Link du jour
http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/pee ... -1.3482998
https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2017/ ... l:trending
St. John resident says there were ‘houses flying away’ when Irma hit
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/nationa ... -1.3483082
Missouri man points gun at woman over her liberal-leaning bumper stickers
BY TERENCE CULLEN
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Saturday, September 9, 2017, 4:01 PM
http://www.nydailynews.com/news/nationa ... -1.3482959
Hurricanes and earthquakes aren’t our punishment for homosexuals, but maybe hate
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS Saturday, September 9, 2017, 2:58 PM
Equally hateful Ann Coulter tweeted: “I don’t believe Hurricane Harvey is God’s punishment for Houston electing a lesbian mayor. But that is more credible than ‘climate change.’”
Maybe she’s right and God IS pissed. But if God is punishing us, it’s more likely because of all the hate we have towards one another. And that is as credible — and as real — as climate cha
Exxon knew about climate change half a century ago.1 They deceived the public,2 misled their shareholders,3 and robbed humanity of a generation’s worth of time to reverse climate change.
http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/scientif ... te-change/
Academic study concludes Exxon Mobil misled on climate change
August 23, 2017 at 6:20 PM EDT
http://www.latimes.com/business/hiltzik ... story.html
A new study shows how Exxon Mobil downplayed climate change when it knew the problem was real
FILE - In this July 21, 2017 file photo, researchers look out from the Finnish icebreaker MSV Nordic
The crew of a Finnish icebreaker examines sea ice in Canada's Northwest Passage, which has been opening up sooner and for a longer period each summer due to climate change. (David Goldman / Associated Press)
Michael Hiltzik Michael HiltzikContact Reporter
Big corporations are known for being two-faced — presenting a nurturing, maternal face to the outside world while ruthlessly pursuing profit on the inside.
But few have been charged with as much of a divergence between its outside and inside views as Exxon Mobil, which has been accused of downplaying publicly for decades what its own scientists were saying internally about climate change — that it posed a material threat to the company’s future.
A new study by Geoffrey Supran and Naomi Oreskes, experts in the history of science at Harvard, presents fresh evidence of how great the gap was. The study matches hundreds of Exxon Mobil’s internal reports and peer-reviewed research papers with its advertising — especially paid “advertorials” the company placed in the op-ed section of the New York Times from 1972 through 2001. The authors’ conclusion is that Exxon Mobil systematically “misled non-scientific audiences about climate science.”
It’s pretty clear that their strategy was the same as tobacco’s. Delay looked to them as a smart business choice, and it may well have been.
— Naomi Oreskes, Harvard University
Supran and Oreskes say their work, which was published late Tuesday in the journal Environmental Research Letters, is the first empirical comparison of Exxon Mobil’s internal and peer-reviewed research with its public statements on climate change. Their goal was to address the company position that earlier investigations were based on “cherry-picked” documents.
“We looked at the whole cherry tree,” Supran says, “and the evidence speaks for itself.”
The study may be especially timely now, because a coalition of state attorneys general and the Securities and Exchange Commission are investigating whether the company lied to the public and investors about what it knew about the dangers of climate change. In 2015, New York Atty. Gen. Eric Schneiderman subpoenaed company research on the causes and impact of climate change dating back to 1977, and financial disclosures, public statements and internal reports on the topic dating back to 2005. The company has moved to quash the subpoena.
The study also involves research and public statements issued by the company while Rex Tillerson, the current secretary of state, was a senior executive. Tillerson isn’t mentioned in the paper, but he became a production general manager in 1999, president and a director in 2004, and chairman and chief executive in 2006.
The new study fleshes out previous reporting on the divergence between what Exxon Mobil knew about climate change and the picture it presented for public consumption. The Times, working with the Energy and Environmental Reporting Project at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism, reported in 2015 that the company had invested heavily in research into how climate change could affect a variety of operations in the Arctic, with company scientists using widely accepted climate models that its executives publicly dismissed as unreliable.
At the company’s annual meeting in 1999, The Times reported, then-CEO Lee Raymond denigrated the models underlying the company’s own research as projections “based on completely unproven climate models, or, more often, on sheer speculation.”
In 2005, science writer Chris Mooney documented the company’s years of financial support of individuals and groups fighting policies and government actions to address global warming, typically by instilling doubt about climate science. InsideClimate News in 2015 laid out the discrepancies between Exxon Mobil’s “cutting-edge climate research” and its public stance of climate change denial. Oreskes, co-author of the book “Merchants of Doubt” about the tobacco industry’s decades-long effort to undermine research on smoking’s health effects, that same year showed the similarities between that effort and Exxon Mobil’s campaign of “disinformation, denial and delay.”
More than 80% of Exxon Mobil's peer-reviewed and internal research acknowledged that global warming was real and human-caused, but about 80% of its "advertorials" took the opposite view. (Geoffrey Supran and Naomi Oreskes)
“It’s pretty clear that their strategy was the same as tobacco’s,” Oreskes told me this week. “Delay looked to them as a smart business choice, and it may have been.”
The 187 documents examined by Supran and Oreskes included 72 peer-reviewed papers and 36 “advertorials” on the topic. Although the authors largely treat Exxon Mobil as a single company, it’s the product of a 1999 merger between the two oil giants; in most of the period covered by the advertorials, they were placed by Mobil prior to the merger. Tillerson came up through the Exxon ranks prior to the merger.
They ranked each one according to whether its thrust was to acknowledge human activities as a cause of global warming, cast doubt on that conclusion, or reflected both viewpoints. They found that the company’s serious research and internal reporting acknowledged human-caused global warming — as well it would, since corporate decision-making depended on the most accurate possible assessment of the future.
