Friday, October 19, 2018

Bob Dean, a treasure in our world, died on Oct. 11, 2018

For some reason, Bob came to my mind today and, when putting his name into Google, I discovered he died just a few days ago.  The online tributes to him are in the thousands -- I don't know of anyone more beloved, simply as a GOOD human being, than Bob. 

What a wonderful man! He brought much knowledge of UFOs to those who had the curiosity to question, and the ears to hear. Holland and I met Bob a few times at UFO conferences. He was fiery about the subject of UFOs and how information had been kept from all of us by the hierarchical governments of the world. And he was a beautiful soul, a sweet man, and the perfect representation of a "gentleman," in all that implies. One time when I spoke with him, he raised my hand to his lips, kissed it, and thanked me for acknowledging him and the work he was doing. 

I learned most of what I know about UFOs from Bob Dean, the most knowledgeable man on the subject whom I have had the pleasure of meeting and hearing.  There is a tribute to him online at:  

If you have never heard Bob speak, you are in for a treat if you go to any of the many online youtube presentations of him speaking around the world.  His interviews online are riveting and full of information he gleaned over a lifetime in military service and in just being one of the "good ol' boys" of high-office military men, with whom he kept in close touch during his lifetime.  If you are curious to know more, just google Robert O. Dean and see what comes up.  I promise you that he and the information he reveals are hard to turn away from.  You just may become addicted to hearing more....and more...and more. 😊  God knows, we need more people like Bob on the planet, to educate us in important ways, for the sake of the planet itself -- and for the sake of our children and grandchildren.  Bob Dean was a shining example of goodness personified.  I'm sure he will be an enlightening force for others, in whatever dimension he now finds himself.

Here is one of his talks, given in Barcelona, Spain -- one link is the full talk -- the other is an 18 minute sample.  Give yourself a treat and listen to him, if you have never seen him before:

Jul 29, 2009 - Uploaded by Project Camelot
Bob Dean's presentation at the European Exopolitics Summit, Barcelona, 25 July 2009. At 55:03 See ...
Jul 27, 2009 - Uploaded by Project Camelot
Bob Dean at the Exopolitics Summit Press Conference, Barcelona, 24 July 2009, filmed by Project Camelot ...

UFO analysis in 1991 by Steven Greer

A comprehensive analysis of the UFO phenomenon, as well as original research and experiences of members of the CSETI CE-5 Initiative Working Group, has enabled us to make some specific conclusions about UFOs, Extraterrestrial Intelligence and their motives. The summation of this analysis, which follows, is intended to assist both groups and individuals in their efforts to understand this complex subject. We have recorded only those conclusions for which we have a high level of certainty.


  • Some UFOs are extraterrestrial spacecraft (ETS) which are piloted by extraterrestrial biological entities (EBEs) who originate on another planet, and most likely another star system.

  • More than one extraterrestrial civilization is represented in the current activities involving Earth.

  • These extraterrestrial civilizations are working in concert and not competitively, although there is some specialization in function and activities for the various groups. This indicates that there exists either an emerging or well established organization for these groups.

  • These beings have bases within this solar system and may maintain temporary bases on Earth, particularly under water.

  • While various reports and speculations exist, we cannot at this time definitely state which planets or star systems are the home systems for these beings. Any specific information on this subject is very likely to be incorrect due to the security considerations of these beings. That is, given human tendencies towards war, aggression and violence, open disclosure of their planets of origin would put these planets at potential risk should human military interests unravel the energy and propulsion technology of their craft.

  • The variety in sizes and shapes of ETs observed is due to:
    a) varying civilizations of origin, and more importantly,
    b) specialization of function, which include general reconnaissance, medical research, central command and base operations, energy generation and transfer, and human technology, military and space program research and reconnaissance.

  • Sudden and fully open contact with human civilization has been avoided because of a number of interrelated factors, including:

    a) the need to avoid an untimely disruption of Earth civilization including military, political, geopolitical, cultural, economic, technological and religious upheaval;
    b) risks to their own civilization and 'people', as well as overall mission, given human xenophobia and tendencies towards violent armed reactions.
    c) up to this time, such massive and open contact has not been necessary, and has not been consonant with their overall long-term mission and purpose (see below "The Question of Intent"), since their purpose is not acquisition oriented or disruptive.

