"The battle, I believe, in the current period, since the time I was born, l947, or even a little earlier, is for the last frontier that's being explored; it's the one where we have to do battle in order to survive; it's for what George Orwell called "the space between our ears." It's that little space, and what's in it, that the government finds the most valuable. Believe me, the Defense Department does not sit around in fear of the Soviet Union, who are technologically and militarily well behind us on every critical point. If they plan anything in relation to the Soviet Union, it's full-scale nuclear, biological and chemical warfare attack in the year 2000. They don't sit and quake over the people in Nicaragua, in Central America, in Africa, in the Middle East. They do genocide against them with impunity. The only people that they're afraid of is us. Because if we figure out what's happening in this society, if we figure out the real politics, if we call the lie and open it up, then the gig is up. That's why Oliver North was so careful to shred everything. It didn't matter, as the Committee pointed out, that the Cubans already knew, that the Nicaraguans already knew, and that even the Soviets already knew. The problem was if the American public should get hold of the information on the secret government, and it's activities. That's the danger.
The history of the establishment of privilege in societies probably goes back as far as there was history. Back at least to multiple groups of people trying to cooperate, or live together. In the earliest part, those privileges were established at various points by religious beliefs that were asserted, or held sway, by outright lies, by force and the threat of force, and from time to time by the discovery of new technologies, which allowed a particular group an advantage or privilege over another group. The maintaining of that privilege, once it was held in a few hands, by a particular class, race or sex, was maintained then, by deception; by a distortion of earlier history; and by a method that became more and more effective as history progressed: the implementation of force, the threat of force, and implied violence.
This continued until all of those things became part of the State apparatus. They became centralized as huge functions, that didn't rely on a particular fiefdom, or how many thugs you could hire to fence off your land, protect it and call it your own, or how many soldiers you could get together under your leadership to die, so that you could take over some other property. The accumulation of wealth and control became centralized not only in a few hands in this country, but by a few societies, a few empires, over time.
We live in one of them. We live in the most advanced one. We live in the most dangerous one, in terms of the further existence of the planet. Current military and intelligence machinery of this society make the Nazi/Hohenzollern machine look like a rubber-band affair.
We're 40 to 50 years down that technological pike from whatever it was that frightened us in the l940s. And as Thomas Merton said in l936: "If we fight the Nazi's, we will become the Nazis."
Under current theory, rather than distorting history, it has become the practice, I believe, to destroy history altogether. History, especially after the year l945, no longer exists. It's not taught in school. When I was in school I was lucky to get up to the end of the Civil War. The furthest you could get in school was, maybe, the beginnings of WWII. Then there was something called Current Events that started in l960. Now the kids in high school have history as an optional topic. You know, it's either that or I don't know what . . . typing . . . or something else. But even if they go into the history, I don't know if you've picked up an historical textbook from high schools that mentions at all the l940s on . . . It's just so distorted as to be unrecognizable. It's down what Orwell called the "memory hole." So it's more than just changing or distorting the history; it's the destruction of history itself so that history no longer exists.
In WWII, techniques were developed for the deception of the enemy, for the control of the human mind, and for war stress. They did an analysis of soldiers. It was that period, and the period directly following, that marked the massive growth of psychiatry as an industry. And of prisons. And of the whole centralized institutional response to political and social problems, that handed them over to experts in the society and to institutions. And that routed those people who stood up in any way, or fought back against their oppression, into these institutions, under definitions that blamed the victims themselves.
Blaming the victim is what mass psychiatry, militarism, and many of these other forces do. "You end up," as Malcolm X said once, "by reading the newspapers for long enough, loving the people doing the oppressing, and hating the people that are being oppressed."
And then add to that, and those factors and those tendencies, the technology of television. As I often say, Goebbels probably would have given his saluting arm for that one. Because that's the ticket, see? We're no longer going to read, we no longer have to do anything except turn on that electronic machine. And as early as l948, according to my investigation and research, that television was exactly the instrument described in l939 in Orwell's book l948, which was changed here in the US to l984 in the first Harcourt and Brace edition. But '48 is the year it's talking about. All the technology that Winston faces in Orwell's society was in place, and in the hands of, and functional for, the intelligence agencies: the averrant conditioning, the telescreen that watched him . . .
By l948 we had Operation Octopus (in secret), which allowed machinery in a particular neighborhood to cover a 25 mile radius, and any television that had it's tubes hot could be listened through and seen through by this technology. This is what Hale Boggs' staff was investigating at the time of his disappearance in the middle of Watergate. He was also one of the Warren Commission members.
Beyond watching us, the television also controls us. Not only with constant subliminal messages, and the message of the commoditization of all human experience, and the message that cops are our friends, no matter what they do. You know, the overt and the covert propaganda. But just the fact that we spend so much of our time absorbed that we, in a sense, leave the driving to them . . . on the brain circuit.
With the brain itself, the procedures were: drugging, cutting, implanting, microwaving and perfecting control. Whether it was end of memory, lapse of memory temporarily, creation of second personality, training of assassins . . . whatever control they wanted, first on the individual, and then on the mass level.
Other programs that the CIA, Navy and Army Intelligence called MK/ULTRA, MK/DELTA, and MK/NAOMI, ARTICHOKE, BLUEBIRD, they had a lot of names, Project Often; they were done on prisoners, on veterans . . . who are still being experimented on in those institutions right now, in ways that won't be seen in the civilian world for several years.
But they took it, obviously, from that individual level to a mass level. As early as l956 Allen Dulles bought 50 million tabs of LSD from the Sandoz Corporation. Now that's not experimental level. They were going to do something with it.
And what they did with it, to just give you one example from an article that I found at the time of . . . you remember the mass murders that were attributed to the Son of Sam (Mae Brussell calls him the "Son of Uncle Sam"), this fellow up there in NY, David Berkowitz. Berkowitz was an Army clerk in Korea. I have an article about his military background from his best friend in the unit. He decided he didn't want to be there any more and he applied as a conscientious objector, the friend says. And then he says, interestingly enough, "the brass gave him acid." Does the brass give you acid? No, the brass gives you MK/ULTRA.
This fellow Gary Heidens, who was just convicted of the mass murders and torture of the women in the basement in Philadelphia. Did you read about that? He had been part of the MK/ULTRA experimentation in the army. He had l00% medical disability from the VA. He had VA records so sensitive that the computers sent out a warning beep whenever anybody tried to access the file. His brother was also on 100% disability from the VA. And when Perutto, his lawyer, tried to introduce any of that, it was squashed by the judge.
These so-called mass murderers not only don't commit all the murders (it's easy for the government to commit a lot of murders and then blame them all on one person) but the murders that they do commit are under the influence, not of some purported mental disease, but of programming of the mind, and distortion by the government itself.
