enemies, foreign and domestic.  And that was before I went to law school and learned a lot more about what I’d promised to defend. Learned things that I’ll never forget.

As I grew older, I learned more things I’ll never forget. When I was drafted, I learned that my government can be arbitrary and capricious.

I learned that my government can, will and did lie to get us into war. And I’m not talking Afghanistan or Iraq. I’m talking Vietnam,  and the fake,  Gulf of Tonkin incident. Which never happened.

I learned that my government will harass people and do other bad things, illegal things, to people when that government doesn’t like what you’re saying. How’s that for “freedom of speech”? 

These are things I will never forget.

They are not particularly happy recollections. What I’ve concluded from these experiences is that my country, my Constitution, can altogether too easily slide into a big, nasty cesspool.

If we let it. As I think we most definitely have done, pretty much starting with the Assassination of JFK by a handful of Lone Gunmen.

Now, I started out telling you about the Preamble to the Constitution. And Francis Bellamy’s so-called “pledge.” And I’ll ask again your indulgence as I speak about infelicitous things (felicity, another Latin word—more about education in another essay.

So we have a pledge about a flag that symbolizes a Republic “with liberty and justice for all.” Think about that. The so-called Pledge makes the bold assertion that this is one nation “with liberty and justice for all.” Is that something you know, from your own experience?

Are there things about our country that you will never forget, but wish you could? Are there things about our country that you know you don’t know about, and don’t want to know about because once you learned about them, you’d never forget?

Frankly, I think we should never forget the Preamble, and recite those 52 words at every time and in every place we’re accustomed to reciting Francis Bellamy’s magazine-subscription-getting, flag-waving patriotic-sounding gimmick. 

I think we should go back to the Constitution, and the Preamble, because this is our funding document, this is the contract between We the People and the people we hire and appoint to take care of the quotidian activities, the daily routines of running a country. And the Preamble is “aspirational”—something we aspire to have made real in our lives. Words we can know, AND believe in.

So here’s what we say we want to have happen, want to exist, why we ratified the Constitution in the first place. Why did we come up with a Constitution, We the People of the United States?

We did so in order to reach, in order to strive to reach, aspire to reach, in order to reach six over-arching goals.

to form a more perfect Union,
to establish Justice,
to insure domestic Tranquility,
to provide for the common defense,
to promote the general Welfare, and
to secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity.

That’s why we did ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Now, why would the Framers first talk of a more perfect Union? Was it because the 13 original colonies had turned out to be a bunch of squabbling, contentious states?  

What about “establish Justice”? The Framers certainly didn’t claim that there was justice for the “indigenous peoples”—the Indians—who inhabited every square inch of this continent and had done so until the European Invasion — mostly, that’s us — arrived on these these shores, fleeing injustice at home, in Europe, in Britain…but bringing injustice to this “new land”.

Establishing Justice was a goal, an aspirational thing. And it is clearly something we have not yet obtained, though it would be nice if we had, wouldn’t it.

If we had a more perfect Union and had successfully established Justice, we could try to keep it that way, to insure domestic Tranquility, right?  But do you feel “tranquil” these days, here in the country you live, are you tranquil?  I know I’m not. I worry about how I’ll ever send my 14-year-old daughters to college. I’m retired, but with no pension, so I’m looking for another business to start (no one would hire me, because I’m “too old,” and way, way “overqualified.” I’m in that “total unemployment” percentage that’s higher than it was during the Great Depression. My deceased parents would never forget those days, because they lived through them. My mother always told us, “Finish your dinner, clear your plate. Don’t you know there are starving children in China.”

Of course, there are actually starving children in these United States. That’s for another essay.

Now we’re learning about the Preamble, and how the next goal, now that we’ve thought about forming a more perfect Union, establishing Justice, and achieving some measure of domestic Tranquility, now—and really only now—so we have something worthwhile to defend. Call it provide for the common defense. That’s the fourth aspirational order, the fourth priority, We the People listed in our “mission statement,” if you will.

I think all of us should never forget that “provide for the common defense” IS the fourth goal we set out in the Preamble. We did not write “The first job of government is to protect our citizens”.  I’m sure you’ve heard that statement, over and over and over and over. Said by politicians.  Who apparently HAVE forgotten what they took and oath to support and defend. Because the Preamble quite clearly puts “provide for the common defense” as the Fourth priority. In other words, if we don’t form a more perfect Union, if we don’t establish Justice, if we don’t insure domestic Tranquility, the there’s hardly anything worth defending, is there. Is there?

But once those three goals are in place, then we do indeed have something to defend.

And if we’re successful in defending it, then it’s possible to tackle promoting the general Welfare, and even, if we’re lucky, securing the Blessings of Liberty for ourselves and our children, grand-children and great-great grandchildren, should we live so long.

It was for those six reasons, those six “in order to’s”, that We the People did ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

I’d like to make a further comment about the priorities, our fourth priority. I will never forget that whenever any of our employees, the people we elect or appoint to run our government for us, tries to convince me that “Keeping America Safe” is our first priority, that is a flag. Not a US flag, but a solid red flag, a warning flag that the speaker who is waving it is telling a lie. Telling “A Big Lie,” or “The Big Lie,” in the lexicon of propaganda and public persuasion—also known as mind control.

Whoever claims that “Keeping America Safe” is government’s “first priority,” is ignoring, casting aside the business of forming a more perfect Union, is casting aside the whole business of establishing Justice, is completely ignoring that domestic Tranquility comes before providing for the common defense.

And why is this so important that you should never forget it? Because this lie is used—and we’ve seen it time and time again in our shared lifetimes—to frighten We the People into approving things we would never approve if we were in control of our reason.  As we all of us know (but do often forget), whenever our emotions are ascendant, when our emotions are in control, then our common sense, our ability to reason, is quietly playing second fiddle to our fears, whipped up by the guys with the red flags.

Once you decide to learn the Preamble, and decide to never forget it, you’ll be able to see that waving red flag of danger whenever it is raised. 

And I strongly urge that you learn, and never forget, the Preamble to your Constitution. It’s 52 words long. Short, powerful, and to the point.

Of course, there’s another thing I’d ask you to never forget. And that’s my name, William Wilt of Waltham, and write it in the blank space for write-in votes for Congressman/Representative come November, because I’m not going to be advertising, and I’m not going to be handing out “stickers” to put on the ballot. And I’m not going to be asking for “campaign contributions.”

But I will be petitioning the Federal Communications Commission to set aside sufficient bandwidth, enough broadcast channels, to accommodate free political advertising, all day, all year. The airwaves belong to We the People, these airwaves, this “electromagnetic spectrum” you should think of as the Communications Commons of We the People.
Thank you for listening.









Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Let's try this: bw0.pdf

[Need to swap this out  for the PDF version, which is where it began.]

CAVE CANEM, UND CAVE DER HEIMATS VERSICHERUNG ABTEILUNG
MAY 20, 2013
PAGE 0 

   May not have mentioned that ma Pere was something of a sports car nut, even as they became antique sports cars. But after we stripped down a TD, he said I could have it if I put it back together again. I was into bicycling at 14, however.

    But eventually another dad and his son put it back together. In taking it apart with dad, though I was taught, or browbeaten, into anticipating what tools, where light, how to hand off/retrieve, etc. After some 2 years of it, I could pretty much anticipatorialy empathize/put myself into anyone else’s shoes when I had to. Useful for system design.

   Amazing Orchids I’d not had the oppor-tunity before to actually go to what is no longer the Bronx Botanical Gardens, but rather the New York Botanical Garden, after a few "twunks" of 3-term NY Mayor Flowers R. Us Bloom-berg's magic twanger, Froggy. He just put a few thou into the operation, and thereupon got naming rights of some sort. Orchids really do have an amazing range of flowerness. I’m certainly glad I no longer have to buy roll film for these excursions into the land of snap-happy-sappiness.

   Of course, the problem then arises of finding enough time to edit all of these digital images, and you would love to have a really large screen to do it on. —Yours trilly.