In this snippet from a 2000 "advertorial," Exxon Mobil claimed that science pointing to human responsibility for global warming was "unsettled." It wasn't. The scientist who produced the Sargasso Sea graph called its use here "very misleading." (Exxon Mobil)
But Exxon Mobil’s public communications, which were geared more toward influencing public policy, projected the opposite view.
Of the company’s internal reports and peer-reviewed papers, more than 80% acknowledged that global warming was real and human-caused. Only 2% expressed doubt, and in those cases the doubt reflected a conventional scientific caution about making categorical findings. Of the advertorials taking a position, however, 81% expressed doubt. Typical, Supran and Oreskes say, was a 1997 advertorial citing a “knowledge gap” in climate science and suggesting that a scientific consensus had not been reached — although by then it had.
Exxon Mobil has responded to the reporting by denying that its scientists reached firm conclusions about climate change that the company hid or suppressed while it was placing skeptical “advertorials” in the press. In a statement issued after the signing of the Paris climate agreement in 2016, the company said it “unequivocally” rejected allegations that it “suppressed climate change research,” and said it understands that “climate change is real.”
Referring to the reporting by InsideClimate News about internal company documents, Exxon Mobil responded that the documents demonstrated “a robust culture of scientific discourse on the causes and risks of climate change.” The company cited more than 100 papers dating from the 1980s that Exxon Mobil scientists either wrote or co-wrote, “with the aim of enhancing the state of the world’s knowledge on the issues surrounding climate.”
Exxon Mobil, in a comment emailed early Wednesday, called the study “inaccurate and preposterous. “ExxonMobil acknowledges the risk of climate change is clear and warrants action,” the company said. It asserted that the study “was paid for, written and published by activists leading a five-year campaign against the company.” Supran and Oreskes, in a financial disclosure statement, said the study was paid for by Harvard University faculty development funds and the Rockefeller Family Fund, and said they have “no other relevant financial ties.”
Supran and Oreskes say it’s accurate, as Exxon Mobil asserts, that the company’s scientists “recognized the developing nature of climate science … [and] mirrored global understanding.” At some points, its scientists even projected more rapid global warming than other experts.
“The question is not whether Exxon Mobil ‘suppressed climate change research,’” Supran and Oreskes write, “but rather how they communicated about it” to a lay audience. Their conclusion is that the company in its marketing and advertising systematically cast doubt on it.
The campaign, they argue, stepped up in advance of the Kyoto protocol on climate change, an international agreement that was reached in December 1997 and currently incorporates commitments by 192 countries. The U.S. has not ratified the protocol.
“Their clear motivation was to undermine Kyoto,” Supran says. In its public statements about the agreement, Exxon Mobil argued that it would bind signatories to financially ruinous policies despite uncertainties about the science. “Let’s not rush to a decision at Kyoto,” urged one advertorial cited by the authors. “Climate change is complex; the science is not conclusive; the economics could be devastating.”
That final phrase may open a window into what Exxon Mobil was thinking in publicly undermining a scientific consensus its own researchers shared: The company may have felt that the short-term economic drag from addressing climate change outweighed the wisdom of accepting scientific fact and joining an international consensus on its consequences.
“With a strategy of delay,” Oreskes says, “they could continue with a very profitable business for another 25 years.”
https://www.theguardian.com/world/live/ ... ive-latest
Hurricane Irma: Florida told to expect 15ft surges as storm closes in – latest updates
http://educationforum.ipbhost.com/topic ... ssination/
Did Exxon Mobil fund assassination of President Kennedy?
Is it possible that Clint Murchison helped to fund the JFK assassination? Murchison was a close friend of both Lyndon Johnson and J. Edgar Hoover. His relationship with LBJ dates back to the 1948 Senate election. Murchison was one of his largest financial backers.
Texas oil millionaires such as Murchison, fought hard to maintain its tax concessions. The most important of these was the oil depletion allowance. It allowed producers to use the depletion allowed to deduct just 5 per cent of their income and the deduction was limited to the original cost of their property. However, in 1926 the depletion allowance was increased to 27.5 per cent.
As Robert Bryce pointed out in his book, Cronies: Oil, the Bushes, and the Rise of Texas, America's Superstate: "Johnson's 1948 race was reportedly the most expensive political campaign ever wages in Texas. The money flowed to Johnson like an inexhaustible river. By befriending Richardson, Murchison, Hunt, and other oilmen like Amon Carter of Fort Worth, Wesley West of Austin, and R. J. Parten of Houston, Johnson assured himself of nearly unlimited funding."
Philip F. Nelson, the author of LBJ: The Mastermind of the JFK Assassination (2011) has pointed out that the oil depletion allowance, "allowed them to retain 27.5 percent of their oil revenue tax-tree; its loss, according to World Petroleum magazine, stood to cost the industry as much as $280 million in annual profits. The original rationale for such an allowance was that the product that their investments yielded yeas a finite resource that would require continual investments in exploration and recovery in order to extend the flow of raw material; the more the companies produced, the less was available. Recognition of this depletion of the asset was intended as an incentive for finding and recovering more oil fields. (How this particular commodity was materially different from other forms of mining, or commercial ocean fishing, or even farming, was never fully explained, other than perhaps the oilmen having better lobbyists than the others.)"
Murchison also became friends with J. Edgar Hoover, the head of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It was the start of a long friendship. According to Anthony Summers, the author of The Secret Life of J. Edgar Hoover (1993): "Recognizing Edgar's influence as a national figure, the oilmen had started cultivating him in the late forties-inviting him to Texas as a houseguest, taking him on hunting expeditions. Edgar's relations with them were to go far beyond what was proper for a Director of the FBI."