  • A plan is in place to allow for gradually broader and deeper contact with human society and individuals so that humans may become accustomed to the reality of other intelligent beings in the universe, and so that needed research and observation may take place on both sides. Limited but increasing opportunities for bilateral and human initiated contact will occur in the reasonably near future.

  • Sudden and large scale contact will occur only in the event of a significant world-wide emergency (man-made or natural).

  • While ETI observation and interaction with Earth is probably an ancient as opposed to purely modern phenomenon, the marked increase in activity coinciding with World War II and the dawning of the 'nuclear age' indicates that ETI are quite concerned about this transitional stage of human social evolution. They are particularly concerned about human nuclear weapons and technology and their potential for world-wide destruction, and possibly for their potential threat to ETI, although this is nominal. These beings are further concerned with our peaceful transition to a world society, international peace, and the establishment of a just, effective and representative world government, expected to occur within 10 to 15 years or less.

  • ETI technology is strictly guarded by both ETI and human governmental agencies because of its potential for military applications which would greatly threaten world security. It is imperative that this technology not found significant human applications until such time as the Earth attains international peace and an effective world government.

  • The US government, at least at the level of a highly compartmentalized above top secret group, has known about the reality of these ETS and their occupants since at least 1947. A strict secrecy and a world-wide cover-up of these facts have been maintained due to:
    a) fear of public panic and social disruption
    b) security issues surrounding possible military and technology applications of ETI technology, especially in the setting of a world beset with Cold War tensions and competing interests. c) uncertainty and mistrust regarding ETI motives and ultimate intentions.
    d) embarrassment and consternation over human military inability to secure world air space from repeated penetrations by ETS
    e) embarrassment and loss of face resulting from disclosures concerning how this matter has been handled, such as the harassment and ridicule of innocent civilians and military personnel, the withholding of information from the public and Congress, etc.

  • The US government possesses several ETS and the deceased bodies of several EBEs. While there is evidence to strongly suggest that these agencies are attempting to reverse-engineer these craft, such efforts have not been functionally successful, although a number of secondary and partial 'discoveries' have resulted from this research.

  • The nature or 'reality' of these craft and these beings has been incorrectly characterized by some as belonging to 'another dimension or reality' from this dimension. Unfortunately, these statements are made without fully considering what 'this reality' is. A more correct understanding of this is that the Full Spectrum of Reality is a singular, integrated one which may be perceived wholly or in its various aspects, such perception being entirely dependent on the level of consciousness of the perceiver. The various aspects or 'dimensions' of this reality, which are limitless in number, are not restricted to or by time and space as we know it commonly. These beings and their craft belong to the same Reality as humans, however their advancement in the realms of physical science and the science of consciousness has given them competence in a broader aspect of the Full Spectrum of Reality than is usually experienced by humans. The difference, then, is one of degree and not fundamental reality, since humans potentially have access to all aspects of the Full Spectrum of Reality just as extraterrestrial beings do. These differences are not insurmountable, nor are they truly fundamental; in fact they are relative and only temporary. While these beings are utilizing and experiencing a broader aspect of the Full Spectrum of Reality, so too can and will humans, for we are as 'inter-dimensional' by nature as they…

  • ETS energy and 'propulsion'(or space transfer) systems utilize principles and laws of the physical universe not yet fully appreciated by human science, and include:

    a) gravity/anti-gravity and electromagnetic/gravity technology b) space energy and so-called hyperdimensional energy systems
    c) matter-energy inter-changeable technologies
    d) possible Consciousness Assisted Technology(CAT) and Technology Assisted Consciousness(TAC)

  • Some if not all EBEs have advanced mental capabilities which include telepathy, precognition, remote viewing and others, indicating that they have developed the 'science of consciousness' to a degree which parallels or surpasses their advanced physical technologies. Humans also possess these capabilities, but these remain largely undeveloped by most humans.

  • EBEs are more developed or advanced than humans in a number of respects, but are not superior to humans as beings. Our point of unity and equality with EBEs is in our mutual existence as conscious intelligent beings.

