Dealey Plaza, 22nd November 1963

Today is the 50th anniversary of the assassination of the American President, John F Kennedy.
JFK

Of all the questions around Kennedy, perhaps one of the most interesting is this – what kind of President would he have been, had he lived?

Kennedy was part of the powerful elite in America.  His wealthy Catholic family had, since the days of Joseph Kennedy, been closely associated with the mob.  JFK was only narrowly elected to office in 1960 and that took the help of both the Mafia (particularly Sam Giancana) and Lyndon Baines Johnson’s ‘disqualified’ Texas votes.  Clearly he seemed to be a man ready to do the bidding of the powerful and corrupt in America.

But that all changed when he took office.

  • He immediately backed away from a full scale invasion of Cuba, resulting in the Bay of Pigs fiasco, upsetting the Mafia, the CIA and the military.
  • He positioned himself as a President for Peace and proposed reducing US involvement in Vietnam, upsetting the arms industry.
  • The Kennedy brothers took direct control of the Cuban Missile Crisis, upsetting his Military Chiefs.
  • He and his brother Robert clamped down on organised crime & the unions, upsetting the Mafia.
  • He planned to introduce taxes on foreign flag shipping, upsetting Onassis and big shipping magnates.
  • He planned to retake control of US currency, upsetting international bankers and the federal reserve.
  • He refused to agree to an Israeli nuclear program.

Kennedy rapidly made many powerful enemies.

One of his most famous speeches is referred to as the ‘Secret Societies Speech’ which is an extract from the ‘The President and the Press’, a very insightful speech given to the American Newspaper Publishers Association on April 27, 1961.
This is the full 19 minute audio with text.

He might just as easily be speaking of our world and its challenges, today:

The very word “secrecy” is repugnant in a free and open society; and we are as a people inherently and historically opposed to secret societies, to secret oaths and to secret proceedings.

We decided long ago that the dangers of excessive and unwarranted concealment of pertinent facts far outweighed the dangers which are cited to justify it.

Even today, there is little value in opposing the threat of a closed society by imitating its arbitrary restrictions.

Even today, there is little value in insuring the survival of our nation if our traditions do not survive with it.

And there is a very grave danger that an announced need for increased security will be seized upon by those anxious to expand its meaning to the very limits of official censorship and concealment.

Full Text

Unfortunately, subsequent American presidents and world leaders chose to ignore his words.  I wonder how different America, with its public surveillance programs, with its support for Big Corporations, and with its overseas wars and interventionist policy, might have been had they been heeded?

Maybe the ‘fork in the road’ that occurred near the end of the 20th Century, that led the world into unending wars for profits, could have been avoided.

These are the last words from the speech that JFK was to deliver in Dallas, Texas on 22nd November 1963;

‘…Almost everywhere we look, the story is the same. In Latin America, in Africa, in Asia, in the councils of the world and in the jungles of far-off nations, there is now renewed confidence in our country and our convictions.

For this country is moving and it must not stop.  It cannot stop.  For this is a time for courage and a time for challenge. Neither conformity nor complacency will do.  Neither the fanatics nor the faint-hearted are needed.  And our duty as a party is not to our party alone, but to the Nation, and, indeed, to all mankind. Our duty is not merely the preservation of political power but the preservation of peace and freedom.

So let us not be petty when our cause is so great.  Let us not quarrel amongst ourselves when our Nation’s future is at stake. Let us stand together with renewed confidence in our cause–united in our heritage of the past and our hopes for the future–and determined that this land we love shall lead all mankind into new frontiers of peace and abundance.

Link to Text and JFK Library

Who knows what might have happened had he lived long enough to be able to ‘Walk the Talk’?

I’m inclined to think that his loss was also our loss.

13 Comments

Filed under Personal, Politics

13 responses to “Dealey Plaza, 22nd November 1963

  1. Pingback: Dealey Plaza, 22nd November 1963 | justiceforkevinandjenveybaylis

  2. Sabre

    If all the above fails the puppet stands a chance of having the contents of his cranium vented over the lap of his wife or his car being blown skywards by a kilo or two of Semtex.

    Another possibility is of course an unfortunate strangle wank incident whilst wearing a surreal assortment of lingerie.

  3. Sabre

    Probably the most important thing to learn from this sorry episode is a lesson on the nature of political power.