Hoover and his boyfriend, Clyde Tolson, were regular visitors to Murchison's Del Charro Hotel in La Jolla, California. The three men would visit the local racetrack, Del Mar. Allan Witwer, the manager of the hotel at the time, later recalled: "It came to the end of the summer and Hoover had made no attempt to pay his bill. So I went to Murchison and asked him what he wanted me to do." Murchison told him to put it on his bill. Witwer estimates that over the next 18 summers Murchison's hospitality was worth nearly $300,000. Other visitors to the hotel included Richard Nixon, John Connally, Lyndon B. Johnson, Meyer Lansky, Santos Trafficante, Johnny Rosselli, Sam Giancana and Carlos Marcello.
Clint Murchison was also closely liked to the Mafia. In 1955 a Senate committee discovered that 20 per cent of the Murchison Oil Lease Company was owned by Vito Genovese and his family. The committee also discovered Murchison had close financial ties with Carlos Marcello. Later, Bobby Baker claimed that. "Murchison owned a piece of Hoover. Rich people always try to put their money with the sheriff, because they're looking for protection. Hoover was the personification of law and order and officially against gangsters and everything, so it was a plus for a rich man to be identified with him. That's why men like Murchison made it their business to let everyone know Hoover was their friend. You can do a lot of illegal things if the head lawman is your buddy."
In 1958 Murchison purchased the publishers, Henry Holt and Company. He told the New York Post: "Before I got them, they published some books that were badly pro-Communist. They had some bad people there.... We just cleared them all out and put some good men in. Sure there were casualties but now we've got a good operation." One of the first book's he published was by his old friend, J. Edgar Hoover. The book, Masters of Deceit: The Story of Communism in America (1958), was an account of the Communist menace and sold over 250,000 copies in hardcover and over 2,000,000 in paperback. It was on the best-seller lists for thirty-one weeks, three of them as the number one non-fiction choice.
William Sullivan was ordered to oversee the project, claimed that as many as eight agents worked full-time on the book for nearly six months. Curt Gentry, the author of J. Edgar Hoover: The Man and the Secrets (1991) points out Hoover claimed that he intended to give all royalties to the FBI Recreational Association (FBIRA). However, he claims that the "FBIRA was a slush fund, maintained for the use of Hoover, Tolson, and their key aides. It was also a money-laundering operation, so the director would not have to9 pay taxes on his book royalties." Gentry quotes Sullivan as saying that Hoover "put many thousands of dollars of that book.... into his own pocket, and so did Tolson."
In 1955 Lyndon B. Johnson became majority leader of the Senate. Johnson and Richard Russell now had complete control over all the important Senate committees. This was proving to be an expensive business. The money used to bribe these politicians came from Russell’s network of businessmen. These were men usually involved in the oil and armaments industries. According to John Connally, large sums of money was given to Johnson throughout the 1950s for distribution to his political friends. “I handled inordinate amounts of cash”. A great deal of this came from oilmen like Murchison.
In 1956 there was another attempt to end all federal price control over natural gas. Sam Rayburn played an important role in getting it through the House of Representatives. This is not surprising as according to Connally, he alone had been responsible for a million and a half dollars of lobbying. Paul Douglas and William Langer led the fight against the bill. Their campaigned was helped by an amazing speech by Francis Case of South Dakota. Up until this time Case had been a supporter of the bill. However, he announced that he had been offered a $25,000 bribe by the Superior Oil Company to guarantee his vote. As a man of principal, he thought he should announce this fact to the Senate.
Johnson responded by claiming that Case had himself come under pressure to make this statement by people who wanted to retain federal price controls. Johnson argued: “In all my twenty-five years in Washington I have never seen a campaign of intimidation equal to the campaign put on by the opponents of this bill.” Johnson pushed on with the bill and it was eventually passed by 53 votes to 38. However, three days later, Dwight D. Eisenhower, vetoed the bill on grounds of immoral lobbying. Eisenhower confided in his diary that this had been “the most flagrant kind of lobbying that has been brought to my attention”. He added that there was a “great stench around the passing of this bill” and the people involved were “so arrogant and so much in defiance of acceptable standards of propriety as to risk creating doubt among the American people concerning the integrity of governmental processes”.
Murchison and Sid Richardson began negotiations with President Eisenhower. In June, 1957, Eisenhower agreed to appoint their man, Robert Anderson, as his Secretary of the Treasury. According to Robert Sherrill in his book, The Accidental President: "A few weeks later Anderson was appointed to a cabinet committee to "study" the oil import situation; out of this study came the present-day program which benefits the major oil companies, the international oil giants primarily, by about one billion dollars a year."
During the 1960 presidential election John F. Kennedy gave his support for the oil depletion allowance. In October, 1960, he said that he appreciated "the value and importance of the oil-depletion allowance. I realize its purpose and value... The oil-depletion allowance has served us well." However, two years later, Kennedy decided to take on the oil industry. On 16th October, 1962, Kennedy was able to persuade Congress to pass an act that removed the distinction between repatriated profits and profits reinvested abroad. While this law applied to industry as a whole, it especially affected the oil companies. It was estimated that as a result of this legislation, wealthy oilmen saw a fall in their earnings on foreign investment from 30 per cent to 15 per cent.
On 17th January, 1963, President Kennedy presented his proposals for tax reform. This included relieving the tax burdens of low-income and elderly citizens. Kennedy also claimed he wanted to remove special privileges and loopholes. He even said he wanted to do away with the oil depletion allowance. It is estimated that the proposed removal of the oil depletion allowance would result in a loss of around $300 million a year to Texas oilmen.
