Eye-Opening Perspectives for Heroic Hearts

Eye-Opening Perspectives for Heroic Hearts

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Smedley Butler, William Ayers, Albert Lasater Maher and the Rough Road To Enlightenment

Disillusionment And The Genesis Of Enlightenment
by Winsip Custer CPW News Service
     Living in darkness, but seeing a distant lightning strike and tree fire may have led the first human to a new enlightenment, but the road toward the fire was a bumpy one. Capturing the fire was a two-edged sword. With light came heat with its potential for good and ill effects.
     Lester Maddix Offrol's new book, Disillusionment and the Genesis of Enlightenment, follows a simple premise: Insight is born of disillusionment. Unless or until disillusionment seals the casket of the status quo and carries it toward the burial ground of dead ideas gathering a procession of the like minded people toward the funeral of forgotten ideologies, there is no real progress.
     "Bad ideas die a slow death and an even slower one when there is monetary reward for continuing them. Take cigarette smoking.   From caveman to frontiersman, when people left behind the daily campfire with the invention of electricity, someone had the bright idea of reinventing the little hearth in one's hand, adding the addictive element of nicotine and building upon our craving for light and warmth. When it was discovered that the smoke would kill you a new enlightenment was needed and in time the cigarettes' embers became a funeral pyre. The truly enlightened are often the early adaptors, but not always, even they can lead progress in a new misguided direction. The removal of financial incentives does not necessary guarantee a better world as Hegel, Marx, Trotsky, Lenin, Castro and other have proven. Consider communism as an ideology. Where has the purported removal of financial incentives truly removed the financial incentives? Was the old Soviet Union without class warfare? Did Fidel Castro live up to the early support that he was given from the Cuban populace in ridding Cuba of the Mafia backed crime and corruption that increasingly intimidated the good people there? Not at all. Castro became a new Batista and Cuba remained in darkness while being propagandized to believe that they had seen the light," said Offrol.
     "Often the way toward true enlightenment is the narrow path cut between the jungle and forest of opposing ideologies. Where has pure Capitalism and pure Communism ever existed?  The discovery of fire is purposeless without someone to share it.  Western Capitalism has a penchant for embracing religion which asks that life be shared...not coerced.  As in nature, the world of ideas depends on a cross-fertilization, hybridization and natural selection that I believe is the gift of the prime mover and author of life itself," said Offrol.
     "In cutting a path toward the distant fire it is easy for the adventurer to become misdirected, ensnared in the briers or burned from a sudden gust of heated embers," said Offrol who remembered that as a child he was running around his father's barbecue pit when he fell face first into the hot coals.
General Smedley Butler, disillusioned but
enlightened Marine (far right seated) and wearing
numerous medals including two Congressional
Medals of Honor.
     "I have used General Smedley Butler, William Ayers and Albert Lasater Maher, as examples of this monumental push toward enlistment, enlightenment and the dangers inherent in the quest. Butler had seen the promise of Western Capitalism as the answer to the world's problems, enlisted in the Marine Corps, won not one, but two Congressional Medals of Honor only to become disillusioned with the the methods, tactics and militaristic misadventures of those who claimed his efforts. "I was a thug for the National City Bank Boys...," said Butler.  When the men behind the curtain finally stepped forward in a 1930's plot to remove a sitting U.S. president, Butler yelled out a warning, averting a Fascist backed attempt to take over the U.S. by some of America's leading Capitalists," said Offrol.
Albert Lasater Maher, Bob Dylan
and Geno Foreman, New York