The print and other media in this country, especially since the period of the Depression, have been in the hands of fewer and fewer people. All you need, really, is the assignment editor and the final copy editor in your pocket. And then you can have as many honest reporters as you want, as long as you've got 2 or 3 CIA reporters and intelligence reporters to cover the right story. And to make sure that nobody else slips into the wrong one.
The wire services are certainly easy enough to control. And now the ownership, which had been secretly held, through interlocking directorates, by the Rockefeller family, for all four major television networks since the l940s, has passed openly into the hands of General Electric (remember, "what's good for GE is good for the country") for NBC, and to Capital Cities, Bill Casey's stock investment company, ABC is under their auspices. So now we're going to be open about the fact that we live in a corporate world.
The future envisioned by the people that are paying hundreds of millions of dollars of money (NASA and Navy Intelligence) was outlined by Dr. Jose Delgado. A Fascist from Spain, an expert in brain implantation on animals and humans, Delgado suggested to the Congress in 1972 that we could have a society of electronic remote control of workers and laborers in the field, and soldiers out on the front lines. A society run from behind by a group of technocrats at the top, with almost all of us implanted with electronic devices, to control our brains and human responses. And he told Congress that he didn't see why anyone would feel adverse to having an implant that would make them both happy and productive. He said: "After all, they take their Swine Flu shots, don't they?''
Disinformation is an art developed by us and now blamed on the KGB. To give you just one example of how it works, it distorts history so much from the beginning, that the common left-wing response to the propaganda merely maintains the lie.
KAL 007, for instance, was not blown out of the sky by the Russians. Was not within 300 nautical miles of the stealth plane that actually invaded Soviet air space, and escaped that air space because it deflected the radar information to the missile fired by the Soviet pilot. KAL 007 was blown up over the Kurile trench by the US intelligence agencies simultaneous with hearing the Soviet pilot say, "The target is destroyed.''
Not only are we not privy to that information, but the KGB and the Soviet Union are blamed for shooting it down. According to the New York Times, in those days there was no excuse, under any circumstances, at any time, for a sophisticated and developed nation to shoot down a civilian airliner.
Now, we've suddenly changed all that to a situation where there's "nothing else the pilot could do. After all, it was 9 miles away." And it was "ascending," or "descending," or doing something . . . And so, "we had to knock it out of the sky." •
But, if our only criticism rests on the idea that the Soviets blew up the plane, then we can only counter with the fact that we shouldn't have done the same. If we get to bottom of history, we're in a different situation.
I used to wear a button that said "Where's Lee Harvey Oswald when we really need him?" [laughter] You see, I wanted him to testify . . . because he could tell the truth to the American public. He was innocent of the crime. He didn't fire a gun that day. But whenever I'd wear it, people thought I wanted to kill the President. If I'd wanted to say that, I would have had to wear a button that said, "Where's Jack Ruby when we really need him?'' He took the guns up the back of the grassy knoll. But if I wore that button, they'd think I wanted to kill Sirhan Sirhan. So you see, once you distort it, there's almost no way back unless you get to the core of the information, and revise it toward truth.
One of the most interesting articles in the last year, was in the Boston Globe, outlining five stories supposedly planted in the international press for distribution by KGB disinformation agents. Those stories included the exact research conclusions of Dave Emory, Mae Brussell and myself, and other key researchers in this country. These "KGB disinformation stories": that Jonestown was a CIA mass murder, that the AIDS disease is a chemical/biological warfare weapon, that the deaths in Cameroon resulted from a test of the neutron bomb . . . were stories that almost no one except the independent American researchers were putting out. So, if anything, the Soviets are our dupes. But I doubt it. I suggest that probably the Soviets didn't plant the "disinformation" but that that article was the real disinformation.
Grenada is another example in point where finally, they openly kept the American press (with almost no contention on the part of the press to the public) from going into a war situation. Then they said that the press could have some hand-picked people that the government would agree to in advance. So those boys tried to go into the Gulf, And they were held at gunpoint by the US Navy to keep them out. So even the ones that they "OK" are only "OK" temporarily; for whichever war, for which three hours they want them in there.
So that's the end of press coverage of war. Which, after all, we're told, lost the Vietnam war for us. You know, you have to keep up not only the morale of the troops in the field, but of the people at home.
And now, it's apparently subversive for people to go to a library. I think that that's appropriate. I think the FBI ought to be in there. Anybody who's still trying to read and not just watching TV, is probably subversive. [laughter] And I think they need a list. [laughter]
I saw a cartoon, called the Wizard of Id, and the King is talking to the Soldier. The Soldier says: "Sire, illiteracy is on the rise." And the king says: "That's great." The soldier asks: "Why's that?" and the King replies: "We can get rid of censorship." [prolonged laughter]
I'll close with a quote taken from my friend Lenny Lapon's book Mass Murderers in White Coats.
This is from George Orwell's l984.. This is O'Brien, the programmer/controller talking to Winston, who he has betrayed and he now has under his control in the Ministry of Truth:
You know perfectly well what is the matter with you . . . You are mentally deranged. You suffer from a defective memory. You are unable to remember real events, and you persuade yourself that you remember other events, which never happened. Fortunately it is curable . . . Even now . . . you are clinging to your disease, under the impression that it is a virtue . . .
It is impossible to see reality, except by looking through the eyes of the Party. That is the fact that you have got to relearn . . . You must humble yourself before you can become sane . . .
Shall I tell you why we have brought you here? To cure you. To make you sane! . . . no one whom we bring to this place ever leaves our hands uncured . . . We are not interested . . . in the overt act: the thought is all we care about. We do not merely destroy our enemies; we change them.
[long loud applause]
Lori Bradford: Hi, I'm Lori Bradford.
Getting back to talking about lying, and how big the lie is I think it's important Because I came to all this stuff through my experience being locked up in psychiatric institutions, I always think it's important that we realize how big the lie is, and on how many levels. And that it takes that.
It's not just that, on the broader level, the news media doesn't tell us the truth, or that when we watch the national news at night we might spend a half hour learning about . . . animal rights . . . or . . . Not that I'm opposed to animal rights, I'm a vegetarian, but we're so distorted on where our concerns are. Especially on a national level. I think it's important to realize what it has to do with our lives, always. I think incest, and battering, and rape, and queer bashing, and racism, and oppression at work, all are so essential to the kind of lie that our government wants us to be operating within.
And to that end, there has developed since the end of WWII, a Medical/Military/Corporate complex. We have to begin to track back and realize how much control psychiatry has had on developments in our society today; realize that it was psychiatrists who set up death camp systems to facilitate the holocaust in Nazi Germany; realize that originally it was 300,000 mental patients that were exterminated first; and realize that it was then those psychiatrists who trained the SS at different locations to set up death camp systems.