Rumours began to circulate that Murchison might have been involved in the assassination of John F. Kennedy. A friend of Murchison, Madeleine Brown, claimed in an interview on the television show, A Current Affair that on the 21st November, 1963, she was at his home in Dallas. Others at the meeting included Haroldson L. Hunt, J. Edgar Hoover, Clyde Tolson, John J. McCloy and Richard Nixon. At the end of the evening Lyndon B. Johnson arrived. Brown said in this interview: "Tension filled the room upon his arrival. The group immediately went behind closed doors. A short time later Lyndon, anxious and red-faced, reappeared. I knew how secretly Lyndon operated. Therefore I said nothing... not even that I was happy to see him. Squeezing my hand so hard, it felt crushed from the pressure, he spoke with a grating whisper, a quiet growl, into my ear, not a love message, but one I'll always remember: "After tomorrow those goddamn Kennedys will never embarrass me again - that's no threat - that's a promise."
Gary Mack has argued that this party never took place: "Could LBJ have been at a Murchison party? No. LBJ was seen and photographed in the Houston Coliseum with JFK at a dinner and speech. They flew out around 10pm and arrived at Carswell (Air Force Base in northwest Fort Worth) at 11:07 Thursday night. Their motorcade to the Hotel Texas arrived about 11:50 and LBJ was again photographed. He stayed in the Will Rogers suite on the 13th floor and Manchester (William Manchester - author of The Death of a President) says he was up late. Could Nixon have been at Murchison’s party? No. Tony Zoppi (Entertainment Editor of The Dallas Morning News) and Don Safran (Entertainment Editor of the Dallas Times Herald) saw Nixon at the Empire Room at the Statler-Hilton. He walked in with Joan Crawford (Movie actress). Robert Clary (of Hogan’s Heroes fame) stopped his show to point them out, saying “. . . either you like him or you don’t.” Zoppi thought that was in poor taste, but Safran said Nixon laughed. Zoppi’s deadline was 11pm, so he stayed until 10:30 or 10:45 and Nixon was still there."
Clint Murchison was at the core of the JFK assassination. H.L. Hunt and D.H Byrd very likely were, too. Murchison, like his investment LBJ, was heavily "mobbed up" and like LBJ had close ties to military intelligence. Murchison, in fact, was a business partner with Jack Crichton, military intelligence, who was the man who provided the controversial interpreter Illya Mamantov for Marina. Jack Crichton was the Texas GOP nominee for governor in 1964. Murchison was plugged in at the highest levels LBJ (Demos) and Crichton (GOP).
Clint Murchison was the top business leader and behind the scenes political leader in Dallas in the 1963 era. In fact, if one person personified the center of business and political power in Texas in 1963 it would be Clint Murchison, Sr. His son, Clint Jr. was a founding owner of the Dallas Cowboys in 1960.
The 11/21/63 party is not necessary in order to deduce Murchison's role in the JFK assassination. Forget the party; focus on who the man Murchison was. I think what happened was LBJ called Madeleine Brown in the morning of 11/22/63, from the Fort Worth Hotel, and made all those threatening remarks about the Kennedys. When Madeleine was interviewed by Geraldo Rivera, she did not mention the Murchison party, but she did say LBJ called her in the morning. And she did say that LBJ later told her it was Dallas, TX oil men, "the fat cats," and the CIA that was behind the JFK assassination.
Lyndon Johnson on the morning of 11/22/63 to Madeleine Brown:
"His snarling voice jolted me as never before - "That son-of-a-biscuit crazy Yarborough and that goddamn _____ Irish mafia cupcake, Kennedy, will never embarass me again!"
I managed to say, "I'm looking forward to tonight," when he blasted out even louder, "I've got about a minute to get to the parking lot to hear that cupcake!", and he slammed down the phone. I was startled ... an uneasiness gripped me over Lyndon's actions and temper." [Madeleine Duncan Brown, Texas in the Morning, p. 167]
Then there is this nugget from 1963 which shows the close personal ties between John J. McCloy and Clint Murchison, Sr.:
"That summer, McCloy relaxed more than he had for many years. He hunted whitewings with Clint Murchison on the Texas oil man's Mexico farm." [Kai Bird, The Chairman, p. 542]
Now check out this passage from the biography Clint: Clint Williams Murchison by Ernestine Orrick Van Buren who was Murchison's personal secretary for 20 years. Note 3 things: 1) Murchison is in "cold disbelief" at the idea of Lyndon Johnson on the ticket with John Kennedy. 2) The author completely skips over the Kennedy years. 3) Clint turns down an LBJ presidential phone call to resume a nap. That shows hierarchy. Very few folks turn down a presidential phone call.
"Clint was in La Jolla during the Democratic Convention in Los Angeles, in July 1960, and he avidly followed the proceedings on television. The avalanche of superb organization which gave John F. Kennedy the nomination on the first ballot was a huge disappointment. When the word was flashed that Lyndon Johnson had accepted the vice-presidential spot on the Kennedy ticket, Clint Murchison listened in cold disbelief.
In December 1963, soon after Lyndon Johnson became president following the assassination of John F. Kennedy, there was a soft rap on the bedroom door where Clint was napping. It was Warren Tilley, butler at Gladoak Farms. "Washington calling, Mr. Murchison. The president [Lyndon Johnson] wants to speak with you.
A brief silence followed. Then through the closed door came the muffled voice of Clint Murchison. "Tell the president I can't hear him." Clint resumed his nap."*
*Virginia Murchison Linthicum Interview, September 20, 1980
[Ernestine Orrick Van Buren, Clint, pp. 317-318]
What kind of a person turns down a phone call from the president of the USA to instead continue a nap? Someone who thinks they are more important than the president of the USA.