    Not the worst of Chem-Trails You’" be able to see them heave into view as slowly, slowly I turn around. There are far better examples of ChemTrails than I’ve gotten here, but this was the very first time I’d noticed them overhead in Waltham. I was headed south for an appointment at my friendly VA on a bright sunny day, and I noticed these wonderfully fluffy, greybottomed clouds, especially because we’d had about five dry weeks and bushels of pollen were pouring forth, causing hay-fever sufferers to do so. I wonder if we’ll get rain. Heading north 1 hr later, clouds, gone, chem-streaks as *. OK, So Maybe I should Have Hung On

 TheWilt Letter
CAVE CANEM, UND CAVE DER HEIMATS VERSICHERUNG ABTEILUNG
MAY 20, 2013 ! PAGE 0

 So this needs a lot of “form” work--it’s my first effort in about 13 years to do some page layout and “graphics”. All my old software was / is obsolete, though I’ve managed to keep the hardware reasonably current. I don’t yet have a smart phone or tablet or phablet. ! Tho maybe, given world enough and time, I can turn Grampa Bi"’s Bean-Bag Binary © bag-toss and radix - teaching tool into some sort of limited production — and as well to resuscitate What’s4Dinner?©, now that I don’t have to get cook-book publishers to go digital, get grocery stores to set up Bulletin Board/Email systems of their own, provide for digital register tapes on a floppy, little things like that. Ahh, the Internet. ! On the other hand, our country seems to be under attack by its own government and the behind-the-scenes actors we know (or rather, suspect, but have a glimmer about as we peruse guest lists at such things as The Bilderberg Group, the Council on Foreign Relations, the Trilateral Commission, the private “national” bankers — nice oxymoron, isn’t it. !

   An earnest young Newsernet Journalist asked former Senator Bob Kerrey of Nebraska something about 9/11/2001 during a hearing break, Kerrey said oh, it goes back at least 30 years, and the young one said, No, I’m talking about 9/11, and Kerrey answered, That’s what I’m talking about, too. And suggested that we need a permanent commission to take on these topics. (Cue the linked video up to 0:48 “it’s a longer conversation”). He may have been referring to “Operation Northwoods,” which see. Pretty spectacular what our Joint Chiefs were willing to do to Americans (kill them, at home) in order to have an excuse to invade Cuba.

   They were able to dust off the script and play it in Boston, NY (off Broadway), Arlington & some say a little playhouse in rural PA. Another little tidbit: During the “Gulf War” the oil field fires were supposedly set alight by Saddam’s forces. One US wildcatter who was actually there said it was US troops who mowed down the Iraqis guarding the wells and then set them on fire. Part 0 — this is part 0 Part 1 — Part 2 — Part 3 — Part 4 — Can’t believe I actually had a copy of this 1959 "selfie" thumb-print. Back then, you had to set the camera on a tripod, wind up the self-timer, trigger it, count down from 10 as you scooted into position (9, 8, 7, 6, 5), composed yourself (4, 3, 2), put on the face to meet the faces that you meet, and (1, flash/snap). No "at arm's length wide-angle" cell phone, or smart phone (aka hand-held computer)—d'you remember Handspring? Palm Pilots? "Gestures" on the stamp-sized stylus-sensitive touch-patch?

Monday, April 22, 2013

Well well--lookee here It's the First Friday, and Unemployment jumped to 16.5%

I'm talking about the Bureau of Labor Statistics' (BLS') joblessness category U-6.

These government officials' "official" unemp rate stayed the same, at 9.1%, but the REAL, or Fact-Based, official unemp rate jumped from 16.2% to 16.5%.

So, do you feel that our current government (a Constitutional Republic) can handle the task to save the country, our economy, and maybe event he global economy?

Or should we go back to the Declaration of Independence, and start all over again?

Let's just update that document a wee bit, shall we?  (May have to update 99% to 99.9% and the 1% to the 0.1% to more accurately reflect the reality of our plutocracy.)


The NEW 99% Declaration of Independence
 of  
The United States of America

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for 99% of the people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with the ruling 1%, and to assume, among the Powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.

  That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. 

 Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown, that the 99% are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the practices of the 1% to which they are accustomed. 

 But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such plutocrat-controlled Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.

   Such has been the patient sufferance of the 99%, and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government.  The history of the present 1% is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over the 99% majority of this nation.  To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

  • The 1% have refused Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good and to promote the general Welfare.
  • The 1% have forbidden the representatives of the 99% to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till the assent of the 1% should be obtained; and when so suspended,  the representatives of the 99% have utterly neglected to attend to them.
  • The 1% have refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of equal, balanced and non-gerrymandered Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
  • The 1% have called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, expensive to get to and distant from the depository of their public Records (which the 1% and its representatives refuse to give over to the 99%), for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with measures of benefit only to the 1%, but paid for by taxing the 99%.
  • The 1% have blocked the functioning of the representative Republic in matters of war and peace, have endeavored to use the military as its personal police force, and to use police forces local police forces as their own private Blackwater and Pinkerton mercenaries, while at the same time requiring the 99% to pay for them. At least in the previous Gilded Age, the 1% had to pay for their own private armies of Pinkerton goons.
  • The 1% have paid the campaign expenses of our elected officials, in the millions of dollars, with the expectation--and the result--of getting returns on these political investments in the thousands of a per cent ($70 million in campaign contributions, for $700 BILLION (and more that we don't even know about) in bailouts for the Wall Street Casino operators.
  • The 1% have, through their purchase of the government, allowed the United States to be attacked, both from without and from within, and have refused to allow an investigation which would establish some simulacrum of the truth, and mete out accountability for the death and destruction their captive government allowed to occur (at the very least).
  • The 1% have refused for the past several decades, to let elections occur without committing fraud on the 99%, illegally disenfranchising as many of the 99% as they can, preventing others the 99% to choose who is to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, now must be said to have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
  • The 1% have endeavored to prevent the population of these States to chose their representatives; for the purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migration hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
  • The 1% have obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing their Assent to Laws to establish Justice, the second adjuration in the Preamble to the Constitution for the United States of America.
  • The 1% have made Judges dependent on their Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
  • The 1% have erected a multitude of New Departments, such as the Heimats Versicherheit Abteilung, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass  the 99% of our people, and eat out their substance.
  • The 1% have kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies, without the Consent of our citizens and our legislatures.
  • The 1% have affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power, and to coerce local police departments, state militias and National guardsmen, to serving the needs and wishes of the 1%.
  • The 1% have combined with others to subject us to powers foreign to our constitution, such as the Federal Reserve System, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving their Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation by silence or overt approval:
    • For inflicting upon us a standing army, augmented by militarized state and local "law enforcement" personnel
    • For killing American citizens abroad without due process, or any process at all, that we know of
    • For permitting the National Surveillance Agency, at least since 2002, to wiretap without court order our telephones, cellular phones, fiber-optical internet data transactions, copy our financial transactions, our conversations, our email, our keystrokes, our health records, financial records, school records, library records, vehicular travel records--in fact any and all communications over our telecommunications networks
    • For directing the Secretary of the Environmental Protection Agency to lie about the safety of the air in Lower Manhattan after the 9/11/2001 building demolitions in the World Trade Center
    • For protecting government officials from punishment for any Murders which they have committed or will commit on the Inhabitants of these States, on the inhabitants of Iraq, Afghanistan, Yemen, Jordan, Pakistan, Libya, as well as any and all other sovereign nations which have raw materials or other benefits which the 1% see as beneficial to their fortunes:
    • For sending our manufacturing and trade overseas to all parts of the world:
    • For imposing Taxes on the 99% greater than those taxes imposed on the 1%.
    • For depriving the 99% in many cases, of the benefits the writ of Habeas Corpus, of due process of law, of speedy and public Trial by Jury
    • For authorizing local, state, federal police and espionage agencies to enter the homes of the 99% without search warrants, to kill, beat up, spray blinding capsicum oleoresin into the eyes of the 99%, and then deny redress of grievances of the 99% peaceably assembled to petition their government for redress of grievances
    • For transporting members of the 99% in this or other countries into "dark sites," where they are known to be tortured, in an attempt to extract Russian-style "Confessions" to acts perpetrated by the 1% and/or their agents 
    • For causing the rescission of long-standing global treaties to which the 99%'s United States of America was a party and had ratified into the body of the Supreme Law of the republic
    • For establishing a large network of concentration camps and an unknown number of deep underground military bases and cities to which only the 1% will be allowed access, in the case of a global catastrophe, such as thermonuclear, chemical and/or biological warfare, for which they have been preparing in secret, for several decades (at least)
    • For eliminating funding for and thus abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments by means of this withholding of funds and application of unfunded requirements upon the States
    • For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever, under the guise of secret "Presidential Decision Documents," secret "Findings of the Attorney General," and other largely secret or suppressed documents pretending to be within the ambit of the Executive Branch, but are not
    • The 1% have promoted the abrogation of the nation's laws, its 231-year history of an attempt to make our Constitutional Republic a government of laws, not of men, and thus have stood the "government of laws, not of men" on its head, making the United States of America a "government of men, not of laws," and a pariah among the world's other nations, joined by two other pariah nations, the United Kingdom and Israel
    • The 1% have polluted the 99%'s air, our seas, our rivers and streams, have ravaged our way of life, have torched our economy, destroyed our homes, villages and towns by bankrupting them and the the 99% who live there--in short, have destroyed the economic well-being of our people.
    • The 1% are at this time supporting large armies of soldiers and foreign mercenaries occupying several sovereign nations abroad, including Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya, Yemen and others we do not yet know about, to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of so-called "Shock and Awe," of collective punishment for decades, and such Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy of the wishes and direction, by Constitution, of the 99%
    • The 1% have celebrated the murder overseas of American citizens who, so far as been made public, have spoken nasty things about our country--these "remote controlled murders" violate our Constitution and are, in fact, "justice-free" governmental actions, neither directed by our Constitution nor approved by the 99%
    • The 1% have endeavoured to inflict and perpetuate on the inhabitants of our frontiers the affliction of the merciless South American Drug Kingpins whose known rule of warfare, death and destruction has caused an indiscriminate destruction of people of all ages, sexes and conditions
    • The 1% have attempted to foment domestic insurrections amongst us by use of false flag terrorist attacks, as against the World Trade Center towers in 1993, the Oklahoma City federal building in 1965, the Ruby Ridge assassinations in ___, the 9/11/2001 false flag operations against the World Trade Center's buildings #1,  #2 and #7 (and perhaps #6), the likely "NewTown Sandy Hook Elementary School Massacre and, most recently, the Boston Marathon Bombings on Patriots' Day in April of 2013
    • The 1% have launched illegal invasions, war and occupations against Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya, have supported and/or conducted torture upon prisoners of war, and are attempting to corner the market on the most popular calibers of rifle and pistol ammunition as they also seek to confiscate the weapons which use such ammunition, to weaken and disarm the 99%, in preparation for a planned takeover of the government by the 1%.
   In every stage of these Oppressions We, the 99%, have peaceably assembled and petitioned for Redress of our grievances in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. These 1% Plutocrats, "Royalty" and "Princes," in effect, whose character is thus marked by every act which may defined as Tyranny, are unfit to control this nation of free people. 

   Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our 1 Percenters. We have warned them from time to time that their attempts to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us and our economy are anathema to us. We have reminded the 1% of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here, that we are no "Homeland" in Herr Hitler's terminology; we, the 99%, are the children of immigrants, of "the melting pot" that once was our nation, our country, our America. We, the 99%, have appealed to the better angels, if any, of their dispositions, and we have conjured them, have begged them, evoking the ties of our common immigrant kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. But the 1% have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity.

We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold the 1%, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

WE, the 99% of the United States of America, in deliberation gathered, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the 99% of these United States of America, solemnly publish and declare, That the 99% of our citizens, that 99% of the un-rich, the un-priviledged in these United States are, and of right ought to be, FREE AND INDEPENDENT CITIZENS; that the 99% are Absolved from all Allegiance to the government of the 1%, and that all political connection between the 99% and the 1%, is and ought to be totally disolved; and that as Free and Independent Citizens, we, the 99%, have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent Citizens and States may of right do

—And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

Signed by:


[Representing the 99%]

[the initial Declaration of Independence, of July 4, 1776, was signed by: John Hancock, Benj. Harrison, Lewis Morris, Button Gwinnett, Thos. Nelson, Jr., Richd. Stockton, Lyman Hall, Francis Lightfoot, Lee Jno. Witherspoon, Geo. Walton, Carter Braxton, Fras. Hopkinson, Wm. Hooper, Robt. Morris, John Hart, Joseph Hewes, Benjamin Rush, Abra. Clark, John Penn, Benj. Franklin, Josiah Bartlett, Edward Rutledge, John Morton, Wm. Whipple, Thos. Heyward, Jr., Geo. Clymer, Saml. Adams, Thomas Lynch, Jr., Jas. Smith, John Adams,
Arthur Middleton,, Geo. Taylor, Robt. Treat Paine, Samuel Chase, James Wilson, Elbridge Gerry, Wm. Paca, Geo. Ross, Step. Hopkins, Thos. Stone, Caesar Rodney, William Ellery, Charles Carroll of Carrollton, Geo. Read, Roger Sherman, Tho. M: Kean, Sam. Huntington, George Wythe, Wm. Floyd, Wm. Williams, Richard Henry, Lee Phil. Livingston, Oliver Wolcott, Th. Jefferson, Frans. Lewis, Matthew Thornton.]

Monday, February 20, 2012

Maced or Pepper-Sprayed (OC) Wall Street Petitioner

Youtube Comment to Pamela Parker’s recommendation (on Facebook) of YouTube video, title:  maced Wall Street demonstrator:



Looks like, at seconds 19, 20 and 21, there's a white-shirted officer, to right, over blue shirted officer's right shoulder, wielding what might be Mace container, with his arm outstretched, thumb over the top of it. I think I can make out a white stream of something. Seems his hand and what's in it are 3 feet from the girl who then falls on her knees.  Can someone do a frame-by-frame analysis?

    Also, a plea, from a frequent taker of video & stills, to all folks taking video:

  Be The Gyroscope.

(borrowed without apology from the golfers’ nifty mantra, “Be The Ball.”)

   That is--and as nearly impossible as it is in crowd situations, the highest camera priority is "keep camera as stable as possible". It's like an exercise in gymnastics or ballet, to keep the camera steady while everything else--you and everyone/-thing about you is chaos, in movement.

    You can practice "being the gyroscope" in the privacy of your own digs and/or with friends and family. View, critique and delete the results, and do it over again. And again.

    Why make this effort?

     I’m thinking that all of us must become proficient "cinematographers" and camera-persons in the coming days.

    This and other video from the Wall Street Casino reminds me of the 1966 Democratic Convention in Chicago when Chicago's finest went berserkers, and we had the spectacle of the Chicago Eight-Minus One on trial before an almost certifiably crazy judge (not that he wasn’t provoked as never-ever in his life, but that’s hardly an excuse--item #2 in the Preamble?  “We the People of the United States, in order to … establish Justice….”. That was 1966. This is 2011, a decade after what will surely be called the Most Successful False Flag Operation In History” (blaming all Muslims and beige people for something whitey did to whitey’s own), and virtually all local police departments have been "federalized" by the Heimats Versicherungen Abteilung ("Homeland" "security, Dept of.). With the latest in "crowd-control" weapons, in abundance--from mace to internment camps “closed” military bases refurbished and reconstituted as internment camps by (drum roll, pls) Halliburton Industries. 

      It's probably wise for any and all citizens who seek "peaceably to assemble, and petition the government for redress of grievances," without being injured or killed doing so, to start bringing to such peaceful assemblies (along with cameras) gear like helmets, goggles, shoulder-, bicep- and thigh-pads--remember from your Abu Ghraib training that billy clubs to the thigh leave hardly any "audit trail" but are immensely debilitating/incapacitating/bring you to your knees. Perhaps even gas masks.

    If any of you ride trains, you may have noticed that each conductor has a "signature" paper punch (issued by the transit authority). I’m thinking that perhaps all police billy clubs, night sticks, brass knuckles, saps and, for musically minded crowd control, the extended or telescoping "baton" (doesn't that sound so benign--a perfect euphemism for a bone-shattering club, dontcha think?-- should have an individual, citizen-identifiable, reverse “users’s logo,” or “brand,” permanently engraved on its striking surface(s). 

    This way, if you didn’t have a chance to ask for the officer’s name, rank and badge number, either you or a friend, or lawyer, will be able to make the connection between the marks and the miscreant from the police-person's brands in your bruises.

