Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The Southern Poverty Law Center: Still In Over Its Head On the JFK Assassination

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The SPLC claimed (in its Intelligence Report)  last fall that Jack Ruby shot Oswald to spare Jackie from a trial. Even the greenest researcher knows this is bare balderdash.

The SPLC insists murders, like that of David Ferrie (called before Jim Garrison's investigation),  were really "officially suicides" - again displaying unbelievable naivete and gullibility.

How do we know that our own rational rejections of conspiracy theories are not themselves infected with beliefs so strong that they are, in effect, conspiracy theories too? 

- Matt Ridley in 'Maybe We're All Conspiracy Theorists'The Wall Street Journal, Sept. 10-11, 2011

While I do support the SPLC,  especially in its work against domestic terror cells, hate groups and rabid racists, I have problems with their ‘baby out with the bathwater’ take on conspiracies. It appears the good folks at SPLC have,  for some reason, branded ALL conspiracies as unproven and likely right wing creations – even those that have the most solid support. (Like the Kennedy assassination.)

A recent case in point was the article  'Conspiracy Act' , in The Southern Poverty Law Center’s  Intelligence Report (Winter, 2013), by Marilyn Elias,   in which she actually babbles (p. 15):

"They (conspiracy theorists) never mention the clear testimony that Oswald's assassin gave to the Warren Commission denying any plot and saying that he killed Oswald on impulse to save Jacqueline Kennedy the pain of returning to Dallas for a trial"

Actually, we do mention it - as I did in several blog posts in November last year - while noting that only a moron would believe that codswallop.  The document trail unearthed by Mark North ('Act of Treason') is revelatory here. North's FOIA -released files showed Ruby had an outstanding  debt to Uncle Sam - owing more than $40,000 in back excise taxes to the federal government, plus $20,000 in other back taxes. A phone call (also documented)  then would have assured Ruby his tax problems would “disappear” if he performed one more job: offing Oswald. Given the mob link to ZR/Rifle, such a scenario would be totally logical. Few people today, unless they've  mined the document trail, are remotely aware of the extent to which the CIA and Mob worked hand in glove, especially on the ZR/Rifle Castro assassination operation. Given Oswald's 'Staff D' connection (from his 201 CI/SIG file) to ZR/Rifle it wouldn't have been a biggie to have this one "jokers wild" element severed - one that had become too dangerous 

Apart from which, only a JFK assassination new-be or slacker would so gullible to believe that if Ruby really was involved he'd admit it to a bogus Commission created, owned and operated by LBJ and Hoover, which had the power to swat him down like a Texas horsefly. This is the same LBJ, btw,   who threatened to disclose Earl Warren's Hoover files if he didn't come onboard as a WC  figurehead.  (See My FAQ - Part 4a, on the Warren Commission, posted Nov. 13 last year).

Like Philip Shenon, see e.g.

Elias wasn't content to stop there, but bloviated onward making herself look even more clueless, as when she wrote (ibid.):

"In a similar way they portray as suspicious the deaths of Dorothy Kilgallen and other journalists skeptical of the story - but say nothing of the many doubting reporters who lived on unmolested."

Well, obviously they "lived on unmolested" because they were journalists within the "Operation Mockingbird" orbit:  either part of it themselves, or their doubts easily neutralized by it. The former brought on in assorted media venues as reported by Kathryn Olmstead, in her book, Challenging the Secret Government: The Post-Watergate Investigations of the CIA and FBI, Univ. of North Carolina Press, p.21 noting:

According to the Church committee's final report, approximately fifty U.S. Journalists had covert relationships with the CIA, about half of which involved money. Watergate investigative reporter Carl Bernstein charged that the total number of U.S. journalists who worked for the CIA was actually much higher

To see a Youtube video on 'Mockingbird', with open admissions,  go to:

So, perhaps Marilyn Elias was too untutored to even have been attempting such a piece (although yes, her prime target was Richard Belzer - using the guilt by association rap, i.e. with Alex Jones).  Or perhaps  she was too incompetent to dig up the Mockingbird journalist links.   As for her complaints about the connections in the witness deaths we can perhaps excuse her because of a likely deficient math education, i.e. which didn't allow any exposure to Poisson statistics, such as employed by Richard Charnin in his mathematical proof:

Now really, I have no problem if people have less math education than those who've gone the physics or engineering  route, but then they need to refrain from spouting bollocks such that "the witness deaths aren't connected." This only reveals their level of ignorance (especially of Poisson statistics), as it does for Ms. Elias - no matter how many years (26)  she's had as a USAToday staffer, before peddling her anti-conspiracy baloney for the SPLC.  In other words, merely because you might be proficient in one area of journalism doesn't mean you are in all. And just because you find most conspiracies to be half-baked baloney doesn't mean you're entitled to toss all in the memetic dumpster. Or.....attribute all to right wing nutcases.

