Saturday, October 22, 2016

Brief Stone notes

Wow. I woke up and did not feel compelled to discover the latest about the Trump menace. For the first time in months, I'm not fretting about the possibility that the nuclear launch codes will end up with someone whose brain cells stopped talking to each other twenty years ago.

We've entered a strange, Dali-esque world. Or maybe Max Ernst-ian. I'm thinking of his painting "Europe After the Rain," the artist's 1942 pre-vision of the ravaged landscape left in the wake of fascism's defeat. You can see it at the top of this post. Doesn't it sum up the way things feel right now? Life hangs in eerie suspension as we survey the ruins around us.

After November 8, the world will be normal once more. We can finally relax and return to bitching about Hillary. Normal bitching -- about policy. Nothing about emails and Benghazi and all of that other nonsense that Alex Jones keeps blathering about.

Alas, that date is still more than two weeks away; Trump is not yet finished. So we wait. And as we wait, let us take one more look at Trump's eminence greasy, Roger Stone.

I've long argued that Stone was and is the secret architect of the Trump campaign. The two men have been friends for decades. Stone must resent the fact that his previous attempt to run a presidential campaign -- 1996 -- ended in scandal after his outlandish sex life made the headlines. The Trump campaign is his last chance to prove that his methods work. This time around, he has kept himself plausibly deniable, free to spew outrageous smears (such as his accusations against the Khan family) without officially speaking on behalf of The Donald. Despite Stone's pretensions of being an outsider, I believe that he has always been -- to borrow a term from occultism -- le supérieur inconnu, the Unknown Superior. Behind the doors of Donnie's Dick Club, Stone is an even bigger dick than Steve Bannon.

Do you recall that odd tweet in which Stone proclaimed his non-disclosure agreement with Trump null and void? Everyone has missed the obvious point: If Stone really were, as claimed, separate from the campaign, what need of an NDA? Corey Lewandowski had a $1.2 million book deal all lined up, but his own NDA quashed all of that.

(We should always keep in mind that no NDA -- no contract of any kind -- covers criminal activity. Thus, Stone's tweet cannot have been in reaction to his contacts with the FBI.)

More broadly: Everything about the Trump campaign has always screamed ROGER WAS HERE. Stone has always loved smears and mud and dirty tricks, and that's what Team Trump gave us: Sleazy accusations and stolen emails -- a new Watergate every few days. Overseeing it all was one of the original Watergaters.

Remember when Trump made that bizarre accusation about Hillary being on drugs? That apparently came from here. The link goes to a lengthy conversation between Roger Stone and Alex Jones, a presentation sponsored by Jone's personal brand of "brain pills." Just pop these pills and you'll think real good, just like ol' Alex. Small wonder AJ is backing the candidate who wants to get rid of the FDA.

Here's an interesting question: Does Trump really believe in AJ's nonsensical conspiracy theories?

We've all seen those tweets from yesteryear in which Trump speaks well of the Clintons. (He also insulted, in his usual Trumpian way, Paula Jones.) If you compare what Trump said then to what he says now, it's hard not to conclude that Candidate Trump has been putting on a big act. He's a teevee entertainer playing a part, a huckster going for the big con.

But I don't think that the "It's all an act" theory suffices. I think that Donald Trump really has become enchanted by the Alex Jones view of reality. Right-wing conspiracism often attracts those with intellectual pretensions who lack the patience to read hard books.

Let's get back to Roger Stone.

Stone calls himself a libertine and a libertarian. Being a libertarian, he presumably views self-interest as his sole motivation. So why does he continue to dodder around the JFK assassination community, where he is a mostly-unwelcome presence? From an Ayn Randian me-me-me perspective, what's in it for him?

Roger Stone is listed as a speaker in this so-called "Oswald Conference," which was held about a week ago. The fact that George Noory (!!!) hosted the event should tell you everything you need to know. With the exception of Russ Baker, none of the listed speakers commands much respect within the JFK assassination research community -- and to be honest, I'm not really a big fan of Baker.

This is not the A-team, folks.

The main attraction at the conference was Judyth Vary Baker, an attention-loving fantasist who claims that she was once Oswald's lover, and whose followers strike me as unnervingly cultish. The real researchers have a low opinion of her. She now inhabits an alternate JFK universe: There are serious JFK conferences and there are "Judy" conferences -- and if you show up at the latter, you may not be welcome at the former. 

I've written about Judy before, offering links to experts who have exposed her silly fibs. Unsurprisingly, she has "confirmed" to Roger Stone that Ted Cruz' dad really was the guy seen working with Oswald. Judy's memory is one of the true wonders of nature.

Again I ask: Why is Stone in this world? What's in it for him? Despite what some people believe, JFK assassination books rarely sell well; the money involved is (by Trumpian standards) trifling. The dimes and nickles may have meaning to someone like The Great Judy, but Roger Stone is the kind of guy who likes to wear bespoke suits while scooting around town in his favorite Mercedes.

Where's the payoff? Is he getting a cut from sales of those Alex Jones Brain Pills?

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