     Of course, just as some police persons in the 1966 Chicago Convention kerfuffles (sounds like feminine ruffles, rather than bone-breaking scuffles, no?) or police riots, if you prefer accuracy, taped over their badge numbers (so they wouldn't be charged with not wearing their badges, while at the same time defeating the purpose of wearing them--so too might enterprising "enforcement folks" be able to come up with counterfeit brands or unmarked batons, much like cattle rustlers in the good old days when the killing of African American slaves and "indigenous persons" by white European invaders was seen as not such a bad thing by white European-immigrant prosecutors and judges.

     Also, you should be alert to the context in which police-persons work every day, with heightened awareness in large crowd “situations.” Please take a thoughtful look at this beautiful web catalog from manufacturer ASP, for Armament Systems & Procedures), who manufactures the “telescoping baton” that is, I think, used now by the Bobbies in Britain, US military, federal agencies, state and local police. Also handcuffs, disposable handcuffs, batons with OC dispensers (oleoresin capsicum, or hot, hot red chili-pepper spray), super-bright flashlights, baton holsters, optional equipment such as a Human Rights baton tip (no kidding), and so on. Take in the pictures of the products, the beautiful diagrams, the lovely stamped and cloisonné medallions you can mount on the butt of the batons, with state seal, surrounded by department name, such as NYPD, or HVA (Heimats Versicherungen Abteilung to help your recollection), and to the full-page, staged “active encounter” situations, and take in the ad copy. Here’s the ASP catalog URL. There's also a YouTuber "knuckledusterbooks" who put up an "introduction to saps" (saps are a slab of lead on a spring-steel shank wrapped in leather; blackjacks are a round billet of lead, molded over a compressed coil spring (like a screen door screen) also wrapped in leather--these are very good at breaking human clavicles (collar bones), fascia (face bones), skulls, fibulae (small calf-bone), ulnae & radii (the two small forearm bones).

     The instructions below are in the nature of “Know what you’re up against, and “Be Prepared,” as in “having advance information gives you two more arms (Forewarned is Four-Armed). This is no apologia for law-breaking, Constitution-busting individuals and the agencies that supervise and train them. So, herewith, some caveats to keep in mind:

     If you haven’t yet learned this, police officers live and operate in a world where the presumption is that an approaching person is “armed and dangerous,” or merely “dangerous with his or her arms, voice, psyche,” etc. The younger of them, not yet risen in rank, have truly abysmal, home-wrecking working hours (weekend duty, shifts that precess ’round the clock, all the while surrounded by critics & potential danger. Anyone who’s in the restaurant bidness, entertainment bidness, nursing, ambulance, fire outputting -- or copy editors for morning newspapers & TV shows & weekly magazines that come out on Mondays -- can empathize. Except in the danger department. 

    However, some journalists can even empathize in the that department as well, like: investigative reporters in the US, war correspondents overseas, correspondents representing non-US news modalities (like Al Jazeera) and any reporters in and from foreign countries, esp. in the Asian con- and sub-continents, particularly where US troops are active, where empathy and life-ending activities are congruent with, or surpass, those of police personnel -- and  even more so, if the police are trying to terminate reporters’ assignments w/ extreme prejudice (or what Darth Cheney might call (after first submitting it to focus groups to make certain that people won't or don’t understand a word of the phrase but THINK they do, and that it has a really nice meaning), “enhanced unitary interviewee techniques”). (In rhetorical and “language arts” circles, this is called “euphemism” or cynical obfuscation, and my description a sad attempt at sardonic sarcasm, to use a tautology twice in the same phrase.)

     You should also be aware that the number of physicians, professors, cancer researchers, Wall Street Casino operators, PhDs in the Arts and Sciences, etc.,  are severely underrepresented in police departments throughout the US. And members of those professions are not insisting to any and all that they’re being discriminated against, marching on Washington, clamoring to gain admission to the police departments. Although, given our economy’s slide into third-world status, that may be changing, under the red headline: “PhD Paupers Can’t Be Choosers.” Those of you who live in big cities, haven’t you already found that you have a plethora of foreign-born, foreign-trained MDs and PhDs driving cabs in NYC and LA and SF and Boston and Atlanta? And not practicing their professions?

Friday, December 16, 2011

The Imperial Cruise, by James Bradley


subtitle: A Secret History of Empire and War. 2009, Back Bay Books, 387pp.

Bradley's father was one of the US troops who raised the flag on Mt. Suribachi, Iwo Jima (http://www.history.navy.mil/faqs/faq87-3l.htm). Bradley wrote about it in Flags of My Fathers.

    For some reason, I was particularly stunned by this narrative of turn-of-the-century activities of such men as presidents McKinley, Teddy Roosevelt & Taft. As if the late Howard Zinn's A People's History of the United States: 1492 to the Present (and there's a new afterword in new editions) were not shocking enough, starting with Columbus' slaughter of from 2,000,000 to 8,000,000 Arawaks, the "indigenous peoples" of the Caribbean. Then there was Andrew Jackson's "Indian Removal Act" of 1830 and the Trail of Tears, etc.

    This work contains descriptions of US activities in Hawaii, the Philippines, Japan, Korea, China, Hong Kong, a bit of Cuba and Puerto Rico, threaded together by the 1905 far eastern cruise of US delegates, headed by Wm. Howard Taft, Teddy Roosevelt's eldest child Alice.

   The racism of presidents, military and a goodly chunk of citizens is murderous. And the exploitation of Asians by the British (some 20% of their GDP sustained by harvesting opium from India and foisting it upon the Chinese.
England controlled a vast swath of prime opium-growing country, stretching five hundred miles across Bengal, and the British Empire invested enormous sums in state-of-the-art opium farming and production systems. More than two thousand British opium agents oversaw the efforts of one million registered Indian opium farmers." p. 273.
  And there were big drug lords among the Americans, with big players like Franklin Delano Roosevelt's grandfather, Warren Delano, from NYC, the Cabots of Boston, who
endowed Harvard with opium money, while Yale's famous Skull and Bones society was funded by the biggest American opium dealers of them all, the Russell family. The most famous landmark on the Columbia University Campus is the Low Memorial Library, which honors Abiel Low, a New York Boy who made it big in the Pearl River Delta, and bankrolled the first cable across the Atlantic. Princeton University’s first big benefactor, John Green, sold opium in the Pearl River Delta with Warren Delano.
The list goes on and on: Boston’s John Murray Forbes’s opium profits financed the career of transcendentalist Ralph Waldo Emerson and bankrolled the Bell Telephone Company. Thomas Perkins founded America’s fist commercial railroad and funded the Boston Athenaeum. [p. 290]
     Many of our "founding fathers" were smuggling Caribbean rum, sugar and molasses past British blockades in the 1760s and 1770s. And of course, during Prohibition, Joseph Kennedy made the family fortune smuggling Scotch into Chicago (the Kennedy's still own the Chicago Merchandise Mart, I believe). And of course the CIA, run by Wall Street banksters, has been involved in drug-running almost since its inception. If you include ethanol as a mind-altering drug, there's a whole lot of US history and US leaders who've been drug lords, never prosecuted, never imprisoned.

   But this is just part of the chapter I've put below here, and by no means is it the most shocking. See what you think.

   Without further ado:


Chapter 10: Roosevelt’s Open and Closed Doors 
Pages 269-297

We do not understand why your people in China preach the doctrine of Love, while in American you treat Chinese worse than any other nation, nay even the negroes!  
—1903 Petition to 
President Theodore Roosevelt
 from Students of the 
Anglo-Chinese College 
in Fuzhou, China, 1903. 
Hednote, p. 269

On September 3, 1903, Secretary of War William Howard Taft steamed west from British Hong Kong to the Chinese city of Canton. For this segment of the cruise he was not following the sun. Instead, Big Bill was traveling secretly at night, aboard the U.S. Navy gunboat Laliao that glided quietly through the Pearl River Delta, entering China on a warship under the cover of darkness because U.S. consular military officials had warned him that he risked personal harm. Anti-American posters were plastered on city walls up and down China’s coast, and furious attendees at packed mass meetings shook their fists as they listened to emotional anti-Yankee speeches. Nevertheless, [end 269]   
          
[Page 270 is a map of the Pearl River delta, which flows from Canton,
 out to sea between Macao and Hong Kong.]