  • While these various EBEs may have values and priorities which are different from those of some 20th century humans, their motives and ultimate intentions are non-hostile and do not include the acquisition or subjugation of the Earth or its peoples (see below, "The Question of Intent").

The establishing of a lasting world peace and a just and effective world government is essential to the long term ETI-human relationship.



While not minimizing the strange and startling aspects of this phenomenon which some humans have experienced, our assessment of these visitors' motives and ultimate intentions, is that they are decidedly non-hostile. Their primary operations and activities center around:

    • General reconnaissance of Earth and her societies

    • Military(especially nuclear) observation and assessment

    • Human social and psychological study and observation

    • Human medical, physiological and genetic research and observation

    • Observation and assessment of human mental and spiritual development

    • Earth ecology research and documentation, including documentation of Earth life systems, and mineral, plant, and animal specimens

    • Observation of human technology and technological developments

    • Observation, active monitoring and if necessary limitation of human space programs, particularly those directed towards the nationalistic colonization of space

    • Close and active monitoring of international conflicts and international relations

    • Careful interaction with humans to convey certain information about themselves and to accustom humans to their presence


Our assessment is that these activities are derived from several ultimate motives, which include:


  1. Pure study and research of a rapidly developing intelligent species(human) during a time of transition to a world community

  2. A needed increase in ETI knowledge of world societies and human nature preparatory to future significant interaction, which will be mutual in nature, and which will eventually culminate in the introduction of Earth civilization into an inter-planetary network(this may require several centuries to complete)

  3. Preparatory activities for continued readiness in the event that intervention is required during a major world emergency, such as a large scale nuclear war; such interventions would be in the protective form of –

    a) interception and destruction of Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles (ICBMs)
    b) alteration of missile coordinates and readiness
    c) emergency Earth based activities when and where warranted

    The minimum intervention necessary would be used, with the intention being the preservation of Earth as an inhabitable planet with adequate human resources remaining to sustain intelligent life here.

  4. Emergency intervention in the event of an environmental or geological catastrophe of world wide dimensions

  5. Preservation of Earth species, including human genetic preservation and/or augmentation as a precaution in the event of a worst case scenario (see above).

  6. Protection of space from hostile or military utilization by human national interests.

  7. ETI self-protective interests, insofar as humans have a strong recent history of coupling marked aggressiveness with rapid technological development; in this setting, monitoring and perhaps even limiting human capabilities may be important to ETI security – Human evolution to world peace, non-aggression and a world government would remove this motive as well as several of the motives listed above

  8. ETI short and long time goals related to the attainment of a significant human paradigm shift from one of fragmentation/separation to one of unity, to include the unity of science and religion, world political and eventual spiritual unity, and universal unity. This paradigm shift is dependent on the development of human consciousness, which is of particular interest to ETI.

  9. The preservation and advancement of intelligent life in the universe.


Saturday, October 13, 2018

Words of Wisdom for our time from a simple sage

With the brutal murder and dismemberment of the journalist, Jamal Khashoggi, and the indifference to it by Trump (and the further idiocy of his actions as President), the barbaric ignorance and cruelty of our times is staring us in the face.  We ask ourselves, What can we do to stop this?  How can we change things?  For a spiritual answer at the depth and height of true introspection, we can go to a little Indian man who passed from this world in 1981 -- a wise sage, Nisargadatta Maharaj.  

Maharaj had no church, no ashram, no large gathering place, and he never sought followers. He simply shared what he had learned from another wise sage, saying it had brought peace to his life.  Word of mouth brought many people, of all religions and from all parts of the globe to Maharaj's humble apartment in India during his lifetime, hoping to get answers that would bring relief from their suffering and the misery they saw happening all around them. They wanted to know how to find peace in a world that always seems to be in turmoil.  The answers he gave to their questions were simple and profound. They touch in the deepest place in the heart of those who are earnestly looking for Truth about life, our existence, and who we really are. Anyone looking for that kind of understanding might find resonance with what Maharaj said, in answer to the following question that was put to him by two visitors, about how to change the world:

 We both come from far off countries; one of us is British, the other American. The world we know is falling apart and, being young, we are concerned. The old people hope they will die their own death, but the young have no such hope. Some of us may refuse to kill, but none can refuse to be killed. Can we hope to set the world right within our lifetime?

