Friday, March 4, 2011

The Coup Against Roosevelt

"MacGuire and the plotters had made a fatal mistake in their choice of a leader, however. "With incredible ineptitude," states Jules Archer in The Plot to Seize the White House, "they had selected the wrong man." The plot, and the men behind it, represented everything Smedley Butler now despised. Over the years his youthful passion for battles abroad had given way to an equally fierce desire to fight hypocrisy at home. He had come to believe that war was a product of corporate greed, that his men had fought for no higher ideal than profit. On August 21, 1931 - a full two years before MacGuire first approached him - Butler had stunned an audience at an American Legion convention in Connecticut when he had said:"

I spent 33 years...being a high-class muscle man for Big Business, for Wall Street and the bankers. In short, I was a racketeer for capitalism...

I helped purify Nicaragua for the international banking house of Brown Brothers in 1909-1912. I helped make Mexico and especially Tampico safe for American oil interests in 1916. I brought light to the Dominican Republic for American sugar interests in 1916. I helped make Haiti and Cuba a decent place for the National City [Bank] boys to collect revenue in. I helped in the rape of half a dozen Central American republics for the benefit of Wall Street...

In China in 1927 I helped see to it that Standard Oil went its way unmolested....I had...a swell racket. I was rewarded with honours, medals, promotions...I might have given Al Capone a few hints. The best he could do was to operate a racket in three cities. The Marines operated on three continents.

Joel Bakan
The Corporation
Penguin Canada, 2004
pages 92-93