[271] after much debate, Taft had decided he would face local wrath and deliver a tough message from President Roosevelt in the Chinese city most aflame with anti-Americanism.

From ancient times, the emperor—the Son of Heaven—had reigned from Beijing. Uninterested in dealing with lowlife traders, he had designated the southern port city of Canton as a backdoor service entrance for those “foreign Devils” hoping to do business in China. The emperor had assigned Cantonese merchants the odious job of dealing with these barbarians and thus Canton became the international commercial outlet for the Middle Kingdom.

As a result, for centuries, Foreign Devils had come to Canton from Arabia, Persia, Africa, Egypt, Rome France England, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Japan , the Philippines, Vietnam, Thailand, Cambodia, India, and the United States. During that time, the Cantonese had endured, and in a number of ways benefited from, these intrusions. That changed three years into the Roosevelt administration.  To protest Teddy’s treatment of them as uncivilized beings, the Chinese had united to boycott all things American.

Uncivilized the Chinese were certainly not. For most of human history, china was the most populated, wealthiest, and most sophisticated country on earth. The travels of Marco Polo, published in 1295, to astonishing tales of enormous banquet rooms with five thousand seats, walls studded with precious stones, and consumers using paper money to purchase mass-printed books from well-stocked bookstores. (Marco Polo was so amazed by Chinese paper money that he devoted a chapter to it.) In Europe, monks hand-copied tomes while thousands of best-selling books rolled off China’s modern printing presses. China’s [p. 271] iron manufacturing industry produced one hundred twenty-five thousand tons a year—an amount not equaled by Europe until the twentieth century. Chinese wore soft, luxurious silk versus the Europeans’ rough-hewn tunics, and at home the Chinese lived in a stylish comfort of which Europeans could only dream.

The Chinese invented movable type four hundred years before Johannes Gutenberg was born. China built a suspension bridge two thousand years before one appeared in the West. It took the civilized Aryans seventeen hundred more years than it did the Chinese to figure out how to make porcelain. Cast iron, the crank handle, deep drilling for natural gas, the belt drive, the fishing reel, chess, matches, brandy, gunpowder, playing cards, the spinning wheel, the umbrella, and countless other innovations—such were the products of China’s inventive genius.

Europeans would eventually borrow such Chinese innovations as the plow and experience an agricultural revolution. Similarly, literacy spread as the Europeans exploited paper and printing, both Chinese inventions. The British public would become addicted to drinking tea from China mixed with adrenaline-pumping sugar from its Caribbean colonies. This was the heady stimulant that would eventually transform the English from agricultural laborers to alert, regimented cogs in Britains’s new factories. But when the English asked the Chinese to accept their manufactured goods as payment for tea instead of expensive silver, the Son of Heaven wrote dismissively to King George III in 1793, “We possess all things. I set no value on an objects strange or ingenious, and have no use for your country’s manufactures.”

The Chinese insistence upon silver as payment for tea was a serious economic threat to the British Empire and a huge windfall for the Chinese.  As the historian Carl Trocki writes in Opium Empire and the Global Political Economy:

The 1700s were boom times for the middle Kingdom as English silver flooded into China. China’s population over that period tripled from about one hundred million to over three hundred million. The constant importation of Asian products into the European markets accused a permanent drain of gold and silver from Europe towards Asia. Only a small trickle of precious metals must have re-entered Europe…. The greater part of gold and silver remained in Asia never to return to Europe.

To the British Empire’s financial rescue came a very clever colonial official, Warren Hastings, the governor-general of Bengal in Northern India. Bengal had long produced opium, for centuries used across Asia as a medicinal and social drug. Portuguese sailors in Asian waters had observed a profitable Bengal-to-China opium trade conducted by Arab merchants. The Portuguese muscled in on the trade, also ringing to the Chinese market tobacco from their Brazilian colony. Tobacco mixed with Indian opium proved to be a pleasing combination to the Chinese, and opium smoking soon become popular. Realize the harm to his people, the Son of Heaven banned opium’s sale and use in China.

Nevertheless, his edict meant little to those Foreign Devils hoping to profit and restore a more favorable (to them) trade balance. England controlled a vast swath of prime opium-growing country, stretching five hundred miles across Bengal, and the British Empire invested enormous sums in state -of-the-art opium farming and production systems. More than two thousand British opium agents oversaw the efforts of one million registered Indian opium farmers. Opium sap was dried into balls, each weighting 3.5 pounds, then placed on floor-to-ceiling factory shelves, where Indian boys would rotate each ball a quarter turn once every six days as it dried. Each opium ball was then stamped with the coveted trademark brand Patna or Benares.

White Cristian opium smugglers could not legally sell the banned drug on Chinese soil, so they installed floating wooden warehouses in the Pearl River Delta, where they sold their booty to Chinese criminals who rowed out under the cover of darkness.

Opium soon accounted for an estimated 15 to 20 percent of the British Empire’s revenue, as the India-to-China smuggling business became the “world’s most valuable single commodity trade of the [274] nineteenth century. Western banks, shipping companies, and insurance companies sprouted to serve this enormously profitable trade. As Carl Trocki notes, “The entire commercial infrastructure of European trade in Asia was built around opium” It was Christians who smuggled the poisonous drug into China, so the Chinese called it “Jesus opium.” This Christian drug-running was nearly fatal to the Middle Kingdom. Between 1814 and 1850, the Jesus-opium trade sucked out 11 percent of China’s money supply. China lost more silver in thirty years than had flowed into the country in the 125 years leading up to the opium trade. As he Chinese money supply contracted, silver became unnaturally scarce, peasants had had trouble paying their taxes, counterfeiting rose, waves of inflation and deflation whipsawed the economy, and unrest grew.

The Jesus-opium trade also tore at the moral fabric of Chinese society. Since the sale of the banned drug was illegal, the Christian smugglers’ business partners were Chinese criminal lowlifes who now got rich and gathered power.
The Son of Heaven finally put his foot down and dispatched a royal representative to Canton in 1839 to stop the Foreign Devil drug trade. Buckingham Palace shook at the news. Queen Victoria was just twenty years old at this point, on the British throne less than two years, but when the Chinese elder threatened to cut her largest single source of income, she understood the dire financial consequences. Opium production and smuggling not only paid for imports from China that England could not afford in silver, but the drug trade also provided the easy money that most sustained her empire. Victoria dispatched her industrialized navy to enforce Britain’s ability to push an illegal drug. What followed were the two Opium Wars—one from 1839 to 1842; the other from 1856 to 1860. What Victoria spent on these [page 275] military operations against China was paltry compared to her take of profits from the illegal Jesus-opium trade.

Victoria also grabbed Hong Kong as part of the spoils in the first of there two Opium wars. Sir John Francis Davis, governor of Hong Kong from 1844 to 1848, admitted: “Almost every person not connected with government is employed in the opium trade.” The British Empire grew fat on Chinese silver drained from the formerly richest country in the world. The sums were so enormous that Queen Victoria stands as history’s largest drug dealer.

AS SECRETARY TAFT CUT through the night on his way from Hong Kong to Canton that September evening, he was passing the homes of the Pearl River Delta families who had more experience dealing with American Foreign Devils than people in any other part of China. Starting with the California Gold Rush, it was primarily the families of the Pearl River Delta who had sent their sons to the United States in search of opportunity.

These Cantonese had brought with them their ancient habits of hard work, cooperation, self-denial, and thrift. Compared to the White workers, the Chinese mined more gold more efficiently, saved more of their earnings, drank and caroused less, behaved better, and almost never caused trouble. An American minister, Augustus Loomis, testified to the Chinese workers’ diligence, steadiness, and clean living: They are ready to begin work the moment they hear the signal, and labor steadily and honestly until admonished that the working hours are ended.  Not having acquired a taste for whiskey, they have few fights, and no ‘blue Mondays’ You do not see them intoxicated, rolling in the gutters like swine.”

