The Thomas Wales Killing

Last month a story popped up again that comes back every few years- the unsolved murder of Assistant US Attorney Thomas Wales.

There are many news stories on the matter, too numerous and similar to link, that tell the story. Wales was a federal prosecutor and also a gun control activist, which is unusual but not actually prohibited. One night in October 2001 he was sitting at a computer in his basement when someone walked into his backyard, avoiding setting off security lights, and shot him several times through a window.

Neighbors heard the shots and called police immediately. A neighbor looked out and saw a man walking quickly away, who then got in a car and sped off. Wales was able to call 911 but not able to speak to police and died a few hours later in the hospital.

Wales was a high-profile individual due to his anti-gun activity, and the brazen killing of a federal prosecutor is a gross affront to the system, so a huge FBI investigation was immediately launched. Nothing came of it. Some complained it wasn’t huge enough, so it was made huger. Years went by, the reward was increased, and every five years or so the feds have a press conference to announce they are just about to catch the guy and he better confess right now.

Most effort went toward a man who Wales had prosecuted for fraud, unsuccessfully, over a matter of aircraft maintenance records, who was also a gun enthusiast. But there was never any way to link him to the crime. Wales was involved in a shouting match in a parking garage after he hit a limo and refused to give the driver his insurance information, and then left the scene. This would tend to indicate an person with aggressive tendencies and poor self-control, but who else Wales may have had trouble with wasn’t really looked into. The feds liked the gun nut for it, and stuck with pressuring him for years.

The whole thing seems to show the ongoing incompetence of the FBI. A couple of city homicide detectives certainly would have done better. The man walking away was probably the shooter, and there is a composite sketch, but he has never been found. The shooter had to have visited the scene beforehand, maybe several times, to know where to find Wales, the large basement window and the security lights. If the shooter was smart he likely would have disposed of the gun before he got in the car, but it was never found.

The feds did find that the gun was a Makarov .380 with a replacement barrel. They have looked for the 1000 or so replacement barrels sold, but not made a connection. They might have checked out who was selling cheap handguns with no questions asked, but FBI agents don’t know things like this.

One theme of the press conferences is that somebody knows something, and should share this with the FBI. The Unabomber would never have gotten caught if his own brother hadn’t ratted him out, and I think they are counting on something like this. They seem to be pretty sure the man Wales prosecuted and some of his friends did it, and hope one of them will crack.

Did they? I think if they had they would have cracked by now. It’s been a long, long time, and it’s difficult to prosecute a case after so long. Who did kill Thomas Wales? Whoever it was planned it carefully, executed it quietly, and left quickly. They either told no one about it, or only people of bulletproof trustworthiness- but more likely no one at all.

The powers that be don’t know everything, and can’t control everything. They are not as omniscient as they would like to have us believe.

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Merry Christmas! God Yul!

It’s snowing. If I didn’t have to go out in that shit I wouldn’t mind, I’d eat and drink and play with the boy and cuddle with my wife. But I’m a long way from home and I do have to go out in that shit, so here I am.

It’s dark, cold and snowy in our part of the world this time of year, and at root our winter holiday is acknowledgement of the power of the sun, to come, go, and return, and our need to wait during this cycle and acknowledge its power.

We are under the control of forces far more powerful than we can imagine. Our enemies are no more than another part of this force, the power of death and decay. For now- for all the astronomical cycles we can imagine, if not all we can calculate- life will always embrace and overcome death. When our enemies lose, they lose, but when they win they also lose, because they are death, and death is merely the fertilizer for life.

Winter is the time for some rest, but also for work, to be prepared for spring. Tools need to be made and repaired, animals cared for, other things cleaned, mended and set in order. Spring comes and we burst forth to grow and build.

Merry Christmas! God Yul!

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Sam ‘N’ Ella’s Farm Fresh Chicken

Sam ‘N’ Ella’s Farm Fresh Chicken is flying off the shelves, and they need a new chicken processing plant. Having researched sites and checked on incentives, they decide on Cracker County.

Preliminary interest in Cracker County is high. It’s a big economic boost. More jobs, spending, people, customers for stores. Sam’s plans to bring in Mexicans and Somalis, but after a year or two they will certainly be true blue Americans. The church ladies at the Refugee Center are especially excited.

Cracker County isn’t quite as peaceful as it seems. There have been a number of homicides, first of drug dealers. The sheriff announced it officially as a turf war, but who won? There aren’t many drug dealers in the county any more. More shocking was the murder of the operator of the county’s pain management clinic. The doctor wrote lots and lots of large quantity prescriptions for opioid pills, many more than you might expect to be needed in a small community. Of course science has shown us that when opiates are properly used to treat pain they do not lead to addiction. The large number of pill and heroin addicts in town belied this, but no one is against science.