We have to begin to see who are set up as experimental populations. What we continue to see in the press: "Oh, this mental patient went there and shot up and and fired . . . " And who tried to kill the Presidents the last three times? What kinds of assassinations have been going on? Who they experiment on, the experimental populations in this country, are Third World people, are women, are children, are military personnel.
And then we also have to begin to understand who ends up in the military these days. We have to start to comprehend the poverty draft. And you have to understand how all this ties together.
In the l940s, when they started programs like MK/ULTRA, it was initially, theoretically concepts of weapons and defense they were concerned about. They were concerned that if you had so called "Communist" politics or anti-Western sentiment or feeling, they wanted to know. They figured since American patriotism was so "normal," that it must be something aberrant in that individual that would make them have any opposition to government policy and procedure. So that's how they initially started. They started to figure out what was wrong with people's minds that would have you objecting to war or racism or classism in this country. And they began experiments to be able to figure out how they could change political opinion. On an individual level.
They started this by going into prisons, and psychiatric institutions and doing LSD experiments on people, mega dosing LSD in combination with other psychiatric techniques, called things like psychic driving, where they set you up on a tape that's played 15 hours a day, giving you a message over and over and over again. Another technique was photic bombardment, flashes of light. They also developed sensory deprivation: white rooms, dressed in white, white lights, white noise coming through microphones. It certainly was a technique that made people lose their equilibrium, their sense of self, made them more suggestible.
So all those things began to come together in a covert kind of way. A lot of the experimentation was done in Canada because, even as the CIA was setting up some of this experimentation on unwitting populations, they knew it was so insidious that some of it they couldn't begin to do here.
And so the CIA funneled money into Defense Departments in Canada. And experimentation was done at McGill University at the Allan Memorial Institute there by a guy named Dr. Cameron, who was alternately the head of the American Psychiatric Association, the Canadian Psychiatric Association and the World Psychiatric Association.
Psychiatric techniques control every aspect of our lives: everything that we think, everything that we think about work, everything that we think about home, everything that we think about family. And we always have psychiatrists on the news to explain things to us if we didn't get it right. If we didn't understand why some guy got so irate at his workplace, or with sexism, or with the kind of pressure that we all learn to operate under, that somebody went in and shot seven people at their workplace. We can understand it was one aberrant individual, but we're not supposed to begin to put together that maybe it's the stress of the workplace, or it's how really oppressive life is in general.
It was only after, I don't know . . . I think, the last several mass murders in a workplace, that I heard one newscaster mention that perhaps they should consider stress in the workplace. Oh, a new concept! [laughter]
It's not the first time they considered stress in the workplace, but they considered it in a real different way. The reason that they first ever developed "alternative" drugs; and I say alternative drugs because I'm talking about Thorazine, which is a very heavy-handed psychiatric drug. Phenothiazines, of which Thorazine and Stellazine are some of those kinds of drugs, leave you pretty non-functional. There's a general term called the "Thorazine shuffle" because you can't walk and you don't move fast. On drugs like Prolixin, you don't move fast. Prolixin is an injectable drug that lasts 2 weeks at a shot. I mean, all you have to do is give a person one injection, and for 2 weeks their behavior is controlled, as it's slowly released into their system. They're thrilled about it, because they just get people to come in for an injection, you know, it's a great . . . it's done on an outpatient basis . . . and it makes life so easy.
So, they had lots of these heavy-handed drugs, but people couldn't work on them. And so it was the Military/Industrial complex that got together at the end of WWII when there was so much worker unrest and they were concerned about rebuilding after the war and all that good stuff. They developed Valiums and Libriums and those kinds of drugs, where everybody could take those, and still go to to work.
And even, if you notice on TV, how we're supposed to think about drugs and how we're supposed to feel about work; it's kind of like, "Are those fluorescent lights at work are giving you a headache? Well, then take some aspirin and you can make it through the day." No problem, you know . . .
And cancer in the workplace? Well, "Just stop smoking, and that'll take care of it," or "Have surgery, and that'll take care of it.'' Cancer treatment and medical operations in this country are based on killing after the fact rather than any kind of preventative medicine. I think we have to begin to realize how medicine and military and corporations come together, because I think that leads us to things like maybe a real understanding of what's going on with AIDS in this country, and where it's coming from; maybe the truth about cancer research in this country; maybe the truth about toxins in our workplace and what they're doing to us; and why you hear talk in the media about why people are acting more violently; and . . . What's going on in the world today!?!
I mean, we so like to think it's just more and more aberrant individuals, rather than seeing it as a whole. It's kind of like how television works. You know, it's like you watch 10 minutes of the news and then you watch 10 minutes of weather and then you watch 10 minutes of sports and then the news from the day before is not very often repeated the next day, or the day after. And, that Contragate drug deals would have nothing to do with Vietnam drug deals. That all of these things are separate and divided issues and none of these things are connected. That the war in Central America doesn't have anything to do with the rise of plans for martial law in the United States, with the rise of a massive epidemic and the deaths of hundreds of thousands; which I think it's gonna be, but the deaths of thousands of Black people and Gay people and Haitians and drug users . . . from AIDS.
I've found lots of data on experiments. The government was covering, under MK/ULTRA, psychological and behavior control mechanisms. They were also interested in things like ESP for espionage, we would say. They were interested in researching obscure poisons. They sent agents to South America to find this special kind of alligator and bring back its gall bladder. And it was this big deal because they couldn't kill it there and bring it back. They were supposed to bring back this whole alligator and, you know, be able to develop these bizarre poisons. Ostensibly, they wanted to develop these poisons because they said, if they had an agent caught in the field they were supposed to take their little cyanide cap before they old their true purpose. They wanted to develop a more effective poison for their agents to use in a suicide scene.
That was one of the answers they gave the Church Committee when they asked them why they were out there, collecting all these poisons and stuff? "Oh well, we wanted to make an easier suicide route for our agents," Rather then, "We wanted to send one of our CIA doctors to assassinate Lamumba in the Congo." No. That wasn't the reason they wanted some of those poisons, to be able to set up surreptitious assassinations.
Also during that time there is information about setting up programmed assassins. They use techniques like they tape your head in place and they force you to watch initially fairly low-level violent films. Like, one program, they start you watching circumcision in an African tribe. And your eyes are glued open, so you can't blink. And your head is held in place, so you can't turn your head. And you'll watch increasingly violent films, over and over again. And they have you wired up, so they wait until you're no longer responding to the degree of violence that you're seeing, and they continually build up, watching, increasing the violence until you're really inured to it. Until they can tell you to kill upon command, and you won't blink an eye. Just like you haven't been blinking in their apparatus for the last 6 weeks.