    As far as ‘liberal democracies’ are concerned we have the common plebeians , most of us recognise ourselves.

    We have our Political Servants, Councillors, MEPs, MPs and Cabinet Ministers, these people are in fact our Political Masters, they are however the Political Servants of those that do hold real power.

    There always exists the possibility that the Puppets may go native and start to act for and on behalf of the Plebeians, this is a remote but dangerous possibility from the point of view of those that are de facto powerful.

    The powerful need leverage over the Puppets, old fashioned corruption is probably favourite anything from the brown envelope to the future non exec directorships for services rendered. Alternative forms of leverage include the old fashioned adultery scandal , if I know that you are cheating on the mrs but that fact is not generally known then I have a certain amount of leverage. The gay scandal was until recently an old reliable, behave or I’ll expose your midnight rambles seeking badgers on Clapham Common.
    With ever increasing tolerance of individual behaviour traits the powerful need more extreme methods of keeping their servants and our masters to heel.
    The main theme of this blog, institutional child abuse and the need to keep it secret.

  4. Sabre

    Jacob Rubenstein, making his living from vice, associate of cops, associate of gangsters who lost everything when Castro cleaned up Cuba, associate of Sam Giancana whose lover (Judith Exner) was also Kennedy’s lover, suddenly gets overwhelmed by a sense of civic duty and knocks off Oswald before any messy trials can take place. Just look at those pigs gracefully swooping through the sky !

  5. Sabre

    The clamp down on organised crime would have had to be toned down.
    Kennedy had been compromised sleeping with Judith Exner.

  6. watergate

    Obama will go down as the President who presided over the NSA’s web surveillance. Reagan was the Cold Warrior who called the olther side’s bluff & had the funds to back that up.
    Kennedy did not live long enough to fail us. That, folks, is his legacy & his only claim to fame…………he didn’t stick around long enough to fail us.
    Given time, he would have. I doubt we should thank him for that.

  7. Mark Hunt

    Sadly, I think his halo would have faded. His death left is with only the promise of what he might have been. We never saw the reality. He was addicted to painkillers and had dubious sexual liaisons.
    Had he lived, he would have taken the flack generated by Vietnam that Nixon & Kissenger were saddled with.
    I forget who said that political careers all end in defeat but the only exception seems to be by assassination.
    He was not in power long enough to fail. That said, he did play a massive gamble with all of our futures over Cuba.
    We all owe our lives to the fall of his dice.

    • john carey

      Yes you are right Mark Hunt he would have been a failure because of those painkillers, `dubious` sexual liaisons (I think what you are trying to say is that, `he would fuck a frog if it stopped hopping`, right?)

      Would have stopped Israel (then the size of Wales) expanding. (must have something to do with the fertilizer they use now bit bigger than Wales lol). They know control USA foreign policy – agree or disagree?

      • watergate

        yes John, I fear that history would have been unkind to Kennedy. The sad fact is that he didn’t have time to fail our hopes. Nixon & others have since been judged accordingly. I guess you are right in my opinion he was no friend of Israel & history since has failed to educate our opinions otherwise.

      • green

        It’s ironic that JFK is being praised here, despite what is known about his sexual behaviour. It shows how behaviour which most people would consider deceitful and immoral can be overlooked if the person is considered important and admirable enough. Apparently the very thing that kept Jimmy Savile going.

  8. chrisb

    The term ‘military–industrial complex’ or ‘military–industrial–congressional complex’ gained popularity after President Dwight D. Eisenhower (a Republican and a former military man!) used it in his farewell address in January 1961 to warn of military spending whose purpose was not to meet the nation’s defence needs but to make profits for the armaments industry. Throw in Bobby Kennedy and we had an era where there were political leaders worthy of respect and votes.

    • john carey

      I agree with chrisb – we have had continual war since the end of WW2.
      We went to war because of Poland being invaded by Germany, end of the war it had been captured by USSR so what was the war for?

      Now all wars are for Israel, which was set up I believe because of the Holocaust – but since their existence (1948) to present have been at war with the native population of Palestine and its neighbours. Must be sad to be a parent in Israel knowing yours kids have to go to war (and their kids, and their kids etc etc), now it must be sad to be a parent of a soldier in the UK military knowing your son/daughter now has to fight in a conflict which Israel won`t resolve.

      `We` went to war over 2 UN resolutions with Iraq – Israel has I believe over 60.