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Evan Whitton
11 February, 2010  
Whitton at large

Evan Whitton at Soderbergh’s Tot Mom ... Master crims diddle the system … A few cards that War Minister Forkbender could play … Who runs America? ... And other conundrums

S*x also ran

imageAustralia Day is a painful reminder that a criminal enterprise, the British Empire, invaded the country and imposed on us its Alice in Wonderland legal system.

Hence my trite observation to a social club that if the Comte de La Pérouse (1741-88, seen here) had done the decent thing in January 1788 and cleaned out Captain Phillip and his gangsters, three things would be better: the food, the anthem and the law.

“And the s*x,” growled a dangerous-looking lady in the audience.

Blonde, rebarbative and loud

To the Sydney Theatre Co’s Wharf Theatre and its Everest of 57 steps to see Steven Soderbergh’s Tot Mom (pron. Tart Mawm). Memo C. Blachett, artistic director: “Keep an eye out for the invention of the escalator.”

imageTot Mom shows CNN’s Nancy Grace (pic) gnawing away interminably at a case in which a Florida tot disappeared and her mom was eventually charged with murder.

I’m not sure why Soberbergh, George Clooney’s partner, bothered; it is no secret that America is the home of wretched excess.

Grace, a former prosecutor, is blonde, rebarbative and loud, but that is almost obligatory on cable TV. At least she is on the side of victims, which the law is not.

Nor does it seem to work as drama. The actors sit on seats facing the audience; the Grace figure on a giant screen interrogates the backs of their heads.

Back, a bit more tetchily, down Ms Blanchett’s Everest.

Snoozing reptiles

imageJason van der Baan, a Sydney serial rapist, got off a rape-murder charge in 2002 after Alice obliged Justice Greg James to conceal a bucket of compelling evidence.

The ensuing uproar – Melbourne pundit Derryn Hinch said it showed the system can be “a dangerously sick joke” – was a factor in the abolition of the double jeopardy rule.

Van der Baan (pic), in prison for other sex crimes, was about to get out in 2009 when DNA evidence tied him to two other rapes. He pled guilty and got 18 on the top and 12 on the bottom on Friday, February 5, 2010.

While the downtown media did not bother to report the result, the question now is: will he be retried on the rape-murder charge?

I am indebted to a law student body, the University of NSW Council for Civil Liberties, for noting – glumly, I gathered – that on October 17, 2006 the NSW Parliament abolished the rule against double jeopardy in cases, including “an acquittal of a ‘15 years or more sentence offence’ where the acquittal was tainted (by perjury, bribery or perversion of the course of justice)”.

I suspect that the man on the Clapham omnibus would view van der Baans acquittal as a perversion of justice. But would judges agree with that omniscient figure?

Moriarty lives!

imageProfessor James Moriarty, master criminal, may or may not have died with Sherlock Holmes in the Reichenbach Falls, but his soul has plainly transmigrated to a big, lumpy, white kid of La Perouse on Botany Bay.

Lumbered for allegedly going for a spin in a blue $200,000 Aston Martin owned by former tourism urger L. Bingle (snap), the chum of cricket chappie M. Clarke, Master X, 14, is said to have taunted the fuzz: “Getting caught for one in 10 ain’t bad.”

If so, he would have already mounted some 350 operations of break, enter, steal, assault, rob, breach bail, thieve car.

Happily, he might beat the rap. His lawyer, Alessandro Cavadini, told the beak:

“Fingerprints were found on the exterior garage, fingerprints were also found on the exterior door of the car. There is no evidence that the young person was inside the car.”

Military intelligence, or A card for Senator Forkbender

Cigar-chewing Curtis Le May (1906-90, Chief of the US Air Staff 1961-65) was criminally insane (he recommended using genocide to win the cold war) and capable of treason: he told staff that President Jack Kennedy should be removed for not letting him bomb Cuba during the 1962 missile crisis.

imageLe May (pic) inspired three memorable characters:

* General James Mattoon Scott, who plotted a military coup in Fletcher Knebel’s 1962 novel Seven Days in May (Burt Lancaster in the 1964 film of the same name).

