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Victoria: A 4th Generation War Novel

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  • #16
    Chapter 11

    The summer of 2017 marked the beginning of work. As Trooper Kelly had warned, building an organization proved to be anything but exciting. It was slow, it was dull, it was frustrating. I often felt like I was trying to drive a thousand blind geese through one tiny wicket. But slowly, the Christian Marine Corps grew.

    The first thing I did was identify a small group of people I could turn to for advice. I knew better than to think I had all the answers, or all the questions, either. The questions were more important, at least at the start.

    As Sir Francis Bacon said some centuries back, if you start out with questions, you may end up with answers. But if you start out with answers, you will end up with questions.

    The first and most important question was, what did we want to do? We knew the answer to that one: we wanted to take our country back. We wanted to take it back for our traditional, Western, Christian culture – in short; for the Ten Commandments.

    We realized this was a tall order. We were living in a country where a teacher who posted the Ten Commandments on the wall of his classroom would be fired. (By 2016, in Massachusetts, he would also be fired if he did not put up a state-supplied poster titled “The Ten Commandments of Safe Sex.”)

    But we also knew the cultural Marxists, seemingly so powerful, had reached what in war is called the “culminating point.” They were running out of gas. As they stuck their big noses into the business of more and more average people, they were building up a tremendous backlash. Our goal was to shape, strengthen, and guide that backlash.

    That was itself a challenge, but one we thought we could manage, God willing. To further limit the task, we decided we would focus on New England.

    The second question we faced was, how do we do it? Here too, we had an answer: by offering the other good people who had the same goal our expertise in war. We sought only to be advisors, never controllers – a true general staff.

    The secret of success in the culture war would be “leaderless resistance,” where people worked independently but with efforts harmonized by shared objectives. The worst thing we could do was create some kind of formal, hierarchical organization. That would be easy for the other side to attack, it would demoralize our own troops by reducing them to pawns on someone else’s chessboard, and it would leave us dependent on one or a handful of brains when we could have many brains thinking and acting for us. Also, it would generate office politics as people within the organization struggled for power. I’d seen enough office politics in the Corps to last me the rest of my days.

    Ultimately, the Christian Marines did not want to be about power. This, we recognized, was our biggest difference from all the other factions. We did not want power. We did not want a new country built around power, or struggles for power.

    Power was itself an evil, maybe the greatest evil. Tolkien was right; the Ring of Power, which is power itself, cannot be used for good. That was another lesson we learned the hard way in the U.S.A. At one time, America had shunned power, refused power, at home and abroad. Those had been our happy days. Then the “Progressives” came along, who thought the power of government could be used for good. Eventually, they decided the power of government was good in itself – because they controlled it.

    That’s how it always works: power looks good to whoever has it. But it isn’t. Our war was in a way the strangest war of all, a war to bury power, not to seize it.

    Advisors – only – we would be. In the heat of battle, when someone had to decide and act, fast, we would do that. And our advice itself would be action, because it would counsel action. But in the end, our goal was to return to our plows, Cincinnati, not Caesars.

    Only with these questions answered did we turn to the third (too many people started with this one): what kind of organization would we be?
    First, we would start small. The old German motto was correct: “Better no officer than a bad officer.”

    That meant we could not simply recruit former Marines. There were people from other services, and people who had never been in the military at all, whom we would want. And, truth be told, the number of Marines who really understood war was small. The Corps had put strong emphasis on studying war, beginning in the 1980s, but most Marine officers blew it off. Their focus was on looking good in the uniform and maxing the Physical Fitness Test, they read nothing beyond the sports page and their only talk was about trout fishing and getting promoted. To us, or to anyone, they were useless.

    One of our great fears was that if actual fighting started, civilians who shared our values would turn to retired senior officers for leaders. Most of these guys, the colonels and generals, had never been soldiers. They were milicrats – military bureaucrats. In the old American military, once you made major, further promotion was based on how well you used your knee pads and lip balm, not military ability. If our side ended up led by milicrats, we would be defeated before the battles even began. We would be like the Whites in the Russian Civil War, who got all the old Tsarist generals as their leaders. The Reds got guys like Trotsky, who were serious students of war. We all knew who had won that one.

    Because we would stay small, a few hundred men at most, we could avoid formal processes for recruiting. In fact, we avoided formal processes for everything, because the focus of any process becomes the process, not the product. We would accept new Christian Marines only by consensus, and we would consider candidates only on the basis of what they had done, not what they told us. We wanted to see actions, not words: articles or books published, speeches given in places where they counted, people mobilized, victories in free play military maneuvers (and later, as it turned out, in real combat), victories over the Establishment – results.

    Das Wesentliche ist die Tat.

    A final rule we adopted was one I insisted on, as only someone who has just learned something important himself can insist. Any Christian Marine had to know the canon of our culture. He had to undergo my “baptism by immersion” in the great books and ideas of Western civilization. We couldn’t hope to fight for that culture, and fight well for it, unless we knew what it was. A few of our recruits came to us with that knowledge – more accurately, that understanding. The rest had to start where I had started. That was true regardless of how well they understood war. An officer should never be a mere technician.

    For the next couple years, as we slowly grew in numbers, we kept a low profile. We weren’t exactly a secret organization, but we didn’t put out any press releases, either. If we succeeded, people would know us by our works, which were all that counted. If we failed, better our failures remained obscure. In any case, Stabsofficiere haben keine Namen – general staff officers have no names.

    Carefully, we built our cadre. New Christian Marines were recruited, and accepted, one by one. I spent a lot of time doing detective work. When our side won a battle in the culture war, like keeping pro-homosexual propaganda out of the schools, who had provided the leadership? That might be someone we wanted. When a Marine – or anyone – who had written knowledgeably about war moved to New England, he was potentially one of us. Where did he stand on the cultural issues? Were there other men who believed as we did in key positions in the state legislature, or the National Guard, or the state police? If so, they could be important to us.

    Did we infiltrate the power structure in the New England state governments? Of course, wherever we could. In Massachusetts and lower New England, we didn’t get very far; the cultural Marxists were fully in charge there. But we gradually made some key friends in Maine, New Hampshire, and Vermont. Some of those friends became Christian Marines. Others just knew who we were and what we had to offer.

    We also infiltrated the active-duty forces. Our goal was not to overthrow the United States government. We were never enemies of the old U.S. Constitution. But we knew that government and its Establishment were going to fall, of their own weight, corruption, ineptness, and disinterest in actually governing. We were looking, always, to the time after it fell. We wanted as many active duty Marines – and soldiers, sailors, and airmen – as we could get who would come to New England when it happened, and help us save something worthwhile from the wreckage.

    By the first decade of the 21st century, the message that the U.S.A. was finished, that it was only a question of when it came apart, not whether, found many a receptive ear. Books like Martin van Creveld’s The Transformation of War had opened quite a few minds. Only the people in the capital, in Washington, could not see it coming. They were like the citizens of Johnstown, Pennsylvania, watching the rain come down in buckets but not thinking about the dam.

    For us, in Maine, the dam started to crumble in the Fall of 2020.
    Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don't have brains enough to be honest. - Benjamin Franklin

    I have but one person on my ignore list. Can you guess who it is?


    • #17
      Chapter 12

      Anyone who wondered where we Mainiacs were coming from could find out by sitting down to a typical Maine dinner. Everything was boiled, and if the cook was feeling exuberant that night, it might be seasoned with salt and pepper. Then again, it might not.

      Any people with food that bad had to be conservative. And we were, in the old sense of the word: we lived pretty much as Americans had lived all along, and we liked it that way.

      The funny thing was, Maine kept electing liberals. The liberals’ crazy ideas didn’t seem to matter in Maine. They could talk on, as they were wont to do, about this or that group of “victims,” and Mainers could nod, because there weren’t any of those people Down East. They weren’t about to move in next door.

      Then, in the Fall of 2020, they did.

      The “they,” in this case, were the gays. They were our one home-grown minority.

      As our culture began to fall apart, in the 1960s, the gays started “coming out.” This broke the old rule of “Don’t frighten the horses,” which had allowed mutual toleration. The rule meant that they were not open about their orientation, and we pretended not to notice it.

      By the 2000s, they had become one of the cultural Marxists’ sacred “victims” groups, which meant they were encouraged to flaunt their vice and we were supposed to approve of it. This was justified in the name of “toleration,” but toleration and approval are different. You may tolerate things you don’t approve. I was willing to tolerate gays, but I would sooner have given my approval to an act involving three high yellow whores, a wading pool full of green Jello, and Flipper.

      As usual, Maine had elected a liberal Governor, a former Senator named Snidely Hokem. He’d gotten tired of the Caligula’s court that was Washington, where he’d competed hard for the role of Incitatus’s hindquarters. But he still liked having his own backside kissed, so he figured being Governor might be about right for him.

      To keep up his liberal standing, he had to find one of the “victims” groups and abase himself and the State of Maine before it. That was a challenge, since our winters kept out most “minorities” and our women had too much real work to do to be feminists.

      The gays provided the perfect answer. So on September 23, 2020, The Honorable Snidely Hokem issued an executive order that each public school in Maine, including every elementary school, had to hire at least one homosexual guidance counselor. The order explained that this was necessary so “students with different sexual preferences would not feel excluded.” In order to determine who had what “sexual preference,” the gay counselors had to be given “unrestricted public and private access” to all the kids.

      Suddenly, Mainers found their “luxury liberalism” had turned on them and bitten them, hard.

      It takes a good bit to stir Yankees, but this did. The outrage was widespread. All over the state, parents came to PTA meetings and raised hell.

      I expected Hokem to back down in the face of the voters’ wrath. After all, he was a politician. But he didn’t. Instead, he got on the television and gave a real stem-winder about how “we were all guilty of oppressing people who were really no different from ourselves.” Far from condemning them, “we should confront our own homophobia, which is a greater sin than any they might commit, not that what they do is sinful.” “Let us ask ourselves,” he concluded, “whether our children are not safer with these counselors than with the average Roman Catholic priest. After all, the sexually victimized have never led an Inquisition.”

      I realized it was time for the Christian Marines to go into action. I read in the Bangor paper where the leaders of a number of grass-roots groups were meeting in Augusta, and I decided to join them. Mr. Kraft had the connections to get me in, which he was happy to do. As a student of war, he understood that most crises were also opportunities.

      The meeting went as such meetings tend to go. It was full of good people who didn’t know what to do because they didn’t know how to operate outside the system.

      Someone proposed a petition drive. Someone else raised the question, a petition to do what? And who would do it? There wasn’t much point in petitioning the state’s liberal establishment, which was no different from that in Washington, only smaller.

      Others wanted to elect more conservatives to local school boards. But the boards, which knew where the public was coming from and had to run for re-election eventually, were already on our side, most of them. However, they had no authority to countermand a state directive.

      Someone suggested, rightly, that we turn Hokem out at the next election. But that would be too late. The gays would be in the schools by then, and they’d go straight to court if a new governor moved to fire them.