When JFK was slaughtered, Russia’s Khrushchev was literally crying, fearing nuclear war. Cuba’s Castro worried and feared an US invasion and gave an impressive speech the next day deconstructing the CIA’s deception provocation for war. Meanwhile at Clint Murchison’s home, their family maid May Newman describes the scene: “The mood in the Murchison family home was very joyous and happy. For a whole week after like champagne and caviar flowed, every day of the week. But I was the only one in that household at that time that felt any grief for his assassination." [The Men Who Killed Kennedy, The Guilty Men, Episode 9]
"…Lyndon Johnson shared in the prevailing oil belt enmity toward Kennedy. In fact, he was the one person in the White House the oilmen trusted….After Johnson ascended to the presidency, he and newly elected congressman Bush were often allies on such issues as the oil depletion allowance and the war in Vietnam….[oil executive Jack] Crichton (close with Bush and head of a secretive Dallas-based, oil-connected military intelligence unit that deeply immersed in aspects of the tragic events of November 22, 1963) was so plugged into the Dallas power structure that one of his company directors was Clint Murchison Sr., king of the oil depletion allowance, and another was D. Harold Byrd, owner of the Texas School Book Depository building.…."
http://www.motherjones.com/politics/201 ... -timeline/
A Brief History of Big Tax Breaks for Oil Companies
There will be subsidies: Nine decades later, “perhaps the most glaring loophole” in the tax code is still going strong.
ALEX PARK, ANDY KROLL, DAVE GILSON AND BENJY HANSEN-BUNDYAPR. 14, 2014 10:00 AM
JFK Theory: Texas Oil Men
Theory: Texas Oil Men
Just before John F. Kennedy was assassinated he upset people like Clint Murchison and Haroldson L. Hunt when he talked about plans to submit to Congress a tax reform plan designed to produce about $185,000,000 in additional revenues by changes in the favourable tax treatment until then accorded the gas-oil industry. Kennedy was particularly upset that Hunt, who had an annual income of about $30,000,000, paid only small amounts of federal income tax.
Madeleine Brown claims that she was Johnson's mistress. In her autobiography, Texas in the Morning (1997) Brown claims that the conspiracy to kill Kennedy involved Lyndon B. Johnson and several Texas oil men including Clint Murchison, Haroldson L. Hunt and J. Edgar Hoover. This theory was supported by Craig Zirbel in his book The Texas Connection: The Assassination of President John F. Kennedy (1991).
Joachim Joesten, an investigative journalist, believes that Johnson's secretary, Bobby Baker was involved in this
Despite their frequent intervention in political campaigns in Northern States, the Texas millionaires proclaim themselves strong advocates of what they call "States' rights"-which, from their point of view, excludes all outside intervention in the State of Texas. Northerners cannot quite understand the bitterness which Texans feel against the government in Washington, and Northern financiers in general-a feeling which appears to be quite general in Texas. Thus, the New York Times of October 16 , 1956 expressed astonishment that "the Governor of Texas, a rich man and a conservative, castigates `Wall Street' in terms used by the Daily Worker." It seems strange that men who have benefited from a tax concession which grants them commercial advantages no other section of the country can match, should nevertheless feel deep resentment, first, against the businessmen in other and less favoured industries and, second, against the Federal Government which has granted the concession to them. Yet this has been so. The Texas millionaires maintain that even the advantages they have are not sufficient; that their taxes are oppressive; that the bureaucrats from Washington are trying to take over Texas. Curiously, though, the State of Texas is one of the principal beneficiaries of Federal grants of one sort or another, quite apart from the tax policy which we already have discussed-and at the same time, Texas spends so little of her own tax money on social services that the average Texas citizen receives less aid than those in other States. Texas, for instance, gets more help from Washington than any other State for various child welfare services, yet ranks no more than 44th in money spent for this same purpose; Texas is the second State in money it accepts to help the blind and aged, but is 40th in money spent; Texas ranks third in its receipts from Washington for all purposes, yet 32nd in expenditures on public education.
The men whom the oligarchs in the State of Texas regard as their main enemies are those who dare propose reduction of their tax concession. Frank Ikard, a Texas Congressman, has called such persons "bombthrowing liberals." The Texas oil men are inclined to feel that epithet is much too mild; for them, the men who want to lower the oil depletion allowance are nothing short of Communists, although two critics of the present level of "depletion allowances" have been the late Republican leader, Senator Robert Taft, and former President Harry Truman, neither noted for pro-Communist opinions. Taft said it was "to a large extent a gift-a special privilege, beyond what any one else can get;" and Truman charged, "No loophole in the tax law is so inequitable." The first serious efforts to bring the taxes of the oil industry into closer correspondence with those of other U.S. industries were made by the New Deal, and no one hated President Roosevelt more bitterly than such Texans as John Nance Garner, who served as Vice-President during Roosevelt's first term and then opposed him for the second. When Roosevelt died in 1945, while the United States was still at war, a San Antonio millionaire announced a cocktail party to celebrate his death. In recent years, the chief foe of the Texas oil men has been Democratic Senator Douglas of Illinois, who proposed to keep the 27.5 per cent bonus for the small producers, but reduce it to 15 per cent for big ones. Douglas pointed out that there had been one oil company in 1954 which had a net income of four million dollars and paid only $404 in taxes, lower than the average US married couple; that there was another company which made five million dollars and paid no income tax at all; a third showed profits of 12 million dollars in 1953 and yet received a $500,000 tax credit; this same company made 10 million dollars the next year, and received another $100,000 tax credit.