By the time they're ready to send you out as a programmed assassin, the final part of the programming is developed; you'll go and hear racist speeches about the country that they're sending you to, and dehumanizing speeches about the people that you'll be dealing with.
And the same thing goes on in prisons. Marion prison in Illinois is, essentially, a control unit. The entire prison is a control unit. And part of what they wanted to do with Marion was not only set up a control unit, but be able to have people be programmed when they left Marion. Some of the psychological services they have at Marion they say they not only want to be able to propagate among the inmates like wanting to come to group therapy, and using psychiatry as a tool in that way, but they want the inmates to be able to leave and be so invested and so engrossed in this new psychiatric/psychological stuff, that they'll go out and propagate it among the rest of the population too.
So all of this is the idea of programming: programming assassins, programming people within confined institutions and sending them out. So you have people just be ready to perform on command. You've got assassins programmed to perform on command, you've got people out there who have knowledge of behavior modification and control techniques and they're set to perform on command. So, it puts more and more control people into the population. And more controlled people into the population.
I think some of the military serves that purpose too. And juvenile detention centers. And certainly psychiatric institutions.
And the new kind of drugs we're seeing, I think set up for more and more control devices. And not only new drugs in terms of control, but electronic devices. I think that's a new big thing. And microwaves. Microwaves can be broadcast in the alpha/beta range of your mind so that they can drop words into your mind, they can control your emotions.
And I think that's the more insidious end of things, and that's what all of this has been building up to: this high degree of technology. They can put in implants that are seen as the new probation of the future. The new future of criminology is seen as these thinner than human hair implants that'll control your behavior and keep you acting right in the streets.
So that's what we have to look foreword to unless we try to put a stop to them. You know, the information is out there, but it's so hidden. And we have to begin to put it together, people. People who are doing different political work, realize what our connections are. We operate so disconnected . . . you know . . . like . . . the peace movement. I mean, OK, well what does that have to do with an anti-Fascist conference?
Well, it depends on what you think about nuclear experimentation on people in the Marshall Islands. Are we ever going to deal with that? The nuclear holocaust is already with us. We don't have a peace movement to prevent it, we have a peace movement to expose that it's already happening to us. To expose that people are vastly irradiated. Lots of different populations. And not just the bombing of Hiroshima and Nagasaki at the end of that war; but that experimentation continued.
Not only did we do it to lots of really patriotic farmers in Utah, Mormons who were just nothing but good patriots and so thrilled to have the Army in their own back yards. Blowing up bombs. But when fallout fell like snow, inches deep in their back yards, they were told: "Don't worry, it's not a problem," and they were thrilled about it. And, of course, now, later, in l980, all these people are having cancer, and all these kids are growing up sick. There's testimony from adults with cancer now, who were kids then, who said they used to go out and play in it, like it was snow, and then go in and have a sandwich. And all this fallout dust would be all over their hands.
When they dropped bombs in the Marshall Islands, again the same kind of thing, where it fell inches thick. And then they'd move people out for a couple of weeks and move 'em back. And they knew all along that they were setting up a situation to collect data on vast amounts of people. So it's not like they don't know what they're doing. And they've been knowing for a long time. And it's like a lot of things where they've known for a long time. And medicine covers up for government, and government covers up for medicine.
It's like: they knew about asbestos in l918 was when asbestosis was defined as a disease. l9l8!!! Well, that's a far cry from all of a sudden now we decide we have to clean up the public schools, you know. And yet we're all told that if we want to stop cancer, if we just get everybody to stop smoking. All the lies about what you're supposed to do. And none of it's accurate.
So, anyway . . . [extended applause]
Steve Hassna: I'm going to talk about the military as far as an apparatus for controlling people. One of the jobs I had when I returned from Vietnam was I was issued this hat. Army Drill Sergeant. I was trained, by the US Army, in various tactics of psychological control to get 40 people at a time to do what they're told without them thinking about it.
I'm going to talk about the military as far as it's control and how it's used to manipulate people and get them to do things they normally wouldn't do. I left Vietnam, I was with the 101st Airborne division, as an Infantry Paratrooper, pointman, squad leader, tunnel rat. I was there in 1967-'68, I went through the Tet Offensive, returned here, and was issued this hat [Army Drill Sergeant] OK? The United States Army has what is called it's Drill Sergeant School. It's a 6 week course . . . [piercing sound from PA system] . . . Ow!
Lori Bradford: [half in jest] It's mind control.
Steve Hassna: OK . . . Drill Sergeant school is a six week course where you are trained to give instruction for basic training. Now, mentioned here today, has been an historical process of, if you don't know the historical process of what happened before, you have a tendency of repeating it over and over again. I did not know the historical process that got us into the Vietnam conflict and consequently enlisted in the United States Army in l966. Later, when I got out of the army and started looking at what I had gone through and how I had been manipulated as a trainee and then controlled as a soldier in the field in Vietnam and then came back and was put through a school to then train people to go and do exactly what I had done a year prior.
I did not know when I went into the army that we had trained and financed Ho Chi Minh's forces during WWII to fight the common enemy, the Japanese. And one of the tactics we had trained Ho Chi Minh's people in was Col. Robert Rogers Rules of Order which is the basic Army Ranger tactics that were developed by Col. Robert Rogers during the French and Indian Wars in the 1700s here in the United States. These tactics were taught to Ho Chi Minh's people, aside from what they already knew about fighting in their own country.
I did not know this. I did not know or read the books, or study (because I was a child growing up, in the 50s), the different manipulative factors that we did as far as Southeast Asia to control the economy, the political atmosphere, the military atmosphere, and everything else.
And consequently I participated in that war, and then, like I said, trained 1200 young men to go and do exactly what I did.
And what did I train them in? I trained them in patriotism, in love of country, in amplifying the feeling of worth for your country by serving your country as it's a noble cause. And I also trained them in very . . . um . . . it's embarrassing to me, it . . . it's shameful, but . . . tactics of hating the Vietnamese. I'll just use the Vietnamese as an example. But an American soldier was supposed to be in Vietnam to help the Vietnamese decide their own political destiny, as an ally. And yet in training, the Vietnamese were referred to as "gooks" and "slopes" and "dinks" and "zipperheads" and everything else that you could thing of to make the Vietnamese look subhuman and less than intelligent. So that when you killed them, you really weren't killing a human being, you were killing this subhuman creature.
And that was my job.
Even though that was not why I went into the military to serve my country. But that was the job that I did. And today, 20 years later, I still have a hard time sleeping at night.
Now, why would a country that is supposedly based on the foundations of freedom, democracy and equality for people, train their soldiers in such tactics? Because if you're gonna employ your troops in such an inhuman fashion, you have to have them operate against people and not look at them as being human.