      I waited ‘til everyone had their say, then I got mine. “If we’re serious, there is a way to stop this, I think,” I said. “The schools need two things to operate: money and students. We can cut them off from both.” In war, a frequent route to victory is through the enemy’s logistics lines.

      “How?” was the simultaneous question from a dozen different voices.

      “By going on strike. Until the Governor’s order is rescinded, we will neither send our kids to public schools nor pay our property taxes,” I replied. The schools got most of their money from the local property tax, and tax bills were due soon. They’d be out of money in six weeks if a strike were widespread. That meant no pay for the teachers. We’d see whose side they were on once they had to choose between their ideology and their wallets.
      People took a while to digest this. A voice finally said, “We’d be breaking the law.”

      “That’s right,” I said. “It’s called civil disobedience. If you remember back to the civil rights movement, civil disobedience is something the liberals did a lot of.” At the moral level of war, it often disarms your enemy when you use his own tactics against him.

      The chairman of the meeting, a local woman from a group called Fight for the Family, asked, “What do we do when they come to arrest us – and take our homes away for non-payment of taxes?”

      “First, there’s strength in numbers,” I replied. “I think lots of State o’ Mainers are mad enough to join a strike. They can only arrest so many. They can’t go after half the population; they don’t have enough police, prosecutors or jail space, not to mention that they’d look like idiots.”

      “Also, it takes time to seize someone’s house for not paying taxes,” I continued. “They have to give warnings, go through all kinds of legal procedures. We’d tie them up in their own knots, for once. And the schools would have dried up and blown away for lack of money by the time they got through all that.” War is a competition in time. If the enemy can’t react fast enough, his reaction does him no good.

      I could tell the rest of the folks at the meeting liked the idea, the more they thought about it. So I sweetened the pill. “They may try to arrest a few people, to make examples of them and scare the rest,” I said. “So what we need are pledges to a strike fund. We’ll only ask for the money as we need it. We can build up pledges of a few million dollars, I’ll wager; plenty of people are mad enough to pledge. If they come after someone, the strike fund will give his family an income while he’s under arrest. It will also pay for his lawyer. If Hokem and his lackies see we’ve got millions of bucks to fight them with, they’ll be less eager to make any arrests.”

      “If they do arrest us, we can turn that around on them.” I recognized the voice, though I couldn’t see the face from where I was in back. It was John Fitzgerald, a former Marine major who’d retired around Portland.

      “Everyone who is arrested, for truancy or non-payment of taxes, should demand political prisoner status. If the state won’t grant it, then go on a hunger strike. If the person arrested can’t stand such a strike, one of us does it as a stand-in for them. At least half the Catholic priests in the state will volunteer for that duty, I can promise you.”

      That was the kind of thinking I liked. I’d talk to John afterwards about the Christian Marines.
      Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don't have brains enough to be honest. - Benjamin Franklin

      I have but one person on my ignore list. Can you guess who it is?


      • #18
        Chapter 12 Cont'd

        There was a good bit more discussion, but the momentum was our way. Finally Madam Chairman spoke. “It’s time for a vote. We can’t make a final decision here; we all need to go back to our people and get their reaction. But we need to decide if we’re in favor of it, ourselves. All in favor say ‘aye.'” The ayes were resounding.

        “We meet again in one week. See if your folks are willing to go along. And we need them to sound out their neighbors. This will only work if we have numbers. This meeting is adjourned.”

        The Christian Marines had done what we existed to do. We’d provided good advice. Now, we had to wait and see what would happen.

        As always, the news of what the supposedly closed meeting had done leaked out. Because the media thought they had a “scoop,” they made the strike proposal their top story on every news program in the state.

        The next day, school attendance was down 30%. That made the news too, which amplified the effect; the day after it was down 65%, then 85%. By the end of the week, the schools were empty.

        A few towns had already sent out their property tax bills. Skowhegan was one. After a rally in front of the school, the folks there made a bonfire and burned the tax bills. That made good footage, which put it on the evening TV news all over the country.

        In the small town of Waite, they didn’t. They didn’t have their tax bills yet, so they burned down the town hall instead.

        At this point, it was clear the troops were out in front of their leaders. I realized that was a good thing. As long as everyone knows the objective, a unit on the attack does well if everyone advances as best he can. We didn’t want to rein our troops in; on the contrary, the challenge for the leaders was using the momentum to drive on even faster. So I called Mr. Kraft.

        “How well do you know the lady who chaired the last meeting?” I asked.
        “We have worked together before,” Kraft answered. “What would you like me to do?”

        “Suggest she call a news conference tomorrow morning. At the news conference, she should announce a torchlight parade of all opponents to the governor’s plan in Augusta next Saturday night.”

        “Why a torchlight parade?” Mr. Kraft asked.

        “Because I don’t think the Governor will feel real comfortable about thousands of torches in the hands of our people in the state capital. Not after Waite. Most of those state office buildings are pretty flammable. Just to make sure Hokem gets the point, she should announce that the people of Waite have been invited to lead the parade.”

        “Consider it done,” Mr. Kraft said. “I know the Fight for the Family people will love it.”

        They did, and the news conference was big news the next day. By the end of that day, buses were being chartered and convoys organized all over the state.

        One rule in war is to game the situation from the enemy ‘s standpoint. If I were Governor Hokem, what would I do? One thing, clearly, would be to mobilize the state police and the National Guard. That meant if Hokem tried to do so, and couldn’t, his situation would worsen. We’d be inside his cycle, as Colonel Boyd liked to say. And he’d start to come unglued.

        I called Sam Briganti, who was a Christian Marine – a former intel Staff NCO – and a Maine State trooper.

        “Sam,” I said, “I’ve got a mission for you. We need to box Hokem in, isolate him. I’m sure he’s going to turn to the State Police to protect his town from our march. I need you to prevent the cops from responding.”

        “You’re right about the first part,” Sam replied. “All leaves have been canceled and we’re waiting for orders. It would really kick his ass if we didn’t turn up. I’ll have to think about how to do that – and not get caught.”

        “Let me know if you can’t do it, or if you need help from any of the rest of us,” I replied. “Otherwise, I’ll trust you to make it happen.” Sam had a first-rate mind plus determination; I knew that was all the order he needed.

        He didn’t fail us. The way he went about it showed a good understanding of war. Often, all it takes is some carefully injected ambiguity to force the enemy to abandon his plan. Sam put an anonymous message on the State Police online message board: “Blue flu Saturday.” He made sure a copy of it went to the Governor’s personal email.

        Hokem knew what it meant. He emailed the head of the State Police. “Will your guys show Saturday or not?” he asked.

        “You can always count on us, sir,” was the reply.

        “How many of your men and women saw the ‘blue flu’ message?”

        “Virtually all of them, sir. Every trooper has his own computer.”

        “How many of them will go along with it?”

        “We have no way of knowing, sir.”

        “Then how can you say your cops will be there for me?”

        “Because you can always count on us, sir.”

        Hokem recognized an ass trying to cover itself. After all, he’d appointed the guy. A former Air Force general.

        And we knew Hokem’s problem was growing, because we were also reading his email.

        His back-up was the National Guard. But we had friends there too. The head of the unit in Bangor was one, so I went to see him and told him what we needed to do.

        It seemed he’d already been giving thought to the problem. For some years, the Maine Guard had been trying to get the money for new trucks. They’d told the Governor the old ones just weren’t reliable any more. So who could he point the finger at if, at some critical moment, they just broke down?

        His email went to every Guard unit in the state. “All, repeat all, trucks in 721st Engineers C-4. Impossible to meet any mobilization requirement. Please report status of your trucks.”

        Mainers aren’t dummies, and I doubt there was a Guardsman in the state who wanted gays counseling his kids in elementary school. Suddenly, every National Guard truck in Maine just wouldn’t start. We made sure the Augusta newspaper heard of this interesting fact. The Governor read the paper.

        At this point, the march was just three days away. Luckily for us, Hokem loved anything “high-tech.” His smartphone, which conveniently combined audio and video calling with all the privacy of a screen door, never left his sight. One of our guys was a former wirehead Master Sergeant who’d worked for the National Security Agency. It didn’t take him long before we were recording Hokem’s conversations and filming his meetings.

        At precisely 2 PM, on October 3rd, 2020, Hokem convened his last staff meeting. He’d invited only his most trusted advisers, the people who had created him.

        “Okay, guys, I’ve got just one question: how can you get me out of this one?” Hokem opened.

        “At this point, frankly, I don’t know,” said his chief fundraiser. “Why in hell did you give that god-damned speech? It sounded like the most radical gay activist in the state wrote it for you.”

        “That’s because the most radical gay activist in the state did write it for me. It came straight from Don Rexrod’s office.”
        Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don't have brains enough to be honest. - Benjamin Franklin

        I have but one person on my ignore list. Can you guess who it is?


        • #19
          Chapter 12 Cont'd Again

          “Shit, he’s head of the North American Man-Boy Love Association. Even most of the other gays don’t like those perverts,” said Hokem’s chief of staff, “Ms.” Virginia Teitelbaum. “Boss, if you’re dancing to his tune, you’ve got to tell us why.”

          “Because Don and the rest of the gays have me by the balls, that’s why,” Hokem said. “Well, not that way, but you know what I mean.”

          “No, we don’t know what you mean,” said Teitelbaum. “We can’t help you unless you tell us what the real problem is. You know what you’re doing is political suicide. Exactly why have you gotten so far in bed with these people?”

          “Now cut it out,” Hokem yelled. “I’m not in bed with any gays. I’m perfectly normal. I’ve got a family, after all. Hell, if I weren’t normal I probably wouldn’t be in this mess.”

          “Come on, Snidely. We need to hear the whole story. Now.” The voice was that of Fred Farnsworth, the political boss who had found little Snidely Hokem years ago, working at his father’s town newspaper.

          “OK, here it is,” Hokem said. “Years ago, back in the early 1990s when I was on the Senate Armed Services Committee, a bunch of us took a junket out to the Army’s training center at Ft. Irwin in the California desert. We figured that wouldn’t look like a junket to the folks back home, but the place was close to Vegas. We flew back each night to Caesar’s Palace, where we had the usual free suites. Anyway, a bunch of us got plastered at the bar and we spotted some really nice tail. I mean, they were gorgeous.”

          “We figured, what the hell, we’re Senators, right? Who’s gonna make trouble for us? So we took them upstairs and started having some fun. Strangely, it was right where they held that Tailhook party.”

          “I swear, none of us even suspected they were drag queens. By the time I figured out something was where it shouldn’t be, we were all in pretty deep. And the bitch, or whatever she, or he, was, was wired for sound. They had the whole goddamn thing on tape! The drag queens gave the tape to a bunch of gay political activists. So when our gay friends call, I listen,” Hokem concluded.

          Now we had a tape of our own. By the next morning, it was all up on the internet.

          With the governor’s office vacant and the ruling about the gay school counselors rescinded by a very nervous lieutenant governor, the torchlight parade was a festive occasion. During the parade, I spotted Mr. Kraft on a hotel balcony, wearing a smoking jacket and a fez, puffing on his pipe and quietly enjoying the spectacle. I looked him up shortly after the rally ended.