To such arguments, the Texans have responded that the national security itself depends on their ability to guard their present rate of profit. "Oil, gentlemen, is ammunition," a Congressional committee was assured by General Ernest O. Thompson, Commanding General of the Texas National Guard. "In defence," he said, "oil is a prime mover. Why tamper with a system that... has made oil available in such quantities that we have been able to win two wars?"
Two wars, and so... why not a third one? Of all sections of the country, none was more opposed to any indication that an understanding might be reached between the President of the United States and Khrushchev, none is more convinced that the United States not only could survive a nuclear attack but could go on and win the war, especially if the U.S. had made the "first strike"-and that it might be worth it. Some of this hostility to a détente may be ascribed, of course, to cynical self-interest, for Texas has achieved an annual expansion, since the cold war started, more than six times greater than the national economy has averaged; conversely, if disarmament were actually to begin, no other section of America would suffer such immediate disruption of its industry, since an extremely high proportion of defence work has been concentrated in the State of Texas.
Neither cynical self-interest nor fear, however, totally explains the attitude of the oligarchy - or, at least, a portion of them. A major part of it must be ascribed to boredom. These oligarchs started as gamblers and gamblers they have remained. But in recent years there has been nothing left on which to gamble, except perhaps the whole future of the United States. This theory is, I think, worth some serious consideration. They have run out of new fields to conquer in the State of Texas; they've begun expanding. We have one of the most powerful and wealthy oligarchies in the world, controlled-as no society has ever been before-by men whose instincts are not those of businessmen, but gamblers. I suggest the impact of this fact upon world history, in any country which possesses the atomic bomb, is terrifying.
Why does Thomas G. Buchanan believe that the Texas Oil Industry might have been involved in the assassination of John F. Kennedy?
(L5) Joachim Joesten, How Kennedy Was Killed (1968)
When District Attorney Garrison, in his statement of September 21, 1967, made the startling disclosure that the assassination of President Kennedy had been ordered and paid for by a handful of oil-rich psychotic millionaires, he
didn't name any names. But I'm quite sure that all the good people of Dallas, if any of them were privileged to hear the news, instantly thought of their fellow-resident Haroldson Lafayette Hunt, the boss of the immensely rich Hunt Oil Company of Dallas.
Hunt is not only by far the richest of all the Texas oil millionaires but he is also, and more importantly, the one with the most pronounced and most vicious spleen. And, above all, the one who hated Kennedy most.
It so happens that H. L. Hunt is also a longtime friend, admirer and financial 'angel' of the most prominent Texas politician of our time, Lyndon B. Johnson, the man who was destined to become President of the United States automatically the moment Kennedy died. Perhaps this is the reason why Garrison preferred not to be too specific.
What evidence does Joachim Joesten use to claim that the "assassination of President Kennedy had been ordered and paid for by a handful of oil-rich psychotic millionaires"?
(L6) Dr. Albert E. Burke attending a meeting at the home of Haroldson L. Hunt in Dallas in 1961. Later he gave an account of the meeting.
I have listened to communists and other groups that can only be called enemies, accuse us of the worst intentions, the most inhuman ways of doing things, as the most dangerous people on earth, to be stopped and destroyed at all costs... But nothing I have heard in or from those places around us compared with the experience I had in the Dallas home of an American, whose hate for this country's leaders, and the way our institutions worked, was the most vicious, venomous and dangerous I have known in my life. No communist ever heard, no enemy of this nation has ever done a better job of degrading or belittling this country. That American was one of this nation's richest and most powerful men!
It was a very special performance by a pillar of the American community, who influences things in his community. It was a very special performance because in that living room during his performance - in which he said things had reached the point where there seemed to be "no way left to get those traitors out of our government except by shooting them out" during that performance, there were four teenagers in that room to be influenced. His views were shared on November 22, 1963.
Interestingly, the man accused of that crime claimed to be a Marxist, a communist. But my host assured me - when I objected to his remarks - that he believed as he did because he was anti-communist!
What happened in that home in Dallas, of one of America's richest and most powerful men, shashed that goal of America as a united country for the four teenagers in on that conversation that night.
Why does Dr. Albert E. Burke believe that Haroldson L. Hunt was involved in the assassination of John F. Kennedy?
(L7) Madeleine Brown, interviewed on the television programme, A Current Affair (24th February, 1992)
On Thursday night, Nov. 21, 1963, the last evening prior to Camelot's demise, I attended a social at Clint Murchison's home. It was my understanding that the event was scheduled as a tribute honoring his long time friend, J. Edgar Hoover (whom Murchison had first met decades earlier through President William Howard Taft), and his companion, Clyde Tolson. Val Imm, the society editor for the now-defunct Dallas Times Herald, unwittingly documented one of the most significant gatherings in American history. The impressive guest list included John McCloy, Richard Nixon, George Brown, R. L. Thornton, H. L. Hunt and a host of others from the 8F group. The jovial party was just breaking up when Lyndon made an unscheduled visit. I was the most surprised by his appearance since Jesse had not mentioned anything about Lyndon's coming to Clint's. With Lyndon's hectic schedule, I never dreamed he could attend the big party. After all, he had arrived in Dallas on Tuesday to attend the Pepsi-Cola convention. Tension filled the room upon his arrival. The group immediately went behind closed doors. A short time later Lyndon, anxious and red-faced, reappeared I knew how secretly Lyndon operated. Therefore I said nothing... not even that I was happy to see him. Squeezing my hand so hard, it felt crushed from the pressure, he spoke with a grating whisper, a quiet growl, into my ear, not a love message, but one I'll always remember: "After tomorrow those goddamn Kennedys will never embarrass me again - that's no threat - that's a promise."