We would have silhouette targets. Little pop-up silhouette targets at the rifle range. You'd shoot at them, the bullet would hit it and they'd fall down and then come back up. Electronically controlled. Human shaped. In the close range combat courses these silhouette targets were actual, you know, with a . . . a life-like figure was painted onto the silhouette target. And usually it was of a Viet Cong. The typical Viet Cong: the conical hat, the slant eyes, you know, and this glaring face at you. With like, maybe a red star on the hat. That you were then to develop an attitude towards the Vietnamese people that they were really not worth saving. That we were just there because . . . you know, we had to . . . you know . . ."save the world." But we weren't really gonna save this part of the world. We were gonna save the world, but the Vietnamese were . . . expendable.
On top of everything else, I also learned the astonishing fact that all military personnel are expendable. OK? No matter what your job in the military, you are infantry. The Marine Corps is honest, alright? The Marine Corps, you go into the Marine Corps, they tell you, "Whatever your job is, you're infantry." The Army says you're a "combat engineer," you're a "medic," you're a "this," you're a "that," but when push comes to shove, you have a rifle in your hand and you will kill to survive because now you're in an absurd situation.
Alright, the military is a killing machine. The reason they have combat engineers is to build roads to the front lines. It's not there for some humanitarian aid like to build a bridge to help a village. It's to build a bridge to get across the river to blow the village up, OK? So? You understand this? These are little things that I did not realize at 19 when I went into the army. I thought that I was going to save the world because we were going to get overrun by these barbarians called Communists, OK?
The United States Army (I'll use that cause that's what I was in) is a very interesting mechanism. Everybody has a job. And all the jobs are interlocked, but at the same time, your job is better than the other person's job. So its constantly a competitive attitude. The thing about this is, is that in the military enlistment document they have a small clause that negates all your jobs. Section 5, paragraph B states, " . . . laws and regulations that govern military personnel may change without notice to me. These changes may affect my pay, allowances, benefits and responsibilities as a member of the armed forces, regardless of the provisions of this enlistment/re-enlistment document."
You are infantry, OK? It does not make any difference.
Now, many people go into the military for hundreds of different reasons: to get out of town, to leave, to go away, to find a career, to become a computer specialist, because you want to be macho and jump out of airplanes. I made the weirdest decision in my life, that I was tired of being controlled in school and having my folks tell me what to do, so I joined the United States Army. [laughter and applause]
One thing is, that the military will use these different things to get people to join, and even if they don't go along wholeheartedly with the military apparatus, they're at least good for a year. They've got you for at least a year. By the time a year is over, you're either so thoroughly disgusted . . . or . . . you're there forever. I was going to do 20 years when I went in. I had purposely designed myself to do 20 years in the United States Army. By the time my tour of duty was over in Vietnam, and the subsequent year as a Drill Sergeant, I was so disillusioned, upset, pissed off and downright bothered, that I couldn't wait to get out of the military as fast as I could. I left Fort Campbell Kentucky at 12:00 o'clock in the afternoon on a Thursday; I did not stop until I got to St. Louis. I wanted to get as far away from that place as I possibly could.
Because the military is a lie. And that lie becomes prevalent as you realize what you're doing over and over and over again.
You've read about the Holocaust, and you've seen the movies, and all the other stuff in WWII. You've heard about the Panzer divisions and the SS going across the Ukraine and Poland and Czechoslovakia and France and all the other places that they ran around and stomped on people. Well folks, the First Brigade of the 101st Airborne Division in l967 that went through Vietnam was NO DIFFERENT! ! ! We did NO DIFFERENT tactics; we burned everything in our wake and we killed it if it got in our way. Period.
That was a contradiction to what I was raised spiritually, morally, and politically, to conduct myself. And yet that is how the US Army operated in Vietnam.
And yet they turn around and they act like the Russians are being weird in Afghanistan because they use chemical/biological warfare. We defoliated five million acres of land that will not grow anything for almost one hundred and fifty years, and on top of that we killed Americans by having an additive in the defoliant Agent Orange called Dioxin. Lori mentioned that asbestos was known in 1918 and now they're just getting around to cleaning it up. Dioxin was known to Dow Chemical and different manufacturers of that herbicide in 1951. They knew it was lethal in l951. They did not remove dioxin from the herbicide because it is a by-product. It has nothing to do with the function of the herbicide. But, when you mix chemicals together, you get a by-product. They did not remove dioxin from that chemical because it would have increased production cost. So they said nothing. Now, you have "hysterical veterans" all over this country. That's what the VA calls us. We're "hysterical veterans," because we're wondering why we're dying, and we're being "hysterical" about the whole thing. I went to a conference on Agent Orange and a chemical company person said that, and I said: "You're goddam right I'm hysterical. You're trying to kill me; why shouldn't I be hysterical?"
Now, the military is a function of the large corporations of this country. That's another little historical fact that I did not know about when I went to Vietnam at 20 years old. But, my job was to protect the political, economic, and military/strategic interest of the US corporate and government heads in this country, while carrying a rifle around Vietnam. Chase Manhattan Bank, Colt/Armalite, Northrup. You know the list of the Fortune 500.
Well, they couldn't tell me, they couldn't say, "Steve, you're going to Vietnam and you're going to kill as many Vietnamese as you can, so that Colt/Armalite and Chase Manhattan Bank make a profit." They couldn't do that because then I might have said: "Well, I don't really think that's what I want to do." But they used the thing of: "If we don't stop them there, they're going to take Burbank." OK? At 41 years old, if they want Burbank, they can have it. I've been there. There's nothing there. But at 19 that was a definite threat to me.
So after serving a year in combat and seeing . . . seeing and then not seeing . . . because in combat you become a person that you're watching something happen daily to a point where you don't see it happen anymore. The destruction becomes a blur. The bodies are like over there, out of your peripheral vision, and you really don't see them. Because if you focus on them, you go insane. Even though you are already insane . . . from being there. You go totally mad if you really focus on what you're doing, so you just act like it's not happening.
Now, when I got back and I was assigned to Drill Sergeant school, I was then trained in how to manipulate people to get them to go do what I had just done. And become just as numb. The US Army is not really a fancy, sophisticated entity in the psychological mind control like has been already talked about here today: the ultra-fancy CIA and everything else. They're real low key. They just teach you how to manipulate 40 people without them knowing it. Which is a pretty good trick. One of the things I was taught was that you go into a barracks in the morning, and you tell the people in the barracks: "We're having an inspection Saturday morning, and this inspection is a very important inspection. All inspections are important. We have to pass this inspection. But, we don't have enough mops and brooms and rakes, you know, in our platoon area, and we can't get them through the supply area because they've already got their requisitions in. But, C company across the street has got lots of mops and rakes and stuff like that." And then in the afternoon, you leave. And in the middle of the night, one of the squads from the platoon gets together and they go out and they get these mops and rakes and they bring them back, and then you pass the inspection.