          “Not a bad week’s work, if I do say so myself,” I opened.

          “It’s a start,” he replied. By Maine standards, that was a high compliment.

          “What do you think should be next on our agenda?” I asked.

          “Understanding why we won,” he responded.

          “Why did we win?” I inquired.

          “Because we kept the fight within Maine. You call it ‘localizing the battlefield,’ I believe,” he said.

          He was right on that. If the Feds had been involved, we would have been overpowered. They would have occupied Augusta with the 82nd Airborne. We wouldn’t have been able to get in the town.

          “What can we do with that lesson?” I asked, continuing my game of 20 questions. It was a useful game if you were playing with someone who could think.

          “The same group that started all this is meeting here this evening. They’re the folks you met with, when you came up with the battle plan that worked. Meet us here in my suite at ten o’clock and you’ll find out.”

          I was there, and was somewhat surprised to find Mr. Kraft now chairing the meeting. It seems the rest of the folks had asked him to. They already knew what I was learning: in his Retroculture way, he was a first-rate strategist.

          “Meeting is spelled ‘waste of time,’ in most cases,” he opened. “So we’ll keep this one short. We won this past week because the issue was decided by the people of Maine. If we can decide matters without Washington sticking its snout in, we’ll usually win.”

          “There’s an idea I’d like to ask you to take back to your people, the folks in the groups you represent in this coalition. I call it the ‘Maine Idea.’ And it’s what I’ve just said. We want to decide matters for ourselves. We want to separate ourselves in every way we can from Washington and from the rest of the country. If they want to mess their lives up with all these modern notions, that’s up to them. But we want no part of it. We know the old ways were better, and we want to stick to them.”

          “Our own government up here is rotten,” Mr. Kraft continued. “But we can do something about that. This business of putting gays in our elementary schools has awakened the people of this state. We can’t fix Washington. So the hell with Washington. The ‘Maine Idea’ is to shut Washington out.”

          “How do we do that?” I asked. I liked the theory, but wondered how the mice could keep out an elephant.

          “By being Moltkes, not Schlieffens,” he replied. “You understand what that means. Moltke did not try to foresee every event in a campaign and plan too much beforehand. He campaigned opportunistically. So must we.”

          “The first step is to get the idea accepted. Ideas have consequences. When a majority of Mainers share the Maine Idea, opportunities will arise, as one did here in these past few weeks. I’m sure we will have some good Marine advice as to how to use those opportunities,” Mr. Kraft concluded.
          When Kraft talked, other people listened. They would take the Maine Idea back to their members. And gradually, it would spread along our rocky shore and through our stone-fenced fields.

          I waited until the others had filed out; I wanted to extend a private invitation to Mr. Kraft. “You know about our Christian Marine Corps,” I said.

          “You don’t have to be a former Marine to join. We’d like to have you. You’re general staff material if anyone up here is.”

          “Thank you,” he replied. “You’re not the first person to think so. I am honored by the invitation. I have always thought well of Marines. I will be happy to work with the Christian Marines and assist you in any way I can. But I am not at liberty to join you. I wear a different uniform.”

          I was intrigued by this answer, but Mr. Kraft’s tone did not suggest the subject was open for further discussion. So I thanked him for his offer of support, said we would be back to him for assistance, and bid him a good evening.

          Which it certainly had been.
          Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don't have brains enough to be honest. - Benjamin Franklin

          I have but one person on my ignore list. Can you guess who it is?


          • #20
            Chapter 13 Part 1

            The fate of Governor Hokem made it clear that, once Mainers thought about it, they were on the right side in the culture war. While the establishment in Maine remained liberal, it got pretty quiet about it. It was not looking forward to another test of strength with those of us who followed the old ways.

            But we knew the feds would come in eventually. They always did. Our victory in Maine had not gone unnoticed in Washington. The forces of cultural Marxism were still dominant there, and they were looking for an opportunity to take us down.

            Through the winter of 2020-2021 and into the spring, I worked to build the Christian Marines, and the Christian Marines worked to spread the Maine Idea. Most of the grass-roots groups had gone for the concept, and they were hitting the hustings to spread it around. It wasn’t really that hard; most folks already understood that all Washington did was take their money and spit in their face.

            I knew the Maine Idea would not become real, however, until Maine had to fight for it. Even if we fought and lost, it would help. The fact that we dared fight the federal government would strengthen people’s desire for independence, as the Battle of Bunker Hill did in the first revolution. If we could fight and win – that would give the people of Maine hope that our dream of being free again might become real.

            The challenge, and our opportunity, came in the early summer of 2021. The Democrats were back in power in Washington, and their slogan was “A Rainbow Over America.” For Maine, that translated into an announcement on June 22 by “Ms.” Lateesha Umbonga LaDrek, the Secretary of HUD, that her department had purchased two large apartment clusters in Bangor. The current rent-paying residents would be moved out, and 350 black federal prison parolees from out of state would be moved in. LaDrek said the purpose of this action was “to offer oppressed people of color a second chance by letting them serve as ambassadors of diversity to the people of Bangor, who were imprisoned in an all-white ghetto.”

            Maine seethed. But after years of being told that they were evil “racists,” people felt morally unable to defend themselves. They dared not speak openly against the trashing of their community.

            I knew we had to turn that around. The first step was for us Christian Marines to put our heads together. When we met at the Old Place on June 25th, I put the problem squarely. “I think Maine can stop this, if it will fight.

            But it has to know it’s in the right before it will fight,” I said. “You all know the problem. Any resistance to black scum, even by decent blacks, brings screams of moral outrage from the cultural Marxists. Most folks have been so conditioned by this crap they can’t stand up to it. They think they’re Hitler if they dare defend their – our – community. So we have to win the moral fight first. How can we do that?”

            “First, let the feds win a partial victory,” said Major Fitzgerald from Portland. “Let them throw the current residents of those apartments out. They’ve given them only 30 days to vacate, and the TV news is playing that up. The feds look heartless, as they are when its a matter of white folks. Seeing all those people’s lives suddenly disrupted tells Mainers there’s something wrong here.”

            “OK, that makes sense,” I replied. “Let the enemy overextend himself. But how do we keep them from moving the black scum in?”

            “By moving someone else in first.” The speaker was one of our more unusual recruits, Father Dimitri, an Orthodox missionary from Russia. Russia was again a Christian nation, under a new Tsar, and she saw her mission as carrying the Word to the repaganized West. Father Dimitri was one of many Orthodox missionaries working in the States, and he was also a Russian Naval Infantry chaplain. Some of our former “spooks” had brought him in to the Christian Marines; they knew him, and I trusted them.

            “What do you mean?” I asked.

            “The enemy is presenting these black criminals as ‘the poor,’ so good people feel it’s wrong to oppose them,” said the priest. “Of course, with your liberal churches, no clergy tell them that Christianity historically has distinguished between the deserving poor, who are poor through no fault of their own, and the undeserving poor, whose poverty is caused by their own sins.

            Before the undeserving poor qualify for our charity, they must repent – they must change their ways. Otherwise, we are just helping them along the road to Hell.”

            “As it happens, I know of some deserving poor who very much need this housing,” Father Dimitri continued. “Three weeks ago, a ship brought almost 400 Egyptian Christian refugees into Montreal. Throughout the Muslim world, Christians are being driven out or killed. These are good people who escaped only with their lives. They are survivors of one of the oldest Christian communities, dating to the earliest days to the Church. Why don’t we move them into these apartments before Washington can move in the orcs, then dare Washington to throw them out?”

            “What are orcs?” Sergeant Danielov asked.

            “The word is from Tolkien,” Father Dimitri replied. “He was one of the great Christian writers of the 20th century. In his Lord of the Rings, which is Christian analogy, orcs are soldiers of the Evil One. Those creatures your government wants to move in to Bangor are orcs, believe me.”

            “How would we get your Egyptian Christians here?” I asked. “The Border Patrol would never let them in.”

            “Don’t worry, we Russians are very good at smuggling things through northern forests,” said the priest, laughing.

            “Illegal immigrants are among the liberals’ sacred ‘victim’ groups,” said Fitzgerald. “Usually that means trash from south of the border, but we can turn it around on them by bringing in good folks the same way. They’ll have to face their own arguments, used against them. That’s disarming.”

            The more I heard, the better I liked Father Dimitri’s idea. In fighting merely to keep the orcs out – I’d read Tolkien, too – we were trying to beat something with nothing. That never works. His way, we would launch a pre-emptive strike, occupy the position, and make the feds try to re-take it.

            I also knew that by giving refuge to these Egyptian Christians, Maine would be striking at least a small blow in the Third World War. That war had been under way since at least the 1980s. It was a war of militant, expansionist Islam against everybody else. The Islamics had been pushing out in every direction – north into Russia and Balkans and also into Western Europe (immigration can be a form of invasion); south down both African coasts, where the ancient Christian land of Ethiopia was besieged on every side; east into the Philippines (a Muslim Indonesian dagger was pointing at Australia as well); and also West. Since the l990s, Islam had become the fastest-growing religion in North America.

            I knew we would have to fight the Islamics eventually, as we did. Of course, the North American Muslims were all for “toleration,” as the Koran commands when they are weak. Once they are strong enough, the message changes. The Koran puts it in a way that is hard to misunderstand; “Kill those who join other gods with God (i.e., believers in the Holy Trinity) wherever you shall find them, and seize them and slay them, and lay in wait for them with every kind of ambush.”

            By accepting some Christian refugees from Islamic terror, we would put Maine on record as to which side we were on in this world war. And it would be hard to find people more civilized than Egyptians; they’d been at it for a good 5000 years. The Egyptian church even spoke Egyptian, the language of the pharaohs, not Arabic.

            “Anyone have a better idea? If not, I say we go with it,” I concluded. No one did. “OK, that’s settled. Anyone who can help Father Dimitri smuggle the Egyptians in, see him after the meeting. The next question is, how will the feds counter, and what do we do about it?”

            “We know how they will counter,” said Trooper Kelly, who’d come up from Massachusetts. “We know from Waco and Ruby Ridge and many other places that never made the papers. The federal government has militarized law enforcement. They’ll send in INS, federal marshals, probably FBI too, all in combat fatigues, with heavy firepower and armored vehicles. They’ll deport the Egyptians back to Egypt, where they’ll probably be killed as they come off the aircraft. They’ll move the orcs in, and arrest anyone who tries to stop them. And they’ll stay to make sure that if anyone objects to the black crime they’ll bring, they are arrested for violating their ‘civil rights.’ Bangor will find itself under foreign military occupation.”

            “I agree,” I said. “That is what they’ll do. The question is, do we let them win that way, and count it a moral victory for our side, or do we try to stop ’em?”
            Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don't have brains enough to be honest. - Benjamin Franklin

            I have but one person on my ignore list. Can you guess who it is?


            • #21
              Chapter 13 Part 2

              We had to think about that one for a while. If we tried to stop them, it meant war – at the physical level as well as the moral.