But to me, the mere fact Elias probably got all her JFK assassination info based on an interview with Gerald Posner (quoted in her piece), immediately disqualifies her from commenting at all on the Kennedy assassination, no matter how hard up she is to nail Richard Belzer for being a nasty, anti-government sort because he boldly holds to the conspiracy thesis as in his new book,  'Hit List: An In-Depth Investigation Into the Mysterious Deaths of Witnesses to the JFK Assassination' .

Sadly, the SPLC hasn’t yet been educated sufficiently to deal with these issues up to now, as in their latest response (‘TV Actor Defends Claim About Deaths of JFK Witnesses’, Summer 2014, p. 6) where  they double down on attempts to rebut Richard Belzer – ending up no better off than Elias after her own embarrassing  JFK assassination reveal last fall.

This time we read:

as the Report story said, the people who were allegedly murdered typically had their deaths officially attributed to illness, accidents and suicide

To which the serious JFK researcher must begin reaction by rolling eyeballs – first to the left then to the right and asking: Can these people truly be THIS naïve and out of touch? Have they no common sense or basic insight at all that any witnesses killed in the wake of the event would most likely be taken out via methods  to make the deaths LOOK LIKE accidents, suicides, natural deaths? Are they so bereft of imagination (or information, education)  that they would not be able to see how such acts could be accomplished? (And we know, from many ZR Rifle documents, the CIA had by 1963, perfected numerous poisons to dispatch those it considered threats and do it in surreptitious ways. One of the most notorious incidents, documented by James Douglass (in JFK and the Unspeakable) involved the CIA's use of Rolando Cubela - a Cuban political figure whom Castro trusted-  to attempt to murder Castro using a ball point pen rigged with hypodermic needle to inject cyanide.

Then take the case of Bethesda Naval Hospital officer and medical technician, William Bruce Pitzer, who had made the mistake of announcing film evidence of actual autopsy manipulations that he intended to make public. Well, he didn’t live to do so – on account of being found with a gunshot wound to the head. Suicide? Why the fuck would he off himself when he stood on the cusp of possible glory for finally exposing the sick cover up of medical evidence in JFK’s killing – which would have shown bullet wounds to the front of the head? Apart from that – as his family observed – the weapon had been made to discharge leaving a wound opposite in location to the hand Pitzer would have used!

 Then there was David Ferrie, who had actually begged New Orleans D.A. Jim Garrison to protect him if he was to be called to account in the Garrison Investigation. Studying in New Orleans at the time (Loyola University), and following the goings on, I could not believe reading in the Times –Picayune and States-Item of his “suicide” on Feb. 22, 1967.  Ferrie had absolute mortal fear of being killed, so why on Earth do it himself? In fact, his heart condition would have only required a bit of digitalis – say injected via syringe– to bring about the desired effect and eliminate one prime witness. (Ferrie is believed to have provided one of the vehicles that transported a team of 'mechanics'  from New Orleans to Dallas - with the beat up condition of the car as described by witness Lee Bowers - who was also killed)

 But I could go through the whole list of those killed and make similar points. What has the SPLC got to show for it? Only its naïve acceptance of assorted “official” stories which do not jibe with Richard Charnin’s demonstrated statistics.   These, when the false filters are removed, show there were at least 96 unnatural deaths (80 homicides, 5 suicides, 8 accidents, 3 unknown).

Charnin notes on his link:

There are 120 suspicious deaths listed in JFK Calc. Seventy-seven (77) were officially ruled to be unnatural (34 homicides, 16 suicides, 24 accidents, 3 unknown). Forty-two (42) were ruled natural (heart attacks, cancers, other). But since many accidents, suicides and natural deaths were likely homicides, the number of unnatural deaths was adjusted to 96 (including 80 homicides).”

These adjustments would have taken into account aberrations such as I noted in the case of Pitzer and Ferrie.