Who does Madeleine Brown think was involved in planning the assassination of John F. Kennedy?
(L8) Madeleine Brown, Texas in the Morning (1998)
Just a few weeks later (after the assassination) I mentioned to him that people in Dallas were saying he himself had something to do with it. He became really violent, really ugly, and said it was American Intelligence and oil that were behind it. Then he left the room and slammed the door It scared me.
According to Madeleine Brown, who did Lyndon Johnson believe was behind the assassination of Kennedy?
(L9) Jim Marrs, Crossfire: The Plot that Killed Kennedy (1990)
Madeleine Brown, reported to be Johnson’s mistress for twenty years, has publicly stated that Johnson had foreknowledge of the assassination. But did Johnson really have enough power to initiate the assassination and force literally dozens of government officials and agents to lie and cover up that fact? Probably not.
What reasons does Jim Marrs give for not believing Madeleine Brown's theory about the assassination?
(L10) Gary Mack published an account of Madeleine Brown's story on 14th May, 1997.
Madeleine has claimed over the years that she attended a party at Clint Murchison’s house the night before the assassination and LBJ, Hoover and Nixon were there. The party story, without LBJ, first came from Penn Jones in Forgive My Grief. In that version, the un-credited source was a black chauffeur whom Jones didn’t identify, and the explanation Jones gave was that it was the last chance to decide whether or not to kill JFK. Of course, Hoover used only top FBI agents for transportation and in the FBI of 1963, none were black. Actually, there is no confirmation for a party at Murchison’s. I asked Peter O’Donnell because Madeleine claimed he was there, too. Peter said there was no party. Madeleine even said there was a story about it in the Dallas Times Herald some months later (which makes no sense), but she had not been able to find it. Val Imm (Society Editor of the Dallas Times Herald) told Bob Porter (of the Sixth Floor Museum at Dealey Plaza staff) recently she had no memory of such an event and even looked through her notes - in vain.
Could LBJ have been at a Murchison party? No. LBJ was seen and photographed in the Houston Coliseum with JFK at a dinner and speech. They flew out around 10pm and arrived at Carswell (Air Force Base in northwest Fort Worth) at 11:07 Thursday night. Their motorcade to the Hotel Texas arrived about 11:50 and LBJ was again photographed. He stayed in the Will Rogers suite on the 13th floor and Manchester (William Manchester - author of The Death of a President) says he was up late. Could Nixon have been at Murchison’s party? No. Tony Zoppi (Entertainment Editor of The Dallas Morning News) and Don Safran (Entertainment Editor of the Dallas Times Herald) saw Nixon at the Empire Room at the Statler-Hilton. He walked in with Joan Crawford (Movie actress). Robert Clary (of Hogan’s Heroes fame) stopped his show to point them out, saying “. . . either you like him or you don’t.” Zoppi thought that was in poor taste, but Safran said Nixon laughed. Zoppi’s deadline was 11pm, so he stayed until 10:30 or 10:45 and Nixon was still there.
Does Gary Mack believe Madeleine Brown's story (L6) about what happened the night before the assassination?
(L11) Barr McClellan, Blood Money and Power: How L.B.J. Killed J.F.K. (2003)
Soon after, there was another private meeting at Johnson's ranch. The vice president was certain he would be dumped, and he had to know what Clark was planning. He needed to know when action would be taken. After all, two years had passed and the politics for Johnson had only worsened. Something had to be done.
Clark was not about to let Johnson know any of the details. The assassination had to be a complete surprise to Johnson. Under no circumstances would he know what was planned. This time, when Johnson called for Clark, the lawyer decided to "woodshed" the vice president. The process was like taking a child out behind the woodshed to paddle him until he learned to do the right thing. In the case of witnesses for lawsuits, the woodshedding was to be sure they said the right thing, that they told the correct story before a jury. What the witness said and did had to be shaded just right...
Clark had one more worry detail, a small one in the overall scheme of things but an important one. He knew how pleased, even ecstatic, Johnson would be when the assassination occurred. He wanted Johnson to react with surprise and then express the correct condolences for the Kennedy family with appropriate assurances to the nation. The best approach for Johnson would be the usual one, to say and do nothing. As things turned out, Johnson would react in good form except on three minor but telling occasions. As Clark had feared, Johnson would overreact.
Why did Edward A. Clark not give Lyndon Johnson details of the planned assassination?
(L12) Phil Brennan, Some Relevant Facts About the JFK Assassination (2003)
There's an explosive new book that lays out a very detailed - and persuasive - case for the probability that the late President Lyndon Baines Johnson was responsible for the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.
I say persuasive because the author, Barr McClellan, was one of LBJ's top lawyers, and he provides a lot of information hitherto unknown to the general public - much more of which he says is buried in secret documents long withheld from the American people....
McClellan and others before him have discussed the fact that LBJ faced some pretty awful prospects, including not only being dumped from the 1964 ticket but also spending a long, long time in the slammer as a result of his role in the rapidly expanding Bobby Baker case - something few have speculated about because the full facts were never revealed by the media, which didn't want to know, or report, the truth...
Bobby Kennedy, called five of Washington's top reporters into his office and told them it was now open season on Lyndon Johnson. It's OK, he told them, to go after the story they were ignoring out of deference to the administration.
And from that point on until the events in Dallas, Lyndon Baines Johnson's future looked as if it included a sudden end to his political career and a few years in the slammer. The Kennedys had their knives out and sharpened for him and were determined to draw his political blood - all of it.