For his answer:


Tuesday, October 09, 2018

PERFECT! Barbra Streisand new song to Trump -- DON'T LIE TO ME

Just in time for elections -- absolutely perfect song for the times.  Tears will fill your eyes at the truth of much work ahead of us to right our sinking ship of state--and our world. Our kids and grandkids will pay the price for what Trump's Party (no longer the Republican party we once knew) has done to tear everything down. Much rebuilding to do, starting with getting a Democratic House and Senate on November 6.  


Tuesday, October 02, 2018

Shocking: Global temps to rise by 7 degrees by end of century - Trump doesn't care

This story rode under the radar when it first broke, because we were all riveted on Trump antics and rallies. Our kids and grandkids and great-grandkids are going to have a horrendous problem to deal with.  We must get Democrats into power to at least try to curtail this dire prediction for all life on Earth.  As the article says, Trump is like a death cult leader, converting too many members and marching us unwillingly toward the end of life on this planet.

Thursday, September 06, 2018

Crazy President in fiction vs. Crazy President in our world today

Last night Rachel Maddow, on her cable news show, mentioned a book called Night of Camp David by Fletcher Knebel, a fictional story about a mentally ill President, with the question being asked, what to do about him?. Today that out-of-print book is selling for $399 a copy on Amazon (no doubt the price skyrocketed on Rachel's mention of it). I found the following review/analysis of that book online -- the conclusion of the author is one I agree with, after reading about the President in the fictional book vs. the President we now have in our oval office. That is to say, the fictional President was far saner than the deranged man we have in our White House today, screaming and tweeting out crazed text messages to the world.  The book President was forced out of office, while we have a Republican Congress that refuses to take action against our real life dangerous nutcase in today's White House.  If interested, read the account of the fictional President below and see what you think:

The mentally ill president in 1965 political fiction

By Ted Delphos

The bill that became the 25th Amendment began as the bipartisan "Bayh-Celler proposal", introduced in the House and Senate on January 6, 1965; it was passed after conference on July 6, and was approved by sufficient states on February 10, 1967.

While it was being debated in the Congress, a political novel raising the issue of presidential mental illness reached the best-seller lists. This was "Night of Camp David", by Fletcher Knebel, one of the coauthors of "Seven Days in May". In this novel, President Mark Hollenbach may be unfit to serve; as with the military coup conspiracy in "Seven Days", the clues are shared by a small number of dedicated public servants who try to figure out what to do about it.

(One of the aspects of rereading the novel in 2017 is being reminded what a white male world U.S. politics was in 1965. The only female character with any role in the plot is the paramour of the male lead. There is a Black senator. A main character is Jewish. And that is pretty much it for diversity. And these are the Democrats, mind you.)

Today, when the terms "Trump Twenty-fifth Amendment" bring up 405,000 Google hits — when people are openly diagnosing him with Narcissistic Personality Disorder or worse — I thought it would be fun to look back at the behavior of the fictional Hollenbach which so disturbed the readers of 1965, and to see how it compares with the characteristics of the current president.

I. The President

As the action opens, a few years in the book's future — maybe the beginning of 1972, a 1972 in which the Viet Nam War has apparently been a much more low-grade affair, and the late 1960's were pretty calm — Mark Hollenbach has served for three years, mostly to general acclaim. A liberal Florida Democrat supported by a Democratic Congress, he is erudite, whip-smart, an experienced politician with rigorous ethical standards. No more than a couple persons in Washington or anywhere have any doubts about his mental stability.

The story is told mainly from the viewpoint of Jim MacVeigh, a capable though unambitious first-term Iowa senator with great respect for Hollenbach, who is considering him for his second-term running mate. MacVeigh soon discovers to his horror, though, that Hollenbach has three or four ideas which he considers to be clear evidence of insanity. Here they are:

II. Wiretapping

In the opening scene, at the Gridiron Club, Hollenbach drops what passes as a farcical remark: "I propose that the FBI be empowered to maintain an automatic tap on all telephones in the country." Later that evening, though, in a tete-a-tete at Camp David, he explains to MacVeigh that he is in earnest:

"I've thought a lot about the rising crime rate, and … we've got to do something drastic. … it's quite feasible you know, if worked through the Bell system. … It would have to be done carefully, with great legal restraints and protection, naturally. But no respectable citizen would have a thing to fear. It's the hoodlums, the punks, the syndicate killers, and the dope peddlers we're after. Automatic wiretapping, aided by computers to store the telephone calls, would drive them all out of business."

