JFK to Trump… What We Tell Our Children, and Ourselves

The 53rd anniversary of the JFK assassination is here. Much has been written, and verified about this out in the open American Coup, and high level fear control program. Whether you are reading this now, or in the future, you must admit that the event shaped us as a nation; and delivered us to where we are today. War and monopoly. Liberty in name only. Total control of our lives, and a consistent degree of withering opportunities at the end of a leash.

“None are more hopeless enslaved than those who falsely believe they are free.”

~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

Ever since Mr Trump shockingly made history by becoming the first Billionaire President – Elect, and in doing so notched a first for a private citizen with zero experience in governing at the highest level… The nation is once again in a debate about what it all means. Many traumatized. Others exuberant. Maybe not since the JFK killing have we been brought to such a shocking conclusion, in such a short amount of time.

Its not how you play the game, its if you WIN that counts.

Early November 9th, 2016 I was watching the results of the “election” with my 13 year old son. Like most teenagers today, he is basically apolitical. But also like all of our children, he is somehow keenly aware that this turn of events will affect him somehow. Its a meme world we live in today, so our children are perhaps more aware of circumstances than we were at their age.

It made me recall the 1972 election. I was only 9 years old, so I wasn’t cognitive in the 1968 election that gave us Richard Nixon… Or the chain of public Assassinations that put him there. But much had changed in 4 years in the country. The war, the dissent, and the ravaging of liberty in the streets of America. My parents, against my protests voted for Nixon. This was confusing, as we had a bust of JFK in our living room. How could they?

Even at 9 years old I remember pleading with my parents to vote for McGovern. Now you might say that it would’ve made little difference. But what followed was catastrophe. We came as close as ever, until last Nov 9th, to having a billionaire as President…. That being Nelson Rockefeller.

Bretton Woods (Gold Standard Ended), Cointelpro, the initiation of the American Drug War (to crack down on Black nationalists and anti-War Hippies)… And my cousins coming home from Henry Kissinger’s golden triangle, strung out on heroin. The transition to corporate control of America, and the world… Had taken a quantum leap. In less than a decade, “Greed is Good” would become a national slogan for upward mobility. Yuppies replaced Yippies, some Yippies like Jerry Rubin actually becoming yuppies… The stage was set for massive corporate consolidation via hostile take overs, debt as money, and a win at all costs mentality. Wall Street was in charge as it never was before. Kill or be killed. Live and let die.

I do not recall my parents attempting to explain this to us children. We voraciously sought distraction, medication, and escape. We found it. Many times at the other end of the police state.

So when my son asked me post election, what does it mean? I could only tell him that Mr Trump would likely be his president until he was 17. I had hoped that the massive scope of such a major block of time in his life would be equal to the gravity of the situation. But, as dads do… I sought to come up with a better answer. This contemplation forced me into weighing the essence of such a historical event. The conclusions I came up with still stir me to my core.

Not who are you…. WHAT are you?


It happened incidentally as I was doing some light reading. A book named “We Never Learn” by Eric Davidson, published in 2010. (Eric is a fantastic writer, and also the singer for the band “The New Bomb Turks“). Its not a political book, but more of a historical recount of music and culture in the late 80s and 90s. In doing so, he shines a megawatt flashlight on where we came from vs where we are now. 

I am reading along, inspired, when I reached a chapter which included an interview with “Long Gone John” the sole proprietor of the DIY record label “Sympathy for the Record Industry“. If you follow viable Alternative music – you will know them and love them. He hand created every record he distributed in his living room. He made hand shake deals without contract, and floated bands he loved by buying them gear, and helping them on tours. Now, if you know anything about the music business, this was extremely RARE back then, and absolutely non existent now….

Long Gone John basically discovered the group ‘The White Stripes’ – They have since gone mega-platinum, eventually breaking up for singer / guitarist Jack White’s solo career. Now, keep in mind that without this generous genius, and his indy label… and it isn’t even really debatable… There would have been no White Stripes, or king of the world Jack White.

So, what happened? A greedy manager comes along, and convinces a very ambitious Jack White to completely fuck over the man and the label that made them so moderately successful. World domination, and financial status a sweet carrot indeed. And not one that many are programmed to refuse.

It is also pretty well substantiated that Jack White is not loved in his hometown of Chicago. He has screwed over a lot of people. Same can be said about just about anyone who we deem as “successful”. Of course there are exceptions. Merit based industry winners such as sports’ athletes comes to mind. To me, it is literally the Crossroads. Sell your soul to the devil for rule and domain of earth. You may know the story of Delta Blues King Robert Johnson, who it is said made a deal with the (metaphorical) devil at the crossroads. An allegory for the ages. Jesus Christ faced the same decision it is said. A historical meme of “Biblical proportions”.

None of this a “revelation” to me. There is nothing new here. What needs to be reiterated though, is the fact that people, and usually people of a wanting status, or class; respect this kind of success. Ive witnessed this first hand in my own life. I have turned down deals that I felt were unethical… Refused to turn on my friends for favor of those offering monetary kinship. I have watched as people around me took those deals became household names, and examples of success and ….. barf… even virtue. This it seems, is what the people revere. Donald J Trump calls them “Killers”. He was trained by his own father to be one. I was not.

So at the end of the day, there is a new tide coming. Wash, rinse… Repeat.

What do I tell my son. Is it what I told myself? That victory without fairness, and compassion is hollow? Or do I hold up his new president, and men like Jack White as an example? Because when you look into the mirror and stare back at yourself…. Will you be disappointed that you are not a massive success in the eyes of your peers? Will you be OK with the fact that you did not sell your soul, and thus are just another face of the crowd? At what price honor?

One of my all time heroes, at least as an artist, but also as a man…. Was Vincent Van Gogh. In him we have a brilliant, supernova failure. A man who never succeeded in his lifetime. Never sold a painting. As you know his work is potentially the most coveted of any artist, anywhere in the world. Do we remember him as a failure or a visionary?

Socrates, the Greek father of philosophy, lived minute to minute, and owned nothing. Given a chance for status vs prison and death…. He chose the latter. What a mook. Anyone remember the Thirty Tyrants / the Oligarchy of 30 who condemned him? 

Buddha, AKA Siddhartha Gautama, a prince soon to be king; turned down a royal existence through trading in violence and suffering… To be a homeless beggar. 

History remembers not the victors du jour, in a light of success or contributions to humanity…. History remembers them as devils. Or not at all. So while a kill or be killed mentality is negotiable for the short term, for instant gratification, and may even be admired by the have nots….. It is NOT something I will teach my children. It is NOT something I will emulate myself, and it is not anything universally real.

I never put much stock in the coin of the realm, or the flavor of the day. I do not happen to believe that a President has much more power than a spokesman for the latest soap, or a ribbon cutter for the new mall. Its human of me to wish that can be different… That change can happen, and that I can point to it and be proud of what it represents.

It seems that if this were to actually become a reality…. the only end is to watch a powerful man, who has undergone a complete paradigm shift, to lead “we the people” to a peaceful honor…. To watch that man go against everything ingrained in him by his royal lineage….. Have his head exploded in front of the world.

And I will tell my son that he was at last an honorable man.

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