In the Senate, the investigation into the Baker case was moving quickly ahead. Even the Democrats were cooperating, thanks to the Kennedys, and an awful lot of really bad stuff was being revealed - until Nov. 22, 1963.
By Nov. 23, all Democrat cooperation suddenly stopped. Lyndon would serve a term and a half in the White House instead of the slammer, the Baker investigation would peter out and Bobby Baker would serve a short sentence and go free. Dallas accomplished all of that.
Bobby Baker was Lyndon Johnson's secretary and political adviser. In November 1963 Baker was under investigation for corruption. Why do some people believe this case played an important role in the assassination of President John F. Kennedy?
(L13) Bobby Baker, interviewed in 1990.
Clint Murchison owned a piece of Hoover. Rich people always try to put their money with the sheriff, because they're looking for protection. Hoover was the personification of law and order and officially against gangsters and everything, so it was a plus for a rich man to be identified with him. That's why men like Murchison made it their business to let everyone know Hoover was their friend. You can do a lot of illegal things if the head lawman is your buddy.
Clint Murchison was a Texas oil billionaire. What is the significance of the comments made by Bobby Baker?
(L14) Peter Dale Scott, Deep Politics and the Death of JFK (1993)
According to President Kennedy's secretary, Evelyn Lincoln, Bobby Kennedy was also investigating Bobby Baker for tax evasion and fraud. This had reached the point where the President himself discussed the Baker investigation with his secretary, and allegedly told her that his running mate in 1964 would not be Lyndon Johnson. The date of this discussion was November 19, 1963, the day before the President left for Texas.
A Senate Rules Committee investigation into the Bobby Baker scandal was indeed moving rapidly to implicate Lyndon Johnson, and on a matter concerning a concurrent scandal and investigation. This was the award of a $7-billion contract for a fighter plane, the TFX, to a General Dynamics plant in Fort Worth. Navy Secretary Fred Korth, a former bank president and a Johnson man, had been forced to resign in October 1963, after reporters discovered that his bank, the Continental National Bank of Fort Worth, was the principal money source for the General Dynamics plant.
What motives did Lyndon Johnson have for wanting John F. Kennedy dead?
(L15) Matthew Smith, JFK: The Second Plot (1992)
Interestingly, there were several arrests made in the Dal Tex building (on the 22nd November, 1963). The third man arrested there was extremely interesting. He was Jim Braden, also known as Eugene Hale Brading, a known Mafia courier. He said he had had an appointment to meet Lamar Hunt, son of H.L. Hunt, the oil millionaire, on oil business. Braden was with a friend, Morgan H. Brown, who bolted when he heard he had been taken in for questioning. A man with 30 arrests to his record, Braden had been staying at the Kabanya Motor Hotel, where Jack Ruby - who was to kill Lee Harvey Oswald in the Police Headquarters basement two days after the assassination - had met some of his Chicago friends the night before the President was killed. Braden was not detained. Five years later, however, Braden was to turn up in Los Angeles when Senator Robert Kennedy was murdered.
What was Jim Braden's connection with the H. L. Hunt? What is Matthew Smith suggesting in this account?
(L16) John Kelin, review of Noel Twyman's book, Bloody Treason (1998)
When Twyman finally names his real villains, we recognize three men whose involvement has been alleged for years: Lyndon Johnson, J. Edgar Hoover, and H.L. Hunt. The author says they acted from that oldest of motivations, self-preservation, and that "they had the the power and the money to make it happen and cover it up." It is amusing, in a sick sort of way, when Twyman says that Hoover seems to be the one person involved who had no redeeming qualities. "I have searched the literature and ... if there was something likable about him I haven't found it."
What does John Klein mean when he says Lyndon Johnson, J. Edgar Hoover, and H.L. Hunt acted from that "oldest of motivations, self-preservation"?
(L17) Edward Jay Epstein, Esquire Magazine (December, 1966)
In January of 1964 the Warren Commission learned that Don B. Reynolds, insurance agent and close associate of Bobby Baker, had been heard to say the FBI knew that Johnson was behind the assassination. When interviewed by the FBI, he denied this. But he did recount an incident during the swearing in of Kennedy in which Bobby Baker said (in January, 1961) words to the effect that the s.o.b. would never live out his term and that he would die a violent death.
What did Don B. Reynolds accuse Bobby Baker of saying in January, 1961?
(L18) Matthew Smith, JFK: The Second Plot (1992)
Another group which hated the President and which merited investigation was the extreme right-wing John Birch Society. Centred on Dallas, the group made no secret of its disdain for the Kennedy administration, in fact it advertised it well. To its members, the young President was a Communist-lover, and, in their world, that represented just about the worst thing anybody could be. In their vocabulary, to call anybody a name like that represented using real venom. That was reaching down the barrel to find the biggest of all insults. Some John Birch members were oil barons, and the oil men made up an overlapping group which, when it came to its opinions of the President, had a great deal in common with the Society. The oil industry in Texas had enjoyed huge tax concessions since 1926, when Congress had provided them as an incentive to increase much needed prospecting. The oil depletion benefits were somehow left in place to become a permanent means by which immense fortunes were amassed by those in the industry and, well aware of the anomaly, John Kennedy had declared an intention to review the oil industry revenues. There was nothing in the world which would have inflamed the oil barons more than the President interfering with the oil depletion allowance. In the minds of many, the conspirators could very easily have come from the ranks of either the John Birch Society or the oil men, which is not to say they didn't belong to both groups.
Why does Matthew Smith believe that the Texas oil industry and the John Birch Society were both involved in the assassination of John F. Kennedy?