              After some talk, our Bangor CO, former Army captain Don Vanderburg, brought us to a decision. “We have two questions to answer: should we stop them if we can, and can we do it? As to the first, it’s clear to me,” Don said. “Of course. It’s my town, my home. And if the feds can rape Bangor this way, the Maine Idea will look hopeless. Most people will give it up. So I think we have to try to stop them.”

              “I also think we can do it,” he continued. “They look like soldiers, but they’re not. They’re just civil servants in tree suits. Most of them have never studied war. They don’t know the terrain, while we do. Plus, we’ll have the support of the people, and they’ll be invaders. That support translates into all kinds of help, especially information.”

              “We may be able to do this in a way where no blood is shed. Remember, these guys aren’t up for a fight. Most of them just want to make twenty and get out. They aren’t our enemies. Most of them share our values and will be privately hoping we win. It’s the people they work for who are our enemies. If we can avoid fighting them, they will try not to fight us.”

              So we decided to resist.

              The first part of the operation went according to plan. With some help from folks who knew the back roads, Father Dimitri got his Egyptians in. We hid them in local churches, then on July 23, one day after the apartment buildings were cleaned out, we moved them in.

              By now, we had our prep down pat. We had friends in the media, including national media, forewarned and on the scene. We had a dozen clergy, led by the local Monsignor, out front of the buildings to explain what we were doing. The mayor and police chief of Bangor were on hand too, to explain that their city welcomed good people who were in need; it just didn’t want violent criminals. We made the evening TV news all across the country, and on the whole the coverage was favorable. We’d taken the moral high ground.

              In Washington, an enraged President Cisneros held a news conference the next morning. After denouncing this “racist, insensitive, hurtful, and illegal action by people who want to hold back the future,” he announced that a convoy of federal law enforcement agents were on their way to Bangor “to uphold the lawful actions of this government and ensure that justice is done on behalf of Americans of color.” Forgetting that his lapel mic was still on, after he had gone backstage, he put it more directly: “I’ll show these white crackers who’s running this place now.”

              Like everywhere in the old U.S.A., militias had been sprouting in Maine (most called themselves a neighborhood watch). Some were for nut cases, most were not. Most were made up of decent people who realized their country was falling apart, and when it fell completely the only security would be local security. They were preparing to provide that. The Christian Marines had ties with some of the more serious groups in Maine, and they were willing to work with us to fight the federal invasion.

              Equally important, we had a great intel system: the cops. Most of the state police in Massachusetts and Maine and many local police were with us by this time; they realized our values were also their values. The feds needed the cops’ help, didn’t realize they’d been penetrated, and provided them the route the convoy would take. The Washington boys were so confident they did the obvious, coming right up I-95.

              Our ambush site was near Newport, Maine, where I-95 crosses the marshes at the southern end of Lake Sebasticook on a long, low bridge. The State Cops told us the convoy would leave Boston about 5 AM on June 27, which would put it into Newport around 10 AM the same day. Forewarned, we’d moved our folks into position the night of the 26th.

              We were prepared for a real fight, but it was not what we wanted. Dead feds would quickly be turned into martyrs by the media, and most of those guys were privately on our side. The challenge to the Christian Marines was to try to handle this so we won, but with nobody wounded or dead. As always, the physical level of war had to serve the moral level or it would work against us.

              I was with an OP we had established just south and east of the bridge. Of course, we’d gone over the plan time and again. More important, everyone understood our objective: defeat them, but don’t hurt or kill them. The militias we worked with had the self-discipline to make sure their actions served that intent, even when events outran the plan (which they always did) and men had to improvise.

              We had a radio in the OP tuned to the state police frequency, and the trooper out front of the convoy broadcast its position every five minutes. Officially, this was so the local cops could clear out the civilian traffic; the feds never thought to ask who else might be listening. Right on schedule, the convoy – a HUMMWV in the lead, then two Bradley Fighting Vehicles, two more HUMMWVs, seven five-ton trucks, and a final HUMMWV as tail-end Charlie – hit the south end of the bridge at 10:13 AM.

              We had wired the end panels of the northbound bridge with explosives set for command detonation. From the OP, I could see the whole span, and once all the convoy was on it I hit the detonator. Both panels blew with a roar every fed could hear, even with the vehicles buttoned up.

              Immediately, before the agents could figure out what was happening, I broke into their net. “This is the Maine militia,” I said in my best command voice. “We have cut the road before and behind you. You cannot move forward or back. We have every vehicle targeted with crew-served weapons, including .50 cals and 90 mm recoilless. If you open fire, you’re dead. Lay down your weapons and come out of the vehicles, slowly, one at a time.”

              At the same instant, a company’s worth of infantry, militia and Christian Marines (general staff types also get to mix it up on occasion), were in their faces. We’d positioned them not at the ends of the bridge but under it, along its length (a modern light infantry defense works parallel to an enemy mech column, not across its head). They were equipped with grappling hooks and climbing ropes. As soon as they heard the end panels blow, they swung their grapples for the hand rails and rappelled up. They had weapons leveled at the drivers before the vehicles came to a stop.

              This was the critical moment. We weren’t bluffing; we did have heavy weapons, and we would take the vehicles out if we had to. No one moved, or spoke. The whole thing took less than a minute, but time slowed down so it seemed like hours. Then, slowly, one of the Bradleys started training its turret to the right, as if to look for a target. “Shit,” I thought, “the dumb bastard is going to open up.”

              A sixteen-year old kid from Rockland saved the day for us. He was on the Bradley’s left side. He saw the vehicle commander had popped his hatch to come up for a better look. With the agility you lose by the time you’re twenty, he was on the vehicle, and the commander got a face full of rifle butt before his head was all the way out. The kid, La Riviere, dropped two smoke and one CS grenades down the hatch, slammed it shut and sat on it, with his AK trained on the infantry hatches.

              Two federal marshals came out of those hatches, saw the AK in their faces and gave up. The rest of the crew, choking and puking, came out the rear hatch with their hands in the air – the Italian salute, we used to call it. I was on my feet now, where our guys could see me, gesturing madly and screaming, “Get away from the vehicle!” As soon as our troops and the prisoners were behind the next vehicles in line, I slapped the 90 gunner in our OP on the shoulder and said, “Take that Bradley out.”

              Like the Russian BMP, the Bradley was an explosion waiting to happen, a tin-clad rolling armor dump that any anti-tank weapon instantly turned into a Viking funeral for its crew. The 90 mm recoilless rifle round hit the ammo and it blew, the turret turning pinwheels in the sky until it plunged sizzling into the lake. The chassis was quickly reduced to a molten mass of metal and treads.
              Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don't have brains enough to be honest. - Benjamin Franklin

              I have but one person on my ignore list. Can you guess who it is?


              • #22
                Chapter 13 Part 3

                The Feds had seen enough at that point. As Trooper Kelly said, they weren’t soldiers. Like anyone in law enforcement, they knew they might get shot at, but a full-scale battle was a different matter. Plus, it had all happened so fast. Wrapped in the smell of real fear and fresh excrement, they crawled out of their vehicles and surrendered.

                We brought our POWs, 83 federal marshals and INS agents (no FBI this time), and our own guys down from the bridge on ladders. We had three Bangor city school buses waiting on the parallel secondary road, and bundled everyone on board. The buses were as close as the feds would get to Bangor.

                Before we pulled out, we took the opportunity to play some mind-games with the real enemy down in Washington. With a video cam rolling, we turned the .50 cals and 90 mms on the remaining, empty vehicles. The tape of exploding, burning military trucks, HUMMWVs and remaining Bradley, coupled with footage of the line of federal prisoners marching off with their hands behind their heads, went to all the networks. In 24 hours, the whole nation knew Maine had fought the federal government, and won.

                Our challenge was to turn a tactical victory into a strategic one. Maine was with us; the Battle of Lake Sebasticook, as it was quickly known, made the Maine Idea real. The slogan appeared overnight on hand-lettered signs in yards, on bumper stickers, on banners hung from highway bridges. But we were nowhere near ready to defeat a full-scale federal invasion, and we knew one was coming.

                Washington was still full of fight. President Cisneros, trying to position himself as a second Lincoln, vowed the Union would be preserved, at any cost. Never was the old rule of “first as tragedy, then as farce,” so applicable. He announced the 82nd Airborne was on its way to Bangor.

                But we had an ancient and effective weapon with which to defend ourselves: hostages. As our militiamen returned to their homes all over Maine, many carried an unusual cargo in the trunk of their car: a trussed-up federal agent. Of course, the feds had specialized hostage-rescue units. But they didn’t have enough of them to hit sites all over Maine simultaneously, even if they could find where the agents were hidden.
                On the 30th of June, we made the feds an offer, through an open letter to Cisneros printed in the Bangor paper. The key part read:

                We have no desire or intention to harm anyone. We could easily have killed many, perhaps all the federal the agents who invaded our state. We have killed none of them, and all are now safe and well cared for. We look forward to returning them to their homes and families as soon as possible. We do not regard them as our enemies.

                However, our first responsibility is to our own homes and families, which you now threaten. Therefore, we regret we have to say that we cannot guarantee the safety of the federal agents now in our custody if further federal forces enter Maine.

                To underscore the point, we arranged for CNN to interview several militia units that were holding some of the prisoners. They allowed that if those paratroopers landed in Bangor, or the feds tried any rescue ops, the lot of their policeman would not be a happy one. One unit already had a noose hanging from a large oak tree. It was a bluff, but Washington couldn’t know that.

                We had a few agents at Ft. Bragg, so we knew within hours that the airlift had been put on hold. Cisneros was waffling.

                Meanwhile, the 250 black parolees who were to move into Bangor had been stuck in a couple of motels near Worcester, Massachusetts, waiting for the federal troops to clear their way in. The Justice Department’s lawyers had determined that, since they had been paroled, they could not be kept under guard. It seems a few of them got tired of waiting and decided to go have some fun. The date was July 4, 2021.

                A summer day in New England is a true joy. That Fourth of July was especially nice. The temperature got up to 77 degrees, with low humidity, a gentle breeze out of the northwest and a few white, puffy, cotton-ball clouds, the kind that children like to see animal shapes in. Sister Mary Frances of the Church of the Blessed Sacrament had brought her Bible school pupils, grades two through five, to a small park on the bank of the West River. They had sandwiches and cookies, toys, a big American flag and sparklers to celebrate the day. Sister Mary Frances had planned to read them the story of the Ride of Paul Revere.

                Thirteen of the parolees discovered them there just after lunch. By the time the police found them later in the day, the Sister and most of the children were lying where they had knelt to say the Rosary, praying for the protection that did not come in this life. She had been raped repeatedly before being strangled with the chain on her Crucifix. Perhaps she had bought the three surviving children the time they needed to crawl off into the woods and hide. A posse of state troopers and frantic parents found them there just after dusk.

