‘BLOOD MONEY’ “keep the tiny humans alive”

Why the image of festive holiday lights when we are talking about BLOOD MONEY and BLOOD DIAMONDS?

First, to brag about Duluth MN and Lake Superior

Second, a special sneak preview of “THE VIETNAM WAR” The epics PBS Documentary Film by Ken Burns and Lynn Novick premiered on Sunday, September 10th at the Duluth Depot prior to its Nationwide Debut on September 17, 2017.

Dated: December 15, 2017

Subtitle: Keep the Tiny Humans Alive

theme for today we allowing the one percent to keep their Blood Money via Google Images
The theme for Today! Why are we paying BLOOD MONEY instead of Saving Them!

First, I apologize slightly for featuring a view of this year’s Bentleyville, Duluth MN 55810. How often have we seen a full moon as a backdrop? Fabulous! I don’t know who took this shot but it was posted on Facebook by Duke Skorich.

Second, the graphic for this post is shown above. The poignant statement is “KEEP THE TINY HUMANS ALIVE”. I first saw a graphic today on my desktop. I use a slideshow of Unsplash! images as wallpaper to have something of interest around my desk instead of just all of the clutter (No I won’t show a pix of my desk!). This is not the exact image that I saw, but I will keep looking for it since it so much more poignant than this graphic.

Third, again I apologize. I looked at each of my blogs and I could not find one this hypotheses fit into. Certainly not the one ‘liarliar.fieldnotesfromanoldman.com’. I reserve that one for heated jabs at the administration that is in power on this date.

So we begin.


Yesterday on Facebook a buddy asked a very vexing question:

“Rather than enact rational gun control legislation we are willing to accept the necessity for ‘Active Shooter” drills in our elementary, middle and high schools. If you don’t think we are in a free-fall as a democracy, this might (should) convince your mind.”

I continued to read some of the responses to his post. Then WHAM it hit me! I know why sensible gun legislation never gets enacted or even proposed in congress in any real way. I believe that my hypothesis is applicable to this and many other actions that the general public wants to happen but are rebuffed at the foot of the steps leading to congress.  I posted my twenty points. I just now realized that I did not receive one comment on them. I guess people just ignore my posts because they usually attack a person so people are real fans of his and ignore me or they are numb to my crazy essays and just flip right past them.


I postulate:

When we react as we normally do on Facebook: First, after the original post, several more people speak out on the egregiousness of Congress for not even attempting to solving this seemingly intractable but yet, on the other hand, seemingly easy problem to solve. Second: we repeat the above.


This was my AHA! moment. Crystal Clear problem, Crystal Clear solution.

When we respond this way we are doing exactly what and in the exact manner the 1% wants us to – we are cowering sheep! By cowering before them we agree that we, as a people, have no power to change what they have deemed as right and proper and just.

Assignment of Guilt

I have assigned the guilt for these bloody actions to the 1%. They are the ones that control the wealth of the United States (and a very large portion of the world’s wealth also). They are the ones that invest in the businesses of gun manufacturers, bullet manufacturers and other businesses that benefit from these bloody actions, such a hospitals, insurance companies and so on.

Framework of the Argument


1.) We agree that we give up our rights in exchange for what is right – FOR THEM. We accept that we are fearful and accept their “BLOOD MONEY” to keep still.

2.) We accept that they have a right to their BLOOD MONEY.

FOLKS LET’S CALL THIS WHAT IT IS (Is this money any different than the “BLOOD DIAMONDS IN AFRICA”?). After all, is this not what our children are to us “BLOOD DIAMONDS”?

3. By acquiescing to them and their surrogates (our congresspeople) they run the United States and we give up our right to call them out.

4. Therefore, as long as THEY AND THEIR SURROGATES KEEP STILL, as long as they continue to MAKE EXCUSES and then, AS ALWAYS PUT THIS TOPIC ON THE BACK BURNER,  they are safe from us. With our conscience now clear we blithely go about our normal business.

5.) Yes, we go on grumbling and mumbling and incoherently cry for our ‘BLOOD DIAMONDS’ as they die before our eyes. We have done our duty. We have called desperately to our congresspeople. We can now move on.

6.) Do we want this constant drumbeat of crying parents and crying spouses to continue? Crying incessantly, crying over spilled blood only to repeat this same drama again in two or three months?

7.) If we really wanted we could change this situation. I didn’t hear you!! If we really wanted we could change this situation right?

8.) If we set our national psyche we could solve this problem. HOW?

9.) We know that by doing the same thing again and again, protesting to our congresspeople, that we will receive the same response again and again.

10.) HAS THAT WORKED? NO! Why not? Because we are not causing discomfort to the top dogs! THEY CONTROL THE CONGRESS – REMEMBER THAT! Our congresspeople, as officious as they are, are not as powerful as they want us to believe!  These people are not the top dogs!   The 1% ARE THE TOP DOGS! BUT THEY DO NOT DO A DAMN THING!  NOW!! Now, do you understand?

