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October 02, 2008


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Jay Taber

According to Sarah Palin's pals, this is all part of God's plan. Paulson better hope that plan doesn't include a visit from friends of Timothy McVeigh.


Good point, Jay, do you hear indications that the friends of Timothy are more than usually enraged?

Jay Taber

What little I hear is that we should expect (and prepare for) a deadly response.

Unfortunately, the elite network of independent investigative researchers on the ground fifteen years ago has fallen into ruin due to philanthropic neglect. I don't know how much this neglect was influenced by litigation grandstanders like Southern Poverty Law Center, but the model for defending democracy promoted by almost all US NGOs certainly conditions the public to think in terms of diplomacy rather than public health and safety.

That misguided response is also heavily promoted by our governing institutions that are terrified of authentic grassroots activism holding them accountable.


Is the trigger for these McVeigh types the bailout of fat-cats? The socialism of by and for the rich? Or is it economic, the loss of home and job? Will the rage be directed against leaders or against powerless scapegoats? I guess you are saying that we don't have an early warning system of independent researchers anymore. Maybe Homeland Security tracks these internal threats?

Jay Taber

Homeland Security, like the War on Terror, is a budget scam. The FBI is often the last to know, or, to want to know.

The only competent and honest federal agent I met was Mike German, who was silenced for political purposes. His specialty was right-wing domestic terrorists like the militias McVeigh was involved with. German now works for ACLU.

Your prophetic questions require both field investigations and open source research, large expenses, and a lot of time. What we have learned from experience would comprise a graduate level two-year course. A good start would be to read this: http://www.publicgood.org/reports/nullify.htm

Putting the Far Right into Perspective is another primer located on the same website.

Jay Taber

To be more precise, the "early warning system" you refer to has been severely compromised over the last ten to fifteen years. East of the Rockies has fared better than West.

My estimate is that we lost roughly half of the independent investigative researchers knowledgeable about the Far Right milieu to attrition. Given that what we had was largely inadequate at that time, the lack of defenses now is staggering. And given we're not talking about policy, but rather public safety, life and death, that's truly shameful.

A short cut to coming up to speed on the topic can be found here: http://firstsolidthoughts.blogspot.com/


Thanks, Jay.

Jay Taber

Tragic as the present is, the future will be worse, precisely because the progressive philanthropic sector has neglected to invest in research, education and organizing for power.

Instead, at a time when there are more young people looking for a way to be effectively and meaningfully involved in our society than ever before, the only funding is for pious posturing. None of the lessons they could be learning about social change are available in any significant way, because those who could mentor them are for the most part excluded from academia, media and NGOs.

Leaving another generation to fend for themselves in this hostile environment, created by market economics and party politics, is a travesty of immense proportions.


If philanthropy is gendered female, look at who she is married to.


A woman who wants to be a philanthropist ought not to marry a janitor, even if her goal is social change.


Philanthropy is the daughter of Capitalism, and while she may rebel against Daddy, she really in her heart of hearts wishes him no harm.


Of course Capitalism is sleeping these days with Socialism, in the House of the Rising Bailout, but Philanthropy is discreet and pretends not to know.


One of the most important words in philanthropic circles, Jay, is "fun." OK? Philanthropy is fun. Giving to what you describe, a scruffy group of aging misfits, raking up disgusting facts, and delving into disgusting aspects of the lower social orders, what is fun about that? It frankly sounds dangerous. I mean what if the Klan or some skinhead group takes exception? They might lay trouble at the funder's door. Where is the upside? Besides the straggly misfits are not even a legitimate nonprofit. No deduction. No supervision. No tidy pr, no brochures. The whole premise of your work is demoralizing and threatening to a funder's equanimity. No cachet. No charismatic leaders. No inspirational speeches.

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