Jim is horrified by this, and he's not the only one. At a later point, Supreme Court Justice Grady Cavanaugh opines, "The most damaging thing you've said, to my mind, is that the President actually is considering a national wiretapping law. That seems incredible to me." Jim replies, "That's just the point. His mind has to be radically disturbed to come up with a thing like that."

Stanley Karper, the Secretary of Defense, takes it just as seriously: "Now, in some ways, I find his serious idea of such a law the most conclusive evidence we've got as to the state of his mind. Even Hitler (!) didn't dream up anything so methodically diabolical in the way of invading personal privacy."

COMMENT: Obviously standards have changed; the national wiretap network envisioned by Hollenbach is not very far beyond our present "normalized" regime of taps and traces under the lenient jurisdiction of the FISA courts.

III. Aspen

Later in the fateful conversation, Hollenbach expounds on his great idée fixe: the "Aspen plan", a plan to merge the United States, Canada, and Scandinavia into a single nation:

"The idea is to forge the mightiest core of power the world has ever known. Not just an alliance, but a union — a real nation — a real union, political economic, social — of the great free nations of the globe." "Canada is the wealthiest nation on earth" "Scandinavia .. will bring us the character and the discipline we so sadly lack. I know these people, Jim. I'm of German extraction, but many generations ago my people were Swedes who emigrated to Germany." The racial messages here go unexplored…

Hollenbach speeds on "like a runaway train": "Great Britain was finished as a major power, attenuated, effete, jaded." "[W]ith the merger of know-how, power and character, … the new nation under one parliament and one president could keep the peace for centuries"

"Once we build the fortress of Aspen … I predict that the nations of Europe will pound at the door to get in. And if they don't, we'll have the power to force them into the new nation." Jim asks, "You mean military force, Mr. President?" "Only if necessary, and I doubt it ever would be. There are other kinds of pressure, trade duties and barriers, financial measures, economic sanctions if you will."

COMMENT: This is all still at the idea stage, and the details for merging these countries under "one parliament and one president", however that is to work, are not spelled out. How far would Hollenbach get with the constitutional challenges? Anyway, is it more evidence of mental illness than the neocon scheme to take Iraq's oil under the Bush 2 administration, or Stephen Bannon's plans for regulating the religious and ethnic content of the United States?

IV. Persecution mania.

Hollenbach takes every slight or feeling of disappointment he feels toward people around him and weaves them together into a perception that he is under attack at all times by a conspiracy. Jim hears of a few of them up front, and the rest dribble into view throughout the course of the novel (a couple months). On each occasion, he works himself into a real and uncharacteristic fit of temper. But these remain isolated incidents, though perhaps of increasing frequency, and he is able to act normally most of the time.

a. Vice-President O'Malley: he has gotten caught referring a businessman from his district to a government contract. He gets no money for this, and it is a very low-grade scandal by today's standards, but it is understood by all that he will have to be dropped from the ticket. Hollenbach, however, concludes that O'Malley has staged his own downfall purposely to sabotage him: "[H]e let Robinson paint him — gradually … until he looked like a crook. That was intentional, Jim. O'Malley did it to defeat me in November." He gets agitated. "His entire aim was to soil me, to rub some of his mud off on me."

b. Davidge, a man whom he is considering offering a post. Jim's paramour, Rita, overhears this scene: "[H]e had learned that Davidge .. was only trying to infiltrate the subcabinet in order to spy on him … He was like a regular volcano erupting … Davidge had made a traitorous speech about the administration and that was 'the self-revelation of a wicked man'." Rita later goes through all Davidge's speeches and finds only one very benign sentence suggesting that the administration alter some policy.