11.) In order to make a change, real change we have to do what we have done before-BRING DISCOMFORT TO THE 1% THAT RULE THIS COUNTRY! HOW DO WE DO THAT? WE HAVE TO GO TO WHERE THE MONEY IS!!! I get posts from a gentleman, I have never met him or talked to him in any way except on Facebook. But HE KNOWS! He has never been wrong. His MANTRA? FOLLOW THE MONEY. FOLLOW THE MONEY!!

Think back. Think back to the 1970s. What do you remember?? Say it out loud! VIETNAM!! I didn’t hear YOU!  Say it louder V I E T N A M!! That war was another huge hemorrhaging of innocent blood.

Remember the movie ‘Gone with the Wind’? Rhett Butler made everything absolutely crystal clear with this line:

“I told you once before that there were two times for making big money, one in the building up of a country and the other in its destruction. Slow money on the upbuilding, fast money in the crackup. Remember my words. Perhaps they may be of use to you someday. “(Rhett Butler)”-Margaret Mitchell, Gone with the Wind.

He even told us to remember his words. That “they may be of use to us someday”!


13.) We face the same situation now as we did back then. Blood was being spilled and for a time no one except a few protesters really seemed to care. No one seemed to pay attention. How long? When?

Who did we protest against? Our congresspeople – who didn’t make changes, Why – because they had no power. Against our institutions – remember KENT STATE?


14.) A protest by a small group of students protesting Nixon’s advance into Cambodia was met by 29 Guardsmen. 67 bullets were fired, 4 people were killed, 9 injured (one permanently paralyzed). Some of these people were not even involved in the protest they had merely been walking nearby or watching the protest from a distance.


march on the pentagon by Bernie Boston for Washington Star
March on the Pentagon October 21st, 1967 by Bernie Boston for Washington Star

The young man putting flowers in the barrels of loaded guns! Crazy move! Lots of Courage! The scene below was also taken at The Kent State Massacre.

Pictures tell 1,000 words and so also can music. The image played over and over for the next years. Marc Riboud took this picture with Jan Rose Kasmir. FLOWER POWER HAS EMERGED!

girl with the flower flower power has emerged Google Images Marc Riboud
FLOWER POWER has emerged!

The March on the Pentagon on October 21, 1967, engaged 2,500 soldiers against 100,000 protesters!

15.) So what the hell, why a Song? A picture? We were protesting against our congresspeople? How did that work out? They didn’t have the power to do anything! ONLY THE 1% CAN!

16.) What happened that day was the turning point in the war some say. The 1% saw that they would not have a Nation if they didn’t retreat. Slowly, oh so slowly. But this day made them fill the discomfort of what they were doing. Doing? Making money on both sides of the war!

17.) Songs didn’t stop the war. The protests didn’t stop the war, even as they got more violent. Songs were a rallying battle cry. They created a bond among the protesters. The protesters were from so many different backgrounds and needed something to bind them. It ‘energizes the base’ as an outlandish political figure calls it in these days.

18.) Even today the songs stir something in my being: Bob Dylan “Blowin the the Wind” 1962 (now it is listed as number fourteen song in the list of the top 500 songs of all time); Phil Ochs “What are you fightin for”; Barry McGuire  “Eve of Destruction” recorded in one take (many radio stations refused to play it “you’re old enough to kill, but not for votin”; Tom Paxton “Lyndon told the Nation”; Pete Seeger,  Arlo Guthrie, Joan Baez, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Country Joe & the Fish “Feel Like I’m Fixin’ to Die’ was a signature moment at Woodstock.

Bob Seeger, Creedence Clearwater Revival (John Fogarty wrote this song in response to the wedding of David Eisenhower and Julie Nixon) ‘Fortunate Son’. The depiction of those born with a silver spoon in their mouth and those without.

John Lennon. He recorded a song while he and Yoko Ono were holding a “bed-in” in Montreal. Five months later half a million people were singing ‘Give Peace A Chance” at a protest rally.

Jimmy Cliff “Vietnam” heralded by Bob Dylan as the greatest protest song ever.

Marvin Gaye, Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young “Ohio”, Edwin Starr ‘War’, George Harrison, Steppenwolf, The Doors.

Songs gave the protesters (and the rest of us) the words to hurl at the organizers of the war, the 1%. It helped us all be melded in mind and spirit so that at last we were One Voice.

The 1% were still invincible. Since they were both the architects of the war and the beneficiaries of the wealth of the war they were able to ignore the will of the people for a very long time. That is a testament to their power.

19.) So how to reach these builders of riches at the expense of people? Reach out and touch them! Show them something to discomfit them and they will start to respond.

