In the TruthMove forum, Mark has called attention to the news story Secret camps and guillotines? Groups make birthers look sane by Steven Thomma, McClatchy Newspapers, Friday, August 28, 2009.
This story mentions Ted Gunderson, who, back in the 1980’s and early 1990’s, was also a major proponent of the “Satanic Ritual Abuse” scare.
According to the McClatchy story:
… Retired FBI agent Ted Gunderson says the government has prepared 1,000 camps for its own citizens. He also says the government has stored 30,000 guillotines to murder its critics, and has stashed 500,000 caskets in Georgia and Montana for the remains.
Why guillotines? “Because,” he wrote in a report obtained by the Southern Poverty Law Center, which tracks hate groups, “beheading is the most efficient means of harvesting body parts.”
Unfortunately, this kind of nuttiness implies that not all FBI whistleblowers are credible. Ditto, all the more so, for CIA whistleblowers. Indeed, one has to wonder whether some alleged “whistleblowers” may in fact still be working for the agencies they allegedly left, spouting disinfo with the aim of discrediting real whistleblowers. Or perhaps some fake whistleblowers are genuinely off their rocker. Either way, they contribute to a climate that makes life much more difficult for real whistleblowers.
Still, it is vitally important to support protections for whistleblowers, and to ensure that their complaints are heard and investigated by some appropriate independent body.
The McClatchy story also refers to an interesting article on the website of the Southern Poverty Law Center, SPLC Report: Return of the Militias, August 12, 2009. This article also discusses the recent revival of the larger Patriot movement. Page 3 contains the following brief mention of what I call grand conspiracy ideology:
Increasingly, Minutemen are giving credence to the sort of fringe conspiracy theories that have long typified militia and other so-called Patriot groups. …
At several eastern San Diego County vigilante camps in mid-May, there were serious discussions about the global banking system being controlled by an ancient secret society called the Illuminati. Another theory floated involved a cult devoted to the Egyptian god of the afterlife, Osiris, operating within the NASA space agency and perhaps arranging with extraterrestrials for a hostile takeover of Earth.
The “Patriot movement,” it should be noted, consists of a motley assortment of groups. The SPLC article describes it as being “made up of paramilitary militias, tax defiers and so-called ‘sovereign citizens.'” I would say that it includes other groups too. Not everyone in We Are Change, for example, is a militia member, a tax resister, or a so-called “sovereign citizen.” Most members of We Are Change probably aren’t any of these, as far as I can tell. Ditto, I would suspect, most members of Oathkeepers.
What, then, does define the “Patriot movement”? As far as I can tell, the two things nearly everyone in the “Patriot movement” has in common are (1) belief in conservative/libertarian economics, e.g. pure laissez-faire plus a desire to return to the gold standard, and (2) grand conspiracy ideology, e.g. belief in “the Illuminati” and fear of “the New World Order.”
I’ll have more to say about Oathkeepers later. In the meantime, here are (1) their main website, (2) their Ten Orders We Will Not Obey, and (3) Retired Sheriff Richard Mack’s response to the SPLC report.