c. Craig Spence, a newspaper columnist, who, at a time when there are apparently seven pols on Hollenbach's short list for VP, refers to the group as "Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs": "It's a snide little crack designed to demean the President." "Something has to be done about these irresponsible newspapermen. … I can cut off Craig Spence's sources at the White House. … I'm beginning to wonder, Jim, if there isn't some kind of conspiracy afoot to discredit me in the eyes of the country."

d. CIA Director Carter Urey, and Secretary of Defense Stanley Karper, who recounts: "He was raging against Carter Urey. He said that Urey was running the CIA like a separate empire, that he was insubordinate, paid no attention to the President's directives, and that he was trying to grind out a foreign policy of his own … He contended Urey was power mad and that he was out to supplant him … as head of the government. .. He said he wanted the Secretary of Defense to take over direction of the Central Intelligence Agency and said he'd hand me a directive giving me authority over Urey. … he didn't care what Congress thought, that he'd issue a secret directive."

When Karper says "You're talking like a madman," he responds, "Karper, you're another one. You want to destroy me too, don't you?" and he picks up an inkwell "as if he were going to throw it at me." But the next morning "He was cheery and very full of command and authority, like his regular self. He told me to forget what he'd said the night before, that he was upset and had said the wrong things. … He apologized for overstating the case."

e. Letters: Hollenbach writes a couple nasty letters to people he is close to, such as Texas farmer Slim Carmichael, whom he accuses of making demands on him at a time when there is a conspiracy against him. Another is to his son, Mark Jr., who has gotten pretty good grades but not good enough for Mark Sr.: "I had hoped that my own son would spare me vexations at this particular time when there is an obvious conspiracy afoot to sully and demean me, even to destroy me."

f. Five members of the CACTUS study group (see below): "I've got information they've joined the conspiracy against me, and I want you (Karper) to keep a close eye on them."

g. Jim himself, having been told about Jim's extramarital affair by the FBI, which was vetting him: "[W]hat I do suspect is that you're in league with O'Malley and the rest of that cabal. You've joined the plot to discredit me and disgrace the administration."

By the way, Jim takes it as quite outrageous that the FBI should have been looking into his activities before his possible selection as vice-presidential candidate: "Never before had Jim known of a president ordering an investigation of his proposed vice-presidential candidate." COMMENT: Those were more innocent times.

Karper is quite concerned about all this, telling one character: "But look at that absurd conspiracy delusion he has. It reappears over and over again. .. That's the symptom of a diseased mind, … and you know it."

Karper later declares: "The conspiracy thing is the key. Millions of ordinary people like to imagine there's a conspiracy behind everything, from the Kennedy assassination to the fluoridation of water. But when a man of Mark's caliber and education imagines there's a cabal operating to persecute and destroy him personally, well, there's only one word for it — paranoia."

COMMENT: Hollenbach clearly has episodes of paranoid ideation, but they have not yet kept him from doing his daily duties to pretty much everyone's satisfaction.

Two other issues, though, are brought up to bring home to the reader how problematic it is to have a president who is even "somewhat" mentally ill:

V. The Stakes

We find that after Karper's experience with Hollenbach's conspiracy-minded anger, he has created a secret five-man study group — CACTUS — to try to create a mechanism to ensure that the three people charged with a nuclear decision — the President, the Secretary of Defense, and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs, the last two being advisory — are in fact mentally healthy. The study group has gotten nowhere. It keeps running into the "fourth man" problem — how can you ensure that any person or body supposed to verify the sanity of the three is competent to do so. In particular, as Retired General "Big John" Trumbull points out, "nobody in this country can tell a president of the United States that his mind is sick…. that's one man we have to trust."

The problem doesn't go away, though. With all the evidence assembled, Karper declares: "I live with this nuclear decision day and night, and I just could not face my children or yours if I didn't do everything in my power to get Mark Hollenbach away from the go-code. It is sheer folly to have that man anywhere near the command and control machinery. It might lead to wholesale murder."