The tragic fatal shooting of the pain doc as he drove through the Cowgirls bikini coffee stand as he did each morning was officially ascribed by the sheriff as an attempted robbery. The barista said she took cover as soon as she heard shots and saw nothing. No other witnesses were found. Nothing was taken but the sheriff said this is common in robbery attempts, the robber gets scared and runs away. Rumors of a couple on a motorcycle close by went around, but most people took the word of the sheriff.

Pills and heroin are very hard to come by now and while many of the users have cleaned up, some said they didn’t feel safe any more and left town. Safe from what? They won’t say, even when pressed.

Cracker County is nicer now despite the crime problem. A lot of people weren’t happy about the chicken plant and some even went to the planning meeting. Some talked about truck traffic, some about pollution and runoff, some complained about the subsidies Sam ‘N’ Ella’s was getting. Some even suggested bringing in hundreds of people with no more housing or schools would be a problem. The church ladies got up and said shame on you, you are clearly all racists who have hatred in your hearts, remember we must welcome the stranger. An accountant tried to pass out an analysis he had made of the fiscal impact but the chairman called a vote and it was 4-1 for the plant. The dissenter said the incentives were too generous and he could only vote for a less expensive package, and that Hillbilly County had gotten the E. Coli Brothers hog plant for much less. But everyone- everyone important anyway- was very excited about the plant and the meeting wrapped up.

“Sam ‘N’ Ella’s is coming to Cracker County!” said the headline. A lot of people still didn’t like it though. No one was happier than Chuck Wood, owner of the county’s largest construction company, who got the contract to build it. Some of his workers didn’t seem enthused, and word got to Chuck maybe he should not build the plant.

Chuck was incensed. He put a trailer up at the site, but it burned down. He started grading, but the equipment was vandalized. He started to move all the equipment off the site at the end of the day, but the labor cost was very high. He didn’t want to put another trailer there- it would be very embarrassing if that one burned too- and managing the job was quite difficult.

The equipment operators tried to get the excavators and bulldozers off the trailers one morning at the site and found they wouldn’t start. They had been more thoroughly vandalized at the yard than they had at the site. The excavation subcontractor was furious- the machines looked to be a total loss. When new equipment could be arranged wasn’t clear. Chuck was beginning to regret the whole thing.

He went to the sheriff and complained but the sheriff said he had only so many officers and lots of calls, and he couldn’t secure the site for him. Chuck reminded him that he and his his employees paid a lot of taxes and spent a lot of money in the county, and the sheriff said true and thanks for paying up but it’s not in the police budget. He said try private security if you want but it will be expensive.

One night a group of big, rough-looking guys showed up at Shifty’s Roadhouse. They kept to themselves but with a little prodding from the fillies let slip they were there to work security on the plant construction site. One even said the sheriff wouldn’t do his job so they would do it for him.

Shifty came over and said he was glad they were there, the plant was important for the community and they could drink free draft beer or well drinks. The goons weren’t dumb and didn’t go crazy but nonetheless got very, very tired and had to be helped back to the motel. The next day they woke up to find their clothes, wallets, phones, and cars gone. Somebody eventually came to get them and they never came back.

All this trouble didn’t go unnoticed. Pastor Bob of the Crackerville Methodist Church said clearly there was a lot of opposition to the plant in the community, and while he understood people’s’ concerns it was clearly motivated by racism, which is a sin. The church ladies at the Refugee Center (Cracker County didn’t actually have any refugees, but they had gotten a grant to start the agency and wanted some bad) told everyone the level of racism in the county was appalling. Pastor Bob and the church ladies announced a Christians Against Racism prayer service. It was sparsely attended but the worst part was the kids outside playing their car stereos in the church parking lot at full volume. Pastor Bob tried to go out and talk about Christian love, charity and neighborliness to them but it was too loud. The deputies ran off one group, but more came, and after they ran the next group off the officer in charge told Pastor Bob they were too busy and couldn’t come back. The service was cut short.

Eventually Sam himself got involved. Sam’s grandparents, Sam and Ella had pioneered the business of bringing fresh chicken to America’s tables. The lawsuits over the deaths had been difficult and expensive but Grandpa told Sam if people got sick they should have cooked their goddamn chicken more. Sam called the county commissioner and after a friendly chat asked him what was going on. The commissioner was very embarrassed and said, as you know, rural areas have more trouble with vandalism and we’re sorry but we are getting a handle on it and the plant should be moving along soon.