White workers claimed that the Chinese competed unfairly [pg. 278] because the Mongolians could live cheaper on their diet of rice and rats. But in truth, while the Whites ate a bland diet—“Boiled beet and potties, beans, bread and butter, and coffee”—the Cantonese “Ate healthy, well-cooked and tasty food…an astonishing variety—oysters, cuttlefish, finned fish, abalone, meat, Oriental fruits, and scores of vegetables, including bamboo sprouts, sea-weed, and mushrooms. Each of these foods came dried, purchased from one of the Chinese merchants in San Francisco. The Chinese drink tea from boiled water. “The Americans drank from the streams and lakes, and many of them got diarrhea, dysentery, and other illnesses.”
Some admired the Chinese miners’ superior work and living habits. The White miners did not. Unable to compete on a level playing field, the Whites soon employed state laws to hold the Chinese back, as Stephen Ambrose explains in Nothing Like It in the World:
California law discriminated against them in every way possible, and the state did all it could to degrade them and deny them a decent livelihood. ‘They were not allowed to work on the ‘Mother Lode.’ To work the ‘tailing,’ they had to pay a miner’s tax,’ a $4-per-head so-called permission tax, plus a $2 water tax. In addition, the Chinese had to pay a personal tax, a hospital tax,  $2 school tax, and a property tax. But they could not go to public school, they were denied citizenship, they could not vote, nor could they testify in court. Nevertheless, they paid more than $2 million in taxes. If Chinese dared to venture into a new mining area, the whites would set on them, beat them, rob them, sometimes kill them. Thus the saying, “Not a Chinaman’s chance.’”
Nevertheless, the Chinese workers continued to outperform the White laborers. George Hearst, later a U.S. senator from California, who observed Chinese miners for ten years in four different states, proclaimed worriedly, “They can do more work than our people and live on less. They could drive our laborers to the wall.”

In 1863, President Abraham Lincoln called for the construction of a transcontinental railroad. Two teams of White workers—one proceeding west from the Mississippi River and one working east from the Pacific Ocean—began work on the giant undertaking. Those proceeding west over the Great Plains made progress, but those proceeding east from the Pacific coast hit the solid granite of California’s Sierra Nevada mountains. The White workers laid down their picks in defeat. The Chinese, [p. 280] from the country that had built the Great Wall, filled the gap and succeeded where the Aryan had tried and failed. Governor Leland Stanford of California wrote President Andrew Johnson, “Without the Chinese it would have been impossible to complete the western portion of this great National highway.”

Most American textbooks feature the May 10, 1869, photograph depicting the east and west construction teams meeting at Promontory Summit, Utah, to drive the golden spike that competed the transcontinental railroad. Although there were many Chinese on the scene—some who had that very morning laid the last ties—when history’s flashbulbs [did they have flashbulbs then, or was it flash-powder in a hand-held trough?] were about to pop, the Aryans self-consciously pushed aside the yellow men who had succeeded where the Whites had failed.

With the transcontinental railroad completed, the workers who had built it were dismissed and they dispersed across the West. The pop culture image of the American West is based more on the films of director John Ford and Monument Valley than fact. This Hollywood version features John Wayne walking through a White town. What’s missing is the Chinese hotel that John Wayne would have slept in, the Chinese restaurant where he would have dined, the Chinese laundry where he would have done his wash, and the Chinese general store where he would had purchased his provisions. Notes the historian Stephen Ambrose, [pg. 281] “In nearly every Western railroad town there used to be a Chinatown.”

With their better work and living habits, the Chinese produced services and sold goods of higher quality at a lower price, driving out their humiliated White competitors. And to those who viewed the world through the prism of Aryan superiority and following the sun, the threat extended well beyond the economic. If 10 percent of the Chinese in China came to the United States, China would still have 360 million people. But if 40 million Chinese crossed the Pacific, they would become America’s major it race. And these Chinese might breed with White women, causing Aryan westering to halt.
Luckily for civilization, the Aryan instincts came to the fore. The media consistently presented the Chinese as opium-besotted, rodent-eating, filthy creatures, shoe lifestyle and lack of morals threatened the White race. In 877, the Order of Caucasians for the Extermination of the Chinaman declared its goal: “to drive the Chinaman out of California…by every manner and means within the thin gauze of the la.” Anti-Chinese labor unions such as he Knights of Labor and the Workingman’s Party spread their slogan across the land: “The Chinese Must Go.”
Senator James Blaine of Maine warned that men “who eat beef and bread and drink beer…will have to drop his knife and fork and take up Chopsticks [if] those who live on rice” are allowed to stay in America. “Either the Anglo-Saxon race ill possess the Pacific slob or the Mongolians will possess it.” In 877, the United States Congress established a Joint Special Congressional Committee to Investigate Chinese Immigration. The White Christian male legislators concluded:
There is not sufficient brain capacity in the Chinese to furnish motive power for self-government. The [page 282] Mongolian race seems to have no desire for progress and to have no conception of representative and free institutions. There is no Aryan or European race which is not far superior to the Chinese as a class.
California’s second constitution, ratified in 1879, prohibited companies from employing “directly or indirectly, in any capacity, any Chinese or Mongolian”; prohibited the employ of Chinese “on any state, county, municipal or other public work, except in punishment for crime”’ and mandated that the legislature “delegate all necessary power to the incorporated cities and towns of this state for the removal of Chinese without the limit of such cities and towns, or for their locations within prescribed portions of those limits, and it shall also provide he necessary legislation to prohibit the introduction into their state of Chinese after the adoption of this Constitution.”

From America’s inception in 1783 to 1882, a period of ninety-nine years, there had been no concept of illegal immigrants in the United States. That changed with the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1882. For the first time in U.S. history, an immigration gate was erected with the specific goal of blocking non-Whites. Senator George Hoar of Massachusetts described the Chinese Exclusion Act as “nothing less than the legalization of racial discrimination.” But because of the dire race threat presented by the yellow men, most Americans had no problem with the new legislation. Twenty-four years old and just out of Harvard, Theodore Roosevelt proclaimed in 1882, “No greater calamity could now befall the United States than to have the Pacific slope fill up with a Mongolian population.”


ROCK SPRINGS, WYOMING, was a mining town that reduced almost half the coal that fueled the transcontinental railroad. [pg 283] Front page of Harper’s Weekly, “ Journal of Civilization, Saturday, September 13, 1879. lead, centered headline

 POLITICAL ASSASSINATIONS
Taking the Consequences
two “panel” drawing
South   and   West
Left caption: The Nigger Must Go”
Right caption: “The Chinese Must Go”
double caption for both:
The Poor Barbarians Can’t Understand Our Civilized Republican Form of Government.  (Harpweek, LLC)
[page 284]
Approximately six hundred Chinese and three hundred Whites lived in the dust-blown settlement. On he evening of September , 1885, the Rock Springs chapter of the Knights of Labor held a “Chinese Must Go!” meeting. The next day, the race cleansing began. “White men fall in” was the call to arms.

Armed White miners surrounded Chinatown. The local Chinese laundryman was in his was house when a bullet shattered his skull. White wives and daughters laughed and clapped as their men shot fleeing Chinese and then earthed their pockets. White women who had earlier taught English classes to the Chinese now looted their students’ homes. Chinese who escaped into the countryside were picked off by waiting Knights of Labor snipers.

The first Wyoming state official o arrive in Rock Springs described the scene: “Not a living Chinaman—an, woman or child—was left in the town…and not a single house, shanty, or [pg. 285] structure of any kind, that had ever been inhabited by a Chinaman was left unburned. The smell of burning human flesh was sickening and almost unendurable, and was plainly discernible for more than a mile along the railroad both east and west.” In the court trials that followed, there were no convictions.

Rock Springs was just the beginning. All across the West, the American Aryan raged against the Chinese. From California, north to Alaska, west to Colorado, and south to New Mexico, posters told the Chinese to get out and those who hesitated would face the barrel of a White man’s rifle. In Fresno, a mob killed Chinese workers in their beds. In Tacoma, the mayor led hundreds of armed Aryan in rousting the Chinese from their homes and pushing them onto waiting trains. In Seattle, the chief of police led a mob who marched the local Chinese at gunpoint up the gangplank of a waiting ship.

Theodore Roosevelt deemed the Chinese a “race-foe” and called upon the United Sates to maintain “race-selfishness” to exclude “the dangerous alien who would be ruinous to the white race.” When he became president, Roosevelt inherited two competing U.S. approaches regarding China. In America, voters demanded Chinese exclusion. In China, U.S. businessmen demanded “The Open Door.”