     "Another example is Barack Obama's friend, former Weatherman, William Ayers. Most people believe that the anti-war movement of the 60's was sparked by American hippies and radicals. Actually the anti-Vietnam war movement was initiated by American merchant marines in the 1950's who were vocal about American ships having to carry munitions into Indo China to support the French efforts to preserve and extend their empire there.   The U.S. merchant marines were close enough to the U.S. Navy to see the hypocrisy of their nation's proclaimed drug war and the Army and Navy's protection of the poppy fields and sea lanes connecting Afghanistan, Pakistan, Turkey and Indo China's Golden Triangle to world markets.  Indeed, one of America's biggest drug propagandists was lead singer of the rock group, The Doors, Jim Morrison whose father was the USN Admiral in charge of the Gulf of Tonkin Affair.  Obama's friend William Ayers, whose father was a prominent Chicago industrialist who served on the boards of many of America's military-industrialist corporations, had seen first hand the quagmire one enters when veering right into the forest of Capitalistic-Fascism in the quest for the light of the distant fire.  Ayes mixed the fire with explosives and was jailed for being a home-grown terrorist.  So like a similar personality, Albert Lasater Maher, who like C. Wright Mills was the descendant of a prominent Texas trailblazer and rancher, Ayers, the Mid-westerner,  veered left into the quagmire of Communism's bogs and bungholes, rejecting his prominent father's example perhaps learning at home a contempt for the raw power that General Butler had wielded then rejected," said Offrol who noted that Maher's father, John F. Maher, was shown in the 1979 SEC report of Zapata Corporation to own 5.9% of the common stock--527,964 shares and was domiciled at 2131 San Felipe, Houston, the address for Hobby Communications, the company of former Texas Governor William P. Hobby whose family was intermarried with U.S. Ambassador to El Salvador and San Antonio, TX businessman, Henry Catto.  Catto's wife, Jessica Hobby Catto, a prominent San Antonio environmentalist served on the Board of Trinity University, a Presbyterian related college, on whose board serves such notable personalities as former U.S. President, George Herbert Walker Bush and Presbyterian pastor, Louis Zbinden.
     I noted that most of my friends believe that the Anti-Vietnam war movement began in the late 1960's about the same time as the Human Rights Movement in America. "Nope," said Offrol. "It started with the merchant marines, guys in the front lines who were able to see first hand, as had General Smedley Butler, the misadventure of enlightenment's promising quest. Albert Lasater Maher stood up with Philip Abbott Luce in Times Square, New York on a busy workday afternoon in 1964 and shouted to people through a bullhorn to wake up and see where they were really going. In time Maher and his friends would be hauled before the House on Un-American Activities, whose leader after the tyrannical buffoon, Senator Joseph McCarthy, was Senator Richard Ichord. Maher had taken a group of American students to Cuba in 1964 in opposition to the U.S. travel and trade embargo against Castro following the Bay of Pigs, also known as Operation Zapata, the brainchild of George H.W. Bush. This was after the Cuban Missle crisis," said Offrol.
     National Review Magazine publisher and son of the Sheriff of Duval County, Texas, William F. Buckley Jr.,  grew up not fifty miles from the ranch-home at Lagarto, Texas, of Columbia University professor and noted sociologist, C.Wright Mills. Mills' book, The Power Elite, pointed to the validity of Smedley Butler's bravery and disillusionment in the face of the growing threat from the far right. Mills died a mysterious death at a young age from a purported heart attack while on a commuter train.  "I am not aware of what happened to Albert Lasater Maher, though I tried to contact his aunt, Margaret Lasater Clark, whose writings have included a history of the First Presbyterian Church of Corpus Christi, Texas titled On This Bluff," said Offrol.
     Following the death of Corpus Christi preacher's son, William Patrick Carr, during the Supreme Court ruling on the Bush/Gore 2000 presidential election....a mysterious death that occurred on December 10, 2000 in Houston and the subsequent mysterious death of the former head of the FBI's General Deputy's grandson in Dallas one day later on December 11, two days before Al Gore's concession speech on December 13th, I attempted to find out if there might be any connections to Maher, Carr and Revell, the FBI General Deputy's grandson.   Much of this story has been covered in earlier articles including the connections to Zapata and the Bay of Pigs, to N.Y. Times reporter Paul P. Kennedy, and to the Presidential election of 2000.   William Patrick Carr's father's new church, the church of Maher's aunt Peggy Lasater Clark, had paid for the education of Carlos Emilio Ham as the pastor's request meeting unanimous church board approval. Ham being head of the Reformed Church in Cuba it seemed a decent thing to do. That was prior to the boys' deaths and the pastor had been the FBI General Deputy's minister in Dallas before moving to Corpus Christi. He said that the request for the help for Rev. Carlos Ham came initially from the president of Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, Dr. Jack Stotts, former president of Chicago's McCormick Presbyterian Theological Seminary in William Ayer's home town.  "I never saw it coming," said the pastor who still grieves the losses.