Sam tells him thanks for all you are doing and we will keep in touch. He hangs up. Sam doesn’t care too much, he needs another plant but he can find a town where there won’t be so much trouble. Some suckers somewhere will pay for a plant for him and provide food stamps, medical insurance and public schools for his workers. He calls his lawyer and asks him to see about suing Chuck for failure to perform. He calls his COO and asks him what the alternatives are to Cracker County. The COO assures him there are a few other good options lined up. Sam ask him to stop by in the morning and run them by.

Chuck is devastated to hear from Sam’s lawyer. He calls his own lawyer who assures him something can be worked out. Chuck hangs up, knowing “worked out” means a large bill at least. The new boat and the lake house will have to wait.

People don’t think too much about the chicken plant any more. People forget quickly. Word is the Refugee Center may close for lack of refugees- the grant may not be continued. Pastor Bob is thinking about an advanced degree in theology at Vanderbilt, then maybe teaching somewhere. Secretly he’s a little tired at the lack of Christian charity he sees in his flock, and their mundane difficulties. Chuck is hustling for more business- being successful means never slowing down, never resting on your laurels. The sheriff had a pointed conversation with Shifty about overserving, and Shifty said he was very sorry and never let anybody get behind the wheel drunk but big guys normally hold their liquor better than that and the motel is right next door. The motel only had a security camera at the front desk so how the goons got all their stuff stolen was never clear.

Cracker County is a pretty normal rural community with normal problems- lack of good jobs number one. The lack of drugs and problems caused by aggressive foreigners is disregarded by most, as people are rarely grateful for not having problems. Something funny seems to be going on though- the good people seem a little humbled, and the rednecks seem a little cocky. The crime problem is less but not gone. A few black boys at the high school decided to bring in drugs from outside, but were killed near their homes in another tragic act of gang violence. Who the gangs were nobody was sure, but nobody tried to sell drugs after that.

Will another corporation try to put a plant in Cracker County? Will another doctor try to set up a pain management practice? Will Chuck and other local employers try to cut costs by hiring illegals? Nobody has a crystal ball, but maybe, just maybe, it’s better not to try these things in Cracker County……..

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Who Can You Trust?

Who can you trust? Trust is assumed in a lot of situations, but other times the question needs to be asked directly.

I was reading some true crime book about motorcycle gangs. A meth cooker was said to work only with guys he had been in high school with or in prison with. That would assure him they weren’t a cop, but not that they hadn’t been turned later.

Outlaw motorcycle gangs in general have few security breaches. They are very difficult to join and undercover law enforcement can’t do it. An ATF guy tried to join the Hells Angels in Arizona but couldn’t go all the way. They have had snitches, some guy wrote a book about snitching on some Hispanic OMGs in California.

If you have spent a long time with some people and shared difficult experiences, you will tend to trust them. That’s the essence of the English public school experience- something whitewashed quite a bit in Harry Potter. Soldiers trust each other if they have been in combat together.

People who grow up together in the same town or are closely related trust each other. In southern Italy, people normally marry people from the same small town, so they are doubly close. This helped the Mafia organize and stay together.

A great deal if not most of the world is like this. The most extreme example is the Arabs, who prefer to marry first cousins- ideally the father’s brother’s daughter.

HBD Chick has written extensively about this, the example above, and how in western Europe the church banned cousin marriage to make people less clannish. Here “family” means the nuclear family. Elsewhere “family” is your extended family. Here you only economically depend on your nuclear family, and only see the others a couple times a year at best (or worst). Elsewhere the extended family is your means of survival, for housing, jobs, food and necessities when you are out of work, and social life.

The West is sometimes described as “high trust” because people trust the government and they trust the legal system and formal institutions. But they have weak relationships otherwise and don’t cooperate outside of formal institutions.

Even non-governmental social organizations are very weak. Church, clubs, and fraternal organizations were a staple of life for a long time, but with the government safety net of social democracy- and other forms of filling time, especially television- these are largely gone.

The church is really the last of these. Evangelical churches have lots of activities and help their members some. The Mormon church demands a lot of time from members but I think is also better at helping them.

How does the system decide who to trust? The simplest matter of trust is credit. Everybody has a credit score and that determines whether you are trusted with a checking account, a credit card, occupancy of a dwelling, and frequently a job. Everybody has a criminal record, or lack of one. This is a matter of how hard and far back the investigator wants to look, and if you have ever been arrested there is a record of it. Security clearances are based on financial reliability, any formal conduct issues, and what the investigator can determine about you from interviews with people they can find from your past.