                The media might well have passed over the event in silence, at least outside Worcester; it didn’t fit their agenda. But “Ms.” LaDrek of HUD happened to be in Worcester that very weekend. She had come to open a new high-rise public housing development, modeled on St. Louis famed Pruett-Igoe. At her news conference, she said that the slaughter of Sister Mary Frances and her young charges “was nothing compared to what people of color had suffered in America since the white invaders first arrived. Maybe it would help the white people of Massachusetts have a better understanding of Black Rage. If so, it might be a positive experience for Worcester.”

                The news conference had been carried live on most of the Worcester TV and radio stations. It concluded with Ms. LaDrek leading the new residents of the housing project into the commons room for a nice lunch. By 12:30, the courtyard in front of the project was filling with Worcester’s citizenry, and they weren’t in a celebratory mood. They were construction workers, housewives, good Catholics most of them, some coming straight from the noon mass at Blessed Sacrament. Their kids could have been the ones raped and butchered. In some cases, they were.

                The priest from Blessed Sacrament himself, with some of the nuns, led the uninvited guests into the luncheon, chanting the Dies Irae. The distinguished Secretary of HUD tried to bolt out the back door, but one of the nuns, a sturdy Irish girl, tackled her. The swift, new elevator whisked LaDrek and a party of escorts to the top floor, where a window was knocked out. The Honorable Secretary of HUD followed the shards of glass down, to a hard and fatal landing in the front parking lot.

                It’s almost uncanny; our Thirty Years War also started with a defenestration. This time, no angels (or manure piles, if you’re a Protestant) broke the fall.

                A story like this couldn’t be hushed up. The nation was appalled, not by the assassination but by what had preceded it.

                In Maine, we moved swiftly to take advantage of the public’s mood. The militias set up recruiting stations in every shopping center and on each town common. The slogan on a banner over each station read, “The Maine Idea – Defend Our Families.” Any male with a weapon could join. The lines ran a block or more long. Within 48 hours we had more than 100,000 men pledged to fight for our state.

                In Washington, Cisneros knew he was beaten. The order went to the 82nd Airborne to stand down. Resorting to one of the city’s oldest tricks, Cisneros asked Congress to establish a “Blue Ribbon Panel” to investigate the whole affair. Announcing that “until the panel is appointed and has conducted its investigation, it would be inappropriate for me to comment further,” he crawled into the deepest hole he could find. The panel, everyone knew, would take years to complete its work, then issue a report that said nothing. That’s what “Blue Ribbon Panels” existed to do.

                So we’d won. Some might say it wasn’t a good, clean victory on the field of battle. It wasn’t, but that isn’t how war works. War is politics, propaganda, fighting, maneuvering, luck, all boiled up in one big cauldron. This time, our side had bubbled up to the top.

                At least we showed that victory doesn’t always belong to the bigger battalions.
                Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don't have brains enough to be honest. - Benjamin Franklin

                I have but one person on my ignore list. Can you guess who it is?


                • #23
                  Chapter 14 Part 1

                  When people read Sun Tzu’s saying, “He who knows himself and knows his enemy will win 100 battles,” they figure the hard part is knowing the enemy. They’re wrong. The hard part is knowing yourself.

                  After we had rubbed Cisneros’s nose in it, some of our guys were feeling pretty cocky. It seemed to them that Maine could go its own way then and there.

                  I saw it differently. The victory at Lake Sebasticook was genuinely ours. We won it by combining the unexpected, speed, and initiative at the most junior level, which is to say by fighting smart.

                  But the rest of it was a pure gift from God. As King Philip of Spain of Armada fame found out, God doesn’t like it when you presume He’s on your side. The next time, the other guy might get the breaks. When the other guy was the whole federal juggernaut, we’d get flattened.

                  It all came back to something I’d said to my fellow Christian Marines many times: we had to wait for Washington to fall of its own weight. We could drop an occasional banana peel in its path, by setting up a situation where it was likely to embarrass itself. But it was far too strong for us to take on, head on.

                  Vermont gave us a lesson that way. Our success in Maine had emboldened friends and fellow “racists, sexists, and homophobes” elsewhere in the country. But it had also enraged the enemies of Western culture, the cultural Marxists, who were looking for opportunities to counterattack.

                  In Vermont – another state with conservative people but a liberal government (God, we were stupid back then) – the governor went on the offensive. He got a law through the legislature that required every Vermont jury to “look like America,” which meant it had to be half women, 10% black, 15% Hispanic, 10% gay (the real number would have been maybe 1%, but these were political numbers), and so on.

                  Some old-fashioned Vermonters saw an opportunity. Calling themselves the Green Mountain Boys, they declared a “White Strike.” No white male would agree to serve on a jury, which would mean the jury could not look like America. Under the new law, that would appear to mean no jury.

                  The whole thing was a flop. A good number of white males joined up, but a good number wasn’t enough. The Green Mountain Boys hadn’t thought the situation through. To succeed, they needed near 100% support from white men, which they were never going to get. There were still some white male lefties, and beyond them lots more white males who didn’t want to listen to the third act of Medea every night over the dinner table from their feminist wives. The courts had to go through more white men than they otherwise would to make up a jury, but eventually they always found enough.

                  Our cultural enemies won a victory. Their triumph in Vermont allowed them to say their defeat in Maine was just a strange accident; the country was really still on their side.

                  One Friday evening in late November, 2021, the phone rang. I always hated the damn thing; Ambrose Bierce was right when he defined it, in his Devil’s Dictionary, as “an instrument almost as useless as the telescope, but unfortunately equipped with an annoying bell.” I had to set down my cigar and my book, dump the cat off my lap and walk into the cold back hall to answer it.

                  Finding one of the leaders of the Green Mountain Boys on the line didn’t improve my mood. “We’ve got a problem,” he began.

                  “You sure do,” I said. “You screwed the pooch. Didn’t help us any in the process.”

                  “Ayuh. Sorry about that,” he replied. “Look, we heah you folks have some sort’a organization that helps think these things through. Bunch of fo’mah Marines, so we’ah told. Any chance we could get theah help?”

                  “Waal, I don’t rightly know,” I said, talking Emmett myself. “Sounds to me like you want us to pull you’ah chestnuts out’a the fiah.”

                  “Ayuh, I guess that’s what we want, all right,” he replied.

                  I had to think about it a bit. I was tempted to let them sleep in their own poop. On the other hand, the Christian Marines did intend to reach out to the rest of New England, eventually. This was an opportunity to start. We needed to reverse the defeat in Vermont.

                  “Waal, I guess we can talk about it, anyway,” I finally said. “Get your folks togeth’ah at the Norrich Inn Friday night. I’ll be the’ah.”

                  By the time we met, I’d done a bit of legal work, with the help of Uncle Earl. It seems Vermont wasn’t exactly living up to its own law on this jury business. It couldn’t. The problem wasn’t the White Strike. Vermont simply didn’t have enough blacks and Hispanics to make up the required percentages on the juries. So they were just saying they tried and letting it go at that.

                  The Green Mountain Boys had about a dozen men at the Norwich Inn that Friday evening, the last Friday in November. After we got to know each other a bit over some supper and cider, I laid out a plan. “Any of you know a lawyer who thinks like we do but doesn’t let on?” I asked.

                  “Sounds like you’re talking about my neighbor,” one of the Boys replied. “Over pie and coffee in the kitchen, he’s as pissed off as the rest of us. He talks funny, of course, since he’s a lawyer. ‘I have no desire to live in an America that has been Hispanized, feminized, and sodomized,’ is the way he puts it. But he always looks over both shoulders to see who’s listening before he says it, because he figures he’d lose half his business if his clients knew where he stood.”

                  “It sounds as if he’s the right man for a pseudo-op.”

                  “What’s that?” another of the Boys asked.

                  “It’s where you dress your troops up in the enemy’s uniforms and have them do something embarrassing to the enemy,” I answered.

                  “What we need from your lawyer friend is this,” I continued. “Representing the ‘oppressed peoples of the world,’ he files a suit demanding that the State of Vermont stick to its own law. Trying to get the right percentages of gays, blacks, whatever on a jury doesn’t cut it. Each and every Vermont jury must have all the numbers right, or it can’t be empaneled. He should file the suit in such a way that it goes straight to the Vermont Supreme Court.”

                  “How the hell does that help us?” asked the first fellow.

                  “According to my Uncle Earl, who knows his judges hereabouts, the Vermont Supreme Court is as politically correct as you can get. He’s willing to bet real nutmegs to wooden ones that the court will rule in favor of such a suit. If it does, the Governor either has to repeal his law or go without any juries. In practical terms, that means repeal, which also means we win.”

                  Well, they bought it, and the lawyer filed suit. The Vermont Supreme Court made Uncle Earl look good. It said the law is as the law reads, and the juries have to get all the right numbers of blacks and Hispanics and gays, or they aren’t lawful.

                  But what happened next came as a surprise.


                  The governor, a fellow named Fullarbottom, felt the hollow eyes of all the “oppressed minorities” fixed upon him. He had been their great hope, a “sensitive, caring, feeling white male.” Now he had to dump them, and they’d howl like a sack full of cats.

                  So he went to the legislature with an ingenious proposal. Instead of repealing the requirement that Vermont juries “look like America,” Vermont would turn to the rest of America to achieve the “balance” it sought. Any American citizen could sit on a Vermont jury if his or her presence were required to make a quota. Fullarbottom concluded his message to the legislature with the words, “We are proud to welcome our oppressed black, Hispanic, and gay sisters and brothers as ‘Vermonters for a day’ to aid us in our battle to reverse two hundred years of white male oppression.”

                  It is in the nature of war that the enemy sometimes makes a good move. This was one. Unfortunately for Fullarbottom, like most good moves, this one had to work fast to work at all. And it couldn’t. The Vermont state constitution required that a juror be a legal resident of the state. That meant the governor needed a state constitutional amendment, which in turn required a two-thirds vote in the legislature. And he didn’t have the votes, not right off, anyway.

                  With the rest of the Establishment cheering him on, Fullarbottom launched a campaign to get the votes he needed. The papers, most of them, backed him with editorials; various black, Hispanic, and gay entertainers, sports figures, and other “celebrities” came to Vermont to support him; President Cisneros himself even paid a visit. In the past, this sort of thing had worked.

                  But it took time, and that gave our side a chance to counterattack. By 2021, Vermonters who believed in traditional American values had a good grass-roots network. They quickly organized their own campaign, one aimed both at state legislators and at the average Vermonter. They struck some deep chords, especially when they blanketed the state with posters and bumper stickers asking, “Where Will It Stop?” If out-of-staters could serve on Vermont juries, what else would they be allowed to do? Vote in town meetings? Help themselves to the Vermont treasury? Send their kids to Vermont schools, at Vermont taxpayers’ expense?

                  By January, 2022, it was clear Vermonters were becoming uneasy with Fullarbottom’s proposal. The legislature would meet in March. Its members were feeling the public pulse, and getting nervous.
                  Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don't have brains enough to be honest. - Benjamin Franklin

                  I have but one person on my ignore list. Can you guess who it is?