OK, now, these people think they were getting mops and rakes so that they wouldn't get yelled at by their drill sergeant to pass the inspection; not realizing that they had actually made a military mission, accomplished that mission, and got back with as few causalities as possible, by "requisitioning" these mops and rakes.
They didn't realize that two weeks before, these ten people that were total strangers, from several different parts of the country, probably could not walk down the street together without tripping over each other, now snuck out and "requisitioned" these mops and rakes. And accomplished a military mission. They don't even . . . it doesn't dawn on them . . . that that was what was happening. That was what I was trained to do.
When I was going through basic training, I thought that drill sergeants were just people they just picked. "You, over there, here's a hat, go for it." I didn't realize till I got to this school that they were purposely taught these different mind controlling things. I would do things like, walk into the barracks at 4 o'clock in the morning and drop a heavy steel garbage can down a flight of stairs and then start yelling and screaming, and tell people to empty the building, and get out of the building, now. And they'd all be standing out in front in their skivvies and everything, shivering and all that sort of stuff, and then I'd tell them, "The reason we're having this exercise is because this wood frame building that was built in l941 can burn down in 3 minutes. So, I'm getting you ready to be able to evacuate the building at a moment's notice." And they believed that.
They did not realize until 8 weeks later that every time I said, "formation," these 40 people dropped what they were doing, ran to a designated area, got into a numerical order, and stood there and waited for the next command. And sometimes I would say, "OK, good, dismissed." And they'd get halfway away doing something else and I'd yell, "formation," to the point where they would instantaneously react to my voice.
And then I sent them to their advanced individual training.
That's what the military does. That's the end result of all this stuff. And it's very, very low . . . it's not even sophisticated . . . I mean these people aren't even imaginative. You know, I mean, what John and Lori are talking about is like these people are really sitting down and thinking how we can do this stuff. "We'll get some fancy drugs, implants, and everything else." The US military just hasn't got time for that. "We'll just traumatize them to hell and they'll do anything we tell them, just so we won't yell at them anymore." And that's the truth. I had trainees that would respond simply so I would not raise my voice at them. That they would do so so I would not pick them out of a crowd.
And a lot of times, we were trained in Drill Sergeant school to individually pick people out. As you're going through the training cycle, systematically go through and put everybody at least once or twice on the block. Do not let anyone in your platoon get out of the cycle without having had his ass chewed out. Period. So it was not like, these people thought they were just getting yelled at on the spur of the moment, where I would actually know, "Tomorrow, I'm taking this one out, the next day I'm taking these two . . . " And I would have a list as to just who I was going to go after, and when I was going to go after them, and why I was going to go after them. And I was trained to do that.
An interesting thing also, is that the military is a contradiction itself. I went through basic training. I graduated from basic training. I went into my Advanced Individual Training. I'm an infantry paratrooper. At AIT I was told; "Whatever you learned in basic training, forget, except, you know, how to shine your boots, make your bed, who to salute, how to salute and when to salute, and if in doubt, salute." OK? Clear. "Oh, OK, so I'm going to learn to be a paratrooper."
So I went and I learned to be an infantry paratrooper. Then I went to Vietnam. And I got there and they put me in a week's training. Preparatory training. You learn ambush tactics, booby traps, and all this other stuff. And the first thing I was told there was; "Whatever you learned in AIT, forget. This is Vietnam, and this is how it's done. You know how to shine your boots and make your bed, and you know who to salute and how to salute and when to salute, and if in doubt, salute." OK. I thought, "Alright, that's a little strange, but I can go along with that."
I got to my unit in the field. The first thing my platoon sergeant said was; "Whatever you learned up until this point, forget. This is Vietnam. You ain't got no bed, your boots are dirty, don't salute nobody." And I'm here for a year . . .
So, actually, what they could have done, in all intent and purpose, was and saved them a year's training, and price several thousand dollars, was take me from 1515 Clay, in Oakland, when I enlisted (I am from this area, so I went to Oakland for my induction) put me on a plane, give me a rifle, and send me directly to Vietnam. Because, when I got to my unit in Vietnam, they said, "Forget whatever you learned before, because it doesn't apply here."
And then when I got back, they made me a Drill Sergeant. And by the time I was done, I was ready to, well . . . shoot my officers. You know, I mean, just simply shoot somebody, because just of just the frustration, and the whole thing.
Now, what I'm trying to lead into is that the military apparatus is the end result of all the things that have been talked about on this panel today. That that is the stark reality. You have the CIA experimentation, you have the plots, you have the psychiatric control and everything else, but the military is the final result. And it hasn't changed much since I got out of the army in l969. I've kept abreast of it since l969, because I'm trying to figure out what happened to me.
And it hasn't really changed that much. They have changed names and numbers, job descriptions, but the fiasco that came down in Grenada was no different than the fiascoes that I went through in Vietnam. As far as bad intelligence, these guys didn't have maps, they gave them tourist maps. One guy had to call on the telephone to get an airstrike. You know, I mean, the Beirut fiasco where you take 250 Marines and put them completely out of their job description, because they're not designed to do this particular type of "hold a fortified position forever," and then you wonder why they get blown up. It's the same as Khe San when the Marines were put into Khe San which was totally out of their job description. The Marine Corps Commandant argued with Westmoreland because the Marines are not designed to do that. They take the beach, they hold it, they get reinforced, and they pull out; you know, that type of thing. Marines are not designed to hold anything for very long.
That's what the military does. And, that's because " . . . laws and regulations governing military personnel may change without notice to me . . . "
I've been writing poetry. I'd like to close with a poem because I feel that the governments of the world, not just the United States, but the governments, the main governments of the world, they're all working in cahoots with each other. OK, you know, the United States points at the Russians, the Russians point at us, and, "We're so bad," and "This is bad," and "They're bad," and they're working together, folks. Because it's easier to keep your population of people thinking the other side is so bad so that they'll fight for your country. I've been writing poetry since I got out of Vietnam and I've got one volume published and I'm doing my second volume now. it's almost finished. This is entitled: On Irony. Some of you may even have seen this particular newscast. And this also goes along with the manipulation, the mass mind manipulation of all people.
Today I got a shot of irony
Right between the eyes
New item, CBS news. Dan Rather
Diary of a young Russian troop
Killed in Afghanistan
Seems he was killed
And possessions he carried recovered
By those who took his life
Afghan, one each issue attitude
Diary and photos
Of a soldier's life
In a hostile, foreign land
I was a foreign soldier
In a hostile land
The diary words:
"Silently we board the helicopters
So many of my friends
Move foreword and kill
Why am I here
Only three of us left"
LZ coming in
Ready to kill and
Young men, this time with
smiling in groups,
Brains never to be the same
You have all seen the pictures
On TV, in books, et cetera.
