this is one of the better interviews of Dave McGowan on his book Weird Scenes Inside the Canyon. i like the way the host leads viewers to conclusions that some have told me are hard for them to grasp when reading the evidence itself. McGowan has stated many times that he thinks there was a coordinated operation to sabotage the antiwar movement although a stronger thesis in Weird Scenes can be tenuous for those who don’t follow him or his other work. he brings up some very logical questions toward the end of this that are worthwhile to consider on their own even if he doesn’t name a larger Operation Hippie or whatever to give people the ultimate “smoking gun” that they have been conditioned to ask of “conspiracy”* researchers.
one of the questions that is most important and that is relatable to the “blowback” terror organizations of today has to do with the open drug use and trafficking done by many young male hippies of draft age — there were simple solutions that the state could have utilized to rein in these guys: drug laws, jailing for avoiding the draft, etc. so it follows in his overall examination that there were conscious efforts to replace the face of the antiwar movement; long haired dropouts who wanted nothing more than to feel good are a lot safer of a sell for youth who wanted to rebel rather than allowing militant communists to have the first crack at them unmolested. Mae Brussell made a salient point as well with regard to how the “freakish” scenes on the coasts, from the west especially, were pitted against the “heartland” — true americans versus the effete liberals. this is still visible today, as an axiom that “fellow americans” use to judge each other to some degree.
i stumbled across this video today after having some “fun” poked at me during the week for having the gall, i guess, to form conclusions from my own reading and writing. the nerve! it really doesn’t bother me that much personally, but what does bother me is the exceptionalism that comes along with the denials, especially on the left. maybe i would have laughed at such a thing at one time, but McGowan’s work among other lesser known researchers has provided for evidence to come to conclusions about questions that i’ve had lingering in my mind about the overall management of the music industry and other aspects of pop culture.
one simple thing to ask oneself even if they can’t fathom some larger, official operation is why were so many connected musicians related to higher ups in intel and military branches? there are talented people all over the place, and that’s not to say that many of the musicians of that time weren’t talented as well. couldn’t it just be as simple as their ability to control the scene, without any more specific symbolic meanings of the music? i think a lot of people get hung up here, those who claim to be against capitalism etc, and don’t look at the very simple facts that the unconnected were not allowed in. to go further, however, i think with some 50 – 60 years of hindsight, we can ascertain the damaging aspects of this psychedelic nihilism that emerged. resorting to mocking people who come to such conclusions through investigation as if they are reading chicken entrails to connect presumed unrelated moving parts is missing these emergent properties that the masters didn’t have to use crystal balls themselves to capitalize on.
*Marx demystified the relations of his time that created the miserable conditions proletarians lived in. researchers who are often referred to as “conspiracy theorists” today work to do the same thing. i am a marxist among many who tries to understand the sociology behind the entertainment complex that works to keep people enslaved. the “deep state” and “conspiracy” fields are both central to this investigation as they go further than the first few layers of the symptoms that cause impoverishment today, e.g. the police, the political class, and the controlled mouthpiece outlets, and look at the spectacle the owners themselves operate! remarkably, we still have the ability to glean the key information needed using marxist methods to make sense of all this even if the outlets themselves are sketchy at times and not in line with the marketed, hip left. that critical thinking, hell even reminding people they are capable of it, is something that becomes only more important to hang on to in this environment and that should be demanded from other would-be fellow travelers.