From Laws of the Jungle, Chapter 10
To understand ungovernability, imagine a cult with a dictatorial leader. He takes his followers' money, tells them how to behave and frequently uses corporal punishment to keep them in line. The cult leader has his own set of laws and his own police force. Such an organization resembles a theoretically good government deriving its "just power from the consent of governed."
Let's say that you, as a cult member, became disillusioned with the leader but were intimidated by the reprisals his guards might take against you. You could band together with others of the same opinion, kill the leader, and overpower his guards. Then you could reform the cult and make yourself the new leader. This course of action is analogous to a revolution.
But maybe you have a revelation of the cult as outsiders see it: a band of fools who believe ridiculous doctrines and are led by a maniac. You'd walk away in disgust. You'd still fear the guards, the cult's police force, but your attitude would have changed. What you had seen as legitimate force would now appear as criminal activity, and you would not be inhibited from striking back however you could. From the cult's point of view, you would have become an anarchist.
Now imagine that everyone in the cult shared your vision. All the members, even the guards, simply go home and try to forget the whole stupid organization, leaving the leader to drum up a new set of idiots to follow him. That's what anarchy means: going home and minding your own business.
The carnage at Jonesville horrified me and caused me to ask a simple question: How can a person put his life into another person's hands? Jim Jones's followers had more faith in him than I ever had in anyone, including my wife and parents. I love my wife more than anyone. I trust her more than anyone, but if she started acting like Jim Jones, I would take precautions. Maybe I'm a sociopath. Maybe Laws of the Jungle is the politics of sociopathy. I'll leave that question for you to answer.
The ghosts of Jonesville haunted the FBI at Waco. The government spent $50 to $100 million in an effort to prevent another Jonesville. They failed miserably. This failure, by itself, was sufficient reason for Janet Reno to resign. Virtually any other course of action at Waco would have saved more lives. [See "What the Hell Is a Dialectic?" for an analysis of the propaganda that makes these failures palatable to the people.] I don't believe that the FBI intended to kill the Branch Davidians. I subscribe to the principle that there is no reason to invoke a conspiracy when simple incompetence and stupidity can explain an action. Besides, if the government had set out to kill Koresh's followers, they wouldn't have killed so many. We are talking about the same government that fought against Viet Nam, a country that was only marginally better armed than the Branch Davidians.
Recent revelations have caused me to rethink my ideas about Waco. After 6 years and 2 Congressional investigations, we learn that incendiary grenades were used at Waco. Everyone who was asked, including the FBI director and the attorney general, testified that no such weapons were used. These grenades were used 4 hours before the fire so that it was impossible for them to have started the fire. Why lie about them? The answer is fairly obvious. The authorities were lying about a number of details and this was one of the more innocent ones.
We are supposed to believe that this incident is the only one that was concealed at Waco. Since these particular grenades could not have started the fire, we are supposed to believe that the tapes exculpate the FBI. Judging from talk shows, many people accept this line of reasoning. But it doesn't make sense and it isn't good law. If you are proved to have lied under oath about a single matter, the judge will tell the jury that the whole of your testimony is unreliable. Unfortunately, Clinton's propaganda machine has undermined the common sense of many people. We know that Clinton lied here and broke some laws there, but we were told that these transgressions did not "rise to the level of impeachment." If a woman could prove conclusively that her husband cheated on her once, do you suppose that she would believe that it was a one-time occurrence? Of course not. The chances of obtaining absolute proof are so small that she would have to be fairly lucky if he had cheated on her a hundred times. When we have absolute proof that we were lied to about Waco, we have to assume that we were lied to multiple times. To believe otherwise strains my credulity. Am I being cynical? Is my attitude a part of my sociopathic politics?
Clinton provided some humor by issuing the following statement: "The President is deeply concerned that the attorney general appears to have been misled and may have been lied to." Apparently misleading and lying are presidential monopolies. Reno is reported as angry at the FBI and no reporter questions her indignation, so we are supposed to believe that she actually is angry. She sent federal marshals to confiscate the tape in question. I cannot discover what else she confiscated, and her possession of the evidence does not assure me that I am going to know the truth about Waco any time soon.
Here's the picture the press is giving us. Clinton left the details of the siege to Reno. Reno left the details to field agents. A couple of field agents used incendiary devices 4 hours before the fire started and hid that fact from everyone for six years. Aside from this lie, everything we have been told about Waco was true. The siege was the biggest FBI operation in history. It made headlines for 51 days. It cost $50 to $100 million. That's more money than Starr spent in his successful investigation of the president, an investigation that took years. I believe that Clinton approved every detail of the operation and that Reno carefully monitored every action of every agent. In other words, I believe that Reno knew about the incendiary grenades. But maybe I'm being cynical.
Here's my theory of what happened. Military personnel (the Delta Force) were involved in the attack. They were involved legally because the president did authorize their presence. Clinton expected a heroic rescue a la Entebbe. When Koresh took matters out of his hands and the operation literally blew up in Clinton's face, he did what he always does: He lied; he covered up; he blamed other people. Fortunately there was a woman handy to take the blame. I'm probably wrong and I wouldn't be surprised if something more sinister occurred at Waco.
Reno is calling for an independent investigation. "Her dream candidate [to head the inquiry] is a middle-of-the road Republican," a spokesman reported. We are once again treated to slanderous impeachment propaganda. We are supposed to believe that a political enemy of the Clinton administration would not conduct an honest investigation. After having seen Clinton in action during the Paula Jones scandal (the one the press called the Monica Lewinsky scandal), I don't believe that we will ever know what happened at Waco. Remember that Janet Reno is all that stood between Clinton and the appointment of an independent counsel to investigate Red Chinese campaign contributions in the 1996 election. She continues to control that investigation. If anything happened to her, Clinton would be hard pressed to find anyone so loyal.
I have my own dream candidate to head the inquiry. I would give absolute power to subpoena witnesses, to compel testimony, to grant immunity, and to prosecute any crime related to the affair. If he were given this power, Timothy McVeigh might get to the truth about Waco.
Timothy McVeigh for Special Prosecuter.