                  • #24
                    Chapter 14 Part 2

                    But something was still needed to push them our way, once and for all. We needed an action average Vermonters could do that would scare politicians. The thing that scared politicians most was the danger of becoming un-politicians, of losing their office. The problem was, how could we make them feel that fear when an election wouldn’t come until the Fall?

                    Late in January I got an idea, so I drove over to Montpelier to see the head of the grassroots network in Vermont, Sam Shephard. On anything important, I always tried to meet people face-to-face; no fax or phone call or email was as effective in getting things done.

                    In typical North Country style, we met in his kitchen. “It seems to me,” I said, “that we need to appeal to your politicians’ patriotism.” That was my usual expression for grabbing somebody by the balls. “We need to let them see what happens to whoever opposes us, and we need to make Fullarbottom himself the example.”

                    “Good idea,” Sam replied. “How do we do it?”

                    “I’ve done a bit of research about your state. You don’t have a recall provision in your law, but over the years, a good many folks have said you ought to. My proposal is this: launch a petition drive to recall Fullarbottom. Explain that if you get a majority, not only will it tell the governor to back off his plan to import out-of-state ringers and put them on your juries, it will also tell the members of the legislature you want a recall law. And it will tell the members of the legislature that their own necks are in danger if they vote the wrong way on the jury issue.”

                    “Hmm, that’s not bad,” Sam replied. “Let me run it by my people. Still, it would have a lot more punch if we could actually toss Fullarbottom out.”

                    “Well, maybe we can,” I said.

                    “How?” Sam asked.

                    “Leave that to the Christian Marines,” I answered.

                    Sam was good to his word, and his folks bought the idea. Early in February, they announced the recall campaign, and their people got out with the petitions and started knocking on doors. The public’s mood had been swinging steadily our way, and the petition drive took off. On the 7th of March, exactly a fortnight before the legislature was due to convene, the “Campaign to Kick Fullarbottom’s Bottom” announced that more Vermont voters had said they wanted the Governor out than had voted to put him in.

                    At this point, Fullarbottom’s earlier sense of tactics deserted him. His emotions took over his judgment. On the battlefield, that leads bad officers to order on-line frontal assaults. In this case, it led Governor Fullarbottom to call a snap news conference.

                    “I was elected Governor of this state and I will stay Governor of this state as long as I want the damn job,” Fullarbottom roared. “I don’t care what these people want or what anyone wants. I spent my life working my way to this position. For thirty years, I did all the crappy jobs the Democratic Party asked me to do, squeezing money out of every store owner in Burlington, kissing the backsides of all the party bigwigs, marching in the damn Jefferson-Jackson Day parade with a blintz in one hand and a kielbasa in the other. If the people who elected me wish they hadn’t, tough. The office is mine, and I aim to keep it until I don’t enjoy it any more.”

                    It seemed Vermont’s politically correct governor was, in the end, merely political, and of the Fafnir school of politics – the dragon in Das Rheingold. He sought only to lie in possession.

                    We had the moral high ground. Now we could move to the physical level of war.
                    As soon as Vermont had come up on our radar screen, the Christian Marines had started recruiting. As usual, we had found allies among the cops, including the state cops. One of our state cops arranged to be the Governor’s driver.

                    On Thursday, March 10, 2022, Governor Frank Fullarbottom was on his way home to work on his speech to the legislature. He knew it had to be a good speech, if he were to have any chance of getting his blacks, Hispanics, and gays from out of state on Vermont juries. A very good speech. He was so absorbed in thinking about it that he did not notice when his driver took a wrong turn, down a lonely country lane. Around a bend, where the view was concealed by a clump of pine trees, the Christian Marines were waiting with a pickup truck blocking the road.

                    There was no violence; that would have worked against us. We had a shotgun pointed at the cop’s head, so it was obvious there was nothing he could do. We handled him just rough enough to maintain his cover. As for the governor, he was quickly wrapped up mummy-style in duct tape and tossed in the trunk of a waiting sedan.

                    The next morning, the Montpelier paper found a message on its email from the Green Mountain Boys (we let them take the credit). It read:
                    Last night Vermont again became a democracy. The will of the people, as expressed by the majority of voters in their petition to recall Governor Fullarbottom, was carried out. Mr. Fullarbottom is safe, well cared for and comfortable. He will be returned to his home the day after his term of office expires. In the meantime, he regrets to announce that he will be unable to carry out the duties of his office.
                    Of course, there was an enormous hue and cry from the Establishment, both local and federal. President Cisneros denounced “right-wing fanatics who dare take the law into their own hands.” (We always thought the power of the law properly belonged in the people’s hands, but of course politicians don’t see it that way.) The FBI was called in, along with ATF, federal marshals, the whole works. We expected that. We also expected no one would look for the Governor of Vermont on a Portuguese fishing boat off the Grand Banks, and no one did.

                    The good people of Vermont do have a sense of humor. Outsiders have trouble seeing it sometimes, but it’s there. They know a typical Emmett joke when they see one. As I drove through the state on my way back to Maine the day after Fullarbottom went on his cruise, I saw a good number of thin smiles.

                    Vermont juries remained the province of Vermonters. Vermont also got a law permitting recall. Politicians can be fast learners when their careers are at stake.
                    Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don't have brains enough to be honest. - Benjamin Franklin

                    I have but one person on my ignore list. Can you guess who it is?


                    • #25
                      Chapter 15

                      War is the extension of politics, and politics may also be an extension of war.

                      By 2022, the first shots of America’s Second Civil War were audible. This time, instead of a few cannon firing at Fort Sumter, its heralds were the popping of thousands of caps. Blacks shot whites because they were white, and Hispanics shot blacks because they were black. Whites usually still called the police to do their shooting for them, though the results seldom justified the cost of the phone call. Koreans and Jews got shot by everybody.

                      Right-to-lifers shot abortion doctors, who in turn relied on their needles and forceps to terminate potential future right-to-lifers. Farmers shot EPA agents, and the feds threw farmers into jails where they were homosexually raped. Once a week, somewhere in the country, the gays fire-bombed a church. Somewhere else, once a week, a bomb in a car or a briefcase took out a government office. Insurance companies would no longer sell life insurance to IRS employees.

                      Like real war in every place and every time, it wasn’t pretty. I hated it.
                      In Maine, our hope was to keep our distance, and increase it wherever we could. That was the Maine Idea, and after we had beaten the feds both on our home soil and in Vermont, most folks were enthusiastic about it.
                      I was pretty sure the whole political system would go down the drain sooner or later, and probably sooner. But in the mean time, we had to use it intelligently for whatever it could do for us.

                      The Maine Idea had attracted some folks who understood politics better than I did, and I was happy to let them take the lead. They weren’t politicians, just normal people who had done the grass-roots organizing that gave the Maine Idea its clout. An idea, even the best idea, seldom goes very far on its own. A good idea plus lots of people who will work for it leads to a different future.

                      I was happy to play a fly on the wall in the meetings where Bill Kraft and other grass-roots leaders put together the Maine First Party. They figured that if a political party based on the Maine Idea controlled the state legislature and the governor’s office, Maine would improve its chances of saving itself from the coming catastrophe.

                      They found ordinary people, good people, to run for office. They got candidates on the ballot for every office in the state. They made clear exactly what they were for: a Maine that stood as far apart from the rest of the country as it could get.

                      They also wanted a place where we could live the way State o’ Mainers had lived in times past. When some greasy reporter up from New York asked Bill Kraft what that meant, he replied with the words of the old Book of Common Prayer: we wanted to live a Godly, righteous, and sober life. To most people in Maine, that summed it up nicely.

                      The Maine First Party faced the Establishment, local and national, with its greatest nightmare: an anti-Establishment alternative the average person could vote for. And vote for it they did. In November of 2022, when all the votes were counted, the Maine First Party held every statewide office and had majorities of better than 80% in both houses of the legislature. The Republicans and the Democrats had been wiped off the state political map.

                      This victory at the ballot box was as important as any victory we ever won on the battlefield. It quickly led to Vermont First and New Hampshire First Parties in those states; as in Maine, they swept into power on a tidal wave of public support. The victories of the home state parties gave upper New England the chance for recovering our freedom when the time came, and laid the basis for the Northern Confederation.

                      In Massachusetts, the same effort failed. Too many citizens of that Commonwealth found their wealth in the common trough that was government, and they were afraid of losing their regular ration of swill. They paid for it, later.

                      I made certain every Christian Marine understood the relationship between war and politics, and politics and war. The actions we had fought, especially the Battle of Lake Sebasticook, made the Maine First victory possible. The victory of the Maine First Party in turn made it possible for us to fight for Maine’s freedom, and win. Each victory fed on the other. Neither was possible without the other. Neither had any meaning without the other.
                      Throughout history, some soldiers have argued that politics should stop when the shooting starts. What fools.
                      Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don't have brains enough to be honest. - Benjamin Franklin

                      I have but one person on my ignore list. Can you guess who it is?


                      • #26
                        Chapter 16

                        By the third decade of the 21st century, the dissolution of the United States had reached the point where each year brought a new crisis. The crisis of 2023 began with the Persell Amendment to the Clean Air Act, a measure intended to prevent the smoking of tobacco.

                        I am not making this up. I know it sounds like satire, but it happened.
                        In the 1990s and 2000s, as the greatest country in the world turned itself into a cultural toxic waste dump, one of the great issues that absorbed the federal government’s attention was – tobacco smoke.

                        The government and the “health industry” that lived off the government whooped it up that tobacco smoke was second only to Xyclon B as the worst thing you could inhale. At first, they just tried to get smokers to quit. But like all bandwagons of the absurd, once their campaign got rolling it rolled over everybody. Soon, they were shrieking that just smelling the smoke from someone else’s pipe, cigar, or cigarette was enough to put you in the grave tomorrow, or by next week at the latest. They called it “second-hand smoke.”

                        Of course, you got far more crap in your lungs just walking past a bus, but that didn’t matter. Smoking was outlawed far and wide where anyone might smell the smoke. Smokers were literally driven out, into back alleys and onto loading docks for a furtive puff.

                        A reasonable man, or even woman, might have considered that people had been smoking for some centuries, yet by a miracle the human race had survived. Smokers and non-smokers had even managed to get along, quite nicely in most cases. The secret was etiquette. Good manners dictated that some places were for smoking and some were not, and that where the lines were uncertain, smokers asked the assembled company for permission before they indulged. Previous to the hysteria, permission was usually graciously given, and no one seemed the worse for it.

                        But by the early 2000s, anti-smoking militancy was the “cause” of the day. Avoiding tobacco smoke had become the equivalent of Fletcherizing – the 19th century movement that promised sparkling health and a Methuselah lifespan to anyone who chewed each bite of food one hundred times. Americans always were suckers for health crazes.

                        And politicians were always on the lookout for suckers. So when the Clean Air Act came up for renewal in 2023, Senator Whitman Persell (“Wimpy” to his friends), Democrat of California, saw a chance to score some points with the anti-tobacco harpies. He proposed an amendment whereby anyone who smelled tobacco smoke anywhere might sue any nearby smoker. The plaintiff did not have to prove that the smoker was smoking at the time; the fact that he or she was an admitted smoker was considered proof enough. The amendment encouraged triple damages for “pain and suffering.” With the enthusiastic backing of the Cisneros administration and the usual craven collapse by Congressional Republicans, the amendment was signed into law. The Health Nazis triumphantly proclaimed “the end of tobacco smoking in America.”