Also, at a key point, Jim is moved to action by hearing that Hollenbach will meet with Premier Zuchek of the USSR to discuss the Chinese nuclear threat and their development of "dragon bombs". "Suddenly the thought struck MacVeigh: President Hollenbach must not be allowed to go into this conference with Zuchek. … Who knew what fantastic secret agreement might emerge from such a meeting? Zuchek, a patient steel-nerved negotiator, utterly devoted to Russia's self-interest, vs. Hollenbach, whose once brilliant mind now was obsessed with fancied tormentors and played like a child's with the toy blocks of destiny."

VI. The characters assess the evidence

Throughout the work, the characters who believe there is a serious Hollenbach problem run into skepticism or resistance from equally respectable characters who don't see it. At one point (in one of several plot devices recycled from "Seven Days in May") Jim himself is grabbed up and held as a possible madman.

Jim shares what he has with Vice President O'Malley: "I suspect .. that President Hollenbach is suffering a severe mental ailment." O'Malley: "I've been in politics almost forty years, and that's the most serious charge I've ever heard." O'Malley hears Jim out but doesn't think he has "clear evidence" and doesn't think the 25th Amendment even applies: "The mental stuff is something else. It's all too hypothetical, too sticky."

When Karper is ready to "take the case to the country — with all that that involves," Senator Odlum (D-Louisiana) (all here are Democrats) is the only one in the book to react in the spirit of partisanship. "You couldn't," says Odlum. "Think what it would do to the party."

Karper: "This is bigger than party."

Odlum: "As I get it, you're willing to wreck the Democratic Party over the issue."

Karper: "I mean precisely that … and I think it's a damned outrage that Louisiana sends the kind of senator to Washington even to mention party advantage in the same breath with a madman's finger on the trigger." At this point they get in a physical scuffle.

In an attempt to resolve the debate, they call in the White House physician, Colonel Leppert. He throws cold water on the whole affair — he has never observed anything peculiar about Hollenbach's behavior, and is unswayed by the dossier they have put together: "Unless the President were adequately examined by the best psychiatric specialists in the country, I would withhold a medical judgment."

(Spoiler alert!) At this point, in the closing pages of the novel, Hollenbach appears before the group in the flesh, and affably talks his way out of everything. But Karper is unswayed, and cross-examines him into a sort of "Caine Mutiny" moment. Then — not too convincingly, in my opinion, and possibly because Knebel had written himself into a hole — Hollenbach decides to resign his office immediately in what we are to take as a moment of lucid patriotism. The option of actually using the involuntary removal provision of the 25th Amendment remains unused and untested, both in the novel and in real life.

VII. Hollenbach vs. Trump

There are similarities and differences between the Hollenbach and Trump stories. Interesting parallels include Hollenbach's feud with the CIA director and the fear that he won't adequately defend U.S. Interests against the USSR's steely premier. It's not clear that Trump has anything like the grandiose vision of Aspen. Bannon is in charge of the vision department. Hollenbach was ethically rigid and personally unselfish; Trump is the opposite.

In any case, I think it's pretty much indisputable that Hollenbach — whom the reader is clearly intended to see as a danger to the republic, someone who ought not to have the authority over nukes — is actually much more sane, much more competent, much more qualified, and much less dangerous than Donald J. Trump is in real life. Where Hollenbach has occasional fits of conspiracy mania, Trump lives in this world 24 hours a day. Where Hollenbach's mental health issues are cushioned by erudition and ideals, Trump has nothing but naked narcissism. Where Hollenbach's mental issues were hidden from the general public, Trump's are bringing on a new crisis every few hours.

The readers of 1965 were supposed to be afraid that someone like Hollenbach could be president. The demands of the job are not less, the world is not less complex, nuclear weapons are not easier to evade, and the problems that a mentally ill president can create are not fewer or less dangerous. Why are we not proportionately more eager to get this man out of the Presidency?


Sunday, August 12, 2018

Must-read article by expert on our planet's environmental crisis

We are way past zero hour, and yet next to nothing is being done to keep the planet habitable for all life forms, including humans.  All of our other problems, political or otherwise, fade away into unimportance if the planet itself becomes unsustainable for life. This article makes clear that is what is happening.  For the sake of our children's and grandchildren's lives, read this warning and consider the ramifications of your votes in November.  

If you consider this message to be important, please forward it to your friends. Laser-beam awareness is needed!