Reach out to them where they will feel it! A facebook buddy has had the correct answer from the outset: FOLLOW THE MONEY!  FOLLOW THE MONEY!!!

20.) PROTESTERS – Where do you DISCOMFIT the 1%? Where do you hit them where the source of the BLOOD MONEY will feel discomfort?

PROTEST THE BLOOD MONEY’S DEEP POCKETS AND ENABLERS: Banks where they invest; Insurance Companie where the invest; Newspaper Syndicates; Television Networks; Stocks where they make their money. There is major activity RIGHT NOW in Syndicates and Networks. ACT NOW!

REMEMBER OUR CHILDREN ARE THE ‘BLOOD DIAMONDS’ of this battle. To make the 1% ‘interested’ shall we say, in stopping the killing requires that you make them discomfited.

Stop the “BLOOD MONEY”!  Those that are being slaughtered: children or as at KENT STATE,  anyone walking around outdoors. They are all potential victims.

They could all become “BLOOD DIAMONDS”.


January 20, 1965, Lyndon B. Johnson takes the oath of office and became President of the  United States of America. He declares, “We can never again stand aside, prideful in isolation. Terrific dangers and troubles that we once called ‘foreign’ now constantly live among us…”

Anti-war marches and other protests, such as the ones organized by Students for Democratic Society (SDS), attracted a widening base of support over the next three years. The SDS peaked in early 1968 after the successful Tet Offensive by North Vietnamese troops. The offensive proved that war’s end was nowhere in sight. The people of the United States now understood that our leaders were lying. There was no end in sight for that misbegotten war.

Opposition to the United States involvement in the Vietnam War began with demonstrations in 1964 as the escalating role of the US military in Vietnam and grew into a broad social movement in the ensuing years.

In 1964 there were 23,300 American advisors in Vietnam. By 1968 there were 563,100 troops. By 1973 there were 50.

Troops on college campuses? Fear struck at the hearts of many.
Soldiers on College Campus! Free Speech? Freedom of Expression? Those were hard to earn in the Vietnam Era. Some people had the courage to change the status quo.

PBS hosted the preview of the PBS Documentary “The Vietnam War” by Ken Burn and Lynn Novick. It debuted on WDSE-WIRT TV on September 10th, 2017. It debuted nationwide on PBS stations on September 17th. This has grown into a statewide Minnesota Television Association and community organizations organized to tell the story of veterans and other impacted by the Vietnam War.

bentleyville 2017 Duluth MN Lake Superior
Bentleyville 2017, Duluth MN Lake Superior



A Tribute to Senator John McCain – Prologue

A Tribute to Senator John McCain – Prologue

Dated  November 16, 2017

I was looking at Vietnam in my rear-view mirror. I had done my duty as painful as it was at the time. I had served my country. My bride and I had served at Fort McClellan Alabama from 1971 to 1973. In military speak, it was 1 year, 8 months and 24 days (which included basic training at Fort Leonard Wood, Missouri). I must recount one short story from that experience.

The “Misery”

I had enjoyed camping, on occasion, as a young man. When the order of the day was called it was time to embark on bivouac. I was not unduly stressed. I had matured in the last few weeks and at 21 years old, I was mature. I was not an eighteen or nineteen year- old like most of the other guys. Hmmm

We loaded everything onto our backs except the food that we would need for who knows how long. We were never told anything in boot camp. I imagine it was so that these green behind the ears inductees would not dream up some preconceived incorrect expectations. Of course, my thought was that the Army just thought we were too dumb.

The march began out to the bivouac area somewhere on the enormous Fort Leonard Wood MS base. It was the home of the Combat Engineers (the guys with the big trucks and things that went KABOOM!). It was hot! It was muggy! This was Missouri. Not the Minnesota I had left such a short time ago. In March or April, whatever month it was, Northern Minnesota had a history of being still blanketed with snow. If it was April there wouldn’t be too much left from the blizzards that paid a regular visit in March. Of course, there would still be snowbanks left by the snowplows and they would still be too high to step over.

The significant part of this little tale is not that we sweated all day, ate Army rations (K rations, not the fancy MRE’s of today. Those cookies and tiny sausage weiners stuck to the ribs pretty well.)

The misery began as we put up the tent for the night. The Army in its wisdom gave every man one-half of a tent. They were called shelter halves. A pretty good name for a really heavy cotton tarp. I don’t think any camping gear is made that heavy anymore. But this was forty some years ago! Well, it got dark (not completely dark) but not too much good light was left as we started to pitch our tents. I was teamed up (we didn’t call it ‘teams’ back then) with another young man from the same town. I didn’t know him before getting on the plane to my new future. It as an adventurous trip to basic (another tale for another day). He was shorter than I, wore glasses and he got one heck of a urinary tract infection in basic!  Understand that sidling up to the urinal trough (not private, white porcelain ones) and urinating red was not a badge of honor in basic!