The United States had come late to the slicing of the Chinese melon. It wasn’t until 1898 that the nation had acquired the Pacific links—Hawaii, Guam and Manila—required to tap China’s riches. President McKiley’s challenge at that time had been how to insert U.S. business interests into the powers’ ongoing scramble for the Middle Kingdom. For his China policy, he chose the kindly slogan “The Open Door.”  The Open Door called on the Western power to be benevolent and avoid partitioning China to the point that it could not function as a national entity, allowing all to compete within one another’s spheres of influence. [page 286]

The Open Door was a huge hit among humanitarian Americans who saw the Chinese as “wards” in need of protection. But when foreign ministers in London, Rome, Berlin, Paris, Moscow, and Tokyo considered McKinley’s request to open their China doors, not one bothered to respond. Nevertheless, in July of 1900, Secretary of State John Hay declared that the powers agreed with McKinley “in principle.” McKinley did not bother sending a copy of his new Chinese policy to Beijing. Yellow men would not decide Asia’s fate.  Hay sniffed,” We have tone the Chinks a great service, which they don’t seem inclined to recognize.”

In fact, McKinley’s benevolence had no practical effect on commercial competition in China. It did, however, humiliate the Chinese. Outraged at the attitude of these distant powers who felt that they had rights to dismember their country, Chinese patriots arose to oppose the Foreign Devils within their midst. Because these athletic young men often practiced martial arts, foreigners called the “Boxers.” In June of 1900, the Boxers entered Beijing and laid siege to the embassies of the Foreign Devils, who held out for fifty-five days until twenty thousand troops from the Eight Nation Alliance came to their rescue. Now armed barbarians marched outside the Forbidden City.

While President Roosevelt would have been happy to nab almost every Chinaman in the United Stats and ship him back to where he came from, strong U.S. business interests were concerned that if this happened, the Chinese in China might stop doing business with the United States. To straddle the diametrically opposed positions, Teddy spine in favor of allowing a minuscule number of “upper-class” Chinese int the United States and blamed the Bureau of Immigration for any anti-Chinese abuses. But even when he did point a finger at the bureau, he could never find his Big Stick to discipline anyone.

Roosevelt’s first commissioner general of the Immigration urea [page 287] was Terence Powderly, the rabid former leader of the Knights of Labor, which had led the race war against the Chinese in the 1880s, including the Rock Springs Massacre.Shortly after Roosevelt became president in 1901, Powderly wrote an article in Collier’s Weekly assuring voters that the new, young resident had their race interests at heart: 
American and Chinese civilizations are antagonistic; they cannot live and thrive and both survive on the same soil. One or the other must perish.
     In his December 1901 message to Congress, Roosevelt called for a closed door for Chinese in America but an open door for Americans in China. Roosevelt’s stance was deplored by the Jewish Exponent of Philadelphia, which contended that the president was in effect telling the Chinese, “You must take our goods, the missionaries, and anything else we choose to send you…but o must not show your face within our borders, for  you are too far beneath us to be fit company for us.” But far more Americans agreed with Teddy than they did such editorials, and in April, Roosevelt signed into law the most draconian anti-Chinese piece of legislation in U.S. history, the Chinese Exclusion Act of 1902, which continued the odium of the original 1882 version and extended exclusion of Chinese laborers to Hawaii and the Philippines.

Viceroy Kin was the governor of Shanghai province. His son studied in England and wanted to transit across the United States to return to China. He obtained a letter of introduction from Joseph Choate, the American ambassador to England. When Viceroy Kin’s son arrived in Boston harbor in June of 1902, he was detained by federal officials for twenty-four hours, strip-searched, and photographed naked. This upper-class Chinese boy was then forced to post a bond not to open a laundry or become a manual laborer. Another Chinese student arriving in San Francisco with admission papers from Oberlin College was held in one of Teddy’s immigration pens for one year. And on October 11, 1903, Roosevelt’s immigration men swooped down [ page 288] upon Boston’s Chinatown. Two hundred thirty-four Chinese were arrested and fifty were deported. The next day a United States district judge declared the raid perfectly legal. Students from the Anglo-Chinese College in Fuzhou petitioned Roosevelt:
‘We do not understand why your people in China preach the doctrine of Love, while in American you treat Chinese worse than any other nation, nay, even the negroes!”
In January of 1904, Beijing notified Roosevelt that it would end the U.S.-China Treaty—due for renewal in 1905—and called on him to renegotiate a fairer agreement. With the presidential election months away, Roosevelt righteously demanded that China maintain an open door and at the same time called for an indefinite extension of his Chinese Exclusion Act.

In an attempt to be shown as tolerant, Roosevelt invited Yu Kit Men, a Shanghai shipping magnate, to serve as one of China’s representatives at the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair. Yu entered the United States in New York and boarded a train for St. Louis. The Shanghai businessman was asleep when he heard a knock on his stateroom door. Bureau of Immigration goons seized him, pulled him off the train, and jailed him near Buffalo. Running for president,, Roosevelt did nothing and wrote meekly, “I have been for a long time uneasy about the way in which Chinese merchants and Chinese students have all kinds of obstacles thrown in their way hen they come to this country.”
` For years White Christians had treated China with disrespect. With Theodore Roosevelt, the Chinese drew a line. In May, 1904, Shanghai businessmen called for a boycott of American goods beginning August 1. A united, peaceful, yet effective repines to a barbarian country was an unprecedented event in Chinese history, and the idea spread like wildfire throughout China and to the world’s Chinatowns. In Havana, Chinese chipped in ten thousand dollars to get the anti-American word [page 289] out. In Victoria, British Columbia, Chinese established a fund of six thousand dollars to compensate Chinese dockworkers who refused to unload American ships. Distraught U.S. merchants suddenly bombarded Roosevelt; missionaries and educators demanded that something be done. But with his thick race lenses, Teddy could not see that the Chinese harbored patriotic feelings and that they would actually do something about it. Surely this sudden flame would quickly fizzle.

Roosevelt’s inability to recognize third-world nationalism in Asia had already cost—and would cost—America much treasure and many lives. He had dismissed Aguinaldo [Father of the Philippines] and the result had ten quagmire. Roosevelt simply could not accept that Asian primitives could cause much trouble—all of race history had made that clear. Such underestimation—indeed, lack of any attempt at estimation—would cost the United States dearly in the Twentieth century. Aguinaldo had been the first. Others yet to come included Mao Tse-tung and Ho Chi Minh.



ON MARCH 17, 1905, one of the most significant weddings in American history took place in a house in New York City at 8 E. 76th St., between Madison and Fifth Avenues. At 3:30 p.m., Miss Alice Roosevelt—serving as a bridesmaid dressed in a white veil and holding a bouquet of pink roses—opened the ceremony as she proceeded down the wide stairs from the third floor to the second-floor salon. The bride—her cousin Eleanor Roosevelt—followed, and behind her was President Theodore Roosevelt, who would give his niece away to the bridegroom, his fifth cousin Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

   Eleanor wore a pearl necklace and diamonds in her hair, gifts from Franklin’s rich Delano relatives. Even tough Franklin had never made much money himself, Teddy knew that he would be [p. 290] able to care for his new wife: FDR was heir to the huge Delano opium fortune.

    Franklin’s grandfather Warren Delano had for years skulked around the Pearl River Delta dealing drugs. Delano had run offices in Canton and Hong Kong. During business hours, Chinese criminals would pay him cash and receive an opium chit. At night, Scrambling Crabs—long, sleek, heavily armed crafts—rowed out into the Pearl River Delta to Delano’s floating warehouses, where they received their Jesus opium under the cover of darkness. The profits were enormous, and at his death Delano left his daughter Sara a fortune that she lavished on her only son.

   The Delanos were not alone. Many of New England’s great families made their fortunes dealing drugs in China. The Cabot family of Boston endowed Harvard with opium money, while Yale’s famous Skull and Bones society was funded by the biggest American opium dealers of them all—the Russell family. The most famous landmark on the Columbia University Campus is the Low Memorial Library, which honors Abiel Low, a New York Boy who made it big in the Pearl  River Delta and bankrolled the first cable across the Atlantic. Princeton University’s first big benefactor, John Green, sold opium in the Pearl River Delta with Warren Delano.

The list goes on and on: Boston’s John Murray Forbes’s opium profits financed the career of transcendentalist Ralph Waldo Emerson and bankrolled the Bell Telephone Company. Thomas Perkins founded America’s fist commercial railroad and funded the Boston Athenæum. These wealthy and powerful drug-dealing families combined to create dynasties.