Young men smiling
Sent by those who do not go
To do what the young should never have to do.
His last words:
Why am I here
And that's what these governments are doing to us and our children. Both of them. All of 'em. And they're going to continue to do it as long as we let them.
[thunderous, sustained applause]
Audience Member: Yes, I'd like to ask John Judge one question. And that is: I'd like to get the date and the issue number and the page number of the Boston Globe article which featured this important research, if you might.
John Judge: I don't have it with me. I have a sheet available entitled Conspiracy!, (with an exclamation point, in case you don't get) it. And, on that sheet, is my PO Box. I'd be glad to send you a copy of the the Boston Globe piece which appeared in October, last year, but I don't have it in front of me to quote it from.
Audience Member: Just one article?
John Judge: Just one piece, by this guy who described these five different supposed KGB disinformation scenarios that proved that the KGB was planting these stories.
Audience Member: Lori and John, could you describe some themes and motifs that identify what you are calling propaganda, so folks can recognize it when they see it?
Lori Bradford: Well, God, "themes and motifs in propaganda"?
Steve Hassna: "Be all you can be!" [laughter and applause]
Lori Bradford: "You've come a long way baby" . . . Anything and everything. I mean, I'm not sure what you mean by themes and motifs?
Audience Member: Well, like, what sort of images do they use to . . . to . . . get their message across?
John Judge: Lori has a nice button that she wears sometimes. It's very succinct, about the way I always recognized propaganda. What the button says is: "Keep quiet, consume and die." [laughter] If any of those three messages are in there, you're probably on the track. [laughter] The images that they use are actually developed on a fairly sophisticated level. There's no advertising agency that doesn't have a staff bank of psychiatric and psychological experts, that work with combinations of sexual imagery, especially, I mean, advertisements that focus on the exploitation of women and sexuality. We were putting protest stickers up in DC, just last month on these new Salem advertisements that have the little . . . fireplugs . . . squirting "semen" out towards two women. You don't get to see a woman's face, but either their rear end or the front of them, you know, lifting up their dress, and then it says, "Salem the refreshest."
A common one is manipulation of sexual images. There's a couple of books: one's called Media Sexploitation and another one's called Subliminal Seduction, I think by a guy names Keyes, that go into some of the kinds of images, death images, and other things they feel will elicit some kind of an emotional response out of you.
Another theme that seems to be constant is impugning people's intelligence, or, sort of presenting stupidity. It used to be mostly aimed at women. Now they seem to have reversed it for a different market, and have the men play the dumb part on the advertisement. But, I mean, if it's paid for by corporate America, it's propaganda, because that's what they do. And if it's supporting the system, you know, that's what it's about.
Lori Bradford: And it's always who the disposable populations are in this country.
John Judge: Yeah.
Lori Bradford: I mean, that's where the stereotypes for advertising come from. And whatever class you take, I mean, the elderly are a disposable population in this country. We'd be more than glad to stop paying for them in any respect. There's a whole new field in psychiatry, this whole new field of geriatric psychiatry, now, where it's hard to tell what's old age and what's drugs. One out of four hospitalizations are due to adverse drug reaction. That's lots. That's lots and lots. And we don't begin to know information on the drugs we're taking, or their side effects. And the advertisement for psychiatric drugging of the elderly shows pictures of agitated old folks leaning over, or pictures of two elderly people in a fight, or pictures of the elderly shaking their fists at their children, or something, or grandparents to grandchildren. Those kinds of pictures are part and parcel of the advertising. But each area of psychiatry, or each area of the media, develops each of those facets. So you have one set of marketing that goes out for the elderly, but if you're talking about wanting all children on Ritalin, then you have another set of advertising that has to plug in. And then you have to realize which children we'd really especially like to have on Ritalin, and then you have to realize that all comes in.
Steve Hassna: A comment on this last question. The US military spends one half a billion dollars a year on advertising. You see it at football games, at sporting events, on TV. It appeals to the patriotism, the machismo, the wanting to be a man, or be a woman, or whatever you want to be, and everything else. Be all you can be, you know, the future's not dead, it's gone to sea with the Navy . . .
You know, you see the advertisements with the young troops in Germany driving tanks around. They don't tell you that they run over Germans in Volkswagens. And they also never broadcast, " . . . laws and regulations governing military personnel which may change without notice to me . . . " They never broadcast that. And they spend half a billion dollars a year to get people to join that military. And, it's been shown, that statistically, they get 40% of the graduating class of the high schools yearly, that come out of the inner city schools are ended up in the military. Because they're appealing to that too. Get out of the ghetto. Get out of the farmlands. Get out of everywhere, and so these people are taken, and they're gone, and that community loses that possible input from those young people. And they're into the military and for that the government spends half a billion dollars a year.
Lori Bradford: We're either going to save them through the military, or we're going to save them through the current war on drugs. I mean, in terms of current motifs, certainly the current war on drugs compared to burying drug deals with Contragate. You know, they'd like to have us believe the Nancy Reagan version.
Steve Hassna: Right. A problem, I guess, with all this advertising, especially looking at it from the military's point of view, is that they don't ever tell you they take about 2000 causalities a year, killed and injured, in training exercises. Like the 21 people that were lost in a helicopter in Japan a while ago, the 21 Marines, those were training deaths, you know?
John Judge: I think some other real important themes for control are anti-communism, and the projection of false enemies, and the racism that's often couched underneath, and sexism and the hatred of people that are different: different class, different sexual preference, different skin. Often under the guise that they're putting people together or doing something to counter that, in some kind of a situation comedy, that's nauseatingly racist and sexist, you know, from an objective point of view. But you're supposed to look at it and laugh, and see this great humanity going on. So it's often hidden, the messages are there, who you're supposed to dislike, and why.
And, so, look for things that take away people's humanity and sense of dignity, and also things that tell you in many, many ways that you are powerless. Because that's the ultimate and final message: that no matter what you might figure out, and no matter what you think is wrong, there's not a damn thing you can do about it. That's the most important message of all. And that's the one that you get every day. And if you crack that one, in the propaganda, and realize that we have more power than any government can possibly have, if we would stop lying to each other about our own lives, if we would stop sanctioning the oppression, if we would stop going along with it, smirking, looking the other way, and keeping quiet.
Lori Bradford: . . . developing massive systems of alternative psychiatry so we can all adjust ourselves to it and keep working every day, and keep doing it every day, keep production going every day . . .
John Judge: We need to set up alternate credit. The money system's going to fall apart soon enough. If we don't understand that money is just a symbol of wealth, we're going to be out like they were in the depression. If we understand how to extend credit to each other and set up other systems, then we can make a difference.