Informally, it’s who you know. If you have somebody willing to certify your good behavior and performance that’s a big help. All desirable jobs and important positions are filled this way. Going to a prestigious school gives the person a formal credential, but also contact with people who can certify him, other students, professors and administrators.

It’s a question of the stakes involved. If you are being screened for employment at a bank, you will get a close look. If you are applying for a security clearance, you will get a very close look. (Unless you are a recent immigrant from the Middle East and they can’t verify anything, then they will just wave you through.) If you are looking for day labor, you won’t get any.

With informal actors, the same situation exists. If somebody wants to buy drugs from you, you will probably want a referral. If you want to buy drugs from somebody, you will be more inclined if a friend tells you he has good stuff. If a strange person suggests you engage in criminal activity with him, you will assume he is crazy or a cop. If he’s a fellow member of your Hells Angels chapter you have known a few years, you can probably trust him.

Can organizations with tight security be penetrated? The LAPD was penetrated by the Bloods gang. (Penetrating the police is obviously a good thing for a gang to do, but apparently the Crips thought themselves too good for this.) A young black guy from the hood with no record is a highly desired police recruit, and even if they wanted to they couldn’t track down all his junior high school friends and see what they were doing now. A similar thing happened in Boston. Some kid from South Boston grew up to be an FBI agent, and as a young boy he had admired an older kid named James Bulger and was able to help him out a lot as a fed.

The Gulenists of Turkey ran a test prep service which they used to identify bright young people and then recruit them. There was no way to observe the contact and they placed many in high places. The Gulenists were undone by a communication security breach, but that’s another story.

Anybody or any group wants to know about others, but not be known itself, other than how it wants to be know. The term counterintelligence state was coined to describe communist regimes; indeed counterintelligence was a more prestigious position in the KGB than intelligence. Maintaining your own secrets may be more important than knowing others.

Intelligence and counterintelligence are a cat and mouse game, very complicated. People who are thinking stuff the system doesn’t like have good reason to be very careful. People who want to do stuff the system doesn’t like have even more reason to be very careful.

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Guns Versus Eyes

A lot of people are obsessed with guns. These people tend to roughly be patriot types, mainstream conservatives at heart who distrust the system and see the possibility of collapse. Or they are preppers, or sometimes more extreme types.

But as Ryu constantly reminds us, the typical gunman a police officer or a soldier is just a small cog in a much larger machine. He can’t function without massive support, so the gun by itself is pretty useless.

The gunman has lots of logistical support, transportation and communication. But what he needs more than anything is eyes. He has to know where to go and who to turn his gun on, and if he doesn’t, he and his support system can defend themselves, but can’t assert control. Guerilla warfare mostly involves establishing bases in hostile areas, then defending those bases. Patrols outside the base are made, and the patrols are defended. People are accosted, rousted, and questioned, and sometimes useful information is obtained, but if the population does not want to cooperate, there is a stalemate, or a Mexican standoff.

From the other side of the fence- what can you do with guns? In modern “peacekeeping” or “stability” operations most of the occupying force wears uniforms and moves around in large, marked vehicles. In modern society, control is distributed among many people, who are not easily identified unless you are in direct contact with them.

As things get uglier, people opposed to the system may want to do something, but who is in control is the first order of business. What are their names? What position do they hold? What do they look like? Where do they live? Who are their family members? What vehicles do they own and drive? As Yogi Berra said, you can see a lot just by watching.

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Why the Left Shouldn’t Attack Confederate Monuments

When I visit the South, I notice how prosperous and peaceful it seems. I’m going to the places that business travelers and tourists go to, which is not representative, but still it’s quite nice. Beyond the economic prosperity, there seems to be much less general anger and agitation, especially racial. There are fewer Hispanics, and blacks don’t seem to be wanting to cause trouble.

The Civil War was a pretty ugly conflict. Reconstruction was worse. Despite years of military occupation, the US couldn’t force the white population to treat blacks as legally equal citizens, much less social equals. Even northern liberals seem to have regarded the project as stupid, from the hostility to Grant and racial equality expressed later in the century.

In the end the US decided to leave well enough alone. The South would remain a part of the US, and would have its own racial policies. The South continued to have a lot of power in Washington- a Southern city, after all- and used this to their benefit.

The people in charge came to the conclusion that it didn’t need an internal threat that could cause it a lot of trouble. The late 19th century was a time of reconciliation, falsely called the Lost Cause, which was a qualitatively different thing, but simply taking the view that the South had honorably fought for the right as it saw it, and could be respected for it.