* General Buck Turgidson (George C. Scott) in Dr Strangelove (1963). He said (of Russian retaliation for a pre-emptive nuclear strike): “Mr. President, I’m not saying we wouldn’t get our hair mussed, but I do say no more than 10 to 20 million killed, tops, depending on the breaks.”

* General Jack D. Ripper (Sterling Hayden) in Dr Strangelove. He actually had an atomic bomb dropped on Russia.

Air Force General Leon Johnson (1904-97), who grew dahlias when not advocating mass murder, was Le May’s parrot.

On Thursday, September 12, 1963, Johnson recommended to Kennedy a pre-emptive nuclear strike. He said it would result “in at least 140 million casualties in the USSR”.

Kennedy declined. He was murdered two months later.

So here’s a card that nice man, Senator Forkbender (b. 1954), our gallant Minister for War, might play when one of his minions puts up some lunatic notion devised by a pal in the US military: “Are you Turgidson or Ripper, or both?”

The unspeakable

All of which raises the question, who killed Kennedy?

Or, to put it another way, who runs America?

In JFK and the Unspeakable (Orbis, 2008), Jim Douglass (b. 1938) nominates a cabal of big business, big banks, big armaments makers, big military, big law, and big media, with the Central Intelligence Agency doing their dirty work all round the world.

The cabal’s marching song, as Richard Condon did not quite say, appears to be:

Profit is the key to life;
Profit is the clue;
Profit is the drum and fife;
And any war will do.

Douglass says Kennedy (1917-63) had to go because he gravely offended the unspeakable by seeking peace, not war, with Russia, Cuba and Vietnam.

Kennedy also refused to take the CIAs bait to invade Cuba after the Bay of Pigs fiasco in April 1961. He said he wanted “to splinter the CIA in a thousand pieces and scatter it to the winds”. As a first step, he sacked CIA boss Allen Dulles (1893-1969).

imageDouglass cannot easily be dismissed as a conspiracy theorist: he is a theologian and his book was published by an arm of the Catholic Church, the Maryknoll Fathers.

He says Kennedy’s murder on Friday, November 22, 1963 was arranged by Richard Helms (1913-2002, pic), a former reptile who ran the CIA’s Executive Action, a euphemism for removing, by murder or otherwise, leaders of countries which big bidness did not care for.

Douglass demonstrates beyond a peradventure that Lee Harvey Oswald lookalikes were used to falsely implicate Russia, Cuba and Oswald in the murder, and thus give the US an excuse to have a nice war with those countries.

Lyndon Johnson (1908-73, President 1963-69) disappointed the cabal; he did not take the bait to go to war with Russia and Cuba.

On the other hand, he did not want to be clipped. He refused to investigate what he knew was the CIA’s role in the murder; he organised the cover-up by Allen Dulles and Chief Justice Earl Warren (1891-1974); and he gave the cabal a great big war in Vietnam.

Deconstructing Avatar

Mr Rupert Murdoch’s Avatar sounds like a metaphor for the cabal.

Carlo Osi, a Washington lawyer, writes in ABS-NBN News that the film has been criticised “as anti-military, anti-commercialism, anti-business, and anti-religion. Some even dare say it is an anti-American film”.

Osi refers to the “culture of impunity practiced by the RDA Corporation and its military arm … It wasn’t accountable to anybody, it wasn’t policed in any way, nor was it regulated by any government agency. It felt superior, all-knowing and with a burden to teach its language and culture. It was free from any sanction or punishment. It was untouchable.”

He says Avatar will probably top $2 billion at the box office by the end of February.

Rupie, of all people, is thus giving a lot of people a little civics lesson on who runs America.

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