In His Savage-To-Civilized Dogma about human evolution, Roosevelt imagined Chinese laborers as bucktoothed dummies, [p. 291] and he appealed to the better class of Chinese, who he assumed looked down on their own, just as aristocratic Teddy looked down on his American inferiors.  In late June, the president held several conferences with K’ang Yu-wei, a respected Chinese community leader. Roosevelt tried to convince K’ang that besides Chinese laborers, American welcomed the Chinese. Roosevelt’s pose did not fool K’ang, who said after the White House meetings hat “the whole nation of China [was] indignant,” and he endorsed the boycott of American goods to “prevent the exclusion of any Chinaman from the United States.”

Back in China, enraged patriots swung into action. Newspapers featured the boycott as front-page news; refused advertisements for American goods; announced boycott meetings and reprinted anti-American speeches as breaking news; listed American trademarks and asked readers to refuse all goods marked “Made in the U.S., “United States,” or “American”; sponsored boycott essay contests; and even argued that their 1905 boycott was comparable to the colonists’ boycott of British tea during the American struggle for independence.

Chinese homes and stores boasted huge colorful placards that read “Do Not Use American Goods,” while students marched with flags inscribed “Boycott American Goods.” The Cantonese danced to a hit song titled “Boycotting the Cruel Treaty.” A Chinese publisher translated Harriett Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin, pointing out in the preface that White America’s treatment of its negroes had now been transferred to the Chinese. Thousands of fans were distributed in Canton portraying sense of Chinese being abused by Americans Gambling houses that had offered their customers free American cigarettes switched to a Chinese brand, and on August 16, the U.S. consul to Canton, Julius Lay, “wrote of the loss in sales of 10,000 cases of oil by [292] Standard Oil and of the failure to sell any flour at a time when 500,000 bags would normally have been sold.

Chester Holcombe, a former U.S. State Department diplomat in China, tried to signal Washington about "the intense racial pride of the Chinese." Roosevelt must have been puzzled. Of what could the “Chinks” possibly be proud?

  On June 28, the New York Times Wrote:

CHINESE VERY BITTER AGAINST THIS COUNTRY
The question of Chinese exclusion from the United States continues chiefly to occupy the attention of the Chinese. The extent and depth of the feeling manifested astonish foreigners, and are regarded as an evidence of the growth of a national sentiment and public spirit which five years ago would have been inconceivable.

    Roosevelt sought to counter the boycott with the Big Stick. When Taft arrived in Hong Kong from Manila on September 2, he read a telegram from Roosevelt instructing him to be tough on the Chinese: “Make them realize that we intend to do what is right and that we cannot submit to what is now being done by them.” The implicit “wrong” Teddy presumed was a rumor that the government of China had ordered its army to enforce the boycott. In fact, the Chinese were for the first time intentionally employing nonviolent tactics. With a plank in his eye, Roosevelt focused the U.S.-China rift on a sliver that wasn’t even there.

Canton was plastered with anti-American posters, one entitled, “Turtles Carrying an American Beauty.” The poster pictured turtles carrying Princess Alice on a palanquin.  To the Chinese, a turtle was a lowlife weakling with no integrity.  Teddy’s consul [page 293] in Canton—Julius Lay—huffed to the viceroy of Guangdon and Guangxi provinces on August 39, 1905: “Today a poster in gold is posted in several places in the city with an illustration of a young girl being carried by four turtles meant to represent the daughter of our President. This disgraceful insult to the daughter of the President of the United States is only another evidence of what the boycott organization has been allowed to resort to, and for which the Chinese officials are alone responsible.”  American newspaper did not inform their readers that Roosevelt’s daughter had been portrayed in a demeaning manner; the Washington Post mentioned only “obnoxious placards” and the New York Times referred only to “insulting posters.”

When Alice observed the osiers, she chuckled Nevertheless, Consul Lay and some American military officers advised Taft not to allow Alice to travel to Canton. But Burr McIntosh, the party’s official photographer, recalled: "Miss Roosevelt wanted to see Canton and that settled it.”

TAFT RISKED ONLY A FEW jittery daylight hours in Canton. His party disembarked after dawn on September  at the U.S. consulate, located on the small island of Shaneen, in a river that flowed through Canton. Taft ordered Alice to remain in the fortress safety of America’s island consulate. Taft then traveled u under guard to the Manchu Club for a luncheon hosted  by the viceroy of Guangdong. But when Taft arrived at the club, his Chinese host was not there. The New York Times Reported, “The Viceroy was seriously ill in bed.” Claiming illness was a polite way for Chinese officials to snub irksome Foreign Devils.

Oblivious to the diplomatic rebuff, Taft delivered a rambling speech accusing the Chinese government of using intimidation to enforce the boycott and claiming that President Roosevelt would [page 294] give the Chinese a square deal. The September 7 Washington Post reported:

TAFT IS BREAKING BOYCOTT
Instructed by the President to Disillusionize Rabid Chinese
He Gives Assurances that the United States
Intends to Treat Immigrants Fairly.

In fact, Big Bill’s tough talk had little pacifying effect. Days after Taft’s visit, Consul Lay cabled the State Department that “the agitation has taken a new lease of life and instead of subsiding is growing.” A Cantonese jeweler later refused to serve the American consul’s wife, and Lay told Washington: “My chair coolies are hooted in the streets an I would not be surprised if my servants left me.” James J. Hill, a railroad titan trying to build track in China, later described the boycott as “the greatest commercial disaster America has ever suffered; [Europeans in China had] practically monopolized the trade.”

Taft got out of Canton under cover of darkness, returning to the safety of Hong Kong the evening of September 3. The party spent the next day being entertained by the more welcoming British Anglo-Saxons. On September 5, the party split in two;: Taft and about sixty people decided to return to San Francisco on the Pacific Mail steamer Korea via Shanghai, Nagasaki, Kobe, and Yokohama; Princess Alice and about twenty-eight people would go on to tour Beijing, Korea, and Japan.


ALICE BEGAN HER NORTHERN explorations in Beijing, where the court cared little about the boycott by China’s southern merchants. [page 295] On the throne was the elderly despot, Empress Cixi, who wasn’t Chinese at all, but the last in a line of Manchu rulers. The empress housed Alice in her Summer Palace, a series of ornate structures, complete with an artificial lake, in the cool hills beyond the Forbidden City. At the welcoming dinner, Alice remembered, “I got [page 296] quite dunk. I remember…thinking, ‘Am I able to walk that line without swaying’ as I wove my way off to bed.”

The next morning a hungover Alice, “feeling slightly unsteady on my feet,” made the obligatory three curtsies as she approached the empress, who sat “very erect and looking just like her picture.”

Alice was escorted to another room for a luncheon banquet with no interpreters, so neither side could understand the other. Next she was taken out into the palace gardens, and she later recalled Empress Cixi showering her with gifts. Alice gushed; “I absolutely loved all the loot I amassed.”

Further gifts and partying followed, enough to leave a bad impression with their American host, Consul William Rockhill, who wrote to James Rodgers, the American consul-general at Shanghai, “My experience with a section of the Taft party which came up here was identical with yours. I never saw such a pack of irresponsible men and women in my life…. Yesterday, at 11 A.M., I was glad to say goodbye to the last of them.”

ESTIMATES VARY, but some conclude that the 1905 boycott cut U.S. exports to China by more than half. Outraged by the Rough Rider in the White House, China had stood up to a White Christian country for the first time with a coordinated, peaceful response.  One man in Shanghai foresaw a new era: “If we succeed in getting justice from America now, we may then boycott the nation that forces opium down our throats and the others that grab our provinces.”  Indeed, the New York Tribune warned that “the greatest significance of the boycott is the possibility of future use of this method of coercion if the first attempt succeeds.”

     The paper had it right. The boycott united China’s nationalists for the first time as they coordinated national communication, staged rallies, managed propaganda, and distributed millions of [page 297] giveaways to rally their countrymen. Many of the leaders of the 1905 boycott would use their skills in further uprisings against domination by Foreign Devils. Unable to imagine that the Chinese would behave as patriots and assuming that they’d always react as merchants, Roosevelt had fundamentally underestimated the Chinese character and had lit another long fuse.
[end of chapter 10]