                        As the law intended, smokers found themselves hunted like rats. A smoker, placed under oath on the witness stand, had to admit smoking or be guilty of perjury. But if they admitted they smoked, they lost the suit, along with their life savings and most else they owned. Repairmen, neighbors, even family members would come into a smoker’s home and promptly file a lawsuit, which they won. If someone smelled smoke in someone else’s clothes, they sued and won. The Surgeon General even issued a pamphlet suggesting ways smokers could be trapped into revealing their filthy habit, and then sued. It was a virtual reign of terror, enforced by impoverishment.
                        But the result was not the end of tobacco smoking in America. The result was war. Smokers fought back.

                        It started about six months after the Persell Amendment took effect. In Pasadena, a little old lady had been sued by a Meals on Wheels deliverywoman who had spotted a telltale cigarette butt in her kitchen garbage. As usual, the smoker lost, and the court ordered her home seized and sold to pay the deliverywoman her winnings. In the final court session on the case, the little old lady pulled a Saturday Night Special out of her handbag and blew away the judge and the plaintiff.

                        She was shot down herself by a sheriff, but on her way to court she had sent a letter to the L.A. Times explaining her action. “I had nothing more to lose,” she wrote. “I would rather die quickly than be left on the street, penniless. And I won’t stop smoking. I was born and grew up in England, and I remember how, in 1940, when a Nazi invasion seemed certain, Churchill had posters printed up saying, ‘You Can Always Take One With You.’ So that is what I will try to do.”

                        Her story was picked up by the rest of the media, not in sympathy but to demonstrate how all smokers were dangerous extremists. However, smokers got a different message. “You Can Always Take One With You” posters appeared on walls and street signs. Other smokers who had lost everything, or feared they soon would, began shooting. They shot judges and lawyers. They shot the people who had sued them, or other members of the plaintiffs families. They shot government health personnel. One of them shot Senator Persell; regrettably, he survived. They all left the same message: “I had nothing more to lose.”

                        Up in Maine, our Maine First state government saw an opportunity. The Governor proposed, and the legislature adopted, a “Resolution of Nullification” that stated that hereafter, the Persell Amendment would not apply in Maine. Maine folks still had good manners, and we would handle tobacco smoke the old way, as a matter of etiquette.

                        The feds understood quite well what nullification meant for them; that battle had gone the other way in the 1830s, and the long-ago victory was still an important part of their power. They went to the Supreme Court and Maine was overruled.

                        But our Governor, John C. Adams, stuck to his guns – or rather, our guns. He wrote to the President and told him the Nullification Ordinance still stood, and that whatever a federal court might rule, no monies based on a Persell Amendment judgment would be paid in Maine. If Washington didn’t like it, they could try to send in federal agents again. We Christian Marines made it clear we were not averse to another meeting like the one at Lake Sebasticook, and the state militia raised on the occasion was still available.
                        Under normal circumstances, Cisneros probably would have sent in federal agents, or troops. But the federal government was by this time caught up in a real crisis, and it didn’t have much attention to spare to the tobacco question. Once it was clear we had successfully nullified Persell, Vermont and New Hampshire did the same, as did the states of the deep South. Elsewhere, smokers kept shooting.

                        The smokers’ defiance had showed the power of leaderless resistance. In former wars and revolutions, effective, sustained resistance required leadership and organization. Without a Continental Congress or a Jacobin Directorate or a Bolshevik Party to guide and direct and order, action could not be sustained. Now, in the 21st century, the Internet supplied “virtual organization” by allowing the actions of one to inspire others, and the actions of those others to instruct and animate more. From the standpoint of the government, it was a nightmare; the rebellions (there were soon many) had no head that could be cut off, no junta or central committee or official spokesmen who could be arrested or assassinated. The ubiquity of the Internet meant it could not be silenced, and it could not discipline itself to pass over stories that people wanted to see. For good and for ill, the Internet was the sorcerer’s apprentice.

                        Now pardon me, if you’ll be so gracious, while I light a fresh cigar.
                        Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don't have brains enough to be honest. - Benjamin Franklin

                        I have but one person on my ignore list. Can you guess who it is?


                        • #27
                          Chapter 17 Part 1

                          The crisis that occupied the feds’ attention while Maine reestablished the doctrine of Nullification was one that usually comes in the last days of ancien regimes. The currency was collapsing.

                          In October of 2018, a Big Mac cost $5.95. By October of 2023, it cost $99. For $150, you also got a small order of fries and a Coke.

                          The warning signs had been flashing for many years, but everyone in Washington ignored them. As late as the year 2000, the federal government had showed it could balance the budget. But for politicians, doing so had no payoff. The Republicans wanted tax cuts and the Democrats wanted more spending. So they cut a deal where each party would get what it wanted, and we would just borrow the money to pay for it all.

                          Through the 2000s and 2010s, the deficits soared, as did the national debt and the international trade deficit. Washington ignored all three. Then, in response to the financial panic of 2008, the Federal Reserve bank began printing money. Actually, it no longer had to print it. It could just enter a few keystrokes on a computer and presto!, trillions of dollars came into being. No one considered that something created so easily couldn’t be worth much.

                          Wall Street got even richer from all the phony money, but the real economy, where real people had to try to get jobs, remained in the tank. That kept down inflation, for a while.

                          The first people to realize that dollars had become green confetti were foreigners. Starting in the mid-teens, the dollar began to lose its position as the world’s reserve currency. Gold came back into its own as the only real money, at least internationally. The dollar’s role as reserve currency had given the American economy a huge subsidy. When it lost that subsidy, it tanked.

                          The Federal Reserve responded by creating dollars even faster, by the tens of trillions. All they knew how to do, when a bubble burst, was generate more liquidity to create yet another bubble.

                          But this time, the bubble was the dollar itself. When that bubble burst, beginning here at home in 2019, creating more dollars made the problem worse. But since that is all the Fed knew how to do, that is what it did.
                          By 2023, the Fed was creating dollars by the quadrillions. By March of 2024, that Big Mac cost $500,000. By July, it cost $50 million. Financial Weimar had followed cultural Weimar. The middle class was wiped out.


                          In Washington, Republicans and Democrats pointed fingers at each other, each hoping to ride the wave of middle class fury into long-term power. The public remembered that both parties had voted for the policies that brought the dollar down to where it took ten million to buy a single Mexican peso. That meant the political system offered no hope of a solution.

                          Revolutions and civil wars are the suicide of states. Men and women commit suicide when they are convinced their problems are overwhelming and there is no other way out. Nations rise in revolution or divide in civil war in response to the same conviction: continuation of the status quo is intolerable, and nothing but the death of the state offers any hope of escape from it.

                          The Federal government’s destruction of the dollar, and with it every American’s way of life, solidified the public against it. Not only solidified – radicalized. Afterwards, most Americans felt continued rule by such a government was unbearable. They did not yet know how to escape from under it. But they were ready to embrace any possibility. Including suicide.


                          The government’s response to the economic catastrophe it had created only deepened the public’s alienation. First, Congress indexed its own salaries and those of government employees. That meant their salaries went up week-by-week to keep up with the inflation. The rest of us were left to live as best we could on incomes that fell steadily, in terms of what they would buy.

                          We weren’t the first country to experience hyperinflation, and while everybody’s savings were gone for good, it was possible to stabilize the currency by the usual tough measures: stop printing more money, drastically cut government spending, run a budget surplus, and so on. The Feds refused to do any of it. It would have meant cutting off the parasites, the welfare queens, Wall Street bankers, government contractors, and all the rest. Those folks were the politicians’ base. The Fed kept on inventing money.

                          People tried to cope in the usual ways, by buying gold, hoarding foreign currencies, bartering, etc.

                          The government’s next response was to make ownership of gold illegal. If you already owned some, you had to sell it to the government at a fixed price – for paper dollars that in one day were worth half as much as when you got them, a day later a fourth as much, and so on. By this time, people were using $100 bills for toilet paper. It was cheaper than buying the real thing. Maybe that’s what economists mean by a “soft currency.”

                          Then, the feds ordered everyone to turn in all their foreign money as well. Banks were commanded to convert all foreign currency into dollars and send the renminbi and yen and pesos to Washington. By a secret government order, on December 7, 2024, the banks opened all safety deposit boxes and confiscated any precious metals and foreign money found in them. The rightful owners were not compensated, but fined.

                          Finally, Washington tried to outlaw barter as well. That was hopeless, but they tried. President Cisneros proposed and Congress (with a Republican majority, but in times of crisis the Establishment knows how to stick together) passed a law requiring all citizens to show receipts for any new goods in their possession. Failure to do so resulted in immediate confiscation, plus fines. Enforcement was given over to the IRS, on the reasonable grounds that it had always presumed guilt unless innocence could be proven by documentation. Armed teams of IRS agents would burst into a home, demanding receipts for anything they thought looked new.

                          They still went through the motions of getting a warrant, but “probable cause” included the fact that the family was not starving. If they had food, they were presumed to have bought it. If they had no receipts for it, the food was confiscated too. And they were fined for having it.

                          Down east, we suffered along with the rest as our money turned into litter. But the Christian Marines’ notion that most crises were also opportunities had caught on. Just before Christmas, 2024, I got a letter from Bill Kraft asking if I would join him and a few others in a meeting with Governor Adams on December 27.

                          I went, though going wasn’t easy. Like most people in Maine, I had food and wood for heat, but gasoline was $1.5 billion a gallon by December, so my truck was up on blocks in the barn. I hiked down to Pittsfield, where I got a train for Augusta. We’d gotten passenger trains running again and, like most retro things, found we liked them. The one I rode was pulled by a steam engine converted to burn wood, of which we had plenty, so the fares were affordable.

                          There were about twenty people at the meeting, most of whom I more or less knew. They were the folks, up from the grass roots, who had put the Maine First Party together. I wasn’t sure what I would have to add to a political gathering, but I knew I’d learn a few things.

                          The governor began by saying something a lot of Mainiacs had been thinking. “Gentlemen, we’ve let this whole thing go too far already. Maine has shown it can act independently of Washington. The inflation problem has stymied us, because the currency is controlled from Washington. But we have to be able to think our way around that – and then do something. We cannot get peoples’ savings back, but there must be a way we can give them a currency that doesn’t lose value faster than it can be printed. I called you here to get your ideas on how we might do that.”

                          “Why don’t we just print our own money?” asked a fellow from Skowhegan.
                          “We’ve thought of that,” the governor replied. “We’re willing to do it; I don’t care whether Washington likes it or not. The problem is, what do we back it with? The ‘full faith and credit’ of a government, even our government, doesn’t mean anything any more. Our economists tell me any paper currency we issue will quickly lose value, the same as the dollar has.”
                          Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don't have brains enough to be honest. - Benjamin Franklin

                          I have but one person on my ignore list. Can you guess who it is?


