Sunday, March 6, 2011

Today's New Idiot - G. William Domhoff

G. William Domhoff wants to criticize conspiracy theories and ideas that everything is run by a secret cabal. His main attack is the notion that something secret controls America. Yes, there are some wild, stupid, and totally false theories about, well, everything really.  Many conspiracy theories are obviously fake to mask another agenda like anti-Semitism, racial hatred, and extreme political causes. But, in doing so he goes too far, to him there are no conspiracies, none, not about anything, and there never have been.

Well, there are some people in prison who would love to hear more about that.  You see, there actually are conspiracies.  And there are laws against it.  People get arrested, charged, convicted and imprisoned for conspiracy.  But. not in Domhoff's world.  Umm, Domhoff, did you ever hear of the Rico statute? 

In 2005 he wrote an article - There Are No Conspiracies in which he writes, "For a smaller group of conspiratorial thinkers, a secret group of operatives located within the CIA was responsible for many terrible tragedies and assassinations since the 1960s, including the assassination of President John F. Kennedy."

Okay, here we go.  

He puts forth a lot of his own personal sociological beliefs, the theory of structuralism, which are not facts, and more sociological garbage that the historical record easily disproves.

He writes, "There are several problems with a conspiratorial view that don't fit with what we know about power structures. First, it assumes that a small handful of wealthy and highly educated people somehow develop an extreme psychological desire for power that leads them to do things that don't fit with the roles they seem to have."

Umm, ever hear of Charles Ponzi, from whom we get the phrase a Ponzi scheme? Bernie Madoff would LOVE to hear this theory that there are no such things as conspiracies.  Just put "charged with conspiracy" into a Google search, then hit news and you'll disprove this goofball and his theory.  

And he writes, "Second, the conspiratorial view assumes that the behind-the-scenes leaders are extremely clever and knowledgeable, whereas social science and historical research shows that leaders often make shortsighted or mistaken decisions due to the limits placed on their thinking by their social backgrounds and institutional roles. When these limits are exposed through stupid mistakes, such as the failure of the CIA at the Bay of Pigs during the Kennedy Administration, then conspiratorial theorists assert that the leaders failed on purpose to fool ordinary people."  

Oy. I could be here for years tearing this apart. He has no clue about the history of the Bay of Pigs. No clue. It was deliberately designed to fail unless JFK sent in the Marines to save the day. JFK told them beforehand there is no way he would do that, for if he did he feared the Soviets would retaliate by taking Berlin, and then it's World War III. So, he didn't send in the Marines and the mission failed.  Right-wing morons have and will to the end of time say that JFK was weak or a coward.  In their view if he sent in the Marines it would have worked.  They never, ever consider Berlin or the Cold War context in which the invasion happened. Nor does Dummkopf, er, Domhoff, address the historical reality of the decades long withheld CIA's own Inspector General's report and what it said about the Bay of Pigs plan.  Available here - INSPECTOR GENERAL'S SURVEY OF THE CUBAN OPERATION AND ASSOCIATED DOCUMENTS, VOL I  which states:

"The fundamental cause of the disaster was the Agency's failure to give the project, notwithstanding its importance and its immense potentiality for damage to the United States, the top flight handling which it required - - appropriate organization, staffing throughout by highly qualified personnel and full-time direction and control of the highest quality." - Volume I p. 34.  

JFK was concerned about, "its immense potentiality for damage to the United States." I want a president who sees the big picture, who thinks about consequences.  

And the people who dismiss the notion that conspiracies are behind presidential assassinations always delete from history the first one, the Lincoln assassination.  As Dummkopf, er, Domhoff, does here, "As for assassinations and assassination attempts in the United States, from McKinley to Franklin D. Roosevelt to John F. Kennedy to Martin Luther King, Jr., to Robert F. Kennedy to Reagan, they have been the acts of individuals with no connections to any power groups."

Why start with McKinley? Why ignore Lincoln? Because of this photo:

As you can clearly see long after John Wilkes Booth is officially shot dead by Boston Corbett we had a military trial and we hanged four people.  There are people who want you to think that Lincoln's assassination was done by one and only one man, John Wilkes Booth, because if you believe that you will believe that that is the pattern throughout American history, one gunman, no conspiracy.  And if you believe this lie, you'll believe it about the JFK assassination too.  

On December 16, 1963 in an Executive Session of the Warren Commission none other than Allen Dulles himself passed out a paperback book on the Lincoln assassination.  "It's a fascinating book, but you'll find a pattern running through here that I think we'll find in this present case."  McCloy responded, "The Lincoln assassination was a plot."  Dulles responded, "Yes, but one man was so dominant that is almost wasn't a plot."    

Doffman also writes, "Because all their underlying assumptions are discredited by historical events and media exposures, no conspiracy theory is credible on any issue."  

And then he confuses me with his nearly last paragraph:

"It is also true that the CIA has been involved in espionage, sabotage, and the illegal overthrow of foreign governments, and that the FBI spied on and attempted to disrupt Marxist third parties, the Civil Rights Movement, and the Ku Klux Klan. But careful studies show that all these actions were authorized by top government officials, which is the critical point here. There was no "secret team" or "shadow government" committing illegal acts or ordering government officials to deceive the public and disrupt social movements. Such a distinction is crucial in differentiating all sociological theories of power from a conspiratorial one."

He seems to be splitting hairs and undermining his entire essay.  He seems to be saying it isn't illegal, or it isn't a conspiracy if we know who's doing it, even if they do it in secrecy, and keep the documents about it secret for decades, and whether they go to jail or not.  Didn't Nixon try this defense? If the President does it then it's not illegal? That didn't work out for Nixon.

And this we know who did what, or we can suspect and name a person, or group, or institution does not mean that the discovered conspiracy was never a conspiracy.  Once a person is caught doesn't mean the crime the person is alleged to have done never occurred, schmuck!  

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