Another threat flared up with the populist politics of Huey Long. Long was killed- by a crazed lone gunman, of course!- but the US adopted a similar, if less radical, form of populist redistribution that pumped a lot of money into the South. The New Deal did not challenge racial segregation, South or North.

Then came the “civil rights” movement, which was a product first of communism and then of the Cold War. Communists regarded blacks as potential revolutionaries, and invented the idea of racism- irrational oppression of non-whites- as a way to motivate blacks to support communism. Once the Cold War developed, the US and the USSR came into competition for allies in the Third World. The US found formal segregation as practiced in the South to be embarrassing and moved against it.

Formal segregation was a way that the South had to cope with blacks. The majority in the South regarded it as essential, but there was a significant number did not. The South was still a traditional agrarian society, but it was also a place for manufacturing and urban business. To the business community formal segregation was an embarrassment and bad for business, and they greased the skids for Northern initiated desegregation.

Informal segregation works in the South because the truth is, blacks don’t really want to hang around whites too much. They find us a little boring and stiff, they like themselves- they like themselves a lot– they like other blacks, they like their own culture, they have their own neighborhoods, their own churches, their own barbecue places, and they don’t need to see whitey too much outside of work.

Bad black behavior is still a problem, but the South has a strong criminal justice system and it mostly affects blacks and poor whites that the business people don’t care about. Southern pride is still strong and cultivated by institutions like college football. The occasional Confederate flag on a pickup truck and Confederate statue in a park reminds white Southerners of who they are, beyond working for Coca Cola or Nissan.

The South has mostly been at an uneasy peace since the Civil War, but it remains the strongest internal potential opposition to the US. Embarrassing or humiliating people agitates them and brings them out of their normal state of passive acceptance, the state which allows most living creatures to function on a day to day basis.

The historical policy of the US towards the South since the Civil War has been to leave it alone as much as possible, and this has avoided large scale social conflict. The smart thing to do would be to keep it this way, but for better or worse the people in charge have been getting dumber and more childish for some time now.

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The Trouble With LARPing……..

Live action role playing, or LARPing, is a form of game play where participants act out the actions of characters in the game. “LARPing” has come to mean any use of archaic right-wing political symbols, specifically Nazi or NSDAP symbols.

Now, I’m the last person to tell you not to be a Nazi, or not carry a Nazi flag for reasons of “optics” or scaring normies or being a loser dork. However, that does not mean there is not a problem with using archaic symbols in current political activity.

The same problem applies to the left as well, to the use of revolutionary communist and anarchist symbols like red flags and the hammer and sickle. The problem is this- the conditions that created the organizations that created these symbols are not the same now as they were then.

The National Socialist German Workers’ Party came into existence in the collapse of German society after WWI. The German army and people thought they were participating in a negotiated truce, not an abject, unconditional surrender. The army, or at least its soldiers, did not lose credibility in the collapse. The veterans still trusted each other and when they decided to band together to put an end to communist, Jewish subversion and destruction of German society, the people trusted them and followed them.

The Communist Party in Russia was composed primarily of Jews. Jews trust each other and cooperate with each other against their host societies. It’s what they do, and the communist revolution was just one example of this. Many communists were not Jews; a critical majority were. Jews trust and cooperate with some non-Jews, as long as Jews are clearly in charge of the enterprise. This is also what they do.

The NSDAP was not, as the alt lite and associated nitwits will tell you, a left-wing organization. It did however use tactics that have historically worked only for left-wing organizations and that can now probably only work for left-wing organizations. They were a public, urban mass political movement with tacit governmental support. The dissident right does not have tacit government support and can’t operate in the same way.

The NSDAP- and the CPSU- formed under certain specific circumstances with certain specific leaders and members, and chose symbols to represent themselves. You can’t create a national socialist political movement with an NSDAP flag or other imagery, because that’s not how symbols work.

If you want a national socialist political program, you have to get like-minded people who trust each other to come together. Having done so, they will create symbols. I don’t think those symbols or aesthetics will resemble too much those of the NSDAP.

Aesthetics matter to the members of the organization and to outsiders. Any serious nationalist movement will probably be formed by Southern military veterans. American military veterans are much less likely to form an anti-system alliance than the German veterans of WWI. American veterans are very conformist and submissive to authority. Still these are the only people who will possibly take action. If they do band together, they will use symbols that they feel represent them. The League of the South uses a black St. Andrew’s cross on a white field. Other Southern nationalists use the Bonnie Blue flag.

Black is a traditional fascist color as a color of formal authority. In America dark blue is the color of formal authority and seriousness and a more likely color to be adopted.

Symbols and images are tools. Tools change over time and what people used generations ago probably isn’t appropriate today.

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