                          • #28
                            Chapter 17 Part 2

                            Bill Kraft spoke up. “As usual, history shows us the way to handle this. In the 1980s and 1990s, a number of other countries, faced the same problem. They solved it, and we can solve it by doing what they did.”

                            “What did they do?” Governor Adams asked.

                            “They established a new currency,” Kraft replied. “But to maintain its value, they only issued as much of it as they could back with foreign currency or gold. To guarantee that, they gave all authority to issue the new money to an independent Currency Board. The government could not give an order to run the presses. Once people understood that, they came to trust the new money. And it held its value.”

                            “Where do we get the gold or foreign currency to back our new money?” the Governor responded.

                            “We seize and sell or lease abroad all the federal assets in Maine that might be worth something,” said a fellow I didn’t know. He turned out to be Steve Ducen, an economist who had worked in Washington as long as he could take it, then fled up here. He had a prosperous apple farm near Lewiston now. “Start with the national parks; Japanese hotels will lease them in a heartbeat and put in golf courses. They’ll bring in Japanese tourists by the planeload, and we’ll feed ’em all the raw lobster they can eat.”

                            “Asia is booming, and we can cash in on that,” he continued. “American antiques are all the rage among wealthy Chinese. Maine has plenty, and we can make more. I’m already selling more than half my apples in Japan, Korea, and Singapore. With some clever marketing, we could sell potatoes, maple syrup, you name it. People who eat dogs and sea cucumbers will eat anything.”

                            “We don’t need to look just to Maine folks for foreign currency,” added John Rushton, President of the First Bank of Portland. “We can allow any American citizen to set up a gold or foreign currency account in a Maine bank. They bring their dollars up here, sell them for whatever they’ll bring in foreign currency, and set up an account. And, if they export, instead of having the feds turn the payments they get from abroad into worthless dollars, they can have them paid right into one of our banks. They can withdraw either the foreign money, or ours, as they choose.”

                            This sounded good to me, but I saw one question no one had addressed. So I asked it. “How do you keep the feds from getting into these accounts electronically and sucking the foreign money out?”

                            Bill Kraft had the answer – a perfect Retroculture answer. “There won’t be any electronic records,” he said. “Remember, we had banks long before we had computers. We just go back to doing it manually, with passbooks and account ledgers and the like. We run these accounts just the way they would have been handled in 1950 – or 1850, for that matter. In effect, we just pull the plug.”

                            I had to admit that was the ultimate electronic security system.
                            We did it. Maine began issuing Pine Tree Dollars in March, 2025. We soon got the kind of prices people remembered from before the U.S. dollar began its long slide. A loaf of bread again cost 15 cents. A pound of hamburger cost 20 cents. Gas stayed expensive at over $50 per gallon; we had no Maine oil. But horse feed was cheap because we grew our own.

                            Within six months, Pine Tree Dollars were in demand throughout the United States. Foreign currency flooded into Maine from the rest of the country, most of which was exchanged for Pine Tree Dollars. Within Maine, prices were stable, for the first time anyone could remember.

                            Washington was unhappy, of course, but it was now too weakened morally to dare any serious countermoves. Beyond denouncing us all once again as “racists, sexists, and classists,” the only action the Feds took was to order the U.S. Customs Service on Maine’s borders with Quebec and New Brunswick (both now independent) to seize all Pine Tree Dollars as well as gold and foreign currency held by people trying to cross.

                            Bill Kraft asked me if the Christian Marines could help out on this one. I said I thought we could. I had preached all along that we had to wait for the Federal Government to fall of its own weight. Now, it was down for the count. It would thrash around on the mat for a while, but I knew it would never get on its feet again. So we could be bolder.

                            On July 2, 2025, a mixed force of Maine Guard and Christian Marines arrived at the border crossings and rounded up the Customs officers. We gave them a choice. They could join the new Maine Customs Service and follow Maine laws, or stay with the feds and get shipped south. Most lived in Maine and were happy to join us. They despised Washington as much as any of us.

                            Just thirteen Customs agents said they wanted to remain with the feds. We took them down to Augusta, where on July 4, in festive fashion, they were paraded in their U.S. Customs Service Uniforms. We then bent them over, cut the seat out of their trousers, painted their backsides red and bundled them all into a boxcar with waybills for Washington, D.C. As their train pulled out of the station, the Governor led the crowd in a rousing toast to Maine, a sound dollar, and liberty.
                            Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don't have brains enough to be honest. - Benjamin Franklin

                            I have but one person on my ignore list. Can you guess who it is?


                            • #29
                              Chapter 18

                              In September of 2025, little Suzy La Montaigne, age seven, came home from her elementary school in New Orleans, Louisiana, with a headache and sniffles. Three days later she was dead. Ten days later, so were all but three of her classmates and her teacher. A week after that, only a handful of the students in her school were still alive, and people of all ages were dropping dead on the streets of the community her school served.

                              When scientists first began fooling around with genetic engineering in their labs, real conservatives warned there would be consequences. When man plays God, bad things happen. But companies perceived that money could be made, so genetic engineering took off. It quickly permeated the food supply. As the technology continued to be developed, word of how to do it spread. Unlike nuclear weapons, genetically engineered diseases did not require much in the way of facilities to develop. Kids could do it in the basement – and soon some were.

                              No one ever figured out whether N’Orleans flu, as it came to be known, happened as an accident of genetic engineering or was deliberately created as a weapon of war. If it were the latter, we never determined who used it on the American South, or why.

                              People did figure out, fast, that N’Orleans flu spread easily, like other flu, but it had a mortality rate of about 80%.

                              The Plague was back. Contrary to what Americans had been taught, the Middle Ages were a highly successful society. What brought them down was disease. Ring around the rosy, pocket full of posies, ashes, ashes, we all fall down. Dead. It’s an old rhyme about the Plague. You still hear children sing it, not knowing what it means. When N’Orleans flu hit, they found out. In response, people did the only thing they could. They panicked.


                              To understand the Great Panic of 2025, you have to realize that by that time, no one trusted any American institution. The hyper-inflation had destroyed what little remained of the federal government’s legitimacy. The media was equally mistrusted. People had figured out what it called “news” had been reduced to another form of entertainment. The culturally Marxist academics and mainstream clergy were taken seriously only by each other.
                              The average American’s life was dominated by one emotion: fear. He feared crime, he feared for his job, he feared the government, he feared for his children, and, most of all, he feared the future. His fears were realistic.

                              They reflected the reality that pressed in on him from every side.

                              So when this new fear arose, the fear of plague, of a new Black Death lurking in every bus and elevator, shopping mall and office building, he panicked. The Establishment tried to reassure him, to deny the evidence, to damn those who had warned about genetic engineering as “Luddites.” But it was all lies and he knew it. He knew the Establishment lied about everything.

                              People simply fled. They gathered up their children and ran for the country. It was the only reasonable response, the only possible response. It didn’t work, because the country soon filled up with people, which is what other people were trying to avoid. So they fled further. Woods and fields became gypsy camps. Like the gypsies, when they needed food or clothing or weapons, they stole them. Their money wasn’t worth anything anyway.

                              The woods were pretty in autumn that year; the East had one of its most spectacular seasons for color, the maples decked in brilliant oranges and scarlets. Soon, there were less attractive sights under the trees.

                              At first, the country people welcomed and helped the refugees. Rural areas were still largely Christian. People there helped each other, and felt it their duty to do the same for the newcomers. But too often, the city people brought their ways with them – crime, drugs, noise, and dirt – as well as N’Orleans flu. The rural folk caught the scent of fear, and feared themselves. Soon, militias were being organized in church basements, and bends in country roads became the settings for ambushes. The red and yellow leaves, dying, offered themselves as cheerful shrouds for human dead; no one would bury the bodies for fear of contamination. The carrion-eaters had a feast that winter.

                              The panic was finally suppressed in 2026 by two old Russian generals, General January and General February. The winter was a harsh one almost everywhere. Just another sign of climate change, the experts said. As the snow fell and the mercury plunged, people started walking home. The risk of a rapid death by disease seemed preferable to a slow and agonizing death by starving and freezing, or murder. By Spring, the country people had their woods and fields to themselves again. However, they did not disband their militias.

                              Citizens demanded that the government do something, now that they couldn’t run away. And government did. It got a ruling from the Supreme Court that said people with disease were “disabled,” so that any preventive measures like a quarantine would be illegal discrimination. No one was surprised. And they all knew there was nothing they could do about it.


                              In Maine, of course, things were different. The government in Washington was merely a polite fiction for us, and we paid as little attention to its Supreme Court as to a headline in a supermarket tabloid. We moved promptly to protect public health.

                              Anyone who showed early symptoms of N’Orleans flu was quarantined, along with all other members of their household. We had very few cases because we also put controls on entry into Maine. The lack of motor traffic due to the price of gas meant most people coming in came by train, and there weren’t many of them; the American tourist was an extinct animal. All trains had to stop while passengers got a quick blood test; those who didn’t pass were put on the next train back. The airports and the Interstates had a similar rule; the rest of the roads we closed. Washington squawked, of course, but we didn’t bother to reply. Vermont and New Hampshire soon joined us, which reopened the border roads. The deep South states also adopted a policy of quarantine; they too were starting to act in concert.

                              The fact that we learned early how to control our borders and who and what crossed them was central to our survival. As the 21st century moved on and the world was engulfed by wars, every surviving state had to shut their borders down tight. Anyone who had the slightest laxness in border controls was quickly hit by a genetically engineered disease. Those growing parts of the world where the state had disintegrated were depopulated.

                              It’s funny how all the “experts” in the early 21st century were predicting a future of “globalism” and “international economy,” where people and goods moved freely throughout the world. The reality is, it now takes two years to get a European visa, and when you get there, you face two weeks of medical tests at your own expense followed by six weeks of quarantine even if you pass. And that’s if you’re coming from another state. If you’re from someplace where the state has disappeared, you can’t go there. Illegal immigrants are shot on site.
                              Tricks and treachery are the practice of fools, that don't have brains enough to be honest. - Benjamin Franklin

                              I have but one person on my ignore list. Can you guess who it is?


                              • #30
                                Re: Victoria: A 4th Generation War Novel

                                Wow RR even tho you didn't write this tale I thank you for adding it to the Patriot Story Board. Just now finished it. Just as the author I've never been keen on the government ANY government working on genetic engineering. Seen plenty of movies where somewhere in a secret lab deep underground one of the scientists trips and breaks a vial of some new toxic agent that's been weaponized. As the container breaks and disperses into the room alarms go off and the facility automatically closes all doorways. A coded message is transmitted to the POTUS as he is whisked off to Air Force 1 and Def Con 1 is activated as this now airborne viral agent reaches an air duct and is picked up by the afternoon breeze and floats off towards Los Angeles..
                                Member of American Legion since 2014.
                                Picked up New Trick 2 day 3.15.18 w/screen brightness. And yes I do have Ctrl Alt Delete.