Company picture day. Fort Leonard Wood, MS
Photo Day at Fort Leonard Wood Missouri.

The Night

We were getting our packs off (damn they were heavy but not as heavy as they were going to get). Just then began a Missouri deluge. In Northern Minnesota terms, we didn’t know about deluges but it rained buckets back there. We were miserable. Why? Because in the dark and in the wet and in a hurry we mixed up the front and back of the shelter halves. We had hooked my front end to his back end of the shelter halves. Start over, bozos.  Well into one of the buckets that had come down we managed to toss our sleeping bags. US Army issue mummy bags (down, with an enclosure that would cover your head so that only your nose popped out. A soldier looked like a mummy.) We struggled to rearrange the pup tent and gushed water when we took our boots off. Wet boots, wet pants, wet field jackets and a down sleeping bag. (Did I mention that the sleeping bags were made of goose down?) When we pulled them out of that proverbial bucket that had come down, they weighed not 20 pounds, not 40 pounds but who knows? They were heavy. And wet down? Clammy, wet, cold sleeping bags. We didn’t even try to get into them. Somehow, we just quit wrestling and swearing and fell asleep. All I remember was MISERY!

The Morning

The morning came. We had hot meals – delivered. The mess hall cooked up something and shipped it out to us. (I’m glad they knew where we were!) That meal felt so good! We dunked our trays into each of the three barrels of hot water, soap then rinse, then fluff rinse. We grabbed our last slurp of coffee and had a smoke. In those days smoking was a necessity. It was a good thing. At least if you had one minute to call your own. After the Drill Instructor called ‘Light ’em up if you got ’em and then hollered ‘put ’em out’, was about a minute. ( I know they loved doing that!)  The worst part came next. ‘Police your butts.’ That was not an anatomical connection. No, a company of stupid inductees had not yet learned the value of non-filtered smokes. We had to strip the tobacco from the butts and put them in our pants pocket until we remembered them while the pants were spinning in the washing machine. (If we had watched the DI’s we would have seen that Palls Malls were a very smart idea. Rip the paper open and let the unburned tobacco and the paper just float away in the breeze.)

Washing machine? Oh yeah, I was enjoying that smoke so much I.forgot were I had left off. Yes indeed. This was the modern Army. Half of the building was showers, the other half latrines. The middle half was washers and dryers. Only a few though, can’t spoil the troops you know. (Another point in passing. Do you see that neat picture above with the scrubbed troops all lined up on the stands? Not in my day! Photo day was wearing your muddy boots and fatigue pants, putting on your Class A uniform jacket and cap and procedure into the latrine to get your mug shot.) Classy!? I’ll say.

The fun begins!

Now the fun begins. The formation was called. Everybody groaned under the weight of the now soaking wet packs and shuffled into line. Hmm. The ground was different this morning. Not firm but squishy. We proceeded forth. MUD! Not MUD! But WORSE! Every step was excruciating! The mud stuck to my boots until it was 6″ thick. I then became intimately acquainted with something I seldom ran into. Not MUD! CLAY! The clay I was familiar with lined the banks of the Mississippi River that ran thru town. We only went near the stuff when we had the green mud boots on. RED MISSOURI CLAY! (Are you getting the flavor of why we called it ‘Little Misery?’)

The clay weighed the each boot down by ten pounds. The march, or slog it was rightly called, all the way back to the barracks. Our company was most fortunate, we lived in Quonset huts. The rest of the battalion had the fancy brick buildings. (That too is another tale.) After hours and hours of slogging under the hot Missouri sun, in the horrible Missouri humidity, we finally arrived. Now nap time.

Nap time? Are you nuts? Clean up time! The DI’s (Drill Instructors, this wasn’t the Marines! Not all were sergeants. Some, by force of their nature got busted down a rank a time or two or more) made sure no one got to eat or sleep until our boots were scrapped off, the mud hosed off the rest and then crawl into the bunk. I was so exhausted I don’t remember that night. Was that the night I fell asleep on fire watch? Don’t ever, I mean EVER do that.

I remember waking to the thought of spending the day getting those boots ready for inspection.


Mississippi Mud, reminescent of the Missouri Mud we marched thru.
Mississippi Mud song by Paul Whiteman’s Rhythm Boys

 Sitting in a field on the few hours we got off a week, scrapping and digging, and wiping and digging. Then came the polish. Hours of rubbing and rubbing and rubbing to get at least a semblance of shine back on them.


Well, I am out of time. I will have to get to the most important part of the tale, The Tribute, next post.

Thanks for stopping by.


Good Old Missouri Mud. None of that stuff from MIssissippi!
Now, this is good ole’ Missouri Mud!