The attempted SPLC rebuttal (to Richard Belzer) then goes on to state:

In addition, the story pointed out that a large number of people who did testify have had normal life spans

 Of course they did, because their testimonies did not detract from or contradict the false Warrenite narrative of one lone nut! So there’d have been no reason to deal with any of these “witnesses” – many of whom (e.g. Julia Anne Mercer, Jean Hill et al) later admitted that they surrendered to pressure put on them by so-called “authorities”, including the FBI and Secret Service.  The ones that had to be dealt with were mainly the material witnesses whose testimonies would have rocked the boat and exposed the Commission for the fraud it was!

 Lastly, the SPLC has continued its manifest blindness to Operation Mockingbird assets with this twaddle:

just as many reporters who were skeptical of the Warren commission account were not murdered.”

Again, the contrarian reporters would only have been murdered if they were material witnesses, like Dorothy Kilgallen. There’d be no need at all to go after mere skeptics because anything they wrote could be easily  neutralized (or simply ignored for publication) by the  entrenched Mockingbird CIA assets. How difficult can this stuff be to grasp?  Evidently, it's like fractal calculus for the good folks at the Southern Poverty Law Center, who one would have thought would have their hands full with racial animus and hate groups without taking on the Kennedy assassination.

The SPLC piece by Elias – as well as the recent follow-up,  also illustrates another irritating aspect of the Left's conspiracy phobia:  running from anything that smacks of "anti-government" sentiment, despite the fact we have reams of documents, files to support the need for a critical wariness of anything government claims (as Edward Snowden's files have disclosed).

 So, indeed, if one faction of our own government - the national security state  -  was responsible for killing Kennedy,  it merits attention from genuine citizens. However, too many on the Left - especially in  its  myopic enclave of conspiracy phobics (like Marilyn Elias and the SPLC) , have become part of the problem of the "unspeakable" noted by author James Douglass ('JFK and the Unspeakable') . This is usually when they go too far, consigning ALL conspiracies to the historical dustbin or attributing them to "anti-government' Right wing sources.  The problem is that this knee-jerk reaction leads to them stumbling over their own arguments and claims which come over  as half-baked in the context of actually demonstrated conspiracies as for the JFK assassination.

The tendency then is to harp on any conspiracy theories and aspects that disclose any remote connection between proponents - as between Richard Belzer and Alex Jones- with one (Jones) being a right winger they're frightened of. As Belzer pointed out in his response to the Elias' ambush, however, he used Jones' site because it was the only one that permitted the sale of his book without charging fees.

What really gripes me is how the SPLC has so energetically gone after JFK assassination researcher Belzer but up to now remained totally stone silent as the NSA expands its web of mass surveillance, violating the 4th amendment. Lest the SPLC forget, that amendment is the cornerstone of all civil rights,  for all Americans. In this case, the SPLC  exposes itself to be cherry-picking, civil rights hypocrites.

Please, guys,  I generally like your work and mission, but don't hump threats of the KKK, Volksfront and Aryan Nation, etc. if you're prepared to give a pass to the national security fascists!  While it is useful to expose the genuine anti-government  whackos and the nascent destructive forces in the country, it is equally useful to be aware of the government's own destructive effects on us all - such as NSA's  indiscriminate mass surveillance . (See my post on Marianne Williamson's take.) My point? If you paint one side all 'black' and the other all 'white' (or good) then you simply cannot do your job. You lack the balance and logical proportion to weigh all actors properly and assign blame correctly.

The best takeaway from all of this in concert is that the SPLC needs to back out gracefully from any further inputs or opinionating on the JFK assassination. That is, until they bring themselves up to speed. To that end, I’d strongly recommend the 50th anniversary edition of my book, The JFK Assassination – The Final Analysis.

(If they wish to hound dog other conspiracies, that’s ok so long as they can justify their attention  - or show direct relations to hate groups.)

See also:


Richard Charnin said...

This is a statistical analysis to estimate the true number of homicides - as opposed to the 34 official number.

91 homicides = 122 total deaths- 12 accidents -3 suicides - 9 heart attacks - 3 cancer- 4 other

Copernicus said...

Thanks for providing that link, Richard. I think that the SPLC conspiracy deniers may find it especially useful!

Richard Charnin said...

This is an extremely important post which answers 20 legitimate questions on live and dead witness analysis.

Copernicus said...

Thanks again, Richard, for your link here. I think it is very critical that deniers like Ms. Elias (and by extension the SPLC) go through it very carefully!