     "The education you get is never the education you need. That only comes from taking that first step toward the light and discovering the dangers along the way. When I was in Galveston at the First Presbyterian Church, founded by the chaplain of Terry's Texas Rangers, I worshipped with Dr. Truman Blocker, also known as Mr. UTMB. Blocker was the younger brother of Dan Blocker or Hoss Cartwright on TV series Bonanza.  Dr. Blocker was an awe inspiring surgeon of international note and his wife was equally impressive working on the first blood bank and life flight helicopter program.  She taught seven languages in Austin Schools in 1961 and the tribal government of The Blackfeet Indian Nation adopted her into their tribe through an all night circle dance giving her the name Asanakia.   Truman Blocker was hated by University of Texas Board of Regents President and unquestioning supporter of LJB's Vietnam War policy and active Kappa Sigma member, Frank Erwin. Erwin could never control Blocker and Erwin also hated Galveston Senator A.R. "Babe" Schwartz. I would like to believe that Doc and Babe carried the spirit of Smedley Butler forward toward the light....Blocker having spent his formative years as a military surgeon sewing up the wounds that our military suffered and inflicted.  I know that Erwin tried to snuff out resistance whenever he could," the pastor told Offrol who noted that Dan Blocker, too, was strongly opposed to the Vietnam War, though he supported LBJ's civil rights initiatives. Truman Blocker was also responsible for the founding of the Shriner's Burn Hospital in Galveston and had operated on burn victims in Hiroshima, Japan following World War II as well as on survivors of the Texas City ship explosion.  Dan Blocker, on the other hand, was certainly in a position to see the Texas political dynamics with connections to the Eastern Establishment, Wall Street and Military Industrialist Establishment about which Eisenhower had warned.  He attended Texas Military Institute in San Antonio  the alma mater of General Douglas MacArthur, Ambassador Henry Catto, Banker Tom Frost and Secretary of State under George H.W. Bush, Houston attorney James A. Baker.  Dan Blocker, a first Sargent in the Marine Corp, had fought in Korea, was a strong Democrat, but parted with LBJ over Vietnam and threw his support behind Eugene McCarthy.

      I asked if Offrol knew if the pastor thought that anything else might have put the two boys in danger in 2000? "Yes, the pastor's son had worked in Austin, Texas delivering organic vegetables to the restaurant, Fonda San Miguel, the same place where George W. Bush proposed to his future wife and made famous by the culinary teacher and wife of Paul P. Kennedy, the New York Times reporter whose coverage of the secret CIA camp in Retalhuleu, Guatemala in General Smedley Butler's old eye-opening stomping ground, blew the lid on the Bay of Pigs and was subsequently seen as an advanced warning to Castro. The pastor's boy had also gone to the Kennedy home in San Miguel Allende', Mexico in the summer of 1999," he said.  "But Patrick was non-political in every way, just enjoying life, his family, hunting and fishing with close friends like the son of the King Ranch foreman, Corey," said the pastor.

C.Wright Mills on BMW motorcycle at Lagarto Ranch,
author of The Power Elite.

      "And I had been the student assistant for Dr. Robert S. Paul in Austin at the same seminary where as a boy, Patrick, nicknamed 'Bumper' at the time, would play in the creek behind the Smoot Center with the children of fellow seminarians.  Dr. Paul, an authority on the Westminster Assembly, had been single-handedly credited with the salvation of  the U.S. Senate bid of Connecticut's Senator William B. Benton against George Herbert Walker Bush's father Prescott Bush," said the pastor noting that Senator Joseph McCarthy had targeted Benton, a relative of Missouri's Thomas Hart Benton, for supporting civil rights...."another important piece of my education that had been overlooked, but which is as important as not telling an early missionary venturing into Sub-Saharan Africa the true identity of the warring tribal chieftains. The American Fascist Right had used McCarthy against the middle with charges of Communism whenever it suited their purposes."

     Carr's father noted, as mentioned earlier, that Jessica Hobby Catto had served on the board of Trinity University in San Antonio with Rev. Louis Zbinden, the pastor of First Presbyterian Church of San Antonio.  The tension between Zbinden and William Patrick Carr's father has been previously explored.

     Testimony before the Ichord Committee included Maher and his friend's itinerary, which would have validated the Right's concerns about Communism.  Maher would have done well to follow the example of Smedley Butler rather than trying to pitch a tent in Castro's camp.  Anyone who in  November or December of 2000 threatened to resurrected thoughts of these bitter ideological battles would have threatened the George W. Bush Presidential candidacy....especially with the election and the U.S. Constitution teetering on a pinnacle.  The message of the two deaths was clear.  STAY AWAY!.  The Ichord record of Maher's itinerary read....

     "Our investigation reflects that your itinerary was as  follows : You departed from San Francisco, California, together with members of a group organized by the Student Committee for Travel
to Cuba, and arrived in New York City via American Airlines.  Then with a larger group formed by the Student Committee for Travel to Cuba, you departed from the Kennedy International Airport
at New York City on June 10 for Paris, France, via Air France, Flight 010. Following your arrival in Paris, together with other members of the Student Committee for Travel to Cuba, you flew to Prague,
Czechoslovakia, on June 11, 1964, via Czech Airline, Flight 508. You then departed from Prague, Czechoslovakia, on June 11, via Cubana airlines, arriving in Havana on June 12. You remained in
Cuba until August 12, 1964. You left Cuba on August 12 and returned to the United States, arriving at the Kennedy International Airport in New York City on August 14, 1964. via Prague and Paris."

     For the full text of Albert Lasater Maher's testimony before the House On Un-American Activities Committee LOOK HERE.

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