Steve Hassna: I'd like to make one last comment, and then this man back here had his hand up for a bit. You've all seen the advertisement on TV for the US Army. A young woman runs out to the helicopter, she puts the helmet on, she jumps up in the side seat on the helicopter, the helicopter takes off, and as it takes off she picks up an M16 machine gun. Her job classification is: avionics, helicopter crew member. You wash the windows, you change the oil, you put gas in it and everything else. The helicopter takes off, you go with the helicopter. The minute you pick up that machine gun you become a door gunner. Bullets do not understand gender. They don't care. And yet women are told that they're not going to be put into a combat situation, or possible combat-relative dangers, and yet this woman is behind a machine gun. If the helicopter gets shot down, you are infantry. Unless you're dead. So, they're getting women to actually believe that they're going into the military to learn different trades, and they're not really going to get caught in combat, because women are not in combat. But what is she doing sitting behind that goddam machine gun? Because if you got a machine gun in your hand, somebody is going to shoot at you.
Audience Member: John, a minute ago, you said that if it supports the system, then you can be sure that it's propaganda. I'd like to clarify a little bit, what the system is. I believe that underlying "system" that we're talking about is killing . . . and that we're talking mostly about killing other human beings . . . but that the killing of other human beings comes from the killing of other life forms. And I want to ask everybody here, when you're going to lunch, are you going to support the system? Are you going to eat meat? 'Cause if you do, then you're supporting the system. [scattered applause]
Steve Hassna: Very good.
Audience Member: [cont.] The whole system of oppression and killing is a model that was taken from human beings doing that to other human beings also, because there's an untold history of cannibalism that went on for a long time. But mostly human beings killing other animals, other life forms, for their food. And as long as we are involved in that, and perpetuate that, then we're supporting the system. A way that we can concretely not support the system every day of our lives, is not to be involved in that killing and oppression of animals.
Audience Member [Pat Cary]: I wanted to say something extremely important, which should be on every newspaper headline in the country. According to John Judge, 47,500 men died in active combat in Vietnam, and 110,000 men have committed suicide since the war. Some of them did it slowly, through drugs and booze, and some of them shot themselves . . . but they killed themselves since they got back from the Vietnam war. Now, that should be all over the country, in headlines, on every radio station, every newspaper. Nobody knows it. John Judge says those are the figures from the VA. they're on record, nobody says it, nobody notices. Forty per cent of the men down there on 5th and Mission, who are alcoholics, are Vietnam veterans. Sleeping in the rain, sleeping in doorways, dirty, filthy, exhausted, hungry, only living for their next bottle of Night Train, and Shooter, and White Rose, which is formaldehyde and embalming fluid. That stuff shouldn't be sold in the stores of America. It's only 89 cents a bottle, and they're killing themselves on it. It ruins the brain cells. It numbs out the brain cells and eventually rots out the body. The VA hospitals (that's the Veterans Administration) have very recently passed a law saying that alcoholism is not related to Vietnam experiences, to army experiences. Which is a lie.
These men were brought up to be decent human beings, at 17 years of age they were given a birthday party, and they had fun with their friends, and they were good kids. One year later, we the people, paid the United States government to give them legal permission to commit murder . . . anywhere in the country, or in the world, that we say to. If they kill in America, we put them in San Quentin, if they kill in Vietnam, we give them a medal. What's the difference?
And that's up to the American people, because we support this powerful system when we don't object to it, and we don't wipe it off the face of the earth. It goes on and on and on and on and we acquiesce by our silence. [applause]
John Judge: I do agree with you that it's a death culture. It's a culture that's based on murder, and, in fact, genocide at this point. I think that the system, though, is using the murder in order to maintain what it is, and it's a system of privilege. The privilege of any group of people, over against another group, whether it's the exploitation of their labor, the right to control their sexuality or their bodies, for use. All the different things that spring from it, the sense of inferiority, and invalidation that people get in those situations. That privilege is a type of violence, a type of death. It's especially true, I think, in Western cultures, that we are separated from the natural world, from the natural relation that we might have to other animals, or other beings. Whether or not you're a vegetarian, I mean, there's also differences. There are cultures that lived with the animals, and didn't eat them. There's also cultures that lived with them and did eat them, but had a spiritual base in that. And I don't think that that, by itself, separated them out.
But I think that that system of privilege eventually concentrates, as wealth and technology developed, into what we can talk about as a system of profit as well. A system that's based on the accumulation of capital and the accumulation of wealth. And as that wealth gets more and more concentrated, the vast population that is created for labor, in order to build up that wealth, through the technology, becomes expendable. And that's what happened after the depression in the late 20s, early 30s, in Germany and in Europe. And when the wealth is so concentrated in a few hands, certain segments of the population get picked out, depending on the biases, the racial and sexual prejudices, and other fears and biases of that society at that point in time, as the elements of the expendable population. And then are actively not only used for labor and killed, but are commoditized: become a commodity. And that's what Fascism is, and that's the system I'm talking about.
And I don't think they care what we say or what we do, in our lives, unless we unplug ourselves from that needle. Unless we take their junk out of our arm. And cut ourselves off from the connection of dependence on that system of profit, and the little benefit that it gives, in order to keep us functioning, with each other, in this competition.
Audience Member: I was going to say, that that is what I think. That the whole military system, the whole advertising system, the whole system of sexism and racism is all set up to keep a tiny minority of capitalists in power, and making the profits. And I agree that they use mind control, and they use drugs, but they don't really have to use that. They've got us all like sheep.
Lori Bradford: Well, that's because they've been using it for so long.
Audience Member: Right. Well, what I'm saying is, I think that we are powerless as individuals, because we argue and fight and, you know, we are not powerful. And if we were we'd be dead. In any country, when people get together, and start to challenge the people of privilege, they're slaughtered.
So I think that one of the biggest mass media images that we are taught is: "We have a voice; this is a democracy." I heard Henry Kissinger say, [fake German accent] "Ve vant you to vote. Ve don't care who you vote for, ve just vant you to vote." [scattered laughter] And that is the truth. They want you to think you have a voice. And, you know, I don't think we do. If we did, we'd be . . . it would be . . . suppressed.
Steve Hassna: In referring to this small minority of people that control a vast majority of people, and the selection of who goes, especially like into wars. In my unit in Vietnam, the majority of the people were from working class backgrounds: Black, Chicano, American Indian, poor White. They were subject to carrying the gun for "the man," to keep the home fires safe from oppression. And yet it's the working class and the poor that go out and die on the battlefields.
The classic example I remember was a Pima Indian in my squad from southwest United States, a machine gunner. The organizational structure that can get the American Indian to fight its wars, after almost annihilating those people here in the United States, is formidable.